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Seeking Approval

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Victoria Holmes had long since given up the expectation of her eldest son bringing someone home for her to meet, so when Mycroft had rung and informed her that he had someone he wished her to meet, a male someone at that, it had truly shocked her. It wasn’t the fact that the person Mycroft was bringing home was a man that was startling: she’s long expected it of Sherlock given his unusual preoccupations. However, the fact that it was Mycroft bringing home anyone at all when he’d never seemed interested in that kind of relationship before was strange. It was even more so when she found out that the man, Doctor John Watson, ex-Army Captain, was the same person that had moved in and become quick friends with Sherlock.

Fearing at first that this was another one of their rivalries, she’d gone to visit Sherlock herself, having not seen him for far too long. Knowing that Sherlock had never truly learned to share, Victoria hadn’t been sure what to think when Sherlock hadn’t seemed to mind that his brother was seeing John, talking about John finally dating someone who wasn’t completely wrong for him. It was an exceedingly odd thing to hear Sherlock say. And apparently as long as Sherlock got John four days a week, he didn’t mind sharing him with Mycroft. She didn’t let herself think too much about the meaning of that; a mother did not delve too deeply into thoughts of the sex lives of her children.

Victoria wondered about the man, this John Watson who had caught the attention of both her sons, no easy feat at that. Many had pitied her for her children, how gifted and eccentric they were, how they would never fit in, how the world would not accept them if she let them do what they wanted. Those people had proven with their ignorance and cruel words that they weren’t her friends, and she’d done her best to not tether her children with expectations of who they should be and what they should do, despite her instincts to coddle them and hide them from the world she and her husband lived in.

Remembering that day she’d returned from Amsterdam, the day Mycroft confided in her, terrified because he’d thought she’d think him broken or wrong because of it, never failed to make her heart bleed. Victoria had truly thought it was a phase, Mycroft’s lack of interest in the opposite sex, or any sex for that matter, that he’d grow out of it. But as the years passed and things showed no sign of changing, she grew to accept that it was just who Mycroft was. She wouldn’t proclaim to understand it, but she would not ridicule her child or force him to be something he was not.

John Watson. Such a common name. According to the records she’d gathered, he was a good man, a strong man, a loyal and brave man, and sometimes a stupid and impulsive man (though weren’t they all at times), and while not what Victoria would have picked for her son, she wouldn’t interfere. Though if he ever harmed them, Victoria would make the rest of his life very unpleasant. However, she trusted her sons, trusted their judgment.

It made her all the more curious to finally meet him, to see in person the pull of the man that had ensnared her sons.

Finally, the day of the meeting came, and the object of her curiosity stood before her in the foyer with her son.

“Mummy, I’d like you to meet John Watson. John, this is Victoria,” Mycroft said in way of introduction, his fingers curled just an edge too tightly around the handle of his ever-present umbrella.

Despite his age, Victoria couldn’t help but think of him as her little boy, always seeking her approval. But she knew this was different, so much more important to him than his A-levels or his job. That Mycroft wanted her to meet John told her all she needed to know of his feelings.

“Mrs. Holmes, it is a pleasure,” John greeted politely.

Victoria noted the tension in his frame, the movements of his fingers as they twitched with nerves. Then, as Mycroft’s long fingers curled around John’s wrist, John’s head turned, and he offered Mycroft a small smile, his frame instantly relaxing with the light touch. She knew in that moment what her sons saw in this man and was glad all her misgivings were for naught.

With a saucy grin, she inclined her head and corrected, “Victoria, please.”

It was Mycroft’s turn to relax as he understood her acceptance.