Beside him, Gregory is speaking, a soft, low rasp, and has been for the last five minutes.
Mycroft shifts in the uncomfortable plastic hospital chair and tries to allow the wash of words to drown out the dull buzzing that has overwhelmed his usually orderly thought processes. To an outside observer, he appears calm: concerned, maybe even worried, but waiting, confident in the medical staff tending to his brother. It is a facade years of diplomatic work have perfected. Inwardly, he is a mess of helplessly churning mind and roiling gut.
He's only hearing bits and pieces (bomber and snipers, John and water and Sherlock, surgeon and pull through), but he's not all that interested in the content.
It's the tone that's keeping him together, a steady, gentle litany that Gregory is offering for him.
For both of them.
Out of the corner of his eye, he can see that the voice is the only steady part of Gregory. His hands are twisting, seemingly trying to form themselves into some sort of impossible Escher-inspired knot. It's an attempt, Mycroft knows, designed to keep Gregory here, inside by Mycroft's side, and not outside trying to smother his worry with cigarette smoke.
Somehow, the knowledge that he is not alone in his panic soothes some of it away. Enough to take one of Gregory's hands in his and interlock their fingers. Holds tight.
The contact silences him, makes him whip his head around to meet Mycroft's eyes.
They sit like that in silence for a moment, and then:
"They'll be all right."