‘I am terribly sorry’ Mycroft’s well-enunciated and awfully apologetic voice filtered through the phone. ‘Something’s come up, I’m sure you understand what it’s like. I’ll call you later in the week if that’s amenable to you’.
Lestrade sighed as he clicked off his voicemail function. He felt like throwing his phone at the wall in a fit of teenage pique. It seemed like it was too much to find a night for them to see each other, and he was starting to wonder what the point of it all was. If you didn’t see each other, surely you might as well move on? Greg really liked Mycroft, so much he feared he was becoming a tad besotted with the man. However Greg wasn’t particularly patient when it came to dating. After two disastrous long-term relationships, a wasted 2 year excuse of a marriage and the odd one-night stand he was beginning to feel every one of his 46 years. Was it too much to ask for to be happy and wanted in a relationship? He had dated commitment-phobe Ian who had strung him along for 5 years, citing they were ‘having fun, so why ruin it?’. Next came baby-crazy Tom who cooed over baby grows on their first date. Greg hadn’t felt ready to be a father so that hadn’t lasted long. His marriage was a pathetic attempt for middle-aged stability. It may be a bit sad to want to be married and in love at his age, but that’s what he wanted, needed. And how could he find this for himself when he felt like he was having a relationship with Mycroft’s voicemail.
It had been a long, dreary day at work where the more interesting cases had gone to the young and keen new detectives and Lestrade had been forced to look over their paperwork and ‘keep an eye on them’. It had made him very grouchy and his team had noted this and kept well away from him. Sally had dropped off a coffee earlier, but had retreated with her arms touching her shoulders in the universal gesture for ‘Don’t shoot’ when he had growled at her to leave him alone. She seemed brighter though, possibly due to the rumours about Anderson being moved up North due to a mistake over an evidence file. Sally had confessed to him one night, over a few too many, that she and Richard didn’t really get on that well and it was just a physical thing.
Sally had rested her head on her arms, tilting her head and peering at him. ‘You know when you’ve had a fucking terrible day and you know that tomorrow will be the same? All you want is someone to touch you, look at you and make you feel bigger than yourself, just for a minute?’ She had sighed, her curls dropping in front of her eyes. ‘Well he’s convenient and there and willing.’
Lestrade had attempted a paternal pat to her head. Sally’s eyes narrowed.
‘I’m not asking for sympathy. I know I can find a better bloke, but when do we have the bloody time?’
Lestrade nodded in agreement, scratching his hand over his stubbly jaw.
‘I haven’t seen you with anyone lately’ she began, eyes twinkling. ‘What happened to Hank?’
‘His name wasn’t Hank’ Lestrade reminded her, not for the first time.
‘Should have been. He was very USA’ Sally mimed twirling a flag.
‘He was from Washington, and there’s nothing wrong with being patriotic…’
‘Remember his car horn!’ Sally came alive, darting up in her seat and grinning, ‘the American national anthem’.
‘Fine’ Lestrade sighed, taking a much needed sip of his pint. ‘He was a bit much’
Sally raised a dark eyebrow at him, scrunching up her mouth.
‘Okay, too much’ Lestrade agreed.
Lestrade’s afternoon consisted of an awkward conversation with his father, who seemed to be only clinging onto life to see his potential grandchildren. He didn’t have the heart to remind him that his two children were far off, himself a gay policeman who would be lucky to get adoption at his age; and his sister who was seemingly trying to break John Watson’s Three Continent record. He might as well buy his Dad a puppy and break it to him gently.
He finished his paperwork, dumping it messily in his tray and pretending not to see the last form he had neglected to do properly. He scraped a hand through his hair and stretching his shoulders, swaying in his seat.
His phone beeped.
‘And I cannot do this weekend. I have to go to a work function. Apologies’.
Greg swore under his breath and tried to ignore the rush of disappointment. He knew Mycroft was lying. It wasn’t a work function, it was Mycroft’s cousin’s wedding. He knew because John had talked about nothing else after Sherlock had asked him to come, and he had had to sit through numerous suit fittings; trying to avoid seeing Sherlock’s amorous pawing. He had laughed though, to see John so flustered and his wide eyes at his reflection.
‘It’s too much’ John said, looking at his reflection in the mirror to speak to Sherlock.
‘Don’t be stupid, John’ Sherlock told him, admiring him.
‘I’m not the one getting married!’ John laughed, straightening his lapels. The suit was a beautiful dove grey, with a blue silk shirt and tie. It surprised Greg at how handsome John looked. His eyes looked very blue and the seamstresses had cast him many covetous glances - to Sherlock's annoyance.
‘Maybe someday you will’ Lestrade joked, raising an eyebrow.
Instead of what he had expected, John’s embarrassed dismissal and Sherlock’s indifference, he was presented with a flushed Sherlock and a endearingly shy John.
‘Maybe’ Sherlock murmured quietly, shooting a quick glance up at John.
Lestrade texted John.
‘Is that wedding thing still on this weekend?’
John replied quickly. ‘Yes, Sherlock is wanting to buy them a pet. Why?’
‘What sort of pet? Mycroft is pretending he has work’.
This time he had to wait for the reply. He wasn’t surprised, he reckoned John would feel sorry for him and not know what to say.
‘A tortoise. Don’t ask. Oh, that’s odd’.
‘But not surprising. Thinking of moving on’.
‘Really? Want me to ask Sherlock?’
‘No, please don’t. Thanks mate’.
With his mind made-up Lestrade send a quick text to Mycroft.
‘I know you have work, but need to see you tonight, it’s important’.
‘Certainly. Will 9:15pm do?’
‘Fine. Will see you at yours then’.