It’s not until the third time the wall got littered with bullet-holes (this time in the shape of a rabbit) and the fifth time Mrs. Hudson’s threatened to raise the rent that John finally stepped in.
“Sherlock,” he said, hugging his laptop closer as Sherlock shot him a glare—the last time they’d gone through this, he’d ended up having to buy a new one, “Why don’t you look for a new case? I’m sure there’s something interesting on the website or in the news by now.”
Sherlock continued strumming at his violin, playing another progression of dissonant chords, “Define interesting.”
John sighed, but flicked through the blog’s requests, “Well, there’s something on—”
“Dull,” cut in Sherlock, setting his violin down on the floor and flopping onto his back on the couch. “Admit it, there’s simply nothing of interest happening.”
“Well, maybe you could turn your attention to other things—”
“Like what? Knitting? Origami? Board games?”
“Oh, God, no,” The poor cluedo board, John would miss it. “No, I mean maybe helping out others. With something that isn’t related to murders and crime. Until the next interesting job, at least?”
Sherlock rolled his eyes, “Oh, that sounds wonderful, John. Why don’t we all go prancing hand in hand across the clouds while we’re at it, too?”
“Oh—for Christ’s sake. I’m sure if you bother your brother, he’d have something for you in an instant.”
“No, no, he’s busy searching for a partner to trick mummy into believing he has something of a love life,” dismissed Sherlock.
John blinked. “Partner?”
“Mm, yes. He ‘s doing his best to avoid the blind date she will undoubtedly thrust upon him if she finds him without a partner.”
“Ah.” John paused. “Your mother does this often?”
Sherlock shrugged, “Oh, yes, every year since we’ve come of age.”
“Usually scared them off or acted unbearably rude until they left. I have you, now, anyhow. Which reminds me. She wants to meet you soon.”
John took another second to gather his thoughts. “You—”
“I am off to fix my brother’s love life.” Sherlock jumped off the couch and rushed to the door.
“We’re having lunch with your mother when?” John shouted after him, exasperatedly wringing his hands.
“Dinner, at month’s end,” Sherlock called back, already slamming the front door behind him.
Mycroft stepped into his flat, flicking the light on cautiously.
Foot tapping impatiently against his table, Sherlock sat with one handcuffed Sebastian Wilkes on his couch.
“Mycroft, finally, your assistant made it seem as if you’d be at your office all night.” Sherlock waved his hand dismissively at the man trembling beside him, “I’ve taken it into my own hands to schedule dinner plans for you.”
Mycroft blinked, mind working a little slower than usual after a day spent reorganising… mixed affairs. “It’s not that I don’t appreciate your visit, brother dear, but—”
John took this time to burst in through the front door, yelling furiously, “Sherlock! I told you three times already. Just because he works with utter pricks doesn’t mean he wants to date one.”
Sherlock frowned, “You’re sure?”
“Yes,” said John emphatically.
“I would rather not have your leftovers, either,” added Mycroft.
Sherlock’s frown deepened, “Fine, then.” He dragged Sebastian up after him, shoving both him and John out the door muttering about wasted dinner reservations.
“You could’ve at least tried fixing up Greg’s before moving on to your brother, you know,” said John sternly, watching Sebastian run away from them. “You did ruin his Christmas.”
Sherlock’s eyes narrowed. “I’m sorry, I didn’t notice when I became the matchmaker for everyone.”
“He’s going to kill you,” said John, not a hint of humor in his voice.
“Nonsense, he needs me.” Sherlock continued twisting the lockpick into the doorknob.
“You’re right. He’ll just punch you.”
“I don’t see why.”
“She’s practically his bloody sister, Sherlock! The Westermarck effect, does it mean nothing to you?” John sighed and ran a hand down his face, “This is illegal, it’s not going to work, and either he or she is going to punch you in the face.”
Sherlock stopped picking at the door for a second, looking up at John with another frown. “You’re sure they’re going to punch me?”
“Punch us, and probably everyone related to us.”
Sherlock sighed, but stood up, stowing the lockpick away. “And I thought Sergeant Donovan might actually appreciate the gesture,” he grumbled.
“No,” said John.
“Really?” Sherlock looked back down at the notes he had scribbled down onto an errant sheet of paper. “But I was absolutely sure you were attracted to—”
“No,” said John again, this time even more firmly. “I will not go on a date with Mycroft as an experiment.”
“No, Sherlock,” said John, “And I will punch you if you refuse to stop.”
“For Christ’s sake—no, I will not go out with Greg either.”
“I swear—Sherlock. You’re not going out with Greg. Or your brother, for that matter. Westermarck effect, Sherlock!”
Sherlock looked mildly sick, “Me and Mycroft?”
“Do you really think he’s interested?” asked Molly, excitement radiating from her, “He did seem quite nice.”
Sherlock sighed. “Yes, of course. Dull.” He passed her a folded note, “Restaurant and time as listed. While not extremely formal, please dress appropriately.”
He snagged John’s arm and pulled him out of the room, mind working to find a suitable date for Mycroft. His assistant? No, she was much more like his sister. Dimmock or Gregson?
“I think you might’ve actually done something right for once,” said John with wonder.
“Yes, of course,” replied Sherlock absentmindedly. No, no, they were much too slow. Anderson was out of the question. Mike’s name was much too similar…
Something felt off, like he’d forgotten something.
“And why are we here again?” John peeked over his menu to glare at Sherlock. He liked the restaurant, but spying on a date just felt like a major intrusion of privacy.
Greg and Molly smiled shyly at each other, Greg with a hand scratching at the back of his neck and Molly with her fingers playing with the plastic menus.
“To make sure if it goes well, of course.” Sherlock slipped the menu under his elbow, cupping his chin with his palm, “And gather data on Lestrade’s dating habits.”
“That’s not creepy. At all.” John sighed, “Will we be here long enough to eat, at least?”
John frowned. “That’s not an answer.”
Sherlock hummed noncommittally.
Molly blushed red while Greg laughed, bright smiles on both their faces. It was adorable, really.
“Oh, dear, what have we here?”
John’s head shot to the side, staring at the woman—Irene Adler—primly sitting at their table. How she had dragged a chair up without his noticing, he would never know.
“Miss Adler,” greeted Sherlock.
“What,” said John intelligently.
“She has such potential, you know. I’d rather not see that wasted on your dear Detective Inspector, charming as I’m sure he is.” Irene’s smile was as cold as ice. “So please, excuse me gentlemen. I have a date to crash.”
She walked over to Molly and Lestrade’s table, saying a few words and smiling quite genially as she dragged Molly away. Greg stared after them in mild confusion and horror, reminiscent of the own look on John’s face.
John wondered when most of his conversations with Sherlock started like this. It was almost sad when he thought on it.
“No,” repeated John for the fiftieth time that week. “Absolutely not. Worst idea yet.”
“A crazed psychopath,” finished John. “A crazed psychopath you are not trying to set up with your brother.”
Sherlock frowned. “I don’t see what’s wrong. Mycroft can handle himself fine.”
John sighed and dragged a hand down his face.
John glanced at the sitting room again before quickly turning back to Sherlock. “On our sofa—”
“Yes,” stressed Sherlock, agitatedly pacing around the kitchen. “Please stop reminding me, I’ve been stuck here for over twenty minutes.”
John blinked. “That long, really?”
“They have surprisingly short refractory periods for men of their age.“ Sherlock closed his eyes. “Deleted, deleted, deleted.”
“I think the phrase you were looking for was closer to extremely insatiable libidos.”
“Deleted,” said Sherlock forcefully.
“Watch out, you might strain something,” said John dryly. “How’d it start, anyway?”
Sherlock glared at him, “It had seemed a good idea at the moment. I didn’t know it’d end up with them—fornicating on our couch.” He shut his eyes again, firmly saying, “Deleted.”
John couldn’t help it—he laughed.