"Would you pass me the coaster, darling?"
Mycroft passed her the coaster. Of course he did. Suck-up.
Sherlock sulked, out of sight, behind the sofa. Well, it wasn't like they didn't know he was there, but it was the principle of the thing. In any case, even from back here, he could still see their reflections in the curved silver dish presented to them by the Colombian ambassador. It had a telltale smudge along one corner that meant one of the household help had hesitated over stealing it.
"And the head, please."
Mycroft passed her the head. It slipped, a little, as the severed neck failed to find traction on the tray. Mummy tutted.
"Sherlock, dear, what did I tell you about the cornflour? Line the base. Always line the base."
"If I wasn't dissecting it," Sherlock said, from his non-hiding place, "then I didn't see the point of preparing it."
"Don't be such a child," said Mycroft, condescendingly.
"I am a child."
"You're a nuisance."
"You're a pillock."
"How very mature," Mycroft drawled. "Thanks to you, it'll be another head, wasted. The coroner isn't going to keep letting us claim and behead corpses."
"They're John Does, anyway."
"Even John Does deserve decent burials."
"Says the one who shoved a torture pear up the last corpse's - "
"Now, now, children. Sherlock, come here and watch me do the eye. It'll be very educational."
Sherlock considered rebelling - but then, Mummy knew all his secrets, and could read every inch of him like a map, and could doubtless find some subtle way to torment him, aside from the obvious (being Mycroft's brother).
So he sighed, got up, and dusted off his knees.
Mycroft had that little curl at the corner of his mouth, something he probably thought made him look more like Mummy, all superior and knowing, but instead it just made him look peculiar. And pathetic. Really, really pathetic.
"Would you do up my apron, dearest?"
Sherlock did up her apron, tying the wide, flower-patterned straps behind her back. It was a designer apron. As always.
"Midshipman's Hitch," she said.
Sherlock retied the knot as she asked.
He retied it again.
"Double Carrick Bend."
His fingers fairly flew through this one. Mycroft scowled.
"Good," said Mummy. She didn't even have to turn to check his work. "Now, watch."
She picked up the spoon and the baking powder, and popped out the eye. It made a sound like a very soft cork, and threatened to roll right off the table, until Mycroft cupped a gloved hand and caught it. The socket itself was wet and dark, a tiny cavern.
Mummy was right, as usual. It was all very educational, indeed.