Mycroft hesitated a moment his key in the lock of the door, there was definite movement coming from inside the flat. He considered his options-the car had already left at his insistence, his assistant had taken two days leave to go home and visit her family. He could call someone for help and they’d be here in minutes, or he could go on in assess the situation and then ask for help. If it was someone determined to end his life it was doubtful he’d be helped in time anyway, but intelligence suggested that such a threat was at the moment minimal. Therefore he reasoned most likely a burglar of negligible danger.
Mycroft sighed upon opening the door, a burglar would probably have made less mess. Instead a Sherlock had managed to make his kitchen look worse than most crime scenes.
‘Sherlock. How nice of you to pop by and ruin a perfectly good kitchen.’ Mycroft said shutting the door and returning his umbrella to the hat stand, ‘To what do I owe this pleasure? Dr Watson finally kicked you out?’
Sherlock turned and Mycroft had to fight back a laugh, letting a smirk settle in its place. Sherlock’s face was streaked with what he assumed was tomato sauce, his hair was on one side matted and wet sticking to his head and the other sticking up in every direction where he’d clearly run a hand through it. His arms were covered in flour, as was his shirt. He frowned at his older brother.
‘No. John is visiting his family. And he couldn’t kick me out even if he wanted to.’ Sherlock’s tone was petulant ‘You’re early. You should have been home in one hour.’
‘I grew bored of the company at the club. And it was too wet a day to take a walk.’ Mycroft removed his coat and hung it up ‘Which, forgive me if I’m wrong Sherlock, is none of your business.’
Sherlock was about to respond when something began to bubble over quite dramatically on the stove and he wheeled around giving it his full attention until it was moderately under control. Mycroft strode over to the edge of the kitchen and folded his arms, watching as Sherlock fussed from pot to pot gradually bringing whatever it was-Mycroft sniffed-spaghetti Bolognese he guessed, under some form of control.
‘Mycroft?’ Sherlock didn’t turn around, merely continued to poke at the boiling pasta.
‘What are you doing here?’
‘Yes brother dear I can see that. Why are you cooking? I wasn’t aware you knew how. And more accurately why are you doing it in my kitchen?’
Sherlock opened the oven and retrieved some bread rolls balancing kicking the door closed with one foot he lost balance and reached out to save the rolls yelling out in pain when the hot baking tray came down on his hand.
Mycroft was across the kitchen before Sherlock even noticed him move, acting quickly he pulled his brother over to the sink and thrust his hand under the running cold tap. Sherlock cried out in pain but was held there a full two minutes before Mycroft released him.
‘You’ll live.’ Mycroft announced.
Sherlock huffed grumpily.
‘Shall we eat this before it does you any more damage then?’ Mycroft suggested moving towards the stove.
‘No I’ll do it.’ Sherlock insisted wrapping a tea towel around his hand a shoving Mycroft out of the way.
Mycroft help up his hands and backed off allowing Sherlock to busy himself with plates and spaghetti and getting more of the dinner over the counter than on the plates. Eventually satisfied he presented Mycroft with a plate.
They ate mostly in silence aside from Sherlock trying to bait Mycroft into giving away government information or cases he could work on. Mycroft had to admit that despite it’s appearance and the general chaos in its wake the spaghetti was rather good, he smiled a little thinking, a little like the chef. When they had put down their cutlery Mycroft asked;
‘So why is John at home? No problems I trust?’
Sherlock snorted, ‘No.’ he said ‘Father’s Day. Apparently.’
‘Is it?’ Mycroft asked ‘Family visit then.’
‘It’s what people do apparently.’ Sherlock said with a sniff ‘Sentiment.’
‘Quite.’ Mycroft agreed, after a pause he cleared away the plates surveying the chaos in the kitchen and deciding to leave it for later. ‘Tea Sherlock? Or are you rushing off to cause chaos elsewhere.’
Sherlock jumped up. ‘I’ll do it.’
Mycroft frowned but allowed Sherlock to busy himself once more with the kitchen watching from the high backed armchair in the corner of the living room. Serving him tea and a portion of truly magnificent cake he seemed to magic from nowhere, Sherlock eventually sat sipping his own tea in contemplative silence.
‘What is it Sherlock?’ Mycroft asked putting down his own cup.
‘He thinks there’s something wrong with us.’ Sherlock said, not needing to say who.
‘Sherlock, he does live with you.’ Mycroft attempted to tease, but seeing his brother’s pained expression frowned ‘Why?’ he asked
‘Family. Sentiment.’ Sherlock shrugged.
There was a long pause.
‘I think we do ok.’ Mycroft said eventually.
Sherlock looked over at his brother who was smiling at him, slowly Sherlock smiled back.
‘More tea?’ Mycroft asked.
Sherlock nodded and made to lean forward and pour, Mycroft waved him away.
‘I’ll be Mother.’ He said.
‘Or Father.’ Said Sherlock as he accepted the cup from Mycroft.
A slow sad smile this time spread across Mycroft’s face this time. Slowly and deliberately he set down his own cup and stood moving to where Sherlock sat, gently he took the cup from Sherlock’s hands and put it down. He sat gently on the sofa where Sherlock was perched and slowly, tentatively as if approaching a frightened animal reached out to his brother. At the touch Sherlock melted into him and clung on desperately. They sat for a long time in until darkness descended on the flat, when they pulled apart and Mycroft pretended not to notice the damp stain on his shirt where Sherlock had rested his head.