Sherlock sits beside him in the bleachers, unmoving, not even a fidget of his fingers, nothing as he watches the football game with John Watson: Starring Center Forward. Greg would have been on that field if he hadn’t torn his ACL last year during a tournament. Not being on the team anymore had made the game unbearable to watch.
“You’re staring.” Greg mutters privately, not wanting the crowd near them to hear.
Sherlock certainly doesn’t hear him, or if he does he’s ignoring him because he continues to track John Watson down to the goal.
He knows Sherlock doesn’t know a single thing about the game. It’s the person who’s playing that he’s watching.
“Sherlock” Greg bumps into Sherlock’s side to catch his attention. Sherlock glances over at him quickly, a look of irritation taking over the nearly blank look he had sported while watching John. “Stop staring.”
His face glowers before he’s pulling out his mobile and checking the time. “I have to go anyway, fencing.” Sherlock stands and leaves without another word, like usual.
Greg is left to watch the game by himself. He could have been on the field at this moment if he hadn’t screwed up a year ago.
He’s in the parking lot waiting with John, who surprisingly came up to him after the game and started a conversation. Greg knows if he waits long enough, Sherlock will come out of fencing practice to meet Mycroft who picks him up after school.
It would be the first time Greg and Mycroft would be together with Sherlock and John as well. A thrill travels through his body at the thought; it could be almost like a double date if they could manage it.
Surely enough Sherlock is walking out of the Gym and heading towards the queue of cars, Mycroft isn’t here yet. Greg knows the sleek charcoal grey jaguar the man drives; he knows the distinct sound it makes as well.
So Greg lifts his hand and shouts for Sherlock when he sees him. John turns to look at Sherlock as well and Greg can see John smile at the boy in question. Sherlock, who had frozen to his spot before finally moving towards him, this was good; it would be the first time Sherlock and John were to talk outside of Chemistry.
“Hey Sherlock” Greg greets, having the urge to cut all awkwardness that could possibly happen. This was Sherlock’s chance.
Sherlock grunts and nods at him as greeting without saying anything else.
“Good practice?” John grins at Sherlock, not bothered at being ignored.
He can see the confusion in Sherlock’s expression and finds himself feeling gleeful, that expression hardly made an appearance as far as he knows. And suddenly the look was gone.
“You know about fencing?” Sherlock asks.
John’s grin falters a bit as he raises both hands palms flat up and shrugs. “Well, you look like you just came out of a practice that involves not standing still and staring at music. Kind of hard to miss when you win all those tournaments, mate.”
Greg is grinning widely. The widening of Sherlock’s eyes interesting to watch.
“And about the Violin?” Sherlock asks, clearly something is misfiring in his brain as he talks to John Watson.
John lets out a startled laugh, pushing Sherlock lightly on the shoulder before leaning back. “We did start out playing in the same orchestra. We even had that duet a few years ago.” John grinned fondly. “You called me a talentless nester on mockingbird hill.”
His face hurts. So many different expressions want to cross his face at this exchange and all he can manage is an open mouthed grin that hurts his cheeks.
“I – remember.” Sherlock halts as he visibly berates himself silently for thinking so slowly.
“Yeah. I cost us the competition and you told me to just give up. So I quit the next day.” John shrugs.
A horrified expression crosses Sherlock’s face.
Greg snorts back his laughter as John begins giggling as well. “I’m only joking.” John presses on. “I really was bad and playing sports was cheaper. My parents hated renting the thing and buying reeds constantly.” John rolled his eyes. “I still go to the concerts when I have the chance though.” John admits.
And Greg is surprised. John is far more involved with the school than he would have suspected. He frowns as he realizes he’s let his jealousy tarnish what he remembers of John and how he really was, even after all those years playing on the same football team.
Someone calls John’s name back from the football field, more like shouts, and John turns to look, a resigned look on his face making a sudden appearance.
“I’ve got to go. But hey, it was nice catching up.” John turns fully back to them. Greg smiles an awkward goodbye before John is stalking towards him and flinging an arm around him in a quick hug. “Just so you know what it feels like after a disgusting game.” John cackles as Greg pushes him away in disgust.
He takes a good look and notices the mud splashed across his whole body. Some of it even matting his hair – he briefly wonders if dirt still got in your mouth while one played football.
Suddenly John is lunging at Sherlock who is quickly sidestepping to avoid the filthy football player. “Suit yourself.” John shrugs as he grins up at Sherlock. “You can tell who doesn’t like getting dirty by what they do.” He watches as Sherlock and John assess each other.
It’s at that moment that John reaches out and smears mud on the back of Sherlock’s hand. A wicked glint and grin on his face as he turns and jogs back to the field house to shower and change.
“How’d you like that, Sherlock?” Greg grins across at his friend who has a bewildered look on his face.
“Oh, I’m not sure even he knows.” A smooth and familiar voice speaks up behind him. Greg turns to find himself face to face with Mycroft Holmes, Sherlock’s older brother, twenty-four years of tall and completely unattainable. He stops himself from sighing as Sherlock barrels past him and into the car as he demands to leave.
“Probably” Greg manages to choke out.
Mycroft gives him a swift smile, more a quirk of his lips before he’s turning to look back at his car. “Would you like a ride?”
“Yea-yes. I mean, no. You don’t have to… offer.” Greg frowns as he rambles. He’s not normally like this. “I’m fine.” He finishes.
“Are you sure? Sherlock might want your company for most of the ride, and I remember where you live.”
He feels giddiness and apprehension rise in him again before he’s nodding. “Sure. Alright.” And he’s following Mycroft to his car.
Greg spends the next few weeks moping at home after school instead of hanging out with Sherlock on the off chance he’d see Mycroft.
It’s not like Sherlock notices. Okay, he does notice – but he doesn’t care, because Sherlock Holmes and John Watson seem to have become friends and bonded over sports. They were horrible people. And terrible friends.
John would attempt to get Sherlock to play football and being invited, Greg joined in at first being able to play non-competitively, but there were only so many looks he could get from Sherlock telling him to fuck off. The only thing Greg had going for him was that it seemed John wasn’t interested in Sherlock.
Or that’s how Sherlock made it seem. Complaining when he saw Greg that they were spending time, teaching each other football and fencing but John was being so dim witted that he didn’t even realize what was going on.
So being alone at home while Sherlock was off having fun, Greg threw himself backwards on his bed bouncing a little. And for a teenage male, that was all it took for him to get interested. He pushed back against the mattress, shutting his eyes and running his hand broadly from his chest to his knee slowly before running back up to his inner thigh.
Breath hitching slightly, he imagined Mycroft crawling over him before traveling across to cup himself in one hand. Oh, he was very interested.
He groaned. Every day. Every god damned day. Greg pushed himself up to lock his door before returning to his bed, methodically unbuttoning his trousers and opening his bedside table for the lotion.
Damn Mycroft Holmes for this.
“I’m telling you. Just let it slip by that your birthday is coming up.” Greg groaned into the table top, his forehead pressed against the questionably sanitized top. Sherlock could be a complete imbecile when he wanted to be.
He hears Sherlock scoff as if offended. He probably is.
“I don’t see what’s so wrong with letting John know you’re turning eighteen. He’s eighteen already, you could go drinking to celebrate.”
“I’m not telling him. There’s no need for me to throw myself at him at every available opportunity. It’s classless and will be obvious to anyone what the plan is if I tell John my birthday is coming up now.” Sherlock retorts angrily.
Greg groans, again. He had such stupid friends. Why did he end up being friends with someone so stupid? God, someone help him.
“It’s not classless. It’s what friends do. Tell each other birth dates to celebrate. You don’t think John would want to celebrate your eighteenth with you?” Greg sits up to look at Sherlock, because it is a possibility.
Sherlock wasn’t very well liked for many reasons. But from the past months he’s gotten the impression John actually liked Sherlock as a friend. If not a strange one who appeared and disappeared just as quickly without warning.
He sighs, he’ll have to. It’s unavoidable. Damn it all. He’ll have to spell it out for him.
“Look, Sherlock. We’re on break. Yeah?” Greg starts. Sherlock nods, glaring at him slightly for pointing out something so obvious. He stops himself from rolling his eyes.
“And you and John have kept in contact this whole time, right.” Sherlock frowns at him but gives nothing else.
“So he likes you. I don’t know if he likes you like you like him. But he likes you as a friend, how do you think he’ll feel if you don’t tell him?” He should come to his senses.
Instead, Sherlock scowls. “Oh – ‘I-don’t-know-if-he-likes-you-like-you-like-him’“ Sherlock mimics nastily before shaking his head and staring back down to his untouched sandwich. “Well said, Lestrade. Such a memorable speech.”
“Now hang on!” Greg protests loudly. “I’m just trying to help here. I don’t see why you don’t just tell John!” Greg snaps.
Sherlock is quick. He can forget that easily, because he nearly jumps out of his chair as Sherlock puts all his focus on him with the maniac energy he reserves for the important things.
“I can’t just tell John!” Sherlock spits, his hands becoming fists on the table beside his plate and drink. “It would ruin what we have. I’d rather be friends with John than nothing else. And nowhere in our friendship have we told each other our birthdays and favorite color and all that stupid nonsense. So. There’s. No. Point. In. Him. Knowing.”
Greg is left tight lipped. “So you’re just going to stay around and not tell John what you think of him?” He asks, anger simmering right on the surface.
“That’s exactly what I’m going to do. There’s no need to complicate things.”
“So you’re going to hang around and do everything John wants… Be everything he needs and not let him know how you feel? Sherlock, you’re turning into a doormat!”
“I’m not a doormat!” Sherlock snarls suddenly as he leans closer to Greg. “Get this now, because I’m not repeating it again. John doesn’t want me. And I’d rather be just his friend than nothing.” He spits, pushing his uneaten plate at Greg before standing up and stalking out of the establishment without paying.
Greg collapses against his chair. It’s ridiculous, how Sherlock is acting. Never did he expect to see the day where his supposedly sociopathic friend would fall into the mentality of the hopeless.
And Sherlock was hopeless. Pathetically so.
He drops his head into his hand, rubbing both at his eyes and forehead in irritation before remaining still. Something had to be done; he couldn’t just let Sherlock go on that way. He’d only grow to hate John and he was sure neither Sherlock nor John wanted that.
“My brother is intelligent.” A voice speaks across from him. “But even he can fall to the whims of affection. I also agree something must be done.”
Greg’s body stills, god it’s that voice again. Why? Why is Mycroft here, now?
“You… why are you here?” Greg moans, not bothering to open his eyes. Only days ago he’d lubricated one of his fingers to feel what it felt like actually pushing past his muscles. All because he’d been entertaining the idea of being rogered by Mycroft so he’d hurried to the nearest market to purchase lube. It had been surprisingly pleasant, all the more reason to hide his face in shame from the object of his fantasies.
Mycroft doesn’t miss a beat. “You shouldn’t be left responsible for the bill my brother has accumulated.” He responds.
Greg glances through his fingers at Mycroft before dropping his hand. “Yeah, well. Thanks for coming to pay.” He mutters.
He’s caught by surprise as a hand reaches in his direction before Sherlock’s uneaten plate is being pulled away from him. He has to take a moment to resume his breathing and slow down his heart.
God, how could Mycroft ever want him if he’s always reacting this way?
He stares as Mycroft brings the sandwich to his mouth and finds himself licking his lips. It’s fascinating to watch Mycroft eat. Even a simple sandwich held delicately in those hands looks far more appetizing than before. He shifts his gaze away as Mycroft swallows his bite.
“About Sherlock” Mycroft begins and Greg glances back at Mycroft, fighting himself to keep eye contact. It’s almost impossible. “He’ll get over his little… sentiment over Watson. However, his most recent mood has worried our mother. She wants to host a surprise celebration for Sherlock’s eighteenth.”
Greg bites the inside of his cheek. Was he being invited to a party? Granted, it was Sherlock’s party, but still – Mycroft brought it up. “That’s – good?”
Mycroft smiles briefly at him. “No, it isn’t. But it could be.” Mycroft speaks as he looks down at the sandwich, not making a move to eat from it again. “Which is why I require your assistance.”
His heart is thundering against his chest, making a quick bid to tear out of his chest or drum its way up and out of his throat. “Do you?” He holds back a choke.
“Your input is essential.” Mycroft’s head bows a little at him.
He finds himself nodding. “Yeah, okay. I’ll help.” He smiles brightly at the older man. He could do this.
“Excellent.” Mycroft stands up and turns to leave, leaving Greg alone at the table once more. He watches a little sadly as Mycroft pays for Sherlock’s plate when suddenly he’s coming back towards him. He consciously straightens his posture as he fights himself between following Mycroft with his eyes and pretending not to see him.
Mycroft reaches him in a few strides. “Would you like a ride, Gregory?” His heart leaps harder against his chest. “It’s raining; my car is out in the front if you’d like a ride.”
Greg shakes his head. There’s no way he can ride alone with Mycroft today. Besides, he promised his mum he’d see her at work today and she worked a few blocks down. “No thank you.” Greg grimaces as he speaks. “I promised my mum I’d see her at work today.” He motions in the direction of where she works. Mycroft only nods.
“My number” Mycroft suddenly places a business card on the edge of the table. “Do make sure you keep this number to yourself.” Mycroft parts with a warning as he smirks at him.
“Will do.” Greg assures quickly to Mycroft’s back as he’s reaching over to take the card in his grasp. He sits looking over the name and number for a short moment before standing up and sliding the card into his wallet.
He takes his ticket up to the counter to pay when the woman working the register smiles at him. “Don’t worry. It’s been taken care of.” She tells him.
Greg feels stunned. What? “What?”
“The gentleman that just left, he paid for your ticket. Thank you for choosing us today, please come back any time.” She smiles brightly at him and Greg can only nod as he makes his way out into the rain feeling a little more than stunned.
They’re rounding the corner, Sherlock leading them to some destination on he knows about that they’re going to try and get through a fence to see what Sherlock is talking about. He doesn’t know how much longer they have to walk because to be honest he doesn’t really care.
He can hear a group of people laughing and when they come upon the group Greg realizes its a few kids from their school hanging about. How they’re not freezing to death like he is, he doesn’t understand. Because it’s January, and it’s cold.
“Oi, look there’s The Freak!” Someone shouts. And just like that, it seems the whole group turns as one to look. Greg feels pinned by all the attention given to him for simply walking by with Sherlock.
Like usual, Sherlock ignores it and keeps walking. Greg forces himself to take another step.
“Where you goin’ Freak?” Someone asks loudly. He’s gritting his teeth; He hates it when people call Sherlock that.
“Aw, come on Holmes! Don’t run away!” A girl shouts before giggling, the group quickly following her example.
“Stop” An icy voice speaks up between the laughter, quiet but echoing in its steadiness. Everyone seems to halt, including Sherlock who freezes. A moment later everyone begins moving and someone speaks up.
“But, John!” Someone whines, “The Freak.Is.Right.There.” They punctuate unnecessarily.
“Yeah, what the fuck is Holmes doing here anyway?” Someone else adds.
“He’s making me feel ill.” Another complains before miming being sick.
“Shut up” That icy voice snaps and Greg can just make out the gold of his hair.
“Why? It’s just Holmes!” Someone suddenly snarls, making a move towards Sherlock. It’s not unheard of for people to randomly attack Sherlock without any encouragement from Sherlock himself.
“Yes. It’s just me.” Sherlock challenges, as he too glares at the group and doesn’t cower. Sherlock never cowers or backs off; it’s another reason why everyone likes to hate him.
“And you’re about to regret spying on us!” The boy from before snarls again before lunging and quite suddenly losing his balance as he’s yanked backwards and slips on the icy ground to land on his backside.
“I told you to shut up.” The familiar calm voice speaks. “Leave him alone.” John steps out from behind the tall bloke whose been obscuring everything about John but his voice until now.
Greg catches movement from the corner of his eye and sees Sherlock quickly leaving. Sherlock’s around the corner before Greg gets his voice working. By that point John is calling after him and being ignored.
He curses under his breath and heads after Sherlock in hopes of catching him. He can’t seem to find where he’s gone to and a while later there are rushing footsteps behind him. He turns angrily only to see John jogging towards him.
“No sign?” John asks after Sherlock as he jogs further ahead of him to the next street. Greg hurries to catch up before telling him no. “Damn” John curses as he comes to a hesitant stop.
“Look, I have to go.” Greg sighs, he really wants to leave but at the same time he doesn’t.
“Oh, right. Go ahead, sorry.” John mutters, giving him an unconvincing smile as he waves him away as an afterthought.
He hesitates as he gets ready to leave. “Look, John. He’s like this. He’ll come around and eventually reply to one of us.”
“Yeah” John nods once before smiling a little more genuinely this time. “I just… don’t want him to hate me – you know?” He fidgets in the seat across from Greg. “My friends can be fucking bastards.” He finishes in a lame statement before shaking his head.
Greg agrees. Doesn’t really understand why nice blokes like John hang around with asses like the ones from today. But it’s not his place to question and who knows about John. He’s not very forthcoming on himself despite everyone seeming to know everything about him.
“Yeah” He voices his agreement before forcing a smile and leaving John. As he walks outside he pulls out his mobile.
Be there in 20
Excellent. We have much to discuss. – Mycroft Holmes
Greg grins despite today’s events. He gets to spend the rest of the day with Mycroft. Having spent the time he was to spend with Sherlock with John instead, he’s now free to do what he had been looking forward to the whole week.
No, not planning a surprise party for Sherlock. Well, Sherlock is his friend so he cares. But he’s spending time with Mycroft today. Time that he had planned on and set and not had been forced onto him by surprise.
The first thing he notices is the jaguar in the driveway and his heart speeds up considerably. He takes a few steadying breaths.
Mature. He had to be mature. Greg chants mentally as he walks up to the door and knocks.
Mycroft opens the door.
Grinning, he steps inside as Mycroft holds the door open for him. He brushes against Mycroft’s shoulder and wishes he hadn’t been wearing a jacket so he could feel the warmth surely radiating off of Mycroft through his jumper.
“You look cold.” Mycroft starts as he points to the rack where he can hang his jacket up by the door.
“Been out all day, yeah.” Greg admits as he tears his jacket off to sling over the rack before following Mycroft.
“I have tea prepared, you should have some.” Mycroft leads him through a few doors presumably to the kitchen. And what a kitchen it was, his mum would have loved it. Large and brightly lit and sparkling clean. “My mother is out and I’m vacationing here for the winter.” Mycroft explains.
He doesn’t live here throughout the year. He knows this; Mycroft is always making trips from London to visit his mother and Sherlock.
“Oh, good.” Greg shares before he catches himself. “I mean… when is she due to be back?”
Mycroft smiles at him. Greg’s sure he knows. Surely Mycroft knows. Oh god, he knows and this is so humiliating! The blood rushes to his cheeks. It doesn’t help that he’s pinker in the skin now that he’s inside the warmth.
“Not for a while. But we need to focus, Gregory. We do not have much time left to prepare a surprise party. We’re woefully behind schedule as it is.”
He stops himself from apologizing. It’s not really his fault they’re running behind. He nods instead.
“So, what do you have in mind?” Greg asks, forcing himself to ignore the humiliation and carry on with the task set out to do. “Because I have a few ideas Sherlock would absolutely hate.”
He must be seeing things, because for a moment Mycroft looks at him as if he’s something special. Forcing himself to look away and around the kitchen, Greg turns back to pull the tea closer to him.
“Well, let’s not start out with your best ideas then.” Mycroft suggests. Greg can’t help but agree, Sherlock likely wouldn’t enjoy the average eighteenth celebration.
His mum opens the door for him and he rushes inside. It’s bleeding snowing outside and he’d had to wait at the Holmes’ long enough for Sherlock to show up and scowl at him during the rest of his stay.
Sherlock didn’t like that Greg was interested in his older brother. In fact, Sherlock always had something terrible to say about Mycroft and about Greg in return for not changing his mind. It’s the reason why Greg became interested in the first place, was a brother really all that bad? Mycroft hadn’t been, and that had sealed it for him.
The smell of warm leather from the inside of Mycroft’s car was still stuck in his nose. It was wonderful.
“Are you hungry darling?” His mum asks.
He pauses at the bottom of the stairs before rushing up to his room, mobile in hand and texting. “No. I had dinner with Sherlock.” He explains as he ascends the stairs steadily without looking away from his phone.
“Alright, well, make sure you get a hot bath. You’ve been out in the cold all day.”
He doesn’t reply and instead sends his message: Talk to John, before he runs up the rest of the way to his room. A good thing of being an only child, he had his own bathroom.
Stripping quickly in his room and rushing to his adjoining bathroom he turns on the light and hot water before shutting his door and locking it. As the steam from the bath rises, he breathes deeply willing his body to warm up further.
Taking himself in hand he strokes slowly as he rests bodily against the door. The cool of the wood seeps into his back before he’s stumbling to the warmth of his shower and stepping in, the hot water pounding steadily against his back.
Taking himself in hand again he groans. Tightening his hold and stroking harder he feels the pleasure shoot through his entire body. He practices being silently verbal. He pants Mycroft’s name a few times with a few unintelligible moans every few good strokes.
He finishes and in wobbly legs, shuts the shower and plugs the drain before turning on the bath. He waits for the hot water to rise before shutting the tap and gratefully sinking in. The heat and weight of the water will be enough.
“He doesn’t know?” John questions, completely unconvinced.
“Yeah” Greg replies.
“Sherlock?” John asks for clarification. He’s hard to convince.
Greg can’t stop his own surprised laugh from bubbling up. “I’m not joking.”
“Christ,” John chuckles along. “He’ll hate it.”
“I know!” Greg exclaims. He’s feeling giddy. A few days spent with Mycroft planning and having lunch with the Holmes’ minus Sherlock was something he thought was very nice.
“Well you know I’m there.” John adds quickly. “Just tell me when and where. Is there anything I can do to help?”
Greg thinks on it for a moment. He could ask John to bring Sherlock to the party instead of his mum but Sherlock would probably figure it out if it was John.
“No, everything is already set. Just be at the Hollow Pub by 8 on the 5th. Which is –“
“Three days away. Yeah, thanks for the warning.” John sighs.
“Will it be a problem?” Greg asks, feeling a little worried about John not being there.
“Oh, I’ll be there.” John assures him. “Will everyone you’re inviting be able to make it on such short notice though?”
“Mycroft is working it out.” He shrugs; he was just told everything would be fixed so Greg had left it at that. He had been left with the job of finding some of Sherlock’s acquaintances to attend though. And he still needed to call Molly and a few others.
“Right,” John smiles at him. “Now I have to go find a present fit for a coming of age – somehow I think a bottle of tequila and condoms is out of the question.” John jokes as he pats him on the shoulder once in a quick farewell. “I’ll see you Greg. Gotta dash.”
The pub is dim to the point of being dark. But it has everything they need: Music, party lights, open bar, karaoke and more for any normal person turning drinking age. Sherlock will absolutely hate it! The thought brings a grin to his face.
“Excited?” Mycroft sits in the bar stool directly beside him.
“Looking forward to his reaction, yeah.” Greg turns to smile at Mycroft. In doing so he finds himself face to face with him, only a few inches separating them. He could easily lean over and kiss Mycroft right now.
Mycroft looks at him as if he’s always expecting him to do more. He doesn’t know if he’s angry Mycroft is always expecting more or excited that he expects more – if he expects anything at all.
“It is a perk, yes.” Mycroft agrees gently and without any heat of true ill will for his younger brother. “Will you be joining in the festivities tonight?” Mycroft brings his attention to the bar tender texting in his corner before the party begins and he’s on full time.
“I’m planning on it, yeah. I didn’t have anything like this for my eighteenth so I’ll be taking advantage.” Greg glanced away.
“See that you’re careful.” Mycroft warns. It seems like something older brothers do because even John does the same thing despite actually being younger than Greg.
“I’m always careful.” Greg assures him without a second thought. He’d never been one of the wild ones running into danger or looking for it. It seemed like he was dragged into it every once in a while, but it wasn’t anything he craved. He just liked to help when he could.
They sit in companionable silence as people invited to the party trickle in. “Shouldn’t you be – I don’t know – giving instructions to them?” Greg looks pointedly at the people huddling around the door waiting for things to start.
“It’s not too complicated. We’re waiting on a text to put us into motion.” They both glance at Mycroft’s mobile held loosely in his hand. Greg silently ponders the use of the word ‘we’re’.
It’s around the time John arrives. And he’s not alone.
“Bloody hell” Greg curses as he looks at John holding the door open for a girl with long hair and leading straight away to drop off their jackets.
Mycroft doesn’t miss his reaction and is turning to look as well. “Friend of yours?” He asks casually.
“Yeah. That’s – that’s John Watson.” He answers, biting his lower lip a little. He never told John he couldn’t bring a date. And here he was at Sherlock’s party, with a date.
Mycroft’s interest is piqued but quickly restrained. He doesn’t remember when he began to realize these little tells from Mycroft. They spent time together, but surely not enough to pick up on such detail. “Interesting” Mycroft murmurs.
He watches John glance around. John looks comfortable in this situation, not knowing anyone, while his date fidgets and glances around much too quickly for him to see her face. Surely he knows her.
That’s when John spots him. A familiar smile lights up John’s face and he’s suddenly leaning in to speak to his date before John leads the way to him at the bar. “Greg, hey!” John greets easily. “Look who came with me.” He grins good naturedly as he slings his arm companionably over the girl’s shoulder.
It’s when he realizes it’s only Molly Hooper.
It could have been worse.
“We just came together. It’s not like it’s a… date, or anything.” Molly quickly adds in, smiling awkwardly at them.
“Oh” Greg mutters before straightening and looking at Mycroft. “This is Mycroft, Sherlock’s older brother.” He introduces.
John’s gaze quickly snaps over to Mycroft and Mycroft in return zeros in on John. They both seem to be sizing each other up. And he is witness to something he’s only ever seen one person do.
“John Watson” John extends his hand to shake hands with Mycroft without a single hint of uneasiness in his features that he can see. “I’ve not heard much about you so I reckon you don’t know much about me.”
Oh, John. How wrong you are.
Mycroft lets go of John’s hand before hitching a smile on his face. It looks less genuine when he looks at John. “I know a little.” He admits.
John doesn’t look disturbed, merely shrugs as Molly is shaking hands with Mycroft next.
Mycroft’s mobile makes a single ping before it vibrates twice and then remains silent. They all watch as if transfixed as Mycroft receives his message.
“Ten minutes.” Mycroft looks directly at him when he looks back up. “Time to get everyone ready.” Then he’s sliding off his bench and walking away leaving Greg with John and Molly.
“Well he’s something.” John mutters under his breath.
Greg feels something prickle the back of his neck before telling himself to calm down. “What do you mean?” Greg probes, realizing at the last second that he’s probably setting John up for something.
“He’s pretty intense.” John shrugs a little self consciously. Maybe John was observant enough to realize how Mycroft had been looking at him after all. With the information Greg had, Mycroft had been amiable to him the first time they met while this time Mycroft’s gaze had been sharp as a knife.
Somehow that little knowledge made him feel pleased.
“He can be, yeah. But he’s a Holmes.” Greg replies as if it explains all. It seems to work for John who only grins briefly before settling on an amused look as he glances around the place. Greg wonders how things will be progressing tonight.
Being moved into position, everyone sitting and standing around casually to make the establishment look used enough to be inconspicuous among a crowd just to see how fast Sherlock would catch on.
Sherlock was bloody quick. And the look on his face made several people burst out laughing.
“Happy birthday mate” Greg bullied his way to Sherlock who was quickly finding his way out of the group of people wishing him a happy birthday.
“Yes. Happy.” Sherlock murmurs looking over his shoulder, making Greg turn to look as well. John was right in their line of sight; he had his arm thrown easily across Molly’s waist as he talked to a few people.
As if he could feel them watching him, John chose that moment to turn around. And John’s smile lit up, this time not faltering. He took a step in their direction before finding himself rooted with Molly. He couldn’t hear what was said between the two, but suddenly John was walking towards them and Molly was following.
“Happy Birthday Sherlock!” Molly gushes happily as she reaches them first. Sherlock smiles tightly at her, thanking her for the well wish.
“So, Eighteen huh” John starts out with, hands in his pocket and his dark long sleeved sweater vest doing his slim body wonders as his whole body takes a different posture when he’s in front of Sherlock. He looks more relaxed if it was possible, “Weren’t thinking of telling me either.” John shakes his head and all the while still smiling somewhat fondly at Sherlock “Happy Birthday”.
Sherlock nods, grinning at John slightly. “Didn’t think it was important.” He shrugs.
“You seem to be the only one.” John counters as he pointedly looks around them briefly before turning back to look at Sherlock.
The music starts and Greg feels it vibrating through his chest. The beat against his body urging him to move with it a little, John brightens if possibly any more at the music.
“Molly?” John turns to Molly. “What do you say to dancing?”
“I don’t know how to.” She replies loudly to be heard over the music.
“It’s not hard” John shouts back before turning back to them. “I expect to see you both on the dance floor at some point” John tells them before he’s dragging Molly into the crowd of people pretending to know how to dance.
Greg stands beside Sherlock who is looking after John only for a moment before shaking himself out of it. “They’re not here as a date.” Greg tells him quickly.
“Yes. Because they’re not dancing together. Because John didn’t have his arm around her earlier. Spare me.” Sherlock starts quietly and is near spitting.
“Oh, give it a rest.” Greg counters, snatching Sherlock’s wrist and dragging him to the dance floor. He knows it’s only shock that keeps Sherlock from struggling. It’s at this point where he finds the perfect idea to grab the attention they both want from two very specific people. “And play along.” He adds as an afterthought as he positions Sherlock.
“I’m going to need a drink.” Sherlock grumbles.
“Yeah” Greg agrees.
Sherlock is difficult to dance with.
For one, he likes to pretend he knows what he’s doing. And second, he talks throughout the whole time. Not that Greg can hear much over the music, but it’s a constant presence that can put one off of dancing.
“I’d like that drink now.” Sherlock pulls himself away and Greg notices that they’re both covered in a light sheen of sweat. A few modern songs danced to in a group of people and it was bound to happen.
“Let’s go get that drink.” Greg follows after Sherlock to the bar. A few people track them the way there and a few others don’t seem to notice. He doesn’t know if the right people have noticed though.
“Your plan is appalling.” Sherlock slips casually.
“My plan?” Greg asks, knowing that Sherlock has figured it out but still trying to pretend that the other boy hasn’t. Sherlock rolls his eyes.
“It’s not difficult to guess. You think John and Mycroft” He scoffs at his brother’s name extra loudly, “will notice that we’re dancing together. It’s not even very good dancing.” Sherlock passes judgment.
Greg feels anger bristling as Sherlock continues. “Look, you don’t know if it’ll work or not. So just go with it.” He looks away, because it’s true that it could all just be completely ridiculous as it was useless. His gaze lands on John and Molly, John who is laughing and dancing and unbuttoning his cuffs at once.
He nudges Sherlock and they both look in time to see John push his sleeves up to his elbows, the cuffs resting loosely against his forearms held there by the tightness of the sleeves.
He can’t hear Sherlock breathing. But he reckons Sherlock is panting right about now because that action was attractive even for him, and short blondes weren’t even his type.
“We need to do better.” Greg nods in agreement.
“Wait, what?” He turns to Sherlock.
“We need to do better.” Sherlock repeats himself before downing a shot of jagermeister and scrunching up his face. Greg can’t help but laugh. He pushes his vodka soda at him to help him wash the taste down but Sherlock only ignores it. “Finish your drink. I think I figured out how…” he trails off.
This way was also appalling. Sitting at the bar, doing nothing and just looking around.
“How exactly is this doing better?” Greg demands, it’s all very unmotivated really.
“Oh, don’t stop thinking now.” Sherlock complains. “It’s my birthday, do you really think people are going to let me sit here all night at the bar and not have any fun?” Sherlock injects venom into the last word as glances at him after looking up from his untouched drink.
“What makes you think John is going to come over?” He asks, because it needs to be asked.
“Because John is… John.” Sherlock frowns, realizing he’s not answering up to his usual standards. “And Molly is with him. They both… care.” He grimaces slightly and shrugs one shoulder.
It is true though. Only they would both have to look up to see them first. This could take a while, especially if other people take it upon themselves to try and cheer Sherlock up or something. He glances down at his drink.
They’ve been sitting there for a few minutes, probably not even a whole ten when they’re accosted by giggling.
“Two waters please” John calls over the bar as he catches his breath from dancing and giggling with Molly.
“Not drinking?” Greg asks curiously.
John turns to him, a smirk plastered on his face. “Oh, I’m drinking. Just want a little water first.”
“Sherlock, what are you doing sitting down?” Molly asks as she sits beside John who claimed the seat next to Sherlock first.
“Taking a break from dancing” John answers for Sherlock. Greg quickly looks at John to read his expression. It’s sharp and the smile a little forced. Oh, did John have something against two guys dancing?
“I didn’t see.” Molly’s grin widens, as if seeing two guys dancing is something she wanted to witness.
“Mmm… wasn’t very fun.” Sherlock finally replies.
“Maybe because you’re not dancing with the right person” John shrugs with forced casualty. Greg wants to punch John, right in the face. Right now.
Sherlock hums before he’s stepping away from his drink and dragging Greg along with him.
“Shut up!” Sherlock snaps, pushing him to the outskirts of the dance floor near a wall.
“What are you doing?” He exclaims as his personal space is assaulted.
“Your plan.” Sherlock mutters into his ear. Greg doesn’t have the heart to tell him what he thinks John is thinking.
“I thought you said it was bad.” He settles on.
“It is.” Sherlock confirms, and then Sherlock’s forehead is dropping to rest on his. And they’re not dancing; they probably just look like they’re talking to everyone else… having some sort of intimate conversation.
“This is a bad idea.” Greg stresses the first word; he doesn’t know what to do anymore.
“Look at John, what do you see?” Sherlock suggests. Greg has no choice but to glance from the corner of his eyes to where John and Molly still are. Molly is facing the bar, gesticulating with her hands as she talks to John. John is halfway between paying attention to Molly and taking quick glances at them.
He’s never seen John look sit so stiff and look so stressed before. The jerk.
“Unhappy. Sherlock, I think John doesn’t like gu-“
“Don’t be stupid. What is he drinking?”
Greg glances over again and looks at John’s drink. “Dunno. But it’s not water.”
“Excellent.” Is all Sherlock says before he’s pulling away and giving him his space back.
“What was that all about?” He complains, he’s still so very confused. If Mycroft saw that it would give the wrong impression. That was not at all what he had planned.
“Your plan, working.” Sherlock grins widely at him before settling down on a smirk.
“I don’t see how.” He groans, because that was not his plan.
Sherlock ignores him. “I can’t see Mycroft, so he’s not looking.” Sherlock lies. “You need to make the next move.” He instructs.
“I need to make the next move?” Greg repeats.
Sherlock only rolls his eyes. “Obviously. I’m going to reject you.”
“You are so selfish.” Is what Greg grumbles as he sighs unhappily before he’s grasping Sherlock’s shoulders and pushing him forwards, glancing at John as he goes. John is visibly trying to ignore them, but he sees his hand tighten on his glass. “And he’s not happy.”
Sherlock laughs. He actually laughs. “Good. Just keeping doing what you’re doing.”
“Pushing you all over the place?” Greg jokes as he grabs Sherlock’s hips. There’s almost nothing to grab he thinks as steps closer and Sherlock leans back and away a little.
“I don’t like being rejected.” He complains as he tries to maneuver the both of them around as Sherlock every once in a while pulls away from him. They’re both keeping an eye on John at this point.
John seems to have become agitated and then he is leaving his seat and Molly, who is talking to someone beside her. They both track John as he stands looking a little lost.
Greg is finally confused with what Sherlock was looking at John. What exactly was going on here? He wonders if John will come in their direction after all and say something. Instead, John is quickly scrambling in his pocket to pull out his mobile.
Greg pauses to watch. From where he is he can see John clenching his teeth and flexing his Jaw muscles before looking up and turning around and heading towards the back door. The whole way there he spends typing out a response before sliding his mobile back into his pocket.
“Where is he going?” Greg voices the question as John pushes the door open and steps out without taking another backwards glance.
“Mycroft” Sherlock snarls, pulling away from him and stalking to a corner of the area where no one is standing around because it’s out of the way of the festivities. He follows Sherlock as he ignores everyone in their way, even bumping into people dancing and standing as he forces his way through.
“What do you mean Mycroft?” Greg demands, needing to know why Mycroft and John would be in the same sentence, they don’t know each other.
“I mean he’s meddling.” Sherlock glares as him, as if it’s his fault Mycroft is doing what he does.
He stays silent. He’s always heard Sherlock complain about Mycroft busying himself with Sherlock’s dealings but he’s never seen it done before. Doesn’t know if he should believe Sherlock’s word about this or not.
“Why with John?” He decides to ask.
“Because Mycroft can’t stay out of my business” Sherlock pulls out his own mobile and begins texting. He doesn’t say anything else and doesn’t look at Greg as he constantly types. Every few moments he frowns deeper, gets more agitated than before.
Greg leaves Sherlock to it, looking around them to see everyone actually enjoying the party. It’s only just begun and he’s spending it with the person it was intended for, doing nothing. He contemplates going after John to find out what was going on.
Then the back door is being opened and John walks in stiffly, his forearms are still bare with his sleeves pushed up and he looks extremely cold. Mycroft follows closely behind as John purposely ignores him and continues walking.
Why were they together again?
John rushes to where he placed his jacket before suddenly stopping. It almost looks like he’s staring at his shoes before he glances to his right and directly at the dance floor as if searching for someone before turning to the bar and not finding them. Greg takes a step towards John, something happened.
Sherlock takes as step past him and then another and John catches the movement by some miracle and he’s glancing over his Shoulder at Mycroft before turning back and walking over to them with purposeful strides.
“Can I talk to you?” John asks Sherlock, completely ignores Greg and so does Sherlock when Sherlock nods and leads the way away.
What the hell was going on?
(See the end of the chapter for notes.)
Mycroft is standing a little away from the entrance before following Sherlock and John with a cold expression on his face after they brush past him. Greg makes the decision to go up to Mycroft and ask what that was all about.
Forget about it not being his business. Sherlock and John were his friends.
“Mycroft!” Greg catches his attention quickly
Mycroft glances at him and makes a decision, motioning him to follow. Greg follows him, stopping to retrieve his jacket as he’s led out through the front door and out in the freezing cold. He’s shivering instantly.
Greg knows what he wants to ask but doesn’t know how to say it. Doesn’t want to seem like he’s digging where he doesn’t really belong, but things are happening just a little too suddenly for him to be comfortable with not knowing.
So he follows Mycroft as he steadily sets a pace to the side of the building where the wind isn’t blowing so directly at them.
As he stops, he stares across at Mycroft. Mycroft’s only a few inches taller and he really doesn’t mind that he is resting his hand on his shoulder. Again, if only he could feel the warmth through his jacket.
“What’s going on?” He asks after looking away from the hand and looking back at Mycroft.
Mycroft has a blank expression on his face and it disturbs him a little how he can’t tell what’s going on in his head right at this moment. He feels like he’s gotten better at reading him, but that’s not the case now.
And nothing surprises him more than suddenly being kissed outside in the middle of winter. The hand on his shoulder pushes him back against the wall, the impact making him grunt into the mouth pressed against his before his own hands are flying up to grab at anything he can.
Hauling Mycroft closer to him and pulling himself higher to reach better and forcing Mycroft to open his mouth to him, he’s wanted this for so long that he wasn’t about to be shy when given this opportunity. As Mycroft reacts Greg can’t stop the soft moans escaping from his own chest.
This goes on for a little while longer before Mycroft is pulling away and they’re both catching their breaths. He’s not letting go of the jacket, his fingers twisted tightly into it as he falls back on his heels to rest.
That was a spectacular first kiss. Is the only thing running through his head even as Mycroft leans back in and rests his forehead against his like Sherlock had done earlier. They shared warm breaths, waiting out their lungs to stop aching and Mycroft peppers a few chaste kisses here and there where he could reach without removing himself.
“Sorry” Mycroft apologizes.
“Don’t be” He counters quickly. “Don’t” His hand tightens on the jacket before loosening and letting his hand trail down to rest against Mycroft’s waist where he grips the jacket in his hand again.
“I saw you and Sherlock” Mycroft starts explaining, “And then Watson was there and now I’m jus-“
He cuts Mycroft off with another kiss, this time long and pulling with a bit of teeth scraping against the soft flesh of his mouth. It’s like being drugged, slowly and pleasantly and there’s absolutely nothing that could possibly be wrong with this because nothing can be wrong when something feels this good and right.
Needing to catch his breath he pulls away this time. And Mycroft is speaking directly into his ear, causing shudders to go throughout his whole body at the warm breath brushes against his ear and neck.
He finds himself nodding and agreeing to everything Mycroft is telling him.
“Keep an eye out for Sherlock. The Watsons are a very unstable family.” He nods.
“You will tell me if anything changes with Sherlock, right?” He nods again as a kiss is pressed behind his ear and he can’t hold back a gasp saying “yes”.
Cold lips trail down to the corner of his jaw where the same lips press softly against there. “You mean a lot to me, Gregory. I’m counting on you.” The words are sighed against his skin and he wraps his arms around Mycroft, holding him close.
He and Mycroft go back inside the pub soon afterwards. It is the middle of winter and it is cold. Mycroft wants to keep this a private thing because they both don’t exactly know what they’re heading towards even though Greg has a good idea of what he wants and it’s frankly no one else’s business.
Being left to his own devices as Mycroft departs to find his mother; he finally remembers that Sherlock and John had left to talk. And he’s wondering about John again, because he’d been reacting so strangely. The Watsons were after all, not very stable. And he didn’t know if John was a homophobe who was in an argument with Sherlock right now, who very well couldn’t be left alone if this was true.
Rushing in the direction he’d seen them going, before he followed Mycroft instead, he looks around him quickly before deciding that they might be where he thinks they’ve gone.
Heading towards the restrooms he doesn’t see them loitering outside the doors and hesitates peeking inside. But when he does it’s surprisingly unoccupied. He has no idea where they’ve gone.
This is definitely where they headed towards though. Maybe they’d already finished and left?
The sound of a hollow bucket being pushed against a concrete floor comes from the far end of the hallway. He might as well go and check.
What he comes across is Sherlock’s back pressed tightly against a corner. He’s slouched down, Shoulders and neck straining to get as low as possible and still remain standing.
He thinks he hears a whimper.
Then long arms are lifting and grasping tightly and yanking and a very obvious name is gasped before it’s silenced and a deep throated moan takes its place.
He feels the blood rush up his neck and into his face.
John is pushing Sherlock into the corner, holding him there bodily as he’s forced his leg between Sherlock’s to get if possibly even closer and they’re entwined. Sherlock’s hands fisted in the vest at the small of John’s back.
He reckons John’s arm is hurting as it’s trapped between Sherlock and the wall, but still he doesn’t move his hand from the back of Sherlock’s neck, a few curls of Sherlock’s hair springing from between where John’s fingers are spread out.
Beating a hasty retreat, he didn’t need to see all of that. Greg didn’t need to see any of it really; he rushes into the empty bathroom. He can’t hear the music from here and he’s staring at his reflection in the mirror.
So Sherlock and John, huh. That’s what it had all been about.
That explained John’s reactions and facial expressions so far tonight. The plan had been to grab attention from two very specific people and it seemed to have worked. Jealousy could be used to push on forwards.
He regrets not trusting John. Because he knows John. Knows he’s not the type of person to judge and hate what he doesn’t know. Knows now what he had been putting up with wanting Sherlock and coming time and time again across Sherlock and Greg.
Always together when Sherlock wasn’t alone, who used a fraction of that time to spend with John because Sherlock was under the impression John wasn’t interested.
And he had a little more respect for the way John had handled it. He hadn’t pushed; he’d been around and backed off when he felt it was necessary. But one thing that should have given it all away was that when Sherlock called, or demanded attention, or needed something, John was there as requested, verbally or not.
He was so stupid! And Mycroft had been so wrong, why would he need to keep an extra eye on Sherlock when John was there?
He froze. His hands falling and tightening around the edges of the ceramic sink, staring at the drain for a good minute trying not to think before glancing up and staring at himself in the mirror.
A laugh choked itself out of his throat, pulling back a dry sob from escaping.
Of course Mycroft would use his knowledge to his advantage. He’d been warned.
He lets go of the sink and takes a step back for balance as both hands come up to wipe across his face and to rest the heels of his palm against his eyes for a moment before pushing his fingers through his hair.
This wouldn’t do.
Of course he wasn’t going to let this happen.
He wasn’t about to be used. And he wasn’t about to go meddle in something that didn’t have a place for him.
Sherlock and John were his friends. He had to trust that they knew what they were getting into.
They were both eighteen and could make their own decisions.
And so was he.
So he had to make a decision. Because it was important that he was every single part the man his father had been.
He let his arms fall down limply. Then he slowly walked to the door, as he pulled it open he finally decided on what he was going to do.
Leaving Sherlock and John who were presumably down the hall, he made his way back to the party. He smiled at a few people who called out to them, telling them to wait a minute while he did something.
He found Mycroft standing next to his mother. Greg tapped him on the shoulder and Mycroft turned to him and actually smiled. The smug bastard.
“Follow me?” He asked, motioning towards the door Mycroft had taken John out through an hour ago. Watching calmly as Mycroft made his excuses to his mother, Greg smiled briefly at her, he led the way outside.
“Is everything alright?” Mycroft asks quickly once the door shuts. It is pretty damn cold out here.
Greg shakes his head. “It’s not.” He starts out with and Mycroft is opening his mouth, probably about to ask him to elaborate. He doesn’t have to.
“Don’t underestimate me, Mycroft.” Mycroft’s sharp eyes stare directly at him when he starts speaking again. “I may be… young to you, but you can’t use me as a pawn. I won’t let you.” He sees recognition on that face now, it propels him to continue. “So let me tell you something. You won’t get anything from me about Sherlock unless I think it’s absolutely necessary. You don’t get to ask me. You can ask him yourself if you want information.” He shrugs.
He buries his hands in his trouser pockets to keep the cold from freezing them as he holds his arms close to his body. “Don’t insult my friends.” He continues. “And next time I see you, remember that you can’t lie to me. I won’t let you. So grow the fuck up and stop playing your games with me.” He says calmly, detaching himself from the emotions he’s feeling.
Because this is someone he thought he knew and someone he had wanted for so long. It was disappointing to come to this conclusion, but it was vastly better than having a biased opinion or veiled truths.
“Gregory” Mycroft starts. “This isn’t a game.” He raises a hand as if to signify the air and area what he’s talking about. “It’s important to me, and I do trust you with it. If there is anyone I trust here, it is you.”
And it’s all nice words. But he can’t believe it easily now, now that he knows what Mycroft is capable of and he’s pretty sure he is capable of more.
“Then prove it to me.” He demands before staring hard and walking around Mycroft to head back inside to the warmth of the party.
Taking a shuddering breath and letting out it out a steady stream instead as he walks, he heads towards Molly and his friends. He’d rather like to have some fun at his friend’s birthday celebration.
And that's that done. Took me 5 days to finish and upload to here... new record for me.