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Chapter Text

Just 24 hours ago Mike had been living a normal, boring life.
Just 24 hours ago he had been sitting at the table, eating breakfast with his family.
And just 24 hours ago his parents had been alive.
Now he was sitting in his room, his back against the wall, sobbing as his grandmother softly knocked on the door, begging for him to let her in.
His parents were gone, he would never see them again or hear their voices.
Mike wished he had been with them, he wished he had died too because he couldn’t handle this pain. He didn’t know how he could ever live a single day without them in his life, it felt impossible.
When the sobs had died down to sniffles and he could finally breathe normally again, he slowly got up and opened the door where his grandmother was still waiting, patiently.
He didn’t even look at her, instead he just walked over to his bed and sat down on it, wiping at his eyes.
His grandmother sat down next to him, lovingly stroking his back.
“I know this isn’t a good time, but I need to tell you something Michael”
“Are you going to die too?”
He asked in a quiet, frightened voice. He knew his grandmother was sick, she had been for a while.
Dad said she was only getting sicker and sicker.
“No not yet”
She said and Mike sighed in relief. He couldn’t lose her too, if grammy died then he would be alone.
The thought made his stomach turn and he didn’t even want to begin to imagine what would happen the day his grandma left him too.
“I thought it would be best if you heard this from me and not someone else”
His grandmother seemed to be struggling with finding the right words, which scared him. What was happening?
“Your dad, he’s not- “
She interrupted herself and Mike felt his heart start to beat faster in his chest.
“My dad is not what?”
“He’s not your dad”
Mike must have heard that wrong. His dad wasn’t his dad? That was just not possible. He had heard the stories about a million times, of how his parents met and fell in love before deciding to have a kid together. He also knew that his mother would never cheat on his father. They loved each other.
It seemed like grammy knew exactly what he was thinking about.
“They lied in their stories. Your dad met your mom when she was already 5 months pregnant”
Mike didn’t answer her. He couldn’t find the words.
He had been awake for less than an hour and he had not only lost his parents but found out that in a way his life had been a lie.
Grammy pleaded as he started to get up from the bed.
“I need to get some fresh air”
Mike mumbled before leaving his grandmother alone in his room.

His grandmother threw her arms around him as he entered through the door, and she hugged him so tightly that he could barely breathe.
“I thought I’d lost you too”
She said which caused him to feel an immense guilt over leaving the house not to return until hours later.
At first, he had just been walking, waiting for it all to sink in, but then eventually he ended up going to Trevor’s house.
His best friend had recently gotten his hands on a new video game and what started as just trying the game had ended up being hours of the boys playing together.
Mike had completely forgotten about the events of today but now it all came crashing down on him again.
“I’m sorry. I just went to Trevor’s house”
“Never disappear like that again. Never”
She lightly scolded while releasing the boy.
“I promise”

Mike clutched the photo tightly in his hand as he stared at the man with his arm over his mother’s shoulders. The man that was apparently his father.
Without really wanting to he located a few similarities between the man’s face and his own.
He turned the picture around and on the back, someone had written ‘Nina and Harvey’ with a heart next to it.
He turned the picture around again and studied the young version of his mother and his biological father, they looked so happy.
“What happened between them?”
Mike asked and his grandmother sighed. If it was one thing that was clear, it was that she did not like Harvey Specter.
“Your mother was madly in love with Harvey. She wanted to marry him and build a family with him, but Harvey broke her heart. He never loved her, he cheated on her and then he left when he found out about you”
Mike frowned, his real dad sounded like a total douche. It sounds like his mother was really lucky to find his dad, someone who treated her right.

The next morning when Mike made his way down the stairs, he was met by the smell of coffee and his grandmother cleaning up in the living room.
She rarely drank coffee herself so it would often mean that she was expecting a guest.
“Who’s coming?”
He asked, thinking that it would be one of his grandmother’s friends.
“Harvey Specter is coming by”
Mike froze in place, why was he coming by? Mike didn’t want anything to do with him, not after learning what kind of person he was.
Suddenly his grandmother adapted the same struggling expression she had yesterday when she told him about the man. It looked like things were just getting worse.
“I want to see if he’s willing to take custody over you”
Mike exploded, she wanted to just dump him over to a douche stranger? Father or not, he was still a douche.
“I’m not going to stay with him!”
“Michael. He might not be the best man in the world, but he is your father and it’s better than ending up in the foster system”
Mike couldn’t believe his ears, how could his grandmother do this to him? How could she just throw him out as if he was nothing but trash?
“I want to stay with you”
“You can’t”
“Why? Because you’re not technically my grandmother? Well that’s bullshit!”
He couldn’t even remember the last time he yelled at his grammy like this, and he could see a mixture of shock and exasperation on her face.
“No because I’m sick, Michael and I might not be around for much longer”
All his anger disappeared at her words. His dad had warned him over and over again about the fact that his grandmother could leave them soon, but grammy had never admitted it herself.
She always kept insisting that she was fine.
Mike opened his mouth to apologize but was interrupted by the doorbell ringing and his grandmother walked past him.
He sat down on the couch as he heard the door open.
“Mr. Specter”
He heard his grandmother say in an ice-cold tone.

Chapter Text

Harvey groaned as the phone rang and he hoped that Donna would handle whatever it was.
He was in the middle of a big, difficult case and had just spent two hours in a meeting and he had even more meetings to come, this was his only chance to relax.
He groaned again when he heard Donna’s voice over the intercom.
“Whatever it is, handle it”
“I think it’s important”
Harvey looked through the glass at his secretary that was giving him a serious look and he sighed before telling her to let the call through.
At first Harvey was barely listening, just humming in acknowledgment in the right places but soon he heard exactly what made the phone call so important and by the time the phone call was over he was still in complete shock.
He slowly put the receiver down while the woman’s word slowly started to sink in.
As soon as he put it down Donna got up from her desk and walked into his office.
“What was it about?”
Harvey looked up at her, disbelief written all over his face.
“I have a son”
Donna looked just as shocked as he felt and she slowly sank back on the couch, both of them just sitting in silence for a minute.
“Who’s the mother?”
Donna nodded and they both fell silent again.
His secretary had never met Nina but Harvey had told her about his ex- girlfriend.
It had been 12 years since Harvey met Nina in a coffeeshop and the two had felt an instant connection.
Their romance had been brief but intense, Harvey had loved her and she had loved him but eventually they had ended up being toxic to each other so they made a mutual decision to break it all off. They had said goodbye and then both of them had walked away with broken hearts.
Nina had never contacted him again, no calls, no texts and not a single word about her being pregnant with his child.
“Why contact you now?”
Donna suddenly asked in a suspicious tone, probably thinking that Nina had decided she wanted child support or something like that.
“There was a car accident last night, Nina and her husband both died at the scene”
It felt strange knowing that the girl he once loved was gone from this earth, despite his current feelings about her. What felt even stranger though was the thought that her husband had taken his place, the place he never even got the chance to take.
“What’s his name?”
“Michael. His name is Michael James Ross”
His son had another man’s name. Harvey wished Nina wasn’t gone, so that he could yell at her, sue her or just something.
She was gone though and now he didn’t know what to do. Did his son even know about him?
“Are you going to visit him?”
“I don’t know Donna”
“Harvey, you have to. I’ll get you the phone number”
The secretary got up from the couch and left the room before Harvey even had the chance to protest.

Harvey stared at the phone, trying to get his hand to just pick it up and call already.
He didn’t think he’d ever been this nervous over a simple phone call before but then again, he had never been in this kind of situation before.
Did his son even want to meet him? Did he even know about all of this or did Harvey have to be the one to tell the kid that a big part of his life had been a huge lie?
He looked through the glass at Donna and she gave him an encouraging nod and he sighed before deciding to just get it over with.
After the fifth tone, he started to think that no one would pick up but then finally he heard an old woman’s voice.
“You’ve reached Edith Ross”
The woman said in a warm, gentle voice and Harvey thought that this wouldn’t be that bad.
“Hello Mrs. Ross, my name is Harvey Specter”
“Mr. Specter, I was wondering if I would get a call from you”
Harvey raised his eyebrows in confusion as the woman’s voice suddenly turned cold. He couldn’t understand why the woman seemed mad at him, if anyone was going to be mad about this situation it should be him.
“Mrs. Ross, I heard about Nina and James, and I’m really sorry for your loss.”
Edith didn’t answer but he could hear her scoff. Harvey cleared his throat before continuing.
“I just wanted to-“
“You want to meet Michael”
She interrupted, not sounding too happy about it but then she sighed deeply.
“I need to talk to you anyway, and I’d rather not do it over the phone.”
He agreed on coming by the next morning and after giving him the address the woman hung up without even saying goodbye.

The next morning Harvey was standing outside the house that had belonged to his ex-girlfriend and her husband. He had to take a minute to breathe before ringing the doorbell.
The door opened and he came face to face with Edith Ross. She looked like a sweet old grandmother, but the look in her eyes told him that she could kill a man and not think twice about it.
“Mr. Specter”
She greeted, her voice just as cold as it had been on the phone.
“Mrs. Ross”
He answered, giving her a smile that she did not return, instead she just made a gesture that told him to come in.
He took of his coat before following the old lady into the living room where a blonde boy was sitting on the couch, fiddling absently with a cushion.
“Do you want some coffee?”
“Yes please”
Edith disappeared into the kitchen and Harvey sat down on the couch next to the boy, his boy.
He was sitting next to his son, his own flesh and blood, he couldn’t believe it.
“You must be Michael”
He said in a polite tone and the kid lifted his head and looked at him for the first time. He was taken aback by how much he looked like his mother, with the blue eyes and the innocent, young face but he could also see parts of himself in the boy’s face.
“It’s Mike”
The boy corrected him, his voice just as cold as his grandmother’s. Why were they so cold towards him?
He wanted to ask the kid but before he had the chance Edith returned with two cups of coffee in her hands and a folder under her arm.
She placed the cups on the coffee table before sitting down in one of the armchairs opposite the couch.
Harvey took a sip of his coffee as he glanced at the folder, Edith noticed his gaze and decided to just bring it up instead of beating around the bush.
“As you know James and Nina both passed away, and that leaves just us two, there’s no other family”
Edith grabbed the folder and handed it over to Harvey who opened it and looked at the papers inside. Edith wanted him to take custody.
“I’m sick and I have been for a long time. I am not a fit guardian”
She looked sad over this fact, which he could understand. Mike might not be her biological grandson but in every other way he was and it was probably hard for her to just hand her grandson off to a stranger.
Harvey flipped through the pages, this was not what he had expected. He had been willing to form a relationship with the boy but this was way bigger than that. Harvey knew nothing about being a father, he barely had any experiences with kids. He had taken care of his brother’s kids a couple of times but that was in the role of an uncle, and that was totally different from being a dad.
“You need some time to think about it?”
She questioned and Harvey nodded.
“Of course, you do”
Edith remarked, sounding as if she had fully expected that. Harvey really couldn’t understand the coldness from both Edith and Mike.
He decided to ignore her remark and instead glanced down at the papers again.
Was he ready to become a father?

Chapter Text

Mike could hear the footsteps coming into the living room but he didn’t dare to lift his head and look at the man. This whole situation still felt so unreal and he discretely pinched his arm just to be totally sure that this wasn’t a dream. Unfortunately, this was all real and his parents were really dead and he was really about to meet his father for the first time.
His grandmother disappeared into the kitchen and he could feel the dip of the couch as the man sat down.
“You must be Michael”
Mike slowly lifted his head and looked at the man. It was without a doubt the man from the photo, except he looked a decade older and he was wearing a fancy suit that looked like it was worth a fortune.
“It’s Mike”
He corrected before adverting his gaze from Harvey. His grandmother returned with the coffee and the folder containing all the paperwork needed for Harvey to become Mike’s legal guardian.
Harvey opened the folder and looked at the papers and Mike glanced at the lawyer, trying to see his reaction but the man didn’t show anything.
“You need some time to think about it?”
Harvey nodded and Mike couldn’t help feeling disappointed, despite knowing better.
The man didn’t want him eleven years ago so why would he want him now?
Sure Harvey hadn’t said no yet but he expected him to and the look in his grandmother’s eyes told him that she was thinking it too.
After Harvey had received the folder, the tension in the room was so thick you could cut it with a knife and as soon as Harvey had finished his coffee he fled the house claiming he had a meeting.
He said goodbye to Mike but it wasn’t returned.
As soon as the door was closed he looked up at his grandmother.
“What happens if he says no?”
He had expected his grandmother to smile and say that it was all going to be okay, just like she always did, but this time she didn’t smile.
“I don’t know, Michael. I don’t know”

That night he was unable to fall asleep. He couldn’t stop thinking about the future and all the uncertainty surrounding it. Mike didn’t want to go to a foster home and he didn’t want to leave his grandmother. There had to be some way to fix this, perhaps he could live at Trevor’s house or he could run away and return to his grandmother as soon as people stopped looking for him.
He knew that his ideas were stupid but if there was even a chance that they would work then he needed to come up with plans.
He needed to be prepared for Harvey rejecting him, just like he had done eleven years earlier.

When he walked down the stairs the next morning he heard a man’s voice from the living room and he was sure that it didn’t belong to Harvey.
He carefully avoided the step he knew used to creak as he made his way down, trying to hear what was being said.
The man mentioned his parents’ names and he got a sinking feeling in his stomach. What if the man was here regarding the custody situation, what if he was already being separated from his grandmother. Mike was thinking about running out the door and follow through on his previous ideas when he heard the man mentioning money.
“If you pursue this in court, there’s no guarantee you’ll receive anything”
He realized that the man was a lawyer and he sat down on one of the steps, listening to the conversation that were taking place in the living room.
The amount of money being offered was just a year’s rent, give or take, and that gave him a sickening feeling. It was bad enough that the man was putting a value on his parents’ lives, but the fact that his grandmother couldn’t get more than that was horrible.
His grandmother ended up accepting the money and the lawyer walked towards the door with a smile on his face. Just as he was about to leave he turned around and smiled at Mike.
Mike got up from the step and walked into the living room where his grandmother was sitting.
“Grammy, are you okay?”
He asked and his grandmother immediately wiped away a tear from her cheek before she smiled at him and nodded.
“Everything’s okay”
“How do you know?”
His grandmother’s smile widened and he realized that it was a genuine smile and not a fake smile used to give him security.
“Harvey called earlier and he said yes”
Mike sat down on the couch while he tried to process her words. Harvey had decided to take custody of him. It meant that he wouldn’t have to go to a foster home, it meant that he could still visit his grandmother but at the same time it meant that he would have to move and the scariest part was that it meant that his biological father, that he just had found out about, was going to become a part of his life.

It turns out that Harvey being a hot shot lawyer was a big advantage and the process that normally could take months or even years were scaled down to two weeks thanks to Harvey’s many contacts.
It was a big advantage considering the fact that just a week after his parents passed away, his grandmother collapsed and had to go to the hospital.
Luckily she could go home the very same day but with the order of bedrest which meant it was hard for her to take care of Mike.
So in that way the short process time was good because even though Mike was reluctant to be separated from his grandmother he knew that she was too sick to take care of him at the moment and without him around she could focus on getting better instead of focusing on him.

Mike hugged his grandmother tightly as he said goodbye to her, trying not to cry. He wanted to appear strong so that his grandmother wouldn’t feel bad about sending him away.
He knew his grandmother was holding back her tears as well in order to not make him feel bad about leaving her.
When he finally released her she smiled lovingly at him.
“Promise me that you’ll visit as often as you can”
“I promise grammy”
She then turned to Harvey, who had patiently been waiting while they said their goodbyes, and she gave him a stern look.
“You better take care of him, Mr. Specter”
“I promise”
Harvey then shook her hand before lifting Mike’s heavy bag.
“Ready, kid?”
Mike wasn’t ready at all, he wasn’t ready to leave his old home and old life behind but he had to be strong for his grammy, therefore he nodded.
Harvey smiled at him before saying goodbye to grammy and walking out the door, Mike followed him and got in to the car that would take him to his new home.

Chapter Text

The tension in the room was unbearable and even though he usually prided himself with being able to handle awkward situations, he now found himself at loss with words.
He had no idea what to say to lighten the mood, and they both managed to make him feel unwanted so he excused himself by claiming he had a meeting to get to.
He said goodbye to Mike but the kid didn’t even look at him and he couldn’t help to feel slightly disappointed.
Harvey didn’t have a meeting until the afternoon which meant he was now forced to meet Donna, who would without a doubt pester him with a million questions.
As expected, the first thing he heard when he reached Donna’s desk was her excited voice.
“How did it go? How was he? Was he cute?”
“It went terrible and I’m pretty sure my son hates me”
He answered and her face fell.
Harvey walked into his office and sat down at his desk with a sigh, placing the folder on his desk.
Donna followed him inside and of course she immediately reached for the folder and he didn’t stop her.
“You’re going to take custody?”
“I don’t know”
“Harvey, you have to”
He sighed, of course she would try to convince him to go through with it, just like she had convinced him to visit Mike.
“Harvey, he’s your son”
“Did you miss the part where he hates me? The only reason they’re even asking is because Edith Ross is sick and can’t take care of him. They need me, but they don’t want me”
It was a difficult situation to say the least and Donna sat down.
“Tell me everything”
There wasn’t much to tell really but he told her about how both Edith and Mike had acted cold towards him and how it was painfully obvious that Edith really didn’t want to ask him to take custody but had no other choice.
“He’s only 11 and he just got a new dad. He’ll get over it and you’ll get along in no time”
“I don’t know if I’m going to do this”
“You will”
Donna gave him that smile that she always had every time she knew she was right, which was more often than not.

Of course, to no one’s surprise Donna was right yet again.
He decided to go through with it the same night when he sat alone in his apartment and his mind started to imagine what it would be like to have another person there.
He didn’t know how to be a father but he could learn along the way just like he and Mike had to learn to get along.
It wouldn’t be easy but it would be better than abandoning the kid when he needed him.
He knew enough about foster care to know that too many people was foster parents for the wrong reasons, and many times it could end with neglect or even abuse.
He just couldn’t let that happen to the poor boy.
That’s why he called Edith the first thing he did the next morning, just to make sure that they knew and could stop worry about it.
Hopefully it would take some weight of their shoulders and they could enjoy their last months living together without fearing for the future.

That had been the plan at least, to let it take it’s time so that he wouldn’t rip the boy away from his grandmother sooner than needed but the plans changed drastically as he got a phone call from Edith, who had been brought to the hospital after a collapse.
“They say it’s bad, Mr. Specter”
She told him and the old woman sounded like she was going to break apart any second.
“It’s really bad and I don’t know how much time I have left”
Despite having only met the woman once his heart broke at her words.
Harvey couldn’t even begin to imagine what it would be like for Mike when his grandmother died, especially if it would happen this close to his parents’ deaths.
He offered her all the help he could give but she only wanted one thing. She wanted him to take care of Mike and as soon as they hung up he started to pull all the strings he could to speed it all up.
Donna was delighted by the fact that Mike was going to come sooner because that meant that she could start remake his home office to a bedroom.
Harvey didn’t dare to stand in her way as she picked out everything from the wallpaper to the bed and he already knew that Donna would be spoiling the kid.
Mike wasn’t even living with him yet but his secretary was already making notes about all the things she could buy the kid if he needed or wanted them and Harvey made a mental note to make sure he got his credit card back from her.

A week after Edith’s pleading to take care of the kid, everything was ready thanks to Harvey’s many contacts and after work on Friday he went to pick the boy up.
He felt nervous, after today his life would forever be changed, after today he would no longer be a bachelor but he would be a single father.
For the next seven years he would be responsible for another life and that was a terrifying thought, he could easily mess up the kid forever.
However, he had reached the point of no return and he had no other choice but to push the anxiety aside and appear confident.
He patiently waited for Mike to say goodbye to his grandmother, and even though they were both trying their best to appear strong, it was painfully obvious that they were just seconds away from falling apart.
Edith then turned to him and gave him a stern look before making him promise to take care of Mike and he had every intention to honor that promise.
Then for the first time since they met the coldness disappeared completely and instead she gave him a small, grateful smile while they shook hands.
He then grabbed Mike’s heavy bag and asked if he was ready and even if it was clear that he wasn’t, he nodded and they walked out and left Mike’s old home behind.

After a car ride spent in awkward silence they finally made it back to Harvey’s condo.
He let the kid go in first and even though he tried to appear nonchalant, Harvey could see the wonder in the blue eyes as the kid saw his new home for the first time.
“Welcome home, Mike”
He said and smiled at the boy, but as expected the smile wasn’t returned so instead he cleared his throat and showed him to his new room.
“My secretary picked all the stuff out, if you don’t like it we can change it”
“I like it, it’s nice”
Harvey nodded before putting the luggage down before turning around to go back to the kitchen and figure out what they should eat for dinner.
He was stopped by Mike’s voice
“Mr. Specter?”
He corrected, he didn’t expect Mike to call him dad but he didn’t want his son to use a formal title either.
Mike anxiously looked down at his hands as if he dreaded asking the question, or rather dreading the answer.
“You will let me visit grammy, right?”
He looked up again and his eyes were filled with fear and Harvey realized that Mike was genuinely afraid that he wouldn’t be allowed to see his grandmother.
Jesus, how cruel did the kid think he was?
“Of course, you can see her whenever you want”
Mike visibly relaxed and mumbled a thank you.
Harvey smiled at him again and this time it was actually returned, with a very small smile.
He then left the room and let Mike settle in.

Chapter Text

It was no surprise that Harvey’s apartment was luxurious but Mike was still in awe of the apartment who looked like it costed a fortune.
He couldn’t help but wonder what his life would have been like if Harvey had stuck around and been his father.
Perhaps he would have been a spoiled little brat whose dad bought him everything he pointed at.
Harvey showed him to the room that from now on would be his bedroom.
He had expected to be given an old guest room or something but instead he was met by brand new, expensive looking, furniture and even the wallpaper seemed new.
“My secretary picked all the stuff out, if you don’t like it we can change it.”
“I like it, it’s nice.”
He answered while he carefully sat down on the bed, running his hand over the blue covers.
The room really was nice, his secretary had done a good job and created a good base.
Mike just needed to personalize it a bit and then maybe it would feel more like home, it would never feel like his old room but hopefully something close to it.
Harvey put down his luggage and turned around to walk away but Mike stopped him, feeling a little stupid when he used the formal title instead of his name.
“You will let me visit grammy, right?”
The thought had popped out of nowhere when they left the house, that maybe Harvey would decide to control his life completely and not let him see his grandmother. Maybe it was an irrational fear but if there was even a small chance that it would turn out to be the truth, he needed to know.
“Of course, you can see her whenever you want.”
The man seemed to be telling the truth and Mike relaxed, he even managed to force a smile when Harvey smiled at him.
He left the room, only to return a minute later asking if he wanted pizza and Mike said yes, but only if he could have cheese in the crust.

While eating their pizza, Harvey tried to have a conversation by asking questions like how he was doing in school or what he liked to do for fun. Mike wasn’t really in the mood for small talk but he didn’t want to be rude either, so he answered the questions but didn’t go into details and soon Harvey realized that he couldn’t get a real conversation going so he started telling him a little about his work instead.
His job didn’t sound as boring as Mike had thought and he ended up listening intently, he even laughed at a story about some guy named Louis.
For a second Mike thought that Harvey actually wasn’t that bad, but then a voice in his head reminded him of his grammy’s story and his good mood disappeared as fast as it had come.
He excused himself, claiming that he had a lot of homework.
Mike walked into his room and decided to unpack his bags, frowning when he found a picture frame underneath some clothes. He knew he hadn’t packed it so it must’ve been his grandmother, and when he saw the picture in the frame he knew why.
It was one of the few pictures that existed with both his parents, his grandmother and himself, normally his dad was behind the camera but not on this one.
They had taken the picture last year to use it as a Christmas card and despite wearing the ugliest Christmas sweaters that existed, they all hade big, genuine smiles on their faces.
Mike smiled and made a mental note to thank grammy before placing the photo on the nightstand.
After unpacking he spent the rest of the evening reading and texting Trevor until Harvey opened the door and said he should go to bed, making it sound more like a suggestion than an actual order.
He guessed that it would take some time for Harvey to get that parental authority, and even longer for Mike to actually respect that authority, if he ever would.
They said goodnight and Mike did go to bed, but he didn’t fall asleep.
He had learned that the nights were the worst, it was then his mind started to think about his parents and it was then the grief hit him full force.
When it all got too much for him, he would usually leave his room and go sleep in his grandmother’s bed but that was no longer an option and he would definitely not go to Harvey’s room.
So, after lying awake, being tortured by his own mind for hours he finally cried himself to sleep.

When Mike woke up the next day, he was surprised to see that it was already 10 AM.
His parents, and his grandmother, would never let him sleep for that long even if it was the weekend.
Mike got out of bed and got dressed before walking out to the kitchen, where Harvey was sitting with a cup of coffee and looking through some folder.
“Good morning, Mike.”
Harvey instructed him where everything was so that he could grab a bowl of cereal and a glass of juice.
He then sat down next to the man, quietly eating his breakfast while texting Trevor, who wanted to hang out this afternoon. Grammy had told him that Harvey wanted to pick him up on a Friday so that they’d have the weekend to ‘bond’, but Mike really wanted to hang out with Trevor and while in the neighbourhood he could check in on his grandmother.
“Hey, is it okay if I go hang out with a friend today, and maybe visit my grandma as well?”
He asked and Harvey turned to look at him, and for a second he thought he saw disappointment in the man’s eyes before he smiled.
“Yes of course.”
Harvey answered and Mike almost felt guilty for wanting to spend time with Trevor instead of Harvey, but they did have the entire Sunday together and besides they lived together now, so they would meet almost every single day for the next couple of years.
“But I want us to exchange phone numbers, and you should be home by- “
Harvey interrupted himself, probably wondering what curfew an eleven-year-old should have.
Mike suggested, which was a whole hour longer than his overprotective parents used to let him be out. The man agreed to the time and they exchanged numbers before Mike got ready to leave.
Harvey even gave him money for a cab, since his bike was still at his old house and it was a long way to walk.

His grandmother looked so small and frail in the big bed, and the sight scared Mike.
It reminded him of how sick she really was and how close to death she could really be.
Despite the fact that she was having a bad day, her face lit up when her grandson walked in the room and she insisted on getting a hug, even if she couldn’t even sit up without feeling an incredible pain.
“How’s everything going with Harvey?”
“It’s going great.”
He exaggerated a bit to avoid making her worry, things weren’t great with Harvey but at least it was better than he had expected.
They started to talk and Mike found out that grammy would be on bed rest for longer than she expected, but luckily one of grammy’s closest friend, a sweet lady named Rose, was moving in to take care of her.
Her friend was a couple of years older than grammy but she had the energy of someone half her age, and she was happy to help in exchange for living in the house for free.
Grammy was very happy as well, not only would she have her best friend with her all the time but she wouldn’t have to hire someone to take care of her or stay at a nursing home, which would have been way more expensive.
When Mike left his grandmother’s house a couple of hours later, they both felt calmer knowing that the other one was being taken care of.
He grabbed his bike and went over to Trevor’s house, where they had a fun time playing video games until Trevor suggested that they would go out and meet up with some of Trevor’s buddies.
Mike agreed to come along, even if he wasn’t that fond of Trevor’s friends who were older and supposedly ‘cooler’ than them.
It was the way their friendship worked though, Trevor was ‘the cool one’ and he was the boss and decision maker. Everything Trevor did, Mike did too even if he didn’t want to do it or if it was really stupid. It was the way it had always worked, and the few times that Mike had said no they had started a huge fight, where Trevor made it clear that their friendship could be over within seconds.
Mike didn’t have any other friends and he wanted to avoid losing his only friend, even if it meant that he sometimes had to do things he didn’t want to do.
This became clearer than ever when they had been hanging out with the older guys for a while and they suddenly decided that it was time for a smoke break.
Trevor happily grabbed two cigarettes from the pack and offered one to Mike.
Every part of him told him no, his grandfather used to smoke everyday and had died in lung cancer a couple of years back. Mike could remember every single word in the anti-smoking pamphlets he had read at the hospital but those words disappeared when Trevor spoke.
“Come on Mike, don’t be a baby.”
Trevor looked at him with a judging look on his face, and so did the older guys, and that was all it took for Mike to fall for the peer pressure and accept the poisonous stick.

When they returned to Trevor’s house Mike just felt sick while Trevor acted as if he was the coolest person on earth just because he had smoked.
As soon as they got inside, Trevor’s mother came down the stairs and told Mike that Harvey had called asking for him and it wasn’t until that moment that he realized how late it was.
Trevor’s parents weren’t that strict and they never really cared if their son stayed out late, which meant that Trevor didn’t think about what time it was.
Mike felt his pockets but realized that his phone wasn’t there, it was still on Trevor’s bedside table where he had placed it hours before.
He felt a sinking feeling in his stomach as he saw all the missed calls and text messages, he really didn’t care about the ones from Harvey but the ones from his grammy made him want to punch both Trevor and himself.
His poor grandmother must be worried sick and she didn’t need that right now. He felt so incredibly stupid when he texted Harvey saying that he was fine and that he would tell grammy that, feeling too guilty to actually call her himself.
Trevor’s mother offered to give him a ride back to Harvey’s apartment and she even offered to bring his bike, and he probably thanked her for the ride a million times when they arrived at their destination.

Harvey was sitting in the kitchen, with his arms crossed and an angry look on his face.
“I’m pretty sure we said 8.30, right?”
The man said with a calm, low voice that reminded Mike too much of his dad. When his dad got really mad he always got that voice, and it was so much worse than yelling.
“Yeah, sorry I forgot.”
Mike mumbled while Harvey stood up, still with his arms crossed.
“You forgot?”
Harvey shook his head in disbelief and yet again the man reminded him of James, which made him angry. James should be the one to stand there being mad and not this man who didn’t even want to be a father.
“Do you know how worried I was? Or how worried your grandmother was?”
“You shouldn’t have talked to her, she shouldn’t get worked up over nothing.”
Harvey opened his mouth to say something, but quickly shut it as he sniffed the air and then he took a step closer to Mike, sniffing again as to make sure that the smell was really coming from him.
“Have you been smoking?”
Mike wanted to lie but his eyes betrayed him and Harvey shook his head again.
“Michael, you’re eleven years old you shouldn’t be out late and you definitely shouldn’t be smoking!”
It sounded exactly like something James would have said, and it made Mike even angrier.
“Why do you even care?”
“Because I’m your father.”
Mike had tried not to let his anger control him but Harvey made it hard for him. The man just showed up after eleven years and tried to take over James’ role, despite the fact that he hadn’t wanted to fill the role from the beginning. That just didn’t sit right with him.
“You might be biologically but in other way James is my dad and he will always be. He gladly took the job that you didn’t even want.”
The anger disappeared from Harvey’s face and it was replaced by confusion.
“What are you talking about? Of course I wanted it.”
“Then why did you abandon me?!”
Mike yelled, suddenly unable to hold back the anger or the tears that had formed in his eyes.
Harvey’s face softened even more and so did his voice.
“Mike, your mother never told me about you. I didn’t even know that you existed until I got that phone call.”
It was Mike’s turn to be surprised, did Harvey tell the truth?
If Harvey hadn’t abandoned him, then he had been angry at the wrong person this entire time.
Mike shook his head, it couldn’t be the truth because if Harvey was telling the truth then it meant that his grandmother was the one who was lying and that just wasn’t right.
She would never lie to him, never.
Harvey showed no sign of lying, but he was a freaking lawyer and they lied all the time.
“You’re lying.”
Mike said before pushing past the man and storming off to his room while the tears started to roll down his cheeks.
“I’m not lying, Mike!”
Harvey called after him, but Mike knew he was. He trusted his grandmother and his parents more than he trusted Harvey.
He yelled at Harvey before he slammed the door shut behind him.

Chapter Text

Harvey would be lying if he said that he wasn’t a little disappointed when Mike asked him if he could visit his grandmother and his friend, instead of spending the day with him.
He had made sure he had no obligations this weekend so that he could get to know his son but apparently his son didn’t want the same thing.
He had to remind himself that this must be very hard for Mike and that there was still Sunday.
“But I want us to exchange phone numbers, and you should be home by- “
Harvey was trying to create some rules like any good, responsible parent did but he realized that he didn’t even know how long he should let the kid be out, or any other rules you should set for an eleven-year-old.
Mike suggested and it sounded fair enough, at least for the weekend and he accepted it as a curfew.
When Mike had finished eating he disappeared into his room, emerging a minute later in a new set of clothes.
“Hey Mike?”
Harvey asked when the boy opened the door, ready to leave without thinking about a very important detail.
“How were you planning on getting there?”
Mike stopped and looked at him sheepishly while mumbling that he hadn’t thought about that. Harvey chuckled and took some cash from his wallet and gave to the kid so that he could take a cab.
Mike thanked him before rushing out of the apartment and leaving Harvey alone.

Since he suddenly had an entire day off he decided to swing by the office to pick up some work.
He wanted to do work at home just in case Mike decided to come back earlier than his curfew.
The day went by pretty fast, Harvey spent his time working, talking to Donna on the phone, eating some leftover pizza and watching some baseball game on the TV.
As the evening came along he found himself constantly glancing at the clock and the door, expecting Mike to walk through it any minute now, but suddenly it was 8.30 and there was still no sign of the boy.
He tried not to worry, he had probably just forgot about the time or he was on his way home right now.
Harvey sent a text reminding Mike about what time it was but he received no answer.
Thirty minutes and a dozen of texts and calls later Harvey did start to worry.
What if something had happened to him?
He could’ve been in an accident, or been kidnapped, or god forbid he could be lying dead in a ditch somewhere.
It was that thought that made him call Mike’s grandmother, hoping that she would be awake and that she would know where Mike could be.
“I’m sorry to bother you Mrs. Ross, but is Mike with you?”
“No, he left hours ago. I thought he’d be home by now?”
“He was going to a friend after visiting you but he should have been back half an hour ago and he won’t answer his phone.”
Harvey surprised himself with how he already managed to sound like a worried parent, even if he had just been one for a little over a week.
“He’s with that damn Trevor.”
Edith said, and it was clear by the old woman’s voice that she did not like Mike’s friend.
“I take it you’re not very fond of Trevor?”
“He’s not a good kid, you should make sure Mike stays away from him.”
Harvey didn’t think he was in the position to decide who Mike should be friends with and not, but he still promised Edith to do his best before she gave him the phone number to Trevor’s house.
Trevor’s mother did nothing to still his worry when she said that the boys were out and she didn’t know where they were but she would send Mike home as soon as they returned.
Harvey soon found himself pacing the apartment, looking at his phone every other second just in case he had somehow missed an answer from Mike.
It was 9.25 and Harvey was thinking about going out to look for the kid when he finally received a simple text saying that Mike was fine and that he should let his grammy know.
Now that he was certain that his son was okay, the worry was replaced with anger and he sat down on a chair, waiting for Mike to return.

As soon as he heard the door open, he crossed his arms and made himself ready to scold the boy.
He had been spending some time thinking about how he should react to all of this, and he had decided to not go too easy on him, and make him believe that Harvey was a pushover, instead he had decided to assert his authority.
“I’m pretty sure we said 8.30, right?”
“Yeah, sorry I forgot.”
“You forgot?”
Harvey got up while he shook his head in disbelief, he would have accepted that an hour ago but now it just wasn’t a good enough excuse.
“Do you know how worried I was? Or how worried your grandmother was?”
Mike didn’t even seem to feel guilty about the fact that he had worried him, so he decided to bring up his grandmother and that did the trick.
Mike suddenly looked guilty before he said that Harvey shouldn’t have talked to her and gotten her worked up, as if it wasn’t him that had been the cause of her getting worked up.
Harvey was about to point this out to him when he picked up a sudden smell, it smelled like cigarette smoke. It seemed to be coming from Mike and he took a step closer, sniffing to make sure that it really was coming from the boy.
“Have you been smoking?”
He could see the guilt in his son’s eyes and Harvey shook his head in disbelief again.
Weren’t these kinds of behaviors supposed to come with teenagers, not eleven-year-olds?
Harvey had thought that he would get a couple of years before this kind of thing happened.
“Michael, you’re eleven years old you shouldn’t be out late and you definitely shouldn’t be smoking!”
“Why do you even care?”
“Because I’m your father.”
The guilt disappeared from Mike’s eyes and was replaced by anger.
“You might be biologically but in other way James is my dad and he will always be. He gladly took the job that you didn’t even want.”
Harvey was taken aback by Mike’s words, why would he think that he didn’t want to be his father?
He had taken on the job now, and if he had known about Mike eleven years ago he would have done the same.
Sure, it would’ve been scary and a big change, but he would never have let Nina raise him without him in the picture.
“What are you talking about? Of course, I wanted it.”
“Then why did you abandon me?!”
Mike’s yell surprised him, he wasn’t surprised by the anger but by the pain he could hear in his son’s voice.
It all suddenly made sense, why both Mike and Edith had been so cold towards him because they believed that he had left.
Oh god, Mike really believed the lie someone fed him, and he was really asking his father why he abandoned him, and it broke Harvey’s heart.
“Mike, your mother never told me about you. I didn’t even know that you existed until I got that phone call.”
The kid looked surprised at his words, and Harvey felt guilty for not even thinking about talking about the past with him, instead he just let his son believe that he was abandoned.
He could see the internal struggle on his face, he went from surprised to puzzled and then finally he landed in denial.
“You’re lying.”
He said before he pushed past him and stormed off to his room.
“I’m not lying, Mike!”
The door slammed behind Mike and Harvey sat down again, releasing a deep sigh.
He wanted to go after him but it would only make things worse, so instead he decided to go to bed and deal with this in the morning.

The next morning he decided to call Edith since he wanted to talk to her too, since she seemed to believe the same thing Mike did. They agreed that Mike and Harvey would drop by later and Harvey hung up before reading the newspaper while waiting for the kid to get up.
Once he did, it was obvious that he was still angry about last night.
Mike was pouting and did everything he could to show Harvey that he was still mad and Harvey had to keep himself from laughing at the kid’s dramatics.
“I was thinking about visiting your grandmother today, do you want to come?”
He asked, doubting that Mike would ever say no to visiting his grandmother even if he knew that there would be a serious conversation waiting.
Mike proved this by quickly glancing at Harvey and then nodding.
“Sorry, I didn’t hear that.”
Mike rolled his eyes, and Harvey wondered if Mike really was eleven and not a teenager.
“Yes, I would like to come.”
He said, with a faked polite voice.
“Great, we’ll go as soon as you’ve had breakfast.”

Half an hour later they arrived at their destination where Edith’s friend welcomed them.
They were shown upstairs where Edith were lying in her bed, looking much paler and sicker than Harvey could’ve imagined.
Despite her weakness, she managed to greet them with a smile and even got Mike to hug her before she lightly scolded him for yesterday.
Harvey sat down in an armchair while Mike took a seat on the edge of the bed.
“It has come to my attention that there’s two sides of the story here, and I would just at least get the opportunity to tell you my side.”
Mike rolled his eyes again, clearly not ready to listen to him but Edith looked at him with curious eyes and prompted him to continue with a nod.
“I’m not entirely sure about what exactly you’ve been told but I never left Nina and I never left you, Mike.”
He tried to establish eye contact with him but the kid refused to look at him.
“I met your mother 12 years ago and we fell in love. We really loved each other but we ended up being bad for each other. We made a mutual decision to break up and then we walked away from each other and I never heard from her ever again. She never told me that she was pregnant, I never even got the chance to be your father.”
Both of them were quiet and for a second he thought that they had really understood, until Mike looked at him and there was still denial written all over his face.
He got up from the bed and looked at Harvey with anger in his eyes.
“You’re still lying! You’re just trying to justify it because you’re a coward!”
For a moment the room went silence while Harvey desperately tried to come up with an answer that wouldn’t make him even more upset.
They both turned and looked at the old woman in the bed. She slowly reached out her hand and took Mike’s hand in hers.
“I think I believe him.”

Chapter Text

Surely, he must have heard her wrong, how could she so easily believe his story when she was the one telling him the other side of the story, and when she carried so much dislike for the man.
“Are you serious?”
He asked, but she didn’t answer instead she just gestured for him to sit down again and after a few seconds of hesitation, he reluctantly sat down.
“First of all, the story I told you was what your mother told us and just because it’s the story we chose to believe for all these years, doesn’t mean it’s the truth. To be completely honest I’ve always had my doubts about it but I have never questioned it before since I trusted your mother. Second of all I do think that Nina would lie about something like that.”
Mike frowned at her words, he didn’t know what she meant by that.
His mother had always been a kind, honest person and he was more willing to believe that Harvey would lie than his mother.
“What do you mean by that?”
He asked his grandmother in an accusing tone which caused her to sigh.
“Your mother always had very strong beliefs that a child could not be happy with separated parents, since her own parents got divorced and she was truly unhappy with the situation.”
His mother’s parents had both died when he was very young and he had no memory of them at all, but he was sure that his mother never mentioned that they were divorced or that they were anything but the perfect parents that never gave her a reason to be unhappy.
“I can easily imagine that she wouldn’t want to involve you Harvey, because if you wanted to be a part of it, then Mike would have separated parents and to Nina that meant that Mike would not be happy and not feel safe.”
“Did she really think that?”
Mike questioned as his grandmother painted up a picture of his mother that he didn’t recognize at all.
“When you were five, James wanted to get a divorce but Nina wouldn’t let that happen and they fought constantly, I honestly thought they would end up killing each other. Your mother just wouldn’t let him leave.”
The only thing he remembered was that his dad started to drink a lot when he was five, but he never knew that it was because of his mother and a possible divorce.
In his eyes his parents had always been the perfect couple, but it seemed as if another part of his life had been a complete lie.
“I just need to be alone and think.”
Mike said before he got up and walked out of the room.

He fled to the room that he once knew as his and sat down on the bed. The room was small and kind of cramped, it had been a guest room before his parents had decided to move his sick grandma in to the house. Mike had been more than happy to trade his bedroom for the smaller guest room in order to give his grandmother the bigger room.
He didn’t know why but he had always had a special bond with his grammy, and he had always been close to her and ready to do everything to make sure that she was alright, but now for the first time in his life he was unsure if he could trust her.
His head was spinning, someone had been lying to him but he didn’t know who.
The first option was that Harvey was lying and he had actually abandoned him, which of course raised the question if the man had changed or if he was doing this because he felt like he had to.
Even if the man had changed, the thought of being abandoned, of being unwanted really hurt and he wasn’t sure if he could ever get over that if that was the truth.
The second option was that Harvey was telling the truth and his mother had been the one lying.
If that was the case then Mike had treated Harvey unfairly, when the man was just trying to connect to the son he never knew he had.
Mike really wished that his mother could still be here so that he could confront her and ask her why she had kept this from him, why she let him live a lie and ask if she had ever planned to tell him.
He wanted to know if his mother had never told him the truth in order to protect him from knowing that he was unwanted or if it had been for her own selfish reasons.
The thought of his mother, mixed with all of the confused feelings, caused tears to escape his eyes.
He cried because he wanted his mother back, even if it was to just confront her, and he wanted the man he’d known as his father back too.
He cried because he didn’t know what to do or who to believe, he was lost and his parents weren’t there to guide him.
All he had now was his grammy and his new dad, and he didn’t know even if he could trust them right now.
A part of him desperately wanted someone to come in and tell him that it was going to be okay and provide him a magical solution to this trust dilemma, but the other part of him didn’t want to show how much this affected him.
Luckily when Harvey knocked on the door a while longer, the tears had dried and Mike didn’t have to show his weakness in front of him.

Several kids stared at the car as it stopped in front of the school building, it wasn’t often that you saw someone arrive in a car as nice as the one Mike was in.
He took a deep breath before he opened the door and stepped out of the car.
“Thanks for the ride, Ray.”
Mike politely said to the driver, who he had really taken a liking to despite having only met the man this morning.
“Have a good day.”
Harvey said and Mike answered with a quick ‘you too’. They hadn’t really talked to each other since they returned from his grandmother, mostly because Mike had shut himself in his room and Harvey had respected his will to be alone.
The car left and Mike walked into the school building, ignoring the way people whispered about him.
He couldn’t really blame them for wondering, he usually arrived to school in his father’s old Volvo and not an expensive, classy car like he had today.
They would wonder about it for a while and then forget about it, or at least that’s what he thought.
Mike was on his way to his second lesson of the day when Kyle and his minions showed up out of nowhere, circling around him like predators circling their pray.
“What do you want?”
He asked, trying to sound tough despite feeling like a zebra cornered by a group of lions.
“I heard you had a new daddy.”
Kyle said and Mike couldn’t help but frown. He hadn’t told anyone about Harvey, well apart from Trevor but his best friend would never tell anyone else if Mike didn’t want him to.
Mike sighed, Kyle’s try to taunt him was just pathetic, pointing out that he had a new dad wouldn’t annoy him or hurt him since he was simply stating a fact.
He would just have to wait for Kyle to realize that he wouldn’t succeed in his bullying attempt today and leave him alone so that he could go to his lesson.
Kyle however was not done, instead he managed to press just the right button.
“Are you sure that it’s your real daddy this time? I mean you have had two now, who’s to say there aren’t more options out there? Your mother seemed to be a real who-“
Kyle didn’t get the chance to finish that word before Mike’s fist connected with his face.
Mike had never been the violent type but Kyle’s words really made him see red, Kyle knew that his mother was dead and still he dared to speak of her that way.
No matter how he felt for his mother at the moment, he wouldn’t let anyone speak ill of her.
Despite the fact that Kyle was both bigger and stronger than him, he managed to tackle him to the ground and he ended up on top of him as he continued to hit him in blind rage.
Kyle managed to get in a few blows himself but it was Mike who dominated the fight, too engulfed by rage to stop.
Kyle’s minions stood like frozen next to them, they were too shocked by the sudden attack to help their leader.
The minions were suddenly pushed aside as two teachers rushed to the scene, one of them pulled Mike off of Kyle while the other teacher helped Kyle up.
“Don’t you talk about my mother ever again.”
Mike threatened as the teacher had to hold him back from Kyle, and he couldn’t help but feel a little proud when he noticed that he had managed to make the toughest kid in school look like a terrified little puppy.

Chapter Text

Harvey hadn't been at work for long when he got a call from Mike's school, informing him that Mike had gotten into a fight.
He checked his watch and shook his head; the kid had only been in school for little over and hour and he had already managed to get into trouble?
Harvey told the lady on the phone that he would get to the school as soon as possible before he hung up and closed the file on his desk.
Donna gave him a questioning look as he grabbed his suit jacket and walked out of his office.
“I have to go to Mike's school.”
He just informed her, and she responded with a big smile.
“Fatherhood looks good on you.”
Harvey scoffed at her before walking away from her desk and over to the elevators.
So far, he seemed to have only experienced the downsides of fatherhood, and he really hoped to experience some good parts soon.
He also hoped that this kind of calls wouldn't become too regular, considering that would force him to choose between his work and his son.

Harvey walked into the school office, where he spotted Mike sitting on a chair.
His right eye was slightly swollen and it looked like he would get a pretty nice shiner.
The door to the principal's office opened before Harvey got the chance to even talk to Mike, and a tall, middle-aged man appeared.
“Mr. Ross, Mr. Specter.”
He said, gesturing to his office to indicate that they could go inside and they did, sitting down on the uncomfortable chairs placed in front of the desk.
The principal started to tell him how Mike had attacked another student in the hallway, and that said student was currently in the nurse's office getting his injuries checked out.
Harvey looked at Mike in disbelief, he had never gotten the impression that the boy was a trouble maker or a violent person.
His grandmother had always bragged about him being a kind, well behaved kid, and when he did get in trouble, like the smoking for example, she had been quick to point the finger at Mike's friend for being a bad influence.
So, it was hard for him to believe that Mike had started a fight and he tried his best to read the kid but Mike was looking down at his sneakers so he couldn't see his face or eyes.
“I hope you understand Mr. Specter, that we have zero tolerance for violence at this school, and we do have to suspend Michael, even if this is the first time he's been in any serious trouble.”
Harvey nodded to show that he did understand and the principal continued.
“Since Michael was the aggressor in this fight I have decided to suspend him for a week.”
Mike finally looked up from his sneakers, and turned to Harvey, with a pleading look in his eyes.
The kid most likely wanted him to use his lawyer skills to negotiate a more lenient punishment, but he would do no such thing.
“That sounds fair.”
He told the principal and Mike's face fell.

Back in the car, Mike was pouting, still upset that Harvey hadn't even tried to negotiate his punishment.
Harvey looked at the kid, wondering if he should hand out an extra punishment for the fighting but he had no idea what that punishment should be, he hadn't even given Mike any consequences for the smoking yet.
Well before he decided what to do, he should try to understand why in the world Mike would start a fight.
“Want to tell me what the fight was about?”
“It's none of your business.”
“Well, I think that me having to leave work and come pick you up because you attacked another student makes it my business.”
Mike was quiet for a minute, weighing his options, before he released a big sigh.
“The other student, Kyle, was saying rude things about my mom, implying things about her that isn't true.”
Harvey nodded, suddenly understanding why Mike decided to start a fight.
Emotional outbursts and anger was a part of the grieving process, and even if Mike appeared to be fine, he was still grieving.
He could easily imagine himself doing the same thing if anyone had decided to badmouth his deceased father, especially if it had been close to his death, but even if he would have done the exact same thing, he would have to be a parent here and teach his child that violence wasn’t acceptable, even if it might be hypocritical.
“This isn’t the way back to the apartment.”
Mike suddenly remarked, avoiding to use the word ‘home’ since it probably would take a while for him to actually feel that way.
Harvey had told Ray to take them back to the office so that Donna would finally stop asking to meet Mike, and perhaps bringing him to the office was a good punishment.
If he kept the kid with him for the rest of his suspension then he could keep an eye on him and make sure that he did the school work he brought home and that it became an actual boring punishment instead of a week of sleeping in late and having fun.
“I’m taking you to my office, my secretary is dying to meet you.”
“You two seem pretty close. Are you sleeping with her?”
Harvey froze, not expecting and certainly not wanting to hear that question from the 11-year-old.
“I’m not and even if I were it wouldn’t be any of your business.”
He answered before quickly deciding to change the subject before Mike decided to ask anymore questions about his love life.
“I actually think that you should stay with me at the office for the rest of the week, so that your suspension actually becomes a punishment and not a week’s vacation.”
“That doesn’t seem fair, I had a good reason for fighting him.”
“Yes, but it doesn’t justify the fighting, it’s not the correct way to handle problems. The mature and adult way is to handle it with words.”
Mike just rolled his eyes at the lecture and Harvey sighed, he suddenly had a greater understanding for what his own parents went through when he was in Mike’s age.
“How about a week’s grounding, including the weekend, with the weekdays spent in my office and then we’ll forget all about the fighting, the breaking of curfew and the smoking?”
It was a good deal, especially since he guessed that Nina would’ve given him a way harder punishment.
Mike just answered at the same time that the car stopped outside the firm and the kid got out of the car.
Harvey released a big sigh before he followed him, silently wishing for this to be the end of the drama so that they could actually bond and become more like friends instead of Harvey just having to be the authority figure.

Donna looked up from her desk and when she spotted the kid next to him, she flew up from her desk and started to walk towards them, bouncing with excitement.
Mike suddenly walked closer to Harvey, clearly not sharing his secretary’s excitement.
“You must be Mike.”
She said and Harvey could see that she was holding herself back, if it wasn’t for Mike’s wariness she probably would have thrown herself at him and enveloped him in a big hug, without ever letting go.
“You must be Donna.”
Mike answered, trying to sound polite despite his obvious caution towards the overly excited woman.
They shook hands before Mike saw his chance to escape into Harvey’s office, where he stopped to look around the room.
“Oh, he’s so adorable.”
Donna cooed, as if she had just spotted the world’s cutest puppy.
“He looks a lot like you.”
She then pointed out and those words cause a warm feeling to spread through his body.
It would be hard to get over that Mike knew another man as his father and that he had another man’s last name, but at least he had Harvey’s genes.
“You think?”
“Yes and can you just imagine him in a little suit, he would look just like his daddy.”
Harvey chuckled and told her to take it down a notch before he followed Mike into his office.

It didn’t take long for Mike to get bored and soon he asked for direction to the bathroom but had obviously decided to explore , since he was gone for over 40 minutes.
When he did return however, he wasn’t alone, Louis was holding Mike by his collar and marched right into Harvey’s office.
As soon as he saw them and noticed the frightened look on Mike’s face, a protective instinct surged in him and he wanted to get his child out of Louis’ clutches.
“Does this child belong to you?”
Louis asked before looking at Mike with a smug look on his face, clearly expecting Harvey to say no.
It wasn’t hard to understand what was going on, Louis had found Mike walking around and saw him as a distraction that didn’t belong there, even if Louis didn’t mind kids per se, he definitely minded kids running around at his workplace.
“Yes, he does.”
Louis smug look disappeared and instead it was replaced by confusion.
“Now get your hands off my son, Louis.”
He told him and the man immediately let go off Mike as if his hand had been burned.
Mike scurried away from Louis and sat down on the couch, avoiding to even look at the man.
Louis spluttered, bewildered by the fact that Harvey suddenly had a son.
“Do I really need to tell you about the flowers and the bees?”
Harvey asked and his words managed to put a smile on Mike’s face.
Louis didn’t get a chance to answer before Donna showed up and managed to herd the man out of the office.
“Are you alright?”
“Yeah, I’m fine.”
Mike answered even if his eyes betrayed him.
Harvey shook his head and sighed, it was typical Louis to make a bad first impression.

Chapter Text

Mike was more than a little disappointed when Harvey didn’t use his negotiating skills to lower his punishment, he had thought that having a lawyer as a father would pay off but apparently not.
Sure, he knew that fighting was wrong but in his eyes, Kyle deserved it and hopefully this incident would at least bruise his ego, especially since a lot of people had seen him getting beaten up by a nerd.
He was allowed to pick up some books to work with while he was suspended, and even if it was a big pile of it he knew that he could finish it all in a day since school was easy for him.
Mike said hello to Ray before he sat down in the backseat and started to pout, he knew it was childish but he felt the need to show that he was still angry.
“Want to tell me what the fight was about?”
“It’s none of your business.”
“Well, I think that me having to leave work and come pick you up because you attacked another student makes it my business.”
He didn’t like to admit it but Harvey was right, he had forced him away from his work after all and besides if Harvey understood his reasons then perhaps he wouldn’t receive any additional punishment.
Mike sighed before he told him about how Kyle had thought it was a good idea to insult his mother.
Harvey didn’t answer him, instead he seemed to get lost in his thought, so Mike looked out the window instead and realized that he didn’t recognize the road they were driving.
“This isn’t the way back to the apartment.”
He pointed out while trying to recognize any landmarks so that he could figure out where they were going.
“I’m taking you to my office, my secretary is dying to meet you.”
“You two seem pretty close. Are you sleeping with her?”
The question was partly asked just to embarrass him, but partly because they did seem close. His secretary had designed his room after all, and every time Harvey mentioned her, Mike got the feeling that she was more than just his secretary.
“I’m not and even if I were it wouldn’t be any of your business.”
Mike smirked, it seemed as if his question got the desired effect judging by how Harvey’s cheeks had turned a faint shade of red.
“I actually think that you should stay with me at the office for the rest of the week, so that your suspension actually becomes a punishment and not a week’s vacation.”
His smirk disappeared, it was one thing visiting the office once but to spend a week there? No way.
“That doesn’t seem fair, I had a good reason for fighting him.”
“Yes, but it doesn’t justify the fighting, it’s not the correct way to handle problems. The mature and adult way is to handle it with words.”
Mike rolled his eyes at him, he didn’t need a lecture because he wasn’t some small child who didn’t understand the difference between right or wrong,.
“How about a week’s grounding, including the weekend, with the weekdays spent in my office and then we’ll forget all about the fighting, the breaking of curfew and the smoking?”
It sounded like a week of torture, he really didn’t want to spend a week cramped up in some office, but he knew that if his parents were still alive then his punishment would have been so much worse.
He answered before he jumped out of the car and faced the building he would spend the week in.

As soon as they got into the building it felt as if everyone was staring at him, he looked up at Harvey but the man didn’t even seem to notice, he was probably used to the attention.
Mike kept his head down and tried to not meet their eyes.
Suddenly he spotted a redhead that stood out from everyone else, mostly because she was walking towards them and instead of just staring at him, she looked like she was bursting from excitement.
He felt like a scared little child when he walked closer to Harvey, but he was slightly scared of what the woman would do, maybe she would try to hug him and even if he didn’t mind hugs per se he didn’t like getting hugged by strangers.
“You must be Mike.”
It didn’t take a genius to figure out who the woman was and he faked a smile.
“You must be Donna.”
He answered before shaking her hand, and as soon as Donna turned to Harvey, he saw his chance to escape into the office with his father’s name on the door.
Harvey had a really nice office, much nicer than he had imagined, and there was a lot to look at, the signed balls, the records and of course the view over the city.
Perhaps it wouldn’t be that bad to hang out here for a week.

That thought didn’t last long because it took just one hour for him to get bored and he asked for directions to the bathroom to get out of the room.
Donna flashed him a big smile as he walked by her desk and he felt obligated to smile back.
He used the bathroom like he had said he would but then he decided that it wouldn’t hurt to explore a little, he would spend some time here so it would be best to know the place.
It wasn’t that big and soon he found himself in a room full of cubicles, he guessed that this is where the newer employees work, the ones who hadn’t earned their own offices yet.
He scanned the area, looking for someone with a friendly face, and finally his eyes landed on a nervous looking guy who seemed to buried in work.
Mike knew he shouldn’t disturb, but none of the others seemed as friendly so he walked up to the guy.
His name was Harold, and even if he seemed really stressed he was more than happy to talk to Mike and to talk about his work.
The work Harold was doing seemed very dull, and he hoped there were more interesting parts of being a lawyer because he could not see how anyone would their days doing boring paperwork.
Suddenly Harold paled, and looked like he had seen a ghost.
At first he was confused by his reaction but then he felt a hard tap on his shoulder and as he spun around he saw a dark haired man, with a frown on his face and a scrutinizing look directed at Mike.
“Who are you?”
There was something about the man that gave him a bad feeling, something telling him that this wasn’t someone he wanted to mess with.
Apparently Mike took way too long to answer because suddenly the man took a step closer to him, and Mike felt like a cornered animal with Harold’s desk behind him and the angry man in front of him.
“Why is a child running around unsupervised?”
He asked, annoying Mike by making it sound like he was a 5-year-old.
“I’m not a child.”
Mike answered but the man ignored him and instead raised his voice and demanded to know who Mike belonged, of course no one claimed him and the angry man landed his glare on him again.
“Who are you?”
He repeated and Mike hesitated, should he really tell the man that he was Harvey’s son?
Was he ready to introduce himself as such and did Harvey even want people to know?
In the end he guessed it didn’t matter because even if he would never be ready to acknowledge Harvey as his dad, he would always be his father and sooner or later his co-workers would find out.
“I’m Harvey Specter’s son.”
He hoped that the name would make the man back off, or at least show some respect since he had understood that Harvey was a pretty big deal around here, but instead the man let out a low, dry laugh.
“Harvey doesn’t have a son.”
“Go ahead and ask him.”
Mike challenged, expecting the man to storm off but instead the grabbed Mike by the collar and more or less dragged him back to Harvey’s office.
He sent a desperate look at Donna’s desk but unfortunately she wasn’t at her desk so she couldn’t save him from the man.
“Does this child belong to you?”
The man asked Harvey, who frowned.
“Yes, he does.”
Harvey answered before telling the man, Louis, to let him go.
Louis loosened him grip and Mike scurried away from the man and sat down on the couch.
“Do I really need to tell you about the flowers and the bees?”
Mike couldn’t help to smile at the comment, before feeling a little stupid for fearing the man who had seemed like a complete fool in Harvey’s stories.
Then Donna arrived and she managed to get Louis out of the office without much protest and Mike could finally relax.
“Are you alright?”
“Yeah I’m fine.”
He lied, hoping that he would never run into Louis again.

Once he recovered from the meeting with Louis, he started to feel bored again.
“Do you have a law book?”
He asked, wanting to know if Harvey’s work were more fun than the paperwork Harold had been stuck with.
Harvey looked surprised by his question before he adopted a more amused look and got up, looking through a pile of book.
He found one that he handed to Mike who thanked him.
He studied the book closely, it seemed to be a textbook from college.
Mike looked through the book and eventually he landed on the section dealing with traffic offenses, and more specifically DUIs.
He scanned through the pages, taking in every word.
“Isn’t that book a little too advanced for you?”
Harvey asked after a while, clearly not expecting Mike to find the book interesting or to understand it.
Mike responded by shaking his head but Harvey still didn’t seem convinced though, so he decided to simply show him.
“Take this.”
He said and held the book, Harvey gave him a puzzled look but got up from his desk and grabbed the book.
“Read the first sentence on the page.”
Harvey looked even more confused but began reading anyways and once he finished the sentence Mike continued, not skipping a single word.
Once Mike stopped, Harvey just stared at him.
“Once I read something I understand it and once I understand it I never forget it.”
He explained, anxiously waiting for Harvey’s reaction.
Mike had gotten mixed reactions over the years, but mostly he had been called a freak.
Harvey finally said and handed the book back to him, no longer doubting Mike’s ability to understand the book.
Mike smiled as he saw that Harvey did indeed look impressed, maybe even a little proud.
He continued to read the book, and was completely engulfed in it, not noticing that it was time to leave for the day until Harvey had to wave a hand in front of his face to get his attention.
“Harvey, is it hard being a lawyer?”
Mike asked the man once they were in the elevators.
“It can be. Are you thinking of becoming one?”
Mike shrugged and clutched the book closer to his chest.

Chapter Text


At first he had just been amused that Mike wanted to borrow a law book, he had fully expected that the kid would just look through it before returning it.
He had expected that an 11-year-old would be more interested in reading Harry Potter or whatever it was that the kids read these days, but he was pleasantly surprised when Mike demonstrated his little “super power.”
It was truly amazing, sure he had expected or at least hoped that his son was smart.
Harvey considered himself pretty smart and even if Nina had her quirks, she had always been a very intelligent woman.
The fact that his son not only had a photographic memory but also the ability to understand books meant for people almost a decade older than him was way beyond his expectations, and he would be lying if he said that it didn't impress him and even make him feel a little proud.
Mike even brought the book back to the apartment and while Harvey was making them dinner, the boy was still absolutely absorbed by the book.
He even had to tell Mike three times to please put the book down when it was time to eat.
It seemed as if he had taken a real interest in the law and he could suddenly hear Donna's previous words about picturing Mike in a suit.
He could easily see the kid walking around the office, dressed in a three piece suit and learning about the law.
It was kind of adorable, he had to stop his own thoughts there because Harvey Specter simply didn't think of something as 'adorable'.
Although he did get an unexplainable warm feeling in his body at the thought of his son becoming a lawyer just like him, just like his dad.

After dinner they decided to watch a movie and Harvey cringed as Mike rummaged through his movies and totally ruined the perfect order he'd placed them in.
“You have the Godfather?”
The kid exclaimed in awe and pulled out the movie before looking at the cover.
“Yeah, have you ever seen it?”
“No, mom wouldn't let me see it, she thought that I couldn't handle it.”
Mike stared at the cover for a couple of seconds before he turned to Harvey and gave him the puppy eyes.
“Can I watch it, Harvey?”
His first instinct was to say no since he could understand why Nina hadn't let him watch it, the movie was more suited for the older audience but he hesitated since it was a really good movie.
If Mike was mature enough to spend an entire afternoon reading an old Harvard law book then he should be mature enough for the movie, besides Harvey had only been a year or two older than him when he watched it for the first time.
“Please, please, please.”
Mike said and those bright blue puppy eyes were impossible to say no to.
“Okay fine, just don't tell Donna. ”
He said, suspecting that his secretary would have the same opinion about the movie as his ex-girlfriend.
Mike let out a squeal of excitement before he put the disc in.
During the movie, Harvey kept glancing over at Mike to look for any signs of the movie affecting him badly, but the kid seemed totally fine.
The only exception was the scene where they placed a cut off horsehead in the bed, but that scene made even Harvey a little uncomfortable, especially since he knew that the horsehead was real.

The next day he was very glad that he had allowed Mike to watch the movie, because they spent the whole morning talking about the movie or making references to it and it felt like they had managed to bond a little.
Donna stopped him when they passed her desk, apparently she had been instructed to send him to Jessica's office as soon as possible.
He could already guess what it was about, Louis had probably told her about Mike and now she wanted to know how he suddenly had a son and why said child was running around the office.
Harvey told Mike to stay in the office in the meantime, and the boy nodded before walking into the office, he didn't think that Mike would go exploring again, not after running into Louis.
As expected, Mike was the reason behind Jessica calling him to her office.
“Can you please explain to me why there's a Specter junior running around the firm?”
Harvey sighed and sat down, deciding to explain everything from Nina not telling him about her pregnancy to Mike getting suspended from his school.
In the end she was more understanding of the situation but she still didn't like it, she shared Louis' opinion about Mike's presence at their workplace being unprofessional.
“I am making an exception because it's you Harvey, but if that kid breaks something or screws something up.”
Jessica didn't finish her threat, but she didn't need to for Harvey to understand.

Mike was sitting by Harvey's desk when he returned, and Harvey just smiled at the sight until he entered the office and saw that Mike was looking through the file on his ongoing, very big and very important, case.
“Mike what are you doing?”
He demanded to know, not only was it important information that shouldn't be seen by outside parties , even if the outsider in this case was an 11-year-old, but he had yet again managed to ruin the order Harvey had put the papers in.
Mike jumped a little at his raised voice before he seemed to realize that he wasn't supposed to touch the papers and that he had just been caught red handed.
Harvey then spotted the pen that Mike was holding in his hand, and he swore that his heart stopped for a second, had the boy been drawing on his important papers?
That was something a five year old would do, not an eleven year old.
“I'm sorry.”
Mike apologized while he scrambled to get all the papers into the folder again, misplacing them even more.
“Just go and sit on the couch.”
Harvey ordered and the kid didn't hesitate a second before he left the office chair and sat down on the black couch.
Harvey took a deep breath while resisting the urge to yell at Mike, at least until he had the chance to assess the damage.
He went through every paper, looking for what the kid had done and finally he found the ink but it wasn't a drawing like he expected, instead it was some words written in the margin.
Harvey read it and then he looked at the document, realizing that Mike hadn't been destroying the document he had just observed some faulty information.
He re-read both the document and Mike's note, and realized that the kid had found a mistake that probably not even half of the associates would spot.
Mike was looking at him while nervously fidgeting on the couch.
“I'm sorry, Harvey I just-”
“How did you find this?”
Harvey interrupted and pointed at the section of the document that contained the error.
“I read something similar in the book yesterday.”
He answered and pointed at the law book that had been discarded on the couch next to him.
While Mike's discovery didn't help him win the case, it actually did help him get unstuck.
If Mike ever decided to become a lawyer, he would become a great one.
“Thank you, just don't touch my papers again.”
Harvey smiled at him to show him that he was no longer mad, and Mike returned the smile with a proud look in his eyes.

Chapter Text


It wasn't like he was purposely snooping, he had just gotten very bored and decided to change from sitting on the couch to sitting in Harvey's vacant office chair.
The file had been laying on the desk and even if he knew that he shouldn't touch it, he was curious to know what the case was about.
Mike looked over at Donna but the secretary was too occupied by her own work to notice what he was doing.
He just meant to take quick peek, just to get a general idea about the case, but soon found himself thoroughly reading through the case and even subconsciously writing little notes in the margin.
It was a really interesting case and he got completely lost in it, which is why he completely missed that Harvey came back.
Harvey questioned what he was doing and Mike felt like a child being caught with the hand in the cookie jar.
He apologized before he went back to the couch, feeling a little ashamed over the fact that he had been snooping but it did feel a little better after Harvey thanked him for managing to find a mistake.

That evening they sat down and watched the second Godfather movie, which was a good movie even if it wasn't as good as its predecessor.
The night after that they watched the third movie and once they were out of Godfather movies they moved on to other classic films that Mike hadn't seen such as E.T and The Wizard of Oz.
It seemed like it was the best way for them to bond since they both loved watching movies and then quoting them afterwards, both of them also enjoyed driving Donna crazy with the constant movie quotes.
Mike figured that he must have gotten the movie interest from Harvey, considering the fact that his mother had rarely watched movies and on the rare occasions that she did, she became very easily bored and restless.

The weekend came along much quicker than Mike had expected and on Saturday morning Donna came by.
Harvey had intended for him to spend his grounded weekend in the apartment but after the man had realized that he would have to bring some extra work home with him, Donna had weasled her way in.
So now he was supposed to spend the day with Donna which, according to Harvey, meant shopping, shopping and even more shopping.
Mike didn't mind shopping, he just wasn't particularly fond of the kind of shopping that lasted
forever, which is why he felt nothing but dread when Donna walked into the apartment.
Harvey was in the kitchen, cleaning up after their breakfast while Mike was lying on the couch, reading a book.
Donna greeted Harvey before she looked over at Mike.
“He's reading a book.”
Donna pointed out, as if Mike couldn't hear her and Harvey just hummed in response.
“That's sad, I should get him a Playstation.”
She continued, causing Mike to turn all of his focus to the conversation.
He had always been jealous of Trevor who had his own Playstation and a bunch of cool games.
“Please don't spoil my kid.”
Harvey, the party pooper, answered.
“I actually don't mind being spoiled.”
Mike added and he heard Harvey sigh while Donna just giggled in delight.

Mike was more than a little surprised when the shopping turned out to be focused on him.
He had fully expected to be dragged from store to store while Donna did her shopping but instead she was intent on doing exactly what Harvey had told her not to do.
Mike could probably point at everything he wanted and Donna would most likely buy it for him, but he didn't try this out since his parents had taught him to not take advantage of people's generosity.
He didn't mind people buying him things, but there was a fine line between him being fine with it and him thinking that the person was spending too much money on him.
There was no stopping Donna though, and even after Mike had way more new clothes than he would ever need, he was told to pick out some more.
They even ended up getting a tailored suit, even if Mike didn't think that he needed one while Donna insisted that since he was Harvey Specter's son he definitely needed one.
Apart from clothes she bought him a new backpack for school, even if there was nothing wrong with his old one, some décor for his room and some new books.
Eventually they ended up in front of the game consoles and even if Mike felt like he was in heaven, he couldn't help to think about what Harvey had said.
“Are you sure Harvey would be okay with this?”
He asked her while she picked up a box with a Playstation 4 and handed it to him.
“Oh honey, your dad might be my boss at work but outside of it, I'm the boss of him.”
She stated with a wink and Mike didn't doubt that statement for even a second.
The secretary then helped him pick out some games, unfortunately making him choose age appropriate games even if he had played many of the games she thought he was “too young for” at Trevor's house.

They ended their day together by eating ice cream outside the mall while Donna told him stories about Harvey, for example about that time that Harvey had dyed his hair pink after losing a bet.
Donna promised to show him pictures of that someday, she had the pictures safely hidden away so that Harvey wouldn't get the chance to get rid of them.
Shen then took him back to the apartment, where Harvey was still working.
He stared at all the stuff that Donna had bought with a look that basically said “disappointed but not surprised.”
Donna turned out to be the perfect “cool aunt” who showed up to spoil him, tell him fun stories and then return him to Harvey and let him do the actual parenting.
“I couldn't stop her.”
Mike told Harvey once Donna had gone home and they were left with what seemed like million of shopping bags.
“I know.”
He just answered while giving the Playstation a disapproving look.
“Can I please keep it?”
Mike asked, fearing that Harvey would return it.
“Fine but there's going to be some rules.”
“Thanks Harvey!”
He exclaimed and without thinking he gave the man a quick hug before he grabbed the Playstation and ran over to the TV to set it up.

Chapter Text


From the second Donna suggested to take Mike for a shopping trip, Harvey knew that she would spoil the kid.
He was not too excited about Donna buying him a bunch of stuff that he didn't need, partly because he didn't want to have too much clutter in the apartment but mostly because he didn't want Mike to become a spoiled rich little brat, but he also knew that there was no way for him to stop her.
So even if she had posed her suggestion as a question, he knew that she would only accept one answer from him.
Once Donna and Mike had left for the shopping trip, Harvey got the chance to work with the casefiles that he had brought home with him.
Before he had never minded bringing extra work home but now that he had a son to bond with, bringing work home felt like the worst thing ever.
If it hadn't been such a big, important case he would have just said “screw it” and went with Donna and Mike instead.
When the pair returned he was still caught up in work but took a break to look at all the shopping bags and let out a big sigh.
He gave the Playstation a disapproving look, not because he was some boring,old man who didn't like the kids' technology but because it felt like Donna was really spoiling him there and because he didn't want Mike to waste his childhood away in front of a screen.
In the end he allowed the kid to keep it, he really had to learn to resist those puppy eyes, but only if there would be some rules.
Mike set the console up and spent the rest of the afternoon playing it.

The next day while drinking his morning coffee and reading the news, his brain randomly remembered that there was a cinema who used to show older movies on the weekends.
Despite still having a lot of work to do he found himself checking their website and saw that they were showing Gremlins today and by the time Mike got up he had more or less decided that they would go.
“Hey, there's this cinema that shows older movies sometimes and they're showing Gremlins today. Wanna go see it?”
“I thought I was still grounded.”
“You're let off for good behaviour.”
Mike's face lit up before he looked at all the folders that Harvey had stacked in a neat pile.
“Don't you have to finish that?”
“I'll have plenty of time this afternoon.”
The smile returned to Mike's face, and agreed to go see the movie.
They ate their breakfast and Harvey then spent some time working while Mike was sprawled out on the floor, reading some book.
Then it was time for them to leave and they arrived to the cinema a couple of minutes before the movie started.
There was only a handful of people in the movie theater and the people there was very respectful and weren't talking too loud or making more sounds than necessary so all in all it was a great movie experience.
After the movie they started their usual discussion about the quality of the movie and then of course they had their quote-off.
Harvey didn't want to go back home and work just yet so instead he suggested that they walked to the mall that was located just five minutes or so from the cinema.
Mike got way more excited over the idea than Harvey had expected and the reason for that was that there was apparently a small burger place inside that, according to Mike, had really amazing burgers.
They went to the burger place and as it turned out, Mike was right about them having absolutely amazing burgers.
While they were sitting at a table, eating their burgers Harvey heard a voice behind him.
Harvey turned around and saw a dark haired boy in Mike's age who was wearing baggy clothes and had a clearly visible cigarette pack in his front pocket.
It wasn't hard for him to figure out that this was Trevor, the best friend who was a bad influence.
Trevor sat down on the chair next to Mike and stole one of his fries before he looked at Harvey.
“You must be Harvey.”
He said and held out his hand.
“And you must be Trevor.”
He answered before politely shaking the kid's hand.
Harvey had to hold back a chuckle as he saw the look that Mike sent him, it was like he was silently begging him not to embarrass him.
They had just started to get to know each other and his son was already worried that he would embarrass him.
They finished their meal with Trevor as their company.
Harvey asked the boy a lot of questions, just to get to know his son's best friend.
On paper the kid seemed okay but Harvey still had a hard time to see anything behind the bad influence label.

Harvey walked into the bookstore to look for the new book from his favourite author.
He was alone since Mike had ran off with Trevor and Harvey had to admit that he was a little displeased over the fact that Trevor for the second time had swooped in and stolen Mike when Harvey had planned for it to just be the two of them.
Mike had at least asked a million times if it was really okay before running off with his friend.
He suddenly heard his son and his friend, which was not hard to do since the two boys ran into the store and almost knocked over a pile of neatly stacked books.
The other people in the store gave the two eleven-year-olds dirty looks which Harvey could totally understand since he used to do the same when children created a ruckus in public, but now one of the children actually belonged to him so he felt slightly embarrassed.
He told them, suddenly feeling like he was the parent to two energetic toddlers instead of being the parent of an eleven-year-old who should know better than to run around in a store.
“Harvey can Trevor come home with us?”
Mike asked and Harvey didn't miss that he had called the apartment “home”.
Trevor tried to do the puppy eyes but it didn't really work out for him but Mike's puppy eyes were powerful enough for them both.
They both cheered loudly, much to the dismay of the other customers.
“Can you please keep it down?”
A middle aged woman asked, giving the two boys an annoyed look.
Mike went quiet but Trevor decided to protest.
“Lady, this is a bookstore not a library.”
The woman looked at Harvey, silently demanding him to do something.
“Sorry, that one's not mine.”
He told her before grabbing the book he wanted so that he could pay and then leave.
Apparently kids weren't the only ones who had to be worried about getting embarrassed.

Instead of working when he came back home, Harvey ended up just sitting at the kitchen table and observing the boys as they were playing some video game.
He had tried to get some work done but it had been very hard to concentrate with two loud kids in the same room.
Trevor was a very loud kid and his presence made Mike loud as well.
At least he got the opportunity to observe Trevor and his behaviour to try to get a better picture of him.
Eventually Trevor got a text telling him that his older brother was here to pick him up and Mike followed him out.
Now that the distraction was gone, he could finally continue working.
When Mike came back, he walked directly over to Harvey and handed him a cigarette.
Harvey gave the boy a confused, questioning look.
“Trevor gave it to me but I don't want to ruin the relationship we're trying to build up by doing something stupid.”
Harvey smiled, Trevor might be a bad influence but at least Mike was still a smart kid and this showed that Mike wanted them to have a good, honest relationship.
He took the cigarette and broke it in half before throwing it away.
The work was still placed on the table and screaming his name, but instead of continuing to do it he asked Mike to show him how the game worked so that they could play together.
In the end spending time with his son was more important than any case, no matter how big or important it was.

Chapter Text


If it had been his mother that had grounded him for a week then it would have really meant a week and he wouldn't have been allowed to even think about setting his foot outside of the house.
Harvey was different though, first he had been allowed to go shopping with Donna and then he was “let off for good behaviour” as Harvey had put it.
He could imagine his mother's face if she had been there.
If his mother and Harvey had stayed together they probably would have had a million arguments about things like his punishments and what movies he was allowed to watch.
Mike wondered what it would have been like if he had grown up with a cool, more lenient father instead of James who had always agreed with his mother and never, ever questioned her rules.

The movie theatre was located not too far from his previous home and not at all far from the mall that he used to visit with Trevor or his parents.
After they had watched the movie, Harvey suggested that they would visit said mall and Mike immediately got excited, it had been a while since he had visited the mall and even longer since he'd eaten one of the burgers from the small burger shop located on the second floor.
It had been James who used to take Mike there and it had more or less become their little tradition to eat there whenever they had the chance.
For a second he wondered if it was disrespectful of him to eat there with Harvey but he quickly let that thought go since the burgers were way too good to pass up.
As they were eating their burgers, Harvey enjoying the burger as much as Mike thought he would, Trevor suddenly showed up.
Mike immediately tensed, not because he wasn't happy to see his best friend but because he knew that Harvey saw Trevor as a bad influence after the whole smoking incident.
Trevor sat down next to him and remained there for the rest of the meal, Harvey asked a million questions and Trevor answered every single one of them while Mike was quiet, both worried of Harvey embarrassing him in front of his friend and worried that Trevor would give Harvey an even worse impression.
After their meal Trevor asked if he wanted to hang out for a bit and Mike was suddenly torn between following his friend and sticking with Harvey.
“You can go with him, it's okay.”
Harvey told him but Mike could sense some hesitation behind his words.
It wasn't the first time that Mike had chosen to hang out with Trevor instead of Harvey, but this time he actually felt bad about it.
“Are you sure?”
“Yes I'm sure. I have some errands anyways.”
They threw away their trash and Mike asked Harvey probably a million more times if he was really sure, getting the same answer every time, before he finally took off with Trevor.

Hanging out with Trevor was always like an adventure, Mike never really knew what he was getting into.
They started out by getting sodas and catching up after not having seen each other for a week and then they ended up in a video game store.
They were going around looking at the games until Trevor stopped in front of a game and looked at it like it was the holy grail.
It was a multiplayer wargame that was too expensive for Trevor to buy and way too violent for Donna to buy for him, and even if he guessed that Harvey would be more lenient he also knew that Harvey wouldn't want to cross his secretary.
Of course, Trevor wanted the game really bad so he did what he always did, he completely ignored the things stopping him from getting the game.
Mike just watched as Trevor grabbed the game and discreetly put it under his hoodie before grabbing another game before doing the classic “Oops I forgot I had the game in my hand” scenario when the alarm went off.
Trevor handed the game used as distraction to Mike who put it back on the nearest shelf before they both flashed innocent smiles at the employee, who luckily seemed too tired to care.
Mike walked out of the store and for a second they thought that they had gotten away with it until they noticed a security guard approaching them with a grim look on his face.
Trevor didn't stick around to see if the security guard had witnessed the incident or not, instead he just took off which gave Mike no other choice than to run after his friend.
Mike didn't know how long they had been running when they ran into a bookstore and almost knocked a pile of books over.
A very familiar voice told them and they both came to a halt when they saw Harvey.
Mike was suddenly filled with an incredible guilt and he nervously glanced at Trevor who was silently urging him to talk to Harvey.
“Harvey can Trevor come home with us?”
Mike asked before Harvey had the chance to question them about why they had been running.
Harvey answered and they both cheered, pretending that they had both just been really excited about that instead of running from a security guard.
They luckily managed to leave the mall without running into the security guard, Mike didn't even want to imagine Harvey's reaction if they had been busted.

Once back in the apartment the boys spent their time playing a car racing videogame that Donna had bought for him but eventually Trevor got bored and texted his older brother to pick him up.
Mike followed his friend outside and waited with him.
Trevor picked up his pack of cigarettes and put one in his mouth before giving one to Mike.
He didn't dare to say no and make Trevor think that he wasn't cool, so he accepted the cigarette but put it in his pocket, telling his friend that he would save it because he didn't want Harvey to smell the smoke on him.
Trevor accepted this excuse and they stood in silence until his brother's car came speeding, coming to a halt with a loud screech.
“Bye Mike, see you tomorrow.”
Trevor said before he got into the car and his older brother sped away again.
The cigarette felt heavy in his pocket as he made his way back up to the apartment and by the time he walked inside he had made the choice to give it to Harvey.
It was the best thing to do since he didn't want to ruin the relationship they were trying to build up, he already felt enough guilt about what had happened at the mall and he remembered how sick he had felt the last time he had smoked.
Harvey accepted the cigarette and broke it in two while giving Mike a smile that told him that he had made the right choice.
Mike returned to the TV but before he had the chance to turn off the game, Harvey sat down next to him, taking the controller and asked Mike to show him how the game worked.
They spent hours playing both the racing game and other multiplayer games, only pausing to eat dinner.
After playing they decided to end the day by watch The Shawshank Redemption but no matter how interesting the movie was, Mike found himself slipping closer and closer to sleep.

Mike woke up with a start, he'd had another nightmare involving his parents' crash.
When he had managed to calm himself down, he frowned as he realized that he was in his bed and not on the couch, where he was certain that he had fallen asleep.
He felt a little embarrassed when he realized that Harvey must have carried him to bed like a little child.
He looked down, at least he hadn't tried to changed his clothes.
A couple of sunrays had found their way into the room and when he looked at the clock he saw that it was only half an hour until he was supposed to wake up, so there was really no point in trying to go back to sleep.
So instead he got out of bed and changed into a couple of clean, fresh clothes before he walked out of the room.
He said good morning to Harvey, ate his breakfast and watched some TV before it was time for him to go back to school.
In one way he was excited to go back to school and meet his friend again but at the same time he realized that he would actually miss hanging around the office all day.
He said goodbye to Harvey and thanked Ray before he got out of the car and walked into the school building.
Mike walked past Kyle and smiled when the bully for once didn't dare to say something mean to him.
When he met up with Trevor, he wasn't even surprised that he immediately asked him to do his math homework.
Mike sighed but started doing the homework, knowing that if he refused then Trevor would get mad and not talk to him for the rest of the day.

When Mike got home he was alone and would be so for at least two more hours.
He threw his backpack on the floor and kicked his shoes off before he sat down on the couch and started a videogame.
Even if the game was fun to play, he found himself missing Harvey's company since it had been way more fun to play with him.
He smiled, who could have guessed that he would ever miss the company of Harvey Specter, the man that he had more or less hated just a week ago?
When Harvey finally arrived home though it was clear, by the pile of folders in his arms, that the lawyer wouldn't have the time to play video games with him.
Mike felt a little disappointed at that but he realized that Harvey couldn't always ignore his work in order to play video games with him.
He played on his own for a little while before exiting the game and sitting down next to Harvey at the kitchen table and started to do his homework while the man was working.
Mike caught the man glancing over at him and smiling and judged by that he guessed that Harvey appreciated the company.
When he had finished his homework, he glanced over at Harvey's work and started to read the document the lawyer was looking at.
By the time Harvey noticed and moved the document out of his sight, Mike had already found a problem in the document, something that he pointed out to Harvey.
“Don't look at my work, it's confidential.”
The man told him before highlighting the section Mike had deemed faulty while trying, and failing, to hold back a smile.

Chapter Text


Even if Harvey had planned to get back to his work sooner or later, he found himself enjoying this quality time with his son way too much to even think about his work.
They tried out a bunch of different multiplayer games but Harvey's favourite was definitely the LEGO Marvel Avengers game because first of all who doesn't love LEGO and second of all the game showed that they were great at teamwork.
The hours went by fast and they eventually decided to watch a movie before going to bed and of course they chose another classic movie.
When one of the saddest scenes in the movie came, Harvey glanced over at Mike only to see that the boy had fallen asleep and for a second Harvey considered waking him up and scolding him for falling asleep during a masterpiece but eventually decided against it.
The kid looked absolutely adorable and Harvey couldn't stop himself from taking a picture of him, not only because he wanted the picture for himself but also because he knew that Donna would melt when she saw it.
After taking the picture, he gently shook Mike's shoulder trying to get him to wake up so that he could go to bed but all he got from the kid was a soft mumble.
He didn't have the heart to leave him sleeping in this uncomfortable-looking position so he carefully lifted Mike up and he was surprisingly light for an eleven-year-old.
Harvey put Mike down on the bed before pulling the comforter over him and then he dared to place a gentle kiss on the top of his head.
“Good night, kid.”
He whispered before leaving the room, glad that Donna hadn't been there to witness it, she'd never stop teasing him about being a big softie and not at all the coldhearted man he wanted people to believe he was.

The next morning, none of them mentioned what had happened last night.
Since Mike was almost a teenager, he would most likely find it very embarrassing that he had been carried to his like a little child.
They had breakfast and Harvey looked through the casefiles while Mike watched some TV before they left the apartment.
Ray drove him to school and Harvey told him to have a good day before the car continued to the firm.
It wasn't until he sat down by his desk and his eyes instinctively looked over at the couch that he realized that he actually missed having Mike around.
Sure, the kid had only been in his office for a week but it had been enough time for Harvey to get used to his presence.
It didn't really make sense for him to miss him since having an easily bored eleven-year-old in his office had been a big distraction.
“You miss having him around, don't you?”
Donna asked with a knowing smile, somehow being able to read his mind.
“And to think that you were actually hesitating to become his guardian.”
She continued and Harvey found it as unbelievable as she did.
It hadn't been long since the kid came into his life but he had managed to change a lot in that short time and it was now unbelievable to think that he had almost let his fear stop him from this.
Sure, it was all still new and he was still as terrified as he had been back then but he didn't regret it.
Once they had gotten past the initial anger and hurt they had started to create something that Harvey hadn't even known that he needed.
Despite the fact that he still didn't really know how to be a father, he wouldn't change his decision to take care of his son for everything in the world.

Over the following week, they fell into a comfortable routine where they had breakfast together in the morning before going off to school and work, then they came back home and if Harvey had the time they played video games and/or watched a movie.
Mike also started to feel more and more comfortable in the apartment which, to Harvey's annoyance, meant that he started to get messier.
It started out by Harvey tripping over Mike's converse that had been kicked off in the hallway or the living room, then he started to leave his bag and his books all over the place and finally his clothes were found in the most random places.
Despite the fact that Harvey was annoyed by it and realized that his apartment would never be as neat as it used to be, the mess actually made it feel more like a home than it had ever felt before.

It was Friday afternoon and Harvey walked through the hallway, thinking about what they would have for dinner when he got home, when he thought that he saw his son sitting in Louis' office.
He was aware of the fact that his mind had been more and more filled with thoughts related to the boy and he knew that he missed having the kid around, but that was completely different from believing that he saw him when he wasn't there.
Harvey turned around and walked back to Louis' office, fully expecting that his mind had been playing tricks on him but apparently he hadn't imagined it.
Mike was really sitting by Louis' desk while the man was talking to him and Harvey frowned in confusion before he opened the door and walked inside without knocking.
Louis stopped talking while Mike turned back to him and gave him a look that screamed “help me”.
“Why didn't you tell me that your kid's a genius?”
Louis asked before Harvey even had the chance to ask what was going on.
“He saw that the numbers were off before I even realized that something was wrong.”
The man continued and held up some document that he was working on.
Louis was clearly amazed by Mike's attentiveness and Harvey knew that if Louis got the chance he would want to use Mike, as if the kid had been a dancing monkey.
Harvey would never be cruel enough to let his own son get caught in Louis' clutches.
“I'm honestly not surprised that you needed help from an eleven-year-old, Louis.”
He said, mocking the man even if Mike had helped him too, and the man's face fell while Mike grinned.
Harvey beckoned Mike to come with him and the kid slowly got up from the chair before carefully passing Louis, as if he was afraid that the man wouldn't let him leave.
Once they had left Louis' office, Mike released a big sigh of relief.
“Thank God you showed up, I thought I was stuck with him forever.”
“How did you even end up in Louis' clutches to begin with?”
Harvey asked in an amused tone, he was able to be amused by the situation now since the protective urge had disappeared when he had gotten Mike out of the office.
“I came here to talk to you but then I met Louis by the elevators, he told me that he wanted to apologize for our first meeting before he more or less kidnapped me. You guys should really up your security.”
“I'll get you some pepper spray.”
Mike grinned at his words before he told him why he had shown up at the firm to begin with.
He had come here to ask for permission to spend the weekend at his old house with his grandmother, since the old woman actually felt better for the first time since her hospital visit, and Harvey couldn't deny the kid the chance to spend some time with his grandmother so of course he said yes.
He didn't realize the consequence of this decision until hours later when he arrived home and realized how cold and empty his apartment felt without Mike there.
Even when he sat down to work on some casefiles, he found his thoughts drifting off and he spent more time coming up with different fun activities they could do next weekend than actually working.
It was crazy how much becoming a parent could change, not only change his life but change him.

Monday eventually came alone, even if it felt like the weekend had lasted forever, and Harvey found himself looking forward to the afternoon when Mike would return home and they could fall back into their routine.
Harvey began his day with a morning meeting with a client and despite his best efforts, he found himself thinking more about what movie they could watch next than listening to the client.
Once he was back at the firm, he steeled himself for meeting Donna, he knew that the secretary would somehow know that he had spent the weekend missing the kid and she wouldn't waste a second before rubbing it in his face.
When he arrived to his office however, his secretary didn't wear a smile on her face instead she looked worried.
“What's going on?”
“The school called, Mike never showed up this morning.”
Harvey felt a sinking feeling in his stomach while Donna tried to mask her worry.
“I'm sure he's just playing hooky or something.”
Despite her best efforts, she couldn't completely mask her worry and it was obvious that she was imagining the worst.
Harvey walked into his office at sat down in his chair before calling Mike with shaking hands and when he didn't answer, Harvey called Edith instead but according to her, Mike and Trevor had left for school earlier this morning.
Harvey spent over an hour calling and texting Mike while he couldn't stop imagining all different kind of scenarios, everything from the kid being kidnapped to him lying dead in a ditch somewhere.
Then finally he got a sign that his son was alive when Mike texted him the words “I'm fine”, but when Harvey tried calling him again, he didn't pick up.
When Mike did show up again, Harvey was definitely going to kill the kid.

Chapter Text


If an outside had seen his grandmother that weekend then they would not have believed that she was really sick.
She had gotten a sudden, unexpected burst of energy and strength and she could get out of bed, walk around easily and even bake some of her delicious cookies.
Mike was glad that he had decided to spend the weekend at his grammy's house, it had been a while since he had seen her with this much energy and it gave him hope.
Sure, both the doctor and his dad had told him several times that she was very sick and that the odds were against her, but when he saw her baking cookies while singing along to some old song he couldn't help but to believe that she was getting better.
Despite having so much energy, his grandmother still needed to rest which gave him the opportunity to leave the house and visit Trevor.
All in all, he had a great weekend with his grandmother except for when it came to sleeping at night.
For some reason he had suddenly found it very hard to sleep in old room, at first, he had thought that it was because he had moved a lot of his stuff to Harvey's apartment and that it just felt empty, but the more time he spent trying to sleep the more he realized that it was something else that kept him from getting his rest.
Being back in his old house and caused a lot of memories to resurface which in turn caused the grief to make itself known again.
It had been so much easier to not feel the grief at Harvey's because it was a new place without any memories but now there were so many memories that he was completely overwhelmed.
After spending probably an hour or two in his bedroom he just couldn't take it, he had gotten out of his bed and walked through the hallway.
Mike had passed his parents' bedroom but instead of seeing them there, like he wanted to, he had seen Rose fast asleep and that just didn't feel right.
He had continued to his grammy's room and without the words he had gotten under the covers and curled up to her, jumping a bit when her warm lips place a gentle kiss on the top of his head.
The action reminded him of the time after his parents’ deaths when he had spent almost every night in her bed and he couldn't stop himself from crying.
His grammy didn't question it, she just hugged him tight and whispered comforting words until he fell asleep and after this he spent every night in his grandmother's room.

As Monday came along, his grammy kissed him on the cheek and made him promise to come back and visit her as soon as possible before he left the house to go to school.
After school he would return to Harvey's and he found that he was actually really looking forward to seeing the man again.
Trevor was waiting outside the house, they were going to school together just like they used to before, or so Mike thought.
“We're skipping today, Mikey.”
Trevor told him without even bothering to greet him first.
“I don't think that's a good idea.”
Mike answered, knowing that his grandmother and Harvey wouldn't be happy.
After the whole smoking incident and the more recent videogame theft, he wasn't too keen on causing more trouble.
“Don't be such a wuss, Mike.”
Trevor said in a judging voice and they both knew that those words were all it took for Mike to go along with the plan.
Sure, Trevor wasn't the sharpest tool in the box but he had figured out how desperate Mike was for his approval and he had learned to use it against him to make him do what he wanted.
“I'll bring someone else if you don't want to.”
Trevor said and the fear of Trevor not thinking that he was cool and stop being friends with him won over the fear of disappointing his grandmother and Harvey.
He turned back at the house, while mentally apologizing to his grandmother, and sighed in defeat. “Okay.”
He said and Trevor's face lit up before they went right back to Trevor's house instead of walking left to school.
As they made their way to Trevor's house he told Mike what they were going to do instead and Mike was far from excited.
Trevor's older brother had invited them to hang out with him and his friends, something that Trevor had apparently been asking his brother for since forever, and according to Trevor his brother's friends were “so cool”.
Mike had never met these friends but he knew that Trevor's brother was trouble, so he had no doubt that his friends was the same.

The older boys, who were all around seventeen, were very loud and they all smelled like they hadn't showered in weeks and had just sprayed some cheap deodorant all over themselves.
They were listening to loud music while they drank cheap beer and smoke weed, while Mike and Trevor was seated on the couch.
Both of them had been given a beer, Trevor had pressured Mike to taste it but he had found it too disgusting to drink from it more than once, but Trevor somehow managed to enjoy the awful taste. Mike was feeling bored and very uncomfortable but his friend looked like he was in heaven, it was hard to understand how people like this were the kind of people Trevor looked up to.
If it weren't for the fact that they ha went out to a cabin in the woods , that apparently the older boys used to hang out since no one would interrupt the or complain about them here, Mike would have found an excuse to leave a long time ago but he was stuck.
When Trevor was distracted by the older boys, he grabbed his phone from his pocket and saw all the missed phone calls and messages from Harvey which filled him with guilt
The man was obviously very worried and he had probably talked to his grammy too and she really didn't need that kind of worry right now.
He sent a quick “I'm fine.” so that they would stop worrying that he had gotten kidnapped or murdered or something.
As soon as he sent it, Harvey called but Mike put his phone in his pocket again, partly because he didn't know what to say and partly because Trevor had told him to turn off his phone and would see a phone call with Harvey as Mike being a tattletale.

It felt like he spent an eternity in the small, bad smelling cabin, just sitting there while the rest of the boys seemed to be having the time of their life.
He had tried to ask Trevor when they were going to leave but Trevor had frowned and called him a lame party-pooper before he had accused him of being a bad friend that only cared about himself and not about Trevor and his happiness.
His words made Mike feel guilty and after that he sat quietly and waited for the other boys to be ready to leave.
The older boys finally decided that it was time to leave, when they all seemed to get hungry at the same time and decided to get some food.
Mike followed them outside but hesitated once they reached the car.
Trevor's brother was going to drive him and Trevor but he was also noticeably drunk.
Mike knew that he shouldn't get into a car with a drunk driver, Trevor's brother could easily crash and that thought made his eyes water.
Even if he hadn't been in the car with his parents, it was way too easy for him to imagine what it was like, it was way too easy to imagine their screams and he could see their lifeless bodies in front of them.
“Mike, come on!”
Trevor ordered, obviously annoyed and Mike looked at him, trying to silently get him to understand why he hesitated but his friend didn't seem to understand at all.
“Get in the car or we're leaving you!”
Trevor said angrily before he jumped into the car and Mike automatically moved towards the car afraid of Trevor being mad at him.
Once in the car, Trevor's brother took off before Mike even had the chance to buckle up and he felt the panic rising.
He had been stupid to get into the car, he damned himself for letting Trevor control him and wished that he had let them leave without him and then called Harvey.
Facing Harvey's disappointment would have been so much better than potentially facing death.

Trevor's brother drove as if he was on the run while Trevor just laughed, as if this was some joyride.
Mike closed his eyes while trying to calm himself down, but he immediately opened them again when he heard Trevor shout.
“Watch out!”
His warning was too late and just seconds after he had called out, the car crashed right into a car that was parked on the side of the road.
The crash wasn't big and it seemed like it was only the cars that had been harmed.
Their drunk driver exclaimed before he stumbled out of the car to inspect the damage while Mike felt tears roll down his cheeks.
If the crash had been more serious, like his parents' accident, he could have died and he couldn't even imagine what an incredible pain that would bring his poor grandmother.
Trevor turned back to look at him and it wasn't until he saw Mike's tears that he seemed to remember what had happened to Mike's parents but he didn't say anything until his brother returned and then he just told him to drive Mike home.
They quickly left the scene without even leaving a note for the parked car's owner.

Mike walked into the apartment building, shaking like a leaf.
Trevor and his brother had dropped him off and told him to not tell anyone about the crash, that was all they had said, they hadn't even asked him if he was okay or tried to calm him down.
He somehow managed to get to the apartment, even if he felt like he was second away from collapsing on the ground and cry until all of his tears had ran out.
He didn't know what time it was but it wasn't late enough for Harvey to be home, which meant that he could cry in peace without needing to explain why.
At least that's what he had thought until he walked into the apartment and heard Harvey's voice, it sounded like he was talking to someone on the phone.
The man had probably left work early to be here when he came back home and he was reminded of the guilt and he felt incredibly stupid for skipping school and worrying people.
He silently walked further into the apartment until he could see Harvey and as soon as he saw him, the tears automatically started again.
Despite the fact that he had wanted to be upset on his own, the sight of Harvey made him change his mind.
The lawyer seemed to notice him, and the state he was in, because he promptly ended the phone call without even saying goodbye to whoever he had been talking to.
“Mike, what happened?”
He asked but Mike didn't answer, instead he just ran over to him and wrapped his arms around the man in a tight hug.

Chapter Text


It was absolutely impossible to get his work done when he had no idea where his kid was.
His stomach was in knots and he couldn't really focus on anything other than the different horrible scenarios that his mind kept coming up with.
For a second, he had been calmed by the text he had received but then he imagined that Mike had been kidnapped or murdered and that the kidnapper/killer had sent the text to make him not worry.
The more he thought about it, the more worried he felt and the more vivid his mental images became.
It was a horrible thing to imagine, his son being murdered, but he couldn't seem to stop his brain from doing it.
The more vivid the mental images became, the harder it got to breathe and Harvey closed his eyes while trying to think about literally anything else than his child's lifeless body.
He didn't know how long he had been sitting there, eyes closed ad struggling to breathe properly, when he felt a hand on his shoulder.
Harvey jumped slightly before opening his eyes to see Donna looking at him, her face showing a mix of worry and sympathy.
“You need to relax or you're going to have a panic attack.”
She said softly before grabbing his suit jacket from the back of his chair and handed it to him.
“Go home, I'll cover for you.”
Harvey opened his mouth to protest but Donna didn't even give him the chance.
“Go home so that when Mike comes home in one piece you can hug him tightly before giving him hell for worrying us.”
Her words managed to make him smile, and even if she had no way of knowing id Mike was okay or not, he chose to believe that this was a situation where she knew exactly what she was talking about.
Harvey got up and put his jacket on before quickly hugging Donna and thanking her, he knew that she was worried too but she had been able to push that aside to make him feel better.

It did feel a little better being at home, even if he was still worried out of his mind.
He kept himself calm by nursing a glass of whiskey, getting some fresh air on the balcony and repeating Donna's words over and over again in his head.
He even managed to get some work done, even if it wasn't even a quarter of the amount of work he'd normally got done in a day.
His eyes kept looking over at the door or his phone but the time passed without any sign of Mike.
The phone rang and he felt hopeful until he saw that it was Donna calling him and not the kid.
Harvey picked up the phone and started to talk to his secretary while getting up from his seat to stretch his legs.
Donna didn't even mention Mike's name, in fact she talked about absolutely anything but Mike and he realized that she tried to take his mind off it, and even if it didn't completely work, he really appreciated her efforts.
His secretary was in the middle of describing some terrible movie that she had watched last night when Harvey turned around and saw Mike standing there, he hadn't even heard the door open.
The kid was shaking like a frightened puppy, with big tears rolling down his cheeks.
Harvey immediately ended the call, without even bothering to say goodbye to Donna.
“Mike, what happened?”
He asked in a worried tone but the boy didn't answer, he just ran over to him and threw his arms around him in a tight hug.
Harvey was slightly taken aback but didn't hesitate to hug him back while he wondering what on earth had happened to his son.

It took several minutes before Mike had stopped crying and felt ready to tell him what had happened.
They sat down on the couch before Mike started to tell him where he had been all day, his words slightly rushed and scrambled since he was still pretty shaken up.
Mike told him how he had decided to skip school with Trevor, how they had gone to the cabin with Trevor's brother, the weed and the alcohol that the older boys had consumed and lastly the drunk driving.
Once Mike was finished with his story, Harvey stayed silent while he tried to process the information.
He felt a mix of worried and angry, a part of him wanted to hold Mike tight and thank all of his lucky stars that his kid was alright while the other part wanted to yell at him for getting into that car and then ground him for life.
“Please, say something.”
Mike finally said, the silence apparently making him uncomfortable.
Harvey stayed silent for another minute while the worry and the anger kept fighting but eventually the anger won.
“What were you thinking, Mike? How could you get into that car, knowing that he wasn't capable of driving, especially after what happened to your parents?!”
The boy looked down on his hands while sniffling.
“I wasn't thinking.”
He mumbled as an answer.
“I don't believe that, I do however that you allowed Trevor to think for you.”
“Don't blame Trevor for this.”
The kid immediately went into a defensive mode as soon as Trevor was mentioned and Harvey felt like banging his head against the coffee table in frustration.
Despite the fact that Mike had made it obvious that Trevor had been the driving force, he was still so quick to defend the kid.
Mike was a smart boy but for some reason he seemed unable to see how bad Trevor was for him, even when he put him in danger.
“Mike, Trevor is a bad influence.”
“No, he's not.”
“The smoking, the skipping and then this? You could've died.”
“But I didn't.”
“You could have. Just think about what happened to your parents.”
Mike looked away again, clearly not comfortable with talking about his parents' deaths.
Harvey guessed that Mike had thought about his parents but the need to please Trevor had been stronger and that was a serious problem.
It was obvious that they didn't have a healthy friendship and Harvey couldn't even imagine what sort of trouble Trevor would drag Mike into if this continued.
“I don't want you to hang out with Trevor anymore.”
“You can't tell me who I can and cannot hang out with.”
“Yes I can, I am your father and I'm forbidding you from ever seeing Trevor again.”
“Well I don't care, he's my best friend.”
“Trevor's not your friend, he is an anchor dragging you down.”
Mike let out a frustrated sigh before he got up from the couch and started to walk towards his room, obviously feeling done with this conversation.
“Cut him loose.”
Harvey called after him.
“Mike it's for your own good.”
He didn't get an answer until the boy had reached his door.
Mike yelled at him before slamming the door behind him and Harvey sighed.
Why did parenting have to be this hard?

Harvey thought that once Mike had calmed down, everything would go back to normal but apparently, he was wrong.
Mike had stopped talking to him completely, not even greeting him and according to his grandmother, who the kid still happily talked to, he was hanging out a lot more with Trevor in school just to protest.
He probably would have hung out a lot with Trevor outside of school as well if it wasn't for the fact that Harvey had grounded him.
Harvey had kind of hoped that Mike would hang around in the office again but the kid had absolutely refused and spent his afternoons at his grammy's instead and when he was at home, he spent the time in his room.
Even if he had tried to forbid Mike from seeing Trevor because he thought that it was the best thing for him, Harvey had started to feel like a villain.
Both Edith and Donna had told him that Mike would get over it but Harvey was really starting to lose his mind over this.

Harvey was more than a little surprised when Mike suddenly walked in his office that Friday afternoon.
At first the kid didn't say something, but Harvey didn't really expect anything else, he just sat down on the couch.
Mike sat on the couch for several minutes, fidgeting, before he finally decided to talk again.
“I'm sorry.”
Harvey looked up at the boy, just to make sure that he had really said that and it wasn't just his imagination.
“Trevor's brother was in another crash, he's in a coma.”
Mike told him before getting up from the couch and slowly walked over to his desk.
“That could've been me, I could have been in a coma or dead because of Trevor.”
It was clear that the kid had fully realized what kind of danger his friend had put him in.
“You are right, Trevor is a bad influence and I know that but I don't want to stop being his friend.
I am going to start thinking for myself though.”
Harvey wasn't fully satisfied with that but it was better than nothing.
Mike walked over to his chair and put his arms around him and once again Harvey didn't hesitate to hug him back.
He lifted his head to see Donna looking at them with a smug smile that seemed to be saying “I told you so.”

Chapter Text


Mike wasn't stupid, he knew what kind of danger he had been in and he could understand Harvey's reaction but calling Trevor a bad influence and trying to forbid him from seeing his best friend made him angry.
Harvey might be his father but he had just entered his life and he had no right to tell him that he couldn't hang out with his best, and only, friend.
Mike walked away from the conversation, yelled that he hated Harvey and then slammed the door, three thing he knew would have pissed his dad, James, off and he held his breath, listening for any footsteps approaching his room but there was none.
His dad would have rushed after him and forced him to apologize and finish the conversation but luckily Harvey didn't do that.
Mike threw himself on the bed and got his phone out of his pocket and saw that he had a text from Trevor.
”You ok dude? Hope you don't tell anyone, my bro could get in trouble.”
The text made him feel guilty, partly because he had thought that Trevor wasn't a good friend since he hadn't asked him if he was okay before and partly because he had told Harvey was had happened and if the man decided to tell someone else then Trevor's brother could get in serious trouble.
”I'm okay. I promise, I won't tell anyone.”
He texted back, hoping that Harvey would keep his mouth shut.

The next morning Mike gave Harvey the silent treatment, perhaps it was a little childish but every time he looked at the man he heard his voice in his head telling him that Trevor wasn't his friend, that he was nothing but an anchor dragging him down.
So Mike stayed angry, partly because he really wanted Harvey to know how angry he still was but also because he was afraid that if he tried to talk, his anger would take over and he would say things that would only make things worse.
Unsurprisingly Harvey decided to ground him again but this time he spent the afternoon at his grammy, since Harvey didn't trust him to be home alone with no one to make sure that he stayed put and since he refused to spend more time with Harvey than necessary.
Mike talked to his grammy, even if she made it clear that she was on Harvey's side in this.
It was the illness that kept him from giving her the silent treatment too, just the thought of her dying while he was ignoring her killed him.

The week went by and the silent treatment continued and it was starting to get uncomfortable to be at the apartment.
Mike was close to caving several times but he managed to persist.
He didn't really know what his goal was anymore, was he waiting for an apology or was he just trying to prove something?
He really didn't know.
Friday came along and as the last class of the day ended, Trevor showed up by his side.
“Me and my brother are going to the cinema and you're coming with us.”
“Trevor, I can't I'm still grounded.”
“So what?”
Trevor looked at him and his gaze somehow made Mike feel small.
“Harvey wouldn't be happy.”
“Who cares?”
Trevor said while shaking his head in disbelief.
When Mike remained silent, Trevor grabbed his shoulders.
“Who's more important to you? Me or Harvey?”
The question made Mike feel bad because how could he ask something like that?
Sure Trevor was his best friend and they had known each other for years but Harvey was the only parent, and together with his grammy the only family, that he had left.
“Is he more important to you than me?”
Trevor pressured when he didn't receive an answer.
Mike slowly shook his head and Trevor lit up.
“Good. Come on, he should be here any minute now.”
Trevor walked towards the exit and Mike followed while Harvey's words echoed in his head:
“He is an anchor dragging you down.”
This time the words didn't make him angry, it made him think that maybe Harvey hadn't been that far off after all.
They stood outside the school waiting for Trevor's brother for what felt like an eternity.
Trevor was slowly losing his patience, whispering swear words and kicking at some small stones on the ground, while Mike tried to tell him that he didn't want to come, but every time Trevor looked at him it was like an invisible hand showed up and pressed the words back.
Trevor's phone started to buzz in his pocket.
“Hope he has a good explanation.”
Trevor muttered as he got his phone out, sighing when he read the name on the display.
“Hi mom.”
Trevor greeted before he listened to what his mother had to say, his face getting paler and paler for every second.
By the time he hung up, his face resembled a sheet of paper, his hand shook like crazy and he looked like he was going to throw up.
“Trevor, what's wrong?”
“My brother is in the hospital.”
He said, wiping away a tear from his cheek.
“He was driving drunk and crashed into another car. He's badly injured, he's in a coma and the other driver...she...”
Trevor trailed off, unable to finish the sentence but Mike understood that the other driver hadn't made it and he felt sick.
If his brother hadn't been in that accident, he would have been driving drunk with them again and in another universe they could've been in that car, they could've been in a coma too or worse they could have been dead.
Mike could have risked his life a second time because he let Trevor pressure him into things and because he lacked the courage to say no.
The thought of what could have happened hit him like a ton of bricks and he got a sudden urge to apologize to Harvey.
Trevor was his best friend and he loved him but Trevor also pressured him into risking his life.
Mike stayed with Trevor until his dad showed up, just because Trevor was a bad friend didn't mean that he had to be one as well.
As soon as the shocked Trevor got into his dad's car, Mike hurried to his bike and set off to his destination.

Mike mumbled a greeting at Donna before he walked into Harvey's office.
He sat down on the couch while collecting himself.
Finally, he managed to find his words and apologized to Harvey and told him what had happened.
He also told him that he wouldn't ditch his best friend but he would start to think for himself.
Mike hugged Harvey, partly to show that he wasn't at all angry anymore and partly because he just really needed a hug.
Harvey somehow seemed to sense that he was still pretty shaken up by the fate of Trevor's brother and the thoughts of what could have happened because he closed the folder on his desk and suggested that he left early so that they could head home.
At first it was slightly tense between them but by the time the pizza arrived they talked to each other as if the week of silence had never happened.
After dinner they easily slipped back into their old habit of watching a classic movie together, this time watching Psycho.

When he returned to school that Monday he immediately noticed that Trevor wasn't there, something that caused him to feel anxious.
He hated when Trevor wasn't in school since that meant that he was forced to spend the day alone, something that made the day feel twice as long and twice as boring.
Today however turned out to be different because when he was sitting in the cafeteria, eating his lunch all alone, he heard someone talk to him.
“Can we sit here?”
He looked up in disbelief since no one apart from Trevor had ever been willing to sit with him.
In front of him stood two students, a boy and a girl, that he vaguely recognized.
They were a year older than him and he had only seen them in the hallway before but had never talked to them.
“Yeah sure.”
He answered and the girl smiled as they sat down opposite him.
Mike wanted to say something but he suddenly felt very shy and awkward, something that the girl seemed to sense.
“I'm Rachel and this is Harold.”
She said before holding out her hand for a formal handshake and Mike smiled as he took her hand and shook it.
“I'm Mike.”
At first their conversation was stiff and awkward but soon they found something to bond over.
Mike discovered that Rachel's father was a lawyer too and Rachel was eager to follow in his footsteps while Harold wanted to be a lawyer too, well he was still deciding between being a lawyer and a zookeeper, which had been the main reason behind Rachel and Harold's friendship.
By the time lunch was over, they were talking like they had known each other all of their lives and Mike was reluctant to separate from them, afraid that after his they wouldn't talk to each other again.

As the school day ended, he found out that he had worried over nothing.
Rachel and Harold were waiting for him by the exit, asking him if he wanted to hang out and he said yes, eager to hang out with people who wouldn't steal video games, smoke or hang out with drunken teenagers.
After a short discussion they decided to visit Harvey, both of his new friends eager to see a new firm since they had only visited Rachel's dad before.
It was a nice feeling to have something to show off and to have them show genuine interest, with Trevor it had always been about him and he had rarely shown interest for things that Mike liked.
“This is Donna, she's just a secretary.”
He told them while giving Donna a big grin.
“Just a secretary? I will have you know that I am the foundation of this firm, without me it all falls apart.”
Donna answered confidently before she muttered “just a secretary” to herself as if it was the most stupid thing she had ever heard.
Mike continued to grin and as he glanced back at his new friends, he saw that they were wearing amused smiles.
He knocked on the door before entering Harvey's office.
“And here's the lawyer with the biggest ego in New York.”
Mike said, feeling the need to be a little cheeky in front of Rachel and Harold, something that caused Harvey to look up at him with a surprised face.
“Hey Mike, what are you doing here?”
“I'm just showing your work to my new friends, that's okay right?”
He asked realizing that he hadn't even bothered to ask if it was okay that he showed up with two other kids in tow.
“It's fine, I'm just glad you're making new friends.”
Harvey said and even if he didn't say it Mike heard the addition “new friends that isn't Trevor.”
“Well Harvey, this is Rachel and Harold. Rachel's dad is a lawyer too.”
“Oh really?”
“Yeah, my dad's Robert Zane.”
“Ah I see, so you're here to check out the competition?”
“Yes Mr. Specter I am here to steal all the confidential information.”
It seemed like Rachel and Harvey immediately hit it off, unlike Harvey and Trevor who hadn't worked at all, and it didn't take long before Rachel, Harold and Harvey was discussing lawyer stuff that even Mike didn't fully understand.
All in all the visit at the firm went great, except for the part when Harold returned after a bathroom break and looked like he was on the verge of a nervous breakdown.
The poor kid had been unlucky enough to run into Louis and the man had managed to completely terrify him.

A whole week went by without Trevor returning to school, something that didn't bother Mike at all.
In fact he was happy about it because he was just getting closer and closer to Harold and Rachel and he had no idea how things were going to be once Trevor returned to the mix.
Trevor would most likely not like his new friends and Mike didn't want to choose between them, so he hoped that Trevor would spend as much time with his brother as possible.
As the school ended on Friday, he said goodbye to his friends before getting on his bike and speeding to his grammy's house.
He had decided to spend the afternoon there since Harold and Rachel both had other plans while Harvey was working late.
He couldn't wait to tell her about his new friends, knowing that she had been eager for him to find other friends than Trevor.
“Grammy, I have something to tell you.”
He called out as he entered the house but stopped as he received no answer.
The house was eerily quiet and it smelled like burnt food, something that immediately made him feel that something was off.
With a bad feeling in his stomach he walked into the kitchen where he saw his grandmother lying motionless on the floor while the cookies in the oven looked more like pieces of coal than cookies.