Mycroft lay on his bed, the blanket lightly draped over his naked body. His gaze was fixed on the tall and lean form of his younger brother. Sherlock stood outside on the balcony, a cigarette in his hand which smoke rose around his head after every deep drag. He was naked as well, the pale light of the moon seeming to glisten on his skin like on millions of little diamonds.
It wasn’t the first night they spent like this, together in Mycroft’s house, together in Mycroft’s bed. But this time it felt different. It felt different for Mycroft, he felt different. He felt tensed, afraid, desperate.
He had to experience first hand what could happen if relationships that weren’t publically accepted – or like he had to witness it - at least not accepted in the social circles in which he moved - didn’t remain secrets anymore. It was an experience he wouldn’t want to be forced to face on his own. And much more important, an experience he wouldn’t want Sherlock to endure.
"Mycroft," Sherlock’s baritone voice suddenly interrupted the nightly silence and the trail of thoughts in Mycroft’s head.
"I can hear you thinking," the younger of the two brothers continued, still not turning around, still watching the few stars that covered the nightly sky above London.
"Sherlock… It’s…" Mycroft began and was glad about the darkness of the room that could cover him, that could hide him.
"I can’t…" he started again and again he fell silent.
"What can’t you?" Sherlock asked, throwing his still glowing cigarette butt away, before he finally faced his brother and stepped into the room, a light breeze of the nippy air accompanying his movements.
"Can’t go on with this," Mycroft ended his unfinished sentence, his voice barely a whisper. He shifted on the mattress, shifting away from the place where Sherlock would lie down and he had to force himself not to pull the covers around him in a desperate attempt to disappear underneath them.
"But nevertheless did you want me to come this night."
"I needed you to come because I needed you," Mycroft murmured, his voice trembling and unsteady.
"But despite that it can’t remain the way it is. We can’t go on with this."
"And why can’t it remain like this? Why do you say this now? Why now?" Sherlock asked and lay down next to his brother, his cool skin only centimetres away from his sibling's.
"Because I’m afraid of what could happen if somebody might find out about us," Mycroft whispered, not yet wanting to look into Sherlock’s eyes, not yet wanting to see the expression in them.
"I know," Sherlock murmured, his voice suddenly much softer than before, much more understanding.
"I know how much you have to risk. It’s so much more than I have to give for being together with you," he sighed and softly grabbed his brother's chin to turn his face so that their gazes finally met. Blue eyes met blue eyes, so similar and yet so different.
"But don’t you think everything we have to give is worth what we are finally able to have? We could still live in the same way as before. In the same way as before I had found your poem. Everything is a lie. Everything will ever remain this lie."
"I wouldn't have been able to live without feeling you, without having you," Mycroft murmured, blinking a few times to push the memories that threatened to come across his mind away. Memories about a time without his brother.
"But what we have now comes at such a high price."
"But, Myc. There will always be a but. We can’t avoid this, our relationship makes us unable to avoid this. Although we can try everything to handle all these buts. Together," Sherlock said and pressed his brother’s hand he’d taken in his. He rubbed his thumb over Mycroft's warm skin, feeling the fluttering pulse in his fingertips.
"Together," Mycroft simply whispered in response, still thinking about Sherlock’s words, about these few words that contained so much.
"I don’t want you to feel like this because of me, because of us. I don’t want you to be afraid and I wish so much that I could take all of your fears and doubts away. All of our fears and doubts," Sherlock corrected himself, wanting to show his brother that he wasn't the only one with these feelings, although he knew that Mycroft’s situation was incomparable to his own.
Sherlock leaned forward, resting his forehead against his brother’s for a few seconds until he lightly tilted his head and softly brushed his lips over Mycroft's, barely touching them, but yet feeling his sibling so close like he’d never felt him before. Sherlock's hand found its way over Mycroft’s chest, lightly ghosted over the exposed skin, until it rested on his beating heart, which thumps seemed to resonate through Sherlock’s whole body.
"This is all I’ve ever wanted and we just have it for such a short amount of time. You’re right, we shouldn't give it away. This is nothing that should be given away," Mycroft whispered and pressed his mouth against Sherlock’s in a kiss that was almost as deep and emotional as the first one they’d ever shared.
"I love you, despite all the things that seem to be against this."
"And I love you, Myc. Forever."