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The darkness our shadows cast

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Sherlock goes to visit Greg at night, something the man hadn't expected at all.

 

 

 

1

“What the hell Sherlock?! Are you crazy, what are you doing here?!”

 

“I.”

 

Sherlock looked down at the ground, hands clasped in front of him, his whole body rigid. It was probably the first time since they knew each other that Greg had seen the man like this, unsure and lost for words. Greg sits up in his bed and blinks his eyes, still adjusting to the light from his bedside lamp. He feels goosebumps form on his bare shoulders as they are exposed to the air. He doesn’t like sleeping with a shirt on, it always feels too constrictive and warm. Now he wishes he had, being so close to Sherlock. Sherlock, who is standing in his room in the middle of the night.

 

Sherlock still hasn’t said anything, looking down at the floor. He’s dressed impeccably as always. This time in a dark blue suit with a purple shirt and Greg feels even more awkward. Aware he’s half-naked in his bed. If Sherlock had been normal he would have blushed a deep red by now, seeing how hard he clasped his hands together. It’s a strange sight seeing the whiteness of Sherlock’s knuckles and the paleness of his cheeks. He just stands there, not moving, not even blinking his eyes it seems, as he waits.

 

Greg sighed, rubbing a hand over his face to try and be more awake and clear. He’s had a hard week at the Yard, working long hours with not enough sleep or decent meals. He'd woken up almost instantly none the less, feeling something was off, the air around him changing, making him aware of his surroundings and ready to fight. It was a natural reaction that never seemed to fade whenever Sherlock was near him. Dealing with Sherlock was always straining, a mental challenge for sure and it was hard enough to keep up with his fast mind and sharp tongue when Greg was awake.

 

“Contrary to Twilight,” Greg smirks when he hears the huff coming out of Sherlock's mouth. “Watching people sleep isn't romantic Sherlock. It's borderline creepy.”

 

Sherlock's gaze meets his for a second and Greg feels a shiver run down his spine as those bright eyes take him in. He never figured out what color Sherlock's eyes had, they seemed to change constantly, going from bright blue to green to gray. The shades seemed to switch within seconds too and Greg couldn't help but stare into Sherlock's eyes for too long sometimes, fascinated by their colors, seeing the brilliance and wisdom in them. There was something about Sherlock's gaze that always knocked him to the ground, capturing him in place and tonight was no exception. Sherlock's gaze flickers with something that is close to hunger and Greg blinks, willing himself to come back in the moment. He really is tired if he thinks Sherlock would look at him with want. His face feels warm, his body on fire and he prays Sherlock didn't pick up on his heart beating faster than a second before. It would be too embarrassing to explain.

 

“I'm sorry.”

 

Another shiver runs down his body as the words hit his ears. Sherlock never apologizes, Greg is sure he doesn’t even know how, but here it was, filling the space between them. Sherlock standing in the same spot, his eyes to the floor and Greg sitting in his bed, not able to stop his eyes from roaming over Sherlock's body, taking in all the angles and shapes, the curves and muscles under those expensive layers of clothes. Greg shakes his head once as the silence goes on. This wasn't Sherlock, couldn't be him. He never acted like this and Greg is sure he’s dreaming. Dreaming about Sherlock Holmes, the world's only Consulting Detective.

 

2

“Consulting Detective? That's what you're going with now?”

 

Greg had raised an eyebrow as he looked at Sherlock's business card. It was elegant and posh, just like it's owner and he saw a scowl form on Sherlock's face.

 

“I am the only one in the world.”

 

“Sure, seeing as you made it up.”

 

Sherlock's scowl deepened and Greg had felt a stab of guilt as he saw the hurt look in those sad puppy eyes, more gray than green.

 

“Sorry Sherlock, I didn't mean to offend you. It's just- working on your own can be dangerous and I don't want to see you get hurt.”

 

A flicker of surprise in Sherlock's eyes, followed by amusement and Greg felt irritation rise. It wasn't funny at all.

 

“Don't worry Lestrade, I can look after myself. Besides, most cases will be too boring to even consider.”

 

Greg had sighed, handing back the card as he saw the determined look in Sherlock's eyes. There was no point in arguing really, Sherlock did as he pleased and no amount of begging from Greg would change that.

 

“Fine. Just be careful. You know I'm just a call or text away right?”

 

Another flash of surprise and Greg had frowned. Why was it so hard for Sherlock to accept people's help and concern? They'd known each other for almost a year, surely by now it was clear Greg saw Sherlock as a friend and wanted to look out for him?

 

“Sherlock?”

 

Sherlock had blinked, still looking with surprise and maybe a hint of suspicion.

 

“Fine. Yes Lestrade, I will do my best not to get killed. Let's focus on the case now shall we?”

 

3

“I shouldn't have come here.”

 

There’s an edge of anger and embarrassment to Sherlock's voice that makes Greg look up at his face again, trying to see behind his mask and walls but Sherlock still isn’t meeting his gaze. It isn’t right, Sherlock being this silent and subdued.

 

“It's fine Sherlock. You just gave me a heart attack, that's all.” His tone is lighter and more teasing than he feels but it makes Sherlock's body relax, the tension in his hands less than before.

 

“For someone who claims to have had a heart attack, you sure talk a lot.”

 

Sherlock finally looks up, a playfulness in his eyes and Greg feels relief wash over him as he huffs, waving a hand in Sherlock's direction. This is more like the Sherlock he knows, the one that could solve crimes like no one else, the one that made Greg want to choke at least four times a week.

 

“Oi! You're one to talk, mister dead guy!”

 

“I'm half dead Lestrade, do your research.”

 

Greg can’t stop the laugh from escaping. His heart feels light and his belly has butterflies in it. It’s absurd, Sherlock standing there in his bedroom in the middle of the night, bantering with each other like they did on a crime scene. He sees the wonderful look in Sherlock's eyes, the color more green than anything else. Sherlock has a weird sense of humor and he isn’t one for making jokes a lot. He’s actually quite serious and it had taken about six months for Greg to even see a smile on Sherlock’s lips. A real one, not a fake one he used with witnesses and other people. Sherlock was a good pretender, being able to smooth talk anyone in record time but Greg is getting good at figuring out the real smiles from the fake ones and his breath catches  as Sherlock smiled at him now, real and bright, his eyes changing colour again, a hint of bright blue mixed with the green.

 

“Are you going to keep arguing with me or are you going to get in?” Greg turns his head, checking the time and yawned, opening up the covers. “It's 2 AM Sherlock. Us humans need sleep. And it's getting chilly here. ”

 

He wants to take it back as soon as it’s out of his mouth, seeing how Sherlock's face changed for a fraction of a second. Shock? Surprise? Greg can’t be sure as Sherlock looks over at the bed, his eyes fixed on Greg's hand on the mattress.

 

“I don't sleep.”

 

Sherlock's voice is soft but with a weird edge to it and Greg holds his breath. What was I thinking? He jumps a little when Sherlock suddenly stands next to his bed and Greg sees the amused flicker in Sherlock's eyes. It still freaks Greg out how quiet Sherlock can be.

 

He could sneak up on you without making a sound, something Sherlock had found very amusing. The first time it happened, Greg had let out a very unmanly yell. His heart had been racing like mad, face flushing with embarrassment as Sherlock giggled, eyes sparkling with mischief. He'd never heard Sherlock giggle before, didn't even know he could giggle and the sound had made it straight to his cock. It had been the first time he'd wanted to drag Sherlock to a dark corner, or his flat, and shag him senseless. He'd known the man for about seven months then and before that moment he'd looked at Sherlock and thought about the possibility of sex with the man. Greg wasn’t an idiot. He knew it would never happen, let alone something more than just sex, but it was nice daydreaming about.

 

He would never forgive himself if he acted on his impulses. Thinking about how Sherlock would react to it, how he'd look at him with betrayal and disgust always stopped Greg from acting on his feelings and desires. Losing Sherlock would be too high a price to pay for just a shag so he buried it all down with expert determination.

 

Greg raises an eyebrow, trying not to blush as Sherlock looks at him with amusement. He still doesn’t get in and Greg feels naked as Sherlock's eyes swept over his torso. His face flames up as he sees a few specks of purple in Sherlock's eyes, knowing the man is watching his nipples. They'd gone hard because of the cold air and Sherlock's eyes stayed there for too long to be an accident. Is this really happening?

 

“You don't sleep.” Greg hears the roughness in his voice, Sherlock's eyes snapping up to his face, his expression unreadable but the purple specks is still there. Greg can swear it’s getting brighter by the second and he feels parched, swallowing to get rid of the lump in his throat. He's never seen that color in Sherlock's eyes before and it’s breathtaking, matching the color of his fitted shirt. How have the buttons not popped off by now?

 

“That explains a lot actually. You know sleeping helps improve your mood right?”

 

His voice isn’t as light as he wants it to be, still very aware he’s half-naked in bed with a fully dressed Sherlock Holmes standing right next to him. But then Sherlock rolls his eyes and Greg is able to breathe again, a smirk on his lips by that typical Sherlockian reaction. Sherlock rolls his eyes at least six times a day and seeing it now made him realize it’s still the same Sherlock he’s talking to. Maybe a bit more restrained than usual but his quirks are still around.

 

“That's not because of lack of sleep Lestrade. People are idiots.”

 

Sherlock throws him a look and Greg shakes his head, a smile on his lips. It’s Sherlock's favorite complaint. Everyone’s an idiot, even him and his team, and the man didn't stop reminding them of it. Every crime scene Sherlock helped with Greg heard a muttered 'idiots' or 'incompetent idiots', depending on Sherlock's mood. It made some members of his team go crazy, getting irritated with Sherlock, refusing to work next to him but it didn't seem to bother the man at all. He just kept going, taking in everything and then reporting back to Greg, most of the time with a bored expression on his face. But, even though Sherlock called them all idiots, claiming the cases weren't nearly as difficult or interesting for someone of his level, he always came when Greg called and asked for his help.

 

“Well, this idiot is tired so either get in or leave.”

 

He pats the bed one more time and after a second of hesitation Sherlock takes off his coat and sits down to untie his shoes, kicking them off before getting in. Greg feels Sherlock's presence instantly, his whole body suddenly wide awake and he curses himself. He’s an idiot after all, his body betraying him as Sherlock settles in next to him. He takes a deep breath, letting it out slowly, sure Sherlock can hear it all but he doesn’t say anything, just arranging the pillow against the headboard and pulling up the covers.

 

At least there’s some space left between them and after a moment Greg moves, trying to find a comfortable position, willing his body to calm down and getting the blankets up high enough to cover himself, all the while trying not to touch Sherlock. Sherlock is strange about people touching him.

 

Vampires shouldn't be allowed to be so beautiful.

4

Greg turns his head back to face the wall, closing his eyes for a second as he tries not to think about those bright, color changing eyes, Sherlock's plum lip with that delicious Cupid's Bow and miles of smooth and pale skin. Some would say Sherlock is too weird looking to be considered beautiful but Greg had felt an instant attraction to the man. Even if that attraction was combined with a sense of danger and alertness as Sherlock's eyes first connected with his.

 

The man is skinny, but that doesn’t  mean he doesn’t have muscles or strength. Greg has seen that strength in action many times, lifting a criminal off the ground like it was nothing, standing his own against a group of five till Greg's team came in to arrest them, shielding Greg from danger with his body. The energy around Sherlock was wild and furious, constantly pulling at Greg, making it hard to leave the man’s side. He wanted to be in Sherlock’s orbit, even if a tiny voice inside his head told him it was a bad idea.

 

Seeing Sherlock in action was breathtaking, either using his superhuman strength, speed or senses. He had the most brilliant and fast mind, seeing all the small bits and pieces that helped solve a case. Greg wasn't sure Sherlock's mind was a vampire thing or if it was something just unique to Sherlock. Either way, it made Sherlock even more beautiful and seeing the man now, sitting next to him in his bed is enough to make his world start spinning faster. He feels Sherlock next to him with every fiber of his being, his body wanting to get closer, to feel Sherlock's skin against his own. He shivers a little and Sherlock moves away instantly, creating a bit more space between them. Greg has to snap his mouth shut to not let out a sound of protest or worse, reach out and pull Sherlock back.

 

“You're so warm.”

 

Greg snaps out of his musings, turning his head to stare at Sherlock's face. It looks like marble, so smooth and inviting and Greg turns his eyes to the blankets for a moment, not wanting Sherlock to see his dangerous thoughts.

 

“I always forget how warm you are.”

 

Sherlock's eyes go a shade darker as his mouth becomes a thin line, lost in his mind. There’s sadness in Sherlock's voice, the green of his eyes a shade darker, and Greg’s heart breaks.

 

“It's fine Sherlock. I mean, I do feel it but it's not too bad.”

 

Sherlock looks up, a sad expression on his face that makes Greg want to reach out and stroke Sherlock's cheek. Greg isn’t sure but he's always had a feeling Sherlock didn't really like being a vampire. When they talked about the differences between them, that same expression always crossed Sherlock's face, mouth a thin line, eyes filled with green and gray. It never lasted long, but it was enough for Greg to figure out Sherlock missed being normal. Or as normal as Sherlock Holmes could ever get.

 

“I can move. I don't need to be under the covers.”

 

Greg shakes his head before Sherlock can finish. Even if Sherlock doesn’t need to be under them, Greg wants him there. It’s a little colder than usual but having Sherlock so close to him made him feel hot all over. He needs a bit of coldness to stop his treacherous body. He just hopes Sherlock can’ figure out how affected he is by the man's proximity.

 

“So you never feel warm to the touch? There's nothing you can do for it?”

 

“I could drink from you.”

 

Greg nearly dies at Sherlock's words. His eyes snap up to Sherlock's face, half expecting to see the famous eye roll but Sherlock's eyes are fixed on Greg's neck, sparks of purple in them again and Greg feels that mixed combination of lust and danger go through him.

 

His face flames up as his mind conjured up images of a naked Sherlock licking and sucking his neck, his sharp teeth piercing through his skin as Sherlock's hands were on his cock. He swallows, feeling his body react to Sherlock's words and his own fantasies and he wants to run away or grab Sherlock and kiss him senseless. For a moment he wonders what color Sherlock's eyes would be as he made Greg come on his stomach. Or how they would change as Greg came inside him, moaning out his name as his nails dug into Sherlock's skin.

 

“Tha- that actually works?”

 

His voice is hard and rough and his blush is still there as Sherlock just nods, gaze on the wall opposite of them, hands turned into fists.

 

“For a while at least, just like hot drinks and food. Maybe- Maybe I should leave?”

 

The question is like a wipe against Greg's back and he turns his head, facing his body towards Sherlock. Sherlock's eyes are a mix of gray and purple, as they gaze over Greg's face, his naked chest, and then back to his face. He sees a hint of sorrow in Sherlock's eyes, a tightness in his lips as the walls come up again and Greg hates himself. Of course, Sherlock has noticed the way his body reacted, Sherlock sees everything and now he's being gentle in letting Greg down. Not wanting to make a scene.

 

“I didn't mean to scare you Lestrade. I'd never- I don't feed on humans.”

 

Greg blinks his eyes as Sherlock moves, pulling away the blankets to get out of bed. Greg moves without thinking about it, suddenly terrified Sherlock will leave and never come back and he reaches forward, placing a hand on Sherlock's shoulder. Feeling the strength of muscles underneath his palm, the coldness making him shiver.

 

“No, it's fine Sherlock. I'm not afraid, I know you, Sherlock. You'd never- I don't mind you being here.”

 

Sherlock sits still on the side of Greg's bed, his body tense and Greg slowly lifts his hand off the man’s shoulder. He holds his breath as Sherlock keeps quiet, sitting there like a statue, his back turned to Greg as the conversation hangs in the air. There is still a tension in the man's body and Greg feels guilt rise as the seconds pass on in silence. It hasn't been that long since Sherlock allowed Greg to touch him and now he's taken advantage of it.

 

His own complicated feelings don't matter. If Sherlock wants to go he'll let him but he came here for a reason. Everything Sherlock does is for a reason and Greg will do everything he can to figure it out, to try and help him.

 

“You can stay if you want to.”

 

Sherlock still hasn't moved and Greg moves backward, giving Sherlock space as time goes on. He wants to apologize for his behavior, for reaching out like that but he knows Sherlock would just be irritated by it.

 

They don't spend time like this normally. Greg sees Sherlock almost every week but it's usually related to work, analyzing crime scenes, talking to witnesses, catching murderers, going over the endless paperwork. It's always fast and dirty, murder and maham, lives to try and save and it's hard to remember there is a life outside of it all. Beyond the chaos and pain.

 

Sherlock coming here is a new step in their friendship and Greg doesn't want it to be over before it's even begun. Whatever 'it' is. He's attracted to Sherlock, he won’t deny it, but he also just likes the man’s company. Sherlock’s witty banter and weird humor, his sarcasm and eye-rolls, even his insults and complaints. He's in too deep but doesn't mind at all. It became clear how much he liked having Sherlock in his life when the man avoided him after telling his secret. He'd felt bereft, not being able to talk to Sherlock, to ask his questions. To just spend time with him.

 

At last Sherlock turns his body, squinting his eyes as he looks Greg over and Greg does his best to act calm and normal. To just be a friend and not a horny teenager.  Their friendship means too much to Greg.Sherlock is a lot to handle sometimes but his life has been better since they met and he doesn't want to go back to a life pre-Sherlock. It would be too calm and too boring.

 

His feelings for Sherlock aren't just fuelled by lust. Yes, he's dreamed of having Sherlock naked under him, panting and growling, eyes dark with wants as Greg spills inside him but it's not just that. He sees a possibility of a future with the man, how crazy and idiotic that may sound. Sherlock is the type of person Greg sees himself share a life with, grow old and senile together.

 

Greg blinks his eyes, keeping all his thoughts and feelings safely locked away from Sherlock's searching gaze. Sherlock is observant, more then anyone Greg’s met before, but for a creature who has been around for decades, he's a little blind on matters of the heart. Somehow it’s a relief Sherlock mistakes his reactions for fear rather than arousal. He’s not sure if he would survive a confrontation about it. He's seen how Sherlock can use and abuse information he deduces, shattering people like glass when he lays out their deepest and darkest secrets.

5

In the beginning of their friendship, before Greg knew Sherlock was a vampire with heightened senses, he was sure the man could read minds. Finding out every twisted and wicked thought you ever had. It made it hard for Greg to act normal around the man, afraid Sherlock would look at him with disgust and pity when he knew about the fantasies Greg had.

 

“I can't read your mind Lestrade, stop looking at me like that. I just observe and listen, that's all.”

 

“It's amazing. A bit terrifying, but amazing.”

 

Sherlock had stopped moving, turning to face Greg, his face all surprise and disbelief and it had made Greg feel awkward, blurting it out like that. They'd been working together for a few weeks then, getting to know each other bit by bit. Greg had talked about his mom and dad, his extensive family and the lovely family dinners during the holidays. Sherlock had told about his big brother Mycroft, his arch-nemesis and Greg had frowned.

 

“Tad dramatic, don't you think?”

 

“Trust me, Mycroft is a pompous and dangerous know it all. Best to not have to deal with him.”

 

“Is he as dramatic as you are?” Greg had smirked as Sherlock stopped pacing, his face in a scowl as he looked at Greg.

 

“Worse. He's the reason the word drama queen is even a word.”

 

After Greg had complimented him, Sherlock had blinked his eyes a few times, hands still next to his side as he opened his mouth to say something, gaze burning Greg from inside. Greg held his breath, steadying himself for the blow Sherlock would surely give but then his expression had changed, his mouth closing again and he'd just given a tiny smile, his eyes softer with specks of green in them, and that had been it. Sherlock had turned abruptly, going over some of the facts about their new crime scene, ordering them to look for a green stool and a black binder.

 

After that, it had been easier to compliment Sherlock. Greg didn't do it all the time, and he was careful to do it when nobody else was around. If Greg had to guess, Sherlock didn't get a lot of compliments in his life, always looking at Greg with a mix of surprise, delight, and suspicion. Greg didn't want to make Sherlock feel vulnerable around other people so he kept his tongue when the team was around. Still, his private compliments had an effect on Sherlock for sure, seeing how his face became a tad softer, his body more relaxed, his eyes more open and on rare occasions, more by accident then anything else, he would get a shy smile as a reward. It warmed Greg's heart, and groin, when Sherlock smiled like that, honest and real, just for him.

 

The compliments made Sherlock less cautious, not doing everything in his power to avoid touching Greg or flinching when they did touch. Greg didn't understand it, this almost aversion to touch when Sherlock had no problem crowding up Greg's personal space. He always stood close, his body angled towards Greg but had a way of avoiding brushing against Greg's shoulder, touching Greg's hands when he took a file. It drove Greg mad after a while, thinking about Sherlock's body, feeling how his own body was affected whenever Sherlock stood next to him, not able to even touch his arm, his shoulder, his hand.

 

That all changed when Robbie Darwin came along and almost killed him.

Chapter Text

Greg almost gets killed on a case and he learns a secret about Sherlock.

1

He hadn't been paying attention for five seconds. Five seconds with his mind drifting off somewhere and that was enough time for Robbie Darwin to aim a gun at him and pull the trigger. Robbie was good, if Sherlock hadn't been there he'd shot Greg right in the heart, killing him instantly. Luckily for him, and unfortunately for Robbie, Sherlock had been there, getting to Greg in record time, using his own body to catch the bullet and save Greg’s life.

 

It was the first time since he'd met the man a year ago that Sherlock had touched him. Before then it had been mostly accidental, where Sherlock would flinch away and Greg would feel slightly hurt and stupid. This was the first time Greg felt how strong Sherlock's body was, how solid and, above all, cold. He grabbed Sherlock's arms, hearing the gun go off and Sherlock’s growl. Suddenly the coldness was all over him. He looked up, fingers still clinging to Sherlock when he saw the man's eyes and flinched. They were pitch black, his face stoic and hard and Greg felt fear as Sherlock stared back at him, his hands grabbing onto Greg too tightly. Later he would see the bruises on his arms, shaped like Sherlock's fingers.

 

“Are you okay?!”

 

Sherlock's voice had been harsh and Greg hadn't been able to speak at first, never before hearing Sherlock so frightening and angry at once. Sherlock had stood up, dragging Greg up with him, shaking him twice, his black eyes going over him. The coldness only intensified as Sherlock’s eyes burned into his.

 

“Are you hurt!? Lestrade!”

 

Another shake and Greg shivered from Sherlock's cold fingers on his biceps, the urgency in his voice and he'd blinked, stammering a 'yes, yes I'm fine' before Sherlock took off, his black eyes going over Greg's frame one more time.

 

He couldn't even call out, Sherlock had vanished within seconds and all Greg could think of were those cold fingers, the black eyes and the fury in Sherlock's voice.

 

“How did you get to me in time?”

 

It was the first question out of his mouth when Sherlock finally returned at the Yard late at night. He looked flawless as he stood at Greg's desk, not really looking at him, his hands shaking and eyes unfocused. They weren't black anymore but dark grey with spots of black in them. Somehow that was worse and Greg felt fear again as he remembered how Robbie had closed in on himself, getting as far away from Sherlock as possible, head turned to the wall of his cell. Greg had noticed the black eye and split lip decorating Robbie's face but when Greg raised an eyebrow at Sherlock the man didn't respond, just watched Robbie tremble with cold fury in his eyes.

 

“Sherlock. How did you get to me in time? You were all the way across the compound.”

 

Sherlock's eyes drifted over to his for a second and Greg was relieved they were their normal mixed color again. Sherlock still didn't say anything, just standing still except for his hands that were shaking, fingers tapping away on the desk.

 

“Hey,” Greg reached out, hesitation for a split second but then placed his hand on Sherlock's. “I'm fine Sherlock.” The man’s hand was still ice cold.

 

“If I hadn't been there you would have been dead!”

 

Sherlock's voice was low and dangerous as he pulled out his hand from under Greg's, a furious expression on his face, eyes getting a shade darker as he looked Greg over.

 

“You should have known better Lestrade! What were you thinking? Five seconds is more than enough to end a life! He would have killed you!”

 

Sherlock threw him a furious look and Greg got up from his chair, alarm bells screaming ‘danger’. The air in the room had changed and the hairs on the back of Greg's neck had gone up, his eyes wide as he watched Sherlock pace.

 

“You would have been dead and for what?! Because you lost focus for a second! You know better than that Lestrade, at least you should know better! It's unacceptable!”

 

Sherlock suddenly got closer, eyes sparkling with fury and Greg backed away against the wall before realizing it. His body was tense, knees trembling and he blinked, nostrils wide. He saw the shock in Sherlock's eyes as they landed on his hands and only then noticed they were formed into fists, ready to fight.

 

“I,” Sherlock backed away, shock still clear as his eyes stayed on Greg's fists. “Forgive me, I didn't-” Sherlock stopped, hands going up in surrender and Greg saw the horror and guilt on the man's face. His body was still on edge but he uncurled his fists slowly, not able not to look at Sherlock with caution and he saw the anguish form around Sherlock's mouth.

 

“Lestrade, I-”

 

Sherlock stopped, taking another step back as he lowered his arms and Greg relaxed a fraction more, able to breathe again. There'd always been a sense of danger around Sherlock, a sense that he needed to stay alert and ready but tonight was the first time he'd actually felt fear. It didn't make any sense but his body was still screaming at him to leave, to run away. The way Sherlock looked at him, haunted, his face even paler than usual told Greg he'd noticed it too. His eyes were grey again, all traces of fury and rage gone and Greg shivered. What had just happened?

2

Silence filled the room as they looked at each other. Sherlock opened his mouth to speak but no words came out, his eyes dropping down to the floor as he stuffed his hands into the pockets of his coat.

 

“You haven't answered my question, Sherlock.” Sherlock's eyes found his again, guilt and shame battling, and Greg took a breath, willing himself to move. It took two seconds for his body to obey and he saw the tension on Sherlock's face. You could never fool Sherlock Holmes.

 

“How did you get to me in time? I heard the gun go off Sherlock. I felt the impact of the bullet as it hit you. I heard you growl in pain! How are you- You should have been hurt, no, killed yourself. How is it possible you're still here? How am I going to explain this all to my superiors Sherlock? Robbie Darwin is terrified of you!”

 

“I was lucky.”

 

Sherlock's chin went up in defiance, his tone fake casual and Greg felt anger rise inside him. He moved forward, ignoring the alarm bells in his head as he pointed a finger at Sherlock. The man's eyes went wide, flinching as Greg’s finger stabbed Sherlock’s chest. That same coldness again.

 

“Lucky? That’s what you’re going with? Seriously?”

 

Sherlock just raised an eyebrow as Greg crossed his arms, disbelief, and anger fighting inside him. When Sherlock didn’t respond Greg let out an aggravated sigh, throwing his hands up in the air.

 

“Oh, the shrink is going to love this! Can you explain what happened DI Lestrade? Of course, my friend caught a bullet for me that would have likely killed me but he doesn’t have a scratch and all because of luck!”

 

He couldn’t keep his voice down, the adrenaline and shock from earlier seeping out of him as he looked at Sherlock, still standing there like a statue.

 

“Do you think I’m stupid Sherlock?”

 

Sherlock was about to open his mouth to answer but Greg held up a finger, his face stern, his voice dangerously calm.

 

“Don’t you dare insult me now Sherlock. I’m not in the mood. Someone tried to kill me today and they would have succeeded if it wasn’t for you. Tell me, if I check, will I find an entry and exit wound on you?”

Sherlock kept silent, eyes going down to the Floor for a second and Greg’s heart clenched, his stomach doing summersaults as the silence went on.

 

“Don't treat me like this Sherlock. I may not be a genius but I’m also not a moron.There was no way you could get to me in time, catch a bullet and walk away without so much as a scratch! Look at you, you look perfect, like you just walked out of a magazine and you're telling me it was just luck?! I deserve to hear the truth, Sherlock.”

 

Greg felt out of breath by the time he was done, staring at Sherlock the whole time, trying to read his thoughts while he jabbed his finger into Sherlock's chest again. He didn't flinch this time, staying in the same spot as his eyes scanned Greg's face. Maybe it wasn't a good idea standing so close to Sherlock after what had just happened but he was too angry and frustrated to care. No matter what Sherlock thought he wasn't a fool and he knew Sherlock had been too far to get there in time and catching a bullet for him. Why?

 

“You wouldn't believe me Lestrade.”

 

Greg snapped out of his thoughts, seeing the defeated look in Sherlock's eyes, still grey and sad. He looked older as if the weight of the world was on his shoulders and it made Greg feel even more on edge, seeing Sherlock like this, giving up. Sherlock's whole body slumming as he stepped away, sitting down in a nearby chair, his head hanging down.

 

“Can't you just trust me and let it go?”

 

Sherlock's voice was small, his eyes begging. It was a plea at Greg to drop it, to forget and move on. Maybe that was the smart thing to do, pretend like none of this had happened. Pretend Sherlock hadn't caught a bullet for him, pretend Sherlock didn't feel like ice. Try to forget how Greg had felt just seconds before with Sherlock coming closer to him. It would have been the smart thing to do but he couldn't. Not knowing would drive him mad, haunted by his memories, trying to convince himself he wasn't crazy and failing miserably, so he gave Sherlock a look, seeing the defeat in the man's eyes.

 

He sat down in his own chair, planting his elbows firmly on his desk, glad for the separation between them. He waited, eyes glued to Sherlock, seeing the gears inside that magnificent brain turning. His heart was beating like crazy again, sweat forming under his armpits but he just needed to know. Good or bad, whatever it was, he could take it. Probably.

 

3

“I'm not normal Lestrade.”

 

It would have been too easy to say something about that but before Greg could decide on what to say Sherlock shook his head, giving him a little eye-roll. Greg watched him carefully, seeing Sherlock's hand grab hold of the armrests of the chair, enough to hear the wood crack. His fingers were pale and trembling, the veins on his hands visible and Greg raised an eyebrow as the wood cracked again, his heart skipping a beat.

 

Sherlock's face did a weird thing, looking down at his feet before letting go of the chair and getting up to pace the floor. His gaze was down, hands wringing together as he spoke, his tone too flat to be real, as if trying to seem calm but his body was full of nervous energy. Greg felt it in the air, building up and it set him on edge, shifting in his seat.

 

“You're right Lestrade, you're not an idiot and your instincts are right about me. You were afraid of me just now.” Sherlock threw him a look full of guilt, it wasn't a question but Greg nodded after a second. There was no point in lying to the most observant person he'd ever met.

 

“You had a right to be. Never ignore them Lestrade. Instinct is a powerful thing and it will save your life. You know that of course, with your line of work it's bound to go wrong sooner than later. As we've witnessed today.”

 

Sherlock stopped pacing, standing still in front of Greg's desk. His mouth was in a hard line and Greg felt a shudder run down his spine. Sherlock was right. Being a DI was a 9 to 5 job but he's had his fair share of dangerous situations. None of those had ever been like this. Greg shivered as he remembered the frightened look on Robbie's face, the rage in Sherlock's eyes, the sound of a gun going off, the coldness of Sherlock's body against his own.

 

“What's your point, Sherlock?”

 

Greg leaned back in his chair, crossing his arms as he waited and tried to keep his nerves in check. Sherlock bit his lower lip for a second, guilt filling his eyes as he kept his gaze glued to Greg's. He felt a weird sensation near his groin but stomped it down. Now was not the time.

 

“My point is, you're right, I am dangerous and you have a reason for being careful around me. I couldn't cross the distance in time, I was too far as you've pointed out already. A human wouldn't have been able to reach you. Or stop the bullet.”

 

Sherlock's gaze dropped to the floor and Greg felt his insides go cold. He blinked, Sherlock's words spinning around in his head as he tried to breathe. He was failing, his heart was racing again, his fingers going cold and then Sherlock looked up, a sorrow look in his eyes.

 

“You. Are you saying? It can't be?”

 

Sherlock’s eyes shifted to the left and Greg jumped out of his chair, suddenly needed to be taller, stronger. He saw Sherlock's jaw clench and regretted his action instantly.

 

“Sherlock, I-”

 

Sherlock shook his head, shrugging it off, but his eyes said it all. Greg's breath caught as he stared into those grey, almost black pools of despair and he moved forward without thinking, closing the distance between them. Sherlock's eyes got wider, his body going tenser when Greg placed his hands on Sherlock's arms, breath catching again as he felt the coldness under his palms. How had he not noticed it before?

 

“I have tricks that make me feel warmer than I actually am.”

 

Greg looked up sharply and Sherlock gave a tight and small smile that didn't reach his eyes.

 

“It's only logical what you're thinking right now. I can't read minds but your face is an open book Lestrade, really need to work on that.”

 

Sherlock rolled his eyes as Greg let out a huff. They still hadn't moved, Sherlock hadn't broken out of his hold and he felt the coldness ease as time went on. He felt the muscles underneath his hands and squeezed, Sherlock's eyes going a fraction wider than before, the grey getting mixed with blue specks. He couldn't stop looking, licking his lips before swallowing, trying to speak.

 

“Who are you, Sherlock?”

 

“Not the right question, Lestrade.”

 

Sherlock gave another sad smile and Greg grabbed hold of Sherlock more tightly. He needed it to keep standing, to try and remain in control. Sherlock didn't flinch, didn't move away, didn't try to stop Greg. He just stood there, watching Greg with dread and hope.

 

What are you?”

 

“You already know that.”

 

Greg shook his head but Sherlock frowned, slowly lifting his right arm up, pressing a fingertip to Greg's forehead. It was cold and Greg's breath caught, his body trembling.

 

“You do know. You just don't want to say it.”

 

Greg closed his eyes as Sherlock withdrew his finger, feeling the cold spot he'd left behind. He couldn't say it, it sounded silly and stupid in his own mind and if it had been any other person Greg would have left long ago. But this was Sherlock and Sherlock wasn't normal by any means.

It wasn't just his intellect. He had a way about himself, walking with supernatural grace and elegance. It was something Greg envied on bad days where he doubted himself, wanting to move just like Sherlock, look as thin and attractive. Have Sherlock’s skills and intelligence. The man knew all about historical serial killers but had never heard of James Bond, or anything pop-related, before. He never touched people, never stood close enough for other's to touch him and when it did happen he gave them a look that could kill on the spot. He was always pale, even in full summer and Greg wasn't sure he even owned casual clothes or jeans. He had weird ticks when in the presence of blood and just now, tonight, he'd saved Greg from a bullet by using his own body as a shield!

 

It didn't make any sense but it made all the sense in the world at the same time. Yet Greg couldn't say it, couldn't acknowledge his crazy thoughts. It wasn't real, things like this didn't happen in real life. There wasn't some secret underground world full of mythical creatures and Sherlock sure as hell wasn't a-

 

“Vampire. You're a vampire.”

 

For just a second Greg wants Sherlock to roll his eyes at him, call him an idiot in that typical Sherlock way and walk out, his coat billowing behind him in a dramatic fashion. But Sherlock just stands there, letting Greg hold his arms, his expression fake blank when Greg finally opens his eyes.

 

“Oh god.”

 

He feels light-headed as he finally let's go of Sherlock, seeing a change in the man's eyes for just a fleeting moment. He takes a step back, eyes spread wide as he watches Sherlock with disbelief, his mouth open too. To what? He's not sure how to react to this. Sherlock just stands there perfectly still, eyes on Greg, body tense as if ready to take action. Action to do what?

 

The memory of Robbie Darwin comes to mind and he gasps and flinches when his body hits his desk. Sherlock's eyes suddenly are all grey, his mouth tight as he looks at Greg trying to get himself together. How do you react when you meet a vampire for the first time?

 

Scream and run away seems a bit melodramatic to Greg but staying here in the same room doesn't seem smart either. He can already feel it, the change in the air between them, how these next few moments will determine their friendship. Can Greg be friends with a vampire? Is it any different than being friends with a human? But it's Sherlock, not that much will change right? He'll still be a smart arse, making Greg's hair go greyer by the day as he runs around chasing criminals, risking his life when he goes off and doesn't tell Greg anything useful except 'it's the blue suitcase!'.

 

“I can hear you thinking from here, Lestrade. Can you please stop before you hurt yourself.”

 

Sherlock's voice is cool and casual but Greg doesn't buy it. He can see the twitching of Sherlock's fingers against his legs, the way his eyes go rapidly from side to side, not really looking at Greg but not able to ignore him completely. He's nervous. Greg blinks again, taking in the man in front of him and it's true. Sherlock is nervous, nervous about Greg's reaction and suddenly Greg's heart breaks.

 

It can't be easy for Sherlock, telling a secret this big and dangerous. And all because Sherlock took a risk, jumping in front of him to save him from Robbie Darwin's bullet. And this is how Greg repays him, stepping away from Sherlock, creating even more space between them the longer he keeps silent. Sherlock's eyes are still grey and sad and Greg now knows it's because of him, because of his actions. Seeing the hurt and nervousness on Sherlock's face makes Greg's heart hurt and he makes a decision right there and then. Vampire or not, Sherlock Holmes is his friend and that won't change.

 

He moves forward and Sherlock looks up, eyes cautious and Greg wants to kick himself for being the reason the vampire is cautious. He reaches out to touch Sherlock's shoulder, feeling the man tense underneath his touch but he lets it sit there anyway, squeezing once before speaking. Somehow it's important to touch Sherlock, to let him know Greg's not afraid of touching him.

 

“I believe you.”

 

Sherlock relaxes instantly, his eyes going from grey to light green and Greg can't help but stare. He's always been fascinated with Sherlock's eyes, how they change from one second to the next. Do all vampires have eyes like that?

 

“No. It's more a Holmes family thing though Mycroft has it far less than me.”

 

Greg turns red, he hadn't meant to say it out loud but Sherlock doesn't seem bothered by it. His face is softer, the blank mask gone and there is a light smile on his lips as Greg asks another question.

 

“How old are you?”

 

“25.”

 

“25?” Greg raises an eyebrow, going over Sherlock’s face before huffing in disbelief. “That can’t be right, you look-“

 

“Older?” Sherlock gives a little smile as Greg nods his head, feeling awkward for being so blunt.

 

“It’s a vampire thing. We look older than our turning age. I think I look around 35-38.”

 

Greg nods again, trying to wrap his mind around the fact that Sherlock’s human life ended at 25. It’s so young, so soon. He feels a stab of sorrow for the man in front of him, Sherlock has lost so much at such a young age. He can’t even begin to try and understand how difficult that must have been. Waking up the next day, realizing you are now no longer human and also aged more than a decade overnight.

 

“It’s fine Lestrade.”

 

“Sherlock.”

 

“It’s fine. It happened a long time ago, I’ve had time to adjust and accept it.” Sherlock gives another tiny smile but Greg can see a hint of sorrow in his eyes.

 

“So, how old are you really?”

 

“155. Give or take.”

 

Sherlock looks down and Greg is sure he's seeing the vampire equivalent of blushing happening before his very eyes.

 

“Give or take?”

 

“It stops being important after you hit 120.”

 

Greg can't stop his mouth from dropping open and Sherlock just shrugs a shoulder. Then he laughs, it comes from somewhere deep inside, spilling out of him and making Sherlock startle a little before his face does that thing again, his eyes going a shade darker. When he's done laughing he has tears in his eyes and he wipes them away as he keeps looking at Sherlock, taking him in, making sense of all the little and strange things that surround him.

 

“You really are the poster boy for being a vampire.”

 

Sherlock frowns, tilting his head to the side and Greg waves a hand at him.

 

“Come on! Pale, lean, and beautiful. It's like the standard for modern-day vampires, isn't it? I've seen Twilight, I know what I'm talking about.”

 

“I do not sparkle Lestrade!”

 

Greg had wanted to ask more questions but Sherlock hadn't answered a lot of them. As time went on his walls went back up, eyes going blue and his mouth hard as Greg asked about his past, his family, his history. Somehow he thought Sherlock would spill it all out now, that something had changed between them but Sherlock had stepped back, keeping space as he gave Greg a hard look.

 

“I'm a monster Lestrade. That's all you need to know. A dangerous monster.”

 

His tone had been firm and unforgiving and Greg hadn't known what to say to that. He just stared, taking in Sherlock's stiff body, his hard mouth and eyes and felt sadness fill his heart. Yes, he'd been afraid only moments before but those had been his primal instincts kicking into overdrive. He knew Sherlock, trusted him. Hell, he was only standing here because Sherlock had saved his life!

 

“You really believe that don't you?”

 

“It's not a matter of believing Lestrade, it's a fact. You don't know how I was before. What just happened, it's nothing compared to what I can do.”

 

Hatred filled the room and Greg reached out but Sherlock pulled back as if Greg was something toxic.

 

“You just know me now Lestrade. The arrogant smartarse weirdo who is good at observing, seeing things and making connections. People tolerate me because of my skills, not because they like me. I've said it before Lestrade, trust your instincts cause they are right, especially about me.”

 

He'd wanted to argue, make Sherlock understand that he didn't keep him around just because he was brilliant. That he didn't seem him as a monster. Even after what had just transpired. He'd never seen rage like that before but he also knew it hadn't been directed at him. He knew Sherlock would never hurt him, no matter what he'd done in the past. He'd opened his mouth to say as much but Sherlock just left, shaking his head as he moved past Greg, making sure he didn't touch him. His eyes were filled with sadness and something else Greg couldn't pinpoint.

 

“Sherlock.”

 

It didn't help, Sherlock opened the door, making it crash into the wall and he saw the little flinch before Sherlock was gone, coat billowing behind him as he made his way out of the Yard.

 

4

It had taken a week for Sherlock to come back. A week where Greg texted him almost daily, asking how he was doing, apologizing for his behavior, asking Sherlock to just come in and talk it out. A week where he'd been ignored, texts left unanswered and calls not going through. It kept him up at night, the whole scenario playing out again in his head, wishing he'd done something differently. Wishing he'd been more composed and calm. But how did you stay calm when you learned of something so big and mysterious? Sherlock was a vampire, a creature he thought only lived in bad books and silly movies. How could you not ask questions?

 

There was so much he wanted to know but it was clear Sherlock wasn't ready to talk about it. He felt like a fool for believing everything would be different now. That their friendship had changed, upgraded to another level. He'd been foolish to think Sherlock would seek him out now, wanting to talk and discuss and get to really know each other.

 

After a week Sherlock was back at the Yard, giving his assistance with a kidnapping case. He looked the scene over, taking his time to look, feel and smell everything. At least now I know why he's so good at what he does.

 

Greg stood back as Sherlock did his thing, it was still breathtaking to see and once Sherlock had laid out all the steps and conclusions it had been hard for him not to compliment Sherlock. He'd kept it lock inside though, somehow knowing this time it wouldn't go over well.

 

“Okay, Donovan, you heard the man. Let's go pay a visit to that nanny.”

 

His team got to work and Greg turned around, feeling Sherlock behind him. Now that he knows what to look for it's very easy to figure out where Sherlock was, always a wave of coldness accompanying him.

 

“Thank you, Sherlock.”

 

Sherlock's face got a tad softer, a hint of a smile on his lips and then it was gone again, the walls back up and Greg felt bereft. It hadn't been easy building a friendship with Sherlock and now it seemed they were back where they started.  He couldn’t help but think Sherlock already regretted saving him. It was only because Sherlock had jumped in to stop Robbie’s bullet that his secret had come out.

 

“Don't you dare say that!”

 

He almost fell to the ground as Sherlock came forward, his eyes wide and hurt, coldness creeping in as his hands grabbed hold of Greg's arms.

 

“Sherlock! What the hell?!”

 

He started to move, wanting to get some space but Sherlock just held him more tightly, his eyes a mix of grey and green as they burned into Greg's.

 

“Don't you ever dare think that again, Lestrade! I don't regret my actions that day.”

 

Sherlock looked at him intently and Greg felt his cheeks flush as he started to realize what had happened. He can read minds! He opened his mouth to say something but Sherlock shook his head, fury still in his eyes.

 

“Stop being an idiot, Lestrade.”

 

Sherlock released him and took a step back, frustration clear in his body and face. Greg wrapped his arms around him, trying to get rid of the cold that seemed to cling to his bones. A flash of guilt in Sherlock's eyes before it disappeared and Greg felt exhausted all of a sudden.

 

“I. Sherlock, I didn't- I’m sor-”

 

“Don't pretend to know what I think or feel Lestrade. It's bound to be wrong. Text me when you've talked to the nanny.”

 

Sherlock felt and all Greg wanted to do was go home and get some sleep. Dealing with a genius vampire was draining and it seemed to only be the beginning.

 

5

“Are you all right? You seem quiet.”

 

Sherlock had a frown on his face as he looked over at Greg and Greg nodded his head, changing his position in bed slightly. It had been almost two months since Sherlock had told him his secret and it was the first time they'd spend time together alone. Sherlock had avoided him most of the time so he'd been more than surprised to find the man standing in his bedroom at two in the morning.

 

He still couldn't quite believe it and had to stop himself pinching his arm to see if it wasn't a dream. Sherlock being here, lying next to him with a soft expression on his flawless face. He wasn't sure how to feel about it, hope rising inside him that this meant something, that this was more than just Sherlock acting strangely. He'd said it himself, he didn't need sleep so why was he here?

 

He turned his head again, breath catching as Sherlock's focus was on him, those ever observing eyes searching his soul. His body reacted to Sherlock's gaze, feeling too hot suddenly and he licked his lips, Sherlock's eyes following the movement, their color a light purple. It was intoxicating, being in the center of Sherlock's attention, it felt intimate and dangerous but somehow Greg felt lost and empty without it.

 

“Why are you here, Sherlock?”

 

He doesn't want to ask but does, seeing Sherlock's face fall a little, the coldness around them somehow getting more intense. It's the same sensation when Greg asked questions two months ago and he's sure Sherlock will leave again, face blank and eyes cold. Only now he stays, his gaze flickering to Greg's face for a second before focusing on the wall, a frown between his eyes in concentration.

 

“I was- bored?”

 

Sherlock's frown deepens as the words come out, filling the room and Greg can't find an answer to that. He's disappointed, the feeling settling in his heart as Sherlock keeps staring at the wall. Suddenly he wants to leave, throw away the sheets and leave Sherlock behind. Bored?! As if he's just a fun thing to pass the time with?! Something he can pick up and drop when it's needed. Someone he can discard when someone else comes along to really spark Sherlock's interest!

 

“Greg.”

 

His name out of Sherlock's mouth makes him come back to reality, seeing those magical eyes scan his face, trying to find out what's wrong. Greg does his best to get a grip on himself, he has no right to expect more from Sherlock, to be hurt by Sherlock's answer when he himself asked the question! Sherlock already warned him not to try and figure out what he thought and here he was doing it again. Creating expectation that Sherlock couldn't fulfill.

 

“And watching me sleep was your best remedy for that? You need to get out more Sherlock.”

 

His voice is still a fraction too hard and serious and Sherlock squints as if trying to see inside his brain. It probably only lasts for a second but it feels like a lifetime and Greg feels unease rise. Why can't he act like a normal, grown-up person around Sherlock Holmes?! Maybe it's a vampire effect? Something Sherlock does that he doesn't even realize, making people all flustered and light headed around him?

 

“I don't like people. Going out has never been something I've enjoyed.”

 

“Hmn.”

 

“People don't like me.”

 

Greg is about to make a sarcastic remark, something light to break away the tension but Sherlock's voice has a raw honesty to it, laced with self-hate and he keeps his tongue, feeling his heart break for the man sitting next to him. He wants to reach out, smooth away the frown on his forehead, kiss away the hate on his mouth but he's not sure it would make things better. He turns his head, seeing Sherlock is still staring at the wall, his body stiff as if waiting for the blow. As if Greg is going to agree with his statement.

 

Sherlock isn't easy at times but he's worth the effort and Greg is sure more people would agree if they just took the time to really look at him. See past the arrogant attitude and the know it all mentality and see how Sherlock really is instead of the version he gives them. It's sad and frustrating, how easy Sherlock can push people away. He's seen it again first hand. Greg isn't sure he's doing it because he believes he's not worth the effort or if he's afraid of disappointing people when they find out Sherlock isn't a genius robot but has flaws and feelings too.

 

“I like you. Most of the time.”

 

“That's because you're an idiot.”

 

Sherlock finally turns his head and Greg sees a flicker of humor in his blue eyes. Greg pokes Sherlock's side, seeing the smile form on those lush lips, the green sparkles in Sherlock's eyes making him feel happier then seconds before.

 

“Oi! Watch it or I'll kick you out of here.”

 

Sherlock chuckles and he's sure he's about to die from a heart attack for real. He sees a change in Sherlock's face for a millisecond and he's sure the man can hear how affected he is. The butterflies in his stomach are flying like crazy, his heart beating faster and his cock is awake again, wanting some extra attention. Can vampires even have sex? Greg feels his face burn as the question fills his mind, hoping that Sherlock can't figure that thought out. It's only one of a million questions that pop up since he knows Sherlock's a vampire but Greg isn't sure it's wise to ask. Sherlock and sex seem like a mix that doesn't go well and he'd be too mortified to ever discuss vampire mechanics in that regard. What if he leaves me again?

 

“You should sleep, it's almost four in the morning. I'm sorry for keeping you up so late.”

 

Sherlock's soft voice cuts through his mind, just now noticing how tired he really is. He has trouble keeping his eyes open, yawning as he turns his head to look at Sherlock.

 

“It's fine. I'm glad you're here Sherlock. I was worried that after that talk you-”

 

Sherlock tilts his head to the side a little, guilt in his expression and Greg gives Sherlock a little smile.

 

“I'm sorry Lestrade, for- For being me.”

 

Sherlock looks down at the sheets and Greg sighs, making the man look in his direction again.

“I hate it when you talk like that. I like you, Sherlock. I like having you in my life. I'm glad you told me and I swear I would never tell-”

 

Sherlock shakes his head, patting Greg's hand once and Greg stops talking, feeling Sherlock's touch linger as the man withdraws his hand, his face serious as he looks at Greg.

 

“I know I can trust you Lestrade. And I don't regret telling you. Or saving your life.”

 

There is a hard edge to Sherlock's voice and Greg feels a blush form on his face as Sherlock gives him a look.

 

“I wasn't avoiding you, not intentionally at least. Just trying to act... Normal.”

 

“How is that working out for you?”

 

Greg gives a smile and Sherlock rolls his eyes.

 

“Go to sleep Greg, you're talking nonsense.”

 

“That's what you get when you wake me up at night.”

 

Sherlock's face twist into guilt and Greg touched Sherlock's arm, still surprised by how firm and cold it feels. He'd always found Sherlock a bit too skinny but it clearly doesn't mean he's weak.

 

“I don't mind you coming here Sherlock okay? I was just messing with you. At least I don't have work in the morning.”

 

Greg gave a smile, followed by a yawn and he hears Sherlock chuckles beside him.

 

“Okay fine. Maybe it's time to call it a night. Some don't have the luxury of not needing to sleep.”

 

Sherlock opens his mouth to say something but the words never come out. He just looks at Greg, blue eyes scanning his face and after two seconds he nods his head, it's barely visible but it's there. Greg gives another smile, not able to not smile and reaches over to flick off his bedside lamp. He nestles himself in the covers, feeling Sherlock next to him, that hint of coldness that's almost completely gone. How does that work?

 

“Night Sherlock.”

 

“Goodnight Lestrade.”

 

As he drifts to sleep fragments and pieces of their conversation come to mind and it's only then that he realizes Sherlock has called him by his first name for the first time since they've known each other. It warms his heart and he falls asleep feeling like the luckiest bastard in the world.

 

Chapter Text

 

Chapter 3 

How Greg and Sherlock met.

 

1

Finding out Sherlock was a vampire made sense in hindsight. Not just because of the way Sherlock looked or acted, or how he moved with grace and elegance but because of how they'd met.

 

It wasn't really how they met, but more where they'd met. On the crime scene of another 'vampire murder', as the press liked to call it.

 

It had been an awful month for Greg and his team, working long hours, interrogating neighborhoods, checking facts and checking them again all to come up with nothing. When Sherlock walked onto his crime scene, and his life, it had been the 6th murder by the same killer.

It wasn't hard to figure out it was the same person, the MO was the same as before. A young man, around 20 to 25 years old, stabbed several times in his chest. That in itself wasn't so unusual, it was the second most popular method to kill someone, but what was strange, and in Greg's opinion, creepy, was the fact that the killer had bitten through the throats of all his victims.

 

It was gruesome, some bites so severe it exposed the victim's windpipe, blood everywhere. You only realized how much five liters of blood is when most of it is covering the floor of an apartment bedroom or the concrete of an abandoned factory site.

 

Greg shook his head, the smell of the blood filling up his nostrils and making him slightly sick. He never got used to this, the smells and odors coming off a dead body, how a body could look anything but human. He'd never understand it, how people could hurt each other in the worst possible ways, always finding new methods to kill and torture, to take pleasure in the suffering of others. He walked under the police tape, taking in the scene before him as his team got to work, going over every inch to find something to help them along.

 

The press was having a field day of course, demanding answers, questioning the police competence and coming up with the most ridiculous nicknames. He hated those, it made it all seem like a joke, or a bad movie when people were out there suffering. No doubt the perv had a fan club by now, lonely housewives and depressed teens wishing for some excitement in their lives.

 

“Boss? You okay?”

 

His Sergeant came up next to him, her face grim as she looked at the victim. The boy was barely an adult it seemed, blond hair greased with blood, shirt half turn open, his torso exposed to the air. There wasn't much left of his torso, to be honest, the killer had used great force as he stabbed the victim over and over again, leaving behind a bloody mess.

 

“He's getting worse, angrier and less controlled.”

 

Greg sighed as he nodded, Donovan was right. The first victim had been found in a hotel room when the neighbors complained of a bad smell. Jerry Burdon had been 23, a soccer player with a bright future ahead of him but somehow he'd ended up being stabbed 10 times, bite marks all over his body. It had been a shock for his family and friends, no one knew what he was doing there and no one could give any names.

 

“Everybody loved Jerry. He volunteered, had good grades and was good at sports. His little brother adored him.”

 

They'd gone door to door, talking to his classmates, best friends, family, and ex-girlfriend but they didn't find a single thing. The crime scene gave them nothing useful either, all evidence careful erased. They were still working on Jerry Burdon's case when a new victim surfaced, the same MO, again with no leads to help them along.

 

“If he keeps it up he's bound to make a mistake soon.”

 

Greg sighed, feeling how tired and weary he was. He wanted to end this case now, not have another body added to the list before they caught their man. He was sure it was a man, based on the force and depth of the stab wounds.

 

“You should look at people with a military background. Possible dishonorary discharge because of his anger issues. Mommy issues for sure. Possibly has an older brother.”

 

Greg had spun around, ready to yell at his team for letting someone through but he'd stopped dead as he took the man in. The poshness of his voice made Greg's hair stand up, the strangeness of his face making Greg's cock twitch inside his pants. The stranger just looked at Greg for a second, a smirk on his lips before his eyes looked past Greg's shoulder.

 

“Your Sergeant is right, he is losing control fast, there are probably about 50 stab wounds this time and he's biting right through the man's throat. I think there will be a piece of flesh missing also.”

 

“Sorry, who are you and what are you doing on my crime scene?”

 

Greg was still staring at the stranger in front of him and when the man looked at him he felt a shiver run down his spine.

 

Dangerous. Greg blinked his eyes, berating himself for being so stupid. He finally got out of his stumper and moved, getting a better look at the man, noticing the sharp cheekbones and bright colored eyes, taking him in with intense focus. It made Greg's skin crawl and he saw the man's eyes change, more blue than green, his mouth in a tight line.

 

“Sherlock Holmes, a pleasure to meet you.”

 

“Sherlock? Interesting name.”

 

The man, Sherlock, rolled his eyes and Greg felt a spark of irritation.

 

“My mother loved torturing me. Trust me Detective Inspector, I got off mildly.”

 

Greg huffed and Sherlock's mouth got less hard, eyes sweeping over Greg's body before he looked at the crime scene again. He had goosebumps all over his body, wanting Sherlock to look at him again. Idiot.

 

“Why the military?”

 

Sherlock's eyes went back to his, a hint of surprise there before he buried it down, looking as calm and casual as before.

 

“The wounds suggest that the weapon used was a SOG Seal Knife 2000. It's specially designed for the Special Boat Service, so it would be best to look for someone with a military background.”

 

“He could have just ordered one online?”

 

Sherlock's eyes narrowed, taking in the suggestion and then shrugged a shoulder.

 

“Could, but it seems unlikely to me. Members from the SBS take care of their weapons. It’s personal, they never go without it. Also, ordering a weapon online is easier to track down. And the dark web isn’t what it used to be. You should also contact Whitely boarding school.”

 

“What makes you say that?”

 

Greg couldn't stop asking questions, seeing the intellect gaze in Sherlock's eyes. Yes, it was suspicious that he was here, talking casually about military knives and stab wounds but Greg had a feeling Sherlock wasn't the murderer. Those blue eyes met him again and this time Greg saw a sheen of green in them. They were fascinating and he had to drag his eyes away from them, listening to Sherlock talk.

 

“All male victims, between 20 and 25, all white and they all have the same tattoo.”

 

“Tattoo?!”

 

Sherlock waved his hand, a hint of impatience in his voice as he kept looking at Greg.

 

“A tattoo yes. Your coroner should drink some more coffee, or party less if he can't see all the victims have or had the same tattoo. You should also talk to the brothers of the victims again.”

 

Greg felt heat rise as Sherlock gave a smug look, his body language screaming 'idiot'.

 

“Sally! Call Hendrix, make him look for any tattoos the victims may have had! And contact Whitely boarding school, I need to speak to the person in charge!”

 

Greg turned back to Sherlock, taking the man in more closely as he heard his team move, doing as he'd said. Sherlock stood perfectly still, letting Greg watch him, taking in the lean and skinny frame, his expensive looking suit and shoes and the paleness of his skin. He had dark lush curls that fell before his eyes at times and his shirt was so tight Greg was afraid the buttons would pop off any minute.

 

“How did you-”

 

“I observe, it's something I'm rather good at. Picking up details, putting the pieces together.”

 

“And the brothers?”

 

“Just a hunch really.”

 

“Somehow I doubt you have hunches.”

 

He saw the sparkle in Sherlock's eyes, the flash of intrigue and approval and it made Greg's heart skip a beat. Focus Lestrade!

 

“And you just happened to be here?”

 

Sherlock shrugged, pointing behind his back.

 

“I don't live far from here, heard the commotion and came to check it out.”

 

“And you just walked right on in?”

 

A flash of amusement in Sherlock's eyes before he controlled himself again.

 

“I can be hard to ignore, Detective Inspector.”

 

No doubt. Greg frowned, not able to stop looking at Sherlock. He had an arrogance about him, holding himself as if he was the master of the universe but somehow Greg didn't mind it. He was intrigued, and not just by Sherlock strange but good looks. Before he could think too much about it, he handed Sherlock his card, seeing the flash of disbelief in the man's green, or were they blue, eyes.

 

“If you know anything more that can help, don't hesitate to call. Now, get off my crime scene Mr. Holmes and let us do our work.”

 

A little smirk as Sherlock took the card with elegant fingers, careful not to touch him and for a second Greg was irritated by it.

 

Get a grip Lestrade! He's way out of your league. Greg looked back at Sherlock, seeing the weird look on his face and he suddenly felt warm, sure Sherlock knew what Greg had been thinking moments before.

 

“Sure thing, Detective Inspector- Lestrade.”

 

Greg's cock gave another twitch at the way Sherlock said his name and he cursed himself and his tired body. Clearly, it wasn't too tired to think about that.

 

“Good luck with your case.”

 

With that Sherlock had left, his ridiculous and expensive coat billowing behind him, curls bouncing a little as he strolled away, too elegant to be real. Greg couldn't bring himself not to watch Sherlock's arse and his body felt on fire as he saw how firm and well shaped it was.

 

Get a grip Lestrade and get back to work!

 

With that he went back to the crime scene, Sherlock's strange eyes still in his mind till he got home and fell down on the sofa with a sigh, exhausted and head hurting.

2

They caught their killer two weeks later though they weren't fast enough to prevent another victim, but at least the monster, who the press had called, the London Vampire, was behind bars. He'd committed 30 murders, happily sharing how he'd killed them, explaining every bloody detail. It made Greg feel sick to his stomach, seeing the glimmer of hunger and lust in the man's eyes as he talked about the stabbing, how the blood covered his hands, how he felt young and alive as he saw the light go out in his victims' eyes.

 

“You have to get really close to see it, that moment the light turns off, the moment they just give up, knowing they won't survive. You're in charge, in control. It's exhilarating, standing so close to death, one foot over the edge, knowing it's your call. It makes you feel alive.”

 

Greg had wanted to hit him, or run away and crawl into bed. Instead, he'd dragged himself to his desk, sighing as he saw all the stacks of paperwork waiting for him. It was going to be a long day. He'd been working for two hours, somehow sure the piles were just multiplying by the second when there was a hard knock on his door. He looked up and held his breath as he took in the man in front of him, the air around him dropping by a few degrees.

 

Being that good looking should be illegal. Greg blinked, willing himself to calm down and breath out as Sherlock Holmes' eyes swept over him before taking in the room.

 

“Congratulations on catching your man, Lestrade.”

 

Sherlock sat down in the chair opposite him, crossing his long legs as he watched Greg with a neutral expression on his face.

 

“I- Yes, well. Thank you?”

 

Sherlock raised an eyebrow and Greg blushed, feeling foolish as Sherlock gave that awful smirk. He dropped his pen down, leaning back in his chair and crossing his arms.

 

“What are you doing here, Mr. Holmes?”

 

He saw the twitch around Sherlock's mouth and felt a hint of satisfaction. It was nice breaking down Sherlock's cool and bland facade, seeing his eyes change color as they rested on a spot over Greg's shoulder.

 

“Sherlock.”

 

“Sorry what?”

 

“Call me Sherlock.”

 

“Okay. Sherlock, what are you doing here?”

 

Sherlock's gaze went back to his, a calculated expression in them. He opened his mouth but closed it again, suddenly standing up and heading for the door, expensive coat billowing behind him.

 

“I shouldn't have come here.”

 

He was halfway across the room, reaching for the door when Greg jumped into action, getting off his chair and closing the door with his body, preventing Sherlock from leaving. Sherlock jumped away as if burned and Greg saw a hint of green in his eyes, his face a little paler than before.

 

“What's going on Sherlock? Tell me.”

 

Greg stared at him, not breaking eye contact even as he felt a shiver run down his spine. Sherlock bit his lip and Greg felt butterflies in his stomach.

 

“I thought, maybe I could, I could-”

 

Sherlock stopped, a sigh of frustration coming out of his mouth before looking at Greg again, determination in his eyes. It was the first time he seemed like a real person, full of emotions and doubts and Greg's heart melted seeing it. He had a feeling not many people got to see this version of Sherlock, unsure and looking for words.

 

“I'd like to assist on cases. I'm more observant that everyone in this place combined and you can use the help.”

 

Greg frowned, crossing his arms and Sherlock rolled his eyes, some of that earlier confidence coming back, making his eyes shine.

 

“You know it's true. I helped catch your vampire killer didn't I?”

 

Sherlock said vampire killer with disdain, a scowl on his face and Greg huffed. At least he wasn't the only one finding nicknames for killers ridiculous.

 

“There are rules Sherlock. I can't just allow you access to crime scenes. And why should I? I don't know you, for all I know you're a killer covering his tracks.”

 

Sherlock's eyes went hooded and Greg felt uneasy as Sherlock watched him. The air in his office felt cold and his arms had goosebumps as the silence went on.

 

“You were impressed by me. Last week, you kept asking me question, doing as I suggested. You believed me and you didn't know me then either. I can help Lestrade. I'm good at this.”

 

Sherlock crossed his arm, stepping back and Greg could breathe again, his heart racing as he thought about Sherlock's words. He was right, he had been impressed by the man and he wanted to know more, how Sherlock had done it, how he connected the dots so fast, who he was. He was fascinated by the man even if some part of his brain warned him to be careful. They had caught their man thanks to Sherlock's help, helping lock away a dangerous member of society. Maybe Sherlock was worth the chance?

 

“Fine. I'll talk to my Chief, see if there's any way it could work. Then I need to talk to my team.” Sherlock frowned and Greg raised an eyebrow. “If the team agrees then we can give this a try. Not sure if we can pay you though.”

 

“Money isn't important to me.”

 

Sherlock waved a hand and Greg snorted. “Somehow I doubt that.” He gestured towards Sherlock's outfit and saw the twitch in the man's jaw. Clearly, he'd hit a nerve.

 

“I can't promise you anything, Sherlock. I'll talk to the Chief and let you know. How can I reach you?”

 

“No need.” Sherlock pulled something out of his coat and Greg saw his own business card trapped in those long, pale fingers. “I'll contact you. Good day, Lestrade.”

 

Sherlock left and Greg shook his head in wonderment. He had no idea if it was the best or worse thing he'd ever agreed to.

3

Two weeks later everything was sorted and Sherlock Holmes officially consulted for the Yard. Greg was still baffled by how easy it had gone. His Chief wasn’t an easy man to convince at the best of times but after Greg had explained how Sherlock’s tips had led them to the London Vampire, the man had asked to speak to Sherlock. Greg had been dying of curiosity, wondering what they’d been talking about.

 

“An interesting man. A little cocky, but he has potential for sure.”

His Chief hadn’t elaborated more but Greg didn’t need it. After the approval of Chief Johnson and the introduction to his team, Sherlock went to work dazzling everybody with his looks and sharp mind, at least at first. It was really amazing. He was like a force of nature, sweeping onto crime scenes, taking it all in, sometimes just in minutes, eyes going over everything and everyone and making deductions as Sherlock liked to call them. He was ruthless, working around the clock, learning everything there was to know, driving Greg's team crazy with his insults and barked orders.

 

“Don't you see?! What are you all, blind? How you solve any crimes is beyond me, all a bunch of incompetent idiots!”

 

It wasn't easy working with Sherlock, he didn't like a lot of people, finding them too slow and too stupid to keep up with him. He also didn't like repeating himself, rolling his eyes as Greg asked more information. He was constantly busy, running around, never stopping for a break or for something to eat or drink as if time was catching up with him any second. He didn't like repeating himself but he also didn't like it when people didn't understand him. When they didn't see what he saw. Greg saw how it frustrated him, having to go over everything in detail when Sherlock just wanted to move on, move forward.

 

They'd had arguments about it, in the beginning, Sherlock running off to solve the case, leaving Greg and his team behind without answers or a plan and it drove Greg mad.

 

“You need to tell me everything, Sherlock! I can't have you running around after a killer clown by yourself!”

 

“Don't you see Lestrade?! It's all right there, use your eyes for once! All you do is see but none of you observe!”

 

“Stop giving me that observe bullshit! You know the rules Sherlock, just stop and explain it to me!”

 

It had taken a lot of patience on Greg's part and a lot of frustration on Sherlock's but they'd learned how to work together. Greg getting more used to Sherlock's way of thinking and Sherlock getting used to Greg's questions. It became easier when Sherlock figured out Greg actually listened, storing away Sherlock's observations and deductions and using them in other cases. He'd had extensive training of course but Sherlock saw the world differently. Using other ways to come to conclusions, usually faster. It made Greg feel alive somehow, knowing he wasn't too old to learn. To get better at his job, it kept him on his toes and focused, eager to spend time with Sherlock.

 

“It can't have been him, look at his shoes. They're too clean and too small to be the same ones as we found on the front door. Didn't you say the heel was wider?”

 

Whenever Greg said something right Sherlock gave him a baffled but approving look and it made Greg feel strange and warm. It made Sherlock slow down, taking his time to go over things with Greg and some of his team. He couldn't stand most of them but somehow, and Greg would never be sure how, Sherlock took a liking to Donovan. He included her in his observations and deductions.

 

He started noticing how Sherlock's eyes changed, green when he was happy and more gray when he was frustrated. It had a pull on him, wanting to look into Sherlock's eyes every time, trying to figure out when and why they changed color.

 

“Did you know your eyes change color?”

 

Sherlock had stopped pacing, face blank as he looked at Greg and Greg had blushed, feeling silly for blurting it out.

 

“It depends on how the light changes. Nothing special Lestrade.”

 

But it wasn't just the light, Sherlock's eyes changed by the second sometimes and Greg wanted to sit down and watch them for hours. The more time they spend together, the more Greg was fascinated by them, having a hard time not staring into them.

 

“Lestrade? What's wrong?”

 

Greg felt embarrassment rise as Sherlock gave him a weird look. He shook his head, gesturing for Sherlock to go on, his heart beating like crazy. It was getting out of hand, this fascination with Sherlock, his sharp mind and weird sense of humor. He couldn't fall for a man like Sherlock Holmes, he was way out of Greg's league, at least 10 years younger then him and Greg wasn't even sure if Sherlock liked blokes. It also wasn't a subject he wanted to start with him. Somehow Sherlock didn't even realize how much he affected people by just walking into a room, getting irritated when people looked too long at him, appreciation clear in their eyes.

 

“It doesn't matter Lestrade. It's just genetics and good luck, nothing more.”

 

“Wish I had some of your genetics and good luck then.”

 

“Why? You are perfectly acceptable with good symmetry and proportions.”

 

Greg's mouth had fallen open as Sherlock had turned his back and walked away. Did he just call me good looking? Greg shook his head, snapping his mouth shut as Donovan gave him a look, eyebrows raised in amusement.

 

“Get back to work Donovan, nothing to see here!”

 

“If you say so, Boss.”

 

She'd given him a smile before going back to her desk and Greg had locked himself in his office for the rest of the day, trying not to obsess over Sherlock's words and failing.

4

Worry for Sherlock's well-being was always there, even after he learned Sherlock was a vampire and could take care of his own. Sherlock had a way of attracting danger, dashing off to solve the case, yelling out things like 'the pink suitcase, look for the pink suitcase!'

Because of his superhuman speed, Greg could never catch up, swearing and worrying as Sherlock ran off into the night. He'd read some books about vampires and seen movies but he didn't know a lot of the facts about vampires. Could they be killed? Could they bleed and hurt like people? How did you treat a wounded vampire?

 

Those were some of the questions Greg had wanted to ask when Sherlock had told him his secret, after Robbie Darwin had tried to kill him. He never got the change because of his own stupidity. He hadn't thought it through. Didn’t even know where it had come from, just blurting it out and the atmosphere in his office instantly changed.

 

“Can I see your real face?”

 

Sherlock’s expression had closed off in seconds, hands stuffed in his pockets as his eyes bored into Greg's.

 

“I mean, this-” Greg had waved at Sherlock's face, feeling more like a fool by the second, knowing he should drop it but couldn’t, “is just your human form right?” He'd dropped his hands, heart beating too fast as the silence stretch on, Sherlock not moving, the air loaded with something nasty Greg couldn’t name. The walls had come up after Sherlock had told his real age, but now those walls were bolted shut and Greg wanted to take it all back. He blamed it on the movies and shows he’d seen when he was younger. There was always that ‘ real face reveal’, mostly only moments before or after the main characters had kissed.

 

“I'm not some circus animal Lestrade. I don't do tricks.”

 

Sherlock had gotten up, voice hard, eyes a mix of gray and black and Greg had held up his hands in surrender, wishing he hadn't said anything at all. That same prickle of fear was there again and he now understood why Robbie Darwin had been so afraid of Sherlock. His anger was a tangible thing and Greg’s stomach turned. I'm an idiot.

 

“I didn't mean it like that Sherlock!”

 

“Then how did you mean it?”

 

“I- I just- I don't- I'm sorry.”

 

Sherlock watched him for a moment with something close to betrayal and Greg felt trapped by his gaze, wanting to stand up and move. He'd been an idiot, careless with his questions and now Sherlock was upset and hurt. He didn't care how Sherlock looked, not really, but he'd always assumed vampires could change their faces when they were angry or feeding. But Sherlock was pretty angry now, Greg could tell by the stiffness in his body, and his face was still as beautiful as ever.

 

“The movies don't know anything Lestrade. I’m a monster Lestrade. That’s all you need to know. A dangerous monster that could kill you instantly. You’d do well to remember that in the future.”

 

He'd left, hurt still radiating off him and Greg felt like a nosy bastard. He'd wanted to apologize the next time he saw the man but Sherlock had kept him at arm's length for the next few weeks after helping with the kidnapping case. He didn’t give Greg a chance to say sorry, only speaking to him about cases and running off as soon as it was done. It was all very professional and distant and Greg hated every second of it. He'd felt like an idiot the entire time, afraid Sherlock would leave one day and never come back. Just thinking about it made his stomach hurt.

 

Who'd have thought Greg would wake up and find Sherlock Holmes in his bed.

 

Chapter Text

Greg and Sherlock spend the day together and then Greg ruins it.

1

“Please tell me you aren't watching me sleep?”

 

“Would that be a bad thing?”

 

“It would be weird.”

 

“Then no, I'm not watching you sleep.”

 

Greg turned, rubbing his eyes before sitting up and seeing Sherlock sit next to him, a book in hand. It was strange, waking up with Sherlock next to him, still in his purple shirt and black trousers. He looked flawless, not so much as a wrinkle in his shirt and Greg felt awkward as he took it all in. His hair was probably a mess, the taste in his mouth was vile. The smell of sleep was clinging to him and if he could smell it, then Sherlock definitely could too. He reached for the glass of water on his nightstand, taking a large gulp as he felt Sherlock’s eyes on him. It felt more intense than normal, but he hadn’t been in close proximity to the man for almost a month, their conversations distant and work-related.

 

“Did you sleep well, Lestrade?”

 

Sherlock's voice was soft and cautious as he closed the book, placing it on his lap. Greg couldn't hide a smile as he saw what Sherlock had been reading. He had an extensive book collection though a lot of them were sitting there for some time. He never seemed to have enough time to read them all. The pile growing mysteriously.

 

“Didn't know you were a Harry Potter fan. And yeah, I slept great. I must have been more exhausted than I thought. ”

 

Sherlock's eyes went from green to light blue as he looked away for a second, hands still on the book.

 

“There is a lot you don't know about me Lestrade.”

 

A hint of sadness in Sherlock's voice, tension in his body and Greg felt guilt run through him. Somehow he always did this, ruin a peaceful moment with his silly comments, making Sherlock tense and sad. He reached out, placing his hand on Sherlock's and pulled it back instantly. Sherlock's hand was freezing and only now did he realize Sherlock was lying above the covers.

 

“I haven't fed in a while and I didn't want to wake you.”

 

Sherlock gave a tight smile, fingers clasped together and Greg couldn't speak. Hearing Sherlock talk about feeding filled his head with images that were both disturbing and arousing and he felt his body wake up because of it.

 

What did Sherlock eat? Or drink? He'd said he didn't feed on humans anymore but what did he feed on? And the idea of Sherlock feeding from another person made him feel weird and jealous. The idea of Sherlock touching someone in that way, taking what he needed to survive made him tense, his hands gripping the blankets.

 

“Maybe I should leave? I've been here long enough and it's your day off.”

 

Greg snapped out of his confusion thoughts, seeing Sherlock's gray eyes watching him, taking in everything and he shook his head. Holding himself back from reaching for the man again and begging him to stay.

 

“I don't mind you being here Sherlock, I told you that before. You should stay for breakfast at least. If you, I mean, if you eat breakfast?”

 

He held his breath, afraid that Sherlock would close off again because of his question but the vampire just tilted his head, taking Greg in before giving a tiny smile.

 

“I do eat breakfast.”

 

Greg wanted to ask more but Sherlock was faster, somehow knowing what Greg was about to say.

 

“I don't need blood to survive Greg. Normal food and drink are enough.”

 

“It is?”

 

Greg frowned as he remembered all the vampire movies he'd seen, the books he'd read. All of them just needed blood to survive, some vampires could eat normal food but that was mostly just for show. To blend in better with the humans. He'd never heard of this before, then again, he'd never met a real vampire before. A vampire who was watching him with mild amusement.

 

“We only need blood once, to transform into vampires. I don't know how it works exactly but that's the only time we really need to drink it. We can live without it but it makes us weak and slow, compared to a vampire that does drink blood.”

 

“Wait, you're saying that you're normally even stronger and faster?”

 

Sherlock nodded and Greg whistled in awe. He'd seen Sherlock in action many times before and it had seemed pretty impressive and frightening then. To image Sherlock as more powerful was beyond him and he felt a sliver of fear creep up again. Here he was, sitting in bed with a creature more powerful and fast than he could ever imagine. Sherlock watched him intently, sorrow flashing across his face.

 

“You don't need to be afraid of me Lestrade. I would never hurt you.”

 

Sherlock looked away, shoulders tense and Greg reached out, grabbing Sherlock's arm. It was still freezing but the layer of Sherlock's shirt made it just bearable.

 

“I know that. I'm sorry Sherlock, I don't mean to upset you. I know you'd never hurt me but-”

 

“It's a natural, human instinct to fear that that is stronger than you. I understand Lestrade. Believe me, I do.”

 

Sherlock looked at him again, not brushing off Greg's hand and Greg squeezed Sherlock's arm, feeling the power and strength underneath it.

 

“I'm sorry Sherlock.”

 

Sherlock raised an eyebrow and Greg withdrew his hand, willing himself to keep contact. He'd been wanting to apologize for almost two months now and it seemed like the best time. Sherlock was here, had even stayed the night. He’d never get a better opportunity then this.

He didn't know how long Sherlock would stay, how fast he'd get bored of Greg so he gathered up his courage and got it out before he lost his nerve.

 

“I shouldn't have asked you about your real face. It was stupid and insensitive of me. I- I don't see you as a circus attraction at all. You're still you, still my friend, vampire or not. I’m sorry for upsetting you. I won’t ask any more questions, Sherlock.”

 

Greg stopped, feeling his face flush as Sherlock just looked at his book. He hoped he hadn't made it worse and felt like a teenager again, constantly worried and afraid he'd done or said something stupid.

 

“Thank you, Lestrade. I. I should apologize too for reacting so strongly. It's normal you have questions and it- it was a logical thing to ask. You only know of us from movies. I should have realized it was just curiosity and not- “ Sherlock bit his lip, taking a few seconds and Greg could see the gears inside the man’s head turning.

 

“ You can ask me questions Lestrade. I’m sorry for making you feel like you can’t. There are things in my past that I am not proud of. People have been curious before and- I can’t promise to answer all your queries.”

 

“People? You mean others-“

 

Sherlock finally looked up, his eyes half gray and half green. There was a hint of sadness in his eyes but he nodded, keeping his eyes on Greg’s face.

 

“I’ve confided in other people before. It didn’t-“ Sherlock looked over Greg’s left shoulder, almost as if he was going back to his memories, reliving it. “My trust than was misplaced.”

 

“I’m sorry.”

 

Greg felt a weight drop off his shoulders, even if he didn’t like Sherlock’s answer. Someone must have seriously hurt Sherlock in the past and Greg wanted to kick that person’s arse. Still, he was relieved Sherlock hadn't left but accepting his apology, giving Greg permission to ask questions in the future. It made him feel proud, being able to get to know Sherlock better, to ask about his abilities, about the vampire world.

 

“I shouldn’t have- I acted like a child. Treating you like that, the cold shoulder. Figuratively speaking.”

 

Sherlock had a tiny smile on his lips as he looked at Greg and Greg felt warm all over. He’d been angry about it, not being able to reach Sherlock for a whole week, then having to act like acquaintances, instead of friends. He was glad for Sherlock’s realization, that the man knew it wasn’t the best tactic to deal with an argument. He smiled, feeling relieved to have sorted this out, his mind was buzzing with excitement. He wanted to ask all his questions that had popped up during the weeks, but Greg wasn’t sure how to begin. Then his stomach roared and Sherlock laughed, a delightful sound that warmed his heart and body.

 

“Yeah, yeah, make fun of the human for being hungry. Guess we should get up and start on that breakfast.”

 

Sherlock nodded his head, getting up from the bed in a fluent motion and placing the book on the bedside table.

 

“What would you like? I can make a decent omelet Benedict.”

 

Greg blinked, mouth going open and Sherlock rolled his eyes, lips in a pout.

 

“I'm a vampire Lestrade, not an imbeciel. I can cook an omelette.”

 

“You- I- okay. Sounds nice.”

 

“Good, I'll do that while you shower and change. Your hair is a mess Lestrade, almost as bad as Potter's.”

 

“Oi!”

 

Greg threw a pillow but Sherlock had slipped out of the bedroom, chuckling as Greg mumbled and got up. The day couldn't get any weirder than this.

 

2

“This was nice. It's been a while since I've had a day off that actually didn't involve me going over paperwork at home to catch up with the workload.”

 

Greg smiled, feeling happy and content as he watched TV. Sherlock hadn't left after breakfast, helping with the dishes as they talked and suddenly it was evening, the sun fading away slowly as they found themselves in Greg's living room.

 

Sherlock was reading Harry Potter again and Greg still couldn't believe it. Sherlock, so logical and rational, was reading a book about wizards and magic.

 

“You need to get out more Lestrade if spending the day with me qualifies as a good time.”

 

Sherlock's gaze landed on his, a tiny smile on his lips but Greg heard the seriousness in Sherlock's tone of voice.

 

“You're not bad company to have around Sherlock. Although pointing out the ending of the movie wasn't very nice.”

 

“Please, it was obvious the pretty guy was going to defeat the mummy.”

 

Greg's eyes went wide, looking at Sherlock's profile as he processed the comment.

 

“Pretty guy?”

 

Sherlock looked up from his book, a frown on his face before he realized what Greg was talking about.

 

“Yes, I may be dead but I'm not blind Lestrade. He's pleasing to look at.”

 

“I didn't know that was your type.”

 

“You've never asked.”

 

Greg's eyes went wider and Sherlock's face did a weird thing, his mouth going in a thinner line, his eyes confused.

 

“Are you okay Lestrade? You look funny.”

 

Greg nodded his head too fast and too long, feeling himself blush as Sherlock dropped the book down on his lap. His eyes scanning Greg's face with more intensity.

 

“Sorry, yeah, yeah I'm fine. It's just, you've never talked about this before, I was a little surprised, that's all.”

 

“Talked about what before?”

 

Greg felt awkward as Sherlock kept staring at him, his eyes a dark green color.

 

“You know,” Greg gestured to the TV. He felt like a teenager again, too afraid to say the words out loud but then Sherlock's mouth went into an 'O' shape, his eyes going wide and Greg wanted to bury himself in the ground.

 

“You want to know if I'm gay.” It wasn't a question but Greg nodded anyway. He'd always wondered from the first time they'd met. Sherlock got a lot of attention from people, male and female but he always seemed more annoyed than anything else. He'd wanted to ask but it never seemed appropriate, also he liked his dignity intact, thank you very much. Now Sherlock was facing him, his face neutral, eyes glued to Greg's and he felt his heart skip a beat.

 

“The answer is yes. Yes, I'm gay. Is that a problem?”

 

A glimmer of defiance in Sherlock's eyes and Greg shook his head.

 

“No! No, of course not! I'd never- I swear, it's not a problem, at all.”

 

Sherlock tilted his head a fraction and Greg felt too warm suddenly. Sherlock is gay! Stop it, it doesn't change a damn thing, he's still way out of your league.

 

He cleared his throat, Sherlock's eyes snapping away from him as he picked up his book again and Greg felt strange, uncomfortable. Spending the day with Sherlock had been lovely but it also made Greg realize how lonely his life really was. He didn't have much of a social life, his family living all the way in France and the few friends he did have were from work. He'd been on a few dates but those never seemed to work out, the women being too clingy, the man being too boring. And since he'd met Sherlock he had the irritating habit of comparing people to him. Nobody was as good as Sherlock, nobody even came close and it filled him with despair, longing for someone he could never have.

 

“Have you ever...”

 

Greg stopped, biting his lip as Sherlock looked at him from atop his book.

 

“Yes, Lestrade?”

 

“No, it's- It's nothing.”

 

“If that were the case you wouldn't have started speaking. Spill it out Lestrade before you hurt yourself.”

 

Greg took a deep breath, his heart racing inside him. He tried to look at Sherlock's face but could only manage a spot above his right shoulder. He felt warm all over, his stomach doing flips but he'd never backed down from a challenge before.

 

“Have you ever loved someone? Is it something a vampire can do?”

 

Sherlock turned his head sharply, his eyes flaming up and Greg felt nerves go through him. Maybe he'd been too obvious? Or maybe it was something Sherlock didn't like talking about. He saw the clenching of Sherlock's jaw, the change in eye color. Sherlock opened his mouth to speak but closed it again, a frown forming between his brow as he dropped his eyes down, watching Harry Potter intensely.

 

“We are soulless animals Lestrade. Vampires don't feel emotions. Even if we do, it turns dark and twisted.”

 

Sherlock's voice was soft and Greg felt his heart break at Sherlock's answer. Somehow it made sense, he'd always heard vampires were just demons, taking over the body of an innocent soul. He tilted his head, wanting to see Sherlock face, but Sherlock kept his eyes down, interlacing his fingers.

 

“You don't feel.” Greg frowned, thinking about the time spent with Sherlock and he shook his head, wanting to say something but Sherlock spoke first, his voice harder, a fraction more tension in his fingers, the knuckles turning paler as he put pressure on them.

 

“I believe humans call it 'being a sociopath'.”

 

Sherlock's eyes met Greg's for a second, dark blue with hints of grey and Greg wanted to reach out and stroke Sherlock's cheek. He said it like he believed it. Like Sherlock believed he was a sociopath, but in all the time they'd spent together Greg had never seen any signs of that. Okay, Sherlock could fake apathy and not caring, be sarcastic and break some rules but it wasn't his true nature. More a front he used to keep people away from him. It upset Greg, hearing the hint of belief in that line, knowing that Sherlock agreed, on some level, that he was indeed a sociopath or a soulless animal.

 

“You, a sociopath? That is bullshit, Sherlock!” Sherlock opened his mouth to say something, probably to list up all the facts of sociopathy but Greg shushed him, placing a finger on Sherlock's mouth for a second. It did wonderful things to Sherlock's eyes but Greg ignored it, just like he ignored the butterflies in his stomach as he felt Sherlock's soft lips against his finger.

 

“You say you don't feel? Really Sherlock? Really? You get excited like a kid on Christmas morning when there's an existing new crime. Last time you twirled, twirled, Sherlock for that locked room mystery.”

 

Sherlock rolled his eyes, batting Greg's hand away and Greg already missed the contact.

 

“Yes, and being excited about murder is such normal behavior. You’re not really helping your case, Lestrade.' Sherlock gave a tiny smirk before fixing his gaze on the TV.

 

“But it's not about the murders is it Sherlock?” Greg had to fight a smirk of his own as Sherlock's eyes landed on his again. “It's about the puzzle, the challenge. You, using your mind, your eyes, your senses to solve it.”

 

As Greg said it, he knew it was right. Some would find Sherlock's curiosity and intrigue with crime disturbing but it wasn't about the murders or the blood or the gory details. Sherlock wanted to solve it, figure out how it happened, learn from it. He didn't even care about praise or credit, shrugging a shoulder everytime Greg mentioned it.

 

“It's about the Work, Lestrade. That's all that matters.”

 

3

It took months for people to find out how much Sherlock helped the Yard and when it did come out Sherlock hated it. He hated the press, wanting to ask him questions at crime scenes. Asking for him at press conferences, trying to dig up information on his life. The press was even more intrigued when they found out Sherlock wasn’t on social media. Some called him mysterious, others eccentric. It became an obsession to try and catch Sherlock on camera, but the man was excellent at avoiding the media. His vampire speed helping with that and leaving the press to Greg to deal with.

 

All they had so far was a snapshot of Sherlock entering and leaving crime scenes, face covered with the collar of his coat, a weird looking hat on his head. It didn’t stop press and fans from showing up on crime scenes, trying to catch a glimpse of him at three in the morning. Greg didn’t know how they did it but you could bet that 10 minutes after Sherlock arrive his fans were there. It was a bit terrifying if Greg was honest, they’d used consultants before but none got that much attention as Sherlock. It was terrifying, but sometimes also amusing. Greg would never forget the confusion and outrage on Sherlock's face when he'd first been handed a phone number, staring at it with utter disbelief.

He had to admire the guy’s braveness, coming up to Sherlock as the man was ready to leave, handing over the piece of pink paper. His face flushed with excitement and nerves as Sherlock took it on auto-pilot, blinking his eyes a mile a minute as the guy left, a satisfied smile on his face.

 

“I- What? Lestrade?”

 

“There was an article on you in the papers last week by Riley Parker. Seems you got yourself a fan base now. He was very lyrical about you, it doesn’t happen much.”

 

“But why?”

 

Sherlock's look of genuine confusion had broken Greg's heart a little. As if he really couldn't understand why someone would find him interesting. Sherlock had looked at the piece of pink paper in his hand as if it would explode any minute and Greg had smiled, patting Sherlock on the shoulder.

 

“I’d take it as a compliment Sherlock. Parker hardly ever gives praise. He doesn't much care for the Yard. I guess his piece reached a lot of people.” Riley Parker was a thorn in the side of the Yard. Greg didn’t have a big problem with the man, but it was no secret how Parker thought about the police force of London. For some reason, Greg personally always got of mildly, but some DI’s had been ridiculed and criticized quite hard.

 

“But I don't- Make it stop Lestrade. I don’t need a fan base!”

 

He'd waved the pink colored paper in Lestrade's face, eyes pleading but Greg had just shrugged a shoulder though he did feel for the man. And maybe there was a bit of jealousy in there too. Others asking, even begging, for Sherlock's attention made his stomach do a nasty flip, wanting to snarl at anyone who gave Sherlock a too headed look.

 

“Sorry Sherlock, there isn't much I can do. It will die down over time, I promise.”

 

It had died down, people finding out Sherlock wasn't as nice as they'd thought he would be. Sherlock was a private person by nature and he didn’t take kindly to people trying to enter his personal space. Let alone shove a camera in Sherlock’s face and take pictures. His officers did their best to protect the integrity of the crime scene but Sherlock was brutal when some came close enough to take a picture of him or the team.

 

“What did you say? That girl seems terrified!”

 

“Some people can’t handle the harsh truth Lestrade. That’s not my fault.”

 

Word got around fast and in a matter of weeks, his fans died down. You still had the die-hard ones, coming to the crime scene but keeping their distance. There probably were photos from Sherlock out there, it was impossible that there weren’t, but somehow the press never used them. Also going back to the grainy, unfocused ones from Sherlock in that silly hat.

 

It didn't stop Riley Parker from writing about Sherlock though.

 

4

“I'm right, aren't I? You're not a sociopath Sherlock, you never could be. It's not in your nature.”

 

Greg gave a tiny smile but Sherlock didn't return it, his eyes going gray as he tore his gaze from Greg.

 

“Sherlock?”

 

“Not in my nature. You don't know the first thing about my nature.” Sherlock got up, book falling to the floor, his face hard and cold and Greg felt a sliver of unease run down his spine. Sherlock turned to face him, his eyes grey and Greg reached out.

 

“Don't!” Sherlock stepped back, mouth hard, body tense and Greg stood up, needing to be upright, needing to be the same height. He wasn't short but Sherlock still looked down at him, eyes crawling inside Greg's soul, finding the very essence of him.

 

“You think you know me because we had a few conversation? You think you know me now? You have no idea what my nature is! How monstrous I really am! Stop pretending like you know what I think or feel. Stop pretending like you know me! Don't be a fool Lestrade! I'm a vampire, I can kill you with one flick of my wrist!”

 

Sherlock walked closer but Greg stood his ground, feeling his heart beat faster as Sherlock's mouth curled into a twisted smile.

 

“I can hear you Lestrade. You can pretend all you want but at the end of the day, you're still afraid of me. And you should be.” Sherlock's face became ugly as his smile got more evil and Greg wanted to look away, wanted to run and hide but he didn't. He wasn't going to be bullied away by Sherlock.

 

“I've killed before.”

 

Greg's whole body went cold as Sherlock took another step closer, his eyes a mix of gray and black. He didn't want to believe it but there was no trace of a lie in Sherlock's voice and he felt his knees shake. He held his breath, feeling nauseated and he saw Sherlock's face change for a second. A hint of sorrow? Regret?

 

“I killed, and I enjoyed it.”

 

“No.”

 

Greg breathed out, feeling his stomach turn as he watched Sherlock in front of him. He shook his head but Sherlock just nodded, his eyes grey, black and cold.

 

“I did. I'm a vampire Lestrade. I don't need blood to survive, I told you that but the hunger is there. It's always there.” Sherlock stepped closer, leaning down a little and Greg flinched as Sherlock's nose touched his neck. “You have no idea what it's like. The constant urge, the need to go out and hunt, to claim and feed. It's like an itch you can't reach, you try to ignore it but it drives you slowly mad.”

 

Greg closed his eyes, his body shivering as Sherlock was still leaning down, sniffing his neck.

 

“You smell nice. Do you have any idea how good you smell to me?” Greg shivered again and Sherlock backed away, a mock smile on his mouth.

 

“I'm a monster Lestrade. Dangerous and timeless. You'd do well to remember that.”

 

“You said you'd never hurt me.”

 

It came out too soft, Greg feeling his head spin as Sherlock's nose touched his neck again before leaning back, eyes fixed on Greg, taking him in, seeing the walls build up before him.

 

“Maybe I lied.”

 

Sherlock backed away, eyes leaving Greg's, creating space and Greg was able to breathe. He couldn't look at Sherlock, still not knowing what to do with this new information, the way Sherlock had sniffed him, how close their bodies had been. His body was still buzzing because of it and Greg wasn't sure if it was from fear or arousal.

 

“Vampires don't fall in love Lestrade. It's lust and obsession. Everything we touch burns to ash.” Sherlock's voice was soft but dangerous and Greg looked up for just a second. He saw the hardness in Sherlock's face, the tension in his body that was half turned away from Greg.

 

“Who would ever love a monster? Trust me Lestrade, it never ends well.”

 

With that Sherlock left, not giving Greg time to answer, to say something. He just stood there, staring at the spot Sherlock had been seconds before, trying to comprehend what had happened. He was still shaking, still heard Sherlock's hard voice, his eyes unforgiving and he was sure in that moment he'd never hear from Sherlock again. He'd asked too much, had gotten too close and there was no way out now.

 

Chapter Text

Greg tries to reach out to Sherlock but finds someone else instead.

1

“Don't get yourself hanged.”

 

It wasn't the finest moment in his career but at least he could blame it on Sherlock. His head wasn't with his work so when Riley Parker asked what people could do to keep safe he'd blurted out the first thing that came to mind. He knew he’d pay for his mistakes in the papers tomorrow.

He hadn't heard from Sherlock since their fight, not because of a lack of trying on his part. He’d texted and even called, but Sherlock didn't answer. The man didn’t even show up to their latest case, a strange wave of supposed suicide by hanging. Greg was almost certain Sherlock had left London and wouldn’t come back.

 

“Don't get yourself hanged? Really, Sir?”

 

He knew he'd screwed up big time when Donovan called him sir. She only saved it for special occasions like when he'd done something really stupid. It was her Sherlock equivalent of an eye-roll.

 

Donovan walked in behind him, slamming the door shut as her dark brown eyes burned with anger and disbelief.

 

“It just came out Sally!” Greg tried not to yell as he pulled off his jacket, dropping it down in a chair before sitting down in his own, a sigh filling the room. His hands went through his hair, wanting to pull them out, feel it hurt. Sally sighed too, sitting down in front of him, her expression still furious but also concerned. He wanted to go home, crawl into bed and not get out but unfortunately, the day had only just started and they had a million things to do. He didn't have time to be distracted. To think about the way Sherlock had sounded, how close he'd been. How he'd sniffed Greg's neck.

 

He let out another sigh, slamming his desk and causing Sally to flinch.

 

“Boss?”

 

“Sorry, it's just-” He stopped, biting his lip once as his eyes found Sally's. He wanted to go back and redo it, slap himself in the face before he could ask his question. That stupid question that set the whole avalanche in motion.

 

Have you ever loved someone?”

 

He still didn't know what had possessed him, why he'd asked that of all things. Even if Sherlock wasn't a vampire he knew he didn't stand a chance. Sherlock was something else entirely and just thinking about kissing him had been foolish. He couldn't expect someone as brilliant and unique as Sherlock to be attracted to him, let alone fall in love with him.

 

But instead of being the smart one and facing the facts he'd asked his question anyway and again presumed he'd known the man causing said man to lash out and leave. He still saw the way Sherlock's eyes changed as he talked, going from beautiful green to dark gray, almost black. The evil smirk on his lips as he stepped closer, how Greg had been afraid but also excited and he knew now that Sherlock had picked up on that. He must have, Sherlock saw everything, heard everything. He'd picked up on Greg's mixed feelings and was probably disgusted by him.

 

A vampire groupie.

 

“Sorry about that Sally, won't happen again. It's just been a difficult week, this case isn't helping either.”

 

Greg closed his eyes for a second, trying to find some clarity and calm, but instantly, Sherlock's eyes came into focus. The knowing smirk, the way he'd leaned forward, the hardness in Sherlock’s voice.

 

I killed, and I enjoyed it.”

 

It made sense. The more he thought about it, it made sense. Sherlock was a vampire, a hunter who lived for one thing. Or so Sherlock would have him believe. And maybe for a while, he'd been just that, a soulless animal stalking his next kill but Sherlock wasn't like that now. Greg would have known. He didn't know a lot about vampires and how they came to be, but Sherlock had told him a bit when he’d stayed the night. How Sherlock had explained the constant urge for blood, the desperate need to hunt and feed had made Greg think about the London Vampire killer. But, where there had been delight and arousal with the serial killer, Sherlock had sounded disgusted and resentful.

 

It made Greg fully realize that Sherlock was wrong. He didn't enjoy death, didn't reveal in murder. Hell, Sherlock had made it his job to catch the people who did enjoy it. Maybe Sherlock had made mistakes, being around for over a 150 years, you were bound to make some, but it didn’t define him. It didn’t make him a soulless animal or a monster. Greg wanted to tell the man that, but his texts and calls were still being ignored.

 

“Where is Sherlock? I thought this would be perfect for him? Suicides that turn out to not be suicides, sounds like a good puzzle for him to solve.”

 

Sally tilted her head and Greg shrugged a shoulder. It had taken some time for Sally to get used to Sherlock but now they worked well. It wasn't always easy and relaxed but Sally respected Sherlock and how he viewed the work. It was nice to see, another example that Sherlock wasn't as bad as he tried to make Greg believe. Some people didn't like him, but Greg blamed that on jealousy. Sherlock was brilliant at his work, constantly learning to get better at it. People like Andrews couldn't, or wouldn’t understand that it wasn’t just genius. It was hard work and effort. Reading books and article on different topics, going over crime scene details again and again. Sherlock spend hours going over old case files, or the witness reports. He talked to multiple experts about different topics and he remembered it all. Of course, being over a 100 years old and not needing sleep made it easier but it didn't downsize Sherlock's efforts.

 

Greg looked up at Sally, sighing as he saw the clear question in her eyes. “I tried texting him but we had a fight and since then I haven't been able to reach him.” His stomach did a flip as he said those words out loud, seeing the surprise on Sally's face. She wiped away some curls before crossing her arms.

 

It hadn't been the first time they'd had an argument. Everyone had words with Sherlock at some point and since they worked so close together, Greg had had more than a few with the man. It always worked out, Sherlock walking off in a fit, leaving Greg with questions and frustration before he came back. He hardly ever apologized but he did make an effort with his actions and Greg always took notice of it.

 

But this, this was something different. He'd seen the rage in Sherlock's eyes but also the hurt and a sliver of fear. Greg didn't understand what Sherlock had to be afraid of, he was a vampire after all. But he'd seen it in those gray, stormy eyes before Sherlock had put up his walls. A hint of vulnerability before he'd gone on about having killed people and how vampires didn't love, couldn't love.

 

It left him irritated, how easily Sherlock build up walls around him. How hard it was for Greg to see past it. For a second, just a glimpse of a second, he’d believed Sherlock. Believed the act he was performing of the dangerous and soulless monster. Believed that Sherlock would hurt him.

 

Vampire don't feel emotions. Even if we do it turns dark and twisted.”

 

There had been something in the way Sherlock had said it. As if he'd learned by mistake and Greg's heart clenched. Hating himself for that second of doubt. Looking back now it didn’t make sense. Maybe vampires, in general, couldn’t feel, but Sherlock certainly could. Greg had seen the man happy for Sally when she'd passed her test, had seen how affected Sherlock was when Susan, a girl abducted by her father, had been reunited with her mother. He'd seen Sherlock get angry when people got hurt for no other reason than greed and pride. He'd seen all of it, in different stages and volumes and Greg would defend Sherlock to his death if someone called him a freak or sociopath again.

 

He just wished he could tell the man all this himself. He couldn’t keep texted, he already felt like a fool and he couldn’t just show up on Sherlock’s door. He didn’t know where Sherlock lived these days. He only knew the man had moved shortly after he’d started helping the Yard. It was another thing that made him frustrated, not knowing the inside of Sherlock’s flat. The man was so damn private of himself but had no problem invading Greg’s.

 

“I don't like people invading my space Lestrade. It’s my sanctum sanctorum.”

 

“Yet, you have no problem invading my sanctum sanctorum.”

 

“Please, those locks aren’t even worthy of the name and I find you fascinating.”

 

Sherlock hadn't explained further and Greg had been too speechless to ask but wasn't it strange that Sherlock had never invited him over in all this time, even after he'd learned the man was a vampire? Whenever he needed Sherlock to come and help them, he send a text and the man would show up in record time so Greg had always figured Sherlock lived close by. Of course now maybe Sherlock lived all across town and just used his vampire speed to get to the Yard so fast. It was infuriating, so many mysteries and secrets and Greg always felt at a disadvantage.

 

2

“I'm sure he'll come around Boss, you know how Sherlock likes drama.” Sally's voice cut into his thoughts, seeing her questioning gaze in his direction. She'd had arguments with him, too many to count, but she always silently forgave him too. He'd been jealous of their starting friendship in the beginning, wondering what Sherlock saw in Sally that made him open up to her. At first, he thought Sally had a crush on Sherlock but he doubted the man would spend so much time with her if she had. People that showed any interest in him in that way, made Sherlock uncomfortable and he cut it off fairly quickly, sometimes being too rude for Greg's liking.

 

“I'm not sure Sally, I was way out of line this time. I want to try and apologize but it's like he's disappeared from the face of the earth. He won't answer my texts or calls.”

 

“So go to him. If Moses won't come to the mountain....” She trailed off, a smile on her face and Greg huffed.

 

“It's not that easy, I don't even know where he lives.” A spark of frustration entered his body, again wondering if he would ever know the man at all.

 

“Lucky for you Boss, I do.”

 

“Sorry, what?!”

 

Sally grinned and Greg looked at her in confusion. “How do you know where Sherlock lives?” His voice was too hard and demanding and he saw the little eyebrow raise Sally gave him. Jealousy entered his mind as he thought about Sally in Sherlock's home, knowing what it looked like, how the man lived. Would it be clean and crisp like Sherlock or would the place be comfy, with a lot of books and piles of stuff everywhere? Did he like a modern interior? Did he own a television? Did Sherlock even like television? He hadn't known about The Mummy till they'd watched it at Greg's place. Why had Sally been there in the first place? Had he been wrong and was there something going on between them after all? Had Sherlock lied about his sexual orientation? But why would he do that?

 

His head was starting to hurt from all the questions and he closed his eyes, willing himself to stop acting like a betrayed 14-year-old. Sherlock was a free man, he was allowed to invite over anyone he wanted. Greg had no right to be jealous, or work it out on Sally for that matter. It wasn't her fault he had all these mixed up feelings for the man, feeling he didn't want to examine too closely.

 

“Sorry. Sorry, it's just been-” Greg sighed, running a hand through his hair. It was a little frightening how much Sherlock's absence affected him. Like a piece of his very core was missing.

 

Sally watched him intently and Greg felt heat rise to his face. It was almost worse than Sherlock's gaze and he held up his hands in surrender.

 

“I'm sorry Sally. I shouldn't have snapped like that. I'm just surprised I guess, Sherlock is so private.”

 

Sally held his gaze for a moment longer before shrugging a shoulder. “He wasn't too happy with it either but it was an emergency really. You remember the Carabo case?”

 

Greg nodded, he'd had a few precious days off during that time and DI Dimmock had taken over. He'd been worried how Sherlock would get on with the new DI but it had gone rather well. Mostly because Sally was a buffer between the two men, keeping their interactions to a minimum. Detective Inspector Dimmock didn't believe in consultants and he'd gone to the Chief Inspector to complain about Sherlock and his work ethics.

 

“He doesn't follow the rules Lestrade! He just rambles on a mile a minute and then he's off! How can you possibly work like this?!”

 

Chief Partington had called Greg in after that asking how Sherlock was doing. He'd been the one to give Sherlock a chance and Greg handed in a weekly report to the Chief, something he was sure Sherlock knew.

 

“Well, while we were running after Dorothé Carabo, I tripped and fell. I sprained my ankle and had abrasions on my hands and knees because of the fall. It turned out we weren't far from Sherlock's place and he helped me there, half carrying me.”

 

Sally had a light blush on her face and Greg couldn't hide a smile. The image of Sherlock half carrying Sally while she was injured was priceless and Sally's eyes sparkled with fire.

 

“Oi! Don't laugh you bastard. I had to hear him complain the whole way about how foolish I had been. We'd lost Dorothé of course, even after I told Sherlock to just leave me there and go after her. I could have easily called for backup but Sherlock didn't want to hear it. It was actually rather nice of him. Even if he complained about how clumsy I was.”

 

Greg smiled, a lightness in his chest as he heard Sally's story. This was again proof that Sherlock did have a heart, that he was kind and compassionate and that he didn't let his friends down. It made him warm inside and Sally looked at him with a knowing gleam. He cleared his throat awkwardly, seeing the flash of triumph.

 

“So, where can I find him?”

 

3

“Well, the movies had that part wrong for sure.”

 

Greg looks up at Sherlock's building with a tinge of disappointment and silliness for being disappointed in the first place. Turns out Sherlock lives in a flat not far from the Yard, a 15- minute walk and not in a castle or a mansion.

 

It's just a regular house, nicely kept with a big golden knocker on the front, 221 placed right above it in white. Now that he's here he feels hesitant to go further. Surely there had to be a reason why Sherlock had never invited him over but Sally had shook her head, her eyes half sparkling.

 

“You know how Sherlock is Boss, it took me two months for him to even talk to me and even then it was only about work. I wouldn't read that much into it.”

 

He tried, he really did, but the fact that Sally had been in Sherlock's home before him still stung. He really thought they'd gotten closer over the past few weeks, especially since Sherlock had told him his secret. He couldn't be sure but he didn't think Sally knew and asking about it was weird. How did you even start that conversation? “Hey, did you know Sherlock is a vampire?” No, it wouldn’t go over well. Even someone as patient as Sally had her limit for crazy.

 

He took a step forward, feeling like a fool for standing in the same spot for at least three minutes. If Sherlock was home he'd already seen Greg, standing there, not sure to move forward or not. Maybe Sherlock wouldn't even let him in, still angry about the whole thing?

 

The idea made Greg's stomach turn and he walked up to the door, ringing the bell two times, hearing the sound go through the building. Even if Sherlock didn't want anything to do with him anymore he needed to hear it. Needed to look Sherlock in the eye, tell him he still believed in him. That he wasn't a monster in Greg's eyes and never would be.

 

He heard footsteps come closer and held his breath, hoping Sherlock wouldn't just slam the door in his face when he saw him.

 

“Ah, Detective Inspector. We've been expecting you. Please, come in.”

 

The voice was smooth and sophisticated and his eyes went up and down instantly, taking in the slim figure, the expensive clothes, and high heels. He was met with a little, knowing smile and felt his face flame up but the woman just stepped aside, guiding Greg inside. When he passed he felt a chill in the air and the scent of vanilla. He looked back, the woman closing the door softly, giving him a wink before leading him further into the hall. It calmed his nerves for a brief second and he smiled, trying to figure out what he smelled, apart from the vanilla. Maybe coconut? Some sort of flower?

 

“Shall I take your coat?”

 

He snapped back to attention as she gave him curious look and he nodded like a fool. Feeling his face flame up again as she helped him out of his coat and hanging it on a peck. He wasn’t faced by beauty, working near Sherlock did that to a person but there was something intriguing about this woman. Not just her beauty, the soft features with curly black hair, falling to her shoulders and light brown eyes that seemed to assess him as if he were on an exam. There was something about the air around her, the way she moved and Greg broke eye contact as she tilted her head to the side, giving him another smile and then walked passed him to go up the stairs.

 

“If you need anything, let me know. Good luck.”

 

She knocked once before opening the door and Greg wanted to ask why he needed luck but she left, pulling out a phone from nowhere and started typing at lightning speed. For a second it reminded him of Sherlock and he snapped back to focus, walking into the room even as his body told him not to.

 

 

 

 

Chapter Text

Greg meets Sherlock's older brother, learns some vampire things and gets a look into Sherlock's human life.

1

“Detective Inspector Lestrade, a pleasure to finally meet you.”

 

If Greg was nervous before it's nothing compared to how he feels now. His eyes scan the room quickly and it's definitely Sherlock's. It just screams Sherlock and Greg can't stop a little smile from forming as he takes in the piles of books, papers, files and other stuff. It seems like it's everywhere but knowing Sherlock it has an order to it, a secret system that only he can understand. To others, it's just a mess but to Greg, this is Sherlock's mind all laid open for him. It's almost too intimate, standing here in Sherlock's space, taking it all in and Sally comes back to mind.

 

She's been here.

 

A shot of jealousy goes through him and he tampers it done. This is not the time or place and he focuses his attention on the one thing that stands out, the one thing that feels like it doesn't belong here.

 

His eyes take in the man in the middle of the room, just rising up from the sofa with so much elegance and grace it makes Greg's teeth hurt. Somehow he's glad he's still in his work outfit, taking in the three-piece suit, the silk tie, and expensive looking umbrella. Why the man would need an umbrella on such a nice day is beyond Greg but it does look good on him.

 

“I'm sorry, who are you?”

 

The man's eyes go wider, his mouth in a half smile, half smirk and there's something familiar about it. He takes another look at the man, how his eyes seem to scan Greg's, their gaze intent and a little too much and suddenly it clicks.

 

“Oh.”

 

The man nods, a glimmer of approval in his eyes and Greg feels like he's passed the test. Now that he looks again, he sees the same change in colors like Sherlock's eyes but less bold and bright. Everything about this man seems more subdued, more human in a way.

 

“Yes, Detective Inspector. I'm Sherlock's brother.”

 

He's heard about him before, Sherlock claiming it's best to never meet the man and Greg's heart skips a beat as he remembers Sherlock's words.

 

Trust me, Mycroft is a pompous and dangerous know it all. Best to not have to deal with him.”

 

“Whatever my brother told you Detective Inspector, I suggest you take it with a grain of salt.” Mycroft's eyes flash to his and Greg feels his cheeks warm up. “Maybe a whole bucket, my brother does have a thing for the dramatic.”

 

Greg snorts, not able to keep his mouth shut. “That's funny, Sherlock says the same about you.”

 

“I'm sure he does. My brother and I have a complicated relationship. I'm sure you can imagine.” Mycroft's lips go into a knowing smirk and Greg feels a flash of irritation.

 

“Where is Sherlock?”

 

He hadn't heard or seen any indication Sherlock was here and his heart clenched, thinking about what it could mean. Mycroft raised an eyebrow and Greg folded his arms, feeling silly for doing it but needing the barrier between them. Sherlock's gaze was difficult at times, but the way Mycroft looked at him was excruciating. As if he could read his mind, not just see and deduce.

 

“Sherlock is safe, I assure you. It seems your little argument had quite an effect on my brother.” Mycroft's face goes hard, his eyes gray and Greg feels a flicker of fear go over his spine. Not human at all.

 

“Is he okay?” He can only whisper, almost choking on the words but since Mycroft is also a vampire he hears it none the less. His mouth goes a fraction softer as if taking pity on Greg and he gestures to Greg to sit down. After a second of hesitation, Greg walks forward, sitting down slowly, his eyes on Mycroft constantly. Yes, he was Sherlock's brother but could he be trusted? Greg didn't know and he didn't want to find out he'd made a mistake in judgment so he kept his guard up, his body stiff and ready to fight.

 

“He will be. In time. You see, my brother has had some problems over the decades and those were making a comeback after he left your flat last week.” Mycroft had sat down on the sofa opposite him, his umbrella on his knees, face serious as he thought about his words.

 

“I guess he's told you he's killed before?”

 

Greg feels dread settle in at Mycroft's casual question. Maybe it was because they'd lived so long that dead seemed irrelevant but he hated how normal Mycroft sounded, almost bored as if talking about the weather. He wondered how Mycroft saw him, irrelevant like a bug, or just a food source that was always around?

 

How does Sherlock see me?

 

“Did my brother mention he killed vampires? And only vampires?”

 

Greg looks up sharply and Mycroft nods, hands tight around his umbrella. Greg notices the freckles on Mycroft's hands and wrist and it surprises him for a second. Weren't vampires famous for their flawless skin?

 

“Detective Inspector, haven't you learned by now that the movies don't have it right?” Mycroft rolls his eyes just the way Sherlock does and it stabs him in the heart, he'd missed that. Missed how Sherlock reacted to his questions, how he found everyone an idiot but answered anyway when he saw they really wanted to learn. Mycroft has the same expression on his face, the only thing that's different is the color of his eyes. They seem to remain gray for most of the time, only hints of blue in them, like now.

 

“How did you?”

 

“Sometimes I get flashes of words or sentences. Don't worry, I can't read all your thoughts.”

 

“You- you can read minds?!” Greg swallowed, fidgeting with his tie, feeling too warm. Mycroft gave him a 'don't be an idiot' look and Greg wondered if it was a vampire thing or just a Holmes thing, they really had that look down to perfection.

 

“I get sentences, words, images sometimes. The rest I see. I saw you looking at my hand for instance and some of your thoughts are loud, Detective Inspector.” A little smile and Greg still doesn't feel better, the idea of Mycroft Holmes even hearing one word in his mind is unsettling.

 

“You can train to block it if you wish. Meditation and yoga are a good place to start.” A tilt of Mycroft head and Greg files that away? Having an extra protection against vampires sounded good right about now.

 

“But Sherlock said-”

 

“Sherlock isn't as skilled. He lacks the focus and control. You see, Inspector, Sherlock has always been special, even before he was turned.” The grip on Mycroft's umbrella lessens, his posture a more relaxed as he speaks about his brother. “Sherlock sees the world differently. He takes it all in, the smallest details and he never forgets. It makes him a good alley in some areas but it's torture in general.”

 

Greg leans forward, wanting to know more but at the same time feeling guilty. Here they were, talking about Sherlock behind his back and it didn't feel right. Sherlock was so private and quiet. He doubted the man would be pleased to find out he'd been chatted about.

 

“Why isn't Sherlock telling me this? Does he know you're here?”

 

“My brother isn't proud of his past, Inspector but I found it necessary to give you some history. Give you some perspective on what happened last week.”

 

Mycroft's gray eyes have sparkles of green in them now, his fingers steepled under his chin as he looks at Greg, assessing him.

 

“Sherlock doesn't make friends easily but somehow he reached out to you. I don't understand it but I do believe you are a positive influence in his life.”

 

“Yeah right. That's why I haven't heard him in over a week, cause I'm such a positive influence.” He can't keep the sarcasm out of his voice, berating himself again for his actions. As the days passed he felt more and more stupid, hating his mouth for speaking before thinking. He knew better than that! Sherlock was like a bomb, you handled it with care and respect, thinking about your actions three times before making a move but that night he'd forgotten it and jumped right in. No wonder it had blown up around him.

 

“Don't sell yourself short. You made a mistake and Sherlock reacted badly by lashing out. Afraid of being rejected again. My brother has a fragile heart, Inspector. He acts tough and in control but underneath he's unsure and lost.”

 

Greg nods, it made sense. He'd seen how Sherlock pulled up a wall for everyone around him, how he pushed people away with his quick wit and intelligence.

 

“The world is overwhelming for my brother. He can't stop seeing everything, making connections, learning and deducing. It goes on non-stop, even as a human he never got the hang of it, never found a good way to control it. It's the reason he turned to drugs as a teen, needing to slow down his mind, to rest and recharge, to not have to think or feel. Drugs gave him peace, at least for a little while.”

2

Greg blinks, trying to understand what Mycroft is saying.

 

“Sherlock is a drug addict?” His voice is too high, eyes open wide and Mycroft gives a disapproving look in his direction. “No, I don't mean it like that.”

 

An eyebrow is raised and Greg feels like a bastard. He leans further back, crossing his arms over his chest and he sees a glint of a smirk on Mycroft's face. He feels heat rise, uncrossing his arms and feeling like a fool for letting the man get to him so easily. Everything he says or does is wrong, feeling like a deer in highlights as Mycroft sits there, judging him, trying to figure out why his younger brother even bothered with him.

 

“Sherlock doesn't seem like the type. He's so put together, so... in control. It doesn't make sense.”

 

“Addiction never makes sense, Inspector. Tell me, what type of people are better suited to become addicts?”

 

There was clear judgment there and Greg looked away, casting his eyes on the stacks of books and papers filling the bookcase. His mouth felt dry, a nasty taste to it and he wanted to go home. No, he wanted to see Sherlock, or at least hear his voice but that wasn't happening in the near future. The only reason Mycroft was there was because Sherlock couldn’t, or wouldn’t see Greg. Mycroft cleared his throat, focussing the attention back on him.

 

“Sherlock never saw himself as an addict. I guess most addicts do. Drugs were a way for Sherlock to face the world. It helped to clear his mind, either by dulling it down or making it focused. But like with all addictions he needed more of it to have the same results. Sherlock was brilliant without drugs but he became ruthless when on it. He didn’t care who got hurt, what he said. Even high he was never wrong but he lacked discresion. August Taylor took advantage of that. He'd seen Sherlock’s skills in high school. Taylor was the older student who introduced and supplied Sherlock with drugs.”

 

The tone of Mycroft’s voice makes Greg shiver and it’s hard to keep his eyes on the man. There had always been a sense of danger around Sherlock but Mycroft’s level was from a higher order.

 

“Auguste was a minor player in the drug industry by the time he finished high school. He wasn’t top of the class but smart enough to go to university. Taylor meant nothing in the drug world but he did have ambition. The ambition to make more money. Sherlock was more than happy to help Auguste with his business, in exchange for drugs. At least the drugs he gave my brother were clean. I guess it would have been bad for business if Sherlock had OD'd.”

 

Mycroft's mouth curls up in an ugly smile and Greg promises himself never to have Mycroft Holmes on his bad side.

 

“Auguste used Sherlock's deduction skills to get dirt on people, some of them very powerful and dangerous. He tried to blackmail them but crossed paths with Joseph Trevor. Some of the people he’d reached out to, worked for Trevor or had worked for him. You can understand that these types of people don’t take kindly to being blackmailed.”

 

Greg nodded, he’d had his fair share of drug-related murders and must of them were never pretty. A clear statement to other members of rivaling gangs to follow the rules and stay on your side of the street.

 

“Joseph Trevor was the drug lord in London in that time, he controlled who sold what and he kept a firm hand. Hearing that some of his people were being blackmailed made him angry but also curious. Who would be so stupid to try it? It didn’t take long till they found Auguste and Auguste, of course, told him about Sherlock. Cause without my brother’s help, he would have never been able to pull it off.”

 

Mycroft’s expression was blank but his hard voice told Greg what he thought about Taylor and Trevor.

 

“Luckily for Taylor, Joseph was instantly fascinated with Sherlock. He was around 21-22 at the time. Not only was Sherlock smart and useful, he was also beautiful. He invited them both, my brother and Taylor, to a party and Taylor begged Sherlock to show off. Taylor was smart enough to know his life was on the line. You see Inspector, my brother is addicted to praise too and both men knew how to use it.”

 

Greg cringed, knowing very well what Mycroft was talking about. Sherlock loved praise, Greg had discovered that soon enough. It always came with a mix of shame and guilt but Sherlock loved hearing how good he was, how brilliant and smart. It was a way for Greg to handle Sherlock, to soften him up and break down some walls Sherlock had. It made him feel sick that other people had found that out too, using it for their own gain. Was he really any different than men like Trevor?

 

“Trust me Detective Inspector, you are worth 10 men like Joseph Trevor.” Mycroft gave a brief nod and Greg looked away. He really needed to start meditation and yoga as soon as possible, this was insane!

 

“Forgive me, I didn't mean to make you uncomfortable.” But Mycroft's lips were in a little smirk. “But you must know that if you were like that foul Mr. Trevor, you wouldn't be sitting here alive.”

 

Mycroft's eyes were gray again, his face blank and Greg knew he was speaking the truth about this. He swallowed, feeling too hot and needing a glass of water. He wasn't sure how much longer he could sit here. Mycroft Holmes was dangerous and it irritated Greg that he was so intimidated by him. He nearly jumped out of the sofa when a glass of water was placed on the coffee table, a hand placed on his shoulder. The woman from before gave him an apologetic smile, gesturing to the glass before giving Mycroft a sharp look. A sense of calm come over Greg as he felt a gentle squeeze.

 

“Thank you, Anthea, you can leave now.”

 

The woman, Anthea, gave Greg another smile and then turned and left, closing the door behind her. With her gone, the room felt much colder, feeling Mycroft’s careful eyes on him before he looked back.

 

“Let me guess, she's a vampire too?”

 

“Very good Inspector, you are learning fast.”

 

A mock smile and Greg took the glass, drinking half of it in one gulp before setting it down on the table too hard. He gestured to Mycroft to continue, leaning back in the chair, willing himself to not cross his arms.

 

“It wasn't long before Joseph Trevor was smitten with Sherlock. Hearing about Sherlock’s skills is one thing, but seeing it in action is quite another.”

 

Greg nodded. He’d been working with Sherlock for more than a year now and it still amazed him seeing Sherlock work.

 

“Sherlock did as Taylor had asked, dazzling Trevor with his skills and intellect. Combine that with my brother’s looks and it’s not hard to realize that Trevor took notice of Sherlock.

My brother has never good with attraction and flirting from other people, not understanding why people would find him attractive.”

 

Greg huffed and Mycroft's eyes went smaller.

 

“Maybe I should have protected him more when he was younger. Or maybe I've protected him too much. We were homeschool till it was time for high school and children can be cruel. My brother as always been too honest, blurting things out before thinking about the impact. It got better over time if he wasn’t on drugs. Still, making friends was never easy for Sherlock, not understanding why people were so slow. He couldn’t figure out all the little cues that made social interaction easier. I wouldn’t even call Taylor a friend. He was just useful to Sherlock. A way to obtain something that could calm his mind, make his life a fraction easier.”

 

Mycroft looked down at his hands, taking a moment and Greg thought about the first few months working with Sherlock. How shocked he’d been when he’d gotten that phone number from a fan. How he’d always been on edge around Greg and Sally in the beginning. High school must have been hell.

 

“Sherlock has had two friends in all these centuries, Inspector. There is you,” Mycroft gestured to Greg with a bored wave and Greg felt his heart skip a beat. “ And there was Victor Bell. He met Bell at university in his first year. They had the same dorm. Bell was smart, not as smart as Sherlock, but smart enough to keep up. They spend a lot of time together, having some of the same classes, liking the same books. Bell showed an interest in Sherlock, asking what Sherlock was working on, how he’d figured something out. Sherlock took on small cases for fellow students, finding back stolen items, confirming a relationship, things like that. It didn't make him the most popular.”

 

Greg sighed, he could only imagine what other people had thought about him, especially if he blurted out the nasty truth for everyone to hear.

 

“But Bell adored him, even if he was on drugs. We never were able to get him clean, though we certainly tried. Taylor was constantly around, always pulling Sherlock back in and Bell used certain substances to pull all-nighters before exams. It wasn’t the best environment to quit.”

 

“So, even with his flaws, Sherlock had himself a friend and admirer. Bell wanted to be just like Sherlock, spend all his time with him. He got angry and upset when Sherlock talked to other people. Bell really thought he was entitled to all of Sherlock's time and attention. Nobody could get in the way of that.”

 

Greg felt a ripple of unease go through him. Clearly, this Victor Bell was obsessed with Sherlock, deeply in love with him and Greg knew love and obsession never mixed well.

 

“When Bell heard about Joseph Trevor he became curious. The man hardly ever got outside, sending messages to Sherlock via letters, that Taylor gave him. One of those letters contained an invitation for Sherlock to meet Trevor at a party later that week. I will never understand why my brother decided to go. By then he knew who Joseph was, what he was doing and how dangerous being around him could be.”

 

“Maybe it was saver being around this Trevor guy then being against him?” Greg asked, seeing the gears inside Mycroft’s head working. Sherlock had been a teenager when he’d met Auguste Taylor, even if they weren’t friends, they did have a connection. Maybe Sherlock stayed around Trevor because he knew bad things could happen if he left? Greg wanted to think of it that way.

 

“Maybe,” Mycroft whispered, his eyes looking at the wall opposite him before shaking his head.

 

“Whatever Sherlock's reasons, he went to the party that night and made the mistake to tell Bell. Bell was furious. Sherlock would be gone all night and he wasn’t even allowed to come! He followed Auguste to the party and things just went from bad to worse. Love and hate really are close together aren’t they Inspector?”

 

A cold smile on Mycroft’s lips and Greg felt goosebumps form on his arms. For a second he wanted Anthea here, a calming presence to help him keep his focus. He really didn’t like the look in Mycroft’s gray eyes, getting darker by the second as he told Sherlock’s story.

 

“Bell instantly knew what was going on. He saw how infatuated Trevor was with Sherlock, how much Trevor adore my brother and how he wanted Sherlock for his own. It takes an obsessed person to know one of course.”

 

“Bell was enraged, not caring that he’d crashed the party of a mightly drug lord. Not caring that his very life was in danger for being there. All he wanted was Sherlock away from Trevor. He managed to get my brother alone. Demanding to know who Trevor was, why he even went to the party, why he hadn’t invited his best and only friend to come along. Sherlock isn’t the best at understanding feelings but he understood that Bell wasn’t his friend at all. Sherlock tried to leave, telling Bell to piss off when he tried to kiss my brother.”

 

Mycroft stopped for a moment, and Greg’s heart felt like ice. When Mycroft started speaking again his voice was even almost robotic and Greg’s stomach clenched.

 

“Bell snapped. He overpowered Sherlock and was ready to show how much he loved my brother. It didn't matter that Sherlock didn't love him, by the time Bell would be done it would be clear to Sherlock that they were meant to be.”

 

Greg sucked in air and Mycroft's eyes went to his, they were black, just like Sherlock's a week ago and Greg grabbed hold of the armrests more tightly.

 

“Trevor got there just in time, killing Bell with one move, ripping out the man’s heart. It turned out Joseph Trevor was a vampire, a very powerful one at that. The leader of the Lamidrak clan.

 

Greg swallowed, a visual coming to his eyes, all the times he'd seen a vampire do it in the movies and thought it was exaggerated. Guess some parts they have right after all.

 

Mycroft tilted his head a little and Greg felt a blush form on his face. Damn vampire mind tricks!

 

“You do realize I heard that?”

 

Greg rolled his eyes and Mycroft raised an eyebrow.

 

“Can we get back to the story. Was Sherlock all right? How did Trevor know Sherlock was in danger? ”

 

“Bell had pushed Sherlock against a wall in his rage and confusion of Trevor showing up. It caused a head wound that wasn’t so severe but Sherlock was bleeding profoundly. I’m sure you know how much head wounds can bleed, Detective Inspector.”

 

Greg nodded, thinking back on his early days as policemen, dealing with drunks and junkies that got into a fight.

 

“It was actually Auguste who saved Sherlock’s life. He’d seen my brother and Bell leave the party, must have known nothing good could come from it and had warned Trevor. I’m fairly certain Auguste knew of Trevor’s nature by then. After Sherlock had dazzled Trevor, he and Auguste started working together, taking the drug dealer under his wings. Like I said, the man wasn’t stupid, he just needed some extra care and attention.”

 

“And Auguste wasn’t worried about his new boss being a vampire?”

 

Greg gave Mycroft a puzzled look as he saw the smile on the man’s face before he shook his head.

 

“I’m sure Auguste figured out the benefits of befriending a vampire pretty early. Maybe Trevor had even promised to change him after a few years of good work. Granting him immortality, just like that.”

 

“Why would anyone-“ Greg stopped, feeling his face flame up as Mycroft raised an eyebrow. Since he’d know about Sherlock’s secret he’d thought about being a vampire himself. How easy life would be with extra senses and not needing to sleep. But after a few moment’s he’d come to realize that those perks didn’t outweigh the downside of an immortal life. Having to say goodbye to your family and friends, seeing the world change around you and not be able to really keep up, not having someone to share your triumphs and failures with.

 

“You really are quite fascinating, Detective Inspector.”

 

Mycroft’s voice cuts into his thoughts and he saw the glimmer of approval in those grey eyes. He wanted to ask more but Mycroft picked up on the story, suddenly in a hurry to finish.

 

“Trevor couldn't resist Sherlock's blood. He already was attracted to my brother and this was something he couldn't fight. He drank too much, lost in the hunger, the craving. Sherlock tried to fight him but Trevor was 340 years old, no match for a human. By the time Trevor stopped

Sherlock was weak and almost unconscious from blood loss. Trevor became scared, afraid he'd lose someone valuable and he force-fed Sherlock his own blood.”

 

Greg couldn't stop pulling a face and Mycroft shrugged.

 

“There are worst tastes in the world. Anyway, instead of just letting the blood do its work and heal Sherlock, Taylor came up with a better idea. He convinced Trevor to kill Sherlock and turn him into a vampire. Trevor couldn't refuse, wanting Sherlock for his own, his skills and mind for all eternity at his disposal. He snapped Sherlock’s neck, told Taylor to take care of my brother and that's were Anthea comes into play.”

3

Greg raised an eyebrow but Mycroft just continued, hands clasping his umbrella tightly.

 

“Anthea had been with the Lamidrak clan for two decades, a close follower of Joseph Trevor but she'd been feeling restless. Every clan has rules and regulations and not following them brings repercussions. Anthea felt the punishments were too high for crimes committed. Trevor had been a leader for over 50 years by the time he and Sherlock met, and he was ruthless. Seeing himself as a god, punishing every single crime, big or small. Starving, drowning, craving. It was torture and Anthea wanted out. She’d had enough of the clan and Joseph Trevor’s tyranny.”

 

“Taylor asked Anthea for help. She was one of few vampires that saw humans as people and not just as tools. Joseph Trevor’s admiration for Sherlock wasn’t for his personality. It was all about his skills and intelligence, Sherlockrlock could mean for Trevor’s business in the future. So turning Sherlock into one of his own kind wasn’t a big deal to him. Now Sherlock would be a tool he could use forever.

 

Mycroft’s eyes almost burned with rage and Greg was glad he wasn’t sitting to close. The anger radiated off the man, as if all this had just happened yesterday.

 

Anthea brought Sherlock back to his dorm. Making sure to be with him when he woke up. My brother’s world would never be the same again and Anthea helped him through it as best she could. I don’t know if Sherlock would have made it i fit wasn’t for her help and guidance.”

 

Mycroft looked down, hands holding his umbrella tight and the silence stretched. Greg felt drained, hearing about Sherlock's past was intense and he had a feeling the worst was to come.

 

“Can vampires be killed?”

 

Mycroft looked up, watching Greg with that 'don't be an idiot' look.

 

“I thought vampires were immortal.”

 

Greg kept his gaze on Mycroft, waiting for him to answer. There was still a hint of 'don't be an idiot' left in Mycroft's eyes but a smile came. It was the closest he's seen it be real, almost warm. Somehow that was even more disturbing.

 

“It's one of the best lies in history, Detective Inspector. Yes, vampires can be killed but it takes skill and force. Sherlock would have found a way. When he woke up it was to a new world. A world he didn’t like very much. A vampire's senses are superior to humans, we see better, hear more, feel everything deeper. For someone like Sherlock, who was already sensitive, it was a new form of hell. He'd lost his mind, or so it felt to him. Everything came crashing in, it was all too bright, too loud, too much. Remembering what had happened, how his only friend in the world hadn’t been a friend at all. Then he woke up and it felt like the world had exploded. Everything came into focus, almost drowning him with input. Anthea held him down, kept my brother from escaping and hurting himself or someone else.”

 

Greg’s eyes were wide as Mycroft talked, thinking about Anthea and wondering how she’d been able to stop Sherlock from escaping.

 

“Anthea is much older then Sherlock. And newly formed vampires are weak in comparision. Oh, they can still kill you with one flick of their hand,” Mycroft smirked, waving a hand in Greg’s direction. “But for a vampire like Anthea it was as easy as holding back a toddler.”

 

“Why did she have to-“

 

“The hunger is all consuming Detective. It's always there, buzzing, whispering underneath our skin. Calling out to us. For a newly formed vampire it’s hard to ignore, wanting to go out to hunt and feed. It’s in our biology, eventhough we don’t need blood to survive. We are hunters, it's our instinct to look for prey, to hunt and kill. Consuming human blood makes us faster and stronger then usual. It also tampers the senses for a while. Over time you learn to control this call inside your head. It takes hard work, some never reach it, but you can control the bloodlust.”

 

“Sherlock of course, had the disadvantage of being in withdrawal. Trevor’s blood got rid of all the drugs in his system. Forcing him to go cold turkey. You’ve withness people in withdrawal?”

 

“Yes. It wasn’t- it’s not pretty.”

 

“Indeed. Can you imagine how it most be to wake up the next day, realize you were almost raped by your best friend, then killed and waking up with all the effects of withdrawal and finding out you are able to hear the grass grow? I don't think anyone can understand how terrible it was.”

 

“God.” Greg rubbed his eyes, taking his glass to drink the last of the water. Trying to wrap his brain around all this information. His heart went out to Sherlock, wanting to go back in time and kick Bell, Taylor and Trevor’s behinds for treathing Sherlock so badly. He sighed, running a hand through his hair after putting the glass back down, staring at Mycroft with a heavy heart.

 

“After many months Sherlock was better and fitting into his vampire body. There were still some issues with Sherlock’s hightened emotions, but he was adjusting faster then any vampire Anthea had seen before. She coudln’t have prodicted Sherlock’s next move. Couldn’t have foreseen the consicenses of my behavior.”

 

Chapter Text

Greg learns about the complicated Holmes relationship and how Sherlock's addiction took a turn for the worst.

 

 

1

“When all this was going on, Trevor, Bell, Sherlock’s new form, I was too busy with my own life to pay attention to my brother’s. I’d just risen up the corporal ladder and I was spending many hours at work. Proving I was the right man for the job, making myself, but mostly my parents, proud.”

The sadness in Mycroft’s tone made Greg want to get up and give him a hug. Which would probably get him killed so he grabbed the armrest of the sofa tighter.

“Sherlock and I were born seven years apart. It’s a big difference at some points in your life. Sherlock was still at university, still trying to figure it all out when I had it all planned and sorted. At least I thought I did.”

“Anthea contacted me when Sherlock had been a vampire for about six months. He’d made remarkable progress and she’d known about my existence from the very start.”

“Six months? You hadn’t heard from Sherlock in six months and you weren’t concerned?” Greg looked at Mycroft sharply. Sherlock had complained about his brother a few times. How the man followed Sherlock’s movements, knew what he was doing, or who he was talking to.

“I received letters. Written by Sherlock, talking about his life at university. My parents got the same ones, it all sounded normal for Sherlock. A fight here, a complaint there. It didn’t raise any flags and, I have to admit, I wasn’t really paying attention.”

The flash of guilt is brief but still visible, the gray of Mycroft’s eyes a shade darker.

“Mycroft, you couldn’t have-“ Greg stops as Mycroft shakes his head, an unreadable expression on his face.

“I should have. He’s my baby brother. He was going through a terrible time and I- I was so caught up in my own life, trying to get ahead, be better. When Anthea reached out to me I mocked her. Thinking it was some sort of trick or silly game from my brother to get my attention. She didn’t take kindly to being ridiculed.”

A soft smile on Mycroft’s face and Greg wonders what happened when Anthea showed up at the elder Holmes’ doorstep, claiming Sherlock was now a vampire and needed help.

"Even after she’d told me the whole affair I didn’t handle it well. I went back to London, convinced I was able to solve everything and have it under control. That’s what I’m good at you see, taking control in a crises situation.”

Mycroft shrugged a shoulder before continuing. The air in the room had warmed up over time but there was a subtle shift as Mycroft talked about himself and how he dealt with the situation.

“I was arrogant, Detective Inspector. Anthea had tried to warn me, had tried to make me understand how difficult Sherlock’s transition had been and how easily it could break. I saw it as just another situation I had to contain, something to monitor and fix. When I was reunited with my brother he looked the same like always. I didn't want to see the truth right in front of me. I certainly didn't want to see how badly he needed my help and understanding, not my judgment."

 

Greg heard the self-loathing in Mycroft's voice and for the first time, he felt something close to sympathy for the man.

 

"You are too kind-hearted Inspector. There is no redemption for me."

 

Mycroft gave him a hard look holding up a hand to stop Greg from speaking. What could he even say? Sherlock wasn’t easy to connect with, but Mycroft was on a whole other level, unreachable like the stars. The very idea of offering Mycroft some comfort was absurd, the man would probably snap his arm off, but seeing the sadness, the guilt, the self-hate in Mycroft’s eyes and Greg’s heart bleed.

 

“I saw my brother, and even then I knew something was off. I knew deep down that Anthea was right and my brother would never be the same again but I was also furious. This wasn’t the first time I dropped my life to rush to Sherlock’s aid, the nights in the hospital, worried this time my brother would die because of the drug use. No matter what we tried, he didn’t want help, didn’t see himself as an addict and with time I just gave up. Angry and worried. This was no different, at least not in my mind.”

 

Mycroft looks away, hands still on his umbrella and it makes Greg think about Sherlock and his coat. Even in summer, he wears the damn thing.

 

“I didn’t think about my brother’s needs, just my own and of course he lashed out. All that careful and painstaking training with Anthea vanished within minutes of me being there. Of course, demanding Sherlock to stop this nonsense, take a break from school and come back home till he was normal, didn’t help.”

 

Greg cringed and Mycroft’s eyes changed to a lighter gray.

 

“You can imagine how he reacted to that. My brother is a lot of things, but normal doesn’t really apply to him. I don’t say that as an insult, not anymore, but at the time Sherlock understood my meaning. Also, the idea of dropping school and coming home made Sherlock furious. He hated the place.”

“Really?” Greg asked, sitting straighter in his spot as Mycroft nodded. Sherlock hadn’t told him anything about his childhood or parents. The only one he mentioned was Mycroft and Greg had soon figured out there was a lot of love there, but also a bunch of other emotions.

 

“Our parents did their best, at least by their means and understandings, but home had never been a happy place for Sherlock, or myself. He would have been crawling up the walls in seconds being back there. Boredom is one of Sherlock's greatest fears, it's one of the reasons he started drugs. Can you imagine what hell it would be for him to be locked away, nothing to occupy his mind, in a place that brings a lot of unhappy feelings?"

 

Greg could imagine it. Sherlock had come round the Yard enough to times to know how bored the man could be. Snappy and childlike, demanding any case to focus on.

 

"You see Inspector, we've always had a difficult relationship and Sherlock has always had trouble with his emotions. He'd just changed, still getting used to this new world where he could see every speck of dust, see every grain of sand. His world was different, the life he'd known over. He'd died and come back and he couldn't do a single thing about it. He'd trusted the wrong people and they'd betrayed him. His only friend had wanted to claim him in the name of love and others just used him for his brain and skills. Then his brother swept in and blamed him for almost all of it."

 

Greg’s heart broke hearing the harsh truth come out of Mycroft’s mouth. He'd always figured Sherlock didn't have many friends, as the genius liked to point out 'people don't like me' and hearing all this made his blood boil. Sherlock was too special to be treated like that, like some freak who could do tricks on command! It made him feel sick, thinking back on Sherlock’s reaction when Greg had asked to see his real face.

 

I'm not some circus animal Lestrade. I don't do tricks.”

 

Sherlock’s strong reaction made sense now and Greg swallowed back the bile in his throat. He wanted to go back in time to kick some sense into himself. Better yet, he wanted to go back and kick every single person Sherlock had met and who had treated him badly.

He heard a noise and looked up, seeing Mycroft’s little smile and a flash of something in his eyes before his calm demeanor was in place again.

 

"Me going in there, demanding Sherlock to come home and blaming him for everything didn't help at all. I’m sure by that point Anthea wanted to murder me herself. She’d been trying to get Sherlock to see me for weeks. She knows the value of family, how strong the bond can be and how much it can help. Even the best can make mistakes.”

 

Mycroft gave a laugh without any warmth in it and Greg felt goosebumps on his arms, the temperature in the room had dropped by a few degrees.

 

"Anyway, the moment I talked about taking Sherlock home, he lost it. He pushed me out of the way and was gone in an instant. Anthea wanted to go after him but Sherlock still didn’t realize how strong he really was. I am sure my brother didn’t mean to hurt me. By the time we saw each other again a few years had passed. If Sherlock doesn’t want to be found, you won't find him.”

 

Mycroft gave Greg a knowing look and it was clear the man knew more about his friendship with his brother then Sherlock had thought. It should have been creepy, knowing Mycroft was around, checking on them but knowing there was someone looking out for Sherlock gave Greg a sense of calm.

 

“We didn’t hear from Sherlock for months, though we never stopped trying to contact him. Anthea had some friends, homeless people that were useful to the clan and she convinced them to work for her instead. Men and vampires were getting fed up with Trevor’s behavior. It only got worse when he found out Sherlock was gone. The clan is a close family but in every family there are problems and Trevor was making a lot of them. Blaming and accusing other clans of stealing drugs from him, not following the unspoken rules of the vampire world.

 

“Thanks to Anthea’s network we heard that Sherlock hadn’t left England and that he was well and safe. Anthea reached out to Sherlock, giving him time to decided what to do. Sherlock refused to see me and I accepted, knowing I would just make it worse.”

 

Greg shook his head. He knew what it was like, being caught off from Sherlock’s life and he was just a friend. Not being able to speak to your own brother must have been devastating for Mycroft and he gave a sympathetic smile as their eyes met.

 

“At least I knew my brother was still around and not in the hands of Joseph Trevor. I doubt he would have liked the clan life with all the rules and regulations.”

 

Greg huffed, crossing his arms together as he leaned back in the sofa. He knew all about Sherlock’s dislike for rules and regulations.

 

“I was worried for my brother, we both were. He’d been a vampire for about seven months by then and suddenly he was out in the world, meeting all sorts of temptations. I could only pray that Anthea’s training had been enough.”

 

“Suddenly the updates from Sherlock stopped and Anthea’s network couldn’t find him. Telegrams and phone calls were left unanswered. Around that same period, we also lost track of Trevor and I was worried he’d gotten a hold of my brother after all. It took some time to reach Sherlock again and Joseph Trevor was the least of our problems. It turned out he'd swapped one addiction for the other. Only this new one was far more dangerous."

2

Mycroft stopped, closing his eyes for a second before getting up and taken Greg’s glass to refill it. As Greg heard the water running he stood up, his knees protesting from sitting so long. He started pacing, going over the things Mycroft had talked about. The man came back with Greg’s glass, placing it on the table before sitting down again, crossing his legs as he watched Greg pace. Some part of him wondered if he was dreaming, sitting down to take a sip of water, going over Mycroft's face. The man was paler, the lines on his face more clear and it still surprised Greg to see it. Movies always made it seem like vampire skin was flawless, smooth as porcelain, but Mycroft had lines around his mouth and eyes, freckles on his neck and hands, it made him look real, human. You would never have guessed he was a vampire. With Sherlock it was different, he was lean and skinny, with pale skin and weird colored eyes. His face was sculpted like a Greek god, razor-sharp cheekbones framed with dark curls. He was exotic looking, out of this world.

 

“Vampires are as diverse as humans Detective Inspector, it's why we fit in so easily."

 

Greg met Mycroft’s gaze, seeing the lightness of the gray, the little glimmers of green and he shook his head. This wasn’t a dream, he would never be able to make up something so elaborate. He saw the beginning of a smile on Mycroft’s mouth and shrugged.

 

“It’s a lot to take in.”

 

Mycroft tilted his head, squinting his eyes and finally nodded his head, clasping his hands together on his lap. It was the first time that evening that he’d let go of his umbrella. Maybe they were making progress.

 

“When did you change? You had clearly not heard of them before Anthea turned up.”

 

Mycroft eyes got wider, staring at Greg with a hint of wonder and surprise.

 

“I am starting to see why my brother is fond of you." Mycroft sat up, eyes on Greg and he tried not to blush. Or think too much about Mycroft’s words.

 

“When Sherlock left he pushed me out of the way and I hit my head on the corner of a table. With all his new vampire strength he couldn't possibly have known how badly I would be injured. Anthea had no choice but to intervene."

 

“So, it’s Sherlock's fault you're a vampire. Oh my god."

 

“I don't blame him, Detective Inspector. I chose to turn. Anthea’s blood wasn’t enough to heal me. It was this or die and I couldn’t leave my brother behind.” Mycroft gave a tight smile, his gaze unfocused as if reliving it again. Greg cleared his throat and Mycroft snapped back to attention, his eyes turning dark gray.

 

“Unfortunately, Sherlock blames himself. Still does but we are digressing.”

 

Greg knew better than to ask more questions, though his mind was still spinning with that snippet of information. Sherlock’s actions made his brother a vampire. How did you deal with that?

 

“We finally found Joseph Trevor in Denmark, decapitated and stabbed several times. It soon turned out he’d pissed off the leaders of the Nisse clan and since he’d been so foolish to travel alone he didn’t stand a chance. The Nisse clan is a highly trained, almost military group of vampires. They have very strict rules about feeding on humans.”

 

“So, some vampire clans still hunt and kill humans?” Greg swallowed, rubbing his arms and trying not to think too much about murderous vampires in the shadows.

 

“The Nisse clan feeds of humans but they never kill them. They usually strike deals with people they meet, offering housing, food, comfort in exchange for occasional blood. Any vampire who doesn't obey those rules faces the consequences and those are never pretty.”

 

“Finding Trevor gave us new information on Sherlock. He’d been sighted at the edge of Nisse territory. The leaders had thought about bringing him in, just to see if he was a treat or not but by the time they moved, Sherlock had left. After that, we started getting word from other people of other clans. At first, it was just sightings of Sherlock, walking alone in the woods or on the road. Later on, the messages became worrisome. Reports of strange animal attacks, ritualistic killings, casualties among vampire groups and clans.”

 

Greg saw Mycroft tense up and the hairs on the back of his neck stood up. The room felt like a freezer and Greg shivered, not taking his eyes of Mycroft as the man opened and closed his mouth a few times. Their gazes met and Mycroft held up a hand.

 

“My apologies, talking about this period in my brother’s life is difficult. Shall I start the fireplace?” Mycroft didn’t wait for Greg’s answer, getting up and fussing with matches. In seconds the fire was going strong and Greg felt himself relax a fraction as the warmth wrapped around the room and his body.

 

“Thanks to the Pigalle clan in France we tracked Sherlock down. Anthea knew some people in the clan and started a negotiation to get my brother back. The clan didn’t want to hand Sherlock over at first. It turned out Sherlock had developed a taste for vampire blood.”

 

Mycroft's voice held a hint of disgust in it but Greg kept his mouth, he could always ask later.

 

“You see, the blood from a human makes us faster, stronger, more clear and focuses. It makes you almost unstoppable, your reflexes are phenomenal, you hear and see everything, you're able to filter out the important parts, you heal more quickly. All lovely perks."

 

"What the blood of another vampire does is make you more animalistic. You have all the advantages of drinking human blood but you lose the parts that make you human in the process. It turns you into a reckless beast, stripped of your intelligence and reasonable thinking."

 

Greg sucked in a breath, Sherlock without his intellect, not able to think, it was an image he couldn't get inside his head. Sherlock without those things wasn't Sherlock at all.

 

“A vampire who consumes vampire blood is called a Revenant. They are rare, drinking blood from another vampire is seen as a serious betrayal. A sin, if you’ll indulge me in using the term. Vampire have been tortured and killed for less. It took Anthea about three months,

but the Pigalle clan released Sherlock into my care. Under conditions, I did them a few favors.”

 

Mycroft looked sour and Greg didn’t want to know what those favors had been.

 

“You see, empathy and remorse are stripped away in a Revenant. All that's left is pure instinct, a killing machine, constantly looking to hunt and drink. Because of my brother’s skills, it was easy to spot other vampires and drink from them. I don’t think my brother wanted to kill them, but a Revenant has little self-control once he feeds. It consumes him, making him temporarily insane. Once he got a taste for vampire blood, humans weren’t enough for him anymore.”

 

"So he's never..." Greg stops, not sure if he wants to know the answer.

 

“He's never killed a human, no.”

 

Greg felt a wave of relief go through him at those words. He’d been right! But then he looked at Mycroft, seeing the grim expression on his face.

 

“I.” Greg stopped and swallowed, willing himself to keep eye contact. “He’s killed his own kind. The strange animal attacks, that was-“

 

“My brother yes.”

 

Mycroft was the first to look away and Greg didn’t know what to say. Human or vampire, it didn’t make a difference. Sherlock had blood on his hands and Greg’s stomach turned.

 

"I'm a monster Lestrade, you'd do well to remember that."

 

“The craving for blood is always there, Inspector. It takes decades to control and even then we slip up. I don’t think there is a single vampire out there who hasn’t drunk from a human. Some enjoy it, the fear, the taking of a life. Most don’t. But we make mistakes and the cost can be high. Sherlock has always had trouble with control and restraint. First, it was drugs, then it was vampire blood. Once you’ve crossed that line it’s hard coming back from it.”

 

Mycroft stopped, his eyes taking in Greg's face, looking for signs. Knowing that Sherlock had killed made him sick to his stomach. Knowing the man in front of him probably had too made Greg feel small and vulnerable. He didn’t want to, but his mind conjured up images of Sherlock. His beautiful face distorted, fangs dripping with blood while he ripped someone's head off, black eyes empty, stripped of any warmth and compassion.

 

"You don't know the first thing about my nature."

 

Sherlock's words came back to him, the anger that followed when Greg said he didn’t believe Sherlock. He’d been a fool, claiming to know the man better then Sherlock knew himself. No wonder Sherlock had left, building up the massive walls that had taken Greg almost a year to break down. It made sense why Sherlock called himself a sociopath and a monster. It was clear horrible things had happened in his past, things he still blamed himself for and Greg had cast it aside, dismissed it as overreacting. Of being a drama queen. God. If Sherlock never talked to him again Greg had no right to object. He'd been so stupid, dismissive of Sherlock's feelings and life.

 

"Mycroft, I need to see Sherlock. I need to tell him I'm sorry. Please tell me he hasn’t left the country.”

 

Greg got up, standing in front of Mycroft, not caring how pathetic his voice sounded. He couldn't let Sherlock leave like this. Mycroft watched him, surprise in his eyes.

 

“What?” Greg crossed his arms, hearing the defensive tone in his voice as Mycroft got up slowly and walked to the window, looking down at the street.

 

“You still want to see my brother?” Mycroft turned, face blank. “Even after all you’ve learned about him. After you know he’s a-“

 

“He’s not a killer.”

 

“Isn’t he? Or does it not count cause they weren’t human?”

 

Mycroft lifted his chin up, waiting for Greg’s answer and Greg stepped closer, making sure to keep space between them. Standing close to Mycroft, Greg felt the tentacles of cold again. Another reason for not wanting to be a vampire, you’re always cold. Mycroft raised an eyebrow and Greg rolled his eyes. He was getting used to the older Holmes brother reading pieces of his mind.

 

“Vampire or human, there is no difference. Sherlock has blood on his hands yes, but it’s been a long time. I. You said it yourself, we all make mistakes and Sherlock is paying for his. Has been paying for them for a very long time. He’s killed, it doesn’t make him a killer. He’s more than that, more than a Revenant monster. I’ve seen it.”

 

Mycroft’s gaze softened and Greg let out a breath, tiredness taken over his body.

 

“He’s my friend. I. I need him to know that.”

 

Greg whispered, feeling exhausted as Mycroft gave a tiny nod.

 

“Sit down Inspector. Maybe it’s time for something to eat? My brother is still in London but I don't think it's wise to see him now." Greg was about to protest but Mycroft raised a hand.

 

"He feels horrible for what happened Inspector. For what he said and how he reacted. He needs time. Trust me, he will come back but it's never a good idea to rush him."

 

"But I-"

 

"Patience is a virtue Inspector, especially with my brother."

A tiny lift of Mycroft's lips as the man took out his phone and Greg felt himself relax. There was still hope, Sherlock hadn’t left, yet.

3

"What happened after Sherlock was released into your care? I have a hard time believe you doing the clan a few favors was the end of it.” Greg leaned back on the sofa, he could feel the emptiness in his stomach but he wanted to know the rest of Sherlock’s history. It would have been better if Sherlock had been sitting there, trusting Greg with his life history but it also would have been worse. Mycroft had some difficult moments during his retelling but he also had a semi-detached view on it.

 

“My brother was weak, severely punished by the clan for his crimes against other vampires. We are not one big happy family, but we do look out for our own when it’s needed. The other clans raised objection when they heard Sherlock got away with it. He’d been traveling all over Europe leaving behind chaos and death. A vampire body doesn't just dissolve or burst into flames, it stays where you drop it and Sherlock had dropped a lot of them. The news coverage didn’t help his case either. Vampires thrive because we are hidden from view, we blend in and walk next to humans. Sherlock’s actions were producing reports about animal attacks, cults, mass murderers. You name it and it was in the papers."

 

Greg sighed, he knew all about the power of the media. Reporters loved to cause hysteria and in this day and age with social media, it was even worse. Anyone could share news now, not caring about facts or the truth.

 

“Once the clans took notice that something was happening, that someone was targeting vampires it wasn’t difficult to find Sherlock’s track. He didn’t clean up, just fed and moved on. He pissed off some very important members of different clans. It was fortunate the French clan caught him, they are relatively peaceful. Most clans wanted to make an example of Sherlock. You know how messy that can be Inspector.”

 

Greg felt the hairs on the back of his neck stand up. Thinking off all the ways humans hurt each other and wondered if it was the same for vampires.

 

“Oh no, Inspector. It's much worse. You see, a human body can only take so much for so long. In the end, you die and that's it. You body gives up and then it's over."

 

Greg couldn't stop the shudder running down his spine at that, the casual way Mycroft said it.

 

"A vampire can live forever, or at least close to it. The torment goes on for centuries, driving them insane, wishing they died but unable to. It's one of the universe's tricks, a vampire can't kill himself. How can you kill something that's already dead?"

 

Mycroft gave him a grim expression and Greg frowned.

 

"But I thought you said vampires can be killed?"

 

"We can, but only by another's hand, not our own. The universe is cruel, Detective Inspector, cruel and uncomprehensible."

4

“I believe your food is ready now Inspector. Apologies for not offering something sooner. I sometimes forget humans need food and drink on a regular basis.”

 

Greg stared at Mycroft like a fool, trying to make sense of what the man was saying. He felt exhausted and rubbed his eyes as the door opened, Anthea coming in with a steaming plate in her hands. She threw a glance at Mycroft, her lips going down in disapproval before turning her attention to Greg.

 

“Dig in Detective Inspector. You look like you need it.” She gave another look at Mycroft, shaking her head lightly before crossing the distance and whispering something in Mycroft’s ear.

 

Greg’s stomach made a nasty growl and Greg realised how hungry he was. He’d been so caught up in Sherlock’s story he’d forgotten to check the time. He glanced at his watch, eyes going wide with surpirse as he sa wit was close to 9PM. No wonder he was hungry.

 

He let out a sigh of contentment as he eat his pasta with chicken and heard a giggle from acroos the room. Anthea met his gaze with amusement, a smile on her face as she gestured to Greg to continue.

 

“The good old days, right Mr. Holmes?"

 

She chuckled as her gaze went to Mycroft, seeing his whole body relax as he smiled back in return. Greg went back to his plate ,feeling like an intruder. The affection bewteen Anthea and Mycroft was clear, it was the only time the man looked truely comfortable and Greg swallowed down a large bit. A glass of limonade was placed next to him and he looked up at Anthea, nodding his head in thanks.

 

“God, I needed that. Thank you.”

 

He let out a sigh, the food having reduced his headache to a mild throb. The temperature in the room was warm and Greg drunk the last of his glass, relaxing into the sofa as Anthea took away the plate and glass. It was strange, having a powerful vampire cater to him and he blushed when Anthea raised an eyebrow at him.

 

“I have many skills Inspector.”

 

Greg opened his mouth to say something, he hadn’t meant anything degrating with his thoughts but Anthea shook her head, a small smile on her lips.

 

“You are very peculiar, Inspector. I can see why Sherlock likes you.”

 

The blush got deeper as Anthea stared at Greg, a knowing gleam in her eyes before she turned and left. Mycroft’s smirk vanished but not fast enough for Greg to not see it. He felt like a child again, missing important clues between adults and he cleared his throat, letting his eyes waunder around the space. It really was all Sherlock, Greg found a comfort in the ordered chaos, seeing the pile of books on different subjects like history, economy ,biology and even psychology. Sherlock was interested in an area of subject, something Greg had always liked about the man and his place was a clear reflection of that. There were prints on the wall of birds, fish and dogs. Some of his science accomptment was standing next to his computer on the desk and there was a skull staring at him from the mantlepiece next to a knife pinning down letters.

 

“My brother hasn’t mastered the art of organization but it does give the space a homy feel.”

 

Greg eyes landing on Mycroft’s and he saw how relaxed the man had become. He felt better too, reading to hear the rest of Mycroft’s story after the food and drink and he gestured to Mycroft.

 

“So, what happened next?”

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 8

Greg learns about the aftermath of Sherlock's addiction and Mycroft gives a warning.

1

“Because of the clan’s punishment my brother was weak and injured. All the lovely perks of drinking vampire blood had gone away. He was barely getting human blood, so this transition wasn’t pleasant. Going cold turkey from vampire blood can be dangerous, that’s why my brother needed human blood, to make the transition a little easier. Of course, the clans didn’t really mind Sherlock’s discomfort, for them, he couldn’t be punished enough.”

 

Mycroft’s eyes had gone dark gray again. It can’t have been easy, not knowing where his baby brother was, finding out what he’d done and then being reunited with him under such circumstances.

 

“When Sherlock was released from clan custody he came to stay with me. I gave him the whole upper floor of my house to recover and heal. I didn’t recognize my brother, Inspector. I hadn’t seen him in over 10 years and-“

 

“What?” Greg jolted as Mycroft raised an eyebrow in question.

 

“I thought- You mean he’d been addicted to vampire blood for over 10 years?”

 

“About that yes.” Mycroft tilted his head to the side as Greg whistled. Somehow he’d assumed all if this had gone down in a few months. To know Sherlock had been on his own, killing vampires for over a decade was disturbing but Mycroft just huffed.

 

“Ten years, 20, 30. For a vampire, it’s hardly any time passed at all. Still, being a Revenant had left marks on Sherlock, physical and emotional. Once the blood was out of his system all his memories of that time came back. The things he'd done, the lives he’d taken and the feelings accompanying that was almost enough to drive my brother insane."

 

“His body was hurting, mostly because of the treatment by the clan, but he’d also been in fights over the years with other rogue vampires. We can get hurt by our own kind, Inspector.” Mycroft gave a look and Greg closed his mouth again.

 

“We won’t die from it, but it does leave scars. Anyway, the physical damage wasn’t the most important, vampires are resilient and strong. The damage to my brother’s mind, his very core, took much longer to heal.”

 

Mycroft's voice had gone strained, the knuckles of his hands turning wide as he clasped them tightly together, his gaze on a spot on the table.

 

“The first months under my care were agonizing, memories coming back at all times of the day, haunting him every second. He lashed out, tried to hurt himself, thrashing whole rooms in the process. He begged me to help him, to end his pain. He tried to get me angry, reminded me daily that it was his fault I was doomed to an eternal life. My brother has a way with words, Inspector. He knows how to push buttons."

 

Mycroft stopped, his face in an ugly frown as he closed his eyes.

 

“Finding out I’d become a vampire nearly broke him all over again.”

 

Greg felt his heart break, seeing the sadness in Mycroft’s eyes and he couldn’t watch, casting his eyes down to the floor to give the man some time to compose himself. When Mycroft talked again his voice was soft, a whisper and Greg swallowed down the lump in his throat.

 

“Sherlock became obsessed with death, hating himself for his actions, blaming himself for my fate. He tried every trick in the book to end his life but of course, it never worked. I tried to help him, tried to make him understand that I chose to turn but he didn’t listen. Every time he saw me he was reminded of what he’s done and who he had become. He even tried to go to the London clan, convinced he deserved to die for his actions.”

 

Greg blinked, feeling a tear run down his face and he brushed it away quickly. Mycroft didn't need his tears, neither did Sherlock. What had happened had been before he'd been born, it wouldn't help them now. Still, his heart ached for the both of them.

 

I'm sorry.”

 

He knew Mycroft had heard it, a slight tilt of his head, a flash of green in his eyes before he spoke again.

 

“Anthea stopped him just in time, spending hours listening to Sherlock, allowing his rage, hate and self-loathing. He still tried to find ways to hurt himself but Anthea never judged him for it. She just listened, being there when he needed her. Even being there when he didn’t want to see her. Sherlock stayed indoors for about a year and a half. He didn’t trust himself anymore, thinking he’d go back to his old ways in seconds the moment he was out in the world.”

 

“Sherlock’s guilt and shame took over his life, some days not able to even come out of his room, refusing to talk to anyone, not taking care of himself. He was still in withdrawal, the blood was gone but the craving was there and drinking human blood helped with that. Sherlock wouldn’t even consider it, another way to punish himself. Vampires don’t have an ‘off switch’. ”

 

Mycroft’s facial expression and eye roll would have been comical if it wasn’t in such a serious setting.

 

“We feel everything, multiplied by a hundred and there is no escaping it, no easy way out. The closest we can get to turning it off, is by drinking vampire blood, but I don’t recommend it. I did my best for my brother but he had to work through it on his own. With the help of Anthea and a close friend of her, Dr. Banner.”

 

“Dr. Banner talked and listened to Sherlock for hours. It was painstakingly slow, making one step forward, followed by four steps back. At times I didn’t think my brother would ever heal or even wanted to. Dr. Banner had the patience of a saint, making Sherlock come to terms with his past.”

 

Greg frowned, trying to see Sherlock in some sort of therapy session. He didn't seem like the type of person to do that but as he was learning, Sherlock was anything but normal.

 

“So this Dr. Banner is also a vampire?” Greg couldn’t imagine a human being able to listen to Sherlock’s life story and not run away screaming.

 

“No, he is not. But Dr. Banner isn’t exactly human either. An experiment gone wrong. He knows all about guilt and shame over past actions. He could sit with my brother and look at him with patience and kindness, no judgment. No matter what he’d done.”

 

“I had always seen my brother as a rational being, believing in facts and statistics. Someone that knew how to deal with emotions and not be ruled by them. Our parent’s motto was ‘Caring is not an advantage’ and I lived by it. Thinking it was all we needed to survive and thrive. Getting Sherlock back, seeing how broken and damaged he was, made me realize I didn’t know my brother at all. It made it hard to help him, my own thoughts and emotions getting in the way of Sherlock’s recovery.”

 

Greg flinched as Mycroft stopped. He'd heard that line a thousand times when they were out on the field. It drove him and his team mad, many had wanted to punch Sherlock in the face at times. He'd had to blush out little fires between Sherlock and his team-mates, making excuses for Sherlock's words but secretly wondering if he really meant it. Most of the time he could shrug it off, blaming it on a lack of tact but even he wasn't a saint and if it hadn't been for Sally that time, he'd done something stupid.

2

Sherlock had worked with them for about two months and it had been a challenge for sure. It was clear the man was smart and sharp but his confidence bordered on arrogant and he'd seen a few raised eyebrows at some of the things that came out of Sherlock's mouth.

 

“Why would he care? She stole all his money, trying to frame him for a murder she committed.”

 

It seemed Sherlock had a hard time understanding the most basic things like friendship, love and how people's hearts worked. He'd made a few family members angry, some had cried and certainly, two had tried taking a swing at Sherlock. And he'd only just started at the Yard.

 

“Fuck's sake Sherlock, you can't go around and blurt out the first thing that comes to mind!”

 

“He cheated on her Lestrade, why would she even cry for him. The man was a drunk and a bastard. I did her a favor!”

 

“You call that a favor?!”

 

“It's better to know the truth!”

 

“You could have used a bit more tact! That was cruel Sherlock.”

 

So yes, working with Sherlock was a challenge but Greg couldn't help but like the man. His mind was extraordinary, so sharp and fast Greg wondered if this was even real. Who even took the time to learn about 242 types of tobacco ash?

 

“243 Lestrade. And it's helped me in many cases in the past. Just because something looks unimportant doesn't mean it is.”

 

He was learning with Sherlock around. There was no doubt of that. Mostly he was learning how to keep his patience and stop his team from trying to strangle the genius.

 

“I swear Boss, he's a bloody psychopath! Look how happy he is, dancing around and taking in all the details. It's not normal.”

 

“Come on Andrews, dancing around? Sherlock doesn't dance around and I'm pretty sure he doesn't even know how to dance. Let the man do his thing and get back to work.”

 

He'd had many conversations like these in the few weeks Sherlock had started working with them and they seemed to intensify over time, getting nastier and mean. Yes, Sherlock could be a bit too much and sometimes hurtful but calling him a psychopath was way out of line.

 

Then they found the body of Linda Harrods and Greg wondered if his team was right about Sherlock after all.

 

"Caring won't help her now Lestrade, she cared too much and look where it got her. Now, give me space to work!"

 

Linda had been barely 12, murdered and left like a piece of trash in a ditch somewhere half naked. Every case was difficult but it was a whole other level when it involved children. He had a ton of nieces and nephews and some of them were Linda's age. Greg would never understand how anyone could hurt and murder a child. Thinking about what Linda probably had gone through made him sick and miserable and Sherlock's cold and harsh reasoning had made his skin crawl.

 

“A child has been murdered here Sherlock, show some respect.”

 

“How will that help her? She's dead, it's not like she knows what's happening around her now.”

 

He wasn't proud of it but he'd snapped, fed up with Sherlock's detachment and clear lack of respect.

 

"Don't you feel anything!? There is a young girl murdered, robbed of her life, her future! How can you be so cold? So uncaring? What is wrong with you?”

 

“Caring for her won't help solve her murder. Stop being so bloody sentimental Lestrade!”

 

“Stop being such a cold-hearted freak!”

 

Sherlock's face had instantly changed, his eyes going wide for a second, his face in total shock before he'd closed down. Before Sherlock could open his mouth to say anything more Sally had jumped in between them, holding up her hands as she gave him a hard look.

 

“That's enough! Having a screaming match here won't help either.”

 

Greg had blinked, suddenly realizing they were still at the crime scene, his team watching them like some circus performance as Sally moved closer to Sherlock, caution in her eyes.

 

“Sherlock?”

 

He'd come out of his thoughts, looking at Sally as if not seeing her, before his eyes drifted back to Greg's. Greg's heart had stopped at the hurt and sad look in Sherlock's gray eyes and he'd moved forward, wanting to reach out.

 

“Sherlock, I-”

 

“You should talk to her school. Find the yellow notebook. Also, try to find a boy named Edward.”

 

Sherlock had stepped back as Greg moved forward, his gaze shifting away from him and landing on Sally again. She gave him a tiny smile which Sherlock didn't return but his eyes softened for a second, a minuscule tilt of his head was all she got before he turned and walked away. Leaving Greg feeling like a bastard and an idiot while Sally gave him another hard look.

 

“Sally, I didn't mean-”

 

“I know Boss, but he doesn't.”

 

He'd felt awful but it still had taken him a few days to forgive Sherlock. He couldn't understand why the man talked like that as if the world and the people in it meant nothing. It took him a long time to figure out that Sherlock did care, he cared deeply, working himself to the bone to catch the people responsible. That was his way of showing that he cared, solving their murders, finding the men, and sometimes women, who had done it and putting them away.

 

"They deserve answers Lestrade, don't you see? The families left behind need justice. I'm not good with all this stuff, other people, and their feelings. That's where you come in. I'm not good with grieving family members and crying in a corner won't help them. Wallowing over how bad and cruel the world is, how unfair it is, won't help either. Catching the people responsible will!"

 

“I understand Sherlock but you need to watch your tongue. Just, try to tone it down a bit?”

 

After that Sherlock had toned it down, learning to keep his mouth shut, or at least be less of a bastard with other people around. He still slipped up, making people cry sometimes but Greg knew that was more his inabilities to read social situations then deliberately being cruel.

 

He'd tried to apologize but Sherlock had brushed it off, claiming it wasn't important and that he'd heard worse. Sherlock's tone had been light but there had been a stiffness in his body as Greg watched him. For the first time it became clear to Greg that yes, Sherlock had a big mouth and an attitude, but underneath it all, he had a small and fragile heart.

3

Mycroft cleared his throat and Greg was back at 221B, Mycroft's eyes focused on him.

 

"It turns out my parents' way of helping us didn’t help Sherlock at all. He tried, he really did, but he could never live up to my parent’s expectations. His interests were all over the place, he could never stay focused for long enough to really excel. He tried to be like me, cold and detached. Trying to earn some respect from my family, from me. You know, when he was younger he wanted to be a pirate."

 

Greg smiled at the idea of Sherlock with a pirate hat and his heart cracked a little as he heard the sadness in Mycroft's voice.

 

“Trying to be someone else, deny himself any sign of weakness broke him down. I think it’s a big reason why he turned to drugs, stop his mind from consuming him and making him care less. You see, Sherlock blames himself for all that's happened when in reality he should blame me."


Mycroft's voice had gone soft again, his face hard as if set in stone.

 

“Mycroft, you couldn't have known. You did what you thought was best, what your parents had taught you.”


“I should have known. I saw all the warning signs and chose to ignore it. Now my brother is a vampire because of it.”

 

Mycroft looked away for a second and Greg got up, moving to sit closer to the man. He put a hand on Mycroft’s shoulder for a second, seeing the surprise in the vampire’s eyes before he was in control again.

 

Cold and detached my arse.

 

“Sherlock is a vampire because of Joseph Trevor and Auguste Taylor, not because of you.”

 

Mycroft raised an eyebrow, clearly not agreeing with him.

 

“Auguste took advantage of Sherlock, they all did. You couldn’t have known. You know Sherlock, he’ll say he’s fine even when he’s bleeding.”

 

Mycroft huffed and Greg smiled, Sherlock’s stubbornness had no bounds.

 

“So Dr. Banner’s help fixed Sherlock?”

 

“I don’t think my brother would like that analogy.” Mycroft frowned, the gears inside his head turning as Greg shifted to a more comfortable position.

 

“But, after time Sherlock came out of his living space. He stopped searching for ways to hurt or kill himself. He even spend time with me, reading books, listening to music. He started playing his violin again. There were still moments when he would zone out, needing time alone, but Dr. Banner was there when Sherlock needed it. Just as Anthea and myself were.”

 

“You’re a good brother Mycroft.”

 

“I have a lot to make up for.” Mycroft shrugged a shoulder, stopping Greg’s protests.

 

“Sherlock found some peace with himself and his actions but there are still members of different clans who want his head. Even today.”

 

“They still want revenge? But they already made Sherlock suffer.”

 

“Vampires can hold grudges for a long time Detective Inspector. What Sherlock went through with the Pigalle clan was nothing compared to what he’d done. Some wanted him starved for eternity, other’s wanted him at the bottom of the sea, some just wanted him dead as painful and slow as possible. The Cullan clan, in particular, was outraged by the deal the Pigalle leaders had made. They didn’t care that Sherlock had been a newborn, that he’d been tricked and turned without his consent. They didn’t care that he’d basically lost his mind, not knowing about the consequences of his actions.”

 

“They lost a daughter, Rose. No, we can’t reproduce.” Mycroft’s amusement was clear in his voice and Greg felt himself blush. He’d been thinking about that ever since he found out about vampires. It was only logical, wasn’t it?

 

“Vampires normally don’t turn people into other vampires. Not if they can find a way to save a human in another way. Turning a human is an intimate act, it requires the consent of the human so they have a clear understanding of what’s to come.”

 

“But Sherlock didn’t consent to it, how-“

 

“Some vampires just take what they want. Blinded by lust and wanting to have control. It’s a big responsibility, giving someone eternal life. When a bond is done right, it’s for life. They start their version of a family. Meeting other vampires, forming a clan. They protect and care for each other. Rose was well respected and liked in the Cullan clan. She was a sister to many, a daughter to the leaders and ready to become a leader herself. How would you feel if someone murdered the person you love?”

 

Greg fell silent, his heart beating faster. If anyone hurt a member of his family, he'd want justice too, no matter how much time had past. Mycroft’s words swum around in his head, hearing about vampires building families and spending their lives together. He let out a breath, trying not to blush as he got his words out.

 

“Sherlock said vampires can't love. That it always turns dark and twisted.”

 

“Sometimes my brother is wrong, Inspector. It’s not always romantic love but there is affection and respect between our kind. We fight for our family and loved ones. In that, we are no different then humans.”

 

“I didn’t think- I mean, what I’ve read and seen-“

 

“It’s easier to pin us down as the villians Inspector. It means humans don’t have to look to closely at themselves. I know you care for my brother but it puts you in danger. The world of vampires isn't a peaceful one and you are merely human.”

 

“Oi!”

 

Mycroft raised a hand, a smirk on his face and Greg glared. Maybe he was just human but he was a DI, he had training and skills and a good set of brains. He could take care of himself.

 

“I don't see you as helpless Inspector but it's a fact vampires are stronger, faster and more deadly than anything you've faced before. If you stay by my brother's side it's something you need to be aware of. We are very good at finding someone's heart and burning it.”

 

“I'm not leaving.”

 

Greg raised his chin and he saw the gleam of approval in Mycroft’s gray eyes.

 

“Good. Now, I think it’s time for you to go home and get some sleep Inspector. I’ve taken up a lot of your time. My apologies. I’m sure you’ll need some time to process this all. It’s a lot to take in.”

 

Mycroft stood up in one fluent moment, making Greg startle. Always so damn fast!

 

“Inspector, learning about our world is not without dangers and Sherlock would want you safe. As do I.”

 

“You do?” Greg bit his lip as Mycroft rolled his eyes at him. It really had to be a Holmes thing.

 

“My brother cares for you, he hasn't cared for anyone in a long time and I believe you do him good. Making him see there is more to life then chaos and death. That he's more than a monster. Give him some time Inspector, he'll come round.”

 

“I hope you're right.”

 

Greg got up, knees protesting and he saw the smile on Mycroft’s mouth.

 

“Shut up.”

 

“I didn’t say a word, Inspector.” But Mycroft was still smiling as Greg put on his coat, heading for the door. He’d gotten so much information, learning about Sherlock’s history, how he’d been treated. He did need time to go over it. He jumped out of his skin when Mycroft suddenly stood next to him, hand on the doorknop.

 

“Dammit! Is that a vampire thing or just a Holmes thing?!”

 

“Both. Goodnight Detective Inspector, Anthea will see you out.” Amusement in Mycroft’s voice as he opened the door, meeting Anthea’s curious gaze.

 

“Ready Inspector?”

 

Greg nodded, stepping out of the flat but turning around instantly and grabbing Mycroft’s arm. The hint of surprise in Mycroft's eyes made him smirk a fraction of a second.

 

“Will you let Sherlock know that I’m still his friend. Knowing about his history doesn’t change that.”

 

Mycroft looked down at Greg's hand on his arm but Greg didn't remove it, giving it a light squeeze instead. When their eyes met, there was a softness in them that took Greg's breath away. He hadn't been sure Mycroft was capable of that.

 

“He already knows Detective Inspector. But I'll tell him again.”

 

Mycroft gave him a nod and Greg dropped his hand, a lightness to his heart as the older Holmes brother turned away. At least Sherlock would know he still had a friend and that he hadn't pushed Greg away. For now, that would have to do.

4

Anthea brought him home, her silent presence a comfort and he looked at her, waiting till she turned her head to meet his gaze.

 

“Thank you.”

 

He didn't have to explain, without her Sherlock wouldn't have made it. He would have been dead and Greg would never have known him. Without her, his life would have stayed the same, not boring but mediocre. He couldn't imagine a life without Sherlock in it and that was all thanks to Anthea.

 

“Goodnight Detective Inspector, take care.”

 

“Night Anthea.”

 

They parted ways and he made it up the stairs to his flat, exhaustion crashing over him as he closed the door. He was just able to kick off his shoes and lose his jacket and tie when he crashed onto the sofa, asleep in seconds. Unaware of a pair of green/blue eyes watching him.

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 9

After their fight, Sherlock goes to the two people he trusts the most for some guidance.

1

“Sir, has your brother checked in with you this week?”

 

Mycroft looked up from his file, a possible war between two idiots, and frowned as he gestured for Anthea to come in.

 

“Hmn, now that you mention it, he hasn't.”

 

It wasn't unusual for Sherlock to forget to call his brother once a week. Most of the time it was Mycroft calling, asking how Sherlock was doing, how his cases were getting along. It was easier in this day and age, just needing to pick up the phone instead of going to Sherlock’s flat. Those visits had been awkward with Mycroft not knowing what to say or saying the wrong thing. Guilt on both sides made it difficult to open up, even with the help of Dr. Banner.

 

“He needs your support Mycroft. Just be there for him, listen. No matter what you think, you are important in Sherlock’s life and for his recovery.”

 

The new technology made it easier, though Sherlock had a much easier time learning these things. They called each other once a week, or when it was really busy for both of them, they send texts. Still, if they were both in London, they made time to see each other. Some weeks it was the highlight of Mycroft’s existence. He was a part of his brother’s life, much more than when they’d been human and he cherished that. Their relationship would never be easy, it always needed work, but they were at a place that they wanted to put effort into it.

 

“That’s strange.” Anthea sat down, crossing her legs and pulled out her phone, the tone of her voice concerned. Whenever Anthea was concerned there was a reason and Mycroft felt his body tense instantly. He worried constantly about Sherlock, up to a point of obsession. It drove Sherlock mad but Anthea was a good soundboard for Mycroft. She told him to stop overreacting, to not check up on Sherlock every hour. To make Mycroft see sense and reason.

 

“We made plans for dinner tomorrow, I texted him with the last details but he hasn't returned my text.” Mycroft felt a spark of worry. It wasn't for Sherlock to ignore Anthea's texts. Even when he was busy, or in a sulk, he never ignored Anthea. Sherlock saw Anthea as a mother, having deep respect and love for her. He always made time.

 

“When is the last time you heard from him? Mycroft asked, grabbing his laptop and typing in a code for the CCTV system. He hated using it, wanting to give Sherlock the freedom he needed but it was strange for Sherlock to not respond to Anthea’s texts.

 

“Last week, after our meeting in Russia. He was working the Horace Carle case.”

 

“The one with the stolen artworks in the National Gallery?”

 

Anthea nodded and Mycroft pulled up the footage of Sherlock's place. It all seemed normal and quiet, a perfect mess as always but he couldn't find his brother anywhere in the house. Still, nothing unusual as Sherlock liked walking around a night, letting his mind wander and try to get some peace. Sherlock had his own Mind Palace, something Mycroft had thought him when he’d been a boy, but it was never as strong as his own. Sherlock’s mind could still be too fast and too over the place. That's why the drugs, and the vampire blood, would always be a temptation for him.

 

“I'll activate the tracker on his phone.” He entered in another code after a second of hesitation. There was no doubt Sherlock knew about the tracker or the camera's in his home but he hadn't commented on them, hadn't even bothered trying to find them. Mycroft wanted to take that as a sign, he just wasn't sure if it was good or bad.

 

The signal went off and he turned the screen so Anthea could see, relief evident on her face the moment she realized.

 

“It seems my brother is just outside. Would you like to go get him?”

2

“What happened?”

 

Sherlock just shook his head so Anthea stepped back, letting Sherlock in and closing the door behind her. She felt Sherlock's nervous energy instantly, a radiating anger mixed with guilt and she let him to the kitchen by the elbow, noticing how tense he was.

 

“Some warm cocoa?” She asked as she gestured for Sherlock to sit down, turning around to get some ingredients. Even after all this time, Sherlock had a sweet tooth and he looked like a man who could use a warm chocolate, maybe two. Sherlock nodded, taking off his coat before dropped down on one of the high chairs around the kitchen island.

 

Anthea kept quite as she melted chocolate and heated up milk. She knew he needed time to find his words, telling her his worries when he was ready to do so. She passed Sherlock’s favorite mug, the scent of chocolate filling the room and she got a smile in thanks, Sherlock’s fingers wrapping tightly around the mug. She took a sip of her own drink, savoring the feeling as it warmed her body. The effect wouldn't last long, vampires were doomed to be eternally cold, but it was one of those little pleasures in their eternal life. Like warm socks and big coats.

 

“Sherlock?”

 

“Greg and I had a fight.”

 

“Greg?” Anthea asked, taking another sip of her drink. She didn’t like Sherlock’s tone, a mix between sadness and hatred but she waited. It was never a good idea to push Sherlock.

 

“Lestrade. The DI I work with. His first name is Greg.”

 

“I see. What was this fight about?” She'd heard about DI Lestrade of course. The minute Sherlock had made contact with the man, Mycroft had done a background check. She remembered Mycroft’s confusion as to why this ordinary man would catch Sherlock’s attention.

 

“He’s 45, never married, nothing special about him. He doesn’t even have a parking ticket, Anthea.”

 

She had some ideas why Sherlock was drawn to him. He was normal. As in kind and honest. People liked and respected him. He kept a level head, didn’t much care for money or luxury, even though he could afford some with his annual salary of 50.000 pounds. The man was patient and friendly but not afraid to put someone in their place if it needed doing. He seemed like someone who wouldn't be intimidated by Sherlock, who wouldn't be jealous of his talents. Anthea had followed him a few days, trying to get a feel for the man and learned nothing that would raise alarm-flags. She had a good feeling about him, a beginning hope that this time Sherlock would find a real friend. The Inspector didn't seem dazzled and blinded by Sherlock's mind and abilities as John had been. Yes, he was impressed, of course, everyone was, but he didn't put Sherlock on a pedestal. Actually confronting the man if he did or said something wrong.

 

“Just because you're genius doesn't mean you're better than us Sherlock!”

 

Anthea had smiled when Sherlock had looked at the DI with surprise. It was the very beginning of their partnership and Sherlock had a lot to learn. It was comforting to see, how the DI stood his ground, not letting Sherlock run over him.

 

“I don't care Sherlock! You don't run off and get yourself almost killed! You wait for back up!”

 

Even then she'd seen the real worry and concern for Sherlock on the DI's face and she'd told Mycroft, asking him to let it be and not interfere. They’d had fights before, Sherlock coming to stay for a week after one of them but she’d not seen so much hurt and pain in a long time.

 

“I.” Sherlock stopped, taking another sip of chocolate milk and not looking in Anthea's direction. She reached out when Sherlock put down his mug and he grabbed her hand, squeezing it tightly and her worries intensified when she saw the despair in his eyes. 

 

“Oh, Sherlock.” She hadn't seen him so upset and lost since John's betrayal and seeing him like this now broke her figurative heart. There was also the tiny pang of worry that Sherlock would do something stupid but she pressed it down. He’d come a long way, they all had and she knew Sherlock would warn her if things got too much for him. They all had Dr. Banner’s number on speed dial, though they hadn’t needed it for a long time.

 

“Whatever you want to tell me I'll listen.” She whispered, giving him an encouraging smile as she let go of his hand. “And I won't tell your brother.” She winked and Sherlock huffed, giving her a grin in return.

3

It had always been easier for Sherlock to talk to Anthea than his brother. Even though he knew Anthea was loyal to Mycroft. He’d helped her after she left the clan, offering her protection and company in a difficult time. Still, Anthea respected and liked him too, always there for him when he needed someone to vent to. Someone who wasn't burdened with guilt and shame over their shared history. Sherlock knew his brother meant well, that he was trying to make up for their past but some days it still felt like a struggle to connect with his brother.

 

“He doesn't see me as a monster.”

 

Sherlock started, surprised with those words leaving his mouth.  The whole scene with Greg had left him disorganized and lost. He’d been so angry at that moment, hearing Greg talk about how good he was.

 

You don't know the first thing about my nature.”

 

He'd seen the unease on Greg's face, the hint of fear as Sherlock got up and loomed over him before Greg had moved out of his seat. His gaze locked with Sherlock's, stubborn to a fault. Nobody would have noticed how afraid Greg was in that moment, but Sherlock could hear his heart skip a beat, could hear the rate go up as he got closer, invading his personal space, breathing him in. Even in his anger, the scent had made Sherlock see stars, imagining what it would be like to lick Greg’s skin. To bite that sweet spot where neck went over to shoulder.

 

It had made him realize that he was still a vampire, no matter how normal he felt around Greg.

 

You said you'd never hurt me.”

 

The disbelief, pain, and sliver of fear had almost been too much for Sherlock. Wanting to take his words back, let go of his anger and enjoy the rest of the evening with Greg. But his fear, for his feelings about the man, had made him close down.  This felt different than with John, more dangerous. So he'd protected himself in the only way he knew how. By acting out and pushing people away.

 

 

“Sherlock? Are you still here?” Anthea's voice broke through his thoughts and he nodded, looking down at his half-empty mug.

 

“I've been a fool, Anthea. I lashed out and he didn’t deserve it. Doesn’t even know why I- He stopped, biting his lip before meeting her gaze. “I'm a monster. Greg deserves someone who can give him a real future, not some mock-up version of it.”

 

It had been a long time since he’d had a friend. He respected Greg, liked being around him. Greg was kind and friendly, hardly ever judging Sherlock. He listened to him, asked him questions, not to kiss arse but because he really wanted to learn. He’d messed up tonight. What he'd said and done was unforgivable and he was sure Greg never wanted to see him again.

 

Maybe I lied.”

 

He shivered as the memory came back, seeing the shock and disbelief on Greg’s face. He would never forgive him. The trust they'd build up over time was destroyed in mere seconds and Sherlock hated himself for being, well, him.

 

“He asked the same question.” Sherlock closed his eyes, feeling Anthea’s hand in his and he held onto it. “He asked to see my real face and I just- It all came back. Why? He’s not John. I know he’s better than that so why did I-“

 

“Sherlock.” He opened his eyes, seeing the care and compassion in Anthea’s brown eyes. They had flecks of gold in them and it always calmed him down. “What John did to you was horrible. It’s only logical to carry that with you.”

 

“He sees me as a person Anthea, even after he learned what I was. I should have realized his questions came from curiosity and not-“

 

“Give it some time Sherlock. Whatever happened, this Lestrade fellow sounds like a reasonable man. I'm sure he'll come around.”

 

“I don’t deserve it. I. Anthea, I was-“

 

“Sherlock. We all make mistakes. You can get past this, I’m sure Detective Inspector Lestrade will understand if you explain it to him.”

 

Sherlock didn’t respond, instead taken another sip of his hot chocolate. His past was something he wasn’t proud of. He doubted Greg would still see him as a person if he told him everything he’d done. He’d been in a bad place for a long time, thinking he’d found happiness with John. When Greg came to his attention he’d tried to fight it but everything he learned about the man made him think maybe this would be different. It was the first time he used his skills and mind for something good. Solving murders, helping people. Greg had been a big part of that, giving him a chance. It was his way of repenting for his past. The lives he’d taken and the blood he’d spilled.

 

“I don't deserve a second chance,” Sherlock whispered, staring into his mug and not flinching when Anthea stood next to him, an arm firmly around his shoulder.

 

“Let him decide that for himself, Sherlock. Give him a chance.” Anthea kissed his curls and patted his shoulder, Sherlock leaning into her body as he closed his eyes.

 

“Is Mycroft still working?”

 

“You can go see him, Sherlock. You know you don't need to ask.”

 

“Thank you.”

 

“Anytime Sherlock.”

 

When he left the kitchen he was feeling better. The idea of sharing his life story still didn’t feel good but if that was the only way to keep Greg in his life then he would do it. He’d pushed too many people away and he was tired of it.

He went up the stairs to Mycroft's office, hearing him type on his computer and couldn’t stop a grin. Mycroft typed faster than any human but compared to Sherlock he was the speed of a turtle. He nodded to himself, finding the courage to knock and enter Mycroft’s office.

 

Greg wasn't John and the man deserved an explanation. Hopefully giving Sherlock another chance. He only hoped Mycroft would help him with his plan.

4

“Are you sure about this Sherlock?”

 

Mycroft watched his brother carefully, seeing how the gears inside his mind were working. He'd been surprised by Sherlock’s request. Sherlock didn’t like talking about that part of his life, still ashamed of it. He didn't trust easily, not after all that had happened and telling DI Lestrade he was a vampire was one thing, but confiding him his whole life story was quite another.

 

“He deserves to know.”

 

“And what if that means he doesn't want to work with you anymore?” Mycroft asked, raising a brow as he saw the flash of fear in Sherlock's eyes. It had been a while since Sherlock had opened up to someone. Closing off anyone that dared to come too close. Mycroft had understood, but it also broke his heart seeing how lost and lonely his brother was. He'd had some concerns at the beginning of learning about the DI. He was the first person Sherlock took an interest too after John but Anthea had asked him to let it be.

 

“He's different Mycroft. Trust your brother’s judgment.”

 

Detective Inspector Lestrade seemed like a logical, down to earth man but Mycroft couldn't predict how the DI would handle all this. He’d never seen Sherlock at his worst, had never seen the soulless eyes, the black veins, the sharp fangs, the ridges along the brows and the lines across his face. He'd never seen how lost and animalistic Sherlock had been when they'd found him, how desperate for his pain to stop, to end his suffering. Mycroft shivered and Sherlock looked away for a second, clearly understanding what Mycroft was thinking about.

 

“I need to give him the option Mycroft. He needs to know who I really am.”

 

“You’re not-“

 

“It’s part of me Mycroft. You know that. He deserves to know all of it. Needs to know the risks of being my fr- Of being in my life.”

 

The determination overtook the sadness but it was clear in Sherlock’s eyes. This had never happened before, people didn’t stick around long enough for a friendship to form so they both didn’t know what was the best choice in this matter.

 

“Will you, will you do this for me?”

 

“Why not tell him yourself? He's never met me Sherlock, who's to say he'll believe me?”

 

“I know Lestrade. He'll want answers. If he doesn't hear from me soon he'll come looking for me. It's- that's just the way he is.” Sherlock gave a watery smile as he shrugged a shoulder. He’d heard a thing or two about the DI and the man could be just as stubborn as his little brother at times. “You’ll be able to give all the facts. To have a bit of distance from it all.”

 

“It wasn’t exactly easy for me Sherlock. For none of us.”

 

“I know. I know that Mycroft. I just, I can’t face him. After what I said, what I’ve done.”

 

“Fine, I’ll go talk to him. It’s not something I look forward to Sherlock.”Mycroft stood up from behind his desk, going to the mini bar and pouring himself a drink, holding the bottle up to Sherlock in question. The idea of talking to a stranger about his brother didn’t sit right with Mycroft. Sherlock had been through enough, he didn’t need more pain and complications but DI Lestrade had a good influence on his brother.

 

“No, I just had hot chocolate.” Mycroft smiled and Sherlock rolled his eyes, crossing his arms in front of him. Alcohol was another way to be warm for a while. He could handle the cold better than his brother, not doing the best job of hiding it. It had earned him a nickname over time, The Iceman. It helped during negotiations, people already intimidated by him and his reputation.

 

“Thank you. This is not like John. Greg is… Better.” Sherlock whispered, not able to look Mycroft in the eye.

 

“You think very highly of this man, Sherlock.” Mycroft turned, taking a sip of his whiskey as he looked at his brother. John had always been a tricky subject between them. He saw the little tick near Sherlock's mouth and could barely hide his surprise. Clearly, this man was more important to Sherlock then he'd let on before. Interesting. And terrifying. The last time Sherlock had deep feelings for someone it nearly broke him all over again and Mycroft wasn't sure if he could deal with that once more if things between his brother and the DI went sideways.

 

“Will you do it or not?” Sherlock's voice had a hint of impatience in it, a pout forming on his lips and Mycroft sighed before walking back to his chair and sitting down.

 

“I will. How much am I allowed to say, Sherlock? Your history is quite... Extensive.”

 

“Everything. Don't sugar-coat it, don't make it seem less dirty then it is. He's a policeman, he can take a lot.” Sherlock said, standing up from his chair and looking down at his brother, his eyes a tad softer than usual.

 

“I know this is a lot to ask.”

 

“I only want to see you happy Sherlock.”

 

Sherlock gave a tiny nod before turning towards the door.

 

“You're more then welcome to stay here for a while if you need some time, Bee. The rooms are ready.”

 

Sherlock stopped just in front of the door, his shoulders sagging a little, voice soft as he answered.

 

“See you tomorrow, brother mine.”

 

“Night Sherlock.”

5

Sherlock had been pacing back and forth for over 40 minutes, counting the steps he took. Mycroft had been talking to Greg for two hours and 15 minutes and Sherlock wasn't sure anymore if he'd been right with his assessment. What if Greg didn't want anything to do with him? The man had texted him a few times after their fight but Sherlock hadn't been able to respond.What could you even say over text? Sorry I sniffed your neck and threatened to kill you?

 

No, a text message wasn't enough to try to say sorry for all he'd said and done. And not just the fight from last week. They'd had arguments before, mostly because Sherlock freaked out and closed off, pushing Greg away with his snark and sulky mood.

 

Can I see your real face?”

 

He'd seen the regret on Greg's face the moment the man had asked but Sherlock had lashed out anyway. Fear clouding his judgment. He didn't view his vampire face as his real one.He'd been a human first and foremost, only Joseph Trevor's greed and obsession had made him like this. He despised his vampire face and all the nasty things that came with it.  It had only gotten worse after John, hating what he was, what it meant. Greg's question had been the same one as John’s and Sherlock had been worried history would repeat itself.

 

What if Greg only saw him as Sherlock, the Genius Vampire after all? It had been on his mind ever since he’d told Greg his secret.

 

He checked his phone again.Mycroft had been talking to Greg for about three hours and Sherlock wondered if that was a good or bad thing. His past was long and messy and he wouldn't be surprised if Greg choose to flee. He’d be disappointed and sad but not really surprised. It was a lot to take in, his drug and vampire blood addiction, the blood on his hands, the consequences of his actions. He knew there were still vampires out there that wanted to see him pay for killing their loved ones. Greg would be an easy target but Sherlock was too selfish to leave.

 

Are you sure about this Sherlock? You know the more he knows, the more dangerous it could get?”

 

Mycroft had a very valid point. Greg was a very good policeman, level-headed and not afraid to take action, but he was only human. Most vampires had respect for humans but there was still a large section that viewed them as just a source of food.

 

From Anthea

Stop worrying. As far as I can tell, everything is going well. DI Lestrade hasn't left and hasn't fainted yet. X

 

Sherlock huffed and then smiled. He couldn't imagine Greg fainting for anything. The man had handled the whole ‘I’m a vampire’ situation remarkably well. There had been shock and disbelief at first but then Greg’s mind had started working and Sherlock had seen the pieces fall into place.

 

I believe you.”

 

It had been a weight of Sherlock's shoulders, the simple acceptance of his statement. He didn't need to show proof, didn't have to pass some test and that's how Sherlock knew Greg was nothing like John. Greg had even stepped forward, showing Sherlock he trusted him. Or as much as his conscious mind could. Sherlock had seen the hesitation in Greg’s step when they first met. The man wasn’t stupid and he’d known something was off about Sherlock, even if he couldn’t put a finger on it.

 

There were days, working with Greg when Sherlock forgot he was a vampire. Being busy with cases and the everyday life he could pretend he was just another person on this planet, doing the best he could to survive and get on with his life. Then Greg would look at him a certain way, ready to say something but stopping just in time and Sherlock was back to reality.

 

Sherlock had been thinking of telling the man, his gut telling him it was the right thing to do. But John’s face always came to mind and he backed off. He couldn’t risk losing this new life he’d build. Then Robbie Darwin had happened and he didn't have a choice but to tell Greg, the man not buying the whole 'I was lucky' story.  He snapped out of his thoughts by an incoming message, almost dropping his phone in his haste to read it.

 

From Anthea

 

Just dropped Greg off at home. He's tired and needs time to process it all but he's not going anywhere. Be back soon. X

 

He almost dropped down on the floor after re-reading it. He'd been 99% sure Greg wouldn't leave but the longer the night went on, the more his insecurities had taken a hold of him. He'd know Greg for about two years now and the idea of losing his friendship made Sherlock shiver. He could always work with someone else, could even leave London and start somewhere new. He had a contact in New York City, but it wouldn't be the same. Greg had given him a chance, even that first day when they'd met when Sherlock suggested they'd look at people with a military background.

 

Greg didn't know him, he'd just been a stranger, a stranger that raised alarm flags in Greg's mind, but he'd listened to Sherlock anyway. He'd noticed how Greg had looked him up and down, liking what he saw but he’d shook it off, focusing on Sherlock's words and not his looks. It was a nice change from all the hungry stares he got, people undressing him with their eyes.

 

He should have known Greg's questions came from innocent curiosity. Who wouldn't have questions when they met a vampire? Greg hadn't shown that same eagerness as John. There hadn't been hints of Greg wanting to be just like him. He seemed happy with his life and work, confident in his own skin. He didn't seem jealous or too much in awe of Sherlock's abilities and Sherlock felt guilt as he went over the conversation again. Greg's questions had been genuine, a way to understand Sherlock better and Sherlock had misjudged the situation, again.

 

“Bee, everything okay?”

 

Sherlock jumped, surprised to see Mycroft standing at the door.  He didn't even hear his brother come in and that was saying a lot for a 155-year-old vampire.

 

“How did it go?” Sherlock asked, walking to the sofa and sitting down, watching Mycroft with sharp eyes as he walked further into the room, sitting down opposite him. It hadn't been easy for his brother, Sherlock noticed in the way his body was stiff, the dullness in his eyes, the hardness of his mouth. He saw it in the way Mycroft's hand flexed before he placed it on his knee, the added coldness to the room. Mycroft was tired, at least the vampire equivalent of it, and Sherlock felt guilt run through him.

 

It hadn't been fair, asking this from his brother, telling Greg all their joined mistakes, their troubled history. Sherlock knew Mycroft still blamed himself for most of it, blamed himself for Sherlock's transformation and the way he'd handled it all. In a way, he blamed himself for John too, though his brother had warned him from the very beginning.

 

“There is something off about this man Sherlock. The way he looks at you. Please, be careful.”

 

Sherlock hadn't listened, blinded by the attention and praise John gave him and it had been too late when he did open his eyes, the effects of love and lust subsided.

 

His brother always looked out for him, doing his best to protect him from harm but Sherlock's stubbornness was hard to fight. He’d wanted to be his own man, show his brother and the world that he could take care of himself. That he didn’t need anyone and that he was just as competent as Mycroft. John had taken advantage of that fact, playing the two brothers out against each other.

 

“You're your own man Sherlock! You don't have to listen to what your brother tells you! You're smarter than him anyway.”

 

He knew Mycroft had done a background check on Lestrade the moment they met but Sherlock wasn't angry about it. In a way, he was relieved, knowing Mycroft was there to help him. He shouldn't have asked this of him, telling Greg their history but Sherlock didn't have the stomach for it. Afraid of how Greg would see him, how he would judge him now that he knew all the facts.

 

“Mycroft, I-” Sherlock stopped as Mycroft held up a hand, an exhausted, little smile on his lips.

 

“I know Sherlock.” Mycroft gave a sharp nod and Sherlock returned it, looking down at his lap for a second. They weren't the best at communicating, even now, but it was far better than the early days with the snide and arrogant comments.

 

“DI Lestrade is an intriguing man for sure. For more intelligent and observant than I first gave him credit for.” Sherlock couldn't stop the proud smile on his face, not many people got compliments from his brother and Mycroft calling someone intelligent and observant in the same line was a first for Sherlock. “He wanted me to tell you that he still considers you a friend. He was very adamant that I tell you this.”

 

Sherlock felt light-headed by Mycroft's words, a smile on his face, not even caring that his brother could see.

 

“He's a fascinating man Sherlock. Even when I warned him of the dangers he was probably going to encounter he didn't flinch. He wants to see you. I told him to give you some time.” Mycroft raised an eyebrow in question and Sherlock nodded. He was still a mix of emotions and Greg Lestrade had a way of creeping under his skin and turning his world upside down.


He'd never expected to find a friend again, let alone someone to- No, don't go there. Sherlock shook his head lightly and Mycroft's face changed a fraction.

 

“Don't.” Sherlock scowled, crossing his arm but his brother just raised an eyebrow.

 

“You know a relationship with a human is-”

 

“I know that Mycroft! Stop talking about this.”

 

Mycroft sighed, clearly wanting to say more but Sherlock got up, suddenly restless and needing to move.

 

“Lestrade is just a friend Mycroft. He means a lot to me but I would never- It's not fair on him.” Sherlock whispered, not able to look at his older brother, flexing and unflexing his fingers a few times.

 

“You know I want nothing more than your happiness Sherlock. This path you're walking on is-”

 

“I know.” Sherlock snapped, his anger deflating before it had even fully started. He looked at his brother, seeing the tiredness on his face, the concern in his eyes and sighed. “Believe me, I know. I haven't forgotten about John.”

 

His brother pulled a face, eyes going dark gray for a second and Sherlock looked away. Even after all this time just mentioning John's name made Mycroft react like that. His brother wasn't very good at forgive and forget though John was long gone by now.

 

“We are just friends. Even if I wanted-“ Sherlock stopped, embarrassment rising as his brother gave him a long look. “It’s never going to happen Mycroft.”

 

“Sherlock, I.”

 

“Can I stay here for a little longer?” Sherlock spoke louder, not wanting to talk about his confused feelings. He didn’t think too much of it, how Greg affected him. It would never happen and it was pointless thinking about. He couldn’t offer a real future anyway.

 

“Of course Sherlock, you're always welcome here. We'll be away for a few days but Mds. Hudson will be here if you need anything.”

 

Sherlock nodded, giving his brother a smile before leaving Mycroft's office. He still had the whole third floor to himself, ready for when he needed it. He loved his flat in 221 B but sometimes it wasn't enough. Mycroft's home was more secluded, still close to London but not at the heart of it, and Sherlock enjoyed the quiet moments here. He was free to wander for hours on end, taking in the trees and animals surrounding him, hearing the distant traffic. He was a city boy at heart but he needed 'off times' like these to clear his mind.

 

He was about to go up to his rooms when he suddenly changed his mind and went out the door instead. Anthea had said everything was fine with Greg but he needed to see it for himself. Watching Greg sleep was probably not good but it eased his mind, knowing the man was safe and sound. He couldn't face him yet, too ashamed about what had happened. Sorry seemed like a very hollow word tonight, watching Greg turn in his bed, blissfully unaware of his surroundings. He needed to figure out how to deal with the mess he'd made and staying with Mycroft for a few days would help him. Maybe he'd reach out to Dr. Banner too.

 

Greg let out a sound in his sleep and Sherlock got up, stepping closer to the bed, wanting to reach out a hand to stroke the man's cheek but deciding against it. At least not all was lost, Greg still being his friend and believing in him. It was now up to Sherlock to close the distance, to show Greg that he still had a friend in Sherlock.

 

He just didn't know how.

Chapter Text

Chapter 10

Greg and his team solve a murder, Sally makes some things clear and Anthea shows she’s a good friend.

1

 

“So, how did it go? Did you see Sherlock?”

 

Sally closed the door gently behind her as she came up, holding up a bag of delicious smelling donuts. The scent filled the office and Greg's mouth started watering, his stomach finally coming back to life.

 

It had been a short night for him, his dreams filled with pieces of Mycroft's story and images of Sherlock covered in blood. His eyes dark and cold, not knowing who Greg was and ready to attack.

 

He'd finally woken up around 5 AM, his body sweating, hands shaking and his heart was beating so fast that for a second he thought he was having a heart attack. He wasn’t looking forward to work but sitting around in the house wouldn’t help him either. He’d asked Mycroft to tell Sherlock they were still friends and that was all he could do. He wouldn’t call or text the man. Now it was up to Sherlock.

 

“There are still members of different clans who want Sherlock’s head.”

 

Greg thought about Mycroft’s words the whole morning, getting ready for work, trying to eat something and failing. Knowing there were vampires out there who wanted to make Sherlock suffer made Greg’s skin crawl. 

 

Vampires can hold grudges for a long time, Detective Inspector.”

 

He'd felt five years older when he’d woken up, sure that when he'd look into the mirror his hair would be all gray.

 

“But I don't- Make it stop Lestrade. I don’t need a fan base!”

 

At least now Sherlock's unwillingness to be in the papers and clear dislike for the press made sense. There was no doubt the leaders of the clans knew Sherlock’s location but the deal they’d made with Anthea and Mycroft must protect Sherlock till this day. Still, staying out of the spotlight as much as possible was a smart idea and Greg felt sick to his stomach as he remembered all the fuss over Sherlock. The reporters with their questions, fans wanting pictures. Riley Parker’s stream of articles.

 

“Oh god.”

 

Just one vampire was enough to try and hurt Sherlock. He took a deep breath, willing himself to stay calm. Sherlock was okay, safe with his brother and Anthea, but the dream still clung to him.

 

The world of vampires isn't a peaceful one and you are merely human.”

 

He suddenly had a bad feeling, as if he wasn’t alone and he did a search of his flat, checking every nook and cranny. Maybe he was already getting paranoïde?

He hadn't lied when he'd told Mycroft he would stay by Sherlock's side but he wasn't an idiot either. Even if Sherlock claimed he was one on a daily basis. He'd seen the strength Sherlock had and apparently that was only the beginning. His stomach did a nasty flip as he thought about how much stronger other vampires could be. How small and vulnerable he was.

 

He'd taken a shower, his head full of worries, questions, and concerns but he didn't have the luxury of sitting around and trying to figure them out. He had work to do and everything else needed to be pushed aside for the moment. At least the criminals he faced at work weren't supernatural. Not that he knew of anyway.

2

“Boss, you okay?”

 

Sally frowned as she folded herself into a chair, the bag being placed on his desk. He was doing his best to be focused and controlled but his mind constantly drifted off to Sherlock. How was he doing? Was he still beating himself up over it? Did Mycroft give his message? Was Sherlock in danger? Would he be in danger now?

 

It was exhausting but he couldn't seem to stop. What he really wanted was to see Sherlock. See with his own two eyes that the man was okay. He’d made a promise to himself to not call or text but his fingers itched to take his phone anyway. Knowing Sherlock wasn’t around made him uneasy. He missed those strange eyes, that sharp mind, his nervous energy, the shy smiles.

 

Get a grip, Lestrade!

 

It turned out knowing about Sherlock's past didn't change anything about his feelings for the man.

 

“Sir?”

 

He snapped out of his thoughts, seeing Sally watch him with a concerned expression on her face and he tried on a smile as he reached for a donut.

 

“Yes, I'm fine. Just had a hard time falling asleep.”

 

It wasn't far from the truth but he saw the skepticism in Sally's eyes. She'd always been hard to fool.She had an almost supernatural way of finding out if someone was telling the truth. Seeing her critical gaze directed at him was unnerving and he took a big chunk out of his donut to distract himself. The chocolate exploded in his mouth and he let out a content moan, his stomach grumbling for more. There was a hint of amusement in Sally's eyes as he reached for another before her expression got serious again.

 

“You need to take better care of yourself, Greg.”

 

He almost choked on another bite, seeing Sally's gaze go down before she faced him again, expression determined.

 

“You work too hard, always staying late, only eating junk food. It can't be enough to keep you going.”

 

“Sally-”

 

“I'm just worried, that's all... Sir.”

 

Greg broke eye contact first, not knowing what to say to that. He'd worked with Sally for a few years now but he could count on one hand the times she'd called him Greg. It warmed his heart to be honest, knowing she was looking out for him and he looked up again, giving her a warm smile. She returned it with a firm nod, cheeks blushing just a bit.

 

“God, these are the best donuts in town, I swear.” Greg held up his second, already half eaten and Sally smiled, relieved for the change of subject. She had a big and kind heart but it wasn't easy for her to show it, something that reminded Greg about Sherlock. Maybe that's why they got along so well?

 

“Have you been to Sherlock's flat a lot?”

 

“You mean after I sprained my ankle?”

 

Sally raised an eyebrow, a hint of irritation in her voice and Greg felt his cheeks burn up. He knew he was being foolish but ever since Sally had told him about it, it had been on his mind.

He was fairly sure Sally didn't have feelings for the man, and Sherlock had told him he was gay, but there still was a voice inside his head nagging about it. When he was tired it was much harder to fight.

 

“I've been there a couple of times, yes,” Sally answered, taking another donut as she watched Greg closely. He felt another stab of jealousy, willing himself to swallow it down, taking a bite of his donut instead. It seems surreal, Sally spending time with Sherlock outside of work, being in his personal space. The man was so private and to himself, he’d only seen Sherlock’s place because Mycroft had let him inside.

 

“It's mostly work related you know. Sometimes he asks for old case files when things are too quiet and he needs some distraction. He's very easily bored.”

 

Sally huffed and Greg smiled. They both knew what a handful Sherlock could be when he was bored.

 

“I didn't know he bothered you for old case files. You know you don't have to-” Greg started but Sally shook her head, giving Greg a tiny smile.

 

“It's fine Sir, it's not out of my way when I'm done with work. Sometimes he invites me in for coffee or something and asks me a million questions about the cases. Most of the time I can't even answer them cause they were way before my time. Did you meet Mds. Hudson? I think she's his housekeeper or something, very sweet but a little noisy at times. Asking if I was Sherlock's girlfriend.”

 

Sally pulled up her noise and Greg raised an eyebrow.

 

“He's not my type Sir, at all. And I'm sure I'm not his type.” She gave a knowing look and Greg felt his face get warm. Dammit, sometimes his Sergeant was worse than his Consulting Detective!

 

“You know, he's lonely Sir. He puts up a brave face but-” Sally shook her head, eyes scanning Greg's face as she bit her lip. It was a thing she did when she needed time to think about her words.

 

“He's great at this, helping us solve crimes, but he's not really a people person.”

 

Greg couldn't stop the huff and Sally's eyes narrowed just a little.

 

“He reminds me of myself. Desperate to prove himself, afraid of asking for help, for reaching out. I don't think he likes himself very much to be honest. He could use a friend and he seems to tolerate me just enough.” Sally shrugged a shoulder, the beginning of a smile on her lips.

“I know I needed time to get used to him but he's not a bad guy. Yes, his social skills are horrible but underneath all that... He deserves some friends or something close to it at least.”

 

Greg nodded, feeling his heart warm up as he looked at Sally. He'd always know she was a great addition to the team. She had patience, took time to learn and get better. He could understand why Sherlock liked and trusted her. The tiny voice inside his head was still whispering, wondering why Greg wasn’t enough, but he stomped it down. He would never be that man.

 

“I've only ever been there for work, Boss. Nothing more.”

 

Sally's voice was firm, her gaze on Greg and Greg nodded, suddenly feeling awkward. He was letting his emotions get too far, that nagging voice inside his head making him believe he had any right to be jealous, to claim Sherlock as his own. Maybe it was the intoxicating way of being in Sherlock's center of attention. Greg loved it when he surprised the genius, feeling Sherlock's eyes burn on his skin when he said something that was right or clever.

 

He needed to snap out of it, stop acting like a lovesick and jealous fool and be the person Sherlock needed, a friend. Someone he could rely on and trust. Nothing more. He cleared his throat, nodding at Sally once and he saw the little smirk on her lips.

 

“It's 2017, Boss. Women and men are perfectly capable of being friends and nothing more. Even if Sherlock is unnaturally beautiful.”

 

“I.” Greg stopped as he saw Sally's smirk turn into a grin, her eyes sparkling with amusement.

 

“He's all yours, Boss.”

 

And now he knew she was taking the piss at him, her voice full of amusement, eyes shining with glee and a bit of smugness. Still, his heart skipped a beat at her words, his mind bringing up an image of Sherlock in his bed, how his body had felt when they'd stood close, how luscious Sherlock's lips looked.

 

Sally cleared her throat, a big smile on her face and Greg wanted to die of embarrassment. Maybe he should take some points from Mycroft's book, learn how not to be so damn obvious.

 

“Okay, we need to get back to work!”

 

3

Sally was still grinning but she handed over a file Greg hadn't noticed before now. Which said a lot about his state of mind.

 

“Any new leads?”

 

“Nothing yet Boss. Everyone is keeping their lips sealed for now. Is Sherlock coming back soon? Did you see him?”

 

He noticed the hope and eagerness in Sally's voice and hated to disappoint her. Not only did he miss Sherlock's company on a personal level, they could really use his help with this new case.

 

“I didn't see him but I met his brother, Mycroft. He assures me Sherlock is fine but he needs some personal time. I don't know when he'll be back but he's okay.”

 

“That’s good to hear. Still, we could use him around here. These dead ends are driving me nuts!”

 

He understood Sally's frustration, they'd found Thomas Ellis' body four days ago and every road was leading nowhere so far. Thomas Ellis had been the most notorious drug leader in London. He was careful with everything he did, almost to the point of paranoid. According to rumors and gossip, Ellis didn't leave his flat. He had four bodyguards with him all the time, childhood friends who'd joined the gang the same time as him. The building his flat was in was monitor 24/7 and you needed special codes to enter. It was a mystery how someone had gotten close enough to kill him, let alone spike his stash of high-grade cocaine.

 

“What about family? Enemies from the past?”

 

Sally shook her head and Greg's stomach twisted into knots. He hated this case. Not only had Ellis been killed, his bodyguards had been found near London Eye Pier, dismembered and discarded into bags. There were no leads, not in Ellis's flat, nor at the Pier and the press was having a field day. It wouldn’t take long before they blamed their incompetence to solve the case on the fact that their Consulting Detective was gone. It was days like these that Greg had to remind himself that he was a DI and had solved many cases without Sherlock's help, it only took more time and more hard work. But of course, that didn’t make headlines in the papers.

 

“It doesn't sound right, Donovan. Who could have access to a man like Ellis? Why take the risk of killing him? And how did they disable his four bodyguards? Those men had been in a gang for most of their lives. It's too much work for one man to execute.”

 

“You mean a team? A rivaling gang maybe?” Sally took out a notebook and Greg saw her mind turning, going over the little things they already knew, trying to see the bigger picture. Sherlock's lessons were rubbing off on Sally too. She'd always been eager to learn and wasn't too proud to admit when she was wrong and needed help. It was an unusual friendship between Sally and Sherlock, one no one else on the team seemed to understand, but Greg was glad for the fact they had each other’s backs. Being a smartarse in the police world was almost as hard as being a woman in an overly male-dominated field.

 

He'd seen it first hand when Anderson had called Sherlock a freak behind his back. When she'd been done with him, there hadn't been anything left of the man.

 

“Sherlock is right! Anderson is an idiot! Instead of listening he just goes off and does what he feels is best, thinking he knows it all and hating it that Sherlock's smarter than him. We're damn lucking to have him help us, not that we need him, we are great on our own, but he does make it easier. He doesn't deserve this!”

 

This protection wasn't one-sided, Greg had heard Sherlock talk to Sally quietly one time, his voice soft and caring as he'd stood close by Sherlock standards.

 

“Don't beat yourself up Donovan, you couldn't have known the man was unstable. You did everything you could.”

 

It warmed him up inside, his feelings for the man only growing. For taking the chance and believing in him. Sally had been right, they were lucky to have Sherlock’s help but maybe they'd gotten too used to it. Knowing Sherlock would come the second he texted the man, solving their most troubling cases in only weeks, sometimes days. They'd become lazy, the outside world forgetting how it normally went and now was the time to change that. He sat up straighter in his chair, taking all the documents they had so far and held them up.

 

“Okay, we need to go over everything again, have another look at the crime scenes, look at the camera footage, talk to witnesses, find out his history. There must be something, family, friends, enemies over the years. He ran a whole drug business in central London, it wouldn't have gone without some blood and chaos along the way. How did he operate, who were his key suppliers, his enemies? Any crimes in the past we don’t know of? We can't rely on Sherlock right now so we have to double down extra hard. Let's get to work Donovan.”

 

“Yes, Boss.”

 

Sally got up, collecting the empty bag and the file and heading to the door. He was sure they could do this, it would take some time but he was certain good old-fashioned police work, together with everything Sherlock had taught them, would bring results. Maybe it wouldn't be solved as fast but they were a good, competent team and now was the time to remind them of that.

 

“Sally.”

 

She stopped and turned around, hand on the doorknob, file tugged under her arm.

 

“Thank you.”

 

Greg smiled, knowing Sally would understand it was a thank you for more than just the donuts.

 

“Anytime, Boss.”

 

4

It took them three weeks to get a break in the case and after that, another two to tie up all the loose ends. It hadn't been easy and over those few weeks, Greg had thought back on how relatively easy his life had been when Sherlock was around to help them out.

 

Police work always seemed fascinating on TV but in real life it contained days of boring, simple tasks like going over phone records, checking names with dates and places, checking them again, talking to people and talking to them again. It had been slow going but they'd finally made it. All because of hard work and a little bit of luck.

 

“We did it, Boss!”

 

Sally was excited, her whole face brightening up and Greg felt his lips form into a smile too. They'd had bad days and terrible days, the press constantly asking were Sherlock was. They made it seem as if they were lost without Sherlock and it irritated him immensely. Not just for himself but for his whole team. They were competent and smart, willing to pull all-nighters if they had to but somehow the press couldn't, or wouldn't, see that.

 

“When will Mr. Holmes be back? It's been two weeks now and you still don't have a suspect.”

 

It took some effort to not snap back but he knew it would only make the situation worse.

“We are working on it. Just let us do our jobs and we will update you as soon as we have something.”

 

“But what about Mr. Holmes?!”

 

It was a question Greg had been asking himself. He hadn’t heard the man since their fight, almost two months ago, and it was getting harder to keep his promise. He wanted to call Sherlock, leave him a message but what could he possibly say? At least Mycroft answered his texts, given him a general update. He’d called the older Holmes brother a few days ago. The press was doing their best to find Sherlock and it made him think about the vampire clans. All this news coverage couldn’t be good, what if some rouge vampire got to Sherlock because of it.

 

“Sherlock is protected here, Detective Inspector. We have a treaty in place with the clans. I can assure you everything is fine and Sherlock is safe.”

 

“But you said-”

 

“I know what I said, Inspector, but going against the treaty would be unwise for any vampire. They take the rules very seriously.”

 

“One vampire is enough, Mycroft. You can’t honestly believe that every single vampire out there follows the rules?”

 

“Of course not.” Greg had flinched when he’d heard the sharp tone in his ear. “But we do have our own protocols set up. It’s very difficult getting near my brother. I’ve been looking out of him for some time, Detective Inspector.”

 

“I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to suggest- I’m just going a bit crazy here, that’s all.” Greg had sighed, feeling frustrated and tired and after a pause, Mycroft’s voice came back, a lot softer than before.

 

“You should get back to work, Inspector. I assure you that Sherlock is okay. I would ask for you to be a bit more patient. Good day, Inspector.”

 

But his patience was running low, the struggles in the case and dealing with a violent press not helping his mood. He made long days, staying well past midnight, trying to not think about Sherlock. He was close to exhaustion when they finally solved Thomas Ellis' murder and took down his whole gang.

 

“I know we've had a couple of rough weeks, it hasn't been easy for any of us but I'm proud of you all. You didn't quit, you pushed through and we made it! Keep up the good work but for now, let's call it a day. Go home to your family!”

 

His team clapped and cheered, patting him on the back as he walked back into his office. He fell down into his chair, seeing all the paperwork that needed to be done. He couldn't suppress a deep sigh, rubbing his eyes before taking the first file and trying to make sense of the words dancing before him.

 

“You should go home, Sir. Don’t you have a free weekend to look forward too?”

 

It was a sign of his exhaustion that he nearly jumped out of his chair at Sally's soft voice. She gave him a look, sitting down opposite him, crossing her arms as Greg protested.

 

“The files will still be here Monday. Go home and get some rest!”

 

“I.” She shot him a glare and Greg sighed, knowing when to surrender. “Alright, I'll just clean this up and then go home. I could use the rest.”

 

“About time you listened to me. Boss.”

 

A tiny smile and Greg rolled his eyes, cleaning up his desk as best he could.

 

“See you Monday, Sir. Enjoy your weekend. I promise I won’t call unless the world is ending.”

 

“Appreciate that. Get home safe.” Greg smiled, waving at her as Sally left to go home.

 

The idea of going home to his empty flat filled him with dread. Every time he opened the door, images of him and Sherlock eating breakfast entered his mind. It had been so peaceful, so normal. Sherlock had read some more in Greg's copy of Harry Potter while Greg did some light housework. Then it had been time for lunch and soon after that they'd watched The Mummy, Sherlock not able to stop commenting on it. It had been heaven, almost like a dream and going home now reminded him of what he could have.

 

5

He sighed, sitting back down in his chair and shaking his head. He wasn't going to do this. He wasn't going to daydream about a life that could never happen. Instead, he was going to begin tackling his huge pile of paperwork and try to get some of it done. Too bad Sherlock wasn't around to help with it, the man was excellent at remembering little details, things Greg forgot during a hectic day but Sherlock never seemed to forget anything.

 

Will he forget me?

 

“Agggrrr! Dammit, Lestrade! You are a grown man, start acting like one!” He scowled himself some more, grabbing a file from the pile and opening it up roughly. Work was the only thing that was keeping his mind from running in circles.

 

He glanced at his phone, hand hovering halfway before he snatched it back. Sending a text to Sherlock would only make him feel like a fool. Like a dog begging for some attention and he was too old for that. Why couldn’t Sherlock just send him a text? Being in this limbo was driving Greg crazy with worry and anger. They were both adults! Why couldn’t they just talk about this?

 

A soft knock on his door made him almost jump out of his chair for a second time that evening and he looked up in surprise as a pair of soft brown eyes took him in with curiosity.

 

“I'm sorry to startle you, Detective Inspector. Can I come in?”

 

Anthea came in after Greg gestured her inside and sat down on the chair Sally had vacated not 10 minutes ago. She squinted her eyes, a frown forming between her brows as she crossed her legs.

 

“You should go home and sleep, Detective Inspector. Your colleague was right. This,” She gestured to the papers on his desk. “Can wait till Monday.” She gave him a little smile as she leaned down, eyes scanning his face and he felt a shiver run down his spine. Stupid vampire stare!

 

“Congratulations on solving the case. From what I've read in the papers it has been quite a challenge.” Her voice was soft, tentative and Greg felt himself relax as she waited for his response. There was something about this woman that drew you in, making you trust her almost instantly.

 

“Is that a vampire trick?”

 

“I'm sorry?”

 

Greg blushed as he realized he'd asked his question out loud, another sign of his weariness. He gestured to Anthea awkwardly. “That thing you do, where you look at me and I instantly trust you.”

 

“I don't know. Maybe I'm just a trustworthy person?” She gave a smile, eyes glowing with amusement and Greg sighed.

 

“There's no winning with you vampires is there?” Greg’s irritation was clear in his voice. “Mycroft can read minds, Sherlock can deduce it and you have some vampire magic that makes me feel instantly at ease. No wonder vampires see us as a joke.”

 

“I do not see you as a joke, Detective Inspector. Neither do Mycroft or Sherlock.” She waited for half a beat. “ For my fellow kind, I can't be sure of course.”

 

Greg huffed and Anthea raised an eyebrow, leaning forward on Greg's desk.

 

“What's wrong? Something is clearly bothering you.”

 

“I.” Greg stopped, his eyes going to his phone again. How could he even begin to explain it without sounding like a moody, needy teenager?

 

“Sherlock hasn't contacted you?” Anthea's voice was still soft but there was an edge to it and Greg looked back at her, seeing how her mouth went down just a fraction as Greg nodded.

 

“I know I have no right but I- I just want to hear from himself that he's okay.” Greg looked down at his desk, embarrassed by his confession.

 

“It's been almost two months. I know Mycroft said to give it some time but I-”

 

He startled when Anthea's hand was on his, her gaze intense.

 

“You don't feel cold.”

 

“I had something warm to drink not long ago,” Anthea responded, patting Greg’s hand.

 

“Sherlock is okay, Detective. He's staying with Mycroft for the time being. I promise you, he is not leaving London.”

 

“Oh. That's, that's good.”

 

“Sherlock isn't the best at conflicts. He's ashamed of his actions and doesn't quite know how to handle it. Personally, I think he's afraid of losing you, because of this.” She looked away for a second, biting her lip as if already regretting telling this much to Greg.

 

“I told Mycroft I wouldn't leave him. He's still my friend Anthea. Yes, I could have handled the situation better but I don't view him any differently. He shouldn't either.”

 

A glimpse of approval in Anthea’s eyes as she squeezed his hand.

 

“I knew we wouldn't be disappointed by you. But your colleague is right Detective, go home and get some rest. Leave Sherlock to me.” She squeezed his hand one more time before getting up.

 

“What do you mean?” But Anthea had already left, the door falling closed with a soft click.

 

“Damn vampire tricks!”

 

6

The moment Anthea was gone he felt exhausted, his right hand tingling where she’d touched him. He was too tired to even lift a pen or type a single word on his computer. He closed it down, putting away the files and went home, dragging his feet and his body felt heavier by the minute.

 

It was a small blessing that it was only a 10-minute walk to his flat, the air cold and crisp and he shivered. He was always cold when tired and he sighed in relief when he entered his flat, closing and locking the door behind him. He’d had enough of this whole day.

 

He pulled off his coat, hanging it on the rack and going to the freezer to warm up a pizza. Sally was right, he needed more freshly cooked meals but tonight was not the time to start that new habit. The smell made his stomach growl and he ate it in front of the TV, drinking some water as his eyes tried to stay open and his mind tried to follow along with what was happening. After 15 minutes he gave up, putting the used cutlery in the sink and heading to his bedroom. He dumped his clothes on the floor, he could always clean up tomorrow, and crawled into bed, a yawn escaping as he pulled the blankets over him. He shifted to find a right position, the blankets pulled high and it didn't take long for Greg to fall asleep, exhaustion taken over, lost to the world.

 

He was so far gone he didn't even hear the window open, the footsteps going from the window to the living room table and then back again, the window closing with a soft click.

Chapter Text

Chapter 11

Greg has a free weekend and Sherlock does something brave.

1

“Please tell me you didn't break into DI Lestrade's flat Sherlock?”

 

“It's hardly breaking in with that flimsy lock.” Sherlock huffed, not meeting his brother's gaze as he looked down at his book.

 

“So you don't want to send the man a text but you have no problem breaking into his home?” Mycroft's voice had a note of disapproval in it and Sherlock looked up sharply.

 

“Said the man who has no problem checking up on his brother with cameras inside the house,” Sherlock smirked as Mycroft's eyes narrowed just a fraction. It was hardly Mycroft's place to lecture Sherlock on privacy issues when Mycroft always has his nose where it didn't belong. Even if, at times, it helped Sherlock. But he would never admit that.

 

“How is he going to take it, Sherlock? Have you thought about that? Not many people react positively to someone breaking into their home. Even if it is to give a gift.”

 

“It's not a gift.”

 

“Then what is it?”

 

Sherlock looked down at his book again. He wasn't really sure what had possessed him but it had seemed like a brilliant, genius idea to give Greg a box of his favorite candies, together with a little note from him to say sorry. He didn't know how Greg would react to this gift/apology, but he couldn't admit it to his brother.

 

He'd never been good with things like this, opening up and showing his vulnerability. It had only gotten worse after the whole John incident and now Sherlock was worried he'd made the wrong decision.

 

He sighed, looking up at Mycroft who was patiently waiting, his own book at hand. That was the only problem with staying here, he couldn't keep much hidden from his brother though he doubted Anthea had been the one to blab. Probably Mds. Hudson.

 

“You know Mds. Hudson is terrible at keeping secrets. It always amazes me why you include her in your plans.” Mycroft smirked and Sherlock rolled his eyes. Of course.

 

“Needed someone to do the shopping.” Sherlock shrugged casually, feeling his brother's gaze on him as he tried to continue reading. After he'd seen the Harry Potter books on Greg's shelves he'd gone out and got his own set, wanting to know why Greg liked them so much. It turned out they weren't bad at all, full of action, emotions and grown-up matters. Sherlock couldn't understand why some people insisted on calling them 'books for children' when the subjects matters were sometimes very dark and serious.

 

“I needed to do something,” Sherlock whispered, hating himself for not being able to keep quiet. Anthea had come to him yesterday, firmly instructing him to 'man up and apologize'.

 

“The man is still your friend Sherlock. He's been keeping an eye on his phone 24/7, waiting for one lousy text message. It's been seven weeks Sherlock. You can't keep doing this, this radio silence is doing neither of you any good.”

 

“But I don't know how to-”

 

“You're a genius. Figure it out, Sherlock.”

 

So that's when he'd come up with the plan of offering Greg a gift/apology. He couldn't bring himself just yet to show up at the man's door to hand it over. Just being inside the flat now had been overwhelming, hearing Greg's snoring from behind the bedroom door, how the flat smelled of Greg and pizza. Memories had flooded in from him and Greg sitting in front of the TV, talking about everything and nothing.

 

“You should talk to him soon Sherlock. I know the DI is a patient man but, even patient people have a final straw.” Mycroft's voice was soft, his eyes taking Sherlock in.

 

Sherlock nodded and Mycroft went back to his book, the silence settling between them. He hated to admit it but his brother was right. Greg was almost saint-like in his patience but he couldn't keep avoiding the man, and the situation, forever. The note was a first step, something for Sherlock to open up the lines of communication again. He just hoped he hadn’t waited too long.

 

2

Greg woke up around 8.30, really disliking his body for needing to take a piss now and not two hours later. He grumbled, not wanting to leave his comfy and warm bed but the pressure on his bladder left him no choice. He sauntered to the bathroom, eyes still puffy from sleep.

 

After going to the loo and splashing some water on his face to fully wake up he went into the living area, his mind focused on breakfast. He'd remembered Sally's words of needing to take better care of himself and he went in search of a piece of paper and a pen, wanting to jut down a list of groceries to get before the shops opened. He actually liked to cook, being busy in the kitchen relaxed him, chopping up vegetables, stirring in pots and pans. His job got in the way of that at times, especially with a big case like Thomas Ellis.

 

Looking for paper and a pen his eye landed on an object in the middle of his living room table. He frowned, slowly stepping closer. Pen and paper forgotten as the object got into view. It was a gift, an almost rectangle shape wrapped with black and white paisley design. Next to the gift was a creme white envelope with Greg's name on it in elegant writing and Greg's heart skipped a beat as he picked it up.

 

He recognized Sherlock's handwriting instantly and he felt his heart beat faster as he turned it around, opening it up and taking out the cream white colored card.

 

Forgive me. SH

 

The two words almost knock Greg out, holding the card in his trembling hands, re-reading them again. Sherlock must have been here last night while he was sleeping to leave this behind.

 

He doesn't really know how he feels about it, it's not the first time Sherlock's broken into his flat, but it's the first time Sherlock has given him a gift. An apology. His heart skips a beat as that fact kicks in. Sherlock gave him an apology. He's not gone, he's not leaving. Not ignoring Greg for all eternity. He lays the card on the table, opening up the gift, a smile on his face as he sees the bag of wine gummies.

 

“He remembered.”

 

He smiles like an idiot in the middle of his living room, bag in hand, eyes drifting from the bag of sweets to the card and back again. This is Sherlock's way of trying to fix it, a way of contact between them. He can't really be mad at the man for entering his flat like this. Mycroft had told him Sherlock was ashamed of his behavior. Clearly, he wasn't ready for a confrontation just yet.

 

With the bag of sweets still in hand, he goes in search of his phone, his self-made rule of ‘no contact’ forgotten. He finally finds his phone in his jacket pocket, almost dropping it in his haste and curses, trying to calm down.

 

He sits down on the sofa, placing the sweets next to him, trying to figure out what to say. Texts and emails are wonderful but it's not the same as talking to someone face to face. You can't show your true emotions, even with those damn emoji's, and Greg doesn't want to sound ungrateful or uncaring, or too eager with a long explanation and repeated sorry’s.

 

He shakes his head as he looks at the empty text screen, thinking back on Sherlock’s card with the simple message. It’s to the point but sincere and honest. Greg's hand trembles when he starts typing his message, biting his lip as he sends it, his heart stopping for a second as the message is gone. Sherlock's card was a question. Wanting to know if their friendship was still alive and if there was a chance to move on and get past it.

 

I already did. Greg

 

Greg sighs, hoping he's said the right thing as he places his phone back down, a smile on his lips as he sees the bag of sweets again. It's such a simple thing, most people would call it silly but to Greg, it's proof once again that Sherlock is a great friend. The subject of sweets had come up when Sally had gone round for her birthday with a bag. Somehow it got the team talking about their favorite sweet and Greg had confessed he loved wine gummies. Clearly, Sherlock had remembered.

 

He startled as his phone beeped beside him, seeing the name flash up on the screen. A name he hadn't seen for almost two months. His skin was buzzing, heart pounding as he lifted up the phone, reading Sherlock's message, a little frown on his face before he relaxed again. Naturally, Sherlock would change the subject now. He was as good at talking about emotions as Greg was.

 

From: Sherlock

 

Congrats on solving the Ellis case. I never doubted you. SH

 

He smiled as he shook his head, getting up to make a cup of coffee. As that was brewing he looked again for a pen and a piece of paper, his stomach beginning to wake up and demanding food. His phone beeped and he couldn't suppress a smile. Sherlock did have a habit of sending 10 texts in barely minutes. He only now realized how much he'd missed that.

 

From: Sherlock

 

The press are idiots. Especially that Riley fellow. SH

 

Greg laughed, taking his pen and paper to the kitchen as he typed a response. Riley Parker had been the most vicious in his articles. Complaining that the MET was nothing without Sherlock Holmes. It had made Greg's blood boil but he'd ignored it as much as possible, only talking to the press when he had to. His love/hate relationship with them in general, and Parker specifically, would never change.

 

To: Sherlock

 

Ah well, they seem to forget we did have training for this sort of thing. We're capable of handling our own.

 

He went through his kitchen, thinking about what he needed for the weekend and week ahead, writing it down as he went. English breakfast sounded really nice right about now. He looked at the clock in the kitchen, only 15 minutes till the shops were open.

 

Another message came in and he took out a mug, filling it with hot coffee before he sat down to read it. It seemed now that they were talking again that Sherlock wouldn't stop anytime soon.

 

From: Sherlock

 

I never doubted that. SH

 

His heart stopped, swallowing down the hot liquid, making a face as he felt it travel down to his stomach.

 

To: Sherlock

 

Thank you. We do good work for a bunch of idiots. ;)

 

He could almost picture Sherlock's eye roll as he read the message.

 

From: Sherlock

 

You're a very capable DI. Though some members of your team are idiots. SH

 

Greg laughed out loud, picturing Sherlock's little smirk on his lips before he got serious again. He drank the rest of his coffee, finishing his list of groceries. They texted back and forth some more. His heart felt lighter because of it, going over some cases that had been in the papers, Sherlock asking how Sally was doing. They didn't talk about anything important though and Greg suddenly felt restless. This was good, a good step to going back to where things had been but at the same time, he knew it wasn't enough. After all, he'd learned about Sherlock past. Their fight had changed things between them and Greg didn’t want to ignore it.

 

Sherlock had opened up to him in a way he hadn't to anyone else as far as Greg could tell and he felt shame as he remembered his jealousy towards Sally. He took a breath, picking up his phone and hating himself for not being able to drop it, to forget it. He'd forgiven Sherlock, he really had, but he still wanted to discuss it, still wanted to apologize. Sherlock deserved that, just as much as Greg did. The man had run away and ignored him for two months. It really wasn’t how friends should treat each other.

 

To: Sherlock

 

I think we should talk about what happened. I know you don't feel up to it right now but we can't ignore it forever. You're still my friend.

 

He hit send, sitting there for five minutes waiting for a reply. When none came he sighed and got up, going to the bathroom to take a shower and change. The shops were open now anyway and he wouldn't spend his free weekend sitting around to hear from Sherlock Holmes.

 

Still, his eyes landed on his phone when he was showered and dressed, grabbing his shopping list and keys. There was one message and he closed his eyes briefly before opening it.

 

From: Sherlock

 

Thank you. I'll talk to you later. SH

 

It wasn't exactly what Greg wanted to hear but he couldn't expect Sherlock to just show up and have a heart to heart either. Sherlock had made the first move with his gift, answering to Greg's message and that was more than he'd had in seven weeks. He would do as Mycroft had said, give Sherlock some more time, be happy with what had happened this morning and enjoy the rest of his weekend.

 

He nodded to himself, checking one last time if he had everything with him and went out the door, breathing in the morning air. Sherlock wanted to stay friends, had even shown it by giving Greg a gift and he hadn't brushed off Greg's message for wanting to sit down and deal with the mess. For now, that was enough.

 

3

 Greg's weekend went by in a flash, cooking lunches and dinner for next week and keeping them in the freezer, cleaning up his flat, doing laundry, reading a new book, watching television. A lot of people would find it boring but Greg had the best time, relaxing and taking care of himself. His phone tore him out of the book he was reading and he couldn’t stop a smile when he saw the name of the sender.

 

From: Sherlock

 

Did you hear about that hit and run on Northumberland Avenu? Something doesn't make sense. SH

 

Of course, Sherlock texted him about work, even on his weekend off. He couldn’t really be annoyed by it, seeing it as Sherlock's way of making an effort. The man had always been awkward in conversation, especially after an argument or fight. Sherlock didn't do apologies, at least not often and he preferred putting it behind him and moving on. Greg wondered for a second if that was what would happen now. Sherlock had said they'd talk later but it could well be the man would avoid the subject.

 

From: Sherlock:

 

I do not wish to speak of important matters via text Lestrade. I haven't forgotten. SH

 

To: Sherlock

 

You know it's creepy when you do that right?

 

He could see Sherlock's face, the famous eye-roll, and impatient huff. Maybe Mycroft had been wrong about Sherlock’s abilities and he could read minds after all.

 

His phone rang and he almost dropped it on the couch, lost in his own thoughts about Sherlock. He scowled at himself, taking a breath to stop his racing heart as he looked at the screen. It wasn't work calling for him to come in sooner, but the name still made his stomach do a flip, hands sweating.

 

“Hello?”

 

“Lestrade.”

 

Hearing Sherlock's voice did strange things to Greg's body and he already felt himself smiling like a fool. He hadn't realized how much he'd missed the man till he heard Sherlock's voice in his ear.

 

“Lestrade?”

 

A hint of uncertainty in Sherlock's voice and Greg let out the breath he'd been holding, reaching for the remote to mute the TV.

 

“Yeah! I'm here, sorry, I. How- how are you?”

 

It was a stupid thing to say, hearing the slight wobble in his words. Sherlock didn't like general questions like that, always preferring to get to the point of the matter but now there was a moment of silence and Greg felt his shoulders tense, waiting for Sherlock to answer. If he would answer.

 

“I'm better. T-thank you.” The little stutter made Greg's heart skip a beat. He'd never heard Sherlock so unsure before as if he was nervous to speak.

 

“Thank you again for the gift. I hadn't thought you'd remember that.”

 

“Of course I remember, Lestrade.”

 

Greg swallowed, his heart pounding in his stomach, trying to picture Sherlock at Mycroft's home. It was a big deal for Sherlock to actually call him. The man always wanted to text, claiming it went much faster than calling someone up and trying to explain his findings.

 

“You could have given it in person. No need for sneaking around, you know.” He heard Sherlock sigh and Greg could picture him running a hand through his curls, a frown between his eyes as he searched for words.

 

“I. I wasn't sure if I'd be welcome. After what I said, what I did.”

 

“You're always welcome Sherlock. Didn't Mycroft-”

 

“He did. He gave me your message.”

 

A little pause, Greg clenching the phone tighter in his hands, willing Sherlock to say more. This felt like a new step, a way of leaving that awful situation behind them and Greg didn't want to screw it up.

 

“I.” Sherlock stopped and Greg heard a sound of frustration in his ear, making his body shiver. It was clear this was hard for Sherlock and Greg felt something warm form in his belly.

 

“You scared me, Sherlock.”

 

“I would never hurt you.” The reply came instantly, guilt and shame entering Sherlock's voice and Greg felt like a bastard for bringing it up.

 

“I know what I said, what I did was unforgivable but you need to know-”

 

“I understand Sherlock. You- you lashed out. I deserve it in a way, claiming I know you better than anyone.” Greg tried to sound light but his body was tense as he waited. There were doing this now, talking about what had happened, as adults and it was nerve-wracking.

 

“You do. Know me, I mean. I've been around for a while Lestrade. The person I am today is a lot different from who I was before. Your faith in me, this belief that I am a good man- It reminded me of who I was before.”

 

“Sherlock.”

 

“I should have told you myself. My history.” Sherlock didn't let Greg speak, his words coming out faster now as if wanting to get it over with before he lost his nerve.

 

“I was afraid you'd see me for who I really am. Afraid you'd be ashamed of me and leave.”

 

“I wouldn't have. I didn't. You didn't give me a chance Sherlock. You didn't give me a chance to decide. You just disappeared for weeks. I was worried about you.”

 

“I'm sorry.”

 

The silence lingered and Greg tried to relax his grip on his phone, seeing the tension in his hands. Maybe he was still upset by it all. The fight, Sherlock's reaction, and sudden absence. Ignoring Greg for so long.

 

“You're still my friend Sherlock. I mean it, I still want you in my life.”

 

“How can you?” Pain and disbelief entered his ear and he wanted Sherlock to be here so the man could see he really meant it. Words were just that, words. If Sherlock were here he'd see the truth on Greg's face.

 

“Stop beating yourself up, Sherlock. I said stupid things, you said stupid things. We screwed up. It happens to the best, Sherlock.”

 

“You know it was more than that. I threatened you Lestrade. I don't know if-”

 

“I forgive you, Sherlock. Yes, I was afraid, I won't lie. But Mycroft helped me understand you a little better. I know that friendship doesn't come easy for you Sherlock and I crossed a line that night.”

 

“I would never hurt you, Lestrade.” It comes out soft, a little hesitant and Greg smiled into the phone, wanting to take Sherlock into his arms.

 

“I know.”

 

“You didn't know then. I- What I said to you- What I did.” Another frustrated sigh before Sherlock talked again, the self- loathing very clear. “ How can you ever trust me again?”

 

“Because I know you, Sherlock. You said so yourself. I didn't know the old you, that's true, but I know you now. I'm still on your side Sherlock. I believe in you.”

 

Greg held his breath, worried he'd said too much or said something wrong. He meant it, every word. Sherlock was a vampire, it was a fact but he was hardly a monster. He'd seen it time and time again, the goodness inside him, how he cared and tried to help. He had dark sides, maybe more than most, but he was fighting every single day to be better.

 

“Sherlock?”

 

“You're too good for this world, Lestrade.”

 

“And you're not half as bad as you think you are Sherlock.”

 

He heard a faint huff on the other side and Greg smiled, a lightness to his chest that hadn't been there in a while.

 

“I really thought I'd never hear from you again.”

 

“Lestrade I.”

 

“It's okay Sherlock. I promise we are fine. But, you don't have to stay away on my account. Okay?”

 

“I'll keep that in mind Lestrade.”

 

“Good, Sally has been biting my ears off wanting to know how you were doing.”

 

“Really?”

 

Greg smiled, shaking his head fondly as he heard the surprise in the man's voice. Sherlock was brilliant and smart for sure but when it came to people and friendships he had a lot to learn.

 

“She likes you. She was worried.”

 

“Oh.”

 

“You have more friends than you think, Sherlock.”

 

“It seems so.”

 

Greg grinned, his stress falling away as Sherlock and he talked some more. Sherlock hadn't said he'd be back soon but he hadn't said no either so Greg let it go, focusing on this moment between them, catching up with each other's lives. After 30 minutes they ended the call and Greg stared at it for a while after that, smile still on his face.

 

They were finally moving forward.

Chapter Text

Chapter 12

Greg and Sally solve a weird accident and Greg asks Sherlock to come back to work. 

 

1

“Sherlock was right, this isn’t a normal accident. We started poking around and followed the money found in the glove compartment. The mother had been in contact with a drug dealer.

 

Sally held up a file of papers before she handed them to Greg with a satisfied grin.

 

“It's all in there. Apparently, they'd just divorced, she didn't get nearly as much out of it as she'd wanted. You've seen the house, it's more like a small castle.” Sally sat down, crossing her legs as she let out a huff. Greg could understand Sally’s reaction. He'd felt uncomfortable the moment he'd stepped into that house. The Thompson family had no problem flaunting their wealth.

 

“She couldn't stand to lose the house or her lifestyle. But she also didn’t want to work a normal 9 to 5 job. I guess she thought selling drugs would make her rich fast.”

 

Greg frowned, opening up the file and looking at the crime scene photos. He hardly suppressed a shudder, being run-down by a car was a real mess and it was very likely the woman wouldn't pull through the night.

 

“The son, Evan, found out about his mother side business. Instead of stopping her, he used her for free drugs.”

 

“Unbelievable.”

 

Sally shrugged, pointing to the photos in the file. “She could hardly tell him no. He’d taken photos of her selling drugs, handling the money, talking to her contact.”

 

“So he blackmailed her? For free drugs?”

 

“If the father found out she’d lose contact with her son, and the alimony. But after a while, the figures didn’t add up anymore and her supplier started asking questions. Turns out that they don’t like it when their drugs are being handed out for free. Bad for business. So maybe this was his way of a warning?” Sally pulled a face, not believing her own words and Greg looked at the file in front of him.

 

“What about the son, have they tracked him down yet? Maybe it has nothing to do with her supplier, running her over wouldn’t bring his money back after all. Maybe mommy cut her son off and this is her reward for it?” Greg gestured to the photos in front of him. It was brutal to look at but then again, he’d seen worse things happen between family members.

 

“We found him in the hospital. He's been there for the last two days. His cell phone was off and nobody had seen or heard from him in two days. Dad wasn't worried cause he hardly saw his son after the divorce. There was tension between them after he'd met his dad's new girlfriend, Veronica Ingram. The wounds suggest he's been in a car accident.”

 

“Wait, what?!”

 

Sally nodded, pulling out a sheet from the file and gesturing to a list of injuries. Greg pulled a face in sympathy as he went over it. Humans really weren’t a match for cars. If the boy made it then he'd have a long road to recovery.

 

“If it hadn't been for Sherlock nagging you about it, we wouldn't have figured it out. He clearly hasn't lost his touch.”

 

Sally smiled and Greg looked up. After they'd talked on Sunday Greg had read the article Sherlock had mentioned. He hadn't seen anything suspicious about it, just a standard hit and run and he'd told Sherlock as much the next day in a text. The man had insisted they investigate, sending Greg other photos and articles about the same crime.

 

To: Sherlock

 

You know that's not really my division, right? The woman in the driver seat is still alive.

 

From: Sherlock

 

Barely. And you should talk to her son. SH

 

To: Sherlock

 

They won't like it if I just butt in.

 

From: Sherlock

 

Just do it Lestrade. When have I ever been wrong? SH

 

To: Sherlock

 

Plenty of times actually.

 

From: Sherlock

 

Not when it comes to the work. Text me what you find. SH

 

Of course, they'd gone after it. Sherlock’s instincts were usually right and they’d soon found out it wasn’t a normal car accident. They’d found drugs and money in the glove compartment and things had gone from there. Now, it turned out the son had been in a car accident too and Greg looked at Sally, his mind racing with all the facts they had so far.

“It can’t be a coincidence. Both mother and son in a car accident just days apart from each other.”

 

“I agree. Why run the mother over if you’ve already made an example of the son?” Sally asked, more to herself then Greg.

 

“Fair point. He sure won’t be getting his money any time soon.”

 

“No.” Sally sighed, playing with a pen. “Something doesn’t make sense. We’re missing something. I was going to go talk to the dad and girlfriend next. See what they know about everything.”

 

“I'm coming with you. That way I can keep Sherlock up to date about everything, otherwise, he'll just text every 5 seconds.” Greg got up, grabbing his badge and coat, leading Sally to the car.

 

“So, he's not coming back yet?”

 

“He hasn’t texted you?”

 

“I send him a text to ask how he’s doing but-“ Sally stopped, looking out the window with eyes on the road as they drove to Thompson’s new home. Greg shook his head, his stomach turning by Sally’s confession. He’d told Sherlock to send her a text, letting her know he was okay but he clearly hadn’t taken Greg’s advice.

 

“You know how he is, Sally,” Greg started, glancing at her for a brief second before focusing on the road again. “ He hates small talk even more then you do.” Greg tried to sound light but Sally didn’t respond, just looking out the window as the buildings past them by.

 

“I guess he just needs a bit more time. He’ll contact you, he always does.”

 

“What happened between you two anyway? He's never been gone this long.” Sally ignored Greg’s comment, turning her head to throw him a questioning look and he felt her gaze burn as they drove the busy streets of London.

 

“I- I can't tell you that, Sally. It's up to Sherlock.” He'd asked Sherlock during the weekend if Sally knew about his secret. Since she didn’t know it wasn't his place to tell her anything about the fight. If he said one thing, he'd have to say it all. It wasn’t his decision to make, even if it was getting harder to stay quiet. It would be nice to have someone else to talk to. Someone that wasn’t family or a vampire. Mycroft and Anthea were wonderful but they couldn't really understand Greg’s worries and his mixed feelings about it all. To them, it was all normal.

 

“We're here.”

 

At least he didn't have to continue the conversation. The house they drove up to wasn't small but it wasn't as big as the villa they'd gone in before.

 

“Wouldn't mind living here myself.” Sally looked up in awe and Greg shook his head.

 

“Too big, think of all the cleaning you'd have to do.”

 

“They have people for that sort of thing. I'm pretty sure Rachel Thompson didn't clean up her own mess.” Sally pulled a face as she opened the car door and Greg grinned.

 

“Fair point. Let's go see if Nicolas Thompson knows anything more about what happened.”

 

2

To: Sherlock

 

Dad claims to not know anything about his son and ex-wife's activities. Looks like a mess too. The girlfriend is another story, she’s hiding something.

 

From: Sherlock

 

Did you see a laptop or tablet somewhere? Would be useful to go through. People keep everything on their laptops nowadays. SH

 

To: Sherlock

 

Getting a warrant for both their places now. Something's not right. Veronica Ingram was too calm about all of this.

 

From: Sherlock

Never trust people with too much money. SH

 

To: Sherlock

 

Aren't you and your brother from money?

 

From: Sherlock

 

Exactly my point. SH

 

Greg huffed and Sally gave him look, putting her seatbelt on to head back to the station.

 

“Sorry, Sherlock being Sherlock.”

 

“Anything useful he's come up with?” There was tension in Sally’s voice as she tried to sound casual and Greg pocketed his phone.

 

“Not yet, he's sure the laptop will bring us all the answers we need. Apparently, people keep everything on their laptops these days. ”

 

He put on his seatbelt and starting the car, going over the added things that had come up during the conversation. Nicolas Thompson claimed he hadn't known anything about what was going on, and the look of disbelief on his face had seemed real to Greg.

 

“Rachel was a drug dealer?”

 

“It seems she needed money to hold up her lifestyle. She didn't want to lose the house.”

 

“I. You can't be serious.”

 

Nicolas Thompson had seemed genuinely in shock, his gaze going from Sally to Greg and back as if he was waiting for someone to pop out and say 'got you!' His eyes had been red and puffy, gaze a bit unfocused and Greg had instantly felt sorry for the man. No matter what had gotten them divorced, Rachel had been his wife at some point and now she and their son were in the hospital fighting for their lives.

 

“It's not that big a leap Nicolas. Rachel always complained she didn't get enough in the settlement.”

 

Veronica, Nicolas Thompson's new girlfriend, hadn't been so upset by the news and the hairs on the back of Greg’s neck had stood up. Something about Veronica’s attitude, her tone of voice and how she looked at her boyfriend.

 

“She always called, all hours of the day, asking for more money, begging Nic to come home.”

 

“Really? You hadn't mentioned that before, Mr. Thompson.” Sally had given Greg a look.

 

“I just. It didn't seem important. Everything went rather fast, the divorce, me moving out and meeting Veronica. I think Rachel still had hope it was all a mistake, that I'd come back to my senses. She could have just asked for more money. I would have been happy to help her. I have no hard feeling about Rachel. We just grew apart.”

 

“And you Ms. Ingram? How is your relationship with Rachel?”

 

Veronica Ingram was a good liar but Greg hadn't believed a word when she told them she didn't have a problem with her, except for the crazy phone calls. The look she'd given Nicolas Thompson when he'd said he would have given Rachel more money said it all and Greg was sure Veronica had something to do with it. They just couldn't prove it yet.

 

3

“So, it wasn’t about the drugs at all?”

 

“No. The girlfriend just used that as a smokescreen.”

 

Greg heard Sherlock's huff and couldn't stop a smile. They'd finally proved Victoria Ingram was the one responsible. It had taken a very deep search of the house but they'd found a laptop hiding away in a fake air vent and there had been files with pictures of Rachel stalking the new Thompson family.

 

“Victoria couldn't handle the stress anymore. They got called day and night by Rachel. We found the other phone and she called 40 times in an hour. Changing the number didn't help long. She stalked them, damaging Victoria's car. She made their lives hell.”

 

“And Victoria was fed up and arrange to murder her?”

 

Greg nodded before remembering they were still on the phone and Sherlock couldn't see him.

 

“Yeah, she found some people online. Wanted it to look like a car accident. Too bad for her they didn't hit them hard enough. Both Rachel and her son are going to make it. They’ll need therapy of course, but it looks like it will work out.”

 

Greg stood up and stretch his back, hearing his joints disagree. He'd been sitting at his desk for a few hours, making sure all the paperwork was in order and he felt numb, his eyes stinging from staring at a screen for too long.

 

“I should have figured it out.”

 

Sherlock's voice was remorseful and Greg shook his head, pulling a face as his neck cracked and he groaned. He really was getting older.

 

“You would have Sherlock. If it hadn't been for you, we'd never know it was a murder attempt in the first place.”

 

“I'm letting you down. I should-”

 

“Sherlock.” Greg stopped in the middle of his office, eyes going over the room. It was getting close to seven and most of his team was ready to head home. He signaled to Sally he'd be there in just a minute and she nodded, tiredness clear on her face.

 

“I won't lie, we've missed you around. You know you're welcome anytime right?” Greg bit his lip. It had been weeks since their fight and he couldn't really understand why Sherlock was still hiding from him. He knew the man was sorry, maybe even ashamed, but he'd forgiven him a long time ago.

 

“I.”

 

“Sherlock. You don't have to worry. Everyone will be glad to have you back. Except maybe Andrews.”

 

“Andrews is an idiot.”

 

“I. Come back Sherlock.” He hadn't meant to say it, but the words slipped out. He was tired of this limbo. Sherlock being in his life but not completely. He wanted to put it behind them, see the man and talk to him. Phonecalls and texts weren't enough. He hadn't gone back to Sherlock’s place cause he didn’t want to intrude but this was getting ridiculous. He sighed, suddenly irritated and he closed his eyes as he pinched his nose.

 

“ I already told you I forgive you, Sherlock. What more do you need? Come back to work. And respond to Sally’s text. She just wants to know if you’re okay.”.

 

“I'm- Greg.”

 

“You don't need to be afraid, Sherlock. We both acted like idiots but we can get past this. We’re still friends.”

 

“You really are too good for me.”

 

Greg wanted to protest but before he could the call had disconnected. Greg grumbled, pocketing his phone in his pants as he took his coat and headed out, gesturing to Sally. They'd planned to go out for dinner, a little treat for their good work and Greg had promised to drop Sally off afterward. He disliked the idea of anyone using the subway in the middle of the night.

 

“You okay, Boss?”

 

“Fine.” Sally raised an eyebrow and Greg sighed. “Just Sherlock. I- I told him to come back to work.”

 

“What did he say?”

 

“Nothing, as usual.' Greg shrugged and Sally shook her head as he unlocked his car. Greg shrugged a shoulder as he held the door open for her, gesturing to get in.

 

“I told him to answer your text.” Greg started the car, turning down the radio. “I just don't understand. Our argument was over two months ago. We talk on the phone, we text but coming back is out of the question. And I don’t understand why he hasn’t answered your text.”

 

“Maybe he's afraid?” Sally put on her seatbelt, turning up the heat and Greg let out a huff, irritation still there as Sally raised her eyebrows.

 

“He doesn't have to be. I already told him I forgive him. We said stupid things, both of us.”

 

“Maybe he doesn't see it that way?”

 

Greg sighed again, driving out to head to their favorite restaurant. It wasn't close to the Yard but they did have the best burgers in town. He could use some grease and comfort.

 

“You know how he is. He has a big mouth but a small heart.” Sally said, running a hand through her hair. “If he did something stupid he's probably ashamed. Afraid you'll look at him differently. He does care you know, what you think of him.”

 

Sally's voice had gone soft and Greg felt a pang of sympathy. Sherlock wasn't easy to get to know but it seemed Sally had done a pretty good job.

 

“I still see him as the same. Brilliant. That won’t ever change.”

 

“And a bit of a smart arse.” Sally grinned, pulling out her phone as it pinged and Greg turned to look at her briefly, a smile on his lips.

 

“And a bit of a smart arse.”

 

“Seems out smart arse’s ears are buzzing. Sherlock just send me a text.” Sally couldn’t stop a smile as she read the text, only needed a few seconds to text back and put her phone away again.

 

“So what are you - GREG LOOK OUT!”

 

Sally's scream was the last thing he heard before everything went black, a sharp pain shooting up his body.

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 13

Greg wakes up to some familiar faces but in an unfamiliar place.

 

1

Opening his eyes has never been this difficult. His body feels heavy as if it's being held down by something big and suddenly he has trouble breathing. Sally's sharp voice rings inside his head and he wants to call out but his mouth is dry and his throat too tight.

 

His heart is racing inside his chest and he moves his hand, trying to rub the constricted feeling away when a sharp pain shoots down his body.  What the hell is going on?

 

“Eg- Hear me?”

 

A cold hand touches his forehead and he lets out a sigh, his whole body shivering. In the distance, he can hear a stern voice and suddenly the hand is gone.

 

“Need to do...”

 

“Erlock, calm...”

 

“Look...”

 

He tries his best to hear but all he gets are a few words and they don't make sense. Is that Sherlock? Why is he so upset? He tries to move and reach out but his body won’t obey him, punishing him with another sharp pain. He still can’t open his eyes, feeling exhausted, his body not feeling like it’s own.

 

“Greg.”

 

Sherlock! His heart skips a few beats as he hears Sherlock's voice close to his ear and he starts turning his head without thinking about it, turning it to the right where Sherlock’s voice is coming from but a gentle, still cold hand stops him, a soft mumbling near his ear. His eyes still aren’t cooperating and the panic is starting to creep up beyond his exhaustion.

 

“It's okay Greg. You need to rest. Just know I'm here, Mycroft and Anthea are here too.”

 

Mycroft and Anthea? Why are they here? Where is here? He wants to speak, ask all his questions but his voice won't listen to him, too scratchy and weak. He feels a gentle squeeze on his arm and he clenches his hand into a fist, at least that's something he can do without hurting all over.

 

“It's okay Greg, I promise you. You'll be okay. Sleep, don't fight it. I’ll be right here.”

 

Sherlock's voice has never been this soft or soothing and Greg feels himself losing the battle, lost to the world again.

 

2

“Sir, I can assure you-”

 

“... do something useful, why aren't -”

 

“... need to stop this! Calm down.”

 

“.... idiots all of them!”

 

When he’s finally able to open his eyes, the light is too bright, making it impossible to see where he his, tiny stars dancing before him as he blinks. His mind feels foggy, body heavy and he can’t even shift, let alone move.

 

“He'll be okay Sherlock, just calm down and stop making the nurses cry.”

 

“How can he be okay?! Look at him!”

 

His stomach turns as he hears the anger and fear in Sherlock's voice and he tries to reach out his hand, stopping when thousands of needles attack his upper body. What has happened? Images come back but it's all a mess and he can't make sense of it. Where am I? Why does Sherlock sound so mad?

 

“Try to remain calm, Bee. This isn't helping.”

 

Something about the second voice sounds familiar, hearing Sherlock whisper a response and his body tenses because of it. He’s never heard Sherlock this mad before.

 

No. Not mad. Worried?

 

“You need to let the staff do their work. Doctor M-“

 

Finally, the voice clicks into place as Sherlock snaps something about being an idiot and he opens his eyes wide, panic rising as he realizes both Sherlock and Mycroft are here with him. He blinks, for a second only seeing white and then Sally’s face comes to mind, her loud scream before everything went dark.

 

Sally! The car! Oh no!”

 

“Greg! Shhht, it's okay, you're alright. Lay still, please.”

 

He tries to get up, letting out a yelp as tears form in his eyes, the pain in his body making it hard to breathe. He swallows a few times, trying to burn down the panic to form words but nothing useful comes out. His hands turn into fists, feeling something soft and he let’s out a frustrated sound, blinded by all the white that’s surrounding him.

 

“Breathe, Lestrade.”

 

A cool hand touches his cheek and his eyes snap up and are finally able to focus, relief going through him as Sherlock’s face comes into view.

 “Sally is in another room but she's okay. She's already making a fuss to see you.”

 

Sherlock's smile doesn't reach his dark grey eyes and Greg feels his heart skip a beat. Room? What room?

 

He wants to ask but before he can Mycroft comes into view, placing a gentle hand on his brother’s shoulder before looking at Greg.

 

“You are in the hospital, Detective Inspector. You’ve been in a car accident. Yes,” Mycroft gives a small nod to Greg’s unspoken question. “ Sergeants Donovan is alright. She has some bruises from the airbag and they are keeping her for a few days to make sure she doesn't have a concussion. Sherlock. You should let the nurse look at him.”

 

“She’s an idiot.”

 

Sherlock's voice rough, his dark grey eyes scanning Greg’s face intently and Greg’s hand trembles, wanting to reach out and touch the man.

 

“Bee, let them do their jobs.”

 

Sherlock growls, his body language tense but then he takes a step back and Mycroft removes his hand from Sherlock's shoulder, opening up the door just before the nurse is able to knock.

 

“Okay, Mr. Lestrade. I'm going to shine a light in your eyes, just making sure everything is as it should be.”

 

He flinches as the light makes him half blind and he hears Mycroft's stern voice when there’s some movement next to him. The nurse goes over some other check-ups, not really paying him much attention, and by the end of it, Greg feels worn out. At least the nurse, Chase is her last name if Greg remembers correctly, gave him some medication for the pain.

 

“Drink, Lestrade.”

 

It’s a clear command and he takes the offered glass of water, swallowing down the pills.

 

“Th- thank you.” His tongue still feels weird but at least he’s able to form words now. He tries to reach for Sherlock when the man pulls back to place the glass away, hissing in pain as he feels the grinding motion in his shoulder.

 

“It's because of the collarbone, any movement of the arm will hurt.” Sherlock’s eyes suddenly seem a fraction darker and Greg can just see Mycroft take a step closer, his face blank but posture stiff.

 

“You’re sure Sally’s okay? You’re not lying to me?” Greg looks at the Holmes brother’s one at a time, trying to read their minds, irritated when he can’t make out a damn thing, except for Sherlock’s obvious worry.

 

“You took most of the impact, Detective. Like I said, Sergeant Donovan has some bruises but she’ll be able to go home in a few days time if they don’t find signs of a concussion. Anthea is currently with her. The driver that caused the accident is of course fine.” Mycroft rolls his eyes at that and Sherlock explains when Greg gives a confused look. All he can think about now is the fact that Sally is okay.

 

“The other driver was drunk and he also had drugs in his system. He also has some bruises and lacerations form the glass but other than that he’s fine.”

 

“Oh, okay. That’s…. good, I suppose? What about me? When will I be able to go home?”

 

Seeing the change on Sherlock’s face is enough for his stomach to drop but then Sherlock shakes his head, lacing his cold hand on Greg’s, giving a tight smile.

 

“The doctor will be able to explain it in detail but you basically have a fracture in your collarbone because of your seatbelt. It’s not uncommon for that to happen in front on collisions.” Sherlock speaks fast, his voice tense as he squeezes Greg’s hand once before letting go again, looking at his brother.

 

“The bones aren't shifted too badly out of place so the doctor says you won't need surgery. You'll need an arm support and medication to deal with the pain but everyone is confident you won't have lasting damage. It will be difficult to move, however, so physical therapy was recommended to maintain arm motion and prevent stiffness.”

 

“We could just-“

 

“Sherlock, no.”

 

Sherlock looks back at Greg, his dark eyes full of concern and Greg carefully reaches his hand forward, his fingertips touching Sherlock’s. Seeing Sherlock like this, clearly worried and stressed makes his heart break. He wants to say something, do something, to make it better but as soon as he moves more than his hand, his body protests and he can't stop a winch.

 

“You really should stop doing that, Detective Inspector.”

 

“Mycroft!”

 

Sherlock throws his brother a look and Mycroft holds up a hand, gesturing to Greg.

 

“I'm just saying it won't help his recovery.”

 

“I'm pretty sure he's beginning to figure that out, Mycroft.”

 

“I leave you boys alone for 15 minutes and already there’s a fire. You do know we are in a hospital?”

 

“Anthea!” Greg calls out, surprised to see her and instantly feeling better as she comes to his side, a kind expression on her face.

 

“Hello, Greg,” Anthea whispers, gently taking his hand. “Sergeant Donovan wanted me to tell you that she is alright and she wants a raincheck on that burger.”

 

Greg’s relieved laugh stops as soon as it starts, his body aching all over and Anthea brushes through his hair gently before pulling back.

 

“Can’t I just give-“

 

“No.”

 

Anthea gives Sherlock a look Greg can’t figure out before her gaze goes over to Mycroft and it feels like the temperature in the room has changed.

 

“What’s going on?”

 

“Nothing, Greg. It’s been a long day for all of us, that’s all. Nothing to worry about.”

 

“You didn’t need to come. Wasn’t there a conference in Russia or something?” Greg frowns, trying to recall the last time he’d spoken to Anthea.

 

“You had a car accident, Greg. Where else would we be? Right?” Anthea looks at the brother and Greg wants to cry again as they both nod their heads.

 

“You're family now, Greg.”

 

“I.” He doesn't know what to say to that, just staring into Anthea's eyes as gratitude washes over him and she gives him a tiny nod before looking over at Mycroft and Sherlock, expression suddenly stern.

 

“We should let him rest, let the medication do its work.” It’s been a long day for all of us and you two bickering won't help.”

 

“It’s not unrea-“

 

“Someone has to use-“

 

Both the Holmes brothers stop mid-sentence as Anthea holds up a hand and gives them a look and Greg can't stop a little smile, fighting back a yawn. He doesn’t know what time it is now but it feels late, his eyes already fighting with him.

 

“Rest, Greg. We’ll be here as soon as visiting hours start.”

 

“But I-”

 

Anthea smiles, placing a hand on his arm, her expression soft.

 

“I know you want answers and the doctor will explain everything to you first thing in the morning. I heard he’s the best in his field.”

 

Greg can see Mycroft nod at that while Sherlock rolls his eyes and Greg’s lips curls into another smile. He’s missed those eye rolls of his. He wants to say something but another yawn escapes his mouth and Anthea nods her head, gesturing to Sherlock and Mycroft.

 

“We should leave. It’s clear the medication is starting to take effect. A good nights sleep will do you good.”

 

“This would go a lot faster if you'd just let me-”

 

“Sherlock!”

 

Now both Anthea and Mycroft scowled at him and Greg frowns, wanting to know what is going on but too tired to ask.

 

“Good night, Lestrade.” Sherlock is suddenly standing next to his bed, trapping him with his intense focus and there’s a moment of panic as Sherlock turns to leave.

 

“Sherlock!”

 

“It’s okay, Greg,” Sherlock whispers, holding Greg’s hand in his and a small part of Greg’s brain registers that Sherlock has never felt this cold before.

 

“Anthea is right. You need to sleep. We can talk later, I promise.” Sherlock smiles and Greg let’s out a sigh as he sees that Sherlock’s eyes are a bit lighter in color. Not back to their normal green/blue, but it’s something and he squeezes Sherlock’s hand.

 

“Okay. I’m holding you to that.”

 

“Trust me, I’m not going anywhere.”

 

3

“I know you want to help, Bee-“

 

“Then why aren’t you letting me?”

 

“You know he’ll never agree with it, Sherlock.”

 

“Which part?”

 

“All of it.”

 

Sherlock let out a grown, knowing his brother is right. They’d all gone to Sherlock’s flat after Anthea had kicked them out and now he was pacing the floor of his living room, wanting to throw something against the wall. He wasn’t used to this, doing nothing, waiting around and Mycroft’s calm demeanor and rational thinking just put him more on edge.

 

“Now is not the time to act carelessly, Brother. The DI and his Sergeant will be fine. After all, they are in the best hospital in London.”

 

Mycroft crossed his legs as he sat down on the sofa and Sherlock huffed, running a hand through his hair before pacing again. When he’d heard about the accident on the police scanner he hadn’t really thought about his actions. Just doing everything in his power to help Greg and Sally but maybe the Royal had been a bit too much for their injuries?

 

Mycroft gave him a look, eyebrow raised and Sherlock scowled, dropping down into a chair. His knee bouncing up and down.

 

“What is it with people and money!?” He called out, hands going to his hair as his mind was spinning. What if Greg had died in that car accident, thinking Sherlock was still angry with him? What if the last talk they'd had was about something silly and void of meaning? If he’d just stepped up and not acted like a coward then maybe none f this would have happened?

 

“Sherlock stop.”

 

Mycroft was standing in front of him, taking both his hands and pulling them down. Sherlock blinked, seeing the strand of hair in his palms, a dull ache on his scalp that soon faded.

 

“You've done everything you could do in the circumstances, Bee. Stop torturing yourself with what if's.”

 

“You mean, I came to you for help and you throw money at it. Not really a grand achievement.”

 

Sherlock swallowed, bringing down the bitterness inside him as he looked up at his brother. The family fortune had always been a touchy subject for Sherlock and he saw the change in eye color his comment had caused, instantly feeling like a bastard.

 

“I didn't mean it like that.”

 

“I know Sherlock. It's been a stressful night, I don't hold it against you.” Mycroft sighed, pinching the bridge of his nose before sitting down next to Sherlock. He didn’t  blame Mycroft. If it hadn't been for his brother, Sherlock would have nothing. His parents had cut him out of the will a long time ago. The only reason Sherlock could do what he did was because of Mycroft handling his financial situation. Never asking anything in return.

 

“We're just helping him. Why would he disagree with that?” Sherlock looked at his brother, placing the strand of hair on the table. At least his hair came back faster than human hair.

 

“Money sets people on edge Sherlock. Especially hard working ones like the DI.” Mycroft sounded tired and Sherlock turned around, taking his brother in more closely. He'd been in Belgium the moment Anthea had called him, some sort of business deal Sherlock hadn't asked about and Mycroft hadn't elaborated. He'd been up and about for four days by then, traveling across Europe, meeting directors and other important people and Sherlock felt a stab of guilt. He hadn't thought about his brother, how draining the world could be for him and he sighed, walking back to the chair and sitting down, folding his hands on his lap.

 

“Thanks for coming, Mycroft.”

A flash of surprise in Mycroft's eyes before he gave a short nod and Sherlock wondered if his brother would ever get used to hearing someone talk gently to him. Their parents hadn’t been warm and Mycroft had been given high expectations from an early age.

 

“I've made sure Inspector Lestrade gets all the treatment he needs such as medication, physical therapy, check-ups, that sort of thing. Both for him and Sergeant Donovan.”

 

Sherlock gave a smile, still feeling uneasy about it. He knew Lestrade wasn't a poor man but taking a gift as big as this was something else. It would also be a clear sign that Sherlock was from a different standing and he hated the idea of Lestrade treating him differently because of it. Just like John.

 

“You know the DI won't be pleased about it. He could even refuse to accept it. As can Sergeant Donovan.”

 

“Why would he-”

 

“He's a proud man Sherlock. I have a feeling he doesn't accept help easily, especially of this magnitude. Money makes-”

 

“People uneasy, I know.” Sherlock looked down at his hands, wringing them tightly together, bouncing his knee faster. It was no secret the man knew Sherlock came from money. He’d figured that out as soon as they’d met on that crime scene.

“He's never once treated me differently.”

 

“And you're afraid he'll do that now?”

 

“I- I don’t know,”  Sherlock whispered, afraid to meet his brother’s gaze. He didn't think Lestrade was that sort of person, intimidated or jealous over money but he'd misjudge people before.

 

“He's a decent man Sherlock. I don't see him as petty. But I think he doesn't like being kept either.”

 

“This is hardly a case of being a kept man!”

 

“I wonder if he's going to see it like that.”

 

Mycroft's voice was soft and Sherlock sighed again, hands shaking as he rubbed his eyes. This was not the way he'd wanted to see Lestrade again. His injuries weren't that bad but Sherlock had forgotten how fragile humans were. Something as silly as a sprained ankle kept them immobile for weeks and it made Sherlock feel useless. He turned to face his brother, eyes hard as he took him in, making a fist of his hand.

 

“You should have just let me give him some of my blood.”

 

4

“If you'd just let me do it when we came in, he'd be okay already! Almost completely healed! Nobody would have needed to know and then all of this would have been over.”

 

Mycroft didn’t say anything but Sherlock knew what he was thinking about, seeing the tiny twitch near his brother’s mouth. He got up, needing to move to ease some of his frustration and worry.

 

“This isn’t the same as with John. You know our blood is powerful, he can use it!”

 

“And how do you think he'll take it, Sherlock?” Mycroft finally spoke, an edge to his voice as he looked up at his younger brother.  “He's already uncomfortable with me being able to read fragments of his mind. How will he react if he finds out you not only fed him your blood but it makes it possible for you to mind read him?

 

“That's highly unlike-”

 

“Not only that, but that you can sense his mood, slip into his dreams and influence his thoughts.” Mycroft summed up, holding up fingers as he did, a stern look on his face as Sherlock scowled at him. “You can’t decide this for him, Sherlock. He needs to know what could happen and you need to give him the option. He can’t make a real decision without knowing all the facts. What it really means to- drink from you.”

 

Mycroft's face twisted into something painful and Sherlock stopped pacing, looked down at the ground for a second to try to calm down.

 

Don't you remember how hard it was for you? You didn't have a choice in the matter, Sherlock. You can’t do that to the Inspector.” Mycroft got up, placing a hand on Sherlock’s shoulder.

 

“You didn’t have a choice either.” Sherlock looked up, the air around them changing as Mycroft squeezed his shoulder before shaking his head, a sad smile on his mouth.

 

“I couldn't leave you behind, Brother mine.”

 

“I need to do something Mycroft. He's lying there pale and weak and I can't- I'm just-”

 

“You're already doing something, Bee. You called Anthea. You gave him care and comfort just now. Just being with him helps, Sherlock. He needs you.” Mycroft’s eyes were a mix of colors as he guided Sherlock back to the sofa. The air around them was freezing cold and he felt guilty as he looked at his brother, seeing the small lines around his mouth, the more profound paleness of his skin.

 

“I know DI Lestrade means a lot to you but this is something he needs to decide for himself. Knowing about vampires is one thing, drinking our blood quite another. Even if it's just to help him.”

 

Sherlock nodded at Mycroft’s words. He still didn’t like it, having seen Greg in that hospital bed set him on edge but crashing in their with his solution probably wasn’t the best way to fix their friendship.

 

“You do really think there is a chance that-”

 

“It’s been known to happen. It’s clear the DI cares for you and your feelings are-“ Mycroft stopped, looking at the coffee table with an expression Sherlock didn’t want to understand.

 

“Just because he cares about me, doesn't mean-”

 

“Are you willing to risk it, Sherlock?” Mycroft's voice was soft but his eyes were blazing, posture stiff and unyielding. “ He's already in danger for knowing about our kind, for working with you and knowing about your past. Being bonded to you-”

 

“Would make him a target. I know.”

 

“Be careful Sherlock,” Mycroft whispered, placing his hand on Sherlock's arm and squeezing it once before letting go. “You know I only want to see you happy but-” Mycroft stopped, looking away for a second. “Just be careful. Friendships between humans and vampires are complicated. I don't want to see either of you hurt.”

 

“You approve of him,” Sherlock whispered, seeing the little smile on his brother’s face and he couldn’t stop the spark of jealousy.

 

“He's interesting, I'll give him that.”

 

Before Sherlock could say something stupid Mycroft’s phone went off, the sound of a text message breaking the moment and maybe it was for the best. After John, neither of them had really made any friends and sometimes Sherlock though his brother had a more difficult time being alone then he admitted to himself.

 

“Anthea’s back in the mansion. I should go home. I’ll see you tomorrow at the hospital?”

 

“You're staying?” Sherlock looked up, surprise on his face. He hadn't thought Mycroft would stay so long, having run out in the middle of his negotiations, but his brother just nodded, sending a short reply to Anthea.

 

“Everything is being taken care of. I can be missed for a few more days. Unless you-”

 

“No,” Sherlock swallowed, giving his brother a grin. “You’re better at explaining things anyway if Greg has more questions.” Mycroft rolled his eyes at that as he put away his phone, getting up to leave the flat.

 

“Okay, then I’ll see you tomorrow. And try to get some rest, Sherlock.”

 

“Yes, mother.”

 

Sherlock's mind was still in overdrive when he finally laid down on his bed, trying to find some calm and clarity as he stored all the emotions and events of that day away in his Mind Palace. They had things to talk about tomorrow and Sherlock was grateful he didn't have to do it alone.

Chapter Text

Chapter 14 

Greg finds out which hospital he’s in and has a talk with Mycroft.

1

 

 “No.”

 

“Lestrade, don’t act like an idiot.”

 

“Brother-”

 

“It’s just money Lestrade. We’re not asking you for a kidney!” Sherlock scowled, running a hand through his hair as Greg rolled his eyes at him. He should have realized sooner that he wasn’t at London General. He blamed it on the fact that he’d been in a car accident only yesterday and was still exhausted. The medication had helped him to fall asleep but every few hours a nurse came in to check on him, going over his vitals and he felt dead tired this morning when Nurse Chase came in with his breakfast, an unfriendly expression on her face. She was just about to leave, after again checking his vitals when he noticed the logo on her uniform.

 

“Wait, we’re at the Royal Bridge?”

 

She’d nodded her head, looking at Greg as if he was an idiot before leaving him with his breakfast and the second he realized where he was he’d known Mycroft had made it happen. Who else would be able to pull so many strings on such short notice? Royal Bridge Hospital was the best Orthopaedic hospital in the world, famous for its wealthy visitors and excellent reputation. Of course, this had been Mycroft’s doing and he raised an eyebrow when the older Holmes brother came forward, standing next to Sherlock, umbrella handing from his wrist.

 

“You need the best possible care, Detective Inspector. As does Sergeant Donovan and this is the best hospital for your type of injuries.”

 

“It’s not like I’m broken all over, Mycroft. London General would have been just fine.” He looked between Sherlock and Mycroft as Mycroft’s eyes meet Sherlock’s, a silent conversation happening between them. Both the brothers look paler than usual, their features sharper and the air around them isn’t as warm as it was when they’d just come in.

 

“You got hurt Lestrade. You needed medical assistance and they are the best.” Sherlock speaks up, hand on the railing as he looks at Greg and Greg knows the man doesn’t understand why he’s angry about this.

 

“I’m not a charity case, Sherlock. I don’t need all this-“

 

“I know you aren’t, why are you being so stubborn, It's not a bother.”

 

“It's not about that Sherlock, it's about the principal. Royal is expensive-”

 

“We're more than capable of-”

 

“And I don't want you paying for me. It's too much to accept.” Greg spoke over Sherlock, his eyes going back to Mycroft.

 

“You know I'll never be able to pay you back for this.”

 

Sherlock made a noise before he walked to a nearby chair and sat down on it. Maybe it was a vampire thing but Sherlock had never had any interest in money. He helped the Yard for free, much to Greg’s disapproval. Sherlock did excellent work, it should be rewarded. Greg had never asked how Sherlock could afford to live in London but now he suspected Mycroft helped his brother a lot more than Sherlock would ever admit.

 

“This is insane, why are we-“ Sherlock started, frustration clear in his voice but he stopped when Mycroft turned to him, holding up a hand in the air and even though Greg was irritated, the beginning pout on the man’s mouth was adorable to see.

 

“Could you leave us alone for a moment, Sherlock?”

 

“I don’t see-”

 

“Please, brother.” Mycroft’s eyes went back to him and Greg noticed the spots of dark gray in the man’s eyes. Mycroft’s freckles stood out even more than usual and he could clearly hear the tiredness in the man’s voice when he spoke again.

 

“Just a moment for me and the DI to talk about a few things. You can visit Sergeant Donovan in the meantime. I think Anthea is with her currently.”

 

A small change in Sherlock’s eyes and Mycroft's gaze softened as he looked at his brother again, reaching out to place a hand on Sherlock's arm.

 

“It's going to be fine, Sherlock. If not, Anthea is there to play buffer.”

 

Mycroft smiled as Sherlock let out a huff and Greg’s heart melted seeing them interact like this. His opinion of Mycroft was rapidly changing. It was clear there was a lot of love between the brothers, mixed with tension and guilt from the past but Greg knew Mycroft would do anything to help Sherlock.

 

“It’s fine, Sherlock. I'm pretty sure your brother won't murder me here.”

 

“Don't be so sure, Inspector.” A hint of amusement in Mycroft's eyes as Sherlock looked from one man to the other, clearly not willing to leave.

 

“Go, Sherlock. Sally will be happy to see you.” Greg nodded, given him a warm smile as Sherlock got up from his chair and took his coat.

 

“Don't be so sure,” Sherlock replied, some concern in his eyes but the color was a normal green now and Greg felt his tension ease because of it.

 

A final look passed between the brothers and then Sherlock left, the door closing behind him.

 

2

“I told Sherlock you wouldn't approve of this.” Mycroft came forward, gesturing to a nearby chair and pulling it closer after Greg had nodded. He felt that signature coldness in the air and he felt gooseflesh form on his arms as Mycroft set down.

 

“You look tired, Mycroft.”

 

“As do you.”

 

Greg rolled his eyes and Mycroft tilted his head to the side a little, placing his umbrella on his lap.

 

“I was in Belgium when I learned about your accident, before that I was in Russia. There hasn't been much time for rest, not that I need a lot of it but-” Mycroft gave a little smile, the lines on his face deepening.

 

“You don't need to stay here, Mycroft. I don't know what you do exactly, but I know you are needed.”

 

“I'm needed here.”

 

“Sherlock asked you to bring me here, didn't he? To the Royal.”

 

Mycroft nodded after a moment and Greg let out a breath, shifting in his bed. It wasn’t pure agony to move so the medication was finally starting to do its job but he couldn’t help a grimace. Everything seemed to be pulling at him, making it hard to move and he felt Mycroft’s gaze on him.

 

“That's why he looked so guilty,” Greg whispered, giving up on trying to be comfortable and looking at Mycroft sharply. “He shouldn't have done that. London General-”

 

“Isn't the best and Sherlock wanted you to have the best possible care. You and Sergeant Donovan.”

 

“Sally won't approve of this either,” Greg said, seeing the knowing look in Mycroft's gray eyes.

 

“You've done a background check on her, haven’t you? Like you’ve done one on me?”

 

The silence grew stronger and Greg huffed as Mycroft gave him a blank look.

 

“Of course you did. Then you know Sally doesn't come from much. She had to fight for everything she has in her life. Nothing was handed to her.”

 

“I don't expect you to pay me back, Detective. Nor your Sergeant. You don't owe me anything.”

 

Mycroft looked away and Greg fell silent. Of course, Mycroft would figure out his reluctance to this generosity. People didn't help you in such a big way without wanting something in return and Greg couldn't figure out why Mycroft had agreed to this. His stay here alone would cost a small fortune and he still didn’t even know yet how long it would take to recover.

 

 “Your recovery will take some time and I'm more than capable of paying for it.”

 

“That's hardly the point, Mycroft. Don't play dumb.” The little eyebrow raise he got felt like a small victory.

 

“You really are a mystery, Inspector.” Mycroft's voice was thoughtful, his grey eyes taking Greg in closely and it felt like tiny ants were running all over his body. Being at the center of Mycroft’s attention was a bit uncomfortable and he cleared his throat, jolting Mycroft out of his thoughts. An apologetic smile came his way and Greg blinked his eyes, saying the first thing that came to mind.

 

“Greg.”

 

“Excuse me?” Mycroft frowned and Greg felt his face flame up as the older Holmes brother looked at him with confusion.

 

“You should call me Greg.” Greg smiled at the confused look on Mycroft's face. It probably didn't happen often that the man was caught off guard and Greg wanted to take a picture of it, show it off to Sherlock.

 

“I highly suggest you don't.” Mycroft raised an eyebrow and Greg scowled.

 

“Stop mind reading me.”

 

“Stop thinking so loudly.”

 

Greg rolled his eyes and Mycroft smirked. At least this was a friendly smirk and the last of Greg’s tension melted away.

 

“I mean it. Call me Greg. Detective Inspector Lestrade is quite a mouthful anyway.”

 

Mycroft's face did a weird thing and his eyes got a shade or two lighter, his hand trembling before he took a firmer hold of his umbrella.

 

“I.”

 

Greg raised an eyebrow and Mycroft stopped, a frown on his face as he looked at Greg. They stared at each other for a second or two more and then Mycroft relaxed, his frown disappearing and being replaced with an almost smile.

 

“Very well, Gregory.”

 

Greg nodded carefully as he tried not to smirk. The Holmes brothers certainly were a challenge to interact with.

3

“Why did you agree, Mycroft?” When Mycroft raised an eyebrow in question Greg elaborated. “For paying for all this. You hardly know me, or Sally.”

 

“As Anthea said, Inspector, you are family and we take care of our family.”

 

Greg swallowed down a lump in his throat as he looked at Mycroft, noticing how the man didn't quite meet his eyes, his fingers drumming on his umbrella before he looked down and stopped himself.

 

“The fact that you are so reluctant to accept it, is a sign you mean my brother no harm.”

 

“What do you-”

 

Mycroft looked back at Greg, holding his umbrella tightly and Greg hoped it was of a good and sturdy quality.

 

“Money makes people act differently. Sherlock was... worried you learning about the arrangement would change your view of him.”

 

“I don't care about Sherlock's wallet, or how much is in it. It won't change my opinion of him. Or you.”

 

He kept eye contact with Mycroft, letting the man see he was telling the truth and Mycroft nodded in understanding.

 

“But I still don't think this was necessary.” Greg held up a hand, gesturing to the room. He was hurting yes and his injuries would take time to heal but he wasn’t in serious danger. London General paled in comparison to the Royal, but it was still a good hospital, more than capable of helping Greg with his recovery.

 

“My brother disagrees. And so do I.” Mycroft got up in a fluent motion and Greg was again awed by the grace and effortlessness with which vampires moved around. I guess that's one advantage of being half dead.

 

Mycroft placed the chair back on the spot he'd found it, giving Greg a look and Greg blushed. He really needed to work more on that meditation!

 

“Accept this gift, Gregory. That's what it is, a gift. Nothing more. We vampires don't like feeling useless and this is the only way I can help.”

 

“Useless? Why would you ever-”

 

Mycroft looked up and down his body and Greg just blinked his eyes, not understanding what Mycroft was saying.

 

“Clearly your morning medication is working otherwise you would not be so slow.”

 

“Oi!”

 

“We've been vampires for so long we forget certain aspects of it. Like how fragile humans are, how easily they break something or get injured.” Mycroft came closer, placing a cold, almost freezing hand on Greg's arm. “We can have injuries and feel pain as vampires but we heal in a matter of minutes most of the time. Since I can't do anything about your pain or injuries-” Mycroft stopped, a weird look in his eyes before a sigh escaped him.

 

“Let me do this for you and Sergeant Donovan. If not for yourself then for Sherlock. It will be a worry out of his mind, knowing you can focus on your recovery and not have to think about the financial side.” Mycroft pulled back his hand, leaving behind a cold spot on Greg’s arm as he stepped away.

 

“I don’t like this, Mycroft. It feels like I’m taking advantage of you.” Greg looked at Mycroft, somehow glad the man nodded at him and didn’t call him an idiot. He had the feeling Mycroft understood his unwillingness to accept his help, much better then Sherlock did. It was a big deal to Greg, even a bigger deal to Sally and he wondered how his co-worker would take the news.

 

“I can assure you, you are not. You've already proven to be a good friend to my brother and those are hard to find.”

 

“I. T-thank you Mycroft.” He yawned as Mycroft pulled out his phone, frowning when he read the message.

 

“Everything okay?”

 

“Of course, just some idiots trying to rule the world.” Mycroft shook his head, putting away his phone and looking at Greg closely.

 

“I know this is a lot to accept, Gregory but I can assure you there are no strings attached. Now, you should sleep.”

 

“Mycroft, it's f-fine, I'm-” He couldn't finish his sentence, another yawn coming out, longer and louder than before and Mycroft raised an eyebrow.

 

“Sleep Gregory, it's one of the many perks of being human. It will do you good and I’ll let Sherlock know he can come visit this afternoon.”

 

“But I-“ Greg stopped, his eyes feeling heavy as Mycroft walked to the side f his bed. He wanted to see Sherlock now, talk to him and catch up but it was getting harder to stay awake, his body feeling heavy as the bed went down.

 

“Sherlock will be here this afternoon. You have my word.”

 

He tried to fight it, he didn’t want to sleep again. He needed to talk to his doctor about his recovery, find out how long it would take and when he was able to get back to work. He also needed to see Sally, make sure she was alright, see it with his own two eyes but his body betrayed him, eyes closing and he didn’t even notice Mycroft leaving.

Chapter Text

Chapter 15

Greg learns more about his injuries but no thanks to his doctor and there is a happy reunion.

1

The nap made Greg feel better but when he tried to shift to have a more comfortable position he was again reminded of what had happened. He let out a sound of pain, blinking his eyes to fight back the tears so he didn’t notice the door of his room opening up.

“Oh, that doesn’t sound too good. Here, let me help.”

Greg felt the bed move, getting him upright as a gentle hand rearranged his pillow and he gave a smile when his eyes took in the nurse. It wasn’t the one from before, the unkind one and he squinted his eyes to read her nametag.

“Nurse Hooper?”

“Pleasure to meet you, Mister Lestrade. You can call me Molly. I’m here to check your vitals, and maybe clean you up a bit if that’s okay?”

“Nurse Chase already-“

“Yes, I know. But I was given specific instruction by a friend of yours. Apparently, he finds the colleague an idiot.” Nurse Molly smiled and Greg felt his face flame up as she started her work, shining a light in his eyes and checking the bandage on his ankle. She was gentle in her work, making small talk with Greg to distract his mind as she helped him to the toilet but it still felt akward.

“Guess you're used to all his.” Greg said, gritting his teeth as Molly helped him put on some fresh clothes after a quick wash. She let out a conforming sound as she re arranged his sheets and he already felt exhausted.

 

“ The first couple of times you have to wash someone it's a little intimidating. Especially if the people are much older then you.”

 

“Ta, thanks for that.”

 

“No!” Molly gasped, rushing to apologize but Greg smiled.

 

“It's fine, just messing with you nurse Hooper.”

 

She let out a laugh as he grinned and it made him feel instantly better.

 

“How is your pain?”

 

“It's bearable. Not as bad as yesterday but it still feels like I've been in a car accident. Like I'm full of needles.”

 

Molly nodded, taking the file hanging on the bed and writing something down before looking up at Greg again. It was a lot different with her then nurse Chase. He wondered if he could ask her to help him till he could go home. At least she listened to him and didn’t look like this was her personal hell.

 

“Here, take these. And it’s going to feel like that for a while I’m afraid. Collarbones can be quite nasty, you only realize how much you actually use it when it's damaged. But you are handling it well.”

 

“Wait till I've been here six weeks. That’s how long it can take right? My friends told me six weeks, if there aren’t any complications.” Molly nodded and Greg let out a sigh, six weeks felt like a really long time, especially if this pain would last for so long. It was going to be rough, not able to function properly for weeks but at least there was good company. Even if it was Molly's job, Greg felt that she really cared.

 

“Visiting hours are starting soon. Your friend has made quite a fuss the past few days.” Molly's eyes shined with amusement and Greg left his cheeks flame up.

 

“I'm sorry. Sherlock can be a little.... intense at times.”

 

“That's fine. I quite like him. He's not one to just do what he's told now is he?” Molly grinned as Greg let out a ‘god no’. He could almost imagine how Sherlock had acted. He’d seen the panic is those dark grey eyes yesterday, had almost felt the air buzzing around him as he fussed over Greg. It made Greg’s heart do a little flip and he forced himself to nt think too much about it. Stress always caused people to react differnetly then normal.

 

“Is it true he made a nurse cry?” He was pretty sure he'd heard Anthea scowled about that and seeing Molly's face, he knew it hadn't been a dream.

 

“Oh, god.”

 

“Just once, I promise. Not like she didn't deserve it. Nurse Chase could use some better bed side manners. Oh.” Molly's face fell, eyes widening as she covered her mouth. “I shouldn't have said that.”

 

“I won't tell if you won't.” Greg whispered and then they were both laughing, Greg soon regretting it and pulled a face as a thousand needles assulted his body.

 

“Right, you should rest a bit more before your friends come to visit and later today Doctor Magnussen will come in to explain everything and answer your questions. If you need anything just push this button, okay.” Molly held up the alarm, placing it next to Greg on the bed so it was easy to reach. Then she left, giving him one last smile before he was alone again, accompanied by his thoughts and aching body.

 

2

He must have dozed off after the doctor came, cause when he opens his eyes he wasn’t alone anymore. Sherlock and Mycroft were back, sitting in chairs and talking quietly with each other.

 

“I'm telling you to wait, Sherlock. Now is not the time.”

 

“Then when is? That doctor is an idiot and you know-”

 

“Good afternoon.” Greg spoke up, seeing two pairs of sharp eyes focus on him. He notice the tension between the two brothers and raised an eyebrow in confusion.  “It's too early to be mad already, Sherlock. Hello, Mycroft.”

 

“Morning Inspector.” Greg gave Mycroft a meaningful look and Sherlock’sscowl only grew when Mycroft gave in and called Greg by his name.

 

“Gregory. How are you feeling?”

 

“Like I've been hit by a bus.”

 

“It wasn't a bus, just a car.” Sherlock cut in, his expression hard as he looked at his brother and Greg couldn’t understand any of it. Mycroft just stared back, seemingly calm but the air in the room had shifted. The uneasy feeling stayed till Greg reached out for his glass of water and let out a winch as he felt his shoulder push back. The medication was still working, the pain more like a dull ache as he sipped his water. 

 

“Where is Anthea?” Greg asked, finaly getting the brother’s attention back and Mycroft ansered. “She's with Sergeant Donovan, going over a few things. She contacted Sally's mother, she should arrive soon.”

 

“God, her mom is going to freak out.” Greg sighed, rubbing his forehead as he tried to ignore the weird vibe between the two brothers. They both looked better than yesterday, clearly having rested but Sherlock's eyes were gray and he didn’t like the hardness he saw in them whenever he looked at his brother.

 

“I want to see her. How is she doing?” Greg sat up a bit straighter, ignoring his aches as he watched Sherlock.

 

“She's doing okay. Like we said, you took most of the blow. They are keeping her here for a few more days, just to be sure.”

 

“Only days?” Greg felt a spark of jealousy at that and Sherlock shrugged a shoulder.

 

“She only has minor bruises, Lestrade. From the airbag and her seatbelt. It's not pleasant but she'll live. She should be ready for work in about a week. Though she wanted to start sooner.” Sherlock rolled his eyes but Greg wasn't surprised. Sally took great pride out of her work, she hated sitting still and not being able to do something useful. Greg felt dread as he thought about his own work, six to eight weeks was a long time but you could hardly do police work if you couldn't move your shoulder or walk properly. He made a mental note to contact the Chief, maybe he could do some desk duty after a few weeks. He was just as bad at resting as Sally was.

 

“You've been to see her?”

 

Sherlock gave a nod but didn’t elaborate.

 

“And?”

 

“And…. We are okay. She gave me a piece of her mind but it’s all fine now.”

 

“Still friends then?” Greg smirked as Sherlock shrugged again, his cheeks a touch paler then seconds ago. “I told you you have more friends than you know. Sally is one of them. Even if she's a little pissed off at the moment.”

 

“Right.” Mycroft's voice broke the silence and Greg felt his face flame up, sometimes it was hard to remember other people were in the room with him, not just Sherlock, and he saw the little smirk on Sherlock's lips as he watched his brother.

 

“Did you see Doctor Magnussen? Nurse Hooper informed me he was in today. Did he tell you what's going on with you? What you can expect?”

 

Greg couldn't stop a shudder at the man's name and Mycroft raised an eyebrow, placing his umbrella next to him before crossing his legs, hands in his lap.

 

“What's wrong?” Sherlock asked, narrowing his eyes to take Greg in. Greg sighed, rubbing at his shoulder before speaking. You really couldn't hide anything from the Holmes brothers.

 

“It’s nothing really, just- Well, he came in and rattled off a bunch of stuff as he went over my file. He didn't really take the time to explain it all, seemed in a hurry.”

                                       

Greg moved his hand, knowing shrugging a shoulder would be a bad idea and he saw Mycroft's eyes narrow, a twitch near his left eye.

 

“I told you that man was no good.” Sherlock's voice was soft but there was a hardness to his tone, his eyes looking at his brother accusingly.

 

“He has the best possible recommendations, Sherlock. I can't know everything.” Mycroft gave his brother a look, seeing the dark gray come forward and Greg held his breath. There was something off between them and Greg couldn't figure out why.

 

“It’s not a big deal. He just made me feel like an idiot. More a number than an actual person.” Mycroft raised an eyebrow at that and Greg wondered if what he was saying resonated with him. Feeling like an idiot was probably something neither of them had ever experienced.

 

“Hmm. I see.” Mycroft mumbled, eyes going over Greg's body before pulling out his phone and sending a text. Sherlock moved his chair closer, able to reach Greg’s hand and Greg squeezed it, relieved he wasn’t alone in this. At least his friends cared for his well being, that was more than enough.

 

Greg took his glass of water again once Sherlock let go of his hand, watching Mycroft type away and his eyes went wide as he noticed how fast Mycroft was typing. His fingers were a blur, alerts coming in at record speed and Greg felt his mouth fall open just a fraction. He heard Sherlock cough next to him, catching his brother's attention.

 

Mycroft looked up, a little frown on his face before he looked back at Greg and rolled his eyes.

 

“Please, Sherlock. The man already knows our biggest secret. I'm sure he can handle this. Your new doctor will be here shorty to help you.”

 

“Wait, you mean to say you actually restrain yourself when typing at a crime scene? And what new doctor?” Greg looked for Mycroft over to Sherlock with surprise and confusion and the man shot him a look, a hint of amusement in it. “Unbelievable. And I thought you already typed fast!”

 

“There is a lot you still need to learn Lestrade.” Sherlock smirked and Greg tried to punch the man’s  shoulder after placing his glass down, letting out a groan as his body acting up again.

 

“Stop hurting yourself!”

 

“I don't do it on purpose!”

 

“Are you sure you two really aren't married?”

 

3

They all looked at the door as Sally was rolled in in a wheelchair by Anthea. She looked tired and a little pale, small bags under her eyes but there was a sparkle in them as Anthea stopped next to Greg's bed. A teasing smile on Sally’s face as she looked at both Greg and Sherlock before focusing on Greg again. Greg noticed Mycroft had slowed down his typing and he glanced at Sherlock, giving him a little smile. Fascinating! What else had the brother's to restrain to not show how special they were. No wonder Sherlock was restless and impatient at times, humans were just too slow!

 

“How are you?”

 

“I'm fine Boss, just some bruises from the airbag. I'll be okay in a couple of days. How about you?”

 

“Been better. I’m so glad to see you.”

Sally smiled, holding onto his hand and Greg wanted to reach out and hug her. She'd been a part of the team for so long now he considered her family. Sort of like an annoying little sister and he couldn’t even think about the possibility of not having her in his life.

 

“Well, you were in a car accident so-”

 

“Then there is the fact that you are several years older than Sergeant Donovan and you will need more time to recover.”

 

“Sherlock!” Both Sally and Anthea scowled at him, making Sherlock's eyes go wide in surprise as Mycroft just watched, face unreadable.

 

“I'm merely stating a fact. Lestrade will be here for six to eight weeks depending on how well it goes.”

 

“What do you mean, how well it goes?” Greg frowned. Maybe he should have paid closer attention to what doctor Magnusses had been saying.

 

“What my brother means is if there aren't any complications along the way you will be out of here in eight weeks, maybe less. But as you don't need surgery, it shouldn't be a big problem.” Mycroft responded, putting his phone back in his pocket as he shared a look with Anthea. It was the same look Greg's mother gave him when his dad said or did something stupid.

 

“Of course the doctor is an imbecile and-”

 

“Ouch, what a warm welcome!”

 

They all turned to look at the new person standing in the room who looked at Sherlock with amusement before he stepped forward and offered Greg his hand.

 

“Doctor Stamford, but everyone calls me Mike. Pleasure to meet you, Mr. Lestrade.”

 

“Mike.” Sherlock huffed but before he could say more Sally shot him a look and the man closed his mouth, choosing to pout instead. She's probably the only one able to do that. Greg grinned at her as she winked at him, Sherlock ignorning them both as doctor Mike spoke up.

 

“Now, Mr.Lestrade. How are you feeling today?”

 

“I’ve been better.”

 

“You are a lucky man, Mr.Lestrade. Head on car crashes are the worst, most likely to be fatal. Now, a fractured collarbone isn’t pleasant as you’ve probably already experienced but it normally heals in about 6 weeks. Then there is the broken ankle,” Doctor Mike gestured to Greg’s right leg, coming closer and accepting the chair Mycroft offered him so he was eye level with Greg as he explained further.

 

As with any injury, It's going to take some time to heal. “You're not allowed to walk on your ankle for at least 8 weeks. There's going to be stiffness and swelling in the joint and so you need physical therapy to get back strength and motion. Our physiotherapists are the best in the UK.” Doctor Mike smiled but dread settled into Greg’s stomach.

 

“That long? But I have work? Cases to solve.”  He looked over at Sally, seeing the pity in her eyes and feels his stomach drop, anxiety about to take over when suddenly Sherlock's face comes into view, a gentle touch on his forehead making him focus again.

 

“Stop it. Focus and breathe. You're going to be okay. It will take time, but you will fully recover and you will get back to work. As Doctor Stamford says, it takes time.”

 

“You said he was an idiot.” Greg whispers, the coldness of Sherlock’s hand feeling amazing on his forehead and Sherlock gives a tiny smirk.

 

“Even idiots have it right sometimes, Lestrade. It’s going to be fine.”

 

But what will you do? He doesn’t say it out loud but it’s been on his mind since he’s been here. He can't expect the man to just sit still and wait till Greg is ready to work again but the idea of Sherlock working with another DI makes him nervous. DI Dimmock and Sherlock don’t work well so he’ll need to find someone else. Maybe DI Gregson?Or DI Booth? They both had heard about Sherlock's accomplishments and had asked his assistance on a couple of difficult cases. Maybe that would work?

 

“Stop worring about me. You need to focus on yourself for now. Listen to the doctor and do what he says.”

 

He manages a tiny nod and then Sherlock's hands leave his head. He can't look at anyone else just now, a little embarrassed by his semi panic attack but then Doctor Stamford clears his troat and starts up where he left off.

 

“It’s a small blessing that the fracture is stable sothe bones should stay in place during healing and you won’t need surgery because the fracture was a clean cut. You will need to wear a cast for six to eight weeks so standing will be a challenge at first. Then like I  said some rehabilitation to restore the range of motion and strengthen the ankle.”

 

No surgery, at least that was something. Doctor Stamford have an encouraging smile, looking around the room before focusing on Greg again.

 

“Do you have any more questions?”

 

“I. No, I don’t think so.” Greg looks at Sherlock, needing to know the man is still here before he smiles at the doctor. At least now he understands what’s going on and this new doctor doesn’t make him feel like just another patient to get through so that’s something.

 

“Alright then. If you do have questions, don’t be afraid to ask for me. Or you can also ask any of the nurses. For now, I’ll leave you alone with your visitors but Miss Donovan,” Doctor Stamford turns to look at Sally, his expression kind but also serious. “You still need to rest and I would suggest not making this visit too long. Good day, everyone.”

 

“We should get you back to your room, Sergeant Donovan.” Anthea says after the doctor has left, looking at Sally before meeting Greg's gaze. “You can come back later this evening. I’m sure nurse Hooper won’t mind.” Sally's about to protest but Anthea raises an eyebrow at him before discreetly looking at Sherlock. He feels his face flame up again as Anthea gives a tiny nod.

 

“She's right Sally. You need to sleep and recover. I'll be here for a while it seems.” He pulls a face at the prospect and Sally winces in sympathy.

 

“I can talk to the Chief for-” Sally starts but Mycroft cuts in, standing up from his chair in that same fluent movement like last night, taking his umbrella from the floor.

 

“That's already taken care of Sergeant Donovan. I spoke to the Chief yesterday. When DI Lestrade is able to get back to work he can do so without worry. Adjustments will be made if it's needed, the same for you.”

 

“But-” Sally stops, looking over at Greg, confusion in her eyes.

 

“There will be no problems when you are ready for duty again. All will go smoothly.”

 

Sally looks from Greg to Mycroft and back again, surprise, confusion and a hint of frustrated helplessness in her eyes. Greg can't really do anything about it, it's clear Mycroft will help both of them as much as needed. No matter how much they protest.

 

“Sergeant.” Anthea leans next to Sally, one hand on the handle of the wheelchair, the other on Sally's shoulder. “ You won't be indebted to us. Not now or in the future.” Anthea takes a pause, biting her lip before speaking again, softer this time. “I know this kind of generosity makes you feel uneasy but I can assure you, there are no strings attached.”

 

They lock gazes with each other for a moment before Sally looks at Greg and he gives a smile. He knows how Sally feels about money and accepting help.

 

“Okay then. Take me back. I'm already fed up with this place.”

 

“Very well Sergeant.” Anthea says, a smile on her face at Sally's pouting.

 

“Sally. Call me Sally.” A confirmative hum as Anthea pushes the wheelchair to the door, Mycroft standing ready to open it for them. “See you later Sir. Take care.”

 

“I'll come visit you later Greg. Try to rest some more.” Anthea stops and turns, a serious expression on her face as she looks from Greg to Sherlock. “Sherlock, will I see you later or are you staying in Baker Street?”

 

Sherlock's gaze goes from Anthea to Mycroft and Greg sees the stiffness in Mycroft's shoulder for a second as the brother's stare at each other. Then Sherlock smiles, looking at Anthea again.

 

“I'll come round tonight. Promise.”

 

“Good. Try not to stay too long. Greg needs his rest.”

 

“Yes, mother.” Sherlock rolls his eyes and Anthea's smiles gets wider before pushing Sally outside.

 

“Take care, Gregory. Sherlock, I'll see you later.”

 

There is a weird expression on Mycroft's face, his posture too stiff. That same vibe in the room again and Mycroft's eyes land on his, only giving a nod before leaving, his umbrella tightly in hand.

 

He feels Sherlock relax next to him on the chair as soon as the door falls closed and he looks at him, raising an eyebrow in question.

 

“Okay. What's going on between the two of you?”

Chapter Text

Chapter 16

Greg and Sherlock talk.

 

Greg can't take his eyes off Sherlock now that everyone is gone. He hasn't seen the man in over 8 weeks and it feels a little surreal and strange. He’s been wanting to talk to the man for so long but now that he’s here, Greg doesn’t know how to start. Sherlock doesn't seem to fit here, the room suddenly small and confining and he can tell Sherlock is on edge, his body tense and stiff as he doesn’t look at Greg but focuses on the door where Sally, Anthea, and Mycroft just went through.

 

“Sherlock. Are you going to ignore me forever? What’s going on between you and Mycroft?” Greg raises an eyebrow when Sherlock finally looks at him, his mouth is a thin line as his eyes, grey with a purple hue in them, take Greg in. It makes Greg feel uneasy, his body forming gooseflesh and he pulls the blankets up higher.

 

“When has my brother started calling you Gregory?” Sherlock tilts his head to the side, eyes squinted as he keeps focusing on Greg and it takes an embarrassingly long second to figure out what Sherlock is actually saying and what he really means by it. His heart even skips a beat because of it, his body suddenly feeling to warm as Sherlock now raises an eyebrow at him, his expression hard and his posture stiff and unyielding.

 

Greg opens and closes his mouth, blinking his eyes a few times when it’s clear Sherlock isn’t joking and he can feel the temperature in the room drop as the silence goes one, staring at each other.

 

“You can not be serious right now, Sherlock.”

 

There’s a brief change in Sherlock’s expression but the man doesn’t back down, even crossing his arms over his chest as he raises his chin and it makes Greg snap.

 

“I asked your brother to call me Greg cause that is my name and we are friends. Some people actually seem to remember it.” He keeps his eyes on Sherlock, pulling the blankets back down cause his rising anger is making his face warm up. The absolute nerve!

 

“I don't know what's going on inside your head but you'd better stop it right now.”

 

His voice is stern considering the circumstances and he sees Sherlock deflate in front of him. His shoulders dropping down, face falling as his eyes go from grey with purple, to just grey.

 

“Lestrade, I-“

 

“Your brother has just offered to pay for my stay here, all the treatments and therapy I will need. The least I can offer him is some kindness.” Greg looks at Sherlock who unfolds his arms and starts bouncing his knee up and down.

 

“I. Please forgive me.” It's a whisper full of remorse, Sherlock's gaze going back to his lap and his knee stops bouncing, placing his slightly trembling hands on his thighs. The vibe now is awkward and Greg clears his throat as he pushes himself up in his bed, trying to find a better position. His medication is doing its work but lying down in bed is already starting to irritate him and he’s been here for only a night and a day!

 

Sherlock’s eyes suddenly fix on him, a low growl coming out of his mouth and Greg looks down, looking at his stomach and seeing the big bruises on it.

 

“It’s not that bad, Sherlock. It looks worse then it is. “Airbags aren't that soft when they go open apparently. They really should work on that.” He tries to sound light but Sherlock’s eyes go darker by the second as he takes in the wild array of green, blue, purple and yellow. Greg pulls down his shirt, reaching out a hand but Sherlock doesn’t take it, seemingly lost in his thoughts.

 

“I should have been there.” Sherlock looks up, agony in his expression and Greg gently shakes his head, offering his hand again. This time Sherlock does accept it and Greg flinches a little by the coldness of it, seeing the apologetic smile on Sherlock’s face.

 

“I’m sorry. It’s been a while since I’ve consumed anything.”

 

“It’s fine, I’ll get used to it.” Greg smiles, squeezing Sherlock’s hand. He always forgets that Sherlock’s normal temperature is colder than his own but that doesn’t mean he’ll stop touching the man when he obviously needs some comfort.

 

“And this really isn’t your fault.” Greg gestures to his stomach, shaking his head when sherlock’s about to protest. “ It was an accident, Sherlock. I know it looks bad but I’ll be fine. You said so yourself, it just needs time.”

 

Sherlock looks at Greg, after a while giving a tiny nod but his eyes are still grey, holing Greg’s hand too tightly as his eyes go over Greg’s body.

 

Stop worrying Sherlock. I’m at the best Orthopaedic Hospital in the world. Thanks to you.” Greg smiles, patting Sherlock’s hand when the man let’s go of him and Greg puts both his hands under the blankets, seeing the amused look in Sherlock’s eyes.

 

“I’m sorry for all this, Sherlock.”

 

“Why would you be sorry? It’s not like you meant to be in an accident.”

 

“No, of course not but- “Is it difficult for you? Being here in the hospital I mean?” He’s been worried about it ever since being here, wondering how Sherlock can deal with all the blood in such a small space. Mycroft had reassured him in his own way but Greg wanted to know from the man himself. He didn't like the idea of Sherlock being in discomfort. Sherlock blinks his eyes a few times, watching Greg with a curious expression and he can feel his face warm up again.

 

“I mean, you just seem a bit on edge. Nurse Molly told me about the nurse you made cry.”

 

“That woman doesn’t deserve to be called a nurse,” Sherlock grumbles, crossing his arms as he huffs out a curse.

 

“She’s the worst nurse I’ve ever met. Trust me, she deserves it.”

 

Greg isn’t so sure about that but he doesn’t comment on it, instead waits for Sherlock to answer his previous questions, knee bouncing up and down again before he catches himself and lets out a tired sigh, running a hand through his curls.

 

“It's always a battle Lestrade. I won't deny it.” Sherlock answers as his eyes go around the room. “Hospitals aren’t my favorite place in the world but human blood has never been my greatest weakness.”

 

“Vampire blood.”

 

Sherlock looks at him before nodding, fidgeting with his hands.

 

“What would happen if-“

 

“I don’t know.” Sherlock whispers, looking away from Greg and he bites his lip for asking. He can’t imagine Sherlock like a Revenant, even after Mycroft told him Sherlock’s history, it seems so far removed from the person who’s sitting here next to him now. Then again, he’s met addicts, has seen how drugs and other things can have such a strong hold on people they risk everything for it, losing their jobs, their homes and families.

 

“You don’t have to stay here if it’s too-“

 

“It’s fine, Lestrade. Like I said, human blood is easy to resist.”

 

“Why did you make me believe you'd killed before Sherlock?”

 

“I have.” Sherlock’s expression is closed off when his eyes find Greg’s, fidgeting on his chair when Greg keeps looking at him. Maybe he shouldn’t push on but they’ve been avoiding the issue for about 8 weeks now and what else are they going to talk about anyway. They can’t distract themselves with cases and Sherlock seems willing to answer his questions, at least for now.

 

“You made it sound like you'd killed humans. Why didn't you tell me?”

 

“Humans or vampires, it's still the same. I've killed, there’s blood on my hands, there is no sugar coating it.”

 

“You shouldn’t have run away like that, Sherlock. I was worried.”

 

“I’m sorry- I just thought-“

 

“We’re friends, Sherlock. That means I have your back and give you the benefit of the doubt. You could do the same for me.” Greg raised an eyebrow when Sherlock’s gaze went to the door, his cheeks going a shade paler when he looked at Greg again.

 

Mycroft and I are just friends, Sherlock. He'll never be anything else. Even if he would be then you still have no right to-“

 

“I know,” Sherlock speaks up, eyes gray as they take Greg in. “I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have-“

 

“No, you shouldn’t have, but I don’t think you need to apologize to me, Sherlock.” Nerves race inside him as Sherlock looks down to his lap, silence falling over them and Greg is sure Sherlock can hear how fast his heart is now beating, afraid and worried about the turn of this conversation. He’s never seen Sherlock like this before. A small part of his brain is flattered by Sherlock’s behavior, delighted even with the tiny hint of jealousy but at the same time, he needs to make clear that his behavior isn’t good. Greg doesn't want to cause problems between them. He’s beginning to like Mycroft, seeing how deeply he cares for his brother, but he also knows his feelings for the older Holmes brother will never go deeper than that. Something Sherlock needs to know too. He’d hate coming between the brothers over something silly as this!

 

Sherlock? Do you… Understand where I’m coming from?”

 

He gets a nod in return when Sherlock looks up at him, the grey in his eyes lighter in color and he lets out a relieved breath, nerves dying down. It's never easy with Sherlock, their friendship complex and strange. Somehow adding Mycroft to the mix has made it even more confusing and Greg looks at the man next to him, his gaze cautious as his eyes go all over the room. It's something Sherlock does when he's nervous or unsure.

 

Can we just, forget about it? Blame it on the stress or something?” Greg tries to joke, not caring how stupid he sounds. The medication is making him tired again and he doesn’t want to waist this time with Sherlock on negative things. It seems their recent conversations have been negative and Greg’s tired of it.

 

Stop worrying Sherlock. You and I are good, okay. I’m sure you’ll make it up with Mycroft too.”

 

He sees the confusion on Sherlock's face after his words and can't help but smirk a little before answering, gesturing to Sherlock’s face.

 

Your eyes. They’re are still grey. Not as dark as before but it hasn't changed back yet. It usually means you're worried or upset.” Sherlock's eyes go wide as he looks at Greg with surprise and a hint of pride.

 

It took me a while to figure out.”

 

You keep surprising me, Lestrade,” Sherlock whispers, an emotion in his expression Greg can’t translate, he can only see the first hints of blue in his eyes again and that’s enough for him.

 

You could call me Greg, you know.”

 

I could. But where's the fun in that?”

 

Sherlock grins like a naughty child, eyes now blue and sparkling and Greg can't stop a laugh from escaping as he watches him. He’s glad to see that they can still do this, easy banter back and forth. It makes him forget about the accident and the pain for a while and he reaches out, patting Sherlock’s hand that’s now laying on the bedsheet.

 

“You do feel like cold, Sherlock. Are you sure you’re okay?” He takes the man’s hand in his, holding it tightly and he feels the coldness go through him as Sherlock’s eyes go wide.

 

“It’s been a bit hectic. If we don’t consume something on a regular basis, we turn cold. I’m sorry, I should have thought about it before coming here.”

 

“It’s fine Sherlock. I just don’t like it when you don’t look after yourself. You should go home and sleep. Or the vampire version of it. You don't need to stay here all afternoon.” Even though Greg wouldn't object to it. Sherlock rolls his eyes at him but there isn’t any irritation in it. Just amusement and Greg frowns. What has he said now?

 

“I’m a vampire, Lestrade. It’s just- strange, you worrying about me because I’m cold.”

 

“Nobody likes being cold. Is that why you don’t like touching people?” Sherlock gives him a weird look and Greg can feel his face burn again as he let’s go of Sherlock’s hand.

 

“Sorry.”

 

“It’s fine, Lestrade and you are right, I do have a problem with touch. But, that’s mostly because it raises too many questions when they feel how cold I am. It's easy to understand in winter but when it's 25 degrees outside it's hard to explain why I'm the temperature of an ice cream. Even you still flinch when you reach out and you’ve known me for a while now.”

Oh. That. Yeah, that makes sense. Good to know it’s not just me then.”

 

I'm not averse to touching you, Lestrade,” Sherlock’s voice is laced with disbelief and Greg can feel his face burn up as the man looks at him. It’s even worse here than normal cause he can’t move away or distract them. “I just know it's not always pleasant when I do, so I keep it to a minimal. That’s all.

 

Sherlock shrugged a shoulder, giving Greg a smile and for some reason, it broke his heart. He reached out, taking Sherlock’s hand as he ignored the cold and held it, letting the silence fall over them.

 

“Thank you, Sherlock. For- for talking to me. Answering some of my questions.” He let go, giving Sherlock a nod when their gazes met.

 

“You’re allowed to ask, Greg. Some things are difficult to talk about, even now. But it doesn’t mean you can’t ask me. I'm sorry if I gave you the impression that you couldn't.” Sherlock places his hands on his lap again, a tiny frown between his brows. “It's normal to be curious about... my kind.”

 

“I.” He stops, not sure what to say and settles for another smile, showing Sherlock that he understands. It's a sign of trust, proof that Sherlock is trying and Greg feels his body get warm as he lets that sink in. After a moment Sherlock speaks up again, jolting Greg out of his thoughts, shifting carefully in his bed.

 

“Congrats on the Thompson case again. I'd been meaning to send you a text but then-”

 

“We got hit by a car so you had to change your plans?” Greg smiles as Sherlock rolls his eyes, a little scowl on his lips.

 

“At least you still have your sense of humor. Even if it's of bad quality.”

 

“Oi! Give me a break! I've been in a car accident!”

 

The real smile that urns him makes Greg realize how much he’s missed the man, probably more then is good for him. Not just in his working life, but as a friend too.

 

Thanks, Sherlock. The team did great work, it was frustrating for sure but a good reminder that we're capable of handling our own, though that Riley fellow still thinks we work too slow and too sloppy without you.

 

I've never doubted your abilities, Greg. Riley Parker is an idiot.” Sherlock looks at him, a gentle smile on his face and Greg's throat closes up.

 

Working with someone as smart and brilliant as you can be hard sometimes. You make it seem so easy. At times I envy you your mind.”

 

Trust me, it's more a curse than a gift,” Sherlock whispers, his eyes having specks of grey in them and he wishes he could move freely so he could give the man a hug.

 

Say that to all the people you saved, all the murders you helped solve. We're lucky to have you. I'm lucky to have you.”

 

The comment makes Sherlock’s eyes change again, this time a bright blue and he’s sure he’ll never totally get used to it. It’s a good color, meaning Sherlock is relaxed and even happy and he can’t stop a big smile forming on his face.

 

“What is it?”

 

“Nothing. It’s been weird without you, that’s all. I almost forgot how slow real police work goes normally. Your skills and abilities make us spoiled.”

 

You handle it well without me. You and the team. It was impressive, most of the newspapers agreed.”

 

“Except Riley Parker,” Greg mumbled, thinking back on some of his latest articles. The man wasn’t as hard on Greg, but when someone talked bad about his team or the police as a whole, it irritated him. Yes, mistakes had been made, they were only human after all, but they weren’t as stupid and incompetent as Parker made them out to be.

 

“You’d start to think that Riley fellow is obsessed with you. How he writes about you in his articles. Mycroft said I shouldn’t worry but-”

 

Sherlock's eyes go a shade lighter, a tremor in his left hand and Greg closes his mouth, horrified by what he just said.

 

“I’m sorry, I didn’t mean-

 

It's okay, Lestrade. It’s good to know you’re looking out for me. You and Mycroft.”

 

Guess we're not a bunch of idiots after all,” Greg smirked as Sherlock rolled his eyes at him, raising an eyebrow when the man didn’t deny it.

 

Well, there is a reason I chose to work with you.”

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 17

Sherlock explains how he found Greg and he learns another vampire thing.

1

“Wait what?”

 

Greg looked at Sherlock with surprise, seeing the regret on Sherlock’s face and his eyes for letting that piece of information slip.

 

“Sherlock? Chose to work with me- what do you mean?”

 

It had seemed like a miracle, a one in a million chance, that Sherlock would show up at his crime scene, changing his life forever in more ways than one. Now it seemed it hadn't been that random at all and he squeezed Sherlock's hand again to catch the man’s gaze.

 

“Please tell me.”

 

“I. Well, I. Maybe I should let you sleep? You’ve already yawned two times and the doctor said-“

 

“Don’t Sherlock. Please, just explain it to me?”

 

Sherlock looked up, letting out a sound that’s close to a growl but then he finally started talking, his posture stiff as his eyes stayed fixed on a spot on Greg’s hospital bed.

 

“I came back to London around the time of that haunted house murder. It was a big deal in the papers and the crime fascinated me. Three people murdered in the same house, in the same room, in the same time frame. It was right up my ally but the Moriarty business was only just solved and I didn't feel the need to come out in public again.”

 

“Who's Moriarty?” Greg asked, trying to remember if he'd read something in the papers or heard something around the office. Sherlock waved a hand in the air, shrugging a shoulder.

 

“Not important.”

 

But Greg knew Sherlock long enough now to decipher that tone of voice and he raised an eyebrow at the man.

 

“Let's just say my talents have drawn the attention of many people. Not all of them good. Most of them not good actually.”

 

Greg saw Sherlock's eyes change color as his mind drifted off, tiny spots of black mixed with the gray and he reached out to touch Sherlock’s hand again. He couldn’t seem to stop, needing to reach out and touch the man but he pulled back fast when Sherlock flinched from his touch. His body grumbled because of the fast movement and he let out a groan. Sherlock looked back at him with grey/black eyes.

 

“It's fine. Are you okay, Sherlock? Your eyes-”

 

“I really should figure something out for that.”

 

“Please don't. It's hard enough to read you as it is.”

 

Sherlock’s obvious confusion made Greg huff, only adding to it and he rolled his eyes in disbelief. Of course, Sherlock didn't seem himself as hard to figure out. He was so used to seeing everything about other people he probably didn't realize other people couldn't do that.

 

The confused look in Sherlock's eyes was comical and Greg let out a laugh.

 

“You're not the easiest person to figure out Sherlock. For most of us, it doesn't come easy. Not like how you can do it. See. Observe.”

 

“It still makes you uncomfortable? My... skills?”

 

“No,” Greg carefully shook his head, feeling the dull sensation of needles pricking his shoulder. “It's frustrating at times, that's all. You being able to know almost everything about me. Sometimes things I don't want you to know. It takes getting used to, I won't lie. But,” He holds up his hand as Sherlock is about to answer. “I wouldn't change it for the world, Sherlock. What you can do, how you see the world, is a gift in my mind and you wouldn't be you without it.”

 

Sherlock gave him that mixed look of awe and surprise, eyes turning green and blue, and Greg smiled, feeling a tad awkward under Sherlock's intense gaze so he cleared his throat, playfully scowling Sherlock when their eyes met again. “You're distracting me. Tell me, how did you choose me?”

 

“I'm not distracting you, you just ask too many questions.”

 

“Someone once told me curiosity is the way to becoming a good Detective.”

 

“Clearly that man was an idiot,” Sherlock smirked and Greg let out a laugh, fondness taking over his heart even as he let out a wince in discomfort. Clearly, laughing was a bad idea.

 

“I'll continue my story if you lay still. All this movement is not good for your body Greg.”

 

“You mean my old body?”

 

Sherlock rolled his eyes at that and Greg gave a smile.

 

“You are not old.”

 

“Maybe by vampire standards I’m not.”

 

“Stop being an idiot.” Sherlock rolled his eyes again but Greg could tell there wasn’t much heat in it, just both of them playfully teasing each other and it lifted some of Greg’s worries off his shoulders. The last few weeks had felt heavy and serious, their conversation loaded with emotions.

 

“Oi! I’ve just been hit by a car, you should be nice.”

 

“I’m never nice, Lestrade.”

 

“Fair point.”

 

They both smirked at each other for a moment, Greg delighted as he saw the change in eye color in his friend.

 

“Now, let's get on with the story, Sherlock. You’ve distracted me long enough.”

 

“I would if you'd let me!”

 

“I'm letting you now.”

 

2

“So, you followed the Dera Willes case?”

 

“Yes.” Sherlock nodded his head, eyes going over Greg's face one more time before continuing. “I heard about the case the moment I got back and started reading up on it. Your name kept coming up and I was curious. The papers were mildly supportive of you and that hasn't happened very often. Even J. Jameson spoke highly of you and we all know how critical he can be. So, I went to see for myself. I have to say, I was impressed.”

 

A soft smile on Sherlock's face and Greg feels his cheeks turn red. It had taken months to solve it, going over every inch of that horrible house. Finding out about it's strange and deadly history. The papers had a field day, talking about vengeful ghosts and sadistic clans. The longer it took to solve, the wilder the theories became. It was a group of teens wanting to become vampires, then a group of adults with mental health problems, then a love triangle gone wrong, then a failed sex experiment.

 

Greg had been stressed and frustrated, constantly trying to shut out the crazy theories and keeping his team focused on the evidence. Even if there was very little to go by.

 

“You followed me all that time?”

 

“Most of it yes. I needed to know your character, Lestrade.”

 

“But I never once-”

 

“I'm a 155-year-old vampire Lestrade, I can be discreet when I have to be.”

 

“So you followed me all through that case?” Greg whispered, his mind going over that time, trying to find a hint of Sherlock in his clouded memories but nothing comes up. It’s strange to know the man had been watching him for months before they officially met.

 

“I did yes. Your team is quite capable although some of them needed some extra help and refinement.”

 

Knowing Sherlock had been there, watching Greg and his team struggle made him angry for a moment. They probably would have caught Dera Willes much sooner if Sherlock had been around to help! He's about to tell the man just that when Sherlock gives him a smile, eyes sparkling with light amusement and a hint of smugness.

 

“Who do you think send that anonymous tip?”

 

“That was you?”

 

Sherlock tilted his head, giving him that 'don't make me repeat myself' look and Greg just stared at the smugness on Sherlock's face, the corner of his mouth up.

 

At the time, that tip had been vital, leading them almost straight to Dera and for a long time after the arrest, Greg had been convinced she hadn't acted alone. Maybe it had been his naivety, not believe a woman was capable of such a brutal and bloody crime but he'd done his best to track down the tipster. Of course, he didn't have any luck, it was an anonymous tip line for a reason. After Dera's confession, it was clear she had acted alone, a mix of feeling inferior and jealousy causes her to take vengeance on her high school bullies

 

“I don't know if I should be flattered or freaking out by this information.” Greg looked at Sherlock with squinted eyes. Knowing the man had watched and followed him for months left a strange taste in his mouth and not just because of his medication. Still, catching the eye of a genius like Sherlock was also flattering in a way, even if it was a little creepy.

 

“It depends on how you view me now, I suppose. After all that's happened lately I'd understand if you don't-”

 

“Oi!” Greg tries to sit up and grab Sherlock's wrist but his body loudly disagrees, Greg letting out a yelp of discomfort. He's going to regret this later on when the meds wair off again. He hears Sherlock cursing as cool hands push him down, his eyes stormy, mouth a tin line.

 

“God sake Lestrade, stop acting like a fool! This moving around will not help your recovery go faster!” There’s a moment where Sherlock opens his mouth to say more but stops himself, a flash of irritation in his eyes before his expression turned sad, eyes going over Greg’s body before gently placing a cold hand on Greg’s arm for a moment.

 

“You're so vulnerable.” Sherlock removed his hand, giving Greg a glass of water. “It's hard to remember what it was like before. How weak and small we really are. Seeing you like this reminds me how valuable life is. How quickly it can end.”

 

“I'm sorry.” Greg gave the glass back to Sherlock, seeing the sadness in his grey eyes. “ I promise I'll be more careful. I just, need to get used to it I guess. It's like my head is still catching up to everything that's happened. “ Sherlock nods, eyes grey as he sits back down again and they sit in silence for a while, listening to the sounds coming from behind the door.

 

“I was joking Sherlock, about the freaking out.”

 

“But at the same time, you weren't.”

 

Sherlock's voice is hard and Greg flinches, hating how sure Sherlock sounds, hearing that hint of self-hate in his voice. It's times like these that he can understand why having Sherlock's skills and abilities can be challenging. The man can't pretend that Greg is okay with this new knowledge cause he can see Greg isn't.

 

“Sherlock.”

 

“I've assisted the police before. Before I came to London. It didn't work out so well and I didn't want to start something in a rush. I know following you for so long is disturbing but I needed to be sure. Of all the people at the Yard, you were the most promising. You showed compassion and real concern for the families but you threated the criminals with respect as well. Your team not only respects you, they like you. That doesn't happen very often.”

 

Sherlock looks at him and Greg finds it hard to breathe after Sherlock's statement. He had no idea Sherlock saw him like that and it makes the butterflies in his stomach work overtime. He hadn't thought his 'softness' would ever be seen as an advantage to Sherlock, something to make him stand out in a good light. The man just screamed logic and common sense at first. Feelings and emotions didn't seem to have a place in Sherlock's world. How wrong he had been.

 

“I. Thank you, Sherlock.”

 

“I knew you'd be a good match after I gave you that clue on the London Vampire case and you checked it. Not only did you listen, you acted on it. You were the first one to do so. At least without being too stubborn about it. You had a healthy dose of mistrust for me, I could tell but you followed up anyway.”

 

“You noticed that?” Greg raised an eyebrow, thinking back on their first meeting, how his body had responded to Sherlock, that sense of danger that hung around him

 

“I'm a vampire Lestrade. I know when people are afraid of me. Something changes in their scent.”

 

“My scent?”

 

Sherlock shrugs a shoulder, eyes landing on a spot on the bed, trying to act casual but failing miserably.

 

“Every person has his or her own smell. No need to worry, Lestrade, you smell nice in general.”

 

“Thank you? I think?” Greg frowned, not sure what to make of this new information.

 

“So you sniff people?”

 

“No.” And there's the famous eye-roll, a hint of irritation and embarrassment on Sherlock's face.

 

“I don't smell you like a dog Lestrade, I just have better senses, it's something I can't control. Believe me, I wish I could.”

 

“What do I smell like?”

 

Sherlock finally looks at him and Greg holds his breath, afraid he's asked too many questions already, that it's too personal too fast but Sherlock shrugs a shoulder, tilting his head to the side.

 

“ It changes with your mood.”

 

Greg feels his mouth fall open, eyes going wider and Sherlock huffs, leaning further in his chair, long legs spread out under the bed. Greg didn't know how long Sherlock had been here but he still looked as perfect as ever, as if he'd walked straight out of a magazine.

 

“Don't look silly Lestrade, it doesn't soothe you. Humans always change, their smell changes too. You should know that, having dealt with dead bodies. And fear is very easy to detect, even dogs notice it.”

 

“Well, that's- I. I never really thought about it. I really smell differently according to my mood?”

 

Sherlock nods and Greg let’s out a sound of surprise.

 

“Give me an example, Sherlock.”

 

Greg looked up, seeing the approving gleam in Sherlock's eyes and feeling a spark of pride because of it. When Sherlock looked at him in that way he felt on top of the world.

 

“When you're happy, you smell like freshly cut grass on a spring day. But when you're angry you smell more like the sea during a storm. It's fascinating to me.”

 

Sherlock's voice was soft and Greg felt hot and cold at the same time. His lower body was more than awake and Greg scowled himself mentally. Not the time! It was strange how he could be so tired, on the verge of exhausted but his dick was more than happy to get some attention. He cleared his throat awkwardly, making Sherlock break eye contact so Greg could breathe again.

 

“So, do criminals smell bad on a regular basis? I wouldn't mind having that vampire trick, to be honest. Would make the job a lot easier if I could just smell them out.”

 

“It doesn't exactly work like that. Even if it did, you can't just arrest people based on their smell.” Sherlock commented, given Greg a look and Greg grinned.

 

“Being a vampire isn't a gift Lestrade. Even with the added 'tricks'. I wouldn't wish this existence on anyone.' Sherlock's face fell, his gaze thoughtful as his eyes went over Greg's body. Sherlock opened his mouth to say something but swallowed it back at the last minute, a twitch happening near his right eye as he looked at Greg's face again.

 

“Do you miss being human?”

 

“I.” Sherlock stopped, biting his lip as he thought it over. “There is something beautiful in the knowledge that we have limited time. It makes you want to push forward, get better, accomplish things others will remember you be. Leave your mark as you will.” Sherlock huffed, shifting in his chair. “Once you're immortal, time loses its shine.” Sherlock's eyes were gray, not a hint of green left and Greg's heart broke.

 

“Are you tired of living?” Sherlock shoots him a look and Greg rolls his eyes. “You know what I mean.”

 

“I was for a while, back when I'd just changed and after John, it all seemed useless. Everything that made me special, I hated it.”

“Who is John?”

3

“It's fine, Sherlock. You don't have to tell me. It's none of my business anyway.” Greg almost stumbled over his words, trying to make the man understand he didn't have to share any more then he'd already done. The silence clung in the room and Greg again wished he’d kept his mouth shut.

 

“It's okay Lestrade,” Sherlock replies softly, shaking his head as Greg opens his mouth. “John was- my partner for some time. It ended badly, which probably is an understatement according to some people.” Sherlock forced out a laugh and Greg cringed at the fakeness of it.

 

“Is that why you said vampires can't love?”

 

Sherlock didn't respond so much in words but his face told Greg enough. He'd always suspected Sherlock would have been taken at some point, a gorgeous man like him couldn't be single for long, but hearing it out of Sherlock's mouth...

 

“I'm sorry Sherlock.” Greg reached out, offering some comfort but Sherlock just gave a half-hearted smile.

 

“Fascination can be dangerous. Only seeing the perks of our existence.”

 

“So, John was-”

 

“Human? Yes, he was. At least when I met him.”

 

“So he-”

 

“Changed? Yes.” Sherlock looked down, staring at his hands on his lap.

 

“And you-”

 

“I can assure you, it was never my intent. I was, naive and blind. I-” Sherlock stopped, fidgeting with his hands as he kept looking at his lap and Greg swallowed in his questions.

 

“You don't have to tell me more,” Greg whispered, seeing the discomfort on Sherlock’s face.

 

“I'm sorry he caused you pain.” Greg's throat closed up as he looked into Sherlock's eyes, seeing the mix of emotions in them.

 

“It is what it is, Lestrade. My life isn’t all rainbows and roses, but it's not all doom and gloom either.” Sherlock gives a smile, seeing the green speckles mix with the gray. “I met you for one. That wouldn't have happened if I'd stayed human.”

 

Greg's breath catches as Sherlock's words, hearing the honesty in it and Sherlock looks down again, cheeks pale as he chews his lower lip.

 

“I. That's the nicest thing anyone has ever said to me.” His voice is a little rough, he feels a bit breathless as Sherlock's pins him down with his gaze for what feels like hours.

 

“Thank you, Sherlock. For, telling me all this.” He couldn’t stop a yawn, seeing the amusement in Sherlock’s eyes when he looked at the man again. He felt tired, his body finally caving in on him and a spark of panic entered as Sherlock got up.

 

“Are you staying? In London I mean?” He felt his face get warm as Sherlock looked closely at him. Maybe he smelled the starting panic on Greg’s skin and that was a new fact he needed to wrap his head around.

 

“Yes. I'm back.” Sherlock leaned forward, placing his hand on Greg's and Greg suddenly felt like crying. He blinked rapidly, trying to stop the tears as Sherlock stroked his hand, eyes not leaving Greg's.

 

“I'm sorry, Greg. For how I’ve been acting these past few weeks. You should rest. I've kept you up for too long. I wouldn't want to anger nurse Molly, she seems to like me.”

 

“Sherlock.” Greg wants to say something deep and meaningful, emotions rushing through him from Sherlock’s words, his apology, the fact that he’s here and apparently staying.

 

“I'll be back tomorrow. I promise.”

 

He nods, not trusting his voice at this point, watching Sherlock as he takes his coat and puts it on in one fluid, practiced move.

 

“Sleep tight, Lestrade.”

 

“I’ll try.” Greg lets out a sigh, shifting in bed. It’s not easy sleeping with a cast on your foot and a sling on your shoulder. He wants to make a funny remark about it but when he looks up he’s alone again and he soon falls asleep. Troubled by imagines of Sherlock in danger.

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 18

Greg reaches out to Mycroft but gets no answer. Anthea and Mycroft have a conversation.

1

Greg is already losing his mind and he's only been in hospital for about two weeks and three days. The sling has finally come off, but now he's wearing a figure eight bandage that has his shoulder fixed tight. It helps with the pain, but it's hardly convenient and Greg is going mental for not being able to move properly.

Not only does he want to die whenever he moves his shoulder, the cast around his foot is itching like crazy. At least it can come off in about two more weeks if all goes well and Greg does his best to be an excellent patient. The sooner his cast and bandage are off, the sooner he can start physiotherapy and be out of here.

Not that it's bad, for a hospital, but Greg misses his own place. His stacks of books, comfy sofa, how the light falls in at night, this fireplace. Hospitals don't have any warmth in them, it's like they lack a soul and all this white and creme is making him depressed. Nurse Molly comes around almost every day to see him, help him wash and change and it's nice to talk to her. She's a kind and patient person, a vivid lover of cats and to Greg's surprise and mild delight, she's a lover of all things vampire.

“I know Twilight had many issues, vampires that glow in the sun, come on! But I still love it. What team were you on? Jacob or Edward?”

It's a nice break from his otherwise boring days, except for Molly, only Sally and Sherlock come to visit. Sally has recovered very well and is already back to work, doing her best to keep the ship afloat in Greg's absence and he's relieved that Sherlock and the DI are getting along. He'd been worried about it in the beginning. Not that Sherlock couldn't work with other people, but most of them needed time to get used to Sherlock and his ways. He'd known DI Gregson from a case they'd worked on together a few years back and knew the man was patient. He did have a strong hand but was always fair and Sherlock could use that.

“The man is adequate Lestrade. Could benefit from my methods of course, but he is sharp. Still, it's time you come back to work. The criminals are being boring, the cases are only six at best.”

“I don't think I have such an influence on the London criminals, Sherlock. I sure hope I don't and it's not like I don't want to come back to work. The doctor said it could take up to six weeks for my ankle to fully heal. Maybe even longer. God, I hope it's not longer.”

Greg had pouted and Sherlock had given him a strange look, opening his mouth to say something before stopping himself again. It had been a few times since these two weeks that it had happened and Greg wondered what was going on inside Sherlock's brain. Clearly, something was stirring, whenever Greg made a wrong move and it felt like he was dying again, Sherlock got that look. That 'I'm maybe up to something' look and Greg wanted to know what was going on. He'd tried to ask a few times but Sherlock brushed it off, changing the subject and Greg had dropped it, for now. He knew it would come up eventually, he just needed to give Sherlock some more time.

“I know you are impatient to get started with your therapy Mr. Lestrade but these fractures can be tricky. If something goes awry, you could be recovering for up to a year and I doubt you'd want that.”

Doctor Stamford raised an eyebrow in question and Greg sighed, looking at him with mild annoyance though he knew the man was only trying to help him.

“When can I at least stand up again? Maybe even walk? How long till I can get back to work?”

“People return to their daily activities within three to four months. Driving is possible within two to three months. I know that's not what you wanted to hear, but as soon as that bandage comes off, which should be in a few days, you can start your physical therapy for the shoulder. Making sure it stays flexible, gathering strength again, light rotation movements, things like that.”

Dr. Stamfords voice was soft, his gaze sympathetic and Greg relaxed a fraction because of the warmth in those kind eyes. He wondered where Doctor Magnussen had gone and he had a sneaky suspicion Mycroft had something to do with it. For some reason, the man always had something to do with it. Not that he'd had a chance to ask him, he hadn't seen Mycroft since that strange morning when the tension between the two brothers had been clearly visible.

“How is the pain Mr.Lestrade? Normally it should be beginning to fade.”

“Yeah, it's much better than at the start. I don't feel like dying now when I move my upper body but it's still not too pleasant.” Doctor Stamford nodded, sympathy clear on his face. Greg had never experienced pain like this before and he still didn't understand how such a small fracture could cause so much pain. The first two weeks he hadn't been able to move much, even just lifting his arm had been a challenge, an intense, stinging pain shooting through his shoulder, sometimes taking his breath away. It hadn't helped that he'd moved so much during his first days when Anthea, Mycroft, and Sherlock had been there, his body punishing him for it after.

“That's good. We are keeping you on pain medication, for now, the therapy will make it feel worse before it get's better, but that is normal. Now, I'll have Miss Morstan come to visit you this week to explain it all and set up a training program for you.” Greg pulled a face and the doctor laughed, the sound brightening up Greg's room and making the day seem a bit less boring.

“I won't lie. It's going to be tough and you'll probably hate her and me for putting you through it, but I promise you, she will bring results and make you get out of here faster. She's the best physiotherapist in the UK, she knows what she's doing. Don't tell her I said that,” Doctor Stamford winked, a genuine smile on his face and Greg grinned in return, glad for the lightness the man brought to the situation. Not that his new doctor couldn't be serious if he needed to be, but it was a nice change from the stiffness and detachment from before.

Greg wanted to ask if Miss Morstan was appointed by Mycroft too but he stopped himself just in time. There was a good chance Doctor Mike himself didn't know why he had Greg as a patient suddenly and he didn't want to make things uncomfortable. Maybe it should have worried him how Mycroft was able to pull strings like this but he knew it didn't come from a bad place. He sighed, rubbing his eyes as his doctor wrote a few lines in his file. He really wanted to talk to Mycroft and clear this strange situation out.

“So, any questions before I go?” Dr. Stamford asked, closing up Greg's file and placing it back on the end of the bed.

Greg shook his head and Dr. Stamford winked.

“Then I'll let you rest now, yes, you do need to rest plenty, it's the perfect way for your body to heal. Do not argue with your doctor.” Mike said, grinning as Greg scowled. He felt like he'd rested enough for a lifetime but a yawn escaped him and Mike raised an eyebrow.

“Fine, fine. I'll rest.”

“Good lad. I'll see you next week. If you have any questions, don't be afraid to ask the staff. And if the pain is too bad, let us know so we can make adjustments to your medication if needed. Collarbones hurt like hell and the pain can flare up sometimes.”

“Nice way to keep me optimistic Doc.”

“Only doing my job. I'll check in next week. Good day Greg.”

“Bye Doc.”

Three to six months.

Greg sighed, tiredness taking over. He just hoped all would go well and that there wouldn't be any complication. That was another reason he wanted to speak to Mycroft, he couldn't expect the man to pay his bill for so many months. When Mycroft had told him about his gift, Greg had suspected he'd be in hospital for a few weeks and that would be all but since he lived alone and there was no one else to help him with basic activities, he needed to stay in the hospital for the whole duration of his healing.

He grabbed his phone, debating whether to send another text to Mycroft and then decided to call Anthea instead. He was sick and tired of Holmes' men avoiding him and he had a feeling Anthea could help him.

2

“No need to worry Greg, I'll see to it.”

So that's why Sherlock hadn't been around a lot these past few weeks. She'd felt it the minute she’d walked in, the tension between the brother’s had been thick, even after Sherlock and Mycroft had talked in private but Mycroft hadn't elaborated to her, claiming it was nothing and all solved.

Clearly, that had been a lie and now Anthea had to deal with it. She loved the brothers, she really did, but sometimes they could be a handful. Sherlock and Mycroft were different but when it came to feelings and how to express them, they were just the same. Maybe that's why they had such a hard time communicating? Both brothers had a way of avoiding the issue, bottling it all up.

She walked upstairs, hearing Mycroft type away on his computer. She knocked two times, waiting for his call and she noticed it took a second or two longer than usual to respond. Maybe he'd heard part of the conversation, maybe he just had a feeling, Anthea couldn't be sure. But at least she was allowed in and she walked in calmly, a neutral expression on her face as she sat down in her favorite chair, facing Mycroft head on.

“Yes, Anthea? What can I do for you?”

Anthea held back an eye roll as the man didn't look up from his work. She knew him well enough to know he already knew why she was there, the tension in his body intensifying a fraction as she crossed her legs and just waited. She hated talking to someone when the person wasn't looking at her, a fact Mycroft knew.

“Yes, Anthea?” After a minute or two Mycroft spoke again, tilting his head up to look at her and he stopped typing, closing his laptop when he saw the expression on her face.

“I just got a call from DI Lestrade. Care to tell me why you have been avoiding his texts?”

“I've been busy.”

“I know.” She did roll her eyes then, raising an eyebrow when Mycroft gave her a look.

“It's been busy for the both of us but sending a text doesn't take that much time now, does it? Would it have anything to do with that fact that Sherlock has been given you a cold shoulder for these last two weeks?”

A tiny twitch near Mycroft's mouth told her she was on the right track.

“You know I sensed the tension between you two in Greg's hospital room. I'm sure even Greg sensed that something was wrong. You both aren't as good at hiding your feelings as you think you are.”

Mycroft's mouth went into a thin line but he had a hard time keeping his eyes on Anthea and she pressed on. Needing to be sure that her guess was right.

“Why haven't you contacted him? Is Sherlock right in his jealousy?”

“Of course not! I would never-”

“Then why this strange behavior? It's been two weeks, Mycroft. The man doesn't deserve this. Not after everything he's done for Sherlock.” Anthea pressed further, knowing damn well she was probably the only person in the world who could do it. She gave a kind smile as she reached out a hand to Mycroft, feeling the tension in the air as Mycroft sat ramrod straight in his chair. After some consideration, Mycroft took her offered hand and the vibe in the room slowly eased, Mycroft's shoulder's relaxing.

“Well?”

“The reason I have been keeping my distance is for Sherlock's comfort. The DI has become an important part of Sherlock's life and I don't want to compromise that with my presence.”

“Mycroft.” Anthea frowned, letting go of Mycroft's hand before leaning back again.

“You know Sherlock doesn't blame you for how things ended with John. You tried to warn him when you knew something was off. We couldn't have known how things would end. He'd made his plans beforehand. John didn't turn out that way because of you, Mycroft. ”

“I know that.”

“Do you? Anthea raised an eyebrow, ignoring Mycroft's glare as she placed her hands in her lap. He'd been the first one to see the signs and known something was off with the man. The way he flaunted over Sherlock, how he praised him constantly, how he'd looked at him once Sherlock had told his secret. They'd both had been blinded by their happiness for Sherlock, glad the man finally had found a friend, someone to support him and make him smile. It had been a while since Sherlock had smiled and John had seemed like a great fit for Sherlock. That's why, when Mycroft's eyes had finally opened and seen, it had been too late.

“You just want to keep me under your control Mycroft! John is right, I'll never be free if I stay here!”

“I don't need you, Mycroft. I'm Sherlock Holmes. I'm smarter then almost anyone out there and I don't need you monitoring me like a baby!”

John had gotten hold of Sherlock, getting inside his head, setting them up against each other. He'd used Sherlock's weakness for praise and recognizing to slowly steal him away. Once it became clear John really wasn't such a saint, it had been too late and Sherlock had been devastated. Losing his belief in people, in love, in life and himself and Mycroft had blamed himself for all of it. If only he'd seen sooner, if only he'd tried harder, if only,...

“Greg is not John, Mycroft. I think we can establish that. He likes Sherlock and his mind, yes, but he's not blinded by it.”

“Maybe he's lying. It would not be the first time someone has deceived us.”

Mycroft looked at Anthea, hate clear in his eyes and she got up, rounding his desk to put her arms around him.

“You've done every background check at your disposal, I followed him for weeks when Sherlock first reached out to him. Sherlock had followed him for weeks before he reached out to him. Not once has he shown the same fascination for Sherlock. That same obsession John had. “

“His feelings for my brother run deep Anthea,” Mycroft whispered, letting himself relax as Anthea hugged him. She let out a disapproving sound as she felt his tension and worry. They'd been working too hard, flying around the world to deal with idiots and hot heads and it was taking its tole. She should have intervened sooner.

“I know Mycroft. But it's not because he's a vampire.”

“And that's another problem, isn't it? Falling in love with a human is-”

“Complicated?” Anthea asked, letting go of the man and looking into his eyes. Mycroft was tired, the lines around his eyes telling her all she needed to know and she mentally cursed herself for letting it get so far. She should know better by now. She sat back down in her chair, thinking about Sherlock and Greg and she couldn't help but feel fondness for both of them.

“He doesn't think he's worthy of Sherlock.”

“Maybe that's a blessing.”

“Mycroft!”

“My apologies.” But Mycroft didn't sound sorry at all and it broke Anthea's unbeating heart.

“I don't think this situation was bad for them. No, let me explain.” Anthea held up a hand as Mycroft gave her a confused look.

“It shook Sherlock up, seeing Greg hurt and vulnerable in that hospital room but some realism is always a good thing to have. DI Lestrade isn't a man to make rash decisions, Mycroft. He's mature and reasonable, not some teenage girl wanting to have superpowers.”

“All humans want superpowers.”

“I don't think you give them enough credit, Mycroft. Sherlock has changed. I think DI Lestrade would be a good fit for him. He doesn't put him on a pedestal, makes him take responsibility for his bullshit.”

Anthea gave a smile as Mycroft huffed at that.

“Would it really be such a bad thing for them to become more than friends?”

“He'd never have a real future, Anthea.”

“I don't agree,” Anthea said it softly, feeling Mycroft's eyes on her. Vampires were capable of love, very much so, but it was a fact they live far longer than their human partners. There were cases where a human turned vampire for love, but not many survived. Forever seemed like a very romantic idea, until forever was an actual reality. She doubted Greg would want to become a vampire, he was old enough to look past the romanticization of an eternal life.

“Greg is grown up to know what it means to date a vampire. Even if Sherlock were human, every relationship is temporary.”

“At least when they are both human, they can both die. Sherlock doesn't have that luxury, he'll be alone again once-”

“So it's better to just not try?” Anthea asked, watching Mycroft as he got up from behind his desk, getting a drink from his private bar and holding up the bottle to her in question.

“Why not, it's been a rough two weeks.”

“Cheers.”

They toasted, enjoying the taste of whiskey and each other's company before Mycroft sat down again, his eyes tired, expression sad.

“I don't want to see my brother hurt again, Anthea. I don't think I could-” Mycroft stopped his line, taking a sip of his drink.

“I understand, Mycroft. Honestly, I do. But it's not about you. If and when things go sideways then we'll deal with it, like we always have. We've all had losses, Mycroft. That doesn't mean we can't try to find something lasting.”

“Lasting?”

“You know what I mean.” She scowled, taking another sip of her drink. She understood Mycroft's point of view, Sherlock would always be Mycroft's top priority and this new development in their lives affected all of them. She wanted Sherlock to find understanding and love more than anything but she also wasn't blind to the troubles that would come along. Still, if any human was worthy of Sherlock, then it was Greg Lestrade. Human or not, sometimes it was better to love and lose, then never have loved at all.

“Always the romantic.”

“Don't read my mind, Mycroft.”

“Then you should do harder at blocking it.”

Anthea gave him a look and Mycroft huffed, raising his glass at her.

“One more?”

“You should talk to Greg, Mycroft. He sees you as a friend and has made that quite clear. He told Sherlock to stop acting like a jealous dick. His words, not mine.” Anthea grinned, taking the refilled glass for Mycroft and kicking off her shoes. She'd been walking around in high heels for about 12 hours and couldn't feel her feet anymore. Not even being a vampire could protect you from fashion.

“I.” Mycroft stopped, taking a sip and letting the alcohol warm up his blood.

Anthea watched him, not able to stop a fond smile. “The DI isn't a man who can fake it, Mycroft. If he says you are a friend, then you are. Sherlock will have to accept that. He will, he knows his feelings are crazy and ungrounded. He's already made an appointment with Doctor Banner to sort out his mind and feelings.”

“He still talks to him?”

“Once or twice a month,” Anthea said, surprised Mycroft didn't know, but maybe it was his way of giving his younger brother space. “Somehow it seems to work. Sherlock finds him fascinating, always trying to writle him up, get a reaction.”

“Please tell me you are joking!”

Anthea laughed at Mycroft's expression, shaking her head to stop him from speaking. “He's not afraid of him and Banner knows it. I think Sherlock's fascination and playfulness help the good doctor deal with some of his own issues. Call Sherlock.” Anthea stood up, placing the glass on the desk and rounding it to put a hand on Mycroft's shoulder. At least the man was calm again, the tension in his body at a normal level.

“Talk to each other and work it out. You know Sherlock, he's already regretting his actions but doesn't know how to make the first move. Do you want me to send Sherlock a message, invite him over tonight?”

Anthea waited, squeezing Mycroft's shoulder as she saw the gears inside his head turn. Mycroft wasn't used to taking the first step either but she knows her words would come through eventually.

“Yes, that would be acceptable.” Mycroft gave her a sincere smile, filled with gratitude for her offer and for a moment it made her sad to know very few people ever got to see this side of Mycroft.

“Doctor Stamford is a good fit. Greg mentioned him on the phone.” Anthea let go of Mycroft's shoulder, seeing the glimmer of pride in his eyes. After Greg had complained about Dr. Magnussen Mycoft had made some calls and it hadn't taken long to find something to have the man removed from his current position.

“Talk to Greg, please. The man is going crazy there and he really wants to see you. I'll clear your schedule for tomorrow, visiting hours are at 10,30. I'll send a text to Sherlock tomorrow.”

Mycroft nodded, already lost inside his mind and Anthea left quietly, closing the door behind her. She just made it to her room when her phone vibrated, alerting her to an incoming text. She dropped her shoes on the floor, getting out of her dress with a feeling of relief before looking at the message Sally had send her.

From Sally:

Hey, you wanna meet up this weekend for pizza and beer. I'm buying! x

They'd started a tentative friendship after Anthea had given her number to Sally, letting her know she could call and text any time she had a question. Mycroft's offer had been generous but Sally came from a totally different background and hadn't known what to make of it in the beginning. Greg accepting it had eased some of her worry and suspicion by Anthea couldn't blame the woman for having questions about so much generosity. After she'd left the hospital they'd stayed in touch, talking about everyday life, Sherlock and Greg, their interests and hobbies and Anthea had soon realized she liked spending time with this amazing woman.

Friendships between vampires and humans would always be complicated but Anthea had been around long enough to take the chance. Eternal life seemed pointless if you couldn't fill it with family and friends. Her biological family was long gone but that didn't mean she didn't have one now. Expanding it with people like Greg and Sally seemed like a win-win situation to her and she typed out a reply, her spirit lifted by the upcoming plans.

To Sally.

Pizza and beer sound great. Send me a time and place! x

 

Chapter Text

 

--Chapter 19-- 

Greg has a visitor at 5 in the morning.

1

The room he's in is ice cold, settling straight into his bones and making him shiver violently. Before he's even taken a good breath, he knows he's in danger, the hairs on the back of his neck standing up. He looks from left to right, trying to find something familiar in between the shadows but the longer he looks, the stranger and unwelcome the place feels. He takes a tentative step forward, the sound echoing in the room and ringing in his ears. If it hadn't been for something life important, he wouldn't stay here. Lost and afraid in the dark.

“Sherlock?”

Greg calls out, his voice barely above a whisper and this time he's grateful for Sherlock's superhuman abilities. Speaking out loud in this place feels wrong, his body tense as he waits for an answer, heart rate going up when all he's greeted with is silence. Something is not right. Another tentative step, berating himself mentally for acting so foolish. He's a grown man, why should he be afraid in the dark?

The answer comes only seconds later, Greg not even having time to prepare, the sharp pain shooting down his body, making it even impossible to scream and the last thing he sees before his eyes fall closed is Sherlock's face, emotionless and terrifying.

 

2

“No!”

Greg wakes up terrified, letting out a scream of pain because he's trying to sit up and get out. His heart is hammering away in his chest, ears ringing and it takes a few seconds for his eyes to adjust to the semi-darkness. Suddenly the door flies open and one of the nightnurses is standing by his side, placing a hand on his uninjured shoulder, pressing him back down in the bed.

He struggles to break free, having trouble breathing because of the horrors in his mind and the pain in his body. The nurse tries to push him down again, speaking to him but Greg can't make out any words, body still set for danger, almost feeling the pain he's sure happened just seconds ago as Sherlock attacked him.

“Sherlock!”

He tries to get out of bed again, pushing away the person standing next to him, letting out another cry in agony and suddenly a pair of cold but strong hands are holding him by his arms. His body shivers, half from pain and half from the cold and finaly he's able to hear again.

“Gregory! Calm down. Everything is okay. Sherlock is safe. You are too.”

“M- Mycroft?”

He gasps for air, blinking his eyes as they settle on the changing lights, letting out a sigh of relief when Mycroft's face comes into focus.

“Lay back down, Inspector.”

Mycroft's hands stay on him, gently nudging him to lay back down. The position of his bed changes, letting him sit upright and his eyes take in the familiar white and cream walls, realising he's still in Royal Bridge, body screaming at him in agony.

“Breathe, Inspector. It was just a bad dream.”

He does as Mycroft says, forcing himself to breathe in and out, closing his eyes to try and focus but the images of his dream come back to haunt him and he opens his eyes again, grabbing Mycroft's arm with his good hand.

“I- I.”

Shame starts seeping in through his terror, eyes going everywhere as his breathing slows down and then Mycroft squeezes his upperarm once. He looks up, staring into the older Holmes' brother gray eyes.

“It was just a dream, Inspector. Sherlock is alright. Now,” Mycroft lets go of Greg's arms, gesturing behind him and Greg's gaze follows the movement, seeing the nightnurse standing by the door.

“Nurse Gilbert will come in to examen you. Is that alright?”

“Of- Ofcourse, I-”

“Very well.” Mycroft nods his head at the nurse and she slowly comes inside, a hesitant smile on her face as she steps towards Greg's bed.

“Did I-” Greg stops, an image coming to mind of a person in a white uniform, him pushing something, the sound of a glass breaking and his stomach acts up as nurse Gilbert shrugs a shoulder.

“It's okay, Mr. Lestrade. Just another bruise to add to my growing collection.”

“I'm so sorry. I didn't-”

“I know.” She places her hand gently on his, shaking her head when Greg is about to apologize again and holds up her stetoscope.

“Okay, take a few deep breathes for me. Let's have a look at you.”

She works fast but efficient, muttering under her breathe when she taps his collarbone and Greg hisses in pain.

“I'll give you a painkiller for now but I'll have doctor Mike come to see you tomorrow, just to make sure. Take these now and I'm coming back later to see how you're doing. Do you want something to help you sleep?”

“No, thank you. I'm really sorry, nurse Gilbert.”

“I forgive you. And you can call me Elena if you like. Press the button if you need anything, okay? I'll just clean this up real quick and get you a new glass.”

His face turns red when he sees the mess on the floor, water, and shards of glass everywhere. He shivers by the time she comes back with new glass, filling it with water and making sure the alarm is witin his reach. Elena smiles at him, straithening his sheets and tells him again not to worry.

“You didn't do it on purpose, Mr. Lestrade. It comes with the job sometimes.”

“Call me Greg. I feel like I should send you a bunch of flowers or something.”

Elena laughs at that, her brown eyes sparkling and Greg can give a tiny smile back, his face still warm from embarrassement and shame. Elena closes the door behind her with a soft click but it's soon open again, the person stepping into the room making Greg's heart stop for a second.

 

3

A pair of light gray eyes take him in and Greg is sure all his thoughts, hopes, and dreams are written all over his face. He opens his mouth to say something but nothing sensible comes to mind and he closes it again, eyes going everywhere before settling on Mycroft. It's hard to figure out what the man is thinking. Greg nods his head after another long silence, gesturing to a nearby chair and Mycroft sits down on it silently, placing his umbrella next to him before crossing his legs.

“So-”

“Have you had these nightmares before?”

Greg stops the useless chit chat line he was about to say, sighing when Mycorft lifts an eyebrow at him in question before mutting a confirmation. It's not been that big of a deal, every since he's been in the hospital he's had dreams about Sherlock. Sherlock in danger, Sherlock missing, Sherlock hurt. The worst ones are those that he finds Sherlock but just too late, the man already transformed into something Greg can't even comprehend. He rubs his neck with his good hand, as if still feeling the sting of the bite and Mycroft clasps his hand together on his lap, his eyes a fraction darker.

“Why have you not told the medical staff about this?”

“It's just a nightmare, Mycroft.”

“Clearly,” Mycroft lifts an eyebrow and Greg's face flames up as he thinks back on nurse Gilbert. The poor woman was just trying to help him and all Greg did in return was lash out and hurt her.

“Do not worry about Miss Gilbert, I will take care of it.”

“Like you take care of all the rest?”

It's out of his mouth before he's had time to think about it but he keeps his eyes on Mycroft when the man gives him a hard look. He's not heard or see the man in over two weeks and of course, now he's here, just in time to witness Greg at his most vulnerable. His face burns with humilation and shame, thinking back on how Mycroft soothed him when he was still in the crasp of his dream and he lifts the blanktes higher, unconsisly trying to hide from view.

“Why are you here, Mycroft? It's 5 in the morning, visitors aren't allowed in yet.”

“I have my ways.”

“I'm sure.” Greg whispers, irritated and restless as Mycroft sits there calmly, like nothing has happened and everything is just fine.

“Inspector-”

“Oh,” Greg cuts him off, not sure what's going on with him but unable to stop. “ It's back to Inspector now, is it?”

“I.” Mycroft stops, for the first time not looking as calm as he appears to be and it makes Greg feel like a bastard for acting so sharply. Mycroft titls his head to the side, seemingly lost in thought before his eyes find Greg's again and Greg can't suppress a shiver. The intensity is almost burning his skin and every fiber of his being wants to dissapear.

“My apologize, Gregory. It's a hard habbit to break.”

“What? Ignoring people?”

He wants to bite his tongue when Mycroft's eyes go even darker, a tiny twitch near his mouth and Greg shifts in his bed, hating himself for acting like this.

“I thought it best to give you and my brother some space.”

“Space? You've been ignoring me for two weeks, Mycroft. I already told Sherlock to stop acting like a fool. I didn't think I'd need to say it to you too.”

There's a flash of something in Mycroft's eyes but Greg ignores it. Now that the man is finaly here he won't let this oppertunity go to waist. He shifts again in bed, trying to seem confident and sure but his body is aching all over, punishing him for the fit he had earlier.

“I already told Sherlock and I'm telling you now. You are my friend, Mycroft. I don't understand why that fact is making you both act like jealous teenagers but-”

“The past is sometimes hard to forget.” Mycroft whispers, wringing his hands together as he looks at Greg and Greg frowns, taking the man in closely. He looks better then two weeks ago, less pale and gaunt but there are lines around his eyes that Greg doesn't like seeing there. Somehow the man looks beyond tired and Greg swallows, again feeling like a bastard.

“Is this about John? Sherlock mentioned him,” Greg explains when Mycroft's eyes go wider in surprise and after a moment Mycroft nods his head once, mouth in a grim line.

“John Watson was the biggest mistake I've made in my life. By the time I figured it out, it was too late.”

 

4

Mycroft's voice is full of regret and self-hate and Greg wants to come out of bed to put a hand on the man's shoulder or give him a brief hug. He knows it wouldn't be appreciated by the older Holmes brother so he doesn't, but his fingers itch to offer some comfort.

“I'm sure you-”

“No,” Mycroft cuts him off, voice hard, mouth in a tight line and Greg swallows the rest of his words. “It was my fault. In the beginning, we were all blinded by him. Good looking, fairly smart, seemed to get along with my brother and make him happy. It was everything I'd hoped for. For Sherlock to find someone. Someone to accept him for who he was. For a while, I believed Doctor Watson was that person.”

“Doctor?”

“A good one at that. Served in the army till he got shot in the shoulder and wasn't fit for duty anymore. Ended up in London and that's where Sherlock met him.” Mycroft says, running his palms over his thighs before speaking again.

“It was all fine in the beginning. They soon became friends and I didn't see any harm in that. Lord knows Sherlock needed a friend at that point in his life. So I welcomed it with open arms, ignoring the tiny voice inside my head that whispered some things didn't seem right.”

“Like what?”

“Doctor Watson's fascinating with Sherlock. His skills and abilities, his deductions. It wasn't long till they started working cases together, him and Sherlock spending all day and sometimes nights together, running around London, catching thieves and stopping murders. I'd never seen my brother so happy and content but-”

Mycroft stops, eyes focused on a spot on the floor and Greg doesn't say anything, letting Mycroft figure out his thoughts. A part of him knows he's too eager to hear about this John fellow, wanting to climb out of bed and shake it out of Mycroft. The larger part of his is frustrated with his own curiosity. He's wanted to know more about John ever since Sherlock mentioned his name but it was clear the subject gave Sherlock stress so he'd dropped it, not wanting to push too much and risk losing Sherlock again. Having Mycroft here, talking about a man that was clearly important in their lives, feels dirty but he also knows the older Holmes brother wouldn't bring it up if it wasn't important. So he waits, taking a sip of water, letting Mycroft decide how to go forward.

“Watson's fascination for my brother quickly became unhealthy but there wasn't much I could do. By that time, he and my brother lived together in London and Sherlock withdrew from me. All my words of concern and help got twisted into something ugly and after a while, it was simply better to let them be then try to make Sherlock see reason. You know how he can get sometimes.”

The sadness in Mycroft's eyes is heartbreaking and Greg reaches out his hand, not caring that it probably makes him look stupid. He gives a small smile when Mycroft leans forward to take it, squeezing Greg's hand once before letting go again. He doesn't feel as cold as two weeks ago and it eases some of his worries.

“What does all this have to do with me? Or the fact that you've ignored me? Sherlock and I aren't in a relationship, Mycroft.”

“Aren't you?”

The direct question, and Mycroft's no-nonsense gaze, make it hard for Greg to breathe all of a sudden. Please don't read my mind. He can't keep his eyes on Mycroft, feeling awkward by the turn of the conversation, as if the older brother knows all of Greg's secret thoughts and desires.

“We-”

“I know my brother cares for you, Gregory. It's been a long time since I've seen him care for someone so deeply and I must be honest, it worries me.”

“What? Why?” Greg blinks, trying to make sense of Mycroft's words and the whole situation but it's 5 in the morning, the images of his nightmare still cling to him and he's sure the painkillers are slowing down his brain cause Mycroft seems to be speaking in a foreign language. It must show, judging by the way the man rolls his eyes at him.

“I'm sorry, I just don't- What are you trying to say Mycroft? That I shouldn't be Sherlock's friend? That I shouldn't be yours? I would never-” Greg lets out a breathe, a sliver of irritation coming through his sleepy brain as he looks at Mycroft. “Whatever happened between you and John, I'm not him. I would never do anything to hurt Sherlock, or you.”

There's a moment of surprise in Mycroft's eyes after that last statement and it breaks Greg's heart. He lets out a sigh, feeling drained and beyond tired, rubbing his eyes before focusing on Mycroft again, seeing the guilty look in those grey eyes.

“My apologies, Gregory. I'm not known for trusting people easily and when it concerns Sherlock-”

“I get it, Mycroft. He's your baby brother and you want to protect him. But by now you must know I don't have any hidden secrets or ulterior motives. Sherlock and I are friends. Nothing more.” Even as he says it, he can feel his cheeks warm up, seeing the raised eyebrow from Mycroft. Of course, the bastard knows.

“Language, Inspector.”

“You know that's not fair right. It's 5 in the damn morning, I'm not awake enough for mind tricks!”

Mycroft just gives a short grin and Greg huffs, not able to be mad for long at the man. They sit there in silence for a few seconds, Greg's thoughts running away with him. Mycroft sitting perfectly still as always, face untelling.

“Would it... bother you?” Greg asks softly, not sure why he's asking and he holds his breathe as Mycroft doesn't respond immediately.

“Of all the people my brother has shown an interest in, you are the most promising.” Mycroft's gaze is soft, a real smile on his lips and Greg lets out the breath he'd been holding, heart skipping a beat as they look at each other. Not that Greg is so stupid to think he'd actually have a change with Sherlock. But still...

“I want my brother to be happy, Gregory. You seem to help with that.”

“I. Thank you?” He pulls a face at his own words, seeing the glimmer of amusement in Mycroft's eyes before the man stand up, elegantly and effortless. He looks flawless in his three-piece, dark blue suit, almost untouchable and Greg wonders how it's possible to have such extraordinary people in his life.

“Have you talked to Sherlock? Please tell me you've talked about all this? I really don't want to stand in between you two.”

“We've talked,” Mycroft says, pulling a face and Greg can't stop a laugh from escaping. If it's been half as awkward as this visit he can totally understand Mycroft's expression.

“My apologies for staying away so long. I thought-”

“It's fine, Mycroft. Just, don't do it again. We're friends now, whether you like it or not.” Greg smiles, feeling as if a weight has been lifted off his shoulder. He's known Sherlock for a longer time, but Mycroft has become a part of his life now and he doesn't want to turn the man away. Not after everything he's done already.

“Mycroft.” He calls out to the man, Mycroft turning around to face him and Greg gathers up his courage. Holmes men don't like repeating themselves but Greg needs to talk about this again.

“I. Thank you for all that you've done for me and Sally.”

“You are welcome, Gregory.”

“I. Are you sure about it? I mean,” Greg goes on to explain quickly before he loses his nerve. “When you offered to pay for our stay I thought it was just a few days, maybe a few weeks at most but Mike told me it could take a few months till I'm fully recovered and I don't think you should-”

“Gregory.” Mycroft is by his side suddenly, his gaze burning into Greg's as he places a hand on the railing of the bed. “I do not take back a gift. Weeks or months, it does not change the outcome. We all want you to have the best possible care and if my wallet can provide that, then why not offer it?”

“But it's just so-”

Mycroft stops him by holding up a hand, a stubborn expression on his face as he speaks. “You are already repaying me by being friends with Sherlock. You don't owe me anything, Gregory. I don't see why that's so hard for you to accept.”

“It's just a lot of money, Mycroft. Maybe you don't understand but-” Greg stops, letting out a sigh as he looks at Mycroft's face. It's clear the man won't back out of this.

“If I ever need a good DI, I'll come running straight to you Gregory. You have my word.”

“You're such a comedian, Mycroft.” Greg deadpans but isn't able to hold his grin in for long as Mycroft lifts a shoulder.

“If I can do anything, anything at all, let me know, okay?” He reaches out his hand to pat Mycroft's, knowing the man is more than capable of handling his own in any situation but it feels good to offer his help. Mycroft nods his head after a moment, stepping away from Greg's bed before heading to the door.

“I'll keep that in mind, Gregory. You should rest now.”

“Mycroft,” Greg calls out before Mycroft has opened the door, seeing the raised eyebrow in question and Greg smiles.

“Don't be a stranger, okay?”

Another flash of surprise in those observant eyes before he gets a nod in return and then the door closes behind Mycroft's back.

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 20

Just a normal day in the hospital where Greg talks to Molly, has therapy and makes a new friend.

 

1

Morning, Greg. How are you?”

 

I know my brother cares for you, Gregory.”

 

Greg tried to shake off his dream, focusing his attention on Molly as she turned on the radio and got her supplies ready to give his morning wash. It still felt uncomfortable after a month of being in the hospital, but at least these days he could do some part of the washing process himself. It was a small victory, the pain in his collarbone sometimes flaring up with his movement, but it made him feel human and that was more important.

 

The swelling on his collarbone was beginning to fade, the dull ache bearable for the most part of the day, but it still frustrated him how helpless he was at times.

 

Did you sleep well last night?”

 

Molly gave him a damp washcloth, keeping a close eye on him as he did his best to wash his face with his uninjured arm. Molly’s question brought images from his dream to mind, and he hoped his face wasn't as red as he felt it was. He'd had a very vivid dream of Sherlock in his bed, naked and beautiful as Greg licked and teased his gorgeous pale body, breathing in the man's moans as he sucked him off. It had felt so real he'd needed a few minutes to realize it had just been his torturous imagination and then he'd let out a curse, ignoring his beginning erection as he stared up at the ceiling. At least his morning wood had been gone by the time the hospital came fully alive.

 

I slept okay, all things considered.” He looked at his arm in the sling before wiping his face dry. The sling, combined with the pain medication, helped a lot with the pain, but it made it even harder to move. It was unfortunate it had been his right collarbone that had broken during the car accident. You really didn't realize how much you used your arms till one of them was injured and some days Greg was beyond frustrated, not able to do the simplest things with ease.

 

I know it can be frustrating, but everything is healing as it should. And the bone isn't poking out through the skin so you're lucky in that regard.”

 

You have a strange definition of luck, Molly.”

 

Molly smiled, helping him put on a fresh pair of clothes and he already felt a bit better than this morning. Being at the Royal wasn't that bad. There was In-room entertainment with TV and radio, so he could keep up with the world and on some occasions Sherlock's cases. The man hadn't been sitting still since Greg was in the hospital and it always made for interesting conversation.

 

What do you think, Lestrade? The wife seems like a logical first choice, but the stepdaughter has enough motive too.”

 

Having Sherlock come to visit was a highlight of his day, the man bringing with him easy conversation and a way for Greg to not go out of his mind completely by asking his opinion on cases and even letting him help in small ways. The free wifi available at the hospital had been of good use, Greg having time to look up different facts and leads that could help the team out there in the field. It wasn't the same as being out there, but at least it was something and he always felt a spark of pride when Sherlock came by and asked for his help or opinion.

 

Just be grateful you don't need surgery. Miss Morstan is coming round tomorrow right?”

 

Yeah, Mike says I'm healing well and I should start with some light exercises to get some strength back. He also wants me to start putting light pressure on my foot. A walker was mentioned.”

 

Greg pulled a face at that and it earned him a warm laugh. He couldn't picture himself walking with any assistive devices, but his ankle needed time to recover completely and Mike didn't want to push Greg too fast, so a walker it was. It didn't mean Greg looked forward to it, but he tried to see it as another step in the healing process. Having to use a wheelchair was getting on his nerves and he couldn't help but remember Sherlock's face the first time the man had seen him in it. There was something about his gaze that had broken Greg's heart and he'd wanted to jump out of his wheelchair and take the man in his arms.

 

If you'd only had a broken collarbone, things would go a little smoother,” Molly said, her voice warm and sympathetic as she helped him out of the bathroom, setting him at the table to wait for breakfast. He was doing a lot of that, waiting. Waiting for breakfast and lunch, waiting for news from Sally, Sherlock, and Mycroft, waiting for the next step in his recovery, waiting to see his doctor,...

 

But Miss Morstan will help you get out of here faster, I promise. She's really good at her job.” Molly's voice snapped him out of his thoughts and he couldn't help a laugh. Clearly, this Miss Morstan was some sort of genius. Every time her name came up, people only had positive things to say. He shook his head when Molly gave him a questioning look, feeling his shoulder protest, but it wasn't anything like the early days here when even the smallest movement made him want to cry his eyes out.

 

I'm looking forward to meeting her. She sounds like an interesting person.”

 

That's one way to describe her.”

 

Oh?” Greg raised an eyebrow, seeing Molly's cheeks go a soft pink.

 

I don't mean it in a bad way,” Molly hastened to say, cleaning up the last of the mess. “She's a great person, very good at what she does. I guess she reminds me a bit of Sherlock.” Molly stopped next to Greg, her brow furrowed as she spoke. “She's driven, always there to help people, but she can have a bit of a temper when the patient isn't given his or her 100%. She'd turned down patients ‘cause they weren't doing the exercises she gave them.”

 

Can she even do that?” Greg asked, his heart skipping a beat as images came to mind of some sort of strict drill sergeant, making him work past his breaking point. Molly's eyes found his and the soft pink deepened as she blinked her eyes, probably at the sudden realization she was talking about her coworker with a patient.

 

I really need to think before I speak sometimes.” Molly sighed, stroking away a strand of hair and Greg shrugged his good shoulder at her.

 

It's not like you’re tearing her apart or discrediting her. Knowing a bit about her can help me tomorrow. Make sure I stay on her good graces and stuff.” Greg grinned and finally, Molly gave a small smile. Something seemed off with her this morning, a tension inside her that wasn't normally there. Or maybe Greg only saw it now because he wasn't going crazy from pain and worrying. He reached out his hand when Molly was about to turn, holding her hand even when she raised an eyebrow in question and he did his best to see her as Sherlock would see her.

 

Is everything okay, Molly?”

 

She visibly tensed and he released her hand quickly, not wanting to make her feel trapped. Her eyes went to the door briefly, before squinting at Greg.  Greg didn't push, meeting her gaze patiently as she decided what to do. After a few seconds she let out a breath, shoulders slumping down and she sat down on the other chair, staring at the table.

 

I can't tell you.” Molly looked up, expression stern, but her eyes told Greg she wanted to confide in him.

 

Are you in trouble?” Greg asked, raising his eyebrows when Molly gave him a look. “I am a DI, Molly. Just because I'm in pain doesn't mean I stopped being one. Something is going on, right?”

 

Yes,” Molly let out a breath, fidgeting with her hands. “But I still can't tell you. You're a patient and I don't even know if I'm-”

 

She snapped her mouth shut, the deep pink on her cheeks having turned red and Greg reached out a hand to place on top of her own, making her stop fidgeting and looking into his eyes. His heart broke as he saw her struggle on her face but he didn't push, not wanting to get her in more trouble.

 

There is someone you can talk to. Someone that comes here almost every day and isn't a patient. He's not a DI, but he'd make a damn good one.” Greg smiled as Molly's eyes went wide. I'm not saying you have to, but whatever is going on, Sherlock could help you. And he's very discreet about this sort of thing,” Greg added softly, getting a short nod in answer and then Molly stood up. Some of the tenseness in Molly's body was gone and she gave him a warm smile.

 

Thank you, Greg. Don't worry about tomorrow. I have a feeling you and Mary will get along just fine. Breakfast will be there soon. If you need anything, don't feel shy about pressing the alarm. Have a good day, Greg!”

 

Same to you. Oh, will nurse Gilbert come in today?”

 

He hadn't seen the woman since he'd attacked her while trapped in a nightmare and he really wanted to apologize again. He still felt ashamed when thinking back on that night and it felt wrong to not say sorry. He'd gone with Sally to the hospital gift shop to buy her something small, but he hadn't seen the woman since. Part of him wondered if Mycroft had done something to have her removed so his heart dropped in relief when Molly answered that nurse Gilbert would come in around 4 in the afternoon.

 

She really doesn't blame you, Greg. We've all had incidents like that one time or another. She knows it's nothing personal. But I'll send her to you when she comes in,” Molly said, stopping Greg's protests and he nodded in thanks.

 

I'll see you later, Greg. Don't forget to elevate your foot once you've had your breakfast and rest as much as possible. Yes, you still need it!” She fake scowled at him as he let out a sigh and then she was gone, doing the rest of her rounds. The room already felt darker without her and he wondered if it was bad form to ask her phone number once he was released out of the hospital's care. He just had a feeling they could be good friends, despite the age gap of 15 years. She had a lovely sense of humor, was easy going and they had a few shared interests, including a love of bad vampire movies. For a brief second, he wondered how she would react if she learned of Sherlock's secret. Fainting could be a very realistic option and he giggled at the mental picture.

 

2

 

Now, I don't tolerate nonsense or laziness. If I notice that you aren't doing the homework I’ve given you, then I can't work with you. These exercises will be hard, it will hurt like hell, and you will curse me to eternal damnation, but, if you do them just like a say, then you will improve in strength and mobility and will be able to return to your normal life sooner. You look like the type of man that doesn't give up easily so, what do you say?”

 

Greg almost couldn't hide a grin as Miss Morstan turned to look at him, her sharp, blue eyes taking him in closely. She was younger then Greg had thought, especially considering all the praise and rewards she had earned already. He'd looked her up yesterday. Well, actually, Sherlock had looked her up once he'd mentioned her name to him.

 

She's barely grown up, Lestrade!”

 

She's 34, Sherlock!”

 

Sherlock's reactions had been comical, going through Mary Morstan's professional site and commenting on every single thing the man could find. It had done strange things to Greg's body for some reason and he didn't want to think too much about it, but still, Mycroft's words from earlier popped into his head from time to time.

 

I know my brother cares for you, Gregory. It's been a long time since I've seen him care for someone so deeply and I must be honest, it worries me.”

 

There was always a moment of delight and hope following those words before Greg came back to reality and realized how silly he was being. Sherlock cared for him, Greg knew that. The man had taken a bullet for him for Christ's sake, but Greg couldn't imagine Sherlock wanting more from him than just friendship. He'd known the man for more than a year now and knew how difficult it was for Sherlock to interact with people. Even though he'd heard about John, it was still difficult picturing Sherlock in a relationship.

 

He'd be bored of me the second we got together.” Greg's mind always stopped in a loop. He knew he wasn't that bad of a catch. He had a decent job with a good salary and considered himself a caring and loving partner, but he also knew Sherlock was something else. Not just because he was a vampire, though that brought its own worries, but because the man was smarter than Greg and came from totally different background.

 

His stay here in the Royal proved how much difference there was between them.

 

Mr. Lestrade? Is everything alright?”

 

Miss Morstan's voice snapped him out of his thoughts, warmth creeping up his neck as she gave him a disapproving look. Maybe this wasn't the best way to start their professional relationship? Greg smiled apologetically and Miss Morstan repeated her words to him again, some tension in her voice as she watched him closely.

 

If you are not 200% committed then tell me now so we don't waste each other's time.”

 

I am!” Greg replied, his voice a fraction too loud for the situation, but Miss Morstan's disappointed look made him want to prove himself. He was committed to his recovery! He missed his home, his life, his work, and friends. He sat up straighter, ignoring the strain it put on his body and there was a tiny spark of approval in Miss Morstan's eyes as he talked. Whatever you want me to do, I'll do it. I really don't plan on being here for longer than I should. To be honest, I'm already going a bit insane as it is.” Greg pulled a face, seeing a beginning lift of Miss Morstan's lips and he let out a huff.

 

The hospital was good for him, the food was great, the nurses were kind and patient, his doctor was a decent human being, but it still wasn't real life. Everything of importance was happening out there, just outside of his reach and it drove him mad thinking about all the things that were going on that he couldn't be part off. Even paperwork sounded appealing to him now, just to have something to do to make him feel needed again.

 

Well then, best get started a soon as possible. Let's have a closer look at you, see how everything is healing and measure your range of motion at this point in time, shall we?”

 

3

Okay, how are you feeling?”

 

Greg gave Miss Morstan a look, not even able to form words as he gently lowered himself into the wheelchair. His body ached, sweat making him feel anything but human and he felt muscles that he didn't even know he had started to act up. Still, he felt good about himself, having been able to almost do all the exercises, only needing to stop twice.

 

Feels like I've been hit by a bus. Is that normal?”

 

Yes.”

 

Greg gave a half-hearted smile, but then Miss Morstan's face softened, as she placed her hand on his shoulder. They were right, she was tough as hell and Greg felt like he'd never be able to lift even a finger after today.

 

The first sessions are always the worst. You've been immobile for some time and the muscles need time to adjust. You did really well, Greg. Now, the nurse will take you back to your room and I suggest you rest for the remainder of the day. Here is a sheet with some light exercises to do on the days when you don't have therapy with me. Don't strain yourself with these. If it starts to hurt, stop and we can adjust as needed.”

 

Okay, will do.”

 

Greg took the sheet, making a mental note to look at it later in the evening and then he was wheeled to his room. He was just about to doze off in bed when there was a soft knock on his door.

 

Hello, Mr. Lestrade, can I come in?” Nurse Gilbert asked, opening the door a crack.

 

Of course!”

 

Greg tried to sit up straighter in his bed, and he cursed when his body wouldn't obey. He'd felt exhausted and proud when his therapy session had ended, but now he just felt exhausted, body aching and heavy. The pain in his collarbone flared up because of all the moving and there was a tiny voice inside his head wondering if Sherlock was right that Miss Morstan was too young to be the best physiotherapist in the UK.

 

I brought your evening medication with me. Molly said you had your first therapy session today, so I figured you could use it. Dinner will come shortly.”

 

You're a godsend.”

 

Greg took the pills Nurse Gilbert offered, swallowing them down with a glass of water and then pulling a face as his body felt heavy and stiff. Nurse Gilbert did a quick examination of him, wiping his face, neck, and shoulders with a wet cloth and Greg suddenly had trouble holding back tears.

 

Molly said you wanted to see me?” Nurse Gilbert asked, her face soft and gentle.

 

Greg felt shame wash over him again as she looked at him with patience in her eyes. He tried to lean over to open his nightstand, but stopped mid-movement, his muscles cramping up.

 

What do you need?” Elena rushed to his side and Greg gestured towards the nightstand, hating his body for giving out on him so easily. It's not like his session was 2-3 hours long!

 

Stop punishing yourself, Greg. The first few times are always the worst and you didn't have to do this.” Elena fake scowled at him, holding up the gift box with her name tag on it.

 

It's really the least I could do. Please, take it.” He should have asked if the staff were even allowed to receive gifts from patients. It took a moment before Elena decided, slowly opening up the box. Her breath caught as she pulled out the necklace.

 

It looks more expensive than it is, I promise!” Greg explained as Elena watched him with wide eyes before looking at the necklace again. It was made of a combination of metals, giving it an antique silver color and the intricate details had drawn Greg to the piece. The necklace was actually a locket, made to put herbs in it and it had reminded Greg of a vampire show he'd seen. Somehow it had seemed fitting and the price wasn't too outrageous.

 

Mr. Lestrade, Greg, I can't-” Elena looked at him, a stunned expression on her face, holding the necklace in her hands. It had seemed like the perfect gift at the time, something to apologize for his behavior, but now he wondered if it wasn’t too much after all.

 

If you don't like it, then-”

 

No,” Elena stopped him, face turning red and there was an awkward moment of silence between them before she let out a breath, placing the necklace carefully back into the box and giving him a big smile. “I actually love it. It's just- I'm normally not allowed to accept gifts from patients. It's against the rules.”

 

I'm sorry. I should have-”

 

It's fine.” Elena shook her head, keeping hold of the box, a glimmer of mischief in her eyes. “If you don't mind keeping a secret, then-”

 

I'm great at keeping secrets, trust me.” Greg couldn't stop a chuckle as Elena beamed at him, putting the box inside a pocket of her uniform.

 

Thank you, Greg. It's really a gorgeous gift! Though you didn't need to give me anything. You had a nightmare, it was a normal reaction. Being scared and not knowing where you were. I should have acted accordingly. I'm sorry.” Elena gave him such a sincere look it almost broke his heart. He was glad that he'd gotten her the gift after all.

 

How are the nightmares? Are they still bothering you?”

 

It's fine.” Elena raised an eyebrow at his sharp tone and Greg let out a frustrated huff.

 

Just because you gave me a gift, doesn't mean I won't-”

 

I know, I know.” Greg held up his good hand, which made him realize how much he'd strained his body today, but the pain was turning into a dull ache so at least the medication was starting to work. He looked down at his lap, feeling silly for reacting so strongly to Elena's question. It was a logical one to ask, as she'd seen how the dreams had affected him, but talking about it was not on his list of things he wanted to do. He didn't even understand why he was having them now, he'd known Sherlock for more than a year now and he'd never had dreams like this before. They weren't frequent, thank god for that, but every single one made him wake up terrified, searching for his phone to call the man up to know he was still alive, still himself.

 

I have one once a week. It's terrifying, so lifelike.” Greg whispered, not able to meet Elena's gaze. Images came to mind of his latest dream, Sherlock's mouth covered in blood, his eyes black, stripped from everything that made the man human. Corpses laying around him, heads torn off by brute force. He could still feel the terror now, his heart beating too fast, too loud as he took a silent step back, glued to the spot when Sherlock turned and met his eyes. Knowing he was a lost cause when there wasn't a hint of recognition in Sherlock's eyes.

 

Do you want to talk to our therapist about it?” Elena stood next to him, some concern in her eyes, but he knew she wouldn't push him.

 

Not now. I'll be fine. I think being here isn't helping.” She nodded, but the concern was still there. It didn't irritate him. He could feel that her worry was real and he gave her a smile.

 

Thank you for offering. If I change my mind you'll be the first to know.”

 

Okay. I should get back to work now. Don't want head nurse Stane on my back.”

 

Elena's face shifted just a fraction of a second, but it was enough to confirm Greg's growing suspicions. Nobody on his floor like Stane. He'd heard some of the staff talking in the early morning, when he'd woken up from another nightmare or when he just needed to take a piss, and they hadn't said a lot of good about him. Greg wondered how the man had gotten his position in the first place. Wasn't medical staff supposed to be nice and considerate of the patients under their care? He'd only interacted with the man briefly, but he'd come across as stern and unpleasant. Even the rare moments that he smiled couldn’t take away that impression, as they felt false. Maybe head nurse Stane had something to do with Molly's stress?

 

If you need anything just press the alarm, okay?” Elena was already at the door and Greg nodded, waving goodbye as she closed the door. He couldn't make Molly confide in him, but he really hoped the woman would talk to Sherlock. He wanted to think more on the subject, to figure out what was behind Molly's stress but by now the medication was doing its job and Greg was exhausted. He lost his battle quickly, falling asleep with his thoughts all over the place. He might want to sort everything out, but his body needed time to recover and heal.

Chapter Text

Chapter 21

Greg's therapy sessions are asking a lot of him and Sherlock's behavior is not helping.

 

1

“Very good, Greg. I can see you're doing the exercises I gave you.”

 

Greg sits down heavily on a chair, sweat running down his face as he’s trying to catch his breath and work through the strain. It's his 9 th therapy session, working on his broken collarbone, the exercises focusing on decreasing stiffness and expanding his range of motion. It's been going better with every single, brutal session, but today he doesn't feel that good about himself. He's had a hard night, barely sleeping, frustrated with himself and the whole hospital situation. He's been at the Royal for a month and a half , and it's beginning to drag on him, making it hard to stay positive.

 

He'd asked Mike about going home, but Mike didn't think it was a good time for him to go.

 

“You'll need help for personal hygiene, not to mention meals and other daily activities. You'd need to come visit me every week, have your session with Miss Morstan at least 3 times a week. I strongly suggest that you stay here for at least a few weeks longer. The cast around your ankle is ready to be removed any day now and you’ll need time to regain full use and range of motion of the joint. Didn't you mention your building doesn't have an elevator?”

 

He'd wanted to scream in frustration, but also knew the man was right. Time in hospitals seemed to slow down for a reason and one hour felt like two, the days just dragging on. It was a monotonous life, only brightened up by the visits of his friends. The hospital garden was a blessing for him, being able to sit outside and breathe in the fresh air, letting his mind wander on various things, sometimes even feeling the sun on his skin. Still, it wasn't the same and since his cast wasn't off yet, he still couldn't walk or stand for too long.

 

Right now he was sounding like a steam engine and he'd only walked a short distance with a walker. It made him feel old and fat, the excellent meals not helping him to reduce weight. Sally had rolled her eyes at him when he'd mentioned it, but Greg could see his body getting softer as time went on. Not even a brutal therapy session could help with that.

 

“Okay Greg, it's time for the swing the pendulum exercise. Do you remember how?”

 

Greg nodded, getting up with a sigh and finding support on the table as he let his injured arm hang down in from of him towards the floor before gently making rotations with his hand. Miss Morstan kept a close eye on him, almost as if she was trying to see through his skin to look at the bones moving.

 

“Relax your shoulder, Greg. Circle your arm clockwise. Good, very good. Now anticlockwise.”



He still felt like an idiot, but he could feel his muscles relax as he did it, breath finally back to normal. Maybe his hopes for his recovery had been too high. It all seemed to be going too slowly, too painfully, but Mary assured him, every session, that everything he was feeling and thinking was normal.

 

“Slow progress is still progress, Greg.”

 

He gritted his teeth as she made a few small adjustments to his posture. She told him that every time, clearly seeing his frustration, but today it wasn't helping. He just wanted to move forward, to be at a level where he could walk around without needing help from a walker. He was just fed up with everything, feeling tired and miserable and Sherlock's little comments about how weak he was weren't helping either.He didn't think the man meant it in a bad way, but having Sherlock list off how long he'd been at the hospital and then comment on what little progress he'd made was getting inside Greg's head, making him want to kick the man for being a damn vampire, for not having to deal with things like broken collarbones and physical therapy.

 

“Okay, now have your arms out in front of you, shoulder-height, palms facing each other. Like this.”

 

Mary showed him and Greg did his best to imitate her, trying to swallow down his frustration and pain. Sweat was running down his forehead but at least it was proof that he was doing something. He took careful breaths, feeling his muscles work as he moved his arms apart and out to the sides as far as he could.

 

“Don't strain yourself!” Mary scowled and Greg brought his arms back lightly, feeling his cheeks warm up for being caught out. He had this crazy idea that, if he just tried to get a millimeter further, then he would heal up faster but Mary always noticed, scolding him for forcing his body too much. Which was a bit hypocritical of her, as she always made him work like a dog. He was so caught up in his exercise, 'watch your posture, Greg!' that he hadn't even noticed someone standing behind Mary, taking them both in closely.

 

“Is this slow progress normal?”

 

“Yes. The combination of the broken collarbone with the ankle make it harder to heal everything. We have to be careful not to put too much strain on Mr. Lestrade's ankle when we work on the range of motion for his collarbone.”

 

Seeing Sherlock standing there, his focused gaze taking in everything, amplified Greg's irritation. Of course the man looked flawless, not a wrinkle on his clothes, not a hair out of place and here Greg was, sweating like a sailor, probably looking miserable and he let out a soft growl, hating everything about his life. Sherlock ignored him, turning his attention back to Mary and Greg was impressed with how she handled Sherlock's stare. She didn't back down, didn't really pay him much attention. She kept her eyes on Greg, even walking towards him just when Sherlock opened his mouth to say something and Greg couldn't stop a mocking grin at that.

 

“Good. Greg. Now repeat this 5 more times and we're done for today. As you can see, your visitor has already arrived.”

 

She gave Sherlock a fake smile, one that Sherlock didn't answer and Greg's mouth almost dropped down on the floor in shock. He'd never seen anyone react to Sherlock like this before. Mary didn't seem at all fazed or impressed by him and Greg wondered if it had something to do with working at the Royal. Maybe dealing with rich and privileged people build up a tolerance for them over the years?

 

“How old are you again?”

 

“35.”

 

“That's a little young to be called the best physiotherapist in the UK, isn't it?” Sherlock's tone was far from friendly and Greg shot him a warning look as he continued with his exercise, trying to focus on doing it perfectly but the conversation between Sherlock and Mary was making it difficult.

 

“I didn't give myself that title Mr. Holmes, other people did. I'm sure you can relate.”

 

Greg had to admire Mary for staying calm and professional through all of this. Sherlock was purposely being a dick, asking questions that made it clear he doubted the woman's abilities. It didn't help Greg's mood. The day had been draining enough already and he didn't need Sherlock being here, watching him sweat like a horse, at his most weak and also being a dick to the person that was helping him.

 

“Sherlock.” He raised an eyebrow, but the man ignored him and Greg hated that he couldn't just grab hold of Sherlock's arm and demand his attention. He gave a helpless look at Mary, one she didn't return as Sherlock was again asking questions.

 

“What are your qualifications exactly? Have you dealt with these types of injuries before?” Sherlock tilted his head to the side, playing innocent before gesturing in Greg's direction. At least now Greg was done with his therapy for today and Mary stepped in to guide him into his wheelchair, giving him a gentle squeeze on his shoulder.

 

“Everything okay, Greg?”

 

“Yes.” He was feeling tired, body letting him now he'd done a lot of work but he was pleased with the results. “Thank you.” He nodded to Mary, feeling bad for his earlier feelings of frustration. She really was helping him and in a few days his cast could come off and then the real work would begin.

 

“I'm only asking because it seems Lestrade is in more pain now since he started working with you.”

 

They both looked at Sherlock, Mary with her calm fake-friendly face, Greg no longer able to hide his anger. Before he could speak, Mary had already taken the word, her voice soft but firm as she kept eye contact with Sherlock.

 

“It's normal to feel resistance after a period of hardly moving at all. I can assure you, I know what I am doing. I've finished all my studies at the top of my class and do my best to keep up with new developments in my field. I also believe Mr. Lestrade is content with his progress so far. Now,” Mary turned to face Greg, ignoring Sherlock completely and Sherlock's shocked and irritated expression was worth remembering forever.

 

“Don't forget to do your exercises tomorrow and don't-”

 

“Strain yourself. I know.” Greg smiled, shaking Mary's hand.

 

“I'll know if you do strain yourself. Yes, Mr. Holmes? Anything else you want to know?” Mary crossed her arms, waiting on Sherlock, but the man didn't say anything, only letting out a huff when Mary raised a challenging eyebrow.

 

“If you'll excuse me, I have other patients to attend to.”

 

“Of course. Come on Sherlock, take me to my room.” Greg touched the man's arm to get his attention, seeing the fire in his eyes before he blinked, watching Mary walk away from them. “Sherlock,” Greg repeated, and did his best to stop the grin forming on his face as Sherlock wheeled him back to his room. Sherlock’s displeasure was a nearly physical presence surrounding them. Clearly, the man wasn't used to this type of behavior, but Greg couldn't really feel bad for his secret glee. The way he'd acted just now was out of line and as soon as they made it to Greg's room he would confront Sherlock head on.

 

2

“That woman is terrible at her job!”

 

Of course, Greg didn't get the opportunity to confront Sherlock. The man startled talking as soon as Greg was sitting up in his bed, his wheelchair placed in its usual spot. Sherlock took off his expensive Belstaff, dropping it carelessly on a chair before taking another chair and sitting down in it, one leg crossed over the other, his eyes light grey and fixed on Greg.

 

Greg counted to ten in his head, watching Sherlock who was watching him, his eyes roaming over Greg's frame. He probably looked, and smelled, like a mess. Therapy was getting more difficult as time went on, the exercises straining on his body, but Mary was right, they were helping. It wasn't as fast as Greg wanted it to be, but it was getting easier to move his body and not want to cry out in pain. The cast around his ankle was slowly driving him crazy, but doctor Mike had assured him it would be off by the end of the week and then Mary could start work on getting his strength back, walking more, stretching the joints and all that. He tried to remember that as he looked at Sherlock, seeing the grey in his eyes had just darkened and Greg let out a sigh.

 

“She's good at her job, Sherlock. You know cause you looked her up, remember.”

 

“Clearly even I can make a mistake. You need a better one.”

 

Sherlock's beginning pout would otherwise be adorable, but not today. Today Greg felt like crap, tired, sweaty and old and he gritted his teeth, not wanting to blurt something out that would make everything worse. He reached for his glass of water instead, feeling the light burn as he moved, but it was nothing like the early days. Back when he could hardly move without feeling like dying.

 

“How is she even able to work here? She looks like a child, I seriously doubt her competence, Lestrade.”

 

“Sherlock,” Greg snapped anyway, his heart rate going up in his irritation. He really didn't want to deal with Sherlock's mood right now but it was clear the man wasn't leaving soon. There was a fire in his eyes Greg hadn't seen a lot before and he tried to strain his brain, trying to figure out why Mary Morstan made Sherlock act that way, but nothing was coming, his brain refusing to cooperate and he let out another sigh, running a hand through his hair, wincing when he felt how damp it was from his session earlier. God, he needed a shower!

 

“What's going on with you, Sherlock?”

 

When Sherlock didn't respond Greg went on, suddenly fed up with his friend's behavior.

 

“You've been acting like a dick the last few days. Not just right now to Mary, who is doing a great job, but also the nurses and other staff here. No, don't,” Greg moved, sitting at the edge of his bed, holding up a hand to stop Sherlock from speaking.

 

“I don't know why you're being like this, but Mary is helping me! Don't you see that? I'm able to sit up without help, can move my arm without feeling like dying. Hell, I can’t even stand for a short period of time! I wasn't able to do that last week. Do you have any idea how hard this has been for me?”

 

“Lestrade, I”

 

“Every day I'm working myself into the ground to get better, to have just a sliver of progress and then you waltz in and break me down with your nasty comments!” Greg's voice went up as the words rolled out of his mouth, eyes focused on Sherlock and nothing else. It had been going on for a while now, Sherlock's strange and often rude behavior and he couldn't for the life of him figure out why. Both Elena and Molly had let something slip over the last week, actually apologizing for not being professional about it!

 

“Is it true you went off on Elena this week? And I heard you picked a fight with Andrew at a crime scene. What is going on, Sherlock? This isn't like you.”

 

“Sally needs to keep her mouth shut.”

 

“Sally is our friend and she's worried about you. Frankly, right now, I'm just pissed off with you. My body is aching all over, I've been awake since 4:30 and I'm just having a shit day. I don't need you coming in here and reminding me of how weak I am. I already know.”

 

“I. I don't see you as-” Sherlock's eye color shifted slightly, but Greg didn't care how the man felt right now. He was beyond tired, close to tears and he just wanted a kind and supporting ear.

 

“Miss Morstan is good at her job. Your brother handpicked her for me, remember? How could she not be good?”

 

Mentioning Mycroft's name made Sherlock's eyes go darker in seconds and Greg let out an irritated huff. Keeping Sherlock's gaze, even when the man let out a soft growl before breaking eye contact, starting to pace back and forth.

 

“You're still in pain, Lestrade! How can she be good if you are still in pain? You're still wearing your cast, you can barely function on your own. You still need help with almost every activity and yet, you call it progress!”

 

“It is progress!” Greg snapped, being so stupid as to stand up and cross his arms across his chest. He let out a hiss of pain and discomfort when his leg went out from under him and it was only Sherlock's quick reflexes that prevented him from falling to the ground.

 

“Oh yes, you are clearly making progress.”

 

“Dammit, Sherlock!” Greg was aware he was glaring daggers at the man as Sherlock helped him sit back down on his bed. The air in his room had changed, making his body form gooseflesh, a shiver running down his spine when he noticed the tiny black spots in Sherlock's eyes. Before the man could let go of him, Greg caught his wrist, holding it firmly and hoping Sherlock wouldn't pull away.

 

He let out a breath as Sherlock stood still, first looking at Greg's fingers around his wrist, then up at Greg himself, his expression closed off. Greg's irritation and starting anger dissipated, tiredness making it hard to stay angry and his voice took on a pleading edge when he spoke again.

 

“Please talk to me. What's going on inside that head of yours? Sherlock?”

 

The seconds seemed to last for days, Greg holding onto Sherlock's wrist, seeing the gears inside the man's head turn. After what felt like years, Sherlock opened his mouth, eyes scanning Greg's face before he closed it again, a frown forming between his brows.

 

“Please, don't do this. Don't shut me out.” He hated how pleading his voice sounded, heart beating faster as the silence went on, Sherlock averted his gaze, nibbling his lip. It felt just like before, Sherlock building up his walls and Greg pounding on it until his knuckles were bleeding. Just when he'd given up, ready to let go of Sherlock's wrist and leave it, Sherlock spoke, his voice soft but full with emotion.

 

“I don't see you as weak. I'll never see you like that, it's just-” Sherlock stopped, meeting Greg's gaze for a moment. “It's been 4 weeks and 10 days and you are still broken. You still need help, are still wearing the cast. Even when it comes off, you'll need help from a walker or a crutch to walk. Your sessions make your whole body ache and you still need to rest during the afternoon. Molly still helps you with washing and bathing and I just- I can't stand-”

 

Sherlock looked up, eyes filled with emotions Greg couldn't name and his heart broke. He let go of Sherlock's wrist, interlacing their fingers instead, squeezing them so Sherlock would look at him.

 

“I don't know how these past few weeks have been for you. You've been a vampire for so long, maybe you've forgotten what it's like, but Sherlock, I promise, this is all normal. I know my progress seems slow in your eyes, but I am making progress, one day at a time.” Greg gave a small smile, using Mary's words from before. She'd probably have a field day if she knew. Or just give him an 'I told you so' look.

 

“I'm human, Sherlock. It all takes more time.”

 

“I know that.”

 

“Maybe,” Greg kept smiling, keeping hold of Sherlock's hand in his own. “But knowing something and seeing it, are quite different. It's normal to be worried, Sherlock. Car accidents are always messy, but it could have been much worse.”

 

“Lestrade!”

 

Greg shook his head at the man as Sherlock scolded him, his eyes still grey. At least the beginning black spots were gone and it eased some of Greg's tension and worry.

 

“Is that why were you so rude just now to Mary?”

 

“You're in pain. She adds to it. I don't like it.” Greg's heart skipped a beat at Sherlock's words, seeing the paleness on his cheeks and he wanted to stroke the spot with his thumb, find out if that spot was warmer or colder than the rest of Sherlock's body. He swallowed, feeling his skin warm up and he pushed back his fantasies, seeing Sherlock watch him with a curious expression on his face.

 

“She's really helping me, Sherlock. I know you don't see it that way, but she is.”

 

“I.” Sherlock stopped, nibbling his lip again and Greg's stomach dropped when the man released himself out of Greg's hold, taking a step back. Something about Sherlock's expression got him worried and even before the man opened his mouth, he knew whatever Sherlock was about to say, he wouldn't like it.

 

He was right.

 

3

“Are you being serious about this?”

 

“Of course I'm being serious, Lestrade!”

 

Sherlock's eyes shone as he looked at Greg but Greg could only pay attention to the object in Sherlock's hand. Just looking at it made his stomach act up but he couldn't tear his gaze away.

 

Blood really is supposed to be inside your body.

 

Greg blinked his eyes, turning his head away to try and clear his mind, but the image of Sherlock standing there, his pale fingers wrapped around a vile of blood, was burned into his brain it seemed.

 

“Why would you-” Greg swallowed, not sure how to respond to this. Somehow in the last few minutes, his life had turned into a bad vampire movie and a part of him wanted to burst out laughing at the absurdity of it.

 

This is what my life has become; vampires and conversations about drinking blood.

 

“My blood can heal you, Lestrade. The movies have that part right.” Sherlock's face turned into a scowl for a second before going back to normal and Greg forced himself to not gape at him like a fish. Was he the only one freaking out by this?

 

Don't be an idiot, Lestrade. You're talking to a vampire!

 

“You've already said how painful and brutal your sessions are, how much you miss your life and how being here is driving you crazy. You could be out of here in a few days. This is the solution to all your problems.”

 

Sherlock held up the vial again, the red liquid seeming to blind Greg as the sunlight shone through the window. He was still lost for words, looking between the vial and Sherlock and Sherlock let out a soft growl of frustration, stepping closer to Greg and placing the vial in his hands.

 

“This will help you, Greg. It will be faster than anything they can come up with.”

 

Greg wrapped his fingers around it, not able to look at it again. Instead, he watched Sherlock's face, drinking in the man's features as his mind went all over the place. Something about this whole situation seemed off and he was sure there was a trace of hesitance in Sherlock's voice.

 

“Is this even safe? Isn't drinking blood toxic?”

 

“Not my blood. Vampire blood is different than human blood. Your body will have no problem with it and it will help heal your injuries faster.”

 

“What aren't you telling me, Sherlock?” Greg raised an eyebrow when Sherlock looked away and Greg held up the vial between them. “If this is some miracle solution, why are you only offering it to me now? You could have given this to me the first day I was in hospital.”

 

“Well, I.”

 

“I know it can't turn me into a vampire. It can't, right?”

 

“Don't be stupid.” Sherlock rolled his eyes, some of his tension easy away and Greg gave an expected look.

 

“It could- I mean, it's highly unlike to happen- Actually it's-”

 

“Sherlock.” Greg stopped him, his tiredness seeping out into his words. “ It's been a rough day. Just tell me. Please.”

 

“There is a chance that we'd be bonded if you drink my blood.”

 

“Bonded? What does that-”

 

“I'd be able to read your mind, at least fragments of it. I'd sense you, know if you're in danger or not. There's also a chance I'd be able to slip into your dreams and- and influence your thoughts. But the chances of that are less than 5% when the blood isn't consumed in the traditional sense.”

 

“You mean-” Greg stopped, eyes going to Sherlock's neck and a burst of curiosity and sickness came over him. Sherlock's complexion had changed in the few minutes it took to explain all this and for a moment he wondered if vampires could faint.

 

“So, if I drink this, there is a chance you'd be able to manipulate me?”

 

“I would never-”

 

“I know.” Greg placed a finger on Sherlock's cool lips, fairly certain he'd seen flecks of purple appear before Sherlock blinked his eyes and pulled away.

 

“Are there any risks for you?”

 

“What?” Sherlock's confused face was rather comical, but it seemed like a wrong time to mention it to the man. Sherlock was looking at him as if seeing him for the first time and it made butterflies go crazy inside Greg's stomach.

 

“You've listed off all the things that could happen to me. Are there side effects for you?”

 

“No. It's only a small amount of blood and you won't be drinking it directly from me.” Sherlock's gaze seemed to go right through Greg and he could feel his face warm as an image came to mind of him licking up Sherlock's blood with his tongue. It did all kinds of strange things to his body and he shook his head, mentally cursing himself for being such an idiot. There was nothing sexy about drinking blood, absolutely nothing!

 

Then why are you still thinking about it?

 

“You-” Sherlock's voice cut through the air and Greg felt like dying on the spot as Sherlock observed him, eyes squinted just a bit.

 

“You have n-nothing to worry about, Lestrade. Drinking my blood will cause you no harm, nor myself.” Sherlock turned his head, eyes focusing on the wall behind Greg and Greg's heart slowly came back to life. He placed the vial on his bedside table, staring at it for some time before being able to speak.

 

“I appreciate you wanting to help me, Sherlock. I can only try to understand what these past weeks have been like for you, but-”

 

“I’m not doing it for my own comfort, Lestrade.”

 

Sherlock's voice was hard as he turned his focus back to Greg, something in his expression changing when he noticed the vial on the bedside table.

 

“You're disgusted.”

 

“Sherlock, that's not-” Greg started to speak but Sherlock held up a hand, eyes going to the door, his expression darkening. Greg was just about to ask what was going on when Sherlock moved and opened the door for a startled Molly, hand hanging awkwardly in the air.

 

“Oh! Hello Greg, just came in to check on you. Mister Holmes.” Molly gave a smile but even Greg could see it wasn't genuine, her expression cautious as she moved past Sherlock into the room. There was a tiny twitch near Sherlock's mouth as she passed and Greg wondered if the man felt guilty for his behavior earlier this week. He knew how brutal Sherlock could be sometimes, not thinking before speaking, or thinking about the consequences and Greg's heart broke as he watched Molly come forward, doing her damn best to act like everything was fine.

 

“Miss Morstan updated me on your sessions. Congrats on your progress, Greg. Must be a relief to be able to move around a bit and use your arm.”

 

Greg heard Sherlock mumble something but he gave a warning look over Molly's shoulder. He didn't want to start this whole conversation again so he focused back on Molly, given her a smile when she scowled him.

 

“You need a wash and some rest! You look exhausted, Greg! If the sessions are too demanding then you have to let Mary know!”

 

“I'm fine, Molly. I promise it's just been a rough day with a lot to think about.” Greg found Sherlock's eyes, his heart skipping a beat when the man pocketed away the vial before Molly would see. He'd almost forgotten about it, still trying to come up with a good way to refuse it and then being shocked by Sherlock's response.

 

You're disgusted.”

 

His whole body ached as he remembered Sherlock's face, the disappointment in it, the sad tone of his voice and he wanted to start their conversation back up, assure the man that it had nothing to do with being disgusted by Sherlock. Unfortunately, Molly demanded his attention, her expression more closed off than usual and Greg's hair on the back of his neck went up as she turned to address Sherlock, the fake casual bouncing off the wall.

 

“Mister Holmes, I need a moment with my patient and visiting hours are almost over for today. I suggest you come back at a later time.”

 

“Of course.” Sherlock's voice was soft and polite, his expression hard to read as his eyes stayed on Greg.

 

“I'll see you tomorrow, then?”

 

“It's a bit busy at the yard at the moment-”

 

“Sherlock.” Greg raised an eyebrow, feeling Molly's eyes on him as she watched the exchange. There were a million things Greg wanted to say to the man but now was not the time and he hated how Sherlock could stay so calm and composed through all this, his expression showing nothing as he nodded his head, hand already on the doorknob.

 

“I'll see you tomorrow afternoon. Good night, Lestrade. Nurse Hooper.” Sherlock nodded at her and she returned it with an unsure smile, arms crossed over her chest. Some of Greg's earlier irritation was back as he watched Sherlock hesitate in the doorway, eyes going from Greg to Molly and back. She really hadn't deserved his foul mood, none of them had and something in Sherlock's expression changed before he nodded again, closing the door behind him with a soft click. Why was it never simple with Sherlock?

 

“Let's get you cleaned up a bit before dinner arrives. Okay?”

 

Molly's voice snapped him out of his thoughts, feeling guilty when he looked into her kind eyes.

 

“Molly,” Greg touched her shoulder, giving a smile when she raised an eyebrow in question before dropping his hand. “I'm sorry. For Sherlock's behavior this past week.”

 

“It's not your job to apologize for him, Greg.”

 

“I know that, I just-”

 

Greg stopped, letting out a sigh before following Molly into the bathroom. She was right of course. Sherlock was a grown man, more than capable of apologizing himself. Still, something inside his heart twisted when he looked back at Molly. He'd come to like her, seeing her as a friend instead of a nurse and Sherlock's treatment of her made his skin itch and crawl. She didn't deserve this. Greg didn't care about Sherlock's reason behind it, it still wasn't right and he made up his mind to confront the man about it.

 

“I'll have a word with him. Not that you can't defend yourself of course.” Greg added quickly when Molly shot him a dark look. “It's just- I know how he can be and you really don't deserve all this. I don't know what's gotten into him lately.”

 

“He's worried.”

 

“Doesn't mean he has to be a dick.”

 

“True.” Molly smiled, a real one that made her eyes sparkle a bit and Greg felt some of his irritation and tension ease out of him.

 

“Let's get you cleaned up, Greg. The sooner that's done, the sooner the day is over.”

 

“Tomorrow, tomorrow, I love you tomorrow...” Greg softly sang, Molly's laugh filling the room as she shook her head, getting the water ready. Yes, he was going to have a talk with Sherlock tomorrow, but for now it could wait. Tomorrow was only a day away after all and he needed rest.

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 22

Greg learns the real reason why Sherlock has been acting like he has.



1

“You should apologize to Molly.”

 

Greg met Sherlock's questioning expression with a stern look, raising an eyebrow when he didn't respond. He felt better today, even after his session with Mary. Sherlock had stopped by the next day, but he'd been called away not long after, something about people being tied down and wearing masks before being murdered. It had irritated Greg for a while, wondering if the universe was punishing him, but having some time alone had done him good.

 

He still didn't know how he felt about the whole blood situation, but now with some time to think about it, he could understand Sherlock's reasoning better and he was sure the man's offer came from a good place. He wasn't worried about the side effects that much, he knew Sherlock would never betray his trust by manipulating his mind, but just the very idea of drinking blood made Greg's skin crawl.

 

It all seemed sexy and romantic in the movies, but Greg doubted it would be the same in real life and he really wanted to explain that to Sherlock. He wasn't disgusted with the man, or his offer, but there were some lines Greg wouldn't cross. Even if it could get him out of the hospital faster.

 

“I see your cast is off.”

 

“Yes, since yesterday. Had my first exercises today to get strength back. It feels strange, to be honest.” Greg moved his foot carefully, still not used to feeling his muscles work again, but Mary assured him it was normal. He had some mild pain, more a throbbing sensation than anything else, but that also was part of the healing process. He wiggled his toes, ignoring the protest of his body, just happy he could move them again and caught Sherlock's small smile.

 

“You're changing the subject on purpose.” Greg did his best not the laugh when Sherlock gave a naughty smile. It almost felt like before, before Greg knew about vampires and drinking blood and the car accident and for just a second, and his heart yearned for those simpler times. He looked at Sherlock, shaking his head when the man gave him a questioning look.

 

“You really should talk to Molly. Not just to apologize for being a dick,” Greg smirked when Sherlock's cheeks went a tad lighter. “But also because something is going on with her and I'm worried.”

 

“What do you mean?”

 

“She didn't want to tell me, because I'm a patient, but I sort of hinted at her to go talk to you. Has she?” Greg asked, tense with anticipation as he waiting for the response. Now that he knew something was going on that involved Molly it was hard to ignore it. He'd asked for more information a few times, but Molly just shook her head, blocking him off kindly but firmly.

 

“She hasn't, though she did- Oh.” Sherlock's eyes went wide, his mouth open with sudden realisation and Greg's heart twisted inside him as the man's cheeks went another shade paler.

 

“Let me guess,” Greg started, seeing the beginning guilt in Sherlock's eyes. “She came to you last week and instead of listening to her, you told her off? Was that before or after you'd insulted Nurse Gilbert?”

 

“I...”

 

“Dammit, Sherlock!” Greg snapped, leaning back in his chair and letting out a sound of discomfort. On good days like these, it was easy for Greg to believe that nothing was wrong with him anymore until he made a sudden move and his body took revenge. Sherlock threw him a look before getting up and pacing the floor, his expression serious and pained. Greg watched as the man went back and forth, wondering if they'd have to redo the floor by the time he was able to go home.

 

“I wasn't at my best, Lestrade. I- I had other things to worry about.” Sherlock stopped in front of Greg, looking down at him and Greg swallowed, suddenly feeling trapped. He knew what Sherlock would say next, but it still made him feel uncomfortable.

 

“Why won't you accept my offer?”

 

“Sherlock I-” Greg started to get up, stopping halfway as his body wouldn't obey him, pulling a face in frustration and discomfort. Sherlock was still looming over him, his eyes a shade darker.

 

“Cause, if you'd accepted my offer, then you wouldn't feel miserable now.”

 

Greg counted to ten before letting out a sigh and Sherlock crossed his arms in answer, still not moving.

 

“Can you please sit down? I'll get a headache soon from looking up at you.”

 

Sherlock rolled his eyes but he did sit down, crossing his legs over each other. There was a hard look in the man's eyes but Greg refused to acknowledge it, taking a few more seconds to gather his thoughts.

 

“I am offering you real help, Lestrade. Drinking my blood will have you out of here and back to work in just a few days. I don't understand why we are still talking about this.”

 

“Because it's worth talking about Sherlock. No, hear me out. Okay?” Greg removed his hand from Sherlock's, giving the man a small smile as he stayed seated in his chair. He'd had a feeling this wouldn't be easy and he let out a breath before speaking, keeping his eyes on Sherlock, so he’d know he wasn't lying.

 

“I appreciate your offer Sherlock, I really do. I know you mean well and I also know that you'd never take advantage of the situation. If that were the case, then you'd have fed me your blood the minute you arrived at the hospital while I was still out of it.” Greg gave another smile, which dropped the moment he saw Sherlock's face change.

 

“You- You were going to feed me your blood?”

 

“I. It was something I considered, yes.”

 

Sherlock kept Greg's gaze and Greg didn't know how to respond to that. They looked at each other, the silence between them awkward, then Greg shook his head, blinking at Sherlock to try and see things clearly.

 

“I can't believe you- Why didn't you go through with it?” Sherlock's expression was even more pained, not able to keep Greg's gaze and somehow things clicked into place for him.

 

“Mycroft.” Greg crossed his arms, knowing he was right when Sherlock got up to pace the floor again, talking fast.

 

“I needed to do something! You were lying there so small and pale and the doctor was a complete idiot- That nurse was horrible at her job, couldn't even get your blood pressure right and you were in pain and all because some drunken idiot had decided to go for a ride! It's was just absurd, you, being in hospital for so long over something so stupid!”

 

“Sherlock-”

 

“Mycroft has been handling everything, making arrangements, having that doctor replaced, making sure you have all the treatment and help you need and what have I been doing? Nothing!”

 

Sherlock's voice was loud, bouncing off the walls as he walked back and forth, seemingly miles away as he went on.

 

“Everyone has been helping you! Everyone is doing something to get you home faster. My brother, Molly, even that horrible therapist! They are all helping you but you are still miserable and in pain and I don't- I can't-”

 

“Sherlock.” Greg tried to cut off Sherlock's stream of words, his heart beating too fast to be healthy as he heard the distress and helplessness in Sherlock's voice.

 

“This is my way to help you and yet you refuse it. Even though you are in pain after every therapy session, even though you hate it here and complain about how much you miss your home and your job, you still refuse my help! My blood is not contagious, it won't turn you into a vampire.”

 

“That's not why-”

 

“The side effects are rare and even if they do present, they are minimal. The only logical explanation for your refusal is your disgust with my true nature.”

 

“Sherlock!” Greg ignored his body as he got up out of his chair, somehow needing to be taller as Sherlock's words got more hateful. He tried to grab the man's arm, but Sherlock was walking too fast by now, almost like a cartoon character and it hurt Greg's eyes trying to follow the movement.

 

“You say that you’re okay with me being a vampire, but you've not seen much of it. Yes, you've heard about my past and the horrible things I've done, but those are just stories. Episodes in one of your beloved vampire shows! Now things get real and your true feelings start to show, but of course, you being you, are too kind to tell me what you really think about me. That you are disgusted with me and you'd rather be in pain then accept help from a vampire!”

 

“That's enough!” Greg raised his voice loud enough for Sherlock to stop moving, stopping at the window of Greg's room, back turned towards it. Greg walked over the Sherlock, taking the man by his biceps and trying to shake him in frustration, letting out a sound when the man didn't move an inch.

 

“I can't accept your blood ‘cause it's blood, Sherlock! This has nothing to do with me being disgusted by you or suddenly realising you are a real vampire. You caught a damn bullet for me, Sherlock. Trust me, I already know you're more than human!” Greg tightened his grasp on Sherlock, knowing the man could break out of it in milliseconds.

 

“You've been a vampire for decades, so all this recovering in seconds, drinking blood, it's all normal to you. It's part of your world, but it's not part of mine, Sherlock. You've had years to adjust, but for me-” Greg let out a breath, holding Sherlock trapped with his gaze, wanting the man to understand his point of view.

 

“For me, blood isn't suppose to be in a vial. It's not supposed to be like a shot kids these days drink in clubs. I'm still wrapping my head around it all, Sherlock. It has nothing to do with not accepting you, or being disgusted by you. How could I ever be disgusted with you? You're my friend, Sherlock.”

 

“Then why won't you accept this gift?”

 

“Sherlock-”

 

“You had no problem accepting my brother's help and he wasn't even a -”

 

“Stop!” Greg tightened his grip on Sherlock, frustration rising as Sherlock stubbornly looked at him. “That's not the same situation and you know it! Dammit, Sherlock!” Greg dug his nails into Sherlock's skin, anger overtaking his reason. He wanted to shake the man to pieces, not understanding why Sherlock couldn't see things from his point of view. Was it really so weird to not want to drink someone else's blood?!

 

“Why are you being so stubborn about this?!” Greg let Sherlock go, turning around to walk to the table and create some needed space. His mind was working overtime, trying to understand why this was so important to Sherlock and he nearly jumped out of his skin when Sherlock stood in front of him, eyes black and his mouth in an angry line. A shiver ran down his spine, image coming to mind of the night Sherlock had stayed and watched a movie with him before it had all blown up in his face and a part of his brain was screaming at him to flee from the monster in front of him.

 

“Because this is the only way I can help you, Greg!” Sherlock took hold of Greg's biceps, surprisingly gentle compared to his tone and another shiver ran down Greg's spine. He wondered if that would ever go away and his heart broke when Sherlock's face twisted into guilt, letting go of Greg as if he'd been burned. Greg wanted to say something, but Sherlock didn't let him, talking as fast as before, eyes burning with emotions Greg couldn't name.

 

“I don't have the resources and influence like Mycroft. I don't have the knowledge like your therapist and I don't have the patience and soft skills like Molly to help you. My blood is the only thing I can offer and I need- I need you to take it.”

 

Sherlock stepped closer, trapping Greg between his body and the door and it made Greg's knees buckled. He'd never been this close to Sherlock, feeling the touch of coldness brush against his skin, seeing the specks of purple in Sherlock's dark eyes. His whole world seemed to slow down, only able to focus on Sherlock and it took him a moment to hear Sherlock's words.

 

“.... pain and suffering and every day is agony for me! Being here, seeing the slow progress you are making, knowing how much you hate being here! I- I need to do something, Greg! I can’t keep sitting on the sidelines. You need to be out there, solving cases with me! I need you by my side and I can’t keep being- “

 

Sherlock stopped, letting out a growl of frustration before releasing Greg and Greg was sure he would drop to the floor at any moment now.

 

“What Sherlock? Can’t keep being what?” He reached out, seeing Sherlock nib on his lower lip and he wanted to step forward and take the man into his arms when Sherlock hung his head, his words filled with helplessness.

 

“Useless.”

2

 

“You're not-”

 

Sherlock's eyes met Greg's and before he could even think it through, he moved forward, wrapping his arms around the man and feeling Sherlock's body stiffen. Greg ignored it for now, putting his head on Sherlock's shoulder, secretly loving that Sherlock was an inch taller than him.

 

“What are you doing, Lestrade?”

 

Sherlock's voice rumbled in the room and Greg added more pressure to the hug, not able to hide a smile when Sherlock's arms finally wrapped around him. They stood like that for a moment, Greg breathing in Sherlock's expensive cologne, feeling the man's arms around him. A perfect moment, one Greg wished wouldn't end, but Sherlock's confession of feeling useless needed to be addressed. He really didn't like the hint of animosity in the man's tone so he pulled back a bit, meeting Sherlock's pale face, smiling up at him when Sherlock's eyes landed on him.

 

“You're not useless, Sherlock. No, let me finish.” Greg shook his head as he rubbed a hand up and down Sherlock's back before breaking the hug completely. He already missed being that close to him and he cleared his throat when Sherlock tilted his head to the side, his gaze going all over Greg's face.

 

“You've listed off all the reasons why others are helping me yet you've missed the most obvious.” He grinned when Sherlock raised an eyebrow in mild disbelief.

 

“The only reason I'm here, getting all this help, is because of you. You've brought me here, to the best Orthopedic hospital in the UK, probably the world. You are the reason I'm getting the best possible care.” Greg kept his eyes on Sherlock, seeing the gears inside the man's head turn and  raised an eyebrow when Sherlock shook his head, the pout on his mouth deepening.

 

“That was all Mycroft. He's paying for all this. I don't-”

 

“You called Mycroft the second you knew about the accident. Do you honestly think I didn't know it was you that made this happen. Okay, Mycroft is paying for it, but you asked his help. None of this would even be possible if I didn’t know you. You asked him to bring me here so you are the reason I'm here and not in London General.”

 

“And you hate it here.” Sherlock turned around, eyes focused on the world outside the hospital window and Greg gently placed his hand on Sherlock's shoulder. Of course it wouldn't be this simple. Sometimes Sherlock was too smart for his own good, always thinking things through too far. For Greg it was simple, if Sherlock hadn't called his brother, he wouldn't have been here. Who was paying the bills was just a detail, the fact that Sherlock had reached out to his brother, asking him for help on Greg's behalf, was the most important. He gave Sherlock's shoulder a squeeze, letting out a sign when Sherlock didn't turn around and dropped his hand, walking to his bed and sitting down on it. It was easy to ignore his body’s needs when he was full of irritation and fury, but he couldn't ignore it forever. He sighed in relief when he allowed himself to lie down, feeling his ankle throb from his earlier session and suddenly Sherlock's face came into view, concern clear in his grey eyes.

 

“It's fine, Sherlock. Just need some rest.”

 

“It's not fine.” Sherlock's voice clipped, his eyes stormy with worry and it melted something inside Greg's chest. He shook his head, adjusting his bed so it was easier to lie down and still see Sherlock.

 

“No. It's not fine. Not yet anyway. Sherlock,” He patted the man's hand when Sherlock was about to speak up, hearing the tiredness in his own voice. “I know you don't see it that way, but you have been helping me, are still helping me. Not just by going to your brother and making this all possible for me and Sally but for being here.”

 

Greg gave a small smile when he saw the beginning confusion on the man's face. For a genius Sherlock could be slow about some things and Greg just wanted to hug the man again, make him understand how much he means to him.

 

“You come to visit me almost every day. Even though this place can't be the best for you to be in, you still come by. You bring me stories from work, make me feel part of the world. You keep me updated on the team and how everyone is doing. You've brought me my favourite books and take away. You've spent the evenings with me watching crappy telly and even asked me advice on a few of your current cases. You’ve given me your company and compassion, Sherlock. That helps far more than any doctor or nurse. You really have no idea, do you?”

 

“What?” Sherlock asked, a hint of irritation in his voice and Greg's smile only grew wider because of it. He's almost certain Sherlock didn't want to ask but he couldn’t help wanting to know, to learn, to understand.

 

“You are the number one reason I'm keeping it together. Your visits are important to me, Sherlock. They're something to look forward to when it's been a boring or painful day. Talking to Molly and Elena is nice, but it's not the same as spending time with you. You are doing everything you can, Sherlock. I promise you, you are helping me.”

 

“But it's not enough.”

 

“Sherlock-” Greg sat up, reaching out a hand without knowing why.

 

“No,” Sherlock stopped him from touching his arm, grabbing Greg's biceps instead. His dark grey eyes were blazing as he looked down at Greg and Greg was once again struck by how gorgeous Sherlock looked. Even if he was being a stubborn arse right now.

 

“It's all taking too long! DI Gregson is a capable man, but he's not you, Lestrade! He doesn't know me the way you do. It's not the same, Lestrade. You need to get out of here and you need to get back to work. Seeing you in this place it- You should be better.”

 

“Sherlock, I am. It takes time, but I am getting better.”

 

“That’s not good enough!” Greg let out a grunt of pain as Sherlock's grip on his biceps tightened, the man's expression changing instantly, shock and horror clear in his grey eyes.

 

“Sherlock no-” Greg tried to take Sherlock's arm when the man lets go of him, but of course Sherlock was faster.

 

Taking a step back, he shook his head fiercely as he looked at Greg with wide eyes, his face paler than ever before.

 

“ I didn't-”

 

“Sherlock, I know. Calm down, I'm fine.”

 

“YOU ARE NOT FINE! HOW CAN ANY OF THIS BE FINE?” Sherlock's voice hit the walls, shattering around them and Greg flinched in surprise. Not so much from the volume, as he'd heard Sherlock yell a few times since working with him, but from the distress and clear self-hatred in his tone. His heart broke when Sherlock grabbed a big strand of his hair, pulling it hard. Greg was halfway out of bed, pleading at the man to stop when his ankle refused to do any more work for the day. He let out a yelp of pain and surprise, but a pair of strong arms caught him before he could fall to the floor.

 

“I'm so sorry..” Sherlock mumbled near his ear as Greg clung to him for support, feeling one hand firmly on his back as the other is stroking his hair and it took all Greg's willpower and control to not purr like a cat at the feeling. Sherlock's body felt hard and solid against him and Greg wrapped his arms around him tightly, stroking Sherlock's back in return before speaking.

 

“It's okay, Sherlock. I swear, it's okay. Just forgot about my bloody ankle. I'm not 20 anymore, that's for sure.” He tried to sound light, half laughing but then he lifted up his head, creating some space to watch Sherlock. Sherlock wasn't smiling.

 

“Don't joke about this, Lestrade. It's not okay. None of this okay and you're not fine.”

 

“No, I'm not fine. But I'm also not dying.”

 

“Greg,” Sherlock scowled, face set in clear displeasure and Greg leaned back in, squeezing Sherlock once before pulling back again, still not breaking the hug completely.

 

“I know this hasn't been easy for you. Being almost immortal, it's easy to forgot how vulnerable you once were. This accident has been a good reminder for both of us that I'm not a superhero. I know it's going too slow for you. Some days it's going too slow for me too, but that's the way it goes Sherlock.” Greg looked up, not able to stop his hand from coming up and stroking the man's cheek.

 

“I do appreciate the gesture Sherlock. Giving me your blood like that, I know it's not something you take lightly. But I hope you understand why I can't accept it. I'm really not disgusted by you, Sherlock. I swear I'm not.”

 

“I can see that.”

 

Greg smiled when Sherlock met his gaze. His eyes were less grey now.  Sherlock closed his eyes for a moment, leaning into Greg's touch and Greg’s stomach did a flip. All he wanted to do was lean forward and kiss him.

 

“I'm not ready to lose you, Greg. I know it's inevitable, but-”

 

“You're not really lightning up the mood here, Sherlock.” Greg huffed out a laugh when Sherlock opened his eyes, rolling them at him as Greg wrapped his arm around him again. As long as Sherlock wasn't willing to break the hug, he wouldn't either.

 

“That therapist of yours is still an idiot.”

 

Greg nodded his head, not able to hide his smile and a weight lifted off his shoulders when Sherlock returned it, his eyes finally back to their normal green and blue. There was a moment of silence, both just standing there until Greg cleared his throat, suddenly self-conscious. He licked his lips, mouth dry and he held his breath when their eyes met again. The intensity in Sherlock's gaze almost knocked him to the floor again.

 

“I can't lose you.”

 

“You won't. I'm still here, Sherlock. You're not losing me.”

 

“Greg.”

 

Something in the way Sherlock said his name made Greg hold onto him tightly and then his whole world stopped as Sherlock leaned forward and kissed him.

 

Chapter Text

 

Chapter 23

Greg’s world is turned upside down and then reality kicks in.

The kiss short circuited Greg's brain. To most, it would hardly be considered a kiss at all. Lips just touching, gentle and sweet, a little hesitant. Greg felt the slight difference in their temperatures and his own knees went weak. Something about their differences made him even more breathless.

 

Then very gently, seeming almost shy, the tip of Sherlock's tongue came out, tracing Greg's upper lip first before going to his lower lip. It was a good thing Sherlock was holding him. All his weariness was gone. Though Sherlock must have heard Greg's beating heart, must have know how affected he already was, in that particular moment Greg really didn't care. He let out a moan as Sherlock pressed them closer together, his tongue teasing and asking for more. Greg opened his mouth, inviting Sherlock deeper.   He hadn't felt this giddy, lightheaded anticipation since he was a teen, but something about Sherlock brought it out in him.

 

Somehow Sherlock's tongue was warmer than his lips, but colder than Greg's, and that feeling, which could be no one else set his whole body on fire. He slid his hands to the back of Sherlock's neck, playing with his curls. Everything felt delicate and sweet and for a second, surprising Greg.

 

Somehow he’d expected a vampire would be hard and fast, demanding in their kisses and touches, but Sherlock is soft, taking his time as if asking Greg for permission to go further. He felt Sherlock's hands slide down his back, stopping just above his arse and let out another moan, their tongues teasing each other. He never wanted this to end, but he was almost out of breath, dreading the moment he'd have to pull back to come up for air. Everything would have changed between them and he wasn’t sure he was ready to process that. to have such intimate knowledge of Sherlock.

 

As it turned out, Greg didn't have to break the precious moment himself. Sherlock's phone did it for him, the sound loud and intrusive like a thunderclap, making them both jump and Greg’s curse filled the air.

 

He blinked, gaze a little blurry as he took a gulp of air. It didn't feel like his body at all anymore. His knees felt like jelly, his heart racing inside his chest. He licked his lips, feeling them tingle as he reached out a hand, suddenly having a hard time standing upright.

 

Don't be silly!

 

He took a step backward, feeling Sherlock's cool hand on his elbow as Sherlock guided him to his bed, looking at the man but not really seeing him. His mind was still on the kiss, how Sherlock tasted, how soft his lips felt, the careful way Sherlock’s tongue had explored his.  How caring the man’s touch could be and how well his own body fit against Sherlock’s, as if it was made to be there. He wanted to reach out and drag Sherlock onto the bed with him, but his muscles refused to work, causing worry and light panic creeping in.

 

Oh my god.

 

“Greg.”

 

Sherlock whispered his name and Greg looked up into Sherlock's eyes. His breath caught as he noticed the change in them and then he reached out, needing to feel Sherlock close to him. To convince himself it wasn’t another dream.

 

Sherlock squeezed his hand, a hesitant smile on those lush lips and Greg let out a wanton noise when Sherlock leaned forward, placing a light peck on his mouth. The man's eyes were almost completely purple now. A rich color and standing this close, Sherlock gazing down at him, Greg can see flecks of gold in the purple.

 

Beautiful.

 

Sherlock's cheeks went a bit paler and Greg raised an eyebrow in question, his heart skipping a beat.

 

“I can only read fragments of your mind. Now and then. I'm sorry.”

 

Sherlock looked down, but Greg lifted his chin up with his fingers, smiling at Sherlock when their eyes met again. He's not as freaked out as he would have been a few weeks back and he gently leans forward to kiss Sherlock again. The soft sound it earned him set his whole body on fire and he wondered if Sherlock could read the mental images he'd conjured up. Sherlock's hands captured his head, the kiss deepening as Sherlock moved, standing between Greg's legs. It shouldn't be a secret how their kisses were affecting him and he saw the small smirk on the vampire's lips when they broke apart. Maybe he should feel uncomfortable or vulnerable, knowing Sherlock just had to look at him to know what he's thinking about but he's been waiting for so long to kiss this man that he wanted Sherlock to see the effect he had on him. He couldn’t keep his eyes of Sherlock, seeing how sexy and alive the man looked right now.

 

And it's all because of me.

 

“Sher-”

 

Another beep of Sherlock's phone cut of Greg's words and he was reminded why they pulled apart in the first place. There's an inkling of jealousy as Sherlock let go of him to take out his phone, though a second later he realized how silly he's being. Sherlock's eyes met his, a flash of smugness in them before he focused on the text he'd gotten. The half growl that filled the room made Greg's cock react, his cheeks burning as Sherlock typed a reply at vampire speed.

 

He knew what Sherlock was about to say before he spoke, but he was still crushed when the words filled the room.

 

“I have to go. A new case.”

 

Sherlock's eyes stayed on him, lingering on his mouth and Greg couldn't help but lick his lips, enjoying the effect it had on Sherlock as his pupil dilated.

 

“A building caught fire. They think it's intentional. One victim found, so far.”

 

Greg's nerves eased as he heard the displeasure in Sherlock's voice. It was clear that he didn't want to leave just yet. His hand went to Greg's arm, squeezing it softly, the beginning of a frown creasing the man's forehead when he squinted his eyes. He stepped closer to Greg, his thumb stroking Greg's heated cheek.

 

Greg placed his hand on Sherlock’s chest, not sure what to say. What had happened just now was life-changing, but there was a part of him that worried Sherlock would leave and not come back. He’d never been good at this, emotions and all that comes with them. Would it be too much? Kissing Sherlock was a good thing, one Greg would never regret, but he wondered what Sherlock thought of it.

 

“Sherlock-”

 

He let the man kiss him, melting into it as he felt Sherlock's smile before they pulled apart. He leaned into Sherlock’s touch as the man cupped his cheek, stroking it with his thumb and Greg swallowed away his questions. Now wasn’t the time.

 

“I want to stay here with you, Greg,” Sherlock whispered, taking hold of Greg's head again and Greg blinked in surprise. The work had always been important to Sherlock. It was a small miracle he was still standing here and not already rushing to the crime scene.

 

“Greg.” Sherlock’s voice was soft, his expression gentle and Greg felt his eyes sting. He could blame it on tiredness later.

 

“You should go. They need you. DI Gregson is waiting for you.”

 

“This is not-”

 

“It's okay S-Sherlock.” Greg smiled, brushing away a stray curl. “The work is important, we both know that. Just d--- Come back, okay?”

 

He wanted to kick himself the second the words were out, but Sherlock just stroked his cheek, nodding his head slowly, a seriousness in his eyes Greg hadn't seen a lot before. They kissed again, Greg wrapping his arms around Sherlock's neck, pressing Sherlock closer to his body. Greg heard Sherlock’s soft growl and shivered with desire.

 

“Greg.”

 

The way Sherlock said his name made Greg moan, making the kiss more demanding as Sherlock slid a hand down Greg’s back. He moaned as Sherlock’s other hand played with his hair, pulling it gently and making him want so much more. He moved his hands to wrap around Sherlock's waist, a growl filling the room as Greg’s hands grabbed Sherlock’s arse.

 

He couldn't stop a sound of protest when Sherlock broke the kiss, an apologetic look in his eyes. The heat and want in Sherlock’s gaze melted Greg to the core and he felt his face flame up, body ready to take further action.

 

“You’re amazing.”

 

He’d never heard Sherlock’s voice so rough and he swallowed, seeing the smirk on Sherlock’s lips and his blush deepened. It had never been easy to hide anything from Sherlock.

 

“God, I wish I could stay. You have no idea.” Sherlock looked pained, licking his lips as he took a step back and Greg had to mentally order himself to not get up and follow.

 

“The way you smell right now.” Sherlock’s gaze was locked with Greg’s, full of desire and Greg’s body was working overtime, his cock throbbing as Sherlock’s looked him up and down, gaze staying a second too long on his groin.

 

“W-what do I smell like?”

 

“Home.” Sherlock blinked, voice rough and sounding like sex. “You smell like home.”

 

They stared at each other for what felt like days, Greg trying his best to calm down and not drag Sherlock on top of him. Tired body and new case be damned!

 

Sherlock’s phone went off again, stopping Greg's plans before he'd even fully made them. Sherlock's irritation was written on his face as he picks up his phone with a brusque 'yes'.

 

“I’ll be there in 15 minutes. Start taking footage of the bystanders. Could be important later on.”

 

Even with hormones raging, Greg found it mesmerizing to see Sherlock in detective mode. Something about the man's presence changed when he was focused and it did weird things to Greg's body, wanting to be the sole focus of Sherlock’s attention. Preferably in bed, naked.

 

“Lestrade?” There was an amused tone to Sherlock's voice as he put away his phone and Greg felt his face flush when Sherlock raised a knowing eyebrow.

 

“Text me when you can?”

 

“Of course.”

 

“O-Okay. Listen to DI Gregson okay. And don't do anything stupid.” He tried for the stern tone, but Sherlock smirked when he took his coat off the chair and put it on. He ran his fingers through his hair and an images came to mind, of pulling Sherlock’s hair as he rode him, and screaming the man's name as he came.

 

Fuck!

 

He cleared his throat when Sherlock stepped towards him again, a smile on his face before leaning forward to kiss his forehead.

 

“When have I ever done anything stupid?”

 

“The list is too long to rattle off now.” Greg laughed as Sherlock pouted, buttoning up his coat and wrapping his scarf around his neck. Hmm, that neck. Greg wanted to lick it, perhaps see if vampire skin could display a hickey. Sherlock let out an amused snort and Greg willed himself to focus on the conversation rather than on all the ways he wanted to bend Sherlock over.

 

“I'm serious Sherlock, just because DI Gregson doesn't know you so well, doesn't mean you have to go back to your old ways. I know about the fight.” Greg tried for a stern voice, but his cheeks are warm enough to fry eggs on. Clearly not thinking about all the ways he wants to bend Sherlock over was a sure way of thinking about it!

 

“How did you know about the fight?” Sherlock frowned, amusement still in his eyes as he looked Greg up and down. “And I really don't need to read your mind to know what you are thinking about.”

 

Greg huffed, and raised an eyebrow at him, not answering Sherlock's question and he saw the realization dawn after a moment.

 

“Donovan, of course.”

 

“Of course. You know, just because I'm not there doesn't mean that the rules don't apply.” Greg crossed his arms as Sherlock gave him a puppy look, raising an eyebrow as the man started pouting.

 

Vampire or not, Greg's heart had stopped when Sally had told him that Sherlock had gone after 5 armed people by himself. At least backup hadn't been too far away, but Greg didn't want to think about what could have happened.

 

“Oh, don't use those puppy eyes on me, Mister! You need to be careful, Sherlock!”

 

“Sally said the same thing,” Sherlock mumbled, looking at his shoes before meeting Greg's gaze again and Greg tried to look stern.

 

“Then maybe you should listen to her from now on?”

 

“Spoilsport.”

 

“I just want to keep you around for as long as possible, Sherlock.”

 

Sherlock's eyes widened in surprise,  then was suddenly in front of him again, both hands on Greg's head, eyes shining as his face was serious.

 

“I'm not going anywhere, Greg. I promise.”

 

Greg grabbed hold of Sherlock's coat, looking into Sherlock's eyes and seeing the care and compassion there.

 

“Good. ‘Cause if something happens to you because of your own stupidity and I will have to kill you.”

 

“You can always try Lestrade,” Sherlock smirked and Greg smiled, a band of fear lifting off his heart. They could still do this, talk and banter as always. They were still just Greg and Sherlock.

 

“I should go. I... I’ll call you tonight? I don’t think I’ll be able to come visit though.” Sherlock looked unsure and it melted Greg's heart, wanting to wrap the man in his arms for as long as possible.

 

“I'd like that.” Greg smiled, his heart warm as Sherlock smiled in return. His eyes were beginning to change back to their normal color and Greg was a tad disappointed. In a few seconds, there wouldn't be any evidence left of what had happened between them, but the look Sherlock gave him made it clear that none of it would be forgotten soon.

 

“Go on, Sherlock. Go be a genius. And will you talk to Molly?”

 

“I will. And I'm always a genius.”

 

Greg huffed a laugh at that, the wink Sherlock sent his way as he left, making him smile like a loon. Molly gave him an amused and curious look later that night, but she didn't push and Greg was grateful for it. It was too soon to start labeling things. He wanted to cherish the moment for just a little longer, pushing worries and doubts to the background of his mind for now.

 

His world had changed, but it was something Greg looked forward to.

Chapter Text

Chapter 24

Sherlock has a new case and Greg is disappointed.

 

 

“You asked her to do what?!” Greg dropped the fork he'd been using for his lunch, staring at Sherlock with a mixture of disbelief and anger. When Sherlock walked in the door Greg had a hard time not draping himself over him and kissing him senseless. It was obvious Sherlock didn't have the same problem, almost immediately talking fast, pacing up and down with his hands gesturing wildly.

 

Three weeks and barely a kiss.

 

“Molly thinks someone is stealing. It's been bedsheets and other linens so far, but there's also been some jewelry missing from the G floor. It's nothing too dangerous, Lestrade. She'll just talk to a few people she trusts and count some inventory. Look at this,” Sherlock held up a red notebook, with a small smile on his face as Greg looks at a bunch of numbers, dates and codes he couldn't decipher.

 

“Your team could learn from this. She's quite thorough.”

 

There's a spark of jealousy after Sherlock's words and Greg took another bite of his lunch to cover his expression. It's silly, Sherlock’s gay after all, but he wasn’t one to hand out compliments easily and Greg wasn’t in the mood to talk about anyone else.

 

Hasn't he missed me?

 

“I sent a text to Anthea to get some additional information on that head nurse Stane. He really doesn't sound like a nice person and coming from me that says a lot. Molly will do her part and I think our next move should be-”

 

Our next move?”

 

Something in his tone must have been off because Sherlock finally stopped pacing and turned to look at Greg. He dropped the notebook on the table, the beginning of a frown visible on his forehead as he sat down on the other chair. Sherlock looked at him with confusion as he took another bite of his lunch, the meat tasting like cardboard now. He’s not sure if he's angry or disappointed by Sherlock's clear lack of understanding.

 

Almost three weeks and not even a sign that he-

 

Greg took a sip of his water, not sure what to say now as Sherlock's intense gaze burned his skin.

 

Maybe he doesn't-

 

“Lestrade.” Sherlock snapped him out of his thoughts, a hint of irritation in his voice as he tapped the notebook between them. “Of course, our next move. Why do you think I'm here? I can't do this alone and I promised Molly I would help her.”

 

Why do you think I'm here?

 

Greg's stomach did a flip and he pushed his lunch away as Sherlock flips through the notebook, muttering to himself before meeting Greg's gaze again. There was not even a hint that the man was happy to see him. Not a single tell about the kiss they shared and Greg clears his throat, disappointment consuming him.

 

Has he deleted it? Is this Sherlock's way of saying he doesn't want to kiss me again?

 

“You do know I'm not on active duty right?” He took another sip of his water, glad his voice sounded relatively normal, but Sherlock's frown deepened a fraction and Greg began talking again, not wanting to answer Sherlock's painful questions.

 

“Now, I can ask DI Gregson to assist you, but for the time being that is all I can do, so if all you came her for was work then-”

 

“Lestrade?”

 

Greg was about to get up when Sherlock reached over the table and took his hand, confusion clear in his eyes and Greg couldn't bring himself to move, glued to his seat as Sherlock's cold thumb stroked his palm.

 

I've even missed the cold.

 

“Lestrade? What's wrong?”

 

The fact that Sherlock even had to ask made Greg want to cry, or scream. After he'd been called away he'd only seen Sherlock a few times over the last three weeks. Different cases took hold of Sherlock's time and they mostly communicated via texts. At first, it hadn't bothered Greg. He knew how Sherlock could be during a case, the work taking up all his attention and time. Sherlock was single-minded when it came to the work and Greg had had his share of long and draining days.

 

After a week, with short and to the point answers to his texts, anxiety had started creeping in. A tiny voice in his head whispering things like He doesn't want you. It was all stress, nothing else. He's already bored with you. He regrets it . As the first week crept into the second, and then third, it had been harder to ignore that voice and his insecurities. He knew Sherlock was way out of his league, even if you dismissed the fact that the man was a vampire. Sherlock was smart, frighteningly so, he had the looks and body of a supermodel and it was clear he came from a different social class. Not to mention that he could snap someone in two by just looking at them.

 

“Lestrade? Greg? Are you sure you're okay?”

 

Do you regret kissing me?

 

It was on the tip of his tongue, Sherlock's touch almost at the point of painful, but he couldn't bring himself to ask it. He was a grown man, for god's sake, not an insecure teenager!

 

And what if he says yes?

 

His heart constricted at the mere thought and he blinked. Sherlock was still looking at him with curiosity, but also worry. His eyes were mostly green, but there was a shade of grey in there and Greg nods his head after a moment, putting on a smile as he gently pulled his hand from underneath Sherlock's. It was only then that he realized how cold his hand feels and he looks at Sherlock with a bit more focus.

 

Is he paler than usual?

 

“Are you okay? It's just, your touch seems colder than usual.” Even as he said it, Greg realized how stupid it sounded, but Sherlock smiled at him, fingers tapping on the notebook.

 

“It's fine, Greg. Nothing unusual about it. I promise.”

 

Coward.

 

Silence settled around them and part of him wanted to grab Sherlock by the shoulders and shake him while screaming 'why aren't we kissing yet?' while the other part was too afraid of Sherlock's answer. Greg settled on going back to a topic that was easy for both of them.

 

“It must have been busy at the Yard? I've hardly seen you these past few weeks.”

 

Is that guilt in his eyes? Am I going insane?

 

“How are the cases coming along? Last time we talked you said you had a few new leads on that triple murder. Did that turn up new evidence? And what about the other two?”

 

He'd gotten a bit of information over the past few weeks, but it wasn't the same as actually being out there, given orders to his team and having the thrills and disappointments of working a murder case. He was jealous of Sally, who was out of the hospital, fully healed and in the middle of the action and he lived for her visits, going over solved and ongoing cases. When he'd heard about the workload Sherlock had, some of his nerves has subsided. Splitting your attention over three cases was draining and it was only logical Sherlock was too busy to indulge Greg's curiosity. But, in week 2, all that logic had flown out the window and his mind was on a repeating loop of optimism and despair.

 

He's bored with you.

 

He's just busy. Three cases is exhausting.

 

He's letting you down gently.

 

Sherlock wouldn't do that, he promised he wasn't going anywhere.

 

Then why hasn't he been here?

 

It was slowly driving Greg crazy, so having Sherlock here in his room, finally, had been a relief for a few seconds. Then the man hadn't even welcomed him with a kiss, going on about Molly and a possible thief in the Royal and Greg was sure any moment now, Sherlock would tell him it had all been a misunderstanding and he wanted to be just friends.

 

Just the thought made him feel physically ill.

 

He was so caught up in his own mind that he missed part of Sherlock's answer, stumbling over his own words to stop Sherlock’s current tirade.

 

“Wait what? What did you say?”

 

“I said I solved those cases a week ago.” There was a hint of irritation in Sherlock's voice as he repeated himself, sitting there as if Greg's world just didn't crumble into pieces.

 

“They weren’t as challenging as I hoped they would be. A 7 at minimum. It's lucky Molly asked for my help, though it's only a 6 for now. It will give me something to focus on ‘til Gregson comes with a really interesting case.”

 

“You- you solved them a week ago? All of them?” Greg blinks his eyes, letting go of Sherlock's hand as the man looks at Greg with an 'don't make me repeat myself' expression. It felt like his heart stopped when Sherlock answered, as casual as talking about the weather, not realizing how he was crushing Greg's hopes and dreams.

 

“Yes, didn't I mention it? DI Gregson is doing the paperwork now. He's rather competent. Not like you of course, but working with him is doable.”

 

“A week ago.” Greg whispers as his throat closes up.

 

A whole week.

 

“Greg? Your pulse is up. What's wrong?”

 

He felt like his heart was going to explode out of his chest. All his worries and fears bombarding him, so overwhelmed by the disappointment and hurt that he didn't hear Sherlock move, taking Greg's head between his cold hands.

 

“Lestrade?”

 

“You were bored.”

 

“Sorry?”

 

“You were bored.” He couldn't say anything else, the word dancing in front of his eyes and he slowly removed Sherlock's hands from his face. He could still feel them, like they were burned into his skin, marking him forever.

 

He got up, his chair falling on the ground as he moved to the window and he forced himself to focus on the world outside, looking at the clouds and watching a group of birds go by. He could feel Sherlock's eyes on his back, but he couldn't bring himself to turn yet, knowing he'd surely see the confirmation on the man's face, the start of their goodbye. When he spoke he sounded more like a robot than himself, and everything came out quietly, barely a whisper, but he knew Sherlock could hear him. He could probably hear the entire hospital, buzzing with life, while Greg's stops.

 

“You finished all your cases a week ago and then you were bored. There wasn’t anything else that interested you. Nothing you wanted to get back to when the cases were over.”

 

“Greg? What is going on?”

 

He felt Sherlock’s hand on his right shoulder and a shiver ran down his spine as Sherlock looked at him, plastering a smile on his face when Sherlock frowned. It was only one kiss after all, well, one afternoon of kissing at any rate. He could survive.

 

Delete and move on.

 

“It's fine Sherlock. I'm just starting to go crazy here I guess. Now, Molly's case. I don't feel comfortable with her doing these things for you. I don't think the thief is a threat, but you never know what else can be set into motion-”

 

“Lestrade, you-”

 

“I am surprised you agreed to take her case. The stealing of pillowcases and jewels is hardly exciting, but then again you were bored.” Hurt and disappointment slowly shift to anger and it was hard to stop speaking. The memories of how kissing Sherlock felt, how Sherlock sounded and it grew hard to breathe suddenly.

 

“Lestrade, can you-” Sherlock tried to touch him, but Greg moved away, going back to the table and staring at his now cold lunch. An interruption now would be welcome, but of course that didn't happen and Greg couldn't stop his mouth from forming words.

 

“It's hardly as exciting as a murder case, but since you don't have anything else on your plate. We all know how horrible boredom is for you and since you have nothing else that occupies your mind-”

 

“Greg, stop!”

 

Sherlock was in front of him, a firm grip on his biceps but Greg doesn't look at him until the man lifted his chin up. There's a sense of triumph when dark grey eyes took him in closely, a frown forming on his face.

 

“What did I do wrong?”

 

The fact that he even needed to ask was what made Greg snap. He tried to shove Sherlock away, letting out a growl of frustration when Sherlock didn't budge. Sherlock let go of him slowly, watching him like a snake poised to attack. It wasn’t amusing at all and he let out another growl, gesturing towards the table where the red notebook is waiting.

 

“You solved all your cases a week ago!”

 

“Y-yes. I just told you that, why are you-”

 

“A week ago!” He poked Sherlock's chest, anger growing when the man still didn't flinch and Greg hurt his own finger in the process. “You solved all the cases a week ago and now you’ve finally come to see me just to bring me this!”  

 

“Yes! Molly asked for help and I thought you wanted me to be nice to her! I don’t understand why you’re acting so strangely.” Sherlock’s voice goes up as he talks, clutching the notebook to his chest, watching Greg like he'd gone mad and Greg threw his hands up in the air, wanting to scream and cry at the same time.

 

“You don’t understand?! You solved all your cases a week ago, Sherlock!”

 

“You just said-”

 

“Why am I only seeing you now?!”

Chapter Text

 

“Oh.”

 

“Oh? That's all you have to say?”

 

Greg raised an eyebrow, anger radiating from him as Sherlock ‘s gaze became unfocused. He didn't say anything else, just stood there in the middle of Greg's hospital room and Greg’s anger turned to rage.

 

“Get out.” He walked towards the door, opening it with too much force and gestured towards the hallway. Sherlock just stood there, blinking his eyes rapidly.

 

Greg couldn't remember the last time he'd been this angry. “Get. Out,” he repeated. It felt like he could explode at any second, but Sherlock didn’t move. Instead of going away or even shrinking back from Greg’s anger, Sherlock opened his mouth to speak. It took Greg a second to register the words, his ears buzzing.

 

“Greg. It's not what you think, I didn't mean-”

 

“I don't care!” Greg shouted, noticing the looks they are getting from nurses and visitors and his face flamed up even more, hating to be the one causing a scene. “Fine. Then I'll go.”

 

He closed the door behind him with a loud bang, walking towards the hospital's enclosed garden and he'd just made it outside when Sherlock caught up to him, placing a hand on his elbow. It's the first time Greg can remember not wanting Sherlock to touch him and he pulled out of his grip, very aware that Sherlock allowed it.

 

“Greg.”

 

“Don't.”

 

At least they were alone in the garden. Greg took a few deep breaths, needing the fresh air to clear his thoughts and slow his racing heart. He turned around sharply, seeing that Sherlock was keeping his distance. He was clearly about to say something, but Greg cut him off. In his anger, he needed to get this out and couldn’t spare a thought for how his words might affect the man standing in front of him.

 

“I am fed up with this, Sherlock! We kissed. You kissed me and I thought- You said this time would be different. You promised you wouldn't run away! But it's just the same as before! You avoiding me and me trying to figure out why! If you regret kissing me, if you don't want to give this a go, then just tell me. I'm a grown man, Sherlock. I can take it. Just don't- don't leave me guessing.”

 

It was hard to finish the end of his rant with a strong voice, but he shook his head when Sherlock took a step towards him, hand out to comfort him. There was a glimmer of hurt in Sherlock's dark grey eyes, but Greg couldn't think too much about that. He needed to have a straightforward, honest answer and he wasn't going anywhere before he got it.

 

“I do not regret kissing you. How can you even think that? What we shared-”

 

“How can I- How can I not think that, Sherlock?” He didn't let Sherlock finish, his voice cold as he answered.

 

“How about that fact that you solved all your cases and you didn't even think about visiting me? You waltz in here, only half greeting me, not even give me so much as a peck on the cheek and go on about Molly and how lucky it is there's a thief because you were becoming bored!”

 

“Greg! Not so loud, you'll-”

 

“I DON'T BLOODY CARE!”

 

They both looked at each other in shock, Sherlock tilting his head to the side and it didn't take long before two nurses came in to check on them.

 

“Mr. Lestrade? Is everything alright? Should we call security?” One of the nurses asked, eyes taking them both in carefully and suddenly all of Greg's anger drained away, eyes meeting Sherlock's and seeing the pain in those dark grey pools. His heart was pounding, face warm and body tense and Sherlock took a step back, looking towards the ground.

 

“Mr. Lestrade?”

 

“I...” Greg turned his head, focusing on the nurse standing closest to him and shaking his head. His voice was wobbly and unsure, and he needed to clear his throat before he could answer.

 

“It's okay. Just having an argument. You don't need to call security. My apologies.”

 

By the time the nurses turned and left them alone Greg was shaking and he stumbled towards a nearby bench, feeling Sherlock close to him. He looked up after a moment, patting the spot next to him, but Sherlock didn't move to sit down and Greg swallowed away a lump in his throat.

 

“I will understand if you've changed your mind, Sherlock. All I'm asking is that you're honest with me and don't keep me in this limbo. I don't deserve it.”

 

“Greg.”

 

“Please.” Greg shook his head when Sherlock sat down next to him, placing a hand on the man's knee. “Let me finish? I know the accident scared you. It scared me too and I can't even begin to understand how it made you feel. I'm not a vampire. I can get injured and break something and it takes a while to heal. I know that's been messing with your mind.”

 

“Lestrade, this has nothing to do with-”

 

“You kissed me after a therapy session, Sherlock. One that was painful and draining for me. The same session that happened after I rejected your blood to heal me.”

 

“That has nothing-”

 

“The stopped visits, the short texts. You not even wanting to kiss me after almost three weeks apart. All those comments the past few weeks about how weak humans are.” Even now it makes him feel uneasy. Sherlock had commented a few times on how slow the healing process went for humans. How a silly thing as a cold could make people miserable and unable to function. How a simple cut needed days to heal properly. Small things like that, but it made Greg very aware of their differences.

“You are not weak. ” Sherlock's voice was hard and Greg shrugged a shoulder, weariness seeping into his bones.

“In your eyes I probably am. All humans are for vampires. I can't really hold it against you ‘cause it's a fact. I have one car crash and I'm in the hospital for months and it could have been worse. You catch a bullet for me and there's not a scratch on you.” Greg tried to smile but it wasn’t very convincing judging by Sherlock's expression.

 

“My point is,” Greg took Sherlock's hand in his, giving it a squeeze before letting go. “You were hyped up, scared I was never getting better and that you couldn't do anything about my situation. These things make people say and do things that they otherwise wouldn't. You felt helpless and frustrated and I understand that. I really do. So, if you want to go back to being just friends then I-”

 

“Stop.” Sherlock took both of Greg's hands, bringing them to his mouth and placing a kiss on them. “You have this all wrong. I don't want to go back to how things were and I certainly didn't kiss you because of some stress reaction!” Sherlock rolled his eyes, taking Greg's face between his cold hands, eyes burning into his.

 

“I’ve handled this the wrong way. I should have- I do not regret kissing you Lestrade. Please believe me.”

 

Sherlock shook his head when Greg was about to speak, leaning forward and then Greg's world stopped spinning as they kissed. It wasn’t as heady as their first kiss, but all the hairs on Greg's neck stood up anyway, body melting as Sherlock explored his mouth, adding pressure and tongue. He let out a desperate sound, grabbing a bunch of Sherlock's curls and wanting to crawl into the man's lap and stay there.

 

When they pulled apart there were purple specks in Sherlock's dark grey eyes and the man gave him a shy smile, stroking Greg's cheek.

 

“I will never regret kissing you that day. I just- I just wasn't sure that you didn't regret kissing me back.”

 

“What?”

 

Greg looked at Sherlock in confusion, taking away the hand on his cheek and holding it in his own.

 

“Why would I regret kissing you ? At the risk of sounding like a sap,” Greg gave a smile, holding a tight grip on Sherlock's cold fingers. “I've wanted to kiss you for a while now. I just never initiated because, well, to be honest, you are way out of my league.”

 

“That's ridiculous.”

 

Sherlock's expression was quite comical, but Greg shook his head, feeling a bit brave after Sherlock's confession, and leaned forward to kiss him. It was a comfort and a reassurance when Sherlock just let it happen, leaning his body towards Greg, placing his other hand on Greg's knee, leaving a lingering sensation of coldness when they pulled apart.

 

“It really isn't. Have you looked at yourself, Sherlock? You are quite a catch. I know for a fact a lot of people at the Yard are fascinated by you. Like I was when I first met you.” Greg smiled, thinking back on that ordinary day that somehow changed his whole life. Sherlock squeezed his hand, his eyes now a light grey.

 

“You shouldn't want to be with me, Greg. I'm not human. I can't offer you anything. Not even a real future. The world that I live in, it's dangerous at the best of times. Even my touch is bad for you.” Sadness was laced in Sherlock's voice, his eyes going down to their joined hands and Greg let out a groan, frowning when their eyes met.

 

“Don't be melodramatic, Sherlock. Yes, your touch is colder than a human’s, but it's not like you're freezing me to death.” Greg took Sherlock's other hand in his, frown between his eyes deepening.

 

“You do feel colder than usual, though. I’m sure of it. Are you positive that everything is okay? No lying.” Greg gave Sherlock his best stern voice as the man was about to open his mouth, raising an eyebrow when he saw the twitch near Sherlock's mouth.

 

“I haven't eaten in a few days. That's why I'm colder than usual.” Sherlock looked out over the garden and Greg stood up, pulling at Sherlock to follow him.

 

“I have the perfect solution for your problem. Come on.” Greg led the way, trying to ignore the curious looks they got as they made it to his room. He sat Sherlock down on a chair, grabbing the basket on his nightstand and placing it in front of him.

 

“There you go. Sally brought a whole basket of treats. The Yard pitched in. You should try a chocolate chip-”

 

“No, it's fine Lestrade. These are for you. I can eat something when I get home and-”

 

“Knowing you, you'll get distracted by something else and forget to eat. Go on, there's more than enough.”

 

“Lestrade.”

 

“Don't, Sherlock. I've never felt you this cold before. I think it's even affecting the temperature of the room.” Greg looked around as if trying to see the cold before gesturing to the basket again, filled with more sweets and cookies and treats than he'd ever be able to finish. He nodded his head when Sherlock reaches out to grab something from it.

 

“Good. You can have the whole basket if you need it. No, don't start.” Greg raised a hand when Sherlock seemed about to protest. “I don't want you to be uncomfortable and if this can help- Or?” Greg stopped, hesitating for a second before he asked anyway.

 

“Do you need blood?”

 

“No, I don't need blood to survive. Normal food and drink are enough to get my temperature up and back to normal. I only need human blood when I'm close to dying. I can assure you I am still only half dead.”

 

“Really? You never told me that.” Greg sat down in his chair again, pleased when Sherlock took a big bite out of his cookie, a satisfied sigh escaping him.

 

“There hasn't been a need for it to come up.” Sherlock shrugged a shoulder and Greg rolled his eyes at the typical Sherlockian reaction.

 

“We need blood for our transformation and we can drink and digest it but we don't need it to survive. I don't know why, it just is. Vampire law you could say.” Sherlock gives a small smile before taking a bite of a chocolate chip cookie. The crunchy sound fills up the room and Greg sits down, taking a cookie himself and nibbling on it as Sherlock continues.

 

“Many vampires live without it, though it makes us less strong, getting our energy and warmth from human food. It doesn't taste as good as before.” Sherlock frowns, taking the chocolate bar and breaking off a piece. “Which is a shame. Everything else is amplified, our hearing, our sights, what we can do and endure. Maybe there's a God there somewhere, getting a laugh out of the fact that chocolate doesn't taste as pure as it did before.”

 

Greg's eyes went wide as Sherlock took another bite. He couldn't imagine a life where chocolate didn't taste like chocolate. Sherlock shrugged, taking another treat out of the basket and Greg swallowed, curious to learn more about this blood business.“So human blood can always heal you?”

 

“Except when you decapitate us of course, or the blood is contaminated. Human blood is powerful, Lestrade. It's why so many people worshipped or feared it throughout history. Don't underestimate what it can do.”

 

“My blood can heal you.” He says it quietly, his stomach doing a flip and he couldn't stop a smile. It was a comfort to know, that he wasn't totally useless to Sherlock but before he could say anything Sherlock frowned, disapproval in his eyes.

 

“You are not useless to me, Lestrade. Or unworthy.”

 

“You really need to stop doing that.” Greg's face was reddening, but Sherlock shook his head, putting his sweet down and reaching out his hand for Greg to take.

 

“I am the lucky one, Greg. Being able to have you in my life and to call you my friend. How can you possibly think you are useless? You are important to me. Being with you, it's more than I'll ever deserve and the idea of you wanting to be more than just friends,” Sherlock stops for a second, eyes a mix of grey and green so full of emotion it took Greg's breath away.

 

“Any minute now I'm waiting for you to wake up and realize that you are the one that's out of my league. That you'll realize that there are others out there that are better suited to be your partner. Better than I could ever be.”

 

“Sherlock.”

 

“It's selfish,” Sherlock's eyes went grey again, and he let go of Greg's hand with a melancholy expression. “Wanting to be in your life, wanting more than just your friendship.”

 

“Don't talk like that. I don't mind the cold, Sherlock. Or the fact that you are a vampire.” Greg gestured at Sherlock to eat another cookie, noticing that he wasn't as pale as moments ago. “I mean, it was a shock when you told me, but now?” Greg shrugged. “I don't see you differently, Sherlock. You are still smart and amazing, ridiculously attractive and funny. You're still you.”

 

“I'm a monster. You've heard about my history, what I can become. Some days it feels like it was just yesterday when I wandered the world and caused chaos. All that blood and pain, all the sadness-”

 

“That wasn't you.” Greg interrupted.“ You are not a monster.” Greg shakes his head as Sherlock frowned, opening his mouth to protest.

 

“You've done monstrous things, I won't argue about that.” Greg placed his hand above Sherlock, needing the contact. There was still a piece of his mind that worried Sherlock will just get up and leave and he interlaced their fingers, voice sure as he continued. “But you are not a monster. I don't believe it for one second. And yes, there’s a difference between the two and you know it.” Greg smiled when Sherlock rolled his eyes at him. It was nice to know that he could, on rare occasions, figure out Sherlock's train of thought.

 

“You are too kind, Lestrade. Too forgiving. Being with you, it makes me feel human. Thinking I deserve-” Sherlock whispered, voice fragile and Greg tightened his grip, heart breaking at the gentle smile on Sherlock's mouth that had turned into a thin line. “But what I did all those years ago is something I can't forget even if it's not a 100% clear. It haunts me, this blurry mess filled with blood and fear. Greg, you need to understand that it's not like the movies. Nothing in my world is glamorous or romantic. Eternal life is bearable for most, but torture for a select few. Time goes on but we are frozen, never quite fitting in. Having to say goodbye to the people we love and care about. I-” Sherlock sighed, leaning back in his chair, eyes dark grey. “I wouldn't wish this existence upon anyone.”

 

“Most of my kind are gentle and kind. Fiercely loyal to their chosen family. It's true devotion, Lestrade, true love. The only reason I'm still around, not suffering for eternity, is because of Mycroft. What I did to the clan is unforgivable , even to this day and if they ever found out about you-”

 

Sherlock's expression was haunting and it made Greg's heart skip a beat, and he wanted to get as close to him as possible and kiss his worries away.

 

“It's dangerous to know me and my world. I should leave to protect you. That would be the honorable thing to do.”

 

“Protect me! Sherlock that's-” but Greg was interrupted by a loud knock on his door and before he could even answer, Sherlock opened it, making the caregiver on the other side jump up in surprise.

 

“Oh, h-hello, Mr. Lestrade. How was your lunch?”

 

“It was good Allison. Just not really hungry these days.” Greg smiled, keeping an eye on Sherlock as Allison took his plate, making a disapproving face when she saw that he'd left half of it.

 

“You should try to eat more Mr. Lestrade. And by eat I mean real food and not those.” Allison pointed towards the basket standing between them on the table and Greg gave an apologetic grin.

 

“Don't tell doctor Stanford, Allison. Otherwise, he'll never let me leave this place.”

 

“Has he given you a date yet?”

 

Greg shook his head, feeling Sherlock's eyes on him. There'd been careful talk these last few days about Greg going home, but he hadn't had time to tell Sherlock with everything else that was going on.

 

“Well, I hope you can go home soon. We can all understand your frustration.” Allison patted his shoulder, taking the tray with Greg's lunch. Her eyes darted to Sherlock for a moment who was still waiting by the door. “I'll leave you to it. Don't forget, therapy session at 2:30. See you around.”

 

“Bye Allison.” Greg waved as she walked out, Sherlock raised an eyebrow in question as soon as the door closed behind her.

 

“Nothing has been confirmed yet, but if everything stays the way it is then I'll be able to go home soon. Probably next week. ” A flash of excitement and hope went through Greg as Sherlock sat down. Every day here was starting to feel like forever and he wanted desperately to go back to his life and pick up where he left off.

 

“That's good news, Lestrade.” Sherlock's voice was soft and Greg nodded, taking another sweet from the basket and ignoring Sherlock's amused smirk.

 

“You know I'm not a child right? I can look out for myself.” Greg took a nibble from his snack, letting his words linger in the air.

Chapter Text

 

 

--1--

 

“I know you are not a child. I’ve never seen you as weak, Lestrade. But you need to understand that this is more than drug dealers and crimes of passion. This is not one of yours and Molly's teen vampire drama with magical solutions for everything. When they kill you, you stay dead!”

 

Sherlock placed the bottle back on the table with force and Greg was surprised the bottle didn't break into a million pieces. Sherlock's face was pale, his eyes dark grey and his mouth in a thin line, but it only irritated Greg.

 

“You think I don't know that Sherlock? I'm a DI, for Christ's sake! I've had my fair share of death and I know dead people don't come back! Well, at least most of them don't. If it's so dangerous knowing you, then why start all this in the first place?” He gestured between them, some of his earlier anger resurfacing.

 

“Why catch my attention that day, Sherlock? Why work with me? You could have worked with anyone. I'm not the only one that would have given you a chance. You're too smart for that, too special. You can't come with this now, after kissing me by the way, and use it as an excuse to not try. I can protect myself.” Greg raised his chin, puffing his chest out instinctively. It was almost the same discussion he’d had with Mycroft all those months ago and it still hit a nerve.

 

“Maybe I can't protect myself to vampire standards, but I am not defenseless!”

 

“I need to protect you, Greg.”

 

“You want to protect me?” Greg got up, kneeling down in front of Sherlock's chair, taking the man's hands in his.” That's fine. Protect me, but I will do everything in my power to protect you too. I'm willing to try this, Sherlock. Even with your history and the potential danger. I know what I'm signing up for here.” Greg smiled, knees beginning to protest but he stayed there, needing Sherlock to look at him, really look at him, and understand that he was speaking the truth.

 

“I'll never be in danger with you, Sherlock. Anyone that even looks funny at me, you'll have on your radar.”

 

“What if I-”

 

“No.” Greg shook his head, pulling a face when his knees hurt too much, shaking his head again when Sherlock tried to help him up. “You will never hurt me, Sherlock. The second you even think I'm in pain you come to help me.”

 

“I can't always be there, Lestrade.”

 

“I'm not asking you to. I don't want a supernatural bodyguard. Okay, now I do need to get up.”

 

“Idiot.” Sherlock mumbled fondly as he helped Greg to his feet, wrapping him in a hug once they are both standing.

 

“I'm glad the food worked.” Greg let out a sigh when Sherlock pressed him closer to his chest, reveling in the fact that he was still here and Greg was still allowed to touch him.

 

“Yes, and I didn't have to suck you dry to do it.”

 

“Oi! Those vampire rules are confusing, you know!” Greg laughed, seeing the shared amusement in Sherlock's green eyes when he looked up. He reached out his hand to stroke Sherlock's cheek, his smile growing when he felt how much warmer Sherlock was now. Almost as warm as Greg.

 

“Does your skin warm up if I touch you long enough?”

 

Sherlock's eyes went a fraction darker and Greg's heart skipped a beat as he awaited Sherlock's answer.

 

“Do you want to find out?” Sherlock whispered, leaning forward to tease Greg's lips with a little peck and Greg let out a wanton sound, crushing their mouth together. Sherlock's hands suddenly seemed everywhere and Greg pressed his groin against him, mind closing down at Sherlock's responding growl.

 

“Oh god. I- I really need to get out of here soon. You'll- you'll drive me completely crazy otherwise.” Greg gasped for words, body tingling and he licked his lips when their eyes met, seeing the beautiful purple in Sherlock's eyes.

 

“It's you who drives me crazy, Lestrade. It's been a very long time since-” Sherlock stopped, kissing Greg again, taking his time with it and Greg was a melting pool of jelly by the time they broke apart.

 

“Maybe you should sit down?” Sherlock asked, smirk on his lips when Greg just nodded, letting the man guide him to the chair. His eyes went over his bed, wondering if they could fit on it together, but Sherlock shakes his head, glee and sorrow warring in his expression. “You have a therapy session soon, remember?”

 

“You can be my therapy. I was thinking about some physical exercise.” Greg winked when Sherlock blinked his eyes rapidly at him and then he couldn't keep himself from laughing. Greg placed a hand on Sherlock's knee, trying to stop the last of his giggles.

 

“You should have seen your face!” Greg took a few deep breaths to calm down, his mind filled with images of them naked on that tiny bed and it was only then that he noticed Sherlock's withdraw expression.

 

“Sherlock.”

 

“I need to protect you Greg. Every day my feelings for you grow and I can't-” Sherlock's expression broke Greg's heart and he pulled his chair as close as possible to his, taking his head between his palms.

 

“Sherlock. I already told you. I don't need a supernatural bodyguard. I can look out for myself. If you want this to work, then you need to start believing that.”

 

“It's unfair of me. Us being more than friends it's, it's a-”

 

“If you say mistake I will punch you.” Greg spoke up. Stopping Sherlock's protest with kiss, fingers carding through the man's curls. “I know how dangerous the world can be, but I also know I'm not alone in it. I have you, your family. I have my team and let's not forget my master skills in vampire slaying.”

 

“You're mocking me.” Sherlock took hold of Greg's hand, bringing it down while he shot Greg a displeased look. “This is not a game Lestrade!”

 

“Sherlock, I wasn't-” Greg started to defend himself, but Sherlock let go of him, standing up from his chair and pacing the floor.

 

“You think you know. How dangerous we can be. You think you can figure out all the way they can hurt you, but you can't. Some enjoy it. The fear, the adrenaline rushing through your body as you try to run for your life. Just when you think you're safe, that you've made it, they are there and it all begins again. Dragging out the hunt for as long as possible, living of the anticipation and the fear. It turns them on. Once they have you, they can make you feel every drink they take, slowly ending it They can beg you to end it all and not allow it. Something can happen to you in a second and just thinking about it drives me insane.”

 

“Then stop thinking about it.” Greg got up, blocking Sherlock's path and ignoring the man's irritated huff. Greg let out a sigh, placing his hands on Sherlock's biceps, shaking the man lightly to get his attention.

 

“You're right. I don't know how dangerous vampires can be. I don't know how this clan feels about you and what they can do to me. Maybe I don't know anything, but I do know that I'm still here.”

 

“Greg.” Sherlock whispered, voice filled with emotion and Greg's grip on Sherlock's arms tightened.

 

“I'm still here and I'm not going anywhere.” Greg let out a breath, hearing Sherlock talk about the clan and the way some vampires see humans as nothing more than food was disturbing but not enough to make him flee.

 

I'm not a coward.

 

“If the clan decides to make a move then we'll deal with it. All of us. I won't let you go without a fight, Sherlock. You should know that by now. “ Greg smiled, relieved when Sherlock responded with his own smile. Greg took Sherlock's head between his hands again, eyes searching the man's face and taking in the worry in his eyes and the lines around his mouth.

 

“I shouldn't ask this of you, Greg. Possibly putting your life on the line and for what?” Sherlock's mouth drew into a line, his eyes dark grey as he looked at Greg. “Just the illusion of a future. I should stop this right now and-”

 

Sherlock stopped talking, an irritated expression on his face as he pulled out of Greg’s hold. Greg was about to ask what was wrong but was interrupted by a  knock on the door and Allison put her head in.

 

“Greg, it’s 2.35.”

 

“Dammit! I- I’ll be right there.” Greg looked over at Sherlock but Sherlock gave a small smile as Allison closed the door.

 

“We can talk later, Lestrade.”

 

“Sherlock, I-” Greg swallowed, taking Sherlock’s hand in his own and squeezing it tightly. Some of his worry must have shown on his face cause Sherlock’s expression softened and he placed a kiss on Greg’s lips.

 

“I will be here when you come back. I promise. I have a few things to check out in the meantime to help with Molly's case, but I'll be here.”

 

“Right Molly's case.” Greg frowned, it felt like a lifetime ago when Sherlock barged in and talked about missing supplies and jewelry.

 

“I don't like her sneaking around to get information. Maybe I can talk to a few people this week? Hear them out and see if there's anything going on.” Greg raised an eyebrow when Sherlock’s smirk grew bigger. “What?”

 

“I knew you'd help us. Active duty or not, you are a policemen Lestrade. You can't help yourself.” Sherlock whispered, amusement in his eyes when he held up Greg’s hand and placed a kiss on the knuckles.

 

“Don't sound so smug. I'm still ticked off that you didn't visit me sooner.”

 

“I'll make it up to you. I already brought you a case, you should be grateful.”

 

“You're a prat, Sherlock.” Sherlock nodded his head, squeezing Greg’s hands before letting go of them and Greg couldn't help but laugh. It was nice to see Sherlock's playful side come out. They still have things to discuss, Sherlock's belief that he'll hurt Greg was just absurd, but for now, it would have to wait. Sherlock opened the door for Greg, gesturing to him to go outside. They walked together to the therapy room, going over a couple of things for Molly's case and soon Greg arrived at the therapy room door.

 

“Don't do anything stupid!”

 

“I never do. I'll see you later tonight Lestrade.” Sherlock leaned forward, placing a kiss on his forehead and Greg couldn’t help but smile.

 

“Ah, mister Lestrade. Maybe next time I should give you a map? Mr. Holmes.”

 

Ms Morstan gave a polite fake smile to Sherlock before looking at Greg, a mild displeasure in her eyes and Greg felt his cheeks warm up. It was worse than his school days! He gave his best charming smile, but Miss Morstan just raised an eyebrow and turned around. Greg sighed, almost sticking his tongue out at Sherlock when the man looked at him with amusement.

 

“Do your best, Lestrade. Make me proud.”

 

“Shut up.”

 

Sherlock smiled and Greg shook his head before going inside. Therapy would probably be hell, but it was a step closer to going home. He looked over his shoulder, watching Sherlock walk away and couldn’t help but smile. Today had been a rollercoaster of emotions but he was sure they’d figure things out, together.

Chapter Text

Chapter 27

After Greg’s late therapy session with Mary. Sherlock comes to visit in the evening.

“I see therapy has done you well today.”

 

“You are not funny, Sherlock. She nearly killed me today. I feel 80 years old.” Greg sighed, his body feeling stiff as he sat down at the table. Miss Morstan had been tough today, working all of his muscles and by the time they were halfway into their session Greg promised himself to never show up late again. At least the nurses had been sympathetic, getting him an extra biscuit with his tea. 

 

“You look tired, Lestrade. Did she-”

 

“It’s fine, Sherlock. She made me work my arse off today, but she would never let me go over my limits. I told you, she’s good at what she does. No need to worry.” Greg smiled, placing a hand on Sherlock’s arm, squeezing it once before leaning forward.

 

“I could use a kiss. To make it all better.”

 

Sherlock’s eyes went wider at that before he rolled his eyes, but closed the distance anyway. Greg moaned when their lips connected, his tiredness forgotten as Sherlock’s tongue moved over his. 

 

“Better?” Sherlock smirked, purple specks showing in his eyes and Greg fake pouted, pulling the man in for another kiss. He could kiss Sherlock all day, the man was an excellent kisser, how he kissed Greg like he was oxygen. 

 

“I do believe your supper is going cold. Don’t want nurse Allison displeased with you again.”

 

“Spoilsport.” Greg mumbled, stealing another kiss before pulling back and starting on his meal. 

 

“Greg. This-” 

 

“Yes?” Greg asked when Sherlock stopped speaking, suddenly very interested in Greg’s supper. When the silence lingered Greg put his fork down, and reached out to take Sherlock’s hand, his heart stopping for a beat when Sherlock took it and held it tightly. 

 

“You’re having doubts, aren’t you?” Greg’s stomach dropped when Sherlock nodded, his eyes a dark shade of green. Sherlock was about to speak up, sitting straighter in his chair but Greg spoke first, battling down his upcoming worry. 

 

“We’ve talked about this already, Sherlock. I’m not going anywhere. I know it won't be easy. I’ve never dated a genius vampire before. I imagine it will take time and probably more patience than in a normal relationship.” Greg smirked as Sherlock rolled his eyes at him.

“I have doubts too, Sherlock. Every beginning relationship has them. Ours just has an extra layer of difficulty. It shouldn't stop us from trying. We can take it slow, Sherlock, I know at least one of us has all the time in the world.”

 

“Lestrade!” Sherlock scolded, doing a half attempt to pull his hand out from under Greg’s and Greg couldn’t stop a giggle. Sherlock's following pout was adorable and Greg leaned forward to kiss it away. Relieved when Sherlock let him, melting into the kiss. 

 

“We need to lighten up a bit here, Sherlock. I'm not saying I don't see your point,” Greg placed a finger on Sherlock's mouth to stop the man from speaking. “But you are talking about what if's and if we only look at the obstacles in our way then we'll never move forward.”

 

He removed his finger, stealing another kiss from Sherlock before leaning back.  His doubts from earlier had melted away, as he started to understand where Sherlock's behavior was coming from. There was a chance someone from Sherlock's past still wanted to punish him for what he did, but Greg had never backed away from a challenge. If he was that sort of man then he wouldn't have ever met Sherlock and his old life seemed rather dull and plain in comparison. He got up from his chair, letting out a grunt as his tired muscles protested. 

 

“Lestrade.” Sherlock was suddenly in front of him, hands on his upper arms to steady him and Greg couldn’t stop a smile. “ I don't know about you, but I really want to move forward.” Greg brushed Sherlock's cheek, heart skipping a beat when the man’s eyes fell closed. He leaned forward, rubbing their noses together before whispering in Sherlock’s ear.  “However fast or slow we decide to go.”

 

Sherlock initiated the kiss this time, his hands running through Greg's hair before sliding down his back and resting above his arse. Greg pushed his body forward, teasing both of them and he wasn’t able to stop a satisfied smile when Sherlock growled at the contact. Greg grabbed hold of Sherlock's curls, adding more passion to their kiss.

 

“You have no idea how much that turns me on.” Greg whispered against Sherlock's lips, licking them and drawing a gasp from him. It went straight to Greg's cock and he grabbed hold of Sherlock's shirt, wanting to melt against him. He took a sharp breath when Sherlock's nose brushed against the delicate skin of his neck before placing a kiss where neck and shoulder meet.

 

“Oh, I know, Lestrade.” Sherlock's voice was somewhat raw, hands grabbing Greg's arse and it was Greg's turn to let out a moan. He felt like his body was on fire with desire as Sherlock smirked up at him, answering desire shining in his purple eyes. He licked his lips. “Trust me, I know very well.”

 

“God, you're amazing.” Greg purred, bringing Sherlock's head down, taking control of the kiss, feeling Sherlock's hands massage his arse. Greg couldn't be sure but he thought Sherlock's body felt warmer now. He stroked away a stray curl, eyes taking in every little detail, the hint of light pink on Sherlock's lips and there's a spark of pride and possession in his heart as they stood there in each other's arms, bodies pressed as close as possible.

 

He's beautiful.

 

He caressed Sherlock's cheek, pressing their lips together again and desire went through him when the light pink returned.

 

That's because of me.

 

His cock twitched in his pants and suddenly he was confronted with Sherlock's curious gaze, eyes taking him in closely. Greg felt his face flush, almost feeling like a teenager when Sherlock tilted his head.

 

“Why are you so surprised by my desire for you?”

 

Greg felt his face warm even more as Sherlock took him in, even standing back to look him up and down. Under that gaze, it was hard not trying to suck in his stomach. Being in hospital has made his body a tad softer then he liked it to be. He usually tried to find the time to go for a run now and then, but his job was demanding, taking up precious time and making it hard to cook his own meals. At least the food here had been healthy, much better for him than what he managed at home. Still, Sherlock watching him so closely was not good for his confidence. It also didn’t help that he felt exhausted, body feeling like that of an elderly citizen. 

 

“You have nothing to worry about Lestrade.” 

 

“It's just, compared to you-”

 

“No,” Sherlock stepped forward again, kissing Greg hard and demanding, making him forget what they were talking about. He let out a strangled noise when he felt Sherlock's cock against him, holding onto Sherlock and letting himself be guided to the bed.

 

“You are very attractive, everything about you. Greg,” Sherlock whispered in his ear when his body made contact with the bed, half sitting on the side of it, holding onto Sherlock's shoulders as the man nibbled on his earlobe. “Your compassion, the way you love life, your loyalty and belief in people. The way you look, the feeling of your body against mine and how you trust me it's-” Sherlock tilted his head up, looking into Greg's eyes with so much desire Greg let out another sound, desperate for Sherlock to kiss him, to touch him, to have him.

 

Sherlock lifted him up like he weighed nothing.

 

“Sherlock, I- Oh god,” Greg wrapped his legs around him. 

 

Sherlock gently laid him on the bed and crawling on top of him. It was hard to think, hard to breathe, wanting to feel every inch of Sherlock. His fingers trembled when they started opening buttons, smooth and pale skin being exposed and he licked the seam of Sherlock's mouth, pushing his body up against him.

 

“I desire you, Greg.”

 

“Sherlock, please-” He didn't even know what he was asking, his body acting on its own and suddenly Sherlock's shirt fell open, exposing his chest, nipples hard. Greg ran a finger over one, hearing the man curse in his ear. It made him buck up, legs wrapping tighter around him and he sucked on Sherlock's bottom lip, teasing that ridiculous cupid's bow before their tongues found each other again.

 

“God, I-” Greg gasps, pleased with the way Sherlock blinked to try and focus, his hair in a mess because of Greg's eager fingers. “I need to get out of here. I need you in my bed, Sherlock. I- oh sweetheart, the things you do to me.”

 

Greg kissed and licked Sherlock's neck and collarbone, feeling their swelling erections press against each other before their mouths crash into each other. He pulled on Sherlock's curls, tongue exploring the man's warm mouth, going crazy with the fact that Sherlock's tongue was still a fraction colder than his own. He licked inside Sherlock's mouth, going along teeth and he sucked in a breath of air when he felt something sharp. He wanted to go over it again but Sherlock took over, biting Greg's bottom lip, making him moan with pleasure and press his body up wantonly.

 

He slid his hands over Sherlock's naked chest, teasing the nipples as they kissed. Sherlock whispered something when he broke apart, needing air but he couldn't make it out, then Sherlock's mouth was hot on his neck, cool tongue licking a line before sucking a mark on a delicate spot.

 

“Sherlock!”

 

Greg tilted his head even more, cock hard and wanting, feeling that Sherlock was just as turned on and he slides his hands down the man's body, trying to get to the zip. Sherlock found his mouth and Greg felt a sharp zing on his bottom lip as Sherlock sucked it. It felt like Sherlock's hands were everywhere, nails digging into Greg's arse and Greg was still trying to open Sherlock's zip, needing to touch him, when there was a sharp pain making him half cry out. He could just see a pair of dark purple eyes, and a flash of white and then Sherlock was gone, chairs falling to the ground as Sherlock landed against the wall, eyes wide and frantic.

 

“She-Sherlock?”

 

Greg gasped for air, hormones racing as his cock throbbed against his pants, making it hard to focus. He could still feel Sherlock lying on top of him, could still taste Sherlock's tongue against his and he sat up. He blinked his eyes, heart racing inside him and he cringed when he licked his lower lip, tasting the salty, iron taste of blood.

 

“Oh Sherlock, no-” Greg started, moving off the bed, his legs wobbly as his eyes found Sherlock's.

 

“F-forgive m-me. I- I didn't- I shouldn't have-”

 

“Sherlock. It's fine.” Greg took a few steps forward, his cock still half hard, his mind trying to catch up with what had happened. Sherlock tensed up and Greg stopped moving, gooseflesh forming on his arms when he noticed the fine, dark, lines underneath Sherlock's eyes. The purple was rapidly turning into a mix of grey and black and shiver ran down Greg’s spine when Sherlock turned his head away. 

 

“I promise, I'm okay. Please look at me.” His voice was raw, his body shaking from the abruptness shift. The arousal from seconds before vanished as Greg watched Sherlock turn away from him, body to the wall, his shirt moving as he buttoned it back up. 

 

“Sherlock, please.” Greg breathed in and out, his mind finally back into focus and he took another careful step, slowly reaching out his hand to place it on Sherlock’s shoulder. 

 

“I. Lestrade, I.” There was desperation in Sherlock's voice and Greg drops his hand, feeling the tension in Sherlock’s body. He took a step back, giving Sherlock space and all he could hear was his own blood pumping in his veins. 

 

“Forgive me.”

 

The sadness and defeat in Sherlock's voice brought Greg to action, stepping forward again and taking the man’s arm, trying to get Sherlock to turn around and face him. 

 

“There's nothing to forgive. I promise you I am fine. Sherlock, come on, look at me. I need to see you, need to know you're okay.”

 

“You don't want to see me like this.” Sherlock's voice was hard and cold, but Greg pulled on his arm again, shaking his head at Sherlock's back.

 

“You don't have to hide from me.”

 

“I shouldn't have done that. I- I lost control. I hurt you.” Sherlock's shoulders sagged in defeat and this time Greg took a few more steps, standing himself between Sherlock and the wall he was using to hide. He stroked the man's hair, letting out a disapproving sound when Sherlock keeps his face towards the ground.

 

“We got carried away for a second there. It's totally normal. You- you have that effect on me sweetheart.” Greg smiled against Sherlock's curls, brushing them once more before bringing his hand down and cupping Sherlock's cheek.

 

“Look at me, Sherlock. Look at me and you'll see you didn't hurt me.” Greg held his breath when Sherlock finally lifted his head up. His eyes were still a mix of grey and black, a web of small veins underneath them, and he frowned when he took Greg in.

 

“I did hurt you.” Sherlock whispered with sorrow, thumb brushing over Greg's lip and Greg rolled his eyes as he let out a huff.

 

“It's hardly worth mentioning, Sherlock. It's fine.” Greg tried to kiss him but the man pulled away and Greg let out a soft growl. “Sherlock stop it. You’re making too much out of this. Please let me kiss you.”

 

“Greg, I-”

 

“I’m not afraid of you.” Greg pulled Sherlock closer, laying his hand on the man’s cheek as he smiled at him. He leaned forward slowly, placing a light peck on Sherlock’s lips before looking at the man again. He carefully went over the tiny veins underneath Sherlock’s eyes, rapidly vanishing as Sherlock’s body relaxed. 

 

“It frightens me, Lestrade.” Sherlock whispered, bringing his head down so their foreheads were touching each other, Sherlock blinking rapidly as his arms wrapped around Greg. “These feelings. It’s intense. It’s been so long since I-” Sherlock stopped, looking Greg in the eyes before leaning forward and kissing him. Greg shivered when the tip of Sherlock's tongue licked his lower lip, Sherlock’s hands stroking his back firmly. 

 

“Just the thought that I could lose control and hurt you-”

 

“You won’t.” Greg interrupted, taking Sherlock’s face in his hands, seeing that Sherlock disagreed. “You stopped yourself. You have control, Sherlock. You won’t lose it.” 

 

“How can you be so sure?”

 

“I just am.” Greg whispered, trying to shrug a shoulder when Sherlock gave him an unreadable look. Greg stroked Sherlock’s cheek, pleased that it felt slightly warm to the touch. He rubbed his nose against Sherlock, a smile on his lips as he kissed the man. ‘“I don’t believe for a second that you will hurt me, Sherlock.”

 

“You're willing to risk your life?”

“On you?” Greg leaned back, looking into Sherlock’s eyes and stroking away a stray curl. “Always.”

 

“You should get some rest, Lestrade. It’s been a long day.” Sherlock smiled when Greg grumbled, pressing Sherlock tighter. He didn’t want him to leave, he still felt like they needed to talk about a lot of stuff but he couldn’t suppress a yawn as Sherlock stroked his back. 

 

“Come on, Lestrade.” Sherlock whispered, gently unfolding himself and steering Greg to his bed. Greg let it happen, feeling his body act up from the strain of therapy and the emotional outburst that had happened before that. He blinked his eyes, trying to focus on Sherlock as the man helped him into bed, even taking off his shoes and draping the covers over him. 

 

“I can do that myself, you know.” 

 

“I know. I just-” Sherlock stopped, looking at Greg with such fondness and care it almost made his heart stop. He reached out a hand, clutching Sherlock’s firmly as he gestured at him to sit down on the side. 

 

“I’ve missed you.” Greg had a hard time looking at Sherlock but he did, fidgeting with his hands as Sherlock watched him, opening and then closing his mouth. Greg squeezed his hand, relieved when Sherlock smiled before leaning forward, kissing Greg deeply. He couldn’t stop a content sigh, wanting to melt into the bed as their tongues explored each other. Sherlock’s fingers went through his hair as they kissed and Greg nearly purred, wanting to be closer. He pulled Sherlock half on top of him, the man smiling as the bed protested, an amused twinkle in his eyes when they pulled apart. 

 

“I don’t think the bed could support us, Lestrade.”

 

“They’d find us a new one.” Greg grinned, placing a peck on Sherlock’s lips again, watching as the flecks of purple grew bigger in Sherlock’s eyes. He wasn’t sure if he’d ever get used to that, seeing Sherlock’s desire so clearly. Desire for him. 

 

“You should rest, Lestrade.”

 

“Maybe. But I- Sherlock.” Greg swallowed, the words dying on his lips, but Sherlock figured it out anyway. A sadness came in the vampire’s eyes as he sat upright, taking a hold of Greg’s hand before bringing it up to his mouth and kissing the knuckles. 

 

“My behavior towards you these past few weeks has been inexcusable. I shouldn’t have treated you like that, letting you think I don’t-” Sherlock shook his head, angry with himself, his voice thick as he continued. “I do want you, Lestrade. Never doubt that again.” 

 

Greg nodded, using his free hand to stroke Sherlock’s cheek. Now that he was allowed to touch him, Greg couldn’t seem to stop. Sherlock closed his eyes, leaning into it and suddenly Greg wanted to home, in his own flat. He wanted Sherlock in his bed, wanted to have the time to talk all night with each other, to kiss, to explore each other’s bodies and find out what Sherlock liked and didn’t like. It wasn’t so much the sex, though Greg did think about having sex with Sherlock. He just wanted them to have some privacy, real privacy, where they wouldn’t be interrupted by nurses or doctors or therapy sessions. He let out a sigh, shaking his head when Sherlock looked at him questioningly.

 

“It’s nothing, just... I’m really getting tired of this place.”

 

Sherlock seemed to understand, a soft smile on his lips as he caressed Greg’s hand. 

 

“You’ll soon be able to go home.”

 

“Hope so, I really want some time alone with you, where we won’t be interrupted every 5 seconds.” Greg grinned, seeing the blush on Sherlock’s cheeks as the man caught on. 

 

“Are you seducing me, Lestrade?”

 

“Is it working?” 

 

“Yes.”

 

Greg let out a laugh, pushing himself up to steal a kiss, but Sherlock put a hand on his chest, gently directing him back down on the pillow, his face stern. 

 

“You need to rest. Stop moving.”

 

“I’m not sure if I’m a fan of this manhandling, sweetheart.” Greg mumbled, pulling Sherlock close enough so he could kiss him. 

 

“Oh, you will be, Lestrade.” Sherlock whispered when they pulled apart, Greg’s body instantly on fire by the way Sherlock smiled at him. “But for now, you need to sleep. You look beyond tired and I’m not sure the nurses would be glad with me keeping you up.”

 

Greg wanted to respond with something sassy, but yawned instead, rubbing his tired eyes as Sherlock got off the bed, took his coat and put it on. 

 

“I’ll come visit you tomorrow. Maybe then Molly will have found something new. Will you-”

 

“Talk to her, yes. It’s on my list. Maybe when Mike shows up I can ask him some questions too.” 

 

“Sounds like a good plan, Lestrade. Now sleep. I’ll see you tomorrow.”

 

“Night Sherlock.”

 

“Goodnight, Greg.”