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Tricks For Treats

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“So we need a trick for a treat, agreed?” Molly looked over the piss-poor canteen coffee to Andrea. This plotting was necessary to get them the thing they wanted most: a date each with their preferred Holmes brother. And Mycroft’s party would be just the place to have the date: public event, good liquor and lots of places to sneak away to should the occasion arise.

Andrea nodded and then gave Molly a smile indicating she, too, was all ready to trick Sherlock while Molly tricked Mycroft. A done deal, sealed over coffee and a scone.

---

“Sherlock, you know Mycroft hates it when you go to his parties. Everyone pays attention to you and not him, and while usually, he can milk it for some favour in the government, this year...” She trailed off. “You’re rather persona non grata after Magnussen.”

“Yes, I realize that,” Sherlock said sourly, carefully measuring the purple and foul-smelling caustic substance he had in his hand into the flask he needed it to be in.

“I heard he was thinking of asking Miss Hooper to go,” she said nonchalantly. “After all, she has done him some enormous favours in regards to you and your actions, and her department is in dire need of an increase in funding. A few small requests to talk, a few dances, it could be quite a beneficial event for her.”

“She’ll be bored to tears,” he replied, but his hand was beginning to shake.

“Well, I suppose you could come as my plus one, just to help relieve her boredom,” she said.

Sherlock was silent for a long while. “I’m not going in costume.”

Andrea smiled to herself as she looked down at her phone. Step one was taken care of. Step two was to change his mind about the costume, but she could work on that later.

---

“I appreciate the invitation,” Molly said with a smile. She had made sure she had all his favourite indulgences during their tea, the ones he allowed himself just a nibble of. And she made sure she had her finest brew made. Now all she had to do was make sure Mycroft went to the party alone in the specific costume Andrea would be pairing hers with. “I think I’ll be going as Dorothy Gale. What will you be going as?”

“I’ll let my assistant sort out my costume, as per usual,” Mycroft said, eyeing the currant cheesecake. Molly went to cut him a slightly larger slice than usual, as this played right into Andrea’s plan and he deserved to be rewarded ahead of time. “If I attend, that is. There is always something bound to come up.”

“If you do go, I’ll bring one of these just for you and I to split in your kitchen,” she said. “When the guests get stiflingly boring.”

Mycroft eyed the cheesecake. “Throw in chocolate dipped biscuits and we have a deal.”

---

“Molly canceled on your brother,” Andrea said when Sherlock arrived before all the rest of the guests. Apparently, some things even the best of plans could not compensate for. “She sent her apologies but something came up at Barts so she’ll have to miss out on the festivities tonight.”

Sherlock looked down at the tuxedo and tails he wore, frowning. “Then what was the point of me coming at all? These things are a bore.”

“I have a sampling of the desserts and the dinner for her if you want to take it to her? I heard it has to do with a case. You might rank it a four, solve it before she spends too much time and share a meal with her? I can have a second serving made.”

Sherlock nodded, taking the bag of food from Andrea. There might be some hope for her friend after all...and maybe some for her as well.

---

Molly looked forlornly at the outfit on her coat rack. She’d enjoyed the idea of going as a glorified flapper from the twenties, and even had her hair done nicely, but here she was in a jumper and slacks, going through old case files in her office. There was a knock at the door and she looked up to see Sherlock there, slightly slack-jawed in a suit and tails with two bags that smelled delicious in his hands. “You have a case?”

“I do,” she said. “You have food?”

“I do,” he replied. “Perhaps I can help. So you don’t have to miss my brother’s party? Judging by the style of your hair you were the intended match to my costume.”

“I’m sorry for the trick, Sherlock,” she said. “We just thought you and Mycroft would never pay attention to us unless we arranged things, but then...” She waved her hand at the files. “The best laid plans of mice and men and all that.”

“We’ll solve the case quickly and you’ll get your dance with me tonight,” he said, smiling at her. “But let’s enjoy the food while we work?”

“Lets.”

---

She had enjoyed the looks on Mycroft’s face when he looked in her direction, his vintage formal wear outfit the perfect compliment to her outfit as Anastasia from the cartoon. He may not have realized she was supposed to be Anastasia Romanov, but he did realize they were supposed to match, and therefore he had kept her close, and not just to work. It had been nice, but soon enough she could see he needed a break and so she gave them an excuse to leave, taking his arm and guiding him to the cavern he called a kitchen. The courses had been served and there was little catering staff in the area, and she went to the refrigerator and pulled out a currant cheesecake. “She did send her apologies.”

“A trustworthy woman, even with the trick,” he said with a soft smile.

“No trick, there really is a case. Barts doesn’t want to let Scotland Yard have the files so Molly is currently going through them. If your brother has his way, though, she’ll arrive in a bit. He might even solve the case to impress her.” Andrea went for a knife to cut the cheesecake. “Did I impress you?”

“Greatly,” he said. “Princess Anastasia, from the film?”

Andrea laughed softly. “Yes. That makes you Dmitri.”

“I’ve been in far worse positions, and far less interesting costumes.” He reached over and put a hand on hers to still her movement for a moment. “Thank you for this moment’s peace.”

“You’re welcome, Mycroft. We’ll enjoy it while we can.”

---

As the end of the evening neared, Andrea and Molly both got their dances and their men and a bit of time to make use of the discrete places in Mycroft’s fortress. The next morning, there was fresh coffee, leftover currant cheesecake, and two women who were wearing their costumes from the night before in Mycroft’s kitchen, trying not to wake the still sleeping men.

A definite treat, after all, it should be told.