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One last case(The life of Mycroft Holmes)

Chapter Text

The hole was deep, dark and dreadful, equally so the metal object hidden inside. He very well knew that it could and would end his life.
*~*~*~*~*~*
Mycroft maneuvered himself into a comfortable position and placed the barrel of the gun in his mouth. It was cold and smooth and tasted of iron. By now his heart was throbbing in his chest and the ground seemed to do the same. He didn't understand why. A logical man like himself knew that it was only time before one died. Death is inevitable and he was ready to face it, but still his vision blurred and fat tears rolled down his cheeks.
*~*~*~*~*~*
Mycroft had found his brother half dead in an alleyway from an overdose of cocaine. Sherlocks groans made Mycroft shudder.
“Would it kill you to kill me, brother mine?”
Mycroft had called Lestrade in to take care of his younger sibling and swore that he would keep his brother safe no matter the cost.
Sherlock had jumped a week later and his loss broke his heart. Whatever was left of it. Mycroft was ready for his own death, but not of the ones he loved.
Love. What an interesting concept. He swore never to feel it. After all he was a government man and he couldn't compromise his job because he let his feelings cloud his vision. But this was too far.
Sherlock. Had. Died.
Sherlock. Was. Dead.
*~*~*~*~*~*
“Sherlock” the tears came now in full force seizing up his throat so that he almost choked on his brothers name. Placing his finger on the trigger he got ready to die.
*~*~*~*~*~*
For a week now a Mycroft struggled to keep his feelings in check. To stay strong for his mother and father, but mostly for himself. As soon as he was safe in his house he would fall against the door sobbing uncontrollably. As much as Mycroft tried to keep his emotions suppressed, he fell, deep into the pit of grief he had been digging for himself for a while now. It was only a matter of time before he slipped. When he reached the bottom he had no more energy to even try to climb back up. He resorted to suicide. If his brother had died he would go down with him.
*~*~*~*~*~*
He collapsed on the ground shaking. His head was aching painfully and his heart felt worse. For a moment he looked at the gun wondering how it got into his hands. It was a ‘Beretta 92FS’ the same kind that Sherlock used to shoot at his blasted wall. Trying to control his breathing, Mycroft lay on his wooden floor and repositioned the gun. Again his heart rate picked up, but he tightened his grip and pushed the gun further into his mouth.
“Mycroft?”
He hesitated, his finger hovering over the trigger.
“Oh shit Mycroft, don't you dare.”
The voice sounded familiar.
“DON’T YOU PULL THAT BLOODY TRIGGER MYCROFT!!!”
Mycroft choked on air.
“Sherlock.” and he burst into tears. Sherlock grabbed the gun out of his hands and threw it across the room and embraced his brother before he could even get up of the floor. They lay there, arms wrapped tightly around each other.
“Why?” Sherlock whispered.
“It killed me to kill you.”

Chapter Text

Mycroft sat at his desk head in hands with a stack of paperwork sitting beside him. He was quickly falling behind on his work and people were starting to worry. Alicia came knocking at his door, before opening it and peeking in.
“Mycroft?” she received an annoyed groan in response “ It's getting late, you should get home.” silence. Slowly he lifted up his head and assessed the intruder. Alicia was a beautiful woman, she stood tall and every move she made was confident yet delicate. The stress was starting to show on her face and there were slight bags under her eyes, though they were mostly covered with makeup. Her hair was an ashy blonde and sat in a bun with bangs hanging down, it too was showing age and was slowly greying. He suspected she used some sort of dye, Schwarzkopf maybe? He didn't have the energy to deduce anything today. She had taken a fancy to Mycroft and had flirted freely with him in the past, but recently she looked more concerned than anything.
“Go home Myke.” Mycroft raised a brow. No one called him Myke, his mother would, now and again, but he would make sure to remind her that his name was Mycroft and that she should use it. He didn't bother correcting her, there was no use, he didn't feel up to it and plus he kind of liked her calling him Myke. He lazily pushed up out of his chair and reached for a pile of papers to stuff into his briefcase. Hopefully he would be able to complete most of it and still get two or three hours of sleep in, but Alicia’s hand grabbed his and stopped him.
“Go home Myke, get some sleep, stay home tomorrow, you need to rest your mind.”
“I’m fine.” trying to get loose of her grip. She was surprisingly strong.
“Oh come on Mycroft, look at you.” she waved her hand at him. “You haven't touched any of your work for at least a week and you look like your dying!”
“I’m fine!” he pressed, maybe a little too loud. She flinched “I’m fine.” he whispered a third time. He repeated it to himself everyday again and again. It became etched in his mind. He wasn't fine and he knew it. Alicia knew it too. He could see the concern on her face. She was worried for him. Slowly she released her grip on his hand and sighed.
“If you need anything, ever, someone to talk to, I’ll be right here. Okay?” he nodded silently. “I've got you.” then she hugged him. He tensed. It was the second hug this week. He could feel her heart beating against his chest and he slowly relaxed and lay his head upon her shoulder. Tears rolled down his face and onto her suit.
“Oh Myke.” taking Mycroft by his shoulders she looked deep into his eyes “I've got you.”
*~*~*~*~*~*
Mycroft lay in bed staring at the ceiling. His carefully constructed life was falling apart. The Beretta still lay in his bedside drawer, fully loaded. It only took one bullet and he could end his life. His brother was alive, there was no need to feel the way he did. Actually he had no idea what he was feeling. He thought about his reluctant conversation with Alicia. She had told him that she would always be there for him, he knew that, but then she had hugged him. He had no idea what to say to that, but he fell into to her and cried. It felt nice. Having someone to lean on, having someone who understands. She loved him, that was clear enough, but he wasn't completely sure about what he felt for her. They were only colleagues. Maybe friends, but nothing more than that. He sighed, it echoed through the empty house and reminded him of his loneliness. He wouldn't admit it, no, but people knew, Mycroft Holmes was a lonely man and there was nothing anybody could do about it. But maybe…
No Mycroft.
Alicia?
She’s your friend.
She loved him.
You don't love her.
Maybe he did have some feelings for her.
Stop.
Maybe.

Chapter Text

Mycroft had hardly got any sleep the next morning when he came into the office, he had spent his whole night thinking of Alicia. Love, he decided, was a rather complex matter. He would have to be careful. He still wasn't sure…
“Myke?” Alicia stepped in front of him. A few heads turned at the sound of his nickname, but Mycroft didn't complain.
“Mmm?” he tried to sidestep her, but she wouldn't allow him to pass.
“Why did come to work?” he pushed passed her and headed to his office.
“I work here.” he said as if it was so obvious.
“Yes, but I told you to take the day off.” Again the concern was showing in her voice. He had forgotten. “Go home Myke.” he remembered their conversation from last night “Please Myke.”
“No.” his voice was blunt and lifeless. He entered his office fully aware that he had weeks of paper work to do in a matter of hours, but when he looked towards his desk he found his paperwork was filed and sat in neat piles completed, “You didn't have to.”
“Yes, I did.” she smiled. It was a soft, sweet smile that made him tingle.
“Um, I was wondering…” he had no idea how to put it or whether he should even ask “I was wondering whether you would like to go out to dinner?” she grinned. Good sign. It was one of her flirtatious ones. That's a ‘yes’.
“I would love too.” Mycroft mentally complimented himself.
“The Landmark at 8:00?” John proposed to Mary there. He hoped she didn't know about it. He wasn't planning anything romantic. He wanted this to be a somewhat casual, ‘get to know each other more’ type of date.
“Sure!”
“Great, I’ll pick you up from your place at 7:30?”
“Done.” She smiled again.
“Why? Why did you do my work?”
“I've got you Myke.” he nodded and she padded off to her office.
“She’s got me.” he mouthed and smiled.
*~*~*~*~*~*
Building passed in a blur, streaks of water clung to the windows and the glass became foggy so that he could only see the colourful lights that were magnified by the water droplets. He checked his watch, 7:20. Good he'd be early as Shakespeare said ‘It is better to be one hour early than five minutes late.’ He completely agreed, this was his first date, ever, and he wasn't about to get late for it.
“Stop here” he motioned to the chauffeur. He nodded in response and came to a halt in front of a house that looked much like his own. Grabbing his umbrella he practically ran over to the front door. Taking a deep breath in he knocked. A few seconds later a woman wearing a long red dress, black high heels and ruby earrings opened the door. She looked amazing.
“Always so punctual.” she smiled. He smiled back. He hoped he didn't mess this up.

Chapter Text

“So how are you?” he didn't know what to say to that. He was horrible, his life was a calamity, he was falling apart. She understood this, she understood him. She wasn't asking to make conversation, this was a genuine question and she wanted a genuine answer.
“I don't really know anymore” Mycroft glanced up from his food trying to read her facial expressions.
“I know.” she reached over and placed a hand on Mycroft’s arm “I know, but you need to find out, because from what I see Mycroft, you're falling apart.” there was sympathy in her voice, “You need to pick yourself up Myke.” the waiter came and placed their food in front of them, but she hardly glanced at the man, her hand stayed on his arm and her eyes looked straight into his. Slowly she pulled away and their conversation became more relaxed.
*~*~*~*~*~*
The rain was pouring down torrentially now. They ran through the rain, his umbrella completely missing its target and causing them both to arrive at the car saturated. He silently cursed at himself for getting his date wet, but she just laughed. He wrapped his jacket around her shivering body and she leaned into him falling asleep on his shoulder. He did love her. It had taken him a while to realise, but he did. Damn emotions. But secretly Mycroft wished that hopefully this meant that he wasn't lonely anymore.
*~*~*~*~*~*
She was still asleep when they pulled up to her house and Mycroft wasn't completely sure what to do. She looked like an angel asleep like that and he didn't want to wake her, so he carried her through the door and laid her in her bed. She looked so peaceful. Sighing Mycroft exited her house. Trodding through the rain once more to get to his car. Blasted umbrella. He heard a splashing behind him and turned. Alicia ran straight into his arms and gave him a loving hug. Mycroft surprised himself and hugged back.
“You're getting soaked!” he said not leaving her.
“I know.” she pulled away and he felt her lips on his. His heart doubled in size, he never thought he would ever feel this way and he never wanted it to end.

Chapter Text

3 Years Later

He now had two nephews, both clinging to his legs. Roland on the left and Quinton on the right. When he had entered his brothers house they had both bombarded him. He gave his brother a scowl, but received a satisfied smirk in reply. Alicia giggled from behind him and shared a knowing smile with Molly. The house wasn't large, especially with two young boys running around, but it was comfortable. It had a warm air to it and was perfect for the couple that inhabited it.
“So, brother mine, how do you like your nephews?” To that Mycroft only grunted in reply “The house?” Sherlock said gesturing to his home.
“Delightful.” Sarcasm dripping from his voice. Though the house was warm and inviting and Mycroft couldn't help, but secretly like it.
“Oh, Mykie!”
Oh darn me.
“Merry Christmas dear.”
Merry Shitmas dear.
“Merry Christmas mother.”
“Merry Christmas Mrs. Holmes, Mr Holmes.”
“Oh, he’s dragged you along too!”
Oh, just shut up.
“I’m afraid so mam.”
“Well what are you doing, come sit down!” He felt Alicia’s arm hook his and she dragged him over to the couch. Oh great, let the fun begin!
*~*~*~*~*~*
Sometimes she really wanted to slap him. He sat there with his eyes downcast, on his phone, typing away at something or another. She understood that Mycroft was a busy man, but so was she and this was Christmas Day. He could at least attempt to act like it. He would attempt to act like it. She would make him.
“Myke!” she hissed in warning.
“Hmmm?”
“Mycroft Holmes, if you do not get off your phone this instant, I will have to take it from you.” Oh god she sounded like a mother. She held out her hand and waited eyeing him closely, staring him down. He quickly saved whatever he was typing and let out a long exasperated sigh, placing the phone in her hand. In the background Mrs. and Mr. Holmes giggled and Sherlock’s trademark smirk appeared again upon his face.
*~*~*~*~*~*
Mycroft had been planning this for a long time. Alicia Smallwood was a tough woman to please. He loved her, he never thought he would love or even like, anyone, like he loved her and he couldn't lose her. He wanted to be with her for the rest of his life. His hand brushed over the ring in question in his pocket.It was an immaculate rose gold ring embedded with Carbonados diamonds. He had had ‘My Goldfish’ etched into the band as an added bonus. It was a rather intricate ring and it had cost him a good twenty thousand, but he had reasoned that it was for her and she was priceless.
“Please excuse me.” He smiled at Alicia and quickly made his way up the stairs and to the room that had been prepared for Alicia and himself. With two long strides he reached his suitcase, unzipped it and pulled out the small velvet box that lay, neatly tucked away inside. Carefully placing the ring inside, he slid the box in his pocket and made his way back down the stairs. Alicia was making conversation with his mother when he reached her, so instead of pulling her away and most likely getting a lecture from both women, he stood next to her and took her hand in his. His mother took the hint and ended the conversation declaring that she had to check on the roast. He walked her to the back garden and closed the door behind them. He gave his lover a warm smile, trying to calm his nerves and slowly got onto one knee.
*~*~*~*~*~*
There he knelt, right in front of her. The ring was beautiful and by the looks of it quite expensive.
“Alicia, you have always seen only the best in me. You've always been there for me and it took me so long, too long to realise that, you, you're the only one I could ever love. So I ask you, my love, will you marry me?” Those words would be forever embedded in her mind. She loved him, he was the only one who could ever make her happy again.
“Yes.”
*~*~*~*~*~*
The wedding was spectacular. Alicia's dress was like a beam of pure moonlight to Mycroft, he stood at the altar and couldn't help, but let his mouth hang a bit. Sherlock giggled beside him and he immediately snapped it shut.
*~*~*~*~*~*
When she entered the room she heard gasps and sounds of awe escaping their guests mouths, but Mycroft stood gaping like a fish out of water and she had to force the giggle that threatened to escape down.
*~*~*~*~*~*
Stupid, stupid work.
It was his wedding day, bloody hell, yet he sat in their suite typing away at his Mac whilst the wedding party was booming away in the background. God bless Alicia for tolerating it. She understood, he knew that, it was as much her work as it was his, at the end of the day.
“Well brother mine, regretting your marriage already?” Sarcasm, poisonous upon his tongue. Mycroft had to suppress a rather nasty retort that popped up in his mind.
“No, unlike you brother mine.” He smirked. Sherlock grunted.
“You and I both know very well that I am not regretting a single moment of my marriage. Molly is an amazing woman and I will not be regretting anytime soon, nor, dare I say, ever.”
“Agreed.” Sherlock walked stiffly towards the desk. He was uncomfortable in his suit, he was normally drowning in that trench coat of his, with his scarf chokingly tied around his neck.
“Prada, how considerate.” Sherlock narrowed his eyes, obviously thinking of a good comeback, or else trying to say it with a glare.
“Yes, how very observant of you brother.”
“Well… what can I say, I have always been the smarter one.” Sherlock was losing.
“Stop. Don't go there.” Score.
“Go where?”
“Mycroft Holmes, I hope you aren't teasing your brother.” The smirk reappeared on his brother’s face and he walked out, nodding to Alicia before exiting.
“No darling.” She looked beautiful as she glided across the floor to his desk.
“Good, how's the British Government keeping up without us?”
“Shit.” He couldn't help, but smile as she took his face in her hands and kissed him.
“You’re a very brave man to be leaving your wife for an hour on her wedding day.”
“Our.” He corrected her, receiving a smug smile from his wife. She came round the desk and kissed him again. The band downstairs started playing a slow waltz and a smile played on her mouth. She held out her hand and he took it and they started waltzing around the room.
“Maybe we should go down and join the party.” She said after a while.
“No, I much prefer it just like this.” She leaned her head on his shoulder.
“You and I.”
“You and I.”

Chapter Text

2 Years Later

Mycroft was texting at the table again. She held back a nasty retort that threatened to escape from her mouth, today she was the bearer of good news.
“Myke.” Her tone was stern, but she made sure not to push it. He replaced his phone in his pocket without so much as a glance at her and went back to his untouched meal.
“How was your day today darling.” He mumbled.
“Amazing!” She knew he could figure it out. He was Mycroft Holmes for Christ sake. Still he sat there and pecked slowly away at his food. They sat in silence for a while, Mycroft too afraid to say anything to his wife and his wife waiting for him to say something.
“Well, I’m heading off to bed.” She finally said “Goodnight darling.” Lifting herself from the chair she headed from the room.
“Wait.” Mycroft stood up so quickly his chair nearly fell to the ground. His eyes scanned her from top to bottom confirming his suspicion.
“Yes darling?” He stood there gaping at her.
“I love you so much.” There, that wasn't that hard. He’d finally figured it out.
*~*~*~*~*~*
She was beautiful. His little girl. They had named her Diana and she was the best thing that had ever happened to either of them. She already had small wisps of hair upon her head that were a light shade of brown and her tiny baby hands were clutching up at him. He felt warm tears run down his face, he looked at his wife with a beaming smile and she smiled back. Then his blessed parents burst through the door.
“Oh Myke, she’s beautiful.” His mother quickly hobbled over to his wife's side and started bombarding her with questions. When exactly was the baby born? How much did the baby cry?
“Leave her alone mother, let her rest.”
“Ah right of course,” She turned to the small child laying in his arms “may I?” She whispered. He gave her a small smile and nodded, passing the baby over to her. “She’s beautiful.”
“Yes she is.”
*~*~*~*~*~*
Diana had grown, she was already 5 and was starting primary. She had quickly picked up on her father’s skills of deduction and was becoming quite a nuisance in school, telling children that they hadn't brushed their teeth that day or if they had been packed a good lunch. Despite numerous complaints from the school and having to lecture her about keeping her deductions to herself, Mycroft was quite proud. With any luck his little girl would be smarter than his brothers two. With them both working full time for the British government, Anthea would take care of Diana and if she was needed with Mycroft, Mrs. Hudson could be relied upon to keep her safe. With many woman in her life Diana wasn't as comfortable around Mycroft as he would've liked her to be, but considering the fact that he hardly had any time to spare for her it was understandable. Most days Mycroft would only reach home by five or six and would still have to work from home to make up for the few hours he missed. Before Diana he would work as much as possible, leaving the house at six and staying in the office for as long as possible, sometimes coming home at nine. But now it was different he would still leave at six, but tried to come back earlier for Diana’s sake.

Chapter Text

The stresses of working full time for the British Government, being a husband, an uncle and a father was taking its toll. One day he collapsed, he broke down into a fit of tears and was sobbing loud enough for the whole household to hear. Diana walked in. She was the cutest thing, hair muddled up, small legs carrying her wherever, miniscule hands swaying by her sides. Only five, but if she looked any older you would think she was in charge. She stood, back straight, head high, looking down (or up in her case) upon everyone. She had once had a staring competition with a dog, but when she walked in all of this dropped. He was surprised that a five year old was capable of such deep concern, but she ran straight to him, wrapping her tiny limbs around his arm.
“Don’t cry daddy. Why are you crying?” The elder Holmes just smiled weakly at his daughter.
“Sometimes darling, people have to cry.” Voice breaking, how do you explain to a five year old how hard life actually is?
“Why?” The inquisition showing in her tiny voice.
“Because if you don't you might explode!” Her eyes became wide and she let out a small gasp.
“Boom!” She giggled, Mycroft couldn't help but laugh along too.
“Yes, boom!”
“Don't go boom daddy.”
“No darling, I promise I won't go boom.” He gave her a smile and a much needed hug. He held her for a long time, before telling her to find something better to do then sulk with her father and waved her off. She quickly ran out of the room, but not before turning towards an invisible entity at the door of his office.
“Boom!” She said and galloped away.
“Boom? What an interesting way to explain a breakdown.” Alicia entered his office and sat next to him on the plush couch.
“Hmm.” He sighed and lay his head upon her shoulder.
“Don't go boom Myke.”
“I won't, you've got me.” He reminded her. She smiled at the memory.
“I've got you.” She whispered back.
*~*~*~*~*~*
It was a jet black SUV. It drove into the car park and stayed there. No one entered no one left.
10
It started it’s engine.
9
It accelerated.
8
It crashed through the school gates.
7
Children scattered, one poor soul going under the wheel.
6
It kept on swerving around buildings.
5
4
The car stopped right in the centre of the school.
3
The school was silent.
2
1
Plumes of flames billowed from the car, sharp shards of metal were flung in all directions. The explosion enveloped the small school in panic and destruction.
*~*~*~*~*~*
Mycroft’s phone buzzed, beside him his wife's did the same. They shared a glance and excused themselves from the meeting.

Dear, Mr/Mrs. Holmes,
We are afraid to inform you that there has been a terrorist attack on your daughter's school. She was caught in the zone of the explosion and is at St. Bartholomew's Hospital currently and is in a comatose condition.
We are deeply sorry,
Baskerville Primary

Alicia choked besides him. He stood staring at the phone, he had already read it ten times over and had worked out all the possible ways this could be faked, but he still couldn't believe what he was seeing. Bzzzt.

Hey, a bomb has gone off in Baskerville Primary. -GL

Bzzzt.

Isn't that your daughters school? -GL

That was it. This was real. Mycroft pulled Alicia out of the office and they clambered into the car. Suddenly finding her voice Alicia literally screamed at the driver to take them to St. Bartholomew's. Mycroft and Alicia jumped out before the car could even stop and pushed their way into the hospital. Mycroft, mentally and physically exasperated followed the receptionist down the pristine white halls to the room where his daughter lay as pale as the room she was sitting in. They rushed over to her side. Mycroft's logical mind already laying out all the different outcomes and possibilities. Alicia not wasting any time, bombarding a poor nurse with questions, which deemed fruitless as she had not a clue of what was happening and was only here to get some equipment. Mycroft didn't know what to do. He never knew what to do. His five year old daughter had been happy and healthy just this morning and then boom, that was all it took. He wept into her tiny chest and Alicia into his shoulder. Molly Hooper burst through the door. She wasn't technically a doctor, but she still worked there. She cursed silently under her breath and tapped a quick message into her phone. Taking Mycroft and Alicia by the shoulder, she dragged them away from their only daughter and sat them down. Alicia's hand was tightly grasped in his. An expression of concern was etched on her face. No one said a word.
Beep.
Beep.
Beep.

Chapter Text

Beep.
Beep.
Beep.
The ground seemed to throb in sync with the heart monitor. She couldn't tell the ceiling from the floor. Everything had flipped upside down, her life was tearing at the seams. Her daughter was lying half dead on a bed and she didn't know who or how they did it. Mycroft had left on a last minute call into the office, something about a could-be war about to break out between two countries that he had to fix. He had said that he would also try to find out what happened and text her if anything came up. She still hadn’t received anything. Molly would pop in and out of the room now and again to check in on herself and Diana. Molly had always been such a kind considerate woman, the type to put everyone and anyone first no matter the cost. She was a real family girl and had softened up Sherlock nicely, when they had announced their marriage Mycroft had spilt and nearly choked on his tea. Mycroft’s face had been a mixture between confusion, surprise and pain and though she was the one cleaning up the mess she couldn't help but smile. He had ruined his favourite suit that day and no one in the family was likely to forget it. She smiled at the thought of her husband, but immediately wiped it off her face when she remembered that he was not there. She walked up to her daughters side and sat down on a small stool that had been placed there. Diana looked so fragile and peaceful sleeping there, she was so small and hardly took up any space on the bed. Alicia rubbed her tiny hand and kissed it. Her skin was pale and there were cuts and bruises that had blemished her smooth skin. Alicia sighed and lay her head on her child's chest. She could feel the steady pulse of her heart and the soft rhythmic rise and fall of her chest.
*~*~*~*~*~*
Mycroft entered the hospital and found Alicia sleeping with her head on Diana’s chest. He sighed and walked over to his wife and child. They both looked so beautiful just sleeping there together like that.He leaned down and kissed Diana’s forehead and took Alicia in his arms and carried her out of the hospital, ignoring the questioning looks he received from the staff. Placing her carefully in the car they drove home. Rain beat down upon the roof of the car and Mycroft lay his head upon his wife's.
“Everything will be okay.” He whispered, nuzzling her hair.
*~*~*~*~*~*
He carried her back into the house and lay her across the bed. He sat with his head in his hands on the edge of the bed in the darkness of the room. This couldn't be happening. The image of his daughter laying in the the rubble of the explosion scared him. He let out a jagged breath. She must have been so scared, being in the middle of an explosion, flames smouldering all around her, knowing, as young as she was that her life could end in those few moments. Mycroft curled up next to his wife, not bothering to change out of his suit, not caring whether he ruined it, he just needed to close his eyes, just for a moment.

Chapter Text

Diana watched as the car sped into her school. Children and adults scrambled out of its way, but there, right in the way of the beast sat the damsel in distress. James sat frozen out of fear staring at the SUV.
“James!” No reply “James, move!” She only tensed further, oblivious to her shouting, “Shit.” That was mummy’s favourite word, “Shit, shit, shit, shit, shit.” Then Diana Holmes, most likely the smartest child of her age, did the most stupid thing she'd ever do. She ran straight towards him. She ran her legs burning towards her death.
“James!” He managed to tear his eyes away from the ever present car still speeding towards them and resorted to staring straight at her, “James you have to move!” He looked equally confused as she was. Why the hell he wasn't moving, she had no clue.
What happened next, put her in a hospital bed.
James finally clicked and with new found energy he bolted out of the path of the car, legs carrying him far away. Diana though couldn't stop. The problem James had faces just ten seconds before she had run into and she was now standing right in front of the speeding car.
4
The car skidded to a stop in front of her. She buckled, holding her hands out in front of her in a protective stance.
3
She thought of her parents. Her father, she understood, was a broken man. She had comforted him when he had broken down, she had told him not to go boom and had ensured him that she wouldn't if he didn't. He would shatter if anything happened to her.
2
Now, here she stood, right in front of an SUV, ready to go boom.
1
Everything slowed down. She saw the metal of the car bulge and distort, like a car shaped balloon about to pop.
WHOOMPH
Windows shattered, flames burst from the car, metal shards flew like bullets. A sharp pain pierced her leg sending a wave of panic shooting through her.
BOOM
When Diana opened her eyes her Holmsian brain decided that first priority was not to get immediately away from whatever was burning her thigh, but instead assess her situation. She had something lodged into her left thigh and deemed that leg useless as she could feel nor see half of it as it was covered in rubble. Her right hand was twisted underneath her in an excruciating position and when she tried to move it she couldn't feel any bone attaching itself to the arm. It felt like a broken hinge, so she left it there, not wanting to cause further damage. One side of her face felt like hell, whilst the other was half way there and it became a struggle to move her facial features even an ounce. What was left of the car sat besides her, still enveloped in flames, slowly scalding her right leg. She tried to get away, but the movement sent agonising pain searing through her arm and her vision faded. Everything went black.
Mycroft woke up. It all seemed too real. He heard sobbing next. A sharp gut wrenching sound. He snapped his head around to see Alicia, tears streaming down her face crying. Wrapping his arms around her he pulled her in close and before he knew it he was crying too.
*~*~*~*~*~*
His office was bleak, boring, depressing even. That's how he liked it. That's how he felt. Mycroft Holmes was bleak, boring and sometimes even depressing. 6 years ago he would have been living a perfectly monotonous Mycroft-Holmes-lifestyle, everything would be going to plan and there would be no one to worry about. Now, 6 years later his only daughter was lying in a hospital and he was sitting in his office looking at the files. She looked beautiful, though there was no smile upon her face you could see it in her eyes, the suppressed giggle that was just waiting to come out. From the slew of information he had been given he had deciphered that his daughter had third and second degree burns all down her right leg, she had dislocated her right shoulder and broke her left ankle. Her ribs were badly bruised and she had broken a few, as well as a piece of shrapnel from the car having lodged itself into her left thigh, then of course the scrapes and bruises that come from being in an explosion and major blood loss. Mycroft sighed, he remembered when he was stuck in Sherlock’s little flat and Eurus had flown a hand grenade in. Of course at the moment in time all he was thinking about was whether his brother would survive and what he would say to his mother if he didn't, based on whether he himself was alive and well or not. He wondered what exactly his daughter was thinking before the explosion. The poor girl would have been so scared knowing that her death was around the corner. As Mycroft continued reading he noticed a report from a boy who was witness to the explosion.

[START]
Interrogator: Hello James. I’m going to ask you a few questions is that okay?
[WITNESS]James Richard Colin: Yes.
Interrogator: Right, so can you tell me what happened James? Just as well as you can manage.
[WITNESS]James Richard Colin: There was a big scary car and it was driving towards me and I was so scared, I thought I was going to die. I think Diana-
Interrogator: Who’s Diana, James?
Mycroft took a deep breath in and continued reading.
[WITNESS]James Richard Colin: She’s a girl from my class, she's really smart. Her uncle is Sherlock Holmes, that really famous detective. Anyway I think she was trying to tell me to get out of the way, but I was really scared and I didn't hear her.
Interrogator: Go on.
[WITNESS]James Richard Colin: So she started running towards me and then I saw her and I ran away.
Interrogator: Yes?
[WITNESS]James Richard Colin: And then she was stuck in front of the car and after that I went and hid so I didn't see the boom. Can I go back to my mummy now?
Interrogator: Yes James, thank you very much for your help.
[END]

James Richard Colin. The boy that saw his daughter before she had been hospitalised. The boy that she had saved only to end up in the same position.
*~*~*~*~*~*
In the hospital Diana was picked up by two men in black.

Chapter Text

Ring
The trill of the phone interrupted his thoughtful trance.
Ring
With a deep grunt Mycroft picked up the phone.
“What?”
“Holmes, Holmes, Holmes,” the voice said tutting. Mycroft tensed, upon hearing the person behind the phone and he knew immediately who the ominous man was.
“Mr. Jim Moriarty.” He replied curtly.
“You were the only one who figured it out!” His Irish lilt danced upon his tongue as he spoke, “And I thought it would be Sherly! You really are the smart one Mr. Holmes.”
“May I inquire to what you want from me.”
“Ah, good ol’ Mycroft, getting right to the juicy bits. Well, to answer your rather polite inquiry,” he paused letting Mycroft’s frustration slowly build. The man on the phone snickered, “oooh I have an idea! Let's play a little game I like to call twenty questions-” Mycroft's patience would only stretch so far.
“No.” He shouted rather loudly into the phone and he wondered if his co-workers had heard him, “No” he said in a more moderated tone.
“Very well then, drum roll please.” He heard Moriarty ‘drum rolling’ upon his phone.
“Mr. Holmes? Your lunch?” Mycroft looked over at the young man who stood in the doorway with his lunch. Mycroft just nodded to his desk, not particularly focused on his lunch at that certain moment in time. On the other end of the line Moriarty practically screamed with excitement.
“I’VE GOT YOUR DAUGHTER!” Mycroft choked on air.
“What!” He managed to sputter, he was already out of his seat and heading for the door. Where is she? Moriarty tell me where she is!” Moriarty ended the call. Mycroft banged his fist upon the desk and the Coke bottle the young boy brought in toppled and fell to the ground. Mycroft expected it to blow open, but all that poured out was fresh, crimson blood.
*~*~*~*~*~*
Alex Woodbridge, Thames.
-Jim

That was all it said, he had found it drenched in blood inside the bottle. Wax paper so it didn't completely disintegrate, but it was still stained pinkish where the blood had seeped in. He had reeled Sherlock in. The name rung a bell. One of Sherlock’s cases about a forged painting. Sherlock immediately bombarded him with questions that he was too mentally exasperated to answer and they had driven straight to the place. He had pleaded that Alicia stay home, but Sherlock persuaded him otherwise, saying that she would be safer with them than with any security he could scrape up.
As they drove down the Thames Mycroft busied himself in insuring the best snipers in the Secret Service were in position and ready to shoot. Alicia let out a small gasp and the frown on Sherlock's face deepened. He saw none other than the man himself, Jim Moriarty standing at the edge of the Thames just between the barricading brick wall that surrounded the waterway. He could easily topple over with one small push. Too easy. He wouldn't even have to remove the body. As the car pulled in front he moved to greet them. Pity.
“Mr. Holmes!” He snickered, “Delighted to make your acquaintance.” He was all too cheery, Mycroft just scowled.
“Where's my daughter Moriarty?”
“Oh, she’s just wonderful, you taught her well!” His brothers voice came in from behind him.
“Enough of these games.” Jim seemed entirely too pleased with this.
“Oh, Sherly. Such a smart boy. Managed to survive the fall? I think that means I still O U.” He sneered, “Bring the girl out!” Two men in pitch black suits dragged Diana out of a black SUV. She had a large red welt above her forehead and her eye was blue. The men dragged her to Moriarty’s side and he grabbed her arm with a tight grip and dug his fingers into her flesh. She winced with the pain.
“Well we've got ourselves a problem.”
“Do we?” Mycroft hated that his brother was playing along, but he also gave him time to think and for that he was grateful.
“I’m afraid we do. You see your men are being just a tad annoying Mycroft. I’d like you to call them off, oh and clear my name.” He paused, “I know you can do it Mycroft, with just a flick off your wrist… ooooor,” he put a ‘pirates’ lilt to his voice, “down she blows!” Mycroft already had his phone out.
“Call it off, call it off, leave all of you. NOW!”
“Name… cleared.” He drew it out. Mycroft started tapping away at his phone, Alicia was doing the same.
“Done.” Alicia called “Come here darling.” She gestured for Diana to come over, but Moriarty held his grip. His psychotic grin danced upon his face.
“Oppsie!” He pulled Diana backwards and she fell.
*~*~*~*~*~*
Air rushed past her and she fell head first into the icy waters of the Thames. She heard a muffled scream coming from her mother and Moriarty’s maniac laugh. She would die she knew. She was too broken to swim and the impact would probably wind her anyway. It was almost like a dream, like she was floating, if only for a moment, on air. Just as she was getting ready to die two strong arms wrapped around her waist.
*~*~*~*~*~*
Mycroft had run. Run at top speed to catch his daughter. He had never run faster in his life, he wasn't reallly one for leg work, but he still launched like a bullet from where he stood. Without one moment of hesitation he leaped over the edge and reached out for his daughter, grabbing her by the waist just before they hit the water.
*~*~*~*~*~*
His brother had sprung from his position like a spring and bolted towards his daughter. Moriarty's grin never swayed for a moment, he was enjoying every moment. He didn't even move. The SUV merely rolled up front of him and Moriarty's hoppped in.
“Au revoir Mr. Holmes!” He waved back at Sherlock, “Let the games begin!”
*~*~*~*~*~*
Water filled his nose and his mouth. All the air had been knocked out of him, but he held his daughter close to his chest and tried to kick up to the surface. The water felt like molasses and his legs weighed one hundred pounds and all he managed to do was keep them from sinking any further. Black spots clouded his vision and his head started to send shots of pain as warning. He kicked harder holding Diana up towards the air. He felt faint, his sense of direction all but failing him. The weight of his child left his hands and he floated slowly down, all went black.

Chapter Text

9 hours later
The monotonous ticking of the clock was slowly driving her mad. Alicia sat staring bleary eyed at her husband and daughter both in hospital beds. Diana slept peacefully, but Mycroft was out cold. Not asleep she reminded herself, no, unconscious. He was almost in a comatose state when they had pulled him out of the icy depths of the River Thames and was gradually returning to his normal state. Gradually.
“Mummy?” She wasn't supposed to call her mummy, not really, they had told her that she was to call her mother and Mycroft father, as it was more formal, but she liked to stretch the rules when she was at home. Alicia thought it was cute when she called her mummy, she rather liked it, if not preferred it. Right now she was just glad she was awake.
“Yes darling?” She moved to sit next to her on her bed.
“Is daddy okay?” She was the most innocent thing that she had ever seen.
“Yes darling, your father is just sleeping. He’s tired.” She knew she knew better, but she tried to put the girls mind to rest.
“Okay.” She replied, understanding as ever, “You look tired mummy.” Alicia felt tired, it was all she could do from curling up next to Mycroft and falling asleep.
“I know darling.” She stroked her hair, “Go to sleep.” Diana smiled her cute little five year old smile and closed her eyes.
“Okay mummy.” She yawned and almost immediately fell asleep. Alicia decided that her daughter was right and she curled up next to Mycroft and instantly fell into a dreamless sleep.
*~*~*~*~*~*
“Water? Food?” He asked.
“Water would be nice please.” She could hardly formulate the words on her tongue. Mycroft nodded and left the room. He still felt a bit waterlogged, but his wife deserved a break. Mycroft entered with a glass of ice water on a tray, only to find her curled up in a ball on the bed.
*~*~*~*~*~*
She didn’t realise Mycroft had entered the room until he wrapped his arms around her waist and laid down next to her.
“I love you.”
“I love you too.”
“Daddy, can I sleep with you?”
Mycroft smiled, “Of course darling, as long as you sleep with mummy too.” A beam appeared on the girls face and she rushed over to the bed and wedged herself in between them, wrapping her small arms around Alicia. Mycroft put his arms around both of them and fell quickly to sleep.
*~*~*~*~*~*
4 years later
He needed to talk to Sherlock. To have a normal conversation, as normal as a conversation between the Holmes brothers could get, so he invited Molly and Sherlock over for dinner. Roland and Quinton were absolutely ecstatic about seeing their cousin again and they had a ball, screaming and shouting and what not. When they sat down for dinner the children were bubbly as ever, but there was an uncomfortable silence held between the adults.
“So, Molly how is work?” Alicia asked politely, breaking the silence.
“Good.” She said with a nod and a smile, then the silence returned.
After a while of pushing his mash around his plate Sherlock turned to the children, who were starting to get out of hand and told them to behave themselves. Then the silence became even more awkward, now the children were sensing it too.
“Well, I think we should retire don't you children?” Their little heads bobbing up and down like bobble heads as they silently agreed with their mother. Molly retrieved Roland and Quinton from their seats and took them upstairs to the guest bedroom, nodding to Alicia and Mycroft as she left and sharing a knowing look with her husband.
“I think we should go up too Diana.”
“Okay mother.” She gave Mycroft a welcome kiss on the cheek and hurried to follow after her mother. The silence grew. After a long while Sherlock asked the big question.
“How did he come back?”
“Yes, well how the bloody hell am I supposed to know that Sherlock?” He spat.
“Well, you've always been the smarter one.” There was no sarcasm in his voice, much to Mycroft's surprise, no, he seemed to show the utmost sincerity.
“He blew his bloody brains out Sherlock.” He said in a more calm tone.
“Yes, so how did he survive.” It wasn't a question, he sat for a while pondering, then suddenly “It wasn't her.” He added in a whisper.
“Excuse me? Her?”
“Her Mycroft, think! Her, the abominable bride, for the love of God! She shot herself, but she survived! How?” Mycroft had nothing to say to any of this. As far as he could tell his brother was going quite mad, “IT WASN’T HER!” vaguely getting the gist of what he was saying Mycroft replied.
“That's not it.”
“What? What do you mean that’s not it! Of course it is!”
“One Moriarty would never have been able to acquire someone that was able to trick you Sherlock. Two he is a psychopath, he wanted to do it himself, no, he did not have someone stand in for him, he did not shoot himself in the first place.” Sherlock frowned, contemplating this. Mycroft went on, “Instead of making up himself he made up his injury.”
“But-”
“You did not, as far as I am aware, check the body after he supposedly shot himself?
“I-”
“So you did not check whether his injuries were real?”
“He-”
“So ultimately, Sherlock, you were in so much trauma at the specific moment in time,” his voice was rising. This was far from the normal conversation he had in mind, “that you ceased to realised that he shot a blank and faked an injury!” Now he was shouting. He didn't remember at which point in his sentence he had stood up, but he found himself in an upright position now looking down at Sherlock, “YOU CEASED TO REALISE THAT HE WAS ALIVE, SO THAT NOW, HE HAS COME AND NEARLY MURDERED MY DAUGHTER!” He roared, Sherlock even flinched.
“Mycroft,” Alicia’s voice came from somewhere in the room. His head throbbed violently. Within in his dreamlike vision he saw Sherlock softly excusing himself and leaving the room.
“Mycroft,” he felt her hand upon his arm and she dragged him up the stairs to their room. He didn't remember falling asleep, his anger clouded his memory.

Chapter Text

His joints burnt, as he raced to the door, tripping momentarily before regaining his balance.
Knock, Knock.
‘John, John open up,” Sherlock hadn't met John Watson in a good year and it was about time they went out on an adventure.
“Sherlock?” John gasped once finally opening the door.
“No Magaret Thatcher! We have a case!”
“Yes and I have a daughter; Sherlock, you know I can't just up and leave.”
“John, I have two unruly boys,” he said trying to tolerate his slowness for the first time after a year, “Molly is waiting just down the street to pick up Rosie. The boys and her will surely have great fun doing whatever childish things children of the modern day get up to.”
“Sherlock,” John was starting to become impatient, he could tell from the way his feet were shuffling and clenching and unclenching of his jaw. Even without the double-edged help of cocaine, Sherlock couldn't help but notice these small details, but now he doesn't have trouble catching up with his brain, like he’s in a running race against Usain Bolt.
“John please, it's a matter of utmost importance to me,” John only raised his eyebrows, he was probably whining like a child, “It's Mycroft’s daughter,” this caught his attention, “Moriarty's back.” And at that the heavy oak door was slammed in his face.
<><><><><><><><>
He slammed the door, hard, in Sherlock's face at the sound of Moriarty's name. No. He would not let his daughter be corrupt, neglidged, not again, not ever again.
“This is important to him,” Mary said bluntly.
“No, no, you are not real, leave me alone Mary.” He said waving his hands in the air, as if to clear away the fog that was covering his eyes.
“Well, you’re speaking to me, aren't you?”
“Don't,” but as usual he couldn't deny his ghost of a wife her right to speak. She always appeared when he was stressed, it was a good and bad thing. In public he would be seen talking to a wall or a vending machine, but on the other side she always knew what to do, and always gave him the right answers.
“Sherlock needs you, his brother needs you, they can't do it alone. Rosie will be fine, she loves those two boys, they get along nicely, but you don't have any friends of your own like Sherlock's boys beside Sherlock himself. Give it a go, one last case.”
“I hate Sherlock's brother,” to him Mycroft was an idiot, an idiot with a brilliant mind, one even smarter than Sherlock's, but still an idiot, “he’s a cow.”
“He’s a cow with a daughter, that is much smarter than you by the way.”
“Don't compare me to the cow’s daughter,” it was in some ways true though, John, at that age couldn't have hoped to have the brains that child did, “she’s just a calf,” Mary made a ghostly snicker, but then her expression returned to serious.
“You heard what happened. Mycroft is hurt, his daughter is hurt and if you don't stop Moriarty, God knows what will happen to Rosie or you!”
“No one is touching Rosie,” sudden determination overtaking him.
“Mycroft probably said the same thing,” she had won.
“Okay,” he said in an obnoxiously loud voice, “Let's go on an adventure!”
*~*~*~*~*~*
“Doctor Watson,” he gave him a curt nod of acknowledgement, “Thank you for coming.”
“Hey Myke,” Mycroft twitched at the sound of his nickname, “you got any of those Ginger Nuts?”
“Sherlock,” he he combed his hair with his hand in an attempt to calm himself and not lash out on his brother, “ Please, we are in the heart of the British Government,” at that moment Sherlock spotted a tray of cookies and waltzed across the room towards them, before pouncing upon them with the ferocity of a little child, “BEHAVE YOURSELF!”
“Brother mine, you taught me everything there is to know about manners,” a cookie hung from his mouth and his speaking was muffled, “On the other hand, I never paid much attention to your lectures.”
“Clearly, if I remember correctly,” he turned to John, seeming in the mood for conversation, “after I taught him to use a knife and fork he started dissecting his potatoes, Christ, they would fly everywhere!”
“I remember I caught him square in the face once,” he winked.
“I’m quite certain you were aiming for me.”
“That I was brother mine!”
“Boys,” John was used to these quarrels between the brothers, often they dealt with themselves, but equally as often they got out of hand.
“Right, back to the matter at hand. As I am sure you have been informed Doctor, there was a bombing at my daughters school, soon after my daughter was kidnapped from the hospital and I received a phone call from Mr. Jim Moriarty-”
“Yeah, I got the brief from Sherlock.”
“Very well then, Mr. Moriarty has sent each of us, Sherlock and I, a puzzle,” John opened his mouth to speak, but Mycroft continued, “Sherlock received his in the daily newspaper, and naturally questioned the paper boy and the paper on whether they knew anything about it, but both hadn't a clue. I,” gesturing to his himself, “Recieved mine in my daily report. I questioned my assistant and some other stakeholders to no avail.”
“Right, so what are these puzzles?” Mycroft pushed two pieces of paper towards him. One was a small newspaper clipping, most likely from the advertising section and the other was Mycroft's report. The newspaper clipping looked like a normal advertisement for board games, but when John looked closer he noticed the little clip art graphic of a dice. The three sides that were visible each had a different letter on it, spelling out IOU. The advertisement read:

Games and fun with Jimmie the gamesman!

Call: 48858422945

“Weird phone number,” he noticed.
“Coordinates of the Eiffel Tower of course,” Oh, of course of course, what a cow!
“And yours?,” he said looking at Mycroft's report, nothing seemed out of the ordinary.
“Here,” he pulled out a paper “these mistakes,” he circled letters and a single comma that weren't supposed to be where they were on the report and wrote them down on the paper in order, “then it's a simple process of the A1Z26 cipher,” ooh, yes of course the ‘we know you are a cow’ code, “It’s really quite easy,” he wrote some numbers below the letters, “There,” he proclaimed triumphantly, but all John could make out were a bunch of letters and numbers printed in fancy handwriting.

d h h e c , b c d i i
4 8 8 5 3 0 2 3 4 9 9

“Okay, but what does it mean,” Mycroft looked over at Sherlock and gave him a ‘how does he not know’ glance. Sherlock just shrugged.
“It's the coordinates for the Notre-Dame cathedral.”
“Right… you got anything else?”
“No,” Mycroft sighed and leaned back in his chair.
“We are each going to the locations separately, Mycroft will have the queen's army behind him,” Sherlock smirked, “ and I will have you.”
“What! No, I am not going to leave Rosie and go run off to Paris. Not happening Sherlock.”
“Look Doctor Watson,” Mycroft replied coolly, “I am leaving my daughter and my wife, Sherlock is leaving his sons and Molly. I am sure Molly can take of your daughter while we are away.”
“Tell me Mycroft, what if we never come back,” Mycroft flinched at the thought.
“Then Rosie will be in safe hands,” Sherlock said in his brother's silence. John sighed.
“When should I start packing?”

Chapter Text

“Mr. Holmes?” said a squeaky voice.
“Mmm?”
“Your room is this way sir.” He snapped out of his daze. He had booked an ensuite in the ‘Hôtel D'Aubusson’, it was only the Seine away from Notre-Dame Cathedral, but not too close, about a twelve minute drive, as to avoid suspicion. It was a five star hotel, of course, he was in the British Government and he liked to splurge once and a while, especially if it was on quality.
“Right, of course, lead the way.” he gestured with his hand for the man to continue.
*~*~*~*~*~*
Mycroft had been kind enough to set them up in a good four star hotel named ‘The Pullman’. It stood only three hundred metres from the Eiffel Tower and was, quite literally, bathed in its shadow.
“Blimey!” John exclaimed as they approached the hotel, which let of a golden hue from the many lights surrounding it, “That's ours?”
“Courtesy of Mycroft,” Sherlock grunted, eyes locked on his phone and fingers tapping away. Gosh, he was one of the smartest minds in Britain, but he could be so thick sometimes. The car slowed to a stop and the Chauffeur hopped out and opened the door for John before he had a chance to blink, “Merci,” he said in an anglicised French accent. He even made the chauffeur cringe a bit. Sherlock came out behind him with impossible swiftness, considering the fact that he was still staring down at his phone. He didn't even glance at the man, but slid a five euro note into his breast pocket and walked off towards the hotel entrance letting a bellboy take his bag and coat. John did the same, handing one of the young men his two cases and jacket and then walked up to the counter where Sherlock was waiting. Sherlock had already managed to annoy the receptionist with a cacophony of incessant dings of the call bell, so John took over, to the relief of the poor man, and they were led to their rooms.
*~*~*~*~*~*
Mycroft lay on the newly made bed and took a deep breath of the fresh Paris air. The night was young, but he felt tired from the flight. However his brain was doing flips and he found it hard to drop off to sleep. He had booked the ‘Superior Suite’ and it came with a good bottle of cognac and the best service in town. Five years before he would have loved to stretch out on a bed in a five star hotel in Paris, but today it felt lonely and way too big. For the first time since he left he completely regretted what he was getting himself into. He blindly picked up his phone and began scrolling through business reports and other government issues to tend to that he had no time for. He decided to look deeper into Moriarty's past. With a flick of his thumb he scrolled down to a folder named Jim David Moriarty, he had read most of the reports and had no interest in reading anymore, so he continued to scroll down to the latest ones. He passed a file of reports from Moriarty's attack on his daughter. The file was full of reports from each and every witness they could compile. Reports from the secret service snipers that had been at the scene, a report from himself, Alicia and Diana. They also had tried to get Sherlock's eye witness report, but all it contained was Sherlock telling the interrogator to “Piss off!” and then a description of how when he didn't move Sherlock had threatened him with a knife. Mycroft had to go and personally apologise to the man for his brother's behaviour and buy him a drink before he let it go. He finally got to a file named:

Report in progress: SISYPHUS

They had named it after a Greek myth named ‘The Tale of Sisyphus’. The Greek managed to chain death up and return to the over world. Upon returning he instructed his wife not to give him burial rights resulting in him being suspended between life and death. They thought it was appropriate for Moriarty's case. The report held a scan of the newspaper clipping and Mycroft's report, but was yet to be filled with their reports of the happenings in Paris. He turned off his phone and lay silent in on the bed. It was a good ten minutes before he finally got up and started to move. He decided to open the bottle of Rémy Martin Centaure that was sitting on his mini bar and ordered a bowl of bisque from room service. It only took them ten minutes to bring it and he was only a quarter way through his cognac when he heard a sharp knocking on his door.
“Your bisque Monsieur Holm-aah,” a loud thud came from the door and Mycroft decided that it wasn't just the waiter getting impatient. He strode over to the door and swung it open. His was all over the floor and Mycroft only just managed to catch the waiter before he hit the ground too. Blood poured from his head trickled down his neck soaking his white collar in crimson. Carefully Mycroft lay the body on the ground and checked his pulse. Dead. He noticed a white piece of card that stuck out of the man's breast pocket and he slowly retrieved it. Monsieur Holmes was written in fancy scrawl on one side. He flipped it over and read:

Dear Mr. Holmes,
Welcome to Paris!

It was in fresh blood.

Chapter Text

Sherlock rolled around and checked his clock.
23:44
He couldn't get any sleep whatsoever. Mycroft had called him at eight seconds past 10:36 telling him about the unexpected message he was left and how his perfectly good bisque was all over the floor just outside his door. He imagined his brother was finding trouble sleeping too. He was probably calling up the lobsters parents and apologising for their son's tragic death. He snickered at his own joke. He missed Molly, Quinton and Roland, he was sure his boys would have had a blast ranting on about the Eiffel Tower, trying to impress any unfortunate bystander they passed.
23:45
Oh well. He couldn't do anything about it now, not when Moriarty was wandering around. Not when Moriarty was still breathing. Before he would be absolutely ecstatic to go chasing Moriarty. His lust for adventure, mystery and to be honest death would carry him anywhere. He faced many dangers and only in his drug induced realisations he would sometimes come to terms with what he had actually gone and done. Coming face to face with death, imprisonment. Once he had narrowly missed a fall which would have caused him to go brain dead. It wasn't the fact that he would have died soon after that his drugged mind was so afraid of, no it losing his mind, losing his brain. He’d start crying like a baby and rocking back and forth until John found him and confiscated whatever he was taking.
23:46
Now he had Molly and two children to look after. Molly could look after herself, of that he was sure. Molly was a strong independent woman, she would stand her ground and not let anyone push her around. He admired that about her, her willingness to face whatever was in store. She had a type of bravery that would never cross the line of stupidity. For Sherlock it was very different. Whatever he had experienced back in his 221B days was not bravery, no, it could never be compared to bravery, he realised that now. What he had back then was lust and pride. He had crossed the line of bravery and stupidity early on in his career and was blinded by his ego.
23:47
He lay in silence, staring at the white washed ceiling.
23:48
He wondered what Molly and his boys were up to without him. Paris and London were only an hour apart, so they’d all be sleeping.
*~*~*~*~*~*
22:48
22:49
She watched it change. It was funny how something could change that quickly. Sherlock had come running in one day exclaiming that he had to leave to Paris because of some Moriarty madness. She didn't really care she just wanted him to be safe, for him to stay and watch the boys grow up instead of watching some case.
22:50
Too many hours of his day he would spend locked up in his office working on something or another that Greg had found. She had had some firm words with the inspector regarding how much time Sherlock spent on theses cases rather than with her or her sons. The inspector had just shrugged and told her that if there was a case to be solved that her husband was the only one capable of solving, then Detective Sherlock had to solve it. She had given him a cold glare and he had agreed to lessen Sherlock’s workload.
22:51
So just like that everything had changed, just like a clock.
*~*~*~*~*~*
22:52
She should really be going to sleep. She still had a full day of work to look forward to, but she couldn't. Her eyes wouldn't shut, so she sat, nursing a refilled glass of cognac in front of a dwindling fire.
22:53
Mycroft was a man who kept to himself. She had watched him go to lengths to avoid certain people sometimes. One of their colleagues was an absolute pain, but she had learnt to cope whereas Mycroft would prefer to avoid the man at all costs. They were once put on a project together. After a tantalising day for Mycroft he had come home and completely finished the project, not willing to spend another day in the man's presence.
22:54
She loved Mycroft, a man, who has been said to never be loved, nor ever love. She loved him when he didn't love himself. ‘I've got you,’ she had told him. She remembered the day all too well. It had become their little thing. Whenever one of them were feeling down or when something had happened or just to say ‘I love you,’ it'd be: ‘Mycroft, I've got you,’ or ‘I’ve got you Alicia.’
22:55
Even Diana had caught up with the trend and she would give them a hug when they were visibly feeling bad and point vigorously at them and say ‘I’ve got you!’ but then it would turn into a game of tag around the house. It was the cutest thing watching Mycroft chasing Diana around the house. She would squeal in delight, her arms flailing as her little feet carried her to and fro. They would dance around the furniture in a father and daughter game of cat and mouse and then Mycroft would swoop in and lift her off the ground and give her a hug. She loved it when he did that and would return the embrace, putting her tiny hands around his neck.
*~*~*~*~*~*
23:56
John was vaguely annoyed at Sherlock and his brother. What was his name. Oh yeah. Moocroft. What a cow. He hated the way he looked at him like he was soo much smarter than him. He was, but still. Sherlock was a tad more tolerable. He had had to go through the torture of living with him, so he was used to his cases and his incessant attitude.
23:57
But oh Mycroft! You couldn't even mention his name without people either cringing or staring at you in amazement. There was no in between. You either knew him as the smartest man in the world or the British Government or, of course, a cow. There were those lucky ones who hadn't a clue who the man was. Of those he was jealous.
23:58
He had become a little better now that he had a wife and daughter. Unfortunately his daughter and his had become the best of friends and were inseparable, so they had to suffer each others company every time their daughters wanted to have a playdate.
23:59
He had come to realise that Mycroft had good intentions though, considering everything he had done for his brother over the years. He really did have a heart inside of him. Awww, how sweet.
He. Is. Still. A. Cow.

Chapter Text

00:00
Sherlock heard a loud bang, like a gun had gone off in his room.
“Hello Sherlock,” He saw Moriarty's face, tainted red from the alarm clock on his bedside table. He had his normal psychotic smile pasted on his face and his eyes burrowed deep into his soul. He scrambled to sit up.
“What-”
“I sent your brother a letter,” he said in a teasing tone, “but I thought I might meet you in person,” Moriarty walked slowly round Sherlock's bed and bent down until their noses were only an inch apart, “Your turn!”
Bang.
And he was gone. His clock turned to 00:01.
*~*~*~*~*~*
John heard loud banging coming from his door.
“I’m coming, I’m coming. Good God, it's one bloody minute past midnight. What the bloody hell do you want?” he opened the door to find a very panicked Sherlock standing behind it, “Sherlock?” Sherlock didn't wait he just pushed past him and started mumbling to himself.
“Did he come, did he come.”
“Oh come on Sherlock it's not even one yet. Couldn't you wait an hour before you decided to pace around my hotel room?”
“Did he come?” he said louder this time.
“Who on eart-”
“Moriarty!” he turned to face him like it was obvious.
“What, no!” Sherlock sighed with relief and all his tension deflated, “What happened Sherlock?” he moved to get them both a drink.
“Nothing,” he replied quickly.
“Nothing?” John replied accusingly showing an amused smile, handing Sherlock a wine which he downed like it was a shot.
“Moriarty came okay!” He brandished his wine glass at John. John frowned and poured him another glass.
“Sherlock have you been-”
“No! I stopped John! It was him John, Moriarty came and he said,” Sherlock shuddered, “Your turn,” he took a gulp of his wine.
“Have you told Mycroft?”
“No,” he unsheathed his phone from his pocket and started typing furiously. After tapping send rather dramatically he proclaimed, “There.”
*~*~*~*~*~*
His phone buzzed. He already knew it was Sherlock. The timing for one. Only his brother would be so insubordinate as to text him at this hour. He leaned across and plucked his phone from the side table.

Moriarty came.
He said: “Your turn.”
-SH
What's your move then,
brother mine?
-MH
We need to make a plan.
Is there any restaurant near you?
-SH
Le Violon d'Ingres, Lunch?
Formal attire.
-MH
You’re paying.
-SH

Mycroft scolded himself for choosing an expensive restaurant. He was sure his brother would take complete advantage and order the most expensive thing on the menu. He clicked his phone off and placed it back on his bedside.
*~*~*~*~*~*
“So brother mine?” the waiter poured them their drinks, but both brothers just stared at each other, so John gave the waiter a smile and flipped him a coin. The waiter gave the boys a concerned glance, but then nodded and left, “What's the plan?”

Chapter Text

Sherlock frowned, his eyes narrowed and he stared off into the distance, deep in thought. Mycroft let out a long sigh and reverted to fiddling with his wine glass.
“Sherlock,” Sherlock's eyes moved to look at his brother, “has he left any… clues,” Sherlock's frown deepened, but not a word escaped his lips, “Sherlock,” Mycroft closed his eyes and pinched the bridge of his nose. His brother could be insufferable sometimes.
“Nothing,” he grunted and his hands slipped into their trademark position, his fingertips touching slightly and his pointing fingers brushing his lips. Mycroft turned to John.
“Dr. Watson?” John also looked deep in thought, but unlike his brother took the energy to reply to Mycroft.
“I’m not sure, I’ll have to check,” Mycroft nodded. He looked to his brother who was now pushing asparagus around on his plate. It was like an interrogation to get anything out of Sherlock.
“Sherlock, get your elbows off the table and eat your asparagus,” out of the corner of his eye he saw John snort. Mycroft took a deep sip of his wine. Maybe it would soften his anger towards his brother, “Sherlock, ” he said in a softer tone. John rolled his eyes.
“Sherlock, honestly, ” Sherlock averted his attention to his ex-flatmate, a new respect in his eyes. Why didn't he show that to Mycroft, he didn't know, “Sherlock Holmes, you've brought us here to work out a plan, so snap out of your deductions and get on with it, ” Mycroft smirked. In a way, he was amazed at how John was able to control Sherlock and scold him without receiving some smart-aleck reply, but at the same time, he was disgusted at his brother for the same reason.
“I don't know what he wants us to do. Moriarty has called us here and now we have to make our move.”
“Which is?” Mycroft was getting impatient now.
“I think he's left our clues at the places he sent us,” He could literally see the wheels turning in John's head.
“Makes sense, ” he looked to Mycroft, “We’ll go tomorrow, just in case Moriarty leaves any more hints.”
“Agreed, ” and with that Mycroft downed his glass, placed a five hundred euro note on the table and left.
*~*~*~*~*~*
Mycroft’s frown deepened. He stared at his wife's profile picture, it was the three of them: Diana, Alicia and himself standing together, each with beaming smiles upon their faces. His finger hovered over the call button, it was too late for all of them, but he desperately wanted to talk to his two girls. He pressed the button and let it ring. It took only a few seconds before Alicia answered.
“Hi, father! Guess what! Today at school we learnt some French! Mother said you were in France on work, ” his daughter's mischievous grin filled the screen.
“Very good darling. What did you learn?”
“Comment allez-vous?” Mycroft grinned.
“Je vais très bien, merci mademoiselle. Et vous?” His daughter's smile grew wider still.
“Je suis très content aujourd’hui, merci beaucoup père,” she giggled.
“Wow, you're learning fast! Good girl.”
“Mother wants to speak to you, goodnight father,” Diana waved and gave him a flying kiss. Mycroft did the same back.
“Goodnight darling,” Diana’s face left the screen and was replaced by her mother’s.
“Ça va?” Alicia’s silky voice made him smile.
“I’m okay, ” he sighed, “I’ll be going to Notre Dame tomorrow, ” his wife's look told him to explain, so he continued, “we have to search for some clues that Moriarty might have left and…” he trailed off, looking past his wife, off into the distance.
“And?” Alicia looked at him with concern etched on her face.
“Hopefully they'll lead us to the next part of his game.” Alicia’s brow furrowed.
“What’s wrong?” his wife was always so perceptive.
“Nothing, ” he couldn't get away with anything.
“Nothing? Really Myke?” she huffed.
“There is nothing wrong, it's just, ” he paused, trying to find the right words, “Moriarty is being rather ambiguous.”
“I see.”
“Apparently it's ‘our turn’,” he cringed.
“Well,” she paused, looking towards the clock past the screen, “it's late. Get some sleep Myke and hopefully you’ll figure something out,” Mycroft felt spent. He must have looked it too.
“I’ve got you Myke, remember,” Mycroft nodded at Alicia.
“I love you.”
“I love you too. Goodnight.” She waited for Mycroft's reply, but he stayed silent. She sighed and disconnected the call. Mycroft clicked the phone off and placed it on his bedside table and fell asleep.