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Jim doesn't offer to replace the new aviators when Martin tells him they broke. Martin is so sensitive about money, after all. (He doesn't tell Jim how they broke, but he doesn't have to. Jim can read the whole story in the tired slump of his shoulders.)

But if he happens to acquire a pair himself shortly thereafter, and happens to leave them out where Martin might pick them up to borrow if he likes, well, the world is just full of coincidences, isn't it?

Martin seems to have been put off aviators by his previous experience, though; they sit around gathering dust until Jim remembers them and slips them on one day before he goes out the door.

And what a day that turns out to be.

Jumbo Jet. Dear me Mr Holmes, dear me.

He's waiting in MJN's portacabin when their flight lands - all right, he did promise he wouldn't do that again, but it was a promise to Carolyn Knapp-Shappey, not to Martin, so it doesn't count. Especially when she's not even on this flight.

"Jim?" Martin tries to look reproving, but he's hopeless at it, which Jim adores. He spends his days around people, including himself, who can turn on a glare at the flick of a switch; Martin's inability to do so is refreshing. Endearing. "You really shouldn't - Carolyn did ask and it is technically her space . . ." He trails off, unable to maintain even the vague semblance of a scolding in the face of Jim's delighted smile.

"She doesn't have to know." Jim snakes his arms around Martin's waist.

"Well done, Martin, that's him told." Ah, yes, now Jim remembers why he hadn't minded making that promise to Carolyn at the time. The aviators allow him the luxury of shooting Douglas Richardson the kind of poisonous look he usually avoids letting Martin see on his face.

Douglas is lucky Martin is soft-hearted enough to like him. It's the only thing that's been keeping him alive since Jim started hearing Martin's stories about him and his wit. Martin would be distressed if Douglas died, and that simply wouldn't do. Jim contented himself instead with seeing to it Douglas's smuggling pool dried up. It was petty and not half so satisfying as feeling the man's throat give way under his fingers would be, but it did make Martin happy.

"I'll send her something nice to apologize," he promises Martin, to make up for giving Douglas the opening for that little jibe. "I just couldn't wait. You know that project I was telling you about, the one I've had my best people on for months?" He spares Martin the details, of course - Martin is under the impression Jim's work is top secret, which is not entirely inaccurate - but complaining in vague terms to his sympathetic boyfriend has proven to be a welcome pressure valve. "We've had a major breakthrough and it'll all be over by this time tomorrow."

"Jim, that's fantastic." Martin is smiling now, pleased for him. He even gives Jim a quick kiss despite his discomfort with public displays of affection. (Much to Jim's bemusement, the portacabin counts as public. Offering to temporarily disable the security feed is not, he has discovered, an acceptable compromise.) "Congratulations!"

"Yes, it is. Now hurry up with your paperwork, I'm taking you out to celebrate. And darling . . ." Jim takes off the aviators and slides them onto Martin's face, stealing another kiss as he does. "These are obviously lucky. You should wear them sometimes."