Harvey Specter waits for no one.
Never had, and he never would. Donna had seen him walkout on dates that were late, abandon underlings who did not understand that Now Means Now, and, once, been the one to tell Jessica that Harvey was off on lunch and not waiting for her because she was late (needless to say, he learned to never do that again).
So it was of some surprise the first time she had seen Harvey wait a full fifteen minutes for Mike to arrive with some files he needed. Donna actually found herself peering through the glass and almost gaping at him. He appeared normal, no flush of fever, no sign of being drunk, and he hadn't been laid in a few weeks so a post coital high was out. She frowned lightly and listened into his office but there was no muttering or any of the other sounds she associated with him when waiting for someone.
It was eerie.
When Mike finally arrived and Harvey tore into him for being late, Donna shrugged and marked it as a one off before going back to work.
But then it happened again.
After the tenth time Mike was late, she decided to pay attention to how Harvey looked when scolding the kid.
It came as no surprise when she saw the hidden, but obvious to her, a fluent Harvey-reader, heart deep affection. Whether Harvey knew it or not, he had a soft spot for the young genius. Harvey did not tolerate tardiness and certainly did not show emotion. Donna smiled slightly and decided to go buy herself some flowers. It was a momentous occasion, after all.
II- Louis Litt
Louis Litt was many things, but a fool he was not.
Well, he wasn't a fool when it came to seeking out weaknesses in Harvey Specter. If Harvey showed a weakness, which he rarely did much to Louis' frustration and admiration, Louis was there to exploit it. When Louis first found out about Harvey's habit of abandoning people who were late, he used that to his advantage. He delayed associates, asked Jessica for an impromptu meeting, and even managed to delay one or two of Harvey's dates. Unfortunately, when it came to clients Harvey was professional. He could wait for hours if need be, and it frustrated Louis to no end. But it did not take long for Louis to realize that waiting for a client was fine by Harvey's clock because he was still being paid.
When Mike Ross started working at the firm, Louis antagonized him just because he could. But the more Mike stood up to him and Harvey intercepted, the more Louis realized that Mike was more than a normal associate to Harvey.
So he went out of his way to delay Mike, to pile work on him when Harvey wanted him, and to pull him into random 'become my pony' meetings. He had expected Harvey to verbally thrash the kid for being late and to eventually loose interest. But the more Louis delayed Mike, the more Harvey called upon him.
It was not right. Louis had been late to one meeting and Harvey had treated him like a plebeian ever since. He never treated Mike like that no matter how many times he was late.
Louis resented Mike. Little punk.
III- Jessica Pearson
Jessica Pearson prided herself on running Pearson-Hardman with an iron fist.
Oh sure, sometimes shit happened, but she could rely on loyal and hardworking employees to fix whatever problems arose, and if they couldn't, she could. Everything functioned smoothly and everyone was on time.
Everyone except Mike Ross, but she left the punishment and verbal dressing down to Harvey. There were advantages to having someone who was obsessed with being on time on payroll. It caused her endless amusement that the timeliest person she knew had an underling who seemed to think that time was general and not exact.
As the months wore on and Mike still was rarely exactly on time for work or meetings with Harvey, she debated on bringing it up with Harvey. But Mike was Harvey's responsibility and if he was alright with the kid being a minute or ten late, than it was on his shoulders.
There was something going on between them and she was vaguely interested in finding out what it was, but running a law firm was full time work and she never had the time. So when Mike burst into Harvey's office when they were having a chat, dishevelled and clutching a stack of papers for their latest major case, she simply gave him a Look and filed away the softly amused look in Harvey's eyes.
Well well... That explained that.
IV- Rachel Zane
Rachel Zane made it a point to never be late when it came to Harvey Specter.
She had witnessed over the years more than one associate leaving the now Senior Partners office close to tears, and she never wanted to do so herself. So, when Harvey asked for something she made sure to have it done the night before at least, and to have a secondary copy emailed to herself.
Just in case.
The first time Mike burst into her office looking frantic, she passed it off as Mike being Mike. He had begged her for help and once finished dashed off to Harvey's office.
The second time he looked like a scolded puppy (and no, she absolutely did not find it utterly adorable). Mike had trotted off to Harvey like a dog after a bone.
After the eighth time, Rachel was amazed. The eighth time, which she named the Incident of the Mad Hatter, was when Mike needed help on some research for a case involving a guy accused of pilfering funds from a multi-million dollar tea shop. Yes, it wasn't that original, but hey she was in shock. Mike apparently needed the stuff for 1600hrs, but by the time they finished it was a half hour past the deadline.
And Harvey was on a warpath.
Well, normally he would be, but apparently Mike was his one soft spot. She had watched with growing horror as Harvey marched up to them, face blank, and stared down at Mike. Mike had simply grinned and handed the file over (Rachel meanwhile had cringed inwardly and mentally prepared herself for months of therapy in Mikes future when Harvey was done with him). But no. Harvey had made a snark-y comment or ten and flounced off.
Rachel had sat in shock as Mike simply grinned and offered to treat her to dinner for being such a help.
Rachel really did have the worst luck with men.
Ray was no fool.
Harvey loved the kid too much to be annoyed when Mike was late.
Mike Ross knew Harvey did not tolerate lateness.
Harvey was intense and intelligent, but above all he was obsessed with timeliness. Mike picked that up within ten minutes of talking to the guy and he tried to keep on Harvey's good side.
Try being the key word.
No matter what, he always seemed to be delayed (by Trevor, Louis, and random other people that Mike could swear Louis hired). If he wasn't delayed, then time seemed to be against him and would fly by. So Mike decided to take things in hand and head off Harvey's anger before the lawyer had a chance to tear into him.
He used humour. He used diversionary tactics (although Harvey seemed to humour him on that more than buy it, if Mike was reading him right). Once, Mike even tried subtle flirting. That had gone well. Shocking well, actually. Harvey had halted in the middle of reprimanding Mike and blinked, a strange look flickering across his eyes before quickly disappearing.
All because Mike had demurely peered out from under lowered lashes and licked his bottom lip.
Dude, he was on to something here...
When Harvey found himself sitting at his desk at one in the morning, waiting for Mike to get back from grabbing some files, he sighed and rested his chin on his fist.
He seemed to be doing that a lot lately. Waiting. It gave him a lot of time to think and Harvey used the spare time to its full. Mike was... well, a puppy really. He always seemed so eager one could picture a bushy tail wagging, and whenever he received a compliment he just perked up. But he was brilliant and so much like Harvey at that age.
So it came as no surprise to Harvey that he was falling in love with the kid.
But only a bit.
It was strange, being (maybe, a little bit) in love. He was shocked the first time he felt amusement and bemused affection instead of annoyance when Mike was late. When Mike started using diversionary tactics to avoid being scolded, Harvey was amused. When Mike gave him Come-Hither eyes and licked his bottom lip, Harvey nearly keeled over in shock. It was a good thing that none of the lawyers he faced could use that tactic against him or else Harvey would be screwed.
Not for the first time he was glad Mike came to his attention before another lawyer noticed the potential in his associates skinny frame.
Harvey sat back and steepled his fingers as he watched Mike come scampering up to his office.
It had not occurred to him before that he had waited for Mike his whole life, and was going to spend more time waiting for him.
Harvey Specter waits for no one except Mike.
He was surprisingly okay with that.