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A Practical Man

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Mycroft was a practical man; he knew precisely what he was and what he was not. That did not stop him from wishing for the unchangeable, for the unattainable. The voice on the other end of the phone line, one Detective Inspector Lestrade, had brought Mycroft closer to his brother than he’d been in over a decade.

The worry that had plagued Mycroft following Sherlock’s descent into the world of drugs had lessened as Lestrade had finally presented something to Sherlock that interested him, where his skills could be put to use and his mind occupied. But Lestrade wouldn’t ruin his career working with an addict, and Mycroft thanks him for that, for forcing his brother to make the choice.

And Sherlock had. Watching the surveillance of his brother going through withdrawal had almost broken that part of him that he had long since buried away. Sherlock may not have been a little boy anymore, but he would always be Mycroft’s little brother who needed protection when he got in too deep. Because Sherlock always went too deep.

Lestrade had brought Sherlock back into the world of the living again, rather than the half existence that he’d spent far too long in, running from the world. Sherlock knew that Mycroft had had a hand in it, that Lestrade kept him up to date on the cases that Sherlock was working with him, the trouble that Sherlock was getting into, but the chasm that had divided them for so long had lessened.

And somewhere along the way, Mycroft had done the unthinkable and oh so foolishly fallen for the voice on the other end of the line. Lestrade’s accent told the tale of middle class parents from West Country but a life spent in London. Mycroft knew almost every nuance of Lestrade’s voice: the way he dropped letters and sank into a drawl when he was tired, the raise in pitch that signaled his disbelief, or the slow rumble of his amusement. And there was nothing false about the warmth that usually laced Lestrade’s voice when Mycroft called.

Having far too much information available to him regarding Lestrade’s preferences, Mycroft knew he did not stand a chance. Mycroft was not an ugly man, but he was far from handsome and not the pretty young type that Lestrade seemed to favor. Despite claims from his ex-wife that Lestrade was impotent, given Lestrade’s occasional trips to a number of clubs that catered specifically to men with certain non-mainstream tastes and the photos that his surveillance team had captured, that was clearly not the case.

Such predilections had rarely interested Mycroft, but he couldn’t help but find himself intrigued. There was nothing to be had from caring, but heartbreak. However, Mycroft had it in good authority that he didn’t have a heart. That didn’t stop Mycroft for doing something incredibly stupid and showing up at the club that Lestrade was reported to be at one night. No one questioned him or attempted to stop him as he entered.

Among the leather and denim and too bright colors, Mycroft should have looked out of place in his tailored suit, but he didn’t. It told the tale of a confident man, a powerful man, and the crowd of people all but parted before him as he made his way towards Lestrade who was leaning against the bar, nursing a drink as he scanned the crowd before him.

There was no missing when Lestrade noticed him, blue eyes locking on brown. The appreciation in his gaze was more than Mycroft expected as was the slow grin that split his face.

“Gregory,” Mycroft greeted when he finally stood before him. The slight furrow that appeared between Lestrade’s brows as he tried to figure out if he knew him amused Mycroft as did the leather ensemble that he wore.

Finally placing the voice of the man that he’d never met face to face, slow recognition dawned as Lestrade looked Mycroft over once again. “Mycroft?”

Mycroft tilted his head in agreement and took Lestrade’s drink from his hand, setting it on the bar beside them. He could see the gears turning, the questions forming, the slight embarrassment of being found here, then the bravado, the challenge that said he wasn’t ashamed and wasn’t going to be cowed.

Lestrade’s eyes followed the movement. “What brings you here? Business or… pleasure?” He gulped as Mycroft stepped closer, all but standing between his spread legs where his heels rested against the rungs of the bar stool.

“Oh, most definitely pleasure, Gregory. If you are so interested…” Mycroft let the offer hang, heavy in the musky air of the club.

For a moment Lestrade looked unsure, glancing around as though he thought this was some sort of trick. “I- yes. Yes. Most definitely.”

Mycroft didn’t fight the pleased smile that crossed his face as he wrapped his fingers around Lestrade’s, stepping back as he tugged him off the stool and onto his feet. “Let’s take this somewhere a bit more private, shall we?”

Lestrade nodded, not saying a word, but followed as Mycroft pulled him through the crowd. Eyes and catcalls followed in their wake, and Mycroft couldn’t help but pull Lestrade possessively closer. He’d never been good at sharing.

The car ride was thick with tension, and Mycroft didn’t break it, not even after they entered one of the many safe houses littering the city.

Mycroft didn’t think as he pressed him back against the closed door, slanting his mouth over Lestrade’s. It was good, more than good, but Lestrade pulled back and pushed him away at the same time. Despite kissing back, there was no sign of arousal in his frame and Mycroft carefully schooled his features into a blank mask.

“Sorry. I’m so sorry. This was a mistake,” Lestrade said with a sigh, hands swiping down his face in weariness.

“Of course, please forgive my forwardness,” Mycroft replied. This was truly not more than he’d expected, so it shouldn’t have hurt so much. It was no more than he deserved, fool that he was, rushing into this. Spontaneity often ended in disaster.

“No, sod it all. That’s not what I mean. This sex. I don’t do it. Not like this.”

Mycroft’s brow rose in question. “This?”

A slow flush spread up from Lestrade’s neck and across his cheekbones. “I submit. I take orders. Anything but sex.”

“Anything?” Mycroft drawled as he began to realize exactly where Lestrade’s interests did and did not lie, and recognized maybe they were not so different in this after all, that they might just fit.

“Are you—Are we negotiating?” Lestrade’s voice was high with shock and something Mycroft couldn’t quite identify, something he hadn’t heard before.

Mycroft wanted more of it. “Unless you would rather not. I can have you driven wherever you would like, and we can forget this night never happened.”

“I—no. I’ll stay.” Lestrade paused for a moment before adding, “Sir.”

Mycroft inclined his head, waiting for him to continue.

“No penetration. No permanent marks. No body fluids. Is—” Lestrade broke off, raising hesitant eyes to Mycroft.

“Please continue.”

“Is this going to bollocks up our relationship?”

There was a shocking bit of fear there, and with it came the knowledge that Lestrade might values those calls, this, dare he call it, friendship, just as much as he did. With a shake of his head, Mycroft replied, “No, I don’t believe it will.” Grabbing Lestrade’s hand, he pulled him deeper into the house, urging him into the first bedroom they encountered. “Strip,” Mycroft ordered as he pulled off his own jacket, laying it carefully over a chair before unfastening the buttons on his cuffs.

Lestrade didn’t hesitate and seemed to relax slightly at the order, his eyes following the paths of Mycroft’s hands as they unfastening his clothings. As Mycroft removed the rest of his outfit, carefully folding each piece, he let his eyes wander over the skin that was bared. Lestrade’s limbs were thick with muscles but his stomach had began to soften with time and too much take out and the hair that covered his body was silvering with age, much like the hair on his head.

Mycroft didn’t quite believe the appreciation that he saw on Lestrade’s face. He was not a vain man, but he didn’t hold the allure that someone such as he his brother did, so he had to ask. “You normally go home with younger men. Why?”

“It’s simple, that. I’ve found that they’re more likely not to push. A quick wank and they have their fun ordering me about. Less expectations for more.”

“And is that what you’re after here? A one off? Why’d you come with me?” Mycroft couldn’t help but ask.

“I—no. I’ve dreamt of your voice. Wanted this.” Lestrade paused and a mischievous grin crossed his face. “It’s hard to pass up a man in a finely cut suit.” He winked before simply adding, “Please.”

It was one simple word that could have meant anything, but Mycroft recognized it for what it was. he didn’t waste time with pleasantries. It was time for something different, something they both would enjoy. “On the bed, face down. Use a pillow and get comfortable before grabbing the headboard.” Mycroft hadn’t done this in a long time, but it had never been quite like this, without the expectation of sex. It wasn’t often that people understood the separation of dominance and submission from sex, and even less so that someone wanted it.

Mycroft dragged his fingers lightly across Lestrade’s skin, down his sides, up his back, across his thighs and buttocks, the back of his knees before barely brushing the soles of his feet. Lestrade jerked and shivered, and Mycroft pinched the inside of his thigh in warning. “Don’t move.” Mycroft followed the pattern again and again, varying where he touched and increasing the pressure of his fingers until red marks that didn’t fade right away were left in their wake.

Finally Lestrade went boneless with a soft sob, and Mycroft wondered if anyone had ever done this for him, touched him without the expectation of sex. His cock was half hard between his thighs, and had he wanted it, he could have stroked himself to full arousal, but this was not the place for it, not here with this. Not this time.

“Let go of the headboard and roll over. Hands at your side.” Mycroft repeated his ministrations, bringing his fingernails into play, scraping against skin until Lestrade’s body practically glowed with the heat from the blood that had risen up beneath the surface of his skin. And finally Mycroft sank down on top of him, licking at the tears that had steadily leaking from his dazed eyes before dropping his head for a leisurely kiss.

“Can I touch you?” Lestrade whispered against his lips, trembling with the need to move.

“You may,” Mycroft said as he shifted to the side so he was only half resting on Lestrade now.

Lestrade’s hands rose, tracing over space hair and soft skin, thin limbs with only a high of muscle to signify he lived something more than a life of leisure. “It’s never been—How did you know?” His confusion was all but tangible.

“We aren’t so different. You and I. Some people have no interest in sex and others have only a little. I fall into the latter category. What interest I may have, I often choose to ignore. But it is human nature to crave touch, and even I cannot deny that.”

The grin that stretched across Lestrade’s face was contagious. “Perhaps next time we can grab a bite to eat first. I’m more than a slight bit peckish.”

Mycroft laughed, finally at ease. “Of course. It would be such a pity to have you waste away.” As beginnings went, this was one of the best, and Mycroft let himself dare hope for what he normally scoffed at.

Lestrade’s laugh told Mycroft that he’d made the right decision today, and he was sure this was something Sherlock could never have imagined happening. The look on his brother’s face would be truly priceless.