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London was dark today, gloomy. Fogged, cluttered by autumn precipitation and so utterly uninviting that Mycroft deeply considered rearranging his morning. He wanted to stay exactly where he was, wrapped in sheets and self-indulgence. Besides, the miserable weather that loomed outside his window and the rain-splattered streets were nowhere near as interesting as the man tangled in his shared bedsheets. Holmes let his gaze travel from the window, his eyes fixing on everything that lay out of place in his bedroom. It was all evidence of how they’d spent their evening: an empty wine bottle here, discarded clothes there and spent cigarettes snuffed out in a crystal ashtray.

Everything about the state of his room was as relaxing for Mycroft as being reclined on a Caribbean beach may have been for someone else.That kind of recreational travel was unheard of to him. He would never go on a vacation like that, England couldn’t afford his absence. Instead, his escape was right at home in his bedroom. It might not seem like all that much, but he did take full advantage of that time and the man he spent it with.

Gregory Lestrade, the very best that Scotland Yard had to offer, an excellent public servant and, to Holmes, a gorgeous reward for his own ingenuity. Greg’s body was as littered with evidence of last night’s adventures as the rest of the scenery. There was a thin line of stained burgundy across his bottom lip from their shared wine and red marks across his collarbone from Mycroft’s teeth. He pivoted to bring his body closer to Greg’s; the more he lingered on the echoes of their evening tryst, the more appealing the idea of an encore became.

Mycroft reached out and slid his hand across Lestrade’s stomach, down his side to his thigh and then in between the Inspector’s legs, ignoring the man’s small jolt of protest as he woke up completely. Holmes watched Lestrade’s face. The confusion fading as slow recognition of what was happening took its place. Mycroft loved that. He loved observing Greg when realisation dawned, it was an emotion that suited the other man’s features well, which was fortunate for him considering how frequently it occurred.

Lestrade wasn’t what Mycroft would consider a bright individual. He was handsome, and he possessed an overabundance of natural charm, but that did not make him intelligent. He did have a certain special something that set him apart, but it wasn’t entirely complimentary. Simply put, Greg was without a doubt the most malleable detective that Scotland Yard had to offer. Mycroft recognised that potential the first time he’d seen him. Greg’s large brown eyes were eager not only to please, but to obey. He might think of himself as someone who’d bend rules as he saw fit, but in Mycroft’s eyes Lestrade was born to take orders.

That fact made him an asset as far as Mycroft was concerned. Especially when it became obvious that his brother’s fixation on crime wasn’t a passing phase and Mycroft had no choice but to start paying closer attention to the net of law enforcement that Sherlock would almost certainly find himself tangled in. Five years before the younger Holmes bucked off his university studies in favour of detective work, Mycroft already had Lestrade picked be the man Sherlock would affix himself to. All because he knew that he could get his hand around Lestrade with minimal resistance..

But it hadn’t been entirely for Sherlock. Mycroft had his own motives for singling Greg out and wanting to spend more time with the up-and-coming Yard detective, but he knew Lestrade never suspected. After all, Sherlock’s disgraceful drug habit and unrivaled mood swings made it all seem perfectly legitimate that Mycroft needed to keep an eye on his brother by proxy.

He’d to wait almost a decade before his investment finally yielded a return. It took quite a lot of patience and some of his best civilian work. It wasn’t easy to arrange for someone else’s wife to get caught up in a string of extramarital affairs, but the effort that went into arranging it was well worth it. Lestrade aged like a fine wine, just getting more attractive with every greyed hair.

He especially liked the way that Lestrade looked in the mornings. Dim light did wonders for the gentle structure of his face. In those early hours, Greg always seemed so bright-eyed and ready to face anything the day had to bring. It always made Mycroft wonder about what it must be like to not know exactly what to expect in the hours ahead. It had been a very long time since he’d been truly surprised by anything. After all it was his job to speculate, consider and prepare for all possible outcomes and the line between his role in the government and his personal life had entirely faded over time. Being caught off-guard by anything was a sensation he only experienced vicariously. That might have been why he so immensely enjoyed watching others struggle their way through the unexpected. So much so, that occasionally he went to the necessary lengths to shock them himself.

Like now, for example.

Lestrade did not present much of a challenge as far as being caught unaware was concerned, but his reactions were so pleasing and so genuine that it hardly mattered. He kept his eyes trained on Greg’s face as he stroked the inside of his thighs, forcing them wider apart as he engaged the swelling erection between them.

“Good morning.” Holmes breathed against Lestrade’s throat as he admired the white stubble on his lover’s face. He put his mouth against Greg and pushed downward to assault the man’s collarbone again, biting at the marked skin. “Inspector.”

In absolutely every avenue of Mycroft’s work, he was delicate. Matters of international importance required the same skill and attention as a turn-of-the-century watchmaker’s craft and Holmes never moved forward with any plan until he’d considered all options. He was careful and reserved. But on vacation, he didn’t have to concern himself with any of his usual protocols, and there was no gentleness now.

The darkness of the thick clouds outside offered no favours when it came to keeping track of time. It was easy to think it was still much earlier, that the sun hadn’t quite risen, and neither bothered to check otherwise. They were far too preoccupied with each other.

Holmes coaxed Lestrade towards the center of the bed and fit himself between his tanned and sturdy thighs, fully appreciating the thick hard arousal now pressing into his abdomen. The fact that his partner had already succumbed to certain morning conditions was optimal as it minimised the need for further meandering ministrations. It wasn’t that he didn’t enjoy touching Lestrade, but quite the opposite. It would be very easy for Holmes to get lost feeling Greg’s pulse speed up and his breathing shallow. He would be delighted, really, to rub the man off until the pressure at the base of his so spine was so severe that he had to meet the rhythm of Mycroft’s wrist with his hips. Maybe giving him a few post-climax moments to catch his breath before encouraging he return the favour by putting his mouth to the only use it was good for.

But it was far too early in the day for Mycroft to want to exert that kind of effort. Beside which, his lover’s pleasure was never quite as high a priority as his own and at the moment it was an even lower on his list.

Mycroft arched his body, pressing his weight into Greg’s hips, as he kissed him. He thought about the fact Lestrade never seemed to mind the lack of direct attention. That he always seemed to be thrilled for anything at all which was exactly how he should be. Holmes was a busy man, particularly with the current state of politics. Even now his mind was half turned to elections and warfare (were they not the same?) as he eased towards the bedside table, opening the drawer to acquire their necessities.


The change in Lestrade was immediately noted. The act of reaching for condoms and lubricant acting almost like Pavlov’s bell. The inspector arched his head back, shutting his eyes and sinking into the pillow as Mycroft shifted away from his abdomen. Holmes held the wrapper between his teeth as he poured the oil into his hand to warm it up before slicking it over the skin of Greg’s cock. Mycroft listened to the hitch in Lestrade’s breathing as he curled fingers into him intrusively and grinned at the arrhythmic, impulsive twitch of Greg’s hips.

Mycroft pushed Lestrade’s legs further apart. Even though they were both silent and his brain was a busy one, right now he wasn’t distracted at all. It was impossible to be when a body like Greg’s lay beneath him begging for attention with every shift it made on the mattress. It was rare that Mycroft’s mind never quite existed only in the present. It was almost always considering the events that had come previous and the yet-to-be-determined. He was idly wondering on how long it might be before the clouds outside broke into heavy rain, how surely Lestrade was going to be late into the office because of poor weather traffic and a delayed start to the day -- and how little he cared. What Greg did with his work day, no matter how long or short it was, was far too insignificant for him to ponder over too long. He was, after all, only here to fuck him. The betterment of Lestrade’s career was surely Sherlock’s department.

Holmes released the condom with his teeth, put his hand on the mattress for support as he put in on and then moved himself into the body he could no longer stand to just admire. He guided himself in between the man’s legs and gripped a hand behind Greg’s thigh, keeping him exactly in the position he wanted. He paid enough attention to his lover to make sure the angle wasn’t particularly uncomfortable, and then he found a rhythm caught somewhere between slow and powerful.

“Fuck.” Lestrade breathed.

The way Mycroft had his leg stretched made Lestrade think of how recent their tryst the night before was and the dull ache of the muscle nearly made him cringe at the reminder that he wasn’t quite as young as he used to be. He wasn’t about to mention it or try to disrupt what they were doing to favour himself though. Realising you were old and admitting it were still two very different things. Besides, the feelings brought on by Mycroft’s thrusts and the friction of his abdomen sliding over Greg’s erection was pleasurable enough to dim a muscle ache. In the end, he only had to withstand the strain for a few minutes before Mycroft pivoted Greg onto his stomach. They finished with Holmes breathing hot against the back of neck, his hand around Greg’s cock to aid the Inspector along even as he pushed him face down into the mattress.

While they lay beside each other, catching their breath, a crack of thunder outside announced the beginning of the long-threatening rain. The hiss of the storm brought a sigh from Lestrade as he realised almost immediately that going on in that wretched weather was his not-so-distant future. He stabbed blindly at the bedside table, looking for his phone to check the time. He cursed when he realised he ought to have already been out and on his way to work a good fifteen minutes ago.

“Shit, sorry.” He said, peeling himself reluctantly from the bed and grabbing his clothes in handfuls as he made his way to Mycroft’s master bath. He didn’t offer any more of an explanation because he knew how useless it was to tell any Holmes what they already knew. He was only going to make himself later taking a shower, but he weighed that as less important than showing up at the office smelling like sweat and sex.

He stepped into the shower and as good as the water felt on his skin, the experience was more like an unwelcome transition than something refreshing. It was strange to think about, sometimes, how different his nights with Mycroft were to his days at work or with Sherlock, and it was only strange because of how closely related (actually related) it really was. He would have worried that the younger Holmes would figure out what he was up to, just because that was Sherlock’s modus operandi, really, but Mycroft had assured him that his younger brother had a bit of a blind spot when it came to his family and sex. He’d never elaborated as to why this was a difficult area for Sherlock and quite frankly, Greg didn’t rightly want to know. The Holmes family dynamic was something he recognised as being out of his depth and that was fine with him.

In the ten minutes, Greg to re-emerged,drying his hair with a wet towel, to find Mycroft already involved with his smartphone. He supposed duty called for them both, sometimes.

“I’ll ring you.” He said, as if it was some sort of consolation for leaving in such a hurry, and then retrieved his trenchcoat from the nearby chair that had held his clothes for the night. “Soon.”

Lestrade was never good at this bit. The leaving bit. It probably had something to do with how negative his ex-wife’s reactions had always been when he had to depart for work at a moment that she seemed inopportune. As thought it was his fault that murders happened in the middle of the night or results came back from the lab (or Baker street) at ungodly bloody hours.

He crossed the room, opening the bedroom door and then pausing when another rumble of thunder reminded him of just how horrible the weather was. He’d almost forgotten while he’d been in the shower. In his moment of hesitation, he noticed that leaned up against Mycroft’s dresser was an umbrella, and one more glance at the window told him it might be a good idea if he pulled that along with him before trekking outside to find a cab.

“Can I borrow this?”

Mycroft looked up from his phone, giving Lestrade a look that said he quite clearly had not been paying the inspector so much as a speck of attention. “I’m sorry?”

“The umbrella.” Greg said. “Can I borrow it?”


“What?” Lestrade smirked, thinking this was some kind of odd joke but not having the patience to find it at all funny. Instinctively, though, he straightened a bit. He’s spent far too long being on the wrong end of Holmes inhospitality to not be immediately defensive about this kind of thing. Working with Sherlock required the development of a rather thick skin, but he wasn’t invulnerable and occasionally he made the mistake of letting his emotions run too close to the surface, particularly after being intimate with someone. Perhaps that was one of the reasons he’d managed to stay in a loveless (but not sexless) marriage for as long as he had.

“No, you may not.” Mycroft continued. “You don’t need it anyway, you’re still damp from the shower. Your shirt is practically sticking to you. It isn’t going to help.”

Lestrade stared at him, not quite sure how they were even having this conversation. “Well sure, but I really was hoping to not get rained on, you see. It’s just an umbrella, you’ve what, thirty of them?”

“That,” Mycroft responded, “is a Choice Stout Whanghee handle Fox Umbrella, and it’s worth more than you’re going to make today and thus no, you cannot take it.”

“Right.” Lestrade said, looking down at the thing and fighting the sudden urge to try his luck at snapping it in half. He shifted his weight from one foot to the other, reminded himself that the Holmes brothers had always been a little bit fucking weird and glanced up at Mycroft once more. He had a hard time keeping his face neutral, not that it mattered. When he spoke again, the raised volume of his voice revealed his irritation. He didn’t like being reminded about the wage gap between what he brought home and what Holmes did. Particularly when he thought too hard about the fact taxpayers picked up both of their tabs. “So you’re what? A collector?”

“A connoisseur.”

“You can’t be an umbrella connoisseur.”

“And you’re the expert, are you?” Mycroft dropped his phone to the bed and stretched out beneath his blankets. “While my possessions are important to me, did it not occur to you that there was another reason why I may so swiftly refuse to give it over to you?”

There was always a chance, no matter what steps they took to guard against it, that Lestrade would run into Sherlock and if the inspector had Mycroft’s umbrella on his person at the time, it might lead to a line of questioning that Lestrade could not be trusted to sidestep around. Which was probably why, when Lestrade shouldered off the doorframe to turn and leave sans umbrella, Mycroft cleared his throat to stop him.

“Only just noticed now that I have a fondness for ferrules, have you?”

“For what?” Lestrade said, turning back to face Holmes.


“Well.” The inspector shoved his hands into his pockets and tilted his chin upwards, as if he had to take a moment to really consider his answer. He had a bad habit of over-thinking whenever he was around Mycroft -- he was almost afraid not to. “I mean, I know you have a lot of them but you have a lot of ties as well. I didn’t think you were particular about them at all -- and you’ve not minded when I’ve borrowed a tie.”

“Have you actually looked at the ties you usually wear?” Mycroft said, tapping the bed with his fingers before moving to get up with a sigh. He pulled his red house coat from a hook by the bed and threw it on before crossing the floor to stand in front of the other man.

“Cute.” Lestrade said, but he did deflate when Mycroft joined him by the door. Sometimes it was easy to dismiss the things that Mycroft and his brother would say about him. He certainly didn’t care if either Holmes had an opinion about his ties, but the implication that he was unobservant left a stale taste in his mouth. He knew what that meant in the language that the Holmes brothers spoke; he knew it was a synonym for stupid and that bothered him. Greg didn’t really think that asking to get through a day without being insulted was too much to ask no matter how either of them defined their relationship.

He knew the score, he really did. It was no secret to him that Mycroft found him attractive and little else. That wasn’t something that bothered him, really. It wasn’t as though he was here because he’d been drawn in by Mycroft’s winning personality. But disregard and just plain cruelty were different things and he’d been handed the short end of too many sticks to want to put up with this when he didn’t have to. “Let’s just leave it then, shall we?”

“Oh, take the umbrella.” Holmes picked it up himself and held it out to Lestrade. “Really, I’m only being silly.”

A clap of thunder outside hid Greg’s slight hesitation and he looked towards the window first pulling on his bottom lip before turning back to give Mycroft his attention. He knew he was being offered an olive branch and a way out of a conversation neither of them wanted to have and that was probably for the best. The less attention he paid to how ill-matched they were, the easier it would be to dismiss. Ignorance was bliss, as they say,and prolonging ignorance was also something he was very good at. He would have never been able to stay married to a woman who preferred the company of other men for so long if that wasn’t true.

Sometimes, being unobservant had it’s advantages.