Molly was beginning to get very tired of sitting by herself in the lab. She had stayed up half the night helping Sherlock analyze the composition of several identical samples of cheese from Azerbaijan, but half an hour ago he had jumped up from the microscope screaming out "Eureka!" and saying that he had to get something from the canteen.
Molly was wondering if she should continue measuring the pH of the samples, or if she should slip away to her office to take a little nap when Mycroft Holmes came in through the door.
Mycroft was dressed impeccably in a pale grey three-piece suit, a short black coat, and white kid gloves wrapped around the hooked handle of a black umbrella. Molly had never seen a man wearing white gloves before. It reminded her of her former pet rabbit Flopsy who was grey with white paws.
"Where has Sherlock gotten to this time?" Mycroft asked. "He knows that today is the National Lawn Tennis Championship. Can't he for once be on time?"
Molly stood up. Her blue scrubs and white lab coat looking somehow childish next to the formality of his brushed wool coat. "Is Sherlock going to see a game of Lawn Tennis?" She asked.
"Certainly not." Mycroft said pulling out his pocket watch, "But it appears that he is going to make me late. The ambassador from Baku, Azerbaijan has come to talk about dairy trade agreements and Sherlock calls to tell me to stop all imports now when we are just about to sign! Where is he?"
"He said that he was going to the canteen." Molly said, "I could go look for him if you'd like to wait."
"Wait?" Mycroft said opening and then slamming his pocket watch with a snap before placing it back into the pocket of his waistcoat, "No time to wait! I'll go there myself."
Mycroft turned and left the lab. His smart black oxfords clicking as he walked down the hall. Molly rushed out after him.
Despite being ever so slightly overweight, Mycroft Holmes could move at quite a clip if he wanted to. Molly had trouble keeping up with him. His coat flapped and his umbrella clicked on the floor as he walked down the hallway turning into the stairwell. Molly rushed over to the stairs and looked down. She could hear his footsteps but she could no longer see him.
As she ran down the stairs after him, her foot slipped and she fell. She found herself rolling down, down, down the stairs until everything around her went black.
Molly awoke and sat up putting her hand to her head. She was alone at the base of the stairs. "I'm glad that no one saw me fall like that." She said, "How embarrassing, but I don't hear Mycroft anywhere. How long have I been sitting here? Surely somebody would have seen me if it had been a long time. What if I had lain here for hours? Then would anyone have even noticed that I was gone?
"I suppose that my cat, Toby, would notice. There wouldn't be anyone to feed him. I suppose that he could try to feed himself on mice if there were any in my flat. I left the bathroom window open. He might be able to catch a bird to eat or a bat. What a silly thought. A cat eating a bat in a flat." Molly thought as she stood up and continued her trip to the canteen in search of Sherlock.
Neither Mycroft nor Sherlock were in the canteen when she got there, so Molly looked around to see what there was to eat. She was looking at the flavored yogurt when the cashier called her over. "You Molly Hooper?" He asked.
"Yes, that's me." She said her hands in the pockets of her white lab coat.
"Sherlock Holmes told me to give you this." He said and handed Molly a large canvas bag. Molly opened the bag and looked inside it. It was full of different kinds of snacks: Crisps, fizzy drinks, candy bars, and other things, but with brand names that she had never seen before. Who had ever heard of Jabberwocky soda?
She went to a table and pulled out a bag of crisps. Someone had taped a note to the front. It said EAT ME.
Molly opened the bag and pulled out one crisp. She had just started a diet. In her diet, it was okay to eat crisps as long as you counted them. Yesterday, she had counted fifty three. "One." she said as she put a crisp into her mouth.
Molly immediately began to fan herself. The crisp was extra spicy. Blood rushed into her face and all along the surface of her skin. She tried to take off her lab coat, but the buttons were in the way, so she pulled the coat over her head.
Just then Mycroft came back into the room. He walked over to her. "Have you seen Sherlock?" He asked.
Molly pulled at the neck of her blue shirt fanning herself with the cloth.
Noticing her distress, Mycroft reached into his coat pocket and pulled out a Chinese fan that he passed to her. She opened it fanning herself until she had cooled down enough to talk.
"Is that better, Miss Hooper?" he asked.
"Yes, much better." Molly said.
"I see that Sherlock is NOT here." He said, "I shall go on. If you see him, please tell him that I am expecting his call."
Molly passed the fan back to Mycroft who took it in his white gloved hand returning it to his coat pocket before walking away.
Just then Molly's phone beeped. She picked up her lab coat and pulled out the phone. The message read...
MOLLY THE CRISPS MAKE YOU HOT. SH
Molly smirked. "I figured that out already, Sherlock." she said to no one in particular. Looking across the room at Mycroft's retreating back, she wondered what would have happened if she had given one to him. Would he have ripped off his coat, jacket and waistcoat?
If someone ate enough of these, would they strip themselves naked? Molly imagined Mycroft naked except for his shoes, socks, and white kid gloves. He would probably stand there leaning on his umbrella, trying to look dignified. She laughed. Of course, Molly couldn't really imagine Mycroft eating anything so common as a crisp, but it was a funny image nonetheless.
Her phone beeped again and she frowned as she read.
BRING THE BAG TO MY FLAT. SH
Here was Sherlock telling her what to do again. Molly was tired of being treated as a servant. Sherlock ordered her around all of the time, asking her to get him coffee, or to do tests as if she was his paid assistant, and not someone with her own job to do. She had every intention of dropping the bag on the table and going back to her office, but then she imagined what would happen if she fed Sherlock an entire bag of these crisps.
Her eyes glazed over.
Molly placed the bag on her shoulder and rushed out of the canteen toward 221B Baker Street.