|A Mysterious Thing
Author: Bad Samaritan PM
What happens when a lonely Mycroft and a world weary DI Lestrade cross paths? Mystrade happens. This basically consists of a mystery with a slow moving love story between the British Government and DI Lestrade. Pairings: Mystrade and implied Johnlock, the latter of which could be read as a bromance.Rated: Fiction T - English - Romance/Mystery - Mycroft H. & DI Lestrade - Chapters: 16 - Words: 41,818 - Reviews: 45 - Favs: 43 - Follows: 97 - Updated: 07-14-12 - Published: 04-04-12 - id: 7991141
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
A/N: This story takes place in an AU where Moriarty either doesn't exist or hasn't engaged Sherlock in his games yet. The first few chapters will be very Mycroft-centric. This first one is a bit of a character study, setting the stage. I hope that won't be a problem, but if it is then I'm sorry. Basically, it is my firm belief that John would be the instigator of any relationship between Mycroft and Lestrade, and this story is the result of that.
Mycroft Holmes did not know what to think.
He had always understood Sherlock, his brother, even when no one else had. There was a common ancestry between them, a connection between their very flesh and blood. Mycroft had ever understood his brother's psychology, well, for the most part. Sherlock was different, just as Mycroft was different. The detective had an intellect far beyond the average human being that could, if gone unchallenged, tear his mind apart from the inside out. It was important that his mind was kept occupied, distracted from the tedium of life. Why Sherlock's distraction of choice was detective work was a mystery to his brother, but that was beside the point. Even in the area of detective work, Sherlock was still an outsider. His keen skills of observation and mastery over logic evoked the jealousy of the police force. This obstacle could have easily been overcome by social graces if Sherlock had commanded any. As it was, Sherlock was extremely lacking in that region. The man had about as much social skill as a cat in a dog world, he simply didn't fit. Not only that, but he liked it that way. Social interactions without an ulterior motive were futile in his mind. What was the point of friendship? What was there to be gained from it that couldn't be gotten by other means?
Mycroft understood all this in his brother, for he himself was not so dissimilar. Letting people close to you was clearly asking for trouble, asking for pain, because, as much as humans would like to deny it, friendship always lead to pain. Whether it was the pain of loss or the pain of rejection, pain was what waited at the end of the line. Why go through pain like that if it can just be avoided in the first place? On this one issue the Holmes brothers were in agreement, friendship was not worth the effort or time it required. All relationships were like time bombs, every second that went by brought them closer to the inevitable explosion that would end them. Relationships were also monumental distractions from more important things. Part of the reason that the Holmes's functioned in the extraordinary way that they did was because they removed all extraneous information from their minds. Normal people cluttered their minds up with all kinds of useless information. These two only remembered important things, and, therefore, were more efficient. Emotions, feelings, friends; all were immaterial, and, to use Sherlock's words, were deleted from the Holmes bother's hard drives. They had been raised to think that way and neither of them ever questioned it; they could see evidence reaffirming their belief system all around them.
Then things changed, and Mycroft was left exceedingly confused. The change came in the form of an ex-army doctor named John Watson, recently returned from service in Afghanistan. At first the situation was nothing unusual, Sherlock stubbornly refused to let Mycroft pay his rent and, as a result, had gone through a string of flatmates. Dr. Watson would be like all the rest; he would live with Sherlock for a while, would sell Mycroft some useful information (everyone had their price), and would eventually leave, because Sherlock was an absolutely abominable flatmate. Then Sherlock did something unexpected, something unprecedented, he brought the good doctor with him to a crime scene. Mycroft was surprised, to put it mildly. Despite being a Holmes, Sherlock rarely did anything that Mycroft couldn't predict ahead of time. In fact, no one ever did anything that Mycroft didn't see coming. He was almost never caught off guard, and even when he was he pretended that he wasn't. So, as his younger brother brought his new friend along for the ride, Mycroft remained unperturbed. He was very calm as he minorly altered his plans; now, Anthea had been given instructions to instigate the kidnapping as soon as possible, rather than waiting till John had actually moved in with Sherlock. Mycroft needed to talk to John, needed to evaluate the man, needed to see what had caused Sherlock to treat this man differently.
In the end, Mycroft wasn't disappointed. John Watson was different. Unlike the previous flatmates, John wasn't frightened in the least during the kidnapping process. He even tried (unsuccessfully) to flirt with Anthea as she escorted him to an abandoned warehouse in an unmarked car. Mycroft wrote this off as the bravery of a soldier, but he would be lying if he said he wasn't just a little bit impressed. Mycroft had reviewed John's files, including the notes written by his therapist, and had already formed some conclusions about the psychology of this army doctor. Here, with the man standing in front of him, he could see that his deductions had been correct. This man was not suffering from PTSD. On the contrary, he was having a hard time adjusting to civilian life simply because he, John Watson, was not an ordinary civilian. No, John Watson belonged on the battle field, needed his life to have that purpose of fighting for a cause. In short, he wasn't haunted by the war, he missed it. This man was significantly more interesting than the excessively ordinary people that had come before him, but that did not account for Sherlock's behavioral switch. Sherlock was not one to make friends lightly, and for him to show an interest in someone as…boring as Dr. Watson, did not make sense.
The matter became only more complicated from there. John point blank refused to sell information to Mycroft, not even letting him name a price. Dr. Watson, like Sherlock, did not seem the type to make friends quickly, he had trust issues. Yet here he was, unwaveringly loyal after knowing the consulting detective for a grand total of one day. Mycroft decided to put this loyalty to the test. He began to refer to John's therapist's notes aloud, a blatant display of power showing John exactly what he was dealing with. For the first time, John's fear showed through his mask of bravery. Ah, so he was intelligent enough to recognize that Mycroft was dangerous, that was good. Mycroft welcomed him as a new player in the battlefield that is London, leaving the rattled doctor to be driven home by Anthea. The address he asked her to take him to: 221b Baker Street. In the course of the evening, Dr. Watson went on to murder a serial killer cabbie, in order to save Sherlock's life. Mycroft did see that one coming; hence, he didn't intervene as Sherlock was putting his own life in danger by getting into the madman's cab. Sherlock, on the other hand, seemed genuinely surprised when he put the pieces together, which brought to mind the question of why he had involved John in this case in the first place. Mycroft deemed it appropriate to make a second appearance of the night, because Sherlock, being his usual infuriating self, most likely would not inform John that he and Mycroft were relations and not, in fact, actual arch enemies. Already, Mycroft observed a great change in his brother's demeanor. He was no longer just Sherlock Holmes; he was now part of a team, Sherlock Holmes and John Watson.
As time went on, Mycroft's confusion was not alleviated. If anything, as John and Sherlock grew closer and closer together the situation made less and less sense. Whatever happened to relationships being not worth the time? Sherlock was not only friends with this ex-army doctor, but he was actively pursuing this friendship. He was participating in all kinds of useless activities, such as movie marathons, and he was making accommodations in his own lifestyle for John. That's right, he was changing himself for John. It was entirely ridiculous! Mycroft understood, of course, why such changes were being made. Why, he himself had often wished that he had a companion to share his life with. But why John Watson? What made John so special? There wasn't anything particularly appealing about the man. Yes, he was more easily tolerated than many human beings, but he could by no means be called an interesting man. If anything, John was ordinary. Was that where the appeal was, in his normalcy? Possibly, but Mycroft simply did not know.
For months, Mycroft reviewed footage from his hidden surveillance cameras, observing his brother and the new flatmate. He watched as their relationship continued to grow into a bond that could rival the greatest of romances. He knew everything there was to know about the John-Sherlock relationship. Perhaps he understood them better than they understood themselves. He perfectly understood the 'what', but couldn't seem to wrap his mind around the 'why'. Why now, why John Watson, when previously the closest thing to a friend Sherlock had was an enemy? Eventually, he came to the conclusion that he was not going to miraculously find answers by observing if he hadn't done so already. No, he needed to do more than that, he needed to interact. So, he devised a plan that he knew could very easily backfire. It was the only possible way to resolve this. He was going to, once again, kidnap John Watson.