"Are you… winking at me?"
"What? No…" Mike started a bit, then frowned in Donna's general direction and handed her the stack of files for Harvey. He'd been standing there waiting for the secretary to finish typing the last paragraph of whatever it was she was working on so she'd take the files off his hands. He'd already found out the hard way that she did notlike him leaving things on her desk.
"Just decided you could work with one eye tied behind your back then?"
"No, just a headache," he replied, absently rubbing his forehead directly above said eye. It felt like the beginning of a migraine, actually, but he was really hoping (probably vainly) that it'd go away. He hadn't bought migraine medicine since before he and Trevor started smoking… he hadn't needed to because the pot helped enough to get him by. Except now he'd promised Harvey he wouldn't do that anymore…
"Hmm." Donna made a shooing motion with her hands; apparently he was dismissed.
He went back to his cubicle and started working on the stack of "to-do's" for Louis. A couple hours later, the lights were noticeably brighter, and the normal office sounds: the ringing of the phones, typing of the keyboards, chatting of the various associates nearby, as well as half a dozen little noises, were noticeably louder.
Shit.Not that there was ever really a fantastic time for a migraine, but this ranked near the top of list of exactly wrong times. Mike estimated he had about another hour before he'd need to wear sunglasses and earplugs to keep the sensory input from making him hurl. Of course, by that time it probably wouldn't matter because his head would be pounding so hard he probably wouldn't even notice the vomit.
He could already feel the drummers in his head gearing up for a long set.
His desk phone rang, and Mike jumped at the sharp spike of pain it caused. "Mike Ross," he answered, trying to keep the grimace out of his voice.
"Meet me downstairs. We're going to talk to Judge Simpson."
Harvey disconnected the call before Mike could protest. And they'd just shot rightto the top of the list of 'wrong times for a migraine'.
Mike didn't have sunglasses with him, and even though it was partly overcast, the sun was still at least ten times brighter than Pearson & Hardman's indoor lighting. Or at least that's what it felt like.
Mike squinted, and kept his eyes on the ground as he made his way to where Ray and Harvey waited in the town car.
"You need glasses or something?" Harvey wanted to know as soon as he got in.
Once inside the car, he sat back and laid a hand over his eyes, hoping this meeting with the judge would be quick. The pounding in his head was getting worse. His migraines were usually pretty slow to get started… but they were also slow to go away. He was not looking forward to finding out just how bad it was going to get without the benefit of his migraine medication, either. He couldn't even remember the last time he'd weathered one without any help.
"You'd better not be hung over."
He groaned. "You know what I love about you, Harvey? You always believe the best about people."
Then the car started moving, and Mike focused on relaxing and trying to not get dizzy as they weaved through New York traffic.
The ride wasn't as bad as it could've been; that was probably more a credit to Ray's driving, than Mike's head, though.
He groaned again when they stepped back out into the sun. "God, it's bright as hell today."
Harvey came alongside him suddenly. "Look at me."
Mike did his best to comply, squinting carefully at Harvey while one hand shielded his eyes from the sun.
Harvey stared at his eyes for what seemed like forever before turning away, apparently satisfied. "Let's go," was all he said.
Mike followed. Already his head was getting bad enough that it was getting hard to snark back like he wanted to. Instead, he focused his energy on steady breathing and putting one foot in front of the other.
When they were just outside the judge's private chambers, Harvey turned to him. "Wait here."
"Uh… what? I'm not going in?"
"Not like that, you aren't."
"Like what? Why'd you drag me down here, then?" If he was going to have a full-blown, head-splitting, please-kill-me migraine in the middle of a courthouse, he at least wanted to know the reason.
"You look like death. How long do you have?"
"Until I die?"
Harvey sighed. "No, until you curl up in a ball and wish you were dead."
Mike ground his palms against his head, surprised that Harvey had figured it out so quickly. "Maybe twenty minutes, tops?"
"Give me ten." And then he was stepping through the door, leaving Mike to wait on the bench just outside.
Mike didn't know how long Harvey was in the meeting with the judge, and before long, he didn't care. The pounding in his head was picking up momentum now. Even with his eyes screwed shut, and his palm pressed to his forehead, he could feel the pain radiating out from above his left eye, all the way down his jaw and to his neck now. If this migraine followed the usual pattern, he'd be too dizzy to walk pretty soon, and he'd lose all ability to be coherent shortly after that.
A door opening and shutting behind him sounded like a shotgun in the quiet hallway, and he gripped his head tighter and ground his teeth together.
"Shit, kid, it's only been twelve minutes."
Mike had nothing to say to that. He was beyond intelligent conversation and witty comebacks. He felt Harvey grab his elbow and tug him up off the bench.
Harvey's voice was soft, and surprisingly gentle. "I'll guide you out; just keep your eyes closed. Ray's waiting right outside."
Harvey draped Mike's left arm across his shoulders, and allowed Mike to press the left half of his face into the other man's shoulder. The pain was already bad enough that he'd lost all sense of embarrassment. Right now, all he was concerned about was the agony in his brain. Each step sent a shockwave of pain up his spine and straight into his head, and even with his eyes tightly closed, the light of the sun outside made him whimper.
He felt one of Harvey's hands cover his eyes, but it only vaguely registered. It felt like he was walking on marshmallows; the ground seemed to bounce and tip in every direction, and he could feel himself swaying as he walked, despite Harvey's steadying influence.
But at least he hadn't –
Mike's stomach chose that moment to rebel, and he bent over, just as they'd reached the town car. The agony in his head spiked to new levels as he vomited into the gutter near the back wheel.
After what felt like hours of retching, Mike rocked back on his knees, panting through the pain and deliriously wondering why his head hadn't fallen off. He really wished it would, if only to lessen the agony.
He felt Harvey half-drag, half-lift him into the back of the car, and then they were in motion again. His head felt like it was being pierced with a white-hot stake, and despite the forward motion of the car, it felt like the entire world was spinning around him. He leaned forward to press his forehead against the seatback in front of him, and choked again on nothing but bile.
The only thought he was capable of anymore was the absolute certainty that he was going to die – he just hoped it'd be soon.
He felt the car round a corner, and come to a sudden stop. That was all it took; his eyes rolled up into his head, and he knew no more.
Relief was the first thing he felt as he started to wake up. His head still hurt, but it was just a mild ache compared to what it'd been before.
Relief - quickly followed by alarm. Even before he opened his eyes he could tell that he wasn't in his own bed. His bed wasn't the best in the world, but whatever he was laying on felt more like a cot. And whatever he was covered with was not his regular blanket; it was some thin scratchy thing that felt strange under his fingers.
He cracked his eyes open cautiously, afraid of the spike of agony that might follow. It didn't hurt, though. The very first thing he saw was a plastic rail alongside his bed. A hospital – that explained it.
He lay on his side, with the head of the bed slightly raised. He could feel an oxygen cannula running under his nose, and he could see wires running from someplace under his gown, to a machine somewhere near the head of the bed. When he looked down, he could see the IV attached to the back of one hand, with a line running up to a bag hung off to the side.
It seemed like it might be a little overkill for a headache, but nevertheless, the sight of that IV bag made him happy – those were obviously very good drugs he was getting.
Hearing the rustle of a paper behind him, he carefully rolled onto his back.
"You're awake." Harvey sat in a chair next to his bed, a file open in his lap.
"But not coherent. Okay."
He frowned. He was plenty coherent. "What happened?" he asked, slightly ashamed that it may have come out sounding closer to 'wh'happn'.
"You passed out on the way here."
Mike cleared his throat, hoping his mouth would cooperate better this time. "You were already coming here?"
"Mike, you were in the middle of a severe migraine. You were throwing up. Even if I knew your medical history and could be sure about any drug allergies, you wouldn't have been able to keep anything down."
"Mmph," he agreed eloquently. "Thanks, Harvey."
The other man scoffed. "You can thank me by getting better so you can proof this merger for me. It's giving me a headache."
Mike smirked. "It's obvious you care. May as well admit it."
"I care about not having to hire a new associate. It'd be a pain in the ass."
The smirk became a full smile. "You're a teddy bear. A cute, cuddly teddy bear."
Harvey rolled his eyes and pretended to ignore him in favor of the file he was holding.
"Harvey-bear. So fuzzy."
Maybe it was the drugs, or his imagination, but Mike could've sworn he saw the tiniest smile quirk Harvey's lips.
"Go back to sleep, kid."