Royal Pains

Life was hard for one DI Lestrade. Mind you, nobody who knew him ever had any illusions of it ever being easy. There was everyday work, reports to be filed, uninteresting cases, handling the whole New Scotland Yard in general as well as his sanity on one hand and three evil geniuses on the other. Only, if Lestrade was completely honest, it took both hands to handle the three on the heavier scale.

He resigned himself to a head of snow-white hair and a straight-suit by the end of the year. A slightly paranoid side of him suspected that the rest of the office was placing bets against him, seeing how long he could manage before going completely crazy.

He dragged his feet into his flat tiredly after dealing with Sherlock and Moriarty's games for the better part of the three days previous. Now, one more evil genius to go...

"Sherlock jokes about you being the Queen of England and Moriarty fantasizes about me being a king in some fairytale. I think the Universe is conspiring against us." Lestrade all but groaned in greeting, flopping onto the living room couch he always shared with Mycroft.

"Oh dear, how terrible." Mycroft offered mildly, not even looking up from his paperwork.

Lestrade let his eyes fall closed and dropped his head onto the couch's headrest. "Why are you doing your work in the living room, anyway?" he inquired. "I thought you had some unspoken rule to always do it in your study. Top secret data, for your eyes only, kinda thing."

Mycroft merely shot him a blank look. "I'll do my work wherever I please, thank you." he responded icily.

Lestrade sighed. Mycroft was in a mood. Handling egotistical, supercillious, two-faced politicians (Mycroft's words, not his) was undoubtedly a stressing job. Mycroft's way of blowing off some of that stress was to defy almost everything Lestrade said or did.

It was going to be a long night.

"Long day?" Lestrade inquired softly, still directing his face toward the ceiling.

"I couldn't say." Mycroft shot back. "It tends to be difficult to diverge 'day' when you've spent the last twenty-four hours in three different time zones." Lestrade raised his eyebrows silently at the man, too exhausted to ask him to elaborate. He probably wouldn't anyway.

"Coffee?" Lestrade offered, dragging his tired and battered body from the sofa.

"No." Mycroft refused with a clipped tone. Lestrade rolled his eyes and moved toward the kitchen. "Just tea for me, please." The government agent called after him. Lestrade threw his hands up in frustration but grudgingly made him a pot of his preferred beverage anyway. After all, two can play at the game.

"Here." he said, plunking the tea cup down by Mycroft's hand. Mycroft sent him a political smile and nod and took a sip.

He froze, his lips still attached to the cup. Then he swallowed thickly, placing the cup carefully back down onto the coffee table. He turned to Lestrade, clearing his throat carefully. Lestrade raised his eyebrows innocently at him as he sat back down on the other end of the couch. "You've deliberately sabotaged my tea." Mycroft stated bluntly.

"Yes, Mycroft, I did." Lestrade admitted coolly, sipping his mug of coffee. "To be fair, you could've made it yourself... or asked nicely."

"You've put-... what is this? Flour?" Mycroft spluttered.

"I mistook it for sugar." Lestrade responded breezily.

Oh, Lestrade was being difficult today...

"Alright, you're upset about something." Mycroft declared with a sigh.

"Not at all." Lestrade cut him off. "How was Vienna, by the way? I hear it's lovely this time of year."

Mycroft froze. "And, how did you guess I was in Vienna?" he inquired. "Are you picking up some of Sherlock's tricks?"

"Oh no, who needs educated guesses when you've got Moriarty's minions loitering about sending live video feed?" Lestrade grumbled, rolling his eyes.

Mycroft's eyes flashed with something akin to concern. "What did Moriarty want to accomplish by doing that?"

"Oh, nothing harmful, just got one of this men to keep an eye on you for a good portion of the day as a distraction from the case." Lestrade snorted. "Seriously though, your security could've done a better job of finding him. You almost caught him once earlier on in the game, so close! I thought it was going to take an impromptu samba dancing minion on the street next to you for your men to notice!" he tried to joke.

Mycroft blinked at him. "If it's any consolation, we caught him trying to shimmy his way down a water pipe to get a better view of my business, does that count?" he deadpanned.

Lestrade let out a snorting laugh. "Good enough for me."

Mycroft's gaze softened and he leant back into his seat, pushing his documents away. "Come here." he said in a voice so low it was near a whisper.

Lestrade shifted in his seat to curl onto Mycroft's lap without a second thought, he crossed his arms on Mycroft's crossed thighs and rested his head on them. Mycroft reached down and ran his fingers through the DI's short-cropped hair with a sigh. "It's been a bit of a day, hasn't it?"

Lestrade let out a sort of a despairing hybrid chuckle and whimper. "Moriarty got away. Sherlock's going to be in my office first thing tomorrow morning to rant about the Yarders' incompetance and John's probably going to take a well-deserved sleep-in."

Mycroft let out a sigh, rubbing comfortingly on Lestrade's shoulder. "You're stiff." he declared absently.

"I was tense the last few days." Lestrade defended himself. Mycroft just hummed in understanding and the two fell into silence.

"He had a gun, you know?" Lestrade said, referring to Moriarty's spy, breaking the lengthy silence.

"I know." was Mycroft's stiff reply, he knew what Lestrade was implying.

Moriarty could've had him killed on a whim, could've killed him somewhere far away from England and from Lestrade. And he could've forced Lestrade to watch him die helplessly.

"I'm glad that the meeting I was obligated to watch take place went so smoothly, though. I was just that little bit irked when that Social Democratic Party guy was leering at you." Lestrade said with a smile, cutting through the grim what-ifs easily. Mycroft smiled and chuckled back. That was his Lestrade. If Mycroft told him aliens came and infiltrated Earth he would just look at him, deadpanned, asking 'The world domination kind? Or the I-took-a-wrong-turn-on-the-cosmic-map-and-just-want-to-get-home kind?'

Mycroft gently took Lestrade's chin between his thumb and forefinger and placed a warm kiss on his chapped lips. "I'm just glad to be back." he said sincerely.

Lestrade let out an appreciative hum and smiled against his lips. "I need a shower." he stated mischeviously and hopped off the couch.

Mycroft frowned a little at the sudden loss of warmth on his lap and looked on half-fascinated, half-reprimandingly as Lestrade toed his shoes off and tossed his socks carelessly over onto the vacated end of the couch as he shrugged out of his jacket. "You feel like joining me?" the law enforcer asked with a sly smile.

"I don't trust that look, DI Lestrade." Mycroft responded mock-warily.

"Oh, please!" Lestrade laughed, unbuttoning his shirt and loosening his tie. "I don't bite!" Then he leaned in very, very closely. "Unless you ask me very nicely." He winked impishly and stauntered off, letting his shirt slip to the ground as he went.

"Behave Mister Lestrade." Mycroft sighed half-heartedly at the man's distractingly shirtless, but generally retreating figure and felt muscles tug at the corners of his mouth.

Lestrade disappeared into the hallway for a moment before poking his head back with a smirk, belt dangling from his hand. "Make me." He dropped that clothing item and disappeared fully again.

"You don't have to go littering the flat with your dirty clothes, Lestrade." Mycroft tried to tell him scoldingly and failed at it brilliantly.

"Not a problem! You can just pick them up on your way over, Hansel and Gretel like!" Lestrade hollered back, tossing his trousers down the hall where he knew Mycroft could see them.

"Will I be able to expect a house made of sweets at the end of the trail?" Mycroft shot back, smiling in slight satisfaction when Lestrade let out a quick bark of laughter.

"Mycroft, get a move-on before I decide to hide my dirty underpants in your travel bag!" Mycroft chuckled and pushed himself languidly off the sofa.

He had been summoned.

The shrill ringing of a mobile phone pierced the silence in the bedroom before Lestrade stirred and groaned into Mycroft's shoulder. "Who's is it?" he asked mumbling, voice husky from sleep.

Mycroft felt around the nightstand before finding the phone in question. "Yours." he responded, handing Lestrade his phone.

"Thanks." Lestrade grinned apologetically before taking the call, not even bothering to look at the caller's ID. "Lestrade."

Mycroft startled when he felt Lestrade suddenly tense beside him. Lestrade grimaced a little at the muffled voice in his ear, then he pressed the phone into his own shoulder and looked at Mycroft. "Moriarty's got my number." he whispered.

Mycroft's eyes widened in alarm but he kept quiet.

Lestrade's eyes flashed at something Moriarty told him, then he settled for a cold smirk. "Oh is that so? Did you like the little touch with the underwear?" Mycroft raised his eyebrows but Lestrade silenced him with a hand motion. "You're a sick, demented, voyeur Mister Moriarty. ...Yes, you are. Now-... no, shut up-... shut up, I don't care." Lestrade seemed to interrupt Moriarty. "Don't wanna hear it. It's two thirty in the morning, I'm tired, and I'm going back to sleep." And with that, Lestrade brutally stabbed the end call button.

Mycroft's eyebrows were still raised. "'Underwear'?"

Lestrade snorted. "What? Yeah. Moriarty's got a hidden camera somewhere out there since a few hours ago." He waved dismissively. "Don't worry, your men will get it." Lestrade's phone rang again. He picked it up. "Jim dear, two calls? I know, I know, I missed you too." Lestrade grumbled with clear exasperation before he let Moriarty speak. Mycroft couldn't help but snort. "But honestly, I'm in bed with my lover and don't appreciate being interrupted."

Lestrade listened to the criminal mastermind speak for a few moments, an unreadable expression on his face. Mycroft began to worry and moved to take the phone from him but Lestrade shook his head, stopping him. Finally, he spoke. "Mister Moriarty, I believe you've made your threats very clear. Now, let me extend the same courtesy." Mycroft blinked in surprise at Lestrade's suddenly calm, cold tone. "Don't overstep your bounderies because I, like all other people, have a line that people know not to cross. And if you do, I'll ensure that you're never caught by the New Scotland Yard. Okay?"

Moriarty spoke again and Lestrade smiled, sweet as candy. "Yes, Jim, that's exactly what I'm implying. The police won't even find a body." Mycroft raised his eyebrows. "I'm glad we understand each other. Good night." Lestrade hung up again and slouched limply into Mycroft with a sigh.

"'You'll ensure he'll never be caught by the New Scotland Yard'? 'Won't find a body'? Who are you and what have to done to DI Lestrade?" Mycroft mumbled, slightly shell-shocked.

Lestrade laughed. "Sorry about that, I had to get a point across. I don't think Moriarty will be calling my cell again, he knows I'll just hang up on his Bond-villain rants." Lestrade tossed the phone down to the foot of the bed.

"What did he say?" Mycroft asked curiously.

"Oh, the same old 'I'm watching your friends and I can kill them anytime I want' speech. I think he might've wanted something from me, didn't let him get around to talking about it, though. That's the problem with evil geniuses, they seem unable to live without their dramatic entrances and flamboyant speeches. All you need to do is cut them off mid-rant and all their carefully laid plans come tumbling down." Lestrade shrugged his shoulders casually.

Mycroft stared at him for a moment before finally collapsing into a fit of laughter. "Wonders never cease, DI Lestrade." he sighed contentedly, wrapping his arm around Lestrade's shoulders and planting a kiss into his hair.

"Seriously though, two thirty in the morning and I have to talk to a pyromaniacal criminal mastermind who just watched me shag my boyfriend, only in my life..." Lestrade groaned, nestling deeper into the crook of Mycroft's neck.

"I think that was officially the worst contact with a dangerous criminal known to the history of law enforcing." Mycroft chuckled, patting Lestrade's shoulder. He grinned down at his lover. "Unofficially, I think your fierce protective streak is sexy."

Lestrade winked back. "That's a whole 'nother side of me."

They were interrupted by another ringtone. "Mine." Mycroft informed him with an exasperated sigh, reaching over to the nightstand. It was a text.

Lestrade didn't even need to ask to know who the sender was. "Sherlock?" Mycroft nodded grimly. "Jesus Christ! They're all seriously a royal pain in the arse!" he whined.

"Sherlock's gotten himself arrested again." Mycroft informed him.

"Like I said, royal pains in the bleeding arse!" Lestrade cursed as he fumbled for his phone. "Donovan? Yeah, Lestrade. You still on duty? Sherlock needs to be let out. Right, goodnight, and get home!" He threw his phone away for a second time just as Mycroft carefully placed his phone back onto the nightstand.

"Children." Mycroft shook his head, grabbing Lestrade's arm and pulling him back into his arms.

They had only laid back for three minutes before both phones rang almost simultaneously. They exchanged helpless looks and reached for their respective phones. "Talk about kingdoms to protect." Lestrade grumbled.

"CIA." Mycroft growled. "Bloody time zones."

"Somehow, Anderson's got wind of Sherlock being locked up and now the two are causing a riot." Lestrade called back. "Donovan's calling, begging me to come down and fix things." He leaned over and kissed Mycroft softly. "Sorry, Mycroft, I know you were looking forward to a lackadaisical night in, but we really should get up."

He reached over and threw Mycroft's trousers at him as he pulled on a discarded shirt. "That one's mine." Mycroft told him casually with a sigh, already missing the other man's body heat.

Lestrade shrugged his shoulders, buttoning the shirt up. "Can't be bothered. Where's the car keys?" He rummaged around in a drawer for a clean pair of trousers.

"Living room coffee table." Mycroft called back from their wardrobe as he fitted on a shirt and a smart suit jacket.

"Tie." Lestrade waved the item aloft. Mycroft bowed his head a little to let Lestrade slip the tie over his head as he buttoned up his cuffs.

"Where's my other shoe?" Mycroft asked, spying only one shoe in the bedroom doorway.

"Probably bathroom." Lestrade mused, disappearing into the bathroom. "Found it!"

"Wallet." Mycroft took the shoe in question and deposited the DI's wallet into his trouser pocket.

"You got the flat keys? I need them." Lestrade said as he slipped into his socks and shoes in the living room.

"Where's yours?" Mycroft inquired curiously.

"Don't know. I think I lost them during my spontaneous stripping adventure." Lestrade grumbled, patting down his pockets.

Mycroft picked up the trousers Lestrade had thrown haphazardly into the hallway on his way to the shower. "Here they are." He tossed the keys to Lestrade.

Lestrade deftly plucked them out of the air and planted a quick peck on Mycroft's cheek. "You're a lifesaver, Mycroft."

Mycroft kissed him back, full on the lips. "Sorry about tonight. See you next time we're both free?"

"Mhm. See you then." Lestrade nodded back.

They exited the flat together. "Sherlock's going to ask why you're wearing my shirt." Mycroft warned Lestrade with a grimace.

"Serves him right." Lestrade rolled his eyes. "He'll know exactly what went down before I came in, it'll teach him not to cause trouble so late at night. I'll call you."

"DI Lestrade, you have a definite dark side to you." Mycroft laughed. "I like it." They smiled at each other and went their separate ways.

Nobody said DI Lestrade's life was easy. But, at the end of the day, nobody could say he wasn't satisfied with it either.

The End.