Chapter 1: Muddy Waters
He was out of time and out of options. Unless Harvey could come up with some miracle loop-hole, there was no way in stalling this merger any longer. He saw Louis's smirking grin floating in his head should Harvey fail. Then he saw Jessica's stern look of disapproval and with a simple shake of her head, his world would come toppling down.
Loosening his tie, Harvey yanked it off, carelessly tossing it on top of one of many paper mountains in his office. He glanced at his watch. It was past midnight on a Saturday night. The soft croon of Muddy Waters filled his office. He'd turned on his blues three hours ago and usually it helped him get the job done. Except tonight, Harvey was feeling the pressure. If he lost the Vanderstorm case, he'd get pulled onto the banks of dangerous waters and no one would be there to save him, just a few to watch him fall. And he was sinking fast and gaining speed- in over his head as Louis would say.
He glanced at his watch again, waiting. All of a sudden he saw the blurred form of a man come jogging into view of his office and stumble to a stop at his glass office door. It was Mike Ross. He stepped inside, panting and wearing the same suit he had on when he left earlier this evening. He was a wrinkled, haphazard mess and Harvey could see the dark bags under his eyes from where he sat behind his desk. Mike looked sleep-deprived and unremarkably bad. But Harvey didn't have the slightest sympathy of him. It was his head on the chopping block this time. And he planned on saving it, no matter the cost.
"I called you almost an hour ago." Harvey stated, biting back the edge of anger in his tone. "Where have you been- Mars?"
"My bike got stolen." Mike panted out in a choppy breath.
"So you thought the quickest way to get here was by foot?"
Mike rolled his eyes, letting out a deep breath. "Do you have any idea how hard it is to find a cab in the city on a Saturday night?"
Harvey's look was as sharp as his tone as he said, interrupting. "And nor do I care. Now sit down. We've got a long night ahead of us."
Mike's striking light blue eyes narrowed at him. "We?"
Harvey arched an eyebrow. "Yes, we. Now stop talking and start reading."
Mike surveyed the boxes and papers littering the office and titled his head slightly. "If I'm correct, I believe you gave me this weekend off, Harvey."
"What are you talking about? I did no such thing…" Harvey trailed off but abruptly stopped and realized that Mike was right. He had agreed to give him this weekend off two months back. Shit, he thought.
"Aw-ha," Mike said with a smug grin. "You know I'm right."
Harvey sighed, feeling his irritation suddenly spike. Mike was right and he was wrong. And how much he hated the feeling. "Fine, you're right."
"Wait…" Mike said, his hand cupping the back of his ear, pretending to look confused. "I'm sorry, can you repeat that? I think I heard you say something…"
"I said..." Harvey bit out through clenched teeth. "You're right. Okay?"
Mike grinned in response.
Harvey quickly realized then that he was going to be doing this by himself and began rolling up his selves, ready to dig in to the Vanderstorm case files.
He picked up a file. "You're free to go Mike. Deal's a deal."
Harvey waited to hear the leaving footsteps of his associate, but didn't. He glanced up from the file. Mike stood at the doorway, an indecisive look on that puppy cute face of his. Harvey vaguely wondered what his young, handsome associate had been doing before he called him earlier tonight. Or maybe who he was doing? Harvey paused. Where had that thought come from? Why did he care who Mike was screwing? It was none of his business.
"How 'bout next weekend off?" Mike asked then.
Harvey narrowed his eyes. "Why? You're off the hook now, Mike. Go home. Get some sleep."
Mike glanced over to Harvey's record player and back to him. "You only play Waters when you're in trouble."
How did Mike know? He rarely played Muddy Waters because he was rarely in trouble. Besides that, since when did Mike know blues?
Harvey titled his head to the side curiously. Mike set down his bag and cleared his throat. "Well, I mean I never hear you play this record so it must mean its special or you only listen to it when you need too." Harvey gritted his teeth. Mike shifted on his feet before blurting out, "And I heard you were in hot water with Jessica over the Vanderstorm case."
"Really? I'm not. I've got this under control."
"Huh?" Mike said, unconvinced. "So is that why you called me and said it was an emergency?"
Harvey tossed the file on his desk, the new source of his frustration staring him in the face. "Hey- I gave you an out, Mike. Take it or leave it. I don't have time to play games."
"So you are in trouble?"
"So… you do need my help?"
Mike raised his hands defensively. "I just want to hear you say you need my help and I'll stay."
Harvey's jaw was clenched so tight he thought he might snap it in two. And Mike was really pushing his buttons tonight for some reason. "Yeah, all right- I need you."
A sudden dazzling sparkle shone through Mike's blue eyes. He smiled warmly at Harvey and shrugged off his wrinkled navy blue jacket and reached for the closest box to him. Harvey watched as Mike plopped down on his couch, pulling file after file out and looking pleased. Harvey frowned. Mike was happy over his admissions yet wasn't acting like an arrogant idiot about it. Instead, he got to work. It was in this moment that the burden of his responsibility and the pressure began to shift. He no longer felt like he was sinking on his own. He had Mike. And he could trust that Mike wouldn't let go of him or let him fall into dangerous waters alone.
A couple hours later Mike struck gold. Feeling practically giddy and possibly delusion from the severe lack of sleep, Mike shot to his feet triumphant.
"What'd you find?" Harvey asked, leaning forward in his chair.
Harvey had lost his tie and jacket hours ago. His hair was tousled instead of slicked back and the weariness under his dark eyes, matched Mike's. Harvey looked almost human, maybe even vulnerable to Mike. He rarely saw him like this. It was obvious from the moment he walked in earlier that Harvey was in serious trouble and actually needed his help.
Though Mike was tempted to go home and sleep, the stress and strain in Harvey's face made him hesitate. He didn't have the heart to tell the guy no. He was his friend. His best friend now that Trevor was gone. Harvey proved his loyalty to him over the past year they've been partners and it was only now, moments like these that Mike got to pay him back for his trust.
"I found your loop-hole." Mike said striding over to the desk. Harvey got to his feet and intercepted the file, his eyes already filling with relief as he looked from Mike to the sheet of paper.
Pride engulfed Mike then as he stood before him, already grinning. Harvey read quickly, then read the last two lines out loud. "A sales merger cannot be brokered until the council committee votes in conferment on the following fiscal year as to prevent allegations of fraud or facilitation of any criminal act…"
"In other words, you've got another…" Mike glanced at his watch. "Two months until the next fiscal year for the Vanderstorm company to trade up to another company."
Harvey let out a soft disbelieving chuckle, his eyes glued to the paper in hand. Mike's pride instantly turned to sear happiness. He was able to do this for Harvey. He was able to truly help him and it meant more than a weekend off every two months. It meant so much more…
His stomach suddenly knotted into a bundle of nervous energy, unable to look away from the handsome older man standing before him. Mike choked back the lump in his throat and took a deep breath. His heart pounded and his pulse raced. Harvey meant more to him than this business partnership. And being so close to him now, seeing the vulnerability and relief in those beautiful golden brown eyes made his heart twist into a funny knot. His eyes slipped down to the thick fullness of Harvey's lips and saw himself moving in, taking those supple lips into his and…
A sudden flutter of sexual arousal hit him square in the gut and Mike shuddered. He was about to jump backwards when Harvey finally looked up from the sheet of paper and smiled coolly at him. Mike loved that smile. That cocky, yet confident smile of a man who knew who he was and what he wanted out of life.
"I don't know how to thank you, Mike." Harvey said unexpectedly. Harvey was never the one for compliments. "You saved my ass, yet again."
Harvey was still smiling at him, still so close, so open…
Mike, taken over by a fleeting moment of insanity, stepped forward, angled his head to the side and kissed Harvey. If possible, Mike's heart stopped beating for a full minute as his lips caressed his. It was soft and light, tentative and unsure. Mike kissed the closed lips of the man he had envied, hated, needed, desired and wanted for the past year. Never in his life had he been sexually attracted to a man. But Harvey Spector was different. Harvey Spector was the only person in this world he truly trusted and who Mike would fight for.
His body trembled with unquenched need as he realized quickly Harvey wasn't kissing him back. He jerked his head back, eyes opened wide as he searched Harvey's face. He was greeted by a cold, unnerving stare.
"Sorry," Mike blurted out, stumbling backwards and awkwardly grabbing his bag and jacket off the couch. "I should go…"
"Mike…" Harvey's voice was just as cold. "Wait…"
Mike suddenly couldn't bare the idea of being in this office a moment longer. He had just made an ass out of himself. He kissed his boss! He couldn't believe it. Maybe he should run home, maybe it would dislodge whatever idiotic logic that got trapped in his brain. Shaking, Mike reached the door, already halfway out when he risked one last glance over his shoulder at Harvey. He still stood in the same spot, paper in hand and a curious, almost bewildered expression on his face. Mike felt his face flush a deep red and headed straight to the exit at a run.
**First Suits slash story- so pleeeeeease let me know what you think so far! THANKS!