Lestrade scribbled his name on his report for the thousanth time and flung it onto the 'finished' paper pile on his desk with as much abhorrence and prejudice as can be directed at a single piece of paper.
His phone buzzed with an incoming message.
Your signature is unique. -MH
Lestrade peered over to the page and grunted. Only the capitalized 'G' and 'L' plus the 't' were legible.
You've never noticed? -Lestrade
With great reluctance, he reached over and snagged another report. His phone buzzed again.
I think your own uniqueness has overshadowed it until now. -MH
Lestrade let out a faux-indignant noise.
Weird is good, strange is bad, and odd is when you don't know which to call someone. -Lestrade
Invalid arguement. I called you 'unique'. -MH
Same thing. -Lestrade
You're unique. Figure that one out! -Lestrade
So you were making fun of me! Haha. I win! -Lestrade
Mycroft was sitting silently, reading a book in his reserved seat in the Diogenes Club by a window. He did not read much fiction, didn't really have any interest in it at all, in fact. But today had been excessively taxing on his nerves and the constant interference from the MI5 on his business did not help any.
He had randomly picked up a volume of Harry Potter that had been lying unattended on a coffeetable nearby and had started flipping through it idly.
He had skimmed through a good third of the book when a blinding flash startled him.
Lestrade was standing outside the window with his phone, obnoxiously sticking his tongue out at him, conveying his triumph at catching Mycroft reading Harry Potter. With all those 'Hogwarts' jibes about his work, it had to happen sometime. The infuriating man grinned, almost looking proud of himself. He waved leisurely as if he wasn't aware of everybody in the room staring at him oddly.
Mycroft bit back a sigh and covered his face in his hand, wondering that if he ignored Lestrade long enough, he'd get bored and leave.
He didn't. He just stood there patiently, hands in trouser pockets, idly bouncing on the balls of his feet, waiting for Mycroft to stop ignoring him.
People began to talk inside the Diogenes Club.
Mycroft wanted to disappear from the Universe.
He hunted for a pen and paper.
Get out! Before you get yourself into trouble.
He wrote hurriedly on a newspaper, his letters looping elegantly diagonal, and held it up for Lestrade to see.
Lestrade pulled out his police issued notebook.
DON'T WORRY! SECURITY'S ALREADY ALERTED TO MY PRESENCE!
Lestrade's blocky capital letters shouted. He grinned. Ten seconds later, he took off at a run to avoid security. Mycroft shook his head and hid a smile behind his hand and wondered if he had gotten himself in too deep with this man.
BY THE WAY... DOES THIS PLACE HAVE A FIRE ALARM?
A minute later, one of the security staff distastefully peeled the torn note from off the window pane where it was stuck on by a wad of mint gum.
"Anthea, do make sure the Prime Minister gets my message. It is imperitive that he takes action immediately." Anthea typed out a note on her Blackberry. "And our business friend in China, feed him just enough bait to keep him on the hook until I find the time to reel him in properly." The PA nodded. "And where did that file from the CIA go?"
"In your desk drawer. Right hand." Anthea reminded him crisply.
"Of course." Mycroft nodded.
Anthea looked up. "Sir?"
Mycroft blinked at her. "Yes?"
"What of that dinner party you had been invited to?" Anthea motioned to the invitation card on Mycroft's desk.
"Ah..." Mycroft almost sighed. "Mrs. Lilypots." He brushed a hand over his brow and rubbed wearily at an eye. "Tell her I'm not feeling quite up to it."
"This is the third invitation you've declined, Sir." Anthea warned him.
Mycroft sighed heavily. "Very well, let us humor her."
"Just to be polite." Anthea smirked at him.
"She talks of nothing but her late husband and her twenty-some cats." Mycroft complained.
"If it makes you feel any better, Sir." Anthea said with a mysterious smile. "Lestrade dropped by about five minutes ago with doughnuts."
Mycroft blinked. "And you didn't tell me?"
Anthea shrugged back. "He was on his way to a crime scene and he didn't want to impose on your very busy schedule."
Mycroft opened his mouth, then closed it.
"He also brought coffee." Anthea added. "Said something about you complaining about a caffeine withdrawal?" She raised her eyebrow daintily.
Mycroft blew out a breath and slouched in his seat. "That man is a godsend."
"Arn't you a lucky one?" Anthea smirked back.
"I think we can afford to take a break for a few minutes." Mycroft said, looking around at his paperwork cluttered desk.
"Coffee break," Anthea allowed magnimoniously. "and then we'll figure out what to do with the U.S Ambassador."
"Hey! Stop!" Lestrade shouted as his suspect dashed off down the street.
He and Donovan pursued for a good block or so before realizing the inevitable loss of their suspect without some sort of divine interventi-...
He and Donovan skidded to a halt at the spot where their suspect lay rolling around on the street moaning and cursing in agony. Lestrade took one look at the man and came to the conclusion that the only damage he had recieved was a blow to his ego... and maybe a twisted ankle.
The man was lucky. Car crashes were nasty things, it could've easily been worse.
The car that had glanced the man off the street now opened and a deceptively baffled-looking government agent stepped out, clutching a handkerchief to his brow in faux distress.
"Mycroft?" Lestrade exclaimed incredulously.
"Unfortunately so." Mycroft had the audacity to act contrite about the whole matter. "I'm afraid this is my fault entirely. I was in quite a rush when this gentleman suddenly flew out in front of the car."
Donovan cuffed their suspect and dragged him off into their car.
"Horrible business." Mycroft sniffed. "Is he hurt badly?"
Lestrade glanced back to Donovan and their suspect. "No, I don't think so."
"Oh, good." Mycroft nodded. "Well, as I said; I'm in a hurry. So, if you will excuse me?"
"It's against the law to flee a car crash, Mycroft." Lestrade reminded.
"Oh, is it?" Mycroft hummed thoughtlessly. "Let me worry about that, then. It was wonderful to see you, Gregory."
Then, he got back in his car... and fled the scene.
Lestrade wasn't even surprised when the reports on the case claimed that the suspect tripped and fell and that the police took that opportunity to apprehend him.
No mention of a car was made.
Mycroft walked through the deserted halls of New Scotland Yard. It was amazing that a building so loud and active in the daytime could be so quiet after the day wasted away. He was here because he had planned to get a bite to eat with Lestrade between the copper going home to sleep and himself boarding a plane to Spain.
Unfortunately, Mycroft had shown up at the restaurant they had designated. Lestrade hadn't.
He rapped lightly on Lestrade's office door before letting himself in. He stepped into the quiet office and snorted a little, a small smile growing on his face.
Lestrade was fast asleep, face down, cheek squashed on his crossed arms on the desk. His mouth was open a fraction of an inch and his chest rose and fell rhythmically.
Mycroft gently pried the pen from Lestrade's limp fingers, brushed a strand of hair away from his forehead, and called Jason, his driver.
Ten minutes later, Jason arrived with the car. Mycroft glanced at his watch with a frown.
Jason was given orders to take the slumbering man home while Mycroft took a cab, for the first time in his life, to Heathrow.
"I dare you to do it."
Mycroft glared across the table at Lestrade. "No."
"Just a little." Lestrade wheedled.
"If I give you an inch, you'll take a mile." Mycroft droned. "No."
"It's just fish and chips, Mycroft!" Lestrade rolled his eyes, dipping his hand into that horrible, greasy, God-knows-how-old, newspaper cone.
Mycroft shuddered. "No. Absolutely not."
"Just once." Lestrade bargained. "Please? Like a normal bloke?"
Mycroft crossed his arms primly. "Alright." Lestrade's eyes lit up. "I'll eat that unhygenic food... if you agree to taste escargot."
Lestrade gagged. "Mycroft! Gross!"
"Exactly." Mycroft smirked, turning his nose up a little in triumph.
"All I'm asking is for you to eat some goddamn fish and chips! I'm not asking you to eat a snail!"
Mycroft raised his eyebrows.
Lestrade pouted back. "You're stubborn."
"Pot meet kettle." Mycroft threw back coolly.
Lestrade sniffed and rubbed a tear from the corner of his eye. "You're heartless." he croaked to Mycroft, who was still dry-eyed and expressionless.
"I'm not made of marshmallow inside." Mycroft replied simply, snagging a tissue paper delicately out of the box with the tips of his fingers and handed it to Lestrade without looking.
Lestrade blew his nose. "Seriously, how can you not cry?" he asked, tossing his used tissue paper into the garbage bin.
"A man's being tortured and getting his guts cut out." Mycroft pointed out flatly.
Lestrade sniffed and sent him a dark glare.
"Oh, now they cut off his head. Awfully violent movie, isn't it?" Mycroft remarked.
"Yes, you've told me many times."
"You really know how to spoil a good movie, don't you?" Lestrade wiped his nose. "Heartless, absolutely heartless."
"There, there." Mycroft sighed without much feeling.
"I refuse to believe it. We're watching the Titanic next time. I will get you to cry at a movie, Mycroft."
"When pigs fly."
"I'll get Sherlock on it right away... for science."
"I can't believe the nerve-...!" Lestrade sucked in a deep breath and held it for a moment before letting it out.
"That's it, calm down." Donovan encouraced.
"It's not actually working." Lestrade retorted flatly and stalked out to where he had parked his car.
"It's weird, you getting angry at Sherlock and me calming you down." Donovan remarked.
"We've been at this guy for weeks! And right when we're about to get him, Sherlock, who wasn't even on the case, bungles it all up!" Lestrade threw his hands up. "Just my luck!"
"We'll get him next time." Donovan said.
"No we won't. We won't get another chance, and you know it." Lestrade rubbed a hand across his tense forehead and sighed. "He's probably halfway across the Atlantic by now."
"Hardly, Inspector." Lestrade whirled around to see Mycroft stepping out of a car. "He barely reached the Tube, in fact."
He pulled the door all the way open and tipped their suspect out of the vehicle and onto the pavement. He was cuffed, gagged, and very angry. Donovan left to get a few officers to help bring him in.
"Mycroft, your brother is-..." Lestrade gestured wildly with his hands, gave up his manic pantomime, and let out a strangled noise of frustration.
"Quite, I think so too." Mycroft hummed with a half-amused, half-sympathetic smile. "In fact, that's exactly what I think of him sometimes."
Lestrade huffed and looked apologetic. "Sorry. Long day."
"So I've heard from Anthea." Mycroft nodded.
"I see you've stepped up from running our suspects over with your car, to catching them." Lestrade teased.
"Would you prefer I continued maiming them?" Mycroft asked back, eyebrow raised.
Lestrade let out a small huff of a laugh. "No."
They trailed off into silence. "Coffee?"
Lestrade began declining, then changed his mind to protesting about the timing, changed his mind again and hung his head with a sigh, defeated. "Yeah. I'd like that." he nodded sheepishly.
"Let's go, then." Mycroft chuckled at him, seeing Donovan reappearing in the distance. "I believe your sergeant has everything under control here."
Lestrade glanced over his shoulder. "Yeah, alright. Let's go. Now, now." He ushered Mycroft back in the car before jumping in after him like a man who has just been seen committing a crime. "Before the cops come." He deadpanned.
Mycroft just laughed. Life was wonderful.