"You know what..." Mycroft said with a grimace when he, Lestrade, and Anthea arrived at Mycroft's safehouse. "I think it would be much less of a hassle if you just moved into this place."
Lestrade let his eyes roam over the familiar foundations of the safehouse Mycroft had situated him in when faced with the threat Maurice and York provided. It had not changed in the slightest in the years that he had been gone. Everything was the same right down to the thick ivy writhing up and down the red-bricked walls and around the steel window frames.
"You know, Mycroft." he responded slowly. "You just might be right." Then maybe he'd have the right to trim down the damn ivy.
He really had no idea how this whole situation came about, Mycroft was just overreacting.
After hearing, in passing, how Sherrinford had broken into his flat, Mycroft demanded that Lestrade temporarily move out while his men milled about in his flat like an army of ants to get every hint of 'criminal germs' out of it as well as upgrading his home security systems.
Mycroft had kindly offered his safehouse as a temporary living space while things settled and Lestrade was too tired, after a full day of three Holmeses, to argue and gratefully took him up on his offer.
The next morning, he met up with one of Mycroft's associates.
Lestrade thought there was something to be said about the fact that he knew Mycroft's head of security, Linus Grint, almost personally by now, having met the elderly man many times when he came over to oversee the upgrade of Lestrade's security.
It did not help to know that Linus was also one of the Diogenes Club's more prominent members and that he was more than likely the Head of Security for more than just household security systems.
Usually, Lestrade would avoid a close friendship with such a distinguished character if he could to avoid potential political webs, but Mycroft had programmed Linus' phone number permanently into Lestrade's speed dial after the third time Linus had to secure Lestrade's home from criminals.
And as far as Lestrade knew, Linus thought of him as a pet project. Nothing critical to National Security, but nevertheless, always a challenge. Lestrade was intimidated by the way Linus always looked at him like he wanted to put him inside a bubblewrap-laced box and burrow him away in the most secure vault he could procure.
Anthea always privately laughed at the way he squirmed.
Mycroft just smirked and said to Lestrade; "Unfortunately, I am on Linus's side in this instance."
Everybody who knew Lestrade, knew that the man had not even the tiniest scrap of good luck. He was Murphy's Law in motion, a trouble magnet. If there was something bad going on, he was more than likely to stumble in on it. Linus seemed to be the kind of man who would doggedly trace his footsteps just waiting for something to happen.
Lestrade was also Linus's muse. Every single time Lestrade called him, he could imagine Linus rubbing his hands together in anticipation as the older man asked him questions like; did they break the office window? Because I was thinking of making built-in lasers for the window frame if the steel mesh wire in the window panes that I had set last time wasn't enough to deter them. And maybe I should set live wires in the air vents just in case...
He was a sixty-two year old revolutionary like that and he knew that if there were any holes in his security, Lestrade's misfortunes would help him find them.
He was utterly mad and Lestrade both feared and admired him with his sunken, but sharp hawk-like blue eyes, paling now from cataracts, the looming eyebrows that seemed to have life of their own, the crooked nose, once broken in a pub brawl when the man was young, the sophisticatedly domed forehead with a strong, curving scalp, and the pure white tuft of hair like a whisp of cloud on the crown of his head.
The man looked ancient, thought like an eager, and sometimes mischevious young man, and spoke like a troublesome, but endearing boy.
He conversed with Mycroft as if he thought the man was a child, Anthea was not spoken to at all, having a ghost status of something not entirely real, the others at the Diogenes Club were harrassed by immature notes and scribbles of taunting authority, and Lestrade was spoken to - surprisingly - as an equal.
That is, until Linus told Lestrade he did not disrespect Mycroft, but simply did not like him because he didn't like beer, Anthea spooked him, and 'all the other tossers' - his words, not Lestrade's - were all posh pricks. They were all human beings but they didn't act like it. Linus always scoffed at them. He was very proud of his mundane characteristics.
Until Lestrade had to ruin it all by pointing out that he was probably the most eccentric man in the room.
"Eccentric?" he cried, looking astonished. "Me?"
Lestrade grimaced and wondered if anybody else had called him out on the fact of if they were all too much in awe of his cutting intelligence, or too intimidated by his aged wisdom to do so. "Uh, a bit unique, I'll say."
"Well, of course I am!" Linus exclaimed indignantly. "Did you think I was made by a cookie cutter like those other old drones in the Diogenes Club?"
"But you can't exactly be proud of your mundane characteristics if you're so unique." Lestrade told him seriously.
"Of course I can!" Linus grinned happily. "I'm a unique human and reserve the right to be proud of my mundane eccentricities!"
"Sorry, you're not making any sense." Lestrade furrowed his brow, trying to understand.
"Humans are unique." Linus explained with a patient smile. "And everybody in the world is equally unique that their uniqueness becomes steadily mundane. And because uniqueness becomes mundane, the old bastards at the Diogenes Club try to become less mundane, which turns them into arid caricatures of their former selves and I, who never strives to change myself, is seen as eccentric." He waved a finger aloft wildly. "Therefore, my only eccentricity is that I am mundane because of my uniqueness."
Lestrade rubbed his forehead wearily. It was like listening to one of those insane men in Catch-22 talk.
"Okay, so let me get this straight." he began. "You're saying you're eccentric because you're normal where nobody wants to be normal because everybody tries to be unique?"
"And the people who try so hard to be unique when they are not, simply grow boring." Linus nodded sagely.
"Because they were unique to begin with, and when they tried to change their unique selves into something they wern't, they became mundane." Lestrade continued. "In an attempt to become unique, because everybody's doing it."
"Doesn't it make you want to poke fun at those imposters too?" Linus grinned under his forboding eyebrows of doom.
Lestrade let out a little laugh. "Wow, I never thought about that before."
"I like you. You're interesting." Linus told him then. "I hear your house gets broken into semi-annually, I like that in a man."
"What? That I have crappy security?"
"No, that people consider you interesting or dangerous enough to see you as a threat." Linus smiled mysteriously. "A semi-annual break-in? Now that's what I would call 'unique'."
Talking to Linus always guaranteed a headache.
"I absolutely abhor those cookie-cut minions of Mycroft." Linus remarked thoughtfully. "I take great satisfaction in eating gingerbread men every day, even when it is not Christmas." he confessed.
Lestrade blinked because he wasn't quite sure gingerbread men had anything to do with their conversation. "That is-... positively cannibalistic." he deadpanned.
"I suppose." Linus shrugged.
"Are you going to stop doing it, then?" Lestrade asked him.
"Why would I do that?" Linus asked him confusedly. "I mean, what else are gingerbread men for?"
Linus was a very uniquely mundane man.
"How was your day?" Mycroft asked Lestrade when he escorted him home after Linus was done with it.
"It was..." Lestrade looked thoughtful. "Mundane."
"Just another day in the life of Gregory Lestrade." Mycroft rolled his eyes with a smile. "You've been talking to Linus."
"I swear, Mycroft. Only one man was injured in Linus' attempt to wire my air vents to electrocute intruders." Lestrade deadpanned.
"A mundane day, indeed." Mycroft shook his head back at him. "Did you meet up with the Spanish Inquisition as well?" he asked dryly,
"... Blasphemy! Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition!"
A/N: Today was very mundane...