Mycroft Holmes couldn't stand migraines.
They incapacitated him in even his most basic tasks. He would not let it incapacitate him. He could not allow himself to be incapacitated.
It was getting harder and harder to move. Every step felt like an earthquake, so strong it made the whole world crumble on itself.
There was no stopping it, he surrendered.
His phone, he needed his phone.
He felt sick, no. No. He was not going to throw up.
He willed his stomach to stop churning.
He could do it.
He texted his PA.
She would be there any minute with a professional expression gracing her features. Everything would be settled with a glass of water and painkillers.
No appointments. No politeness. No fake smiles.
Britain and, marginally, the world would run itself for one day.
He had to take the day off, there was no way he was going to work with his brain faculties lowered by the painkillers, or worse, the headache.
He crossed his arms on his desk and rested his head on them. Maybe his office would stop spinning.
Tears started streaming down his face. It was bad, so very bad.
He was supposed to be better than that, his brain should have been used to its constant override by then.
Why start failing now?
Now that his brother was supposedly dead.
Now that he was left with an armful of people to keep his eyes on and protect.
A knock at the door.
No, please no.
"Inhale, exhale... breathe..." he whispered to himself massaging his aching temples.
Another couple of knocks.
"It's me, sir..."
"Thank God..." he exhaled thankfully. The controlled breathing not helping him in the least, just helping him focus more and better on how badly his head was aching. "Come in." another spin, he wiped his face with one of his expensive handkerchiefs. "Please..." he added unable to hide his despair.
Anthea smiled kindly, seemingly truly concerned about him, it must have been really bad if he had her cancel everything that was planned for the day.
God, he wished she didn't wear those high heeled shoes. The rhythmic noise they made when hitting the floor felt like a very small, but very sharp, hammer beating his brain in time with the pace she set up. He'd come up with a dress-code that imposed sneakers as the only footwear allowed in his office.
Who was he kidding?
He'd rather be, and see others, barefoot.
She placed the glass and the painkillers on his desk. Right in front of him. A bigger but less pointy hammer threatening to make his head explode.
Then she proceeded to sit across from him, on the other side of the desk. Legs crossed. The smile still on, but with a point of maliciousness.
"No need to thank me, sir. You should keep your prayers for the privacy of your room."
Ah. A joke.
Shaking his head was a very, very bad idea. He could practically feel his melting brain, dripping from his ears.
He reached for the glass, no point in waiting. The sooner this stopped, the better.
"Oh!" she got something with the unmistakable shape of a sandwich out of a bag he hadn't noticed. Bad sign. And handed it to him. "You should eat first. Don't worry: low fat cheese and salad."
He smiled while he clumsily unwrapped the sandwich and started eating silently.
"Sometimes I'm so glad you have these migraines of yours." he arched an eyebrow at her and she promptly started texting. "Otherwise you'd never stop."