A/N: I do not own Sherlock. The characters belong to the BBC and Sir Arthur Conan-Doyle. I do not make any profit out of it and I'm doing it just for fun. Picture not mine.
Sherlock was sitting in his flat, his eyes fixed on Gred Lestrade. The inspector made himself comfortable in John Watson's red chair. The army doctor wasn't home. After all those traumatizing events, he finally had the guts to visit his sister, along with his daughter. It was bad, but still better than Sherrinford.
Sherlock went back to working on the cases that Scotland Yard were unable to solve. After 221B Baker Street flat was renovated, it looked like life started to make sense again. Not quite accurate, though.
Mycroft quited working, which made England fall apart. And in the darkness of the night, Sherlock saw the sad and lost eyes of his sister, the messy, red hair of Victor Trevor and the ancetral house of his family burning.
He eventually came to a conclusion on why he became a detective.
„Maycroft was right all along." Sherlock told Greg. „The man I am today is just my memory of Eurus". For a long second he seemed lost in his thoughts, blank stare on his eyes. „Or, rather say, my memory of what she put me trough. I've never stopped looking for Victor. I've never stopped trying to solve the mystery. So my brain is trying to solve anything that's unsolved. Because..." He looked into Lestrade's concerned eyes, and he seemed to realised something. „Where's John?"
„He left three hours ago."
Sherlock stood up quickly and looked at the detective inspector who was following him to the door.
„Sherlock! Wait. What were you saying?"
Sherlock left the room and run down the stairs.
„I can't remember. How's Mycroft?"
Sherlock remebers everything. Lestrade run after him.
„He's not working. He locked himself in his cinema. He's not speaking to anyone but his personal assistent. He smokes pack after pack..."
Sherlock's frown was something between wonder, confusion, and understanding.
"What?" Lestrade asked. Sherlock put his scarf on.
"It may be the right time to pay a visit to my brothers. Good evening."
Sherlock put up the collar of his famous long coat, run outside and yelled for a taxi. Lestrade looked at him confused.
"He's always like that" The melancholic voice of Mrs. Hudson came from somewhere behind him. He frowned, surprised. His and automatically went to his gun.
"How long have you been standing there?"
Mycroft's security system was never a problem when it came to Sherlock Holmes. However, it may be the right time to use the key that Mycroft gave him all those years ago. The double iron-gates opened when he scanned the card received from his brother.
Entering the garden, he greeted the bodyguards with a small nod. They all knew "the other Holmes".
When he entered Mycroft's cinema room, a strong Wisky scent filled his nostrils. The thick cloud of cigarette smoke wet his eyes. His brother was watching an old film, facing the other side of the room.
The left armrest of his comfortable chair supported his umbrella.
"What happend?" Asked Mycorft in a calm tone, his voice turning to sarcasm when he said "Where's the clown?"
Sherlock frowned, looking at his brother. The psychological stressed Eurus put him through left deep scars on Mycroft, even deeper than Sherlock's own. Of all the enemies he faced, most of them were trying to get to Mycroft through him. Moriarty. Irene Adler. Charles Augustus Magunussen. They hurt him, the threatened him and tormented him and all his friends, trying to get the British Government attention. Eurus, however, went the other way around. She tried to get him through Mycroft.
"Mycroft, do you have any idea what's happening outside? England is literally falling apart!"
The Mycroft's cold gaze surprised the young Holmes. Sherlock analyzed his brother once again, trying harder to enter his mind, realizing that it wasn't his mind that was wounded, but his soul. Guild was overwhelming his soul (supposing that he had one).
"You quit your job?!" Sherlock looked surprised. Mycroft gazed somewhere over his shoulder.
"I am not qualified for the position I occupie in the British Gou..."
"You are the British government!" Sherlock cut him short.
"Yes" He stopped for a second. "But, as you may see, brother mine, the death of five human beings are on me..."
Probably much more, but not directly.
"... I cannot and I will not let this number increase. As a conclusion, the only logical solution was to quit the Government and..."
"Lock yourself in your house? Isolate yourself and avoid any form of human contact?"
"I killed five people, Sherlock! Five people in only two hours."
"It wasn't your fault."
"You may leave this house now."
Sherlock looked at his brother. Was he... surprised? Hurt? Confused? It was not the reaction he expected from Mycroft. Then he remembered...
I don't care HOW you faked it, Sherlock! I wanna know why!
John's voice was echoing in his mind.
John never understood why you jumped of that bloody rooftop that day. And that's what hurts him still, Sherlock.
That's what Mary used to say on those dark days following his return from the death. Days in which John would not even see him. Days in which he used to punch him every single time they met.
Threegunmen. Threebullets. Threevictims.
John, Mrs. Hudson, Lestrade…
"Don't say it."
"Do. Not. Say. It!" his voice was sharp. "Leave, Sherlock. I will be fine. Seriously, I will. It's just that I will need some time. You know me. I'm known to be indestructible."
"Myc... I want you to know...why I pointed that gun at myself..."
"DON'T SAY IT, dammit Sherlock!" Mycroft jump out his chair knocking it over in the process. The chair fell back. Mycroft turned around and looked at the door Sherlock entered a few minutes ago, trying to find a way out…
Flee, don't fight.
…Mycroft was the big brother…
Do not fight.
…he was the one to look after Sherlock, not the other way around…
…all his life the only person he ever loved...the only person he only cared about... Caringisnotadvantage...was Sherlock.
The only one he ever looked after was his little brother. And no mater how hard he tried to protect him, to keep him safe, no matter how many spies he had with their eyes on him, or how many bodyguards he planted at his door, he always feared that his brother's own past will come back to hunt him, and eventually destroy him.
He had always feared Eurus. For himself. For Mommy and Daddy. For Sherlock. For England. He feared the only person that could ever defeat him. Eurus. The only one that My croft could not keep Sherlock safe from.
And Eurus almost forced his little brother to commit suicide. Because he wasn't capable enough to determine his brother to kill him. Because he failed. Again.
When Sherlock looked at his brother one more time, he saw something he neither expected, nor wanted to see, until his own funeral. In Mycroft's eyes there was something that looked like tears. His ice facade was melting, revealing Mycroft — the human. Not Mycroft — the Government, not Mycroft — the genius, not even Mycroft — the big brother. There was just him, bare and raw.
May be we could all just be humans.
"I can't believe this!"
"Leave, Sherlock!" Mycroft tried to make his voice steady again, but it broke at the end of the sentence.
"Why? Why would I leave?" He stepped towards his brother.
"Because I can't have you see me in this deplorable condition."
"Myc..." Sherlock sighed. "I've always known you were human. And could always see beyond the ice wall you built around yourself." That wasn't true at all. Nor was the fact that Sherlock believed his brother human.
"And you know...that ice is pretty transparent. For someone who knows where to look." Another lie.
Well, I suppose there's a heart somewhere inside me.
Mycroft looked down. Sherlock reached for him, putting his left hand on the other man's shoulder. "I want to thank you, Mycroft." Wheredidthatcamefrom?
Although the Ice-Man did not know how to cry, his eyes were full of tears still.
"For trying to make all of that easier... for trying to make me ki..." Sherlock faltered. It was hard for him too. In that inexplicable moment he pointed the gun to Mycroft's chest, he swore he will never let that happened again. "But Myc...promise me never to do this aga..."
His thoughts were cut short by Mycroft's angry reaction, when he wrenched Sherlock's hand away from his shoulder and started his rant.
He may have asked Sherlock why he didn't shoot him. Why he made everything so complicated. Why he chose suicide.
He may have said that he was the one to protect Sherlock, because he was the big brother.
He may have told him that Sherlock's life was worth more than his own. That he was happy to die if it meant that Sherlock and Dr. Watson could get out of that damned hell-hole.
He may have said that he's not worthy enough to survive, after everything his own foolishness caused.
He may have, at one point, lost his balance, his mind clouded by alcohol, and fallen to his knees. It may have been that Sherlock knelt next to him and looked as his brother with compassion, for the first time in decades.
It may have been that Mycroft kept yelling about how he killed 5 people and Gods know how many more, about how, though knowing the power of Eurus' intelligence and psychosis, he still chose the selfish and easy way of using his sister to solve England's challenges, that were only his to solve.
He may have called him William.
And, somewhere in that unclear and unintelligible monologue, full of sorrow and guilt, he may have told his brother he loved him.
Too late indeed
Still on his knees, Mycroft was catching his breath.
Mycroft's eyes were showing something Sherlock had never seen in him before. Shame.
His body moved on its own when he put his arms around his brother in something that looked and felt like an awkward embrace. Not meant for providing comfort, but meant to be an anchor. The promise that life could go on. The hope that, once more, everything can be okay. An anchor that, Mycroft gladly accepted, although it went against his nature.
Mycroft used to understand compassion. And he felt it for the first time when his brother was but a child, and he used to throw his arms around Mycroft's large form, hugging him. When he snucked in his bed when nightmares came back.
To know compassion was one thing. To show it was a completely different challenge. After all these years of avoiding human contact, all Mycroft could do was lower his forehead on his brother's shoulder.
And than, it was over. In one second, like he learned early in his youth, Mycroft stood up, putting on his unreadable, neutral facial expression. They looked awkwardly at each other, their gaze tensed and weird. As an unspoken rule, they decided never to talk about this moment again.
"So…ugh…thank you." Mycroft neutral voice was back.
"Yeah…ahm…you're — you're welcome."
"If you're already here, you msy as well stay for dinner."
"Yeah, good idea. Mrs. Hudson is going through that phase anyway."
Not your house keeper.
It's been a long time since Mycroft used his dining room. The cool and calculated Anthea looked like she could jump around in happiness when she ordered the most expensive food from the fanciest restaurants for two. Mycroft acted like he didn't see it, he had enough embarrassment for a lifetime.
Looking across the table, the two brothers were trying to ease the awkward silence.
"You'll have to tell them eventually."
"Yes. The time has probably come." He knew that, for all the embarrassment of tonight, some things were still left unspoken.
"Sherlock, what's wrong?"
"Nothing … it's just…we'll need to talk about this sometimes."
A moment of silence. In a second, both of them were back to their respectively sarcastic selves again. Like a mysterious spell was lifted off of them. So Sherlock criticized the state of the embroidery on Mycroft's furniture and Mycroft proved Sherlock how slow he actually was. As the everlasting feud between brothers went on, everything got back to normal. As normal as it could be.
When Sherlock was getting ready to leave, his brother ironically addressed him.
"Sleep well, brother mine!"
A/N.: This was hella difficult to translate. During these troubled times, I'm kinda turned back to writing. Or at least I'm trying. And will try and take a look at all the crap I posted when I couldn't write in English, maybe even try and check the spelling and grammar of the stories I posted here years ago. Honestly, I think they are decent, if you're able to get through everything, considering the awful English.
There's going to be another chapter to this. Thank you for reading! Looking forward to your reviews. Lots of love. Stay safe.