[personal profile] nickelsandcoats
Title: I'll Give You Everything You Need (You've Given Me Everything I Want) 14/? || at Ao3
Author: Sarah/[livejournal.com profile] nickelsandcoats
Rating: PG13 for this part
Spoilers: Spoilers (eventually) for all of season 2!
Word Count: ~3,100 for this part
Pairings: Sherlock/John, Mycroft/Lestrade
Warnings: AU.
Disclaimer: I own nothing.
Summary: Mycroft's never given his feathers to anyone before, but one person wins him over without even trying.
Notes: For [livejournal.com profile] flying_dreamz's prompt here at my shuffle meme post. She asked for #103, which was, for this part, "To Dartmoor" from the Sherlock Season 2 soundtrack by David G. Arnold and Michael Price.

This is a sequel to Here Is What My Heart Will Give You (and Here Are the Things I Will Give Up for You). You really should read that one first before you read this story or this story will not make any sense. One last note: this story is set pre-Here Is What My Heart Will Give You (and Here Are the Things I Will Give Up for You) and will eventually end up post-Reichenbach. Expect lots of angst.

part i || part ii || part iii || part iv || part v || part vi || part vii || part viii || part ix || part x || part xi || part xii || part xiii




Note: some of the dialogue in this chapter comes from [livejournal.com profile] arianedevere's wonderful transcript of The Hounds of Baskerville.

****


Mycroft woke to an empty, cold bed and sighed softly. When he finally went down to the kitchen for his tea, Mummy was at the table, watching him.

“Oh, child,” she said, standing and folding him in her arms. “I am so terribly sorry.”

“Don’t tell me that you tried to warn me.”

She pulled back and stared at him, waiting for him to continue.

“I can’t tell him, Mummy. If he knew that I was all but immortal, that he could spend his life with me but I could not do the same, he would leave in order to protect me from some future pain. And I will not tell him because I am selfish. I am finally happy, and I want to keep that happiness for as long as I can. Is that so wrong?”

“If it means breaking his trust, yes, dear child, it is.”

Mycroft blinked and looked away. “I don’t want what happened to Father to happen to him. Knowing makes him a target, and I can’t protect him from everything, even if I try.”

“Have you told him this?”

“Told him what?”

“What happened to your father. Why that makes you react the way you do.”

“No, I’ve not said anything.”

“If you won’t tell him about your true self, if you won’t bond with him, then at least tell him about your father. He will understand you better, then.”

“Why did you bring John back?”

“Is that the question you truly want to ask me?”

Mycroft cleared his throat, shuffled his feet a bit. “No,” he admitted. “I do wish to know, though.”

“Once you have the courage to ask of me the question you truly want answered, I will tell you.”

“I cannot ask you that question, Mummy. He left.”

“And he will be back. He loves you so deeply that he cannot articulate it. You are the same. Stop being so stubborn and trust him.”

“Mummy⎯”

“I have to go, dear. There are other things happening that you and your brother need to hear of, but not just now. Remember what I’ve said to you.”

“I always do.”

“Then heed my advice, Mycroft, and stop simply listening. One day, you will wish you had acted instead of listened. I will not speak of this again.”

And then she was gone, leaving Mycroft to stare down, unseeing, into the canister of loose tea. For some reason, his vision was blurred.



***

After Henry Knight had left their flat to head back to Dartmoor and its supposed hound, Sherlock turned to John, changed, and fluttered around his head, croaking out a joyful “Let’s go!”

John’s smile was a wry twist of his mouth. “What, are you proposing we fly there?”

“Well, yes.”

“We can’t do that, Sherlock. We need a car, for one thing, and luggage for another. I can’t imagine that there are many places to hide in that small village, so we can’t exactly just fly in. Besides,” he said, holding up a finger to forestall Sherlock’s protests, “I don’t think I’m up to flying that far anyway.” And he wasn’t⎯while the Morrighan had changed him, his shoulder still had a bullet wound, and long flights caused it to stiffen and seize up.

“Oh, all right,” Sherlock grumped, changing back and flinging himself onto the sofa. “I’ll hire us a car and get the train tickets, you go pack.”

As John’s footsteps faded away, Sherlock called out, “Oh, and bring your gun.”


Baskerville was not what John was expecting. For one, it was far too easy to penetrate the base, even if they did think that Sherlock was actually Mycroft. Second, it was too…quiet. He expected much more activity, more people, more experiments. But the few scientists they did interact with were as cagey as if they were in a TV show, and that made John’s teeth set on edge. He was hyper-aware of what could happen to him, and Sherlock and Mycroft, if their true identities were ever revealed, and ending up in a lab like this one was only one of the nicer possibilities. Sherlock seemed to notice his discomfort, took them the Henry’s soon after. Their plan to meet later that evening to head to the moor in place, Sherlock and John returned to their room at the Cross Keys, where John sank down in the small chair while Sherlock paced.

“What do you know about hellhounds?” Sherlock asked on his fifth lap of the small room.

John blinked. “Like in myth and legend?”

“No, like in the comics, of course I meant like those in myth and legend. Do keep up.”

“I….don’t know much. I know they tend to haunt lonely roads and such.”

Sherlock huffed and kept moving. “All of the myths concerning hellhounds describe them as large dogs with fiery eyes. Many of them are supposed to haunt un-travelled roads, moors, fields, mountains.”

“So do you think we’re dealing with some mythological creature and not an escaped Baskerville experiment?”

“I don’t know, John. I am merely exploring all of the options. There is not enough data yet to make a conclusion.”

John noticed the slight tremble in his husband’s limbs and stood, holding him close, letting his slow, steady breathing calm Sherlock’s racing heart. Sherlock buried his face into John’s hair and murmured, “I hope it is just an escaped experiment. Mother’s stories of the hellhounds still give me nightmares to this day.”



Later, after their trip to the moor, Sherlock was sat in one of the chairs in front of the fire, the diners’ knives and forks creating an inescapable and unbearable cacophony of scraping screeching scratches that assaulted his ears and made him hunch down in the chair. John returned from getting Henry settled and started in on some Morse code he may have seen out there. John was far too calm for this. Mother’s stories were real⎯there was a gigantic hellhound out there, waiting to get at them, and why wasn’t John more worried? His fear must have shown, because John’s brow was furrowed and he was leaning forward in his chair, ready to reach out to him. This was unbearable. Sherlock was supposed to be the strong one, the one who was touched by nothing, not John. John did not need to comfort him. They were only stories, even if his mind thought they were true. Surely there were no hellhounds really left to wander a moor⎯Mother would know about it. Why couldn’t he fool John into thinking that there was nothing wrong with him? He spouted off a deduction and then culminated his performance with alienating the only man he’d ever loved:

“I don’t have friends.”

John stood and walked away.

Fuck. That is not what I meant John, I do have one friend, and it’s you, but you’re so much more than a friend⎯you’re everything everything to me and I don’t know how to say that now. How can I make this better, John? I’m sorry, I’m sorry, please just come back.

But in the end, John was still gone and there was a case to solve. Dr Mortimer arrived at the bar just as Sherlock was heading up to their room. He sent John a text and waited for a response. Even for his anger (and rightly so), John agreed to speak to Dr Mortimer about Henry. Sherlock opened the door, changed, and settled himself into the middle of the bed, waiting to see if John would return.


When John came back in to the room, Sherlock had changed and had his head tucked under his wing, sitting in the exact centre of the bed. John instantly changed and settled in next to him, laying one wing protectively over Sherlock’s quivering back. After a long while, Sherlock stirred just enough to whisper, “Would you change back and hold me like this? Please?”

John nudged his head against Sherlock’s and then flew off the bed, changed, and immediately climbed back in, scooping Sherlock up in one hand and bringing him in to his chest. Sherlock pressed himself as close as he could, tucking himself up under John’s lowered chin. John cupped his hand over his husband and held him there, curling his knees up as close as he could to enclose him in a cocoon. He fell asleep with Sherlock’s bird-fast pulse fluttering against his palm.

When he awoke in the morning, Sherlock had changed back and was sitting on the edge of the bed, watching him.

“Thank you,” Sherlock mumbled, leaning down and kissing him gently.

“Always,” John said, the echo of the promise he had made Sherlock in Sussex making Sherlock’s mouth twist a bit in a smile. But there was a lingering sadness in John’s voice, an echo of the hurt Sherlock caused last night, and Sherlock didn’t know how to fix what he had broken. John pulled away from him and shrugged on a coat, heading out the door without a single glance back to see if Sherlock followed.

Sherlock stared after him for far longer than he would ever admit before he finally shook himself and headed off to see Henry. The continued use of the word “hound” was niggling at something deep in his brain. Perhaps Henry could shed more light on the matter, but that visit proved nearly useless. Sherlock himself suspected there was something preying on Henry⎯if there truly was a hound, he and Henry saw it last night, but John had not. The only commonality was the sugar Sherlock and Henry took in their coffee, and so this little side trip to see why Henry insisted on calling it a hound provided him with the chance to steal some of Henry’s sugar for further testing.

Now, though, he needed to find John and apologise.



That afternoon, they were back at Baskerville. Sherlock, with a very slight tinge of regret, sent John into the lion’s den of his experiment, having dosed John’s coffee with Henry’s sugar. As he waited for John to get set in to the lab before beginning his experiment, Sherlock thought about Lestrade’s (he refused to call him Greg, even in his own head) strange answer to Sherlock’s needling question about Lestrade doing whatever Mycroft asked of him. Lestrade had vehemently denied it, and now Sherlock was left to wonder if he had left Mycroft, of all things. He wondered how Lestrade and Mycroft were handling this dispute of theirs, and to his horror, found himself wanting them to work things out. Damn his sentimental streak! John would be proud of him, he thought, for thinking of his brother and his friend’s (yes, he would admit that Lestrade was a friend, of sorts) well-being. He quickly squashed all thoughts of Mycroft’s relationship and focused on the task at hand. Holding up the small recorder, he played the growl through the sound system. On the monitors, John gasped and ran for the abandoned cage, locking himself in. John was a combat veteran⎯he would be fine. Still, Sherlock rang his mobile to see how John reacted to this kind of stress.

Oh.

John was upset, still coherent, but obviously scared nearly out of his wits. This was…not good. Sherlock immediately stood and ran for the lab, flipping on the lights and all but pulling John from his hidey-hole.

“Can you walk?” Sherlock asked John urgently, heart pounding in his chest. If his little experiment had brought John’s limp back, he would not forgive himself, even though the experiment was of vital importance.

“Yes, of course I can walk,” John retorted, looking almost affronted. He strode two steps behind Sherlock the entire way to Dr Stapleton’s lab, and then back out to the main laboratory so Sherlock could study the sugar under a microscope. Failing to find any trace of tampering, Sherlock threw them out of the lab and let himself wander through his mind palace, pushing aside the memories associated with John⎯couldn’t get distracted now, there was a case⎯seeking out a connection between HOUND and Liberty and In. When the answer came, it was like a lightning bolt struck him between his ribs, and he swirled out of the lab to find John and Dr Stapleton.

Sherlock’s connexion of HOUND to H.O.U.N.D. in Liberty, Indiana led them to the Major’s office, where Sherlock broke into the secured database just as easily as he cracked John’s passwords. As his eyes flicked over the data about the project streaming across the screen, he kept glancing at John’s reflection. John’s left hand was trembling ever so slightly where it gripped his right elbow. Not good. Time for a distraction, some action, something.

Fortuitously, John’s mobile rang⎯apparently, Henry had shot at Dr Mortimer and was heading back to the Hollow. Excellent. Sherlock pulled out his mobile and dialled Lestrade, who was hopefully still in the village (Mycroft would have told him to keep an eye on him, of course Lestrade was still in the village). “Get to the Hollow. ... Dewer’s Hollow, now. And bring a gun.” He rang off and slid the phone back into his pocket. He broke into a fast jog, John just behind. No trace of a tremor or limp in the face of danger. Good.

Henry was nearly incoherent with fear and delusions when they reached him. Even as Sherlock tried to explain what had happened to Henry⎯“Remember now, Henry. You’ve got to remember what happened here when you were a little boy…. It wasn’t an animal, was it, Henry? Not a monster. A man.”

And then the hound appeared, just after Lestrade skidded into the Hollow. Sherlock gaped, torch shaking in his hand, as he stared at the red eyes, the enormous sharp teeth, the slavering mouth and dark fur. It was a hellhound, straight out of Mother’s stories. He fought the urge to change, to grab John (and Lestrade) and fly away from the danger. He heard a noise behind him and half-turned, muscles tensed. Oh, God, there’s another one, he thought as he squinted in the dark at the new threat.

No.

Not a hellhound.

Moriarty.

Sherlock had never wished for a gun so intensely in his life. But then he blinked, and charged the man, grappling with him before finally tearing off the mask to reveal the scientist, Frankland, who had been part of HOUND. He looked at the gas mask he’d just torn off the other man and struggled with his suddenly sluggish mind to put aside the triumphant sense of relief that it wasn’t Moriarty standing in front of him and to connect the reason for wearing a gas mask to the Hollow…It was the fog! The hallucinogen is in the fog!

He shouted this to the others, barely registering Frankland’s frantic shouts to “Kill it!” Shots rang out, and the dog (for that’s all it really was) collapsed at their feet.

Henry shouted at Franklin while Sherlock cast around the Hollow, still feeling as though Moriarty was watching them, even though he knew the drug was still affecting him. It was just paranoia, his sense of fear heightened by the fog. That was all.

When Frankland broke away from Henry, the dog growled again, and got to its feet. John fired two more shots, and then they were in hot pursuit of Falkland, who, despite working at Baskerville for years, managed to forget that there was a minefield surrounding the base and stepped on one, blowing himself up in the process. Pity. Sherlock would have liked to discuss the dispersion device he’d used for the fog.


The next morning, John was up before him and already had their bags packed before Sherlock even stirred. When he did wake, he noticed John had left out clothes for him, and a few toiletries, with one of the bags left pointedly open. Sherlock showered, dressed, and packed the bag before heading off in search of his husband, who was just sitting down to breakfast.

Sherlock fidgeted nervously with the ketchup packets as John, who was always far more clever than Sherlock gave him credit for, figured out just what exactly had transpired in Baskerville’s lab when he had been running from what he thought was the hellhound.

“Oh God. It was you. You locked me in that bloody lab.” John was angry, but not to furious, not just yet.

“I had to. It was an experiment.”

“An experiment?!”

“Shhh.”

“I was terrified, Sherlock. I was scared to death.”

“I thought that the drug was in the sugar, so I put the sugar in your coffee, then I arranged everything with Major Barrymore.” Sherlock swallowed a bit of his coffee, then said, “I am sorry, John. It won’t happen again.”

John glared at him for a moment, then let his shoulders slump a bit in defeat. “Sherlock, I know it’s sometimes hard for you to remember, but I was a soldier, and I have been diagnosed with PTSD. I know you think it’s all in my head, and that you cured my limp and all, but you know I still have nightmares sometimes. It’s real to me, Sherlock. Doing things like what you did to me yesterday is extremely dangerous. I could have hurt someone, or had a relapse. Please, just promise me you’ll try to remember that next time.”

Sherlock had the grace to look ashamed as he murmured, “I am sorry. Truly.”

John leaned in and pressed a kiss to Sherlock’s forehead. “I know, and I accept your apology.” He looked down at his plate, swallowed the last few bites of eggs, and asked, “Did you pack your things?”

Sherlock rolled his eyes. “Yes, and the bag’s in the boot.”

John smiled, said, “Good. Let’s go home. I don’t fancy seeing more of the moors for a good long while.”

They stood and headed for the car. Just as Sherlock put his hand on the handle to open the door, he had the strongest feeling that someone was watching him from behind. He turned his head just slightly as he tugged on the door handle, but there was no one there.

That feeling of being watched did not fade until he and John shut the door to 221b behind them hours later. He wouldn’t ask John if he’d had the same feeling⎯it was obvious from his banter that he hadn’t. Perhaps it was just the last of the drug leaving his system.

Yes, surely that’s what it was, he thought as he listened to John make tea. But the words rang hollow even in his own mind, and he shivered a bit in the warmth of the flat.


part xv

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March 2013

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