is That Guy who’ll stand in the same room as you and groan and sigh dramatically until you ask him what’s wrong
get really homesick easily which is sad but also kinda funny?? he starts tearing up over the weirdest shit
*sees a plant* “this reminds me vaguely of a flower in the bouquet my mamá gave my tío antonio at his wedding four years and nine months ago” “is lance crying”
has gone into battle w the face mask and lion slippers on
occasionally gets the vague impression that shiro is gonna pull La Chancla on him and it stresses him out
his self care routine is religious and he’s too proud to actually ask anyone for advice so instead he just follows coran around the castle for days trying to figure out how he keeps his mustache so perfectly coiffed
“keith that’s a stupid plan and there’s no way i’m going along with it” “why, are you chicken?” “…..fuck you i’m not let’s go”
is still lowkey bitter about allura’s comment about his ears
pidge: “i would sell you to satan for two corn chips” lance, patting pidge on the head: “love u too lil buddy”
Epilogue to the Adlock ficlet “And Four To Go…” Part 1/3
There is a black car parked in front of Baker Street when they return, and he doesn’t know how it’s possible, but his heart lifts and sinks at the same time.
He does not look at the Woman. Instead, he looks up at the building he calls home.
It looks like hell.
The walls are black and scorched from the explosion and he can see unrecognizable debris through the broken windows. The police and firemen have come and gone in their absence, leaving a hollow, blackened, smoldering mess behind.
The bedrooms are probably intact, but God knows what state they’re in now, and the sitting room with all of his research artifacts and mementos from old cases, and the kitchen with all his experiments are no doubt ruined.
Still, the light burns ever on in Mrs. Hudson’s kitchen.
Kate is waiting for them at the table where Mrs. Hudson has served her tea and biscuits. There is another empty seat at the table across from Mrs. Hudson’s with a small pile of cushions on the chair, as though its absent occupant was too short to reach the table. Instead of tea, there is a half-empty glass of milk sitting in front of this chair. The two plates beside it are empty with nothing left but a few crumbs as though the occupant had consumed the biscuits ravenously and asked for more.
He’s not surprised. The boy loves Ginger Nuts.
At the sight of the Woman, Kate rises and points in the direction of the sitting room.
The Woman pushes past him, past the kitchen and into Mrs. Hudson’s sitting room where there is a small bundle of blankets curled up on the lumpy sofa.
He can hear the boy’s light, whiffling snore and he can see the blankets moving up and down gently in time to his son’s deep breathing… and something is released in his chest, like a Gordian knot suddenly cut loose. The relief that floods through his system is so profound, he feels almost light-headed and he has to hold onto the door’s frame to keep himself upright.
It doesn’t matter that the boy was never in actual physical danger, that he knew the explosion on the phone this morning was fake. Seeing that the boy – his son – is alive and whole, innocently sleeping on Mrs. Hudson’s couch, and blissfully unaware of the events of this wretched day… it … he can’t…
He has no words for the what he is feeling right now.
He wants to fall to his knees beside the Woman, who is brushing back the mop of dark curls from the boy’s forehead, the rich voice that sends shivers of lust and fear in equal measure down the spines of greater men now murmuring sweet endearments into the boy’s ear.
He wants to feel the boy’s sturdy little limbs as she does, to make sure he is still real, still whole – still his Nero – after all that has happened today.
But he doesn’t.
Instead, he stands stiffly at the door, holding himself tightly, because if he moves — if he moves, he doesn’t know what he will do. If he speaks, he doesn’t know what he will say. What this tremendous, inexplicable relief will pull out of him.
And so he keeps the outpouring behind a tight, impenetrable dam inside him.
Vaguely, he can hear Lestrade, Mycroft and John crowd in behind him. Kate and Mrs. Hudson are close behind. He can feel their curiosity burning as they see the boy, but he ignores them all. The boy’s blue eyes – so like his mother’s – open blurrily and their sleepy blue gaze focuses on the Woman.
“Mummy?” Nero’s voice is thick with sleep, but he can hear the delight in it as the boy sees his mother. “Mummy! You’re back!”
The Woman smiles at the boy beatifically – the kind of smile that would otherwise be foreign and strange on her cold, marble face, but around the boy, it occurs naturally and spontaneously. The boy reaches out and puts his arms around her neck.
She rises from her kneeling position on the floor and lifts him easily along with her. No mean feat, as Sherlock can see that the boy has gained at least four pounds and grown three inches since the last time he saw him.
“I found all the clues, Mummy.” The boy snuffles into the Woman’s shoulder with a contented sound, clinging to his mother like a limpet. His words are muffled by her dress and his lisp. “I’m a detectiff like Daddy.”
“Well done, my darling. You were so good today.” He can hear her murmur into the boy’s ear so that only the three of them can hear, but she gives Sherlock a sly look over the boy’s shoulder to let him know exactly what she thinks of their son being a detective.
The others behind him are silent, watching their exchange : Mycroft with quiet, barely disguised surprise, John with shock and something akin to morbid fascination, Lestrade with an expression similar to that of a man having a heart attack, and Mrs. Hudson with an entirely too-knowing look.
As the boy settles sleepily into her side, the Woman’s mask slips back on and her eyes are cold and impersonal again when she turns in the direction of the small crowd in the kitchen.
“Kate.” She commands imperiously, and the other woman nods, needing no further instruction. Kate retreats from the table and heads for the door.
He knows where she’s going, and he feels an almost tangible panic begin to close around his throat. The Woman heads towards him, to the door, and he knows she’s leaving.
She’s leaving, and she’s taking the boy with her, and while this is nothing new – she never stays in one place for long – this time… this time he feels an inexplicable fear that tastes like bile in the back of his throat at the thought of her walking out the door.
Maybe it’s the events of this wretched day. Maybe it’s the all-consuming relief at seeing his son alive and well. Maybe it’s the thought that something could happen to them out there and he would be too late – too late, like he almost was tonight – to stop it. Maybe it’s seeing her again after months of separation, and being in her addictive presence that always makes him crave more…
Whatever it is, it grabs hold of him and claws its way from his chest to his throat, spurring him into action. As she brushes by him, he takes hold of her wrist, the one cradling his son. His fingers settle over her pulse.
His voice is ragged and hoarse, the dam cracks, and the word chokes out of him before he can take it back. His mind cringes at the blatant emotion in that one word, but it is out there and he knows she will do with it what she wishes…
She has him, and the boy has him too. But he will not have either of them once she walks out that door.
“Just for tonight.” That’s all he’s asking. Just one night when he can have her and the boy, to keep him sane, to keep him whole – a touchstone when everything around him, the very life he’s lived, has been called into question.
“I want…” He chokes and his chest tightens painfully, because she’s not meeting his eye, and hers are glacial and unyielding. She lifts her chin and refuses to look at him, her gaze hard and focused forward, her battle mask firmly in place. “I need to know you’re both safe.”
This is him begging.
He has begged many times in her presence, in many ways, not just with words – it is part of the Game they play, the limits she stretches – but never in the presence of others, and as cruel as she may be, it is an unspoken agreement between them that she will not force him into it, will not tear the pride he wears so close to his skin. Not because she can’t or indeed, won’t, but because whatever this is, it stays between them – it is not to be shared.
But this time, he is begging – in front of his friends and family – and she knows it. They are all watching him in silent surprise, but he doesn’t care. His hold on her wrist tightens.
He moves closer to her, closer to the boy, and to the utter shock of the others in the room, he bends down and leans his forehead against her temple, his lips almost at her ear. He has no doubt she can hear the raggedness of his breathing, the desperation of it. She hears it, and she goes as still as stone. “Please.”
I would have you until you begged for mercy twice.
How utterly right she had been.
The boy watches them both sleepily, and she turns her head slightly toward his. He draws back just enough to meet her eye, his gaze clear, and he sees something in hers shift, a crack in the ice wall.
Her gaze softens, like it does when she looks at their son — the chemical defect that had the audacity to turn into an actual human being — and she looks away. Looks at Kate with a nod.
He breathes a sigh of profound relief.
The other woman nods back in understanding and disappears through the door. Ten seconds later, he hears the driver’s side door of the black car parked out front open and close. The engine starts and the car drives away. He knows it will be back.
But not tonight.
For everybody who enjoyed ‘And Four to Go…’ (here) and left such lovely comments and feedback, thank you!
I swear, I love these two (well, three), but I hate them sometimes. Cooperate, guys! Part 3 is done, but Part 2 is giving me problems. Hopefully, it’ll be ready soon! Shout-out to the awesome @elinorx for her help in this… thing.