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Mycroft gets eight stitches and a shaved patch on the back of his head. The shock wears off around the same time they're patching his head and the concussion settles fully in – there's a confused moment where the world just whirls and Mycroft can't hold onto his thoughts. He's fairly certain that Eggsy is there through the whole thing. He's also fairly certain that vomiting was included. All told, he's quite relieved that he's given strong enough pain medicine that it rather blurs everything about the whole event.

Sherlock gets off with a check-up. His concussion is mild at best – he didn't even suffer any dizziness – and so he's up and about and bothering everybody before Mycroft has been fully patched up. His coat and scarf, as it turns out, protected him – when he was thrown back by the explosion, the collar was between him and the wall and so he wasn't knocked about as badly. Mycroft, meanwhile, hit the corner of a doorway.

The moment he figures out that Eggsy won't be giving him any straight answers though, he flounces off to do his own bit of investigating, no doubt.

John gets brief surgery and a cast for the next two to four months. He suffers the treatment with all the patience of a doctor – which is to say, none at all. The saying of doctors making the worst patients is embodied in John Watson – he's worse about being stuck in a hospital than Sherlock is. Someone arranges it so that despite the severely different types of injuries, Mycroft and John end up sharing a ward. Mycroft is fairly certain it was Anthea, who whirled in and out in a blur of anger and annoyance, bringing him a clean suit of clothes and telling Mycroft in no uncertain terms that he is never again to go out in the field like that.

Eggsy gets a silenced pistol aimed at his head the moment Mary Watson arrives.

"Name," she demands, watching him hard, eyes flickering over the suit, the umbrella, the glasses – the signet ring now present on Eggsy's little finger.

Eggsy is sitting in a chair by Mycroft's bedside, idly reading the Sun for some reason. One leg crossed over the other, hair neatly slicked, suit jacket unbuttoned just so that it won't crease, he looks precisely nothing like the casual young man the Watsons had met at Mycroft's house. He doesn't look all that threatening either, however, not if you didn't know him. For a man who killed eight people just earlier that day, he looks very relaxed.

"Mary?" John asks, sitting up awkwardly, holding his good hand over his cast. "You know him? I mean, other than… than you know?"

"I know what he is. Name," Mary demands again.

Eggsy blinks at her, unimpressed. "Put that thin' away. You ain't going to shoot me in a fuckin' hospital, especially not with my connection to Mycroft. You ain't stupid," he says, and turns back to the paper. "And my name don't matter none to you. You ain't in that game anymore."

She hesitates, eyes narrowed. "Not being in the game doesn't make me a fool," she says.

"Precisely. So put the fuckin' gun away," Eggsy says and turns the page. "I ain't here for you."

Mary says nothing and Mycroft clears his throat. "Mrs. Watson, if you please," he says sharply.

Mary glances at him, blinking sharply at the words and as abruptly as she pulled the gun, she puts it away again. Then, rather pointedly, she turns to John and ignores Mycroft and Eggsy completely.

"Well," Mycroft says, prodding at the back of his head carefully. The stitches are still numb from the local anaesthesia he'd been given, and they've been bandaged besides. But he can still feel the shaved patch around it. "Now that that's over with, any chance you could get me released?" he asks, knowing that Anthea would make sure that any efforts to that end on Mycroft's part wouldn't do him much good.

"With a concussion and all? Not for another six hours at least," Eggsy snorts at him. "I ain't taking chances with you bruv. Only way I'd get you out of this place is if I take you to another with enough medical staff to look after you."

"I'm perfectly fine, now," Mycroft all but grumbles. "I'm no longer exhibiting symptoms beyond mild dizziness and a headache. With rest and the right medication –"

"No," Eggsy says and smiles, reaching out to take his hand in his. "Sorry. Your head is a bit too valuable for me to take my chances with it."

Mycroft watches him in silent frustration for a moment and then sighs and squeezes his hand. "You're a sentimental fool, Eggsy," he murmurs.

"Yes, I am," Eggsy agrees and kisses his hand gently.

 


 

Eggsy's the one who takes him home eventually, in one of his handy custom taxis. Mycroft sinks into the seat gratefully, his head pounding again as the painkillers wear off. And in the back of his head, where it aches the worst, he idly calculates how long he has until he can take the second one.

Eggsy's hand rests on the back of his neck, very gently rubbing along the tense muscles there – close and comforting but not once dipping under Mycroft's collar. Mycroft leans into it slightly and sighs. It doesn't help, but is welcome nonetheless.

"Sherlock will no doubt be a nuisance from here on out," he warns Eggsy, glancing at him. "I'd prefer he did not vanish without warning, however."

"Your brother's safe from me, Mycroft," Eggsy smiles. "He won't find anything."

"Mary knew you," Mycroft points out.

"She came in contact with one of my co-workers a few years back. We're good at what we do, but once you know the signs, we're not that hard to recognize. We conform to a certain pattern, I suppose," Eggsy says, lifting his right hand to show the signet ring. Then he shrugs. "Mary Watson is very good at what she does – or what she did, anyway. Figured out more stuff than most people do, when they come in contact with me and mine."

"She asked for your name."

"For a name. Code name," Eggsy says and looks at him thoughtfully. "With name comes rank."

Mycroft wants to ask, but he doesn't. Instead, he just nods and looks out of the window, thinking, thinking. Eggsy revealed a lot of himself when he rescued them – to Mycroft, to Sherlock, to John – to eight insurgents, before killing them with a near negligent ease. Of course Mycroft had known… but now he'd seen. Eggsy had shown him.

It had been quite amazing, so much so that some part of Mycroft wonders if Eggsy had been showing off. But no, he doubts he was. That was how it always is for him. That was what his missions are like – that was what he does, before coming back with sprains and bruises and cracked ribs. That was the level of skill his work demands of him.

And the level of sheer disregard for his fellow human beings.

"How many people have you killed?" Mycroft asks softly.

"I've never counted. Hundreds," Eggsy shrugs and looks away. "I'm pretty good at it. Does it bother you?"

Mycroft thinks it through and then shakes his head. He's never killed anyone, not directly, nor does he think he ever will. "No," he says and reaches to take Eggsy's hands. "No it doesn't."

They arrive at Mycroft's block and eventually at his flat to find that someone's been in and stocked Mycroft's medicine cupboard with everything he needs for the best recovery. Whether it was Anthea or Eggsy's people, Mycroft doesn't really care. All he wants is to lie down and get some rest – something which Eggsy seems to support fully, as he leads Mycroft straight to the bedroom and digs through his closet for his pyjamas.

"Are you going to dress me too?" Mycroft asks, a little amused.

"Do you want me to?" Eggsy asks, not quite eager, not quite suggestive – but obviously willing.

"I'm injured," Mycroft says slowly.

"And I'm a sentimental fool. Do you want me to dress you?" Eggsy asks, eyeing him.

After a moment, Mycroft decides that, injured or not, it's an experiment worth doing. He nods, and without hesitation Eggsy moves to undress him.

It's quiet in the bedroom, quiet in the building – quiet in the whole world, it feels like. Or maybe that's just the wool that Mycroft's head suddenly seems full of, the thrum of his own blood, pounding in his ears. His head aches and he's dizzy, and Eggsy's hands are almost clinical as they unbutton his jacket and ease it off his shoulders. Eggsy puts it away with the efficiency of someone who too wore suits, before turning to and then, slowly, going down on one knee between Mycroft's legs, to unbuckle his belt.

Maybe, if he didn't feel so damn awful, it might've been sexual. As it is, it's something between intimate and awkward, as Eggsy opens the belt and pulls it loose before tackling the buttons, the zipper. Mycroft stares at him and wonders what the hell he's doing there.

Something of mine, Eggsy called him.

"Can you stand?" Eggsy asks, and Mycroft does, letting the trousers be pulled off his legs. It puts his crotch pretty much level with Eggsy's face, and it goes utterly unacknowledged. Eggsy eases the legs off gently – never once touching Mycroft's skin directly, and then nods at him to sit down on the edge of the bed again.

Then goes the tie and the shirt. Eggsy stands up for that, loosening the tie before sliding it gently from under the collar and over Mycroft's head. After setting it aside, he takes Mycroft's hands and eases the cufflinks off, setting them on the bedside table. Then, finally, he unbuttons Mycroft's shirt with surprising deftness despite the reversed orientation, opening it slowly and easing it off his shoulders.

It is the barest that Mycroft has ever come to in the presence of someone who wasn't a family member, or a medical professional.

"Okay?" Eggsy asks.

"Hm," Mycroft answers, reaching out to take Eggsy's hand in his. Then, not entirely sure why, he lays the younger man's palm against his own throat, just over the collarbones. Eggsy's eyes widen a little and his fingers immediately flex and then settle, his hand fitting there warm and wide, his calluses tough against Mycroft's skin.

"You're injured," Eggsy says softly, a little choked.

"And you're a sentimental fool," Mycroft agrees, looking down as Eggsy's hand trails downwards, over the collarbones, down to the middle of his chest, fingers dragging at his chest hair. He can hear Eggsy swallow and when he looks up, the younger man is staring at him with a stunned expression, looking more than a little flushed.

And what little reservations Mycroft might've had about himself – a middle aged man, not in the best of physical conditions, being faced with such an example of fitness as Gary King – all but evaporated. He lays a hand over Eggsy's and holds it tight to his chest, over his heart.

"Subcutaneous trackers," he says suddenly, remembering. "What stage of relationship includes subcutaneous trackers?"

"For someone like me? Around the engagement part, I reckon," Eggsy says, blinking rapidly and then looking at their hands. "Does this mean –"

"I don't know," Mycroft murmurs and leans into the warmth of Eggsy's hand. "I just… I'm concussed."

"Yea, I know, bruv. Probably not thinking straight."

Mycroft nods and closes his eyes. Eggsy's other hand touches his cheek gently, fitting against his skin there, and it's warm too – and Mycroft might be shivering a bit. He's not sure. The whole world is spinning quietly in the background and Eggsy's hands are just… warm.

"Let's get you dressed up," Eggsy says finally, his voice quiet. He then helps Mycroft into his pyjamas with the same care that he used to get him out of his suit, and the warmth of the worn flannel is welcome against his suddenly chilled skin. Maybe that was it. Maybe he was just cold.

When he lies down to sleep, he tugs Eggsy down to lie with him. It must've been uncomfortable – Eggsy is in a full suit, sans oxfords, and he probably has a gun holster under his jacket which must be digging into his side. Eggsy doesn't complain in the slightest though. He merely takes his glasses off and shifts closer – close enough to touch, but far away enough not to be oppressive.

"You're in love with me," Mycroft announces sleepily.

"Like you wouldn't fuckin' believe," Eggsy admits with a sort of desperate exasperation, and Mycroft falls asleep holding his hand.

 


 

Eventually, between avoiding Sherlock's nosy enquiries, trying to wrangle the duties of a godfather now that the parents of his goddaughter have decided that he's dating unseemly people, and trying to hold the British Government together, Mycroft meets some of Eggsy's people.

The Kingsman Tailor shop is a real one. It is also a front. Eggsy takes him there only a week after the kidnapping incident, and Mycroft gets measured for a suit. A bulletproof suit. Eggsy is really not going to be taking any more chances with him, it turns out. And while the Kingsman suits – the bulletproof ones that is – are a rather well-kept secret, nothing actually prevents the members of Kingsman from having them made for people outside the organisation.

"We just have to pay for it ourselves," Eggsy says, running a hand over his own suit while Mycroft gets measured by the Kingsman tailors – who he suspects are a part of the Kingsman tech department. "In pre-V-Day it costs almost ten thousand pounds, one of these suits. These days they're even more expensive."

"And you're not worried about someone reverse engineering them?" Mycroft asks.

Eggsy smiles. "They'd have to re-invent a whole branch of tech first. We got a bit of a head start on the synthetic fabrics," he says smugly. "We had para-aramid fibres down twenty years before Kevlar was invented. These days, we use somethin' much better."

Of course he doesn't say precisely what they use now, but that's pretty much given.

During that same meeting, Mycroft also meets the man who created his and Eggsy's favoured e-cigs. Merlin is a brusque man with a slight Scottish burl and a shaved head – and, "If you really decide to stick with Eggsy, I'll be the one to implant you with a tracker," he says.

"Is that really required?" Mycroft asks, mildly amused.

"Not required, but for your safety it would be for the best," Merlin shrugs. "It wouldn't hurt to get one anyway. You're pretty much irreplaceable in your position, and it’s better for everyone if you just keep on doing what you're doing."

Apparently, Kingsman has greatly benefited from the UK's stability, and they are rather keen on keeping things that way. Though it has been quite a while since V-Day, the world is still far from recovering. Many governments have collapsed and many countries have descended into anarchy, but the UK stands strong and Mycroft is more than happy to take full credit for it. He worked hard enough to deserve it, certainly.

"We might be international, but that doesn't keep us from being a bit biased," Eggsy shrugs.

Mycroft doesn't precisely get a full tour of Kingsman’s facilities, naturally not, but he's added into the security systems of the tailor shop, and his biometrics are scanned for his personal access ID – so that in the event of a disaster, he could come there and know that he would be safe. Aside from that, however, he doesn't see much at all.

It is enough to estimate the scope of Kingsman’s operations, and considering that the organisation employs quite a number of skilled individuals, the fact that Eggsy heads the organisation starts puzzling Mycroft somewhat. While he has not precisely met any of the Kingsman agents aside from Eggsy – and perhaps the young woman from the Diogenes club – he has seen a couple in passing, and there is at least one man older and far more experienced than Eggsy in the ranks of the Kingsman agents.

So how did Eggsy gain control of the organisation?

"After V-Day, no one else wanted to do it," Eggsy shrugs. "Well. It was a bit more complicated than that – a whole fuckin' lot more complicated really. We lost a lot of staff in V-Day. Since our previous head was in Valentine's camp, well… he sabotaged Kingsman as much as he could. He was dead by then, but that didn't fuckin' stop him from messing everything up all posthumous like – he planted V-phones and shit in our HQ beforehand. We lost over half of our members. Lots of agents, a shit ton of support staff. It was a fuckin' mess."

He trails off and then shakes his head. "Me and Lancelot, we were the only agents who came out kind of unscathed. A couple of agents had head explosives, and the rest, they killed co-workers, family members, just a fuckin' shit ton of people. First hirin' we did after V-Day involved gettin' a whole slew of shrinks to take care of everybody. A few of our agents still aren't fit for duty, maybe never will be."

"So… they chose you out of a lack of anyone else to choose?" Mycroft asks, frowning.

"It was between me and Merlin. Lancelot didn't want to do it and she didn't have the leadership qualifications. I did. Besides, I was biased just right," Eggsy says and grins. "I told you I messed up my loyalty test, right? Yea, part of our testin' process involves raising a dog. In the loyalty test, you're ordered to shoot the dog. I didn't. And then that same day, I invaded Valentine's base and all that good stuff. Funnily enough, it made me right fit for leadership."

"Hmm," Mycroft hums, considering it.

"It was one hell of a trial by fire. Though, the first couple of months, I was pretty much a puppet for Merlin. Still not sure if that made things easier or harder for me," Eggsy snorts and then falls quiet. After a moment, he turns to look at Mycroft, his smile fading into an expression of total seriousness. "There's another thing, though. About why it was me, in the end, and not anybody else."

"Yes?"

"You know that during V-Day, the head explosives went off a bit before the wave was launched, right?"

"Yes," Mycroft says slowly. It was what had saved his life, probably – he'd gone into his panic room, when the explosives had been triggered. It had kept him safe from the wave. Safe in a way Sherlock, John, and Mary hadn't been. Nor almost anyone else, really.

Eggsy looks at him closely. "I ordered that," he then says. "It wasn't Valentine who did it. He never planned to do it. The trigger to super heat the soft tissues – that was just a safety measure, a way to keep the secret before V-Day. But after? Those were the people he wanted to save, the people he'd chosen and turned to his cause, the people he was going to make a new age for. Everyone in his base had one, except for himself, his assistant, and the hostage VIPs who didn't agree to his terms. A little under a thousand people, all told."

Mycroft blinks and slowly leans back, thinking, running through a mental list of everyone who'd died that day due to those implants. It had included a lot of people he'd known. Some of them personally. Some of them he'd even trusted.

"You triggered the implants," Mycroft says slowly.

"Well, Merlin did. We hacked the network, he got the access, I suggested that he turn them on, and he did," Eggsy says slowly, still watching him.

Mycroft swallows a little at that, at the utter lack of remorse. "Why?" he asks quietly.

"It was the last option. It was them, or the world," the younger man says and finally looks away, smiling faintly. "And that's why no one else wanted to become Arthur. Because how the fuck do you top an executive decision like that?"

How indeed. Mycroft turns the new bit of information in his head for a moment before letting it settle – accepting it as a part of Eggsy. It fits rather well with the rest of what he knows about Eggsy, and it fills in that last hole in the puzzle of V-Day that had been bothering him. It is not a happy thought, but then… neither is the Valentine Conspiracy as it exists now. And that was Eggsy's work too.

Shaking his head, Mycroft reaches and touches the back of Eggsy's head, urging him to turn to him. When Eggsy does, a little more hesitant than he's ever been, Mycroft just shakes his head and kisses him. And Eggsy, as is his way, leans into it with the eagerness of a man on the brink of death – desperate and savouring all at once.

"With that sort of history, I am not having a tracker implanted in me," Mycroft tells him firmly, leaning his forehead against Eggsy's.

"I swear, ours don't come with explosives," Eggsy says quickly. "I got three of them, they're perfectly safe!"

"No, Eggsy."

The younger man smiles at him, winding his arms around Mycroft's waist, fitting firmly and comfortably against him. "You'll let me put bugs on all your clothes though, right?" he asks and then his eyes suddenly light up. "Hey, I got a brilliant idea for an engagement ring!"

Mycroft just rolls his eyes and kisses him again.