“Why am I here?” Sherlock demands.
He stands once more in the Stranger’s Room at the Diogenes, afternoon sunlight filtering weakly through the windows. Dust motes swirl in the shafts of light, the remnants of dead things. Dead hopes, dead dreams, dead desires.
“Why ask me?” Mycroft picks up a madeleine with hands like risen dough, and pops it into his mouth entire. This time he’s wearing a pin-striped suit stretched over his grotesquely swollen frame, matched with a maroon tie and pocket square, looking thoroughly modern. He chews calmly and swallows as Sherlock watches, revolted yet entranced. “I didn’t summon you.” He pats his mouth with a mustard-stained napkin. “You summoned yourself.”
“Did I? Why on earth would I do that?”
“I’m not responsible for your impulses, brother mine.”
Sherlock tilts his head, considering, and is assaulted by a sudden wave of nausea. He coughs and retches as the bile rises in his throat, but manages not to vomit on the patterned carpet. Something is terribly wrong. When he straightens back up, Mycroft is halfway through a buttered scone, watching him with sorrowful eyes.
“Help me,” Sherlock says, when he can breathe.
“How can I help you when I can barely move from this chair?” Mycroft wipes his hands and spreads his plump palms wide. “But then, help has never been what you really wanted from me, is it?”
Mycroft selects a blood plum from a fruit tray with great deliberation and bites into it. A thin trail of juice escapes, and he dabs at it swiftly with the napkin. “Are you all right, Sherlock? You appear to be perspiring quite freely.”
Sherlock can feel it now, the sweat making his hair stick to his scalp, one or two trickles sliding down his face. At first he can’t tell if he’s too hot or too cold – his skin is burning with heat, while the core of him is freezing. He hurriedly strips off his suit jacket and unbuttons his shirt, trying to summon a breeze. But the air is heavy and stifling, as though the room were hermetically sealed.
“It’s far too warm in here.”
“Is it?” Mycroft plucks the plum stone out of his mouth, setting it aside, and reaches for the open box of chocolates beside him. He holds one up to the light, like a dark jewel, before devouring it whole. “It feels perfectly temperate to me.”
Sherlock is assailed by another, smaller wave of nausea, and suddenly finds Mycroft’s behaviour repellent beyond belief. “For god’s sake, stop eating! You’re disgusting. Have some self-control.”
Mycroft only chuckles, and picks up another chocolate. In mock deference, he bites into this one slowly, showing a flash of white teeth. Inside is a liqueur of some kind; the napkin gains another smudge. He makes a great show of savouring the remainder, licking his fingertips. “Self-control? That's precious advice, coming from you. These are exquisite, by the way. Would you care for one?”
Sherlock snarls and snatches the box from Mycroft’s outstretched hand, flinging it aside. Chocolates scatter the floor. More calmly, he begins moving the numerous trays and dishes of food surrounding his brother out of his reach. The last thing to go is the silver trolley, which he pushes hard up against the wall. When he returns, Mycroft is mournfully finishing a hastily-rescued roast beef sandwich.
“Woe is me,” he says, patting his belly fondly. “A slave to my appetites.” He sets the napkin aside at last, and smiles.
Sherlock swallows hard, clenching his fists. His heart is racing. He wants to punch his brother in his great fat face. He wants to…
“Well,” Mycroft says. “You appear to have me entirely at your disposal. What is it you want from me, Sherlock?”
“I – don’t – want – anything – from – you,” Sherlock says, through gritted teeth.
“No? Then why don’t you just leave?”
All the nerves in Sherlock’s body are ablaze, and he needs to do something, anything. He darts immediately to the door, not even bothering to retrieve his suit jacket, but finds it locked. He rattles the knob and pounds on it a few times, yelling, but deep in his heart he already knows it’s futile. Grimly, he returns to Mycroft.
“I can’t,” he says. “And you knew I couldn’t.”
“I knew no such thing. There are always choices, Sherlock. Free will. The decision not to give in to one’s… baser urges. Of course, you’d know nothing about that.”
“And you would.”
Mycroft shrugs, a surprisingly delicate gesture for his bulk. “Not here, apparently.” He fixes Sherlock in his gaze, and his eyes are as sharp as ever. “What do you want, Sherlock?”
Sherlock licks his lips, breathing hard. “I want…” The feeling of panic rises and crests as understanding sinks in. Mycroft is massive, hideous, and yet. “I want… “
“I’m sorry, Sherlock,” Mycroft says, and then Sherlock is pounding into him with his fists, his breath sobbing. Again and again he strikes out at Mycroft’s unresisting flesh, giving full vent to his fury. When he pulls back, Mycroft is regarding him calmly, looking entirely unaffected by the blows. Only his eyes are soft and regretful, just as he’d looked that day…
“To hell with you,” Sherlock says roughly. “And your self-control.”
“Just so,” Mycroft says, extending an arm like a side of mutton. He reaches up to stroke the side of Sherlock’s face. “It’s entirely up to you, of course. I’m aware I’ve looked... better.”
Sherlock, considers, then laughs. “Not by much.”
Slowly, he strips off his clothing – shirt, shoes, socks, trousers, pants. At last he stands naked before Mycroft, who eyes him with frank, uninhibited interest.
“My dear boy,” he says. “My dear, dear boy.”
Mycroft eases his legs further apart, with some difficulty, and Sherlock moves between them to kiss him. His size should matter more, but it doesn’t. It’s still Mycroft, every solid, fleshy inch of him, and Sherlock luxuriates in the welcoming softness of his mouth, the warmth of pudgy hands holding him close. When he was younger, sometimes all he wanted to do was hide in his brother’s arms, and Mycroft would always turn from whatever he was doing and indulge him.
As Sherlock loses himself in the complex flavours of Mycroft’s kisses, he feels his cock hardening against the vast slab of Mycroft’s belly. He rubs himself shamelessly against the wool, enjoying the play of texture against his skin. All the while, Mycroft murmurs soft encouragement, telling him how lovely he is, how desirable, and Sherlock hangs on every word. Now fully aroused, he pulls back and his hands fumble at the button of Mycroft’s trousers.
“Mycroft. Do you think…?”
“Of course, Sherlock. How could I possibly refuse?”
Mycroft leans back further in the chair, shifting his hips forward to allow Sherlock better access. It will be difficult, Sherlock thinks, but by no means impossible. Sherlock wraps his hand around Mycroft’s cock, still small and soft, and strokes it briskly into hardness. Mycroft’s eyes are closed, his head thrown back against the chair, and his lips curve slightly at the corners. Low sounds of pleasure emanate from his throat.
As Sherlock moves up to straddle him, Mycroft draws his legs together and opens his eyes. The affection in them takes Sherlock’s breath away.
“I’ll always be here for you,” Mycroft says. “You know that.”
“Yes.” Sherlock leans forward to kiss him again, and then begins pushing himself down onto Mycroft’s cock, using sweat and saliva to slick the way. He manages barely an inch before he’s forced to stop, panting. It’s not the usual burn of penetration, but something harsher, deeper, a twisting cramp inside him.
“Are you all right?” Careful hands caress his back.
“Yes, yes,” he says, and tries again. The discomfort is sharper this time, a knife slicing upwards through his belly, briefly blotting out rational thought.
“Sherlock, please, speak to me. How are you feeling?”
“Hurts… “ he says, even as a new spike of pain overwhelms him. The room begins to blur. His hands clutch at Mycroft’s shoulders, finding only empty air, and he moans and curls into a shivering ball. Then gentle hands are soothing him, stroking him where his shirt is now clinging to his sweat-soaked back. After several long moments, he’s able to breathe again.
“You’ve been here before. It will pass,” Mycroft says, as Sherlock opens his eyes. He’s in his own room, his own bed, and Mycroft is sitting beside him, a flannel in his hand. Mycroft’s in his shirtsleeves, but otherwise looks his normal self. Restrained. Calm. Controlled. I’ll always be here for you, he’d said, once. But not in that way. I’m sorry, Sherlock.
“It’s all right,” Sherlock says. “You didn’t have to stay. I’m fine.”
Mycroft looks relieved, but his mouth is set in a grim line. He wipes Sherlock’s face with the cloth, which is cool and damp. “You realise one day you won’t be so lucky.”
Sherlock uncurls a little and lies back against the pillow. He slips a furtive hand around Mycroft’s waist, and rests it against the curve of Mycroft’s small, soft belly. Mycroft flinches a little under his touch, but lets it lie.
“I like the new waistcoat, by the way,” Sherlock says. “It suits you.”
Mycroft frowns at him, puzzled, but Sherlock only closes his eyes and tries to sleep once more.