lightconductor: (cheer)
[personal profile] lightconductor
It had, for Watson, been an uncomfortable cab ride, though he was trying not to show it. Though Miss Morstan, beside him, was as charming and sweet and friendly as she ever was, he couldn't quite shake the feeling that he was being unforgiveably cruel, that he was encouraging her in the belief that he had some interest in her. This entire plan was foolish, mad, and doomed to failure, he was sure.

Still, it was straightforward enough. They woud go out to dinner; Holmes would accompany them, as a friend and as a chaperone (not that Watson had ever any serious need of a chaperone in the past, or that Mary was so deicate she needed her virtue protected, which was one thing he liked about her), and Lestrade would be fortuitously present for them to invite along. It might come to nothing, but it was at least worth a try.

If only Mary would lose faith in him first, Watson thought grimly as he ascended the steps to their sitting room. "After you," he said, graciously.


Mary was feeling troubled; she could not quite grasp whether or not she was wasting her time with Dr. Watson. Oh, to be certain, she enjoyed his company, and he seemed to enjoy hers, but he had yet to make any firm strides towards deepening their relationship. He had not attempted a single kiss, not a romantic embrace, nothing. And yet he seemed so warm. Was he that much of a gentleman? Did he really think her that... pristine, that virginal? She was beginning to think that, as out of place as it might have been for a young lady, she might have to be the one to force his hand.

She was, though, beginning to lose hope.

She smiled at him as she entered the sitting room, glancing around to see if Mr. Holmes was in sight. This room brought back memories, not all of them good, but she would be genuinely glad to see the detective in any case. "You haven't mentioned where we're going," Mary said, conversationally. "Or is that supposed to be a surprise?"

Date: 2011-10-20 04:01 am (UTC)
mustbethetruth: (Looking up. Go on.)
From: [personal profile] mustbethetruth
Holmes looks up when Watson and Miss Morstan enter. Lestrade is late, but he'd expected that; besides, he's fairly certain he can see a cab that would contain Lestrade approaching now. He isn't precisely overjoyed to see Watson and Miss Morstan together; frankly it still reminds him of the life Watson could be having, might've been having, and he isn't sure how it make him feel, still.

"Surprises are more my line of work," he says with a graceful inclination of his head as he stands smoothly from his seat. "Good evening, Miss Morstan. It's a pleasure to see you again." Particularly when he's about to pawn her off onto someone who would probably be a good match for her, granted, but it would also remove her from Watson's side.

Lestrade's step on the stair is not an unwelcome sound just then. He's ready for this show to begin.




When Lestrade gets the telegram, right in the middle of his lunch thank you very much, he curses over his tea. Blast Sherlock Holmes, he thinks, staring down at the short, terse, demanding little message. "Come at 6" is all it says, signed "SH," and somewhere between those letters, Lestrade can just see his upturned nose and holier-than-thou commanding smirk.

Probably he would've crumpled it up and told the pompous so-and-so to stuff it (or shown up at 6:30, just to irritate him) had he not known that Holmes really isn't holier than anyone. That underneath that somewhere is a man who feels just like anyone else. Lestrade still is a bit baffled that of all people, he's one of the few (he supposes) to really see that side of him. He hadn't asked for it, that's for sure, but he won't abuse it now that he's in that position.

And so when he steps out of the cab in front of Baker street -- at 6:18, so there -- he thinks Blast Sherlock Holmes and starts for the door. He experiences a brief, uncomfortable knot of memory as he climbs the stairs, worrying about knocking, about interrupting them, but the open door eases some of that uncertainty, and he steps into the room -- and starts.

"Ah. Good evening," he says, looking from Holmes to Watson to the (charming) woman.

Date: 2011-10-20 04:43 am (UTC)
mustbethetruth: (There you have it. Duh.)
From: [personal profile] mustbethetruth
"Inspector," Holmes greets with an air of nonchalance even though he's excited that this whole affair is beginning. He struggles not to let that show through. He shouldn't be excited about what's bound to be a terribly awkward evening.

"Prompt as ever. I'm afraid, as you see, that I'm a bit preoccupied with dinner plans. Our appointment will have to wait." Before Lestrade can say what Holmes can see he's struggling very hard to keep from saying in front of their feminine company, Holmes gestures to Watson and Miss Morstan and lifts his eyebrows. "Perhaps instead you could accompany us to dinner."



It's on the tip of Lestrade's tongue to chew Holmes out. He invited Lestrade here with no explanation -- no, he summoned Lestrade here more than anything, and Lestrade came without having a single clue as to what Holmes might need or want of him, because he's just a good damned person. He keeps all that to himself, though, for the lady's sake.

She is pretty, he has to admit, and he hasn't any doubt that whatever she's hoping to accomplish this evening likely won't come to pass. He wouldn't want to be the third wheel to a meal with Watson and Holmes, not when he might be inclined to think of one of them as a suitor. And dinner would be good.

Blast Sherlock Holmes.

After a glance at Watson, he nods, feeling resigned. "I'd be delighted," he says, without much delight, though he tries on a smile to cover it up. For the lady's sake.

Date: 2011-10-21 02:40 am (UTC)
mustbethetruth: (Small smile.)
From: [personal profile] mustbethetruth
"Let's start with dinner," Holmes decides, starting for his coat. He wants to get this meal over with as quickly as possible, and perhaps the drinks afterwards would be more entertaining. Miss Morstan and Lestrade are not very happy with this turn of events, but Holmes figures that he and Watson will just have to turn their moods around.

Dinner passes by pleasantly enough, with Lestrade warming up to Miss Morstan and the idea of the meal fairly rapidly. Holmes is sure once food is introduced, Lestrade can't stay disgruntled for very long at all.



As reluctant as he'd been, Lestrade enjoys the meal. Holmes and Watson's company is as good as it always is, and he finds himself rather charmed by Miss Morstan, if he's honest. She's pretty, no doubt, but there's a wit and a sharpness to her that he appreciates. He would've thought he'd be more awkward in this whole ordeal, but she fits herself into the conversation, and Lestrade greatly enjoys her company as well.

When the time the meal's over, he actually prompts Holmes about those drinks back at Baker st., and the farthest thing from his mind as he climbs those stairs again tonight is how much he'd like to trip Holmes sometimes.

"What a splendid meal," Lestrade comments amiably as he strides into Baker st. and situates himself on the sofa, sighing contentedly. "I must thank you gentlemen for inviting me along. I hope you weren't too dismayed to have another join your party, Miss Morstan."

Date: 2011-10-21 04:11 am (UTC)
mustbethetruth: (I'm awesome. Cigarette.)
From: [personal profile] mustbethetruth
Holmes chokes back a small chuckle as he drifts over to the sideboard. It isn't like Watson needs any help pouring the drinks, but Holmes would rather not wade into that heterosexual area over there just now. He's not surprised at all that Miss Morstan's readjusting her interests, especially since Lestrade did far better at dinner than Holmes had thought he would. He gives Watson a small, private smile, angled so that Miss Morstan and Lestrade can't see.



"I expect she would, if she existed," Lestrade answers goodnaturedly, but he isn't an idiot. He knows what that question's fishing for, and he gives Miss Morstan a little smile, the best attempt he can muster up at flirting. So far, there's a reason there's no Mrs Lestrade, and that's that he isn't as handsome or charming as Dr. Watson.

"Probably Mrs Patmore, my housekeeper, is more than a little annoyed with me, but that's hardly a new state of affairs."



"You're in an enviable position, Miss Morstan," Holmes calls, grinning. "A lady in a roomful of bachelors."

Date: 2011-10-22 02:23 am (UTC)
mustbethetruth: (OOC can't read my p-p-poker face)
From: [personal profile] mustbethetruth
"Thank you, Doctor." Lestrade takes his drink and reminds himself that of the four people in this room, he's not the one that's out of his element. Miss Morstan's definitely at a disadvantage here because she doesn't even know that Holmes and Watson are a couple of inverts, and the only bachelor she has to look out for around here is Lestrade. Somehow, though, when she turns that warm smile on him, he feels a little like he's drowning in something.

Get your head together, G. All she's done is smile at you.

"You and me both," he says, chuckling warmly along with her. "Holmes, what was it that you summoned me over here for?" he asks, twisting around in his seat. At least talking to Holmes doesn't make him feel shy. "I'm assuming it wasn't that urgent."



Holmes waves his hand dismissively, not entirely eager to be drawn into the conversation when he's been enjoying watching the exchange of signals between Lestrade and Mary.

"One of your fellow inspectors got something wrong, but it's not important. The person who was arrested committed a crime, just not the one he was arrested for." He shrugs a shoulder and shoots Lestrade a teasingly smug look. "It's nothing that unusual."



Lestrade rolls his eyes and turns around, deciding not to be upset with Holmes, at least not in front of Miss Morstan. "I don't know how you put up with him, Watson. He must have the patience of a saint." He says the latter to Miss Morstan and then takes a sip of his drink because he really shouldn't be talking up the man that's maybe caught Miss Morstan's eye already.

Date: 2011-10-22 03:55 am (UTC)
mustbethetruth: (Quiet laughter.)
From: [personal profile] mustbethetruth
"Thank you for the vote of confidence, Watson," Holmes drawls, making his way over to his chair, though he throws Watson a smile over the rim of his glass before he takes a sip. Settling down, he gets comfortable in his seat, resting an elbow on the arm of the chair as he appraises this situation between Mary and Lestrade. Mary's certainly rising to the occasion; clearly Holmes overestimated how much she had settled herself on Watson. Lestrade seems barely able to keep up.



"No, he's not an ogre. More a rock in my shoe." Lestrade grins teasingly at Holmes, admittedly feeling a bit bolstered from Miss Morstan's compliment and that warm laugh of hers. She's rather pretty when she laughs, he thinks.

"Our entire relationship is based around him mocking my colleagues," he says, smiling at Miss Morstan. He leaves out the part where he mocks Lestrade a fair amount, too. "But I give as good as I get." He realizes the rakish smile he gives over his glass is fairly shamelessly posturing, but she's the one who's smiling at him like that, so. Oh well. Maybe Holmes will tease him for this, too, but he's seen Holmes and Watson half undone, and Lestrade's finally feeling daring enough to bring it up again. So he can just look out.

Date: 2011-10-22 05:52 am (UTC)
mustbethetruth: (AMAZING PERCEPTIVE SKILLS)
From: [personal profile] mustbethetruth
Look at Mary go, flirting up quite the little storm. Though Holmes has seen this phenomenon of course, even been on the receiving end of it, he's always a little fascinated and a little put off when he's around a particularly flirty girl. She should probably leave the alcohol alone; he knows this isn't necessarily a part of her character, that the evening's going to her head.

Holmes raises a challenging eyebrow at Lestrade and sips from his drink, more amused than anything at Lestrade's jibe. He realizes that he and Lestrade are friends, and he shouldn't find that so strange, except when does he have friends?

"I'm sure you'll find someone who agrees, Miss Morstan," he answers smoothly, turning his somewhat lazy expression on her. "A mutual acquaintance of ours comes to mind. It really is a shame that Lestrade couldn't have helped us out on that case, rather than Athelney Jones."



Lestrade snorts and rolls his eyes a bit, though he watches Miss Morstan to make sure she shares Holmes's opinion of Jones. Though really, who couldn't.

"Oh, him. I wanted that case, you know. Aside from it sounding interesting, it's not often you hear about pursuits down the Thames." He flicks his eyes to Miss Morstan, wondering at himself and how bold he's being, but well, how often does he get to do this kind of thing anyway? "And I could've made your acquaintance sooner."

Date: 2011-10-23 06:11 am (UTC)
mustbethetruth: (Side. Smirk. Hat.)
From: [personal profile] mustbethetruth
"Oh, I'm sure about that." Lestrade finishes off his drink and holds his glass in his hand. His eyes hover on Miss Morstan, and then flit away, a tad self-conscious. He does wonder if he's getting a little ahead of himself, if he's letting a pair of pretty eyes carry him away, but she is rather a good deal more than pretty eyes. Look at her, all witty and charming. He has been a bachelor for a long time, hasn't let himself get carried away by pretty eyes in quite some time.

Only problem he can see is, it's a bit awkward being too flirty when he's sitting with two of his friends in their sitting room, and increasingly he's getting the distinct impression that they're monitoring how he and Miss Morstan are getting along.



Holmes hides his smirk behind his glass and gives a suffering sigh, glancing at the clock although he knows perfectly well what time it is, and he doesn't really care either way because whatever the clock says won't change what he's about to say.

"It is getting late, Miss Morstan. I fear Mrs. Forrester may be organizing a search party for you shortly."


Lestrade gives Holmes a very small, very hopeful smile, which Holmes does manage to return.

Date: 2011-10-23 08:18 am (UTC)
mustbethetruth: (There you have it. Duh.)
From: [personal profile] mustbethetruth
Oh, bless Watson. And Holmes too. He's glad to be getting away from them because he's definitely suspicious now of the whole evening and their interests in throwing Lestrade and Miss Morstan in a hansom together. While he's grateful to them for it, he'd rather not continue sitting here, feeling rather like a creature in a zoo with its handlers hovering nearby, waiting for it to mate. Or maybe that's the drink getting to him. Or maybe it's the infatuation he's harboring for Miss Morstan.

He needs to get out of Baker street.

"I wouldn't mind in the slightest," he returns, his excitement and flattery over her excitement showing in his face. Oh, this is promising indeed. "Thank you for the invitation, sudden as it was," he says as he gets to his feet, maybe a little too quickly. "I'll see you gentlemen soon enough."


"Yes, you do always have a habit of turning up," Holmes teases, feeling only warmth and affection for Lestrade and Mary, surprisingly. Without the fear that she'd be whisking Watson away into domestic bliss, he can appreciate what he liked about her from the beginning. This romance stuff rather color his opinion, but no matter.

"Good evening," he says, getting to his feet to nod them both a goodbye. "Thank you for dinner."

Date: 2011-10-24 01:32 am (UTC)
mustbethetruth: (Grin. Hat.)
From: [personal profile] mustbethetruth
"I'd enjoy that," Lestrade says readily, happy to jump at a chance to spend more time with Miss Morstan. He slips into his hat and coat and stands ready for Miss Morstan to join him, smiling warmly at her.



Holmes suppresses the urge to groan. "Naturally," he says instead with a small, polite smile. "Until then."

He waits for Lestrade and Mary to start down the stairs, and the door to shut behind them, before he turns a warm smile on Watson. "My dear, I think we're matchmakers now."



Lestrade's only a little nervously excited when they reach the landing and step outside. He catches a hansom for them and helps her in, and he settles himself beside her, quite unable to stop grinning. This is probably inappropriate, or something, but Lestrade has no complaints about squeezing in beside her.

"So, Miss Morstan, you are a governess? How old is your charge?" He asks, eager to know more about her.

Date: 2011-10-24 02:55 am (UTC)
theyarder: (Small smile)
From: [personal profile] theyarder
"A baby's always exciting," he offers, feeling a little bashful himself after Miss Morstan sweeps him up into a secretive bubble. "My brother just had one last year. Well, his wife did. Handsome thing. I don't get to see him as often as I'd like to. Work keeps me busy, you know."

As much as he'd rather not bring up how he doesn't have a lot of time for romance, hence why he's still unmarried and childless, something his brother gets after him for often enough, he figures it's only fair to point it out. No sense in her getting her hopes up about something only to be disappointed because he has to run off in the middle of dinner.

Date: 2011-10-24 04:18 am (UTC)
theyarder: (sadness. so.)
From: [personal profile] theyarder
She isn't balking from this, he notices, which is definitely a good sign. Admittedly he's a little nervous about how she'll feel about his life, but honesty's better than trying to wriggle out from what his life's usually like.

"Never when I'm in the thick of it. It helps, too, when I'm pretty thoroughly worn out, so I just about have time to eat and read the paper before I'm nodding off. On a slower day -- and there's a good number of those -- especially after I spend all day filling out paperwork..." He sighs and presses his lips together, slowly nodding. "It's a bit lonely, yeah. There's not much to fill in the spaces, days like that."

He gives her a self-conscious smile. "I don't suppose you have much time to be lonely."

Date: 2011-10-24 04:59 am (UTC)
theyarder: (hmmmm)
From: [personal profile] theyarder
"That's true enough," he relents, nodding. "I've got my brother, and my parents are still alive, though I see them even less. It is nice to have family, but a person gets lonely for other things. I get on with the boys at the Yard, and lately now Mr. Holmes and Dr. Watson, but, well." He gives a shrug, trying not to be morose himself.

"I suppose they're rather like your Forresters. We're friendly, but it's all about work. That's why this evening has been particularly pleasant." He smiles, shy and flirtatious all at once. "Your company's been a welcome relief."

Date: 2011-10-24 02:48 pm (UTC)
theyarder: (Smile. Laugh.)
From: [personal profile] theyarder
"I'd like that," he says warmly, endeared by her blushing, endeared by her being forward, "very much. And I don't care if that's too forward." He gives a soft chuckle and turns away, wondering at how he could feel like he was in school again with his first love. For God's sake, he just met the girl, but she's witty and charming and lovely and Lestrade's been lonely, it's true.

"You know, I think Mr. Holmes and Dr. Watson would like that too," he adds, chuckling harder now. "

Date: 2011-10-25 02:36 am (UTC)
theyarder: (oh you)
From: [personal profile] theyarder
It's Lestrade's turn to blush; his ears turn red, an unfortunate characteristic that he's never quite enjoyed in himself, but there isn't much to be done for it now. He takes her hand, feeling warm all over and pleasantly surprise at the turn of events. He figured he'd find a wife someday, but had been putting off the actual search, too... unsure of where to start it. He'd have to thank Watson and Holmes (though surely, mostly Watson) for giving him the push.

"I might have to thank them," he says, bashful suddenly.

Date: 2011-10-25 03:00 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] missmorstan.livejournal.com
Mary couldn't stop smiling, a slightly shy and bashful little smile. She was certainly in no hurry for this cab ride to end. "We both will," she said, and she hoped that this was successful enough that they would have reason to thank them.

"But perhaps it might not be wise to overestimate our luck?" she suggested. The last thing she wanted to do was assume anything and ruin this. She had thought she liked Dr. Watson, but she had a new perspective on that now.

Date: 2011-10-25 03:27 am (UTC)
theyarder: (G)
From: [personal profile] theyarder
"Right," he agrees, forcing a more sensible expression onto his face and nodding, trying to shake some sense into his head. He appreciates practicality and sense and realistic approaches, so she's absolutely right, but it doesn't help that her being sensible about this only seems to suggest that they'd be well-matched.

"Of course. Chickens and eggs, and all that. Maybe after another dinner, you'll decide I have a horrible sense of humor, and you can't abide that. Which would be completely fair." He smiles, a little playfully. "Can't live with someone who you can't laugh with."

Date: 2011-10-25 03:44 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] missmorstan.livejournal.com
She could already laugh with him. Oh, but she felt lucky.

"Is that an invitation for dinner again?" Mary asked, sweetly teasing. "If it is, I think I might accept. You ought to be careful, Mr. Lestrade. You don't want to give me the wrong idea."

She giggled a little, unable to help it, feeling positively light-headed.

Date: 2011-10-25 03:59 am (UTC)
theyarder: (Smile. Laugh.)
From: [personal profile] theyarder
"Right again. I don't." He grins at her, already enjoying the sound of her laugh, her sweet, giddy giggles. "That's why I'm inviting you out to dinner, so you'll get the right idea." He breaks off, chuckling, mostly from happiness, though also at his flirtatiousness.

"What will your employers think of all this? You go out with one bachelor and come home with another," he teases. Though Watson isn't quite a bachelor. That's still a bizarre thought.

Date: 2011-10-25 04:28 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] missmorstan.livejournal.com
Laughing again, Mary shook her head. "I haven't any idea. They're quite accomodating but this might be a bit much even for them. I shall have to see what, if anything, they say about it."

She tossed her head. "Let them disapprove. I know and you know that nothing untoward has happened. That's good enough for me." In a slightly softer voice, she added, "But I do accept the offer of dinner, gladly."

Date: 2011-10-25 04:59 am (UTC)
theyarder: (G)
From: [personal profile] theyarder
Lestrade is aware that he's staring at her, just a little, but the toss of her head and the daring of her words... Well, he appreciates a girl with spunk. He breaks off from looking at her with a self-conscious shake of his head, though he very lightly squeezes her hand.

"Good because I suspect even if you hadn't, you wouldn't be seeing the last of me."

Date: 2011-10-25 05:26 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] missmorstan.livejournal.com
"I'm relieved to hear it," Mary said, still smiling. She squeezed Lestrade's fingers back gently. She was aware that they were coming up soon upon the Forrester's home, and that this cab ride must end.

"Before I forget to ask," she said, speaking softly, "I don't believe I heard what your Christian name is. I think I'd like to know, before we end up going to dinner together again?"

Date: 2011-10-25 05:35 am (UTC)
theyarder: (oh you)
From: [personal profile] theyarder
"Oh," he says, with another little amused chuckle. He likes it when she speaks softly too, and he's beginning to realize he might just have a thing for her voice. "It's Guy. Guy Lestrade. Bit of a family name. It was my grandfather's."

Date: 2011-10-25 02:39 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] missmorstan.livejournal.com
"It's a lovely name," Mary said. Guy Lestrade. She liked the sound of it. She liked the sound of Lestrade in general, come to think of it. He seemed almost perfect, as far as she was concerned.

She told herself, firmly, to get herself under control. One evening did not mean true love. It didn't even mean general compatibility. It was, at least, a good start.

She sighed a little, peering to look down the street as the cab pulled up to a familiar house. "Well," she said, "Mr. Guy Lestrade, I believe this is my destination."

Date: 2011-10-25 02:56 pm (UTC)
theyarder: (sadness. so.)
From: [personal profile] theyarder
The little twinge of disappointment at that is a little embarrassing. She's only getting out of the cab, for goodness's sake. He'll see her again soon enough -- and he knows for sure that he'll be coming by as soon as he properly can, without being too unseemly. Well, maybe a second before.

"Ah, very well." He squeezes her hand lightly before he slips out of the cab, reaching up to help her out. "I thank you for a lovely evening, Miss Morstan. One of the loveliest I've had in a long time."

Date: 2011-10-25 03:25 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] missmorstan.livejournal.com
Taking his hand, Mary stepped out. The smile she gave Lestrade was warm, thankful, encouraging. "I agree," she said. "Perhaps next time we could have dinner without the extra company."

She gave a small laugh. Oh, she hoped he would call on her soon. "Escort me to the door, Mr. Lestrade?"

Date: 2011-10-25 03:37 pm (UTC)
theyarder: (G)
From: [personal profile] theyarder
"With pleasure. And most definitely without the extra company," he agrees readily, warmly. He's already mentally rearranging his schedule to see where he can guarantee a proper evening off that he could take Miss Morstan out. Preferably within the week. Is that too eager? Oh well. He is eager.

"You'll see me again soon enough," he says, half a warning. "To be honest... I'm not sure I could stay away for very long." He stops at her door, feeling the pleasant tingle of infatuation. It'll be good to get away from her, to screw his head back on right, but he doesn't think that much of this feeling will dissipate once he steps back in that cab.

Date: 2011-10-26 02:18 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] missmorstan.livejournal.com
"I look forward to it," Mary promised, squeezing his fingers. "I hope you don't take so long to come visit me again."

She tried the door, and was relieved to find that it was open, that she was not locked out and would not have to wake the household up. Bless Mrs. Forrester for that. Still, she was reluctant to go inside, not now, not so soon.

"Good night, Mr. Lestrade."

Date: 2011-10-26 02:59 am (UTC)
theyarder: (Smile. Laugh.)
From: [personal profile] theyarder
"Good night, Miss Morstan," he says, and he's sorry to say it. He lingers, recognizing her reluctance to leave and mirroring it right back, but he has to leave at some point -- if only to come back and see her again later. Nodding, he draws his hand away and backs up a step, smiling goodbye again, until finally he turns and hops back up in the cab.

Oh, dear. He's really falling over his heels on this one.

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