Title: take your time cause you’re up against space (4/?)
Fandom/Pairing: Suits, Harvey/Mike (we’ll get there eventually)
Summary: Mike actually knows quite a lot about law
Mike actually knows quite a lot about law. He’s taken the LSATs more times than he should ever admit to and for far more people than he could admit to. He has an unhealthy amount of legal information memorized, ready at a moment’s notice.
Mike had had dreams of law school once. Of breezing through and eventually settling in a career as an attorney. His dreams had met the harsh reality of heating bills and law school loans before promptly withering into nothingness. It wasn’t that he didn’t love law enough, it was that he didn’t love law enough to force Gram into a state run facility so he could be in debt for the rest of his life.
So Mike is very familiar with law. He would even go far enough to say he was comfortable with it.
He doesn’t say any of this when Harvey asks him though. He just gapes at the other man, much like a confused fish. As soon as he realizes what he’s doing, he shuts his mouth and tries to figure out what’s going on.
“Um, excuse me?”
“Rule one, don’t make me repeat myself.” And it’s like Harvey has an authority button for his voice.
Very quickly, Mike realizes something. For all that Harvey may know about him and all that his mind thinks Harvey knows about him, he knows virtually nothing about Harvey.
“Last time I checked, I wasn’t your janitor?” It’s the best Mike can come up with on short notice and it’s not nearly good enough. Harvey has an eyebrow quirked at him again, and how can an eyebrow be so attractive?
“In case you can’t tell, I’m offering you a job. I would suggest you shut up and listen carefully unless you want to spend the rest of your life as a janitor.” Mike has no idea where Harvey’s cockiness has come from. It’s a little bit insanely hot.
“In case you can’t tell, I already have a job.” Let the record state that Mike Ross is not one to go quietly.
“So are you stalking me, or offering me a job? Because they actually aren’t the same thing…” Mike knows how to banter. Enjoys it actually, but how often do you find someone to banter with in a hospital?
“I’m a senior partner at Pearson-Hardman. I’m going to be returning from a four month…” Harvey pauses and Mike has the feeling that he still isn’t comfortable with the vulnerability associated with a coma, “hiatus. I want a competent associate who isn’t a brainless Harvard look-like. Convince me that’s you.”
“Weren’t you the one that one who wanted to hire me? Why should I have to convince you?”
Harvey just gives him this look. And then Mike is off, quoting cases, citing civil procedure and explaining why property law is just annoying. It only takes a few minutes for Harvey to be thoroughly convinced. He looks almost impressed. Mike wants to glow.
“So when can you start?” And Mike’s world slowly crashes back down.
“You do know that I don’t actually have a law degree right?”
To his credit, Harvey seems to take this surprise with some grace, “fuck.”
“You didn’t know? Why would I be a janitor if I had a law degree? Why would I be working three jobs?”
“I was hoping you we’re at least half way through law school.”
“Oh.” Because what else can you really say to that.
A week later, shit hits the fan. Big time.
Gloria from the retirement home calls to inform him that due to their current renovations on the dining hall, they’ll be raising their rates. By several thousand.
Then he gets a letter informing him that his water bill is late and if he doesn’t pay it by next week, they’ll be shutting off his water.
Then Trevor calls with a job offer. And Mike really doesn’t have a choice.
It’s a set up. A fucking set up.
Mike is trying to keep his grandmother happy in her retirement with enough money to pay his damn water bill. The last thing he needs is to get arrested. So he gets the hell out of there.
There’s a bunch of Harvard clones sitting around waiting to be interviewed and his suit fits in perfectly. Then a pretty redhead is yelling at him about how late he is.
“I don’t really care about the interview. I’m just trying to hide from the cops.” It’s probably the stupidest thing he’s ever said. But then the redhead is calling him someone else’s name and leading him from the room where dull men are occupying equally dull suits and oh, Harvey.
He’s not sure what Harvey is doing here or if he even recognizes him, but Mike follows him down a hall into a separate room.
Harvey seems surprised to see him, “Mike what’s going—“
And then there’s pot all over the floor.
“Oh shit.” There’s a few antagonizing moments before Harvey gives him a look and Mike thinks it’s something Harvey does a lot.
“Do I even want to know?”
Mike runs a hand through his hair, trying not to burst apart at the seams from stress, “No.”
Harvey seats himself behind the desk and looks up at Mike expectantly, “This is a job interview isn’t it? Convince me that you’re the person for the job.”
And Mike does even better than last time. This time, there are bigger things on the line. After some quizzing from Harvey and smugness from Mike, Harvey nods at him.
“I hope you own more suits.” Harvey has combined his classic eyebrow with a smirk this time and damn he looks good outside of the hospital.
“So I can have the job? Even though…” Mike trails off, praying that a reminder of his degree-less situation won’t change Harvey’s mind.
“Do not fuck it up, kid.” And then Harvey’s up and out of the room with one last comment thrown over his shoulder. “And don’t be late.”
Harvey Specter, attorney is very different from the Harvey Specter of room 2453.