Title: take your time cause you’re up against space (6/7)
Fandom/Pairing: Suits, Harvey/Mike
Summary: Mike isn’t quite sure what’s going on.
Mike isn’t quite sure what’s going on. One second Harvey’s ordering around the cab driver and the next second, the cab is doing a U-turn and Harvey seems frustrated.
Mike wishes he knew what the hell was going on. He hasn’t done anything stupid lately. Well not stupid enough to make Harvey turn the cab around.
Dinner had been fine, they had recently finished a case, and Mike had dropped all his most recent paperwork at Harvey’s desk way before Harvey had asked for it.
So what’s the problem?
Harvey’s face is blank but his jaw looks a little strained and that tells Mike everything that Harvey’s expression doesn’t.
Not only is Harvey pissed, he’s also confused. Confusion is not a usual state for Harvey Specter.
Harvey’s apartment is a little less immaculate than usual and this surprises Mike. He turns to joke about it to Harvey but the comment dies as soon as he sees his boss’s face.
Harvey looks even worse than in the cab and Mike wishes he had some idea what he did wrong.
“Sit down.” Harvey’s expression is sharp and Mike responds to the command immediately. It’s actually a little embarrassing how quickly he drops down on the nearest couch.
“Explain.” Mike’s mouth opens automatically but no sound comes out. He feels like a gaping fish and what is he supposed to be talking about anyway?
“Explain why I know your favorite foods and your address and why I knew you in the hospital.”
Oh. Things are very rapidly coming together in Mike’s mind and he’s not quite sure how to explain. It all comes spilling out rather quickly and from the look on Harvey’s face, Mike’s speech barely resembles English.
“What the hell did you just say?” This Harvey is different from the one in the hospital and the one from the office. Even in the hospital, Harvey was rarely lack self-control.
Seeing him so blatantly confused and vulnerable makes Mike even more nervous but Mike knows that Harvey isn’t going to drop this. He isn’t going to be able to avoid this forever. Or even for five more minutes.
Mike takes a deep breath before starting to explain, “I started working at the hospital a little while after you were admitted…”
The conversation lasts much longer than Mike could have ever expected and when it ends, Harvey still looks confused.
“Why didn’t you tell me when I first woke up?”
“What was I going to say. ‘Hi, I’m Mike. I spent every afternoon talking to you while you were in a coma but you don’t actually know me.’ That’s creepy.”
Harvey shakes his head and there’s a slightly uncomfortable silence for a few minutes. They’re sitting on the couch, angled towards each other so they can talk and Mike can’t stop fidgeting.
Mike’s drumming his fingers on his leg and trying to ignore how close Harvey is. Harvey’s silence makes him too nervous to be affected by the other man’s proximity. But he is anyway. Harvey is dead silence and it’s so awkward and it’s all Mike can do not to stare at Harvey’s mouth.
When Harvey finally turns back to Mike, his jaw is set and he’s expressionless and this is not good.
Mike imagines that Harvey is going to yell at him or fire him. Instead Harvey says, “You need to go talk to the ex-wife in the Hellneir case.”
Mike actually stutters. “Umm…what?”
Harvey looks at him and motions towards the door. “Get going. And if you manage to finish that, there’s a stack of paperwork waiting to be done.”
“Harvey it’s like midnight. Can’t I do it tomorrow?”
“I don’t really care when you do it. Just get it done.”
And then Harvey’s off the couch and disappearing down the hall. So that’s how it’s going to be.
The next three weeks are terrible. They’re awkward and disgustingly busy and Mike only speaks to Harvey in person four times.
Other than those few times, work is left for him in his cubicle and any questions are either fielding through Donna or emails between him and Harvey.
Harvey is mostly certainly avoiding him and Mike feels like such an idiot. Why didn’t he just tell him in the hospital?
Loads and loads of paperwork always appear on Mike’s cubicle when he isn’t there and the only times Donna lets him actually leave the paperwork in Harvey’s office is when he isn’t there. Donna gives him critical looks every time they see each other, but at least she’s talking to him.
Mike keeps busy with work and goes to lunch with Rachel every now and then and tries to pretend that he isn’t totally upset over the way Harvey has practically forgot his existence.
It’s eventually Louis of all people, who brings the awkwardness to attention.
Louis orders Mike up from his cubicle and drags him to Harvey’s office, all the while Mike insisting that he really does have work to do and he doesn’t have time for whatever nonsense Louis wants right now.
“It’s come to my attention that you’ve been neglecting your associate.”
Harvey looks up sharply from his desk and Mike is not sure the two men should be having a pissing contest right now considering that Harvey actually has been neglecting him.
“If you feel that you aren’t adequately prepared to mentor Ross, I’d be more than willing to take him off your hands.”
Louis looks positively mischievous and Mike can almost see the evil wheels turning in his head.
Harvey seems unfazed and this makes Mike even more nervous. What if Harvey really doesn’t want him anymore?
“I think we should leave that decision up to him. Mike?”
“Would you like to be…” Harvey seems to be searching for the right word, “mentored by Louis, or would you like to continue to work for me?”
“I’d like to stay where I am, please.” It’s probably the most formal Mike has ever been with Harvey and it’s in fear that Harvey will toss him out anyway, just to see him suffer under Louis’ rule.
But then Harvey looks at Louis and he’s ridiculously smug.
“Now that we’ve taken care of that, can you leave Louis? I don’t want you to get upset when your wife calls me soon.” It isn’t the best joke Harvey has ever made about Louis’ non-existent wife, but it’s enough to get Louis out of Harvey’s office with a scowl.
Harvey looks back down at the papers on his desk, and it’s like Mike doesn’t even exist. But then Harvey makes a quiet comment that gives Mike a little hope.
“When you finish those briefs, we’re going for lunch.”