Dr. Spencer Reid wakes sharply at 5:00am that morning, as he does any other. He starts off his day with a cup of hot tea (extra honey) and a good book; although, to him, any book is fascinating and enriching. Nothing out of the ordinary. Not until he's shuffling papers around on his desk, looking for a report he'd been working on the night before, does this seemingly normal morning become an anomaly.
Subconsciously, he glances over his left shoulder, and his eyes land on something they haven't in a while. An off-white book spine, peaking out from the others along the long row of book after book, one blending into another. He stops his rummaging and stands tall, eyeing it curiously. The cogs in his head whirr furiously, debating whether or not he dare touch it. Finally, curiosity gets the best of him, and his long, pale fingers flick the book off the shelf and into his hands. He knows this is something he shouldn't be doing, Morgan had told him that. He justified this exclusive glance to himself for the simple fact that it was the six month anniversary of the day she had died.
He shakily walks over and takes a seat on the couch, his palm running over the smooth front cover of the book. He doesn't look at it for a good minute, the side of him that has sense waging a war with the side that still wants to keep her memory alive. Suddenly, as if he'd been shocked into action, he flicks the front cover open and stares hungrily down at the words written so neatly, so matter-of-factly, so lovingly. He knows that doesn't make sense, because logically, words cannot be written with love. Yet, somehow he knows that these ones were.
"Love is our true destiny. We do not find the meaning of life by ourselves alone. We find it with another."
He does not allow himself to cry. That time is over. He silently runs his index finger over the words, feeling the impression the pen made in the paper. He sits like this for what seems like a year, reliving everything he was told he shouldn't. Mostly, he remembers her voice, for that's all he had of her for months. When he does think of her appearance, it's distorted and warped into something unpleasant, the memory of finally seeing her tainted with another memory from the same night.
No, he suddenly thinks. I can't be doing this to myself. It's time to move on. You can't keep living like this. It's time for a fresh start.
He stands with finality, striding over and replacing the book on the shelf. He stares at the spine again, as if trying to understand the nature of it, although he well knows it's just a book. Will it disappear if he looks away too quickly?
Morgan is right, his conscious speaks again. It really is time to move on.
Suddenly, his cell phone buzzes from the counter. As he picks it up, he notices the time and is horrified by his tardiness. He runs over to his desk to retrieve his report once again, shoving it hastily into his bag before running out the door and into the elevator. There, he reads the message that originally alerted him. It was from Garcia:
Remember all, don't be late. We have our new SSA in today, so don't forget your extra dose of sweetness and patience this morning.
Reid sighs, hitting the button for the ground level, his heart sinking as he remembers a few weeks prior when Blake told the team she couldn't juggle both jobs anymore, and was permanently moving to work at Harvard with her husband. Since then, Hotch had been working day and night to finding someone to fill the open position, not necessarily Blake's role, but just to fill the hole she had left. No luck on finding another Linguistics Expert, so he settled for sending Rossi to the FBI Academy, with the logic that they could use some fresh eyes. Someone who hadn't seen all the rest had seen, someone with some shred of innocence left. Apparently, that person had been found.
"There he is," Morgan's deep voice sounds across the office. "Where've you been, kid?"
"Sorry," Reid mutters, throwing his bag onto his seat at his desk, hastily unwrapping his scarf. "Got, umm, sidetracked this morning."
"I spilled my coffee," he lies quickly. "Everywhere."
"I thought you were trying to steer clear of coffee?" Morgan asks, raising an eyebrow. "You said it made your headaches worse."
"Did I say coffee?" Reid replies with an uncomfortable laugh. "I meant tea."
Morgan gives him an unimpressed look.
"Take it or leave it," Reid says, shrugging and walking past him to the conference room.
"Hey, woah, I wouldn't go in there yet," Morgan warns.
"What's going on?"
"I guess Hotch is trying to prep for the rookie," he explains, sauntering over to his desk and picking up a file.
"The rookie?" Reid repeats, a note of uneasiness in his voice. "We still don't know who it is?"
"I guess they wanted it to be a surprise… or something," Morgan replies. "Rossi knows, but I've asked him several times and he won't leak anything."
"Of course he would," Reid states matter-of-factly. "He picked this person out."
"Right," Morgan agrees, his focus shifting to the doors as they swing open and JJ appears. "Hey Blondie, rough morning?"
"Traffic, Derek, traffic," she sighs, sounding ruffled. She takes her seat at her desk, immediately starting up her computer and pulling paper work.
"Not to interrupt you, but remember we have a conference this morning?"
She freezes, realization washing over her face. "Slipped my mind."
"Hello all," Garcia suddenly calls as she struts over, blue feathers sticking from her ponytail.
"Morning, Baby Girl," Morgan says, and she replies with a wink.
"They ready to call us in yet?" Garcia asks nervously. "I've had butterflies all morning, I just want to meet this person."
"Calm down, I'm sure they'll be fine," JJ says with a note of optimism in her voice. "Rossi chose for a reason."
"Are we all here?" Hotch suddenly calls from the conference room, drawing everyone's attention from each other.
"Rossi?" Morgan announces.
"He's in here with me," Hotch answers. When no one responds, he continues. "Well, let's get this started."
With that, everyone migrates to the conference room, taking their usual seats with the exception of Blake's empty chair. Reid painfully remembers the time when the chair was empty before, only this time had the void been left by Prentiss. He sits, folding his hands in his lap.
"Alright everyone, I'm sure you know why I've called you in today," Hotch starts. "Filling Alex's position wasn't easy, I'll tell you that. But, I think I finally found the person that will best fit this team. She-"
This catches everyone's attention. She.
"-got excellent scores on her final assessment before graduating the academy, had an excellent interview with Dave, and proved herself in a little self-assessment of my own."
As if on cue, the door opens and new Section Chief Johnson stands, eyeing Hotch.
"Is she here?" Hotch asks, caught off guard.
"Early," Johnson replies, a note of sharpness in his voice. Maybe it was just the position, but it seems that Section Chiefs are not the nicest people.
"Send her in," Hotch says, sighing. Reid knew that he desperately wanted more time to prep the team than to just throw this newcomer headfirst into shark-infested waters. Nonetheless, the man steps back and reveals the mystery girl.
She stands at about five foot, five inches, a little shorter than average, Reid notes. Her light-gray work suit cinches at her waist, revealing a deep purple blouse underneath. At her neck, she wears a silver chain with a pendant that falls out of sight. Reid's eyes travel up a little further and he stops. For the first time in his life, he feels befuddled by beauty.
When he had first laid eyes on Maeve six months ago, she had already been this gorgeous being in his mind. Finally seeing her hadn't shocked him, for he'd been living for the past ten months with the knowledge that she was completely perfect. But this girl caught him by surprise. She was new, fresh, and something he wasn't expecting. It wasn't everyday you meet a young, intelligent, capable SSA such as her.
She was young, maybe a year or two younger than himself. She had a thin, pale face with full lips covered in a pink gloss. She had dazzling hazel eyes that peaked out from behind long, full lashes. Her hair was three different colors, which mesmerized Reid. It seemed her natural color was dark brown, but she'd dyed the majority of it with blonde highlights. Yet, since half of it was pulled up, you could see she had streaks of stunning auburn running through it. It was styled in loose curls, falling to her shoulders. Reid knew he was blushing.
"Everyone," Hotch says, interrupting Reid's thoughts. "This is SSA Ginessa James."
No one says anything, but continues to stare at this new alien creature. Reid clears his throat and straightens his cardigan, which draws her attention to him and makes him blush even more.
"Call me Ginny for short," she says, smiling and breaking the awkward silence. Still, no one responds.
"Ginessa, you can take a seat," Hotch says, motioning to Blake's old chair next to Rossi.
"Thank you," she replies courteously before sitting.
Hotch then launches into a speech addressed to the entire team concerning the newest addition. She sits silently, watching everything in amazement and awe. After about a half an hour, Hotch dismisses the team back to do desk work. Ginny hangs back, making small talk with Rossi while the rest of the team leaves to man their stations. Reid arrives at his desk and begins to unpack his things as she slinks out of the conference room, trying to be unnoticed. He watches her descend the stairs and start across the room. It's not until he realizes that she's headed his way that he finally tears his eyes from her and pretends to be minding his own business.
"Dr. Reid?" she suddenly questions, making him jump and turn around in his seat.
"Call me Spencer," he replies automatically, looking up to meet the stunning hazel eyes.
"Spencer," she corrects herself, with a small smile "I believe this is my desk?"
He looks to where she is pointing and suddenly remembers Blake had indeed been his desk-mate.
"Oh," he chuckles. "Yeah, that'd be yours. Home sweet desk."
This makes her break the reserved personality she'd had since she'd arrived, and she giggles. "Thank you."
She takes the seat opposite Reid, perfectly so he has a good look of her over his laptop. Perfect, he thinks sarcastically. How am I supposed to get any work done like this?
He turns back to a report and works furiously for only a few minutes before there's another disturbance. He's distracted by the sound of glass breaking, and a sigh of embarrassment.
"Oh, my God, Spencer, I am so sorry," Ginny's voice calls, full of dread. He wheels around in his seat to see her standing at the edge of his desk with her arms full of files, her eyes embarrassed and remorseful. "I'm so sorry. I'm such a klutz. I should've been more careful of where I was going."
Reid then looks at her feet and sees a broken picture frame on the floor, glass everywhere. He wheels over and picks up the broken frame, only to see Maeve's smiling face looking up at him, the only good picture he has of her. He'd gotten from her mother a few months after her death. Reid sighs and looks back up at Ginny.
"Don't worry about it, Ginessa," he says, getting up and retrieving a dust pan from the supply closet across the office.
"I'll get it for you," she offers, still sounding incredibly sorry for what she'd done. Reid honestly wasn't ruffled as long as the picture itself hadn't been defaced in any way, and it hadn't.
"No, it's fine," Reid responds, trying to give her a comforting smile. "Hotch needs those files."
She gives him a quizzical look. "How did you know-"
"People around here have learned not to question me anymore," he says with a sly expression.
"I'll take your word for it," she replies, and gives him a broad smile before continuing her way to Aaron's office. After cleaning up and tucking the frameless picture into his bag, Reid returns to work.
Business continues as usual. Hotch flits back and forth from his office and various cubicles around the building, Garcia comes and flirts with Derek at lunchtime, and JJ makes a call to check on Henry on her break, letting Reid have the phone to give his godson a quick hello. Some time later, maybe five or six hours, Reid is interrupted a final time that day.
"You can call me Ginny, you know."
"Excuse me?" Reid questions, looking up curiously from his report. He meets Ginny's eyes from across their desks. She shuffles some papers before speaking again.
"I said you don't have to call me Ginessa," she repeats. "Ginny is fine."
"Oh," Reid replies, smiling and blushing into his lap. "Okay then, Ginny."
Hello all! :*
I just HAD to. If you know me from I Love You More Than Myself, you probably want to kick me right now for not updating, but this was just such a brilliant idea I couldn't pass it up. I'm actually quite proud of this one! :D
But if you're not here from that other fic, then welcome! (: I hope you enjoyed! I've been on a Crim Minds kick for about two weeks now (like I can't stop watching it, it's pathetic) so I just had to let some creative energy out with this! :D
Please leave a review! And yes, this will be continued! (: