[5x21 – Exit Wounds]
"All love that has not friendship for its base is like a mansion built upon the sand."
- Ella Wheeler Wilcox -
"You really should call him you know. He certainly seemed to like you." JJ said with a pushy smile from the plane seat at the window, but with very different intentions for her friend this time.
"JJ, I don't know… Mick is just… well…" Emily began hesitantly, obviously not at all enthused by the subject of conversation.
"He is just what? Handsome, smart, mysterious… British… need I go on? Like I said before, he's just you're type." JJ asked, clearly not wanting to give it up.
"Yes, but JJ with our jobs and our schedules, it is so hard to have a relationship that works."
"Will and I do it."
"Yes but Will is a good and decent guy and you could get anyone you wanted." Emily began. "Now me on the other hand, if my job doesn't intimidate them, my nerdiness or something else scares them away. Like I said, I'll just get a cat." Emily said, hoping that would end the matter but knowing it wouldn't.
Sure she wanted a relationship like Will and JJ, like Kevin and Garcia even, but in her mind, she was just a nerd, fully devoted to her job and too full of emotional baggage and damage to ever be desirable to any worthy man. So, as always, she closed herself off – trying to forget the loneliness that brought pain to her heart every night she had to spend alone with no one to love, and no one to love her in return.
The only people she ever opened up to were her team members – the only real family and source of love she had ever had. And she was fearful everyday that it would all be taken away at any moment. Luckily, the captain announced they were landing before Emily could delve any deeper into her depressing thoughts.
"Look, Mick may not be the one; but whoever it is you are holding out for, you should give him a chance. You never know what could happen." JJ said with a wink as she made her way to exit the plane, thinking with a smile of the exchange she had witnessed earlier.
"It is still freezing in here!" JJ said to Emily as she walked to the fireplace in the hotel room they were sharing. The small Alaskan town had really messed up the normal BAU sleeping arrangements. But the two friends didn't mind. At least they had gotten a chance to catch up on girl talk.
Well at least it was JJ doing most of the talking. All JJ could talk about was how Emily needed to call Mick like she had been saying ever since they got back from the case where they met him. But Emily, on the other hand, would be happy if she never heard Mick Rawson's name for the rest of her life.
Their conversation was interrupted by a knock on the door. JJ went to open it as Emily walked out of the bathroom dressed but hair still dripping wet. Derek Morgan was on the other side of the door holding a tray of coffee cups in his hand.
"Oh please tell me those are for us!" JJ said excitedly.
"Of course." Morgan said, handing JJ her cup.
"And the regular for you, Em." Derek said as he handed a cup to Emily who had made her way to the door.
Emily took a sip and smiled. "Mmmm, just the way I like it. You get it right every time."
"And I always will," he winked. "Besides, I know how you can get when you don't have your coffee."
"Oh as if you are such a happy morning person?" Emily remarked sarcastically, but still smiling.
"I am today," Derek said, his goofy smile still plastered to his face.
"Well then maybe we should have you sleep with Garcia more often."
"Oh I don't think that's going to happen," Derek laughed. "Apparently Kevin now wants to fight me."
"Well then you should be very scared Agent Morgan, I don't know if you could win in hand-to-hand combat with Kevin Lynch. You're pretty weak you know. He could really hurt you," Emily said, playing along.
"I think I'll take my chances." Derek laughed.
JJ looked on at the conversation unfolding before her, completely forgotten by the two agents. As she watched their easy smiles and their laughter – she realized just how much she missed Will. And then she realized that maybe Mick Rawson wasn't right for Emily after all. Sure, he might be her supposed type of guy but Prentiss was already taken because she already had one of those at the BAU. And he wasn't just her type of guy – he already was her guy.
Sure it wasn't romantically but they were partners and best friends. To each other they were someone who knew each the other than anyone, who thought of each other through gestures as simple as morning coffee, but also someone who understood when they struggled with the terrible things they saw, and someone who they trusted with their very lives every day. JJ knew how much time they spent together as friends – the whole team was a family. They couldn't go one day off without at least seeing one team member.
And Morgan and Prentiss were pretty much the standard for that. They saw each other all the time: for dinner, movies, workouts, or even just carpooling and morning coffee. They were much more than partners, they were best friends. And after all, isn't it true that love begins with friendship? And theirs was about as deep as you could get. Now JJ finally realized what she had been suspecting all along… but nothing could happen until Morgan and Prentiss figured it out for themselves.
"Hotch wants us to go do more interviews." Derek said to Emily, pulling JJ out of her thoughts.
"Okay, I just have to finish my hair first."
"What do you mean? You look perfect!" Derek said with a grin.
"Oh very funny," Emily smirked, not realizing just how serious Morgan was. "Give me five minutes?"
"Take all the time you need, Princess. I'll be right out there." Derek said, walking out of the door. His wide smile matched the look on Emily's face as she made her way back to the bathroom… only confirming JJ's suspicions.
"Just think about it…" JJ called over her shoulder before finally exiting the plane.
"Was she talking about Mick Rawson?" Derek said with an obvious look of disgust as he walked up to Emily. He had made sure Kevin would pick up a still shaken Garcia but now it was time to tend the other woman he cared so much about. He didn't want to be rude and eavesdrop but he couldn't help overhearing their conversation – and he was especially nosy when anything came up about one of his BAU ladies and another man, especially his partner.
And when he heard Mick Rawson's name, he couldn't help but cringe. That man had gotten under his skin from the moment he met him. He was so arrogant and it didn't help that he flirted with his partner throughout the whole case. Derek told himself he wasn't jealous, it was just that he was very protective of Emily, and the rest of his team for that matter.
But it didn't help matters when Mick saved Emily from getting shot on that rooftop. Derek still beat himself up over that one. It was his responsibility to protect his partner. So even though he was nothing but grateful the man had saved Emily's life, he couldn't wait to get off of that case and far away from Rawson.
"Yes," Emily said with exasperation as they made their way to exit the plane together. "She keeps telling me to call him and I am so tired of it. I know she means well. I guess it's just that now that JJ has Will, and Garcia has Kevin, I'm the last available female on the team so she feels it's her duty to set me up. But I really don't think I want to call him."
"Well good, because you can do so much better than that arrogant, British jerk."
"Well I don't know about that but…"
"Emily, come on. Don't sell yourself short." Derek cut her off as he stopped her in the dark parking lot; knowing how low Emily's self-confidence really was despite her efforts to act so put-together and detached. So he began to tell her exactly how he felt, "A million guys would love to get even the smallest chance with you. Any man who wouldn't is an idiot." Emily could instantly feel her face begin to flush, and looked down at the ground. "You're smart, you're funny, you're tougher than anyone I know and you are absolutely beautiful."
"Thanks," she said sincerely. "But I just always scare men off…"
"Then they don't know you like I do. And I guarantee they don't know what they are missing," Morgan said as he looked deep into Emily's eyes.
"Thank you," Emily whispered, instantly feeing more confident and at ease – the way she always felt around Derek. "I'm definitely not calling him. I don't care what JJ says. Our jobs are way to hectic, it would be long distance anyway, and honestly, he's not even my type."
"Wait you have a type? What is your type?" Derek asked with genuine curiosity though hidden carefully behind his joking tone.
"Oh wouldn't you like to know…" Emily laughed.
"Come on," he gestured in mock defeat.
"Where are we going?" Prentiss asked with confusion.
"I'm taking my partner out for a midnight breakfast."
"If you think you can win me over to tell you all of my secrets with blueberry pancakes I'd say you've got the right start but you've got a long way to go."
"I'll throw in workouts then dinner and a movie of your choice at my place tomorrow afternoon… What do you say to that Princess?"
"I say you're off to a good start so why are we still standing here? Let's go," Emily smiled. Derek put an arm around her shoulder and led her to her own car before getting into his own. Little did they know, a smiling JJ was looking on, smiling at every move they made and forming a brand new plan for two of her favorite agents.