|The Red Poinsettia
Author: ilovetvalot PM
Sequel to "The Teacher and The Nerd". Reid/Emily. Reid wants to meet Emily's parents. Is there a better time of year than Christmas? THREESHOTRated: Fiction T - English - Romance/Drama - S. Reid & E. Prentiss - Chapters: 3 - Words: 4,692 - Reviews: 22 - Favs: 18 - Follows: 14 - Updated: 12-22-10 - Published: 12-20-10 - Status: Complete - id: 6571605
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Author's Note: First, I hope you guys enjoy this new story. It will be updated once a week.
We have a few announcements for year today. First, don't forget we have a new challenge open on the forum, "Chit Chat on Author's Corner". Sign-ups for our January challenge, "The Happy New Year's Challenge" is open through December 30, 2010. We'd love to have each one of you. Simply swing by the forum (you can link to it thru our profile pages) and sign up with the pairing you'd like to see written and three prompts associated with the holiday. On Jan 1, 2011, you'll be assigned a random pairing (not the one you usually write) and three prompts to write by January 30.
And don't forget - those that signed up to complete the CM Christmas Fic Gift Exchange, you have exactly SIX days left. Please PM me if you have any problems.
Finally, if any of you have any idea for issues/activities that you'd like to see "Chit Chat on Author's Corner" forum tackle in the form of discussion threads and/or challenges, please let us know. We want to bring you all some really fun threads in the New Year!
As always, thank you to every reader, reviewer, and person that favorites or alerts one of our stories. Hearing from each of you means a great deal to each of us. We truly value your thoughts and opinions. Now, on with our story!
The Red Poinsettia
"So, when do you think you'll introduce me to your parents?"
Emily shivered as she knotted the towel around her breasts and stared at Dr. Spencer Reid's reflection in the clouded glass mirror. Hopefully, he'd just discount the shudder as a sign of the change in temperature between the hot shower coupled with the even hotter shower sex they'd just indulged in and the cooler temperature in the rest of the bathroom.
"I didn't realize the question would fill you with that much distaste," he muttered from behind her, his tone filled with far more than simple questioning.
So much for hope, she thought grimly, blotting her wet face with a hand towel as he wrapped his own towel around his narrow waist.
"Spencer," Emily whispered, staring at his reflection in the steamed bathroom mirror, "It's not that at all," she shook her head, droplets of water falling over her shoulders as she turned to face her lover.
"Then what is it like, Emily?" Reid asked, his voice faintly challenging as he scrubbed his hands through his damp hair. "We've been sleeping together for months. We agreed that we're more than just friends with benefits. You say you love me and I know I love you. You went to Vegas with me to see my mom at Thanksgiving. And yet, not once have you offered to introduce me to your family," he continued, his tone slightly accusing. "I know I'm not an expert at relationships, but I thought meeting the parents was a logical progression in an evolving relationship." Pausing, he narrowed his soft brown eyes. "Are you ashamed of me, Emily? Is that it?"
Jaw dropping, Emily turned to face the lean man standing in front of her vanity. "Are you being serious right now?" she asked incredulously.
Reid's jaw tightened as he stared back at his still damp girlfriend. "Just tell me if I'm right, Emily," he said softly, the humidity in the small bathroom adding to the obvious tension developing in the atmosphere.
"NO! No, you aren't even in the neighborhood of right, Spencer," Emily declared vehemently, reaching out to grab his forearm when he would have turned and strode out of the bathroom, and potentially, out of her life. "I'm NOT ashamed of you. I could never be ashamed of you."
"I find that difficult to believe right now, given your resistance and reaction to the idea," Reid replied, his lips barely moving and his eyes steadfastly refusing to meet hers.
Shaking her head as he drew his arm away from her and walked back into her bedroom, Emily followed him. "Spencer, no," she groaned, shaking her head again frantically as he stiffly shoved one leg into his boxer shorts. "It has nothing to do with you."
"Nothing to do with me?" he asked incredulously, lifting his head to pierce her with a disbelieving look.
"Okay, I realize how stupid it sounds," Emily said quickly, holding up a stalling hand, "but, just hear me out. Please?"
Pulling his boxers up over his narrow hips, Reid nodded jerkily. "Go ahead."
"I'm not and have never been ashamed of you. You, Spencer Reid, are the best thing that's ever happened to me. And I don't want to screw it up!" Emily told him, her wide eyes begging him to at least try and understand. How could she make him believe this when she couldn't find the right words?
"How will me meeting your parents screw anything up? Do you think I'll embarrass you that much?" he whispered, his eyes filled with unspoken pain.
"No! You won't be the person that embarrasses me, Spencer. My mother will," Emily answered desperately, running a hand over her still wet hair nervously.
"What?" Reid asked as he jerked his head up, his one word question filled with anguish.
Open her mouth, Emily drew her lower lip between her teeth as she stared at the man she'd fallen in love with. How the hell did she explain this to him? He had a hard enough time processing normal relationships, let alone this animosity between her and her mother. "It's complicated," she muttered, her teeth worrying her lower lip. "I want to make you understand and I don't know how."
"Emily, I understand how difficult the bond can be between mother and child," he reminded her quietly as he recalled his own turbulent childhood.
"Yes, but your mother had an excuse. She was ill. Mine was simply a, for lack of a better word, bitch," Emily murmured, staring at the floor, suddenly noticing the small droplets of water landing on the light carpet. Lifting her eyes back to Reid's, she whispered, "She's ruined every good relationship I ever had, Spencer. With her pretentious airs and snobby attitude...with her outright cutting remarks...nothing and no one is ever good enough for her. I don't want to put you in that position. I don't want to lose another person I care about because they can't stand her."
"Emily, has it ever occurred to you that the right man...the man that truly loves you...won't give a damn what your mother thinks?" Reid asked her softly, taking a half-step toward her.
"You say that now," Emily grimaced. "But, you haven't been forced into an evening in her company yet. Reid, I avoid her like the plague. The only reason I'm seeing her this weekend is that stupid Christmas gala. I only agreed to attend for my father's sake, and now, he's not even going to be there. I don't want to expose you to her...to us...and give her the chance to ruin things for us."
"Emily," Reid denied, shifting his weight from foot to foot, "if we're meant to be, she won't be able to create a ripple of unease between us."
"She already has," Emily argued, gesturing toward him with one hand. "What would you call this?"
"A disagreement," Reid replied evenly as he watched her dark eyes flash. "Created by misunderstanding on my part. I thought the problem was me. As it turns out, the problem is derivative of her."
"She's where most of my problems do begin and end," Emily grumbled, picking at the edge of the towel she wore.
Lips twitching, Reid's eyes twinkled. "Now, I think that may be a bit of a reach, don't you?" he asked, moving in front of her to wrap his arms around her waist.
"Not by much," Emily retorted, her lips pursed as she stared up at him.
"Perhaps, not," Reid smiled, pressing his lips to her warm forehead, the soft aroma of coconuts filling his nose as he inhaled her recently shampooed hair. "But I still think I need to meet her. A Christmas gala, I believe you said?"
"Yeah," Emily said with a long-suffering sigh, knowing Spencer was resolved to face the lioness in her den. "I hope you like monkey suits," she said, lifting her face to his as she leaned against him. "You're going to need a tux. And I'm going to need a rescue phrase."
"A rescue phrase?" Reid raised a brow curiously.
"Mmm," Emily nodded, leaning against him. "That magical phrase I can say so that you can execute a rescue mission and get me out of there before I drown my mother in the punch bowl."
"How about," Reid said gently, "'The Christmas poinsettias are exploding with color tonight.'?"
"That works," Emily agreed on a heavy sigh. And God, how she hoped it would.