|Fight Now, Cry Later
Author: Jennifer131 PM
The team are called in to assist with the capture of a dangerous fugitive. Will they be able to convince his own brother to help them? Will Spencer Reid ever be the same? From Dusk Til Dawn crossover.Rated: Fiction T - English - Romance/Angst - S. Reid - Chapters: 19 - Words: 27,972 - Reviews: 189 - Favs: 76 - Follows: 110 - Updated: 05-20-13 - Published: 07-18-11 - id: 7192811
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
No excuses ... I'm rubbish! I have not and will not give up on this story I promise you. It's been difficult the last few months with organising an international move with a small child and two dogs but that's no comfort to those of you who have been waiting so long for an update. The next few chapters may be short but they will keep coming. My apologies and gratitude for those I have pissed off but continue to follow this story!
Reid stood shivering in the thin moonlight, his sweat-dampened shirt cold and clinging in the night chill. A few feet from him, embracing and laughing, stood two of the most dangerous men in recent memory. The heavy, sick feeling in his stomach served only to remind him that he'd had two clear opportunities to escape from Seth, three if he included simply not exchanging himself for Rossi at the police station, and that despite everything he had made a conscious choice not to run.
He was here, not because it was part of a master plan or because he thought he would somehow be able to stop either man from repeating the horrors of the past, but because he knew it was what Morgan would have done. What Hotch or Emily would have done. And now he was here, here, and he had no idea what to do next. He hugged his arms around his body in a poor attempt to protect himself from the cold.
He could run now. Ignore the fact that he didn't know where he was, that the temperature was dropping faster than his leaden stomach, that it was pitch black and just run. Except he couldn't. The survival statistics for an inexperienced person, dressed as he was, lost and alone in the desert at night were all too vivid. Even now, ignored and unbound, he was a total prisoner.
Part of his mind tried to drag him back to what had happened in the truck, to find some semblance of comfort in the familiar process of profile and analysis, but was quickly suppressed. If he couldn't make sense of his own behaviour how was he going to learn anything from Seth's? He'd been panicking and Seth had snapped him out of it. That'd do for now.
He doubted whether he'd be able to make even the most cursory of assessments of Richie Gecko, not merely due to the stress of his situation but because his mind was beginning to feel unfamiliar to him. His default response to stress or anxiety was to talk; a defence mechanism to compensate for his lack of physical strength. It worked more often than not too; it unnerved people, it distracted people. Not having anything to say was as alien to him as not being able to think. But something about Seth left him tongue-tied.
Reid jumped and focused on the brothers who had now both turned to face him. Seth smiled, but in the small light from the open motel room door, it seemed uncomfortable and forced.
"Richie, meet Spencer Reid. He's our insurance policy."
Reid immediately noted the lack of title and FBI credentials. He had to trust that Seth knew his brother well enough to know how to play this.
"What the fuck do we need insurance for huh Seth? We're in the fucking wind. They don't know where we are, they don't know where we're going. I thought it was just you and me man!"
Spencer flinched as Richie's wild gesturing brought him a few paces closer, and felt small relief when Seth casually stepped between them both in an effort to shield Reid.
"We're not going to stay here forever bro, we've got feds right behind us. They'll tread a little lighter now we've got a hostage." Seth had both hands on Richie's shoulders, maintaining eye contact so that Richie focused. "Trust me. We need him for now."
"Since when do we take fucking men as hostages Seth! How'd you know he's not one of them huh? A cop or a fucking fed!" Richie's tone was full of menace.
"Christ Richie look at him! You think he's a fed? He's just some kid wandered too close and I didn't exactly have the time to be fucking choosy!" His eyes never left Richie's. "We're not gonna hurt him, okay? We need him alive and in one fucking piece, got it?"
"One piece Richie I swear to god." Seth's hands moved to either side of Richie's jaw.
"Okay, Jesus, got it," Richie nodded. Seth pulled him in for another bear hug, pressing a quick kiss to his hairline. Over his brother's shoulder Richie stared unblinking at Reid. Reid shivered, the cold forgotten. He was far from happy that Seth had had to repeat the instruction not to hurt him, much less that he felt he had to give it in the first place.
"Now let's get inside before my balls freeze." As Seth pulled away from Richie he noticed his brother's predatory appraisal of Reid. He scowled. "Now Richie."
"Yeah, come on. I got food. You hungry?" Richie's entire demeanour shifted, his empty expression now open and eager to please. He disappeared inside and Seth visibly relaxed. He extended an arm towards Reid.
With nowhere else to go and no option other than to die of exposure, Reid followed the lion into his den.
He followed his brother into the small motel room. It was as he remembered it from all those years ago - the cheap furnishings still mostly in place, although there were ragged holes in the plaster where the tv and air-con had long been ripped out. The gas and electric had been cut off but there was still working plumbing in the kitchenette and wet-room. He and Richie had once carefully boarded up the room's two windows, both the one in front and the small one above the kitchen sink, sealing the room except for the easily guarded front door.
Spencer shuffled in, arms still wrapped around himself, alert and wary. Seth watched as he took in the living space. The light was harsh and blue-white from a couple of LED lantern-style torches, too bright and yet allowed for deep shadows in the corners of the room. The light bleached the colour from Spencer's face and threw his cheekbones into sharp relief. So beautiful.
Richie was digging around in the kitchenette, talking constantly but Seth wasn't listening. He hadn't seen his brother in years but apart from his initial joy at being reunited he just couldn't seem to focus on Richie at all. His thoughts and eyes were on Spencer. He watched as the younger man gingerly lowered himself onto the small two-seater couch opposite the bed where Seth now sat, legs wide, leaning forward with his elbows on his knees, head cocked and watching.
He'd been relieved that Spencer had said nothing to amend his anaemic introduction. The profiler had been right, there was no way Richie would ever trust a stranger and the likelihood of his shooting a federal agent was much more assured, a doctor only slightly less so. He could only hope that Spencer would be able to pick up enough without being able to properly talk with Richie.
Spencer seemed to become aware of his staring and suddenly met his gaze. Seth could see the fear in his too-bright eyes and clenched jaw but was certain that he was no longer the cause of it. The thought warmed his stomach and he threw Spencer a soft, reassuring smile. Spencer shivered again.
Richie emerged from the kitchenette with a bottle of bourbon, several bags of chips and a couple of cellophane-wrapped subs which he threw on the bed.
"I knew you'd get out man, saw it on the news. Thought you'd have done it sooner, thought you might have come for me but I guess security must a bit tighter over there huh? Bunch of dumb fuckers here in Texas, place was full of holy bitches too, walking round like they own the place, watching you, like they know they can't be touched. You have any nuns? Must have been real hard asses if they managed to keep you inside this long." Richie bit into his sub, reproachful but seemingly reluctant for a confrontation. "You seen any news?"
"I heard some," Seth finally turned from Spencer to his brother. "I heard how you almost let the feds catch you. Jesus Ritchie! We got lucky last time. You get caught again they'll send you to the chair. You want to fucking fry Ritchie?"
" No! No! Seth, they never got near me! I'm not fucking stupid!" He was shouting in that petulant tone that always grated on Seth's nerves. "You're not the only one with insurance. I lost them anyway, just like we used to. I wouldn't have come here if I was being fucking followed would I?" Richie threw his half-eaten sandwich at the wall above Spencer's head, causing him to jump to his feet and unconsciously step towards Seth before quickly resuming his seat, watching Richie tensely. Richie appeared not to notice. "You still don't trust me do you Seth? After everything I've done you still think I'm a fucking child!"
"Sit down Richie," Seth growled. Then louder, "Sit the fuck down!"
Richie stopped his nervous pacing and dropped submissively onto the edge of the bed next to Seth. Seth could feel his rage rising inside him but bit it back down. He'd seen Spencer move towards him.
"I do trust you Richie. You're my brother and I love you." He clapped a hand on the back of Richie's neck and forced a smile. "I worry about you. When I heard you nearly got caught, I worried."
Richie turned his head under Seth's grip and smiled back, lapping up the meagre affection. Seth pulled him close into a hug, hoping that his lack of enthusiasm would continue to go unnoticed. He felt none of the familiar closeness, none of the unconditional protectiveness he had been hoping would return on seeing his brother again. When Richie looked at him, Seth couldn't help but see the indifference that had been in his eyes that day as he splashed a little girl's brains across her mother's still twitching corpse. When Richie spoke, he heard only the astonishment that Richie might have done something to upset him. Seth's eyes pricked with tears as he felt the realisation dawn that there was less of a monster inside his brother as there was a just thin veneer of his brother wrapped around a monster.
What exactly had he thought Spencer would be able to do?
"I gotta take a piss." As Richie stood, he caught sight of Spencer and hesitated for a moment, his smile disappearing and a vacant expression taking hold, before blinking twice and continuing to the small washroom.
Seth waited til the door was closed before looking over at Spencer. The young doctor was staring urgently at him. His wide eyes flickered over to the closed door and back to Seth's.
Again, I'm really sorry for keeping you waiting. I won't make any promises other than that I will not give up on this story. Thank you so much to everyone who has reviewed, especially you gorgeous people who always review, and doubly especially to those of you who have been ever so politely nudging me to get the hell on with it!