Thoughtless Consequences

Category: General/angst

Summary: "You infected me with mildew?" The repercussions of Grissom's experiment on Greg in "Seller Beware."

Warning – Mild spoilers for Seller Beware.

Disclaimer: Well, I don't own these characters and I'm sure you're all very surprised. Probably as surprised as I would be if I did find that I owned them. My god, what I could do if I had Greg … Hmm, better post before I get caught up in fantasies.


Greg was not happy. His foot was itchy, he was supposed to have gone home six hours ago, his stomach was churning, and his head hurt. He rubbed at his eyes, bleary from lack of sleep and then he scratched the bottom of his foot once more, wondering just what Grissom had done to him. He quickly got sick of scratching through the thick socks Gil had provided and took them off to get at the itch better.

It must have been fleas or some kind of itching powder, Greg thought as he pulled the sock off, wondering if it was coincidence or side effect that his leg felt slightly numb. When he saw the bottom of his foot he cringed; it was red and splotchy.

"What the hell did he do to me?" Greg pondered aloud quickly stripping off the second sock to find his right foot completely normal. He looked at the clock, nearly six hours had passed. Pulling the socks back on, Greg stood up and charged for Grissom's office, determined to find answers.

Grissom sat innocently behind his desk, going over evidence of some sort. He looked up when a clearly unhappy Greg stormed in but he showed no signs of concern or guilt.

"What did you do to me?" Greg demanded, not happy with his new rash and hoping it wouldn't spread.

"You had a reaction," Grissom stated calmly, seeming to already know what he would find.

"I'm Hazmat meat. Quarantine, here I come!" Greg complained, sitting down with a huff as he pulled off both socks and smacked his feet on Grissom's desk.

"Your right foot I swabbed with a placebo, regular tap water," Grissom said, now slightly interested and seemingly pleased as he studied the feet.

Greg rolled his eyes, "Well it's not the right one I'm worried about."

Grissom continued, more interested in the outcome than Greg's discomfort, "Left foot … eumycotic dermatitis."

"Oh great, it's probably fatal."

Grissom was hardly amused, and explained, "It's a mildew-induced skin rash."

Greg's eyes widened in horror and disbelief, "You infected me with mildew?"

Grissom nodded and stood up, clearly having all he needed to know and started to leave. Before he was out the door he tossed Greg a tube of hydrocortisone and instructed him to use it to clear up the mildew.

"Like that's gonna help me," Greg mumbled drearily when he was gone, running a hand through his spikes. With this new revelation exposed though he knew he had to move fast, so he pulled on his socks again and ran down the hall.

Six hours, probably a pretty strong exposure, Greg thought to himself, realizing the nausea he had been suffering was not caused by his fast food dinner like he thought, but by his boss. Shit, this is gonna suck. He saw Nick leaving the fingerprint lab up ahead of him and slid to a stop, his socks having little traction in the halls.

"Hey man, are you busy?" Greg asked urgently, sounding as serious as he ever got.

Nick looked up from his file, "Not really, what do you have for me?" he asked, assuming Greg had results for him to see.

Mildew! Greg's mind shouted, but his mouth said, "I need you to drive to the hospital."

"Why? We got a new case?" Nick asked, his mind focused on work and not seeing that Greg was in a hurry.

"No, I need you to drive me to the hospital," Greg explained hurriedly. Nick looked at him skeptically, trying to discern if this was some sort of bad joke, but Greg looked and sounded very serious. Looking down he saw the lab tech was in his sock feet, one scratching madly against the top of the other.

"What's wrong?"

Greg shook his head, "I'll explain on the way, can you just get your car keys, please?"

Nick nodded, noting that his eyes were a strange, dried out red, and seeing that the younger man was completely serious. He fished the keys off his desk and when he turned around again Greg was already ahead of him, bounding down the hallway towards the parking lot.

"Don't you need shoes?" Nick called out curiously, jogging to catch up.

"No time," Greg answered as Nick reached him just as they exited the building.

"Okay Greg, this is silly, you have to tell me why you're in such a rush to get to the hospital." Nick demanded, purposely walking slower so Greg would confront him and explain.

Greg sighed in irritation, still eager to get moving, but began to explain, "Grissom did this experiment …"

Nick watched as Greg stopped suddenly and put a hand on his head.

"Whoa, head rush," he mumbled, staring oddly at the ground. He swallowed noticeably and tried to focus again, "Uh … Grissom's experiment … was uh … I had to …"

Nick stepped closer, now concerned as Greg opened and closed his eyes as if trying to get them focus or was warding off a serious bout of dizziness. He put a hand on Greg's shoulder to help lead him towards the car, "You okay man?"

"Yeah … fine, just …" he stopped talking then and his eyes rolled back into his head as he fainted. Thankfully, Nick was there to keep him from slamming his head against the concrete. He caught the younger man under the arms as he fell and lowered him to the ground. Nick pushed him into a sitting position and leaned him against his chest and lightly slapped his face a few times.

"Oh my God, Greg, can you hear me? Greg?" Nick was now beyond concerned and entered the realm of very worried. He didn't know what was wrong with the lab tech but knew that Greg had been in a rush to get to the hospital and that seemed like the best idea for the time being. He took Greg's arm and flung it over his shoulders, easily hauling the smaller man to his feet; he pulled him to his car a few feet away, opened the door one handed and propped him in the passenger side, then buckled his seat belt. Then Nick slid into the front seat and pulled out of the lot, suddenly very thankful for the emergency sirens CSIs had built into their cars, which he switched on to clear a path to the hospital.

Once they were on the road Nick reached out and checked Greg's pulse, it seemed steady, and felt his breathing, which could have been worse but also felt wrong somehow.

"What the hell happened, buddy?" Nick pondered as he drove. It would be five more minutes before he got to the hospital and he flipped out his cell phone. He dialed Grissom first. Greg had mentioned one of Gris's experiments, and he hoped Gil would know what was wrong with him.

Unfortunately, after getting all the answers he needed from Greg's feet Gil had gone to confront his suspect with his findings and had his cell phone turned off while he was in the interrogation room. Nick swore and looked over at Greg again, who seemed slightly paler. He checked his pulse again, still steady.

Nick dialed the next number on his list.

"Willows."

"Cath, it's Nick."

"Hey, Nicky, what's up?" Catherine asked, wondering what lead or clue he might have found.

"I've got a bit of a situation here, Greg just passed out in the parking lot," Nick explained.

He could almost picture the concern that was creasing Catherine's face at this news, "What?"

"Yeah, he came up to me in the hallways, real rushed, and asked me to drive him to the hospital. Before he could explain why he just collapsed," Nick explained as he veered through traffic. "I'm taking him there now though."

Catherine had clearly been caught off guard and stumbled over her response, "Well, does he have … the flu? What's wrong with him?"

"I have no idea. He was talking, he got light headed, then he fainted. He's still out, pulse is steady but his breathing sounds kind of weird. Can you try to find Grissom for me, Greg said something about an experiment he was running, might explain what's wrong."

"Sure, no problem. I'll let you know, just take care of him," Catherine requested.

"That was the plan, I'll call if I find out what's wrong," Nick assured her, said a quick goodbye and hung up. He looked over at Greg, who for once in his life was quiet and motionless apart from the continued labored sound of his breathing. "Looks like we're on our own Greggo."

Not surprisingly, Greg did not respond.


Catherine closed her phone after promising Nick she would find Grissom and turned to Sara who was eating lunch next to her.

"What's wrong?" Sara asked, noticing that Catherine looked noticeably upset.

"That was Nick. Greg just passed out, he's driving him to the hospital," she explained.

Sara's interest was immediately piqued, "What's wrong with him?"

"Nick doesn't know, but he wants me to find Grissom. Apparently he and Greg were running some sort of experiment together, might be the reason."

"I'll come with you," Sara offered, standing up to follow and throwing the rest of her sandwich in the garbage.

Catherine flagged down Warrick in the hall, "Hey, you seen Grissom anywhere?"

"Yeah, he just went with Brass to interrogation, apparently they got their guy," Warrick explained then continued on his way, eager to find out the results of his own case.

"Thanks." Sara and Catherine headed to interrogation and were told Grissom was inside, so they waited in the hall until he was done. Ten minutes later a man emerged in handcuffs with Grissom and Brass following.

"Gil, hold on a sec," Catherine called out.

"Hey, what's going on?" Grissom asked, curious why both Catherine and Sara would need to see him together.

"Nick just had to take Greg to the hospital," Sara explained, then saw one of the few looks of real surprise that ever passed Grissom's face.

"What for?"

"He told us to ask you. Greg said he was working on some kind of experiment with you, then he passed out," Catherine said. Grissom was about to reply when Catherine's phone rang again. "It's probably Nick. Hello… Hey Nicky, how is he? ... Oh? Call us when you find out … Medical and personal, no problem … St. Luke's? … Okay, we'll be over as soon as possible. Bye."

"Any news?" Sara asked.

"They haven't told him anything yet, Greg just went into observation. Nick wants us to fax over Greg's records for him, he doesn't know how long they'll be," Catherine reported.

"You two aren't working on anything too pressing, why don't you go wait with Nick? I'll send whatever they need," Grissom offered.

Catherine and Sara didn't argue since they were eager to get to the hospital for themselves. Sara offered to drive and the two women were gone. Grissom's expression drew dark when they were out of sight and he rushed to the nearest computer to pull up Greg's files, fearing that his eagerness to find the truth had endangered one of his own.


Upon finally arriving at the hospital Nick was relieved to see there were no ambulances parked in the front of the building, so he pulled up next to the Emergency Doors. When the car stopped suddenly Greg's head tipped forward. As Nick repositioned him he noticed the lab tech's breathing had changed from slightly shallow to raspy and seemed to be getting worse by the minute.

"Just keep breathing man, keep breathing. You are so not dying on me," Nick mumbled, scrambling out of the car. As he ran to the other side an attendant came out of the hospital.

"Hey, you can't park there," the man exclaimed, unable to see the unconscious Greg in the front.

Nick whirled around at the voice. "I'll move just as soon as I get some help for my friend," he promised, kneeling down to unbuckle Greg's belt. When the attendant saw the unconscious, spiky haired young man his attitude immediately changed.

"Wait, you shouldn't move him, I'll get a nurse," he said, going back into the building.

Nick took the attendant's advice but stayed by Greg's side pushing back a few of the spikes that had fallen in his face.

"You're gonna be fine man, they got good people here." Nick frowned, growing more concerned as Greg's breathing hitched again, now coming in short quick breaths. He took Greg's face in his hands, trying to make him hear him. "Hey, Greg, I know it's getting harder but you have to keep breathing. Just keep breathing Greggo, come on. In and out, don't stop."

Greg could not do as Nick asked though. With what seemed a great effort the lab tech took one large gulp of air and then stopped breathing altogether. True fear now clutched Nick's heart as he shook Greg by the shoulders.

"No man, wake up! Come on, don't do this!" Nick begged, forever thankful as he heard the hospital doors opening behind him.

The attendant had returned, this time with a nurse, a doctor and a gurney.

"He's not breathing!" Nick shouted as they approached.

"Okay, let's get a mask on him and then get him up," the doctor instructed.

Nick helped them move Greg onto the gurney and then backed away to let them work, but stayed close enough to hear them talk.

"What's his name?" the doctor quickly asked after putting the oxygen mask in place.

"Greg."

"Are you family?" the nurse asked, clipboard in hand to take down notes.

"No, coworker," Nick replied.

She nodded, "What happened?"

Nick was sorry he could only shrug, "He just collapsed at work, but he knew something was wrong, he asked me to drive him here before he fainted."

The doctor worked quickly as the gurney was rushed through the halls, "HB's still good, airway seems constricted, did he swallow anything?"

"No."

"Passage must be swelled. Pupil dilation is slow, let's get some tests run, ASAP. Did he hit his head when he fell?"

"No, I caught him," Nick replied quickly. "Is there anything I can do?"

"Just answer our questions. Did he ingest anything, exposed to any sort of gaseous fumes?" The doctor continued.

Nick was unsure, "I don't know, he could have been exposed to anything, we work in a crime lab."

"Then you should be a good analyst. Do you have any idea what may be wrong with him, cause these symptoms could be a range of things. Has he done anything out of routine?" The doctor pushed, frowning as Greg's color grew paler from lack of oxygen.

"Um," Nick thought quickly, "He wasn't wearing any shoes."

The doctor took this at face value as useful information, but they had reached the doors and Nick could go no farther. "We'll see what we can do, I'll ask you to fill out some forms and let us know if you think of anything else."

"Okay, no problem." Nick said, wanting to help. Then the doctors and patient disappeared behind solid doors. In the last glimpse Nick had of Greg, he couldn't help noticing how young and tired the lab tech looked, such a stark contrast to the normally vibrant, smiling, head banging, Greg he knew.

"Oh, man," Nick muttered, running a hand over his face. Seeing his friend, who was usually so cheerful and energetic, just collapse like that had been scary and it was only now sinking it that he had no idea what was wrong with him. He could only hope the doctors would know and be able to treat him, or Catherine would find something out back at the lab. He considered calling her but a nurse quickly approached him with a clipboard of papers.

"Do you think you can fill these out or is there someone else we should call?" the nurse enquired.

Nick thought about it, he didn't think Greg had any family in the city and he supposed he knew as much about the lab tech as the rest of the team.

"No, I can do it. Just, let me know when you find out anything," he requested.

She nodded, "Of course."

He sat down and stared at the forms, filling them in slowly as he struggled to remember specifics about Greg's life. Simple questions such as 'hair color' stumped him. Blond or brown, Nick wondered, knowing it depended on the day and Greg's apparent mood. He settled on dirty blond and moved on.

"Previous medical conditions? I don't know, A.D.D?" Nick mused. Realizing he did in fact, not know enough about Greg's personal life to fill out the forms, he resigned to calling the lab and just getting the information faxed over. Pulling out his cell phone, he dialed Catherine once more.

After she promised to fax the records and come over as soon as possible he let her go and sat down with a sigh. He hated waiting.


"Nick, have you heard anything?" Sara asked as she and Catherine came into the waiting room.

"No, they got his records awhile ago but they haven't come back out yet," Nick replied, looking worn. After a pause he continued softly, "He stopped breathing for a minute, it was scary."

"How did he look when you last saw him?" Catherine asked, grasping at straws for clues to what had struck their lab technician down.

"Not great. Still unconscious, really pale, worn out almost," Nick said, sounding frustrated. "I don't understand it, he's standing there talking to me, maybe he was a little jumpy, but hey, it's Greg, how do you tell? And the next minute he's getting dizzy and passes out."

"It's probably something simple; maybe he mishandled something in the lab, there must be hundreds of things in there that can knock a person out," Sara surmised.

"Yeah, probably," Nick said, sitting back.

All eyes turned as a doctor approached, clipboard in hand.

"Are you Mr. Stokes?"

"Yeah, that's me," Nick said, standing with Catherine and Sara.

"You brought in Greg Sanders?" Nick nodded again.

"How is he?" Catherine asked.

"He'll be fine," the doctor assured them with a confident smile. A collective sigh escaped the group, and then he continued, "He had a relatively severe allergy attack, but he's on medication now and should be fine in a few hours, but we'd like to keep him the night for observation."

"Allergic to what?" Sara asked, not recalling Greg carrying around an Epi-pen or mentioning allergies before.

"Mildew," the doctor replied and was met with stunned faces. "It's in his medical records."

"Mildew? How did he get exposed to that? We have the most sterile work conditions imaginable," Catherine said.

"Wait, that didn't look like any allergy attack I've ever seen, especially one caused by mold," Nick pointed out, not quite believing it was that simple yet.

"You're correct, there were some irregularities. For most people a mildew allergy would only bring on sneezing, maybe coughing and red eye …"

"His eyes were really red," Nick interrupted.

The doctor continued, "But Mr. Sanders had a complication; on top of the allergy alone he has Scandinavian background. I won't get into the specifics but the unique proteins and compounds in Scandinavian blood react badly to mildew, causing normal people to rash. Add that to an existing allergy, and you have what just happened to Mr. Sanders. Besides this even, it seems he was exposed to a massively concentrated amount of mildew on the skin, but none airborne. It took several hours to seep into the bloodstream but once it did his reaction was swift. He's lucky you got him here so quickly Mr. Stokes, his airway was slowly closing up and if he'd come in any later it may have been too late. Thankfully we were also able to medicate him before had a chance to seizure in any way."

"That could have happened?" Sara asked, surprised at the severity of the reaction.

"It's not unheard of."

"But he's going to be okay?" Catherine asked again to be sure.

"Yes, fine. He'll probably suffer from sore muscles and throat for a few days, dry mouth, maybe fatigue."

"Not this kid," Sara muttered, and the doctor smiled, understanding.

"Can we see him?"

"We've sedated him for now, just so he'd sleep through any discomfort while the drugs take affect. Why not come back in a few hours, he should be awake and coherent," the doctor replied.

"All right, we will. Thanks doc, we really appreciate it," Nick said, shaking his hand.

"No problem, thank you for bringing him in so fast."

When the doctor turned around to check on his other patients, the three CSIs collectively sighed once more.

"Well, good work Nicky, sounds like you saved Greg's life," Sara commended him.

"He knew he was sick, all I did was get him here. I'm just glad he'll be okay," Nick said, clearly relieved but showing no outward signs of happiness. Instead he seemed lost in deeper thoughts.

The same could not be said for Sara and Catherine, they smiled broadly and were ready to leave.

"Come on, we better get back to the lab then. We'll come see him after shift," Catherine suggested, leading the way out of the hospital doors.

Sara stayed behind a moment, "Just a second, I'm going to call Grissom."

Nick and Catherine went on ahead as Sara listened to the phone ring. After half a dozen rings it was clear Grissom was not picking up or was away.

"Humph, guess we can just tell him in person," she said, folding her phone and following after her teammates.


When the three arrived back at the lab they all stopped by Grissom's office to find him solemnly gazing at his computer screen. Sara leaned on the doorframe and announced, "Good news, Greg's going to be fine."

"That's great," Gil replied, smiling briefly then turning back to his work.

Catherine looked at him curiously, "He suffered an allergic reaction to mildew, the doctor says it should clear up soon."

"Hmm? Oh, good, glad to hear it," Grissom was clearly engrossed in whatever was on the screen and the trio took this for the obvious dismissal it was. Catherine rolled her eyes as she and Sara moved on down the hall, but Nick stayed behind, rooted firmly to the doorway.

"Your current investigation involves mildew doesn't it? Found it around a pool?" Nick asked, taking another step into the office and closing the door behind him.

Gil looked down, either formulating an answer or contemplating his guilt, took off his glasses and looked back up at Nick, "Yes it does." He said, not denying anything.

Nick crossed his arms and huffed, not believing this, "You see my first guess was that Greg had broken something, or accidentally exposed himself to it somehow, but then he said he was doing an experiment with you. And if I know anything about your experiments, you most likely volunteered him yourself, infected him with mildew and then didn't tell him what you did. Am I getting close?"

Grissom tried to stop him, "Nick …"

"No, let me finish. You know how I figured out you didn't tell him? Because he waited more than six hours to go to the hospital when he was fully aware he was allergic to mildew, which leads to the obvious conclusion that he had no clue what you did to him."

"Nick, I'm sorry, if I had known he would have any sort of reaction …"

"Well he did have a reaction Gris! For God's sake, we're not your lab rats or your bugs! You can't just run experiments on people and not tell them what you're doing," Nick was truly angry now. Grissom had always had a tendency of performing experiments and recreations without letting anyone in on his thoughts or what he was trying to prove, but this time that omission of information had put a coworker's, no a friend's, life in danger.

"I was just trying to find the truth," Grissom replied but even in his own ears it sounded weak. He had made a mistake, he knew. Put his quest for answers before his care for his team and he knew that was completely unacceptable.

"Screw the truth! You know what the doctors told me Gris? They said he could have died if I hadn't gotten him there when I did. He could have died, Gris? And you'd be responsible. My god, what were you thinking?"

"I wasn't okay?" Gil finally exploded in defense. "I needed answers and I went about getting them and I made an irresponsible decision. I didn't consult Greg or his medical records, I have no excuse." He ended softly.

"But you do have the truth," Nick scoffed, still disgusted he would do this.

Grissom stood, agitated, and leaned against his chair, "Yes, I do." After a pause when he had calmed, he looked up and asked sincerely, "What else did the doctors say?"

"Well, since he was infected topically and with such a concentrated substance it took a while to hit him, but when it did it was fast and hard," Nick replied, but his anger had left him and he sat down tiredly, "They got it figured out early though, he'll be fine. He was sleeping when we left, they sedated him until the worst of it passes."

"Are you going to see him after work?" Grissom asked, clearly meaning the entire team.

"Yeah. You gonna come?" Nick asked. Gil nodded, he had to, it was the least he could do after all. With another sigh, this one more final, almost accepting, Grissom sat down at his desk and turned back to his computer screen, clearly having nothing else to say.

Nick rolled his eyes in disbelief and shook his head but he had no more words for his supervisor either. He stormed out and didn't look back.


It was morning when the team's shift was over. Before even getting breakfast they all headed straight for the hospital. They were told Greg had been awake for nearly an hour and since his condition was far from critical now they could all go in and see him together.

They were led to a private room on the third floor. Nick was the first one at the door and opened it a crack, peering in before he entered. Greg was sitting up in his bed, fiddling absently with a wire and then looking around the room desperately. Nick smiled, not surprised that Greg was already bored and looking for entertainment.

"Knock knock," he said, striking the door as he went in. Greg's eyes shot to the doorway and he smiled, widely, genuinely.

"Nick, guys, hey!" His voice was scratchy and tight, clearly the swelling in his throat had not left him unscathed, but he was very happy to see them. "Please tell me you're busting me out of here, or brought me some food, or coffee. Please say there's coffee. I've seen some brown kind of liquid around here that they seem to think is coffee for some reason when it is clearly mud with caffeine." He saw a bag in Sara's hand, "Is that coffee?"

"No, sorry Greggo, might be the next best thing though. We brought you your discman and some CDs you left in the lab, just to keep you from going crazy or making any escape attempts," Sara replied.

Greg smiled as he took the bag, "Thanks, I really appreciate that. Hey, cookies!"

"Guaranteed mildew free," Catherine said from his other side. Greg laughed but it soon changed into a coughing fit and his face became red as he doubled over.

"Whoa, easy big guy," Nick said, putting a hand on his back and then grabbing a glass of water and holding it in front of Greg to take when he could. Greg let out one final, burning cough and took the water, gulping it back greedily.

"Thanks. Oh, that sucked worse than Hanson," Greg commented, sitting back, now tired.

Sara slapped him lightly on the arm, "Hey, I like Hanson."

Greg cringed dramatically at the words, "Oh, you poor child. If only I could show you the way of good music, but you've already been tainted by pop culture. Step away from me, you're unclean."

Sara put her arms up and took a step back, chuckling. Catherine spoke next asking, "So Greg, what happened? How did you get dosed with mildew?"

Greg faltered for a second and looked at Grissom, who was yet to say anything. The supervisor met his eye, clearly willing to accept the blame Greg would now place on him. Greg smiled, seemingly half nervous, half embarrassed.

"Uh, it was my own fault. I knocked over a vial in the lab. I cleaned it up put I didn't realize I'd step in it until a few hours later when I broke out," Greg explained.

"Well just be more careful from now on, man," Warrick advised. Greg looked at him and nodded and then saw that Nick was staring coldly at Grissom, his jaw set. He clearly knew the truth, but Greg saw no reason to share with the others. He yawned loudly.

"Anyway, you look tired. We'll let you get some sleep, I think visiting hours are ending," Catherine announced glancing at the clock. The group slowly said their good-byes and made for the door.

Nick put a hand on Greg's shoulder, "Take care of yourself, man," and started to walk away, but his eyes found Grissom again quickly and turned hard.

"Hey Gris, can I talk to you for a sec?" Greg requested when they were all nearly out the door.

"Sure," Grissom replied evenly, watching as Nick closed the door being the last to leave. "Greg, I am very sorry about this. If I had had any idea …"

"Look, I don't want you to feel bad about what happened. I know you didn't do it on purpose or anything, and I'm going to be okay, so why don't we just forget it?" Greg said, shrugging as if Grissom had done nothing more than run into him in the hall.

"Don't pretend it's not a big deal Greg. I was irresponsible and I nearly killed you, I already wrote it up in my report," Grissom explained, appreciating Greg's passive attitude though and forgiveness.

"See, now that's stupid," Greg exclaimed, surprising Grissom. "You're the best CSI in the state and putting a mark in your own record to come back and haunt you some day is ridiculous."

"I'm not going to lie Greg, I put your life in danger needlessly," Grissom continued.

"Yeah you did, so you owe me, and I want you to not put it in your report." Grissom wanted to interrupt but he kept going. "Look, I'm a goofball, who's not going to believe that accidentally infected myself with mildew? No reprimands, no slap on the wrist, just a short hospital stay and I suspect a very large bag of Blue Hawaiian awaiting me when I get back. No harm no foul. Just, let it be."

"My job is to find the truth; I can't just cover it up and put the blame on you."

"But I already put the blame on myself. Come on, you were just looking for the truth so there could be justice, you shouldn't get in trouble cause your method sucked," Greg continued, not to be denied.

Grissom could see that Greg really meant this, and it touched him. He could not deny him his request, "All right Greg, if you're sure. But Nick already figured out what happened."

"I'll take care of Nicky, that big softie, he's a pushover. A little coughing, a little 'oh, my head hurts' and he's putty in my hands, don't worry about it," Greg assured him. This was followed by a short laugh, which was then met with a yawn. Gil moved to leave.

"Get some sleep Greg, you've earned it."

"Yeah, all right," Greg said, complying but also slipping his newly acquired headphones over his ears.

"And Greg … thanks."

Greg smiled, "No problem. Catch a bad guy for me and we're even."

"Actually, I already did," Grissom smiled, took hold of the doorknob and left him to rest.

"That's even better then," Greg said to himself, as he settled into his less than ideal bed, closed his eyes and cranked up his headphones, a contented smile touching his features as he fell to sleep.

Fin

Author's notes: I did a little internet background for this story but if my medical facts/thoughts on this fic are totally off the scale I don't really care, it's all in the name of Greg-angst. Also, many thanks to Intrepid for doing an amazing job at episode transcripts, really helped out with my fic. The beginning at least.

Well, that was longer than I'd thought it would be. Hope you enjoyed, you would tell me if you did wouldn't you? You wouldn't just leave me wondering, all alone and reviewless? does sympathy still get reviews?

Anyway, thanks for reading even if you don't drop a line, but I'm thinking of doing a darker, longer Greg Angst piece and was curious if I got all the characters down well yet or should I do a few more vignettes for practice. I don't know, tell me. But, I'm out. Goody.