Confessions on the Rooftop
Henrika- Long title, I know. This particular piece sat around as an unfinished concept in a notebook for two years. Then one day I happened to think about it and I revamped the concept with knowledge from the current shows, though namely season 5. Should have a handful of chapters. Enjoy and review!
Gil Grissom did not enjoy paperwork. It took him away from experiments and cases that he found much more worthwhile. But being nightshift supervisor required that he did do paperwork, copious amounts of it.
And timesheets were some of the things that he signed off on most frequently.
He pulled Warrick's timesheet off the stack. The man had maxed out his overtime on a high profile case with Catherine. He grabbed her's too and scribbled his signature on them both. A husband had started to slowly poison his wife, then got impatient and strangled her. It had taken the pair a number of shifts to figure out how to link him to both actions (fingerprints on the iron bottle and matching his hand size to the ligature marks).
Sara and Nick (who was still slightly leery about working solo again) had worked a triple homicide on the strip. It had turned out to be a rather simple case. A husband had finally tracked down a cheating wife and her lover to a hotel room and shot them both before shooting himself. He signed off on the two forms and added them to the growing stack of his "out" box.
He pulled the last form in front of him, realizing that it was a few sheets thicker than the others. He flipped though them, finding a trend that he didn't like to see. He checked the last few entries and realized that they were continuous. Which means a triple shift. He thought with concern. And he found with annoyance that Ecklie's signature was already on the form. Which means that he approved this. Grissom didn't like when his team worked double shifts, much less triple ones. He glanced at the name heading the sheet, "Greg Sanders". The younger man had helped him wrap up a case and then it looked like Ecklie had pressed him into running DNA for both the dayshift and the swing shift. He suddenly recalled that the dayshift person had had a family emergency and the woman running nightshift had clocked out sick, swing shift being shared between the two of them. And Greg would now be starting on his fourth shift.
He decided to go send Greg home and stood up, tossing the sheet on the stack as he did.
He went to the glass-enclosed DNA lab first, shaking his head for a moment as his eyes immediately picked out the pane of glass that replaced the one that the lab explosion had blown Greg through. A quick glance told him the lab was empty, but he went inside anyways. He was confronted by several neat stacks of samples and results, along with a still-steaming mug of Greg's famous Blue Hawaiian coffee. He looked over a few of the results, finding that all of them were triple-checked. This must have taken him hours. He paused mentally, realizing that that statement was very true. He checked a few more of the labs before he came across the rest of his team in the break room.
"Have any of you seen Greg?"
"I saw him in the DNA lab awhile ago." Nick said, looking up from the sports section of the paper.
"So did I. Why was he covering DNA anyways?" Catherine asked, stirring sugar into her coffee.
"He's not in there. And it looks like Conrad told him to."
"Come to think of it, he's been in there since last shift. How long has he been working Gris?" Warrick added.
"Too long. I'm trying to send him home."
"Guys?" They turned and found Sara clutching a small bag of coffee. "Greg never lets this stuff out of his sight. It was on the counter."
"C'mon. We'd better find him." Nick said.
"Nick, you and Sara take the labs and the morgue. Warrick, you check outside. Maybe he just went out for some fresh air. Catherine, you look around and see if anyone has seen him. I'll walk around and see if I can find him." They left to their respective tasks, Sara still holding the bag of Blue Hawaiian.
Grissom took a loop around the floor, before he noticed that the roof exit door was slightly ajar. He hurried up the stairs, getting a funny feeling that belied all of his rational instincts. He stared over the expansive maze of antennas and pipes that were beginning to cast eerie shadows with the aid of the setting sun and the street lights that were starting to flicker on and began making a thorough perimeter. The sick feeling in his stomach got even worse the farther he went. And it culminated as he caught sight of the lab-coated figure slumped against the roof's edge. "Greg!" He ran to the young man's side, feeling his neck for a pulse even as he pulled him off the edge. "Greg? Greg?" The pulse came back weak and Grissom made the frightening analogy that the man's skin was about as cold as that of a dead body. His hand drifted to Greg's forehead almost relieved to find the fever there because it meant Greg was still alive.
Rational thought ground back to work in Grissom's brain and he pulled out his cell phone. "9-1-1. Emergency response. What is your emergency?"
"I have an unconscious co-worker here. He's feverish and looks very pale. We're at the CSI lab."
"We're dispatching a unit immediately. Please stay calm sir."
"Do you need me to stay on the line?"
"Only if you'd like to sir."
"Thank you." He hung up and dialed Catherine. "Cath, I need you to gather up the team. I found Greg."
"Where are you? Is he okay?"
"The roof. No, he's not." He hung up over her next frantic questions and turned his attention back to Greg. As gently as he could he lowered the younger man to the ground, noting with concern the rings that had formed under his eyes. Greg's eyelids suddenly screwed shut and he rolled over onto his side and threw up, blood laced through the clear fluid. When was the last time he ate? "Greg?"
The spiky-haired blonde coughed a bit before moaning and trying to open his eyes. "Grissom?" His eyes were clouded and he struggled to focus them on his boss, his face palely illuminated by the lamplight that pooled on the rooftop.
"Easy Greg. Just take it easy."
"Sorry." He whimpered, though Grissom couldn't tell just what he was apologizing for.
"It's alright." He rubbed circles onto Greg's back like his mother had done when he was sick. Greg threw up again, this time mostly blood. Grissom heard a door slam back and heard shouting as the rest of his team found their way to their location. "It's alright Greg. It's alright." The younger man nodded slightly and closed his eyes, his muscles relaxing as he passed out again.
"Grissom! Greg!" Nick was the first to reach them, falling to his knees beside them. "What happened?" He reached out a hand and gingerly wiped the blood away from Greg's mouth.
"He was unconscious when I found him and he just threw up a fair amount of blood. Ambulance is on the way."
"Damn." Warrick knelt beside Nick, examining the thick crimson that was seeping into the stone. Sara and Catherine went to Grissom's side, Sara switching the bag of coffee she was still holding to one hand so she could stroke Greg's hair with the other.
The group looked up as they heard the sirens growing in intensity. "One of us needs to get them and show them where to go." Nick pointed out, now clutching Greg's lifeless hand.
"I'll go." Catherine volunteered after a moment.
"Catherine, I want you in charge for the rest of shift. Handle any cases that come in and hand off everything else to dayshift. I'm going to go with him. I'll call Catherine and she can update all of you on his condition and what room he's in. After shift, you're free to go. No overtime. Does everyone understand?" They nodded and Catherine left, returning quickly with two paramedics.
They loaded Greg onto a backboard, forcing the team to step back and away from him. Instruments were hooked up and they carefully eased him down the stairs until they reached they reached the parking lot. He was pushed into the ambulance and Grissom hopped in behind him, his look barring protest. "Take care of him Grissom." Nick said as they slammed the doors.
And looking at the pale young man strapped down on the stretcher, Grissom was forced to whisper, "But I already failed."
Henrika- I am so evil to poor Greg. It makes for good fiction though.