By Mia Shade
Summary//Garcia rubbed her palms together, evil-genius style. "There's a tattoo parlor next door. It must be fate; Reid needs to get a tattoo." // Over drinks, some slightly intoxicated agents decide that their youngest member needs to be a bad boy for once.
Disclaimer: I don't own Criminal Minds.
A/N: This came from me finally getting my ears pierced a second time, so that I have two studs in each lobe; I think it's gorgeous (and plan on going for three pairs at the end of the summer), but my parents hate it. Being the addled CM geek that I am, I immediately thought of what Reid might do if he rebelled a little by way of body modification. And I think the end result is incredibly sexy. Feedback is, as always, adored.
"All right, Reid, answer me this: where was William Shatner actually born?"
"I asked for difficult questions, Garcia," Reid scoffed, pushing back a lock of hair behind his ear. "Montreal. Drink!"
Five heads tossed back identical shot glasses of alcohol; Emily Prentiss gasped as she replaced her glass on the table, pounding on her chest.
"What in God's name is that stuff?" she sputtered, coughing. Reid grinned.
"It's what losers drink when they can't ask me difficult Star Trek questions."
JJ giggled girlishly, already tipsy after five shots. "It's called a Darth Vader, Emily. It's an alcohol shot with Tabasco sauce."
Emily regarded the empty shots on the table with a raised, skeptical eyebrow. "It's terrible."
Morgan joined JJ's laughter at the look on Emily's face. "You're just a weakling," he teased, leaning back in the booth and signaling with a raised hand to a waitress for another round; she appeared a moment later with five more shots and a beer for each person as well.
"All right," Reid held up both hands. "It's my turn to ask a question. Morgan, is there any meaning to your tattoos?"
Morgan looked up from his beer. "Excuse me?"
Reid shrugged. "Well, I've been wondering. Historically there's symbolic meaning to tattoos—the Russian mob, prison tattoos, ancient ones, they all had individual meanings. Gangs, in particular, are notorious for—"
JJ clamped a hand over Reid's mouth, laughing. "Shut up, genius."
Garcia nodded. "Please, Precious. I'm just a little too drunk for a history lesson, and it's Saturday to boot," she agreed.
Reid pulled JJ's palm from his mouth and looked at Morgan again. "…Well?"
Morgan's hand ran over the tattoo on his arm. "This is just a Celtic design. I got it the day I turned eighteen," he answered. "My mom was so mad, she almost threw me out of the house. That's pretty much why I did it, I guess—to see if it would annoy her."
Reid looked extremely confused. "You got a tattoo just to make your mom angry? Why on earth would you do that?"
Morgan grinned. "C'mon, Reid, you're telling me that you never had a rebellious teenage side?"
"I was doing my second Ph.D when I turned eighteen!" Reid exclaimed. "I didn't have time for rebellion. Besides, my mom wouldn't have noticed, anyhow."
JJ threw an arm around Reid's shoulders. "Oh, Reid, you missed out; pissing off your parents is an essential part of life," she said. "And especially since you could have gotten away with anything—that would have been awesome!"
Reid looked incredulous. "You're telling me that you had a rebellion, too, JJ?"
She nodded and turned away from him, pulling up her shirt ever so slightly to show off the rose tattooed on the small of her back. "I got this done when I was sixteen. I was in New York City for a soccer tournament and our coach's nineteen-year-old daughter took us on our afternoon off."
Reid choked on his drink, sending the others into spasms of laughter again. He next looked at Garcia, who pulled her hair back to reveal two small studs pierced at the top of her right ear,
"Ooh," purred Morgan. "Sexy."
Garcia blushed with pleasure. "Part of my twenty-first birthday present from my older sis."
All eyes fell on Emily, who, with a teasingly devilish look, slowly pulled up her tank top to show a glittering blue jewel in her navel. Morgan, JJ and Garcia burst into applause, and Emily winked.
"I was fifteen," she chuckled. "And my mother still doesn't know about it, so don't tell her or I'll have to kill you."
Reid took a sip of his drink, clearly impressed. "So, all of you had your—er—rebellious moments."
"Spence, I'm willing to bet that even Hotch has had a rebellious teenage moment," JJ proclaimed. Morgan gasped dramatically.
"No! Say it ain't so!" he laughed, punching Reid in the arm. "So, man, we've gotta get you to have a rebellious teenage moment that has been six years overdue."
Reid shook his head wildly as the others began to grin. "What—no, guys, this is not a good idea!"
Garcia rubbed her palms together, evil-genius style. "There's a tattoo parlor next door."
Emily nodded solemnly. "It must be fate. Reid needs to get a tattoo."
Reid gripped the table as Morgan began trying to drag him from the booth. "No! No tattoos, I'm a federal agent!"
"Aww, poor widdle Reid's worried about making Big Bad Gideon mad," Morgan pouted, prying Reid's fingers from the table. "How about a piercing? Maybe your nipple?"
Reid's face contorted in horror. "People do that??"
"People do much, much worse."
The girls were almost dead from laughing so hard. JJ handed Reid a shot.
"Here, Spence, drink this—" he obeyed immediately. "—good boy. Come on, now."
Reid was still shaking his head, but he allowed himself to be pulled from the booth by Morgan as the others grabbed their coats and Emily left a fifty-dollar bill on the table for the waitress. As they headed out of the bar and into the warm Virginia night, he couldn't help but laughing despite himself at the total absurdity of it all—or maybe that was the six shots he'd had that were laughing. He couldn't really tell.
The tattoo and piercing parlor was lit warmly, with designs of tattoos covering the walls. Reid immediately noticed the punk girl at the counter; her hair was striped in neon blue, red and black; tattoos wound their way up her arms like sleeves and she had studs marching up each ear, both nostrils, and the bottom of her lip. She looked up from her book and gave the profilers a look of incredulity.
"Can I help you with anything?"
Morgan grinned wide, clapping Reid on the shoulder. "This kid needs a teenage rebellion moment."
"—no, I don't," Reid piped up.
The punk's eyebrows—streaked through with blue—rose. "Are you sure?" she asked.
"—we think he needs a tattoo," that was Emily from the back of the room, who was examining the pictures on the wall with fascination. "Immediately."
The girl ran her hand up one arm, over her tattoos, seductively. "Anything for you, gorgeous," she said to Reid. "What would you like?"
"I don't want a tattoo!" he exclaimed. "I'm sorry, no offense or anything, I think they look great on you, but—I can't. Besides, I don't know what I'd get."
"That's all right," the girl replied casually, and Reid could see that her tongue was pierced, too. "A tattoo is something personal. You should take some time and think of what you want before you get it."
Morgan cleared his throat. "No, ma'am, we're not leaving until Reid here has something to show for his bad boy side."
"Ma'am? My name's Nancy, you can call me that," she laughed, looking Reid over. "And I don't think that this guy could even imagine being a bad boy."
Reid turned as red as Nancy's hair. "I—"
"Ooh!" JJ cried. "He should get a skull on his arm!" The others groaned, and Reid looked slightly ill.
Morgan rolled his eyes. "How about a heart with an arrow through it, while we're here?"
"He could always get a few digits of pi," Garcia suggested.
"—I'll tell you what," Nancy walked out from behind the desk to stand before the group. "I think I know something that's not as personal as a tattoo, and just as fun, and if you hate it, it doesn't have to be permanent. Does that sound all right?"
Reid considered for a few moments, and the alcohol in his system made him feel dangerous and, yes, a little rebellious. When he nodded, the rest of the team burst into applause and cheers; Nancy winked flirtatiously and took Reid's hand in hers, leading him towards a chair in the back of the room as Morgan and Garcia catcalled outrageously.
"Just sit back and relax," she ordered, kneeling to open a drawer beside him and rummaging around for something. "One teenage rebellion coming right up."
Hotch sighed just a little as he walked into the bullpen of the BAU office; he hated Mondays. He loved his weekends off, and it was always difficult to leave Hayley and Jack and go back to work. As he walked through the desks on the way to his office, he noticed Reid sitting back in his office chair, reading emails, with his hair pulled back behind one ear—and something was glittering at Hotch. He blinked, confused, as he continued up the stairs only to meet Gideon on the walkway. The older man's right eyebrow was up, his gaze on Reid, who was waving at Morgan and looking uncharacteristically relaxed. Hotch joined his friend, leaning over the railing and watching their youngest team member; the two men were silent for a few moments, and then Hotch couldn't stand it.
"Did I just see what I thought I saw?" he asked.
Gideon chuckled. "I think it looks good on him."
"It's rather unprofessional, don't you think?"
"Does it annoy you?" the older man asked.
Hotch considered for a minute, watching Reid. "I guess so, yeah."
Gideon shrugged, hands open, palms up, smiling with pride. "Then it's served its purpose."
As Hotch went into his office, Gideon silently got Reid's attention. The young agent turned, causing the thin silver ring in his earlobe to catch the sun and twinkle a little.
Gideon tugged on his own earlobe; Reid gingerly touched the earring questioningly. Gideon tossed his head subtly in the direction of Hotch's office, gave Reid the OK sign, with his index finger and thumb touching, and grinned.
Tugging his own earlobe with tentative pride, Reid grinned back.