Okay, set during and after Grave Danger. What did Nicky really say on that tape? NickGreg. Characters not mine. Inspired by The Fray's 'Unsaid'. Hope you like! Wahoo! My 100th fic posted on here!
"Grissom…" Nick's voice cracked as he spoke, the reality of what was happening and the more than likely outcome of the situation forcing him to say everything that needed to be said on a single cassette tape. "If I don't make it out of here… it's going to affect Greg more than anyone. Please, tell him that I'm sorry. I'm sorry I let him down."
The salt and pepper haired man sat in front of the computer, watching his friend intently, reading his lips. He shouldn't be listening to this. He shouldn't know what Nick wanted to say to his parents, or the team, or Greg. But, if Nick said anything that would help locate him, he needed to be paying attention. "You never did, Nicky."
"Tell him that he meant everything to me and that I love him. Tell him I wish I'd sucked it up and told him a hell of a lot sooner. I--" Then a piercing scream filled the plexi-glass box.
"He's loosing it!" Sara announced, her eyes transfixed on the screen as well.
"No," Grissom corrected her, zooming in on the picture. "My God, he's being eaten alive…"
Months, nearly a year had passed since that horrific incident and the two were still not together, Greg still didn't know what Nick had said while in that box. Didn't even know anything had been said as he'd been in another room trying to find a lead, and Nick had no plans to tell him. The younger man had not even come to see him once while he was in the hospital, not once. He couldn't keep everyone else out, but the one person he wanted to see wouldn't come. And that hurt him more than the kidnapping had. Now it was over, they were all back at work, as if nothing had happened, moved on…
"Hey, Nicky, Bobby just paged me with the ballistic results. The teen is our shooter. I sent Brass to pick her up." The sandy haired C.S.I. informed him, flopping down in one of the chairs in the break room, after a double shift.
"So much for that 'nothing done out of love can ever do us harm' philosophy, huh?" Nick replied, eyes closed, a cold cup of coffee in one hand.
Greg nodded in agreement, though the other man couldn't see him. "It works until someone shoots someone else, at least. All I wanna do is go home and sleep for a week."
The Texan laughed. "You and me both, Greggo."
"Do you want to come by my place for something to eat? I'll share my Blue Hawaiian." He eyed the cup of coffee Nick held warily. "I would suggest sending that sludge to Hodges. It might actually have been coffee at some point in time. Maybe before I was born…"
"You still buy that stuff?"
He nodded. "Much less frequently. Be amazed that I'm willing to share."
Nick disposed of the inedible coffee, pulling himself to his feet. "Well, let's go then. Before you change your mind on that."
Upon entering Greg's condo, after a ride made in a comfortable silence - the only sounds coming from the Rob Thomas CD Nick had agreed to, the Texan found himself rather surprised by how un-Greg like the place was.
He'd expected some colorful, crazy, messy room. A clean, organized, fashionable one greeted his entry. An old, fat tabby cat was curled up in one corner of the armchair across the room, raising his head as if to see who had dared disturb its nap.
"Nicky, meet Buuyou." Greg gestured to the feline, as he shrugged off his jacket and kicked his shoes out of the way.
"Not very people friendly, is he?" Nick stared at the creature that seemed to have understood, sending a hiss in his general direction.
Greg was in the kitchen now, digging through the cabinets in search of his beloved coffee. "My Papa Olaf gave him to me after I got out of college. He's a lazy bum who steals my pillows at night." He explained. "So do you want to get take-out or would you rather risk eating my cooking?"
The elder laughed. "I think I'll go with the safer alternative, thank you."
"Smart man." The younger grabbed two beers from the fridge as well as the cordless phone and flopped down on the couch beside Nick. "Chinese okay?" His guest nodded, taking a swig from the drink offered to him as Greg dialed the familiar number and ordered. "Fifteen minutes."
"Mmkay." Nick nodded, watching intently as Greg flipped on the television to whatever game happened to be on, landing on some Disney show. A couple of moments passed by in a companionable silence before either of them spoke again. "Can I ask you a question?"
Greg nodded, still sipping nonchalantly at his beer, turning to face Nick when he realized that the other man wanted his undivided attention for this. "Go ahead."
The Texan bit his lip. "Why… why didn't you ever visit me in the hospital, you know, after…"
"Nick…" The younger's eyes pleaded with him not to make him answer that, but it was clear that the older man wanted to know. "By the time I could get in, you were always asleep. Warrick and Catherine had to be pried away from your side…"
His brow furrowed. "What do you mean? You were there?"
"I was there every day. Stayed until someone kicked me out." Greg admitted eyes downcast away from the other man. He didn't know why he was embarrassed about telling him that, but he was.
"I didn't know that." Nick replied, absorbing that information. "You were really there every day?" Greg nodded in reply. "Why?"
"You're my friend. I wanted to be there with you… I would have been in the ambulance with you, too, if Cath and Warrick given anyone else the choice."
Nick bit his lip. "Were… were you there when I was using the recorder? I know Grissom was, I don't know if anyone else was. It was… ugh, right before the ants started."
The younger man shook his head. "No, I was looking through your case files in case someone had a grudge against you." He wasn't sure what Nick had been told about the whole experience and was trying to be careful about what he said; he didn't want Nick upset at him.
"I was… saying my goodbyes. My parents… my sisters… and I asked Grissom to tell you something for me, if I didn't get out." He averted his gaze, having kept the words unsaid for as long as he had; it was hard to say them now.
Greg shuddered at the very idea of something like that happening. The whole time Nick had been missing, his mind had been playing millions of 'what if's' in his mind and they'd only stopped… well, they'd never stopped. "But you did."
Nick nodded. "So you never found out…"
"I never found out what?" He asked, but any other thoughts were lost when the elder's lips pressed softly against his. His body melted into the kiss, though his mind was screaming at him to pull away.
Strong, Texan, hands moved up to curl in his hair, and Nick broke away from the tender moment with a huge grin spreading across his features. He ran his fingers along Greg's cheek, tucking an errant hair behind the younger man's ear before moving to initiate another kiss.
"Wait…" Greg forced himself to say the word, which did effectively stop Nick from frying any more of his brain cells. "I… I don't believe… me?"
The younger man smiled, shifting closer to Nick on the couch. This time he started the kiss, holding tight to the man he'd loved for quite a while now, with no plans to let go anytime soon. "Me, too." He whispered, and Nick didn't have to ask to know what he was saying.
The real words remained unsaid, but neither minded because perhaps they weren't really needed after all.