A/N – Okay, a sad bit of drivel that poured out of my brain. I apologize. Please don't kill me. NOTE: Character Death.
Disclaimer – No one is going to sue me for this short bit of nothing, are they?
"Honey, are you sure you packed my Hawaiian shirt?" he asked from the doorway to the bathroom.
"Positive, Gil," she replied, trying to latch her small suitcase, and failing. Grunting, she shoved down hard on it and watched it bounce back, trying to decide if sitting on it would help.
Walking up behind her, Grissom reached over and pushed down on the object she was struggling with, and heard a snick as the case locked. Wrapping an arm around her waist, he leaned down and whispered, "I love you, Sara."
Her eyes misting, she turned and kissed him, before murmuring, "I love you, too."
Standing back from one another, hand in hand, they surveyed the two suitcases on the bed, and each grabbed one. Making their way to the living room, Catherine rolled her eyes and said, "If we don't get moving, you're going to miss your flight."
Smiling, they made their way out the door, eager for the start of their time away.
"Thank you for taking us to the airport," Grissom said, taking the front seat, and riding next to the strawberry blond.
Smiling in return, she said, "Just do me a favor and have a great time."
From the back seat, Sara frowned, and asked, "Do we have the sunscreen in the luggage?"
"I figured we'd just pick that up when we get there," Grissom replied.
"How long is this teaching engagement supposed to last?" Catherine asked. "You haven't precisely been forthcoming with information."
Grinning, Grissom replied, "Two months."
Nodding, she looked back at Sara in the back seat, watching the brunette's eyes soften when they looked from the view out the side window and landed on her husband in front of her. Smiling, Catherine, said, "Looking forward to a nice long vacation?"
"Oh, yeah," Sara murmured, lost in thought. "We could use some time alone, and he only has two classes he'll be teaching." Laughing, she added, "He's already put together some 'field trips' for us to take while we're there."
Making their way to the departures gate, Catherine put the car in park and got out to bid her friends farewell on their trip. With quick hugs and promises of postcards, Catherine watched the extremely reserved Gil Grissom reach out and grasp his wife's hand.
Two months later, Nick made his way down the hall, turning sharply into the DNA lab, without ever taking his eyes off the report in front of him. Looking up, he smiled at Wendy, and asked, "Do you have the results of the Truman case?"
Grinning back, she pulled out a piece of paper and said, "I was just about to page you. It's a match."
Whistling his way down to Catherine's office, he pulled out his cell phone, called Brass, and told him to pick up their suspect.
Sitting in a chair opposite the interim graveyard supervisor, Nick grinned, and laid the DNA results in front of her with, "Brass is picking him up." Yawning, he watched as Catherine pulled out another mountain of mail and sighed.
"I just spent three days going through Grissom's backed up mail, and now I get to go through mine. Oh joy," she said sarcastically. Eyeing the large mound, she started sorting out the journals, and grinned at the postcard she found, handing it over to Nick. Flipping it over he read off this quick sentiment, and laughed.
With only a couple of dozen letters to go through once the circulations had been moved to the side, she frowned. Picking up the letter on top, she made a humming noise, and Nick asked, "What's that?"
Slicing open the envelope, Catherine pulled out an enclosed letter, written on thick parchment stationary. Looking up, she quietly said, "Get Warrick and Greg."
It took only moments to find them playing video games in the break room. Once assembled, Catherine looked at the group.
"It's from Sara and Gil," she softly began, showing them the postmark on the envelope, and watching that envelope get passed around.
By the time you get this, Gil will have passed away. Several months before we left, doctors found pancreatic cancer. It had spread far enough and fast enough that treatment would have done little good. It may have prolonged his life, but made him non-functioning. The spread into the lymph nodes within short weeks confirmed the worst suspicions.
He wanted to see the rain forest again. He wanted to teach. He wanted to explore a place he's always admired for its richness of life – and bugs. The small village and school here in Brazil have been a godsend to us both. Our days have been filled with making memories, which I will cherish for the rest of my life.
For the past two months, we have woken to amazing sunrises. Last night, I held him in my arms as he took his last breath watching as the sun set. I've been reading passages to him of Wordsworth, Shakespeare, and others, as he's been so weak the past two weeks. He's at peace, and the pain that has been his constant companion for so many months has ceased.
I am burying him here in this place. He asked me to read Paradise Lost to him just days ago, and as I lay next to him, feeling his breath on my neck, he whispered in my ear that if he were to write a book about this village, he'd call it Paradise Found. It's where he belongs, and for as long as I am alive, I belong with him. Should you ever wish to visit, you will always be welcomed, not as guests but as family.
We… I… miss you all.
Tears streaming silently down her face, Catherine folded the letter and stood, seeing through her own watering eyes that the others fell into the same condition. Wiping a Kleenex across her face, Catherine quietly said, "I'll spread the word."