Sharing - by Sara's Girl
AN – It's another fluffy one – the next won't be so much I promise. Inspired by a conversation at the Fort, credit where it's due to MyLastChance/hiddeninatree for allowing the 'borrowing' of her idea. I see this taking place around S6, Greg is in the field at any rate. Earlyish in their relationship but they do live together. Sorry if the set-up feels contrived but I had fun...
This kind of switches between POVs but is mostly from that of Catherine, Warrick and Sara.
I don't own Nick and Greg. They own each other! Please leave me a review instead….
Greg let out a long moan and brought his hand down hard on top of his alarm clock, ceasing the shrill sound and opening one eye tentatively, not wanting to know what time it was.
He leapt out of bed as if someone had poured ice water on his bare skin. He had to be at work in thirty minutes – that barely gave him time to shower and style his hair, never mind find something to wear. He stood under the shower, trying to figure out what had gone wrong. He remembered Nick kissing him goodbye while he was still half asleep, saying something about overtime and an urgent case. He smiled at the memory. Then he'd had that dream again, the one where Nick was naked on the break room table…his alarm had gone off and he'd hit the snooze button. Again and again and again. You idiot, Sanders, he berated himself, now wrapping a towel around his slender waist and pushing dripping dirty blond hair out of his eyes. There were now literally 3 minutes before he had to leave the apartment or risk being late.
He flung open the doors of the closet he shared with Nick. Started pulling things out and flinging them on the bed. He had managed to struggle into a pair of jeans but was drawing a blank on the shirt front. Anything would do – shirt, sweater, t-shirt, whatever. Where the hell was all of his stuff? He glanced around the bedroom in a panic. Eyes resting on the laundry basket which was full to overflowing with stuff he'd been planning to wash all week. There wasn't a single item of his clothing that was clean, other than the jeans he was already wearing. He had been certain he had at least one t-shirt in the closet, too. But to no avail.
"Arrghhhh…." He let a strangled cry of frustration escape his lips and in desperation, started into Nick's side of the closet. Most of Nick's stuff was too big for him, but there must be something. Finally, he pulled out a blue fine knit sweater with a slight pattern to it. Very Nick, he thought, holding it against himself. Not very me. Glancing at the clock again, he shrugged and pulled the sweater over his head. He snatched his keys up and ran to the car, making record time.
He walked into the break room at one minute past 10pm. Started his ritual coffee making. Pushed the sleeves of the unfamiliar sweater up experimentally. Smiled as he caught a whiff of something that was uniquely Nick as he moved and realising he must have worn the sweater once and put it back in the closet. As Sara entered the room, he swapped his slightly soppy smile for the full on light-up-the-room Greg Sanders special and passed her a cup.
Sara accepted the cup and returned her colleague's bright smile. He certainly looked pleased with himself. He had looked like that a lot recently, she noticed, and if she didn't know better she would suspect he was in love. But the idea of Greg in love, or in a relationship, made her laugh. He made it known on a regular basis that he was a free spirit in every way and didn't want to get tied down, unless it was in the kinky way. Yeah, sometimes Greg shared a little too much. Flirted too much as well, but in the years that they had worked together, Sara had gotten used to his playful teasing and realised that it was just the way Greg was with everyone, even the men.
"Penny for 'em." Greg's voice was warm but he looked at Sara questioningly.
She shook herself out her thoughts and tried to remember the details of the case she wanted to discuss with him, but she couldn't. She had noticed something else which amused her very much indeed.
"Greggo…what on earth are you wearing?" She eyed his patterned sweater with interest, trying but failing to keep her laughter in.
"Hey!" He faked a hurt expression. "Are you referring to my extremely cool and stylish sweater?"
"Um, yeah, Greg, did you leave your fashion sense at home today?"
"That's low, Sidle." He shook his head.
"Ahuh…so's that sweater. What's going on?"
"Maybe I'm trying something new. Maybe this is the height of style in the sort of circles you will just never move in. Did you consider that?"
Sara raised her eyebrows and didn't say anything for a while. Though Greg's tone was jokey, as ever, she detected a hint of defensiveness behind it and she immediately wanted to know why.
"Look, would you leave my outfit alone? I got up a little late, and this was all I could find. My mom gave it to me for my last birthday and I thought I should wear it at least once. Satisfied?"
His dark eyes were challenging and Sara pragmatically decided to shelve the teasing for later. After all there was a whole shift left to make fun of Greg. She nodded pleasantly.
"Ok. Good. Can we talk about the case now?"
"Sure. Last night we found a – oh, hey Catherine."
Greg's eyes swivelled to follow the blonde's progress across the room. She poured coffee for herself and sat on the edge of the table, glancing from Sara to Greg and back again.
"What'd I miss?"
"Not much," replied her dark haired colleague with a suppressed laugh in her voice. Greg shot her a look. Catherine tilted her head on one side and watched them for a moment.
"I just came to tell you both that I think we may all be working on connected cases. The signature on your vic from yesterday is consistent with the one we found at a similar scene out in Henderson this morning."
"That's interesting," replied Sara, putting her coffee down and looking ready for action. "Are we heading out there?"
"No. Warrick and Nick are already there." She smiled at Sara's obvious disappointment and turned her gaze to Greg. As her eyes settled on him, something struck her. Something familiar but out of place. Something…that was it!
"Greg? Why are you wearing Nick's sweater?"
Greg spluttered on his coffee, spitting a good mouthful of dark liquid back into his cup. Catherine grinned.
"I'm not wearing Nick's sweater!"
"You are too."
"Look, Greg, I saw him wearing it about two weeks ago. I remember because I recall thinking that it was a nice colour on him and made a change from black."
She crossed her arms and stared at her young colleague, whom, she noted with satisfaction, looked both guilty and uncomfortable.
"Has it crossed your mind that maybe we just have the same sweater?" Greg's voice sounded hopeful.
She shrugged. "Yeah. But it's a pretty big coincidence. Horses, Greg, not zebras. What I'm thinking is that the reason you're wearing that sweater is because you were rushing this morning and because Nick's clothes are in the same place as yours are."
"He was late." Sara offered, looking a little confused but growing less so by the second.
Both women fixed their eyes on Greg now and he squirmed under their gaze. He was blushing. Catherine didn't think she had ever seen Greg blush before. Normally he could talk about everything from liquid latex to bondage without a trace of embarrassment showing on his face. About bloody time, she thought. If Nick and Greg were together, she had some serious money to collect from a few of the lab techs who had refused to accept her idea might be true.
"Catherine, I really don't know how you are getting all of that from a sweater, but you're so wrong."
Greg was shaking his head now, having recovered himself a little, and was looking at Catherine and Sara as though they were mad. He dropped his cup in the sink and walked out into the corridor. He hadn't got further than a few feet before Catherine heard a muffled:
The two women exchanged glances and followed Greg out of the room with interest.
Nick walked quickly along the corridor, past the trace lab, shaking his head but still smiling in spite of himself. Warrick was hot on his heels, still laughing. How was he still laughing? It wasn't that funny, surely. He hadn't planned on spending the evening being the focus of his best friend's hysterical laughter.
When he'd been called in early, he had lain for a while, propped up on one elbow, watching Greg sleeping. He hated to leave him but decided to let him sleep, just kissing him softly and saying his goodbye in a whisper. Nick had dressed quickly and silently. Feeling an unexpected wrench as he looked at his partner, he had impulsively picked up a t-shirt of Greg's from the floor of the closet. It was bright red and looked as though someone had splashed paint on it, on purpose of course. It was very Greg, and smelled like him. Nick had put it on and then replaced his sober navy button down shirt on top, concealing his tribute to Greg to all but himself. He had left the apartment smiling, and met Warrick at the scene.
It had all been routine until he decided to climb up a ladder and look for the murder weapon in the guttering. He had found them in stranger places than this before, and was humming softly to himself as he searched until the whole two foot section collapsed suddenly. Covering him with soggy leaves and cold water. It was all he could do not to fall off the ladder, and had slowly climbed down, shaking himself off. Of course it had to have rained the night before. He rolled his eyes and tried to ignore Warrick's sniggers. The other man was leaning on the door frame and staring at him, having been drawn out of the house by the sharp crack and sound of cursing.
"Aw, not funny man."
"Yeah….yeah it is though." More sniggering.
Nick sighed and started to unbutton his soaking shirt, peeling it off his skin and shivering. He didn't remember about the other t-shirt until it was too late. Oh god. Warrick let out a low whistle and Nick screwed his face up with discomfort before turning slowly turning to face his friend.
"Check you out! Whoa! Kinda edgy for your taste, Stokes."
He looked down and realised that, apart from anything else, Greg's shirt was far too tight on him and stretched almost obscenely across his broad chest and shoulders. Not to mention that it was bright red and had paint artfully splashed across it. Why, why did I take my shirt off? Being wet would be preferable to the hour of piss-taking I'm going to get for this, he thought silently. Too late now.
Warrick pushed off the door frame and approached Nick, not even trying to hide his laughter any more. It really wasn't every day he had a valid reason to make fun of his strait-laced friend and he took his opportunities where he could find them. Oh, man, was he really wearing that shirt? It was just too good. He didn't think Nick had any other clothes besides his self-imposed uniform of navy and black dress shirts. He wondered if Nick wore clothes like this when he was away from work. The thought brought a bright smile to his face, the thought of the conventional Texan pushing his way through some cutting-edge club, dancing even. Oh yeah. There was no way he wasn't pushing this.
"This is a new direction for you, man. I gotta say, it's different!"
"Look, it's just…." He trailed off. Shrugged.
"I get it. Not new, right? You were a secret fashion victim all along. Who knew what you were hiding underneath those sensible clothes. I suppose I never had you pegged as a member of the tight t-shirt brigade." Warrick laughed helplessly and clapped Nick on the shoulder.
"What's the big deal about this shirt?" asked Nick valiantly, gesturing towards himself with the sodden ball of fabric in his hand.
"Nothing, nothing," Warrick smirked. "Apart from it's red, it's very tight and it looks like it belongs on someone ten years younger." Registering Nick's slightly pained expression at that remark, he pressed on. "In fact, it looks like something you've borrowed from Sanders."
Nick paled. Quickly recovered himself and laughed, a little too hard.
Warrick watched him for a moment, thinking. He had hit a nerve there. The panic on his friend's face spoke volumes but it didn't make a lot of sense. Why would he possibly be wearing Greg's clothes? And if he was, why was he so embarrassed about it? Of course he had never intended to take that shirt off until he got wet…Warrick's mind was whirring, processing, trying to fit things into place. It was with an abiding sense of confusion and a nagging in the back of his head that both men got into the car and returned to CSI. Watching the red t-shirt ride up over Nick's belly as he drove only served to set off the laughter again, and as they entered the building, he still hadn't got it under control and was trailing behind Nick as they headed to the locker room.
They didn't make it that far before Nick stopped dead in his tracks and Warrick slammed into the back of him, following his gaze across the hall.
Catherine came to a stop behind Greg, taking in the scene with keen eyes. Warrick, obviously very amused about something, standing behind Nick Stokes. Nick Stokes wearing a very tight, very red and slightly damp t-shirt and a sheepish expression. She looked back to Greg, who hadn't moved an inch and was staring at Nick with mute horror etched across his face. His mouth had fallen slightly open and his face was flushed again. He looked as though he wanted to say something but all that came out of his mouth was a muffled "Nnnggggghh."
Catherine glanced back at Nick, who was staring back at Greg with an eerily similar expression in his dark eyes. There was something else though, a tinge of amusement now lifting the corners of his mouth, though he was clearly trying to fight it. She didn't know how or why, but Nick and Greg were clearly wearing each others' clothes and it seemed that both of them had started the day thinking that they were the only one. Until now. She could barely contain the pure joy at this delicious coincidence. There was no way they could deny it now. No way. She pushed her hair behind her ears and rested one hand on Greg's shoulder. Felt him flinch.
"Oh my, that's interesting," she whispered into his ear.
"Mmmhmmm…" he seemed incapable of forming a coherent reply and was growing redder by the minute.
"Hey," spoke up Sara from somewhere behind Catherine. "Nick's wearing your clothes too!"
"Good to have you on board, Sara," she murmured, looking at Warrick now, who had stopped laughing. His eyes widened as realisation dawned, taking in Greg's horrified face and Nick's embarrassed one. The one possibility he hadn't considered now seemed like the only one there ever was. Nick and Greg? Jesus. That was huge.
The glances being exchanged between Catherine, Sara and Warrick ricocheted back and forth for some seconds, the mischievous grins becoming firmly fixed. Sara spoke at last.
"So…hey…is this like the CSI clothing exchange?"
"Hmm…sounds interesting, think we could get in on it?" Catherine laughed, squeezing Greg's shoulder.
"Nah, man," Warrick shook his head. "It's only for those sharing a closet."
That was it. Three CSIs collapsed in fits of giggles, leaving the other two standing only paces apart, staring at each other and wondering how this had possibly happened. It had only been a matter of time before their colleagues found out about their relationship but neither had planned it to be so far out of their control. Nick broke first, crossing the floor and lifting his hand to Greg's burning face.
He smiled into Greg's eyes and rested his forehead against the younger man's.
"How…what…why are you…never mind," Greg sighed, smiling at last. Flicking eyes over to where his three co-workers were standing, together now, waving hands in the air and animatedly filling each other in on the missing parts of the story. Flicked them back to Nick's and ran a tentative hand up his back.
"You look good in that t-shirt. I guess it is pretty funny."
"No…what's funnier is you wearing that sweater." Nick raised one eyebrow.