To the Ends of the Earth

A/N: Part of the Pieces series which is a series of (unconnected) one-shots, written in a self-imposed challenge of chronicling every pairing in the CM universe. This one is set after About Face.

She's in her office when you come up to ask. She's going through files, looking at potential BAU cases. She doesn't look up when you knock, merely stating, 'Come in.' Her voice is tired, bored, as if she would much rather be doing something else.

'I didn't realize paperwork was so entertaining,' you say. She gives a wry smile at your remark, but gives no other indication of finding it humorous.

'Can I help you with something Agent Rossi?' She doesn't sound particularly thrilled to see you, but you aren't going to let that stop you. You've come this far.

'I was wondering,' you say. 'Would you like to go to dinner with me?'

The question seems to startle her, but there's no disappointment, you notice. 'Um…' she says. 'I'm actually seeing someone right now.' She sounds unsure of herself, as if not entirely positive that her words are accurate.

'It's just dinner,' you reply. 'I have no expectations.'

'Why ask if you have no expectations?' Her eyebrows are raised; I can tell she does find some humor in the situation. She has a sardonic wit that you find yourself wildly attracted to.

'Let's just say I'm living in hope.' But you both know that that isn't true.

If David Rossi wants something, he pursues it to the ends of the Earth.

'Yes,' she says finally. 'Yes, I'll go to dinner with you.'

And suddenly, the ends of the Earth don't seem that far away.

***

'So,' she asks, twirling a fork into her spaghetti. You're at a small Italian restaurant; good food, good wine. 'Is it true that you're responsible for the FBI's fraternization policy?'

You smile slightly. 'Perhaps you should ask Agent Strauss.' It takes several seconds for the true meaning of your words to dawn, and when it does, she almost chokes on the spaghetti. Her face turns a color that can only be described as "corpse grey." You chuckle.

She gives you a look of abject horror. 'Never – ever – mention that again, and I think we'll be fine.' You smile at her unintentional insinuation. You're getting on much better than you'd hoped. You had wondered if perhaps she was too young for you, but you know that her true age extends well beyond the years she has actually lived. The job will do that to you.

Several more glasses of red wine, and she's telling you about Detective William LaMontagne Junior, better known as "the bane of her existence."

'It's complicated,' she tells you, then frowns and pauses. 'Very complicated. An on-again off-again long distance relationship.' You get the feeling that there're other complications that she isn't telling you about, but you don't ask. Instead, you ask the question that you really want to know the answer to.

'So how about now? Are you on or off?'

She smirks, not oblivious to your blatant scrutiny. 'Off.'

And it's the answer you wanted to hear.

***

Like a gentleman, you escort her to her apartment. It's not a particularly bad neighborhood, but you know there was a connection. You know that there was something between you, and you know she felt it too.

'May I see you again?' you ask.

'Sure,' she says. 'Tomorrow at work.'

You don't consciously let your face drop, but when it does, she laughs. 'Yes.' She is serious this time. She gives you her number – her private number – and tells you that she'll await your call. Of course, the irony of it is, you will probably see her more often at work than you will outside of work, but again, it's the nature of the job.

It doesn't matter though. Because you'll go to the ends of the Earth.