Disclaimer - I don't own anything, and no profit gained.
Thanks - To all that read and gave feedback on the last one that encouraged the continuation of this slightly AU context of Emily and JJ's relationship and family life with Henry. There will be more to come, but I think from now on I'll be adding the next episode parts as chapters onto this rather than creating their own categories. Thanks again.
JJ sat silently, starring out of the window into the dark of the street outside. The rain pattered the windows, bounced off the hard surface of the road and the parked cars. It had been raining for so long, a testament to exactly how this last case had gone. How she had been locked into it, conflicted and confused.
She was good at what she did. She believed in what she did. But everything that had transpired had shaken that belief in herself. Rossi's words, not meaning to accuse her of not believing in her team, but had come across like that anyway had shaken her. At the start she had known who she was and what she was capable of. And then she had turned into a Mother.
What if she couldn't do this anymore? What if every time she saw a parent in distress it would take away her judgment and her professionalism? What if everything her parents had ever told her, her whole town, came true? That she would ultimately come up to nothing and only had her head in the stars. Should she have listened to them? Never gone to college, never gone to grad school or joined the FBI? It was only at this point right now that she had ever doubted herself in such a way. She'd had bad times before but they were nothing compared to this.
She had made a mistake. She had thought she could handle it, handle these cases just like she had before. But before was different. Before there had only been her. And when she had met Emily it was okay because Emily knew what it was like too. But now? Now she had Henry. The dear precious little boy that slept soundly in her arms, wrapped up warmly in a land of perfection that his dreams created.
Her eyes dropped from the rain and onto him. He was so tiny and unaware and when she had looked into that woman's eyes, Sandra Lombardini, she had only been able to see her son. So she had done something she never thought she would do. Which was to go against the assessment of her team, her superior. She had trusted in a man even knowing his conviction record because she had been acting as a Mother for another Mother, with those words haunting her mind.
I need my baby to be alive.
JJ blinked, hesitating in her movement to stand up, as she listened the voice on the other end of the line. The deeply anxious Detective Fullwood from Washington, who was leading the case she was about to present to the team. During the morning she had already received new information, as well as the information that Jordan had taken over the weekend and had detailed thoroughly for her arrival back to work. It was the most urgent case, and JJ agreed with Jordan's prioritizing of it.
''Yes Sir, as I told your partner I'm SSA Jennifer Jareau, I have your case in my hands as we speak and I'm about to present it to my team. Agent Todd, who I believe you spoke with over the weekend, has detailed everything thoroughly and I can say with certainty that we will be joining you there in a matter of hours. Yes Sir. I completely understand, I will call you personally to let you know what time we'll be arriving and if there's any problems you have my cell phone number. No problem, bye.''
JJ had only been back at work for a little over 2 hours, and things were already and unsurprisingly fast paced. She had already gone through the file that Jordan had prepared for her meticulously, added all the new information and combed through any of the details she could squeeze more helpful information out of, and spoken to one of the Detective's on the case this morning. He had warned her that Detective Fullwood would want to contact her personally anyway when he returned to the office, and she understood why. JJ was great at math but even she couldn't count up just how many Detectives' and other such law enforcement officials just simply wanted to be listened to by the time they reached her line. They were usually desperate and anxious, just like this Detective was, and always with good reason. She could understand why they fretted when dealing with these extraordinary cases. One of his concerns had been the crossover between Jordan and herself, obviously having not realising that it was going to happen and that this was her job.
She was actually a little grateful that things were going along rapidly because it had given her no time to fret too much over leaving Henry with the nanny she and Emily had been phasing in for the last few weeks. Separation anxiety was not an easy thing to deal with, she had realised. It sat at the bottom of her stomach like hot thick tar, making her feel nauseous and heavy. Logically, JJ knew Henry was fine and that he was going to continue to be fine. The nanny they had chosen, Annette, was very experienced and completely flexible around their jobs and they had even arranged for a part time nanny to come in and help her so she wasn't expected to look after the baby all day everyday. But Henry was her baby and it was hard to leave him all the same, she could still feel him inside her and it was possibly the hardest thing she'd ever needed to do. And JJ knew Emily was feeling a little of the same thing. The brunette had already been through it, having to leave them both to go back to work, and JJ cringed at the foul mood she was probably in at having to do it a second time because to Emily it was like a second time. This time she knew there was no JJ staying there with Henry, so it was the first time he'd be alone with Annette ever.
''C'mon Jay, you can do this.''
JJ encouraged herself, clearing her throat and clutching the file. She picked up her phone, determined to get going and just throw herself into this as usual. She hadn't seen the others much yet, but she was already glad to be back. However odd that sounded, no one should have been glad to be back chasing serial killers, but she was. She had missed her team, her friends, and she was ready to be here and getting down to some work again because she knew how important it was. Someone else's babies were being killed out there, and she wanted to do her part to stop it.
So, gathering herself up, one ready for work Jennifer Jareau walked out of her office, up the hallway and into the BAU bullpen just in time to hear Emily's sarcastic reply toward someone. JJ presumed it was Garcia; given that it was her that Emily was giving a 'simple gesture' toward. Oh yeah, her wife was definitely in a foul mood. It probably didn't help that Garcia had the paper out in front of her, turned to the horoscopes. Of course that would wind Emily up, she hated the horoscopes whereas Garcia was totally into them. JJ could see the withering scorn in Emily's outrageously dark eyes as she scowled, making Morgan chuckle and shake his head.
''Hey, you guys ready to gather?''
The blonde interrupted, clutching her files and offering all that turned toward her a light smile. It was like interrupting recess, even though it seemed more like they were bickering lightly than anything else. A sudden well of nerves popped up into her stomach for a second. She hadn't done this in quite a while and she was surprised that she was nervous. She knew how to do this, she was prepared, she had done it a hundred times and she was damn good at it. That's what she had to tell herself now.
''Well look at you Miss Thing, first day back and your all business!''
Morgan enthused smoothly, giving her an encouraging wink and an appreciative stare. Seemingly he approved of her hair, which she had spontaneously decided to cut during her trip out with Emily and Henry at the weekend. Amongst the baby clothes buying, and naturally shopping around for lots of different things much to Emily's pretend hatred, JJ had decided to pop into the hair salon place and luckily enough they'd had a spot free. She'd sent Emily off to amuse herself with Henry and let herself get a little pampered. She'd never expected Emily to meet her back in the food court with a present that she'd bought while she was having her hair done.
''Well it's either dive right in, or face my separation anxiety!''
She drawled, smiling but also very serious which she knew they knew. Garcia groaned, looking up at her friend sympathetically.
''It's tough being away from him, huh?''
JJ nodded, and Garcia gave her her well-known sad face, to which Emily scoffed.
''Hey! How come she gets the sympathy face and all I get is the lot of you riling me up?''
The brunette demanded, sulking a little petulantly but also shooting Garcia a guarded and icy glare. Her chilly mood was down to exactly what JJ was going through. Okay, so many JJ was going through it in a different way but still, it was hard on her to leave her son knowing JJ wasn't there with him too. This was their first time away from him together, and it sucked. That's why she had been like a bear with a sore head today, so she didn't understand why she was being ragged on so much.
''Oh, because you're special to me, peaches!''
Garcia cooed patronizingly, again receiving a glower for her efforts. Emily could be so easy to torture sometimes, and whether the brunette knew it or not, this was exactly what she needed to get through her own apprehension of leaving Henry at home with their nanny. Emily was more sensitive than she let on, Garcia knew that. And if she was left to dwell she would get more and more impatient and pissed off. And just like her sign said, despite her lack of belief in it, she could be prone to shocking bouts of rage, they had all seen it. Usually in work, but sometimes she snapped personally and Garcia intended today not to be one of those days. Emily was her friend and if riling her a little bit to let her get all the sting of leaving her son behind to work out then so be it. At least she'd be going into the case without it all building up inside of her.
Emily snickered, making Garcia roll her eyes and shake her head. She often wondered how Emily could have such an understanding of people, tap into their emotional needs like she had seen her do a million times, and yet not have the foggiest idea of her own emotional needs. The woman could peg herself so wrongly sometimes. Emily didn't think she was elegant, but she was. She didn't think she was natural with people, but she could be especially when it came to the people she cared about or for. She was fair and honest, she believed in justice and resent people, herself included, being treated unfairly. She was intelligent and creative, and that's why Garcia thought she was so good at her job. And although she wasn't one to like confrontation, when the need called for it she stepped up and did what she needed to do. Emily was a hard worker, and although she had and would always be extremely wealthy, she held no real interest in money. She didn't use it to get the things she wanted like some people could and did. That's why Garcia respected her so much. And she knew Emily tended to fail seeing herself how she really was, but it didn't matter, because JJ saw her, and having JJ beside her made Emily see more of herself and made her stronger.
''You're sexier when you're being dark and broody!''
Garcia flirted teasingly, effectively taking the sting out of Emily's glare as she did. She also made JJ snicker quietly from the side of her which made one blonde look up at the other and suddenly made her realise the new ring on her fingers.
''Oh shiny! This is new isn't it?''
She cooed appraisingly.
''Yeah, citrine, it's Henry's birthstone. Emily surprised me with one for us both over the weekend.''
JJ explained, glancing up at Emily with an affectionate smile and a deep sparkle in her eyes that only Emily could actually read. That's what Emily had been off doing when she'd been at the salon getting her new spontaneous look. There was a very similar ring sitting on Emily's right hand, which evidently the others hadn't noticed yet. JJ loved the notion of it, that they were not only bonded somehow to Henry but to each other. They had something to constantly remind them of him when they were away, something that they could both share too.
''Aww baby cakes that's so romantic. Just like a typical Libra!''
Garcia was still teasing, but knew that Emily could really see that she meant it that she thought it was adorable. It made the perky blonde grin even wider that Emily blushed every so slightly and mumbled into her coffee cup as she also received a nudge from JJ.
''Are you finished with this?''
JJ enquired, pointing to the paper and receiving an incredulous look from Emily because of it. It only made her smirk; knowing how much Emily thought all this was gibberish. In all honesty, JJ didn't actually put much stock into the newspaper horoscopes but she still liked to read them as most did. She didn't dismiss the notion that they could be right, but she put far more stock into the people that really studied astrology in depth and really dug deep into it and didn't tend to generalize. She knew Emily reluctantly admitted, from time to time, that there must have been a little something to it, but it didn't stop her hatred for these types because they were silly and frivolous. Emily required a lot of proof for things; she needed something tangible most of the time, rather than running on faith. Which was odd, considering her faith in love and passion, as well as her faith in justice and fairness.
JJ grinned, walking away toward the briefing room, leaving Emily to shoot Garcia one last withering glare that only made the computer analyst grin before she followed her wife off in the same direction.
JJ traced the outline of Henry's face. His skin was so soft and delicate. He was so at peace and content in her arms. She dreaded the thought of him growing up but looked forward to it at the same time. She took something from the fact that they had managed to find Brooke Lombardini alive, just barely. A handful of moments later and it would have been a different story. Absolutely no help from their 'psychic', however. It had startled JJ that she had actually gone to him, still didn't know what possessed her to do it, other than she wanted it to be true what he was saying. She wanted to give that hope back to that Mother after Rossi had taken it away from her.
It was only a matter of hours before JJ found herself in the car with Rossi, driving over to Sandra Lombardini's house where they would be going over her statements and trying to find out anything else she might know.
JJ was already a little put out, she didn't know what else to call it. But Rossi's flippantness at the precinct had put her on edge, he didn't have kids, he didn't know what it was like. She didn't even know what it was like to have her child taken from her, but she knew that she would be willing to do damn well anything to get Henry back if it was them, and that kind of love and devotion shouldn't be belittled. If making a news appearance and consulting a 'psychic' was this woman's way of trying to help get her daughter back, then so be it, right? Yet again, she could also see why Rossi didn't want to think about dealing with a psychic too, in case it was someone who was just picking off this woman's pain and leading her on. But she'd rather take that chance than do nothing at all.
''You're pissed at me.''
JJ blinked, realising that she had floated off into space as she looked out of her window at the scenery going by, and turned to look at Rossi who was driving. He had a knowing expression, which wasn't offended, covering his face. JJ continued to look at him for a second before nodding.
''For saying the Mother has false hope?''
JJ sighed, her head turning again so she could stare out of the windshield for a moment. It was so much more complicated than that and she didn't even know how to begin putting it into words.
''You don't know what it is to be a woman, or a Mother, or a parent. Don't get me wrong; I know where you're coming from. Professionally, intellectually, I know where you're coming from and I even agree with you. And I know you have this Father/daughter thing with Emily, which by the way, I think is great for you both. But you have no idea, from the perspective of being a Mother, you have no idea. So saying she has false hope, yeah, its insulting. This woman is prepared to bleed herself dry to find her daughter, you shouldn't piss on that because you don't believe in the mystical, even if it might be a crock of crap.''
Rossi side glanced JJ for a moment, chewing over her words as she said them. She had him on a couple of points, he knew that. It wasn't his disbelief she was angry at per say, it was his dismissal of what this woman was prepared to do for her child. What in the same situation, JJ and even Emily would be willing to do. What any woman would be willing to do to get the life they created back home to safety. He wasn't a parent, that much was true, but he was glad that JJ recognized his Fatherly feelings toward Emily, because by now, he realised that he did see their relationship mostly as a paternal one for him. She was everything he'd want in a daughter, and seemingly, he was what she wanted in a Father.
''Point taken. If I made it seem like that was a useless thing, I'm sorry. And you're right; I don't know what I feel like. The nearest I've come to it is with Emily. My point was, I don't want this woman to be gutted a second time around, because its all so painful in the first place.''
He admitted, shrugging a little as he concentrated on the road.
He looked at her again, seeing the truth in her eyes as she turned to him again. Then, looking back at the road he took in a deep breath. There were plenty of thoughts running through his mind, about this case, about his words and about JJ. He knew Emily, part of her was still a mystery to him, but he knew her and he was glad she'd let him in. HE knew the only person who knew her better was JJ. And it was the blonde that he had never been able to work out properly.
JJ was motivated, she was remarkable intelligent, at first he had seen no real reason for her position within the team but even as soon as the first case he had retracted that thought. She organized everything, ran everything, and there were plenty of people willing to take her place. She never folded at the pressure, and that was amazing for someone so young. She was competent, human, compassionate and dedicated. She had endeavored to protect not only the people out there that she didn't even know, but her family also. She had killed a man to protect her family even. There was nothing unremarkable about this girl, even though she obviously thought there was nothing too remarkable about her. Just a small town girl doing her best in a big city and an important job.
''Why aren't you a profiler again?''
HE asked, even though he hadn't mean to, it had just been what had come out of his mouth but now that it had he found himself curious.
''Who says I'm not?''
She challenged lightly, but with enough seriousness to make him think about it. She cleared her throat and looked at him again.
''Look, there are a lot of things about my job that you don't know about. Things I'm prepared to deal with so it doesn't get in your way. Have you seen my office? Who do you think wades through that on a daily basis? There are 5 profilers on this team and 1 of me. I mostly work alone and I get it done. You don't need another profiler, you need me.''
She also had him there. Beneath the soft and easy going exterior, there was a strong and persevering interior. JJ was self assured about what she did, and he had to admit when she pointed it out, she did mostly work alone. She did a lot of things that was unknown to him and probably the rest of the team. Emily probably understood the full extent of her job, but possibly only because of their relationship.
''You know, I can wrap my head around that. I can get my head around Emily, and the others, for doing what they do. But you? You're a complete mystery to me.''
He admitted, side glancing her for a moment. She was still a mystery to him, and he had often found himself watching her sometimes, usually when she was interacting with others. Sometimes when she was working alone and concentrating as she meticulously went over the most minute details of cases with a scarily amount of dedication and precision. There was that elusive aura about her, it twinkled deep inside her eyes and something told him that she liked to be a mystery to people. That look emerged now the twinkle and the softest of smirks that was barely there but said volumes. Out of everyone she was the one people knew least about even though they were profilers.
''I'd get used to that if I were you.''
She answered softly but ultimately with a little edge in her voice that came out of that mysteriousness. It wasn't harsh or anything like that in fact it was almost a little teasing even a little exciting. It gave him a challenge and clearly JJ expected to win that challenge and she could possibly be right but he'd still mull over it anyway.
''I love you baby boy. Don't forget that.''
JJ kissed her son softly still cradling him close before standing up from the chair and moving toward his crib. Gently she lowered him down and placed him inside making sure that he was comfortable and would keep warm. He sniffled and stirred a little bit but then grunted out a little yawn and fell back into the deep slumber again. JJ smiled touched by the simplest of things that gave her heart all the same. She watched him for a few second longer before stepping back from the crib and leaving the nursery.
It felt like a whirlwind the few hours that followed that. JJ looked that Mother in the eyes and connected to her on a level she supposed she would have to get used to now. It was a new level even though she had always been able to connect with people particularly the families and victims. She'd experienced it when she was pregnant out in Las Vegas just before she had actually had Henry. Felt his presence growing inside of her even more as she watched a Mother struggle to get her baby boy back and it had been a real awakening for her. She had been doing this for a long while that was true and each case affected her and she had thought very seriously about having a child just like Emily had. She had thought about what she would be bringing a baby into with the world she lived in there was no way to get around it. She didn't think it would be perfect, but it had startled her all the same. And it seemed that her first caes back was going to push her just as hard.
''Baby, are you okay?''
JJ blinked visibaly shaking her head before looking up at Emily. They were in their hotel room and she sat on the end of the bed just starring at the floor lost in thought. Emily looked at her from across the room with concern written over her face and when JJ didn't or couldn't say anything the brunette moved to crouch in front of her.
''I knew it'd be different doing this and being a Mom. I guess I just didn't really get it until now.''
JJ spoke grimly making Emily sigh and nod. She knew exactly what JJ meant and her hand went up to brush through golden strands.
''I know. Unfortunately I don't have anything to say that makes it easier. Only that I'm right here.''
JJ smiled as she looked at Emily lovingly and thanked all of nature that she had gotten lucky enough to have Emily in her life.
''I love you so much.''
''I know. I love you too.''
Emily leant up to place a soft and lingering kiss on her wife's lips. She hated that she had to let JJ work through this by herself. She wished she could take it on for her but she couldn't. just like she'd had to work through it so did the blonde. It had always been hard anyway. Emily remembered times when she and JJ were dating or whenever just lying awake in the dark together harrowed by the things they had seen and the only thing that could be done was to just hold one another and remember that not everything was cruel and brutal. They would remember now like then that life could offer some pretty great things. They already knew that because of their relationship and now they had Henry too and that was pretty damn remarkable.
''Tell you what, how 'bout we call home before we get changed and grab something to eat? See what kind of circles Henry is running around Annette!''
''I think that's a great idea, thank you.''
She leant on the doorframe of their bedroom eyes just watching Emily's seemingly peaceful slumber. She was so angelic in sleep. JJ felt something inside of her tighten at watching the brunette like that. Emily was always there for her when she could be and now JJ had no idea what would happen if she ever lost that. She knew Emily had things inside that she still didn't know about, could see the hidden and guarded secrets in her eyes but that was okay. Everyone had those, even herself. It didn't interfere with the trust she had in the other woman.
JJ couldn't help but smirk just a little bit at Garcia's continued harassment of Emily over this case. Teasing her about romantic rendezvous and linking every action she made with traits of a Libra, Emily had been flooded with those texts the whole time. JJ knew it was Garcia's way of making sure that she had something else to focus on and it had worked well. Emily had managed to get her head down and work, although avoiding the element of this case that she herself had become hopelessly entangled with. JJ had had to laugh ever so lightly though as Emily had blushed something rotten on the plane ride back home, when Garcia had announced on webcam just how sexually compatable a Libra and an Aquarius were, which she just happened to be. Everyone looked at them as Garcia had continued to babble about sensuality an high sex drives, with adventurous and bold. Emily had told her to be quiet, but Garcia had kept right on spilling the beans about the zodiac combination, finally moving onto general relationship traits and marriage suitability. Then she had gone back to sex again, until she had made Emily admit that there might be something to the whole astrology thing.
Walking across to the bed, JJ knelt one knee onto it so she could lean forward and over Emily. Running a hand through her hair gently and enjoying the silky strands flowing through her fingers, JJ leant further forward and placed a kiss on Emily's forehead. The brunette breathed in deeply, shuffling around as she cleared her throat sleepily, inching toward the touch but too tired to open her eyes.
JJ smirked again loving Emily when she was only in the limbo between sleep and wakefulness.
''I'm going into work, go back to sleep its still dark.''
''I just…there's something I have to do. I love you.''
Yet again, as the case continued, JJ felt like she was swept up in a whirlwind. Not only caught in the grapple of balancing out her work life and what she saw with her Motherhood, but also now questioning things deep in herself. She was conflicted over what to make of this 'psychic', the one Rossi was adamant in dismissing. JJ had always thought 'never say never'. Always given credence to the idea of the mysticism, even though she took things like that with a grain of salt. Her life had been very much a real one, there had been little tiem for fantisies. However, she was an introspective person, had indulged many a time in thoughts around things like this and noted the feelings it stired. But in this work everything was hard fact. So what did she believe now? How did she balance this? One wrong step and things could go desperately wrong. A girl could die.
What JJ knew for sure was that it shouldn't have been in Rossi's right to take away the last hope that Sandra Lombardini had for finding her daughter alive. Her words rang over and over again in her head 'I need my baby to be alive'. No one had the right to take that away from her. This was her family, not theirs. This was her life, she had raised this girl and not one of them should have been able to take away her hope at having all of that again. It was cruel and unusual.
What had happened to her in the bullpen of the station had been weird. One of the oddest encounters she had had in a while that was for sure. She couldn't work that out either. Did he really knew she'd had a baby from her ring? JJ was pretty sure she hadn't mentioned anything in front of him so there was no way he could know. There had only been Rossi there and he hadn't said anything either. The only other possibility that JJ could think of was the man had guessed from both the look in her eyes, and the weight that was still there. So he was either genuine or he was messing with her. But she was a Mother she needed to believe.
There was a soft grunt from the lump next to her and a couple of seconds later that lump shifted as Emily turned over in bed and lifted up her head a little. JJ was stretched out on her back just staring up at the ceiling and listening to the rain outside.
''Do you think I'm crazy to want to believe in things like this man is saying he can do?''
Emily breathed in as she made her brain kick start again not wanting to tell JJ to just go to sleep. It was a serious question and she had been able to see that JJ was grappling with a lot of things.
''No, of course I don't.''
''Do you believe it?''
Again the brunette pulled in a breath as she blinked trying to get the sleep shaken away from her long enough to talk with her troubled wife.
''I…honestly don't know. I'm one for evidence, JJ, you know that. I guess you could say I'd like to believe. I'd like to think people are capable of being more than we are now. And I'm sure that there are energies that people are more accustomed to tapping into than others. But I deal with a very gritty, very real world. But I believe in you, so if you think that there's something to all of this, then I think there's gotta be.''
She mused trying to get the complicated mess of thoughts out of her head and into words. This was all a little out of her territory too and she didn't quite know where to place it so she continued running with the case facts and evidence as it came in. she used her established skills and trusted in them, trusted in her need for justice to prevail and trusted in her teams effort to save this girl. But every time she looked at JJ she could see the conflict of belief there, and she knew how that felt. Faith was a tricky, tricky thing and she definitely knew how fast it could slip through fingers or overtake your life.
''He knew about the baby, Em. He congratulated me.''
She departed quietly still unsettled by the whole thing. Emily's head shot up immediately as her eyebrows knitted together.
''Earlier today, in the bullpen when he was called in.''
''Well what did he say exactly? Did he touch you?''
Emily squeaked somewhat disturbed by the thought of this guy doing anything to JJ.
''No of course not. He shook my hand.''
JJ turned slightly, looking up at her wife expectantly but Emily just looked at her blankly.
''He shook your hand?''
She restated slowly.
''Yeah. My right hand. Henry's ring? He shook my hand, sorta held onto it a couple of seconds, and then he turned and said congratulations, indicating the ring. He knew Emily.''
Emily looked off into the dark for a moment, frowning ever so softly as she remembered Mr Asher coming in with the Detective. She had seen JJ talking to him briefly, they had shaken hands. When JJ had come up to her, she had been playing with the ring and had been distracted, but said she was okay when Emily had asked.
''Honey, at the risk of sounding like Rossi here, he could have figured that out anyway.''
''Well for one you have a wedding ring so he knows your married. Could've heard something about Henry. He could've even seen footage from our old cases when you were pregnant from online if he checked you out. You're connection with Sandra Lombardini is stronger than anyone elses aside from the Detectives.''
Emily cringed slightly hoping that she wasn't saying anything that would make JJ upset. She could tell Rossi had already done that. He was much blunter in his distaste for this guy and she actually wished he'd been a little more sensitive with the whole thing. She loved the guy but sometimes he was so oblivious and seemed to have forgotten that this was JJ's first case back. It's not that she couldn't handle it but it was worth remembering.
''You don't believe him either.''
''Baby, it's not that I don't want to. If this happened to us and someone came along to tell me that our son was alive I would want that. But he's a convicted felon JJ. I have trouble with all of this anyway but coming from a criminal? It's hard to swallow.''
JJ sighed deeply blinking in tiredness as she looked past Emily numbly. She had no idea what she was supposed to do or believe. Emily was right the guy wasn't squeaky clean. But people weren't perfect so did it really make a difference?
JJ looked back at Emily again and gave her a half hearted smile.
''Let's just get some sleep.''
They had had no leads. Nothing. Nowhere to turn and nowhere to look. And all she had been able to think about was those words, I need my baby to be alive. That's why she had done it. That's why she had taken that damn letter to that man. Why she had stood there, with a gun on her hip and a badge in her pocket, and given evidence to a supposed psychic. She hadn't even been able to watch him. She had stood looking out at the rain debating with herself whether this was the right thing to do or not.
He had given her somewhere to look and so she had. And she had found somewhere. A very possible somewhere that seemed even to the team like it could be the spot but directly conflicting with Rossi's assessment of the whole thing. Two different opinions from two different sources. Hers was the wrong choice.
In the end Hotch had mentioned to JJ that what Asher had told her had been on the wall right outside but it hadn't given her any comfort. If he had gone with her, believed in her, they would never have found Brooke alive and she couldn't afford to do anything like that again. She wasn't even sure if it was her instincts or not, it had just been something.
''You're in early.''
JJ turned quickly at the unexpected and familiar voice behind her having been so lost in thought that she had gone into autopilot pouring out the coffee that was there ready and waiting. She faltered slightly as she came face to face with Rossi and was a little disappointed because she had wanted more time alone before she faced him. Why the hell would she have chosen to leave her family at this time of morning in the pouring rain otherwise?
''I know how it can be coming back here. The bad things seem worse, you want easy answers.''
JJ ducked her head a little. He was right the bad things did seem worse. But getting easy answers? He thought what she had done was easy? Even as someone who didn't turn a blind eye to this sort of thing it had been far from easy and she had never once gone for an answer because it was the easiest. Still she knew what the point was. However badly he was constructing it.
''If you're gunna tell me not to believe in psychics you don't have to.''
She felt young in front of him, green even. Like she hadn't seen the things she had already seen. He had so much more experience and right now she felt like it was overshadowing her.
''You can believe in what you want. But when you're here you need to have faith in what we do. It works.''
''I just…I saw a Mother loosing her child and…we didn't have any other leads. I thought what harm could it do?''
''I asked the same question once.''
She gazed at him dubiously.
''It was a kidnapping case in Georgia. We had nothing, time was running out. And there was a local woman known for her…abilities. On her advice we took the investigation in the wrong direction. The boy died.''
''It was a long time ago.''
''Well we won this time. That's what matters right?''
Rossi smiled lightly.
JJ took in a breath as she watched him walk away. Thinking where she stood for a moment she turned and left the BAU bullpen to walk down the hallway to her office. She sighed again as she scanned the files there before walking around her desk after flipping on the lights and sitting down. Sipping the coffee her eyes glanced at a picture of Emily and Henry and she smiled softly thinking about them sleeping soundly at home. She needed to do this though. She needed to let herself fall into work, needed to drown herself in the stacked up cases surrounding her. Needed to face them head on. So she did. Getting comfortable she took the first file and started to do what she knew she could do.
JJ blinked ripping her eyes away from the details she had been reading and was surprised to see Emily stood at her doorway. Her wife was leaning there and JJ somehow knew from the sparkle in Emily's eyes that she had been watching her. Her office was lighter with the light that poured in from the windows in the hallway and now she had been dragged back into reality she heard the bustle outside. Checking her watch she realised that she had been working in her office for coming up 4 hours.
''Hey. Sorry, I was completely zoned out there.''
She blinked some more trying to shake the cobwebs from her mind. Emily nodded lightly before gesturing with her head toward the two piles of files on JJ's desk. The one to her left seemed to be the 'to do' pile, the one on her right seemed to be the ones she had worked through.
''I see that. Finding us a new case in there?''
JJ sat back in her chair as she let out a breath.
''It's what I do, right?''
Emily tipped her head gently.
JJ dropped her eyes momentarily.
''Do you think I should be out there with you guys?''
Emily frowned immediately, standing upright.
''Yes, I do. Why would I think otherwise?''
''Jennifer. Talk to me.''
Stepping in now Emily closed the door and moved to sit down in front of the desk. JJ didn't look at her for a good few seconds, but when she did she saw the mass tangle of emotion and vulnerability. Vulnerability that was battling with the confidence that used to reside there.
''Rossi…he said I should have faith in what you guys to because it works. I dunno…I guess he was trying to make me feel better but it kinda made me feel worse when I thought about it. How could I be here if I didn't believe? Why would I work so damn hard every single day, doing things you guys have no idea about, taking calls at insane hours, doing everything you're all too blind to see that needs doing. No offense. But I shift heaven and earth for you guys and its really hard Emily, there's only me that does it. And he thinks that I go for easy answers and quick fixes? He thinks that I did what I did without thinking? I know I haven't been doing this as long but I'm good at my job and I have faith in it I do. And I've been in here for god knows how long doing my part of it like I have something to prove when I don't. I got here because I deserve to be here, and I may have a lot to learn but I hate people questioning my faith and loyalty to this damn team. And I'm kinda sick of being treated like some mascot that doesn't know anything.''
JJ panted as she stopped abruptly frowning a little bit as more came out than even she had expected. Things she hadn't even been thinking about but now had been said out loud she recognized. She looked over at Emily who was sitting patiently and letting her vent. She didn't seem mad she seemed kind of unsurprised and proud.
''Then go tell him that.''
She encouraged making JJ quirk an eyebrow.
''Go shout at the legend that is David Rossi?''
Emily shrugged and nodded.
''JJ he's not a god he's an arrogant ass that needs to be shouted at every now and then. What you just said is perfectly right. And yeah sure he probably was trying to make you feel better but he didn't he patronized you instead. If you want him to know everything you feel for this job and this team, go right on and tell him, you have the right and he needs to listen.''
JJ couldn't help but feel a little inspired and tempted. There was something about the idea of walking into Rossi's office and giving him a piece of her mind that she just couldn't resist. Smirking slightly she stood up and threw her pen onto the surface before walking around her desk. She stopped by Emily, reaching down and cupping her head with her hands to lift it up so she could place a heated kiss on her lips.
''I love you, thank you for believing in me. And you're so getting lucky tonight after that!''
Emily just laughed as JJ walked out of her office full of that confidence and determination that Emily saw so often there. JJ was definitely back in the saddle!