Fandom: Criminal Minds
Prompt for 30 sweets: #11 Hey, can I have…?
Disclaimer: Neither the show nor the characters belong to me, they belong to CBS. Nonetheless, I love to borrow them from time to time.
Summary: Part 26/30 of "No more Sweets". Penelope tells Derek about a dream she's having. Sorry, I suck at summaries. ;)
AN: Hi everyone. I'm sorry it took me forever again. My wonderful beta-reader Jenny was incredibly fast. Unfortunately, I wasn't. Christmas was just too busy around here. ;)
Anyway, I hope you all had wonderful holidays and I'm wishing everyone a happy, joyful, successful and healthy New Year 2014! Only one more day. LOL
Thanks so much for all the wonderful reviews I received. Once again, I just didn't manage to answer all of them. I'm working on it, but sometimes the days are just too short. Nonetheless, they were all very much appreciated.
Now enjoy this chapter!
Penelope's jaw dropped. She was probably hallucinating. She couldn't have heard right. Derek Morgan – hottest man in the whole universe – hadn't just asked her to marry him.
Maybe she was dreaming. Yeah, that was probably the case. She'd fallen asleep – hopefully not during the ceremony – and was now dreaming. This had to be a dream. Could somebody pinch her?
"Baby Girl?" Derek asked carefully, reaching out to brush her cheek, when she didn't say anything in return.
She felt his touch, looked up into his eyes, and realized she wasn't dreaming. She was still wide awake, and Derek had just asked her to marry him – and was now expecting an answer.
"I…uh…" she stuttered. It had been years since she'd buried her dream of getting married some day. Derek proposing to her was the last thing she'd expected.
Seeing his heart break at her reaction, she quickly pulled herself together. "Yes," she managed to whisper, finally looking up at him again. "Yes, of course."
Grinning, Derek leaned down to give her a soft, lingering kiss before taking the ring out of the box and putting it on her finger.
She looked at the new piece of jewelry and quickly wiped away the tear that had escaped her eye. It showed two dolphins encircling a small diamond. "It's beautiful," she whispered.
"It sort of reminded me of you," Derek told her.
"It's perfect." She smiled up at him. "I can't believe we're getting married."
"We should wait till tomorrow before we tell them, though," he suggested. "Don't want to blow Sarah's party. This is her day."
She looked up at him, knowing her face was almost glowing. "Yeah, okay."
Derek frowned at her. "You're sure? I mean, it's not like I don't want everyone to know…"
"I know," she quickly assured him, blushing slightly.
This made Derek frown even more. "Then what is it?"
"It's nothing," she mumbled. "Just that… It's nothing."
"Spill it," he commanded.
"Well, I…to be honest…I mean, it's not a must, but…" she stuttered.
"Hey," Derek interrupted her, placing a finger under her chin and making her look at him. "Just tell me, okay?"
"Okay," she whispered, sighing. "I…I'd like to have an engagement party, you know?"
Derek grinned at her. "So you want to officially announce it."
Penelope blushed even more. "Well, like I said, it's not a must… I just…thought it would be…nice, you know?"
He silenced her by putting a finger over her lips. "I love the idea."
"Okay," she whispered, smiling at him.
Smiling himself, he leaned down to capture her lips with his.
"Hey, get a room," Sarah teased as she passed the couple on the dance floor.
"Oh, look who's talking," Derek shot back sarcastically. "After the ceremony, I thought you two would never stop kissing."
"You just don't understand that because you've never been a newlywed," Sarah told him.
Derek didn't say anything in return. He just grinned at Penelope, pulling her closer as they continued their way across the dance floor.
Penelope almost wasn't able to keep her smile from taking over her whole face the rest of the evening. She still couldn't believe that Derek had really proposed. She was going to marry him…and she couldn't wait to tell the rest of the team.
"So, when do you want to have our engagement party?" Derek asked when they arrived at his place.
She turned to wrap her arms around his neck. "I don't know," she whispered, kissing him gently. "Tomorrow would be too soon, right?"
Grinning himself, Derek wrapped his arms around her middle, leaning down to nibble her neck. "I don't know," he mumbled against her skin. "It could work. I mean, I already invited them over, after all."
Penelope pushed him back to look at him. "How long have you be planning on this?"
"Well…I…" he stuttered. "I didn't really plan this. I mean, I wanted to propose, but I wasn't sure when or how until earlier, and…I just invited them over for dinner, that's all. I didn't know it would be our engagement party."
She raised an eyebrow at him. Somehow, that sounded like an excuse. Why would he invite the team over for dinner a day after his sister's wedding if he hadn't planned something? "What if I'd said no?"
"Hm, in this case, I think I know some pretty nice ways to convince you," he said with a chuckle.
"Really?" she asked, tilting her head coquettishly. "Why don't you show me some of these ways?"
"Oh, you want to dare me?" Before Penelope could react, Derek had lifted her up and was carrying her to the bedroom. "You should know better than that."
"You know, the prospect of getting this for the rest of my life is indeed very convincing," Penelope whispered much later that night, when she was lying in Derek's arms.
Much to her surprise, Derek didn't tease her back. He remained silent for a moment before mumbling, "Can I ask you something?"
Hearing the seriousness in his voice, Penelope looked up at him. "Sure."
"Were you…well…unsure of your answer?" he stuttered without looking at her.
Penelope frowned. "What do you mean?"
"Well, you…" he continued, clearing his throat. "You were…hesitating. I was just wondering if maybe…you weren't so sure of what to say."
"I was…speechless," she whispered. "I mean, I just didn't expect you to propose."
"You didn't expect it at that moment, or you didn't expect it at all?" he questioned.
Blushing slightly, Penelope looked down, but didn't say anything in return.
Derek reached out to cup her cheek with his hand. "Who hurt you so much that you still can't be sure of how I'm feeling?" he whispered.
Penelope sighed. "It's not that one person hurt me. But…well…the older you get, the harder it becomes to find someone. I mean, seriously, how many dates have I been on since you know me?"
"I…don't know," he admitted, wondering why they seemed to have talked about everything right from the start except for Penelope's love life. He'd told her everything about his, after all.
"Three," she told him. "And they all went…wrong. The first guy ran, the second guy ran, and the third guy shot me. Somewhere along the way, I just…gave up on ever finding someone, you know?"
Derek frowned. "Well, I…never questioned the fact that there's one right person for everyone."
"Yeah, easy to say if you look like…well, you," she mumbled. "But it's not that easy if you don't have the world at your feet. I…I don't know. When I turned thirty, I kind of gave up hoping I would ever get married. That's why you proposing was…a bit of a shock."
"But in a good way?" Derek asked, sounding a little concerned.
Smiling, Penelope leaned up to peck his lips. "The best," she whispered.
Grinning, Derek pulled her back down for a lingering kiss. "You know, I have to admit something," he whispered into her ear. "Actually, I had been planning on proposing tonight. Even though I didn't plan on asking you at the wedding."
"So…the wedding did make you think," Penelope guessed. "That getting married might be a good idea, I mean?"
"No," he replied with a chuckle. "It wasn't the wedding that made me think. Actually, it was the case. I just wanted to make sure you would never feel that something could tear us apart again. I wanted to make you…be sure of us."
"I am," Penelope assured him. And for the first time in their relationship, it really was true.
"I wanted to ask you long before the wedding," Derek added, "but…I don't know. I think I was somehow waiting for the right moment."
Penelope didn't say anything in return, not sure where this was going.
"But then at the wedding, when we talked about how every girl wanted to marry a doctor, I realized that maybe there was no such thing as the perfect moment to propose. I mean, I could have been waiting for this moment forever, never daring to ask you…
"The wedding might not have been the perfect moment," he admitted, letting his hand run up and down her bare back. "But it felt right, and I thought maybe that was all that mattered."
"For me, it was the perfect moment," she whispered, leaning down to kiss him once more. "And I'm glad you dared to ask."
Derek grinned at her, pulling her close to him again. "Me, too."