Author's Note: First, thanks to my co-author Tonnie2001969, she goes way above the beyond for me. And also thanks to Kavi & Sienna27 for the TV Challenge opportunity. Please let me know what you are thinking! This story is finished, but I'm going to post in chapters. As ever, I don't own Criminal Minds.
Worth The Wait
Prompt: How I Met Your Mother - "The Slutty Pumpkin"
Looking around the crowded bar, Penelope Garcia grinned widely as she took another sip of her drink. There was nothing like a rocking Halloween party to get one in the mood for fun. And it helped that she was getting a new view of her best friend. Who knew that Jennifer Jareau could limbo like that?
Seeing the look of glee on her friend's face, Emily Prentiss asked, yelling to be heard over the din, "What's so funny, Garcia?"
Gesturing with her coca-cola bottle, Penelope pointed toward the dance floor. "Take a look at our little Marilyn. "
Emily twirled on her barstool, balancing herself at the last moment to keep from being thrown off. Gazing toward the dozens of people packed into the tiny space, Emily had no problems finding her blonde coworker. In a sea of possible pumpkins, Jennifer Jareau stood out like a neon sign in her Marilyn Monroe-esque white halter dress.
Laughing, Emily shook her head as she yelled, "If JJ goes any lower, I don't think her dress will leave much to the imagination."
Just then, Penelope felt her phone vibrate, and she muttered a curse against whoever was daring to interrupt the most fun she'd had in years. Glancing at the display, she saw Morgan's number, and she quickly connected, yelling into the phone, "Listen, my chocolate God of Thunder, did you forget the plan?"
Morgan laughed, the noise just as loud on his end. "Hell, no. You drilled it into me, baby girl. I was just making sure everything was still going according to your perfect plan."
Garcia nodded, swinging her eyes back to the dance floor. "Just like we discussed, we're about to place a call to the BAU. And David Rossi's gonna show up and be JJ's knight in shining armor. He's supposed to be there tonight, working on his book, right?"
"That's what I heard him say, Mama," Morgan replied. "You sure you don't need me to come get you though?"
"Nope, Emily is going to leave in the next few minutes and then I'm gonna make that little call we discussed and get Operation JJ's Future Happiness under way."
"Then you get that shapely butt of yours home and tell me the details, Mama. This I can't wait to hear.," Morgan ordered on a grin.
"Will do, Lovebug. I'll be home soon," Garcia told him, disconnecting and meeting Em's eyes.
"You think this is gonna work?" Emily asked, sipping her mixed drink.
"It better! You heard the Gumdrop earlier…you saw the way she blushed and stammered when she talked about him…those are all clear markers that our girl is in LOVE!" Penelope enthused.
"Ah hell, my supersmart profiler friend! You've seen exactly what I have. The way his mouth drops every time she bends over…"
"Garcia…you've seen JJ's ass! MY mouth drops open, too!" Em argued.
"True," Garcia nodded, "but you don't look like you want to rip every man's head off that strays a little too close to our Golden Goddess. Besides you heard her, she loves Rossi's ass and thinks he'd be a ten plus in the sack!"
"Yeah, her tongue did sort of loosen up after her second drink," Emily laughed.
"That's what the Gumdrop gets for only drinking once a year," Pen snorted, shaking her head as she looked around a sea of orange for that one white body. "And hopefully, she'll be just relaxed enough to let her guard down tonight around our resident SuperAgent."
"Here she comes," Emily said, nodding at the dance floor as a slightly inebriated JJ flowed toward them. "That's my cue," she said winking at Pen and hopping off the bar stool.
Wiping her forehead as she reached the table and grabbed her drink, JJ took a healthy swallow. "Damn, it's hot in here!" she panted.
"That might have something to do with the fact that you just limboed your ass off!" Pen laughed. "I didn't know you were THAT flexible, Agent Jareau! Those skills of yours could come in MIGHTY handy!"
"Yeah, right," JJ grinned.
Hugging her friend, Em yelled over the music, "I gotta go…Aaron just texted and let me know that he'd dropped Jack back off at Haley's."
"Ah, so that's your cue, huh?" JJ winked. "Have a good time for BOTH of us, if you know what I mean!"
"Ya never know, Jaye," Emily said, casting a quick look at a smirking Garcia. "It's Halloween…maybe this year you'll get a really BIG treat!"
"Don't bet on it," JJ rolled her eyes as her hips swayed to the music. "Go! Go get some for both of us!"
Kissing her friend's cheek again, Em nodded and made her way out of the bar as JJ's eyes followed her. Turning to Pen, JJ scrunched her nose. "Lucky bitches! Both of you are going home to men that want you! I'm going home to Mr. Happy, the yellow vibrator! Life isn't fair!" JJ said, waving to a passing waitress and holding her empty drink up.
"Never know…Halloween is filled with mystical things…" Garcia murmured.
"And ugly girls dressed like some horror-film director's idea of surreal pumpkins," JJ completed as she glared out at the dance floor. Dropping off the barstool, JJ wavered slightly, her hand reaching out to grab Penelope's shoulder for support. Giggling, she said, "Wow, who knew that this bar had a revolving floor?"
"Sweetie Pie, I think you might be feeling the effects of those lovely little drinks you've been downing all night, " Pen said knowingly. Taking advantage of the moment, she added, innocently, "Why don't I place a call and get a friendly ride all lined up? I've got Call-a-Profiler on speed dial, you know. Ready and waiting."
Smiling happily as the waitress handed her another mixed drink, JJ took a healthy sip as she said, "You go on, Pen. I'm fine here for a while longer."
Garcia said sternly, waving her hand in front of JJ's face, "Listen, gumdrop of mine. Remember our deal? We never leave our partners behind. "
"That's for work, silly. This …" JJ said as she waved her arm around at the ensuing chaos, "…is FUN!"
"Be that as it may, if you stay, then I stay," Garcia replied, schooling her face into a long-suffering expression. "Of course, I can just call Morgan and let him know that I'll be late. I'm sure that he won't mind putting those plans on hold. Of course, he's been planning this night for weeks, so…." Trailing her voice off, she looked expectantly at the blonde.
Even in her highly inebriated state, JJ felt the guilt rolling over her, and she took another sip as she said, pulling a face at her friend, "Oh, all right. I'll just go on home and figure out some way to make myself happy."
"I'll make arrangements to get us both home safely, Sunshine," Penelope replied happily as she reached for her phone. "Just leave it to me."