AN: This is a story I have always wanted to do but been too lazy to do it…another sleepless night inspired me to write…set after minimal loss…this is my first Criminal Minds Fanfic so go easy… no live rounds please…. bow and arrows are allowed. This is written in Hotch's point of view.
Comfort in your Company
I know I shouldn't be here. I should be at home in bed like the rest of DC, but the events of the day had scared me. I can't remember a time I had been so scared. The moment I heard Derek scream my name I knew something was terribly wrong.
My gut had screamed at me. This is not going to end well. I had woken up with a bad feeling and I'd dismissed it. I couldn't live on feeling alone. There was no rational reason for the bad feeling in my gut that morning. The one I felt after hearing Derek call for me however had three rational reasons. Their names? Emily Prentiss, Spencer Reid and Benjamin Cyrus. The last I could care less about. My only concern was what he would do to my agents.
The Colorado State Attorney General had used the visit to ensure the children were safe. Cyrus had been ready for the officers that had raided the compound.
Hearing that one of the Child Service workers had died had knocked the wind out of me. I worried for my agents and prayed that it had not been them. I felt for the family of the Child Service worker but my team, my family needed a break. After so much suffering how much more could they take before finally breaking?
Finding out that both Prentiss and Reid were alright I sighed in relief. One question ran through my head over and over. They were safe but for how long?
I'd wanted to tear the State Attorney General into shreds for putting my team in the predicament. I restrained myself because I knew my team to be brilliant, strong and resourceful. We would get through this, one way or another.
The part that had scared and scarred me the most came as JJ rushed to us turning on the news.
The reporter had blown their cover. At least one of them. Had he no sense to give such information to the public? Did he think that Cyrus had no access to the news? At that moment I had truly wished we'd shot the solar panels not allowing Cyrus access to the news. The reporter had been added to my lists of people to dismember. Channel nine news would need to find a new reporter.
The darkness my thoughts had taken had surprised me but only for a minute. They were my colleagues, my friends and family it was my job to ensure their safety.
"Me, its me." Three simple words. My heart had stopped. My arms and legs heavy. My chest tight. My head felt as though it was going to explode.
I was not in the least bit surprised that she admitted her identity. I'd seen her take care of the team on so many occasions I almost saw it coming. The minutes to follow her admissions are those that will stay with me for a very long time. No doubt I would hear them in my sleep. Never in my life had I heard a sound more torturous then the cries that came from Emily as she was being used as a punching bag.
Through it all she had remained the strong Emily we had all come to rely on. "I can take it." She'd said it without thought to herself. She'd known we were on the other end listening. She'd known that all she had to do was say the word and we would have stormed the compound. "I can take it." She'd repeated to ensure we would stay put.
A feeling of anger had washed over me. Did she not understand we were ready to help her? That it nearly killed me to listen to her cries of pain? At that same moment I had felt proud as well. She had stood her ground and taken care of Reid.
I'd never been more relieved then when I saw her come out of the building. She looked a mess but at that exact moment she was beautiful to me. She was alive.
Her concern had been Morgan and Reid. After everything she had been subjected to her concern had still been her family. I feel a pang in my stomach when I see her wince as she hugged.
The day had ended and I couldn't be happier. Leaving La Plata Colorado we were returning to DC. That was the next time I had a good chance to observe her.
She moved the curtain aside as she steps towards Reid. She didn't know this but I'd heard her words of comfort to him. She would never stop surprising me. After everything she'd told him she'd do it again.
I sent everyone home the minute we landed. I stayed late to finish the files from the case but it had been more difficult then in the past. I couldn't focus my attention on the paperwork in front of me. I could still hear her. Giving up I shut the case file and grabbed my belongings.
I raise a hesitant hand to knock on her door but quickly bring it down. What if she's asleep? I couldn't bring my self to disturb her. I sighed and left her doorway. I stepped into my car and turned the ignition. Everything told me to go home and rest but I couldn't bring myself to do so. I didn't want to be too far from her incase she needed something.
I looked to her apartment most of the lights were turned off. I knew one to be the stair lights. I looked to her bedroom. Lights were turned off. I kept repeating to myself to go home. Reaching for my phone I flip it open and find her number. Calling her would definitely wake her if she was asleep I settled with a text message. 'Are you awake?' If she didn't reply I would have my answer.
The seconds spent waiting for a response felt like hours. I looked at her bedroom window once again hoping for some movement beyond the curtains. There was none. Looking down at the clock on my phone I sigh. Five minutes. No response. Maybe it's best I head home and let her rest.
Reaching for my seat belt my phone beeped. Picking it up immediately I glanced at the message. 'I can't sleep' caught off guard by her admission I thought it best I be honest with her.
'I couldn't sleep without checking on you first.' I replied waiting anxiously for her response.
'I'm fine Aaron. Just sore.' I chuckle, leave it to Emily to down play everything.
'Can I see you?' I took a deep breath as I sent the message. The anticipation of her answer was killing me. What if she said no? I wouldn't be able to sleep if that was the case.
'Where are you?' I read her question. Would I scare her if I told her I was outside? Hoping I wouldn't, I told her I was outside. I looked to her bedroom window. Seconds later the light came on.
'Door's open.' With that I stepped out of my car and returned to the door I had earlier stood at close to an hour.
"Hey" she smiles when she sees me.
"Hey" is all I can say as I enter her home. I can't help but look at her. Wearing a loose FBI T-shirt and sweats I thought she'd never looked better.
I wanted to touch her to make sure she was alright for myself not just by her admission. I reached a hesitant hand to her cheek. Before making contact with her I stared into her eyes seeing if I'd scared her or crossed the line. When she didn't pull away I let my fingers touch the side of her face that had formed a bruise.
I sighed, how could anyone lay a hand on her was beyond him. I was surprised when she leaned into my touch. Did she draw as much comfort from this as I did?
"You scared the crap out of me today." I say not removing my hand.
Her eyes open as she looks at me. "I'm sorry."
"I'm just glad you're okay Emily, when I heard him hurt you I felt as though my heart had stopped." I was startled at how easily I poured my inner thoughts out.
When she didn't speak I continued.
"I wanted to go in there, kill him and take you out where he couldn't reach you." I move a strand of hair from her face. As I tuck it behind her ear I see that her eyes have welled up.
My intention had not been to make her cry, just aware that I cared.
"Emily. Emily I'm sorry, I didn't mean to upset you." She shook her head at my statement.
"You didn't" she paused. "It's been a really long couple of days, I'm exhausted and I can't sleep." She admitted. I turned to the door behind me. She grabbed my hand holding me from turning completely. "Just gonna lock the door." I supplied. She blushed releasing my hand. Two seconds and I'd already missed the warmth.
"I uh made some tea." She spoke making her way into the kitchen.
"I'd love some." I followed her and watched as he moved to get the mugs. I couldn't help but notice the wince as she reached for them. Quickly I stood and gently pushed her hand down. "Let me." I looked over at the couch. Without much argument she nodded and left for the couch.
Grabbing the two hot mugs of tea I sat beside her handing her one mug. She smiled and took a sip. As if instantaneous she relaxed, the tea warming her aching muscles.
We sat in silence close to half an hour before she finally spoke. "Aaron I'm fine. You don't have to stay with me."
"I'm comforted by your company." I shoot her a shy smile. I needed to stop with these lame answers. What was wrong with me? I couldn't help my self, I went on. "I feel better knowing you're right here. Alive and well. I can't get it all out of my head." What is wrong with me? I shouldn't worry her.
"I wouldn't be able to sleep if I went home." I confessed.
She didn't say anything. Instead she nodded. Finishing the tea she grabbed both mugs and left for the kitchen. She returned minutes later with a tall glass or water in her hand.
I knew she was thinking as she stood before me. Finally she reached out her hand to me. "I'm comforted by your company too Aaron." Surprised I looked from her hand to her eyes. I grabbed her hand and stood following her to her room.
Entering her room the first things to catch my eyes were the medication bottles on her night stand. Following my gaze she shrugged. "They help with the pain not with the sleep."
"You've already taken a sleep aid?" I was amazed she was still awake.
"They didn't work." She smiled. Of course they hadn't worked. If they had I would still be sitting in the car worrying.
Setting the glass of water next to her medication she climbed into the bed. I followed soon after. I lay beside her not touching her afraid I'd scare her. At her sigh I turned and looked at her.
"You did a really brave thing today Emily." I couldn't help but be proud to be in her presence.
"You would have done the same thing." She supplied. I sigh, she makes it really hard to compliment her. I turn my eyes to her again and see her staring at her white ceiling. She's fighting sleep and I can see it. Stubborn woman.
"Come here." I lift the blanket with my left hand and reach for her with my right. She looks at me hesitantly, the hesitation quickly leaves her as she scoots closer. Her smell alone relaxes me as I bring my arm around her. I reach for her right hand that lay on my stomach and hold onto to it with my left. I feel her begin to relax.
"Get some rest. We'll talk tomorrow." I feel her nod. When I don't receive a verbal response I glance down to find her already asleep. Pulling her closer to me without hurting her I too close my eyes. If anything had ever felt right in my life it was this moment.
AN: soooo…tell me what you think… hope you enjoyed it…it is now one in the morning and I should go to bed…