Breathing Room

A.N. This idea has been gnawing at my brain since I started watching Criminal Minds two months ago. I know I have the Brean story still to finish, which is my first priority, but I just wanted to see how this kind of story would go over. So, yeah. Let me know!

Summary: Dr. Spencer Reid knew his statistics--he knew facts and diagrams. He was the "smart guy." He liked it when things made sense. But when Brooke Davis blows into town and turns his world upside down, NOTHING makes sense.

"Check latent prints, run extensive background check on unsub C," Penelope Garcia repeated quietly, going through her daily tasks as she made her way through the FBI headquarters. "Let's see, uh, news reports from serial in '02, pull together case file on--oh, sorry." She struggled to keep a hold on her overstuffed trapper keeper and reach an apologetic hand out to the girl she'd run into.

"No problem, it was my fault."

The almost raspy voice made Garcia's head snap up just in time to see the retreating figure of a slender brunette making her way to the visitor check-in desk.

"No," Garcia mumbled softly. "No, it couldn't be." She walked ahead a few steps, peering around a pillar as the young girl spoke with the receptionist, nodding as she quickly signed her name to the visitor's log. "There's no way…"

But how could it not be? The hair, the smile, the voice. The clothes, for God's sake.

She pressed herself against the marble, eyes trained on the girl, watching as she turned slightly to examine the floor numbers and offices. She was turned to the side, but Garcia could easily see her pale, flawless face.

She gasped softly, eyes widening behind her glasses. Oh. My. God.

"Morning, Baby Girl."

"Gah!" Garcia yelped, whirling around to see the smirking face of Derek Morgan.

"Little jumpy there, Sweet Thing?" he asked, laughing.

She glared at him behind her thin framed glasses. "After all these years, don't you know better than to scare someone who can wipe out your financial accounts and ruin your credit history with a single keystroke?" Morgan simply continued to smile and she sighed, turning back to peer around the pillar. "Ugh, as if I could stay angry at you, my dark chocolate hero."

He laughed, shifted his jacket on his arm, and leaned over her shoulder. "Why so Bourne Identity, Hottstuff?"

Garcia pointed to the front desk. "Do you see the exceptionally well-dressed brunette over there?"

He nodded, smirking. "You mean the exceptionally well-dressed brunette with the exceptional figure and melt-my-heart dimples?"

She cast a withering glance in his direction. "Yes, Neanderthal, that brunette."

The agent rolled his eyes. "What about her?"

"Well, Luscious, I am almost positive that the brunette is none other than Brooke Davis."

She turned to face him when he didn't reply, and saw him staring at her questionably.

"Brooke Davis. Small-town girl that launched a hit clothing line at the age of 17. Sky-rocketed to a multibillion dollar entrepreneur by 21. Sets the foundation of said company on the motto, 'Zero is not a size.'" At his still blank look, she threw up her hand. "Do you not browse the magazine rack at the checkout counter?"

"Do you not realize how much you sound like a stalker right now?" he chuckled.

"Oh, I would gladly stalk Brooke Davis. I would stomp on your head, my little pretty, to become her stalker. She is my idol. Literally. Standing strong against a vain world that demands conformity based on waist size and appearance. Don't you see that this is Fate! For us to meet and become soul sisters on the platform of ostracism."

"Excuse me?"

Garcia jumped, twirling around to see none other than Brooke Davis standing behind them. Her mouth dropped open ungracefully and her eyes nearly bulged from their sockets.

Brooke smiled, pointing over her shoulder. "I'm sorry to bother you, but the woman at the counter said you could point me in the direction of the Behavioral Analysis Unit."

Morgan glanced at Garcia, grinning at her star-struck expression, and turned to the young woman before them. "Absolutely," he said, extending a hand towards her. "Special Agent Derek Morgan, BAU task force. This is Penelope Garcia, our resident tech analyst."

Brooke smiled, shaking his hand. "Brooke Davis."

He smiled charmingly, nodding. " 'Zero is not a size'," he said, ignoring the infuriated gasp from the flamboyant woman next to him. He sent her a quick wink, grinning. "Garcia's a big fan of yours."

Brooke grinned, switching her gaze to Garcia's now beaming face. "Really?"

"Fo'sho," Garcia replied, causing the brunette to laugh at her slang. "Clothes Over Bros. is literally Manna from Heaven. I've been following your career for years. Not in a freaky stalker way, mind you, but the healthy 'this-is-the-coolest-woman-on-the-planet' way."

Brooke smiled. "Thank you," she said, laughing. "Though Manna from Heaven might be pushing it a bit. I'd settle for Johnny Depp offering red wine and a lifetime of Jack Sparrow fantasies, but hey."

Morgan smiled and rolled his eyes when he heard Garcia sing "Soul Sister" under her breath and motioned towards the elevators. "The BAU is this way," he said, leading the way and shaking his head as Garcia quickly engaged the fashion designer in conversation, realizing that he was now as good as invisible.

He leaned against the wall of the elevator and finally took the time to really look at Brooke Davis.

She was a knockout, that's for sure. He'd peg her at about 22 or 23, and considering the facts Garcia had fed him minutes ago, he'd say the latter. She was well-clothed, her blue dress just stopping at her calves, it's spaghetti straps revealing smooth, slightly toned arms. Her slender figure was easily outlined in its smooth material.

Her face was pale and flawless, with big hazel eyes that seemed to shimmer. Her smile, though, as beautiful as it was, didn't quite reach those eyes, and it made him curious.

What could be the cause of that?

The three of them stepped off the elevator and Morgan walked forward to pull open the glass doors that led to the BAU. "Here we are," he said, leading them to his desk and tossing his jacket over his chair. "What can we do for you today, Miss Davis?"

She smiled shrugging. "If you could just point me in the direction of SSA Aaron Hotchner's office."

Garcia and Morgan exchanged a surprise glance. "Hotch?" they asked in unison.

Brooke frowned slightly. "Yeah…."

They pointed up the stairs to their supervisor's office.

She smiled, nodding. "Thanks," she said, turning to leave. "Um, it was great to meet you guys."

They watched as she made her way up the stairs before stopping before the office door and knocking lightly. A second passed before she walked in, smiling, and closed the door behind her.

Morgan and Garcia sat watching for a long moment before turning to look at each other, bewildered. "Hotch?"

Brooke took a deep breath before rapping quickly on the door.

She heard a muffled reply and pulled it open, peeking her heard around the corner.

Supervisory Special Agent Aaron Hotchner looked up from his endless mountain of paperwork, and a rare smile graced his face when he saw who stood in his doorway.

"Brooke," he said, standing to his feet and meeting her halfway, pulling her into a tight hug.

"Hi, Uncle Aaron."

Well, hopefully this piques someone's interest. I've got a couple more chapters typed up, so I'll upload them and then let you guys b the judge.

R&R and let me know!