Title: Hotch and Gideon and a Kid in Trouble

Author: Kuria Dalmatia

Rating/Warnings: FRT, PG-13 (profanity, drug use)

Characters/Pairing: Hotch, Gideon

ARCHIVING: my LJ... anyone else? Please ask first.

Feedback always welcome.

DISCLAIMER: The Mark Gordon Company, ABC Studios and CBS Paramount Network Television own Criminal Minds. Salut! I just took them out to play and I promise put them back when I'm done. I'm not making any profit just trying to get these images out of my head.

VERSION: October 2009

TIMELINES/SPOILERS: None, late 2nd season


Gideon charged into the after-hours Emergency Room entrance, shoving his badge into the faces of two security guards as he barreled past them. At three thirty-four in the morning, he wasn't in the mood to be polite.

"I'm here for Elle Greenaway," he barked at the young woman behind the desk as he slapped his credentials down. She flinched, her chair rolling backwards as she began to stutter a reply. He cut her off with a sharp, "Where is she?"

"Having her stomach pumped," came the quiet answer from behind.

Gideon whirled around, mouth uncharacteristically dropping open. "Hotch?"

"Apparently, I'm still I-C-E-One on her cell phone," the other man said with just a touch of bewilderment to his tone.

It had been three months since Greenaway had resigned from the BAU, three months since that questionable night in Dayton when a passionate agent had let her emotions get the best of her. Three months since Hotch and Gideon had shared a bottle of rioja at Gideon's cabin, wondering what the hell they had missed.

"The call went to voicemail before I could answer," Hotch continued with a shrug. "I guess you're I-C-E Two."

The news stung in an odd way, Gideon's ego oddly hurt that he wasn't listed first. He closed his eyes briefly, dreading his next question: "How bad?"

"Percocet, Temazepam, Diazepam, and a BAC of zero point two-six."

It wasn't what he was expecting to hear. Elle was smart. A fighter. It was one of the reasons she was such a good profiler yet also the reason why she was no longer part of the unit. Anger and disappointment made Gideon spit out, "How could she be so stupid?"

Hotch took a step back. He crossed his arms over his chest. Dressed in a Red Sox tee-shirt and faded jeans, he looked a bit less imposing than if he had been in his ubiquitous suit. Even with his hair sticking out at odd angles, the puffiness around his eyes from lack of sleep, and the five o'clock shadow, Hotch still carried the air of authority.

"We don't know the whole story, Jason," Hotch said sharply. And was his tone disapproving? "Those were the pill bottles the paramedics reported finding. We don't know what she actually took."

Gideon paused. Even now, after everything that had happened, Hotch still gave her the benefit of the doubt. It was... predictable.

After all, Elle had once referred to Gideon as "dad".

Jason supposed that made Hotch the "mom".

It almost made him laugh.