This is the last chapter of "Broken". Again thanks to everybody who read, alerted and commented on this story. In case, you're interested how the story of Rossi and Strauss continues (so far only in my spinning head), just let me know about it.
Thanks again for all the encouragement and every comment and/or suggestion is highly appreciated.
David had always liked to teach in the evening, because the students who bothered to attend an evening lesson were usually the ones who were definitely interested in what he had to say. He wasn't wasting his time with them and it was an opportunity to preselect possible candidates for the FBI.
But tonight was different. He was distracted and this time he was actually glad he had Reid at his side who did most of the talking. Usually, the young academic was quite a handful, because he used to scare off the youngster with his intellectual jokes and his attitude, but tonight Rossi didn't care. Something else or better someone else had his full attention.
Shortly after the lecture had started the door of the room had opened again and a woman had slipped inside. He had recognized her instantly and had automatically straightened his back.
Had she ever visited one of his lectures before? He doubted it. But then she had never admitted she was reading his books, though he knew now she did.
Her presence in the room made him nervous, though she was silently sitting in the very last row, wearing her usual poker face. She looked beautiful. Rested and a bit tanned. How long had she been gone? Two months? Three? He had lost counting.
He caught himself checking his watch every minute until Reid kicked him and gave him a look that could kill. In the end the lecture ended as a mess and Rossi was just glad it was over.
"What's wrong with you?" Reid asked, as most of the students had left and only she remained in her chair.
"I don't feel very well... but it's okay. You did a fine job tonight." Rossi admitted quickly, hoping to get rid off Reid as fast as possible. "Why don't you just go home while I clear the desk?"
"You sure?" Reid asked doubtfully.
"Absolutely." Rossi gave him an absent-minded smile and patted his shoulder. "You go out and get a drink. You deserve it."
"Yes, I guess I need one," Reid said puzzled and picked up his bag. "See you tomorrow?"
With one last doubtful look, Reid headed upstairs toward the door. On his way upstairs he passed Erin Strauss who greeted him with a quick smile.
Reid stopped, puzzled, turned and watched with growing confusion, as Strauss approached Rossi who seemed paralyzed. His forehead wrinkled and he decided it was really time to leave when he watched Strauss kissing Rossi's cheek and the tight embrace that followed the tender gesture. He really didn't want to know what was going on.
"You're back," he whispered against her ear.
"I came back two days ago," she said as she pulled back, holding his hands.
"The kids are fine?"
"A lot better... we spend some quality time together... they'll make it."
"And Mommy dearest?" he asked amused.
"I shipped her off to Florida... a so called Bridge friend of hers is living there."
"Actually her friend is an old friend of my father... and I doubt they're playing Bridge."
He chuckled, glad Rose being in Florida meant on the other hand, he had Erin for himself... at least he hoped so. He was all tensed, waiting for her to explain why she surprised him in one of his lectures.
"How are you?" She asked, running her hand over the collar of his jacket.
"Okay... actually we had some time to breathe in the last weeks... I had time to teach."
She gave him a look. "I've never seen you teaching before, but..."
"Actually I'm better and funnier when you're not around," he interrupted her quickly. "You distract me too much."
"I'm sorry. That wasn't my intention."
"Sometimes you have that effect on me. I didn't expect seeing you here."
Their eyes met for some time and then she lowered her eyes and he noticed that she was blushing. "Actually, I wanted to see you and when I heard you were here, I couldn't resist."
Feeling encouraged by her confession, he leaned in and softly cupped her cheek with his hand.
"I've missed you too, Erin," he admitted and kissed her. It was a soft, almost shy kiss. A tender gesture that caused his heart to beat faster. She slowly melted against him, reminding him of how well their bodies fitted together. Her mouth opened due to the soft caress of his tongue against her lips and the moment their tongues met and recognized one another, the kiss became more heated. Both panted helplessly as their mouths parted again while their bodies still leaned against each other.
Suddenly he became aware of the deserted, semi dark room around them. Hardly the perfect environment for an intimate situation like this, but they had never cared for good timing or the right surroundings, but then there was a first time for everything.
"I want to make love to you," his whispered as his lips traced her forehead and her nose. "I want to take you to my place and make love to you all night." She smiled and kissed him again when his traveling lips found hers.
"You know, my new place is not perfect yet, but..." she mumbled against his lips.
"But?" he asked with a crooked eyebrow.
"I have a bed..." she whispered. "And my place is closer..."
"So what are we waiting for?"
He hadn't quite believed her when she had said, she only had a bed, but she had told him the truth. She had finally found the right place for herself and had bought a penthouse apartment that offered a fantastic view over the city.
Not that he cared much of the sight over the city. On their way to her apartment he had ignored two red traffic lights and in the elevator an older couple had almost suffered from a heart attack when they had caught them in a compromising position. Everything that really mattered lay next to him in the darkness, barely covered by a sheet.
"Where did you get that one here?" Erin asked as her finger traced a scar on his shoulder blade. As almost every FBI agent, he had several scars all over his body, but this one looked different from the others. It hadn't been caused by a bullet or a knife. It was a thin line, about two inches long and too fine to be caused by a common weapon. He chuckled and turned his head to face her.
"That was you."
"No," she drawled, disbelief written all over her face while her index finger kept caressing the scarred skin.
"You know how to make a memorable impression and I'm certainly glad you tamed your nails," he said and moved closer against her. She welcomed him with open arms, as he rolled her on her back and moved himself on top of her. They had spent the whole night like this. They made love, recovered, and talked until they reached a level of intimacy both still couldn't deal with. Then they started kissing until their bodies again craved for more.
Erin closed her eyes, relinquishing herself to his skilful hands and lips. After this night he had a pretty good idea of how he could drive her mad with desire and he enjoyed pushing her buttons, enjoyed to play her like a violinist enjoyed touching a string. What would happen to her, if she lost it – him – again?
Her plan was to go back to the office in the next week. She had exactly four days left, before she would again sit in her office, making the decisions, he had to hate, because they affected him and his team. She already knew what was waiting for her, and she didn't look forward to it. The options she had were limited. She could execute Shepperd's orders, she could fight them, hoping to activate Shepperd's enemies or she do take an even higher risk and win or lose.
Right after she had arrived in Quantico, Shepperd has asked her for a private conversation and though his offer hadn't been a big surprise to her, the cold-blood with that he had challenged her, had come as a shock to her.
"David," she said, forcing herself to ignore his hungry mouth nibbling at her neck.
"There's something we need to talk about."
He lifted his head and brushed her hair with his right hand. "I thought we've established that you can't always be the one on top," he joked, knowing from the tone in her voice, she wanted to talk about something much more serious.
"As much as I want to fight this out again with you, it's not that... I'm coming back to the office next week."
"I thought so," he said and settled down next to her, waiting for what she had to say.
"I saw Shepperd today... he told me his plans for the BAU." Silence fell. He preferred not to comment on anything she had to say, before she had finished. He watched her features, as she focused at the ceiling while she talked more to herself than to him. "And I don't think I can execute his wishes for the BAU and that's what scares me. I've always been afraid of the day my personal judgment would interfere with my job."
"What do you mean?" he asked, curiously.
"It means I'm losing my objectivity."
"There's no such thing as objectivity, Erin," he reminded her. "Everything we do is based on our personal judgment."
"Call it whatever you want, fact is, I can't go on like this."
He had heard those words before. The night Adam Strauss had been killed, she had told him the very same and he remembered now he had exactly felt the same as back then. There was no way Erin Strauss could leave the FBI or the BAU. She belonged there as he did, though their functions couldn't be more controversial.
"Look," he turned and switched on the lights. "Whatever Shepperd asks of you, I'm sure we can convince him to give up on his plans. After all, it was his fault Dolan could come close enough to harm you the way he did. If he hadn't hired him despite the knowledge who he was..."
"Forget it," she said wearily and shifted on her side to have a better look at him. "Shepperd trapped me... he knows, if I stay I will fight him to give your team a chance to survive, but I'll lose this battle, because all he has to do is cutting the money and then you all will be gone sooner or later. And if I take the offer he made me, he'll replace me with someone who executes his orders without further questions."
She sighed unhappily and ran her fingers through his hair. "You see, me being here doesn't make our life any easier."
"What kind of offer is that?"
"A promotion... Deputy Director of the FBI."
"He wants you right under his nose?" Rossi asked, astonished.
"Yes, maybe you heard about the current Deputy Director's health problems... his heart... he'll retire... enjoy the rest of his life, which means Shepperd needs someone who does the work while he runs from one party to the next."
"Let me guess... he told you, in exchange for the promotion he expects you not to fight for the post of the Director, before he retires."
She grinned, "Something like that... if I cooperate I'll succeed him in less than 5 years, because that's the time he intends to retire. Generous, isn't he?" she made a face.
David smiled. "He must be quite scared of you, when he tries to get you like that."
He traced her shoulder with his finger, promising himself he would never tell her what exactly he and Shepperd had agreed on the night, Landon had been killed. "Can I take my presence in your bedroom as a sign of insurrection against him?"
"First of all, you can take it as a sign of admitted attachment from my side and," she placed a kiss on his mouth, "And second, yes it's a kind of insurrection, because I decided to accept his offer..."
"But... " David asked, sensing there was a plan behind her decision.
"I'm going to use my new position to prove he's nothing but a corrupt bastard..."
He crooked his eyebrow in surprise. "You intend to play dirty to get his position before he retires?"
She shook her head and bit her lower lip. "No... I just want to see him down... anyone can do his job better than he does... I just want to see him squirm and I want to help saving the BAU and each and every team of it."
"In other words, soon we'll get a new boss and he won't be nice to us?"
"Yes, you'll probably will beg me on your knees to come back," she smiled sweetly and leaned in to kiss him. "And now that we've established the official line of command..." She swung her leg over his and straddled him. Her hands caressed his bare chest and he smiled in greedy expectation. "We can discuss the fact that I love to be on top. My bedroom, my rules."