Title: Aristocrats, Debonaires and Sophisticates
Author: Kuria Dalmatia
Rating/Warnings: FRM/R (profanity, offensive language, ribald humor)
Characters/Pairing: Rossi/Reid with Hotch and Morgan, pre-slash. Mid- to late-Season 3.
Summary: "No. No. No. We are not explaining the Aristocrats to him in the middle of a damn restaurant."
Word Count: ~650
ARCHIVING: my LJ and FFNet account... anyone else? Please ask first.
COMMENTS: Thanks pabzi for the beta. Any mistakes left are mine. The "Aristocrats Joke" dates back to vaudeville and has been called the "Greatest Dirty Joke Ever Told." It is rude, crude, outrageous and taboo-defying, and almost always improvised. See A/N at the end...
This was an off-shoot of "Fried Chicken & Coleslaw" but I felt I mixed too many concepts in one story so here we go!
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.
Dinner with the Team was a lesson, really, in how families interacted. JJ always poached at least two French fries from Morgan. Hotch always placed the cucumbers from his salad on the edge of his bowl so Prentiss could snag them. And Reid…Reid always did this thing with the parsley garnishes whenever they came with the meal. He somehow collected them off people's plates without anyone noticing and, by the time they were all done, the whole lot of them would be neatly arranged on the edge of one person's dish.
The first time Dave noticed his own plate was christened with the greens (he had a feeling he had been subjected to the trick several times before he caught on), he responded with his typical, "What the fuck?" He pointed to the carefully constructed parsley pyramid next to his knife, pissed that it just seemed to appear.
Morgan snickered and Hotch hid his grin with his napkin; the case was going badly and it was typical for someone in the group to try to a little humor to lighten the mood. It also was one of the rare times JJ and Prentiss weren't with them, so Dave didn't get 'the look' from Hotch for dropping the f-bomb.
The kid smiled brightly, launched into some discourse about the history of the herb how it freshened breath with his usual breakneck speed of speaking. He nodded towards Dave and ended with, "and you mentioned once that you liked to eat a good bush every now and then, so…" He did a flourish with his hands over the herbs, "I made you a tasty—"
"Reid!" Hotch cut him off sharply.
"I cannot believe this!" Morgan muttered, wincing and shaking his head.
Dave stared in momentary shock, because Spencer Reid just didn't make crude jokes or references like that. Then, he narrowed his eyes. The kid had been in law enforcement for long enough to know slang, especially in their line of work. The kid had to know what he was saying and what he was implying, even if his expression was one of cluelessness. Was Reid trying to tell a dirty joke?
Yet Reid looked utterly baffled. "Um."
"We get it," Morgan told him quickly, but obviously it wasn't in the context of understanding the joke. It was the tone Morgan used when he knew he had to explain something to a clueless Reid. "We get it."
But Dave wasn't convinced by Reid's act, so he leaned forward and asked, "What? Is that your version of the Aristocrats?"
Which earned a snapped "Dave!" from Hotch and Morgan saying, "No. No. No. We are not explaining the Aristocrats to him in the middle of a damn restaurant."
What both men failed to see was the slight tug of Reid's lips as if fighting a smile.
Son of a bitch.
As if on cue, Reid queried with what Dave now knew was practiced innocence, "The Aristocrats?"
"Oh, no, man. No. No. No!" Morgan then pointed to Dave. "You brought it up. You get to explain it."
"Not here," Hotch added sternly, and Dave could have sworn that the unit chief was blushing. "Not now."
Later at the hotel, as Reid and Dave walked down the deserted hallway of their floor, Dave stopped them. "Nice one back there," he said sincerely, because it had been unexpected, raunchy and funny. It wasn't wholly at his expense either; Reid had set up Morgan and Hotch as well. He nodded his appreciation. "And you've been waiting for a while to spring that one on them. I can't remember ever seeing Hotch blush like that. Quite an accomplishment."
There was a long pause before Reid finally quirked a smile. "If it was the Aristocrats joke, I would have talked about a family and their dog. Did you know that in some regions, it's referred to as the Debonaires or the Sophisticates?"
Dave let out a hearty laugh. "So what is your Aristocrats joke?"
"Buy me a drink and I'll tell you."
/***/ Finis /***/
A/N: As much as I would love to, I don't feel that I can do justice to Reid's version of the joke. In my mind, it is not offensive in the ribald, sexual outrageous way, but one that takes scientific concepts to the "raunchy" limit. Yes, it's a joke that Sheldon Cooper and the Big Bang Theory guys would find hilarious.