"When you give someone your whole heart and he doesn't want it, you cannot take it back. It's gone forever." - Sylvia Plath

Morgan didn't realise how hard he had been holding the glass in his hand until it shattered under the pressure of his grasp. Garcia made a shocked sound and flapped her hands as the dregs of beer poured over the tabletop, sweeping smaller pieces of glass with them. His sigh of frustration was lost to the noise of the room as he turned his hand up and checked whether he'd been cut. He hadn't, but Garcia insisted on checking anyway.

While she kneaded at his palm soothingly with her thumbs, Morgan looked out across the bar. Reid was lifting his own drink to his mouth and smiling at the man opposite him. He'd noticed them as they came in, but Reid and what was obviously his date hadn't noticed him or Garcia. He had felt angry, and Garcia had squee'd and cooed appreciatively. He had done a good job of hiding the vicious stab of emotions, remained casual and feigned disinterest.

Spencer Reid didn't date. Morgan knew he friend didn't date, but here he was, and it was clearly a date. The other man, who was slim and olive-skinned with tousled black hair was leaning with his elbows on the table, clearly engaged in whatever Reid was saying. The body language of the stranger clearly demonstrated romantic interest, and what Morgan refused to acknowledge was fuelling his negative response much more than that was how relaxed Reid's own body language was. There was an awkwardness he couldn't escape, but he didn't seem uncomfortable or unsure; he was completely at ease while his companion openly flirted with him.

"Did you know my baby genius is gay?" Garcia asked.

"He's not gay." Morgan said a little too quickly.

"Bi, then?" she offered, smiling cheekily. "It's nice to see him having a love life, anyhow. But as much as I'd love to share this exciting development, I don't think we should mention this to everyone else, eh?"

"Yeah." Morgan agreed, offering an apology as a member of the bar staff came over to clear the broken glass from their table.

"I mean Reid might not be ready to declare anything yet." Garcia went on. "And it looks like a first date."

"How can you tell?" Morgan asked, dragging his eyes away from the pale man across the room with his companion.

"Well I'm no profiler, but the hot Mediterranean guy isn't touching him. So they've probably not even gone to first base. There's no little flirty touches."

Morgan had noticed the lack of physical contact, despite the obvious body language, but the fact that Reid was so calm in what was clearly more than platonic chatter made Morgan's guts writhe. He didn't spare any thought to identify what that emotion was; he didn't want to know.

Garcia turned her attention back to him, interpreting his feigned disinterest as boredom, but she kept sparing glances to check how their teammate was doing. It wasn't until Morgan was considering trying to convince Garcia to go somewhere else for another drink that she nudged his hand and met his eyes, grinning excitedly.

"They spotted us. They look like they're leaving, but they're coming this way."

With an unfamiliar tightness in his chest, Morgan looked around. She was right; Reid and his companion were making a beeline for them through the bar.

"Hey there junior G man." Garcia greeted. Morgan did his best to look passively interested.

"Hi." Reid said awkward, meeting Morgan's gaze for just a second before he focused in on Garcia instead.

"Who's your friend?"

"This is Alejandro." He gestured to him, lacking the finesse of pronouncing the name with an accent, and the olive-skinned man flashed a dazzling smile and offered a firm handshake to Morgan and softer one to Garcia.

"Nice to meet you." He said, his Spanish accent almost melodic. "Spencer says you are friends from work?"

Morgan's stomach did a funny little flip as the stranger called Reid by his first name. He couldn't actually remember ever addressing him directly by that name.

"If I didn't trust you, Garcia, I'd say you were spying on me." Reid teased.

"Just a happy coincidence." She grinned. "But it looks like you didn't need my help to try out for the other team."

Spencer and Alejandro both laughed, and Morgan forced a little titter out, covering the awkwardness by taking a drink from his beer.

"So, having a good first date?" she asked. Spencer smiled at the man next to him, his pink tongue subtly snaking out to wet his lips.

"Yeah." He nodded. Alejandro smiled charmingly at him. "But we should go, we're going for.. coffee." he kept his eyes still on Penelope, not daring to catch Morgan's eye.

Garcia grinned wider and wiggled her eyebrows. Morgan's stomach clenched uncomfortably and he used all his control not to let it show.

"You boys have fun." She encouraged. "Nice to meet you, Alejandro."

The Spaniard nodded his goodbye and Reid gave a characteristic little wave, and others watched them go. Before they reached the door, they witnessed Alejandro putting a hand gently on the small of Reid's back to reassure him past gaggles of people, and there was no noticeable adverse reaction from Reid to that touch. Morgan had no idea why it was satisfying to imaging himself grabbing the Spanish man's wrist and twisting it painfully to remove it from Reid's body. That thought surely couldn't be healthy.

"Reid's gonna get some." Garcia sing-songed, and Morgan looked around a little too fast.


"Oh, c'mon. Coffee?"

"Reid likes coffee." Morgan pointed out. Garcia practically cackled.

"When was the last time a woman asked you back to her place for coffee and you actually had just coffee?"

"So, we're actually having coffee." Reid observed as he sat on a stool in Alejandro's apartment kitchen, watching him make their drinks.

"Yes." The man laughed musically. "You thought we were coming here for something else?"

Reid didn't say anything, merely shifted in his seat and smiled awkwardly.

"You have not dated much, have you?" he asked, knowingly but seemingly not judgemental.

"No." Reid confirmed. "I haven't ever dated in a conventional sense."

"Is that what you want to do?" Alejandro asked, handing a cup of coffee to him. "Although it will have to be short-term, since as I said earlier I am only in American six more weeks."

"Is it always this simple?"

"No," he laughed in a good-natured way, "hardly ever. But I find you very attractive, Spencer. I enjoyed talking to you at the book shop, I would like to spend time with you in my last weeks here."

"You would?"

"Si." He took a sip from his own coffee. "Whatever you'd like that to be, I will be happy with. Whether you want to date, just to talk, coffee," he gestured his mug, "or something more."

Reid nodded his head a little, processing the information as he sipped the coffee. It was really good coffee.

"Alejandro," Reid started, "are you gay?"

"I am," he paused to think, rolling his wrist to gesture, "how would you say, multisexual? I have had lovers who are men, lovers who are women, lovers whose genders were not so simple."

"Right." Reid nodded, his brain comparing the statement to reading he'd been doing on gender and sexuality. "I'm not sure what my sexuality is." The other man nodded.

"And you do not like not being sure." Alejandro said perceptively.

"No, I guess I don't."

"I cannot help you so simply as telling you," the Spaniard said, "but I can be an experience. Perhaps that would be something you need."

Reid nodded again, and sipped at his coffee. In much simpler terminology than he would employ, Alejandro was giving him permission to experiment. There time was finite, the temporary nature of any arrangement or relationship already established. While some might read that as a whirlwind romance or fling, to Reid it felt practical and rather safe.

"I'd like a sexual relationship." Reid said suddenly. Alejandro didn't even raise an eyebrow.

"I would like that, too." he agreed. "Spencer, have you been intimate with men before?"

"One." He said honestly.

"Can I ask you, did you enjoy it?"

"I did." Reid nodded, setting his empty cup down on the counter. "I'm not," he laughed a little embarrassed chuckle, "very sexually experienced, though, at least not with other people."

"Experience is only one part of enjoying what sex can offer you." Alejandro said, putting his own cup down. Reid's tongue crept out to wet his lips, eyes drinking in the lines of muscle on the man's hands and bare forearms. He was slender, but not so much as Spencer, and his condition looked strong. His skin was a rich warm tone, quite inviting, and the dusting of fine dark hair on his arms was something Reid perceived as masculine, but still felt was attractive. He filed that away, that new awareness that his range of attraction was not limited to conventional femininity as social construct would have him believe. When Reid blinked himself out of his study of the other's body Alejandro's eyes were on him in a rather intense way.

"Would you like to stay tonight, Spencer?" he asked, rich tones of his voice making Reid swallow. "As much or as little can happen as you would like."

This was what he wanted. Reid wanted to be able to discover, to test, to explore his sexual identity. He had already worked out he was attracted to Alejandro's physical attributes and to his personality, and he had managed to compartmentalise thoughts of Derek Morgan to a small space in the back of his mind. As much as he tried it seemed impossible to remove them entirely, so he was satisfied with their minimisation as he nervously ran a hand through his short hair, watching Alejandro's patient face.

"I'd like to stay."

"You know," Penelope said, as she walked arm-in-arm down the street with Morgan in the warm night air, "you shouldn't be so pissed at Reid."

"What?" he said, his step faltering a little. She couldn't possibly know.

"Look, I know you're annoyed he didn't tell you he's not straight." She said, and internally Morgan felt relief wash through him. "I don't think it's because he doesn't trust you. You're his best friend. These things are just confusing. The world doesn't make it easy to get to know yourself, especially if you're any kind of same-gender-lovin'."

"I guess."

"No need to guess, it's a fact." Garcia said. "I've always been the girl with the gay male friends. I went to prom with a gay boy. It's not like I didn't know; I guess I kind of liked being everyone's beard. It made their lives easier, even though it sucks they needed that safety net in the first place. It's not like he think you'd judge him." she reassured. "Would you?"

"What? Of course not." He said. "You know I don't have any problems with gay people." He felt rather guilty saying it, because it only seemed to be true when it wasn't related to Reid. He's been entirely shitty to Reid about sexuality issues.

"Good." she nodded. "He's gonna need our support."


"Well, if things get serious he might want to come out." She reasoned.

"The rest of the team aren't gonna care, it-"

"It doesn't matter how supportive your family or friends are," she said patiently, "it's not easy. You're still coming out into a hostile world. I mean, remember Hancock County?"

"Yeah." He breathed. It had been two weeks since that case. The cut on Reid's cheek was now just a thin scab. It still made Morgan feel physically sick to be reminded every day of what Reid had gone through to conclude that case.

"Hopefully this will make him happy again." she said, a little sadly.

"Huh? What do you mean 'again'?"

"He's been a bit out of sorts for a couple of months." She said. "Ever since that case in North Dakota, really." She looked to Morgan, noticed the confusion on his face. "Not on cases. I just see you guys quite a bit when you're not on hours, you know, in the mornings or when you stay to finish paperwork. He's been doing that more since that case. I mean, that's not strange for you guys," she said, obviously noticing the concern on Derek's face, "I see you cycle through phases like that. It's no surprise, considering the job. And things always get better, it's just not nice to know there's really nothing I can do. I think maybe if Reid's getting comfortable in his own skin, it might help him pass through the down phase."

Morgan nodded his agreement, although his insides were writhing. Was it self-involved to wonder if he could be the reason Reid's mood had changed? He didn't want to cause that.

Spencer couldn't have Morgan. Or, he shouldn't. He knew that technically, he could have sex with him. Morgan had made it clear he was up for that, with no strings attached. But Reid also knew he had more than platonic feelings for the man, and trying to maintain a sexual relationship without forming attachments which would never be reciprocated was foolish; it would end up hurting him, and possibly ruining a friendship.

Alejandro was a welcome distraction from the process of moving on from those feelings for his team mate. He had kissed Reid gently in the kitchen, to test his reaction. When it had been favourable the kiss had developed, deepening and strengthening. Alejandro had permitted Reid to undress him when he asked, and he had done so slowly after they had moved to the bedroom. The Spanish man had clearly enjoyed letting Reid study his form, long fingers stroking over the press of bones and definition of muscles. The warmth of his skin tone, the darker tone of his nipples, the subtle definition of abdominal and pectoral muscles. A dusting of dark hair from his navel to his crotch and along both long, legs. He had a tattoo of a sun on his hip and Reid had traced around it with a finger, delaying the moment he studied the man's crotch. Eventually he did of course, the same long-fingered hands touching him, looking at his proportions and shape as the man's cock hardened from the ministration; slightly darker than the rest of his body, an intact foreskin and a just above-average length with an average girth. His public hair was dark as the hair on his head, natural in appearance where it curled around the base of the shaft, but obviously kept by the lack of hair on his balls.

Every moment of the relaxed study of the other man's form was a fight to stop his mind conjuring up comparisons to Morgan's body; the broader shape, the darker skin, the differing texture of hair, the more defined muscles, the longer, thicker shaft of his cock. Neither one was better than the other, but even as he appreciated Alejandro, he would rather be wrapping his hand around Morgan and beginning to stroke him luxuriously, settling into the curve of his body.

The Spaniard caught him under the chin and lifted, bringing their lips close together. Strong but gentle hands mirrored the action being graced to him, taking Reid's much paler cock in hand. It was relaxed, easy, romantic as Spencer stroked the other to completion, marvelling at the cry of release that sounded like a melody and the spill of white fluid over the back of his hand the tan stomach. Reid reached his climax under the other's hand just a few minutes later, pressing his hips into the contact and trying to bite back his loud moan.

As Spencer noted the rate of his breathing post-orgasm, he didn't notice Alejandro reaching into the bedside to find a damp wipe to clean away the traces of semen. He muttered a small 'thank you' and the other smiled at him, lowering his mouth for a kiss. He returned the kiss lazily, sated and relaxed against the warmth of the other man's body.

"You still want to stay?" the Spaniard asked. Spencer nodded. Alejandro took it has a cue and reached to pull the bed sheet over them, cool against their hot skin. In that moment nothing seemed more pleasant to Reid than to linger together after sex. It had happened the first time he had been with Morgan, but never subsequent times. He wasn't entirely convinced he hadn't had sex with him again mainly for the hope that he'd get to lie with him again.

Alejandro turned off the bedside lamp and settled down on his back, Spencer resting in the curve of his side with his arm around his chest. He continued to kiss Spencer in the dark, fingers tracing along the thinner man's arm in a comforting way. This was nice, Reid decided, very nice. Perhaps one of the most pleasant human interactions he had experienced in his life. There had been a fulfilling sexual conduct, romantic affection, and now a relaxing, intimate atmosphere.

He still wanted it to be Morgan who kissed his forehead as he fell asleep.

"There's nothing quite so humbling as thinking you're completely over someone, then realizing you're not even close." - Brian Strause