Author's Note: This is the second in a three story arc. It follows the oneshot, "Not To Be". I hope you enjoy it. I'm currently working on the concluding story. Thanks to all our readers!
Once And For All
The wind whistled through the trees, limbs shaking and quivering with each blast of arctic air. Cinching her coat tighter around her waist, she lifted her chin defiantly. Much like the postman, she wasn't going to be swayed from the task at hand. Nothing short of a cyclone hijacking her ass to Oz was going to alter her determined course. And if she managed to make it to that fabled city, she'd be seeking out the Wizard for entirely different reasons.
David Rossi had a reckoning to face.
And she was bound and determined to deliver the fatal blows.
Sidestepping an amorous couple blocking her path, she glared at the canoodling lovers and resolutely resisted the urge to request they find a room for their liaison...at gunpoint. But venting her wrath on innocents that stood between her and her target would only delay her. Keep your eye on the prize, Jareau, she sternly reminded herself.
Or the prize bastard, as the case may be.
God only knew why she wanted to do this. She certainly hadn't understood her own motivations, though she'd spent a fair amount of her non-existent spare time attempting to do so. She ought to let him rot...old and alone and miserable. It wasn't any less that he deserved for treating her as though she'd suddenly become invisible.
She'd lived like this for months...wondering what she'd done to bring him to this level of cruelty. Of course, if she'd listened to the whispered rumors about the notorious profiler instead of choosing to believe he actually possessed a beating heart, she wouldn't be in this position.
In one beautiful night, he'd ruined her.
Oh, not in the virginal, "I can't believe he only wanted one thing" kind of way. That she could have forgiven.
No, he had done far worse when he'd betrayed her friendship. He'd skulked out of her hotel room in the dead of night without so much as a note. He'd taken what she'd offered him without reservation, and then, in typical Rossi fashion, he'd vanished.
No discussion. Not even a dismissive kiss on the forehead.
Just deafening silence that had crushed her during those early pre-dawn hours.
To this day, she couldn't comprehend how he'd simply walked away from something as profound as what they'd shared together. Despite her anger, even now, she could feel his hard arms locked around her...his warm lips caressing her skin as his husky voice had groaned her name.
The satisfaction she'd found with him in that single night had been breathtaking. Her body had never been hotter...wetter…than when it was joined with his. Of course the best sex of her life would be with the biggest asshole alive. Why wouldn't it have been?
Blinking hard against the tears pricking her eyes as images from that night flooded over her, taunting her mercilessly, she shook her head as she forced her thoughts to remember the worst. For weeks, she'd suffered the agony of wondering if it was her shortcomings that had made him act as though he didn't know her.
But no more, damn it. She wasn't going to spend one more second of energy wondering about it. She was going to the heart of the matter. Or perhaps, she'd simply try to rip out the obviously useless organ from his body. Either way, she was going to get her answers, she told herself determinedly, inhaling the crisp air around her and fortifying herself for the coming battle. She'd already allowed one jackass to rip her to shreds without repercussions, and she damn well wasn't looking to set some kind of fucked up record with David Rossi.
For awhile, she could have forgiven him his actions. Hell, her own embarrassment had been enough to endure. But the aversion to his presence that he'd developed...the staring right through her...all of it had combined to render her almost incapable of doing her damned job. The offer of a new job had been almost a blessing…or so she was going to tell herself it was.
Now, she wasn't forced to suffer through those rare, uncomfortable conversations regarding cases. She didn't have to spend every hour of her work day wishing he'd actually look at her and see what was in front of his eyes. She should have been able to heal...to forget about him and the dreams she'd briefly allowed herself.
She should have been...but she hadn't.
Like a worm, he'd worked his way into her system, winding himself around her heart. And that was the real bitch of it all...in spite of the way he'd acted...the way he continued to act...she found herself still in love with him.
Not that he knew it. Whether by his own inability to feel anything other than his own gratification or his deliberate blindness, he appeared to, by all accounts, remain happily oblivious to what was in front of him.
She was resolved that he'd feel something tonight, however. Even if it was only her wrath.
Smiling grimly as the tavern he frequented of late, information gained from her more than cooperative best friend, came into her line of vision, she felt her heartbeat quicken. Pausing outside the glass windows of the bar, her eyes found him easily, perched on a bar stool in the corner well away from the other patrons. She could almost see the wall he'd erected between himself and the rest of the world.
"No more hiding," JJ mumbled to herself, unsure if she was talking to herself or issuing him a mental warning. Squaring her shoulders, she squelched the hesitation she felt with a stern reminder that she was due an explanation from that daunting man inside. She would have ideally chosen an apology, preferably on his knees, but she'd always been a girl that set achievable goals for herself.
And this time, she was going to get exactly what she wanted.
After months, she'd finally acquired the guts it took to bring her to this very moment. This was the first step in taking back control of her life...confronting this devil in human form.
Steeling herself, she pulled open the door, the brass bell tinkling above her drawing no interest in the busy establishment.
She had a mission to complete and even if she went down in a blaze of glory, she'd get this job done.
Once and for all.