Reid hesitantly opened the door. "Hotch?"

Aaron Hotchner was standing next to a table on which lay several different firearms. He was busy loading them. "You need to know how to use these.", he said, not looking at Reid. "Though I hope you never have to."

"Hotch, my firearms qualification is tomorrow morning. I barely passed my last one."

"That's why you need this extra training."

Reid sighed, "Well all right then.", and put the headphones on.

"Show me how to load it."

Spencer made not a single mistake. Loading was the easy part.

"Very good. Now get into position."

He held the gun in front of him with two hands and aimed.

Hotch stepped forward. "You're making this too difficult for yourself. Use one hand, not two." With his left hand he removed the younger man's from the gun. Then he grabbed his shoulders, moving him to the left. Reid's hand that held the firearm fell down as he was put into another position.

"Turn sideways to the target. That position helps you to relax." Spencer felt Hotch's breath on his neck as he spoke. He must be very close behind him. The unusual intimacy made him nervous, he licked his upper lip.

"Looking along your shoulder...", Aaron put his finger under Reid's chin and turned his face towards the targets. "...and down your arm. Bring up the gun." Aaron's hand slid down Reid's arm, pulling his right hand in position to shoot. "Slowly. It's all in the breathing! Hold it firmly. Don't grip it, you need to be calm for this." He held the firearm with Reid, who felt his palm go clammy.

Only when Hotch removed his left hand from Spencer's shoulder to decock the gun he realised that it had been laying there for quite a while. His supervisor put his hand on Reid's hip, standing very close behind him. Spencer felt his chest pressed firmly against his back. Somehow the closeness evoked a soothing feeling in him. "Now relax. Breathe in. Step one: Focus on the front sight. Breathe out. Step two: Control trigger press. Squeeze gently."

They shot.

"Now the most important thing: Don't come off the target to see where you hit it afterwards. Step three is called 'Follow through'. After the shot you come right back to the target." His breath was hot against Spencer's neck.

Only after a few second he let go of Reid. They had hit the target in the head.


"That was a joint effort!", Aaron smiled. "Try it again, this time on your own. And remember about the three steps."

"Front sight, trigger press, follow through."

"Very good. You do those three things you hit your target every time."

Spencer tried alone and hit the target in the groins.

Hotch chuckled. "Did Elle teach you that? What did you do wrong?"

"I didn't follow through."

"Right. Try again."

Reid shot and missed the target.

"Don't grip it too tightly. You need to relax!"

Again, Spencer missed.

"Breathe first, then shoot."

He hit the target in the right shoulder.

"Now we're talking!". Hotch seemed to be really happy. "Right, I've got to dash now. I'll let you practice on your own." He took off his headphones and put them in a locker. Then he waved at Spencer and left the room.

Several seconds Reid just stood there. Then he murmured, "How can I possibly relax when he's with me?"