Criminal Minds © not mine.

World So Cold

Reid put the letter down with shaking hands. It didn't make sense, and yet, it made a horrible sort of sense. Gideon left, just like Reid had hoped he never would.

"Hey kid."

He hadn't realized he had been crying until Morgan touched his shoulder. He looked up, tears blurring the other's face. "M-morgan. What are you – "

"I figured you'd come here looking for Gideon." Morgan crouched down next to the chair, putting himself on eye level with the younger man. "Although, I gotta admit that I'm glad this is all you found."

Reid stiffened. "You think Gideon would have –" He cut himself off, looking away.

Morgan sighed. "There's no telling, really. This job can screw a lot of people up, and Gideon took a pretty big hit. Losing someone like that – well, I've seen people kill themselves over less." Reid flinched at the words. Morgan gripped his arm, staring at him hard. "Reid, talk to me. Tell me what's going through that genius head of yours."

That earned him a small smile, but it vanished as soon as it came. Reid still refused to look at him. "Does Hotchner know you're here."

"Hotch wanted to come himself, but I told him I'd take care of it." Morgan said. "I got the feeling Hotch isn't going to like what's waiting for him at home, so I had Prentiss keep an eye out for him. JJ went home."

Reid nodded. "Just keep looking out for all of us, don't you?"

"Hey, I'm a big brother. It's what I do." Morgan smiled. "Come on, Reid. Tell me what's wrong."

For a moment, there was simply silence. Then –

"He left. Just like my dad."

Morgan felt his breath catch. "Aw, kid – "

"Why does everyone keep leaving?"

For once, Morgan didn't think through his actions. He simply pulled Reid into a tight embrace, holding the younger man while he shook with silent tears.

"It's gonna be okay, kid. I promise you – I won't leave."

A sniff. "Ever?"



AN: Short drabble, but I watched that episode again today, and this popped into my head. Go fig.

For those of you who wanted a full story for Mightier than the Sword, keep an eye out for the multichap fic One Hour. It'll be up as soon as I finish one of my other stories.