Criminal Minds Suspect Behavior Fanfiction
Second summary- The Red Cell team must track down two serial killers targeting young women in DC. When Gina suspects Ellen is lying to Mick, she takes matters into her own hands. Things get out of control during the case when Ellen is kidnapped by the unsubs. Will Gina be able to help Mick save her? Or will her unwillingness to believe him lead to an unfortunate end for the Red Cell team?
Warnings for blood, violence, cursing, and some themes that might be a bit scary for anyone under the age of sixteen. I'll try to keep those parts as vague as possible without going overboard.
Pairings are Mick/Ellen and Mick/Gina in the future.
Rated Teen for now. It might go up depending on where the story leads.
Spoilers for the first season. A continuation of Siblings, Evil Angel, and One Thousand. This is the forth in my own series of the show now that it's been canceled.
I own nothing involving the characters with the exception of the ones I create. I also own no rights to the music mention in future chapters.
First chapter will be written in what I call the 'standard' point of view. The rest will be written in Gina's perspective.
Chapter 31 Decode
Why was Cooper being so cryptic? I mean, it's not like I couldn't guess what he was talking about from the sheer context alone, but it would have been nice to really know rather than make an unwarranted hypothesis. The words suggested that something like this has happened before and he helped Mick pull himself back together. How he was able to do such a thing, I don't think I'll ever know. I know that what he and Fickler keep hinting to and never wanting to actually say sounded pretty damn bad. Something happened overseas, something that took everyone by surprise, and no one wanted to admit it.
It isn't my business to ask about highly classified jobs. No matter how much I could beg one of my uncles or my dad for the official information, I would never get it. There was a very good reason why it was classified. They aren't going to break some international cover-up law just to ease my curious mind.
For the time being I had to let the thought go. I had to focus on finding Mick. Cooper said that he was probably drinking at the local bar, so that's where I was headed. Fortunately the nearest bar was a twenty five minute walk from my apartment building, so I didn't have to worry about the chance of Mick taking a car. Knowing him, he probably limped his way on foot. A cold night like this wasn't exactly good conditions to go out for a stroll, but I had a feeling he didn't care.
After ending my call with Cooper, I grabbed my purse from the kitchen table and left the apartment. The door slammed and locked behind me. Luckily none of my neighbors seemed to be concerned with the noise. They were more worried about their own lives than myself own. That's one of the few things I actually like about the building. The neighbors are nice and friendly, but they tended to stay out of someone else's business. I was grateful for the privacy.
I used the streetlamps as a light source on the concrete sidewalk. My boots clicked on the surface, crushing gravel with the soles. I kept my head down and my purse clutched tight between my arm and my side. The gentle breeze gliding through the nearby foliage bit at my skin. I pulled my thick jacket closer to stave it off, but it had little effect. A dimmed glow from the overhead cresset moon barely broke through dense clouds. The weather report called for heavy rain by midnight, so I had to get Mick and return to the apartment before then.
The nearby passing people showed no interest in me. When in a busy crime infested city such as DC, it was better to blend in. Standing out could result in a mugging or something equally troubling. The other buildings on both sides of the street buzzed with life just like the streets. People occupied not only the sidewalks, but the shops and other small businesses in the vicinity. Some were walking with friends or loved ones, others were too distracted with texting or talking on their phones to care. A variety of cars and motorcycles zipped past. The occasional bicyclist trailed the edge of the asphalt. Headlights added to the streetlamps, threatening to blind pedestrians on the concrete.
Each step was focused. One after the other in a steady pace, not bothering to see where I was going. I just knew which way to walk and let my mind wonder as I did so. Reminiscing about the past three days was the only think I could think about. There was just so much that had happened, some good, most bad, and I still couldn't believe a good portion of it. I had learned too much about the sniper in those three days. Most of it was about what goes on in that head of his. When I thought about it, I realized that not only did he fit the standard sniper profile, but there was a completely different side to it. Not like how Ellen had two different personalities, but like two sides to a coin. They were relatively the same as far as basic structure goes, but one side was more complex than the other. Maybe that's one of the reasons why I find him so interesting. Maybe interesting isn't the right word. What would be the right word though?
It's hard to imagine that someone like me could ever understand such complexity. Or that someone like him could the most intriguing man I've ever met. For the longest time I thought Cooper would be impossible to understand, and in a way he is, but there are too many secrets for both him and Mick that I just can't stop thinking about. There's something between the two men that I can't see as of yet. I know that Cooper values Mick as a son in some ways and a professional coworker in others, but that doesn't explain everything. How could two completely different people trust each other so much? How could one be willing to lay down their life for the other without a second thought? My only guess was because they weren't completely different. Whatever happened in the past effected both of them. Only one seems to be still haunted by it.
Apparently I had let my thoughts run away from me. One moment I was walking down the cold sidewalk, the next I was standing outside of the local bar. The small one story building was laced with brick and stone, similar to the bar we found Samantha Quinn in. Stained glass windows dimmed any lighting from inside. The sense of old England vibrated off of the designs etched in the glass. One side of the building was nothing but designed glass with the name of the bar engraved across the length. The far right side held the entrance; it's dark heavy wooden door seemed too intimidating for the small polished stained window in the center.
I stepped past a couple in their thirties, obviously drunk, and into the bar as they held the door open. This was the first time I had ever been in that particular bar. I know that sounds weird considering it had been in business for years now, but I never needed to go out drinking alone. The times I went drinking were only with my teammates at the bar across from Cooper's apartment and with boyfriends. I had been meaning to check out this bar for a while now, but never really got around to it. From what I've heard, it's a very warm and comfortable English pub.
That sounds like the perfect place for Mick to hide and get drunk in.
The atmosphere in the bar was comfortable. A gentle dim hue cast over the open floor plan, illuminating singles and couples sitting at the tables and the nearby bar counter. Sitting in the back of the building facing out was a small stage. A microphone, guitars, and drum set up littered the polished wooden floor. Waitresses in long black skirts and white button ups carried trays of drinks to the tables. The occasional tray of foot was brought out to share between a couple. An overhead echo of what sounded like The Beetles rang through the building. I could see the bartender behind the counter serving drinks to depressed souls.
I stepped into the building further and was greeted by a young familiar blond woman. She was dressed just like the other waitresses, but her hair was pulled back loosely and the thick sense of seniority emitted from her stance. Whitney Hales, coroners assistant, worked as a waitress in her off hours. I didn't see that coming…
"Agent, what a surprise." She greeted with a smile.
I offered one in return, but quickly realized just how forced it was. My eyes didn't stay on her for more than a few seconds. I combed the crowd for a scruffy dark haired man in faded holey jeans and a leather jacket. "I'm looking for someone. Did you see a Welsh-English man come in here within the last hour?" I asked as I continued to scan the crowd.
She nodded and pointed to a lone figure sitting at the far right end of the counter. "He's been here for about an hour now. Eight glasses of the most expensive scotch and he's just now starting to get tipsy. I didn't realize foreign men could hold their alcohol so well." The younger woman replied in an amused tone.
I felt myself smile minutely at the relieving sight of Mick sitting at the counter. The relief quickly died down as I watched the bartender refill his glass. I mumbled a quick thanks to the waitress and started towards the back of the counter. To my surprise, Whitney caught up to walk beside me.
"You're worried about him, aren't you?" She questioned.
I stopped in mid-step and glared at her. What the hell could she possible know about how worried I was? She was just a kid compared to the rest of the world. Sure, she carried two jobs and seemed fairly smart, but she was still a child. I wasn't about to explain myself to someone who could never possibly know what kind of hell I've seen lately. "Yes, I was worried. Why do you ask?" I responded a little harsher than intended.
She glanced at the Welshman and shook her head slightly. "He's depressed. Considering I helped with the case in some capacity, I know the a little bit about what happened. And I helped my boss patch him up yesterday…"
"While I appreciate your help with that, I can't talk about the cases we work on."
"You don't have to. I was just going to say that I think he could use you now. Whatever the hell happened has him shooting back shots like their water. I've seen men like that in here before and it normally doesn't end well." She sounded truly sincere. That alone was surprising. Most waitresses in bars know a lot about their clients. It's the way they talk, what the ask for, and how they present themselves. In a way it was a rudimentary form of profiling. But it works, so who am I to complain.
I couldn't stop the sigh that escaped my lips. My non-bandaged hand ran through my hair, then across my eyes. "You're right, I'll make sure he gets home safe."
She smiled with one last glance towards him. "You know, when I asked if he had any contacts to call that could drive him home, he said he was staying with a Gina LaSalle. I take it that's you?" I nodded uneasily, knowing what she was implying in her words. "I know you two don't want to admit it, but it's obvious that you like each other. I can see it in the way you look at each other. He needs you just as much as you need him."
I raised an eyebrow in curiosity and stuffed my hands in my jacket pockets. My boots rocked on their heels and shifted the purse on my arm slightly. I felt myself gulp in an attempt to clear the knot in my throat. "You aren't the first person to say that."
"And you haven't listened to anyone before, have you?"
"Nope." I replied with a quick smirk.
She just nodded in understanding and stepped towards the bar. "You know, I knew my currant boyfriend for six years before he finally asked me out on a date. We were best friends for the longest time until he realized that we were inseparable. My point is, don't wait years before you finally see what's in front of you. It might be too late by then."
Before I could think of a response, she sauntered off to serve another table. I let her words sink in for several long moments. Why did everyone jump to the conclusion that Mick and I belonged with each other? Sure, we got along great and I really enjoyed his company, but I didn't think we could ever really be something. Some part of me knew that I kind of did like him more than I let on, but I didn't want to show it. The FBI rule wasn't the issue. The issue was that I liked our friendship more than the possibility of something more. I wasn't in denial about it, I just didn't think soiling our friendship for something so dicey was a good idea. Neither one of us have had good luck on lasting relationships and I couldn't image that would change anytime soon. Things would just be too awkward if we started dating and then it didn't go well. I'm not sure I would want to work with him anymore in the FBI if that happened.
I pushed the thought away roughly and walked towards Mick. He didn't seem to notice my presence until I sat next to him and ordered a glass of water. I wanted something to take my mind off of things, but both of us couldn't be wasted at the same time. Someone needed to be sober enough to get us home.
He glanced at me after taking another swig from his glass. The slight dazed glint in his eyes suggested that he was getting tipsy. A small smile faltered on his lips. "Hey. You come to make sure I don't go off the deep end?" He asked with a faint slur. His accent made it hard to understand what he was implying.
The bartender served me the water and went about tending to another man a few seats away. "No, I came to make sure you're okay. You weren't at the apartment when I came back. I thought something happened…" I replied clearly. Just as he went to pick up the glass and finish it in one swig, I grabbed it from his hand and swapped it with the water. He stared at it in confusion, then towards me with a raised eyebrow.
"I'm not done with that."
I motioned for the bartender to take the glass away and fixed him with a stern expression. "Yes you are." He straightened himself on the stool, repositioning his elbows on the counter ungracefully. Once the glass was out of sight, I leaned on the counter until I could see his face. He continued to stare at the glass for a moment before picking it up and taking a sip. I took that as a small sign of victory on my part. "Mick, let's go home."
The sniper shook his head roughly and dropped the glass onto the counter with a loud thud. "Why are you really here? You didn't track me down just to take away my scotch." He questioned harshly. The way he slowed the words suggested that he was trying to push the slur from his accent. Unfortunately it wasn't working very well.
"I could ask you the same thing."
He glared at me with dark, unfocused eyes. "What makes you think I'll answer?"
I shifted in the seat so I could lean back a few centimeters. The stool teetered on the hard wood, but didn't tip. "Because you want to answer. You want to say what's on your mind."
A smirk graced his lips as he turned away. "Profiling me, are you?" I gave a small nod and teetered the stool on the floor again. "You're not going to leave me alone until I speak my mind?"
"Nope. The sooner you get it over with, the sooner we can go home."
He sighed loudly and ran a hand through his hair. "Fine. Where do you wanna start?"
I leaned against the counter again, crossing my arms over the top to put my full weight forward. "Why did you come here? Why not just drink all of the beer in the refrigerator in my apartment and stay there?"
"That's two questions, love." He smirked. I refused to show any kind of amusement, which promptly made him take my questions seriously. After another sip of water he continued. "Just wanted some alone time. I would have been back by midnight. Besides, your storage of beer isn't nearly as good as the real stuff. Which you took away…" His voice drifted off as the bartender came into view again. He lifted his hand to get his attention, but I grabbed it and forced it back to the counter top.
"Mick stop it. You've had enough." I scolded softly.
The Welshman sighed again in frustration and pulled his hand free. He glared at me, then turned in his stool so he faced me. "If I tell you the truth, will you let me have one more?"
Was he joking? How does alcohol poisoning sound? It sounds like a really bad idea to me, but his muddled brain couldn't understand that now. I gave him a hard expression and fingered my necklace. Arguing with him at this point would be ridiculous.
Damn his stubbornness…
"Fine. One more after you tell me the truth. Then we're going to my apartment for the rest of the night." I replied sternly.
He spun around, leaning against the counter top again. "I came here to forget." He mumbled as he sipped the water. At my curious expression he continued. "Do you remember when I got shot? And when I was poisoned?"
How could I ever forget? Just the waiting alone had me in tears for what felt like forever. I looked away and whispered a choked 'yeah'. That was the only thing I could think of to respond with. I know this seems obvious, but I never wanted to talk about those days again. Just thinking about them brought the same sadness and fear to the forefront of my thoughts. If I couldn't bare the memories, how was he holding them together?
"I thought I was going to die. I mean, I've taken bullets before, but none like that. Before there was always my teammates to back me up. There was someone there to make sure I didn't go alone. But those hours in that warehouse with just Jenna," He paused, buying himself more time to perfect his response with another drink of water. Though he refused to show his face, I could still see the hard frown contaminating his features. When he finally answered the bare whisper pushed the slur from his accent just enough to understand more clearly. "I thought that was it. I thought Jenna was going to watch me die and there was nothing I could do to stop it. She was going to die and I couldn't save her."
I didn't know where this was headed. Was he just reminiscing over the past year, or did this lead to somewhere important? There was one thing I was certain of though; he wasn't comfortable with talking about this. Be it with the therapists the director forced him into or the comfort of his friends and family, talking about this was a sign of weakness. It went against his base personality which was why talking was so hard. He was fighting himself to talk about it.
I placed a gentle hand on his shoulder and said softly, "You don't have to…"
He shook his head roughly and glared at me. "No, it's alright love. You want to know why I'm here, drowning myself in something that could kill me, so I'm trying to explain. I'm trying to explain why I loved Ellen and why I didn't see any of this sooner. That's what you want, right? An explanation for everything?"
"Yes, I do, but not at your expense." I responded with as much sincerity I could muster.
He simply turned his gaze back to the glass, twirling the ice around nonchalantly. "But you lot did save us. Taking the truck to break out was a stupid maneuver, especially letting Carol drive, but it got your attention and things started to get better from there. Then that bastard rigged the plane, hired a friend to kidnap her, and made life hell for months. But we got her back and everything seemed fine."
If everything was 'fine' than why talk about it now? Why bring up such a traumatic set of events if he was supposedly 'fine' with them?
"That brings us to why I got involved with Ellen. She was willing to listen, even more so than anyone I was forced to talk to. She actually gave a damn about me and I guess I let that go my head." Mick paused again, pulling out his wallet for the second time in half an hour. Callused fingers fumbled through the back bill holder. Seconds later he pulled out a small folded mess of old pictures. He spread them out one by one across the counter top.
None of them held the same person more than once. One looked to be about ten years old with him and Jenna smiling happily next to their foster parents. Another was recognized as a group photo from his April birthday surprise. A third was a group of men, all older than him who looked to be about twenty at the time, dressed in professional military attire and grinning like fools in front of the camera. The last was a wrinkled shot of him and Ellen standing in front the royal palace in England. They looked so happy together, like they had known each other forever. It was heart-wrenching to see such a happy memory and realize that it had all been a lie. Well, maybe not all of it.
He pointed to the photo of him and Ellen roughly. "That was one of the happiest days of my life. I used an old contact that transferred into the private sector a few years ago to get in. They do allow tours, but only if you make plans before hand. We had only been together about three months, which is longer than most women I've dated, so I thought I'd treat her to someplace nice. We couldn't get in, but we got close enough to take this picture. I spent the rest of the day showing her around London. She had this idea to go to Wales in a few months. Said it would be good for me to visit my old home for a while." He said with a small smile at the memories.
"That's why I loved her. She knew me better than I knew myself in some ways. It was odd, really, but I couldn't bring myself to think about it. In some way I knew something was wrong. I just didn't want to acknowledge it. For the first time in a long time, I was happy. I couldn't risk that just to aid my stupid paranoia."
It wasn't 'stupid paranoia' though. It was an instinct that he chose to ignore. As understandable as that was, I couldn't quite fathom how he was able to push the instinct aside. Willpower alone wouldn't have been enough, would it?
A pregnant silence followed his words. I watched him gather up all of the photos with the exception of the one with him and Ellen, fold them back into the square wad, and stuff them into the wallet again. Once it was back in his jeans pocket he waved down the bartender and ordered another drink. We sat in silence for several minutes as he downed the beverage. When it was gone he turned to me with a sobered smirk. "So that's why I came here. That's why I decided to drink myself into a stupor. I wanted to forget that I ever loved her."
What could I say after hearing him confess all of that? This was the first time I had ever heard him sound completely true. There was no mask in place, no sense of a lie between the words, just the real and unfiltered Mick Rawson. If I wasn't so shocked at the revelation, I would have been astounded that he was able to get over the ego for a few minutes to show the real him.
The silence was broken as he snapped the glass to the counter top and stood up. He swayed slightly, whether from the alcohol or the sprained ankle. A small smile flashed across his features as he grabbed the photo still on the wooden top. He asked the bartender for a lighter who quickly retrieved one from a nearby smoker. The photo was held between two fingers for a moment. It looked as though he was having second thoughts about what he was going to do. But he shoved them away and pulled his empty glass forward. The two small ice cubes had already started to melt, creating a small film on the outside of the glass.
I watched him with curiosity and relief as he started the lighter and dipped the edge of the photo over the flame. It started to char the paper, singing the edges until it finally engulfed one side completely. Once it became too dangerous to hold, he dropped it in the glass and handed the lighter back to the bartender. Then turned to me with a new mask of relief and drunken slurs.
"Come on love, let's go home."
Note- Ta-da! And that ends this very long story. The ending was something I had plotted from the draft and wasn't sure if I would use it. But now that I think about it, it's a very good way to end this. The conversation between Gina and Whitney was a nice insight into both characters. I plan on using Whitney in a later story. Mick's entire confession was a little hard to write because there were several different ways to do it. I think this one worked better than the previous I tried. The very end tied off the story line between Ellen and Mick. I personally like the way it ended because it was a silent yet clear message that he was done with her. He isn't going to let himself dwell on her anymore which is a good thing for everyone.
I got the idea for this chapter from several songs. Ghost Man on Third by Taking Back Sunday and the live acoustic of Decode by Paramore seem to fit more than some of the others.
So, please let me know what you think! I thank everyone who has read, reviewed, favorited, and subscribed to this story. I hope you all have enjoyed it.