Disclaimer: I do not own Criminal Minds. I do however own this particular idea.
AN: I think it's safe to say that the only reason that this story even exists is because the lovely klcm practically dared me to write it because she wouldn't use the idea of Garcia reverting back to her hacker ways. I wanted to explore what it could be like if Garcia was a full blown hacker. She said something along the lines of "Write it yourself!" – To which I replied "Fine!" What follows is the result of that brief and yet brilliant conversation, and yeah, it has totally taken on a life of its own. My bad.
To klcm: In a completely non-creepy way, this story is kind of dedicated to you because without you this story would not exist. So thanks.
Playing With Fire
Penelope Garcia was willing to accept that sometimes the world just flat out refused to make sense. She accepted that sometimes life did whatever possible to get in your way, and that while it may be dismal, it was not an excuse to not enjoy as much in life as you possibly could. She knew that it was best to accept what was given to you…and then take whatever was missing. She was a devout optimist, and yet she had seen far too many hardships in her life to not be a realist as well. But more than anything, she believed that everything happened for a reason. That philosophy had stood tried and true throughout her entire adult life until about…well, yesterday.
Before yesterday there were only four people in the whole world who knew her name, her real name. She hadn't seen them in over ten years but had always managed to keep tabs on them. It wasn't particularly hard, her brothers had next to no skills when it came to cyber anonymity. No, Penelope hadn't felt like a part of anything, much less a family in a long time. But, the fact remained that her brothers were the only ones who'd known that she'd even existed, and that alone kept her loyalty to them intact. And up until about a week ago, all four of them had been alive.
"Preston….oh God…he's dead because of me."Penelope may not have pulled the trigger, but she knew where the blame would fall. There was a whole task force more than willing to convict her. They were all convinced by an overwhelming amount of amazingly planted evidence that pointed toward her being a killer. What really made this situation impossible was the fact that the only way she could clear her name from one crime was to admit to others, a whole bunch of others. Penelope wasn't her brother's killer, she was the one that'd pissed his killer off, and that was why he was dead. The only reason she was here now was because she hadn't covered her tracks well enough.
Now she sat in an interrogation room that had taken all of about two minutes for her to decide that it was pretty much the most boring room ever. She looked around at the barren walls, pausing briefly on the one way window, the two hard backed chairs, the lightweight and yet incredibly sturdy table. All around, the room felt like it was designed to just suck the life out of a person.
"Isn't that pretty much the point." She thought to herself. She shifted in her chair, trying to get comfortable – it was a losing battle.
She didn't feel dead though, not with SSA Derek Morgan sitting across from her. He had been sitting across from her for the better part of two hours laying out all the evidence stacked against her, trying to make her confess to murder. Penelope was having trouble paying attention though, she was trying hard not to undress him with her eyes. She couldn't help herself, it wasn't often that she found herself alone, in a room, with a hot example of perfection, all the time in the world…and probably a whole hoard of brass on the other side of the window watching her every move. That thought helped douse some of the particularly naughty thoughts she had swimming around in her head…. thoughts that revolved around him, a bowl of strawberries and an epic lack of clothing. Yeah, her sense of self-preservation was currently on hiatus. Thankfully the object of her affection chose that moment to start speaking again.
"We know that you contacted Preston and that you met with your brother two days before he was killed. We have witnesses that saw you two have an argument, a very vocal and heated argument – in public. We found the murder weapon in your car. On top of that we caught you at the crime scene Penelope…after you had broken into it. That screams guilty Garcia."
"No. You're making it sound like I killed him. I didn't. I didn't kill Preston." She stated flatly.
"Oh really," Morgan replied conversationally "And how do you plan on convincing me of that?"
"With my magnetic personality and killer smile." She replied hopefully with a half grin.
"Forgive me for not being convinced."
"I had a perfectly good reason to be in his apartment last night Handsome. I'd just rather not tell it to you." It was like being caught between a rock and a hard spot. Yes, breaking into Preston's apartment wasn't the best of plans, but at that point she had been running out of options. The plan had been simple, drop in, check a few things off of her cybernetic To-Do List via a connection that would lead to a dead end, and leave before anyone knew the wiser. A simple plan, but at the same time, apparently looked a lot like someone returning to the scene of a crime, and even more apparently, that was frowned upon. How was she supposed to know that the place had been staked out by the FBI?
"Garcia, no one can help you if you don't talk. The way I see it, you really don't have much of a choice. It's not like you're going anywhere anytime soon. " Derek Morgan growled, gesturing to her hand that was handcuffed to the table. Penelope followed his gaze down to her wrist and just shrugged.
"I'll admit it. This isn't the way I was envisioned starting a charm bracelet. A whole table is just a bit much don't ya' think Hot Stuff?"
Morgan had the grace to look a flustered. Garcia tried to hold in a giggle, it was a cute look on him.
Morgan quickly schooled his expression. There was no way he could admit to the blonde in front of him just how much she was getting to him. Her constant use of nicknames and innuendos was really unnerving. He'd never met an Unsub whose tactics involved shameless flirting and a smile. It threw him off, the Unsub wasn't supposed to make you want to laugh at her jokes. They weren't supposed to look like a bombshell either. He had to remind himself that she was the "bad guy", that she could ruin people's lives. She probably already had. Penelope Garcia was dangerous, oh so dangerous. She was as cold as ice, which was an irony in itself because he felt like he was playing with fire.