Disclaimer: I don't own criminal minds, although I do lay claim to Hannah and Ruby.
Just a little piece of rubbish I wrote when I was bored and feeling kind of angsty. Hope you enjoy it and don't hate me too much for being mean to the characters! Please review because they make me happy :) Idril xxx
When he shall die
Take him and cut him out in little stars
And he will make the face of heav'n so fine
That all the world will be in love with night
And pay no worship to the garish sun.
William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet
It was a plain wooden coffin covered in the stars and stripes with white roses being slowly laid on top. When it came to her turn she let go of the little girl's hand and took a reluctant step forward, all the while the words "it's not fair" were swimming around her mind. She hated herself for thinking it but as she stared around at his team she wished one of them were in his place. It was atrocious, she was stood there wishing that little Jack, who'd already lost his Mom, had lost his Dad too. But staring down at her own little girl, clutching a flower in one hand and her little bear in the other, she wished it all the harder. When she reached the coffin, she placed one hand against the soft material of the flag, remembering the feel of his shirt as he embraced her before he left that last day. He usually called her everyday so when it got to midnight and there was nothing she'd known. When the doorbell went twenty minutes later and she found Garcia stood there in tears it was just confirmation of her worst nightmare. For a second she couldn't move her arm to put the flower down because if she did then it would all be over, for some strange reason she believed that if she didn't put it down then there was a chance, however small, that she would wake up with his arm around her. A little hand pulled on her sleeve and there was her baby girl, holding out her flower so they could put them down together. She was just like her Daddy, the thought made her smile for the first time since the doorbell had gone. 197 hours ago.
"Would Daddy like Daisy?" The little girl asked holding out her stuffed bear.
"No, he'd want you to keep her." She pulled the little girl up into her arms and held her tightly, as much for herself as the little girl. A hand squeezed her shoulder, when she saw whose hand it was she blushed in shame. The last time they'd spoken- spoken, that was definitely the wrong word, try screamed- she'd accused him of nothing less than murdering his best friend. She'd been so angry with the world and he'd made an attempt to comfort her. The poor guy would never try that again. All he'd said was "It was quick, he didn't suffer" but that wasn't what she'd wanted to hear. She'd wanted to hear that he was still clinging to life. That he'd loved her enough to fight. Somewhere in the back of her mind she knew how angry and bitter she was being. This was no one's fault except the Unsub, but he was dead and she needed someone to blame. It didn't matter whether it was Derek Morgan or her own loving husband, as long as there was someone she could take chunks out of.
"Thanks." She hoped that single, whispered word would convey everything she needed to say. He nodded gently, accepting her unspoken apology. They stayed like that for a few seconds while the rest of the congregation slowly filed away from the graveside. She couldn't follow them; it felt wrong to leave her husband there, all alone in the cold and dark. Sophie squirmed slightly in her grasp, wanting to get down but she couldn't bring herself to relinquish her grip on the little girl.
"Come on, Hannah." Derek tried to lead his friend back to the car but she refused to move. "Ruby's getting cold."
"Ok." Hannah nodded before turning back to the coffin and bending down to kiss it. She whispered I love you to the wooden container while Derek tried not to break down. He had to be strong for Hannah right now. It was his uselessness as Reid's partner that had left her a widow and her daughter Fatherless. He knew what it was like to grow up without a Father yet he had allowed it to happen to his own Goddaughter. He could only remember the day in flashbacks, as if his mind was trying to protect him from the horror of the entire day. Sat in the kitchen listening to the potential witness. Garcia's name flashing across the screen of his phone. Stepping out of the room to take the call. Garcia screaming that he was the Unsub. The ricocheting bang of the gunshot. Reid on the floor in a pool of blood. Unsub gone. Cradling his best friend in his arms as blood spluttered out of his mouth. Begging Reid to hold on. The last spluttering heartbeat. The silence.
He shook the final image from his mind before turning back to Hannah who was staring longingly at the coffin as if Reid would open it up to reveal it was all part of an elaborate magic trick. He reached out his hand and gently tugged at her elbow; it was getting cold and he needed to get the two of them somewhere warm. It was the least he could do. For a minute he thought she'd refuse but then she turned and allowed him to lead her away. Hannah was usually one of the most beautiful women he'd ever laid eyes on but right now she looked awful; her regularly shiny raven black hair was hanging limply around her face while red streaks marked the passage of the tears down her pale, haggard face. She used to be so smiley she made Garcia look miserable, but looking at her now, he couldn't imagine ever seeing her face light up again. Ruby had buried her head in her Mother's shoulder but he knew she was crying too. She was her Daddy's little girl when it came to her intelligence so he knew she understood what was going on. Right now, he wasn't sure whether that was a good thing or not.
When they got back to the car park he was shocked to see the rest of the team waiting silently. He'd expected everyone to have already left for Rossi's house where they were holding the wake but he was glad they'd stayed, and from the look on Hannah's face so was she. Staring at the team it was evident that they were all still in shock too; I mean when two of your team go out to interview a goddamn witness you expect them both to come back. Instead they had just buried their youngest member and now had the pleasure of watching his wife slowly self destruct.
The wake started off as a quiet affair with members of the FBI whispering quiet condolences to Hannah who stayed close by any member of the team she could. Ruby had gone off to play in another room with Jack and Henry leaving Hannah feeling even more bereft, she kept going to check on the little girl, she knew coddling her wouldn't do her any good but for the minute she had to know where she was. She'd been about to head off to hunt for Ruby when she'd caught sight of him across the room. For a minute she'd thought her mind was playing tricks on her, but there he was, larger than life.
While she'd never formally met Spencer's father, the things she'd heard had made her skin crawl. She hated the man for what he'd done to Diana and Spencer and to see him here now. A red mist descended and she stormed over to where he was stood quietly in the corner watching Ruby.
"What are you doing here?" She hissed angrily while trying to keep her voice quiet so Ruby wouldn't hear.
"You're his wife aren't you? You spoke beautifully."
"What are you doing here?"
"He was my son." She snorted because really, he remembered that now? Hadn't that played into his consciousness any other time over the past twenty years?
"Yeah and he hated you. So please leave. Don't make today harder for me, for her," She jerked her head in Ruby's direction. "Then it has to be."
"Diana not here?" He asked, purposely ignoring her plea.
"No. After she...after I told her, her health took a turn for the worse. Her Doctors didn't think it was advisable for her to come." She bit her lip as she thought of Diana all alone in the hospital. She'd already promised herself that she'd take Ruby out to see her soon. Hopefully seeing her Granddaughter would cheer her up, it had always done in the past. William paused at the news before turning back to Ruby.
"I'm sorry." She wondered what exactly he was apologising for: the list was too extensive to pin down one specific event.
"I didn't see you at the service."
"I stayed at the back, I didn't want to make it harder for any of you then it had to be."
"So why did you come here?" She fired back irritably although regretted it when Ruby turned to look at the two of them. She smiled at the little girl, hoping it would convince her that everything was fine. Thankfully she didn't come over, although she did continue to turn and stare at them every few minutes.
"I wanted to see her. She's beautiful, you must be very proud." She was tempted to fire back a vicious comment about never leaving Ruby but something stopped her. There was something about the defeatist, heartbroken look on his face that made her stop. He was suffering enough without her making it worse. They stood there in silence for a few seconds before he mumbled something about leaving.
"Wait." She sighed, unsure exactly why she was about to extend the olive branch to him. The only explanation she could offer was that he had a little part of Spencer in him and right now she was in no position to lose another piece of the man she adored. "If I let you into her life, and you let her down in any way, shape or form then the things I'll do to you would make some of Spencer's psychos proud. Do you understand?"
"Are you serious?"
"That I'll kill you if you hurt her? You bet I am."
"No, that I can... I can be a part of her life?" He looked shocked, but there was something in his eyes that made him look like a drowning man just thrown a lifeline.
"Yes. Just don't let her down, she... she can't lose anyone else." Her voice cracked on the last word and she had to bite her lip to keep from crying. Ruby appeared from nowhere and grabbed her Mom's hand in a childlike attempt to offer comfort. Hannah pulled the little girl up into her arms and stroked a dark curl back behind her ear so she could get a better glimpse of her hazel eyes, a carbon copy of her father's. "Ruby, there's someone I want you to meet. This is Daddy's Dad."
"Like a Grampa?" Ruby asked curiously, eyeing up William suspiciously. Ruby had never had a Grandfather before; Hannah's parents had died in botched burglary when she was in her last year of college. It had been the reason she'd joined the bureau and ultimately, the reason she met Spencer.
"Yes baby, he's your Grampa."
"Hello Ruby." William smiled at waved at her; the gesture moved him forward slightly so Hannah could see over his shoulder to Derek watching William darkly. Their eyes met and he mouthed everything ok?
Its fine, thanks. He nodded at her reply but didn't move from his position by the counter, for which she'd be eternally grateful.
Derek drove Hannah and Ruby home after the wake. She'd wanted to stay and help Dave clear up but the team refused to let her, saying she should get Ruby home. Ruby had fallen asleep in her booster seat before they'd even left Dave's drive with Daisy tucked under her chin. Hannah had been curled up away from him in her seat since they'd left but she turned around to face Derek, biting her bottom lip.
"Do you think I did the right thing? Letting William see Ruby?" She added when he looked at her blankly.
"Everyone deserves a second chance. And if he lets her down there are many people with guns who'll go after him."
"I said he could see her when we go to Las Vegas." He took one hand off the wheel and tentatively put it over hers.
"It'll be ok whatever happens." He promised her, although he understood her fears. William had let Reid down so badly that twenty years later he still had problems trusting people. Derek made Reid a silent promise that he'd keep his girls safe, it was the least he could do since he'd let him down so badly. If William Reid put so much as a hair out of line he'd make sure there was hell to pay.
When they pulled up outside Hannah's house he gently pulled Ruby into his arms while Hannah unlocked the door. It felt so wrong as he cradled her, that was Spencer's job not his. Hannah seemed to agree because as soon as he was over the threshold she took Ruby and headed up the stairs. He headed into the living room and sat down on the red leather couch to wait for Hannah's return. She appeared ten minutes later rubbing tiredly at her eyes.
"You don't have to stay."
"I think your couch looks pretty lonely, it needs some TLC." She rolled her eyes at him but relented.
"Fine but if you're going to be a martyr you might as well sleep in the spare room." Secretly, she was glad he was going to stay, the idea of being alone tonight, well any night, scared her. It was stupid, she'd spent enough time alone during her early twenties but now she was used to having someone curled up beside her. A body that radiated warmth, love and protection even while he slept. Sure she'd slept alone when he was away with work but she'd known he'd be back soon. Now he was suffocating under six feet of earth. The idea made her shiver and she curled up closer to Derek. It didn't feel the same. Rock hard arms replaced soft scrawny ones, the arm he put around her shoulder was too heavy and the hand that squeezed her shoulder was gun calloused. But it was someone; she had to be grateful for that.
They headed to bed soon after that, the day had been an emotional wreck but the night wouldn't be much better. Reluctantly Hannah shut the bedroom door after making sure Ruby was still asleep. She tried to keep her eyes from wandering towards Spencer's side of the bed but it was impossible. The screwed up pillow was exactly how he'd left it and the nightstand held the Russian book he'd been reading. She knew it was a mistake but she couldn't help walking over and opened the walk in wardrobe where Spencer's shirts were lined up neatly. She put her hand out and gently stroked them, if she closed her eyes she could visualise warm, shirt clad arms wrapping around her body. Why couldn't Hotch have sent someone else? She emitted a tiny whine before fumbling in the pocket of her skirt for her phone. She restlessly thumbed through her contacts before she found her answer phone. It was the only message she had.
"Hey baby, we just finished the case so I'll be home soon. I can't wait to see you two, give Ruby a kiss from me and tell her I'll be home for bedtime. I love you, Honey. See you soon." But he wouldn't. He was never going to read to Ruby again. She hit 1 to repeat the message as she slid down the wall onto the floor. I love you, Honey. The words ripped at her heart and she let out a sob, quickly followed by another. Before she knew it, she'd lost all control and was crying hysterically on the floor. Wrong arms engulfed her and promised that everything would be alright. They were wrong. Nothing would be alright ever again.