I was once an avid CSI fan. Over the seasons, I started watching it now and then when I was home and didn't have much else to watch, but this season has drawn me back in completely. I really like Morgan's character, I think she brings back that spunk and easy, carefree banter that's been a bit missing of late. And, as Greg has always been my favorite character, it's nice to see someone more his age to bring that side of him back out as well. Needless to say, I love their little flirty moments, which inspired this story.
Each chapter will be a different one-shot that pertains to a quote in some way.
Disclaimer: I like to pretend I'm a cool crime lab scientist when I'm doing DNA abstractions in my lab research class at college, clearly I am not quite cool enough to own this show (but oh, if I did).
Obsession has some semi-spoilers for CSI Unplugged.
"Obsession is the single most wasteful human activity, because with an obsession you keep coming back and back and back to the same question and never get an answer." Norman Mailer
It's sitting there, innocuously. Just like it has for more than a week now. Nothing's different, it hasn't changed. It hasn't even been knocked or wiggled from where she first set it down.
She's been staring at it for ten minutes and she knows it.
Shift ended twenty minutes ago. She knows that too.
The report she's been working on has autosaved twice without changes and she actually doesn't know that, but she does realize that her fingers have been still on the keyboard unnecessarily long.
Even so, the clock ticks forward and she remains at an impasse, her eyes slowly losing focus on the object itself, her mind thinking back to how it came to rest on the right far corner of her desk, wandering back to the crazy shift.
She's slightly obsessed, and she doesn't even know why. It's just a bunch of metal and glass and knobs and tubes. It's not like it has the answers to any of the questions she's not even certain she's asking. And it certainly doesn't contain any secrets about the report that she should be finishing right now (autosave number 3 has just been completed).
Still, for whatever reason, it keeps catching her off guard and commanding her attention. (She's not about to admit this is the fourth time this week either).
With unnecessary force, she slides her keyboard tray back into her desk, startling the only other person who seems as unable to finish their paperwork and get home as she is.
"Everything alright Morgan?" Greg asks with enough legitimate concern that it only serves to further unravel her rapidly fraying nerves. He's looking up from his own monitor, a tired smile on his face—perhaps amused to know he's not the only one who's struggling. But, she reminds herself, at least he's struggling because he's working. She can't even manage to keep her mind on what she needs to do.
She meets his concern with an equally weary smile and shrug of her shoulders—dismissive but grateful. "Just trying to finish this case report." There's an offhand motion to her computer as she stands, bringing her arms above her head and stretching muscles she hadn't known were tense.
"Think I'm gonna go get some coffee, see if it helps me focus. Want some?" With any luck the caffeine will at least get her jacked enough to not be able to concentrate on any one thing for long—maybe she can manage to distract herself from obsessively staring down her microscope and manage to get herself to jump back and forth between the report and, well, anything else.
The good natured amusement in his voice (she's often the more businesslike of the two of them, he likes seeing her frazzled and distracted from the task at hand for once) lifts her spirits and she really hopes that that is not one of the things that her caffeine wired brain will be thinking about. "If you're offering, yeah."
She bites her tongue against comebacks she might otherwise say and nods as she heads out of the room, not bothering to ask how he wants it. After five months of working together, she knows. (She stubbornly refuses to think about the fact that she doesn't how anyone else takes their coffee—or indeed, if Sara even likes the energy spiking liquid).
The short trip to the break room does serve to jumble up her thoughts a bit and the familiar process of making coffee requires just enough concentration that she can let go of everything else as she does it. Of course, ten minutes later she's grabbing a mug she knows is his favorite (black with white writing, a double helix on the front, the nucleotide amino acid sequences on the back) and filling it with coffee, half a creamer, and a flat topped spoonful of New York Vanilla ice cream from the freezer. She dumps the rest of his creamer into her own cup with a heaping pile of sugar, and uses the spoon from his ice cream to mix her cup as well.
Walking back to their office (devoid the other, productive members of their team who's desks are neat, tidy and empty), the glass case catches the corner of her eye and she sighs. Here she goes again.
Shaking her head against the thoughts, she steps back into the office as autosave number nine finishes up, walking past her desk to pass a cup off to Greg, ignoring the fact that he doesn't even have to ask which is his (apparently he knows that the cup with the night skyline of the strip has become her favorite).
"Thanks," he comments genuinely, taking a long, savoring sip. Morgan turns around to avoid watching him and looks anywhere but at that damn microscope as she crosses the space back to her desk.
She's sunken into her chair and taken her own long draw of coffee before she answers back, "you're welcome," following the words with another satisfying sip.
As she waits for the caffeine, glorious and very much needed, to sink in, she devotedly looks anywhere but the right hand corner of her desk. Unfortunately, that means her gaze almost always ends up going left, crossing the room to the desk kiddie-corner to hers and while this is clearly unhelpful and certainly unwanted, she can't help but admire how insistently he is working. Then again, as lead for the case, he does have rather more notes to put together than she does (thank God).
"How far are you?" His voice startles her errant thoughts, only to be further startled as she realizes his eyes are on her and she's probably been caught staring (she crosses her figurative fingers that her unfocused gaze just looked zoned out).
Smiling sheepishly, hoping to play it all off, she gazes down at her screen, watching the word 'autosave' fade away (eleven). "I've probably got about three-quarters of it done, why?"
"You wanna go grab breakfast and then come in early to finish? Coffee just made me realize I haven't eaten since I got here."
Odd. She hadn't realized how hungry she was, but now that he mentioned it, she was starving.
She really should finish, reports are easier to do, and honestly best done, with the case fresh in the mind. She's opening her mouth to tell him she'll pass when she turns her head slightly and sees the microscope. As if she'll get any work done.
"Yes, get me out of here."
They leave their computers and coffee cups where they lay, grab their coats and hit the parking lot. He offers to drive, saying he can easily drop her off on his way home and grab her to come in an hour or two before shift.
They laugh and swap stories and just chat as they wait for their breakfast. Amidst the light hearted, much too easy chatter, one image keeps floating around in the back of her mind whenever they hit a lull: the damn microscope.
Autosave number 41.
I've started writing this a bunch of ways a bunch of times, always with the idea of Morgan being distracted by the microscope and her having it on her desk. I just love that scene, really that whole episode, and wanted to expand on it. My first CSI fanfiction in a good long time.
Feedback is always appreciated, let me know what you think or if you have comments/concerns/thoughts/suggestions.