Derek's house would need to become a safe haven. A place that father and child felt safe and comfortable in, and Derek knew that. He had written down the channels that aired cartoons and the hours in which they played. He'd made sure to have coffee and creamer in abundance. Mac and cheese, chicken nuggets and juice.

Derek doesn't try to fool himself, either. He knows that these things aren't magically going to pull them out of the depression they're in. Jack's not going to drink a box of juice and suddenly stop caring that his mother doesn't want him and that his father beat and raped his Papa while he stood mere feet away. But he hoped that it would comfort him, even slightly.

"Hey Spencer, can you come into the kitchen?" Derek asks. They'd been at his house for a month now. Spencer is biting his lip. This is what he'd been waiting for. Either Derek would be sick of them and ask him to leave or he would want repayment. Spencer knows that Derek has been in love with him. He assumes that that is what he will ask for in return, and he will accept. He would do anything to protect Jack.

Derek hugs Spencer and Spencer hesitantly returns it. He sits down at the table and Spencer follows. "Pretty Boy, are you and Jack doing alright? You hardly talk to me, and I just want to know if there's anything else I should be doing for you." Spencer shakes his head. "There isn't a lot that can be done. Jack is having to deal with finding out that his hero is one of the worst kinds of people... And I have to get over loving someone enough to let them abuse me," he answers honestly.

Derek takes one of Spencer's hands. "I will never be able to explain to you how much I admire your courage. To go through all of that... Just to protect that little boy in there." Spencer feels himself tearing up. He'd never considered any other option. He could have just left the first time and never said anything else about it, but Aaron always brought Jack up and Spencer was not willing to hurt Jack.

"Thank you, Derek. Are.. Are you sure we're not in your way too often? I appreciate the help, but I don't want you to get sick of us." Derek leans forward and kisses Spencer softly on the lips. "This is what I've always wanted... Just with a different reasoning behind it. I am never going to get sick of you. As for Jack- He's the coolest kid I've ever met. You're both welcome here forever."


Spencer leaves Jack with Jessica and goes to work with Derek. The BAU is quiet and Spencer feels like everyone is watching him. He quickly sits at his desk and wonders who the temporary replacement for Hotch will be.

"Agent Reid, I need to see you in my office," Strauss says firmly. Spencer stands and exchanges glances with Derek before following Strauss. He sits down and she looks at him with a sigh. "You and Supervisory special agent Hotchner were engaged in a relationship?" She asks. Spencer begins rubbing his wrist.

"We were, ma'am. I've no doubt that you know why he's been arrested." Spencer replies. She nods her head and looks through some of her paperwork. "We do not allow relationships between members of the same team. When and if SSA Hotchner returns to work he will be punished accordingly. As for you- I'm sorry but you're fired."

Spencer's breathing hitches. "I'm being fired?" Strauss hands him the paperwork and apologizes again. Spencer walks out of her office and back to his desk. Derek raises an eyebrow at him. He folds the termination paper into an airplane and throws it over to Derek. He watches as the goofy smile slowly fades.

Spencer packs his belongings and walks out of the building.


He gets Jack from Jessica and returns to Derek's home. "Papa, I miss daddy." Jack tells him quietly. Spencer wraps his thin arms around the boy. "Me too... sometimes," he admits.

Derek wakes him up when he returns home. "I'm going to start making dinner. Is there anything in specific you want?" Spencer shakes his head. "They've named me the temporary head of the BAU," Derek tells him. Spencer doesn't have to force the smile on his face. "You deserve the title, Derek. You're one of the best."

Derek stirs whatever it is he's decided to cook. "I'm thinking about accepting one of the teaching jobs they've offered me at the University." Spencer says. "I'm not sure, though. I don't know how I'd handle having to talk in front of so many students all the time." Derek wishes Spencer was more excited.

"Pretty Boy, you'd be great! Have yo considered teaching the new recruits at the FBI?" Spencer laughs a little and shakes his head. "I'm the poster child for disaster. I would be a bad role model for how to be a safe agent."

They both laugh at the truth in this. "Have you thought about giving yourself a break and staying home? Maybe writing some books about all of that amazing stuff you have crammed in your head." Spencer thinks about it. "I could teach and write. Staying home isn't a viable because it doesn't bring any money in."

Derek sighs and turns the food off. "Spencer, baby doll. You can stay here, with me. I work and I have a house and I will take care of you. And Jack." Spencer leans forward and kisses Derek on the lips. Derek kisses back but pulls away. "That is not what I want in return. I just want to see you happy again, Pretty Boy. I'm okay in the friend zone."


Spencer and Derek had finally set the guest room up for Jack. Now Jack has his own room and Derek has his room back. "Papa, is Derek going to be my new daddy?" Spencer smiles. "No, baby. We aren't going to be with each other like that, but he is still my best friend and your uncle Derek." Jack smiles. "I think you like each other," Jack mentions.

Spencer sighs. "Even if we did, it's too early for us to be in love. Maybe one day," he says. It satisfies Jack enough for him to go to sleep.