It was late by the time they got back to the BAU. Another case solved, another serial killer behind bars, and countless lives saved from his particular brand of brutality.
Emily had worried the entire time they had been in Oregon. Firstly, she'd worried because the victimology on this case had been startling. Every one of the eleven victims had borne a striking resemblance to JJ, and they had all been painfully aware of the fact, even if none of them had said it out loud. Emily herself had been moments away from whispering in Hotch's ear, asking him to send JJ home and get her away from the danger, when there had been a break in the case and they'd been off, speeding to catch the guy.
The second reason Emily had worried, was because it was painfully obvious that JJ hadn't slept for most of the time they'd been away. The dark circles under her eyes were a stark contrast to her peaches and cream skin. She'd been a real asset though – she'd worked just as hard as the others, and in the end it had been her takedown. After rolling with the guy down a short incline, she'd ended up more or less on top with her gun leveled right at him, giving Hotch a chance to cuff him. But JJ's little journey down the hill had led Emily to the third reason she was worried. Every time the jet hit a pocket of turbulence and jostled her, the blonde had winced. It was plain to see – to Emily, at least, a professional behavioral analyst – that she'd injured herself in some way wrestling with the Unsub. Perhaps she'd pulled a muscle, or strained something. Whatever it was, she was clearly in pain.
Dumping her go-bag by her desk, Emily slumped in her chair and laid her head on her arms for a moment as she waited for the guys to file out one by one. Hotch holed up in his office, which wasn't a surprise, but Reid, Morgan and Gideon all murmured goodnights as they went their separate ways. That just left Emily and JJ in the bullpen, and JJ looked like she was about to drop.
"Hey," she said lightly. "C'mon. I'm taking you home."
"What?" JJ asked, failing to stifle a huge yawn. "No, I'm okay."
"You're not okay. You're exhausted, and in no fit state to drive. If I let you get behind the wheel of a car right now, Hotch might even have me charged with reckless endangerment."
It was a testament to how tired JJ really was that she didn't put up more of a fight, but within minutes the two of them were in Emily's SUV headed away from the BAU. It took JJ a while to realize that they weren't going the right way to get to her house.
"Hey… you missed the turn," she said, voice thick with fatigue. Emily smirked.
"I feel like a slumber party," she said simply. "So I'm kidnapping you."
Again, it was easier just to give in than try to resist. Twenty minutes later they pulled into Emily's building and got into the elevator. Emily led JJ into the bedroom and dumped their go-bags in the corner. "Take off your shirt and lay down on the bed," Emily ordered, in a tone that brooked no argument, and JJ did as she was told, though she shot Emily a very strange look.
"What are you doing, Emily?"
"I'm going to fix your back. You're clearly in pain." After grabbing a bottle of her favorite lavender and chamomile scented lotion out of the bathroom, Emily came back to the bed and looked down at the scene in front of her. JJ was stretched out on the bed in nothing but her bra, head pillowed on her arms. Gently, Emily gathered her hair and tied it in a rough ponytail so that none of the lotion would get in it, then poured a generous amount in her hands and got to work.
She started with the base of JJ's spine. She dug her thumbs in deeply, working the tense, tight muscles as skillfully as she knew how. "Jesus, Emily!" JJ yelped. "Not so hard, that hurt!" But Emily didn't stop. She leaned forward, speaking right into JJ's ear.
"Do you trust me?"
JJ nodded wordlessly, though there was a trace of doubt on her face. Taking her lack of protest as permission, Emily continued. She took her time, making her way up JJ's back and finishing with her shoulders and neck, working out every kink and knot on the way. Before long, JJ's yelps and protests had turned into sighs, moans, and… "JJ, are you purring?"
JJ was completely boneless in her relief and relaxation, her eyes barely open. Emily's hands were magic, she decided. She hadn't felt this good in… she couldn't remember the last time she'd felt this good. And the older woman hadn't stopped touching her. Instead of the firm, deep massage now there were just gentle caresses, up and down her back. "Where did you learn that," she slurred. "God, that was better than sex."
Emily let out a peal of laughter, leaning back down to talk in JJ's ear again. "You can't have been having very good sex then. C'mon, Miss Jennifer, up with you. It's time for bed. The guest room is right next door."
"I can't move. Staying here," JJ mumbled. "Deal with it."
With a sigh, Emily climbed off the bed, grabbing her pajamas and making for the door. "All right, bed hog. I'll take the guest room."
JJ reached out a hand. "Stay?"
A few hours later JJ woke with a start, realizing that she wasn't alone in the bed. There were arms around her, and there was warm breath on the back of her neck, and she still felt all relaxed and loose from the massage earlier. It took her a couple of moments to remember where she was, and then she had to smile. So Emily Prentiss was a nocturnal snuggler, was she?
Experimentally, JJ moved forward slightly, only to have Emily grumble lightly in her sleep and pull her back, until JJ's back was flush against her front, their legs tangled together, and Emily's face was buried in her neck. With a sleepy smile, the blonde settled back into her bed mate. It wasn't as if it meant anything, and frankly it was nice, to have someone there with her as she slept. Neither she nor Emily had had anyone to come home to in quite some time, and JJ for one had been getting tired of an empty bed. She closed her eyes, hands clasping over Emily's where it lay on her stomach, and went back to sleep.