If I owned it, would I be writing this? Nope, sure wouldn't... you'd be watching my version on TV every Wednesday at 9pm, 8 central and mountain. ;)
Also - please put away the pitchforks and torches... yes I know I should be working on chapters 23 of The Road Before Us and Though The Road Was Never Smooth, but the muse is arguing with me on how to write those chapters plus it's been an incredibly busy month in the real world... but my very good friend ByWillowy (if you haven't read her stuff, you totally should) sent me some pictures that totally sparked this story idea... I'm hoping that working on it will knock some cobb webs loose so I can get back into a normal writing and posting rhythm.
Also - you can read the unabridged writers cut here:
www. thewriterscoffeeshop library /index. php
Just take out the spaces :D
Happy reading and enjoy ;)
JJ stood looking out the window in the dark kitchen, mesmerized by the beauty of the middle of the night moonlight as it cascaded over the fresh fallen snow, as she stood sipping from a glass of water. She was looking forward to a week of vacationing in this winter wonderland with her boyfriend.
A smile crossed her face as she thought of the man she'd left sleeping in their vacation bed as she slipped out of bed and into his shirt to head to the kitchen for a drink of water. She quickly became lost in her thoughts of the last several months. If anyone had told her she'd be standing here a year ago, she wouldn't have believed them. A year ago Emily was still relatively freshly returned from the dead. Her friendship with Spence had been on fragile terms, but slowly recovering from the fallout of Emily's faked death and all the lies surrounding it.
'It's amazing how much things can change in a year.' she mused as she lifted the glass and took another sip, reflecting back on the night that had changed the course her life had been on forever.
"So, nervous?" JJ overheard Dave ask Will as she walked arm in arm with her Mom to go get ready.
"Only if she doesn't come back down." Will replied with a facial expression that belied just how worried he was that she wouldn't come back down.
JJ took a deep breath as she walked through Dave's mansion and up the stairs to a room that had been set aside for her to get ready. JJ paused in the doorway watching as her Mom hung the wedding dress she'd worn when her parents were married up and removed the protective plastic. Suddenly, she felt overwhelmed and gasped for breath as she stepped in the room, sinking into the chair in front of the vanity.
"Sweetheart, you need to…" Sandy trailed off as she turned around to look at her daughter. "Jennifer, sweetheart, are you alright?" she asked as she walked over to JJ, rested her hands on JJ's shoulders, and met her daughter's eyes in the mirror. There she could see the turmoil, the indecision, the anxiety, the doubt.
JJ took a deep breath, and reached up to clasp one of her mother's hands as she silently shook her head no.
"Sweetheart, what is it?" Sandy asked in concern.
"Nothing has changed." JJ whispered softly. "All the reasons I've always told Will 'no' all the other times that he's proposed, they're still there."
"Other times…he's asked you more than one other time?" Sandy asked surprised.
JJ nodded. "When I found out I was pregnant, when Henry was born, and several dozen other times between then and now."
Sandy sighed, her eyes closing as she said a silent prayer for her daughter to make the decision that was right for her in this moment. Her eyes opened, meeting a matching set of blue eyes in the mirror, "What changed this time? Dave said you asked Will to ask you again."
JJ growled in frustration at herself. "It was a long day. Will almost died. Twice." JJ sobbed, "He was held hostage and had to leave one of the people we were after with Henry…"
"He left a criminal, a murderer with Henry?" Sandy asked in shock.
JJ's head dipped, her chin resting on her chest as she relived the moments of horror and panic she'd gone through where Henry was concerned as she silently nodded, tears cresting her eyes. She reached up with her free hand to wipe them away. "I was just so relieved that we all made it through it… and when Will was getting patched up, I realized how close Henry came to losing his Daddy… and I…"
"Oh, Jennifer, when will you stop sacrificing yourself and your needs for others? I know you want Henry to be happy, and I'm proud of how good of a mother you are. You always put Henry first, but if you go into a marriage that you don't want, in some way, Henry will pay a price." Sandy whispered sadly, realizing that her daughter had brought up marriage in order to make sure that Will would always be there for Henry, to solidify a family unit for her son, not because she was so in love with Will that she couldn't wait another moment for them to be married. She wrapped her arms around her daughter and held her while she cried; wishing that she could fix this as easily as she'd been able to fix her scrapped knees when she'd been a little girl.
"What am I going to do?" JJ asked as she turned, burying her face against her mother's suit as she wrapped her arms around her.
"Oh sweetheart, only you can decide that." Sandy replied as she stroked JJ's blonde hair and rubbed her back. "You're the one who has to live with whatever decision you make. Just out of curiosity, why did you say no all of the other times Will proposed?"
JJ took a deep shuddering breath and grabbed a Kleenex from the box on the vanity as she leaned back to answer her Mom. "It didn't feel right. I know he gave up his badge and his life in New Orleans to move here, to be with Henry and me, but I didn't ask him to. He's been asking me to give up the BAU ever since I was pregnant. He was happy when I was forced to transfer to the Pentagon… he's jealous of the team and the amount of time we spend together. He was angry this summer when Spence came over almost every night for ten weeks while he mourned Emily."
Sandy looked down at her daughter and studied her, really studied her. Jennifer had always spoken fondly of her friend Spencer, relishing in when she was able to share something new with him and expand his world or when she learned something new from him. To be honest, she'd been surprised when Jennifer told her she was pregnant and introduced Will as the father. She'd thought for the longest time that with each passing story Jennifer shared about Spencer that they were growing closer and closer and would presumably end up together once they both woke up and admitted their feelings to each other. It seemed it was now or never. "Jennifer, is there maybe someone else… maybe feelings for someone else have been stopping you all these years from telling Will yes?"
"Mom, I would never cheat." JJ replied in shock that her mother would suggest such a thing.
Sandy smiled. "I know you wouldn't sweetheart, at least not physically; but we can't control our heart and who it decides to love. To be honest, I think you gave your heart away a long time ago, a year or two before you met Will. Will is a good, kind and decent man. He's an excellent father, and in another life, the two of you could be very happy together, but in this life, I don't think it's ever been an even playing field, has it?" Sandy asked, cupping her daughter's jaw as she looked down into her deep blue eyes, the kind that ran in the family for generations now and apparently would continue to do so, given the fact that the same beautiful blue eyes were present in the face of her treasured grandson.
"Mom?" JJ asked in confusion.
"Just be honest with yourself sweetheart. Besides Henry, who do we talk about most?" Sandy asked very innocently.
"Spence," JJ answered without pause or reservation, "Oh my God, Spence." JJ said, repeating his name, struck dumb as her brain made the connection. "Mom, I need to see… to talk to Spence. Can you go get him for me?"
"Hey, what are you doing out here? The bed is cold without you." Spence whispered as he walked up behind JJ, wrapping his arms around her waist as she stood staring out the window watching the moonlight reflect off the snow. He'd been excited when JJ suggested a week away at a cabin. Seeing as he'd grown up in the desert he'd never had an opportunity to play in the snow as a child. JJ told him her goal was to remedy that situation, along with all the other ways they would be spending their time at the remote vacation cabin. He was looking forward to it all.
JJ turned her head, resting her cheek against Spence's chest and pressed a kiss to his bicep where it crossed in front of her as he stood with his arms wrapped around her. "I was just thinking of that night… the almost wedding…"
"Oh," Spencer murmured in reply, nodding as he dropped his chin to rest on her shoulder. He'd been beyond shocked when Sandy had come to find him as he did magic tricks for Henry, whispering in his ear that JJ wanted to see him, needed to speak with him. "That was some night, huh?" he asked with a chuckle, his thoughts going back to that night.
Spencer took a deep breath as he paused, his knuckles just about to knock on the door of the room JJ was using to get ready. 'What does she want to see me for?' he thought curious as to what it could be that would cause JJ to ask her Mom to get him. 'Well, Spencer only one way to find out.' He silently told himself, forcing his hand forward. He caught his breath as the door opened. JJ stood there looking absolutely radiant in a beautiful blue dress that matched her eyes almost perfectly.
"Spence!" JJ exclaimed, her eyes lighting up as she stepped forward wrapping her arms around him.
"JJ," Spencer murmured into her hair, taking advantage of the rare opportunity to hold her, to imagine what it would be like if she was his love and more than just a fantasy that would never come true. He swallowed down his sadness at tonight being the end of any hope that he might have since she was marrying Will. "Your Mom said you wanted to see me? But," he glanced down again appreciating the way her blue dress hugged her form, "shouldn't you be getting ready?"
JJ swallowed as she clasped his hands, her fingers playing with his, wishing that one of them had spoken up sooner, that it was Spence she would be marrying tonight… she swallowed again. Now or never. "I did. I needed to see you before…" she trailed off as she caught the subtle wince that crossed Spence's face. "There is something that I need to know… something I need to be sure of."
Spencer looked up from where he was staring at their joined fingers. "What do you need to know? How can I help?" he asked as JJ stepped back, dragging him all the way into the room with her.
JJ let go of one of Spence's hands and reached behind him to close the door as she cleared her throat, wondering what the best way to approach this was. Then she looked up into the swirling pools of his hazel eyes. 'Screw it, all in Jareau.' The little voice in her head told her as she stretched up, her hands clasped on either side of his face, her thumbs stroking across his cheekbones. Then one hand slid down along his jaw and his neck, up the back of his head, her fingers tangling in his hair as she pulled him down meeting his lips in a passionate kiss as she put every feeling she'd ever had about and for Spence into their kiss. She kissed him as if it would be the last time she ever kissed him, savoring and relishing the moment, because the simple truth was it truly might be the last and only time she kissed him.
Spencer gasped as JJ's lips made contact with his before surrendering to the kiss and allowing his lips to express through their kiss the words he'd never found the courage to say.
JJ pulled out of the kiss, not making eye contact with Spence, afraid of what she might see in his eyes, but even more afraid of what she might not see in his eyes. She leaned against him, her arms wrapped tightly around his neck, afraid to break the silence as she rested her head against his cheek. "I needed to know." She whispered.
Spencer startled out of his thoughts, sure up until now that he'd been day dreaming. "JJ… I… you… you kissed me." He murmured in wonder.
JJ smiled, finally daring to look up into his eyes as her fingers played with the hair at the nape of his neck. "I did."
"Wait… you said you needed to know… you needed to know…" he puzzled over JJ's words just before she kissed him, trying to connect her words and her actions in his genius brain.
JJ could see the exact moment that his brain made the connection between her needing to know something and her kissing him as his eyes went wide.
Spencer turned his big wide hazel eyes on JJ, meeting the brilliant blue eyes that he loved. He cleared his throat. "You, um, said that you needed to know something… did you uh, get your answer?"
JJ smiled. "I did. I love you Spencer Reid. I'm in love with you and I have been for a long time. I'm sorry that I didn't realize it… didn't figure it out sooner."
A very large grin lit up Spencer's face. "I love you too JJ. I always have. I never thought… I couldn't imagine…" he trailed off as JJ leaned in and kissed him again. "What does this mean?"
JJ sighed at the sobering thought of where they were and why they were there. "It means I have a big mess to clean up so that we can be together." She replied leaning her forehead against his temple.
Spencer nodded, a little sad that they couldn't stay in this moment forever. "Right."
"Can you please go and find my Mom and let her know I need to talk to Will?" she asked as she reached up, rubbing her thumb across Spence's lips to remove the light trace of her lipstick on his lips.
"Sure." Spencer replied, reaching behind him for the door handle, not wanting to let JJ go until the last possible second.
"Spence?" JJ asked, causing him to pause.
"Yeah?" Spencer replied, his hand pausing just above the door knob.
"After you find my Mom, can you please find Henry and keep him occupied and distracted? I'm not sure how Will's going to take it… I don't want Henry to be scared if it gets…" JJ trailed off, wincing at the thought of how much of a scene Will could make if he decided he so chose. The entire team was here, Beth, Chief Strauss… things could become quite awkward rather quickly.
Spencer quickly managed to find Sandy Jareau in the company of Henry. He leaned in and whispered in her ear that JJ needed to talk to Will so as not to be overheard by Garcia and Emily who weren't that far away.
Sandy leaned back, her hand resting on Spencer's arm as she studied his face, looking, searching.
He gave her a shy smile and a nod to confirm that what she suspected was true. He was in love with her daughter and her daughter was in love with him.
Sandy smiled back and patted Spencer on the shoulder, happy that Jennifer had found and followed her heart. Then she sighed realizing the long night that Jennifer had in front of her in sorting out this mess.
A few moments later, Sandy took a deep breath and knocked on the door. She poked her head in and then opened it. "I found Will for you." she told Jennifer, empathy in her eyes for the mess her daughter had gotten herself into by not following her heart sooner.
"Thanks Mom." JJ said as she stood up from where she sat at the vanity.
Will glanced from JJ to the dress that was now back in the protective plastic, to Sandy as she stepped out of the room, closing the door behind her. "Cher, aren't you supposed to be getting ready?" Will asked. "I know we haven't done things the right way up to this point, but I'm pretty certain the groom isn't supposed to see the bride before the wedding…"
JJ stepped forward and took Will's hands in hers, saying a silent prayer that she managed to make this as painless as possible, and yet she knew no matter how she said it, that it was going to be incredibly painful for him. "There isn't going to be a wedding Will." She said tilting her head back to look up at him.
"Isn't going to be a…" Will paused in confusion at the words that were coming out of his soon to be wife's mouth, "sure there is cher. You've got your Momma's dress and there's a band, and a dance floor. We've got rings. Everybody that's important to you is here." He replied, his voice cracking under the strain of emotion as the realization of what was happening hit him. He closed his eyes, hoping against hope that he was wrong as he held tightly to JJ's hands.
JJ took a deep breath. "No there's not Will. I'm sorry. I'm sorry that I got caught up in the emotion yesterday and asked you to ask again. I'm sorry that I didn't realize before now that there was a reason the answer's always been no. Most of all I'm sorry that I don't love you the way that you love me because you deserve to be loved like that." JJ swallowed thickly.
Will opened his eyes. "What about Henry?" he croaked.
"I will never be sorry for Henry." JJ replied, meeting Will's gaze.
"Doesn't he deserve to have a Momma and Daddy that are together and love him?" Will pleaded against the loss of his dream of the last several years, his dream since finding out that JJ was pregnant.
JJ swallowed. "Henry has a Mommy and Daddy that love him, but the together part…I'm sorry Will, that's just…"
Will nodded. "We're not just not getting married… we're splitting up aren't we?" he asked, despair seeping into his voice.
JJ nodded, biting her lip.
Will nodded and then held up his hand as JJ was about to speak. He turned on his heels and opened the door slamming it behind him, needing to get out of the room where his dream died. He headed for the stairs taking them two at a time.
"Daddy, Daddy, Daddy," Henry yelled, oblivious to what was happening, as he charged towards his father upon seeing him at the bottom of the stairs.
"Hey buddy," Will responded to Henry in a tight voice as he attempted to control his emotions.
"Unca 'Pence did a new magic twick!" Henry squealed in delight just as Spencer came up behind him.
"Sorry, he's pretty quick. He got away from me." Spencer said, swallowing as he took in Will's appearance.
"Will!" JJ called from the top of the stairs, afraid of what might happen next as she glanced back and forth between Spence and Will.
Spencer turned to look up the stairs at JJ, at the sound of worry in her voice, his eyes showing his own concern for her and what she was going through right now.
Will's hands clenched and unclenched as he looked back and forth between Spencer and JJ, the pieces finally falling together. JJ's reluctance to tell the team about their relationship; JJ's reluctance to tell the team about her pregnancy; JJ refusing to leave the BAU when she was pregnant; JJ asking Will to have Spencer be Henry's godfather; JJ being so upset over having to leave the BAU for the Pentagon; Ten weeks of Spencer being held by JJ on their couch as he cried over Emily; the fights; the jealousy he'd felt… He clenched and unclenched his hands, his jaw clenching and unclenching in time with his fists. He glared up at JJ. Then he turned to look at Henry. "Yeah, he's a real magician alright." He said his eyes rising to meet Spencer's. Then he turned and stormed out of Rossi's mansion, slamming the front door behind him.
Chaos ensued in the wake of Will's departure as the entire BAU struggled to figure out and understand what the hell had just happened.
JJ snorted. "I thought for sure Will was going to punch you just before he stormed out of Rossi's house." She winced at the memory. The last thing she'd wanted to do was hurt Will, but in the long run, she was sure it would have hurt them all more for her to have gone through with the wedding and realize later that it had been a mistake. She loved Will and wanted him to be happy; but she wasn't in love with him, not the way he wanted her to be and certainly not the way she should have been when getting married.
"Trust me, I thought so too. Although, with the kiss you gave me when you told me that you just needed to know… to be sure… well, it would have been worth it. I love you." Spencer replied as he nuzzled against JJ's neck.
"I love you too. I know the drama that night was beyond horrible, and it took a couple of months to work things out with Will, but it was all worth it so that we could be together. I am so in love with you Spence. It's always been you baby." JJ replied softly, as she set her water glass on the counter. Then she twisted in Spence's arms, burying her face in his neck as she wrapped her arms around him.
"Mm," JJ moaned, "If it was cold in the bed without me, why are you so nice and warm?" she asked as she nuzzled her nose along the column of his throat as her hands explored the naked planes of his back.
Spencer's hands moved down JJ's back, rubbing against the soft cotton of his shirt. He loved when JJ wore his clothes. She'd made a point of doing it ever since he'd told her that had been one of his biggest fantasies over the years. "I threw a couple more logs in the fireplace in the bedroom. It's nice and warm now." He murmured and he trailed his hands down her smooth creamy thighs and then back up. He groaned as his hands slipped under the lower edge his shirt and encountered her naked firm backside.
JJ giggled at Spence's discovery that she hadn't pulled on anything other than his shirt when she got up for a drink of water. It was her turn to moan however when he squeezed her ass and pulled her firmly against him, his growing erection pressing into her belly. "Baby," she whispered against his lips as he kissed her, leading her back towards the bedroom.
JJ smiled against Spence's lips as they crossed the threshold of the bedroom and she felt the pleasant warmth of the fire he'd stoked before coming to find her. As they reached the bed, she pulled back, taking in the sight of his beautiful face lit up by the light from the fireplace. The flames flickering and dancing in the hearth behind her cast light and shadow across Spence's face and chest.
JJ leaned forward and pressed a kiss to his chest over his heart and then the center of his chest as her agile fingers slipped into the waistband of his boxers, pushing them down to pool at his feet. She continued pressing kisses to his chest, her tongue sliding wetly across first one nipple and then the other as her hands roamed up from his slim hips and across his abs. Her fingers trailed over his ribs and then back down his sides, gripping his hips. She pulled her lips away from his chest as her hands pressed down and back on his hips, urging him to sit on the edge of the bed.
Spencer attempted to hold JJ close as he sat on the bed with her nestled in the 'V' of his thighs, but she peeled his hands from her waist and took a step back. His breath caught in his throat as she began to unbutton his shirt, slowly teasing each button from its respective hole as inch by inch, more and more of JJ's creamy smooth flesh was revealed in the thin strip about an inch wide as she continued on her course of undoing buttons at an agonizingly slow pace. Even though by now he'd memorized every luscious curve and delectable slope of JJ's body (he did after all, have an eidetic memory), the anticipation of her undoing every button was almost more than he could bear.
JJ smirked as she undid the last button; her hands gripping either side of the placket of Spence's shirt, watching his knuckles turn white in the fire light as he tightly gripped the edge of the bed at the anticipation and still not being able to really see anything. Her smirk changed to a smile as she peeled Spence's shirt back and allowed it to drop from her body, joining Spence's boxers on the floor as she stepped forward back into the 'V' of his thighs. Her hands settled on his thighs, her fingers tracing random patterns on his skin as she watched the expression on his face and the oranges, yellows, and reds from the fireplace flicker in his gorgeous hazel eyes.
Spencer stared at JJ in breathless wonder and awe. Even now after being together seven months, it still left him in awe that they were together, that they loved each other, and that he was allowed after all these years to see her like this. He hoped that sense of wonder never went away. It reminded him how precious she was to him and to be thankful that they'd managed to find their way to each other after all these years.
JJ lifted her left hand and cupped his jaw. Her thumb traced over his lower lip, while her fingertips caressed his cheekbone. "What are you thinking?" she asked softly, always curious and always amazed at how Spence's brilliant mind worked.
Spencer turned his head kissing the palm of JJ's hand. "Just thinking how lucky and thankful I am and hoping that I never take it or you for granted."
"We won't." she replied, "We've been through too much to ever take what we have for granted." She whispered against his lips.
Spencer smiled into the kiss, realizing that she was including herself in that promise. "And what do we have JJ?" he asked as he pulled away.
"Love, each other, everything baby… we have everything." She replied as she lifted one knee up on the bed to climb into his lap.
Spencer nodded in agreement at the sentiment. "Yeah… I guess we do." He replied as he helped JJ up onto the bed and into his lap.
JJ nodded in agreement as she wrapped her arms around Spence's neck and sank into his lap with her knees resting on either side of his hips, her center brushing along his erection and causing them both to moan.
They sat for a moment, treasuring the feeling of their breath washing over each other's skin as they reveled in their closeness.
Spencer moved first as he nuzzled against the top of JJ's head where it rested against his chest and kissed her forehead.
JJ lifted her head to meet Spence's gaze, her breath catching in her throat at the love and passion she saw reflecting in his big beautiful hazel eyes. Her fingers tangled in the hair at the nape of his neck as she pulled him down to kiss her.
They lay panting and gasping in each other's arms, foreheads resting against each other for some time as they recuperated. Then Spencer shifted, concerned that he'd hurt her. He was by no means a large man, but he was bigger than JJ and he didn't want to hurt her.
JJ groaned at the loss as Spence lifted himself up off of her, but smiled as he leaned down to kiss her. Then she turned and propped herself up on her elbow to watch his sexy naked form as he ambled over to the fireplace and threw two new logs on the fire.
Spencer watched for a moment, making sure that the new logs caught fire rather than smothered the flames, as he stirred the embers. Satisfied that the fire would blaze until the wee hours of the morning, he closed the grate, set aside the fire poker, and turned back to join JJ in bed. He paused at the sight of JJ watching him. "What?"
"Nothing. Come back to bed." JJ said patting the spot next to her.
Spencer grinned like a little boy and crossed the distance between the fireplace and their bed in three long strides as he leapt up on the bed, bouncing as he landed next to JJ.
JJ laughed and wrapped her arms around him as she snuggled against his chest and tangled her legs with his. "Eager are we?"
"To be with you? Always JJ, always. I love you." He responded as he leaned down, kissing the tip of her nose as he grabbed the covers and pulled them over them, snuggling down into the sea of pillows and blankets as he curled up with JJ.
JJ smiled and placed a soft kiss on his lips. "I love you too." She murmured softly.
They curled up, wrapped up in each other in bed in front of the fire talking, sleeping, and cuddling as they made plans for their first full day of vacation tomorrow.