Spencer is sitting in their office wrapped in one of the emergency blanket they keep around. Hotch sets a cup of coffee down beside him and sits in the empty chair that had been taken from Derek's empty desk. "Do you want to talk about it?" He asks softly. There was no one else there but them. Morgan, Rossi and Prentiss would probably be showing up soon, though.
"What need be said? I think you walked in on enough to gauge the situation yourself," Spencer answers with a defensive tone. "You know that's not true. Has this happened before?" Spencer nods and takes a drink of coffee. "Have you told him to stop?" Spencer rolls his eyes. "No, I encouraged him to continue beating me."
Hotch sighs. "How long has this been going on?" Spencer sets his cup down. "We started dating around the time I started working here. He didn't start abusing me until last year. I'm not sure what happened." Spencer rubs his face. "I should have known. I should have been able to tell. I'm a Goddamned profiler! How could I be so weak?" Hotch takes one of Spencer's hands in his own.
"Let me tell you a story." Spencer looks at Hotch and waits. Hotch takes a deep breath and looks Spencer in the eyes. He's never been a blinker. "Several years ago, before I married Haley and before I had Jack I was in college. I was just as big and strong as I am now. I was a good profiler, even back then." Spencer nods. He's got an imagine in his head. A young man who used to be Hotch; would in the future resemble Jack.
"I was dating someone. A... man," he says without blinking. "Even though I was a good profiler and even though I was strong I ended up in a bad situation." Spencer is taken off guard. "It started so slowly that I dismissed it. He would put me down sometimes. He would be frustrated and no matter what I was doing he would take it out on me with names and accusations. I let it go because I loved him and I didn't think it was abuse enough to leave him."
Hotch takes a deep breath again and lets out a shuddered and sorrowful chuckle. "I knew better, but it didn't seem the same when I was the one involved. Eventually it escalated. I wish I could remember what started it. I just remember becoming numb to the names before he hit me. I'd been punched before. My father was an alcoholic and I'd fought with other students in my secondary school, but it had never surprised me as much as it did when he did it."
"Hotch..." Spencer says, feeling terrible. He would have never guessed. "I didn't leave. I let him apologize and I stayed. It happened again and again until I ended up in the hospital. He broke two of my ribs and gave me a concussion. He tried to force me into his bed and I fought back for the first time. He never came to see me. I finally pressed charges after a detective wouldn't leave me alone. She kept telling me that if I did nothing he would find someone else. And someone else might not be as strong as I was. I couldn't let that happen again."
Hotch has tears forming in his eyes and he rubs his forehead while gauging Spencer's expression. "I'm sorry that you went through that Hotch. I... I would have never thought that you..." He says. "So, will you tell me your story now?" Spencer bites his lip and nods.
"It started last year. He called me names throughout our relationship, but I thought it was just his way of being affectionate. They were never particularly hurtful comments. But then he started to accuse me of cheating when we'd be gone too long on cases. I wasn't sure how to prove to him that I wasn't. I let him search me... search my body when I got home to show him, but it wasn't enough."
"I was home. It was during a week that we were off work. He came over as I was boiling water for tea and I was watching a biography about Albert Fish. He said it was disgusting, and he was right. He demanded that I turn it off, but I refused. I turned away from him to take the kettle off the stove and he snapped. He just...He snapped and he punched me in the stomach. I tried to catch myself but my hand landed on the eye of the oven."
Spencer holds up his hand, which bears a faint mark that there had once been damage. "He spent the next two days kissing me and pampering me... Treating me better than he ever had before. I couldn't see it for what it was. I mean, he didn't put my hand on the burner... but it continued. And I'm... I'm not... You're so stronger, and he overpowered me so easily. I tried, but..."
Hotch takes his hands again. "I know it wasn't his right to take me when I refused, but he took it anyway and I didn't do anything about it." Hotch squeezes his hand. "Spencer, it wasn't your fault. You didn't do anything wrong." Spencer feels a tear run down his face and he laughs. "Do you know what the last straw was? Do you now why I finally decided to do something about it?"
Hotch shakes his head. "He called me stupid. He was holding me down. He'd already raped me and hit me and bit me, but he called me stupid and I kicked him. I kicked him until he stopped moving and I called the police."
Hotch wipes his tears away. "I'm so glad you did. We knew there was something wrong, but every time we asked you would shut us down. We all knew that you wouldn't accept help until you decided it was time."
They hear Morgan and Prentiss coming down the hall. Spencer wipes his face and turns towards them. Derek embraces his best friend. "I'll kill him Spencer. I'll fucking kill him." Spencer hugs him back tight. "He's in jail. I don't want you there too." Prentiss pats his back. "Spencer... Why didn't you tell us? We would have helped you."
Derek releases him and looks at him for an answer. "I guess I just wasn't ready yet." She runs a hand down his face; fingers lightly caressing the already bruising skin. "Wait until Garcia gets a hold of you" she says. They all have a little laugh. "Do you need somewhere to stay Pretty Boy?" Spencer nods. "I need to get my stuff from his house, if you have time."
Derek nods. "All the time in the world for you." Hotch is standing beside him. "Let me know when you're going over. We'll make a team day out of it. Collect all your things- move them out and then have a great big barbecue at Rossi's house."
The hear the older man chuckle from behind them. "Sounds good to me. I even have some space in my big old house if 'Pretty Boy' needs somewhere to stay permanently."
Spencer smiles at Rossi in thanks. "I say we pack it home for tonight, though. Do you two want some help getting his things for tonight?" Hotch asks. "No. Just going to grab some jammis and books and whatever else he deems necessary for the rest of the weekend. Probably got some hundred pound chest set carved out of the stonehenge hidden under the bed."
Derek and Spencer are arguing playfully out the door with Prentiss behind them. Aaron and Rossi stand silently until they're gone. "Did you tell him about when you were in college with that foreign guy?" Hotch nods. "He's going to need a lot of guidance Aaron. A lot of healing. You two would be good for each other," he says with a smile. Aaron raises an eyebrow in amusement.