Title: Worries, hesitancy and too much thinking – part 16
Disclaimer: Neither the show nor the characters belong to me, they belong to CBS. Nonetheless, I love to borrow them from time to time.
Summary: That’s what in my humble opinion should have happened after ‘True Night’.
warnings: some fighting and some Kevin… fluff? Maybe. :)
“Anyway” Fran smiled at her son, “what I wanted to tell you was that you’re lucky Penelope was here at the party.”
“Not that I would argue with that but why?” Derek raised an eyebrow at his mother.
She giggled: “Didn’t you notice that Mary had brought another woman around your age with her? I bet that was her second attempt.”
Rolling his eyes he replied: “Yeah, and I can imagine she was even worse than Angela!”
“So, you just wanted to be polite when you took her out?” she questioned him as she prepared the coffee machine.
“To be honest, I thought aunt Mary was gonna kill me if I’d blown her off right away.” Derek answered as he set the table. “I still don’t know why she thought that girl was in any way good for me. Just her voice alone made my ears bleed, I swear it.”
“How did you get rid of her?” Fran wanted to know.
Derek chuckled and put an arm around his mother’s shoulders. “You know, you did very good at teaching me how to behave – especially towards a woman. So I just did everything you told me absolutely not to do. Obviously, it worked pretty well.”
“Seems like.” she nodded. “Penelope is the complete opposite of Angela. She’s so caring, helpful and well-behaved. And it’s a lot of fun to spend time with her. Now I know why you always drooled so much about her.”
“I didn’t drool about her.” he objected.
“Aw, that’s so cute!” Fran squealed a little.
“What?” he asked a little annoyed. He hated his mother calling him ‘cute’. Strangely enough the same sentence from Penelope’s lips would have made his heart leap with joy.
“I never heard you talk about any woman like you talk about her.” she smiled. “And you ARE drooling about her whenever she’s not around – and even when she is. You’re whipped.”
“Totally.” he nodded.
“I never thought I would hear you say something like that.” she smiled jubilantly.
“And I never thought I would find someone like Penelope, someone I actually could love.”
“By the way, where is she?” Fran glanced at the clock on the wall. “It’s time for breakfast – well, as soon as Des and Sarah make it back with the rolls.”
“I’m gonna get her.” he smiled and headed for his room. Whistling he climbed up the stairs. But when he opened his door he froze when he saw Penelope closing her packed suitcase. “Baby girl, what are you doing?” he wanted to know.
“I’m leaving.” she harshly replied.
“What?” slowly he stepped into the room and tried to look into her face but she avoided him. “Why? Penelope, what’s going on here?”
“I accidentally overheard your little conversation.” she informed him.
Derek raised both his eyebrows. And that had made her upset? Finally he blocked her way and forced her to look at him. “Sweetness, what exactly did you hear?” he wanted to know.
“Enough.” she snorted. “I know that it’s over.”
This startled him for a moment and he let go of her. “What… what made you think that?”
“Well, maybe because I’m a pain in the ass.” her voice was barely above a whisper. “Or maybe because you never really loved me.”
“I… have no idea what you’re talking about.” he assured.
“You said I was challenging.” she yelled at him. “Nosey and bothersome, the worst woman you ever met. I should have known better. You just wanted to lay another woman. I just thought… you wouldn’t do that… to me. Not since we were really close friends. I thought you would at least have enough respect for me.”
“Listen to me, baby girl!” he begged. “What you heard…”
“I wasn’t meant to hear” she interrupted him, “I know that. But unfortunately I did. And now excuse me, I’m gonna leave. Don’t make it harder than necessary.”
“I can’t let you go.” he insisted. “And I won’t. I love you, I need you – and I don’t want our relationship to be over.”
“That sounded quite different a few minutes ago.” she answered bitterly.
“Please, let me explain!” Derek repeated. “You only heard a part of our conversation, apparently. And in that part we weren’t talking about you.”
She snorted. “You don’t honestly expect me to believe that, do you?”
“It’s the truth.” he assured. “A few years ago my aunt Mary came over to visit us – and she wanted to hook me up with the daughter of one of her friends. Her name was Angela. Mom and I were talking about her.”
“Yeah, sure.” Penelope wiped away the new tears that had sprung to her eyes. “It’s almost impressive how fast you can come up with a pretext.”
“This is… We can go down and ask my mom if you don’t believe
“Don’t bother!” she laughed dryly. “I will just leave and you’ll never have to soft-soap me again just to lay me.”
“I… That was never my intention.” Derek tried to keep his voice calm even though he was on the edge of complete desperation. Why didn’t she believe him? And what could he do to make her believe him?! But she was hurt and mad enough. The last thing he wanted was to make things worse.
“Was it worth all the effort?” she yelled. “Or are you disappointed now? Did you think about giving it up when you noticed I wouldn’t be an easy lay?” She grabbed the first thing she could find – which was the jacket he’d worn the day before – and threw it at him.
Derek ducked the object and it was stopped by the wall behind him. With a slapping sound it landed on the floor and a small black box fell out of one of the pockets. It slid a few inches across the floor into Penelope’s direction.
She stared at the box for a moment. Then she slowly walked over and picked it up. Without saying a word she opened it and sank down on the bed staring at the ring in disbelief.
“I don’t want it to be over.” Derek started carefully. He’d never been nervous talking to a woman, he’d never been afraid of being dumped. But at the moment he felt like he was risking everything. Penelope could make him the happiest man on earth the next second – or break his heart.
“It took me so long to realize what you mean to me. Everything I said to you was true, not a word was a lie.” he assured. “I’ve never been so happy before and I don’t want you to go. I want to keep you.
That’s why I bought this ring. I… I had already bought it quite some time ago. But I didn’t want you to feel rushed. And after what happened last night I just… didn’t want you to think that I was just asking you because of that.
I love you. You are the best thing that ever happened to me. I feel good when I’m with you, safe and secure – and I never felt like this before with anyone. That’s why I bought this ring and… wanted to propose.”
“No.” she whispered still staring at the ring in her hands.
Derek swallowed hard. “I know this is too early.” he explained huskily. “And as I said, I didn’t plan on proposing before I was sure that you felt… safe enough and…”
Suddenly realizing that she had said the word out loud Penelope looked into his eyes and said: “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean… It’s just… This is a dream. It has to be! One minute ago I was sure you didn’t want me at all and now… I’m sorry, go… go ahead.”
He took a deep breath, knelt down in front of her and then took her hands in his. “I love you, baby girl, like I never loved any woman before. And I want to spend the rest of my life with you. I never want to be with anyone else again, ever. Penelope Garcia” he smiled up at her, “will you marry me?”
“Yes.” she nodded and new tears sprang to her eyes. “Yes, of course.”
Smiling Derek took the ring from her hands to put it onto her finger.
Penelope stared at the piece of jewelry still in disbelief. Definitely a dream! And if it was, she never wanted to wake up again. Then she looked at Derek and smiled.
He raised a little to pull her into a tight embrace. He hadn’t wanted her to find this ring – but he was relieved that she had. Because he feared that he would have carried this jewelry around for years without ever daring to propose.
“I’m so sorry.” Penelope whispered. “I wanted to leave you without saying a word and start a new life somewhere.”
“I would have found you.” Derek replied. “I wouldn’t have rested until I did.”
“You’d never have found
He pulled back, smiled at her and put a strand of her blonde hair behind her ear. “Maybe I know you better than you think I do.”
She just gave him a quizzical look in return.
“Remember when I asked you about a holiday we could spend together?” When Penelope nodded he walked over to his closet and took a tour guide out of a drawer. “I bet you wanted to move there.” he smiled as he handed her the book.
She stared at the cover, back at him and back at the book again. Then she sniffled and laughed at the same time.
“I know you always wanted to see Paris.” he smiled as he sat down on the bed next to her. “So I thought you’d like to go there. I just thought you’d take me with you and… well, go back to
All she could do was nod. She felt so stupid.
“I’m serious about us, baby girl.” Derek assured and gently caressed her cheek. “That’s why I made every effort to make you feel good. I never wanted to ‘lay’ you. I want to spend the rest of my life with you. Don’t ever doubt that.”
Smiling Penelope put the tour guide on the floor and leaned over to kiss him.
Sighing with relief Derek let his hand run through her full hair and pulled her closer. He gasped when she suddenly made him lay back on the bed and climbed on his lap. “Baby girl…” he whispered against her lips.
“I want you.” she breathed and kissed him demandingly. “I want you.”
“Wait!” he panted and gently pushed her away a little.
Penelope pulled back and stuttered: “You… I thought you… want me too.”
“Of course, I do, goddess.” he smiled and cupped her cheek with his hand. “You have no idea how much I want you. But I don’t want you to do this as… some kind of reward.”
“Oh” she smiled, “this… wasn’t meant to be a reward. I just… I don’t know.”
“Are you really sure?” he carefully asked. He wanted Penelope to feel completely safe when they took this step and he couldn’t tell if she did.
“No.” she mumbled. “But I came to the conclusion that I’ll maybe never be completely sure.”
Derek frowned at her.
“I know I’ve been giving you a very hard time and…”
“No.” Derek interrupted her and gently stroked her cheek. “You’ve been giving me the best time of my life.”
Smiling she looked down and whispered: “I really want you.”
“But?” he softly asked.
Penelope raised her head and locked eyes with him. “No but, not this time.”
Grinning like mad Derek pulled her down to another passionate kiss. Then he whispered: “I have a little but. We shouldn’t do that here. As you said, my mom and sisters could hear us.”
“Well, we… could be quiet.” she shrugged.
“Sure.” Derek’s grin widened. “But I absolutely don’t want you to be quiet. I want to hear if you enjoy it.”
“Derek!” she scolded him as her cheeks were turning purple and her heartbeat sped up.
He leaned in and whispered between soft nibbles on that special spot on her neck: “I’m serious, sweetness. Besides I absolutely don’t want to be interrupted by my mom or one of my sisters. I want to be allowed to take my time.”
Penelope’s heart started pounding like mad and her whole body was humming. “That’s not fair.” she mumbled.
Derek chuckled. “You call that foreplay.”
“I call that torture.” she replied huskily.
“We should go down, have breakfast and enjoy another day of sight seeing with my sisters.”
“Yeah, that sounds just great.” she whispered literally melting under his touch. Derek was just about to lean down and caress her collarbone when her cell phone rang.
Sighing she got up, took the phone from the locker and frowned at the caller ID. “It’s Kevin.” she informed him.
“On a Sunday morning?” Derek sat up and grabbed the phone from her. “You can’t tell me this is work-related!”
“Derek, what are you up to?” Penelope asked suspiciously.
“Relax.” he winked at her as he opened the phone. “I just wanna let him know that it’s pointless to keep calling you.” He answered the phone and put the caller on speaker and met him with an innocent ‘Hello?’.
“I… um… this is Kevin… Lynch… I wanted… Who’s there?” the voice mumbled.
“This is Agent Derek Morgan.” he replied.
That was followed by a moment of silence before Kevin said: “Actually, I thought I was calling Penelope.”
Derek snorted slightly at the use of her first name. “You did. My FIANCÉE is taking a shower.” he grinned at her. “Do you want to leave a message for her?”
“N… No… just… um… Sorry to bother you…” and then he hung up.
“Well, I’m rather sure it won’t happen again.” Derek chuckled and handed the phone back to Penelope.
She got up and put the phone back into her bag. “You know, I almost went out with him.” she mumbled without turning back to Derek.
Both his eyebrows shot up and he stood up to step behind her. “What does that mean?”
“Kevin asked me out.” she replied. “To the Bureau’s New Year’s Eve party. But you’d asked me beforehand so… I blew him off. But I… thought about accepting his invitation and blowing you off. I thought…”
“He was honest and I wasn’t.” he finished the sentence for her.
Penelope sank back into his arms, placed her head on his shoulder and whispered: “I can’t believe I almost chose him over you. By a hair I defrauded us from… everything we have.”
“You know, I believe if we’re really meant to be we would have been together anyway.” he breathed into her ear. “What belongs together eventually gets together. Natural law.”
Turning in his embrace to look at him she asked: “And… do you think we’re meant to be?”
“You and me?” he grinned and wrapped his arms tighter around her. “We’re the reason they had to invent this word.” he whispered just before his lips met hers for another breathtaking kiss.