Title: Worries, hesitancy and too much thinking – part 19
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: not really a lot
She felt distraught and somehow as if she was caught in a nightmare that simply didn’t want to end. She’d been so happy and suddenly everything had gone wrong. Derek was probably cheating on her maybe even dumped her with that message and just wanted to pretend nothing had ever happened. And even if that wasn’t the case it certainly didn’t matter ‘cause they weren’t allowed to get married anymore and one of them was going to be transferred.
She desperately wanted to talk to someone and had just decided to call Fran when her cell phone rang. It had been two hours since Strauss had called her. She checked the caller ID to make sure it wasn’t Strauss again before she answered: “Garcia?”
“Hey, sweetness.” he greeted exhaustedly but still obviously glad to hear her voice. “I just called to tell you that the case is over and the plane will take off in an hour. We’ll leave the rest of the work to the local police. They can handle the case now that they have a complete profile and the address of his assumed workplace. Go figure, they didn’t even know about victimology.”
“That’s what we are for, I guess.” she replied quietly.
“Yeah, they’re obviously thinking the same, doll face.” Derek chuckled. Finally this case was over and the unsub would be behind bars soon. Normally they were all relieved by now. But Penelope didn’t seem to be. Something was wrong, he could tell from the sound of her voice. “Are you okay, lollipop?” he asked.
This question brought the tears back to her eyes and she started to sniffle.
“Penelope? What’s wrong?” Derek wanted to know.
“Who was she?” Penelope finally asked the question she’d been wanting to ask way too long.
“Who?” he wanted to know.
“The woman you met for lunch before you had to go to Topeka.” she explained.
“How do you…” he started intuitively but stopped immediately and secretly kicked his ass for answering her question like that. How would that sound like?
“Kevin saw you.” she just replied. “He… came here to tell me how sorry he was ‘cause he thought we broke up.”
Derek took a deep breath. He should have a serious talk with that guy.
“Listen, sweetness.” he softly started. “I can’t tell you who she was, not yet. But I…”
“I want an answer, Derek!” she interrupted him the tears clearly audible in her voice. “Don’t you think I at least deserve to know who you dumped me for?!”
“I did… what?” he asked utterly perplexed now. “I just had lunch with her. That doesn’t mean…”
“And what about the text message?!” she shouted at him.
“What text message?” his confusion only got bigger the longer they talked.
Penelope took a deep breath to calm down a little before she explained: “The message you sent me saying that it was over.” She took out her cell phone and read it out to him.
When Derek heard the content of the message he clenched his fists. “Baby girl, please, stop crying. I never sent that message. But I can assure you the guy who did is dead!”
“You didn’t?” she quietly asked. “But you… went out with that other girl…”
“Listen, goddess! I swear to God I would never in a million years cheat on you. It’s true, I met this woman – and by the way she’s married. That wasn’t a date. I met her for a very good reason. I just can’t tell you yet because it’s going to be a surprise.”
“For me?” she sniffled.
“For whom else, my sweet lady?” he smiled. “Just trust me, okay? I love you and I’m not cheating on you, I never would. And I will most definitely not dump you. Now that I finally found you I’m not willing to let you go again.”
“Okay.” she nodded. “I’m sorry, it’s just…”
“No, I should have told you that I planned on meeting someone for lunch that day. You shouldn’t have heard about it from someone else.” he interrupted her. “Please, stop crying, sweetness, everything will be fine.”
“No it won’t.” she started sobbing again. “Strauss took back the permission she gave us to get married. She said we had sex in my office and that she couldn’t…”
“We did WHAT?” he exclaimed. “That’s not true.”
“You don’t need to tell
“Don’t worry, angel, we did nothing wrong.” he soothed her. “So there’s nothing she can hold against us. This will all be resolve, trust me.”
“I know we didn’t do anything, chocolate God.” Penelope took another deep breath. “But still… She already changed her mind about the permission and…”
“Calm down, goddess, will ya?” he softly interrupted her. “We can handle whatever gets in our way, I promise. Now stop worrying and stop crying! I promise we will get married no matter what! Even if it means that I have to quit my job.”
“You… would do that… for me?” she whispered.
“Of course, Penelope. I’d do anything for you.” he smiled. “We WILL get married.”
“Okay” she smiled at his words, “just come back here soon, superhero!”
And with that she hung up and tried to think about something else. She was looking forward to the team being back – one of them in particular. At least it had taken them only two days to track the bad guy down. At least Derek neither cheated on her nor wanted to dump her. And all she could do was hope that he was right and they could clarify the situation to Strauss.
But thinking about that it might be the last time she was allowed to see Derek or maybe even the whole team brought the tears back to her eyes. Strauss would certainly transfer her rather than Derek. She was replaceable.
She tried to keep herself busy so that she didn’t think about Strauss all the time and what might make her think Derek and her had had sex in her office. Since there wasn’t any work she could do she decided to play a match of online poker.
But it was too boring to really distract her thoughts. So she decided to try something else, something she certainly shouldn’t do. But finding out what the surprise might be Derek had promised to her would at least cheer her up to some extend. So she decided to take a look at his computer.
But alas he was exceptionally good at hiding things, even from her. And he obviously knew her too well to simply keep information about that on his computer. But then she found a file that caught her attention – and when she opened it she couldn’t help but burst out laughing.
A picture popped up on her screen. A picture of a stuffed bunny with an angry look wagging its index finger at her and the lettering: “It’s not nice to hack my system, baby girl!”
“I know you better than you think, huh?” a voice suddenly said from the door.
Penelope jumped a little but then smiled. She should stop being frightened that easily.
Derek could have kicked himself when he saw her jump. He quickly stepped closer and pulled her into a tight embrace. “I’m so sorry, Penelope, I should have known better than to…”
“It’s okay” she put him off relaxing in his arms, “really. I’m just a little too jumpy. And I didn’t know you were back already.”
“Sorry, I wanted to call you.” he smiled and gently kissed her hair, inhaling the scent of her deeply. “But my battery’s low.”
“It’s okay.” Penelope smiled up at him. “I’m glad you’re back. And I’m sorry for hacking your system.”
“Don’t worry about that.” he grinned and softly pecked her lips. “I have nothing to hide from you.”
“Apparently you have.” she mumbled as she pulled him down for a more passionate kiss. “Otherwise you would tell me about the surprise.”
“I will” he promised, “this weekend. There’re still some things I need to take care of beforehand. Come on, now, we need to talk to Strauss!”
The grin disappeared from her face. This wouldn’t end well. How could they ever convince Strauss that her accusation simply wasn’t true? Nonetheless, they made their way to her office, knocked, waited for her to call them in and took the seats she offered them.
“Ma’am, we would never…” Derek started.
But Strauss cut him off: “Someone saw you – or better heard you.”
“Ma’am, I can assure you whoever told you this is lying.” Penelope jumped in. “We would never have sex in my office, or anywhere else in the building. Who said we did?”
“I can’t tell you for obvious reasons.” Strauss said.
Yeah, for example because I’d beat that guy to death for spreading such rumor about us. Derek thought. He was sure he knew who had told Strauss this lie anyway – and that guy so had one foot in his grave already.
“As I said, under the given circumstances I can’t give you permission to get married.” Strauss added. “And I have to transfer one of you to another field office.”
Penelope felt like she would burst into tears any second and desperately tried to keep up her self-control.
“I bet it was Kevin Lynch.” Derek just snarled. When he looked into Strauss’ surprised face he knew that he’d hit the target. It made sense. First he’d told Penelope about the woman he’d have lunch with and Derek would bet his left arm that he’d also sent her the text message.
“How do I know?” Derek asked in response to Strauss’ raised eyebrow. “Because that guy has tried to ruin our relationship since the day we’ve started dating including sending a text message via my cell phone that said I left her. He wants Penelope.”
Strauss frowned at them once again.
“You don’t believe us.” Derek stated.
The frown on her forehead just became deeper but she didn’t respond. Lynch had suggested that Agent Morgan should be transferred. If that analyst really was that scheming he could soon turn out to be dangerous. People like him didn’t have a place in this building.
“When – according to him – did he hear us?” Derek wanted to know. Maybe this way he could prove that Lynch was lying, if they had an alibi.
“Two weeks ago.” she replied. “On Tuesday, if I’m not mistaken.”
“At what time?” Penelope asked abashed.
“Around noon as I recall it.” Strauss answered. “He said he wanted to deliver some information you needed before you went to lunch.”
“That can’t be true.” Derek sighed with relief. “We didn’t have any new cases that week, so we were going over some paperwork. Agents Prentiss and Reid were with me in the bullpen until one p.m. when we all went for lunch together. You can ask either of them. Besides either Agents Jareau or Hotchner or Rossi have certainly seen me from their offices.”
“And I never asked Kevin Lynch for any information.” Penelope added.
“I should probably ask the other agents.” Strauss mumbled. But I don’t think it’s necessary. I’ll have a serious talk to Technical Analyst Kevin Lynch, though. “You’re dismissed.”
“Thank you, Ma’am.” Derek nodded and they headed for the door to her office.
Penelope turned around and asked quietly: “Ma’am, the permission…”
“… is still valid.” Strauss cut her off. “And none of you will be transferred. But if something like that should ever happen it will have serious consequences for both of you.”
“Yes, Ma’am.” Penelope quickly replied. “I promise something like that won’t happen, ever.”
And if it does, we’ll make sure we don’t get caught. Derek thought and chuckled to himself. But his face remained stern.
Once they’d left Strauss’ office Derek stomped down the corridor at a smart pace.
“Wait, where are you going?” Penelope wanted to know as she struggled to keep step with him. He was obviously pissed.
“I’m gonna have a serious talk with Lynch!” he grumbled. “And then I’m gonna beat the shit out of him. Or the other way round, haven’t decided on the order yet.”
“Derek, let me take care of that, will ya?” she begged him. “It won’t help if you get suspended for beating him up.” But Derek didn’t slow down.
“He’s probably at home anyway, it’s past ten already.” she tried again.
Derek froze and then turned around to stare at her for a moment. Then he just mumbled: “Damn it!” and ran a hand over his head.
“Calm down, sweetness, please.” she said calmingly. “He’s not worth the effort.”
“True.” Derek took a deep breath. “But he’d better not mess with me again.”
“C’mon, let’s go home!” she softly said.
Derek agreed. However, he did not agree on leaving it alone. So when Penelope took the hot bath he’d prepared for her he searched for Lynch’s phone number and called him.
When Penelope left the bathroom and headed for the kitchen to get a bottle of water from the fridge, she heard Derek talking from the living room. He sounded quite upset.
“I can imagine something better than coming back from a tough case pretty much in the middle of the night just to be called to Section Chief Strauss’ office because some despised admirer spread rumors about me and my fiancée.” she heard him grumble and immediately knew whom Derek was talking to.
“No, I don’t care about MY reputation. But you’re hurting Penelope with what you do and I can’t let that happen.” he snarled. “Why? Because I love her, because I care about her and I’m gonna protect her whatever it takes. You understand me?” Penelope smiled at his words.
“No, I’m not trying to threaten you.” Derek growled. “But I can assure you if you don’t leave us alone you’ll regret the day you were born.”
Penelope stepped into the doorway in an attempt to stop Derek from saying anything Lynch could ever hold against him, but he didn’t even notice her.
“Listen, Lynch!” Derek hissed into his phone. “I don’t care if you believe that I love Penelope or not. I don’t need your agreement to be with her. I will marry her because she’s the best thing that ever happened to me whether you like it or not.”
There was a long pause and from the doorway Penelope could see Derek pace the living room. Finally he said a little calmer: “No, I don’t want to keep her all to myself. And yes, I know that I don’t deserve that she loves me. But I wonder what makes you think you do.
Maybe I can’t offer her as much as you think you can. But I love her and I’ll do anything to make sure she is as happy as she can be every day for the rest of our lives. I know how lucky I was that she decided on me and if it’s up to me I’m not gonna let her go again, ever. And you will have to kill me to keep me away from her.”
Derek frowned at his phone and mumbled: “Yeah, hang up on me.” When he turned around he was startled by the sight of Penelope standing in the doorway. “Baby girl, I…” he tried to apologize while she slowly stepped closer. “I know you didn’t want me to talk to…”
She cut him off with a passionate kiss. Then she smiled at him and whispered: “Thank you.”
Wrapping his arms around her Derek sighed with relief and replied: “Any time, angel face. I just hope he got the message now and will leave us alone.”
“I’m rather sure he did.” she smiled and pulled him with her towards the bedroom. “Now come to bed, I missed cuddling with you!”
Derek didn’t need to be told twice. He didn’t even think about what her words might have meant. He’d missed cuddling with her just as much. So he quickly crawled into bed next to her and kissed her softly.
Penelope sighed happily and pulled him closer. “I missed you so much.” she whispered. “And I’m glad this isn’t the last time we’re allowed to see each other.
“I missed you too, sweetness.” he mumbled sleepily and buried his face in the crook of her neck. The case had been exhausting and they hadn’t found much sleep in the past two days. “I told you everything would turn out well.”
“And I’m glad you were right.” she sighed already half asleep as well. “I love you, Derek!”
“I love you, Penelope.” he mumbled against her skin.
“I’m so sorry, hot stuff, I should have talked to you earlier. I mean, I wanted to but…”
“Stop that, goddess.” he softly cut her off. “The only one who should be sorry is Lynch!”
Of course, they didn’t know that he was far from being sorry. He was rather really pissed after he’d seen Penelope and Agent Morgan leaving the building together, kissing and obviously happy. And then the guy had had the guts to call him and confront him!But he would take care of that. His first plan hadn’t worked, so what? There was still time for plan B. In the end he would be with Penelope – and if it was over Agent Morgan’s dead body, all the better!