little_profiler (little_profiler) wrote,

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Heartbreak - Part 1

Title: Heartbreak – Part 1

Fandom: Criminal Minds

Pairing: Morgan/Garcia

Prompt for 30_forbidden: #3 Love

Rating: T

Disclaimer: Neither the show nor the characters belong to me, they belong to CBS. Nonetheless, I love to borrow them from time to time. No copyright infringement is intended. The idea behind the story and the story itself – including all chapters as well as possible pre- and sequels – are mine, though.

Summary: Part 13/? of the ‘Love and prejudice’-series. Yes, the title gives away the plot of this chapter.
warnings: none

AN: I’m really getting better, right? Not at last thanks to my wonderful and wonderfully fast beta-reader Jenny.

I know, this is not where you wanted this story to go. Unfortunately, it was where my muse wanted to take it. I can’t give too much away, but you should maybe read the coming chapters before thinking about killing me for this one. ;)

Hope you’ll enjoy it nonetheless.

You know those things where you immediately know doing them will be a mistake, but you can’t help doing them, anyway? It’s like a tiny little voice in your head is telling you not to do it, but you can’t hear it – or maybe you don’t want to listen to it.

It wasn’t that he actually wanted to spill it all out. He hadn’t planned on any of this happening, it just had. Sure, that was what husbands usually told their wives after they’d cheated on them. But somehow, it felt that way to him. He couldn’t have done anything to avoid the situation he soon found himself in.

As he had promised, Derek carried Penelope’s bag into her room and made sure it was safe. The room was on the third floor; there was no balcony, no fire exit stairs – nothing the unsub could have used to try and get to her again.

Still, Penelope didn’t seem to be at ease. She was shivering, and even though she tried her best to hide it, it was obvious to Derek.

“Hey,” he said softly, gently nudging her shoulder. “You’re safe in here.”

“Yeah, I know,” Penelope replied, nodding as if she wanted to convince herself.

Sighing, Derek stepped in front of her and made her look at him. Only ten minutes ago, she had seemed like her normal bantering self, and now… Or maybe she just hid it better when the others were around. Apparently, she didn’t try and hide it from him now.

“What’s wrong, Baby Girl,” he asked carefully. “Don’t you feel safe in here?”

“I don’t know,” she whispered. “I… I felt safe in the other hotel, until… and now I just keep thinking that he might come back, and even though I know it’s very unlikely that he’ll manage to get to me a second time, I just can’t stop thinking ‘what if’.”

And then it started. It was a fraction of a second and only a small step forward, and Derek had caught her in his arms again, pulling her warm body close against his. Inhaling her scent deeply, Derek closed his eyes and gently swayed her back and forth.

He could feel her relax. She felt safe. In his arms, when he was around, Penelope felt safe.

“You know, I can stay here if you want me to.” The words had escaped his mouth before he had even realized they had been forming in his mind – and long before he could have made any effort to stop them.

Her head shot up, and she stared at him.

Derek searched her eyes with his. He was sure he could read a plea in them. A plea to stay with her and make her feel safe. Or was it just his wishful thinking?

She didn’t say anything; she just stared at him as if she wasn’t sure she had heard correctly.

“I’m just saying,” Derek said with a shrug, trying to sound nonchalantly. “If it makes you feel safe, I could stay here and make sure nobody gets in.”

Now he was sure she wanted him to stay. It was the same expression he’d seen on her face after Battle’s first attempt to kill her.

Yet, she said, “No, thank you. I really appreciate that, but I’m fine. Really.” She freed herself from his embrace and tried to turn away from him.

But Derek’s hand refused to let go of hers. He didn’t want to lose contact. He didn’t want to leave her alone – not only because he was still worried about her. He never wanted to let go of her again.

“I’m serious,” he assured her, his voice low. “I can stay here. If you want me to.”

“I… I know,” she stuttered, her eyes wandering to his hand that still clutched around hers and back to his face. “But… I… You really don’t have to.”

“I don’t consider it a duty,” he told her, still refusing to let go. “I’ll stay if you want me to.”

There was a mixture of confusion and apprehension written all over her face, but she didn’t say anything. She didn’t send him away. She didn’t tell him to stay, either, but at least she didn’t send him away immediately.

“I love you.” Once again the words escaped his mouth before he was able to stop them.

“I know,” Penelope whispered, and Derek could see her swallow. “I love you, too.”

“I mean it.” He had decided to switch off his brain completely – or maybe his brain had decided on its own, Derek wasn’t sure anymore. He just let the words flow from his lips without even trying to think about them, or about possible consequences.

“You asked me why I was acting so strange lately. It’s because of you. You’re making me go crazy whenever you’re close to me, because I love you, because I’m in love with you.” And that was the exact moment he spoiled everything.

She stared at him almost in shock, her eyes filling with tears the next second.

“I mean it,” he assured her again. “I’m serious. I’m not just saying that because of the heat, or because of this unsub, or because of any other force from outside making me say it. I’m saying that because it’s true.”

“But… why?” she whispered, tears running down her cheeks now.

Derek reached out to brush them away, but Penelope took a step backwards, away from him. He froze, realization hitting him. She wasn’t crying because she was so touched by his words. She was crying because she didn’t want him.

“Why now, Derek?” she asked, wiping away the tears by herself.

He blinked at her, not sure how to answer this question, not even sure what it was supposed to mean in the first place.

“I can’t,” she finally said. “I… I’m with Kevin, and I’m happy with him. He makes me happy. I… I can’t, Derek.”

He felt his heart go to pieces. That was exactly why he had never opened up to anyone, ever. There always was the threat of being rejected and hurt when feelings were involved.

His hand let go of hers automatically and fell back loosely at his side. “I understand,” he simply said.

“I… I’m sorry,” Penelope whispered, new tears running down her cheek.

Not as sorry as I am, for being such an idiot. “Don’t be,” he told her as he turned to leave. “I shouldn’t have said anything.”

That being said, he was gone. He wasn’t sure, but he thought he heard her call after him – or maybe once again, it was just wishful thinking. Whichever it was, he didn’t turn back. He just headed straight for his room, almost running over Hotch on his way.

“Hey, what’s going on?” the older agent demanded to know.

Derek stomped farther without even turning to him. He desperately wanted to punch something, and then hit the bottle – or the other way round. He wasn’t sure which, yet.

Back at his room, he emptied the mini bar. Unfortunately, it didn’t help one bit. Maybe because the stuff wasn’t heavy enough – or maybe because there simply wasn’t enough of it.

He chewed over the latest events, his feelings, and finally, his options. There wasn’t much he could do. He had spilled the beans, and therefore ruined their friendship, ruined what they’d had. Despite the fact that she was with someone else, they’d still been very close.

All the nights spent together after tough cases. All the hugs and little touches. All their bantering. He’d just ruined it. They couldn’t go back to that as if nothing ever happened, not now that he had told her the truth.

He’d wanted to keep his feelings secret until the time was right – if that was ever going to happen. What did he expect her to do? Dump Lynch after she’d been with him for three years now?! Just because he came along, throwing himself at her feet?!

God, he was such a fool. He’d wanted to stay in the background, be her friend, because that was his only chance of being close to her. She’d trusted him enough to let him hold her when she needed it. He’d ruined everything.

Now, he didn’t have anything anymore. She surely would never allow him to hold her again. Not just like that. Not if she knew that his feelings weren’t merely platonic. Not if she had to fear that he had ulterior motives. He could never be close to her again. Not like he used to be.

Maybe he should try and talk to her. Explain that he really understood, that he could accept the fact that she was with Kevin and would never try and interfere with their relationship again. Maybe it would help. Maybe it would repair their relationship – at least, their relationship as friends.

Yeah, how likely was that?! He would go back to her and just tell her he would back off, and she would throw herself into his arms because she still wanted him to protect her? Very likely. Hell certainly would freeze over sooner than they would be able to talk to each other again – let alone go back to being best friends.

Why on earth did he have to tell her in the first place? Normally, he knew well enough when it was the time to just shut the fuck up. But this time…

Sighing, Derek fished his phone out of his pocket. He needed to talk to someone before he made his decision.

Staring at the number, he reconsidered his plan. There was only one thing he could do, anyway. He needed to have a serious talk.

So he went back, knocked at the door, took a deep breath when it opened, and said, “There’s something I need to talk to you about.”

Tags: 30_forbidden_fruits_challenge, morgan/garcia, story_love_and_prejudice
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