Apartment of Penelope Garcia- Friday Evening
Monday, October 14, 2013
After Kevin's death Derek and Penelope work to regain a normal life. Unfortunately, danger from an unlikely source threatens their lives.
Apartment of Penelope Garcia- Friday Evening
Penelope hoped Derek was up for a long night. It had been over a month since they’d been able to have their weekly movie night. Work as usual had gotten in the way of their pursuit of normalcy. Their recent case was a tough one and lasted over two weeks. Everyone on the team was exhausted and in need of some R&R and so out of the goodness of his heart, Hotch had granted them all the weekend off.
She thought it was funny how she and her best friend had chosen as usual to spend their night together. Morgan, who never had a problem getting a date and seemed to virtually bat women off like flies whenever he stepped out in public found solace in a night of movies, popcorn, red vines and beer with her. She wasn’t complaining of course, she just wished he would see her as more than his good friend. Nevertheless, whatever it was that they had, it was not anything that could be labeled nor understood by mere mortals and for now she was content with just having him in her life.
Home of Derek Morgan
Derek had stepped out of a long hot shower and felt his body finally relax as he prepared to join Penelope for a night of movies. He’d missed their time together these past few weeks and he looked forward to hanging out at Garcia’s for the night that was sure to roll over into the early morning. He remembered the days not so long ago when his weekends consisted of trolling the nightlife of D.C. and would usually end with him going home with a lovely willing lady. As much as he loved the attention of the opposite sex, he couldn’t imagine going back to that part of his life. He chuckled to himself as he recalled a conversation earlier in the day; Garcia had sworn it was her turn to pick the movie; no doubt it would be a chick flick or an old black and white starring Betty Davis or Erroll Flynn. He preferred the loud action movies with cars crashing and guns blasting. It really never mattered to him what they watched but he loved giving her a hard time, knowing that he would in the end let her choose what they saw. What mattered to him was the peace she brought to his life. Just spending time with her was the touch of sanity that he needed. And so, it was that thought that nudged him out the door with the fixings for hot fudge sundaes in his hand and a smile on his face.
Apartment of Penelope Garcia Later Friday evening
A safe haven, yeah that’s what Derek called this place. It was a place where he could be his silly self and his serious self without being judged or made to feel as if he had to live up to some false image created in someone else’s wild imagination. None of that was required and Penelope’s friendship had no strings…he loved her for that and for so much more.
It was midnight and Penelope had already fallen asleep tucked perfectly in his embrace like that place had been made especially for her frame and no one else’s. He almost believed that too because no one else had felt quite like this next to him. He watched her and listened to her breath-tones so peaceful and rhythmic. Then he chuckled to himself thankful that no one else could hear his thoughts and force him to relinquish his Man Card.
As the credits rolled, Morgan gently awakened his friend, guiding her to bed and tucking her in. Like so many times before Morgan curled up on the couch and fell fast asleep. While the two slept a black late model sedan was parked outside, hidden in the thick blackness of night. Cold steel angry eyes had watched for hours wondering about the occupants of the small apartment and what they were doing, images running like wild fire through his mind and when the lights where turned off well after midnight rage overcame him as he pounded his gloved hands on the steering wheel over and over again as he cursed and screamed.
Apartment of Penelope Garcia – Saturday Morning
Morgan gently planted a light kiss on the forehead of the still sleeping Penelope Garcia, whispering goodbye as he headed toward the door leaving her to enjoy her morning off.
“Leaving so soon?” She said sleepily, poking her head from underneath the covers.
“Yes Baby Girl. Go back to sleep.” He hated that he had woken her but secretly was glad he could say goodbye before he left.
“What about breakfast? I can fix you some eggs before you leave.”
“Thanks but I promised Valdez and a few other new recruits that I’d meet them at the firing range this morning.”
“Don’t you ever take time off, Handsome?”
“I’ll take time off later. Remember what happened the last time I took time off?”
“Don’t remind me. Fine, go. Enjoy your day my Sweet. Love you.”
Garcia snuggled deeper into the bed and covered her head with the layers of linens to resume her nap.
“Love you too. I’ll call you later.”
Morgan headed toward his bike and noticed a late model sedan across the street. He hadn’t noticed it before on his countless other visits but he made a mental note of it nonetheless. He shrugged, thinking that his profiler instincts were working overtime. Looking at his watch he headed home with just enough time to shower and meet the recruits at the range.
As Morgan sped off, the driver in the sedan thought how easy it would be to run the unsuspecting rider off the road. There were so many places, corners and bends in the road up ahead where he could hit him and no one would find his body. A wicked grin crossed his face as he started his engine and headed in the same direction…speeding.
2 Hours later…FBI Firing Range
Morgan still had the complete attention of the six recruits as they left the FBI firing range. It was evident that the newbies highly respected their trainer. They had finally realized that he was more than the tough no-nonsense seasoned agent he pretended to be. The fact that he was willing to share his Saturday morning teaching and giving them extra pointers and then buying them coffee afterwards gave him away. He assumed he still had them fooled; they’d made a pact amongst themselves not to tell him that they knew he was a softie at heart.
As Derek headed to his bike, he was being watched closely. This time he didn’t notice the car, the driver had managed to park out of sight. Gripping the steering wheel and tapping his thumb against it nervously, the driver wanted desperately to take the unsuspecting biker out but he knew it wasn’t time and it definitely wasn’t the place. So, he waited and watched as Derek sped away.
Monday morning – BAU Quantico, VA
Derek as usual was one of the first of his team to arrive. Coffee from a nearby coffeehouse in hand he climbed the steps and headed straight to his office. He loved the peace and quiet of the morning but he wanted to be in the field working cases and bringing down bad guys. Besides, he didn’t have much to look forward to at home. Lately, he found himself envying Hotch and JJ for having families waiting at home. His solitary thoughts were interrupted by a knock at his door. Without waiting for his response, Penelope poked her head in.
“Good morning, my Sweet!” Her smile lit up the otherwise dimly lit office.
“Good morning. Come in.” He smiled back and thought how great it was to start his day with her visit.
“So, how was the rest of your weekend?” She inquired.
Their conversation was interrupted as JJ poked her head in and summoned them both to the conference room.
“Hotch wants us all in the conference room in five.”
Five minutes later – Conference room
Hotch stood next to the board with the pictures of five victims, all women between the ages of 35 and 50. Each woman was found dumped in alleys of downtown Atlanta.
“What took Atlanta PD so long to call us in?” Rossi frowned as he looked intently at each victim.
“The women were all killed in different ways and the lead detective retired shortly after the second victim was found. By the time the new lead got up to speed on the case another victim was found.” Hotch answered.
“There’s a lot of rage here!” JJ added.
“Looks like the UNSUB took a lot of time with these victims inflicting severe pain.” Reid said as he stepped up to the board.
“We’ll meet Detective Armstrong at the airport and hit the ground running. We need to catch this guy before more bodies start turning up.”
The team stood and exited the room. Garcia grabbed Morgan’s arm as he passed her. He paused looking back and noticing a troubled look on her face.
“Hey, what’s wrong Baby Girl? He looked deep into her eyes for the truth.
“Come home safe.” Her voice cracking slightly.
“Always.” He assured her still looking deep into her.
Derek pulled Garcia into a hug and she relaxed against him not wanting to be released but she knew the team would be waiting. She had an uneasy feeling about them leaving. She couldn’t figure out what it was but she didn’t want Derek to leave.
Releasing her, Derek saw something almost like fear in her eyes.
“Are you sure you’re okay, Baby?”
“I’m fine. Go. The team is waiting.”
Derek hesitated and gave her another squeeze before letting her go with a kiss planted on her forehead. Derek hurried to the elevator as the team waited for him to board, then turning and giving Garcia a smile as she waved goodbye.
One hour later – Jet
The team continued to review the evidence while Garcia researched and shared new information to them from Quantico. The five victims appeared to have nothing in common, and they shared no particular physical features except that they were women. The age range told them that the UNSUB was between the ages of 45 and 60. He most likely had a place where he could hold his victims for an indefinite period of time without fear of being interrupted or discovered. He also had to be a large physically fit man with a large vehicle or van. The women were taken from high traffic areas so the UNSUB was someone that people trusted and looked as if he belong in the area. The women were low-risk; they worked in normal jobs, had families and lived regular lives with no known enemies or recent run-ins with anyone.
7pm BAU Headquarters
Garcia couldn’t shake the uneasy feeling she’d gotten just before the team left for Atlanta. They’d gone out on horrific cases before and come back safe. But this time something felt different. She wasn’t sure what it was, wasn’t sure if it was the case or something else. She struggled to stay focused knowing that the sooner the case was closed the sooner her team, her family would be back home.
The team landed safely in Atlanta and without taking a breath headed straight to the precinct to continue working on the case. Thanks to more digging on Garcia’s end, the team discovered that the first victim’s husband had a one million dollar life insurance policy on his wife. Bruce Callum was an Atlanta businessman who owned several furniture stores; one in Roswell, Macon and two in Atlanta. His wife Mildred, 48, managed the larger location in downtown Atlanta. The two had been married for 27 years and had no children.
“Our second victim, Melody O’Neal, 50, was single and worked from her home in DeKalb County as a blogger. She lived a relatively low key life with church on Sundays and eating at Myrtle’s a local diner twice a week.” Garcia waited for a response as she continued searching for information.
“Garcia is there any link between victim #1 and #2?” Hotch asked.
“No. Nada. Ziltch.” Garcia answered.
“Okay, let’s call it an evening. We’ll start again in the morning.
“Thanks, Baby.” Morgan said.
“My pleasure Crime Fighters.”
Garcia was exhausted and in need of a jolt of caffeine. She knew her computers were still searching for more information on the other victims and so she headed toward the break room for a refill. Just as she grabbed the half empty pot, Agent Anderson entered.
“Agent Anderson…it’s a little late for you isn’t it? Garcia inquired.
“Yes. Strauss has me working on some last minute mundane task.” He answered as he waited patiently for the coffee.
Smiling, Garcia poured the remaining coffee into his cup and he thanked her.
“Hey, I know we don’t know each other very well. I mean we’ve worked here for years but we don’t know each other…” Anderson sounded nervous.
“Listen, I just wanted to say that I’m sorry to hear about what happened to Kevin.” Anderson continued.
“Um…thank you.” Garcia answered.
“Kevin and I had just started hanging out. He was a nice guy.” Anderson added.
Anderson grabbed a sugar packet from the counter. Garcia began to feel uncomfortable. She wanted to leave but she didn’t want to seem rude.
“Oh really, he never mentioned you.”
“Well. Yea, we talked all the time, you know when we saw each other in the office and then a few weeks ago we started getting together after work.”
Anderson leaned on the counter as he continued the conversation with Garcia.
“Listen, I don’t feel comfortable discussing Kevin. He and I had been having problems and had broken up just before he was killed…”
“Oh, I see. I’m sorry to hear that.”
That was it. No more discussing Kevin with Anderson who if it weren’t for the fact that he worked for the Bureau, would be a complete stranger. Penelope quickly grabbed a few packets of sugar and hurried toward the door.
“Wait.” Anderson said just as she cross the threshold into the hallway.
Penelope turned slowly towards Anderson.
“It still must hurt, right? I mean even though you two were broken up it still must hurt.”
“Of…course…yes…but honestly I don’t see what…” Garcia continued before she was interrupted.
“I mean if you love someone, you don’t just stop loving them do you? Unless of course…”
“Unless what?” Garcia was growing impatient at the intrusion into her personal life.
“Unless you never loved him at all.” Anderson concluded.
For some reason his words struck Garcia and held her silent. She had no comeback. All she could do was stare at Anderson as he slowly approached her stopping just in front her with a piercing glare. Then suddenly he pushed past her and left the room.
What an odd man, she thought as she headed toward her office. Kevin had never mentioned a friendship old or new with Agent Anderson. She didn’t know him and yet he felt quite comfortable discussing her relationship with Kevin. As a matter of fact she didn’t even know Anderson’s first name or what he really did except run errands for Strauss and Aaron. She made a mental note to do a little digging into the life or lack thereof of one Agent Anderson.
Since Hotch had dismissed the team in Atlanta, that was her cue to head home to get some much needed rest. So, she grabbed her green neon oversized pleather bag and headed out of the building, walking right past a dark late model car, it was too dark to notice the driver but the driver definitely noticed her and as she started her engine so did he.
Tuesday Afternoon –
The team had started early and now had gathered all the available information on all of the victims. Unfortunately another body had been found just as they arrived back at the precinct that morning.
They had built a firm case against the husband of the first victim. Morgan had interviewed Bertrum Callum’s assistant and discovered that she and the victim’s husband had been involved in a secret affair for the past three years. Callum had promised to leave his wife and marry her but when the business started failing he needed money fast and the only money he had was a million dollar life insurance policy on his wife. The other victims, random women with nothing in common were merely a dastardly plan, counter measures, to keep law enforcement from discovering the only true target.
“Hello, my Sweet. When are you guys heading back home to Mama?” Garcia smiled as she greeted him.
“Hey Baby Girl. We’ll be taking off in about an hour.” He paused for a moment wanting to say so much more to her.
“I miss you Gorgeous. We couldn’t have closed this case this fast without you.” Derek continued.
“The All-Knowing Goddess of Cyberspace works her fingers to the bone if it means getting her Noir Hero home quick, fast and in a hurry.”
“Well I’ll be home in a couple of hours, Sweet Thang.”
“I’ll leave a light on, Sugar.”
“You do that, Crazy Girl.”
Morgan hung up. He could hear her smile across the phone line and it made his heart skip a beat. It was good to hear her in better spirits than when they left. He couldn’t wait to see her.
Apartment of Penelope Garcia - Evening
Garcia was startled by a knock at her door. She couldn’t imagine who it could be since the team was still in the air and wasn’t due to land for another hour. She approached her door and looking through her peephole she was shocked to see Agent Anderson standing in the hallway.
“Agent Anderson? What are you doing here?”
“I wanted to apologize for last night. I was way out of line.”
The uneasy feeling that Garcia had gotten when the team had left for Atlanta had returned. She couldn’t wrap her head around the fact that Agent Anderson was standing outside of her apartment. How did he even know where she lived?
“It’s really late. Can we talk about this tomorrow when we get into the office?”
It was then that she saw the gun. He was holding a gun and he was eerily calm as he suddenly found courage from somewhere as he pushed his body against the door and forced his way inside.
“What are you doing?”
Garcia began to panic but she had to keep her wits about her. She decided that she would not do anything foolish or say anything to provoke this man.
“Sit down! We need to talk.”
Garcia complied and sat on the couch, ridged and terrified keeping her eyes on Anderson. He took the seat next to the couch and began explaining the reason for his visit. All Garcia could think of was Morgan.
Morgan and the rest of the team had landed and were each headed out of the elevators to their work areas. He wanted to see Garcia but he knew it was late. Even though he was exhausted he was wide-awake like always after a big case. He found it hard to turn his mind off; everything kept rewinding and replaying itself in his head. The fact that he’d drunk coffee all the way back to Quantico didn’t help either. As he began the paperwork to close the case he glanced at his phone. He was wondering if Garcia was still awake. It was late but she usually stayed awake until she’d heard from everybody.
Apartment of Penelope Garcia
“How could you be so…so okay?” Anderson was agitated.
“What are you talking about?" Garcia watched as he fidgeted in the chair.
“You didn’t deserve him. He was too good for you. You couldn’t appreciate a guy like Kevin.”
“You’re right. I didn’t deserve Kevin. Now, could you please leave? We can forget this ever happened, okay?”
Anderson started pacing the room and occasionally looked out the window as if he were expecting someone. Garcia’s heart was beating furiously as she fought to remain calm.
“I loved him, you know. He was always talking about you…all the time!” Anderson said.
“Listen, I know you and Kevin must have been good friends but I really…”
“Shut up! You’re nothing but a two-timing Bitch! You and Agent Morgan sneaking behind Kevin’s back and playing him for a fool!”
Anderson’s voice continued to get louder.
“I think you’ve misunderstood. Agent Morgan and I are just friends. Nothing more.”
Anderson seemed to not hear Garcia as he looked out the window again.
“I loved him you know. I could have made him happy. I wouldn’t have cheated on him!”
“Anderson, Kevin…wasn’t…gay.” Garcia began to feel sad for him.
“Gay, straight. He was confused. You confused him! I could have made him happy!”
Their conversation was interrupted by Garcia’s phone ringing on the cocktail table. Morgan’s face appeared on the display and Anderson rushed over to the table and picked up the phone and answered it.
“Get over here!!!” Anderson was screaming at the top of his lungs.
Morgan looked at his phone. He thought he’d mis-dialed. He hadn’t.
“Who the hell is this?!” Morgan said angrily.
“You don’t get to ask any questions. If you want to see your ‘Baby Girl’ again you’ll get to her apartment now or I’ll deliver her dead body to your doorstep!”
“Let me talk to her you son-of-a-bitch!”
“If you hurt her…If you touch her in any way. I will kill you! Believe it!”
“Oh and Agent Morgan…leave the Calvary at home. Come alone.”
Morgan slammed his phone shut and raced out of his office.
Outside the Apartment of Penelope Garcia – 20 minutes later
Morgan and the rest of his team have arrived and positioned themselves out of sight. Morgan’s adrenaline was pumping and he was struggling to keep his emotions under control. Hotch and Rossi immediately grab him after they jumped out of the SUV’s.
“Morgan, I don’t think you should go in.” Hotch said.
“C’mon Hotch! If I don’t go in he’s going to kill Garcia!”
“You can’t do anything that’s going to get both of you killed.” Rossi added.
“Don’t you think I know that? I can do this!” Morgan breathed deeply.
Hotch turns to the team and gives final instructions. He knows that once Morgan is inside the UNSUB will be distracted and it will give them a small window to approach and find another way into the apartment.
“Okay, Morgan. Bring her out.” Hotch knew that if anyone could handle this situation, it was Morgan.
Inside the Apartment …
Garcia continues to watch Anderson as he paces the floor. For the umpteenth time he looks out the window and notices Morgan walking up to the apartment.
“He’s here.” Anderson says.
Garcia’s heart leaps as she prays that Morgan is able to rescue her. She has no idea what Anderson’s plan for them is but she trusted her hero to save her.
There was a knock at the door.
Morgan was ready, angry and calm…for the UNSUB that could prove deadly. There was nothing Morgan would not do for Garcia. She was more than a friend to him and he’d wondered often why he hadn’t told her how he felt. But now was not the time for all of that. Now was the time to bring her out alive and then work to make her feel safe in her own home again.
“It’s Morgan!” He said.
The door swiftly swung open. Morgan was shook by the image of Garcia before him. She was crying and Agent Anderson stood behind her with his arm around her neck and pointing a gun to her head. It was all he could do not to take a chance and leap toward him but he knew that would get her killed for sure.
“Come in!” Anderson said as he walked Garcia and himself back into the apartment.
Garcia locked her eyes on Morgan. His steel glare drew her in and spoke to her soul. She immediately began to feel as though she would survive this nightmare. Anderson seemed shaky and Morgan’s appearance didn’t give him the victory he’d hoped for. The only advantage that he possessed was the gun.
“Anderson, what’s this about, man?”
“You need to pay for killing Kevin Lynch.” He motioned for Morgan to move near the couch.
“That was self-defense. You know that.” Morgan responded.
“He was my best friend. You shot him down like he was garbage!”
Morgan noticed that Anderson was losing it as he began pointing the gun back and forth between him and Garcia.
“I’m sorry for your loss. Why don’t you let her go and you and I can talk this out.”
“Talk? It’s a little too late for talking.”
Morgan turned his attention to Garcia.
“You okay, Baby Girl?” He kept his gaze fixed on her.
Garcia nodded, yes.
“You trust me?”
“I trust you.” She whispered.
Anderson began shaking his head and rolling his eyes in disgust. Morgan noticed that Anderson had broke concentration and had moved the gun away from Garcia’s head. A split second, that’s all he needed, that’s all he had. He swiftly moved toward the gun that was now aimed more at the wall than Garcia as Anderson tried to regain control of himself.
“Stop! Just stop talking! You need to pay…”
Suddenly, Anderson pointed the gun at Morgan. This was the split second he needed. He looked toward the rear of the apartment as if he’d heard a noise. This drew Anderson’s attention away from Garcia enough for him to make his move. Morgan sprung toward Anderson grabbing the arm that held the gun. Just then the back door and front doors sprung open…it was the Calvary, guns drawn and aimed at Anderson. Morgan wrestled him to the ground pinning him and knocking the gun away. He couldn’t resist, he knew he’d be reprimanded by Hotch later but he didn’t care so he called on all of his strength and anger and landed his fist across his face and knocked him out cold.
It felt good as he got to his feet and glanced down at the bloody agent’s limp body. He could feel Hotch’s eyes on him but he rushed to Garcia and pulled her into his arms. She fell limp in his arms and sobbed uncontrollably.
“It’s okay, Baby. I got you. I got you.” Morgan’s voice soothed her and made her once again feel safe confirming that he was indeed her Noir Hero.
As the team and the Crime Scene Investigators walked the scene Morgan and Garcia sat quietly on the couch. He held her close as she rested her head on his chest. They didn’t care about the action around them. They sat in each other’s arms. Morgan was willing to invest any amount of time to help her calm down and feel as though everything was okay.
After a while it was just the two of them left. Just as Morgan suspected Hotch ripped him for punching Anderson. JJ, Rossi and Reid secretly seemed pleased that he had knocked him out and as they left the apartment they gave him a thumbs up and had slight grins on their faces.
“Pack a bag, Baby Girl. You’re staying with me tonight.”
“I’m fine. I can stay here…” She half-heartedly protested.
“No arguing. Pack a bag. I’m not letting you stay here tonight. Now do what I said.” Morgan insisted as he helped her up.
She smiled and walked to her dresser and began putting some things in a bag.
Morgan watched her. He shuddered as he thought how his life would have ended if he hadn’t been able to save her. She was his light and she kept him sane. Life wouldn’t make sense without her keeping him on a straight path. He loved her, there was no doubt about that. He didn’t deserve her and that he was sure of as well. There were so many things, excuses that kept his feelings silent and unspoken.
She approached him, bag in hand, breathtaking, vulnerable and so fragile. He saw beyond all of the frailty a strength that kept her grounded and real and accessible to him and everyone that she loved. He gently took her in his arms, held her and placed a light kiss on her head. He thought to himself that he would always keep her safe, always look after her and most of all he would always love her.
He pulled away from her and looked down into her eyes. For the next few moments their eyes locked and they stood in silence. Then he grabbed her hand, fingers interlocked together and turned toward the door and said,
“Let’s go home.”
"Before you embark on a journey of revenge, dig two graves." - Confucius