DISCLAIMER: Criminal Minds and its characters are the property of CBS. No infringement intended.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: I couldn't find a character to pair Garcia up with, sadly. Somehow stealing Emily or JJ away from each other didn't seem right. I just hope you can all warm up to Bailey. A big thank you goes to Em, she's an amazing beta *applause*. She really helped me out a lot but I don't recommend her because I want her all to myself.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
SPOILERS: Season 3, episode 8 'Lucky'.
By Major Roon
"If you wait to do everything until you're sure it's right, you'll probably never do much of anything."
Maybe if she didn't get coffee she wouldn't be late again, Penelope thought, glancing at her watch.
With a happy swing in her step, she opened the door and smoothly slipped inside.
'Good morning, Penelope.' The woman behind the counter said cheerily. 'Good morning, Alison.' She frequented this coffee shop and was considered a regular; she had been coming here for almost 2 years after all.
'The usual?' Penelope handed over her thermos mug and nodded distractedly, her attention on the nervous clipping of the keyboard behind her.
'Oh, come on. Don't do this to me ' The voice belonging to the keyboard-abuser pleaded with a desperate undertone. 'I'm sorry I called you a piece of metal no better than a typewriter. Please?' Garcia smirked for a moment as she took her coffee and turned to take a closer look at the disaster behind her. She watched the scene a second longer and decided to offer her help.
'Hey I work with computers, maybe I can try fix it?' She received a blank stare which she interpreted as a warning to leave the 'poor soul' alone. 'Sorry, none of my business.' Penelope made to leave; she really shouldn't stick her nose into everything
'No, no, no. Please.' A hand was gently but firmly placed on her upper arm. 'Please, take a look at it.' With a grin, Garcia stepped up to the table and the 'piece of metal no better than a typewriter'.
'Oh, Linux good girl.' She started typing away, certain that she was able to fix it. 'It said nasty, incomprehensible things to me before but I've never seen it do that.' The woman hovered right over her shoulder and more than a little bit too close.
Penelope glared. 'Sorry.' The woman stepped to the side and glanced worriedly at the computer screen. 'Can you fix it?'
'Yeah just a moment.'
The stranger breathed a sigh of relief. 'Thank god.'
'Do you talk to your computer often?' The woman looked embarrassed for a moment but then smiled. 'Sometimes it keeps me sane in such situations.'
'Don't worry, I do it too here you go.' Pleased with herself, Penelope turned and looked at the woman next to her, whose face sported a huge smile. 'Wow, thank you so much um '
'Penelope Penelope Garcia.' What was that?
'Thanks, Penelope. Funniest thing my name's Garcia too. Um, Bailey Garcia.' The woman extended her hand nervously and grinned; she seemed to do that an awful lot. 'But, you know, Garcia is a common name so it's actually number 18 on the list of most American last names.'
Penelope found it utterly endearing how the woman, Bailey, tried to talk herself out of her nervousness only succeeding in making it worse. For a moment Garcia had a very strange feeling about the woman but it passed quickly and she didn't dwell on it further. 'Well, I should probably go or I'll be late for work.'
'Sure. Thanks again.'
'No problem.' Garcia turned and asked herself what the matter was with that woman; she behaved strangely, very strangely. Then it dawned on her. Penelope didn't know this because she'd learned a lot at BAU. No, it was just something she knew, what women in general knew and something she was scared of happening. 'Oh ' There it was. She turned slowly, cringing inwardly. 'Your coffee.'
My coffee, of course. Get a grip, you're imagining things. 'Thanks.' Penelope took her mug and turned again, kind of disappointed that her instincts had misled her. She was a people person and she usually knew such things, at least when it came to guys.
Her name was spoken hesitantly but beautifully. 'Yes?'
Bailey moved closer and fiddled with the hem of her button-up shirt. 'Uh I was wondering...' The woman took a deep breath, plastered a smile on her face and looked into Garcia's eyes. 'Maybe we could have lunch together or something?'
Penelope stared at Bailey. For a moment she couldn't move, not even blink. She had somehow seen this coming but now that she was confronted with it she couldn't believe it. Bailey was so pretty and Bailey was asking her out on a date oh god.
'If I'm totally off base here I'm sorry I didn't mean to make you uncomfortable. I just thought we might have a good time together.'
Now she's apologizing for asking me out. That's sweet oh god.
Instead of babbling her way out of this, Garcia said the first thing that came to her mind. 'Yeah ' Okay, she hadn't meant to say that nor say it in such a squeaky voice. Usually she knew what to say, she was witty, she was smart, she was funny. 'Um ' Penelope cleared her throat, stalling. She tried to come up with something but her brain was empty and she had to admit, she was also kind of flattered. 'Okay. Let's have lunch or something.'
I am so screwed.
'Great.' Bailey was thrilled, Garcia wasn't. 'I have a card, just a second.' Bailey rummaged through her wallet, produced a card, handed it over to Penelope and grinned. 'My cell and my private number,' she explained.
Penelope stuffed the card into her purse and searched for something to write on. She found many pens, on which Bailey didn't comment and finally a piece of paper.
I really shouldn't do this, Garcia thought as she wrote down her number. 'That's my hotline.' Bailey took the little piece of paper and nodded. 'Alright. I'll call you '
She had walked out of there as fast as she could.
What were you thinking? You could've let her down gently, Penelope, but now you've got to go out with her at least once. You can't just not call she has your number after all and she will call, dummy.
Oh god, this is going to end horribly.
Why did you do that? Sure, you were freaked out, caught off-guard and, admit it, you were a bit flattered even, but those are no excuses, Penelope.
Why did she ask me out of all people? She's pretty, she looks like someone who is successful, like someone who can have anyone they want; so why me?!
I'm not hot stuff. I'm pretty and cute, but I'm definitely not hot stuff.
Maybe it's a lesbian thing? Did you think about that? You know nothing about lesbian things, so maybe they like your type.
I'm not a type I don't fit into categories. Besides, that's the most stupid thing I've ever come up with.
Well, maybe she just likes you.
She doesn't even know me, how can she like me already? This is ridiculous. I'll get through this. Just one date.
But what if she wants to go out with you again, smarty?
am I arguing with myself?
I guess you are.
'Good morning, Princess.'
I should just wait and see what happens. Don't panic.
'Morning.' Oh, I'm at work
'Huh,' Morgan looked rather surprised and Penelope felt caught. She turned slowly, dreading the conversation that was coming. 'Everyday I say good morning, and everyday you respond with I'll show you a good morning hot stuff. Everyday, yet not today.'
Garcia picked at her shirt and blinked innocently. 'You know, I hate profilers.'
She was up to something; Morgan knew it and Penelope knew that he knew. 'Spit it out.'
'Oh, it's nothing, hottie,' she said playfully but apparently it didn't work at all.
'Don't hottie me. What's with that mask of innocence you've put on?'
Now she had a problem. She couldn't just tell him she just accidentally agreed to go on a date with a lesbian; that was out of the question. Why anyway? 'Uh I met someone.' Morgan looked stunned for a moment but composed himself rather quickly.
'You did what? Where?'
Penelope should have realized that she couldn't keep it to herself for long. 'Coffee shop. Smoking hot. Fixed a computer. Asked wanna go to lunch, said yeah I'd love to, end of story.' Okay, that at least sounded like me.
'Slow down. You fixed the guy's computer and he asked you out? Just like that? And you said yes?'
'Yeah. Just like that smokin' hot, did I mention that?' She swallowed carefully and looked into Morgan's eyes without even blinking once. He bought it.
'Yeah, yeah, you did. Well ' He tapped her on the nose and grinned. 'It happens.'
'No no, not to me.' And that was the truth. 'Not like this. I'm not the girl men see across a smoky bar and write songs about.' In fact twice men had just asked her out after seeing her in a 'smoky bar' but not once had a lesbian asked her out, ever.
'I'm doing fine but it takes a minute, you know.' Time to wrap this up.
'Okay, so what's the problem? You think this is happening too fast or something?'
'I dunno, maybe, what do you think?'
'I think you should always trust your guts. If you think he's a little too smooth or a little too smokin' hot then you should walk the other way.'
That would make sense if I were in an entirely different situation. He's right though; was she a little too smooth? No, she was nervous and fidgeting. Was she too smokin' hot? Well she was pretty
Oh JJ, thank god.
'Hey, we got a bad one.' The blonde was carrying a load of files and seemed out of breath. Whatever it was it was probably really, really bad.
'How bad,' Morgan asked.
So far so good. The team was in Florida and she actually was onto something. Fingerprints. She really hoped she would get some results and quickly because this case was creepy. It was also gruesome and she wanted it to be over. She wanted to know that no more women would be hurt or killed and she desperately wanted to forget all the ugly details.
For some time she had even thought about that woman Bailey to distract herself. Penelope had played the scenes over and over in her head, had asked herself a thousand questions and had even tried to analyze the woman's behavior.
She had seemed so genuine and so sweet. Garcia hoped she wouldn't hurt her much.
The phone rang, it was probably Morgan. 'You've reached the mighty oracle of Garcia, speak and you will be heard.' She heard someone chuckle on the other end.
'I thought you were kidding when you said the phone number was your hotline?'
'It's Bailey from the coffee shop this morning.'
Say something. 'Hi. How's it going?'
'Great, thanks to you.'
Aww how sweet. 'Just happy to be of service.' What are you doing encouraging her?
'I was wondering if you were in the mood for breakfast tomorrow?'
'Yeah. In the coffee shop? Would that be okay?'
'Would that be okay?' Penelope shook her head at herself. 'Yeah. I'd like that. Maybe an hour earlier than this morning?'
She could actually hear the smile in Bailey's voice and for a moment Garcia was happy that she was the one to put it there. 'Perfect. I look forward to it bye.'
Her phone rang again. 'Hello?'
'What's that? Just hello?' It was Derek, figures.
'I'm searching for matches on the prints. Just another few minutes, I'll call you back as soon as I have something.'
'Not so fast. What's the matter?'
Yeah, what was the matter anyway? Garcia felt like a puddle of goo; her insides were quivering nervously and she couldn't stop fiddling with her pens. 'Bailey called.' Penelope admitted quietly, actually relieved that Bailey sounded more like a guy's name.
'Coffee shop, smokin' hot.'
'That was fast. What did he want?'
Why was Morgan so nosy all of a sudden? 'He asked me to have breakfast with him tomorrow, at the coffee shop. I said yes.' She really needed someone to help her out here. Maybe she should just tell Derek the truth. No big deal. He wouldn't laugh at her, he wouldn't disapprove; he was open minded and her friend. No problem. But saying it out loud was somehow way harder than Garcia had imagined.
'Well, that's good. Breakfast's good. You get to know each other in familiar surroundings and if you decide that he's a creep all you wasted was another hour of sleep.'
Why did he assume Bailey was a creep? He didn't know her. He didn't even know she was a she, how could he just assume things like that. 'Oh god.'
'I got something on the fingerprints.'
She was supposed to be working, but she wasn't. Why? She had another argument with herself whether to look Bailey Garcia up or not. She could, no one would ever find out but she would know. She should just let it be. Just go on that date, let her down gently and move on.
Penelope also asked herself why she was so adamant that it would be horrible. Why didn't she just give it a shot and try to have a good time because who knows, maybe Bailey was a fun person.
But I'm just not gay.
Maybe I'm bi sexual? Hmm. A hot woman Angelina Jolie.
Penelope concentrated on the mental image of her and Angelina making out.
That's not doing it. Maybe Angelina just isn't my type.
Penelope, you're overanalyzing. You're making this bigger than it is.
'What's up with Garcia? Take a look at this.' Prentiss piled up a few sheets of paper and started to sort through them.
'Why?' Morgan came to stand next to her and looked over her shoulder.
'Well she's faxing some of them upside down.'
'So? It happens.'
'So? It never happens to her.' Emily looked over the details of the first identified victim. 'She's keeping some big secret, isn't she?' He said nothing to that. 'She does, right?' Again nothing. 'Oh, c'mon. Is it bad?'
'No. Nothing bad.' He didn't seem so convinced.
It was early morning and it was time.
Penelope walked dreadfully slowly toward the coffee shop. She paused in front of the door and took a deep breath. Having gotten herself into this, it was now time to face the music.
Though Garcia was nervous and not very keen on this date, she had decided to at least get to know Bailey a bit better. She might turn out to be someone Penelope might like to hang out with sometime.
If Bailey still wanted that after she heard what Garcia had done that is.
Penelope opened the door and stepped inside, letting the smell of freshly brewed coffee assault her nose. 'Hey, Penelope. You're early,' Alison greeted. 'The usual?'
Garcia stood at the counter and started looking around. 'No I'm meeting someone.' She couldn't spot Bailey. Maybe she wouldn't come, maybe she had been stood up? Penelope didn't know how to feel about that; whether relieved or insulted.
'You looking for Bailey?'
'Huh?' Somehow her wittiness had gotten lost.
'Her table is around the corner. She always sits there.'
Penelope gathered what was left of her courage and shuffled around the corner where she found Bailey sitting at a table, looking as immaculate as yesterday, reading the newspaper. She flung her black hair back and that was when she noticed Garcia standing there, staring.
A huge smile formed on Bailey's lips and she neatly folded the paper while Garcia stepped up to her. The woman stood slowly, unsure of how to welcome her date and just settled for the smile, which was apparently enough.
Garcia swallowed reflexively as she heard her name being spoken like that. It sounded expensive, precious and sexy out of Bailey's mouth.
The food was great; it was a delicatessen after all. Having coffee while they waited for their food seemed like a good idea, but now the caffeine was starting to make Garcia jumpy. She was jumpy most of the time, actually almost always but right now she could do without it.
'Hey I got you something,' Bailey said excitedly, reaching to her jacket. She handed Garcia a pen and grinned. 'It lights up when you write and it changes color even the light does depending on which color you're writing in.'
Penelope took the pen and glanced at it. No one she had ever been on a date with had given her a pen before. It was strange but cute. 'I hope this wasn't a dumb idea. I just noticed all the pens you had in your purse yesterday and thought you know.'
Penelope looked at the pen in wonder; not because it was changing color, not because it had little LED-lights in it but because it made her realize that people noticed other things about her beside her clothes and her hair. At least Bailey did. 'No. Not dumb at all.'
For the first time that morning the smile on Garcia's lips came easily. 'Thanks.' She took a swig of coffee to hide the coy grin behind the mug and eyed the woman across from her curiously. This woman was impossible to figure out; Garcia was really starting to wish she had looked her up before meeting her for this date.
Her clothes looked neat but they weren't expensive, just good looking and stylish. She would probably go to work right after the date which meant she had to work in a place where a professional style was required but where there was also the freedom to show your individuality.
Bailey didn't wear any jewelry, except a necklace with the pendant hidden beneath her shirt. What also struck Penelope as kind of odd was that she had very short fingernails, and her hands looked like she worked a lot with them; yet someone with such clothes usually sat at a desk.
Oh, she really should have looked her up.
Or maybe she should just ask?
'So what do you do? Work, I mean.'
'Well,' Bailey sipped at her coffee. 'I always get either or both of two reactions when I tell people what I do. The first one is: oh my god, tell me everything about it!' She traced the rim of her mug with her fingertip. 'Or: oh my god, that's dangerous. So please don't freak out '
'I'm trying,' Penelope said dryly. Bailey chuckled lightly and sighed. 'I'm an FBI agent.' She waited for an 'oooh' or something equally astounded but what she got was a mere nod and a deep sigh. 'Figures,' Penelope mumbled.
'Why figures? You aren't uncomfortable with that, right?'
'No,' Garcia responded lightly and took a large swig of coffee, knocking back the sweet, strawberry-flavored stuff as if it were cheap whiskey. 'Which department are you in?'
'Actually I'm with a Special Weapons and Tactics Unit. That's '
'SWAT, yeah I know that.'
Bailey seriously asked herself what she'd done now. 'So what do you do?'
'I'm working for the BAU. Now look at that '
Bailey chuckled again. 'Seriously? Wow. That's tough. So, you're a profiler?'
'No, I'm the computer geek,' Penelope said lightly and grinned. It was somehow depressing that she wasn't able to meet people away from work when she was away from work but at least Bailey wasn't in her unit.
'More of a computer goddess, you mean? Well, that figures.'
'Aww, goddess, that's just too much continue.' Was she flirting? Yes, she was. Oh god. What are you doing, Penelope?
The date was coming to an end and Garcia realized she had not cleared this whole mess up. Penelope felt slightly guilty about it but didn't dwell on it; the day had started just too great to spoil it now with unpleasant things like her un-gayness.
'I had a really great time, Penelope.' There was her name again in combination with that strange tone of voice. 'I hope you decided that I'm not a total creep and psycho?'
'No, you're not but that you're only drinking plain black coffee when there is so much yummy stuff to choose from is kinda suspicious and way beyond me.' Bailey held the door open for her. It made Garcia feel strange, a bit uncomfortable even but also very cared for. The agent wanted to accompany Penelope to her car and she had only mildly protested, so they walked down the street together at a leisurely pace though they both should actually hurry to get to work on time.
They arrived at Penelope's car and stood there, somewhat awkwardly. 'So can I call you?'
Garcia thought about the question for a moment though not really pondering the potential outcome of this 'charade' she thought she was playing. 'Yeah. My hotline's open.'
'Great.' Another awkward moment passed between them. 'Okay. I'll talk to you soon, Penelope.'
Bailey bent down slowly. 'Sure,' Garcia squeaked, afraid she was going to be kissed and damn curious about it as well.
Bailey Garcia kissed her on the cheek and touched her arm softly. 'Bye,' she breathed mere inches away from Penelope's cheek and grinned.
'Bye, hot stuff.'
Well, maybe this wasn't really such a stupid idea, Garcia thought. She had enjoyed herself a lot. She started toying with her new pen for the umpteenth time that day. If only she was actually gay things would be so much easier
If Bailey were a guy none of this would even be a problem, but she wasn't. The woman was just so sweet and considerate, even funny and smart. Most of all she put up with Penelope's oddness; even seemingly enjoying it.
And that was all Garcia wanted in a man. She was a serious freak, it was really that simple.
Another thing Penelope had noticed was that Bailey seemed to be old-school, if you could call a lesbian that. A real gentlewoman, which after you got used to it was kind of endearing. She had paid for breakfast and even held the door open
Depressing. For once she met someone un-creepy, funny and sweet and it had to be a chick.
Garcia looked at her clock, she had several, on every computer screen at least one, and sighed. It was almost 10 pm and she was in desperate need of some sleep but she was chained to her desk until the team decided to call it a night. If they were awake, she was awake,
Her phone rang once, breaking the silence. 'The truth is out there. Almighty Garcia will tell you where for 5 dollars.' There was a brief silence then a female voice spoke.
'Hey it's Bailey. I actually wanted to leave you a message because I thought you'd gone home already.'
Penelope leaned back in her chair and smiled a tiny smile; she felt much more at ease now that she knew the woman a bit better. 'Odd job, odd hours.'
'Tell me about it. We've got new recruits right now, so I've got to stay another 2 hours to watch the fledglings.'
'Can't they sleep without you singing them a lullaby?'
Bailey huffed. 'Sleep? We're currently practicing what we learned in binoculars 101. 'Sides, no one could fall asleep with me singing right next to them '
Penelope smiled again and pressed a few keys on her keyboard. She didn't really pay attention but she knew how to do her thing in her sleep. 'So, don't take this the wrong way, but why did you call the almighty Garcia? Remember, the location of the ultimate truth costs 5 bucks, no exceptions, not even for you.'
'Well I know I'm breaking the rule because I didn't wait two or three days 'til calling again but I had to be patient all day long with the newbies so all the pent up impatience forced its way out and directly to the phone. What I wanted to ask was if you were interested in dinner?'
'Dinner? Sure. When?' It was startling how easily those words left Penelope's mouth.
'Tomorrow,' Bailey suggested, her voice hopeful.
'You move fast '
'Don't like wasting time when I know what I want.'
Garcia grinned giddily and bit her lip. 'What is it you want?'
'Tomorrow then I'm not sure when I'll be able to leave though.'
'Don't worry 'bout that. My internal clock is messed up already and I wouldn't wanna miss a date with you for anything.' God seriously must've made a mistake, why else would she be straight and Bailey a woman? This was so unfair.
'Would you like me to pick you up at the office or wouldn't that be a good idea?'
No, I'm not out at my workplace if it's that what you want to know because I'm not gay ergo no coming out.
'Actually I better get home first ... and right now I have to go, someone's calling.'
'Okay, see you tomorrow.'
'Bye and hello, stranger seeker of the truth. Five bucks and it's yours.'
'We've got him.'
It was Morgan. 'You got him? That's great.'
'Yeah. Just wanted to let you know that you can go home and that we'll be back by tomorrow evening.'
Garcia was already packing her stuff. 'That is fantastic!'
'You sound chipper what's the deal?'
Penelope thought about not telling him of the breakfast at all but she just had to talk to someone about it, maybe she should tell him that her date was actually a woman and hear what Morgan had to say he always had something to add.
'Bailey called, we're going out again, tomorrow.'
'Tomorrow? Again? You went out with him?'
She hadn't mentioned that yet. 'Oh, yeah. We ended up having our breakfast date.'
'I thought you wanted to blow him off? I thought you had the feeling that something was wrong with him?'
'You had the feeling something was wrong with him, I on the other hand had a great date and I'm going to have another great date tomorrow.' Garcia had no idea why Derek had to be this way. Here she was, talking to one of her best friends and he didn't think about being happy for her.
'Well don't you think that's a bit fast?'
It kind of hurt.
'Wow, you are some profiler,' Penelope said sarcastically. 'You could tell how wrong he was from what little I told you. I wonder, was it that he was too handsome or too interested in me that tipped you off on how wrong he was?'
'Garcia I didn't mean '
'Just because you wouldn't cross a crowded room to hit on me does not mean that a more perceptive, less superficial guy wouldn't. You know what, Derek? You suck!' She hung up on him and he deserved it. Who did he think he was? Just because someone hot, someone sweet and nice asked her out didn't mean he, she, was a creep.
Bailey wasn't a creep at all and she could prove it.
It's not like I'm some wallflower with ugly hair. I'm attractive, I'm cute, I'm smart and I'm damn funny, I just wear crazy clothes, have crazy hair, crazy make-up and crazy attitude but that doesn't mean I'm undesirable.
She would show him how desirable she really was and who that smokin' hot someone interested in her was. Derek would probably love to have a date with Bailey but he didn't stand a chance in hell against Penelope Wonderful Garcia.
Tomorrow she would walk out of the office with a very attractive FBI agent.
Penelope dug into her purse and searched desperately for the card Bailey had given her the other day. She found a lot of things lip gloss, bubblegum, an old USB stick then finally the card. Agent Bailey Garcia, she read, FBI. Should've looked at it at least once
She dialed Bailey's number and waited for voice mail to pick up but instead she got the real thing.
It was kind of funny to hear your own name on the other end. 'Hi, it's Penelope. I'm not interrupting anything am I?' She could hear voices in the background.
'Hi, Penelope.' There were some cheers and howls. 'Penelope! Uuuuuh!' Some guys yelled. 'Shut up, Frank! And no, you're not interrupting anything important. We're on a break actually or how I like to call it: Bragging Time.' Bailey was obviously going somewhere more private because the howls and cheers were getting quieter. 'If you're calling to cancel I'm going to hang up '
Garcia chuckled. 'I just wanted to let you know that my team caught the bad guy so I'll be working my normal hours. Meaning I won't take the car ... meaning you can get me at the office.'
'Then I'll do that. Can I come in or should I wait outside? Get out, Frank! Sorry '
'You can come in.'
'Great well, I better get back in there and brag some too '
'Okay. See you tomorrow.'
'I'm looking forward to it.'
'Me too bye, hot stuff.' Why did she say that again? Ugh. She should seriously start thinking before speaking.
The next morning Penelope had considered wearing something a little more decent for her date, something that wasn't so shiny and colorful, or at least less sparkly, but decided to just wear what she liked and felt comfortable in. Bailey seemed to like her clothes, she seemed to like her just the way she was and that was a great feeling.
Besides, Penelope Garcia wasn't someone who changed just because someone else didn't like what she was wearing, saying or doing.
The team had wrapped things up in Florida and was on its way back. Penelope had talked to Prentiss a few times during the day but wouldn't be talking to Derek anytime soon. Garcia had spent the afternoon wrapping everything up as well and was practically done.
Later in the afternoon someone knocked on her door. It was Emily wearing a smile. 'Hey. We're back. Debriefing is in 10 minutes.'
Garcia decided to play dumb; she knew it wouldn't work but tried anyway. 'What do you mean?'
'Oh, c'mon. Morgan tells me to get you, Morgan tells me to call you, you call me instead of Morgan. What happened?' Emily leaned against the desk and waited.
'Well I met someone.'
'Oh, I see,' Prentiss said with a smirk, getting herself a chair. 'Tell me about it. Where did you meet?'
Penelope thought her colleague and friend was acting like a teenager but found it cute and was in the mood to share with someone who wouldn't judge her or her date. 'We met in the coffee shop. Two days ago.'
'Does the guy have a name?'
'What does he look like?'
'What's this? 20 questions?'
'Yeah, it is. I've got to live off someone's love life because I don't have one. Spill.'
Garcia bit her lip coyly and started playing with the pen again. 'Black hair, actually it looks a lot like yours green eyes, muscles but not too many, a cute smile '
'Oh, that sounds good. What does he do?'
'So that's where he's got the muscles from. Isn't he a bit you know rough?'
'Rough, no. Gentle, sweet, yes. Hot, hell yeah, baby.'
'Uhhh. Sounds like a dream boy to me I'm jealous.'
Garcia felt bad for lying again. Maybe she should just tell her the truth, soon everybody would see Bailey anyway. Prentiss would surely understand. Actually everybody would understand.
'Actually, Bailey is '
Emily's cell rang before Penelope could finish. Great. She really had wanted to say it. 'They're ready. C'mon and later you're going to tell me all about him.'
'I'll be right out '
Emily left and Garcia dialed Bailey's number to let her know she would only be another hour.
Penelope glanced at her watch yet again; almost everyone had caught up on it but didn't say anything. Garcia on the other hand didn't notice them noticing, she was in her own little world. Right then she was asking herself if she should've applied the pinkish lip gloss instead of the red one.
Her thoughts wandered to where they might be going for dinner. She hoped it wasn't a classy restaurant, she didn't like that. She liked cozy, warm and intimate but Bailey didn't strike her as someone who liked classy anyway.
Garcia started to feel giddy. Soon Bailey would arrive, Derek would see her and Penelope would see Derek's face. She felt guilty once again for doing this to him, but he deserved it, what really bugged her was that she knew she was not only using Bailey but also leading her on.
Penelope was interested in the woman just not in a romantic way. Or was she? No.
'Huh?' Penelope brought her eyes up and onto Hotch's face. He looked expectantly at her and she had no idea what they were talking about or what he could possible want from her. She noticed Emily smirking and trying to hide it behind a hand; not very successfully. 'I wasn't thinking about that,' the blonde snapped in mock anger.
'Right. Then what were you thinking about that put such a dreamy expression on your face?'
'Hello,' Hotch interrupted. 'Could we get this done?' He noticed Garcia glance at her watch again and then outside and he had enough. 'Alright. Let's get this over with so you can get on with whatever it is you're waiting for.'
'Sorry.' How could she get so distracted? It wasn't like she was looking forward to the date, she just looked forward to seeing Bailey again. Garcia shook her head briefly at herself; she was becoming obsessed kinda.
Penelope looked up again and her eyes fell onto a black haired figure leaning casually against a desk, talking to an agent. 'Garcia ' Hotch started but the blonde whirlwind interrupted him by handing out folders. 'This is all the info I have on the guy. I researched the fire in the hospital and did background checks on the victims. Everything in there is in perfect order, just waiting for you to sign it off and let it disappear into an evidence box.'
She paused a moment until everyone was done staring. 'Anything else?'
With a huge grin Garcia stepped out of the conference room smoothing down her dress. She knew she was behaving strangely, but what the heck.
Bailey spotted her right away. Some might say that it was impossible to miss someone like Garcia but the look on Bailey's face told Penelope that it wasn't the usual disbelief most people had in their eyes at seeing the clothes, the hair and the rings. Bailey looked genuinely happy.
The black haired agent started to walk towards her, with one hand on her belt looking a bit cliché, Texan even, which she wasn't. Her accent was way too New England. Besides, she had already told Garcia she was from Connecticut.
Penelope just observed for a few moments how Bailey weaved her way through the crowd. She was so smooth, smoother than Jackson doing the moonwalk.
'Hey ' Garcia greeted with a small, shy smile playing around her lips. Bailey bent down and touched her waist gently then she kissed her on the cheek. 'Penelope. You have no idea how glad I am to see you.'
'Not that I can't believe that but allow me to ask why?'
Bailey tilted her head to the side. 'I just spent hours in a room full of testosterone. You though are the opposite of testosterone; you are so way beyond pheromone you're already anti-testosterone.'
'Is that supposed to be a compliment?'
'Hey, Garcia?' They both turned to look who was calling. It was Emily, dragging a bored looking JJ along. 'We wanna go out, you in?'
Penelope cleared her throat quietly and put on her best diplomatic smile. 'Actually, no. I'm going on a date with Bailey.' She gestured at the woman next to her. 'Surprise.'
JJ blinked a few times, not really understanding at first. Emily caught on and grinned. 'Well, well.' She shook hands with the woman who introduced herself as Bailey Garcia. 'Nice to meet you.'
'Emily Prentiss.' She nudged JJ then turned to Penelope, smirked and walked past closely. 'Still jealous ' She threw another glance at Bailey and walked towards her desk from where she could observe what was happening perfectly.
Emily jumped at the sound of Morgan's voice right next to her ear. 'Damn, don't sneak up on me like that!'
'I wasn't sneaking, you just weren't paying attention. So, who's that?'
His colleague slapped him on the arm. 'That, my friend, is Bailey.'
'Oh, I like.' Penelope leaned back into the plush sofa and continued sipping on her dangerously colorful cocktail.
The restaurant, if you could call it that, was awesome. Garcia had no idea it existed but now that she did she wanted to live in this place. Their 'table' was a couch with a coffee table, there were tons of things to eat, all in small portions so you could eat the whole evening if you wanted. The best things though were the drinks.
Bailey wasn't allowed to drink alcohol, sadly, because she might be called in, which she said probably wouldn't happen anyway. She had sipped on Penelope's drink a few times but drank coke instead.
Garcia leaned her head against the backrest and looked straight at Bailey next to her. She watched the woman for a few moments and tried to make sense of all of this. 'Tell me why did you ask me out?'
Bailey leaned back as well and looked into Penelope's eyes then she averted them carefully. 'When I saw you for the first time
I just knew I had to get to know you.'
Bailey reached out and let a single strand of blonde hair run through her fingers. 'Really.' Penelope watched her blush; she had never seen Bailey blush before. 'This might sound stupid, so please don't laugh at me '
'I would never laugh at you.'
'For a moment I felt so inadequate. And then I noticed that you smelled so sweet you were so cute, you still are and you made me laugh, you made me happy, just like that ' Bailey bit her lip and smiled shyly. 'In my line of work you don't have much to laugh about, you know how it is and then you just turned up and made me feel so great, you made my day and every other day since we met.' She reached out and touched Penelope's hand. The physical gesture barely registered in Garcia's mind. She was stunned and flattered, her heart was beating so fast.
'I know it's selfish but I just can't stop wanting to be with you.'
Penelope looked at her unmoving. She didn't know what to say or what to do. There was that incredible woman telling her beautiful things and being so absolutely wonderful and she just felt like she was leading her on. It hurt her deep inside, it was making her feel horrible.
'I'm I'm just not gay.'
Bailey smiled sadly. 'I know.'
'I'm sorry wait, you know? How did you know?' Garcia received a pointed look. She had no idea what it meant but let it go. 'You're not mad, are you?'
'No, not mad. Either you are or you aren't, it's not your fault. I'm a little sad but it'll pass.'
'I enjoyed myself a lot tonight.' Penelope let her fingers travel along the muscles in Bailey's upper arm which Garcia had circled with her own.
'Me too I guess it was luck my laptop was so awful to me the other day. I should thank him.' Their shoulders bumped together gently and they both smiled. 'Well, I don't know about luck. It was just awfully good that I was there to fix it.'
They stopped somewhere, Bailey had no idea where but she followed Penelope's lead and came to a halt. 'You don't believe in luck?'
'Hmmm ' Penelope tilted her head to the side and gave Bailey a cute smile. 'I believe that everything happens for a really good reason. What about you?'
'I don't know. Sometimes, when you come this close you can't explain it with anything other than luck. I just know that I feel lucky that I met you.'
Penelope chuckled shyly and averted her eyes. 'This is it.' Bailey glanced at the house just briefly then brought her eyes back on Garcia's, hugging her tenderly. The blonde felt her heart soar at the gentleness Bailey was capable of and felt awfully sad that she couldn't have that. She felt really safe with this woman, also cozy and comfortable. Just like she was lying in a huge fluffy bed with the most wonderful smelling and softest covers wrapped around her.
Bailey was as sweet as always and kissed her on the cheek. She started to draw back slowly and Penelope knew she was reluctant to just let go, not only physically but also emotionally.
As she looked into Bailey's eyes Penelope began to wonder if she might ever meet someone like that woman again, if she should give it a shot. Somehow it just didn't feel right.
'There's something I wanted to do since I had to say goodbye to you after our breakfast,' Bailey said quietly.
'What's that?' Penelope asked after a moment, her voice small.
'Close your eyes.'
Garcia did so without a moment of hesitation. She knew what she was doing, she knew what was going to happen, she just wasn't sure if it was a good idea. In the end she thought that maybe thinking everything over again and again wasn't really doing anything other than causing her more confusion.
The next thing she knew she was being kissed, almost chastely. Bailey's lips felt unbelievably soft against her own. They left hers after just a moment and Penelope sighed. It had been nice and that was all.
Penelope opened her eyes as soon as she felt soft waves of warm breath hit her lips and looked up into the green innocent pools of the woman holding her in her arms. The kiss had felt strange but not exactly wrong.
The kiss had been too short, Garcia decided and came closer to those lips again. She felt a pang of fear but the urge to do that again, to experience it once more was just too overwhelming.
Bailey just looked at her, mildly baffled, as the agent realized what Penelope wanted her to do. Somehow she couldn't believe it, not even when the blonde's fingers tickled her neck and drew her closer. It all happened so fast; Bailey barely had time to close her eyes again.
The kiss started out just as innocent as the one before; a gentle meeting of lips and breath. Garcia tilted her head to the side and after another moment she brought her arms around Bailey's neck and just kissed.
Penelope thought that she was glad she put the red lip gloss on because it was stickier than the pink one and the feeling of Bailey's lips sticking to hers was worth it. This felt good, incredibly good and intense. Only things that were right could feel that way, Penelope realized. So she had gotten the answer she had been looking for after all.
They parted slowly, though stayed close. Bailey seemed to need a moment to compose herself so Penelope took the opportunity to look at her, really look at her. She felt like laughing, not because all this felt ridiculous but because she just realized that she could have all of the things she thought she couldn't.
Garcia chuckled lightly and grinned at the cute woman who was still holding her gently. 'Nice lipstick,' she mumbled, reaching out to wipe away a bit of lip gloss from Bailey's lips. She kissed the woman again, just a little peck, and grinned. 'Goodnight.'
Bailey cleared her throat quietly, let go of Garcia and nodded. 'Goodnight.'
The blonde lingered a moment longer then made her way up the stairs slowly.
'Yeah?' Garcia turned and found Bailey standing in the exact same spot she had left her, a small smug smile tugging on the corners of her lips.
'I'll call you,' the black haired woman simply said.
"One day your life will flash before your eyes. Make sure it's worth watching."
Return to Criminal Minds Fiction
Return to Main Page