DISCLAIMER: Criminal Minds and its characters are the property of CBS. No infringement intended.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
SPOILERS: 2 x 09 The Last Word.

The Morning After
By Jax


Emily woke up and groaned, pressing a hand against her forehead. Of course her first hangover would come the day she had to report to Agent Strauss for her reassignment within the FBI. She was finally getting it. Her position at the BAU had been secured after three years of applying for every opening that appeared.

And that was the morning she woke up, head pounding, with foggy memories of a delicious blonde with sparkling blue eyes. Emily paused and opened her eyes. No, this was definitely not her room. She blinked and took in the room around her, sitting up. As her senses cleared, she could hear a shower running, a voice softly humming over the din. There was a baby blue blouse and a khaki a-line skirt hanging from the closet door. The water stopped and Emily watched as the door opened, bracing for the blonde to be stunningly less attractive without four beers, three shots, and two irish car bombs in her.

The door opened to reveal the opposite... a woman more beautiful than her hazy mind could recall, blonde hair just past her shoulders, blue eyes sparkling as beads of water dripped down to her towel. "Oh good, you're awake. I'm so so so sorry but... I have to go. I should have left for work about twenty minutes ago, but I slept through my alarm and... I'm so sorry."

Emily smiled, "It's okay. I should get going myself I... have to meet with my boss at work. Look, last night was amazing um..." She searched her mind for a name.

"Jennifer," she reminded her softly, smiling, "and it was. But maybe we should have skipped the two rounds of car bombs, huh? Emily, right?"

Emily nodded.

"Well, I have you programmed in my cell so... I'll... call you?" Emily smiled and stood, grabbing her clothes up off the floor, stopping briefly to kiss Jennifer quickly. A soft flush spread across her cheeks, "You know... I don't usually..."

"I don't either but... who knows. Everything happens for a reason, right?"

Jennifer nodded and bit her lip, watching Emily scramble to pull her clothes on. "Well... I'll call you. I promise!"

"Better keep that promise, because I won't forget!"

Emily stood rooted in her place unmoving as Agent Hotchner kindly explained to her the mix-up. She took a breath and looked up at him, unflinching in the face of her dream shattering, "It's no mistake, Sir... Erin Strauss told me that I was to report to you today..."

Agent Hotchner sighed and mumbled under his breath, "Strauss..."


Hotchner opened his mouth to reply but his door burst open and a flurry of blonde hair handed him a file, "Hotch, we have a bad one."

"Aren't they all bad ones, JJ?" He sighed and nodded at Emily, "Agent Prentiss, until your paperwork comes through, you can't be on any cases, but I'll have Agent Jareau here run you through some preliminary team information and protocol while I brief the team on this case."

The blonde turned at the mention of her name and both froze, eyes locked as an ironic smile threatened at the corners of Emily's mouth.

Hotchner continued, oblivious to the women's reactions to one another, "Emily, this is Supervisory Special Agent Jennifer Jareau, our press liaison and case co-ordinator. JJ, this is Emily Prentiss, a... potential candidate for Elle's position. I'll go brief the team, JJ." And with a nod and a flourish of the folder in his hand, he disappeared through the door, talking under his breath to another man in the hallway, gesturing at his office questioningly.

Emily and JJ stood silently for a few moments before JJ finally broke the silence with a nervous chuckle, "Wow so uh... we meet again, Emily?"

Pushing her hair behind her ear with a laugh, Emily nodded, "So we do..."

"Well I'll... give you the tour and we can talk about... what we do here at the BAU." JJ was struggling not to distract herself with memories of the night before and just what Emily Prentiss could do with the hands that were hovering over the cardboard box of picture frames and other desk-appropriate decor. "We can stop by my office and you can stash that in there."

Emily raised an eyebrow, "You have your own office?"

JJ blushed and waved a finger at her, "Don't you go getting ideas. I happen to be monitored on closed-circuit video at all times and we have a very, very pervy tech analyst who likes to watch." She paused, "However, I do happen to know a few hallways and closets that are dark spots."

"Can we start the tour with those?" Emily grinned, eyes flashing.

"You're insatiable, Agent Prentiss." A grin lingered on JJ's lips as she turned to the door, grasping the handle. She looked over her shoulder, blonde strands masking the sparkle in her eyes. "Later, perhaps."

The End

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