Title: Candy Basket
Series: Fic A Week & Love Heals the Shattered Soul
Fandom: Criminal Minds,
Year: Season 7
Spoilers: Up through Season 7
Summary: JJ noticed first but she didn’t have the information to figure out why it was significant, until Jack comes for a visit to the BAU.
Aaron knew he had a long way to go to get back into Spencer’s life but it was worth it. He had shattered every single bit of faith that the younger man had in him. While Spencer said he trusted him, Aaron knew it was a shaky trust. Staying around was the only way to build it back up. He had plans to woo Spencer this time.
JJ was sure she was the first to notice the addition to Spence’s desk. It was a small basket filled with suckers and hard candies. It hadn’t been there the night before when she and Spence had left and it had been there when they had arrived that morning. Even Spence hadn’t noticed it. Or if he had, he hadn’t touched it or spoke of it.
“Morning, Reid,” Morgan said as he propped his hip on the side of Spence’s desk, being careful to not knock over the pile of files sitting there. He reached over to grab a piece of candy but a slap to the hand stopped him. He looked at Spence with wide eyes. “Don’t want to share with me?”
Spence reached over to the basket and pulled a sucker out. He ripped the paper off and popped it in his mouth, giving Morgan a smirk. JJ had to stifle a laugh. Several more seconds of staring and then he opened the drawer and grabbed a mini chocolate bar and handed it over. Morgan smiled at him but it was guarded. JJ watched Spence for a few more minutes before she went back to her work.
Pushing the weird candy basket out of her mind, JJ let the case files in front of her lure her mind away.
Hours later, JJ was shocked when she heard the footsteps of a kid running into the bullpen. She looked up to see Jack Hotchner running to his dad’s office. Turning, she saw Jessica standing at the glass doors, her eyes following Jack’s path. Then JJ watched as Jessica looked at Spence and smiled, waving as she left. Spence then grabbed his stack of finished files and moved them away from his left side of the desk. He then spent a few minutes cleaning an even bigger area. It was the cleanest she’d seen his desk in a long while.
Spence went right back to work, trying to finish a file. JJ went back to her file until she heard Jack coming back down the stairs. JJ looked up and saw that he was carrying a book with him. He went right to Spence’s desk and the young agent just smiled at him before picking him up and setting him on the spot cleared on the desk. Jack tucked his feet up and started to read. JJ watched him for several long minutes before deciding to turn back. Jack moving though caught her eye. Jack reached into the basket, grabbing sucker and handing it to Spence before grabbing one for himself.
Half an hour later, there was only Hotch, Spence, and herself left in the BAU. Everyone else had already gone home for the day. Hotch came out of his office with his coffee cup in hand. He stopped by Spence’s desk and grabbed his empty cup before heading to the coffee pot in the break room. JJ watched from the corner of her eye as Hotch stopped back by the desk, dropping off the cup of coffee and then grabbing a piece of the hard candy out of the basket. He unwrapped it and popped in his mouth with a smile before heading back to his office.
“Can I give Miss JJ one of your suckers, Spencer?” Jack asked as he closed his book and set it on the desk. It was the first words he’d spoken that JJ had heard that day.
“Actually,” Spencer spoke as he pulled open his drawer. He pulled out two wrapped chocolate covered cherries. “Miss JJ likes these candies and I have one for each of you. Why don’t you go share with her?”
Jack carefully took both cherries from Spence and then turned to walk the few steps to JJ’s desk. He handed one over to her and started to unwrap his own. JJ smiled and carefully unwrapped hers. Jack smile brightened even more as he chewed on his piece of candy. “It’s good.”
“I know. Spence always keeps a few on hand for me. What kind of sucker were you eating?”
“Blow Pop but I don’t like the gum. Spencer likes Dum Dums.”
“So the basket has your and Spencer’s favorite suckers in it?” JJ turned so she was able to watch Spence as she spoke. She was curious and wasn’t going to hide it.
“And daddy’s favorite as well. It’s just like the basket we have at home.”
Spence actually blushed at the boy’s words. The words solved the mystery of where it came from and why Spence hadn’t let Morgan have a piece or even draw attention to the basket. The room was full of profilers.
“Actually Henry really likes Dum Dums as well. So when he comes to visit, I’ll let him have some of mine.” Spence closed his file and set it in his done pile. He turned to face the two of them.
“What book were you reading?” JJ hadn’t been able to see the cover.
“The Secret Garden. Spencer bought it for me.” Jack turned and looked up at his dad’s office. He smiled. “I have a whole shelf of book in dad’s office that Spencer has bought for me. I’ve read almost all of them. I have The Secret Garden and Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH left to read.”
“I’ll have to see about finding you more.” There was a soft loving smile on Spence’s face as he looked at Jack. It was then that JJ figured out the one question she had been asking herself since she had found out about Hotch and him. How it all started. She knew that at least once a week, Jack was dropped off at the office when they were in town and he spent the evening with his dad. Most of the time she remembered Hotch telling her that he worked on homework and sometimes read. It wasn’t that big of a leap to think that Spence was there on some of those nights. Hotch would have invited Spence to join them on at least one occasion. Spence would have offered homework help and even reading help, given the books. Jack had come right out to Spence’s desk and had been happy to sit beside him and read. It was a routine, it was normal.
“Want to join us for dinner, JJ?” Hotch asked as he stopped by Spence’s desk. His briefcase in one hand and Jack’s light jacket in the other.
“Will and Henry are waiting at home with a pot of gumbo. I am just going to finish this case file and then I am leaving. You two have fun.”
“Three,” Jack said moving over to his dad and slipping his coat on. He looked up at his father, scared. “Spencer is coming right?”
“Jack,” Hotch said as he looked down at his son with guilt in his eyes. JJ could tell that Hotch wanted to look at Spence but he didn’t.
“Of course I am, Jack. Fridays are burgers still right? Five Guys?” The worry in his voice wouldn’t broadcast to Jack but JJ caught it and she was sure that Hotch had as well. Still the look of happiness on Hotch’s face eased JJ’s heart a little. Spence only had eyes for Jack so he didn’t see the look. The genius stood up and slipped on his jacket but before he could grab his bag, Jack slipped up and grabbed it. He started towards the glass doors.
Jack obviously missed Spence. That right there told her how much Spence had been in their lives before. How easily Hotch had dismissed him made JJ’s heart ache. Things were getting better thought and it seemed that Hotch was trying to make it up to him. She would stay back but she would keep an eye. Hotch wasn’t going to get a free pass this time.
Next Part: Not Broken