A Storm’s Fallout

Title: A Storm’s Fallout
Fandom: Criminal Minds
Year: 2016
Tags: Established Relationship,
Ratings: R
Pairings: Aaron Hotchner/Spencer Reid,
Characters: Jack Hotchner, Spencer Reid, Aaron Hotchner,
Spoilers: Up Through Entire Season 11
Summary: When the storm passed, Spencer didn’t know this would be the fallout. He’s still not sure that it’s the best course of action but he does what he needs to do to protect his family. Even stepping out of his comfort zone.
Words: 5,641
Notes: None
Warnings: None
Beta: rivermoon1970

Spencer looked up at Aaron’s office and was shocked to find him just sitting there. His eyes were across the room. Staring at a wall. Spencer wasn’t sure what was up about that. He set his coffee cup down on his desk and made his way up to his lover’s office. He knocked on the door jamb but Aaron didn’t react. That wasn’t good at all. Spencer knocked harder and Aaron finally turned to look at him.

“Come in and shut the door.”

“Sure.” Spencer shut the door but he didn’t move closer to the desk. Aaron stood up and moved to the couch. He sat and spread his legs and Spencer knew that he wanted him in the chair.

“Do you remember the conversation we had after the dinner at Dave’s?”

Spencer nodded. The conversation had been about Jack and trying to help him come to terms with SWAT entering the apartment and taking him out at gunpoint with Jack watching.

“I think that I’ll take your offer of talking to him. I’ve not had a single bit of luck.”

“Okay.” Spencer was happy because Aaron and Jack needed help and neither would like an outsider stepping in.

“Jack is waiting at school to be picked up.”

“It’s only eleven.” Spencer looked at the clock and confirmed that it was barely even past the eleven o’clock hour.

“He screamed at his teacher and is demanding to go home. The principal and the school psychologist aren’t able to get him to talk. Pick him up and take him home. Or wherever you feel like you can get him to talk. Don’t worry about your work. I’ll take care of it.”

“No. I’m going to take the files with me. I have been thinking and I know that you said you didn’t need my help before but I couldn’t help but plan. I think I have a good plan.”

“Just…” Aaron waved his hand before rubbing both of them down his face. He didn’t look up. Spencer moved over in front of him, dropping to his knees. He tilted his head up. “I don’t know what to do with him.”

“I don’t know what to do either but I’ll help as much as I can. Maybe a sleepover at my place is a good idea.”

“Whatever you think. I think that I should have listened to you a long time ago. I just…”

“It’s okay, Hotch. We can talk after I talk to Jack.”

“Just go. The school called twenty minutes ago and I just couldn’t leave.”

“Okay. I’m not on Jack’s approved list to pick him up. You’ll need to call the school.”

“Take your credentials.”

Spencer nodded before leaving his office. He grabbed his things from the desk and slipped them into his bag. He made sure that his credentials and his wallet were in the small side pocket. He slipped into the stairwell, finding out over the years that he was able to slip away using them much easier. It was only a few moments until he was slipping into the front seat of his car. The Amazon was in the garage at the apartment. After starting with Aaron and it had become serious, he’d bought a second car that was safer for Jack to be able to ride in, especially since Jack had needed a booster seat and the Amazon hadn’t been made for booster seats.

The school looked exactly the same as it always did when he and Aaron dropped off Jack or picked him up on the rare afternoons where they were able to slip out. When Spencer was escorted to what was a psychologist’s office in the school he wasn’t shocked. Jack was in the playroom attached, his back to the two way mirror. The psychologist was sitting at her desk and she looked shocked to see him. There was another woman who was looking at Jack.

“Mr. Hotchner,” the other woman said as she turned. She looked shocked though, as if she wasn’t expecting him. “You are not Mr. Hotchner.”

“No. I’m Spencer Reid, I’m on Hotch’s team.”

“Mr. Reid has been in Jack’s life since birth,” the psychologist said. Spencer raised his eyebrow at her. “Jack talks about you a lot in the sessions that he and I have. You are dressed much like he described in the aftermath of what happened last week.”

“Yes. Well.” Spencer slipped his hands into his pockets. “You can call me Reid.”

“I was expecting to meet with Mr. Hotchner. We have a lot to discuss and I need to do it with him,” the other woman said.

“Hotch has asked me to take Jack for the day and to try and get him to open up.” Spencer wasn’t even sure who this woman was. She wasn’t Jack’s teacher and she had yet to introduce herself.

“I think for Jack’s sake that I am going to insist that he come and get him.”

“I’m sorry, Ma’am but you have no right to demand anything. Hotch has made the decision that he feels is best for his child and you have no right to question that. I don’t even know who you are.”

“Miss Evangeline Smithfield. I am covering Jack’s class for a week.” Smithfield looked back at Jack who still had his back to the mirror. Spencer moved to where he could look in the room and he didn’t even hide his laugh. He could see the door that he was fairly certain that Jack had been taken into the room from.

“He’s not interacting with anything in the room is he?” Spencer asked.

“No,” Smithfield answered. She looked really put out.

“His father works in law enforcement and he loves to play in interrogation rooms. He knows a two way mirror. He touched it didn’t he?” Spencer asked.


“His father taught him that. The principal should have told you Doctor Martin that you are to tell me everything that happened.”

“I don’t think that…”

“Miss Smithfield, you have no right to stop any of this. The principal faxed paperwork to the office and Hotch faxed it back that I am added on as a contact in emergencies just as Miss Brooks is. I don’t understand why you are still in here.” Spencer looked at Doctor Martin.

“I was a social worker before I became a teacher.”

“And that means? I have a doctorate in child psychology. I got it after Jack’s mother was killed in the same house as he was in by a serial killer.” Spencer moved to sit down at the edge of the room. He could still see Jack and he could see both women and he was closest to the door that led to Jack. The boy was closed off and Spencer didn’t like it.

“How could you have got a degree? You are so young.” Smithfield looked at him like she thought he was lying.

“It was my fourth PhD, Ma’am and over all my seventh degree.” Spencer just stared at her until she took a seat in front of the desk but turned to face him. “Now what happened today? Jack has never yelled before, much less at an adult.”

“Today our entire day revolves around Mother’s Day. We spent the morning doing a little bit of class work and then around ten we cleared away everything to work on Mother’s Day cards.”

Spencer nodded. He knew that Jack made Aunt Jess cards instead, he’d done that since the first year after his mother’s death. Jessica loved getting them and Aaron had already planned a nice lunch with her and Jack on Sunday at her favorite restaurant.

“Jack started on a card and I didn’t pay him much mind until he finished it and started to draw something else. The other kids were drawing very extravagant cards and he only wanted to work on his own thing. So I picked up the card. It wasn’t a Mother’s Day card.”

“It was a card to his Aunt Jessica, like every year.”

“Every…” Smithfield looked very upset and when Spencer looked at Martin she looked a little shocked. “What do you mean?”

“Jack remembers his mother as any child whose mother had died when they were four can. Instead of a card that he puts on a grave, Hotch takes Jack up to the highest spot in DC in the evening and they have a meal there. A picnic and Jack talks to her that way. Remembering something that he remembers about his mother. He doesn’t want to make her a card so instead Hotch suggested Jessica. So Jack model’s Mother’s Day around her each year.”

“Oh.” Smithfield looked upset.

“What did you do?”


“I think at this point maybe Doctor Reid would be more appropriate. Now what did you do?” Spencer looked for two seconds at Martin. She was leaning back in her chair. He wondered exactly what Jack had told her about him.

“Doctor Reid, I just suggested that his mother would like a card. I wasn’t aware until after that she was dead.”

“Really?” Spencer leaned back. He knew that Jack’s teacher would have left a note.

“Yes and that’s all my fault. I found the note from Mrs. Albert about what to expect from each of her kids for the day. I am ashamed but I am more disturbed about what he was drawing.”

“Can I see it, Doctor Martin?” Spencer asked. He’d seen her fingering a page inside a file and figured it was the drawing that Jack had been working on. Martin opened the file all the way and handed over a piece of paper. Spencer stood up and took it from her. It wasn’t hard to recognize Jack’s drawing and while the teacher might have been shocked about what was on the paper, he wasn’t. He recognized JJ, Henry, and Jack himself crowded in a corner with Aaron on his knees and a gun visible on the page. What shocked him was the second person on their knees. The black rimmed glasses and hair in a ponytail told Spencer that it was him. It was him as he normally was when he was over at Aaron’s. Aaron had seen him with his hair up just once early in their relationship and he’d adored him like it. Spencer only did it for him now. Jack saw him like that a lot of the time. “And what do you see wrong with this?”

“I tried to explain to her what happened last week,” Martin started.

“He saw that and he’s just seeing a school psychologist?”

“Yes, he already has a rapport with Doctor Martin, changing from someone else would hurt him more than anything else. That decision was made between Hotch and Doctor Martin AND Jack. You are a substitute and I don’t think that you need to have an input into Jack’s mental health. I’m not discrediting your years as a social worker but how can you make a decision on what he needs after spending about two hours with him in a classroom.”

“And what do you do for a living, Doctor Reid?” Smithfield said his name with derision.

“I work for the FBI, Ma’am. I work for the Behavioral Analysis Unit. I work with serial killers and with their victims. I also work a lot with child victims and even children whose parents have been taken. What do you see when you look at that picture?” Spencer threw it at her feet.

“I see a boy in pain and no one is helping him.”

“Do you want to know what I see? That woman there in the picture? That’s not Jessica. That is JJ. JJ is on our team. Her son is the other boy there. They were there when SWAT invaded Hotch’s apartment last week. He saw his only living parent being held at gunpoint. He’s not talked to Hotch about it yet and Hotch tries. He’s tried for a week and today, this has made him give up. That’s why he sent me. Jack interacts with me still. He won’t talk to Jessica. I’m his last resort.” Spencer moved to the window again. He looked at Jack.

“Who is the second person?”

“That only Doctor Martin needs to know. I think, though, that it does help me understand something. I need to ask you to leave, Miss Smithfield.”

“You can’t…”

“I am telling you to leave as well,” Martin said. Smithfield huffed and left. She slammed the door and only then did a reaction come out of Jack. He turned and checked both doors. “Who is that man?”

“What has Jack told you about me?”

“He calls you Spencer and he likes your magic tricks. It’s the most animated that he’s been in the aftermath of last week.”

“That’s it?”

“Sometimes he starts something that he did with you but stops. I don’t know why.”

“That’s me, Doctor Martin. Those are my glasses that are in a case at Aaron’s bedside and how I tend to wear my hair when it’s just us at home. Those moments that he stops himself, it’s probably because he’s afraid that talking about me that way will break the secrecy of mine and Aaron’s relationship. We are private people and we like our secrecy. Only JJ on the team knows about us. I think that I know what caused the outburst and I’m sorry that it disrupted the day but it’s personal and I don’t think that he’ll talk to anyone but Aaron and I about it.”

“Then go ahead and take him home. If you feel that a few days off will be best, just let me know.”

“Thank you.” Spencer opened the door and Jack didn’t even turn around. He tensed though as Spencer stepped closer and closer to him.

“Come on, Jackers. It’s time to go home,” Spencer said just as he rounded Jack’s vision and smiled at him.

“Spencer. Where’s dad?”

“At work. He sent me because he thinks that you and I need to talk. And I think that it’s true as well. I think that we need to talk and then we need to talk as a family.”

Jack’s eyes moved to where the mirror was.

“It’s only Doctor Martin in there and she knows Jack. I told her. You never had to keep it from her. She’s a secret keeper. She tells no one anything. She only tells your father how you are doing but nothing about what you actually say, unless she’s afraid that you are going to hurt yourself or someone else.”

“Oh,” Jack said but he stood up and grabbed his backpack from the floor where it looked like he’d just dropped it.

Spencer didn’t say anything, just smiled as he took the backpack from him and slung it over his shoulder. Jack leaned into him for a few seconds before he started out of the office.

“I’m sorry for the outburst, Doctor Martin.”

“It’s okay Jack. Humans are emotional and it’s understandable that given the situation that you needed an outlet. Miss Smithfield is the one who touched you and when you asked her to let you go she didn’t and I’m going to be talking to the principal about that. You don’t need to apologize to her.”

Spencer raised an eyebrow at that but she mimed a phone and he nodded. She was more worried about Jack and the drawing than his reaction to what seemed like a violation of his space by a teacher who shouldn’t have touched him. He would let Aaron deal with that. Right now he needed to deal with a boy who was very, very scared.

Halfway to Aaron’s apartment, Spencer turned down a different street. Jack wasn’t paying attention and he wasn’t looking up. When Spencer stopped the car in the parking lot of Jack’s favorite pizza place that was the first time he looked up from his hands.

“Why are we here?”

“I”m hungry and I know you have to be. Your father told me you didn’t eat breakfast this morning. So we are going to stay here until you eat, cold pizza or not.”

“I just want to go home, Spencer.”

“Well, I’m eating. You can sit in the car if you like.” Spencer grabbed his messenger bag from the backseat and moved into the restaurant. He had line of the sight of the car the entire time and after he’d ordered a large pizza for the both of them as well as two drinks, sitting down in their normal spot, Jack got out of the car. The waitress set down two drinks and then left before Jack had made it to the table.

“You left me in the car,” Jack pointed out.

“I did. You want to pout? Pout. I was going to enjoy my lunch and I had eyes on you the whole time. Seven people got within ten feet of the car and the only one that got closer was the woman leaving with a large meat lover’s by the smell who I parked next to.”

Jack cracked a smile. It was his first real smile outside of the night at Rossi’s.

“You’ve not been coming over as much since last week.”

“Your father wanted some time with you.” When it came to Jack, Spencer did everything that Aaron wanted. He didn’t fight and he didn’t show how it upset him. Even now, he couldn’t fault Aaron’s instincts for Jack. The boy was his world.

“But I wanted time with you. I asked him to have you over and he told me you were busy. I knew that he was lying. He got that closed off look he does like when he’s working.”

“Just as much as having those guns trained on him and how it scared you Jack. Having you in that room with them like that scared him. We’ve been around too many accidental shootings in tense situations. He just needs to know you are safe. Your picture tells me that you were scared of more than just your father going away that day.”

“You’d only left there twenty minutes before. You’d wanted to stop and pick up something. What would have happened if you had been there when they came?”

“Nothing. We all spend way too much time with each other. I’ve stayed over at JJ’s even before she got together with Will. When Emily was on the team, we hung out more than I do with your father now, talking books and movies. If I had been there, I could have been there for you. Right from the start. I could have held you and kept you calm and not had to have hidden behind my job when I saw you the first time.”


“You were afraid of losing me. Have you talked to your father about this?”



“I don’t know.”


“Dad loves you. You love dad. I know you love me but dad doesn’t even broach the subject of living together. I know that it’s partly because of your job. I asked him once and he said that he wasn’t ready for that. You guys have been together for six years Spencer, and I know that a lot of other couples are married by that point.”

“Our relationship is ours, Jack.”

“Are you saying that you don’t want to move in with us?” Jack asked. He closed his mouth as the pizza was set down on the table.

“I’m not saying never but Jack, we work busy lives, and we are happy with what we have. Do you know the exact age gap between your father and I?”

“Ten years?”

“Sixteen. Technically, he was of an age where he could have fathered me. There are not a lot of people who accept relationships like that in this day and age, and then throw in that we are both men. That Aaron has a child that is as young as you. It’s a lot of things that we have to take into account. I’ve never lived with anyone outside of my parents. Your dad has a long history from before and a reputation.” Spencer watched Jack’s face and was a little upset at what was going on. It seemed that Jack was somehow thinking that something was lacking and that Spencer being there with them all the time was going to fix it.

“You got my favorite pizza.”

“Of course.”

Lunch was subdued and it didn’t shock Spencer. Seconds after getting into the apartment, Jack went right back to his room and shut the door. Spencer flopped down onto the couch and closed his eyes before he dialed Aaron’s cell phone by spatial memory. He waited for the sound of him picking up transferred down the line.

“Hotchner,” Aaron sounded worried.

“Aaron, Jack’s in his room. I’ve fed him pizza and I think that a substitute teacher at Jack’s school is getting fired today.”

“Sounds productive and yes she is. The other kids confirmed that she had no reason to touch him. They also don’t like the thought that she thinks that I’m abusing him by letting him watch violent things without an understanding of my home life.”

Spencer decided that he needs to rip the bandaid off quickly. “Did they tell you what he drew after he finished Jessica’s card?”


“The scene from last week, only with me on the floor with you.” The sound of Aaron’s deflating could almost be heard over the phone. “Also, Jack wants us to all live together. He thinks that because we don’t live together that we aren’t a true family. I think that he’s a little upset that he was happy that I wasn’t there that day. Probably something along the lines of him thinking that at least he’d have me and Jessica if you’d died and feeling like it makes him love you less.”

“That was a productive lunch. Do you want to live together?”

“The same reasons of why we don’t are still valid and I like what we have.” Spencer didn’t know if he wanted to live with them. But he knew that if it was what Jack needed, he’d do it. He loved that boy like he was his own and that wasn’t going to change.

“JJ brought up something that night at Dave’s. The apartment next to me is available.”

“You want me to move in next door?”

“It would be a good run at the next step. We could see how it goes and then we could see about talking to the owners about putting in a door between them.”

“You’ve been thinking about this.” Spencer was shocked.

“Sitting there under that gun and all I could think of was that Jack had you and Jessica to get him through whatever would come next. Especially when I was in that interrogation room. It was rather shocking to me.”

“I think that we all got a rude awakening last week with the same thought.”

“What did you think?”

“How was I going to be able to get Jack through you going to jail until we could prove that you were innocent?”

“So moving in next door?” Aaron asked.

“Come home early and we will talk about it.”

“Be there as soon as I can be. I’ve already given up on work today.” Aaron hung up and Spencer laid his phone on his chest. He liked his apartment. He liked having someplace to go back to that was his. It was going to be a change. He’d been in the same apartment since he’d moved to DC. It was all a change but hadn’t Jack changed his life? It was worth it to make Jack happy. To give him something. Something that he obviously wanted.

By the time that Aaron got home, Spencer had already called the owner of his building and paid off the breaking of his lease and gave his move out time. He’d called and secured the apartment beside Aaron’s as well. Aaron walked in the door with his briefcase. He looked around for Jack but a motion of Spencer’s head told him that he was in his bedroom.

“Why did he scream?”

“Because she wasn’t listening. He screamed to get her away from him. It was his only way he knew of. I think that he hoped it would bring someone else into the room. I think that you need to talk to Doctor Martin. I was more worried about Jack and getting him away from that woman.”

“Smithfield was fired as soon as she left Martin’s office. The Principal called me before you did. Even the Doctor couldn’t get her to see reason.” Aaron was off. He turned to set his briefcase down. “I talked to Cruz today before I left.”

“Okay.” Spencer stood up and moved over to him, he reached out and Aaron allowed him to cup his cheek but he resisted the pull in to kiss him. “Aaron?” Spencer felt his gut clenching.

“I can’t do that again. I’ve put in years of loyalty. I’ve never wavered. I’ve never not done my best and they come in here with guns and scare Jack. I told Cruz that once we find all the serial killers who escaped, I was going to be done. Lewis is staying on the team and Callahan is replacing Morgan.”

“Who are they going to put in as Unit Chief?” Spencer asked.

“Dave’s going to be interim if Cruz doesn’t approve my choice. I also talked to Cruz about our relationship. He’s not exactly pleased but given that in the six years since we’ve got together, neither Strauss nor he had heard a thing, he’s going to let it all slide. I’m going to talk to someone in two days to take over the hole that my position makes.”

“Aaron, tell me.”

“All in due time.”


Spencer stopped as he entered the bullpen for the first time in over a week. He’d taken a week vacation following Aaron’s departure from the team. It had taken them six months to find all of the escaped serial killers. Peter Lewis had been found two months into it because Spencer hadn’t let it go. He’d spent all of his free time tracking every single aspect of Lewis’s life and he hadn’t stopped until the man was in jail. Spencer hadn’t wanted another killer to get to Aaron and mess with his life. He didn’t like the thought of not having Aaron there every single day. Unlike Morgan though, he was still there. Teaching at the academy part time. Still so close but not there with him.

Inhaling, Spencer moved to his desk to find all of his things gone. He looked around. JJ, Lewis, Callahan’s desks were all like they had been the last time he’d seen them. There was a new nameplate and he was shocked to see SSA Ashley Seaver on it.

“Rossi?” Spencer called out as the older man came out of his office. The empty office that had been Aaron’s was shut up with no name on the door. The last Aaron had said was that the person who was taking his place hadn’t accepted but that it was a forgone conclusion.

“Come on up, Reid,” Rossi said and pointed at the round table room. Spencer re-shouldered his bag and moved up. When he passed Aaron’s door, he ran his hand down it. Rossi was standing beside Cruz at the head of the table. JJ, Lewis, Garcia, and Callahan were sitting on either side of them. Seaver was standing at the side.

“Doctor Reid, thank you. Can you please shut the door?”

Spencer did but he didn’t step away from it. He didn’t like this. What was Seaver doing there? Where was whoever was taking over for Aaron? What was going on? He gripped tighter to his bag strap. He hated change and this was just not something that he needed right now. He wanted to just go to his desk and settle down and work. In one year both Aaron and Morgan had left.

“Spence, breathe,” JJ said as she stood up. She looked at Rossi and Cruz. “I told you to do this different.” The sound of a door opening alerted him that something else was going on but he felt hands on him and smelled JJ’s perfume. He followed her hands out the door. He wasn’t paying attention to anything just focusing on his breathing. The sound of another door opening had him opening his eyes but all he saw was a flash before there was darkness as JJ shut that door behind them. “Spence, breathe. Hotch?”

“Right here, Jayje.”

Spencer felt very familiar hands settle on his upper arms, settling him down. He felt heat press along his back. He inhaled and exhaled but still couldn’t talk.

“Go ahead out and tell Cruz that I’ll tell him.” Aaron’s voice was calm and controlled, no anger. No anything. His Unit Chief voice. The door shut and Spencer tried to see where he was when the flash of light happened but it was too brief. “You okay?”

“I don’t like change.”

“I know. I know. I thought that it would be different. Then Cruz told me what was happening and I tried to get him to change his mind but you know him and Dave. Cruz has seen what this team can do. We are better as a family. Families change. We all know this but the thing is that Morgan was always being groomed to take over for me, if and when it happened. So when he left, Cruz told me to start thinking on who I wanted to replace me next. Dave doesn’t want it. He never wanted to be Unit Chief. Which meant bringing in someone from the outside and that would make you all chafe so I talked to JJ, I talked to Dave. What have I been doing the last six months?”

“Hoisting your work off on me,” Spencer said.

Aaron’s laugh kind of shocked him but he felt lips on his forehead from the side. It was still so dark where ever they were. And why was he there? Did they really expect this and prepare for it?

“Come on, Spencer think. Truly think. What have I been doing? How much time I have spent with you at work and at home?”

“Outside of case work? Roughly ninety five percent of our time has been together.”

“And when have I had the chance to court a new Unit Chief?”

“You don’t talk about it.”

“Because I kind of hoped on the fact that you’d take it as me wanting to spend time with you. For the next six months, Dave is going to be interim chief but it’ll be in name only. Anyone who matters will know the truth.” The light in the room turned on and Spencer had to blink. It was Aaron’s old office but it was different. Aaron turned him and he was looking at the desk. It wasn’t Aaron’s desk. It was his mom’s old desk from when she taught. He’d had it in storage in Vegas. He knew right then what it meant. He started to shake his head. “Yes. You are the only name. You’ve stepped up over the past six months and didn’t even know it. The last month alone, you’ve been the one everyone on the team has turned to. We knew you’d freeze if it was dropped in your lap but you’ve stepped up.”

Spencer went back over the past month. He hadn’t realized it at all. Rossi asking opinions on things. He hadn’t lead any of the assaults going after but everything else he had done and hadn’t realized it.

“Cruz has watched our every step and on those three takedowns that he joined in on hunting the killers, he was shocked at how you changed. Here you are yourself. Out there, you are strong and you are what this team needs. A new leader would mess them up. Dave will always be there and so will JJ. You can do this. I believe in you.”

“Who did this?”

“JJ, Dave, Garcia, Callahan, Morgan. You are taking my place and Seaver is taking yours. She’s also going to take over the media liaison part of the unit while you are on cases. JJ’s been working with her when we were back at base. Garcia is still going to take care of her part of the job that she can do from here. And she does have a tablet with your name on it but that’s for work. All case files are still going to be in print for you. It’s your team now, Spencer.”

Spencer looked around his office for several minutes before he stepped out and looked at the round table room. The team. His team was there. He heard footsteps at his side and found Morgan there. Aaron let go of him to allow him to hug Morgan.

“Is it to your liking, Pretty Boy?” Morgan asked low in his ear.

“Yes. It’s perfect.”

“Good. Now I am here to officially kidnap you for a breakfast in your honor.”

“And we will have to go and get you back,” JJ said from close. Spencer pulled back to see the team was all there, ready to go. Cruz was at the back of them with a smile on his face. There was no hesitance in his eyes as he looked at Spencer, sure of his choice. Spencer nodded at him and Cruz nodded back. He could do this because Aaron was right. He had to do this for his family and he wasn’t going to fail them.
The End


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