A/N: This is for gabem, who was going through some tough times when she was R&Ring ATT. This isn't a tie-in, just a regular oneshot. Her prompt, more or less, was that Emily accidentally hurts Hotch and has to take care of him (no pre-established relationship). It could have been fluffy, but…it's me! There's enough fluff in the ATT oneshots and in DS, I think XD Enjoy!
She'd been the best marksman in her class. One needn't specify markswoman—she'd had a more accurate shot than all her male classmates as well.
So how it was that she shot her unit chief in the back, she wasn't sure. Her second shot was a dead-on kill shot for the unsub—her intended target several feet away—but there was no taking back that first bullet.
Hotch lay on his side, hissing and groaning in a crumpled heap on the brown carpeting in an outdated ranch home in upstate New York.
"Oh my God, oh my God," she breathed, her knees nearly buckling underneath her, saving her the work of kneeling. "Hotch, don't move, don't move."
"I'm fine," he grunted.
"But I hit your back," she said shakily. "Please, don't move."
"My back is fine, I can feel everything, but I hit my head on the…edge of the table," Hotch managed. "What time is it?"
Emily quickly radioed in for a medic and placed both hands on Hotch's side, stabilizing him. "I'm so sorry, Hotch. But please, I'd feel better if you didn't move. Okay?"
"O—kay—God…" Hotch began taking in large gulps of air, holding one in every few times until his face went a touch purple.
"Breathe, Hotch, breathe. I know it hurts, and I'm so sorry." Just then, she noticed that he'd done a little more than hit his head on the table. "Your head's bleeding," she informed him. She picked through his hair wet with dark red blood until she found the large cut on the back of his head. "Stay right there, and don't move," she said to her silent unit chief. She found an unopened roll of paper towels in the kitchen and tore off the wrapper on her way back into the living room. "You still with me?" she asked, unrolling quite a bit of the paper towel and wadding it up before pressing it against Hotch's head.
"Yeah," he sighed.
Emily held Hotch's head steady with a palm to his forehead and the paper towel pressed firmly to the back. She was what Garcia would have called a hot mess by the time medics arrived. Tears and a little of something else ran down her face. She'd done all her crying silently and out of Hotch's view, so he seemed surprised to see her such a wreck.
"Emily, I'm fine," he said, mustering up some firmness as two medics strapped him to a backboard. His breathing had stabilized gradually as the pain ceased to overwhelm him so much.
Just as Hotch was being transported out the door, Morgan and JJ trotted inside, out of breath. "What the hell happened?" Morgan asked.
"Just a little bump," Hotch said, sounding a little lightheaded now. "Where are we again?"
"I shot him and he fell and hit his head," Emily sputtered. She didn't have the strength to resist JJ's comforting arms around her while she looked at the blood on her hands.
"I'm fine," Hotch said on his way out the door.
"I know we didn't get raises this year, but dang, girl," Morgan said with a twitch of his head.
"Morgan, that's so not funny," JJ chided. "Ride to the hospital with Hotch. I'll take this one back to the police station and get her to calm down."
"You again?" Hotch teased when Emily came to pick him up from the hospital a few hours later. He was already dressed and ready to go, sitting on a bed in a partitioned area. Hotch had suffered a concussion from his head's collision with the table, had gotten a few stitches for the cut, and had a large and painful welt on his back from where the bullet had hit.
Any resolve she had gathered on the drive from the police station to the hospital immediately dissipated, and her renewed horror showed clearly on her face. She absentmindedly shut the curtain behind her.
"I was joking. I'm fine, really. They wouldn't be letting me go if I wasn't. Where's everyone else?"
"Case in Oregon that JJ couldn't say no to. And yes, they took the jet," Emily said regrettably.
"We'll have to fly commercially, I guess."
"Number one, Morgan told me your doctor warned you that flying might cause you more pain from your concussion, and number two, we're not going to Oregon. We're going home."
"I'm not missing a case because of a bump on the head," Hotch said matter-of-factly.
"Morgan said that according to your doctor, you are." Emily's determination came back in the form of putting her foot down with Hotch, who would show up to work with an axe splitting his skull if no one stopped him.
"I feel fine."
"You're not making my job any easier," Emily remarked.
"Why did you volunteer if I'm such a pain?" Hotch asked, sitting up with a grimace and furling his fists.
"Who said I volunteered?" Emily retorted.
"Morgan said you wouldn't take no for an answer."
Emily blushed at being found out and had a seat in a chair. "How does your back look?" she asked, changing the subject.
Hotch shrugged. "I haven't looked. Morgan said it's got some pretty colors."
"All right, Agent Hotchner, sign these and we'll get you out of here," a nurse said as she walked through the open curtain. "Remember, Dr. Westfield said you're not cleared to drive yet and flying might be painful. How're you getting back home?"
"I'll be driving him," Emily said, half-raising her hand.
"All right, then. You can get those stitches out in a couple of weeks. Keep ice on and off that welt to keep the swelling down, and get cleared by your doctor back home before you head back to work."
"Will do," Hotch said, quickly signing by the Xs and wincing as he scooted off the bed.
"Your painkillers are at the pharmacy on the third floor. Other than that, have a safe drive home."
"Thank you so much," Emily replied, following a slow-moving Hotch to the nearest elevator. "Hotch, I…I can't even begin to tell you how sorry I am. If it makes you feel any better, Rossi said I'll be under review and Strauss made him take my gun from me."
"That's just a formality, you'll have your gun back in no time. But why would that make me feel better?"
"Just…saying…" Emily huffed and waited for the elevator door to close. "Can I see the welt?"
"I'm not un-tucking my shirt," Hotch said quietly.
"I suppose it's unprofessional enough of you to be leaving a hospital not wearing a tie," Emily jabbed. "Where is your tie, anyway?"
"They lost it."
"Do we need to stop at a mall on the way home?"
"I thought you felt sorry for me," Hotch pointed out.
"Doesn't mean I can't pick on you. Okay, maybe it does. I'll be nice. How are you feeling?"
"I've felt better," he mumbled. "Thank you, by the way, for driving."
"And for insisting on it."
"You had to bring that up again, didn't you?" Emily said in a deadpan voice.
"You shot me," Hotch said with a trace of a smirk.
"I'll stop bringing it up once you get your gun back? How about that?"
"Stop bringing what up? The fact that I shot you when my target was five feet away from you, or the fact that I politely suggested to Morgan that he'd be of better use on the next case since I no longer have a gun?" Emily asked, peeking around to the back of Hotch's head to see that they had shaved off some of his hair. She cringed.
"Politely suggested…sure. How did you end up shooting me, anyway? You're right, the unsub and I were nowhere near each other. Did I say something?" Hotch went out on a very shaky limb. "Or was Morgan right when he said it was PMS?" he asked with a sly grin.
"You know, I can cleanly castrate a man from fifteen hundred meters, Hotch," Emily said smugly. "They begged me to be a sniper and I came this close to becoming one. So my guess is my finger was sweaty and it slipped. I don't really know for sure. But do not question my aim."
The elevator dinged and the doors slid open. "Anyone can be a sniper with the right gun," Hotch said with mock haughtiness.
"Oh yeah? All right, Hotch. Once your doctor clears you for work again, you have one more obstacle to overcome before you're really allowed back."
"And what's that?"
"To outshoot me. Or do you want to have the doctors help get your foot out of your mouth while we're here?"
A/N: Reviews are love.