It was a normal day in the BAU. We were waiting for Hotch to come in with JJ to brief us on a new case. Things had been slightly strained since my fiancé was deployed a little more than six months ago. She was due home in a week and I haven't heard from her in over two months. She usually doesn't go this long without writing to me or her brother, Hotch. I could only assume she's been on a mission that has put her out of communication.
It was really weird when I first started dating Isabella. Hotch wasn't too keen on having someone from his team dating his little sister, but he eventually let it go and was finally happy for us. He was especially happy when I asked her to marry me a month before she was deployed overseas. He told me it gave her something to fight for and come home to besides family.
I'm brought out of my thoughts by JJ and Hotch coming in to start our briefing. We were going to be traveling to Texas for our newest case. Hotch was just getting ready to dismiss us to get our ready bags when there was a knock on the conference room door.
"Agent Hotchner there are some men here to see you and Dr. Reid." The Agent stated and I was surprised. Normally the only one to come see me was Isabella. Suddenly I had a sinking feeling in my stomach and I knew I didn't want to hear what those men were going to tell me.
"You alright kid?" Morgan asked me.
"Yeah, I'm fine. I guess we should go see what's going on." I said and everyone walked out with Hotch and I.
Standing in the bullpen were six men in military uniforms. I recognized one of them as Isabella's Commanding Officer, Jasper Whitlock.
"How can I help you gentlemen?" Hotch asked and Jasper stepped in front of the others to take Hotch's hand in greeting.
"I'm Jasper Whitlock and I'm afraid I've come with some bad news. I think this might be best done in private. Can we go to your office?" Jasper asked and I saw Hotch stiffen as we walked to his office. The whole team followed us like I knew they would. We're a family and they wouldn't let us go through anything alone.
Once we were in the office everyone sat down except the military men and Hotch started us on the conversation. I knew he was just as impatient as I was to hear about what was going on. Isabella wasn't with them so it must be something to do with her.
"So what is this about?" Hotch asked.
"Two months ago we were sent on a mission to a small town that was rumored to be providing aide for a local terrorist group. Once we entered the town we were ambushed quickly and taken prisoner. We were all separated and were not told about the rest of our unit until we finally made it back to our platoon about three weeks ago. We were all that made it back. Each of us had written multiple copies of letters that we would give to our loved ones and made sure everyone in our unit had a copy so we knew the letters would get back to our loved ones. I have one for you and one for Dr. Spencer Reid. I also have something else for Spencer." Jasper stated and my heart broke. Would I ever see Isabella again? That question kept going through my head as Jasper handed me a letter and Isabella's engagement ring. I saw that he had also given Hotch his letter.
"Is there any news on her? Is anyone looking for her?" Hotch asked desperately and I knew this was just as hard on him as it was me.
"They are still looking for her, but they're quickly losing hope. She's been gone for two months now. None of them hold much hope for her being brought back alive or in one piece. We're still missing another of our unit as well." Another one of the soldiers stated and I could tell he didn't like losing someone in his unit. They all seemed really close with each other.
"I'm sorry. This is Edward Masen. The one next to him is Emmett McCarty, then there's Jacob Black, Samuel Uley and Paul Lahote. They were in the same unit with Isabella and myself. Jared Cameron is also still missing with Isabella." Jasper answered. He must have seen my confused look when the man spoke up.
"So all we can do is wait?" I asked and I saw the forlorn looks on all of their faces. No one knew what to do or say to make any of this better. We would just have to wait until we were given a definitive answer on whether Isabella was alive or not. For the first time in my life I prayed that my fiancé would be brought back safely to me.
3 months later
It's been three months since Sergeant Jasper Whitlock walked into the BAU and destroyed the happiness that I had been slowly gaining with Isabella. I didn't blame the man by any means, but I would always remember the day that Jasper Whitlock told me I would probably never see the love of my life again. It had been three days later that we received the official report of Isabella being MIA. A month after that she was listed as a POW. That night I had cried myself to sleep in Hotch's guest room in his apartment. He didn't think I should be alone at that time and I had quickly agreed.
Morgan has been trying to help me, but there's just nothing for me to do without knowing if she's alive or dead. I just needed closure. I didn't know how I would ever move on.
I'd never seen Reid so down, even when he was taken hostage by Hankel. The kid bounced back pretty fast after that even if he did come out of it with a slight drug addiction, but when those soldiers came into our bullpen and dropped that news I saw the life leave his eyes. He hasn't been the same since and I honestly can't blame him.
Right now he was in Hotch's office going over our latest case. We'd just gotten back and they were going over the details of the killer. It hadn't been an easy case on any of us, but it was especially hard on those two because the killer had been going after active and retired military personnel.
I was brought out of my thoughts by the door behind me opening and I heard the sound of crutches. No one in the BAU was on crutches so I knew it wasn't someone from the office and that it was probably some visitor. I turned around and saw a beautiful woman with long, curly black hair and blue eyes. She had a cast on her left leg with multiple bruises and cuts on her face and neck.
"Can I help you?" I asked quickly as I went towards her to offer her help.
"I'm looking for Dr. Spencer Reid and Supervisory Special Agent Aaron Hotchner." She said and with that everyone on our team looked up.
"Can I ask who you are?" Prentiss questioned. I could tell she was leery about letting someone close to Reid and Hotch since everything with Isabella was announced.
"Oh I'm sorry. I don't mean to be rude. I'm Corporal Isabella Hotchner." She said and we all jumped up.
"You're alive!" JJ said with enthusiasm.
"Yes I am. I've been in a German hospital for the last three weeks and I wasn't able to get a phone call out." Isabella stated and I quickly stood up to give her my chair.
"Here sit down and I'll go get Reid and Hotch." I said with a smile.
"Thank you." She said with her own smile. I quickly ran up to Hotch's office and busted in.
"Reid! Hotch! You have to come down to the bullpen. NOW!" I yelled and they both jumped up to follow me.
Once we were down in the bullpen I heard Reid gasp and then he pushed passed me to snatch the woman up from the chair.
"Careful Spencer." Isabella gasped.
"I'm sorry. I just…I didn't think I would ever see you again." I heard Reid whisper and I knew right off that he was crying.
"It's alright Spencer. I'm here and I'm safe. I never have to go away again. I've retired." Isabella told him and I had never seen the kid smile so brightly.
"How about we take this to my office?" Hotch said with the first smile I'd seen on his face since Jasper Whitlock had walked into the BAU.
"That's fine Aaron." Isabella said as she reached for her crutches, but Reid beat her to it.
"You don't have to do anything alone anymore. You're home with me and I'll take care of you." Reid whispered, but it was loud enough that we could all hear it. Prentiss and Garcia cooed at it. I saw Reid's cheeks tint pink.
"Thank you Spencer." She said as she kissed his cheek which only had him blushing more. The kid had moves, I'd give him that.
We all slowly made our way up to Hotch's office and I watched as Reid helped her into a chair. He brought over another chair to prop her leg up on.
"You're being very sweet Spencer, but you don't have to take care of me. I can still take care of myself you know." She said with a teasing smile.
"I know, but I've missed you and I need to take care of you now." Reid said and I could tell he meant it. He was really in love with Hotch's sister.
"Can you talk about what happened Isabella?" Hotch asked her and I watched her go slightly pale. I had a feeling this was going to be very hard on her and from the look on Reid's face he was close to slapping our boss. I couldn't blame the kid though. Hotch had to know this would be hard on his sister and he asks her in front of all of us within the first two minutes of her being in our presence.
I could have smacked Aaron for asking that question. It was her first day back and he asks her about her time being captured. Could he not see the stress she was in?
"I can. I've been given permission by my bosses to tell you. They know you're FBI so security isn't that much of an issue." Isabella said and I couldn't help, but admire her strength in agreeing to talk to us. It had to be torture to talk about something like that. I was only held hostage for a little over a day or so and it took me months to talk about it. Here she was talking about it right when she was returned home.
"You don't have to do this Isa. I know this is hard for you." I said and I gently took her hand. I know I was being overly affectionate and it wasn't usually my attitude, but having her missing for over three months has me acting overly protective of her. I think she likes it if the smile she's giving me is any indication. I might just have to be more affectionate all the time. I know I can be kind of standoffish in public.
"I know I don't have to do this Spencer, but it may help me to talk about it. The only other person I've talked to about this is Sergeant Whitlock and Private First Class Jared Cameron. Jasper told me that he let you in on what happened when we initially entered the town. What he doesn't know is I was taken along with Jared. We were the only ones taken together, or so I've been told. We were taken to an underground bunker and tortured for over three months. The women of the town would come in and feed me while the men would feed Jared, but it was only every second or third day. I was…I was made to wash in front of the men and they would leer at me. I'd never felt so exposed in my life." Isabella whispered and I watched as tears streamed down her face.
"It's alright Isa. You're safe now. No one will touch you again and no one will see what you don't want them to see." I said as I pulled her into my side to calm her down.
"The tortures went on until the rescue team came for us. By that time I had a broken leg that needed to be surgically repaired, six broken ribs and malnourishment. I also had a concussion. Jared was pretty messed up too. He tried to keep their attention off of me, but it didn't always work. They took us to a hospital in Germany and I was out of it for about a week. I couldn't get a call out and I couldn't contact you until I made it back stateside last night." Isabella finished explaining. I was just glad to have her back.
"Where are you staying Isa?" Aaron asked.
"I don't know yet. I'll figure something out. I'll probably stay in a hotel until I can find something permanent. I want to be close to you and Spencer." She said.
"Do you want to come stay with me?" I asked and I knew I had surprised her. Her cheeks tinted pink, but the smile she gave me was so blinding that I was surprised her cheeks didn't crack.
"I'd love to Spencer." She whispered and then kissed me soundly in front of the whole team. Morgan and Rossi were making catcalls as Garcia, Prentiss and JJ cooed. I'd never live this one down, but I didn't really care.
9 Months Later
I couldn't believe it was my wedding day. Isabella had finally gotten her cast off a couple of months ago and she had finished her rehabilitation. You couldn't tell she'd ever had surgery on her leg unless she landed on it wrong or she overexerted it. She has some scars on her neck and one on her face, but she was still so beautiful in my eyes.
I was waiting at the front of the aisle for her to walk down the aisle. She had Hotch walking her down to me. Morgan was standing as my best man with Rossi and her other brother as groomsmen. Isa had Prentiss, JJ and Garcia. She had picked beautiful decorations and colors. I had let her have free reign with the wedding, but she had said she didn't want to go overboard with anything and only wanted close family and friends at the ceremony which is exactly what we did. It was perfect in my eyes as long as I got to marry my best friend in the end.
The wedding was beautiful and I can't believe I was finally married to my beautiful Isa. After everything we had been through she was finally my wife. We would be on our honeymoon for two weeks and then I would go back to work. Isa was still training to be an agent, but she wasn't sure if she was going to be a field agent or work in the office, but she was excited nonetheless.
1 Year Later
I was pacing the waiting room with the rest of my team. Isa had been taken back into surgery for an emergency C-Section over an hour ago and I still didn't know how she was or what had went wrong. One minute she was fine and then I was being ushered out of the room as warning alarms went off on the machines she was attached to.
"She's going to be fine Reid. She's a strong woman and she has you to fight for." Hotch said to me as he laid his hand on my shoulder. I could still see the grief in his eyes from losing Haley and I knew thinking about losing Isa was driving him crazy with worry. He didn't want to lose his sister and he also didn't want Jack losing another important female in his life.
"I know she's strong. I just wish this pregnancy hadn't been so hard on her. They said it could have been residual effects from her torture in Iraq. I just didn't know that it could have negative impacts like this. Maybe we shouldn't have tried for children. I thought it was what she wanted so I pushed for us to get pregnant. What if I lose her because of my insistence on children? I'd never be able to forgive myself." I whispered and he nodded with a look of remorse on his face.
"She'll be fine kid." Morgan said as he walked over to us.
"I hope so." I said and then sat down next to Garcia.
"She really is strong Spencer. I'm sure her and Hailey will be perfectly fine." Garcia said and I nodded. We had agreed to name our little girl after Hotch's late ex-wife.
It was an hour later that we were finally given some news when the doctor came out to inform us of Isa's condition.
"Spencer, Isa came through the Cesarean fine. There were some complications during the surgery and we'll have to be very careful if you decide to have another child, but you'll be able to see her in about a half hour. Hailey is in the Nursery if you want to go see her now." Dr. Marx said and I immediately took off towards the nursery with Hotch and the rest of the team following closely behind me.
When we got to the nursery we all looked through the window and saw the pink bundle with the last name Reid on the card.
"She's beautiful Reid." Prentiss said as we all looked through the window and I couldn't help but to agree. She looked just like her mother.
The nurse saw us all standing there and waved us in.
"Are you Spencer Reid?" The nurse asked and I just nodded. She handed me Hailey. She was so tiny. I didn't think it could be healthy for her to be this small.
"Is she healthy?" I asked the nurse who was standing next to all of us.
"She's a little small, but besides that she's perfectly healthy." The nurse told us.
"I was small too when I was born." I stated and Garcia laughed.
"I can seriously see that." Garcia said through her laughs.
"She's perfect Spencer." Hotch said softly. He was smiling again.
"Do you want to hold her?" I asked and he nodded so I handed Hailey over to him. He was a natural and I could see that my little girl would be very spoiled by her Uncle Aaron just like Jack was spoiled by Isa and myself.
It was about an hour later that I was allowed to see Isa. She was sitting up slightly in her hospital bed and she looked exhausted. She had been through almost twenty-three hours of labor before they had to take Hailey out by Cesarean.
"Spencer! Have you seen Hailey?" She asked with a worried look on her face. I could tell she had been worrying about Hailey's health.
"Yes, I've seen her and she's perfect. The nurse said she's a little small, but so was I when I was born. Aaron said you were too." I told her and she nodded.
"I was so scared Spencer." She said softly and I hurried over to embrace her in my arms being careful of her incision and IVs.
"It's alright Isa. Everything is going to be fine. The doctor said you were fine and we just needed to be careful if we want to have any more kids." I sad and she smiled through her tears.
"Thank you Spencer." She whispered and she laid back to rest. I knew she desperately needed it
While she was sleeping I sat and thought about everything we had been through in the last two years. Between Isa being captured and returned, Hotch getting taken and tortured, Haley dying and then the complications with this pregnancy. I'm just glad we are all here and alive.
I couldn't help but be grateful as I watched Isa sleep. Things were finally working out.