Bring Her Home

Chapter 2

Vacation, Sort of

The loud slam of the Denali's door seemed to echo throughout the neighborhood as Nick rushed out of it. He quickly grabbed his mail and only took a few seconds to unlock the door. He put his mail down, closed, and locked the door. Nick headed to his kitchen and grabbed a water bottle from the fridge. After opening it, he headed over to couch and sat down. He ran his hand through his hair in frustration.

Grissom had ended their conversation by telling him that he had gone in to too much overtime. Nick would be forced to go on vacation for a week before he could go back to work. Normally Nick was fine with vacation but this time – it felt forced. In addition, because of how last minute it was he had not had time to plan anything. Nick was not sure what he would be doing during his vacation besides the normal everyday things like laundry, sleeping, eating, and what not. Nick took another swig of his water bottle and nearly chocked on the water when a knock at the door surprised him. Cautious of who he let into the house, Nick looked into the eyehole before he opened the door – it was Greg. Nick sighed but opened the door. Greg gave him a large grin and held up a couple pizza boxes – with DVDs on top – and a pack of beer in the other.

"Pizza, Beer, and movies?" Greg asked with a bit of hope in his voice. Nick shook his head in amusement and opened his door further to let him in. Greg walked in and laid out the pizza, beer, and movies on the coffee table. Nick headed to the kitchen, grabbed a beer opener, and took a seat next to Greg.

"Why are you here, Greg?" Nick asked as he put the bottle opener down next to the beers. Greg sighed and shifted around a little.

"I asked Grissom where you were at when I was leaving," Greg admitted. "He said you were on vacation because you had too much overtime." He finished his sentence with a raised eyebrow.

"More like forced vacation," Nick grumbled. Greg nudged his shoulder with his own.

"Nick every time I have seen you this week you've been drop dead tired," Greg pointed out. "It's been like that for a few weeks now. I know that you want to find Adaline but if you do not give yourself a rest, you will not be able to because you will be too tired to see anything." Nick rubbed his tired eyes in response.

"You're right," Nick admitted. "It's just that this vacation seemed to come out of nowhere and I have nothing really to do." Greg grinned and pulled something out of his back pocket – it was an envelope.

"Do you remember the last forensics conference I went to?" Greg asked. Nick furrowed his eyebrows as he thought about it.

"Yeah you were pretty agitated when you got back if I remember right," Nick recalled. "What does that have to do with anything?"

"On the way to the conference they lost my luggage," Greg told him. "It took them a couple days to get it back. When I finally did get it back, my I-Pod was missing. The president of the company gave me ten free tickets because after all of this on the way back one of the flight attendants spilled hot coffee on me – twice." Nick winced in sympathy. To have it happen once was bad enough – but twice, that was downright painful. "So I talked to Grissom and it turns out that if I don't use some of my vacation time, I'm going to lose it. I took a week off for vacation. I figured you might want to go somewhere. You could go visit your family in Texas." Nick gave him a curious look.

"While that sounds great, why did you take vacation as well?" Nick asked. Greg squirmed a little.

"Grissom wants me to keep an eye on you," Greg admitted. "He thinks you need to take a breather and if someone isn't watching you, you won't and you'll just wear yourself out again while on vacation." Nick began to pace as he took in what he said.

"So Grissom wants you to keep an eye on me wherever I go?" Nick asked incredulously. Greg nodded. "Why did you agree with this?" Greg sighed.

"Because you are my friend and I figured it was better that it was me than someone else," Greg told him. Nick sat back down on his couch and looked at Greg as he thought about what he learned. Slowly a smile spread across his face.

"Well pack your bags Greggo," Nick said. "We're going to go on vacation." Greg blinked.

"To where?" Greg wondered. Nick's grin grew even more.

"Well that's the fun part of it," Nick said. "Go pack and we'll figure it out. Make sure to bring your passport, the world is our oyster." Greg grinned and then his stomach growled. Nick laughed. "We'll eat first then you can go pack." Greg gave him a sheepish grin as he opened a pizza box. Nick headed to the kitchen and grabbed a couple of paper plates.

When Greg showed back up at his door a couple of hours later, Nick was ready. His own bags were packed. Spread across his coffee table was a map of the United States. Below it was a map of the world. He let Greg in and directed him over to a couch.

"I talked to my mom," Nick said with a slight grimace. "We'll have to spend a couple days in Texas but we have 5 other days to work with."

"She give the whole I haven't seen in a while bit?" Greg asked with a wide grin. Nick nodded. "My mom gave me the same thing. Thankfully I managed to leave out the part that I am currently on vacation and will be for a whole week." Greg frowned when he noticed a rather curious look on Nick's face.

"Maybe we should surprise your family?" Nick suggested. A thoughtful look crossed Greg's face.

"You know what?" Greg said. "I'm up for that. We can do two days at your family's home and two at mine. We still have three days to work with. What do you want to do?"

"I don't know," Nick said. "We'll figure it out after; take measure of how we feel and what we want to do after spending time with family." Greg grinned.

"Sounds like a plan," Greg said.

As they walked through the airport, Greg studied Nick. He seemed like he was excited. However, looking closer he noticed something else – he was tired and sad. Both were easily explained; Nick had been running himself into the ground recently and he was sad because he still had not found Adaline. What stood out the most was something else that Greg could not pin point. When Nick tapped on his shoulder, Greg jumped a little before he noticed they were in front of baggage claim. Nick raised an eyebrow at his jumpy friend but turned his attention elsewhere when the carousel beeped and luggage began to come out.

Once the two had grabbed their luggage, they headed to the rental car line. It took only a few minutes for them to finally rent a car. While they were travelling down a highway, Greg watched the scenery around him with a cautious eye.

"G, what's going on in that head of yours?" Nick asked as he changed lanes. Greg sighed.

"My parents don't know that I'm a CSI," Greg admitted. "It wasn't something I wanted to tell them over the phone. My mom has always been overly cautious with me. I'm considering telling them while I am there but I know they are not going to be…happy." Greg shook his head. "My mom freaked out about the lab explosion. She told me that being in the lab was too dangerous and that I should take a teaching position. She will be even worse about me being out in the field as a CSI." Nick gave him a sympathetic look as he took an exit.

"Parents are not going to always like what we do," Nick, pointed out. "But they love us and your parents love you. They may be upset at first but they will get over it, you are their child." Greg gave him a small smile.

"Thanks Nick," Greg said. A thoughtful look crossed his face. "You sound like your speaking from experience." Nick nodded.

"Yeah back when I joined the Dallas police force," Nick said. "It was an all-out fight. It was a rather frosty situation for a couple of weeks before everyone was able to calm down enough for us to really talk about it. I think what scared my parents the most is that I did not talk about it with them before I signed the contract. I was grown up – I was not their baby anymore. I gave them time and once they were able to wrap their minds around it, we really talked. They could see that I loved what I was doing. When I transferred to the Las Vegas lab, all Cisco said was that he was proud of me." For a moment, the two were quiet and Greg took that time to look at their surroundings.

"Uh, Nick I think we're lost," Greg finally said. Nick snorted as he pulled up to a house.

"No Greg we're not," Nick disagreed as he parked the rental. "This is home." Greg raised an eyebrow but jumped out of the car and followed Nick to the trunk. He pulled out his suitcase and backpack. He waited for Nick to do the same and the followed him up to the front door. Greg was practically vibrating as he stood next to Nick on the front steps. Nick let out a deep breath and then knocked on the door. It only took a minute or two before the door opened. Standing in the door way was an older man, with grey hair, who stood over six feet tall. By the large grin on Nick's face, Greg knew who he was.

"Hey Cisco," Nick said.