Title: Snapshots: A Brief History of a Life Less Ordinary
Word Count: ~20,500
Please see first part for disclaimer/summary/notes.
December 24th, 1988
They had elected to spend a quiet Christmas Eve together at Toni’s, rather than going out. Toni had cooked a wonderful dinner and Jessica had brought the wine. They stood side by side at the sink, washing and drying their dishes. Both content with the quiet domesticity of the moment. With the dishes done, they filled their wineglasses and settled together on the couch to watch some TV.
Before long they started kissing and stopped paying any attention to what was on the television. They were stretched out on the couch. Jessica was lying on top of Toni. She was showering Toni’s neck and throat with sensuous, open-mouthed kisses. The older woman’s hands slid up her back under her shirt. She deftly unhooked Jessica’s bra as Jessica latched onto a particularly sensitive spot on her throat.
Jessica was moving her body on top of Toni’s. She lifted her head and captured the older woman’s mouth with her own. Toni slid one hand down and grabbed Jessica’s butt, at the same time she raised a thigh between her legs. That move put wonderful pressure on the younger woman’s clit. As she ground against Toni’s thigh she was getting more and more worked up.
They usually put the brakes on before things got that far. But neither one was slowing or backing off. They had agreed to take their time getting to know each other, to take things one step at a time, so they hadn’t slept together yet.
“I want you, Toni...” Jessica breathed between kisses.
“I want you, too. I want to taste you... make you come...”
Toni brought her hands to Jessica’s face and kissed her passionately. When they parted they silently agreed to move from the couch to Toni’s bedroom.
December 25th, 1988
She woke up rather early in the morning, despite their late night activities. She watched the woman in bed next to her sleeping. It suddenly hit her like a ton of bricks. She had fallen in love. The realization made her heart skip a beat. She felt a little lightheaded. She drew in a deep breath and slowly let it out. A tear trailed down her cheek without her awareness. A light touch of a fingertip wiping away the tear startled her. Not realizing she had closed them, she opened her eyes.
“What’s the matter? Why the tears?” her companion asked softly.
“I’m in love with you,” she whispered.
Sparkling grey eyes gazed up into dark brown eyes. Jessica slid her hand to the back of Toni’s head and pulled her down. “I love you, too,” she replied just before their lips met.
Toni was nervous. Jessica had promised her partner that she would come to his house for Christmas dinner. She knew Casper was protective of his partner, and he was well aware of her playgirl reputation. She wasn’t sure how he’d react to her showing up for dinner with Jessica. The younger woman told her to relax and not to worry. That was easier said than done. Despite the fact they were coworkers, going to Casper’s felt like going to meet her lover’s family for the first time.
John opened the door and wrapped Jessica in a bear hug. “I’m so glad you’re here.” He let her go.
“I brought someone with me,” she said with a happy smile. She held her hand out and Toni took it, stepping into view.
“Hi, John. Merry Christmas.”
“Merry Christmas, Toni. Come on in.”
As John hung up their coats, Jessica slipped into the kitchen to see Jennie. “Do you need help with anything, Jennie?”
The blonde smiled. “If you could grab the mashed potatoes, we’re just about ready.”
“I hope you don’t mind, but I brought someone with me.”
“Of course I don’t mind. There’s enough food here for an army. I’ll set another plate.”
Meanwhile, in the living room, John closed the coat closet and looked at his partner’s date. “Forgive me if this comes out the wrong way, but how long is this going to last?”
“You and Jessica. You’ve been together what? Three months now? Isn’t that some kind of record for you?”
Toni took a deep breath and let it out. “Four. Yes, I suppose it is. But one thing no one has ever been able to accuse me of is being a liar.” She paused. “I’m in love with her, John. It’ll last as long she wants me. I’m not going anywhere.”
He looked in her brown eyes and saw the truth of her words. Finally he nodded and smiled. “Hope you’re hungry. Jennie’s cooked a ton of food.”
“I can’t believe I’ve got to get all dressed up for this thing,” the younger woman whined.
“Relax, you’re beautiful.”
“Perhaps. But that doesn’t change the fact that you’re beautiful,” Toni replied as she slipped her arms around Jessica’s waist from behind. She looked in her eyes in the mirror and smiled.
Jessica put her hands on the arms around her waist. She gazed at the dark brown eyes in the mirror. “You’re going to make me late,” she said with a smile.
“Move in with me,” the older woman suddenly said.
Jessica turned in her lover’s arms. When she didn’t immediately say anything Toni tried again.
“Or, if you don’t like it here we can find a new p–”
She was silenced by a passionate kiss.
“Is that a yes?”
“For an act of valor above and beyond the call of duty exhibiting exceptional courage, extraordinary decisiveness, presence of mind and unusual swiftness of action regardless of her personal safety in an attempt to save or protect human life, it is my honor to present Special Agent Jessica Morgan with the FBI Medal of Valor.”
The Director, flanked by the Deputy Director and AD Cavanaugh, motioned her up onto the dais.
An embarrassed agent stood on the dais and reluctantly accepted a medal she didn’t feel she deserved. If not for the encouragement of her partner and her lover, she would have declined the medal. But John and Toni had finally convinced her to accept it. Still, she couldn’t wait to get out of the spotlight and slip back into her comfort zone.
“Okay, that’s the last box,” John said as he set the box down on the kitchen table.
Jessica handed him a cold soda and kissed his cheek. “Thanks for all your help, John.”
He gave her a quick hug. “No problem.” He smiled. “Though I must admit I never thought I’d see the day.”
Jessica simply smiled. She had known Toni’s reputation, but something had made her take a chance and go on a second date with the woman. Toni had never given her a reason to second guess or regret that decision.
In the bedroom, Toni relieved Jennie of her burden so she could get a diaper out of her bag. She played with Jeremy as Jennie prepared everything for the task of changing his diaper. “Thanks again for helping with Jessica’s move, Jennie.”
The blonde smiled as she took her son from the brunette. “It’s our pleasure, Toni.” She paused and smiled at the woman. “So, when are you and Jessica going to have one of your own?” She laughed at the look on Toni’s face. “Relax. Breathe. I was just joking.”
Toni chuckled at herself. “Sorry. I guess I’m still getting used to the idea of actually living with her.”
Casper took in the tanned skin of his partner and the radiant smile on her face. “So how was the vacation?” he asked as she sat at her desk.
“It was fantastic!”
“Well, from the color of your skin, I’d say you went somewhere warm.”
Her grey eyes sparkled as she grinned. “We went to Bora Bora.”
His eyes widened in surprise. “Wow. That’s some surprise!”
“It was incredible, John. We stayed at a beautiful resort. Our bungalow was in the water on stilts. The water was so clear and blue. We went kayaking and snorkeling and horseback riding and parasailing. I didn’t want to come back!”
Casper sat down on the grass next to his partner’s lover. She was intently watching the volleyball game. He watched her a few moments before turning his attention to the game as well. “So who’s winning?”
“Huh?” She seemed almost surprised there was someone sitting next to her.
“I don’t know.”
“But you’ve been sitting here watching the game since it started.” He saw her shake her head from the corner of his eye. “Then what have you been doing?”
She grinned. “Watching her.”
John chuckled. “You’ve got it bad.”
“Yep.” She took a breath and turned her head to look at him. “Is this how you felt when you met Jennie?”
He nodded. “Yeah.”
“You know I never thought I’d meet someone like her.” She turned back to watch her lover playing volleyball. “I’d marry her if I could, John.”
That surprised him. He knew Toni loved Jessica, he saw it in her eyes every time she looked at his partner. And it was obvious that Jessica felt the same. However, he hadn’t expected that.
Morgan and Casper stepped off the plane and walked up the jetway. In the airport they headed straight to baggage claim. While Jessica waited for their bags, John rented their car. Once they retrieved their bags, they left the airport and headed to the Atlanta Police Department headquarters.
When they arrived at the police department they met with the detective that was working the serial rape case that had brought them to Atlanta, Detective Bobby Marinelli. He shook both agents’ hands.
“I want to thank you for coming down and helping with us with this case. This rapist is... different somehow.”
“Well, you couldn’t ask for a better profiler than Agent Morgan,” Casper said with some pride.
March 8th, 1991
She was in an office going through the original files of the rapes. Casper had slipped out to get something to eat. She would have preferred sleep, especially since they hadn’t even arrived in Atlanta until after 9:00 p.m. Oh well. It wasn’t the first time they’d worked through the night, and she really wanted to get a handle on the UNSUB.
Det. Marinelli entered and leaned against a wall, just watching her. Eventually she looked up at him.
“Something I can do for you, Detective?”
“He doesn’t know, does he?”
“You’re partner. He doesn’t know about you.”
“He doesn’t know you’re a half-breed.” He smirked at her shocked expression. “Don’t be so surprised.”
She then closed her eyes and took a calming breath... and recognized him for what he was. She opened her eyes and looked at him again. “No wonder you work nights.”
His smile was wide and genuine. “It suits me.” He paused for a beat. “I’m surprised you didn’t recognize me as soon as you arrived.”
She sighed. “My thoughts were elsewhere.” A vision of her and Toni making love before having to leave for the airport flashed in her mind.
The door opened and admitted her partner, bearing food from an all-night McDonald’s.
March 11th, 1991
Jessica’s profile had greatly narrowed the pool of suspects, and the three of them – Morgan, Casper, and Marinelli – were closing in on the house of their suspect, William Stevenson. They split up so that each of the front, side, and back doors were covered.
She heard Marinelli at the front door as he talked to the person who answered. Casper was around the back while she entered the side door. Their goal was to sneak in and secure his latest victim while Bobby kept Stevenson at the front. Of course things don’t always go as planned.
Jessica ended up having to shoot the suspect while he held Bobby at gunpoint. It was a shot that no one else could have made, because he and Bobby were in the dark and their location only given away by their voices. Only after letting her eyes shift was she able to pierce the cover of darkness and see their exact positions.
Afterwards, with the victim safely ensconced with her family, and the paperwork mostly done, Marinelli spoke to Jessica quietly. “Thank you. You risked being found out to save me.”
She looked at him. “What other choice was there? Certainly not to let him kill you.” She looked back down at her report. “Besides, I won’t hesitate to use my advantage when someone else is at stake.”
Hearing her tone of voice he sat down. “I take it that you have before.”
She gave an almost imperceptible nod. “Not consciously at the time, but yes, I did.” She looked back up at the vampire cop. “All my life, my grandfather taught me that actions have consequences. I’ve never had human blood and have always carefully guarded my ‘secret.’” Her grey eyes hardened. “But inaction also has consequences. I cannot put my personal wants before my duty or the safety of another.”
They held each other’s eyes for a few moments in silence and then nodded in complete understanding. Marinelli was quite impressed with the young agent.
The woman looked up at the sound of her lover’s voice and smiled. “Hey. How’s your day been?”
“I just finished up my paperwork on the Johansen case. I’m officially done for the day, and ready to get out of here. What about you?”
“I’m afraid I’ve got at least another 20 minutes of work left. If you want, you can go home and get ready. I won’t be far behind you. John can give me a ride home.”
“What do you mean I can give you a ride home?” John asked as he returned from the copy room. He grabbed a folder off his partner’s desk.
“Hey, I’m not done with that yet.”
“Yes, you are. I know you and Toni have special plans for this weekend. Now get the hell out of here.”
Jessica just sat there and looked at her partner as he opened the folder. “John.”
He looked up at her and smirked. “It’s not like you haven’t put in a lot of extra hours lately, Jessica. You’re not shirking your duty. I’ll finish this up and then go home to my wife and son. In the meantime, you and Toni go enjoy your long weekend.”
She finally nodded. “Alright.”
“Thanks, John,” Toni said as her lover locked up her desk.
“Just have a piña colada for me while you’re sunning yourselves down in the Caymans,” he said with a smirk.
The phone woke her up. She fumbled for it on the nightstand. “Morgan.”
“Jessica, it Lou.”
She was instantly wide awake. Getting a call from the assistant director at – she looked at the clock radio – 3:17 in the morning was not a good thing. “What happened, Lou?” she asked with trepidation.
“I’m afraid Toni was shot.”
“How is she?”
“I don’t know. She was unconscious.”
“I’m on my way to the hospital now.”
“I’m on my way.” She hung up and rushed around the room quickly getting dressed.
She burst through the doors of the ER. She’d made it to the hospital in record time. She quickly scanned the room and saw Cavanaugh. “Lou!”
He turned and saw the young woman. They met halfway and he gave her a quick hug. “I haven’t heard anything yet.”
“What the bloody hell happened?” she demanded.
“Toni and Lance had to make a move on Wieder while on stakeout tonight.”
Just then a nurse came out. “Mr. Cavanaugh?”
“The doctor said you can come back now.”
“Come on, Jessica. Let’s go see Toni.”
Jessica ran to the side of gurney Toni was lying on as soon as she saw her. “Toni!”
She took her lover’s hand and bent down to kiss her. “I was so worried about you.”
Toni reached up and wipe an errant tear from the younger woman’s cheek. “I’m okay. Just a couple of busted ribs and a knot on the back of my head.”
“They said you’d been shot.”
“She was, but fortunately she was wearing her vest,” said the doctor who joined them. “Hi. I’m Dr. Ross.” He shook hands with both Cavanaugh and Jessica.
“When can she go home?”
“We can’t let her go home alone. She’s needs to be observed because of the concussion.”
“That’s okay, she won’t be alone.”
The doctor took in the look the two women were sharing and their entwined hands. He nodded.
“Alright. I’ll have a nurse go over after care instructions with you while I prepare the discharge papers.”
“Don’t forget I’m leaving half a day today, John.”
“That’s right, you’re starting your vacation today. Where are you two off to this time?”
“Aruba.” She smiled.
Casper smiled widely at his partner’s happiness.
Previous parts: Prologue | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6 |