Aaron “Hotch” Hotchner had to wait sixteen years for his soulmate. Apparently she was significantly younger than him. His coworkers had teased him for that one, calling him a cradle robber and telling him that second wives were meant to be trophy wives. Of course, that was all joking around. Divorce was illegal now so there would be no second wife. Not since the government had found a way to positively identify people’s soulmates and connect them with each other from birth. As such the birth mark above Aaron’s heart had little meaning to him, so he’d never sat down to think of what the pie symbol might mean about his future partner.
Hotch was a pragmatist. He showed up at the courthouse on the date he’d been informed he was required, October 9, 2055, with a birthday card and a spare set of keys to his apartment. The card was specifically geared towards soulmates who had to wait to meet due to an age gap. Whoever she was, she was celebrating her eighteenth birthday today. Hotch had waited for her and despite his calm exterior inside he was bursting with excitement, anxiety, and lust. Today he’d marry. Tonight he’d lose his virginity. Tomorrow he’d start a new life with the woman who was meant to be the compliment to his serious, dry personality. He expected to be greeted with a smile. His mental image was of a cheerful woman with an affinity for hosting parties who would allow him to be the man in the corner with a glass of bourbon and a smoker’s jacket. Not that he smoked, of course. The last thing he expected was to walk into the small room and be confronted with a thin, young man with mid-length curly hair and a nervous smile beneath a frank exterior. He was reading a thick, old book that he slipped into a messenger bag when Hotch arrived. His clothes were nice and crisp, but clearly outdated, and his glasses were too big for his face.
“Hello,” Hotch stated, frozen in the spot and at a loss for words.
The young man stood up from the chair he’d been sitting in, long legs stretched out in front of him, and stood without offering his hand. Hotch extended his and stared at him in expectation, waiting for a joke or some other indication that this was his soulmate; someone who would fill in the gaps in his personality to make them a more complete unit. The young man ignored his offer of handshake.
“Hi,” He stated in a voice still high with youth, “Doctor Spencer Reid.”
“Doctor?” Hotch asked.
“Yes,” Reid nodded firmly, “I have a PhD in mathematics from Caltech and B.A. in Philosophy. I’ve been working on my PhD in Chemistry and Engineering while studying psychology and sociology and I’d like to continue. Would you be requiring we remain in Virginia? My education is transferable but given your substantially higher age it’s understandable if your job is not.”
“Um,” Hotch replied, glancing at the official at the desk.
“Good luck with this one,” The man sighed, “He came in here and offered to rearrange my office to make it more ergonomically correct.”
“I think there’s been some mistake,” Hotch replied uncomfortably, slipping his hand back into his pocket, “Perhaps I’m in the wrong office?”
“I hope not,” The official replied, opening a file, “We’re closing up for the day. Aaron Hotchner?”
“Yes, but I’m not gay,” Hotch stated firmly.
“That’s not a problem,” Reid replied quickly, “I’ve never had much interest in sex. What sort of degrees do you hold? You look like a lawyer to me.”
“I was an attorney, now I work for the BAU. What do you mean not interested in sex? You’re eighteen. It should be the only think you think about.”
The quirky smile Hotch had been expecting from his soulmate fluttered into existence, “If it was I doubt I’d have a doctorate a BA and another two doctorates in the works at my age. Don’t you agree?”
“This can’t be my soulmate,” Hotch stated firmly, looking back at the official, “I’m not doing this.”
Reid frowned, his eyebrows lowering in confusion, “You don’t have a choice unless you’d prefer to remain single, which won’t change your sexual options. If sex is an issue than I’m sure we could find a way to bring me around. What’s the BAU?”
“Behavioral Analysis Unit,” Hotch replied, “I’m with the FBI. I catch killers.”
“So you’re an agent?” Reid asked.
“Special Agent. I’m a psychological profiler.”
Reid waited expectantly and Hotch sighed before providing the avid young man with more information, “I study crime scenes and victims in a process called victimology. That allows me to determine the killer or abductor’s mental state and expected behavior which allows us to track and capture them.”
Reid’s entire disposition changed, his eyes lighting up and his hands flying out of his pockets to gesture excitedly. He was instantly animated and excited as he burst out a long list of facts and statistics on serial murders in Virginia. A moment later it switched over to terrain. Then he was off on a diatribe about mental health and the effects of socialization on prisoners in long-term facilities. Hotch stared in shock while the man behind the desk became more and more frustrated.
“Look, are you two marrying today, or not?” He snapped out.
“Yes,” Hotch stated, “Where do we sign?”
Reid fell silent as if he hadn’t been interrupted mid-rant and turned to sign the paper, using his own pen from his messenger bag and being careful not to touch anything on the desk. Hotch’s mind was whirling at a million miles a minute, though clearly not as fast as his husband’s mind was moving. Reid was clearly autistic, though he seemed high functioning. He had OCD and was germophobic. He was also looking for a connection to another human being despite his statement that sex did not interest him. He wanted to impress Hotch, and he had.
They signed the paperwork, the man said a few words, and told them that they could kiss their soulmate. Hotch turned towards Reid who immediately looked panicked but didn’t flee when Hotch leaned in, captured his chin, and left a dry peck on his lips. Reid wiped his mouth off anyway, and spent the next few minutes flushed and staring at his feet. They left in silence and didn’t exchange words again until they were outside in the nearly empty parking lot.
“Where’s your car?” Hotch asked.
“I took the bus,” Reid informed his feet.
“You’re awfully uncomfortable for the sort of kiss I’d reserve for my mother,” Hotch frowned, “Were you expecting more passion?”
“No,” Reid replied, fidgeting, “I guess I assumed the man who would be my soul mate would be a bit different.”
“Like Einstein, perhaps?” Hotch asked, trying not to be insulted.
“Hey, you walked in the door and decided you had the wrong room, remember?” Reid frowned, eyes flashing as they finally rose to face Hotch again, “I think I’ve been pretty patient so far.”
Hotch nodded, “I won’t apologize. I’ve never found men attractive so you being male was a shock to me. It had nothing to do with you personally.”
“Yes it did,” Reid huffed, “You were expecting someone young, pretty, perky, and social. I’m only one of those things.”
“Two,” Hotch corrected without thinking.
Reid blinked a moment, “Well. There goes your heterosexuality.”
“Thinking you’re perky isn’t-“
“You weren’t thinking perky,” Reid cut him off, “And don’t insult me by suggesting you meant social, either. I know I come off as autistic.”
“Are you?” Hotch asked quickly.
Reid shrugged, “I graduated highschool at twelve. My social development suffered. I’ve never been diagnosed with anything, just rated based on a superficial test score that determined my intelligence level and then pushed ahead so I didn’t become bored.”
“Oh, absolutely. I’m bored right now,” Reid replied quickly.
“Did you mean for that to be an insult?” Hotch asked with a frustrated sigh.
“No,” Reid winced, “Was it insulting?”
“Is me being boring to you insulting?” Hotch countered, his tone filled with disbelief at the geniuses ignorance.
“What? No!” Reid flushed, “That’s not what I meant. You’re not boring. At least, I don’t think you are. It’s just that unless I have a puzzle in front of me I’m generally not entertained.”
“Well then,” Hotch replied, watching him carefully, “Let’s get you a puzzle. Where do you live?”
“Wow,” Hotch blinked, “That’s quite the trip.”
“I flew in last night. I didn’t check into a motel because I figured that my spouse would have some kind of arrangements here or that we’d check into a motel together.”
“I have an apartment,” Hotch replied, and handed him the keys from his pocket, “The address is… let me get you a pen.”
“Just tell me, I’ll memorize it,” Reid replied.
“Of course you will,” Hotch frowned, and recited it quickly.
“Okay, great,” Reid nodded, “Well, I’ll see you in a few days, a week at most.”
Hotch stared after him in shock as Reid turned and headed for the nearest bus stop, “Wait a second!”
Reid turned and Hotch jogged to catch up to him, “Yes?”
“Where are you going?” Hotch asked, “A moment ago you said-“
“Yes, but you’re uncomfortable with me. You’re also telling me your address instead of offering to take me there. You have a vehicle- it’s the blue Hyundai, you’ve glanced at it seven times during our conversation- so transportation isn’t the issue. You’re embarrassed by me and will want to warn your friends and family before introducing me to anyone. Then there’s the fact that I have unfinished business in Las Vegas. So… I’ll see you in a few days to a few weeks.”
Reid turned on his heels and headed for the bus stop. This time Hotch didn’t try to stop him.