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mess me up

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spencer reid does not do jealous.

that’s ridiculous. he isn’t jealous. he doesn’t let himself dwell on silly unimportant things such as emotions.

but, yet, there’s a...twisty feeling in his chest, seeing derek morgan flirt with a girl.

which is stupid, because he doesn’t even know if morgan likes guys, and reid most definitely does not like derek morgan, of all people. reid doesn’t do crushes, he doesn’t do butterflies-in-your-stomach bullshit, he doesn’t do flirting and kissing and all that. he understands how it works (chemicals, the science behind attraction, societal constructs of what beautiful is supposed to be, none of which he fits into).

he especially doesn’t do people like derek morgan.

derek morgan, who shows off his stupid muscles and never does his homework and sprays his damn cologne everywhere in his and reid’s shared dorm room so that reid’s clothes all smell like it--

“that kind of sounds like a crush to me,” j.j. had said yesterday, smirking across the library table at reid. reid, who’d been complaining yet again about his playboy roommate who sexiled him every other night and always asked to copy homework (because apparently they were both studying criminal psychology; the universe was sadistic and had it out for him).

“it isn’t!” reid had insisted, fighting his inexplicable blush. “he’s just annoying, j.j.”


maybe j.j. was right , reid’s mind unhelpfully suggests.

he accidentally dents the soda can in his hand from crushing it so hard.

reid isn’t big on alcohol--he likes his inhibitions as they are, thank you--but that keg of beer is looking better and better by the minute.

he steals another glance.

from his corner, perched on the back of a sketchy armchair, he can see the whole room, and he has a perfect view of morgan chatting up some girl on the couch in the middle of it all. morgan keeps shifting closer, and biting his lip, and okay, reid is more fucked than he originally thought if he’s actually wishing right now that it could be him on the couch instead of that girl.

he leaves.

the wind stings his cheeks. it’s the reason his eyes are tearing up, he tells himself.

don’t bring anyone back to the room. i’m turning in early he texts morgan.

thought you were at this party? morgan replies, almost instantaneously. reid frowns down at his phone.

i was

okay. enjoy your beauty sleep

reid tries not to think too deeply about that.

“what’s up?” garcia asks.

reid swallows and switches the phone to his other hand. “i have a problem.”

“is it the sort of problem that almost got you and j.j. kidnapped a couple weeks ago? please don’t let it be that sort of problem. i’m in bed.”

“it’s a boy problem.”

“boy--okay, then, who?”

“my roommate.”

garcia sighs. “that is the most cliche of cliches, spencer reid. do better next time.”

“but--but--” reid stammers. “he’s--he’s really nice to me, even though i’m clearly inept at social stuff, and he has such nice arms, and his cologne smells nice--”

“surely the genius could come up with adjectives better than nice,” garcia interrupts him. reid starts to defend himself on the grounds of sleep deprivation or emotional turmoil or the like, but she scoffs. “i’m just messing with you, reid. just talk to him.”

“no promises,” reid mutters.

“nah, you can do it. doesn’t he call you ‘pretty boy’?”

emily prentiss sits in front of reid in his thursday afternoon class. she has long black hair that’s always getting on his desk, but she’s sharp and willing to talk to him even through his awkward fact-spewing attempts at conversation.

morgan is also in reid’s thursday afternoon class. (so is j.j. so is garcia. rossi teaches it. later, reid will marvel at the way they all fell back together. but that’s another story.)

the main problem with emily prentiss is that she’s pretty.

okay, no, that sounds wrong, reid amends in his mind, glaring at the head in front of him. she’s pretty. that isn’t a problem. the problem is that morgan recognizes that fact, and he’s been pursuing her since school started.

“what did emily do to you?” morgan hisses under his breath. reid jumps a little, leaving a stray pen mark on the back of his hand. “you’ve been glaring at her for the past twenty minutes.”

sometimes reid forgets that morgan sits beside him.

“nothing, sorry, i was just spacing out,” he mumbles, trying to inconspicuously shift away from morgan.

morgan gives him a long look, which only serves to make reid feel strangely hot all over. he rubs at the back of his neck. “it’s really nothing,” he insists quietly. “she’s nice to me. i have no problem with her.”

morgan raises one eyebrow, which does scary things to reid’s heart rate. “okay.”

“i have a large problem,” reid announces.

“can it wait for like ten minutes?” j.j. asks, writing down a customer’s name on a cup and handing it to the person manning the espresso machine. “you kinda came in during the after-class-friday-afternoon rush.”

“yeah, of course.” reid is careful to not touch any of the countertops or food preparation surfaces. the coffee shop j.j. works at is very clean, but he doesn’t want to take any chances.

“and stop lounging on the bakery case--here, just go sit over there,” j.j. says. she points to the table closest to the counter. “i’ll be over soon.”

reid sits, and watches. j.j. is beautiful like this, blonde hair tied back, calling out orders and handing people their coffees with a bright smile that never seems fake. she is in her element when she is dealing with people, the complete opposite of reid. he might be in love with her if she weren’t basically his sister.

“okay, tell me about this problem,” j.j. says maybe twenty minutes later, drying her hands on a towel and beckoning to reid to come stand at the counter.

“it’s my roommate,” reid starts.

“didya finally come to terms with your feelings?”

reid blinks. “how did you already know?”

“he calls you ‘pretty boy,’ for christ’s sake, and you text him all the goddamn time. you never even text me, reid. it was kinda obvious.”

“do you think he knows?”

j.j. must sense the fear in reid’s tone, because her face softens and she puts a hand on his shoulder. “just talk to him. i’m sure it’ll all be okay.”

“you ever kissed anyone?”

reid snorts. “does it look like i’ve kissed anyone?”

“you never know, with the genius types.” morgan sets his phone down, takes off his headphones. why someone would start a conversation while still on their device baffles reid. whatever. “so i’ll take that as a no?”

“very obvious no,” reid says, feeling the back of his neck redden. he looks back down at the worksheet he hasn’t been able to concentrate on for the past half an hour, due to morgan’s atypical presence in the room on a friday night.

“you ever wanted to kiss anyone?”

“where is this going?”

“you ever experimented?”

“have i ever what now?”

morgan is standing now, one hand on the back of reid’s chair, and when did he get that close? why is he that close, and saying these...things, and--

“y’know.” morgan shrugs. “experimented. like, with the same gender.”

“i had my sexuality crisis already,” reid says without looking up. he writes down an answer, not even sure if it’s to the correct question. his mind is a confused puddle with morgan this close. “i’m bi.”


reid thinks that the conversation is over, and makes the mistake of glancing up, and oh god morgan is right there, literally inches from his face, and that’s it, he has officially died.

“hey,” morgan murmurs, voice a couple octaves lower than it had just been. a shiver goes down reid’s spine.

“hello,” he says stiffly, unsure what he’s supposed to be doing. are there signals he’s supposed to be picking up on or

morgan kisses him, a bumping of lips together, and reid nearly falls off of his chair from the shock of it.

“sorry,” morgan says immediately, backing up several steps. “oh my god, reid, i am so sorry, i didn’t think--i thought--okay, sorry, i’ll leave now, i can find a different roommate if you want me to--”

“no, wait,” reid says. the two words take up about half a second, that’s how fast his brain is spinning. “wait, wait, wait, do that again, but better this time.”

morgan’s brow momentarily wrinkles, but then he smiles a little bit, with only the corner of his mouth, and damn, that’s sexy.

“stand up,” he commands. he takes the steps he needs to be standing right in front of reid, almost not quite barely touching. “i’m going to kiss you now, if that’s okay with you.”

reid nods his consent.

this time, it is in fact a lot better. morgan is a damn good kisser, and even though reid is completely foreign to anything even distantly related to romance (the sexuality crisis doesn’t count), he doesn’t feel totally out of his depth or anything.

it’s nice.

“did you sleep with him?”

reid covers his face with the hand that isn’t holding his phone. “no, oh my god, garcia.”

“what? it’s a fair question,” garcia says. “okay, how far did you go, then?”

“he kissed me, and that was kinda it--”

“that was it?” garcia nearly screeches. “you two had the room to yourselves, on friday night, and all you did was kiss?”

“garcia, you’ve got to remember that i’m completely new to this,” reid reminds her.

garcia considers this. “okay, i’ll let you off the hook just this once. but you better have some juicy details to tell me the next time you call.”


“bye! have fun with your lover boy!”

“who was that?” morgan asks, coming into the room and closing the door behind him. reid groans, flopping down across his bed, letting the phone drop to the floor.

“my friend penelope garcia,” he says. “she likes to think that i’m a lot more interesting than i actually am.”

“i think you’re plenty interesting,” morgan says. reid looks up at him and almost chokes on his own saliva.

apparently morgan’s just gotten out of the shower, because he is definitely shirtless, with only a pair of loose basketball shorts on, and fuck, he looks good. he looks really, really good.

“you look good,” reid blurts before he has time to fully process the thought. he promptly turns bright red and rolls away from morgan, burying his face in his pillow.

“well, i would hope so,” morgan says, sounding faintly amused. reid feels the edge of the bed dip down as he sits. “it would be hard to woo you if you didn’t think i looked good.”

“it would be--what--”

“so, spence, how are things going with your large problem?”

reid smiles despite himself. “no longer a problem.”

j.j. gasps in excitement. “you talked to him?”



“made out with him a couple times,” reid says, feeling weirdly proud. j.j. has the audacity to laugh.

“that’s it? kissed him and now you’re all good?”

“well, no, we talked about it too.” in quiet whispers, both so tired they couldn’t move, morgan’s breath tickling reid’s earlobe. “you should be proud of me, j.j., i have a boyfriend now.”

“i am proud,” j.j. says. she smiles at him and starts making his drink, coffee with just the right amount of creamer and milk and sugar, because j.j. has known him for most of his life and she’s awesome like that. “my little baby spence, getting out there in the world.”

“oh, shut up,” reid says, but he’s grinning.

derek morgan is unlike anyone reid’s ever known. he’s impulsive and thoughtful and kind and gets a steely light in his eyes whenever someone makes fun of reid. he flirts with him in class and kisses him to calm him down and takes him on dates. he holds him when the fear gets to be too much and makes him go outside of his comfort zone. he totally, completely, utterly, messes reid up.

and reid’s okay with that.