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The Secret Omega

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At the age of ten Spencer Reid had presented as an Omega and his father had walked out in disgust, leaving him to look after his increasingly estranged mother. Still, in her lucid moments, she had assured him that even as an Omega he could do whatever he wanted to do in life. Spencer hadn’t been satisfied with her reassurances and had voraciously read everything he could on Omegas at the library. It didn’t sound like he could live a normal life at all. It sounded like he would lose himself to being nothing but a sex-crazed lunatic every heat, begging any Alpha he could find to fill him with his knot. He avidly studied every aspect of Omegas from their anatomy to their treatment through history. He learned that being an Omega was a strange position to hold in society. They were simultaneously prized and considered the lowest of the low. Certain professions were barred to them as they were considered too dangerous for such delicate creatures and they were, almost unanimously, rather uneducated as they were too busy with having children to fill their pretty heads with learning. Spencer vowed on the floor of the Las Vegas public library that he would fill his head with as much learning as he possibly could and then he would enter one of those ‘unsuitable professions’. He may have only been ten years old but he was already wise beyond his years and he knew that this would take some doing and a great deal of secrecy. He learned that he probably only had about six years before he would go into his first heat and would then probably be bonded. The thought terrified him and he set himself the task to develop a suppressant. Not a heat suppressant. They already existed, though they were tightly controlled. No, he would develop something to suppress his entire biology.

 

As his head lolled from side to side, his hands tightly bound with his own handcuffs, the hard wooden chair digging bruises into his arms, he re-lived those moments again. He saw himself working furiously in the lab at university at night, drawing tube after tube of blood and experimenting on himself until he finally developed the perfect suppressant. The elation that he felt at the moment of his success was quickly tempered with the knowledge that he would have to keep this secret. If the government got hold of this he was sure it would disappear. Hell, he’d probably disappear. This wasn’t him thinking crazy like his mother. It was a fact. Omegas were valuable. They were a commodity reserved for the wealthiest, strongest Alphas. His serum would give them the choice to do whatever they wanted. It would allow them to live as Betas. It would significantly undermine the status quo and the Alphas’ apparent natural superiority. Spencer kept his mouth shut but continued to manufacture his drug and dose himself over the next decade.

 

“Confess!” Raphael compelled him but Spencer kept his mouth shut. He could feel the suppressant wearing off. The dilaudid also seemed to be having an interesting reaction either with the drug or his biology and he had the distinctive feeling that he was about to go into heat. At least Hankel, as a Beta, wouldn’t be any the wiser. He’d never experienced a heat, by choice, but it seemed like his choices were all being taken away from him.

 

“Choose one of your team to die!” Spencer sat, staring at the barrel of the gun, his mind working furiously. He wasn’t ready to die. He just had to think.

 

“I choose Aaron Hotchner.” And wasn’t that an uncomfortable truth. Spencer had always been wary of Alphas, afraid that his drug didn’t entirely mask his Omega scent, but Hotch was the exception. He let Hotch get close to him. Not only physically at the shooting range but they’d become friends. Hotch valued Spencer for who he was, not what he could do but Spencer would happily do anything for his happily married unit chief. Still, this was his best chance for rescue and Spencer chose to live even if it might mean outing his gender. “He’s a classic narcissist, thinks he’s better than everyone else on the team. Genesis 23:4 ‘Let him not deceive himself and trust in emptiness, vanity, falseness and futility for these shall be his recompense.”

 

Bending over his own grave and the still warm body of Tobias Hankel, Spencer shook and trembled with fear and the coursing desire that was starting to become a drumbeat in his blood. So this is what it felt like to go into heat but it wasn’t mindless, at least not yet. It was exhilarating. He felt totally alive and utterly focused on one man. The man who emerged between the trees and picked him off the ground.

 

Aaron had been nearly out of his mind with worry over these past few days. Spencer was more to him than just a subordinate. He was his friend and sometimes, Aaron thought that if circumstances were different – but they weren’t. The thought of losing Spencer was devastating to the whole team but he continued to trust in Aaron up to the last minute and Aaron nearly collapsed with relief at seeing Spencer and knowing that his trust had not been misplaced. As Spencer threw his arms around Hotch the Alpha couldn’t help but take a deep breath and fill his nostrils and mouth with the sweetest scent he had ever smelled in his life. He buried his face deep in Spencer’s neck, scenting him before pulling back his mouth suddenly full of saliva. “Reid?” he growled.

 

“I knew you’d understand,” Spencer mumbled and Hotch saw the vulnerability in the younger man’s eyes despite the blown pupils. He pulled Spencer towards him and moaned as their sudden erections ground against each other. Hotch could feel the slight pull of his knot, a new and frightening experience.

 

“Reid, you’re an Omega?” he managed to choke out, supporting the hobbling man in the direction of the ambulance.

 

“Yes, I can explain, oh God, Hotch,” the younger man squirmed as Hotch’s fingers slid against his hardened nipple through his thin cotton shirt. “You—you can’t take me to hospital. No one can know. You have to keep this secret.”

 

“How did you hide this?” Hotch whispered but he was already moving towards the cars. If Spencer was an Omega going into heat then he was right; he couldn’t go to a public hospital. Hotch ignored the caveman part of his brain that was screaming “mine” and urging the Alpha to take the Omega right here and fill him with his seed. Spencer needed to go somewhere safe. Aaron just wasn’t sure where that would be. Everyone was too busy dealing with the crime scene to pay them much notice and apparently Spencer’s scent was not yet strong enough to attract the attention of the numerous Alphas milling around. They slipped into Hotch’s SUV and he started driving, still with no idea where he was going.

 

“I’ll tell you later,” Spencer promised as he squirmed in his seat. “Right now you need to get me to a hotel that has an Omega room so I can deal with this.”

 

Hotch swallowed heavily and inhaled more of those wonderful pheromones, his mind swum. “Reid – I—I’m married,” he finally forced out, his ring feeling suddenly tight on his finger.

 

“I know, Hotch, I know. I wouldn’t ask that. They have toys, I can do this alone.”

 

Hotch fought against the wave of disappointment and nodded, he handed Reid his phone and the younger man flicked through the menus until he’d programmed the GPS with the nearest Omega-equipped hotel. Hotch’s clothing was feeling tight, his palms sweaty and his slacks uncomfortably tented. He was having to fight the urge to pull the car over and take Reid over the bonnet. This was the side of his Alpha biology that he had never felt comfortable with. He didn’t particularly like the idea of going into rut, of mindlessly fucking just because his body was telling him that he should. It was part of the reason that he had married a Beta, even though his family name could have secured him an Omega. “Reid,” he choked out at the still squirming man, “I don’t think it’s safe for you to be around me.”

 

Spencer rolled his head to look at his unit chief, Hotch’s furrowed brow, beaded with sweat as he fought the biological imperative to fuck. Honourable. Aaron Hotchner was the personification of honourable. Spencer’s heart ached with love for his friend and he felt a rush of fluid between his legs, thickening the scent of arousal in the car. “There’s not much choice, Hotch. I can’t drive with the injuries to my foot even if I could think through this fog. Anyway, I trust you.”

 

Hotch nodded stiffly and focused on driving as fast as he possibly, if not legally, could. Reid trusted him. He’d just have to prove he was still deserving of that trust. They arrived at the hotel and Hotch supported Spencer into the reception. The staff raised a few eyebrows at Spencer’s dishevelled state but quickly moved into action when they realised that he was going into heat. Hotch knew they were thinking he’d won this Omega and he caught a few admiring glances from the more romantic Beta women. It was a ridiculous notion to think that he could win a person in a fight, that he could win the right to fuck someone. The two men were ushered into the Omega suite and then the staff disappeared.

 

“Are you sure you’ll be okay, Reid?” Hotch asked lingering by the door as Reid laid back on the king size bed. Hotch could see that the young man’s slacks were damp between his legs and he shifted attempting to hide his painful erection.

 

“No,” Reid muttered, “but it’s okay, Hotch. Go before you can’t.” It was that thought that sent Hotch from the room. Reid didn’t want him. He had to leave before he ended up ostensibly raping him, both of them lost to their biological drives. He closed the hermetically sealed door and slid down to the floor with his back against it, breathing deeply until he could no longer smell Reid’s scent, as if he had inhaled it all. Then he went to work. He’d promised Reid he would keep this secret. He had no idea how the genius had hidden his gender for all these years but Hotch would be damned if Hankel was allowed to take this from the young man as well. If Spencer’s gender was exposed, he would lose his job, his place on the team, his entire life.

 

Hotch pulled out his phone and dialled Morgan. “Hotch, where the hell did you take Reid?”

 

“Are you still at the crime scene?”

 

“Of course we are. We’re all here. I thought you took him to the hospital but when I called there was no one there under that name.”

 

“He’s been transferred to a special facility to deal with the drugs that Hankel was giving him. I’m here with him now but I’ll meet you back at the police station in a couple of hours.”

 

“Drugs? Shit. You smelled them? He’s in a rehab facility?”

 

“I don’t want to say anymore, Morgan. This has to stay off the record.”

 

“I understand, Hotch. Give him my best. I’ll deal with things on this end.”

 

Hotch hung up and took another deep breath, searching for Reid’s scent but finding nothing. His dick was still painfully hard and he realised that it wasn’t going to sort itself out. Pushing himself off the ground he made his way to the fire escape, unwilling to alert the staff to the fact that there was an Omega going through heat alone. Let them think that Hotch was taking care of Reid. That would leave absolutely no possibility that anyone would bother the young man. It would be suicide to intrude on an Alpha’s territory when he was in rut and it was considered permissible homicide in the eyes of the law. Hotch made it back to his car and he was never more thankful for his tinted windows than when he unzipped his slacks and freed his aching cock. He ran his hand over the long stiff flesh, slightly marvelling at how huge and hard he was just from inhaling Omega scent. His fingers traced his slightly bulge at the base of his penis and he felt his knot swell slightly. Jesus, how was that supposed to fit? He tugged on it and bit back a guttural moan. It was pleasure like he had never known and his started frantically working his cock. Spitting into his palm, he worked his left hand swiftly over his flesh as the right tugged on his balls and squeezed at his knot. The smell of Spencer was somewhat stronger in the car and he turned his head towards the passenger seat seeking more. When he came his vision seemed to white out and he almost howled at the strength of his orgasm. Copious amounts of sperm shot out of his dick, over his hands, his slacks, the steering wheel and yet despite the strength of his orgasm, his dick didn’t seem to soften at all. “Spencer,” he mumbled and used his ejaculate to slick up his cock as his hands started working again.

 

Meanwhile, in the hotel room, Spencer had stripped himself naked and was currently kneeling on the bed with three fingers in his stretched ass and one hand working his cock. Rocking back onto his fingers and forward into his hands, he keened Aaron’s name in desperation. The pain in his foot was a minor ache compared to the empty feeling in his gut. His rational mind knew that Hotch wouldn’t return but his body was screaming for the Alpha. His first ejaculation was ultimately unsatisfactory and his hole clenched uselessly around his fingers. With a desperate moan, Spencer reached into the bedside table and pulled out a ridiculous purple Omega dildo, sealed in cellophane. He rubbed his own slick over the smooth rubber surface and knelt forward, spreading his legs and shoving it into his hole. It felt better but as he worked it in and out of himself all he could think of was Hotch, his smell, the feel of his fingers brushing his nipple, the way his pupils dilated in desire when he scented Spencer’s neck. “Aaron,” he moaned out again, piteously, but his cries went unanswered.

 

Chapter Text

Spencer went to Hotch’s office as soon as he returned to work. Morgan and Prentiss waved their hellos but Spencer was focused on one thing. His time for stalling had run out and he owed Hotch an explanation.

 

Once Spencer had emerged from the haze of heat, he’d realised that he was somewhat stranded in a strange hotel in Georgia. He’d stiffly rolled over and dialled Hotch’s number on the hotel phone. “Hotch?” he’d croaked into the receiver, his voice hoarse from screaming that very name in desperation.

 

“Spencer? Is that you? Are you okay?” Hotch sounded slightly frantic.

 

“I’m fine. A bit sore but fine. Where are you?”

 

“I’m still at the hotel we were staying at. The rest of the team went back to DC. I’ll come and pick you up. Do you need to go to a hospital?”

 

“No, no hospital. I’m fine, really. Bring a first aid kit and I’ll be able to strap up my foot. Um, you should probably wait in the hallway, though.” The room was reeking of Omega pheromones.

 

“Right. Okay. I’ve got your go-bag too. I’ll be there in half an hour.”

 

Spencer hung up the phone and hobbled to the bathroom for a much needed shower. He was also starving. The room was equipped with sports drinks and energy bars at the side of the bed to keep the couple alive during the heat and Spencer had managed to see through the blinding lust every so often and swallow down a few mouthfuls but his stomach was growling in protest at the prolonged exertion and lack of nutrition. He turned the water on as hot as he could handle and scrubbed himself until his skin was pink in an attempt to remove as much of the smell as he could before seeing Hotch again. Once he was out the shower, he heard a knock at the outer door and he hopped over, checking through the peephole that it was Hotch. His boss was standing there in jeans and a T-shirt, nervously scanning the corridor. Spencer pulled the door open and immediately saw Hotch sway as a cloud of pheromones escaped into the hall.

 

“I’ll just take the bag and be out in a moment,” Spencer muttered, very aware that he was in nothing but a towel. The clothes he had been wearing were ruined by his ordeal with Hankel and the subsequent heat. The first thing Spencer did was swallow his suppressant. It should start taking effect within minutes and, by the time he was in the car with Hotch, he would once again appear and most importantly smell like a Beta. Once five minutes had passed, Spencer quickly dressed and slipped on just the left of his spare pair of shoes before stepping out into the corridor. Hotch was standing at the end of the hall, pacing nervously.

 

“Ready to go?” The older man asked in a scratchy voice.

 

“I just need to strap my foot but I can do that in the car.” Spencer limped towards Hotch who instantly strode over to support him as he swayed. “Sorry, I’m really tired,” Spencer mumbled.

 

“Understandable,” Hotch croaked, turning his face away from the crook of Spencer’s neck. “I’ve paid for the room and we can drive straight to the airport.” The couple left to more curious glances from the staff and once Reid was safely in the passenger seat, Hotch knelt and carefully bandaged his injured foot.

 

“I know you have questions,” Spencer muttered, his eyes already heavy. “But can they wait?”

 

“Of course,” Hotch murmured and strapped Reid in for the drive to the airport. Spencer slept the whole way and was barely awake as they made their way through security, aided by their badges. Once on the plane he fell into a deep sleep again and missed the concerned glances Hotch cast at him every few minutes. True to his word, Hotch didn’t push the issue. He just dropped Reid at home and left to return to Haley and Jack.

 

Spencer could have phoned Hotch during his week of medical leave but he didn’t. It wasn’t that he thought that Hotch would go to the authorities (Hotch had more than proven himself honourable on that night) but the man deserved an explanation in person and Spencer was reticent about inviting the star of his fantasies into his home. So one week later, Spencer was standing outside the door to Hotch’s office and steeling himself for a difficult conversation. After knocking on the door, he heard the muffled permission to enter and hobbled into the office on his still bandaged foot.

 

“Reid,” Hotch smiled as he half stood and motioned Reid into one of the chairs in front of his desk. Spencer saw his nostrils subtly flair as he searched for the now familiar Omega scent. “It’s good to have you back.”

 

“It’s good to be back, sir,” Spencer replied and folded himself into the offered chair. The Alpha’s scent washed over him and he thought back to those three days in that hotel as he viciously fucked himself on an Omega dildo, desperately imagining that it was Hotch’s cock buried inside him. His first heat had been long, deeply unsatisfying and nothing that he had imagined it would be. He’d expected to be utterly mindless but in fact he’d been utterly focused, focused on the man sitting in front of him. For three days, his entire being had ached for Aaron Hotchner. For the first time in his life, his biology and his heart had been entirely in agreement. He had cried Hotch’s name with every ejaculation onto the sweat soaked sheets until he collapsed with exhaustion only to wake again to whimper his boss’ name. He coughed and shifted in his seat, trying to stifle the blush he could feel rising up his neck. His first, and probably only, heat had been lonely and unsatisfying but he’d been dreaming about Hotch every night since, dreaming that he hadn’t left that hotel room. For the first time in his life, Spencer was imaging spending his heat with an Alpha and it was distorting his entire world vision.

 

Hotch noticed Spencer’s attractive blush and, guessing at its cause, also felt himself colour slightly at the remembrance of his furious masturbation session in the car and in his hotel room, the bathroom, the FBI showers over the following days. Spencer had always been attractive to him but now he couldn’t get the young man out of his head. It was as if his scent had released all those dirty dreams and fleeting thoughts that Hotch had firmly locked away behind a door that was banded with yellow tape that said “Do not cross. You love your wife” on it. Hotch cleared his throat.

 

“I owe you an explanation, Hotch” Spencer began and Hotch nodded, leaning back in his chair and attempting to look less intimidating. “It’s a long story but, as you saw, I am biologically an Omega. I developed a suppressant when I was at university. I would guess that you don’t really want the chemical breakdown but I’ve been taking it since I was fifteen. It suppresses aspects of my Omega biology such as my scent and my heats and allows me to live as a Beta. I had never experienced a heat before last week.”

 

“That was your first heat?” Hotch asked incredulously, biting back the ‘and you went through it alone’ that wanted to burst out. Spencer just nodded before taking a deep breath and continuing.

 

“Of course, while with Hankel I couldn’t take my pills but I’m still surprised at how fast my heat came on. I would imagine that something in my drug compound reacted with the dilaudid.”

 

“That’s something else we need to talk about, Reid, but continue. How did you escape registration when you presented?”

 

“I presented at age ten and my mother threw a fit, screaming that she wouldn’t let the fascist government take her son away from her and locked us in her bedroom. A few days after my mini-heat, my father left. I don’t know why he never turned me in but I guess it was the least he could do. Anyway, there are lots of Omegas who avoid registration in one way or another. I’m not really sure what else to say. I’m back on the pills. It shouldn’t be an issue again.”

 

“These pills are a major breakthrough. How have I heard nothing about them before now?”

 

Spencer snorted. “I never told anyone before now. You wouldn’t understand, Hotch, you’re an Alpha. You’re part of the elite. Do you really think the Alphas would allow my scientific discovery to rock their boat? If Omegas were able to control their biology, they would no longer be second class citizens. They would be able to enter any profession, to choose who they wanted to bond with. They would no longer be a commodity. You know that the register of Omegas is nothing but a glorified catalogue for the Alpha elite to browse when they want a new fuck toy.” Aaron winced. He remembered his mother asking him if he wanted to choose an Omega and holding out a glossy brochure of suitable candidates. Reid was right. “No, if I told anyone my research would vanish, as would I.”

 

Hotch sighed and rubbed a hand over his face. As much as he hated to admit it, he couldn’t understand. Spencer was right again, as an Alpha he had been born into privilege far beyond the wealth of his family name. Omega oppression was ingrained into society. Hell, they’d only been allowed the right to vote in the 1970s and they were still, largely, treated as property by the upper classes. An Omega was supposed to be approached by the Alpha and offered a series of gifts before the Alpha asked if the Omega would willingly enter a bond. In practice, the Alpha or his family gave a large amount of money to the Omega’s family or their broker and the Omega’s wishes were mostly ignored. Yes, they signed a contract but they were often forced or so naïve and sheltered that they had no idea what they were signing. Spencer’s discovery would change everything but that would never be permitted. “What about side-effects? Long term issues?”

 

Again Spencer smiled wryly, “This hasn’t exactly undergone clinical trials and received FDA approval, Hotch. I’m the only test subject. I’ve been taking it for over a decade and so far there doesn’t seem to be anything too severe. Dry eyes is the worst so far.”

 

“What about internally? What effect is this having on your body?”

 

Spencer just stared at him. Hotch really wasn’t getting this. “It’s not like I can go to a doctor, Hotch. Any internal exam would give away the truth of my biology. I was terrified even going through the physicals to get into the FBI. There have been some more noticeable changes to my body. I’m more,” Spencer blushed, “developed than I understand is usual for an Omega.”

 

Hotch’s throat went dry as his eyes flickered to Spencer’s crotch. That was one hell of an image. Clearing his throat again, he continued, “It’s amazing, Reid. What you’ve achieved is remarkable. You smell just like a Beta to me.”

 

“Really?” Reid grinned. “I’ve never been able to test it. You know, being unable to tell anyone. Would you,” suddenly embarrassed he ducked his head so his hair curtained his face and continued, “would you scent me? You know, as an experiment.”

 

Hotch felt a lump in his throat. It didn’t matter that Spencer smelled like a Beta, he still smelled good to him. He always had. Their sessions in the gun range had proven that to Hotch. The thought of scenting him already had Hotch’s blood pumping faster. Still, he couldn’t say no when Spencer looked at him like that from underneath his long eyelashes. He nodded.

 

“Wow, ok, great. Maybe we should shut the blinds, you know. It might look weird.” Hotch stood and twisted his blinds shut, ignoring the quizzical looks from Morgan and Prentiss. This definitely wasn’t a team matter. Spencer had moved to the sofa and Hotch joined him over there feeling somewhat apprehensive but Spencer’s expression was entirely focused on the experiment. “Ok, first my wrist.” Spencer held out his arm and Hotch ducked his head and inhaled deeply. It was a Beta scent, certainly, but was he imagining something manufactured about it?

 

“You smell like a Beta but there is something different about it.” Spencer nodded, intrigued.

 

“Ok, now my neck,” Spencer tilted his head exposing his jugular and Hotch felt saliva rush into his mouth like he was preparing to bite. His cock started to swell. Shaking his head slightly, he leant forward and buried his nose in Spencer’s neck. His scent was stronger here, heady, and again there was that slight sort of plastic edge to it but it was still definitely a Beta scent. If Hotch didn’t know better, he would have said it was preposterous that Reid was an Omega. Realising that he was still breathing deeply with his head buried in Spencer neck he went to retreat, Spencer’s breath hitched as Hotch’s nose almost nuzzled at the crook of his neck. Unable to stop himself, Hotch allowed his tongue to dart out and flick gently against the soft skin. Spencer just groaned slightly and tilted his head further. The flavour of Spencer’s skin burst across Hotch’s tongue. Yes, he tasted like a Beta but there were subtle undertones, the plastic smell transferred into an almost rubbery quite unpleasant taste but under that, just because he knew what he was looking for, was that intense sweetness of Spencer’s real scent. Breathing heavily, Hotch forced himself to pull back. His eyes met Spencer’s, pupils blown as both men fought against the urge to reach for the other.

 

“You—you smell like a Beta but there’s a hint of plastic,” Hotch said, unable to break the eye contact but pleased with his even voice.

 

“And the taste?” Spencer asked, his voice suddenly lower and somewhat gravelly.

 

Oh, Hotch had been hoping they were going to ignore that indiscretion. “You taste like a Beta but it’s rubbery and then, I think I just knew to look for it, but I could taste you.”

 

“Oh, um, okay. Well, thanks for, you know, experimenting with me. Not like that. Just—“Spencer stood awkwardly, his satchel swinging round to cover his crotch. Hotch attempted to cross his legs to hide his own erection but the discomfort was too much so he quickly retreated behind his desk.

 

“We still need to talk about the drugs,” he tried to get his breathing under control but realised he’d be taking another trip down to the showers.

 

“Oh, yes, well,” Spencer wanted nothing more than to flee from the room but instead he reclaimed his seat. “I’ll admit, I was tempted to seek out more drugs. The ability to escape reality is tempting but I won’t.”

 

“Why?” Hotch leaned forward onto his desk, directing his piercing gaze at Spencer.

 

“I can’t predict what effect it would have on the pills I take. Suppressing my biology is far more important to me. Keeping my life, this job, is far more important to me. I don’t seem to have developed a dependency on the dilaudid yet possibly due to going into heat. Maybe it burned it off or something, you know, purged my system. It would make a fascinating study, looking at the effects of drugs on Omega biology. The heat might be some sort of self-defence mechanism to keep the Omega pure and fertile but I can’t really look into it anyway, not without revealing myself.” Reid trailed off and Hotch studied him for a long moment before offering a curt nod.

 

“I told the team that you’d been sent to a detox facility from the hospital to help stave off addiction. It explained your three day absence and subsequent medical leave. I realise it was a sensitive issue but it was the best that I could do. No one will think less of you for it.”

 

“Thank you, Hotch. For everything.”

 

“Thank you for trusting me when I didn’t trust myself.” The two men shared a long look before Spencer left the room. Hotch rounded his desk after the door clicked shut but realised that he’d never make it to the showers like this. Flicking the lock, he grabbed a wad of tissues from the desk and unbuttoned his trousers, pushing them down to mid-thigh. His cock stuck up, flushed and proud. Now that he knew what it looked like, felt like, he could see the slight bulge of his knot. Pushing his shirttails up, he started quickly jerking himself off. He knew he should be thinking about blonde hair and soft breasts but instead he imagined chestnut curls and the little groan Spencer made as he lapped at his neck.

Chapter Text

Hotch knew Haley was having an affair as soon as it started. One evening he walked through the door, stepped towards his wife and son playing on the rug in the living room, and he knew. Sure, she showered after being with him but, as a Beta, she couldn’t understand just how attuned an Alpha sense of smell was. He detected the subtle changes in her scent within a minute. There was a sharp undertone, a mix of adrenaline and arousal. The musky smell of semen lingered around her body and he had to fight against the desire the curl his lip in disgust. He wasn’t particularly surprised that she was having an affair, their sex life had been lack lustre for a couple of years, but what shocked him was that he simply didn’t care. It bothered him, of course it bothered him, but not enough to make it something to fight over. Instead, he forced a smile and asked about her day.

 

His whole world had changed in Georgia. He’d never considered having an Omega. He’d never particularly relished being an Alpha but now his mind was filled with the image of Spencer laying back on that hotel bed with his slick already staining his trousers. Hotch could easily imagine sliding his cock into Spencer’s wet hole and fucking his seed into him, knotting him, filling him until it leaked out and then fucking him again. Shrugging off his jacket, he accepted Haley’s placatory kiss on the cheek and responded by rote to her questions about his day. She was really playing up the obedient little wife role to assuage her guilty conscience but Hotch allowed her this deception. Hell, it was better than being screamed at for being half an hour late. If he closed his eyes that night and the images of Spencer spread on the bed beneath him were a little more vivid, suddenly more permissible, well, he was just a man. A horny man whose wife was lying beside him in bed reeking of a stranger’s cum.

 

Haley’s breathing evened, in her sleep she turned away from him and, in the pale moonlight, he studied the curve of her back, the way her hair curled around one ear. Sitting up, he leaned over to see her face and wondered why his Alpha possessive side wasn’t going into overdrive. His wife was sleeping with another man and he wasn’t even feeling a flutter of jealousy. Instead the butterflies in his stomach were fluttering fantasies of walking out the door and driving to Spencer’s apartment because now that seemed almost okay. Silently, he slipped out of bed and padded down the hallway to his son’s room. He stood by his crib, breathing deeply. At least Jack didn’t smell wrong. Hotch would kill Haley if she introduced his son to whoever this Beta prick was. Idly, he wondered if Haley enjoyed having sex with a Beta more. There was always a slightly painful stretch to accommodate his Alpha size. When they’d been young it had been exciting but maybe being with a Beta was just easier. Maybe he’d find it easier being with an Omega. Spencer. His heart soared and crashed onto the floor at his feet, beside the crib of the reason he would stay with his wife no matter what. His son snuffled softly in his sleep, his tiny fists clenching and his brow furrowing. Aaron slid down the wall and sat leaning his forehead against the bars, watching the rise and fall of his son’s chest.

 

He knew when he married a Beta that it would be slightly harder for them to conceive than for a Beta/Beta pairing but he hadn’t expected it to be so heartbreakingly difficult. Jack was their little miracle. They’d almost given up when Haley had finally fallen pregnant and was finally able to carry a baby to term. His son was perfect. Part of him hoped that Jack would grow up to be a strong Alpha like his father but a larger part of him hoped that Jack would be a Beta. There was a simplicity in being a Beta that Aaron envied. If Jack turned out to be an Omega, Hotch would be damned before his son would be put up for sale but now he realised that he had other options. He was sure Spencer would help them if he asked. Lulled into peace by his son’s slumber, he padded back down to his sham of a marital bed.

 

The months rolled on. Cases came and went and Hotch flew all over the country doing what he did best and ignoring the gulf of deception in his home life. No one on the team seemed to notice except one. Suddenly, despite his resolution to stay with his wife, Aaron found himself seeking out time with Spencer. And when he searched the room for the younger man, Spencer's eyes always seemed to be resting on him already. He paired them together when he had the chance. On the jet, he found himself sitting next to Spencer and he even found himself asking Spencer out for lunch. It wasn’t a date but the warm smile he received as Spencer nodded his agreement and reached for his bag made Aaron’s heart thump in his chest.

 

It was quite a relief to no longer have to deal with Haley’s bickering when he had to fly out at short notice. She seemed happier as she continued to sleep with whoever it was. Hotch was sure he could have found out who he was if he’d cared enough but he didn’t. As strange as it was, things were better this way. Then suddenly Hotch came home from a case to a sullen wife who smelled only of herself and their son. Haley had stopped seeing him. Hotch had to stop himself from asking what had happened, remembering that, of course, he wasn’t supposed to know. Seriously, though, did Haley think he was stupid? Even without his Alpha attributes he would have had to be deaf, blind and probably brain dead not to pick up on the phone calls, the mysterious jewellery, the ‘book club’ every Thursday. Haley dropped her ‘wife’ act instantaneously and Hotch guessed that whoever-he-was had found out that she was married. Their marriage returned to frigid formality and snide comments as Aaron ate cold leftovers once again. He stayed later at the office if he’d already missed Jack’s bedtime in the hope that Haley would be asleep by the time he walked through the door. She usually was.

 

Aaron found that he was not alone at the office most nights. Each time he looked out his office windows, he saw Spencer bent over his files, writing report after report in his meticulous but flowing cursive. Aaron would admit it to no one but sometimes he sat with one of Reid’s report on his desk just running his fingers over the words. There was no reasonable explanation for such a ridiculous action but it somehow made him feel closer to the other man. One night as he was filling in a particularly tedious budget report for Strauss, Aaron found his mind wandering and his gaze consistently drawn to his subordinate. Finally, he stood from his desk, stretching out his back and moved to lean on the banister overlooking the bullpen. It was a couple of minutes before Reid felt eyes on him, which made Hotch chuckle. An Alpha would have known instantly they were being watched. Reid turned to look at him with a small smile.

 

“You’re here late.”

 

Reid just cocked his head to the side, “So are you. A lot, lately.”

 

Hotch nodded slowly. “You could come sit in my office, if you like. We could keep each other company.” Hotch was glad that the overhead lights had long been turned off and the room was only illuminated by Reid’s desk lamp and the light spilling from his own office so that Reid couldn’t see the blush that stained his cheeks at the unintended innuendo.

 

Reid hesitated for a moment before reaching for his messenger bag and files and walking up to join Hotch on the gangway. “I’d like that,” he mumbled unnecessarily and Hotch just gestured for him to proceed with a small smile. Reid claimed a spot on the sofa but looked surprised when Hotch joined him in the adjacent chair rather than returning to his desk and the still open report.

 

“I need a break,” Hotch clarified and pinched the bridge of his nose between two fingers. Reid made a non-committal noise and leaned back on the sofa stretching his long legs out in front of him. The silence was companionable and Hotch watched, from underneath half closed eyelids as he uncharacteristically sprawled in his chair, the way Reid’s restless fingers skittered over his trousers, tapping out a mathematical rhythm against his bony knee. He’d loosened his tie and rolled up his sleeves hours ago. “You know you’re always moving. Maybe you need to cut down on the caffeine.” He couldn’t help the smirk at Reid’s indignant noise.

 

“You should talk. You’ve got your own coffee machine in here.” Hotch could hear the jealous tone in Spencer’s voice. “Anyway, I’ve got a doctor’s note.”

 

“You don’t go to the doctor, Reid.”

 

“I’m a doctor.”

 

Hotch’s grin was now spread across his face in a way that he half-remembered from years ago. “Not that kind.” When he sat up, he saw that Reid was also grinning boyishly.

 

The silence seemed to spark and crackle with electricity this time as Hotch found himself unable to look away from Spencer’s indefinable eyes. He watched Spencer’s throat work as he swallowed and the tiny dart of a pink tongue between two full lips. If he leaned forward, shifted to the edge of his chair, he could close the gap. He froze as Spencer’s eyes trailed over his muscled forearms before settling on his own lips. Unconsciously, he mirrored the flick of Spencer’s tongue, feeling that his lips were dry and parched. Finally, it was Reid that broke the moment with a sigh and a flood of words, Hotch felt the wrench as Spencer tore his eyes away to glance over at the closed door. “Really, it seems to be a side-effect of the drug. Really strong caffeine and sugar cravings. I’d hypothesise that the compound has a strong effect on my metabolism.”

 

“Oh,” Hotch couldn’t think of a reply to that though his libido seemed interested in the reminder that Spencer was, in fact, an Omega.

 

“Yup.” Spencer popped the p almost obscenely but seemingly unconsciously. “So, what’re you working on that’s got you here so late?”

 

“Huhn?” Hotch was still very focused on Spencer’s lips and the question took a moment to filter through. “Oh right. Nothing important. Just some budget shi – stuff for Strauss.”

 

Spencer smirked but it quickly fell and he looked at Aaron with a piercingly earnest expression on his face. “If it’s not important, why aren’t you home?”

 

No convenient lie presented itself so Hotch just shrugged, hoping Spencer would drop it. Of course, he did no such thing.

 

“Is everything okay? With Jack?”

 

“Jack’s great. I swear he’s growing taller and learning something new every day.” Hotch answered that one easily with a true smile that only faltered because he knew what was coming next.

 

“And Haley?”

 

Hotch hesitated, almost wanting to confess the pain of Haley’s past infidelity to the young man in front of him but, perhaps foolishly, his pride stopped him. Spencer would understand. He would sympathise and it would be so humiliating. Or perhaps he’d move in closer to Hotch, perhaps he’d offer him a place to drown his sorrows that wasn’t at the bottom of a bottle. He flashed back to his childhood, to his parents in separate bedrooms, each smelling of strangers and smiling at each other with taut angry eyes. “She’s fine.” Spencer could have seen through that one from a mile away but he allowed Hotch his deception for now. “What about you?”

 

Spencer looked at him for a long moment before slumping back in his own seat, his hands resuming their dance as his words tumbled out: “Oh, I decided to compile all the cases of serial offenders who cross state lines in the hopes of developing, in conjunction with Garcia, some sort of software” Reid gave the word a questioning tone as if he wasn’t quite sure that he was using it correctly, “that will allow the different police forces to easily check if their murder is linked with a similar crime in another jurisdiction. I’m hoping that it will reduce the number of murders committed before the separate police forces are able to link them. It’s ostensibly similar to ViCAP but I don’t want it exclusively focused on the sexual aspects of the crime but rather also include other possible early indicators like arson. I’d also like to see if there’s a certain type of offender that is more likely than others to have a wider, cross jurisdiction comfort zone. It’s a work in progress but I’m going through all the BAU’s case files chronologically to narrow done the most important fields to input.”

 

Hotch grasped at this like a drowning man. Work. He could talk about work. “Sounds very useful. ViCAP certainly has its limitations.”

 

Reid just nodded before looking at his watch. He really hadn’t intended to stay this late but he hadn’t liked the thought of Hotch being alone in the office. Maybe, if they did this again, he could finally get him to open up about what was bothering his so much that he didn’t want to go home. It had to be Haley but Spencer wasn’t going to push.

 

“I better go or I’ll miss the last train.” He stood and slung his bag over his shoulder. It was on the tip of Hotch’s tongue to offer him a lift but the thought of the last time he was alone with Reid in a car, that night in Georgia, paralysed him. Truth was, he didn’t trust himself around Reid. It didn’t matter that Reid smelled like a Beta. Hotch still desired him beyond all reasonable thought and although there was a little voice in his head that told him that he wouldn’t be the first one to cheat in his marriage so what did it matter. It did matter. Two wrongs don’t make a right. His lawyer voice chimed in that it would make the divorce far more complicated and give Haley ammunition against him. That was a depressing thought. Apparently, he’d already written off a twenty year marriage. “Night, Hotch.”

 

“Night, Spencer.” Reid offered a slightly quizzical glance and a small smile. It was only when he was back behind his desk staring at a crowded page of figures that Hotch realised that he had used the younger man’s first name. He scrubbed a hand over his face and lay back in his chair again. Haley might be the one who’d been cheating but was he any better? Sure, he hadn’t acted on his feelings but he couldn’t deny that he heart no longer belonged to his wife but rather to the enigmatic genius who’d just left his office. His marriage was over. They just hadn’t signed the paperwork.

Chapter Text

Spencer Reid may have decided on the floor of a library at age ten that he was going to defy all gender stereotypes but he certainly didn’t have a firm plan in his head. He’d spent the next decade trying to figure out exactly what he wanted to do with his life and staying safely locked away in the ivory tower of academia. Sure, his PhDs had been largely motivated by a thirst for scientific knowledge but, in truth, Spencer’s thirst would never be quenched. We wanted to learn everything about everything. That was how he ended up at a lecture given by Agent Jason Gideon of the FBI’s Behavioural Analysis Unit.

 

As he did for all lectures he went to, Spencer did a little background reading so that he wouldn’t be lost and would be able to ask some relevant questions during the Q&A. He always found it so painfully awkward when the chair called for questions and the room was deadly silent. However, his reading on the BAU ended up being rather extensive as he found himself fascinated by the idea of not only hunting serial killers but also attempting to define them. Spencer had spent his life trying to avoid definition but even he would admit that his Omega nature did affect his personality. His innate shyness, his tendency to duck his head when faced with an Alpha, or even a strong Beta, were all seemingly part of his biological make-up. His mild touchphobia had more stemmed from a fear that if an Alpha got too close he would be able to smell the Omega underneath Spencer’s manufactured Beta smell. However, it was also true that Omegas generally avoided contact with anyone other than their mate. Though Spencer realised that this aversion might be a social construct on the part of the possessive Alpha elite.

 

It was one of the Alpha elite that stepped onto the dais at MIT to lecture the gathered crowd about the work of the BAU. Jason Gideon oozed the calm authority of an unchallenged Alpha. His body had softened with age but his eyes were ruthlessly cutting as they darted over the hall and the gathered students. His speech was quiet but somehow rang across the room even when he stepped away from the microphone and paced like a caged animal. Spencer was transfixed. When the floor was opened to questions, he found himself monopolizing the allotted time while simultaneously shifting nervously under the weighted stare of Jason Gideon’s eagle eyes. At the end of the session, Spencer was gathering his bag when he felt a heavy hand on his shoulder. He jolted and nearly stumbled backwards in a tangle of legs and chairs before he was steadied by that same strong grip.

 

“Didn’t mean to startle you, son,” Gideon’s voice was warm, a small smile toying with the edges of his downturned lips.

 

“You didn’t, ah, sir,” Spencer subtly jerked his arm out of Gideon’s grip but could feel his face flushing.

 

“You had some very interesting questions.”

 

“Oh, thank you. I, ah, I read a little about your unit before the lecture. Your work sounds very interesting.”

 

“You read a little, hmm? What are you studying?”

 

“Oh, I’ve just finished my PhD in Physics. After reading about your unit, I’ve signed up for a BA in Psychology starting next semester.”

 

“Your PhD? No offense, son, but you look a little young.”

 

“Oh, um, yes. It was my third PhD. I also have one in Chemistry and Engineering. I graduated high school at twelve.”

 

“Fascinating,” Gideon’s eyes gleamed. “We could use someone just like you in my unit. Here’s my card,” Gideon pulled out a white card and a pen, “and this is my personal email and cell number. Call me once you’ve got that BA in Psychology and we’ll talk again.” Spencer took the card and nodded slowly looking a little lost. He wanted to dart away but Gideon was still standing in front of him, blocking his exit. “Have you eaten today?” Gideon looked Spencer up and down with a critical eye.

 

“Um, maybe? I don’t remember.” Spencer wasn’t quite following what was happening.

 

“Follow me.” Gideon strode out of the lecture hall and Spencer felt he had no choice but to trail after him. God damn his Omega biology.

 

Spencer glanced up at the gangway and towards the offices of the only two Alphas he had ever really trusted and knew that they were both in trouble. Spencer knew that there was something going on between Hotch and Haley but he felt his own self-interest disqualified him from approaching the Alpha before he came to him. Spencer wasn’t a saint and he knew that if Aaron wanted someone to warm his bed, he would gladly volunteer his services whether Aaron was still married or not. He liked to think that he would be able to impartially offer Hotch someone to confide in but the sexual tension that thrummed between them whenever they were alone together suggested that might be easier said that done. So the plan with Hotch was to make himself as available as possible but not intrude. Spencer dragged his gaze away from the dark head bent over a mountain of paperwork and squinted at the closed blinds of Gideon’s office. That in itself was unusual. Gideon was a private person but he was generally very approachable. Spencer had no plan for Gideon.

 

Gideon had become a father to him, the one he had never really had, over the years since they’d met at MIT. Spencer had never confided the secret of his gender to the older man. There were times when he was sure Gideon knew. Those eyes of his could feel like they were boring right into your soul. But Hotch had said that, even with his nose buried in Spencer’s neck, (Spencer fought a full body shudder at that memory) Spencer smelled like a Beta so there was no way that Gideon could know. Recently, though, Gideon’s eyes had lost some of their edge, clouded by grief and even fear. Frank had shaken the older man more than he was willing to admit. There had been hints of the onset of Alpha-crisis after the Adrian Bale fiasco in Boston but Gideon had seemed to come back from his leave healed. Now, Spencer wasn’t so sure.

 

Alpha-crisis was a documented though somewhat disgraceful phenomenon that some middle-aged Alphas experienced. Spencer had been reading more about it ever since he started to notice that wild, unfocused look in Gideon’s eyes after Sarah’s death. In Betas, a mid-life crisis might result in the dissolution of a marriage or the frivolous purchase of a sports car but in Alphas the results were often much more deadly. Alpha-crisis seemed to be related to the natural dip in power that an Alpha experienced with age. Like in wolves, the Alpha would feel his position as pack leader was being challenged and would often react erratically and violently. The Alpha would become a more primitive version of a human, reduced to basic impulses. However, it was far from an inevitability for all Alphas. Most were kept in check by the thin veneer of society or by their own rigid self-control. Spencer had dismissed his worries over Gideon. Jason was far too gentle a man to go through something so primal. It wasn’t like he’d killed Frank. The man had thrown himself in front of a train. Still, there was something haunted in his mentor’s eyes and it made Spencer nervous.

 

Turned out he’d been right to be nervous. The very next case was a shambles of a perfect storm orchestrated by the increasingly erratic Gideon and a distracted Hotch. Now, a deeply troubled girl was dead at the hands of a killer. Spencer turned to Gideon after the case and stumbled back a step. Gone was the kindly father look in those eyes. It had been replaced by a feral, darting gaze that refused to settle on anything. Spencer was sure in that moment that, if he had been an Alpha, he would have been dead. Gideon’s lip curled to reveal his teeth and then he was gone, fleeing in the direction of their SUVS.

 

“Where’s Gideon?” Morgan asked, looking around as he caught up with Spencer who’d chased after Gideon without thinking twice.

 

“He’s gone,” Spencer murmured.

 

Morgan snorted, “Nice of him to leave us to clear up his mess.” Spencer shook his head and stared down the road in the direction that the SUV had gone, trying to follow Gideon’s path. He had a sinking feeling in his stomach that Gideon was gone for good.

 

Gideon wasn’t on the jet back to DC. He wasn’t there to see Hotch get suspended for his actions. He wasn’t there to see Prentiss quit rather than bow to the political machinations of Erin Strauss. He wasn’t there to see Spencer crumple under the weight of the failure of all the Alphas around him. The team was left with a collection of Betas and one hidden Omega. Strauss took this opportunity to assert her authority and Spencer bent his neck like a good little Omega. From behind the curtain of his hair, he sneaked glances up at the empty offices on the mezzanine level and worried about the Alphas in his life who’d seemed to strong but where were they now?

Chapter Text

Apparently Haley hadn’t got the memo that the Hotchner marriage was over because when Hotch was suspended for Gideon’s actions it seemed to galvanize something in her. She latched onto this as a second chance for them. Aaron found himself caught up in her enthusiasm, in the renewed light in her eyes when she looked at him. He found himself considering the possibility that they could work as a couple if he was away from the BAU, away from Spencer Reid, and so when she pressured him into moving to White Collar Crimes he did. After all, she was his wife. She should be his life.

 

“This is the best thing for us, Aaron. You’ll be home for Jack at night. We’ll be a family again.” Haley threw her arms around his husband’s shoulders, kissing him lightly on the cheek and giggling like the schoolgirl she’d been when they met. If she noticed the lines of nervous tension creasing the corners of his eyes then she said nothing. Aaron grinned back at her and pushed down the horrible feeling that he was tearing himself in two by agreeing to this. Pushed down the uncomfortable truth that he was abandoning himself by agreeing to leave the BAU. Aaron liked to think of himself as a good man, not a perfect man, a flawed but good man so he ignored the little voice in his head that kept whispering the name Spencer every time he thought of leaving the BAU.

 

His resolve lasted a week. A week of hanging shelves, of gardening, of playing with Jack, and making grocery lists. He itched under his skin with the need to run, shoot, fight. He remembered this feeling from the endless days of paperwork between the faux-battles of the courtroom. He’d had a well-earned reputation as an absolutely vicious prosecutor and he knew that it was because his whole Alpha being was desperate to go in for the kill every time he stepped in front of a judge. It was why he’d moved to the FBI. Sure, he enjoyed making a difference but he’d done that as a prosecutor by making sure criminals stayed away. No, he wanted to the one on the front line, gun out, bringing them down. White collar didn’t do that. White collar brought them in through legalese and fancy bureaucracy. He was going to go insane.

 

So when Morgan called saying that they needed him, it was a no-brainer, just like Haley had said. It helped that there was another dropped call that morning, followed by the not-so-subtle ringing of Haley’s phone. She smelled like someone new this past week. Not the guy from before. A new man was fucking her while Aaron was organising the garage. Jesus, and he’d thought that this could work. His job wasn’t the only third party in their relationship but he’d never say that to her face. He was packing his go-bag before he’d even hung up the call. Haley was furious.

 

“What the hell are you doing?”

 

“Keep your voice down. Gideon didn’t show in Milwaukee and the team needs me.”

 

“I don’t believe this.”

 

“Don’t worry it won’t affect my transfer if I’m working on an existing case.

 

“You’re not working on this case.”

 

“I can’t just switch off my loyalty.

 

“They suspended you for two weeks. Who are you being loyal to?”

 

“The team needs me.

 

“No, they need Gideon”

 

It was a low blow to tell her about the details of the case but he just couldn’t stand the way she was talking to him. His biology rebelled against the constrictions she was putting on him but mostly it hurt that she didn’t understand him after all this time. He needed her support. He needed her understanding. He should have known that was too much to ask.

 

“This is who I am.”

 

“No, this is what you do.”

 

“I’m trying to do the right thing here and there and I would really appreciate a little support.”

 

She was wrong though. He wasn’t trying to be the hero. Reid understood that. Reid understood him. He’d used the fact that Hotch wasn’t a narcissist to send him that message in Georgia. Reid would support him. Hotch whole body ached for his friend, for his Omega. The Omega who wasn’t an Omega and who, really, wasn’t his.

 

Hotch knew his first stop would be Emily’s. If he was going back then she was going back too and she’d proved herself. When Hotch got to Emily’s door he was somewhat pleased to see the Alpha female looking as miserable as he felt away from the BAU. He knew she still had a go-bag packed. His had only been unpacked because Haley had done it herself one night. Squaring off with Emily got his blood pumping and he was running on adrenaline by the time they were on the flight. Jesus Christ, it felt good.

 

They were straight into the work, as it should be. At the crime scene that brief conversation with Reid had been entirely between Unit Chief and subordinate but having the young man kneel at his feet, even over a dead body had made his Alpha side purr with satisfaction. Only the public setting and the pressing needs of the case had stopped him from saying anything more. Anyway, Reid’s mind was entirely on Gideon, which hurt more than Hotch was willing to admit, even to himself. First Haley saw him as superfluous, that the team only needed Gideon and now Spencer was entirely focused on that old Alpha. Did it mean nothing that he had come back to the BAU, to him?

 

It was only back at the station that Hotch finally found himself alone with Reid as the young man was closely examining a map. Reid’s fingers skimmed over the streets and highways like he was caressing a lover and it made Hotch desperately want to reach out to him, to pull him into his arms. He hadn’t realised just how much he had missed the young man until he saw him and the personal aspect of the profile of the child, that Reid had given them, had made Hotch’s heart ache as he longed to protect the little Omega boy that Spencer had once been. Spencer had apparently done anything to be the perfect child. Hotch had acted out until he’d been sent away to school. It just underlined how much they had in common, how good they could be together. Even that strange artificial Beta smell was somehow comforting and Hotch was sure that he could smell more than just the vague memory of Spencer’s sweet scent underneath it. It felt as if that scent was a secret that had been revealed to him and him alone, which was a heady truth. Hotch felt himself stirring both sexually and, somehow more worryingly, emotionally and it was the strength of his feelings that froze his hand. Spencer wasn’t his to hold. Spencer could never be his to hold. It would be inappropriate. He stood still just inside the doorway, unsure of what he had wanted to say in the first place.

 

“I think Gideon has left.” Spencer didn’t even look up from his map but his shoulders slumped a little more under the weight of this fresh abandonment.

 

“I know,” Hotch murmured, unsure of what to say.

 

“I wanted to call you when he didn’t show up but you left too.”

 

“You could have called anyway,” Hotch offered even if he knew that wasn’t strictly true. How would he have explained that to Haley?

 

“Are you back?” Hotch was glad Reid hadn’t called him on his falsehood but this question cut him to the quick. He should say no. He’d promised Haley that he’d transfer. He should do everything to preserve his marriage.

 

“Yes.” He’d need to talk to Haley but he knew that he’d never want to leave the BAU. Maybe she would finally understand that.

 

“Good.” Spencer gave him a quick glance over his shoulder and a small, sad smile that Hotch didn’t return. There was work to do. There was always work to do. This was who he was. The case was brutal, they always were when children were involved and Hotch focused his entire focus on finding the Unsub.

 

Hotch felt his heart break as he walked into his big empty house. Even though all the furniture was still in place, he almost thought he could hear his footsteps echoing off the walls. Haley was gone. She’d taken Jack. There was a note of the fridge saying that she’d gone to her sister’s, stating that it was over, claiming that she wanted a divorce. Hotch froze, reading those lines over and over again. Feeling his life crumbling down around him. He took out a bottle of Scotch and poured himself a glass because the one thing that he had learned from the harsh sting of his father’s belt was that real men drowned their feelings in alcohol. Hotch’s phone rang late that night. “Haley?” Hotch blurted out without even looking at the caller I.D.

 

“Hotch? No, it’s, um, it’s Reid. You said that I could call.”

 

Hotch’s heart thumped in his chest. Spencer was calling him. How could he know that Haley had left that Hotch needed someone here so badly? Hotch remained silent, barely breathing.

 

“I, um, I went to Gideon’s cabin.”

 

Oh, this wasn’t about Haley. Spencer had no idea. This was about Gideon. “Yes?”

 

“He left his gun, credentials and a note for me. He’s really – “ Spencer’s voice cracked “gone.” Hotch rubbed a hand over his tired eyes. Spencer didn’t need another abandonment. Fucking hell, Gideon, a note?

 

“I’m sorry, Spencer. I don’t know what to say. The Breitkopf case was just the last straw for him. It’s been a long time coming.”

 

“Yeah, I – I know. It’s just –“ Spencer didn’t seem to be able to finish that sentence.

 

“Go home, Spencer. Gideon will return when he’s ready.” There was a long sigh but Hotch heard the muffled slam of a car door.

 

“You’re right, Hotch. I’ll head back to DC now.”

 

“Good. I’ll see you tomorrow, Reid.”

 

“Wait, Hotch, is everything okay?”

 

“Of course,” Hotch’s breathing picked up. He wasn’t ready to tell anyone about Haley, about his failure.

 

“It’s just you thought it was Haley calling. Is she okay?”

 

“She’s fine, Reid, she’s just staying at her sister’s and I thought she was calling to check I was home.”

 

“Oh, alright. See you tomorrow.”

 

“Goodnight, Reid.”

Chapter Text

Aaron Hotchner had presented as an Alpha when he was eight years old. Extenuating circumstances at home had activated his secondary biology early. His furious father dragged him to the doctor who surmised that it was the birth of his baby brother that had activated him due to the need to compete with another male. Even at eight years old, Aaron knew that the doctor was wrong. He didn’t have to compete with Sean; he had to protect him. The beatings from his father became even worse. The Beta felt threatened by his Alpha son and was determined to exert his dominance in any way that he possibly could whether it was with a belt or with his bare hands. Aaron’s childhood became a nightmare of fear. His school work suffered as he lashed out at classmates on the days he managed to drag his aching body from his bed into school. Teacher’s tutted over his poor health and how it must be devastating for his parents to worry about their son, and an Alpha too. No one could fathom that the Jackson Hotchner, Esq. was beating his eldest son until the boy could barely move or that Charlotte Hotchner was so preoccupied with her societies and her scotch sweet tea to notice or care. Aaron learned to be silent and to never show weakness in the face of a bully but at night he’d curl in on himself and sob into his pillow.

 

All that mattered was that Aaron’s plan worked. His father never lifted a finger to hurt Sean. Aaron waited, biding his time until he was strong enough to get the old man back but cancer robbed him of that opportunity, leaving him standing impotently beside a grave with clenched fists. After their father’s death, his mother’s drinking got worse and both the Hotchner boys were sent to military school to get them out of her hair. As an Alpha from a ‘good’ family, Aaron should have ruled the school but he’d learned to curb his natural dominance, almost to fear his biology. As much as he hated to admit it, he learned that at the hands of his father.

 

Aaron flew under the radar at school. He left behind his troubled past as he recognised that getting a good education would be his ticket away from his broken home. He was academically successful, well liked, but not much of an Alpha. There were whispers that perhaps he was borderline, just on the cusp of an Alpha but really more of a strong Beta. It didn’t help that Aaron shunned the communal showers. Sure, one look at his impressive manhood would have quashed any Beta rumours but he didn’t need the questions about the belt and burn scars that marred his back and buttocks.

 

He continued in his quiet way through university and law school, finishing with honours and marrying a pretty Beta wife. Haley Hotchner was his dream girl when he was fifteen, before he’s been sent away to school. He’d cultivated their romance, sending her letters from school and courting her when he was back at the holidays. His mother had received offers of Omegas but he’d turned them down despite the glossy pictures she tried to shove in his face. He didn’t want to go into rut. He didn’t want a mindless sexual experience with someone too sheltered to even truly give consent. No, he was happy, he thought. He married Haley in a simple ceremony and as she stood before him in her pretty white dress, he thought that he would never want for more than this. Then the drudgery of being a lawyer really hit and for the first time in his life, Hotch’s Alpha side rebelled against its confinement in monotony. Haley was confused and upset when he took the entrance exams for the FBI but at first she was supportive. However, years down the line, even Jack couldn’t save their marriage. The tiny baby boy shouldn’t have such a burden on his shoulders anyway. When Haley left, Hotch realised it had been a long time coming but that didn’t make it hurt any less.

 

“Haley’s left and I don’t know if she’s coming back.” It ripped that wound open a little further to admit that to Morgan. His Beta just nodded sagely. Hotch dipped his eyes and twisted his fingers waiting for something, anything, but the younger man had matured, was more aware of when there were no words that would help. Hotch couldn’t help the way his eyes strayed to Spencer’s sleeping form and his stomach twisted with guilt at the soaring feeling of hope in his heart that maybe, just maybe, something could happen between them now but it seemed that every chance he had to start moving on, Haley would push her way back in and bring his mood back down. There were constant phone calls to berate him over the lack of progress of their divorce, hampered as it was by Hotch’s trips out of state and his general reticence when it came to acting in this matter. She was particularly vindictive when it came to Jack, making Hotch practically grovel for five minutes with his son unless he agreed to move forward with the divorce. Though she kept promising that he’d get flexible access to his son, Aaron feared that he’d barely see the boy.

 

It didn’t help that he was feeling more of an Alpha than ever before. He seemed to be constantly on the edge of uncontrollable anger and only his vice-like control cultivated through his childhood allowed him to keep a lid on his spiralling temper but that wasn’t his main issue. It was probably because he knew he was now unattached, but his biology was forcing his libido into overdrive. His entire self was screaming at him to mate with Reid, his rational side and his more primitive Alpha drive for once in complete alignment with what they wanted but that didn’t make it any more appropriate. He was still Reid’s supervisor. He was still utterly unsure about what Reid wanted in terms of a relationship between them. Just when he was planning to gently sound out the issue on a casual night of drinks with the team, he was served with papers in front of all of them. It was a huge, humiliating blow to his ego and he could to nothing but walk away.

 

Spencer watched sadly as his boss fled the support of his team. Hotch was becoming more of a lone wolf than he had ever been and it terrified Reid. He’d already lost one member of his family to that route. If Spencer had been a braver man, he would have chased Hotch down the stairs and then what? Spencer shook his head sadly. There wasn’t going to be a big movie emotional scene if he chased after his boss where they finally admitted how they felt about each other and kissed passionately as the orchestra swelled and the divorce papers were carried away by the wind.

 

“You still coming, Pretty Boy?” Morgan shook his shoulder and pulled his from his ridiculous reverie.

 

“Yeah, sure,” Spencer adjusted his bag sadly, not really feeling in a celebratory mood anymore but, since he’d joined the BAU, he’d come to appreciate being part of a team. He’d come to understand what it meant to have a family.

 

After meeting Gideon at his lecture, Spencer had started thinking seriously about joining the FBI and the idea terrified him. It seemed like possibly the stupidest thing that a genius could think of when he was an Omega in hiding. There would be rigorous entrance exams including a physical by a doctor. Spencer checked. It wasn’t an invasive examination but he hadn’t been to a doctor since he was a child out of fear of discovery. Blood would be taken so Spencer sent anonymous blood samples to friends who were working on a DNA project at Caltech to try to ascertain exactly how effective his drug was at masking his true biology. When the results came back as a weak male Beta possibly on the cusp of Omega, he breathed a sigh of relief. Sure, he might be teased for being weak if the results were leaked but he knew from looking in the mirror and from past experiences that he was going be teased for being physically weak anyway.

 

He sat at his desk looking at the application form that Gideon had helpfully mailed him and breathed in a deep breath. He remembered vividly the decision he’d made at ten years old and realised that this was about as far as he could push that resolution. If he could make it in the FBI, it would be a massive (if silent) fuck you to the Alpha elite and their antiquated ideas of biology. His eyes flicked over the page and settled near the top just under name and primary gender. The box marked secondary gender only held two smaller boxes: Alpha or Beta. Spencer snorted in disgust and drew a heavy X through the box marked Beta. Screw them all. He was going to do this.

 

Every day at the Academy was a mixture of pumping adrenaline and blind fear. He’d expected the snide glances and scoffs at his weak physique but what he hadn’t expected was the camaraderie from the other Beta applicants who were pushed around by several more pig-headed Alphas. Sure, physically Spencer was still the weakest out of all of them but they still formed a rag-tag group and generally looked out for one another. Spencer pushed himself as far as he possibly could just as he had academically. The long hours he’d spent in the lab when getting his PhDs became long hours spent in the gym. He discovered a love of swimming. The repetition of laps up and down the pool quieted his humming brain and it had the benefit of being a sport where there was no chance of anyone striking up a casual conversation or laughing at his puny muscles. Despite, the Beta camaraderie, Spencer remained isolated apart from chess games with Gideon on quiet evenings when the older man was in town. He scrapped through his physical exams and barely passed his gun qualification but his academic marks pulled him through and before he knew it he was riding the elevator up the BAU.

 

Gideon met him at the doors of the elevator and Spencer felt his entire body shaking, he was half expecting alarms to start sounding and agents to come running at him to drag away the Omega imposter but instead there was a gentle ding and Gideon giving him a half smile. He led Reid through a set of etched glass doors and into an airy conference room.

 

“Everyone, this is our newest team member Dr. Spencer Reid.” Gideon gestured to the room at large and one man stood, walking around the table towards them.

 

Dark hair and kind eyes caught his attention. A dimpled smile, that melted Spencer even as he visibly flinched away from the outstretched hand, held it. The man lowered his hand without comment, “I’m SSA Aaron Hotchner, Gideon’s second in command. Call me Hotch.” The man reeked of Alpha power but his eyes were so gentle that Spencer didn’t feel any instinctive fear. Instead he felt a yearning to lean into that powerful form and call it his safe place. Roughly putting the brakes on that thought, he gripped the strap of his messenger bag and nodded politely to cover the fact that he felt like his throat was closing up. The rest of the team stepped forward, none of them offering a hand to shake. Spencer quietly observed them as he kept his distance. Derek Morgan, Beta, smiled broadly at him with clear interest in the new Beta on the team. Jennifer Jareau, another Beta, introduced herself as the media liaison and she seemed the personification of polite and non-threatening but Spencer knew that she had to be tough to make it this far as a Beta. She didn’t have Morgan’s physicality but he figured that she’d pack a mean punch. Penelope Garcia, Beta, was an anomaly that sent Spencer’s brain grinding to a halt as he was momentarily blinded by her outfit choice. She had her arms wrapped around her own chest but was practically hopping with excitement which made Spencer edge away from what he feared was going to be a hug. Finally, Alice Howard, Alpha, stared at him with unconcealed interest, her gaze flaying Spencer open. Spencer nodded at each of them and nervously twisted the strap of his bag.

 

“Hotch,” Gideon prompted and motioned for everyone to take a seat.

 

With a decisiveness that would become as familiar to Spencer as the back of his own hand, Hotch stood and launched into a summation of the team’s last case. Spencer breathed out the breath he’d seemed to be holding since he’d filled in his application form for the FBI and allowed a small smile to tug at the corner of his mouth. He’d made it. He was an Omega in the FBI.

 

So even though he didn't feel like it, he went out with the team because they were more than just his coworkers. They were his family. He just wished that he could get Hotch to see it that way.

Chapter Text

Hotch was uncharacteristically indecisive when it came to signing the divorce papers. He’d gone home to his big empty house that night and read them through. Haley was being fair, he’d give her that. She got the house, which made sense since she’d have Jack most of the time and, as he looked around, he realised that he really didn’t want it anyway. It was too big and echoing with happy memories that taunted him as he drank too much. He had no issues with the child support payments and, Haley had honoured her promise, his visitation rights were sufficiently flexible to allow him to see Jack even with all his travel for work. If he signed, it would be about as amicable as a divorce could be. He unscrewed his fountain pen and froze. This was it. The end of his marriage. As an Alpha, shouldn’t he be fighting to keep what was his? He didn’t really want Haley anymore, not sexually, but still something stayed his hands. He filed the papers back into his briefcase, poured himself a drink and procrastinated.

 

He still hadn’t come to a decision as he drove out with Reid to Connecticut for a routine prison interview but then, when was anything at the BAU ever routine?

 

Hotch’s hands flew to his tie, ripping it from his collar and he could feel his hackles rising. Still, out of the corner of his eye he noticed Reid’s appreciative swallow as he unbuttoned his collar revealing just a hint of his chest. Chester Hardwick wasn’t even a challenge but it had been so long since he’d beaten someone to a pulp with his bare-hands. Not since the Academy when he’d found one of the cadets forcing himself onto a woman outside a bar. Aaron had bashed his face in before bringing him before the disciplinary board. Hotch’s whole being was screaming at him to defend the Omega, to take down the threat to his Omega. The rational part of his mind reminded him that Spencer wasn’t his but it was Spencer himself who reminded Hotch that he was far more than a defenceless Omega. Hotch stood motionless, muscles tense and aching for a fight as Spencer expertly used his razor sharp mind to flay Hardwick open and buy them enough time for the guards to come. Hotch envied Spencer’s calm even voice and as the guards burst through the door he felt nothing but shame that he had allowed his Alpha side to take over. He was better than that, smarter than that. Hell, since the moment Hardwick had walked into the room he’d been Alpha posturing. He could see that now, asking the guard to take the chains off had been stupid and reckless. He’d been itching for a fight like a stupid animal. His humiliation over his emotionality sent him storming from the room but his biology and his heart made him look back to be sure Spencer was following.

 

In the car he was still smarting with shame and Spencer was unusually quiet, probably angry at him for antagonising the situation. It was Hotch’s job to set this right. He couldn’t have tension between him and a subordinate. “It was smart to get Hardwick to focus on himself long enough for the guards to come back.”

 

“I find I do some of my best work under intense terror.”

 

“I’m sorry.”

 

“For what?”

 

“I antagonized the situation.”

 

“No, you didn’t”

 

“Well, I certainly didn’t help.”

 

“I guess you didn’t really help.”

 

“So Haley wants me to sign the divorce papers uncontested so no one wastes money on lawyers.”

 

“You don’t want to?”

 

“What I want, I’m not going to get.”

 

Spencer returned to silence, not knowing quite what to make of that comment. Since Georgia things between himself and Hotch had been very different. On the one hand, Spencer felt more at ease with his boss than ever. Finally there was someone who knew his secret, someone with whom he wasn’t being disingenuous. It was wonderfully refreshing. And yet, there was this constant simmering tension of arousal between them. Spencer may have been a virgin but he wasn’t an idiot. He knew what the heated look that occasionally clouded Hotch’s eyes meant. In the mornings when he took his pill, he would occasionally find himself hesitating, pausing and imagining what going through a heat with Aaron Hotchner would feel like. To be thoroughly fucked and knotted suddenly didn’t sound so bad. For the first time in his life, Spencer considered the positive aspects of his biology. The idea of bonding was pleasant if done with the right person and Aaron Hotchner was definitely the right person. Spencer could imagine himself spending the rest of his life with Aaron. They fit together. Hotch was the only one of the team who had ever fully accepted him as he was. Gideon had wanted to mould him. JJ wanted to mother him. Morgan was his best friend but they were so different that sometimes it was strained. Hotch just accepted his rambling, cutting him off only when necessary and even then he would always give him a chance to let it out later. Still, this was all speculation. Fleeting glimpses of arousal in Hotch’s eyes did not mean that he wanted to act upon them and Spencer worried that it was all biology. Maybe Hotch simply wanted an Omega and he was just convenient. Maybe that was enough.

 

The drive from Northern Correctional Institute back to Quantico was nearly seven hours so they were booked in to stay at a motel about half way there. Reid found himself suddenly humming with anticipation at the thought of being alone with Hotch in the hotel. Yes, they had two separate rooms but there wasn’t the added complication of team members sleeping in adjoining rooms. Hotch’s actions in the prison had terrified him but they had also aroused him. Hotch’s Alpha brain had clicked in and he’d behaved like an Alpha male protecting his – Reid froze and glanced at the man in the car next to him but Hotch was concentrating on the road – he’d acted like an Alpha male protecting his bonded. But that didn’t make any sense. They weren’t bonded. Hell, they’d never be bonded because there was no way that Spencer was going to give up his life to become a house-omega. Still, if either man was willing to admit it to themselves, it spoke volumes about the depth of the bond that already existed between them even without the sexual aspect. However, neither Reid nor Hotch were particularly good at being honest with themselves.

 

“Hey,” Spencer shifted awkwardly in front of Hotch’s open hotel room door and held up a bag from Krispy Kreme. He wasn’t entirely sure why he was here. He’d been lying on his bed in his room, book discarded by his pillow, turning over the events of the day. They remained terrifying and arousing in equal measure but it was the conversation in the car that worried him the most. Hotch sounded lost. That was not something that Spencer ever imagined that Hotch was capable of feeling. He was always so focused, so determined, the ultimate Alpha, but the catch in his voice, the slight swallow at the end of his broken sentence suggested otherwise. It was that thought that had propelled Reid out of his hotel room in search of his boss’ favourite comfort food. “I got doughnuts.”

 

“You’re going to eat doughnuts at ten o’clock at night?” Hotch asked his expression remained serious as he crossed his arms and leaned against the door jamb. Somehow he managed to make a worn T-shirt and sweats look as starched and imposing as his suit. Spencer nodded reverently, trying to gauge his unit chief’s mood. “Did you get any of the cream filled chocolate ones?” Spencer grinned.

 

“Of course.”

 

“Then come in,” Hotch stood back and Reid followed him into the hotel room. The TV was on showing Psycho. “They’re having a Hitchcock marathon.” Hotch explained gesturing to the screen where Janet Leigh’s character was just leaving the car lot.

 

“Great,” Spencer smiled absently and looked around the room. Hotch had stretched out on the bed and there weren’t many seating option that would allow him to see the TV other than joining the older man.

 

“Sit on the bed, Reid. Don’t think you’re getting out of sharing those doughnuts.”

 

Spencer flushed but removed his shoes and slipped onto the comforter next to Hotch, leaving a good amount of space between them. The two men ate in silence watching the movie. Spencer felt himself relaxing slowly, calmed by Hotch’s scent which permeated the room. He may have been suppressing his biology for years but there were certain aspects that remained like the ingrained response to relax in the presence of a familiar Alpha, and specifically his Alpha. He choked slightly on a crumb at the realisation that he was referring to Hotch as his. The older man glanced over at him. “You know, when people are asked about this movie they often recall the vivid red of the blood in the shower scene, which is totally impossible since the movie is in black and white,” Spencer gestured at the screen, “and anyway, they used Bosco chocolate syrup so it was brown anyway.”

 

Hotch nodded though he looked like he knew that Spencer had been thinking something else. “It was the first movie to show a toilet flushing on screen,” Hotch replied straight faced. Spencer smiled and they lapsed into silence again until the doughnuts were gone.

 

“Are you going to be bouncing off the walls for the rest of the night?” Hotch asked with a smirk.

 

“Hey, I’m a grown up and if a grown up can’t eat half a dozen doughnuts in the middle of the night then I don’t see any point in growing up.” Hotch just raised an eyebrow and Spencer sighed, “Yeah, I’ll be a bit jittery for the next hour and then crash.”

 

“I’m immune to sugar crashes,” Hotch noted, poker-faced.

 

“Sure, it’s your Alpha physiology,” Spencer retorted.

 

“Really?”

 

“No, Hotch. I’m pretty sure you’re going to crash too.”

 

“Uh-uh. You’ll see.”

 

By the time the credits were rolling both men were fast asleep, stretched out on the bed next to one another.

 

Spencer woke the next morning to the wholly unfamiliar but wonderfully satisfying feeling of arms around his chest and a firm body pressed against his back. The scent that surrounded him was comforting and arousing. Shifting slightly, he was rewarded with a throaty growl and a stiff cock pressing into his ass. Suddenly, awareness hit him. Hotch. He was in Hotch’s bed. That was Hotch’s scent. That was Hotch’s cock. The older man’s arms tightened as he started to wake and Spencer felt him inhaling deeply, face pressed into his hair. Another growl rumbled from Hotch’s throat and he rocked his hips slightly. Spencer couldn’t help but whimper at the sensation.

 

“Hotch?” he asked tremulously, not sure if he wanted the other man to stop or continue.

 

Whatever the desired effect may have been, Hotch jumped as if he had been doused by cold water. “Spencer? I mean, Reid?” Spencer rolled onto his back and looked at Hotch with his dishevelled hair and tented sweats. “I’m so sorry.”

 

“No, I’m sorry. I fell asleep in your bed.”

 

“Your smell. It’s stronger.”

 

“Oh shit, what time is it?” Spencer looked at his watch. Eight thirty. He dived over the side of the bed and rummaged through his bag. “Yeah, I have to take my pill at eight.” He dry swallowed the capsule and laid back on the bed. He always seemed to get a little head rush a few minutes after taking the pill and it wouldn’t do to faint while trying to escape Hotch’s room. The older man looked down at him.

 

“I’ve never noticed a change.”

 

“You don’t usually have your nose buried in my neck,” Spencer noted wryly. Hotch seemed to blush, looked down at his erection and positively flushed. “It’s ok. It’s a biological reaction to the Omega scent. That’s all. You can’t control it.”

 

Hotch’s brow furrowed. “You make it sound like all Alphas are just animals.”

 

“Hotch, we all are just animals.”

 

“That’s not true, Reid. And it’s not just because you’re an Omega—“ Hotch broke off suddenly, unwilling to give too much away. Spencer propped himself up on his elbows and waited. Hotch rubbed a hand over his eyes before reaching up to attempt to tame his hair. He looked into the mirror hanging on the wall and gave it up as a lost cause. “Look, Reid, I’m attracted to you.” Spencer snorted and opened his mouth to retort. “No, it’s been since before Georgia. I won’t deny that my Alpha response to you is—primal. But I like to think that I’m more than my biology, that it doesn’t define me, just like you didn’t want yours to define you.” Spencer was silent and Hotch sighed heavily. “I’m sorry if I’ve made you uncomfortable. I assumed that my feelings for you were perhaps returned but I realise now that I may have been reading into something that wasn’t there. I apologize.” Hotch hung his head and contemplated his hands feeling very old and very foolish.

 

“You have feelings for me?” Spencer blurted out after far too much time had passed. Hotch nodded but didn’t look up. “Are you sure?”

 

Hotch’s brow furrowed in frustration and he finally looked up to see Spencer staring at him wide-eyed. “Yes, I am but I won’t allow it to affect our working relationship.”

 

“I—I have to go,” Spencer stuttered and stood quickly, swaying slightly as the drugs flooded his system. There it was right there in front of him. He could take it. Hotch could take him. He could lose his virginity, finally, right here and now and he was running away. Throwing out a hand, he braced himself on the wall but Hotch had already rounded the bed to support him. The older man’s scent was heady, thick with sleep, and suddenly Spencer had Hotch against the wall. Before he’d even realised what he was doing, his lips were pressed against Hotch’s as his hand slid through his mussed hair.

 

Hotch’s hands came up to grip his waist but other than that the man ceded control of the kiss to Reid. He kissed him like a virgin and it made Reid was to scream in frustration as he could feel the tension in every muscle of Hotch’s body. He stepped back.

 

“What’s wrong, Hotch? I thought you wanted this.” Spencer’s tongue darted out to wet his lips, chasing the taste of Aaron Hotchner. He saw Hotch’s eyes track the movement and a choked moan seemed to stick in the older man’s throat. Spencer wanted to hear that noise again so as his tongue swept once more over his full lips. He let his head loll to the side, exposing his neck to the Alpha. It was blatant manipulation of Hotch’s biology but if it got him what he wanted then he simply did not care. No more being afraid. Hotch had feelings for him and those feelings seemed to include desire. This might just be a one-time thing but, God, one night or morning with Aaron Hotchner was more than he’d ever dreamed he’d get.

 

Hotch let out a tiny growl before surging forward and pinning Spencer down to the bed. “Yes,” Spencer gasped as Hotch scented his neck, chasing the scent that was rapidly being replaced by the drug’s artificial overtones. Spencer caught his mouth again and Hotch roughly bit and licked at Spencer’s lips. Reid arched underneath him, hips bucking wildly as his hands scrabbled for purchase over Hotch’s shirt. Suddenly the weight on his was gone as Hotch backed off. “What—why?” Spencer protested.

 

Hotch shook his head and stood, breathing heavily, his hands clenched into tight fists. “I’m mauling you. Like a goddamn animal.”

 

“I’m not complaining, Hotch.”

 

“No. This isn’t who I am. It wasn’t like this with Haley. Jesus, you don’t even smell like an Omega and I’m practically going into rut.”

 

“No, I don’t smell like and Omega and I’m not going to. What do you even want, Hotch? I thought this was going pretty well. I don’t have to be an Omega for you to fuck me or is that what you want? You want me to go off my pills so you can spread my legs and knot me? That’s not going to happen. You can have me like a Beta but I don’t understand these mixed signals. One minute you have feelings for me. The next you’re practically ripping my clothes off and now you’ve backed off completely.”

 

“Didn’t that bother you? The way I was just now? I’ve just proved what you said about Alphas being animals.”

 

“No! I’ve already said that it didn’t. I’m pretty turned on at the moment if you’d take a minute to look.” Spencer gestured crudely to his crotch. “And so are you.”

 

Hotch attempted to adjust his own erection but there was no way to hide that in his sweats. “Jesus, Reid. This isn’t right. I’m your boss. I’m in a position of responsibility. Gender and feelings aside, we can’t do this.”

 

“We are doing this, Hotch. We’ve been doing this for years. It’s too late now. We’re both feeling something beyond professional for each other. We apparently have been since before Georgia and that didn’t help anything.”

 

“Sex changes things. It complicates things.”

 

“I’ve imagined sex with you more times than I can count. In my mind, you’ve had me in every possible permutation.” Hotch stared, his mouth suddenly dry. His erection throbbed uncomfortably. “Tell me you haven’t had the same thoughts.”

 

“You know I have, Reid. That still doesn’t mean that we should act upon them,” Hotch was pleased at how sensible his words were, even if his voice did come out raspier and maybe slightly more desperate that he would have liked. Spencer just groaned in frustration and stood roughly from the bed, pushing forward into Aaron’s personal space, leaning into the older man who stood his ground, glaring at his subordinate in lieu of making the mistake of showing his blatant desire on his face. Yes, he admitted his feelings for Spencer but he hadn’t imagined them just jumping into bed and his primal reaction to the man in front of him terrified him more than any Unsub ever had. There was nothing he feared more than losing control of himself. Still, he had a horrible feeling that if Spencer would kiss him one last time that his resolve would break entirely but the younger man didn’t. He blew out an exasperated breath and stormed out of the hotel room, slamming the door. Hotch’s heart sank. He’d wanted to break.

 

The next morning when the rest of the team piled into the bullpen Hotch was forlornly watching Reid spin in his chair from behind the blinds. They hadn't exchanged a single word as they drove back to DC and Hotch had left Reid at his apartment.

 

“Pretty boy! How was Conneticut?”

 

“Ultimately uneventful.” Hotch turned away from the window and quickly signed the papers on his desk before he had time to second guess himself. He should be mourning the end of his marriage but all that was going through his head was: ultimately uneventful. It shouldn’t hurt so much. Reid was protecting him, not revealing his outburst to the team but he was also dismissing their night together. Hotch got the message loud and clear. He’d missed his chance with Spencer Reid and that hurt.

Chapter Text

Spencer was painfully polite with him after ‘the hotel room’ as Hotch referred to the incident in his head. Hotch couldn’t fault him in any respect. He showed the necessary deference to his unit chief but maintained a cavernous distance between them that had never existed before. Aaron suddenly realised how dependent he had become on Spencer’s mostly silent companionship. Never before had he shared such a deep understanding with another individual but now there were no quiet looks passed between them, no gentle touches of support on the shoulder, no soft chuckles at his dry humour and it felt as if the light had left his world. If the team noticed, well, they didn’t say anything to Hotch but he hadn’t thought that they would. He was seen as pretty much unapproachable and even his divorce hadn’t seemed to humanise him in their eyes. He’d thought that perhaps Emily, as another Alpha, would make some sort of overture but she seemed more focused on mothering Spencer. At least she wasn’t sexually attracted to him, Hotch consoled himself, but then, of course, she had no idea that he was an Omega. No one did. It was their secret. It bound them together even though they were barely talking anymore. Hotch sat in his office and observed his team through the slanted blinds. Sometimes he would bristle at the casual touches that Morgan shared with Spencer. The shared camaraderie of two Betas surrounded by overachieving Alphas. Not that Morgan wasn’t an overachiever. Hell, for a Beta to rise so high in the FBI ranks was no small feat and it was clear the young man had worked for his physique and his position. He just didn’t know how much more Spencer had had to overcome. Hotch knew and he found himself increasingly in awe of and infatuated with his untouchable subordinate.

 

Of course, Hotch had forgotten the one member of their team who wasn’t intimidated by either his position of authority or his glare. Rossi pushed open the door to Hotch’s office late one night and settled himself into the chair in front of Hotch’s desk before pouring them each a tumbler of Scotch from the bottle he was holding.

 

“Make yourself at home,” Hotch murmured without looking up from the requisition form he was filling in.

 

“Oh, stop being so fastidious for five minutes and have a drink, Aaron,” Rossi fired back and nudged a glass in Hotch’s direction. Hotch laid down his pen and leaned back in his chair before pulling the glass towards him and taking a sip. Ah, Dave did have good taste in liquor. “See, that wasn’t so hard.”

 

“I thought you’d gone home hours ago.”

 

“I was editing my new book. It’s easier to concentrate here. I think your work ethic leaks into my office through the air vent.”

 

Hotch smirked. “You’re welcome.”

 

Rossi rolled the glass in his hand before leaning forward ever so slightly. Hotch raised one eyebrow, waiting for the pointed question that was sure to follow. “So what’s going on with you and the kid?”

 

“Jack’s fine,” Hotch frowned. “Haley’s taking him to visit his cousins this weekend so I won’t see him but he’s doing well.”

 

“That’s good but I meant Reid.”

 

“Reid?” Hotch quirked an eyebrow and hoped he wasn’t blushing as he remembered Spencer pushing him against the wall of his hotel room and kissing him like he was the only source of oxygen in the room.

 

“Don’t play coy with me. Ever since you went to that custodial together, he’s been distant. What happened?”

 

Hotch bit his lip and swirled the amber liquid in his glass. “Do you like being an Alpha?”

 

Rossi raised an eyebrow and sat back in his chair. “I’ve never really thought about it. It’s just a part of me.”

 

“But if you could, would you choose to be a Beta?”

 

Rossi paused, clearly giving Hotch’s question some thought. “No, I don’t think so. Being an Alpha makes everything that little bit easier, particularly with the career path I chose and in Vietnam. You would?”

 

Hotch stared out his window at the inky black sky. “I lost my temper. Hardwick used the interview as a ruse. He thought he could get a stay of execution if he killed two FBI agents and I just lost it. I nearly went feral in my desire to attack him.”

 

“But you didn’t.”

 

“No,” Hotch laughed dryly, “only because Reid kept a level head and managed to talk us out of the situation.”

 

“Is that the problem? You scared Reid?”

 

Hotch shook his head. “I don’t think so but I scared myself, Dave. I was this close to beating a man to a pulp. What does that say about me?”

 

“You reacted to a high-stress situation, Aaron. So you reacted violently but that doesn’t make you a bad person.”

 

“No, it just makes me my father.”

 

Rossi sucked in a sharp breath through his teeth. If Aaron was referring to his father unprompted then this was more serious than he’d first thought. Still, if Aaron was in a talking mood then he was going to encourage it. The man needed to let go of some of his demons. “You don’t talk much about your father. Was he a violent Alpha?”

 

Hotch laughed harshly, “No, he was a Beta who was intimidated by his Alpha son.”

 

“Oh, and you think if you’d been a Beta that things would have been easier?”

 

Hotch shook his head slowly, “Not at home. He never liked me. But maybe Haley wouldn’t have left me. Maybe I could have been happy being a prosecutor.”

 

“Bullshit, Aaron. Our gender doesn’t define us. You would have wanted to be on the frontline even if you were a Beta. You’d still be kicking in doors just like Morgan. As for Haley, I know that Alpha/Beta relationships can be difficult but so can any other configuration.”

 

“Have you ever wanted an Omega?” Hotch asked seemingly absentmindedly.

 

“My family couldn’t have afforded one.”

 

“But you could now.”

 

“I could but I dislike the idea of buying myself a spouse. Plus I like my women to have a little spice. Omegas are all so docile.”

 

“Not all of them,” Hotch murmured, “and isn’t that mostly because they’re not allowed to do anything with their lives.”

 

“Are we really going to get into a discussion on Omega rights?”

 

“No, I suppose not.”

 

“I just prefer dating Alphas. My first wife was a Beta but the next two were strong Alpha women. It didn’t save our marriages but when the sparks flew it was something else.”

 

“I never thought I’d want anyone other than Haley but by the end of our marriage I was more than happy to let her leave. I didn’t fight for her like an Alpha should.”

 

“Which way do you want it, Aaron? You seem pretty confused about what an Alpha should be.”

 

“True. I’ve never really understood it.”

 

“Maybe you’re overthinking it. It’s part of who you are but not everything that you are and it’s nothing to be ashamed of.”

 

“Hmm,” Hotch offered with a slight shrug and downed the rest of his glass. Rossi instantly refilled it.

 

“So when you say you were happy to let Haley leave, is that because you were looking elsewhere?”

 

“I’d never cheat,” Hotch fired back. He hadn’t been the one to be unfaithful in his marriage. At least not physically. That was one line that he would never cross.

 

Rossi was nonplussed, “I never said that but even a married man is allowed to look.” Hotch rubbed a hand over his forehead wearily. “Maybe at a certain doctor?”

 

“I don’t know what you mean.”

 

“You see that avoidance thing you do whenever I mention Reid? You might as well just pitch a massive neon sign that says ‘I want to screw Spencer Reid.’”

 

“Dave,” Hotch cautioned, feeling himself flush.

 

“What? It’s the truth.”

 

“Enough,” Hotch said forcefully and stood from behind his desk.

 

“So you’re afraid that you’ll hurt him if you get into a relationship. Because you’re an Alpha? I know the kid looks like a strong breeze would snap him in half, but I figure he’s tougher than that.”

 

“You have no idea,” Hotch muttered under his breath as he paced. He wondered how Dave would react if he knew that Spencer was an Omega. The older man held some pretty old-fashioned ideas when it came to Omegas and their place in society. Hotch repressed a smirk at the thought of the shock on Dave’s face when he found out that he’d been working next to an Omega and never knew. Well, that was the thing wasn’t it? He would never know. He couldn’t ever know. He realised Dave was talking again and he’d been totally tuned out.

 

“Being an Alpha doesn’t make you violent, Aaron. It doesn’t make you a mindless beast. You’re you and you would never hurt someone you care about. I mean, how many times have you wanted to punch me in the face? You haven’t done it.”

 

“Yet,” Hotch stopped his pacing and smiled back at Rossi before reclaiming his seat. They drifted into small talk before Rossi left and Hotch was once again sitting in his office alone. He didn’t think that Rossi had really understood the deep turmoil that Hotch associated with his gender. The fear he had of losing control and giving himself over to his more animalistic nature. Still, maybe his friend had a point when he said that Hotch was still himself even when he was at his most Alpha. Really, his talk with Rossi hadn’t really clarified anything, other than that his friend was too good at reading him and picking up on his affections for Spencer. Affections that were coloured by his fear of his own gender and his feral desire. Though, was that desire from being an Alpha or just because he wanted Spencer? Maybe Dave was right and he was overthinking this. Rossi didn’t seem to have any problems with being an Alpha and, if he was honest, Hotch probably wouldn’t prefer to be a Beta. Being an Alpha opened doors for him that would have been much harder to pass through if he’d been a Beta. And if he was a Beta, he would never have been able to smell the way Reid smelled underneath his suppressant. He’d never forget that sweet smell that drove him utterly crazy. The craziest thing though, was that that wasn’t the important part of Spencer. He was attracted to Spencer exactly as he was or at least exactly as he appeared to be. He wanted Spencer as a Beta, as an Omega, as his everything. He’d never felt this raw desire with Haley and it ate away at his careful control. Was it worth the risk? Was it worth it to put himself out there again? Would Spencer even be willing to give them a chance after Hotch had rejected him? What would happen if Reid couldn’t take his pills again? Could Hotch really be trusted around him if he smelled like an Omega? That was a terrifying thought. Hotch rubbed at his aching temples and pondered about why he struggled to make personal decisions when he was so competent in the field. All that was needed was some decisive action but that seemed utterly beyond his reach at the moment. Instead, he looked down at the forms in front of him and vowed to give his predicament some more thought.

Chapter Text

The stalemate between them probably would have continued indefinitely with each man too stubbornly insecure to explain their position to the other if Hotch’s feelings hadn’t been pushed to the forefront by Spencer’s stupid, reckless disregard for his own safety. Seeing his Omega walk out, unarmed, into the path of a shotgun held but a hormonal teenaged Beta was more than he could stand. He clenched his fists in impotent fury and fought the urge to beat that stupid kid to death with his bare hands. Of course, stupid kid could refer to Spencer as well. Hotch decided that he would kill his Omega if he survived. That small voice in the back of his head again pointed out that Spencer was not his and not exactly an Omega but his raging Alpha side easily brushed it aside.

 

This case had forced them to start talking to one another again even if it was mostly terse words and bitten off shouts. Spencer’s bitter accusation that Hotch was punishing him still hung in the air and Hotch hadn’t missed the sexual implications of his retort that he was, in fact, using him. Using him, was that what he was doing? Had he been doing that? Leading Spencer on? The fact was that they couldn’t be together. The fraternisation rules were there for a reason but it was precisely this reason: the feeling that Hotch’s heart had been ripped out his chest as he watched Reid walk into danger. His judgement was already compromised. Would sex really change that?

 

His mind whirred with unanswered questions as the scene played out before him and then Savage dropped his gun and Spencer was walking him into the police station. Hotch sucked in a huge gasp of air as he realised that his lungs were burning. Dave looked over at him, smelling his anxiety, and gave him a ridiculously smug smile which was totally inappropriate for the situation (and largely undermined by the stench of anxiety that was coming from him too). Clearly, Hotch was projecting more than he intended but right now he didn’t care. All he could see was Spencer bleeding out on the ground and never knowing that Aaron wanted him more than anything in the world. His Omega. His mate. Even if they could only be together as Alpha and Beta, it didn’t matter. With all his hang-ups about being an Alpha it was probably better that way. No matter what they were biologically, Spencer was his mate. The man he wanted to spend the rest of his life with. Now he just had to find the courage to tell him.

 

When he cornered Reid on the plane, he wanted nothing more than to embrace him, to rail at him for his stupidity while pressing kisses to every inch of his skin but this was the time to see if he could still objectively treat Spencer Reid as his subordinate. If there was to be any relationship between them, they would need to seriously compartmentalise their identities and for now he was Hotch. Later he could be Aaron.

 

So he settled himself across from Spencer, cracking his knuckles to release some tension before leaning forward, his brows pulled down low. “You knowingly jeopardized your life and the lives of others. I should fire you. You’re the smartest kid in the room but you’re not the only one in that room. You pull something like this again you will be.

 

“Yes, sir. It won’t happen again. Thank you.”

 

“What were you thinking?”

 

“I was thinking that would’ve been the second time a kid died in front of me.”

 

“Keeping score just like Owen.”

 

“It was my turn to save one.”

 

“It doesn’t work like that.”

 

“It should.”

 

“I know it’s painful when the person you identify with is the bad guy.”

 

“What does that make me?”

 

“Good at the job.”

 

Spencer nodded and Hotch opened his mouth to say more before shutting it firmly. Spencer sighed softly but gave no other indication that he was expecting anything more from Aaron before he left to reclaim his seat next to Morgan. Dave looked over his book at Aaron and unsubtly jerked his head in Reid’s direction. Hotch just glared. No. He wasn’t going to do this on David Rossi’s prompting. He’d choose the time, the place, and the words. He’d do this right.

 

It was near midnight when Hotch found himself shifting from one foot to the other, hand raised but hesitating before knocking on Reid’s door.

 

“Hotch?” Aaron nearly drew his gun before he saw Spencer standing at the top of the stairs, hands clutching the strap of his messenger bag. He looked tired and resigned. Aaron huffed slightly in frustration, so much for the element of surprise.

 

“Hi,” was all Aaron managed in reply.

 

“I guess you came to check up on me or fire me. I just needed to get out the house.”

 

“Yes. No. I – yes. I came to see how you were but not check up on you, exactly. Definitely not fire you. Look, could we talk inside.” So much for choosing his words carefully.

 

Spencer shrugged and walked past Hotch to key open his door. Aaron looked around as he stepped into Spencer’s apartment for the first time. A small hallway light illuminated a short corridor lined with book cases. Spencer led him towards the kitchen and opened the fridge to reveal its sparse contents. “So there’s beer or water? Or I could make some coffee.”

 

“I’ll take a beer.” Bad idea, Hotch realised as soon as the words were out his mouth. Sure, one beer was nothing but he needed to be focused tonight. Still, Reid had already unscrewed two beers and was gesturing for Hotch to follow him in to the living room. Spencer flopped into a chair, leaving Hotch the couch and held out the bottle. Hotch shrugged out his jacket and perched on the edge of the cushion. Feeling inordinately uncomfortable. He’d planned for them to be standing when he spoke. So much for that too. He took a long drag and noticed the way Reid’s eyes flicked to his throat. That constant flame that simmered under his skin when near Reid seemed to ignite and his skin felt uncomfortably warm and tight. The two men remained silent regarding one another for several moments until Spencer groaned in exasperation and ruffled his hair.

 

“Why are you here, Hotch?”

 

Hotch leaned back on the sofa and stared at the ceiling. This would be easier if he didn’t have to see Spencer’s eyes, see that the younger man was unwilling to give him a second chance. Okay, what was his planned speech again? Right, yes. “I wanted you to understand something that I think wasn’t clear in our discussion on the plane. I had to be your boss then and I cannot support your actions in any capacity but you have to know that my concern for you is more than just professional. I can’t – I can’t lose you, Spencer.”

 

“Spencer?”

 

“You could call me Aaron.”

 

“Why would I call you Aaron?”

 

“Jesus, Reid. I’m trying to tell you that when you walked in front of Savage’s gun that I realized that I love you.” He looked up and glared at Spencer. None of this was going to plan. The L-word was not meant to be dropped right there. Clearly, this was Spencer’s fault. Frustratingly wonderful man that he was.

 

“Oh,” Spencer shifted slightly and took a long drag of his beer. Aaron closed his eyes again, his head leaning back against the sofa, the beer forgotten in a loose grip.

 

“I’ve made a fool of myself, haven’t I?”

 

“No. No, definitely not. I just wasn’t expecting that. Love is a strong word.”

 

“I don’t love easily, Reid.”

 

“Spencer, you should call me Spencer again. It’s nice.”

 

Aaron’s head lolled to the side so that he could look at his subordinate who was closely examining the label on his beer bottle. “Will you call me Aaron?”

 

“I could do that.” Spencer smiled and Hotch couldn’t help but grin in response. Well, that actually went far better than he’d expected. They gazed at each other for a few moments before Hotch sat up and drained his beer. Spencer shifted in his chair before fixing his gaze on Aaron again. “So should we have sex now?”

 

Hotch choked and stared at Reid. “Jesus, Spencer. You can’t just ask things like that.”

 

“What? Why not? I’m nearly 27 years old and I’m still a virgin. I’d really like to do something about that.” He stood smoothly from his chair and held a hand out to Aaron who stared at it in shock until Spencer huffed impatiently. “Come on we’ve nearly done this before. What are you waiting for, Aaron?”

 

It was hearing his name easily roll off Spencer’s tongue that galvanized Hotch into movement. Standing, he pulled Spencer into an embrace and buried his nose in his subordinate’s neck. All he got was that plastic fake Beta smell but when he licked a long stripe up over Spencer’s pulse point, he was able to chase the taste of the Omega beneath. Spencer moaned but then pushed slightly against Aaron’s strong frame until he was holding him at arm’s length. “Love or not, Aaron, I won’t give up my career for you. You can have me like a Beta or not at all.”

 

“I want you as Spencer. I don’t care that you’re an Omega. I’ll admit, that little taste I get of you is heady and knowing that you’re an Omega does turn me on. It’s our biology but we’re both more than our genders. I love you, Spencer. I’ll take whatever you’re willing to give me.” Spencer just smiled and linked their hands pulling Hotch towards the bedroom.

 

Once Aaron closed the door, he turned towards Spencer who was suddenly looking more than a little nervous. His hands trembled as he reached for his own tie and Aaron stepped up to him, gripping his hands firmly. “I’m sorry,” Spencer murmured, “I have no experience at all. Like nothing. I’m going to be really bad at this.”

 

“Shh, no you’re not. If it helps, I have no experience at being with a man.”

 

Spencer laughed, “No, you know, that really isn’t reassuring.”

 

“Oh,” Hotch paused and realised that probably he should have done some research or something before coming over here, “Sorry.”

 

“It’s okay. I know the technical side. It’s just, I assume that there’s more to sex than that.”

 

“That’s the easy part, Spencer. That comes naturally.” Spencer looked like he was about to protest so Aaron tipped his jaw and pressed a warm kiss to his lips. Licking his way into Spencer’s mouth, he kept pressing forward until he felt Spencer relax beneath his ministrations. Hotch smoothed warm palms down Spencer’s sleeves and opened his cuffs before undoing his own. His hands reached for Spencer’s tie and he tugged on it slightly, deepening the kiss and revelling in the deep moan that produced. Spencer’s tie fluttered to the floor and Aaron quickly unbuttoned his shirt to reveal an expanse of smooth skin broken only by a line of light brown hair that trailed from Spencer’s navel until it disappeared into his slacks.

 

“I, um, I’ve never really been able to build much muscle,” Spencer moved to cross his arms over his chest and Aaron realised that he’d stepped back and had been staring.

 

“I’m not exactly built like Morgan, either, but you’re misinterpreting my interest,” Aaron lifted his eyes so that they locked with Spencer and allowed all his desire, want, and hunger to shine in his gaze.

 

Spencer swallowed heavily and took a step back, Aaron stalked forwards closing the gap between them and pulling Spencer’s body back towards them. “Oh, I, um, yes. That’s good,” Spencer stuttered and groaned as Aaron pushed him backwards until he was sprawled on the bed.

 

“Take your pants off, I want to see you. All of you,” Hotch ordered.

 

“Right. You could, too, you know. You’re a bit overdressed,” Spencer commented as his fingers fumbled at his belt.

 

“I could,” Aaron teased but he’d already loosened his tie and was quickly flicking open the buttons on his shirt. Fingers hooking into the waistband of his slacks, he paused as Spencer lay back on the bed fully naked. He was a long line of lean muscle, shifting uncomfortably under Aaron’s heated gaze. “Wow, you really weren’t kidding when you said you were developed for an Omega.” Spencer’s cock was long and flushed, proudly curved towards his flat stomach.

 

Spencer blushed but a smile tugged at the corner of his lip. “Seen many naked Omegas, Aaron?”

 

“No, no. Really no, you’re the first, you know in person but there were brochures that, you know, I was meant to choose but I didn’t want to.” Aaron stumbled over his words. “I didn’t want an Omega because I didn’t want a relationship with someone who couldn’t give consent.” His eyes flicked back to Spencer’s face, questioning.

 

“I consent, Aaron, and I am perfectly able to.”

 

“I know.”

 

“I want you.”

 

“I know.”

 

“So get naked,” Spencer grinned as the tension left Aaron’s body and he quickly divested himself of his pants, underwear and socks until he was standing by the bed equally naked.

 

All of Spencer’s confidence fled as quickly as it had flourished. “Wow, so that’s an Alpha cock. I mean, I could tell you were big and I’ve seen them in porn but that is really big. Is that going to fit?”

 

Aaron looked down at his cock and agreed that it was imposing. “Fit where?”

 

“In my ass,” Spencer supplied, the ‘you idiot’ was implied by his tone.

 

“Oh, um, is that what we’re doing? Shouldn’t we have a conversation about who tops or something?”

 

“But you’re the Alpha,” Spencer shifted so Aaron could join him on the bed.

 

“There are Alphas who bottom in male Alpha/Alpha relationships. I wouldn’t be adverse to that. I mean, I figured we’d try everything and it might be better not to start with you taking me. I know it can be painful especially since I’m you know – “ Aaron gestured to himself and Spencer swallowed nervously. “We don’t even need to do that now.”

 

“I want to,” Spencer hurriedly added. “I really do. I mean that was how I’ve imagined this going but the practicalities seem a little daunting.”

 

“Do you have lube?” Aaron prompted, rolling so that he was facing Spencer and propping his head on one hand. Spencer nodded and his eyes darted to his bedside table. “And condoms?” Spencer’s eyes widened as he shook his head.

 

“No, I, uh, wasn’t really expecting this but I’m clean. I got a friend to do a work up of my blood after Hankel and I didn’t contract anything from him, you know from the needle.”

 

“I wasn’t accusing you of anything, Spencer. I was more thinking of myself,” Spencer frowned as Aaron looked away, his fist clenching slightly where it rested on the bedspread. “So we’ll start slower and then when we’re ready we’ll make sure we’ve got everything we need.”

 

“You’re very calm.”

 

Aaron huffed out a laugh, “Alpha biology, calm in the face of blind terror. I want you, Spence. Everything else will fall into place.” Aaron reached forward, cupping Spencer’s face with one warm hand and pulling the younger man into a kiss. Spencer rolled willingly until they were tangled together, Spencer resting on Aaron’s chest as his hand tentatively traced the muscles in his arms.

 

“Oh,” Spencer breathed as Aaron shifted beneath him and their groins came into alignment. He rolled his hips and watched in wonderment as Aaron breathed in a quick breath and his hand tightened around Spencer’s bicep. Aaron’s free hand drifted down Spencer’s back to cup his ass as he gently directed the movement of their hips until they achieved a slow rhythm of push and pull as their lips met with quiet sighs and soft moans. It was nothing like what Spencer had imagined but it was so much more. “You feel really good,” he whispered. Aaron’s agreement rumbled through his chest and Spencer shivered. “Can I try giving you a blow job?”

 

Aaron pulled back, his eyes wide. “Do you want to?” he looked slightly shocked at the proposal, which confused Spencer was he’d thought this was a pretty standard thing and not the sort of sexual act that needed to be discussed beforehand.

 

“I do. I mean, only if you want and I wouldn’t expect reciprocation. It was just an idea.”

 

“No, that would be good. I’d like that. It’s just no one’s ever done that to me before.”

 

“Oh,” Spencer whispered and a slow smile spread across his face. “I’ll be your first.” There was something so utterly seductive in that idea.

 

“I hope you’ll be my first for a lot of things,” Aaron replied, and added to himself, and my last.

 

“It’s a nice idea. I suppose that’s quite an Alpha thought,” Spencer murmured as he slid down Aaron’s chest, tongue tracing patterns over Aaron’s nipples and relishing in the sudden intake of breath that produced.

 

“What?” Aaron asked, watching Spencer’s progress down his body with wide eyes and a panting mouth.

 

“The whole staking your claim on virgin territory. Doesn’t it turn you on that no one else has touched me?”

 

“Yes,” Aaron breathed, slightly embarrassed at the fact that his whole body shuddered with the strength of that thought.

 

“Stop being so ashamed of being an Alpha, Aaron. I may have spent my whole life hiding the fact that I’m an Omega but here in this room, I want you to dominate me and there’s no shame in that.” Aaron just stared at Spencer who was now tracing patterns on his inner thigh with one finger. “Still would like to try topping you though, in the interests of science.”

 

Any reply Aaron might have formulated was thwarted when Spencer licked a long line from the base of his dick and swirled his tongue around the head, dipping into the slit to lap at the droplet that had formed there. He hummed thoughtfully at the taste before wrapping his hand around the base and sucking tentatively at the swollen head. He pulled off to see Aaron with his hands fisted in the sheets, his eyes wide open and staring. “Is this okay?” Spencer asked unsurely, one hand still tugging softly at Aaron’s dick, maddeningly.

 

“It’s amazing,” Aaron breathed.

 

“Oh well, that’s good.” Spencer grinned again and reached out to uncurl Aaron’s cramping fingers from the bedspread and place one hand on the back of his head. “You can touch, you know.” The gentle suction started again and Aaron allowed the silky strands of hair to slide through his fingers, catching slightly on his calluses before he decided to take Spencer at his word and cupped the back of his head, directing the movement so that Spencer was taking him a bit deeper, his head angled down. Barely half his cock fit in Spencer’s mouth and he was sure that Spencer’s jaw must he aching from the stretch around his girth but the younger man wasn’t stopping and it felt so damn good.

 

“Would you touch my balls?” he asked tentatively and Spencer’s hand instantly started rolling them, Aaron gasped at the touch. “That’s good, really good.” Spencer continued alternating between rolling and slightly tugging until he pulled off with an obscene pop, saliva trailing down his chin.

 

“Sorry, that’s harder than it looks.”

 

“No,” Aaron replied absently petting Spencer’s hair was he fought the urge to shove Reid’s face back onto his cock. “No, that was really good.”

 

“I wanted to make you come, though.”

 

“I’m really close,” Aaron offered and Spencer rolled off him in the direction of his bedside drawer before coming back with a tube of lube. He squeezed it liberally into his palm before running his hand up and down Aaron’s cock, coating it and making his hips lift off the bed into the movement.

 

“Tell me when you’re going to come,” Spencer ordered before returning his attention to Aaron’s aching cock and balls. He added a slight twist to his hand that left Aaron shaking. Aaron reached down and pressed and his lower belly, able to feel the slight swelling of his knot at the base of his cock. Spencer looked at his curiously but didn’t comment and Aaron continued to press down and moan.

 

“I’m going to come,” he gasped and was rewarded with Spencer’s mouth haloing his dick again as their hands continued to work. His whole body seized as he jerked upwards towards that wet warmth and blissfully came for the first time under Spencer’s hands.

 

Spencer coughed slightly as he swallowed convulsively. “Wow, so that was a lot.”

 

“Sorry,” Aaron muttered, with a small grin tugging at the corner of his mouth.

 

“No you’re not,” Spencer mumbled as he slid back up Aaron’s body and claimed him with a searing kiss, their tongues tangling together. Spencer tasted sharper and Aaron realised that he was tasting his own cum and growled, rolling Spencer onto his back and chasing more of that taste.

 

He wrapped one hand roughly around Spencer while the other groped for the discarded lube. Finding the desired object, he squirted some into his hand before returning his attentions to Spencer’s cock. His teeth grazed against Spencer’s exposed neck and his whole body crowed with the success of having his desired mate shaking and moaning beneath him. “I want you to come for me, Spencer. I want to know that I’m the only one who’s ever seen you come apart like that. Just for me. All for me.” Aaron’s words were a deep growl in Spencer’s ear and he keened in response, shifting against the sheets as he tried to find that final piece that would make everything utter bliss. One of Aaron’s hands slipped past his balls and a slick finger was thrust into his hole making Spencer’s eyes shoot open as he howled his approval and came hotly all over Aaron’s hand. When he opened his eyes, he saw Aaron licking cum off his fingers and whimpered softly.

 

“I like the way you taste,” Aaron murmured as he gathered Spencer to his chest.

 

“That’s good,” Spencer whispered, allowing Aaron to arrange their limbs into a comfortable position. “It was all very good.” Humming his agreement, Aaron allowed sleep to finally pull him under after the stress of the day.

Chapter Text

The morning was a flurry of coffee and kisses, showers and quickly knotting ties after Spencer ran down to Aaron’s car to collect his go-bag. One day of paperwork was all that separated them from the two totally free days.

 

“Come to mine for the weekend,” Aaron murmured, pressing another kiss to Spencer’s mouth as he backed him into the kitchen counter.

 

“I could,” Spencer answered with a small smile. “We should keep this quiet though,” he added.

 

“Okay, I can do that,” Aaron promised with another kiss.

 

“So, you should leave now if you want to make it in on time through all that traffic,” Spencer pushed at Aaron’s shoulder but didn’t loosen his grip on his waist.

 

“I’ll give you a lift,” Aaron offered.

 

“Keeping it quiet, Hotch,” Spencer admonished with a smile.

 

“Right, yes. Alright but you’ll stay the weekend?”

 

“I’ll stay. We should probably talk about, you know, us.” Spencer blushed at the plural pronoun and finally let Aaron go.

 

Despite agreeing to keep their relationship secret for as long as possible, if Aaron had a little more spring in his step when he walked through the office that morning, well, he was only human. He saw the slightly puzzled look that Morgan and Emily shared before shrugging and returning to their coffee. When Spencer sneaked in half an hour later with dark glasses and a coffee complaining of a migraine to cover up the real reason for his lack of sleep, Hotch could only grin from behind his office blinds. He stayed sequestered in his office for most of the day, not trusting himself not to grin like a lovesick schoolboy if he was anywhere near Reid.

 

Spencer didn’t even make it through a full day. Emily had been shooting him knowing smirks all morning and she finally cornered him at lunch, hooking her arm through his elbow and dragging him out of the office. His spluttered complaints were unequivocally ignored and he found himself sitting at an outdoor table with a menu in front of him before he even noticed where they were walking.

 

“So, you and Hotch,” Emily offered casually once the waiter had taken their orders.

 

“Hotch and I what?” Spencer asked, attempting to nonchalantly take a sip of his water.

 

“Are having sex.” Emily completed for him. Spencer frowned at her. “You smell like Hotch.”

 

“Stupid Alphas and their stupid noses,” Spencer grumbled. As an Omega, his nose was equally as sensitive but Emily didn’t know that. He should have known that she wouldn’t leave it alone. Rossi was probably going to catch Aaron as well.

 

“Yup, there’s no point in trying to deny it.”

 

“I wasn’t. I just wanted a little privacy for the start of our relationship.”

 

“Hmm,” Emily offered with a shrug, “well, only Rossi and I will know at first but it’s only a matter of time. Once Garcia finds out, you're screwed.”

 

Spencer sighed, “I know but the illusion of having a private life is nice. So, you just kidnapped me to tell me that I smell like Hotch’s semen?”

 

“I didn’t kidnap you. I didn’t kidnap him,” she clarified for the waiter who set down her Caesar salad and Spencer’s turkey sub. The waiter nodded and backed away from that conversation. “I just wanted to talk to you about, you know, being in a relationship with an Alpha.”

 

“Why would you assume I’ve never been in a relationship with an Alpha?” Spencer countered though he knew he was blushing and that there was no way he could bluff his way through as a ‘sexually experienced’ Beta.

 

“Right, let’s just assume that you didn’t say such a stupid thing since you’re a genius and all. It’s not easy dating an Alpha.”

 

“Really, Emily, I appreciate what you think you’re doing but you are coming off as really patronising.”

 

Emily looked slightly taken aback, “I didn’t mean to.”

 

“I know,” Spencer conceded, “you’re the last one to play the Alpha superiority card but when you come to the poor little Beta to explain how to handle the fact that he’s somehow landed himself an Alpha, well, you sound like a total dick.”

 

Emily grinned broadly before breaking into a laugh that had the tables around them glancing in their direction. Reid smiled slightly uncertainly. “Oh my God,” Emily gasped, “you are going to have Hotch whipped. He had no idea what he has got himself into. I can’t wait until he does his Alpha jealous posturing.”

 

“Aaron won’t do that. He doesn’t get jealous.”

 

“Again, I’m ignoring the stupid. Seriously, you two might have only just done the deed now but he’s been watching you like a creepy stalker since I came to the BAU. Sometimes I swear he’s about to rip Morgan’s arm off when he dares to touch you. And now that you stink of his pheromones, it’s just going to get worse.”

 

“I really don’t know what you’re talking about,” Spencer mumbled as he picked at his sandwich.

 

“Alphas get jealous. I do it. Rossi does it. Hotch does it. But you’ll handle it. I just hope I’m there to see it.”

 

“So that’s it? You came to warn me that Aaron’s going to get jealous if Morgan pats me on the back?”

 

“Well, I was also going to recommend some good lubes and toys that can help stretch you. I mean, I’m assuming Hotch is hung like a horse.” Spencer just blushed furiously. “Ok, I’ll write you a list.”

 

“Thank you,” Spencer whispered.

 

Emily shrugged as she jotted some names down on a napkin, which Spencer vowed to burn as soon as he’d read it. “So is he?” she asked with a smirk.

 

“Is he what?” Emily looked up with one eyebrow raised. Spencer blushed again. “Oh, yes. Yes. Very. Bigger than I anticipated.”

 

“Yeah, I figured. He’s like the textbook definition of an Alpha. Was it good though?”

 

“Yeah,” Spencer smiled dreamily.

 

“Good. I mean, you two really deserve something good.” Emily smiled at him and their discussion drifted back to work as they finished their lunch. Spencer took the napkin and vowed that he would attempt some heinous internet shopping in the interests of his fledgling relationship with Aaron. Plus, figuring out how to buy online would be less nerve-wracking than having to go into a sex shop.

 

Hotch should have known that Dave would be the one to break through his seclusion in his office. The old Alpha may be somewhat grizzled but he was just as sharp and not to be underestimated. When he swaggered into Hotch’s office at five with his familiar bottle of Scotch and two crystal tumblers claiming that he just wanted to share a drink, Hotch instantly knew the gig was up. Damn it. He hadn’t even made it one full day. Spencer was not going to be happy.

 

“So, you and Reid.”

 

“Hmm,” Hotch mumbled noncommittally into his glass. There was no point in trying to hide that there was sexual relationship between himself and Reid. Dave would be able to smell it. That Spencer was actually an Omega, well, Dave hadn’t been able to tell before now so he didn’t think that would have changed.

 

“Come on, Aaron. You smell like sex.”

 

“I do not,” Hotch protested. He’d showered very carefully.

 

“Yeah, yeah. It’s faint but I can smell it. You smell like sex with Spencer Reid.”

 

Hotch wrinkled his nose. “Well, at least your sense of smell hasn’t weakened with age.”

 

“Hey, you’ll need reading glasses soon too. Mark my words. Alpha biology can only get you so far. Though, a fit young Beta in your bed will keep you young.” Hotch almost breathed an audible sigh of relief but managed to hide it in his glass. Dave studied him for a long moment. “He’s good for you, you know.”

 

“I know.”

 

“And I totally called it. I should get commission for that.” Aaron just raised an eyebrow and Rossi grinned. When Dave steered the conversation to his new book, Aaron settled in his chair with a sigh. Aaron appreciated that about Dave. He may be a crass, abrasive son of a bitch but he knew when his point was made. The two men shared their muted conversation, drinking good Scotch and appreciating every moment until Spencer knocked on the door with a small smile.

 

“Well, look, if it isn’t loverboy!” Dave staggered up out of his chair as Aaron rubbed a tired hand across his brow.

 

“I didn’t tell him,” he defended himself.

 

“I know. Emily got me at lunch.” Spencer smiled and sidled into the room. “Are you ready to go?”

 

“Yup, he is.” Rossi supplied as he threw Hotch’s jacket in his general direction, it landed on a pile of papers on his desk. “Have a good weekend you two,” he added as he sauntered out of Hotch’s office.

 

“I can wait for you to finish those,” Spencer gestured to the papers under Aaron’s jacket. Hotch looked torn for a moment. He knew that he should be putting this new relationship before everything else but he really hated leaving work unfinished. “You know what? I’ll help.” Spencer sat his bag on the floor and pulled up a chair in front of Hotch’s desk.

 

“You don’t have to do that, Reid. We can go.”

 

“Aaron, sit down and start work. The quicker we finish this, the sooner we can start buying stuff on that list Emily gave me.”

 

Hotch hung his jacket on the back of his chair and sat down, pulling his unfinished report towards him as he passed another over the desk to Reid who started flicking through the pages. “What list?” he asked as he raised his pen.

 

“Sex toys and personal lubricants to help a poor Beta deal with a massive Alpha cock,” Spencer mumbled before he looked up to see Hotch blushing a furious red to the very tips of his ears.

 

“Oh, um, yes. Good.”

 

“That was my response,” Spencer muttered, “but you’re adorable when you blush.”

 

“Shut up, Reid.”

 

“Yes, sir.”

Chapter Text

It was late when they finally made it through the door. “I’m so sorry,” Aaron assured Spencer once again. “I really didn’t think that it would take that long.”

 

Aaron had spent the whole of the drive home apologising for the fact that they’d spent most of Friday night in his office doing paperwork in silence. Each time Spencer had reassured him that he really didn’t mind. Sighing exasperatedly, he grabbed the other man by the shoulders and made him look into his eyes. “Aaron, I’ve told you. It’s okay. The job’s important to you. It’s important to me. As sad as this is, I just enjoyed spending time with you.”

 

Aaron gave him a small smile and leaned into the pseudo-embrace. “Are you hungry?”

 

“I’m just really tired, to be honest.”

 

“Oh, bed?”

 

“That’s really disappointing, right?”

 

“No, not at all. We’ve got all weekend.”

 

“Okay, so where’s the bathroom?” Aaron led him down the hallway and showed him the bathroom before opening the door to his bedroom where Spencer left his bag. Aaron looked around the bedroom as he listened to Spencer as he washed his face. From all those nights in shared hotel rooms, he could envisage the younger man taking out his contact lenses, running wet hands through his hair, before slipping on his glasses. Breathing in deeply, he sighed in satisfaction. Home. His apartment finally sounded and felt like a home.

 

Aaron woke up surprisingly late in the morning with his nose buried against Spencer’s neck, inhaling that sweet Omega smell. It was the hotel room all over again but this time Spencer was still fast asleep, deep even breaths expanding his chest beneath Aaron’s palm. Guilt twisting his stomach into knots, Aaron inhaled again and groaned as he felt his arousal spiralling.

 

“It’s okay, you know,” Spencer mumbled, his voice heavy with sleep, his eyes still shut tight against the sunlight spilling in through the windows, “if you like the way I smell.”

 

“I – I’m sorry,” Aaron stuttered but didn’t move away. “You should take your pill. It’s already nearly nine.”

 

“I will,” Spencer rolled, and stretched languidly, the sheet slid down his torso revealing enough smooth skin to make Aaron’s mouth water. “It’s okay, though. I mean, I do sleep in occasionally without plummeting wildly into a heat. Honestly, the dilaudid accelerated the process through its interaction with something in my suppressant. I’m not sure what. I’m not going to find out what.”

 

“Why not? I would have thought you would want to know.” Aaron asked, surreptitiously moving his groin away from Spencer’s thigh and removing the temptation to rut against him.

 

“Can you imagine what would happen if that information fell into the hands of certain Alphas? Combine these two compounds and send your Omega into an instant heat. Already there are Omegas who are nothing more than sex-slaves. If the Alpha didn’t even have to wait for the natural heat cycle, those Omegas would lose everything. They’d be kept in heat until they died from exhaustion.”

 

Aaron sighed heavily. He wished that he could say something to defend his gender but Spencer was right, as he usually was. Omegas were property and their value was based on the sexual pleasure they would give an Alpha during their heat as well as the near guarantee of this producing an heir who would be either an Alpha or an Omega. Alpha and Omega children were also born to Beta pairings but a Beta would never be born to an Alpha/Omega couple. “You know, the world really needs your discovery of the suppressant.”

 

“You think I’m being selfish keeping it to myself?” Spencer rolled slightly away from Aaron who grasped him around the waist to still his movement.

 

“No, not at all. It wasn’t a criticism. God, you smell so good and I really want to have a serious conversation with you. Will it always be like this for me when you smell like an Omega?”

 

Spencer smirked at Aaron’s obvious arousal and how it seemed to utterly disarm and distract him. “Hang on, I’ll take a pill and then you won’t be so horny.” Spencer reached for the pills he’d placed on the bedside table the night before and dry swallowed one while Aaron frowned at his own inability to concentrate. “And to answer your question, no. I don’t think it will always be so overwhelming. This is just so new for both of us and our biology would naturally be pushing us to bond during my next heat.”

 

Aaron swallowed heavily as Spencer swallowed against a wave of nausea. “Are you okay?”

 

“Yeah, they make me feel a little dizzy and sick. I’ve never been able to eliminate that side-effect. It passes in a few minutes.”

 

“I know I’ve said it before, but this is such an amazing thing to have achieved, Spencer. Do you really think you’re the only one to develop this?”

 

“It’s statistically unlikely,” Spencer murmured with his eyes closed, “but if there are others then they either haven’t come forward, like me, or their discoveries were suppressed.” Silence fell as Spencer lay with his eyes shut and Aaron studied the sharp angles of his face. Finally, Spencer opened his eyes and frowned at the look of adoration in Aaron’s eyes.

 

“It didn’t work, though,” Aaron stated, a teasing tone in his voice that made Spencer focus on the small smile quirking the side of Aaron’s thin lips.

 

“What didn’t?”

 

“You smell just like a Beta now but I’m still just as horny,” Aaron waggled his eyebrows suggestively and Spencer snorted in laughter.

 

“That was a ridiculous line.”

 

“Did it work?” Aaron asked moving closer to Spencer, one hand trailing down his chest.

 

“Yeah, I don’t know what that says about me but yes.” Spencer reached up and pulled Aaron into a heated kiss.

 

Aaron blanketed Spencer’s body with his own, pushing him down into the bed, and licking his way into Spencer’s mouth. One hand found its way into Spencer’s tangled hair, gripping firmly and angling his head so that Aaron could nibble his way across Spencer’s jaw before biting down firmly at the juncture of neck and shoulder. Spencer keened as his hands scrabbled against Aaron’s back, seeking purchase on the rippling muscles, and his hips jerked upwards and brought their aching groins into contact. Aaron groaned and rolled his hips against Spencer’s.

 

“Take your pants off,” Spencer whined, pushing ineffectually at Aaron’s pyjama pants as he wiggled his hips maddeningly, attempting to remove his own at the same time. Aaron stilled his movements with one strong hand against his hip before pulling back and pushing his pants down his legs. He stared for a moment at Spencer’s long, lithe form spread beneath him before he shimmied out of his own pants and laid back down, bringing their skin into contact again. “Better,” Spencer gasped.

 

Spencer’s long fingers dug into his ass, angling his thrusts as Spencer rolled up into his movements, a slow push and pull of bodies that had near continuous moans of appreciation rumbling from Aaron’s chest as he held his body up on his elbows and gave into the rolling sensations. A litany of praise and encouragement tumbled out of Spencer’s lips as they rocked into each other. Sweat slicked their movements as they exchanged soft kisses, breathing each other’s exhalations.

 

“Spencer,” Aaron breathed as his movements became slightly more frantic, his teeth grazing at Spencer’s neck. “I need –“

 

Spencer’s finger slipped between Aaron’s ass cheeks and Aaron’s whole body jerked. “Is this okay?” Spencer whispered.

 

“I don’t know,” Aaron frowned as his body tensed slightly. Spencer instantly removed his hand. “No, I meant that I don’t know. Don’t stop. I want to find out.”

 

Spencer smiled and brought his hand up to his mouth, sucking on his own two fingers until they were dripping wet. Aaron watched him slightly breathlessly, his hips still rocking gently. “I’ve been researching,” Spencer whispered as he slid his wet finger along Aaron’s crack and Aaron had no idea why that sounded so sexy coming from Spencer’s lips, “Alpha physiology. Did you know that a healthy male Alpha’s prostate is about twice the size of a Beta’s? It allows the Alpha to produce the copious amounts of semen that are needed during an Omega’s heat. If I just move my finger –“

 

Aaron’s eyes shot open and a high-pitched whine was ripped from his throat. “Oh my God, Spencer, please.”

 

“Good?”

 

“So good.”

 

“Good.” Spencer’s grin was all teeth and he used one hand to keep Aaron’s rhythm as he ruthlessly stimulated Aaron’s prostate until Aaron was shaking and coming all over their stomachs. Watching his strong Alpha lover totally undone by his hands sent him hurtling over the edge too.

 

They lay together breathing heavily and exchanging kisses as their skin cooled and Spencer felt sticky and sweaty but more sated and happy than he’d ever been in his life.

 

“Next weekend that we’re home,” Aaron murmured, in between pressing kisses to Spencer’s neck and biting lightly at his jaw line, “I want you to meet Jack.”

 

“Jack?” Spencer asked stiffening awkwardly and pushing at Aaron’s shoulders.

 

“Yes, of course. He’s my son.”

 

“He’s a child,” Spencer pointed out and Aaron frowned.

 

“Yes, he is. Well-noticed.”

 

“You’re the one who coined the term: the Reid Effect. You know, I’m terrible with children and dogs.”

 

“But that was before I knew…” Aaron trailed off seeing the dark look in Spencer’s eyes.

 

“Before you knew I was an Omega?” Spencer finished for him, his voice cold and sharp.

 

“Um, yes?” Aaron finished sheepishly.

 

“And now you assume that I must have been hiding my brilliance with children as some sort of elaborate ruse?”

 

“No, I just thought…”

 

“You didn’t think. Just because I am physically capable of having children, Aaron, doesn’t mean that I should. I am unequivocally terrible with children and have absolutely no maternal or paternal feelings towards them.”

 

“I’m sorry, Spencer. I shouldn’t have assumed that.” Spencer looked slightly mollified so he continued. “I still want you to meet Jack.”

 

Spencer groaned dramatically, throwing his arm over his eyes. “Why Aaron? He’s going to hate me.”

 

“No, he is not.”

 

“Why wouldn’t he?”

 

“Because there’s nothing about you to hate and because he’s only three years old. I love you and I love Jack. He’s part of the deal, Spencer, you know that.”

 

“I know but –“

 

“Breakfast?”

 

“You’re changing the subject.”

 

“I’m hungry and need a shower,” Aaron countered as he walked naked out of the bedroom, leaving Spencer sulking on the bed. Jack. He knew that Aaron’s son would come up at some point but he hadn’t expected the issue to be raised so soon. They’d only been together for a couple of days and already Aaron wanted to introduce them. That certainly spoke to the seriousness with which Aaron was treating their relationship. Spencer let that thought settle and waited for the wave of panic to follow but it never came. Huhn, Spencer muttered to himself. Apparently he was also extremely serious about this relationship and that would mean making friends with a three year old. It couldn’t be that difficult, he was sure.

Chapter Text

“Well, you are looking chirpy today, Pretty Boy!” Morgan slapped Spencer on the back when he walked into the bullpen and saw the younger man grinning at the paperwork in front of him.

 

“I had a good weekend,” Spencer conceded.

 

“Well, well, my man has got himself a little something something,” Morgan crowed and thumped Spencer on the back again. Spencer just coughed and rolled his chair out of arm’s reach. “Hey, Princess, did you hear that the kid’s got himself a girl?”

 

“Don’t call me that!” Spencer and Emily shouted simultaneously, Morgan held his hands up in surrender but his grin belied the sentiment.

 

“A girl, really?” Emily asked, a smirk twisting her lips and her eyes alight with mischief. “I am shocked, Reid.”

 

“Shut up,” Spencer grumbled while Morgan looked slightly confused.

 

“Anyway,” Emily smirked and changed the subject, “JJ just passed me this file. There’s a suspected Omega cult in Colorado. Seems like an Alpha is making himself a harem of Omegas and possibly forcing bondings with just emerged Omegas. They need a couple of agents to go in undercover and suss it out.”

 

“Okay, so you’re thinking me and you? Female Alpha to challenge the Alpha male and me because I’m –“

 

“Because you look harmless.” Spencer nodded his reluctant agreement. “But, I haven’t talked to Hotch yet and I told JJ to hold off too.” Emily looked at him meaningfully.

 

“Let me look through the file and if I agree with your assessment then I’ll talk to Hotch.”

 

“He’s not going to like it.”

 

“Why not?” Morgan asked, arms crossing his chest. “It makes sense.”

 

“I’ll talk to Hotch,” Spencer repeated and opened the file Emily handed to him.

 

Spencer stood in front of Aaron’s desk as he read through the report and the accompanying cover letter that Spencer had attached elaborating why he and Emily were the best choices for the short undercover operation.

 

“No.”

 

“You’re not even going to let me verbally justify my request.”

 

“I said, no, Spencer. End of story.”

 

“Reid.”

 

“What?”

 

“I’m not your partner at this moment, Hotch,” Spencer stressed Aaron’s nickname, leaning forward and resting his hands on Aaron’s desk, looming over him, and forcing Aaron to lean back in his chair in order to maintain eye contact. “In this office, I am your subordinate and you cannot dismiss me simply because you do not wish for me to be in danger. This is the job.”

 

“Don’t lecture me on the job. I know the job.”

 

“Well, then act like you do because it’s my job too.”

 

“You want to go interview possible victims of abuse in a polygamous Omega cult.”

 

“Yes.”

 

“That is completely inappropriate, Reid. You’re an Omega.”

 

“You’re discriminating against me because of my gender.”

 

“No. I’m weighing it as part of my decision.”

 

“If it is part of your decision, then it should be considered as a positive aspect. There is no other agent as suitable in the FBI.”

 

“What if the Hankel thing happens again?”

 

“What if I get kidnapped, handcuffed to a chair, and injected with drugs again?”

 

“No, what if your gender is exposed? The Alpha leader of this cult will smell it in a minute.”

 

“That’s not going to happen. We’re just going in for an interview and then back out again.”

 

“Nothing is ever as routine as that.”

 

“I’ll carry pills concealed around my person. If asked, I can say that I have a thyroid problem or something but we won’t be there that long. A few hours and we’ll be on our way home.”

 

Aaron sighed and all his aggression melted away. “Spencer, I can’t lose you.” He turned worried eyes on his lover and subordinate.

 

“You won’t but you can’t wrap me in cotton wool. I’ll never be a house Omega.”

 

“I don’t want that. I love you as you are.”

 

“Then let me do my job.”

 

“Fine. Just – fine.”

 

“I’ll go tell Emily. I’ve already started liaising with the agent from Child Protection Services to set up our undercover identities.”

                                                                                

“I’m so glad that this conversation wasn’t just a formality,” Aaron drawled, his tone laden with sarcasm and his eyebrows drawn down into a frown. Spencer grinned at him, thrusting his hands into his pockets, and rolling on the balls of his feet. “Go on, get out,” Aaron dismissed him with a wave.

 

“This will take a while to set up,” Spencer attempted to assure him. “We’ll have to check with the other agencies to make sure that there are no other operations going on. A cult like this will attract the attention of everyone.”

 

“I know. I just worry.”

 

“I understand.”

 

Aaron nodded at him and waited until Spencer had his hand on the door handle. “Oh Spencer, wait. I’ve spoken to Haley. As long as no case comes up we’ve got Jack the weekend after this one.”

 

We’ve got Jack?” Spencer’ mind whirred furiously at the plural pronoun. How was he in anyway in possession of a three year old? Not possession. Bad word. Responsible. Better. Oh god, how was he responsible for a three year old?

 

“Yes.”

 

“You weren’t going to discuss this with me.”

 

“Sure, as a formality,” Aaron grinned back at him and Spencer huffed out an exasperated breath.

 

“Fair enough. You win this one, Aaron.”

 

*****

 

The doorbell rang and Aaron practically had to drag Spencer to the door. It had been almost a month before Aaron and Haley had managed to arrange a weekend between his work and her familial commitments but finally it was here. His heart soared and his inner Alpha howled in satisfaction at the thought of having Spencer and Jack together in his home. It also allowed him not to think about the fact that Spencer was catching an early flight to Colorado on Monday morning. He threw it open with a smile that faltered when he saw three people standing on the other side.

 

“Daddy!” Jack squealed and threw himself at his father’s legs.

 

“Hey, buddy!” Aaron bent down to pick up Jack and pressed a kiss to his soft, blonde hair.

 

“Jack, you want to take your cars into the living room,” Haley asked, holding out a little rucksack and handing Aaron a larger overnight bag.

 

Jack looked curiously at Spencer but did as he told, wriggling back to the ground and disappearing down the hall making vroom vroom noises the whole way.

 

“Aaron, this is Todd,” Haley introduced the tall, blonde Beta next to her and Spencer saw Aaron’s nose visibly twitch with disgust, a look of pain crossing his face before he mastered himself.

 

“Haley, this is Spencer Reid. You’ve met before.”

 

“We have,” Haley nodded in Spencer’s direction looking equally curious and suspicious. Spencer nodded back nervously. Todd also nodded but with a broad grin, obviously not picking up on the tension.

 

“Spencer and I are seeing each other,” Aaron stated. Haley’s eyes narrowed rapidly and Todd’s grin faltered. Silence reigned, broken only by the sound of Jack’s cars crashing into each other in the living room.

 

“So, how did you two meet?” Todd asked with forced cheerfulness.

 

“They work together,” Haley hissed. “How long have you been seeing each other?”

 

“About a month,” Aaron answered instantly and quirked an eyebrow at Haley who flushed.

 

“Well, we’ve got you beat there!” Todd joked, throwing an arm around Haley who looked like she wanted the ground to swallow her up. “We’re coming up on our first anniversary!” The sentence had obviously been rehearsed and Spencer flashed a look at Aaron at this blatant lie but Aaron had pasted on his ‘I am pretending to be friendly to lure you into a false sense of security smile’ and was turning all those teeth in Todd’s direction. Clearly, he could smell blood in the water and was ready to go in for the kill. Haley coughed and started backing in the direction of the door.

 

“I’ll be back to pick up Jack on Sunday evening,” she offered. “Aaron, Dr. Reid. Bye, Jack!” Jack shouted back a goodbye and Haley left with her nails digging into Todd’s arm. The minute she was out the door with Todd, Aaron seemed to collapse in on himself.

 

“Aaron?” Spencer asked, his hands thrust into his pockets as he scuffed his toe against the carpet.

 

Aaron sighed heavily and visibly gathered his strength. “Come and meet Jack.”

 

“Aaron?” Spencer asked again, laying a hand on Aaron’s arm.

 

“I recognised his smell,” Aaron offered, looking everywhere but at Spencer. “Haley smelled of him for the last few weeks of our marriage.”

 

“Oh,” Spencer’s eyes widened slightly, “Well, I guess you should introduce me to Jack.”

 

Aaron smiled his thanks in Spencer’s direction before leading him back into the living room where Jack had transformed the rug into an airport judging by the planes, cars, and Spencer’s book of criticism of Nietzsche’s Ecce Homo that seemed to have become the terminal.

 

“Hey buddy, what are you playing?”

 

“Airport. This is the BAU jet,” Jack grinned up at his father. “Who’s that, Daddy?”

 

“This,” Aaron gestured Spencer forward, “this is Spencer. He’s a friend of Daddy’s and he also works with Daddy.”

 

“You’re a super-agent?”

 

“I’m a special agent?” Spencer offered, looking at Aaron for confirmation of his professional position.

 

“Daddy’s a super-agent.”

 

“Um, sure,” Spencer shrugged and Aaron grinned.

 

“It’s like a superhero,” Jack explained, “but no flying. ‘Cept on the jet. Can you fly?”

 

“No?” Spencer looked increasingly confused. “I’m human. Humans can’t fly.”

 

“They could if they had wings.”

 

“No, their breastbone wouldn’t be strong enough to support – “

 

“Do you have a gun?”

 

“Yes?” Honestly, why were all his answers ending in an upward lilt, he looked again at Aaron who was just smirking slightly. Spencer huffed out an annoyed breath.

 

“Can I see it?”

 

“No, I don’t think that would be a good idea.”

 

Finally Aaron joined the conversation, “You know you’re not allowed to play with guns, Jack.”

 

Jack shrugged and turned his sharp blue eyes back to Spencer. “Do you kiss Daddy? Are you Daddy’s Todd?”

 

“Oh God,” Spencer groaned and slumped down into a chair, his head in his hands.

 

“Do you like, Todd?” Aaron asked his son, crossing his arms over his chest.

 

“Yeah, he’s alright,” Jack shrugged again and pushed his plane back and forth on the carpet. “He kisses mommy all the time and that’s icky. Do you kiss Spencer?”

 

“I do.”

 

“Oh God,” Spencer groaned again.

 

“That’s icky.” He turned to Spencer. “You’re icky.”

 

“Jack that’s not nice.”

 

Jack’s eyes started to fill with tears, “I wanna be with you, Daddy. Not ‘pencer!”

 

Spencer jumped up from his chair, wringing his hands. “I can go. I’ll go.”

 

“No!” Aaron shouted at the same moment that Jack wailed, “Yes!”

 

Spencer froze looking back and forth between them. “Aaron,” Spencer sighed.

 

“It’ll be fine,” Aaron assured him, his voice sharp even as he nuzzled his son’s soft hair as Jack clung to him.

 

“Maybe I’ll just go out for a walk, then.”

 

“I wanna go out,” Jack wailed. “I wanna go to the park.”

 

“Okay, okay. Let’s do that,” Aaron picked Jack up, grabbing his discarded shoes with one hand. “Let’s all go to the park, okay?” Jack nodded wetly, his face still buried in the crook of Aaron’s neck. “You need to put your shoes on, buddy.”

 

“Okay,” Jack let Aaron put him on the sofa and started jamming his feet into his sneakers. Spencer tied his own Converse as Aaron collected all their coats and put on his own shoes. It was a short walk down a couple of blocks to a small park with a grassy hill, a climbing frame shaped like a pirate ship, and a couple of swings. Jack skipped happily, holding onto his father’s hand as Spencer walked slightly behind them with his stomach twisting in knots. This was going about as well as he’d expected but Aaron wanted this to work. Hell, even adulterous Todd had made it work with Jack. Spencer’s stomach clenched at the thought that Haley had been cheating on Aaron. He would never. He could never. Aaron glanced back at him with an encouraging smile and a plea in his eyes. Spencer took a deep, fortifying breath and decided to try again with Jack.

 

As soon as they were through the gate, Jack shook free of Aaron’s hand and went flying over the grass in the direction of the climbing frame. He scuttled up a short ladder onto the deck.

 

“He’s very active,” Spencer commented, shoving his hands into his pockets, “I guess he takes after his dad. You and your triathlons.”

 

“Want to train with me this year?” Aaron asked with a grin, wrapping an arm around Spencer’s waist.

 

“Sure, about as much as I want a hole in my head.”

 

“Daddy, look!”

 

“Wow, Jack! That is really high. Are you going down the slide?”

 

“Yup! Catch me!” Aaron ran over to the end of the slide and grabbed Jack as he shot out the bottom. Spencer couldn’t help but smile at the way Aaron’s face lit up as he spun his son through the air. The musical chimes of an ice-cream truck drifted over to them and Jack squirmed out of his father’s hands, jumping excitedly once his feet touched the ground. “Ice cream, ice cream!”

 

“Alright. You want ice-cream, Spence?”

 

“Um, sure, yeah. I’ll go and get it.”

 

“No, you stay here with Jack. I’ll only be a minute.” Aaron jogged off over the grass before either Spencer or Jack could answer.

 

Spencer looked down at the little boy next to him and cleared his throat. Jack kept looking at the ground, suddenly quiet and kicking at the sand morosely. “So, um, you like ice-cream?”

 

“Yeah,” Jack answered quietly and looked up at Spencer, his fringe flopping into his eyes but not disguising the wariness there.

 

“Me too,” Spencer offered. “Um, do you want to play some more?” Jack shrugged. Spencer looked around desperately and his eyes alighted on the swing set. “You haven’t been on the swing yet.”

 

Jack’s eyes lit up and he grabbed Spencer’s hand pulling him in the direction of the swings.

 

“Push me, ‘pencer.” Jack demanded, grabbing hold of the chain and pulling the swing back and forth.

 

“Shouldn’t you be on that swing?” Spencer asked, pointing to the enclosed baby swing.

 

“I’m not a baby,” Jack complained, stomping his foot and glaring at Spencer. “I’m nearly four!”

 

“Okay, um, sure. I’ll push you.” Jack held his arms up and Spencer gingerly lifted him onto the swing before moving behind him and tentatively pushing him. The swing barely moved and Jack’s legs kicked ineffectually.

 

“Harder!” Spencer pushed a little harder. “Harder!” Jack squealed again. Spencer huffed and started really pushing the boy who giggled in delight, his hair blowing in the breeze. “Whee! I can kick the clouds!” Jack’s legs wiggled again. “Look, ‘pencer!”

 

“Yeah, um, sure,” Spencer answered, not really sure what he was meant to be looking at. He scanned the horizon for Aaron coming back with the ice-cream and spotted him just cresting the hill balancing three cones.

 

“Hey, Jack, your Dad’s got our ice-cream.”

 

“Yay, ice-cream!” Spencer saw the scene enfold in front of him with the detachment he felt when watching an Unsub commit suicide by cop. It all seemed too inevitable even as he heard the word no rip free of his throat. Jack’s hands let go of the chains of the swing near the peak of its arc and his little body lurched forward in the direction of his dad who leapt forward, arms outstretched even as though his hands were full of ice-cream. Jack flew through the air for an interminable moment before his feet hit the ground too fast and he fell face forward into the sand. Spencer ran forward, reaching Jack just as Aaron skidded to his knees beside his son.

 

“Jack?” Aaron asked frantically, somehow still holding the ice-creams level.

 

Jack lifted his face and spat out a mouthful of sand. “Did you see, Daddy? Did you? I flew. It was awesome!”

 

“Oh God, Jack.” Aaron punched out a breath, his chest heaving. “You scared me.”

 

“I’m okay, Daddy.” Jack sat up and brushed his hands off on his jeans. “Can I have my ice-cream, please?”

 

“Sure, Jack,” Aaron smiled but his eyes still looked a little wild.

 

“I’m so sorry, Aaron,” Spencer finally found his voice. “I am so so sorry.”

 

“It’s fine, Spence,” Aaron assured him, “have your ice-cream.” Spencer took the cone with a numb hand and followed Aaron and Jack over to a picnic bench where he stared blankly at Jack happily chatting with his dad who’d already apparently got over it already. How did a person do this? Why would someone choose to have a child only to worry at every minute something was going to happen and they would just be gone? Being a parent was terrifying and apparently Aaron wanted him to be some sort of parent to Jack.

 

Spencer was quiet the rest of the day, sitting in the background and pushing his food around his plate at dinner as Jack continued to either eye him warily or ignore him entirely, the brief moment in the park where he turned to Spencer seemingly forgotten. After putting Jack to bed, Aaron closed the bedroom door and allowed himself a defeated sigh, shoulders slumping momentarily before he turned back to the living room.

 

“Where are you going?” he asked Spencer who was re-tying his shoes, his coat already on.

 

“Home.”

 

“Stay the night. We can go out for breakfast, pancakes if you want.”

 

“Aaron,” Spencer rubbed a tired hand over his face, “I’m sorry about what happened in the park.”

 

“Jack’s fine. Kids fall all the time.”

 

“You left him in my care and he nearly got hurt. He could have cracked his head open or broken his arm or something.”

 

“But he didn’t.”

 

“He hates me, Aaron.”

 

“He doesn’t know you.”

 

“Please, can I just go home?”

 

“Of course, but I don’t want you to. We’ve not spent a night apart. I don’t know if I know how to sleep without you.”

 

“It’s been less than a month.”

 

“I want you in my bed.”

 

“What? You want to finally try anal with your son in the next room?”

 

Aaron blushed to the roots of his hair. The package they’d ordered had arrived earlier in the week but they were still working up to full penetration. “No, of course not. Though, there’s no reason we couldn’t have sex.”

 

“Aaron,” Spencer hissed, “your son is asleep in the other room.”

 

“Parents do have sex, Spencer.”

 

“I’m not a parent.”

 

“No. I know that. I’m not expecting you to instantly love Jack.”

 

“There’s nothing wrong with Jack. He’s a great kid. I’m the problem. God, even Todd is better at this than I am.” Aaron stiffened at the mention of the other man. “I’m sorry, Aaron, I didn’t mean to bring him up. It’s just been going through my head all day.”

 

“No, it’s fine. I just – I don’t know. Seeing him after smelling him was just –“

 

“I should go.”

 

“I don’t want you to go.”

 

“I need to prep for Colorado anyway. I could come by tomorrow night after Haley picks up Jack if you’d like?”

 

Aaron recognised the offer for the compromise that it was and nodded his head slowly. This weekend hadn’t been the blazing success that he’d been hoping that it would be. It was foolish to think that Spencer and Jack would instantly hit it off but he’d expected slightly more than the wary animosity on Jack’s side and the near terror that Spencer was exuding. He listened to the front door closing and collapsed onto the sofa, considering pouring himself a Scotch. He’d meant it when he said that he had already forgotten how to sleep alone and at least the alcohol would help him relax a little.

 

“Daddy?” Jack asked peeking his head around the door to the living room. “Are you okay?”

 

“Yeah, of course. Daddy’s fine. How come you aren’t asleep?”

 

“I got thirsty and you didn’t leave me a cup of water.”

 

“I’m sorry. I’ll get it for you right now.” Aaron stood and Jack followed him into the kitchen.

 

“Where’s Spencer?”

 

“He had to go home, buddy.”

 

“Oh, okay.” Jack paused and then took a deep breath, “I don’t know if I like Spencer, Daddy.” Jack sat at the kitchen table pushing his glass back and forward, leaving a wet trail across the wooden surface.

 

Aaron fought the wave of pain that his son’s words caused and poured himself a glass of water too, joining Jack at the table. “Why not?”

 

“I don’t think he likes me.”

 

“He does, buddy. He told me he does.”

 

“Well then how come he doesn’t hardly talk to me or look at me. I think he was mad that I jumped off the swing.”

 

“No, he wasn’t mad. He was just scared. You scared Daddy too.”

 

“Sorry. Is Spencer coming tomorrow?”

 

“I don’t know. Do you want him to?”

 

“I dunno.”

 

“How about if we spend the morning together and then maybe we can phone Spencer and see if he wants to come to the zoo with us in the afternoon before Mommy picks you up.”

 

“Yeah! I wanna go to the zoo!”

 

“Alright, how about we call Spencer now and ask him?”

 

“He’s not sleeping?”

 

“No, I think it’ll be okay,” Aaron pulled out his phone and dialled Reid. Spencer should be still driving home. “Hey, Spencer. Yeah I know. No, I – just stop. Jack wants to ask you something.” Aaron handed Jack the phone.

 

“Hey, Spencer. How come you’re not sleeping? Were you thirsty too? Yeah. Hey, want to go to the zoo tomorrow? They have monkeys. Okay.” Jack handed the phone back to his dad.

 

“Jack go to your room, I’ll come and tuck you in in a minute.” Jack padded back to his bedroom and Aaron cradled the phone. “You’ll come? Thank you, Spencer. That’s all I’m asking for. Night.”

Chapter Text

Spencer waited nervously outside the entrance to the zoo. He’d got there early just in case and now Aaron was running late or maybe he wasn’t coming. Maybe Jack didn’t want to see him. No, Aaron would have called to cancel. He wouldn’t leave Spencer just standing here. Or maybe he would if Jack really hated Spencer. Then again, Jack had been the one to ask him to go to the zoo. The phone call last night had really shocked him and he’d driven the rest of the way home on auto-pilot, surprising himself when he put his car into park and found that he was sitting outside of his apartment building. He wasn’t fooling himself that the excitement in Jack’s voice was for him. He understood that the kid was just really looking forward to going to the zoo but it was certainly nice to be included.

 

Still, he hadn’t been able to sleep, running the conversation with Jack and Aaron over and over in his head until he’d finally collapsed from nervous exhaustion sometime around dawn. Only a few of hours later, he’d been woken by the buzzing of his alarm at nine telling him that he needed to get up and shower now if he was going to make it to the zoo by eleven thirty even though Aaron had texted him that they would meet at twelve. He hadn’t wanted to disappoint Jack by making him wait if Aaron was early but now, as he threw his empty coffee cup into the bin, he wished that he hadn’t been quite so anxious. Sighing he turned and saw Aaron fumbling one-handed with a backpack as Jack pulled him in towards the entrance gates.

 

“Hi, I’m sorry we’re late,” Aaron pulled him in for a chaste kiss and Spencer blushed furiously as Jack stuck out his tongue in disgust.

 

“That’s okay. Hi Jack,” Spencer tried with an awkward wave.

 

Jack gave him an uncertain look but waved back. “Can we go see the monkeys first?”

 

“Sure thing, buddy. I bet Spencer knows lots and lots about the monkeys.”

 

“You do?” Jack looked up at him with a little more interest.

 

“Um, yeah, I know a bit,” Jack didn’t need to know that he’d spent the night flipping through every book he had that mentioned primates in some kind of desperate attempt to ingratiate himself with the boy today.

 

“What about dinosaurs?”

 

Spencer blanched. Dinosaurs? He hadn’t realised dinosaurs were going to be on the test. He hadn’t revised dinosaurs at all.  “Um, I don’t—“

 

“I bet Spencer can answer all your dinosaur questions too,” Aaron assured Jack as Spencer’s mouth flapped open and shut uselessly. “Come on let’s go get our tickets.” As Aaron took Jack’s hand and steered them in the direction of the ticket booth, he whispered into Spencer’s ear “He’s three. His questions aren’t going to be that complicated. You’ll know enough.”

 

“Okay,” Spencer replied, feeling much less sure than he sounded. Yeah, he knew that Sauropods were bigger than Tyrannosaurus Rex but what if Jack wanted to know about their eating habits or what if he wanted Spencer to prove the theory that Triceratops actually never existed and was a confusion of other skeletons? He just didn’t have the research to back it up beyond one article that he’d scanned about five years ago. He could feel himself starting to panic so he focused on the warm weight of Aaron’s hand on the small of his back and the small smile that quirked the sides of Aaron’s lips out of his usual frown.

 

Once they were past the visitor centre, Aaron pulled the map out of his pocket. “Hey, Jack, we’re right near the pandas. Do you want to go there first?”

 

“No. Monkeys.”

 

“Alright, then, it’s a bit of a walk. Come on.” The three of the headed off through the crowds in the direction of the small mammal house. Spencer looked around at all the families happily strolling with their kids, at the mothers scolding little ones not to run off, at the little boy lying flat on the ground screaming his head off while his parents looked absolutely mortified and realised that here, now, with Aaron and Jack he fit right in. They were just another family, walking around the zoo. The thought simultaneously terrified him and warmed him inside. He was being included in a family and that was something that he had never imagined would happen. Yes, it was terrifying but the rewards far outweighed the risks. He’d try harder with Jack. He was the adult here and it was his job to put all his inhibitions and insecurities to the side. Also, it was his job to simplify his ramblings and that was what he intended to do.

 

“Look up, Jack,” Spencer prompted, pointing up to where an Orangutan was making its way above their heads.

 

“Wow! Cool! Where’s he going? Has he escaped?”

 

“No, he’s not escaped. That’s called the O-line and it links the Orangutan enclosure to the Think Tank.”

 

“Cool. Daddy said you take the Metro to work. Is it like that?”

 

“Kind of. They take the O-line to get from one place to another but the Metro is a train, just underground.”

 

Jack slipped his hand into Spencer’s as they started walking again and Spencer jumped slightly in surprise before curling his fingers around Jack’s little ones. “Can you take me on the Metro?”

 

“I guess, if your Daddy says it’s okay.”

 

“Sure,” Aaron shrugged but the grin on his face belied his nonchalance.

 

“What’s Think Tank?” Jack asked as they entered the Great Ape House.

 

“There’s puzzles and things there for the animals,” Spencer replied, remembering to keep his answer simple. Jack probably wouldn’t want to know about Orangutan cognitive development.

 

“Could Daddy beat T-rex in an arm wrestle?” Spencer looked over at Aaron, confused by the sudden change of subject.

 

“Um,” Aaron was being absolutely no help at all, pretending he hadn't heard the question.

 

“’Cause T-rex has tiny arms.”

 

“Only in proportion to his body.”

 

“What?”

 

“He’s big so his arms look small. T-rex would still be much stronger than a human.”

 

“So, he’d beat Daddy?”

 

“Yes?” Spencer really hoped Jack wouldn’t be upset with his answer.

 

“How come the Orangutans don’t fall off the O-line?” And that was how their entire trip around the monkey enclosures and the Think Tank passed. Jack asked a question. Spencer answered it. Jack asked another unrelated question. Spencer answered it.

 

“I’m hungry,” Jack finally said, holding his hands up to his dad who hoisted him onto his shoulders.

 

“Alright, then buddy. Let’s go grab something to eat.”

 

“Look. Cheese Toast. He’s got cheese toast.”

 

“Ohh!” Spencer couldn’t hide his interest as he spotted the Grilled Cheese Cart that was parked just outside the enclosure and Aaron bit back a laugh.

 

“Cheese Toast it is. How about you sit here with Spencer, Jack, and I’ll go get us some food?”

 

“Okay, Daddy. Come on, Spencer. We can sit here.” Spencer allowed himself to be pulled over to a free bench. “So, Spencer,” Jack started seriously. “You like my Daddy?”

 

“I do,” Spencer affirmed swallowing nervously.

 

“Do you like like him?”

 

“Yes.”

 

“Okay. Do you like me too?”

 

“I like you a lot, Jack.”

 

“Good. You’re okay. I mean you know lots of stuff and that’s cool.”

 

“Thank you, Jack.”

 

“Do you like cheese toast?”

 

“I love it.”

 

“Cool.”

 

Aaron appeared next to them with three sandwiches in paper bags and sat on Jack’s opposite side. “Spencer loves cheese toast, Daddy.”

 

“Yeah? We love it too, don’t we?”

 

“It’s my favourite,” Jack nodded seriously, taking a bite, cheese stringing from his mouth back to the sandwich. “Yummy.”

 

*****

 

“Today was better, right?” Spencer asked nervously when Aaron came back into the living room. Haley had arrived on her own to pick up Jack but had still declined Aaron's invitation to come in. Spencer was pretty pleased about that. Jack was one thing. Haley was another entirely and he was still irrationally angry at her for cheating on her husband.

 

“Yes,” Aaron stated firmly, wrapping his arms around Spencer’s waist and pulling him into a passionate kiss. Spencer responded eagerly, opening up for Aaron’s tongue and gripping at his shoulders.

 

When Spencer broke away for air, Aaron started kissing his neck, licking and biting like he just couldn’t get enough of Spencer’s skin. “Couldn’t have been worse,” Spencer gasped.

 

Aaron pulled back so he could look into Spencer’s eyes, “It was always going to take time, Spence, but I really enjoyed this weekend, even the bad moments, because I was with you and Jack. It meant the world to me so thank you.”

 

“Oh, um, you’re welcome, I guess.”

 

“I’m going to miss you.”

 

“I’ll only be gone two days at the most.”

 

“Still. It was really hard to sleep last night without you in my bed.”

 

“I know. Well, I was researching monkeys all night in preparation so I didn’t really sleep but I missed knowing that you were in bed waiting for me.”

 

“See that’s why I know you and Jack will be okay.”

 

“Because I know about monkeys?”

 

“Because you care about what he’s interested in and you don’t want to disappoint him.”

 

Spencer nodded slowly. He knew what it was like to be disappointed by a parent. He wouldn’t ever want Jack to experience that pain. “Bed?”

 

“Bed,” Aaron affirmed with a wicked smile before grabbing Spencer’s arms and pulling him down the hallway to his room. He pushed Spencer down onto the bed before blanketing him with his body. “Thank you for today, Spencer,” Aaron reiterated, dragging his teeth down Spencer’s neck, his hips already rolling, thrusting his hardening length against Spencer’s.

 

“Thank you, Aaron,” Spencer gasped, his fingers finding their way into Aaron’s hair and tugging at the short hairs but holding Aaron against his neck, angling it to give him more room to work. “You let me be part of a family, today.” Aaron nuzzled at his neck in approval and allowed himself a little bite, not enough to mark but enough to quell his desire to sink in his teeth and claim Spencer as his, as his family, as his mate. “Can we try something?” Spencer asked, pushing Aaron away to catch his eye.

 

“Anything you want?”

 

“I think I’m ready to try anal penetration.”

 

“Okay,” Aaron readily agreed. “Who’s topping?”

 

“I won’t deny that it intimidates me but I want you inside me.”

 

“Okay, yes, I mean, yes. I’ll just get the stuff.” He reached into the bedside table where he’d stored the supplies that they’d ordered from Emily’s internet site: silicone based lube that was laced with a relaxant and an impressively sized butt plug that Spencer had been practising with, much to Aaron's voyeuristic enjoyment. “Are you sure?”

 

“Yes, just go slow.” Aaron kissed his way down Spencer’s body, relieving the tension that the conversation had infused into his muscles. He’d been doing some research of his own and he breathed hot air over the wet head of Spencer’s cock before sucking at the tip. There was a sharp intake of breath above him before Spencer moaned at the now familiar sensation of Aaron’s mouth on his cock. “Jesus,” Spencer gasped as Aaron breached him with one long, thick finger.

 

“Nope,” Aaron chuckled, mouthing at the soft skin of Spencer’s thighs, “just me.”

 

“Your jokes are terrible,” Spencer complained. Aaron added a second finger. “Oh God.”

 

“You love them. Everything okay?”

 

“I will kill you if you stop,” Spencer panted, writhing on Aaron’s fingers as he gently probed at his prostate and sucked greedily at his cock. “This is my favourite thing. I love the feeling of your fingers. God, they’re so long.”

 

“I love your voice,” Aaron growled, his cock twitching in jealousy of those fingers. “Keep talking.”

 

“I don’t know what to say.”

 

“Anything.”

 

“Let it suffice thee that thou know'st/ Us happy and without love no happiness./Whatever pure thou in the body enjoy'st (And pure thou wert created) we enjoy/ In eminence and obstacle find none/ Of membrane, joint or limb, exclusive bars”

 

As Spencer continued his recitation, Aaron slipped in a third finger, spreading them wide and marvelling at the way Spencer’s body stretched to accommodate him. Unable to remove his eyes from the way his fingers disappeared into Spencer’ body, he searched blindly over the bed until he closed his hand over the plug. He pulled back, sitting on his heels and gripping at the base of his cock as he viewed the full visage of Spencer naked and wanton on his bed. He slicked up the plug and waited for Spencer’s nod of approval before pushing in forward into his gaping hole. Spencer’s back arched and keened high and long before falling back onto the bed.

 

“Can I play with it a little?” Aaron asked, his fingers already toying with the end of the plug. Spencer just panted in response, his limbs spread eagled on the bed and his body covered in a thin sheen of sweat. He moaned as the plug rubbed against his prostate and his cock visibly twitched. “Tell me what it feels like,” Aaron commanded.

 

“Full, it feels full,” Spencer gasped, tossing his head from side to side. “I want your cock. I want you inside me. It’s full but empty like when I was calling for you in that hotel in Georgia. The dildo just didn’t touch me where I wanted. I wanted you.”

 

“God, Spencer,” Aaron surged up his body, capturing his lips. He reached down and pulled the plug free, replacing it with three fingers that squelched in Spencer’s loose, wet opening. With his other hand, he reached again for the lube and smeared it over his aching cock. Spencer shakily placed his feet flat on the bed, spread wide. Aaron reached down, and rubbed the head over Spencer’s hole before pushing forward into that welcome heat.

 

“Oh my God,” Spencer’s voice was high and tight, his fingers digging crescents into Aaron’s biceps.

 

“Should I stop?” Aaron asked, fighting every instinct that told him to fuck into the heat surrounding the head of his cock.

 

“No, I just, you’re so big. I don’t know if I can but I want to. Don’t pull out.”

 

“Okay,” Aaron agreed, stroking his fingers through Spencer’s sweaty hair. “We don’t have to do this now, Spence.”

 

“I want to,” Spencer whined and Aaron caught his mouth in a wet kiss, unintentionally slipping forward as Spencer’s muscles started to relax. He pulled back with a groan.

 

“Sorry,” he panted.

 

“No, it’s good. Keep going. Just like that.” Aaron rocked his hips gently, each movement forward pushing his dick a little further in as Spencer opened up to him. His fingers loosened their death grip and he trailed one hand down Aaron’s back to rest on the curve of his ass.

 

“Jesus, Spencer, you feel amazing.” Spencer chose that moment to shift his legs up around Aaron’s waist and pulled him forward until he was fully seated in his body.

 

“Wow,” Spencer panted, feeling stretched beyond capacity but still wanting more. “Move, please.”

 

“Yes,” Aaron hissed as he started pumping his hips in earnest, he shifted until he saw Spencer’s eyes roll back in his head and he knew that was the spot. Concentrating on keeping his cock there, he reached between them and grabbed Spencer’s dick, tugging gracelessly but apparently it was enough as Spencer’s legs tightened around him and he came in thick strands over Aaron’s fist. Aaron stilled and watched his lover come, always so overwhelmed with the fact that he was the only one who had ever seen Spencer’s face like that.

 

“Fuck me,” Spencer croaked, cracking open his eyes with a challenge in those hazel orbs. Aaron pulled at Spencer’s legs until they were draped over his shoulders and started pistoning his hips as fast as he could. “Yes, like that Aaron, just like that.” Aaron hips stuttered erratically, Spencer’s body beneath him practically bent in two before he stilled, a deep guttural growl pulled from his throat as he came hot and fast.

 

“Well, we’re definitely doing that again,” Spencer murmured. Aaron nodded his agreement before pulling his softening cock from Spencer’s body. Spencer winced slightly and Aaron reached down to check for blood.

 

“God, you can’t stop playing with me,” Spencer smirked weakly as his body shook with futile arousal when Aaron breached him with his fingers.

 

“I’m just checking to see if you’re hurt,” Aaron grumbled but he couldn’t stop himself from pulsing his fingers in and out a little to see Spencer shake. He was relieved when there was no blood and lay down, wrapping himself possessively around Spencer’s body. “Be careful in Colorado, Spence.”

 

“I’ll be fine, Aaron.”

 

“I don’t like not being with you.”

 

“I’ve got an Alpha with me to protect me,” Spencer grumbled.

 

“You know I don’t mean that,” Aaron protested and Spencer sighed. “I just have a bad feeling about this one.”

 

“I promise I’ll come home to you.”

Chapter Text

“It’s a polygamous Omega cult,” JJ began briefing them on the plane. “Prentiss and Reid were there to interview some Omegas about possible abuse. There was a phone call to child protection services that tipped them off.”

 

“Why did they go in if the state was planning a raid? Didn’t we phone ATF?” Morgan fumed, throwing the file down on the table.

 

Aaron’s response was a growl that made the whole team stare at him in shock, “The governor kept it secret. He’s running for another term and thought that this would be the best time to serve the warrant, when all the kids were in one place.”

 

“Stupid son of a bitch,” Rossi muttered under his breath.

 

“Our priority is getting Prentiss and Reid out. We don’t want this to turn into another Waco. So let’s go over what we know about the cult and about Benjamin Cyrus. Garcia?” Hotch turned his fierce gaze to the computer screen and Garcia visibly swallowed at the barely restrained feral Alpha behind those eyes.

 

“Um, not a lot, sir. Um, it’s like he never existed before becoming the leader of the compound.”

 

“The compound’s a hell of a lot older than this one Alpha. Who ran it before him?”

 

“Oh, that I do know!” Garcia tapped her fingers. “Interestingly, it was a Beta called Leo Kane who was a Libertarian.”

 

“How does a compound go from Libertarian to staunchly hierarchical within the space of a few years?” Rossi mused.

 

“Well, that would be Cyrus. He’s written pamphlets promoting Alpha supremacy and a return to a time when Omegas were treated as second-class citizens.”

 

“Like they aren’t now?” Hotch mumbled under his breath which had Rossi looking over at him with unconcealed interest. He added in a louder voice: “Get Kane brought out to the compound. He’s our best chance at finding out who Cyrus is.”

 

“Yes, sir. Bring my babies home safely,” she added and signed off.

 

Hotch rubbed a weary hand over his forehead. He’d had a bad feeling about this from the beginning but, pig-headed as he was, Spencer just wouldn’t listen and now he was an Omega trapped inside a compound of Alphas who wouldn’t think twice about raping him. He breathed out heavily, jolting in his seat when Rossi patted his shoulder as he passed down the aisle.

 

“You okay, Hotch?” Morgan asked, looked at him over a file.

 

“Sure,” Hotch shrugged it off and went back to his own reading. He was anything but okay but now wasn’t the time to fall apart.

 

Earlier That Morning

“Savages they call us, because our manners differ from theirs,” Cyrus commented, picking himself up off the balustrade and walking towards the small group. His movements were sinuous with all the coiled power of an Alpha in his own territory.

 

Nancy didn’t pick on the threat but Prentiss stiffened beside Reid and he had to fight the desire to lower his gaze. He was a Beta. It wouldn’t fit to roll over and show his belly and, anyway, his belly belonged to Aaron now. “We didn't come here to hear you cite scripture, Mr. Cyrus,” Nancy retorted.

 

The words were out before Reid could stop himself, “Actually it's Benjamin Franklin.” He cursed himself when Cyrus turned all his attention to him but he held his gaze as the Alpha motioned the group towards the school. Spencer looked around and spotted the conspicuous panels at the side of the church. “You're using solar power?”

 

Cyrus gave him another calculating gaze before barely smiling, a slight lift of the side of his mouth. Hotch had the same smile but on him it was warmth and companionship. On Cyrus is was cold and cruel. “Yeah, we're completely self sufficient. Electricity, food, water. Ben Franklin said: God helps those that helps themselves. You look surprised”

 

“No, uh, impressed actually,” Reid admitted truthfully.

 

“Thank you.”

 

“For what?”

 

“For admitting that.” Reid fought the urge to squirm at the evaluating look in Cyrus’ eye and just ducked his head in acknowledgement before heading to the school. The interviews were unsurprising until Jessica, a young Omega, whose mother, another Omega, stood nervously twisting her hands next to her daughter. The compound was Reid’s worst nightmare. The sexes were strictly segregated according to traditional rules for Alphas, Betas, and Omegas. They were sitting in the school but it was really for nothing more than indoctrination. Omegas were learn housekeeping and child-rearing while the Betas would learn how best to serve their Alpha leaders.

 

Suddenly there was a barrage of gunfire that sent them all tumbling to the floor. Cyrus stormed through the door, an automatic rifle held aloft. “What is this? Are you in on this?”

 

“In on what?” Prentiss challenged, stepping up into Cyrus’ face while Reid shifted nervously in the background and Nancy just stared at the sudden appearance of guns in every Alpha’s hands.

 

“A raid,” Cyrus hissed back at her. Prentiss couldn’t have hidden her shock and fear even if she’d wanted to. They’d done their checks. They’d been assured that nothing was planned but clearly someone had lied. “They know nothing,” Cyrus sneered, “everyone into the tunnels.”

 

Reid and Prentiss were herded into the tunnel with the Omegas and Betas while the Alphas started barricading the compound as best they could against the assault from the state police. “This is not good,” Prentiss muttered under her breath and Reid nodded his agreement.

 

“I can go talk to the police,” Nancy suggested. “I probably know some of those guys. They’ll listen to me.”

 

“Nancy, they won’t,” Prentiss countered and was backed by another round of automatic weapon fire. “No one is listening at the moment.”

 

“And did you see the look in Cyrus’ eyes?” Reid murmured, “he looks almost joyful, vindicated.”

 

“He’s got a plan,” Prentiss whispered back as they came to a stop in a store room, its walls lined with guns and ammunition. They all looked around at the stock piles. “Shit.”

 

The team were in humvees and on the scene as soon as possible but already it was too late so stop the utter chaos that had descended on the ranch. The state police, who had conducted the raid, had already been sent packing but they could see, from their high vantage point, that the rooftops were being patrolled by men with guns. “So what do we do now?” Rossi asked, interrupting Hotch’s surveillance of the terrain.

 

“I—“ Hotch uncharacteristically faltered as he thought of Spencer behind those walls, possibly already dead. “I want you to lead the negotiations.”

 

“I’m emotionally compromised,” Rossi countered.

 

“Not as much as me, Dave, and we need someone who knows what moves Reid and Prentiss are likely to make.”

 

“Are you going to be able to do this, Aaron? You need to compartmentalise.”

 

“You think I don’t know that,” Hotch snapped. “Will you lead the negotiations?”

 

“Yes, of course. Whatever you want.”

 

“Who’s in charge here?” came a strident Alpha voice and Hotch turned to see a fat, red faced man blustering towards him.

 

“That would be me,” Hotch pulled himself up to his full height and glared at the man in front of him. “SSA Aaron Hotchner of the FBI. You must be Wells.”

 

“Attorney General Jim Wells,” Wells corrected him but his eyes were already darting nervously to the sides.

 

Hotch bared his teeth, his tongue tracing the sharp point of one canine. “Of course. Now get out of my sight.”

 

“You can’t talk to me like that.”

 

“I have two agents in there and if any harm comes to either of them I am holding you personally responsible and I will personally deal with you. Do you understand?”

 

The entire tent was silent at the sight of a near feral Alpha, Hotch’s entire body was taut like a spring wound too tight, his teeth were bared, his hands curled into fists. Wells let out a slight whimper and ran. The sounds of everyone returning to work roared into Hotch’s ears over the pumping of his own blood. If anything happened to Spencer, he would rip Wells apart with his bare hands.

 

Shit just keeps hitting the fan, Spencer thought as Cyrus rounded the corner with a near savage look on his face. “The time of reckoning has come brothers and sisters. For as it is written: ‘And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the Dragon; and the Dragon fought and his angels, And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. And the great Dragon was cast out… and his angels were cast out with him’. The Devil himself is at our door. We must prepare.”

 

“Listen to me,” Nancy stepped forward. “You have to let me go out and talk to them.”

 

“I have to let you?” Cyrus sneered. “I don’t have to do anything you tell me. You’re nothing but a Beta : ‘And the four angels were loosed, which were prepared for an hour, and a day, and a month, and a year, for to slay the third part of men’. You Betas are the third part. Insignificant in the final battle.”

 

Nancy shook with ill-concealed rage: “You Alpha prick. This is the 21st century and that Alpha supremacy crap doesn’t cut it anymore. Let me go.”

 

“Sure,” Cyrus raised his gun to Nancy’s head, “I’ll let you go meet your maker and you will see the Heaven that he has created for Alphas.”

 

“You’re going to shoot me in front of an FBI agent?” Nancy crossed her arms but her face was deathly pale. Cyrus gaze flickered to Prentiss before he pulled the trigger and Nancy collapsed to the ground.

 

“You, you’re the FBI agent!” Cyrus roared now pointing his still smoking gun at Emily. Spencer shifted uncomfortably but there was no point in arguing. Cyrus would never see beyond his own prejudices and it was in their best interests to play along for now.

 

“Yes,” Emily stated firmly, stepping into Cyrus personal space and shrugging off Reid’s restraining hand.

 

“Well, that is interesting,” Cyrus grabbed her by her hair and pulled her from the room. Over her shoulder she motioned to Reid to keep quiet and he did, biting his tongue and realising just how right Aaron had been to have a bad feeling about this.

 

Rossi straightened his shoulders as the phone rang. “Hello?”

 

“Who is this?”

 

“This is SSA David Rossi with the BAU.”

 

“BAU?”

 

“Behaviour Analysis Unit of the FBI.”

 

“More FBI,” Cyrus scoffed.

 

“Excuse me?”

 

“I have your agent here. Agent Prentiss.”

 

“I see. And the child protection services workers?”

 

“One of the Betas was caught in the crossfire.”

 

Rossi stiffened and Hotch looked like he was about to pass out. “Can you give me a name?”

 

“The female Beta. I don’t remember her name.”

 

“I see. Well, we would like to resolve this as peacefully as possible Mr. Cyrus. How can we achieve that?”

 

“You attacked us on our land. You brought this down upon your own heads. We were living peacefully here according to God’s law.”

 

“I know. I’m sorry. We have no quarrel with your beliefs.”

 

“We need aid supplies to tend our wounded.”

 

“I’ll bring them myself.”

 

“Goodbye, David.” Cyrus hung up and Rossi signalled to the crew around him to start boxing up first aid supplies and planting bugs before putting his arm around his friend and walking Hotch to a corner of the tent.

 

“Aaron, you’ve got to pull yourself together.”

 

“It’s Spencer in there, Dave. My Spencer – I just – I can’t lose him. Not now. Not when finally –“ Aaron’s shoulders shook as a rough sob clogged his throat and he turned to face the wall of the make shift tent. “I can’t.”

 

“Aaron, look we’re going to get him out. We’re going to get both of them out.”

 

“You don’t understand. Spencer is – he’s a –“

 

“I get it, Aaron. He’s just a Beta but he’s tough. He’s smart. He’ll be fine.”

 

Aaron nearly screamed in frustration. “Just give me a minute, Dave, okay?”

 

“Sure thing.” Rossi walked back over to the assembled agents giving Aaron the illusion of privacy. Aaron’s head fell forward into his hands. He couldn’t tell Dave. He couldn’t tell anyone and it was eating him up inside. How had Spencer kept this secret for decades? God, he wished that he’d never agreed to send Spencer in there. His Spencer was in danger again and it was all his fault. What if they took his pills away from him? What if he went into heat? What if Cyrus raped him? Aaron choked back a ragged sob. He shouldn’t be here. He wasn’t balanced enough to be any part of this stand-off but he also wasn’t strong enough to make himself leave. Staying here for Spencer , saving Spencer, was his priority.

Chapter Text

“What are those pills you’re taking, boy?”

 

“Oh um, these?” Spencer quickly downed a pill before he held up the bottle and rubbed his eyes tiredly. It had been an exhausting night slumped in one of the pews trying to get some rest but stay alert enough at the same time. “I’ve got an overactive thyroid, you know, that’s why I’m so skinny.”

 

Cyrus snorted in disbelief. “You’re so skinny because you’re a Beta. You’re not designed to be strong like an Alpha. See in the proper order, you’re the scribes. You are here to tell the story of the Alphas’ greatness.”

 

“Is that what I’m here to do now?”

 

“I believe so, boy. You’re sent by God to tell the story of my trials against an order that is designed to keep Alphas down. The government and its minions are keeping Alphas from achieving the true greatness that they should. The oppression that Alphas are suffering is choking the life out of true red-blooded Alphas. And all in the name of Beta and even Omega rights. It’s disgusting.”

 

“Yes, sir.”

 

“The world is becoming corrupted. We’re moving away from the order that God intended. My ranch was an attempt to return to that way of life and we are being attacked for it but I knew that this day would come and I have prepared for it according to the word of God.” The sound of an engine roared and Cyrus turned his head towards the doors of the church. “And that would be David, their messenger. We’ll see if he is a man of his word.” Spencer swallowed nervously and the door was pulled open by two armed gunmen and Rossi strolled in with a box of supplies in his arms, seemingly at ease despite the considerable fire power pointed in his direction. “You must be David,” Cyrus greeted him, motioning for one of his followers to take the box and for another to start emptying what Rossi had brought in his truck.

 

“I am. You’ll see that I’ve brought the supplies you asked for.”

 

“And now you want something in return,” Cyrus smirk was wry and suspicious.

 

“All I want is a peaceful resolution.”

 

“I’ve lost good men.”

 

“I understand that but more will be lost if we cannot discuss this rationally.”

 

“You’re right, David.”

 

“Perhaps you’d be willing to let the children go? As a gesture of good faith?”

 

“Faith?” Cyrus’ smile was wry and tight. “Ah but the children and the Omegas are our security.”

 

“I see. Well, let me know if you need anything else.”

 

“Certainly,” Cyrus shook Rossi’s hand and led him back to the doors. Spencer watched his friend leave with a heavy heart but he’d known it wouldn’t be that easy to just walk out of here. They were all kidding themselves if they thought this wasn’t going to end in bloodshed.

 

“So how does Cyrus seem?” Hotch asked Rossi on his return.

 

“Calm. He seems calm and logical. I saw Reid.”

 

“He’s okay?”

 

“He’s fine. I didn’t see Emily so I imagine they’ve got her locked up somewhere. It’s good for us that they’re underestimating Reid.”

 

“You have no idea,” Hotch muttered. He hesitated before asking: “How did he smell?”

 

“What do you mean? Was he scared? He smelled like a Beta leaking adrenaline. How should he smell?” Rossi looked at Hotch strangely.

 

“Good, that’s good,” Hotch bit his lip uncertainly. Spencer had managed to take his pill. That was really good. Now they just had to get him out of there as quickly as possible.

 

*****

 

A voice crackled over the receiver from the bugs that Rossi had managed to sneak in. “The time has come my brethren to sacrifice the third.”

 

“Sacrifice the third? What the hell is he talking about?” Morgan asked, walking back in from where he had been interviewing Leo Kane. Hotch had reckoned that Kane would be more likely to cooperate with another Beta but Morgan figured that Kane was so pissed at Cyrus kicking him off his own ranch that he would have spilled everything he knew to anyone. “I got a map of the compound.”

 

Hotch nodded his approval before returning his attention to the radio. “’And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy. And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority’. That man who just walked in our midst my friends was none other than the beast, come to tempt us with his lies and sway us from the righteous path.”

 

“I thought you said he was calm,” Hotch hissed in Rossi’s direction.

 

“He was,” Rossi protested. “He was lucid and logical. I had no idea he was planning this. He shook my hand. You don’t shake the beast’s hand.”

 

“My Alpha brothers, we are like angels of the Lord and the Devil is at our door. We must have faith that this is our judgement day. ‘And the number of the army of the horsemen were two hundred thousand thousand: and I heard the number of them’. Are not those horsemen at our door? Who is willing to raise his sword so that he too may enter the kingdom?” Emily had been led out at the start of Cyrus’ speech and Spencer edged his way towards her. Her face was swollen and cut.

 

“Is he really about to kill all the Betas?” Emily whispered frantically. “Jessica has been tasked with watching me. She says that the Betas are not given a place in paradise. We have to do something.”

 

“I don’t think he is,” Spencer replied, spotting the box that Rossi had brought in, he shifted so that he was closer to it, guessing that it would definitely contain some kind of bug. “He’s too calm and look his lieutenant is taking notes. I bet it’s the names of those who look uncertain.”

 

“We have to go in,” Hotch frantically gestured at Rossi who waved him off.

 

“You’re not listening to Reid,” he muttered distractedly.

 

“Reid’s going to get himself killed,” Hotch fired back.

 

“A test, my brothers and sisters.” Cyrus’ strident voice once again crackled through the radio. “Remember, ‘not everyone who says to me, `Lord, Lord,' shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, `Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?' And then will I declare to them, `I never knew you; depart from me, you evildoers’’. We must be prepared to act in God’s name. Ready yourself.”

 

Hotch let out a violent breath and stormed out. The sun was dipping towards the horizon but he was still hit by a wave of baking heat. He heard Morgan ask loudly what was up with him but he couldn’t reply. Everything seemed a violent shade of red, white spots swimming in his vision as he fought to catch his breath. God, only Spencer would be at risk of being killed as a Beta when being held captive in an Omega compound. He was going to chain Spencer to his wrist as soon as they got him out, never let him out of his sight again.

 

“Hey, Hotch?” JJ’s uncertain voice calmed him slightly and he turned to see her holding out a cup of water. “So, I might be overstepping my bounds here but Spence is like a little brother to me.”

 

“I’m not doing a very good job of hiding this, am I?” Hotch tried to chuckle wryly but it caught in his throat and came out suspiciously like a sob.

 

“Not so much.”

 

“How did you know it wasn’t Emily?”

 

“I’ve heard enough about Emily’s dry spell over wine and ice-cream.”

 

“Oh,” Hotch shifted uncomfortably.

 

“They’ll be fine.”

 

JJ sounded so sure that Hotch found himself nodding reflexively even though he wasn’t at all convinced.

 

Morgan poked his head out looking concerned. “Cyrus is on the phone. He’s asking for dinner and he’s offering to release the children.” Hotch and JJ shared a concerned look. This shouldn’t be this easy. Cyrus was planning something and it wouldn’t be anything good.

 

Rossi was just hanging up the phone when they came back into the tent.

 

“What’s going on?” Hotch asked, cramming his feelings back down into a little box.

 

“Cyrus is ordering take out. He’s in the mood for chicken,” Rossi replied wryly, his brow furrowed with concern. “He sounded vindicated. I think Reid was right about some kind of test. I just don’t know what happens to those who fail.”

 

“We need to move in,” Hotch shifted impatiently on the balls of his feet.

 

“We need a plan and we need to figure out a way to let Reid and Prentiss know our plan,” Rossi countered.

 

“You’re both right,” Morgan said drawing their attention. “I don’t think Cyrus is going to release anyone. He’s got too much to lose. So, he says he’s willing to release the children at first light. We need to hit him before then, make sure that he doesn’t have time to complete his plan. I suggest we take advantage of this tunnel.” He gestured to the crude but detailed map that Kane had drawn. “Kane was pretty confident that Cyrus didn’t know about this one and it comes out just behind the church.”

 

“We’ll go in at three a.m. It’s the best time to take advantage of a confusion in their bio-clocks and hopefully all the children and Omegas will be asleep in a relatively safe place,” Rossi continued, people were already moving around, readying equipment. “We’ll need a distraction.”

 

“Play on his fears,” Hotch joined in, warming to the subject now that they were finally forming a plan, “he thinks we’re the big bad wolf, let’s make it look like we’re going in with all our guns blazing.”

 

“I’ll order some more Humvees,” Rossi nodded. “But how do we let Reid and Prentiss know?”

 

“I’ll think of something,” Hotch promised.

 

“Alright. Aaron go get some sleep,” Hotch looked like he was about to protest. “Look, this is going to take a while to get set up and we need to order the food. Just go lay down for an hour before you fall down.” Hotch nodded his head and retreated to the next room where some cots had been set up for a futile attempt at rest.

 

It was only half an hour later when the smell of fried chicken had him returning to the main area. “I said an hour,” Rossi muttered at the sight of his friend.

 

“You know this ranch isn’t so different from the real world,” Hotch muttered wearily as he threw himself into a chair next to Rossi. The assault was mere hours away; there was a flurry of activity around them and the food was being separated. Half was laid out on a table for the hungry agents while the other was piled against the wall, marked for Cyrus. Tonight the devils and angels would break the same bread.

 

Rossi looked up from Kane’s map. “What are you talking about? Last I checked we no longer think Betas are servants.”

 

Hotch waved a hand dismissively, “I mean in the treatment of Omegas.”

 

“Cyrus bonds just presented Omegas,” Rossi made a disgusted face.

 

“And we sell them off to an Alpha at that age. So the Alpha waits a few years; the Omega is still given little to no choice.”

 

“They are given a choice. They have to agree.”

 

Hotch raised one eyebrow and snorted, “How many of them can afford to say no?”

 

Rossi shifted uncomfortably, “Well, an Alpha no longer bonds with multiple Omegas.”

 

“Unless their Omega dies.”

 

“Aaron, what is going on with you? When did you become such a die-hard about Omega rights?”

 

“It’s not okay, Rossi,” Hotch started, ignoring the question. “Omegas aren’t educated, they’re given little to no choice about their lives or their mates. Who’s to say an Omega couldn’t work as a doctor or in law enforcement?”

 

Rossi spluttered indignantly, “We couldn’t have Omegas running around crime scenes. What if one went into heat? All the Alphas would go mad.”

 

“And that’s the Omega’s fault? Is it not the Alpha’s problem to control themselves?”

 

“I—that’s not possible. It’s biology, Aaron. You can’t fight biology.”

 

“We can and we should or else we’re no better than Cyrus.”

 

“I don’t agree, Aaron,” Rossi sighed, “maybe I’m too traditional but I just believe an Omega’s place is in the home.”

 

“Because God determined it that way?” Hotch countered

 

“Don’t make me into Cyrus.”

 

An agent informed them that the food was ready to go, the boxes laced with fresh bugs so they could get some ears back into the compound. This was their last chance to tell Prentiss and Reid about the raid at three am. Hotch was hit by a sudden wave of inspiration. Gesturing for a marker, he started scrawling on all the lids, “OPEN ‘TIL 3AM”. Spencer would understand. He knew he would understand.

Chapter Text

It was nearly three in the morning and Spencer was exhausted. He should probably take another pill soon but now was not the time for a fainting spell. Especially not in a building laced with dynamite. He’d uneasily watched Cyrus’ men set the charges and, now, he needed to be alert for the team’s assault. The warm wave of comfort he’d felt at seeing that message scrawled in Aaron’s hand had got him through the long wait but the sleep deprivation was kicking in. He hadn’t realised that Cyrus was so close to him until he felt a powerful grip around one bicep and he was whirled around where he stood.

 

“Wait?” Cyrus pulled Spencer in close, nuzzling at his neck in a parody of the intimacy with which Aaron did it. “That’s impossible. You can’t be. It’s faint but you smell like an Omega.” Cyrus hissed into Spencer’s ear and grazed it with his bared teeth. Spencer stumbled back, his retreat arrested by the wall at his back. “You’re a bit old for me, boy, but I’m willing to make an exception. Guard the door. I’m gonna teach this one a lesson.” Cyrus’ men looked confused but knew better that to question their leader as he took the skinny child services worker into a small room off the main area of the church.

 

It really would be fascinating, Spencer thought to himself as Cyrus pulled him into the adjoining room, to research the effects that various body chemistries or chemical imbalances within his own body had on his drug. It seemed like stress and a constant flood of adrenaline had some sort of accelerating effect on the rate at which his body metabolized his suppressant. Well, it would be fascinating if he didn’t keep discovering this at the most inconvenient of times.

 

“An Omega who has disguised himself as a Beta. You think to better your station? You think to go against the will of God?” Cyrus backhanded Spencer across the mouth. “You need to be taught a lesson by an Alpha with a firm hand. You’ll learn.”

 

“You think you’re superior just because you’re an Alpha?” Spencer spat, wiping a trickle of blood from his lip.

 

“God determined it that way.”

 

“’I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty’. If your God exists, God is also an Omega, you dick, and without us you couldn’t even exist.” Spencer bared his teeth but inside all he could think of was Aaron. He was probably going to die and he would never have shared his heat with Aaron. He would never even get to say goodbye. He’d finally found someone and now Aaron was going to lose him. He shook himself, bracing as Cyrus smacked him again. No, he could keep Cyrus talking. Keep him talking for a few more minutes and then watch a bullet blast through his stupid Alpha supremacist head.

 

“You claim you know the word of God? You think to use His word against me?” Cyrus’ hand reached for his belt buckle. “You are here on this Earth to be bred. Nothing more.” Spencer swallowed nervously and scooted backwards falling onto a chair. “Sit there.” Cyrus roared and backhanded him again.

 

One of Cyrus’ men rushed into the room, “Ben they’re coming at us in trucks!” The man ran back into the main part of the church and Cyrus turned to Spencer before checking his gun.

 

“I think your judgement day has come,” Spencer smiled around blood stained teeth. Morgan appeared silently in the open doorway and Spencer’s grin widened.

 

“Think again, boy,” Cyrus raised his gun and Morgan’s shot ran out. A momentary shocked look appeared on Cyrus’ face and then he fell forward, his face smacking wetly on the floor.

 

Reid struggled to his feet before Morgan grabbed him by the waist. “Kid, are you okay?”

 

“Jessica!” Reid gasped seeing the young Omega in the door staring blankly at Cyrus’ corpse. Her face suddenly contorted with righteous fury and she fled quickly. “Morgan, go after her. Cyrus rigged the church to explode. I’ll be right behind you.”

 

Quickly Reid swallowed another pill before dragging his feet to the door, the room spun from a combination of his head injury and the suppressant. Feeling his way along the wall, he managed to stagger back into the main area of the Church. Morgan was there but they couldn’t see Jessica.

 

“I think she went into one of the tunnels, kid. We’ve got to get out of here.” That was when Reid spotted her stepping out from behind the altar, a detonator in one hand.

 

“You don’t have to do this, Jessica.”

 

“He is my Alpha. His word is the word of God.”

 

“That’s not true,” Spencer took a step towards her, “you can be your own person. You can do whatever you want.”

 

“You killed him,” Jessica screeched. “I’ll kill you all.”

 

Morgan grabbed Reid around the waist and physically lifted him from his feet and out the door of the Church which exploded all around them. The last thing Spencer saw was Jessica’s face being consumed in flames as she screamed in pain. A martyr to her Alpha God, Spencer thought as he stumbled down the steps. He could smell burning hair and wrinkled his nose in disgust as he realized that it was his own. Morgan was still holding onto his arm, apparently worrying that Reid would dive back in to the blaze in a futile attempt to save Jessica but then Morgan was pushed away and there were firm lips pressed against his own. Hotch wrapped his arms around Spencer’s body and Spencer relaxed fully into the embrace.

 

“Hey! What the—?” Morgan began but the deep rumbling growl that rolled from Hotch’s throat had Morgan backing away towards Rossi who was smiling smugly.

 

Aaron buried his head in Spencer’s neck, inhaling deeply, apparently unbothered by the reek of singed hair. “You need to take a pill,” he commented as he pulled back. Spencer reached up and wiped a hand over Aaron’s wet cheeks.

 

“I just took one now. I warn you I feel like I’m about to pass out.”

 

Aaron wrapped his arm more tightly around Spencer’s waist. “I told you I had a bad feeling about this one.”

 

“I know.”

 

“I was right.”

 

“You were right about a lot of things.”

 

“What things?”

 

“I – it doesn’t matter right now. Let’s wrap this up and go home.”

 

Aaron gripped Spencer’s shoulders and looked into his eyes. They shone with a fire that had nothing to do with the inferno behind them. “God, Spencer, don’t do anything stupid.”

 

Spencer smiled that disarming half-smile and leaned his forehead against Aaron’s. “Genius remember? I couldn’t do something stupid if I tried. Emily?”

 

Aaron wasn’t fooled by Spencer’s brush-off but now wasn’t the time to discuss it. “She’s fine, minor bruising and contusions. The EMTS are looking at her now. You’re pretty beat up too.”

 

“Cyrus smelled me.”

 

“Did he –“ Hotch’s words stuck in his throat.

 

“No, he was just warming up when Morgan shot him.”

 

“God, Spencer.”

 

“No more talk of God, Aaron. I’ve had enough to last me a lifetime,” Spencer tried another smile and blood oozed sluggishly from his split lip. “So, you know you just outed us to the team? Or did you give Emily the same greeting?”

 

Hotch shrugged but Spencer was sure that the red tint to his cheeks wasn’t from the flames. “I think only Morgan and Garcia were still in the dark. JJ guessed when I was a little off during this case.”

 

Spencer’s expression softened and he cupped Aaron’s cheek with one hand. “I’m sorry I worried you.”

 

“I’m sure it won’t be the last time.” Hotch had been leading him over to the ambulance and let him sit on the edge beside Emily as they were both attended to by capable hands.

 

Once Hotch had walked away to wrap up the case, Emily gently bumped their shoulders together. “You know it had to be me, Reid. He was an idiot. He didn’t see you as a threat because you’re a Beta. He wouldn’t even have believed that you were FBI.”

 

“I know, Emily. It doesn’t mean that I have to like what you did.”

 

“Just don’t beat yourself up over it. Cyrus has done that enough for both of us,” Emily paused, a smirk curling her lip, “So I heard that Hotch gave you one hell of a kiss.”

 

“That he did,” Spencer smiled.

 

“He threatening to chain you to his desk yet?”

 

“Only to his bed,” Spencer quipped and Emily threw back her head and laughed.

 

“Hey, hey, hey,” Morgan protested as he walked towards them. “Ain’t nobody here who wants to hear about that, kid.” Morgan ruffled his hair and he smiled back at him, accepting the gesture for the reassurance that it was.

 

Unanimously the team decided to spend one more day in Colorado. None of them had slept well, from the stress and worry. When Hotch and Reid openly retreated to the same hotel room, they were followed by wolf-whistles from Rossi and Morgan. “I could fire them,” Hotch muttered under his breath as he wrapped his arm more tightly around Spencer’s shoulders. He’d had trouble letting go of the young man since he’d been released by the EMTS.

 

“You’d miss them,” Spencer murmured back sleepily. Aaron kicked the door to their hotel room shut and reluctantly allowed Spencer to flop down face first onto the bed. He tugged the curtains shut against the bright sunlight that was streaming through the windows. Nearly ten in the morning, his watch informed him when he glanced at its face. Loosening his tie and shucking his jacket, he looked over to see Spencer gazing at him through heavy eyes.

 

“Don’t let me stop the striptease,” Spencer prompted, waving one hand in Aaron’s direction.

 

Aaron huffed out a laugh, “You can barely stand, Spence, this isn’t going anywhere.”

 

“I just need a nap,” Spencer conceded.

 

“So nap,” Aaron kicked off his shoes and moved around the bed to remove Spencer’s shoes.

 

“I smell like a bonfire,” Spencer groused but he had already curled up on his side, one hand fisted under the pillow.

 

Aaron swallowed against the reminder of Spencer’s near escape. “You can shower when you wake up.”

 

“Come to bed,” Spencer’s voice was already thick, sleep pulling him under. Aaron climbed onto the bed and curled around his lover’s body, holding his close, and listening as his breaths deepened and finally evened out. He’d thought that he was running too high on adrenaline to sleep but exhaustion won out and he too drifted off.

 

Aaron was awoken by the sound of the shower. Another glance at his watch revealed that it was nearly two in the afternoon. He must have been utterly dead to the world if Spencer was able to leave the bed without waking him. Spencer. Spencer in the shower. Aaron quickly got to his feet, shedding his clothes and stepping into the steamy bathroom.

 

“Morning,” Spencer greeted him from the shower. “I cannot get the smell of smoke out of my hair.”

 

Aaron stepped into the bath tub, pressing up against Spencer’s slick back and sniffed at his hair. It was true, it still smelled a bit smoky. “Here, let me.” He took the shampoo from Spencer’s grasp, noticing that it was his brand, and poured a generous amount into his hands before starting to massage the lather into Spencer’s scalp. Spencer sighed and leaned back into the firm planes of Aaron’s body. His head rolled back onto Aaron’s shoulder. “You’re making it very hard for me to reach your hair.”

 

“It’s easier to kiss me this way,” Spencer responded and pressed a kiss to Aaron’s jaw line. “And I’m not going to go for the easy joke there.” The roll of his hips against Aaron’s groin proved his point. Aaron slid his soapy hands down Spencer’s chest, over the lean muscle and jutting hip bones, before sliding them down his thighs. Spencer’s cock started filling before Aaron’s eyes, slowly rising upwards, straining for his touch but Aaron had other plans.

 

“Come back to bed,” he growled into Spencer’s ear.

 

“Why not here?”

 

“We should be lying down for what I want. Go on. I’ll join you in a minute.” Spencer gave him a quizzical look but rinsed the soap from his hair and body before stepping out of the shower. Once Spencer had grabbed a towel and wandered back into the bedroom, Aaron let out a deep breath and started vigorously soaping his body with quick efficient movements. Only when he reached behind himself did he pause for a moment before rubbing more soap between his ass cheeks and slipping one soapy finger into himself. It felt nothing like when Spencer did it, simply clinical, but it somehow relaxed him to think that he was preparing himself for Spencer. Shutting off the water, he took another towel and briskly dried his body, finger combing his hair into a semblance of its usual neat style.

 

Spencer was sitting up in bed, flicking through a book that he’d commandeered from Aaron’s bag. “You know I didn’t read at all for three days,” Spencer commented, closing the book and smiling up at Aaron. “It was weird. So?”

 

The question hung unanswered in the air as Aaron dropped the towel slung around his waist before crawling up Spencer’s body and kissing him deeply, biting at his lips and tracing Spencer’s tongue with his own. Spencer was breathing heavily by the time they broke apart, his eyes slightly glazed.

 

“I want you inside me,” Aaron whispered, biting his lower lip nervously and not quite meeting Spencer’s eyes.

 

“Oh,” Spencer sucked in a sharp breath, his hands convulsively clutching at Aaron’s thighs as the older man straddled him. “Wow. I was expecting that we’d do it the other way. You know I really liked that, right?”

 

“I know,” Aaron replied, sitting back so that he was perched on Spencer’s thighs, his cock flushed and proudly standing out from his body. “I just want to feel you. I was so scared. I thought I’d never get to hold you again.”

 

Spencer soothed him, one hand stroking down his back before stopping with his palm resting on the slight curve of Aaron’s ass. “I know. I thought of you all the time.” Spencer sat up so he could kiss Aaron, his hands roaming over Aaron’s strong back, kneading at the tense muscles. “Okay so pass me the lube.”

 

Aaron reached for the bottle that Spencer had got from his bag and placed on the bedside table. “Do you want me to do it?”

 

“Oh no,” Spencer smiled. “I want to take my time with you.” He gently pushed at Aaron’s thigh to get him to roll over until he was sprawled on the bed, Spencer bracing over his body with a look of awe in his eyes as he slicked up his finger. Gently, he breached the resisting muscle. This was nothing they hadn’t done before but knowing what it was leading to leant it more meaning. Aaron breathed out, relaxing, one hand straying to his own cock, stroking it gently as Spencer added a second finger. The stretch was new but not uncomfortable, just sort of there. Spencer pressed one hand against the inside of Aaron’s thigh, spreading him open and gazing intently at where his fingers were disappearing into Aaron’s body. When he crooked his fingers, grazing the pads against Aaron’s prostate, Aaron quickly squeezed at the base of his cock, gasping.

 

“You know, if I smelled more like myself right now, you’d just be stimulating your knot by doing that,” Spencer offered conversationally making Aaron squirm and moan. “I’ve noticed you have a bit of a knot kink. Want to knot me, Aaron?”

 

“N—no,” Aaron stuttered against Spencer’s relentless fingers. “I like you as a Beta, like this.”

 

“I know,” Spencer reassured him, sliding in a third finger. Aaron shifted uncomfortably but Spencer stroked up his thigh before kneading gently at his balls until Aaron relaxed. “But hypothetically?” Hypothetically, Aaron thought, of course hypothetically he wanted to screw his knot into Spencer, he wanted to fuck his cum into Spencer’s wet ass and have it stay in there, have them joined together until his cock swelled again and it began over. All he could do was groan his approval at the image but the grin on Spencer’s face told him that he’d understood. “Maybe one day I’ll be ready to leave the FBI.”

 

Aaron’s mind cleared of the fog of arousal and he gripped Spencer’s forearm, stopping his movements and forcing him to look at him. “Not for that,” he growled. “It’s not worth it. What we have is perfect and you’re too good at your job to leave it for something as trivial as knotting.”

 

“As trivial as bonding?” Spencer asked, biting his lip uncertainly.

 

“We don’t have to bond to spend the rest of our lives together,” Aaron offered, speaking as off-handedly as he could but in the full knowledge that he was laying of his cards on the table with that statement.

 

“Good,” Spencer nodded, smiling a small secret smile. “I think you’re relaxed,” he added. “What position should we, you know?”

 

“Lie on your back.”

 

“Ever the Alpha,” Spencer sighed but he was grinning as he laid back, holding his cock steady as Hotch once again straddled him and started lower himself onto Spencer. “Are you sure?” Spencer asked, his hands gripping at Aaron’s hips and stopping his descent.

 

“Yes, Spencer,” Aaron sighed, bracing his arms on Spencer’s shoulders and slowly lowering himself onto his lover’s erect cock. The head breached him with a slightly painful burn but he pushed through it until the resisting ring of muscles loosened. It was strange and uncomfortable but when, he looked down, Spencer’s mouth was hanging open as he panted with arousal, his eyes full of unmasked desire. Aaron pushed down further, wrenching a strangled moan from Spencer’s throat. Spencer’s fingers dug into his thighs, leaving impressions in the strained muscles until Aaron found that he was sitting flush on Spencer’s groin. He felt so overly full but not unpleasantly so. Shifting experimentally, he felt pressure against his prostate and gasped breathlessly.

 

“Okay?” Spencer asked, his brow was furrowed and Aaron knew he was holding himself back from thrusting.

 

“Full,” Aaron replied, trying to tentatively adjust his position and feel that pressure again.

 

“Oh fuck,” Spencer’s eyes rolled back in his head as Aaron started a slow undulating motion with his hips. “Fuck, Aaron.”

 

“Is this good for you?” Aaron leant back, steadying his hands on Spencer’s bent knees and starting to bounce, his thighs bracing his weight.

 

“It’s amazing. I can feel you everywhere.” Spencer loosened his grasp and shifted, starting to pump his hips up to meet every downward movement that Aaron made.

 

“God, yes.” Aaron threw his head back and sped his movements. Spencer’s cock was grazing his engorged prostate on every thrust and he felt his movements becoming slightly erratic as his muscles started shaking. Spencer saw him struggling and increased the momentum and strength of his thrusts until the bed was thumping against the wall and they were a sweaty mess of bodies, plunging manically towards orgasm. Suddenly Spencer shifted again and everything was right there, Aaron’s body stiffened and his cock seemed to swell before the first spurt of cum shot out, nearly hitting Spencer in the chin.

 

“You’re coming?” Spencer’s eyes were wild, his hair stuck in a sweaty mess to his forehead. Aaron’s cock kept spurting in answer, releasing with every upward thrust Spencer gave, nailing his prostate. “Oh, God. You’re coming just from this.” Spencer closed his eyes and doubled his efforts. Aaron could feel his asshole gripping Spencer’s cock rhythmically with every spurt of cum and he could only gaze down in amazement as his orgasm was ripped from his untouched cock. Spencer gave one final, violent upward thrust and stilled, Aaron felt a warm splash inside him and he keened a high, contented noise as he relished the feeling of his lover’s release coating his insides.

 

Aaron’s arms gave way and he ungracefully collapsed onto Spencer who simply rolled them slightly so that Aaron’s weight was half on the bed. His drying semen was a sticky mess between their bodies as he pressed little kisses to Spencer’s shoulder, still panting breathlessly. Suddenly, Aaron’s phone rang and, with a groan, he flailed in its general direction, managing to slap his hand down on it and drag it towards him. “Hotchner,” he answered gruffly, hoping that his voice didn’t sound as fucked out as he thought it did.

 

“Hey Aaron,” Aaron could hear Rossi’s smirk through the line, “we’re all going to get some lunch so as long as Spencer can walk straight you should both come with.”

 

“I hate you, Dave.” Aaron replied and hung up the phone. Rolling his head to the side, he traced the sharp line of Spencer’s jaw with one finger, relishing the easy grin that curved his lover’s lips. “Lunch?”

 

“I could eat,” Spencer replied, rolling his head to kiss Aaron’s fingertip. “Plus, the plane home would be hell if we skipped it and stayed in our room all day. They don’t need more fuel for the fire. You know he was probably listening through the wall. I mean, he called right after we finished.”

 

Ruefully, Aaron nodded his agreement and rolled out of bed to get dressed. Looking back, he caught Spencer regarding at him with something like wonder. “What?” Aaron asked with a small smile.

 

“I love you,” Spencer breathed the words as if they were being ripped from his very soul and Aaron’s breath caught in his throat before a broad grin split his face, deepening his dimples.

 

“I love you too.”

Chapter Text

Aaron was feeling more relaxed than he had in years. Jack had just spent a long weekend with them and he still had a full week off with Spencer. The haunting memory of the ranch in Colorado and the fear that he was never going to get Spencer back had passed. He still woke in the night, clutching his lover to his chest but he figured that just came with the job. He’d finally managed to arrange annual leave for the whole team together and, although that hadn’t gone so well when Elle had still been with them, this time had been serial killer free.

 

It was in the afternoon of the third day of their leave when Aaron suddenly noticed something different. Spencer had just breezed through the kitchen to re-fill his coffee before returning to the journal article that he was working on and Aaron found himself transfixed. He dropped the spoon he was holding, pasta sauce splattering all over the floor and cupboards, and trailed after his lover into his office. Spencer was already bent over his notes again, his hair falling forward and revealing his neck. Aaron took a deep breath of the already slightly thickened air before rushing forward and burying his nose in this lover’s neck.

 

“Spencer,” he choked out now slightly panicked, “I think that your pills have stopped working.”

 

Spencer spun in his chair and beamed up at his lover. “Nope. I stopped taking them.”

 

Aaron was struck slightly dumb. This was one thing that Spencer had been adamant about from the start. He would live as a Beta despite being in a relationship with an Alpha. Aaron had supported him in this. He would never choose experiencing a heat with Spencer over allowing the younger man to live a full life in the career he had chosen. Maybe Spencer hadn’t understood this. Maybe he had felt that Aaron was pressuring him. “Spencer, you don’t need to do this for me.”

 

“I’m not.” Spencer responded bluntly but his smile did not waver. “You haven’t asked me about the article I’m working on.”

 

Aaron blinked at the change in subject. Spencer not taking his pills needed to be discussed in depth. This would have far-reaching consequences for both their lives. Spencer would lose his job when exposed. Aaron's stomach clenched at that thought. But they could bond. His heart seemed to flip in his chest at that one. The emotional turmoil going through him must have shown on his face because Spencer took pity on him and held him by the arm, guiding him to sit on the small sofa.

 

“I don’t understand, Spence.”

 

“I’ve been doing some digging,” Spencer started slowly. “Do you remember you said that you couldn’t believe that no one else had developed a similar pill to mine?” Spencer continued without waiting for an answer. “Well, I realised that it was, in fact, statistically very unlikely that I was the only one who had managed to suppress my biology. I figured that there must be others like me out there. So, I started looking. Especially after the whole thing with Cyrus. You know, I realised that I had to take a stand. There are Omegas out there who are being abused every single day and I was in a position to help them. First, I figured it would be best to limit my search to various law enforcement agencies but specifically their science based departments like CSI or forensic anthropology. Omegas who wanted to work in those areas would necessarily have to maintain their secrecy but to develop the serum they would need an extensive scientific background. Then, I started profiling. I looked at myself as an example, figuring that any side-effects I have would probably be exhibited by others taking similar drug combinations even if they weren’t identical and then I started going through personnel files, with some help from Garcia who I had to explain everything to but she’s been really supportive. And I found them. Aaron, I found them.” Spencer’s hands were gesticulating wildly and his pace had picked up in the excited way that it did when he had figured out a key part of the profile. Aaron couldn’t help but smile softly in response. “Contacting them was the hard part.”

 

“They would have no reason to trust you.”

 

“Exactly, I wouldn’t have trusted one of them if they’d reached out to me and I was afraid to fully reveal myself in case I was wrong. I must have re-written my emails a thousand times but eventually I settled on introducing myself and asking if they would be interested in co-authoring a paper entitled “Can Omegas Live as Betas?” It wasn’t the most subtle approach but it garnered their attention. Eventually, we moved on to phone calls.” Frowning, Hotch remembered the cut off phone conversations and his unvoiced fear that history was repeating itself. “I know what you must have thought,” Spencer reached out and grabbed his lover’s hands, “I’m sorry if I caused you any pain but I had to be sure before revealing this to you.”

 

Aaron nodded but didn’t make eye contact. “How many people have you found?”

 

“So far there’s four of us.”

 

“Where are they?”

 

Spencer choked out a laugh. “Well, Greg’s in Las Vegas, can you believe that? Abby is at the Naval Yard and Zack, well, Zack’s drug managed to get rid of the cravings for caffeine that Abby, Greg and I share but it had seemingly far more serious effects on his mental stability. He’s currently in a mental institution for the criminally insane.” Aaron winced. “Yeah, I know. He probably won’t really help our cause but then again the fact that he is an Omega with enough initiative to become a murderer’s apprentice will, perversely, strengthen the argument that Omegas should be held responsible for their own actions both good and bad. Anyway, he used to work at the Jeffersonian before all that. There’s probably more. I just haven’t found them yet.”

 

“So what’s the paper that you’re working on?” Aaron asked remembering Spencer’s original prompt.

 

“We’re revealing our existence to the world.” Aaron stared at Spencer, his mouth hanging open.

 

“Spence, you—what if – you – “

 

“Look, we’re all well established in our careers with hundreds of convictions behind us. They cannot supress or deny our existence since we are all relatively public figures, at least in academia. If they try to argue against our mental faculties it would probably lead to the appeals of several hundred convictions between all of us. All of us have select confidants who know of our gender. Abby’s boss is really supportive of this, as is Grissom who was Greg’s former boss. And Zach’s mentor, Dr. Brennan, has kept supplying him with his pills even after his incarceration. This isn’t something that will be easily hushed up and, if I’m right, once we publish this paper there will be more Omegas with the same story coming forward. We’re going to change the world, Aaron.” Spencer was shining with confidence and Aaron could only lean forward and press a firm kiss to his lover’s lips.

 

“I still don’t know why you’ve gone off your pills,” Aaron murmured once they broke apart.

 

“We have two weeks of leave. I’ve been working with Greg on our formulas, which were quite similar anyway, and, well, he’s done this before with no issues so I think it should be fine,” Spencer cleared his throat, “He went off his pills, bonded with his boyfriend and started taking them again without anyone being the wiser. I’m pretty positive that it will be the same for me actually and this was something that I’d been thinking about for a while anyway. Really I’ve been thinking about it since Georgia but only now as something other than a fantasy,” Spence stopped and took a deep breath, “I was hoping to share my heat with you.”

 

Aaron’s mouth was suddenly so dry that he couldn’t swallow. Spencer misinterpreted his silence. “If you don’t want to then I’ll start taking the pills again tomorrow no harm done. I know it was really presumptuous and we haven’t been together that long but when I was stuck with Cyrus all I could think about was how my biggest regret would be not experiencing a heat with you.”

 

“I want to. God, I want to. But only if you want. I’m not pressuring.”

 

“I know, Aaron. I want this so much. I’ve wanted this since you took me to that hotel room in Georgia. I cried out your name for three days.” Despite having been in a relationship for several months now, they barely talked about Reid’s first heat. Aaron felt simultaneously bereft and incredibly horny, knowing that Spencer had been locked in a room on his own, begging for Aaron’s cock.

 

“I masturbated in my car after dropping you off,” he blurted out and instantly blushed furiously. Spencer just stared at him, which didn’t help, before huffing out a heavy breath.

 

“That is strangely arousing.”

 

“Oh, good,” Hotch deadpanned but couldn’t help but smile. “So we’re doing this?”

 

“By this you mean having sex?”

 

“Yes but this is sex when you’re, you know, in heat.”

 

“It’s going to be intense, from what I understand. Since you can already smell me then I imagine that I’ll start going into a proper heat in the next couple of days. I probably shouldn’t leave the house, just in case. So, you’ll need to get us some supplies like water, energy drinks, lots of easy snack food.”

 

“Just how long will we be having sex?” Hotch asked, slightly alarmed.

 

“At least three days,” Spencer smirked as he watched his lover’s eyebrows shoot up. “Good thing you’ve been training for that triathlon.”

 

Hotch just nodded, slightly dumbstruck. He’d thought that Spencer’s heat had lasted so long because he’d been on his own but apparently that was normal. God, he really hoped that he’d be able to perform well. He wasn’t as young as he used to be.

 

Spencer suddenly looked slightly uncomfortable and nervous. “There is one thing. When in heat, there’s a good chance that we’ll, well, it’s just that we should probably talk about this in advance so it’s not something that’s done entirely on instinct and I know that we’ve not been together very long so this might not be something you want.”

 

“Reid, Spencer, are you asking me if I want to bond with you?” Aaron couldn’t hide his small smile at his lover’s rambling.

 

“I guess so.”

 

Hotch’s smile spread into a broad grin with his dimples on full display, “I would like nothing more.”

 

“Oh,” Spencer looked slightly shocked. “Oh, well, that’s – good?”

 

“Yes, it is.”

 

“Bonded, huh?”

 

“Yup, we’ll be bonded.”

 

“That’s commitment.”

 

“Well,” Aaron gestured to himself in an almost self-deprecating manner. “That’s kind of my thing. Are you sure that’s what you want? Bonding, that’s for life.”

 

It was Spencer’s turn to smile and to lean in to reassure his lover, his soon to be bonded, with a passionate kiss. “I’ll be taking a contraceptive, though. You know, a baby doesn’t really suit our lifestyle and, well, I know you might want more kids, you know, as a virile Alpha, but I, well, I never really, you know I love Jack, but, well, because of my mom.”

 

“I know.” Aaron cut off Spencer’s increasingly disjointed speech. “I understand and, no, at this point I don’t really want more children either. Neither of us has the time or the inclination to give up our jobs to make time. I just want to bond with you. It’s more than I ever imagined.”

 

“Good. That’s good.”

Chapter Text

The next couple of days seemed to pass in a fog of preparations. Spencer’s smell got stronger and stronger in the house, helped by the fact that he couldn’t leave anymore. It made Hotch’s skin itch and his cock swell but Spencer was adamant that he needed to finish the article and submit before they got carried away with sex. Hotch was trying to calm himself down a bit by languidly stroking his cock while lying on his bed listening to the Beatles (though Oh Darling was a poor choice of song to calm down to) when Spencer entered the room. He stopped in the doorway watching Aaron and squirming slightly, his own pants already tented. His tongue darted out to wet his lips though his eyes didn’t shift from Aaron’s hard cock. “Oh good, you’ve already started.” Spencer’s eyes shifted to that of his lover as he stepped into the room and Aaron inhaled deeply. It was time. Oh God, that smell. He hadn’t smelled that since a god-forsaken graveyard in Georgia.

“You smell amazing,” Hotch rumbled out and his cock seemed to harden even further in his grip as Spencer pulled his t-shirt over his head.

“It’s quite astonishing,” Spencer smiled, his voice even as his hands started pushing his pyjama pants down to pool at his feet and leaving him nude in front of his equally naked partner. “I thought your cock was big but like this, stimulated by the Omega pheromones, it’s fucking huge. I feel like I should be scared but I’m just desperate to have you inside me. I feel so empty, Aaron.” One of Spencer’s hands disappeared round his back but Hotch knew from the way that his lover was biting his lip that he was fingering himself.

In one fluid movement, he was off the bed and across the room crowding Spencer up against the wall and rutting against him. One hand pushed Spencer’s away before Aaron pushed his own finger into to Spencer’s dripping hole.

“Fuck, Spencer. You’re soaking wet. It’s incredible.” Aaron added a second finger and buried his face in Spencer’s neck. The pheromones that had been flooding their home for the past few days were so pungent here that Hotch nearly howled with need.

“Please, Aaron, please.”

Aaron’s strong arms easily picked Spencer up and walked him back to the bed, his cock brushing against Spencer’s hole, which dripped hungrily. Throwing Spencer down on to the bed, Aaron roughly spread his legs and nestled between them. “Need you, Spence. Is it okay?”

“God yes, please. Please please please.” Spencer rolled over, head down on his hands and ass presented to his Alpha.

Aaron leant down and licked a long line up Spencer’s crack, his tongue slipping into Spencer’s hole to lap at the juices there. When he moved back, Spencer looked over his shoulder at Aaron and whined as he licked more of the thick lubricating fluids off his fingers. “You taste amazing,” he groaned and kneaded at Spencer’s ass before lapping this juices from his thighs and chasing the taste back to his hole. He licked and sucked, driving his tongue into Spencer over and over until the younger man was shaking, his head buried in the pillows and his whole body jerking with every pass of Aaron’s tongue. Taking pity on his desperate Omega, Aaron lined his cock up and thrust into Spencer’s tight wet channel. Spencer’s head was thrown back as he howled at the pain and pleasure of being impaled on Aaron’s massive cock but his body relaxed and Aaron thrust all the way in. It was nothing they hadn’t done before but it was totally different. The air was thick with the scent of sex and their pounding pheromones. Aaron’s cock seemed to pulse with every beat of his blood and he growled as he pulled back out to thrust again. Spencer’s face was still pressed into the pillow as he moaned and sobbed with Aaron’s every thrust over his achingly swollen prostate. It felt nothing like his first heat had. The Omega dildo, though impressively large, had left him feeling bizarrely painfully empty after every hard fought for orgasm but already he could feel his balls drawing up and without Aaron even reaching for his dick he suddenly was ejaculating in thick streams over the bedcovers. Behind him, he heard Aaron release a stream of curse words as Spencer’s channel pulsed around him, trying to bring him even deeper.

Aaron’s hands left their bruising grip on his hips and gathered him up to lean back against his strong chest. One hand splayed against Spencer’s stomach, Aaron’s other hand gripped Spencer’s neck and angled it. Hot breath swept over his ear and Spencer just managed to process the guttural growl of ‘mine’ before he felt the sharp sting of Aaron’s teeth puncturing the skin of his neck. It triggered another orgasm as Hotch sucked at the bleeding bite before licking it clean. His thrusts sped up and then Spencer screamed as Aaron’s cock began to swell even further. Academically, he knew that this would happen. Aaron would knot him now but the feeling was beyond anything he could have imagined. It felt like he was being split in two as Aaron fucked his knot passed the protesting ring of muscle. Spencer was almost about to beg Aaron to stop when the older man licked the already healing bond-bite again and Spencer felt his whole body relax. Aaron’s knot slipped in and Spencer’s body hugged it. With a few more jerky thrusts that pulled on Spencer’s hole, and clearly felt amazing around Aaron’s knot if his choked off moans were any indication, Aaron howled out his climax. Spencer could feel the copious amounts of ejaculate filling him until his stomach seemed to swell slightly.

Breathing heavily, Aaron gently manoeuvred them until they were lying side-by-side spooned together. He continued to lick at the bite until it was closed up and nothing but a neat impression of his teeth. Only then did he speak, “Did I hurt you?”

Spencer tried to roll slightly and it tugged on Aaron’s knot making him moan and release another splash of semen into Spencer’s body. Spencer just smirked. “Aaron, you bit me and fucked your massive knot into me.”

Aaron furrowed his brow. “So I did hurt you.”

“Yes but it was the most amazing experience of my entire life.” He shifted again with a wicked grin on his face and was rewarded with another moan from his Alpha. “And that was only the beginning.”

Aaron gasped sharply at the tugging sensation on his knot and his hips began to undulate in shallow thrusts, each one pulling at their connection without ever releasing. “Again? Already?” he mumbled against Spencer’s neck. At the smell of his Omega, he felt another wave of desire crash over him. Keeping his movements shallow, he ran one hand down Spencer’s lightly muscled chest, pressing on his thin stomach so that he could almost feel each thrust. “I’m so deep inside you,” Aaron panted.

“Yes,” Spencer gasped, his body already shaking with the stimulation. “More, Aaron. Please.”

“Shh,” Aaron soothed him, leaning over his shoulder to press a kiss to the side of Spencer’s mouth. “Just like this.” He kept his movements small and rhythmic, a constant wave of pressure against his knot and Spencer’s prostate. One large hand circled Spencer’s weeping cock, rubbing lightly and keeping him on the edge of orgasm. “We’re going to keep doing it just like this for hours.”

“Days,” Spencer gasped, a small smile quirking the corner of his mouth.

Aaron groaned, teeth grazing the bond bite. “Days,” he agreed and started thrusting in earnest.

The next three days were a blur of sex. Every time that his knot loosened and Aaron slipped from Spencer’s body, his heart hammering, he was sure that they were done. Then Spencer would turn to him, pupils blown and cock heavy, and tug on Aaron’s cock until he was sliding into his wet heat again with as much desire as the first time. They collapsed with exhaustion and then reached for each other in the middle of the night, Aaron’s fingers sliding into Spencer as the younger man writhed in ecstasy. Aaron forced Spencer to eat periodically and handed him water, which was gratefully taken with a hazy smile. When Spencer got up to use the bathroom, he would quickly strip the sheets and replace them with fresh ones that Spencer had wisely advised him to stockpile next to the bed.

“God, Spencer,” Aaron’s hands slid on the sweaty skin of Spencer’s thighs as his lover rode him. “It’s too much.”

“Not enough,” Spencer retorted, his head thrown back, his hands gripping Aaron’s shoulders and his cock bouncing between their bodies. Pushing himself up from his reclined position, Aaron gathered Spencer to him, one hand around his back and the other squeezing his cock. “Yes,” Spencer hissed as he pumped his thighs even harder, riding Aaron like they hadn’t had sex in weeks. “Yes.”

Aaron felt another orgasm suddenly rip from his as his body seized. It seemed to come from his toes, curling them and tightening his grip. Spencer cried out, throwing his head forward and sinking his teeth into the meaty flesh where Aaron’s neck met his shoulder. Aaron cried out again and his cock pulsed as he felt Spencer’s cum coating his hand between their bodies.

When he could breathe again Spencer turned to Aaron with a sated expression on his face and Aaron knew that the heat had passed. His cock slipped from Spencer’s loose hole and he lay his lover down on the bed beside him. Spencer’s hair was a sticky tangled mess of sweat and cum, while Aaron was sure his wasn’t much better. The room stank of sweat and sex and Aaron’s whole body ached but he couldn’t stop grinning. He was pretty sure that his permanent frown had been replaced with smile lines, which was confirmed when Spencer reached up with a shaky hand to trace his dimples.

“Hey,” he said softly and pressed a gentle kiss to his Omega’s palm. “How do you feel?”

“Sore, sweaty, stinky but amazingly ridiculously happy. That was amazing.”

“Yup,” Aaron confirmed and allowed Reid to snuggle into him. His whole body ached, the bite mark stung but he was happier than he had ever imagined possible. They dropped into an exhausted doze, wrapped around one another and finally bonded.

When they awoke in the late afternoon, they traded lazy kisses relishing these last hedonistic moments before they would leave the bedroom and return to some semblance of normality. Aaron couldn’t stop tracing the bond mark on Spencer’s neck. He was pleased that he’d bitten low enough that Reid could easily hide it beneath a shirt but he knew that there would be questions.

“We’ll have to tell the team before the end of the leave,” Aaron murmured. “Rossi and Emily will be able to smell us now. Even if you go back on your suppressants, they’ll know I’ve bonded with someone. I smell different.”

“You smell amazing,” Spencer supplied and nuzzled further into his lover. Aaron chuckled and tightened his hold.

“Thank you but they’ll know I have an Omega and they know we’re in a relationship. If Morgan thinks I’ve been cheating on you, he’ll kill me.”

“You’re right,” Spencer murmured after a few more moments. “We should probably explain over food. People like food.”

Aaron laughed, shocking himself with how carefree he sounded. “Alright. We’ll have them over here.”

“We should cook together.”

“You’re letting me cook?”

Spencer’s brow furrowed with mock concentration. “That thing you do with the blue box, you know where you add extra cheese to the mac and cheese is pretty good.”

“That’s Jack’s favourite,” Aaron protested with a smile. “You like my cooking.”

Spencer hummed his agreement, “Though if we want to branch out beyond pasta, I should probably plan the menu. And Rossi will bitch if we make Italian food.”

Aaron had to concede that. All his ‘signature’ meals were pasta based. “Ok, chef, you decide the menu and I will chop and stir as directed. Come on, we need to shower.”

Hotch had fired off a text to the whole team inviting them to his apartment for an impromptu dinner the Friday night before they were return to work. It wasn’t ideal if one of them was to react badly but Morgan would only be back from Chicago Friday morning so it was the only time that they could get everyone at once.

By midday, Spencer was already fretting over the menu and preparing as much as he could in advance. By five o’clock, he’d re-set the table three times despite Aaron trying to get him to sit down. It probably didn’t help that Aaron was dusting the bookshelves for the second time and considering polishing all his shoes while he was telling Spencer to relax. The look Spencer gave him clearly called him on that bullshit. At six thirty the buzzer rang and Aaron stood to let in Garcia, Morgan and JJ. They’d asked the Betas in the team to come earlier since the Alphas would be tipped off by the smell as soon as they entered the house. Garcia gave Hotch a big hug, with a whispered congratulations in his ear, before skipping off to the kitchen apparently to help Spencer.

“So, what’s the big news?” Morgan asked looking around the dining room with a beer in his hand as Hotch handed JJ a glass of wine.

“How do you know there’s news?” Aaron countered.

“Penny was practically bouncing in her seat the whole way over here and, no offense Hotch, but you never have team dinners at your home.”

“Touché. We want to tell you all together so let’s wait for Dave and Prentiss.”

On cue, the buzzer rang again and Hotch went to open the door to Dave and Emily, who stopped in their tracks. Identical expressions of wide-eyed astonishment on their faces.

“Aaron?” Rossi choked out.

“I am going to kill you,” Emily bared her teeth and took a menacing step towards Hotch. “He loves you.”

“Spencer? Now!” Aaron shouted down the hall, the panic in his voice only barely masked. Sure, he was pretty sure he could take Emily in a fight but he really didn’t want to try it.

Spencer came skidding around the corner on his stocking feet, the rest of the team poking their heads out of the lounge to see Emily back Hotch up against the wall, close her hand on Hotch’s collar and practically lift him off his feet.

“Em! Emily! It’s fine. I’m fine. Please put my bonded down.”

“Your bonded?” Emily turned to Spencer her nostrils flaring and that open-mouthed shocked look reappearing. She dropped Hotch who tugged his shirt straight again.

Rossi still hadn’t moved beyond the door and he turned to his friend again, looking a little lost. “Aaron?”

“Why don’t we close the door and move into the living room? We’ll explain there.”

So the team gathered around the table and Spencer told him his story. He told them about presenting as an Omega. He told them about developing his suppressant. He told them about his choice to enter the FBI. He told them about Georgia and being forced to reveal his gender to Hotch. (‘Rehab facility, my ass’ Morgan snorted). Aaron told them about how they only got together after the divorce. Aaron told them about how they had bonded, one hand brushing the bond bite on his own neck, which made Garcia audibly sigh.

“I was ready to kill you for breaking Spencer’s heart for some stupid Omega,” Emily muttered.

“I noticed,” Aaron deadpanned. “I admire your restraint. I thought it would have been Morgan.”

“Hey, if I could have smelled that, I would have put you down,” Morgan concurred. “How come you aren’t surprised by any of this Baby Girl?”

“Oh well, my baby genius came to me with a special project so I got an advanced screening of the big reveal. Well, our fearless leader didn’t know that I knew but I did know and now he knows that I knew but now we all know so the point is moot.”

“Yes, that.” Spencer pointed at her.

Rossi had been silent up to this point, apart from mainlining the whiskey that Aaron had helpfully pressed into his hand but now he spoke, his voice a little shaken and the comment somewhat a non-sequitur. “But you carry a gun?”

JJ rolled her eyes but Spencer placed an arm on her forearm before leaning forward slightly. Nothing had changed. He could still fight his own battles. “Yes, Rossi, my delicate, weak Omega arms are capable of lifting a firearm.”

“No, I mean, you’ve killed people with that gun.”

Spencer huffed out an irritated breath and stood slightly, hands resting on the table as he pressed forward into Rossi’s personal space. “Rossi, I know an Omega who was an apprentice to a serial killer. Not because he was weak and easily coerced. No, he was the one who approached the serial killer. He found him. He learned from him. He enjoyed the kills.”

“Spencer,” Aaron cautioned but he couldn’t hide his slight amusement as the table flinched and Dave positively blanched. “You all know he’s not talking about himself.”

“What?” Spencer looked up to see everyone looking a little wary. Reclaiming his seat he brushed his hair behind his ears. “No, of course not. I’d never be caught.” Spencer looked over to Aaron and they both grinned, “But I proved my point that Zack’s case will be useful even just for shock value.”

“Useful for what?” Morgan asked.

“Well, that’s the project I needed Garcia for. I’ve found others like me. Other Omegas who are living as Betas and working in law enforcement. We’ve authored a paper together and we are submitting it to Scientific American this week.”

“Reid,” Emily’s eyes were wide and shocked. “They’ll kill you.”

“I won’t let anyone harm Spencer,” Aaron growled, baring his teeth in Emily’s direction. The new bond still making him feel somewhat overly protective of his Omega.

Spencer rolled his eyes but nestled in closer to Aaron. “They won’t be able to, Em. We’re prominent figures and we’re going to be very public about releasing this. They won’t be able to just make us disappear. If they were to go the route of discrediting us, they’d have to overturn hundreds if not thousands of cases. We’re going about this in the safest way possible. I’m not stupid.”

“Obviously, Mr. three PhDs.” Morgan jibed and Spencer smiled at him, grateful that his declaration didn’t seem to have affected their friendship.

“Are you sure they’ll publish it?” JJ asked, “I mean, they could just suppress the article.”

“Dr. Brennan is handling that. She’s on the review board. Really, all of us hold a fair amount of clout. Scientific American had been trying to get me on one of their panels for years. They’ll publish. It’s too big a breakthrough for any good scientist to ignore. Look, I know that there are going to be repercussions. There will probably be attempts on our lives from Alpha supremacist groups and maybe from other more mainstream groups but this is worth it. The way that Omegas are treated is unacceptable. We are second class citizens, barred from certain professions, unable to own property, unable to prosecute an Alpha in cases of abuse. Even you, Rossi, assume that, as an Omega, I should be unable to fire a gun. Do you not realise how ridiculous that sounds? Imagine if women were treated that way?”

“So we’re your test run?” Morgan asked, “See how we react before the big reveal.”

“Sort of, I guess. I mean, you’re my family. Aaron and I wanted you all to know that we bonded.” Garcia let out a little whoop and Spencer smiled. “But yes. You all needed to know the truth. I’m not ashamed of my gender. I never was. I just didn’t want to live the life that apparently an Omega should. I wanted to make my own choices. I hope this won’t change anything between us.”

“Of course not, Spencer,” JJ gushed, smiling.

“Hey man, I mean you’ve always been an Omega and you’ve always had my back. This don’t change a thing,” Morgan assured him.

Emily grinned, “And I thought Cyrus was underestimating a Beta. What an ass.” Spencer shuddered slightly at the reminder but he appreciated the sentiment.

All eyes turned to Rossi who sighed heavily. “I trust you, kid. I do. Still, this is hard for me. Give me time.” Spencer lay a restraining hand on Aaron’s thigh as his Alpha looked like he was about to start berating Rossi. Catching Rossi’s eye, Spencer nodded his understanding. He knew it would be a long road ahead of him and that even those he considered his friends would be re-evaluating who he was and what he could do simply because his gender had been revealed. Dave wasn’t a bad person but he’d been raised to believe certain infallible truths. It would take time to re-write his world view. “So, let’s eat?”

Chapter Text

Abstract as appeared in Scientific American Volume: 301 Issue: 2 Date: August 2009

The Secret Omega: Existent Hormonal Suppressant Drugs that Enable Omega-Individuals to Live and Function as Betas in Law Enforcement

It is a long-held idea in society that Omegas must be excluded from certain vocations due to the temperamental nature of their biology and the detrimental effects that their biology can have on Alphas. To this purpose, they have been barred from several areas of society but particularly the Alpha-dominated law enforcement professions. The authors have challenged the belief that there does not exist a way for Omegas to control their heats and thus to lead full lives in every area of society. Our hypothesis was that it is possible to develop a drug that will not only act as a contraceptive but suppress the Omega biology to the point that the subject can live as a Beta. The subjects of this extremely unorthodox study have been the authors themselves who have, in isolation from each other, developed hormonal suppressant drugs over extended periods of time, all over a decade, that have enabled them to live as Betas despite being genetically Omega. The results are clear. The authors have all enjoyed careers in law enforcement and remain undetected and unidentified by their superiors or the many other Alphas that they encounter daily, until this point in time. The significance of this article cannot be underestimated. The authors will willingly submit themselves and their respective formulae to peer testing to prove their biology and the effectiveness of the developed suppressants.

 

Spencer cleared his throat as he stepped behind the podium and adjusted the microphone. The constricting bullet-proof vest bulked up his thin frame slightly. Spencer hated the constriction but he’d promised Aaron he would wear it. He’d also allowed Garcia to personally vet every single person in this room and he knew that she was monitoring the security cameras while the rest of the team patrolled the room. He glanced over at Hotch standing seemingly nonchalantly in the corner but his sharp eyes were continually scanning the crowd. Sensing Spencer’s gaze, he looked up and gave him the smallest of smiles but he knew that Spencer had seen it from the way his features relaxed slightly. Then he turned again and faced the assembled press.

 

“Good afternoon. I am SSA Dr. Spencer Reid with the Behaviour Analysis Unit of the FBI. I am the co-author of a recent paper published in Scientific American,” the press started to perk up as they realised just who was standing in front of them and exactly why this conference had been called, “and I am an Omega.” The press went wild, shouting questions, leaping from their seats towards the platform to thrust microphones in Reid’s direction. He stood, unmovable, projecting strength and authority just as Aaron had coached him to when in a courtroom. Framed by the wings of the eagle on the FBI logo he looked like an avenging angel. He was fiercely beautiful, Aaron caught himself thinking, so unlike the stereotype of an Omega. Finally, faced with Spencer’s implacability, the press calmed down.

 

“I’ll take your questions now,” Spencer informed them choosing the first journalist from the sea of raised hands and so it began. The world was changing. An Omega was changing the world.