TITLE: Bodies at Rest

AUTHOR: Little Red (mylittleredgirl at gmail dot com)

RATING: PG

CATEGORY: Doggett/Reyes UST, challenge fic

SPOILERS: nothing beyond general season 9

CHALLENGE: first-line meme. This one was for Isabelle Ashe, using the first line of one of her stories.

SUMMARY: Friday. Again. And nothing ever changed.

Monica slumped against the wall of the elevator as she waited for the doors to close and the car to ascend to the surface.

Friday. Again. And nothing ever changed.

She didn't really have a right to get testy about it -- she was even feeling a little bit bad for her snappish remark about how John was working late reviewing an old case for Scully again -- but it had been almost two months since she'd had anything of note to do on a weekend, or anyone to do it with, and she was feeling sorry for herself.

Of course, it didn't help that the only person she really wanted to go out with on a Friday night was the same one she worked with all week. Things had changed, a little, but only enough to frustrate her -- and make her feel guilty for wanting more. He smiled at her. Touched her. Said things to her in the company of others that could only be called in-jokes, things that even Scully didn't get. Made her feel just a little bit like a lovesick girl, undeserving of her actual age, hanging on his every word and quietly desperate for attention. Drove her nuts.

And worked late on Fridays. Every single week.

Still, it wasn't his fault that she wanted something from him he had never been willing to give her. If he had even noticed her crankiness, which wasn't guaranteed, he didn't deserve it. She was better than this, after all. She should call up Dana, or that woman she'd met at the new yoga studio in her neighborhood, or even that cute agent from violent crimes who had given her his phone number and was always staring at her hips...

The elevator dinged and the door started to open onto the ground floor. Definitely the cute agent.

"Monica."

John was standing in front of the elevator doors as they opened, and she had to glance back at the panel to make sure it had actually moved. He must've run up the stairs after her.

She was proud to note that her heart didn't even jump -- she was getting better at that, to a point. She probably left her cell phone on the desk or mispunctuated a report or something.

"John?" She stepped out and nodded at the agents filing past her into the open elevator.

He didn't say anything right away. Looked a little lost, actually, like he couldn't remember why he'd bolted up the emergency stairwell to chase her elevator.

And her heart jumped. Dammit.

But she had a phone call to make. Dinner to have. She probably wouldn't actually get as far as sex, because she didn't even know the cute violent crimes agent's first name yet, but that hadn't always stopped her in the past, and it felt important to dangle that mental carrot in front of herself to get her out of this building.

"John, did you want something?"

He looked surprised at her tone. Perhaps she'd overshot her air of having somewhere else to be.

"I'm sorry," she corrected -- weak to those eyes to the last -- and took a deep breath. Her mother had always warned her about blue-eyed gringos. "What's up?"

"Nothin' important..."

And there went her heart again.

"Just... meant to ask you, earlier, if you wanted to catch a beer after work. The game's on. And... we really should talk about that meeting with Kersh before next week."

She frowned, slightly, a part of her thinking of Agent what's-his-name and a real date and something that would mean much less than this, at least to her. But still, even with all of that, she couldn't make herself be torn about it.

"Sure." She touched his elbow as she nodded, watched his pupils dilate slightly. She shouldn't have let herself savor the rush that went through her at the further minute proof that she had some sort of effect on him, even if it was never quite the effect she wanted or never quite enough.

"Just... lemme get my stuff." John shot her a sheepish smirk, and she pressed the call button on the elevator for him.

"We can't talk about Kersh," she decided suddenly.

"Oh?"

"It's Friday," she explained.

He gave her the look that meant he thought she was a bit cracked, but, to her surprise, didn't argue the point.

It wouldn't go anywhere, certainly not the places it might have gone with the girl from the yoga studio or the dark-eyed agent whose name she didn't know. It never did. Still, the smile she gave him when he led her back into the elevator with a hand on her back wasn't fake, and her chest couldn't help but tighten a little in hope when he smiled back.

It wasn't going to be much of a Friday night, but until she found a way to get over this, any something with John would always to be better than anything else.

*end*

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