Title: Rock Paper Scissors 13/?
Rating: FRAO for violent rape and murder scene
Pairing: Morgan/Reid, but mentions of Garcia/Kevin & Hotch/JJ
Summary: Morgan, Reid and Joe make a shocking discovery. Barry takes another victim.
Beta: None. Ah well. All mistakes are mine.
ConCrit: Better than watching Reid suck on a lollipop (and that was pretty darned good)
SPOILERS: Some canon from all seasons, but not always in the way it happened on the show.
Disclaimer: I don’t own any rights or trademarks to Criminal Minds, the FBI, CBS or any of the characters within. No infringements of these copyrights are intended. Any similarities between original characters therein are a coincidence. I make no profit from the following fictional story. (Fictional, maybe, but I swear this happened all in my head).
7:04am in Charleston, West Virginia
Dr. Spencer Reid
The entire drive to Charleston I feel Morgan’s cynicism. It’s not towards me, it’s for Joe. Not really for him specifically, more for the predicament. Joe and Agent Ringer are trying to work an open case they’ve been tracking for years, it must be frustrating for them. We’re trying to find a serial killer who has killed someone we suspect is a member of The Gaia. It’s a series of intersections that have worked to complicate our individual cases and made it impossible to work one without working the other. But still, Morgan feels like we are being used by Joe to get to The Gaia.
I’ve been working with Morgan long enough to figure out his attitudes towards cases.
I feel guilty for our conversation last night. He willingly laid everything out on the line, said he’d help me no matter what. He also said he’d stay with me after I first told him about Toby Bell. I still plan to leave the FBI after this case, I plan to leave DC. I plan to leave Derek behind. But I didn’t have the heart to tell him that, and maybe that’s because I feel myself wanting to stay. That maybe, just maybe, things will be okay. That we can be happy and together and safe and free of worry.
Joe stops the SUV in front of the hospital and flashes his badge at the attendant. We get out of the car and are met by a detective wearing a brown suit with his shield pinned to his chest. “You must be the FBI. Agent Hotchner called me and told me you’d be coming. I’m Detective Cillian Duggard.”
Joe introduces us. “What can you tell us about the car crash victim, Carson Knight?”
“I can’t tell you much about him, because our meager background check came up with Mr. Knight being dead since 1997 from a heart attack. I was informed that you have someone on your team in Autryville looking into this further.”
“Stolen identity,” I look to Morgan and back at the detective. “We were told there were items in the vehicle relating to the protests happening today in Autryville?”
He nods. “Fliers, that’s pretty much it. The backseat had two suitcases for us, and we found a train ticket stub. He came from Minnesota, but that could have just been a transfer point. But there’s something else you should know. We found this in his wallet.”
Joe takes a small piece of paper from the detective and reads aloud. “Meet on Yew Mountain, Barry. Three down.” He hands the paper back. “Yew Mountain is where we suspect The Gaia are camping out. Barry is the leader.”
“We saw them,” Morgan interjects. “Prentiss and I. They are definitely living up there.”
“Three down, we have four murders. But this could have been written before,” I add.
“If they have anything to do with the murders at all. This guy knows something about The Gaia.” Joe takes a deep breath. “We’d like to talk to him.”
“Sure, he’s in room 248. He’s awake, I was just up there take his statement. Cuts and bruises, broken ribs, and a broken femur on the left side. He ain’t going anywhere. I have to get back to the station,” he hands Joe a card. “Please keep in touch.”
“Thank you.” As we walk into the hospital, Joe begins ordering us. “Don’t tell him that we know about the murders or mention The Gaia by name. Just ask him his whereabouts, where he’s from, what he’s doing.”
“With all due respect Agent Helman,” Morgan says, “we know how to do our job. And you are not our Unit Chief.”
I privately smirk at Morgan’s remark as we are directed to Carson Knight’s room on the second floor. When we arrive, he’s awake, staring at CNN news coverage of the protests in Autryville on the television in the corner of the room. “Mr. Knight?” Joe asks.
He sits up. “You aren’t the police.”
Morgan shakes his head, taking a step in front of Joe to show his alpha status. There’s something so sensual away about the Morgan works, how he dances with gestures and looks and questions when talking with a witness or questioning an unsub. I never really noticed the intimacy of the way he works before, but now I’m almost distracted by it. I’m starting to notice all sorts of things about the people I work with. I think I’m more conscious of it, now that I know it’s all coming to an end soon.
“Mr. Knight, My name is Supervisory Special Agent Derek Morgan. This is Agent Helman and Dr. Reid. We need to talk to you.”
“I could deny that I don‘t know what this is about, but you would know I was lying now wouldn‘t you?” He grabs the remote from his lap and turns off the TV. I notice bandages on his left side from his neck down.
“What’s your name?”
“What’s your real name?”
Mr. Knight rolls his eyes. “My name is Carson Knight. I was in a car accident on my way to an environmental protest.”
“How did you find out about the protests?” I ask. “Watching the news?”
“The internet. I like to keep my eye on what’s going on. I never know when I‘ll be able to help.”
“So you saw that there was a protest over one little mining company and you hopped a train from Minnesota and then rented a car to drive out there?” Joe asks. “Who are you meeting?”
Carson Knight squints just a little, perhaps from the pain. “I’m there to meet others who believe in the cause of saving our planet. I’m told that they won’t let me leave today, but I’ll check out AMA, rent another car and go down there. I’m not under arrest, and even if I have to be wheeled around, I’ll be there to assist.”
“You’re obviously in pain, what’s the rush?” Morgan asks. “Barry waiting for you?”
I see Joe is upset at Morgan playing our cards so quickly. But what I don’t think Joe has picked up on is that ‘Carson Knight’ knows we aren’t stupid, he knows we know something. If we feed him something, we can gauge his reaction and he’ll let us know more than he thinks. Besides, he’s not going anywhere. We aren’t disappointed. Carson Knight tenses at the mention of Barry’s name. Perhaps he’s under the influence of pain medication, which could work to our favor.
“I have never met Barry, I was just told when I get there that he might be someone I’d want to meet.”
“He’s a very interesting person, Barry,” Joe says. “Right now our other agents are talking to him at the Autryville Police Station.”
Mr. Knight lays his head back and closes his eyes. “He wouldn’t say anything about me, because he and I haven’t met. Not officially.”
“That’s not what he said,” Morgan says. “He says you’ve been helping him.”
Carson Knight opens his eyes and smiles. “I do help people, I help this cause. I want to get involved. Maybe that’s all he meant.”
“You are so devoted to helping that you are going to check out of here, right?” Morgan rolls his eyes. “Maybe your little boyfriend really wants your help with his little group. But see, you getting in this car accident just causes him a slew of problems now doesn’t it? You still need to get to Autryville come hell or high water.”
The satellite phone buzzes in my pocket, and I see it’s Garcia. Excusing myself into the hallway where I can safely talk. “Garcia, what did you find?”
“Well, he isn’t Carson Knight boy wonder. His real name is Nathan Villisca, age 27. He’s currently unemployed, living off his father’s life insurance. His father was killed in a car accident two years ago in Minneapolis.”
“So he plucked Carson Knight’s identity right out of the air, there’s no connection?”
“Oh but there is. See, Carson Knight is the father of Gregory Knight, who just so happens to run Knight Testing Systems just outside Seattle, which is a private company that contracts out to others to test their products. Everything from medication trials on humans to poking cute little bunny foo foo’s in the eye with mascara wands.”
“Let me guess, Nathan Villisca worked for Knight Testing Systems.”
“Dr. Reid, you aren’t just a genius, you’re clairvoyant,” Garcia laughs. “Not only did Villisca work for Knight, but he worked in the public relations department. He had interned during college and got a permanent job doing administration. His job was to filter through hate mail and keep tabs on websites and groups who directly mentioned Knight Testing Systems. He had his fingers on the pulse of eco-activism.”
“When did he leave the company?” I ask, Morgan coming outside into the hall to join me.
“This is where things get interesting. Villisca must have seen one too many blogs about the evils of the company he was working for. He went online and orchestrated a break-in the unit where all the animals used for makeup testing were kept. Freed everything that was healthy, and they used veterinary-grade euthanasia to put down the ones that were suffering. Villisca was ID’d by a security guard on the video feed, but since the ID was based on his shoes because they were all wearing masks, no charges were ever filed. But Villisca never came back to work. This all went down about three years ago. From what I can tell, he moved in with daddy dearest and after he died, has been living in his father’s home and off the insurance settlement. I’m tracing anything related to his father...ping.” Garcia’s flurried typing is in the background. “He’s been keeping all his utility bills under dear dead dad’s name, internet, phone, cell phone, utilities...you name it. Not even a bank account in his name since the Knight break-in.”
“Can you do me one more favor? Check to see if he’s used the phone from his hospital room. Also, as soon as you get that information from the PDA...”
“Will do. Stay safe.”
“Thanks Garcia.” I hang up and look at Morgan. “Let me handle this.”
We walk back into the room to see Joe standing next to Villisca’s bed. “You want immunity? You give up Barry Mr. Knight.”
I clear my throat and approach the other side of the bed. “He’s right, you need immunity Mr. Villisca. Wait, you’d prefer to be called Loki.”
Nathan Villisca looks at me with a sense of wonderment, and so do Morgan and Joe. “That was quick. I had no idea you’d figure it out.”
“You tell us about Barry. Everything. See, while you were on the lamb living under your assumed identity, the feds got more evidence against you. You’re wanted for domestic terrorism. Some of those animals you released and put down where test subjects in a government program. The Patriot Act, see, Agent Helman here is getting a little itchy to take down The Gaia. He’ll throw you in Guantanamo Bay so fast you won’t realize it’s happened until it’s too late. You’ll never get a trial, never get out. Unless, of course, you want to cut a deal. Lesser charge for information. So, you ready to cooperate?”
I sit down in the chair next to Nathan Villisca’s bed feeling like a cop in a movie. I just played all my cards, so to speak, but I’m confident that he’ll talk. I have no idea if he’s still wanted, and I doubt he’ll serve any real time, but he doesn’t know that. At least the look on his face is telling me that he’s worried.
“Barry is the leader of The Gaia. I was supposed to meet him at his camp on the mountain this morning. I don’t really know much about him or the group other than that they are done pussy-footing around.” Mr. Villisca sighs in pain. “Barry’s serious. Sometimes I wonder how far he’d go.”
“Far enough to hurt someone?” Morgan asks.
“I don’t know. They are camping on the Yew Mountain. I was supposed to park ten miles outside of Slatyville and hike about two miles up into the camp and meet them. Last time I talked to him, he was serious about upping the ante.”
“Meaning what?” I ask.
“This Barry guy, there’s something about him. He’s angry. He comes out of nowhere a while back and just puts this group together. They leave their homes, go on the road, leave everyone behind. It’s like a fucking cult. Don’t get me wrong, the group has done some great things, but...”
“But?” Joe asks.
“I just don’t know what he’s going to do next.” Mr. Villisca hits the button to receive more pain medication. “So, what about that deal?”
Meanwhile, back in Autryville
Barry is downright giddy at the number of people who have already shown up, and more are coming. He’s nervous that Loki hasn’t so much as called yet, but he has a bit of faith. Loki will be here. Maybe he’ll be waiting up near the mines. He’ll meet him when he’s done.
There’s a thump coming from the trunk. Damn, she must have woken up. Barry finds a nice, quiet place. It’s a little ‘lovers lane’ area that he’s noticed on his drives between Slatyville and Miracle King. Right now it’s empty. Nobody comes here during the day. All the environmentalists are at the march, and the locals are also protesting against the protestors, hoping that the media will show both sides of the story. Who knows?
Barry puts on a pair of latex gloves and gets out of the car. He drags his hand along the length of the car as if it were a woman. He’s got a little time to enjoy this, and he plans on it. The waitress from the diner was more about getting the job done. This one will too...but he has to wait until the march is fully underway before he can take her back to town.
The trunk opens with a satisfying ‘ka-clunk’ sound. She’s awake, her big brown eyes pleading up at him. The duct tape around her mouth is holding fast, the rope around her wrists and ankles digging into her flesh and making it red, swollen, angry. It’s poetic, the way a human body changes under force. The way it responds, the noises that come out of someone’s mouth when they are in pain. It’s a lot like when the members of his group do whatever he says. He feels power in the manipulation. He is the creator. It makes him happy.
He pulls her out of the trunk and lets her body thud into the dirt. She moans through her duct-tape and rag gag in pain. Something he did. He laughs and drags her through the dirt and into the woods. Her muffled cries only make him drag her faster over the twigs and rocks. He sees a place he likes and stops.
Barry flips her onto her back so she can look at him. “Fucking whore.”
He unzips his pants and pulls them and his boxers down to his knees. Her eyes shut, as if not looking will somehow make it not happen. She’s the first one who has ever refused to look. Most of them stare at him with wide glossy eyes pleading for him to stop and let her go. Not this one. She knows what’s going to happen, she’s just trying to get through it. That makes him want to hurt her even more.
Using his bowie knife, he cuts her denim jeans off. Each rip and pull jostles her body, but she keeps her eyes firmly shut. He cuts off her shirt and grabs her tits hard. When she doesn’t moan into her gag he grabs them harder, so hard that if she lived long enough it would leave beautiful bruises. Deep purple ones. When the edge of his knife sinks into the flesh on her thigh, that’s when her eyes open. A good palm full of blood serves as an impromptu lubricant, because he doubts this is turning her on and much as it turns him on.
Her struggling just works his cock faster, and he knows it won’t take long. It’s a good thing he put on a condom before he even found her, because he knows that he always gets so carried away that he forgets important things like that. When he comes, he plunges the knife into her stomach at the same time. With his other hand, he pulls her duct tape gag off and the rag out of her mouth. She instantly screams.
Barry pulls the knife out of her stomach and into her face, watching her blood drip off the blade and onto her cheeks, her nose, her lips. Bringing it back down, he stabs her again. And again. He loses track after five, because he’s just watching her eyes roll back in her head, her breaths getting more desperate, and then finally she’s still.
He drags her back to the car, where he makes sure his plastic-lined trunk is empty before dumping her body inside. He goes into the backseat and pulls out an empty trash bag. He strips naked, putting everything in the bag. He grabs the bottle of hydrogen peroxide and the towels, cleaning himself off. After he grabs his clean change of clothes, Barry takes the trash bag of his bloody ones into the woods and hides them. Animals will smell the blood and tear the bag apart, but by the time anyone finds the pieces The Gaia will be long gone.
Taking several deep breaths, he gets behind the wheel and heads towards Autryville. The near-hour drive gives him time to plan out exactly what he’s going to do. It’s beautiful, how he’s going to pull this off. He’ll have to be careful, but he knows that Nino and Seraphina are planning on distracting the cops and feds, pulling them away from the station just long enough for him to do this. Then when they arrest them and take them back to the station...Barry is almost sad. Nino and Seraphina think it’s fake. A deterrent. A scare.
The bomb is real.