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Irrational Fears

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Irrational Fears

Disclaimer:  I don’t own CSI, its characters, or anything else associated with the show other than the DVDs… although if I did, Sara and Grissom would’ve gotten together a long time ago, Ecklie would’ve been killed, and Warrick would be mine.  :-D

Spoilers:   Come on, does it really matter?  We’ve seen all the episodes by now, haven’t we?

Rating:   PG

Summary: A topic of discussion arises that prompts Grissom to share the truth he’s never shared.  GSR straight shot.

A/N:  This idea came to me when I heard some girls down the hall shrieking over a bug.  I kept thinking how stupid it is that people get scared over the most harmless things, and it led me to this.   (For those of you who don’t know, Wendi is the girl who replaced Mia in DNA.)  Please, no flames.

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Anticipating a long night, Wendi walked into the break room before shift for some of the sludge called coffee served by headquarters.  Warrick, Nick, Catherine, Sara, and Greg were sitting around the table awaiting their fearless leader and assignments for the night, and laughing at some joke she must have missed.  Ignoring the jovial engagements of the others, Wendi reached for a Styrofoam cup from the cabinet, only to shriek and jump back in surprise a moment later.

Her sudden hysterics drew concerned stares from the others in the room.

“What’s wrong, Wendi?”  Warrick was the first to speak.

She merely pointed to the cupboard.  Greg moved to her side of the room and looked up in the cabinet to see a small cockroach crawling near the cups.

“Oh, come on.  It’s just a bug,” he sighed. 

“It’s not ‘just a bug’,” she said emphatically.  “It’s a cockroach!”

Sara perked up.  “Don’t kill it, Greg.”  She pulled out a specimen jar from the kit by her chair and handed it to him.  “Use this.”

“You’re going to keep it?!” Wendi asked incredulously, a disgusted look on her face.

“Grissom would be heartbroken to find one of his little friends squashed.”  Nick put on a pouty lip and sad puppy dog eyes that made Catherine laugh outright.

“I don’t understand why you’re so afraid of it,” Greg said as he scooped the roach into the jar and screwed on the lid.  “It’s completely harmless, not to mention it’s like 10 time smaller than you are.”

Wendi crossed her arms across her chest.  “Okay, so it’s an irrational fear, but I’m entitled.  Everybody has some kind of irrational fear, Superman, even you.”

He puffed out his chest dramatically.  “Superman fears nothing!”

Sara threw her already empty Styrofoam cup at him.  “Sit down, smartass.”

“She’s right, you know,” Catherine smiled.  “We all have stupid things we’re scared of.  What’s yours, Sara?”

“Oh, I know this one,” Warrick smiled.  “Saliva.”

Nick laughed.  “You’re scared of spit?”

“No!” she said quickly.  “I am not afraid of spit.  I just happen to find it rather disgusting.”

“So what are you afraid of?” Greg pushed.

“I don’t like bees,” she said flatly.  She looked at the person nearest her to change the subject.  “What about you, Warrick?”

“Drowning.”  His speedy answer startled the others.

“You’re afraid of water?” Greg asked, stunned.

“No, not water.  Just drowning.  Ever since I was a kid.”

“Actually, that’s not all that irrational,” Sara piped up.  “The odds of accidentally drowning in your own bathtub are only one in 685,000.”

Nick shook his head.  “Where do you get this stuff?”

“Probably the same place you learned all about fortune cookies,” she retorted.  “Your turn.”

“Easy.  I’m claustrophobic.”

An uneasy tension filled the room as they were reminded of the agonizing hours he’d spent in his own personal hell.   The thought of his abduction still sent shivers down their spines.  Even Wendi could feel the anxiety mounting, though she’d not been present for the disaster.  Moving toward the table, she tried to lighten the mood.

“I heard the girl before me had some kind of weird obsession with everything being spotless.”

Greg laughed.  “Yeah, that definitely sounds like Mia.  She had a fit with Hodges because he once told her that alternating hands while double gloving increases the risk of contamination.”

“I seem to remember a conversation about birthday cake that was rather disturbing,” Nick chimed in.

Warrick looked to Catherine.  “You started this conversation… What’s your irrational fear?”

“Clowns creep me out.”

Sara shivered.  “Me, too.”

Nick’s eyebrows took a dive as a confused smirk crossed his face.  “That’s it?  That’s your irrational fear?  But you both worked that clown case two years ago.”

“That only confirmed my suspicions that clowns were creepy, and the people who get into clowns are even creepier.”  Shaking away the memories of that particular case, she looked to Greg.  “I haven’t heard anything out of Superman yet.”

“Yeah, Greg.  Fess up!” Warrick called, playfully punching at the young CSI’s shoulder.

“I told you, Superman is fearless!”

He suddenly found himself being pelted with odd objects from around the room, including but not limited to another Styrofoam cup, crumpled pieces of paper, and a balled up piece of duct tape from Sara’s kit.

“Okay, okay!  It just so happens that your favorite ex-lab tech is a bit superstitious.”

Sara raised an eyebrow.  “Superstitious?” she repeated.  “You mean like walking under a ladder or opening on umbrella inside a building?”

“No, nothing drastic,” he said, rocking on his heels a bit.  “Just…”

“Out with it, Greg!” Nick prodded.

"Paraskavedekatriaphobia," he pushed out quickly.

“Say what?” Warrick asked, a questioning look darting from his bright green eyes.

“Fear of Friday the thirteenth,” came a voice from the hallway, in a tone that made Wendi excuse herself and head quickly toward the DNA lab.  They all turned to the doorway to see Grissom stalk into the room with a handful of assignments.  Making his way to the head of the table, he asked, “Why are we talking about Greg’s irrational superstitions?”

Sara was the only one not intimidated by his obviously bad mood.  Staring him down, she said, “Wendi saw a cockroach and freaked out, so we saved him and got into a discussion about all the different irrational fears that we have. … What’s yours, Grissom?”

“Spiders,” he said flatly.  “Vegas is in knee deep in crime tonight, so we’ll have to divide and conquer.”  Diving straight into assignments, he didn’t see the collective eye roll from the rest of the team.  Handing a different case to each person, he passed out their slips and watched them as they filtered out of the break room.

All but Sara.

She stayed in her chair and stared at him until he noticed her presence still in the room, raising the hairs on the back of his neck.  Meeting her stare, he sighed and asked why she hadn’t gone to her scene.

“You never answered my question.”

“Yes, I did,” he said quickly, trying to sound indifferent and failing miserably.

“No, you didn’t.  You said ‘spiders’, and we all know full well that you are not afraid of spiders.  You keep them as pets and set them on your shelves right next to Henry and his friends.”

He raised an eyebrow.  “Henry?”

She nodded toward the cockroach in the specimen jar sitting in the middle of the table.  Crossing her arms over her chest, she leaned back in her chair.  “So what are you really afraid of, Gil Grissom?”

He got up and headed toward the door.  “I’m afraid that the body will get cold before you get to your crime scene.  I’ll be in my office.”  With that, he left her to her musings.

She shook her head and looked down at her assignment sheet once more.  ‘419 in Paradise.’  Nothing out of the ordinary… until she turned it over.  On the back was written a note addressed to her.

‘That’s odd,’ she thought.  Sitting straight up in her chair, she read the words before her.

Sara,

I can’t do it anymore.  I can’t sit around and pretend that I don’t care about you.  You’ve made it clear over and over again how you feel for me, and it kills me that I haven’t been able to do the same.  I’ve been so afraid that I can’t give you what you need, and my greatest fear is losing you.

Don’t let my fears come true, Sara.  Meet me for dinner after shift.  Let’s see what happens.

Grissom

Moved beyond words, Sara dropped the sheet on the table and headed for Grissom’s office.  The door was left open.  He sat at his desk, papers and files spread before him, but it was obvious that he wasn’t really working.  He rose to meet her as she strode in, determination apparent on her face as she walked around the desk and stood before him.  He tried to say something but he was immediately silenced as her lips met his and her arms wrapped around his neck.  Sheer confidence exuded from her as she sought to show him just how much his small beginning meant to her. 

When she pulled back, he smiled.  “I was so afraid you’d say it was too late.”

She gave him her famous Sara smile, the gap-toothed grin he’d recognize anywhere, and whispered, “That’s the most irrational fear I’ve ever heard.”

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