Note: This was written as a bit of a drabble for crimeland for Garcia week! I pulled the idea from thin air and just fell in love with the idea. It seemed like something Garcia would own.
The coffee that she had been pouring missed the cup and splashed onto her hands, provoking a shriek and a moment later, her favourite
mug (painted with cats and rainbows) shattered on the floor. Her first reaction was to look down at the shards of the cup, and she saw the grey kitty’s face cut in half, and her eyes teared up behind her glasses.
“Hey hey hey,” came the concerned yet deeply soothing voice of Morgan, and he eased the coffee jug from her grip and put it on the counter. “You okay?”
She nodded numbly, still staring at the mutilated animal on the floor.
“Garcia, look at me.”
Garcia turned, her eyes rising from the floor and up at his face where his eyebrows were furrowed. “I’m fine, Morgan, really. Just an accident.”
He seemed ready to accept this for the time being and knelt to collect the pieces of Garcia’s treasured mug. He was swift and careful and in a moment he stood with the colourful crockery and moved to toss it in the bin. Garcia jumped for his arm and gripped it.
“Wait,” she said, her voice tense.
“Baby, it’s broken. You ain’t going to be able to fix it.”
“Yeah, I know, but...”
Morgan sighed and said, “you gotta let it go.”
It wasn’t that Garcia was a person who dwelled on things a lot: she had a few select items that she kept close to her heart and the rest was neither here nor there. But this mug... she couldn’t bare to let go of it.
“Morgan, I just... I want to keep it, ok?” she said, and with a determined move, she took the pieces from his hands and into her own. They were still warm from the coffee.
“Your hands – you’re burnt, Garcia,” Morgan said, sighing again. “What’s wrong with you?”
Morgan didn’t mean for it to sound accusing – he meant for her to talk to him about what was worrying her. But to Garcia’s ears, it was an
insult: a jab at her sentimentality and pathetic nature. She snatched her hands back from where he was touching them, defensive and withdrawn. Cradling the pieces of her broken mug, she turned on her heel and stalked off, leaving Morgan to deal with the split, sticky coffee on the floor.
In the sanctity of her office, Garcia let the cup pieces fall to her desk before letting herself cry. Her glasses became foggy, and she tossed them off to get better access to her eyes. The tissue came away with smudges of black and purple – her colour theme for the day – and she sank onto her chair.
Morgan didn’t understand the importance of the mug. It wasn’t just a perfect representation of Garcia’s personality – what with all the rainbows and kittens – but it had been the last present her parents had given her. It had been a silly gift – something her parents had known she’d hate, but she’d laughed and accepted it anyway, shoving it in the back of her closet and forgetting all about it til she moved out. That was when it hit her how important each and every moment she’d spent with them had been.
In her small den of humming computers and glowing screens, Garcia rubbed her eyes and decided that she had cried enough. With her eyes dry and her throat clear, she punched in the speed dial two, and heard the phone connect with Hotch.
“I have that information you want, Hotch. She had only one credit card...”
While she worked, Morgan hurriedly ran from the office to a small craft shop he knew of – he’d been there for presents once or twice before.
He knew the owner, who lived in the same apartment building as he did, and had called before coming down. As soon as the bell tinkered, an elderly woman swathed in ponchos of knitted green-and-yellow yarn waddled out with a box in her hands.
After polite conversation and Morgan’s feverent thank you’s, he drove back. The eyes of Reid and Prentiss followed him through the bullpen
and to Garcia’s door. He could hear her inside talking to Hotch, her tone professional and lacking just that hint of spark that was so typically Garcia – and he knew it was because of the mug. He smiled and shook his head, deciding to leave his gift outside the door for his girl to find.
When Garcia ventured from her office at 7:06pm, the last thing she was expecting was to trip over. Immediately blaming her heels combined with her weariness, she almost missed the box with a red bow lying at her feet. Stooping to pick it up, she read the tiny note attached: ‘great new memories but never forget the old ones.’
Peeking open the box, Garcia’s breath hitched: inside was a mug painted a neon green filled with lollipops and dancing dogs. She stared in awe at the beauty of the mug before clutching it to her chest and walking to the elevator, a decidedly Garcia-like spring in her step.