Different Side of Me
You smoothed your hands over the fancy dress you wore, double-checking how you looked in the large mirror your boyfriend bought last year. Speaking of him, you heard him calling out for you.
“Y/N! Are you ready to go?” His head popped out from the doorway, his eyes immediately going towards where you were in your shared bedroom.
You breathed deeply and smiled tightly, “Yeah, Spence. Let’s go.”
You and Spencer Reid, your boyfriend of nearly two years, were going to meet your parents for dinner at a five-star restaurant they chose. This would be Spencer’s first time meeting your parents because you never really got along with them and you were incredibly nervous about how it would go.
Spencer, sensing your distress, reached his hand out for yours as you walked out of the apartment and towards your car, squeezing it before rubbing circles on the top of your hand with his thumb.
As you both settled in the car, you took another deep breath, flipping the visor down in the car so you could check your makeup once again.
“Y/N,” Spencer chuckled, “you look beautiful. Stop worrying, you’re psyching yourself out and that’s just going to project negative scenarios in your head. It’ll be fine, okay?”
You sent him a smile, “You don’t know what my parents are like.”
He looked at you once more before turning his attention to backing the car out of the spot it’s in. “If you love me, they’ve got to at least tolerate me, right? You and your parents share similarities, not just DNA, but mannerisms and other traits, so statistically, they must have to like me somewhat.”
Spencer was pleased with his deduction, but you knew the truth.
You were nothing like your parents, behavior wise. They were incredibly judgmental, hateful, snobby people who kept you on such a tight leash all throughout your childhood and teen years that you vowed to be nothing like them when you moved out. You kept up with your promise all these years, but they got worse with age, you were able to tell from the weekly phone calls your mother made sure to implement.
They were still trying to control you, even in your adulthood. Which is why it wasn’t surprising when they demanded to meet Spencer, and then chose what date, what time, and where. Spencer was okay with it all, as he was just excited to finally meet the people who raised the girl he loved. But you knew the night would end in emotional disaster. It always did.
Before you knew it, you guys had made it to the restaurant and were quickly escorted in while the valet parker parked your vehicle.
You held your breath while stepping in, with Spencer letting the hostess know the name of your party—Y/L/N.
“Of course, right this way. They’ve ordered already as they’ve been here for twenty minutes, but I’ll get someone right out to take your orders,” the pretty hostess smiled at you both as she led you to the table your parents were at.
Twenty minutes? You couldn’t believe it. You made sure you and Spencer got here ten minutes early. It was barely 7:20 and you knew for a fact that your mother told you 7:30 pm.
As you were thinking this, you and Spencer had arrived at the table. The hostess smiled once more and wished you all a good time before leaving.
“Mom, Dad. You guys said 7:30, the hostess told us you had already been waiting twenty minutes?”
Your father tsk-ed, “C’mon, now, Y/N. First time seeing us since the holidays, and the first time we’re meeting your boyfriend, and the first thing you say to us is an issue with the time?”
You bit back a comment and forced a smile on your face, “This is Spencer Reid, you guys. He works for the Behavioral Analysis Unit of the FBI as a profiler. Spencer, these are my parents, Y/M/N and Y/D/N.”
Your father stood up and reached a hand out towards Spencer, “Nice to meet you.”
Spencer glanced at you briefly before opening his mouth, “I, uh, don’t actually shake hands. The amount of pathogens passed is astounding. It’s actually safer to kiss, you know.”
Your father’s hand was still extended for an awkward moment before he and your mom exchanged a look and he sat back down in his seat next to her. You and Spencer sat down in the seats across from theirs and quickly opened your menus.
As you and he were perusing the options, your mom cleared her throat. “So, Spencer. What is it you do exactly for the FBI?”
At the mention of his name, Spencer set the menu down and looked up. “Well, I’m part of a team that analyzes crime scenes and unknown subjects in an attempt to help police catch them before they commit another crime.”
Your father cocked his head to the side slightly, “so you study criminals?”
Hearing the judgmental tone that you’ve become so accustomed to, you broke in. “Spencer’s amazing at his job. He has 3 Ph.D’s, actually. He’s a genius and saves lives.”
“I’m sure,” your mother said, raising her eyebrow at you.
“Well, what about you, Y/N? How’s your job going for you?” your father asked.
“It’s great. I just got another client, actually.” You were a book editor and absolutely loved your job. Your parents, however…
“It still astounds me that you took such a trivial job. You had so much potential, Y/N. You did amazing in science, you could have become something so much more useful,” your father said.
“He’s right. There’s still time for you to change your mind, you know. Your father’s company is hiring and if you take some college classes or start going for an engineering degree, you’d be sure to find a better paying job there.” Your mother offered.
You didn’t even bother putting a polite smile on your face. “We’ve been over this. I don’t want to be an engineer or go back to school. I’m happy with my job and I’m tired of arguing with you about this. Can we just not right now? You guys are here to meet Spencer.”
You glanced over at your boyfriend, when speaking his name, and could see the confusion and frustration in his eyes.
“We spent so much money sending you to the best private schools and paying for your college education, and this is how you repay us? You won’t even entertain the thought of—“
You cut your mother off, “First off, I’m paying you guys back for my college education. Second off, I don’t have to entertain any thoughts. Stop trying to control me, you don’t have any power over me. I’m my own person and an adult and you both need to accept it. Okay?” You finished your rant with a sharp tone and looked at your parents with disdain.
Your parents exchanged another look before starting yet again.
The waiter hadn’t even come by to take your and Spencer’s order yet and this was the third time your parents were going to try and insult your profession. You were just glad they weren’t going after Spencer. You understood why, though. They didn’t care about him. They just wanted to make sure you knew what they thought of you and how they felt you failed them.
Your mother opened her mouth, “I just don’t understand, Y/N. You could be so much more and do so much better. How are you content with your life?”
“What?” Spencer cut in, his rage clear on his face.
“This doesn’t concern you, Sam,” your father announced.
“This does concern me. Y/N is my girlfriend, the love of my life, and her feelings are important to me. How could you both sit there, insulting her career and putting her down? She’s worked so hard to get where she is. She’s a senior editor at one of the best publishing houses here. She confers on textbooks, fiction, non-fiction, everything because she’s that good at her job. She’s incredibly intelligent and passionate about her work. She’s generous and kind and everything you two seem to be lacking. She’s able to brighten up any room she walks into. I’ve never met anyone like her in my life and doubt I ever will. She’s unique and loving and caring and selfless. I stupidly thought you two and her must have shared some personality and behavioral traits, but now I’m glad I was wrong. You should feel ashamed of yourself for putting Y/N down. She’s just—she’s magnificent and if you can’t see that, then it’s your loss and I’m sorry you both will never realize how charming and wonderful she is.” Spencer finished his spiel with disgust and anger still coloring his face.
“And for your information, my name is Spencer, “ he added, before turning to you. “Would you like to stay or go home?”
You looked over at your parents, the pair of them shocked at Spencer’s outburst. “Home,” you smiled, the first genuine one of the night. “Home sounds amazing.”
He reached for your hand as the pair of you stood up and walked out, without another word to your parents.
As you made your way inside the car, you glanced at him. “Thank you, for all of that back there.”
Spencer looked confusedly at you, “Y/N. Don’t thank me for that. I’m sorry I didn’t believe you or take your words for truth when you said you didn’t get along with them well. I’m also sorry you had to live your whole life with them. I love you so much, and I meant every single word I said back there. They don’t deserve to have you in their lives if they won’t appreciate you like you deserve to be.”
You were overcome with such strong emotions that this beautiful man in front of you would defend you so easily, you didn’t know what to do. You settled for leaning over and kissing him. He placed a hand on your face, angling you deeper into him.
You pulled back slightly, letting your forehead rest against his. “It was pretty hot seeing you so riled up, though.”
Spencer laughed, “your family brings out a different side of me, what can I say?“