You loved coming home to the sounds of your boys yelling for you.
“I’m home, guys!” you yell out, dropping the three pizzas off on the couch as they come barreling from different parts of the house.
“Mom!” Wilder yelps as he throws his arms around your neck.
“Hey there, sweetheart,” you coo, rubbing his back and holding him close just as you feel a pair of strong arms descend behind you, wrapping around both you and Wilder.
“Ma!” DeShawn yells again, squeezing you guys tight as you begin to breathlessly giggle.
“I missed my boys!” you squeal, letting go of Wilder as you ruffle his hair.
“Moooooom…come on,” he complains.
“As long as you refuse to cut it, I hold the right to floof it,” you smile proudly.
“We missed you, Ma,” DeShawn smiles as you turn around and give him a massive hug around his neck.
“I missed you boys, too. I’m so sorry I was gone for so long this time.”
Your heart ached whenever you had to leave your boys. Especially with this being the start of their last year of high school. So many things were happening in their lives. Wilder had gotten a scholarship for two paid-in-full years at one of the top culinary schools in New York, and DeShawn acquired a paid internship for the summer before his first year of college at a law school in NYC that would open doors for him to apply for scholarships he didn’t even think would be possible for himself.
The three of you had come a long way from the old days.
“Mom? Is that pizza for us?” Wilder asks, ripping you from your thoughts as you crane your neck to look up at your solid 6 ft. son.
“Pepperoni and olives for you, three meat for DeShawn, and extra cheesy goodness for me,” you say as you walk over to the pizza, divvying them out as the boys plop themselves down in their respective seats in the living area.
“Could we get something to drink?” DeShawn asks as you shake your head and roll your eyes.
“Only if my pitiful sons find something good to watch on television,” you say as you chuckle, making your way for the kitchen as you begin to grab at glasses.
As your boss stares at you intently, his mind weighing his options heavily, he sighs as he breaks the staring contest between the two of you, conceding defeat and shaking his head.
“You have to tell us everything,” he says.
“Not a problem,” you say as everyone begins to sit down.
But poor Spencer couldn’t rip his eyes away from you.
Turning slowly towards you, your gaze softens lightly as you watch him take in a deep breath through his nose.
“Not the time…” you whisper to him, shaking your head lightly.
You knew what he was thinking.
Nodding lightly, he finally moves for the first time since he had entered the meeting room, his eyes downcast at a folder put in front of him as he opens up the contents, bearing to him not only your life, but the lives of your sons.
“Just before I turned 15, I was raped,” you start.
Your entire team went silent as Spencer’s eyes stayed locked on the folder in front of him.
But you noticed his fingers weren’t moving along the page.
Nor were his eyes jumping across the pictures.
“When I made the decision to have Wilder, my parents were less than thrilled. I was raised in what most people would call a ‘high-society’ type of living, and…to put it simply…they wanted me to abort.”
“But you obviously didn’t,” J.J. interjects.
“No. And it got me banished.”
“They kicked you out?” Rossi asks incredulously.
“No. But I was relegated to a part of the house that no one usually went to. I raised Wilder by myself until I was 18, dropping out of high school and opting for an online GED program, and when I obtained it I moved out and never looked back.”
“So…who is…DeShawn?…” Morgan asks, looking down at the file as he scrolls across DeShawn’s full name.
As your eyes lock onto Morgan, his stare slowly panning up to yours, he takes a shallow breath in through his lips as he says, “DeShawn’s your son, too?”
“Yes,” you breathe.
“How old were you when you had him?”
The delicateness of Spencer’s voice was hard for you to discern. Out of all of the things that could be running through his head, you were sure that the most prominent things were of disappointment.
“I didn’t. I adopted him when I was 20.”
It was the first time Spencer had moved since sitting down, and it was only to whip his head around to you as his helpless gaze stared up at you.
“You adopted another son at 20?” he asks incredulously.
“Yes…” you trail off, your eyes begging Spencer to understand as Hotch gets your attention.
“We don’t have a lot of time, Y/N,” he says lowly.
“Wilder and DeShawn were best friends in preschool,” you sigh as you close your eyes, “but DeShawn’s father was…well, he wasn’t the best father.”
“Bullet points,” Rossi urges.
Whipping your gaze over to him, you clench your jaw as you take in a light breath through your nose.
“Dad beat him up. Dad went to jail. Family didn’t want him. I became family.”
A brief bout of silence descends upon the room, until your eyes pan around and lock back into the screen that has now come back alive with the faces of your sons.
Wilder, his lip now open and bleeding, was sobbing as DeShawn, his eyes swollen shut and his forehead cut and bleeding, leans his head over and rests it on the side of Wilder’s face.
“Ma’s gonna find us,” DeShawn says.
Your eyes widened as they welled with tears.
“Did you know we had audio, Garcia?” Hotch asks sternly.
“N-n-n…no, boss. No, I-I-I…I didn’t,” she stammers breathlessly.
“Ma’s gonna find us both,” DeShawn whispers reassuringly to Wilder.
“You’re damn right I am,” you whisper, your eyes dancing along the screen as the teams heads whip between the television and your face.
“My, my, you have been eating your string beans, haven’t you, Stevie?” she whispered, and Steve felt his eyes fill with tears.
“You always told me they’d make me big and strong,” he whispered, and then threw himself forwards into her welcoming arms. “Ma.”
“You’re so big,” she mumbled against his shoulder, before pushing him back to hold at arms length for scrutinization. “My precious little boy, all grown up.”
“You’re… I know it must be confusing,” he replied, batting at his damp eyes quickly. “It’s… complicated. You’re in the future, Ma.”
“Of course I am,” she sighed, as though it were obvious. “I see a bright light like something straight out of one of Stevie’s – your – comic books, and then I wake up to my boy all grown up. Of course this is the future, Steven; I’m not stupid.”
All over again, Steve had to hold back tears. He had missed his Ma’s whirlwind personality and fierce intelligence.
“The more pressing matter,” she continued, taking his hand and holding it up so his wedding ring glistened, “is when you were going to tell me about this?”