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16 March 2013 @ 02:22 pm
Fic Post: Anapestic Tetrameter or a Typical Night at Home  
Title: Anapestic Tetrameter or a Typical Night at Home
Author: Montiese
Category: AU/Family/Humor
Characters: Emily Prentiss, Jason Gideon, Spencer Reid, Ashley Seaver, Jennifer Jareau, Derek Morgan
Pairing: Gideon/Prentiss
Rating: TEEN
Summary: “Spencer won't ever be normal. But that doesn’t mean that he won't be fully functional in a “normal” world. We do the best we can.”
Author’s Note: This story is written in the Thicker than Water universe where the BAU are kids and teens.


“Hey Spencer?” Ashley walked into the den from the kitchen. Spencer was lying on the couch reading a book. He looked up when he heard his name. “Is this a real word?”

She hopped up on the couch and pointed to the word in her own book. Spencer hadn't read it before; he thought it might be about young witches. He had no idea but Ashley seemed to be eating them up as fast as she was getting them from the library. She was eight now and got her own library card. Jason always encouraged them to read; Spencer was glad she enjoyed it so much. He looked down and saw the word dilapidated.

“Of course it’s a real word.” he replied. “It’s in a book.”

“That’s a silly thing to say.”

“What's so silly about it?” Spencer asked.

“Made up words are in books all the time.”

“That makes no sense.”

“Haven't you ever read Dr. Seuss?” Ashley asked. “He made up great words. I can't even pronounce them all but they were cool. All his stuff rhymed.”

“No.” Spencer shook his head.

“What do you mean no?”

“I mean no. I've never read a Dr. Seuss book.”

“Well what are you reading right now?”

“This is Empty Planet. It’s about…”

“How many times have you read it?” Ashley asked, cutting him off.

“This will make the 12th time. It’s a great book.”

“You can let it go for a while and read a Dr. Seuss book.”

“Why?”

“Because.” She drew the word out and made a funny face. “They make you laugh and they're about good stuff like not being mean to people because they're different and caring about trees and having awesome adventures.”

“Really?”

“Yeah. Even Jason likes Dr. Seuss. Are you sure you’ve never read one?”

“I have an eidetic memory…I would remember.” He replied.

“You have a what?”

“I have an eidetic memory. It’s the ability to remember visuals, sounds, and objects from my memory with extreme precision.”

“What's that mean, Spencer?”

“I could recite an entire chapter of this book if I wanted to, simply put. But it’s more than that.”

“OK. Well c'mon,” she grabbed his hand and hopped off the couch. “If you can read Animal Farm in like 5 minutes, it should only take you one to read Horton Hears a Who.”

“A who? How do you hear a who? That’s empirically impossible.”

“Stop being a genius for a minute.” Ashley said.

“I can't.”

The kids ran up the stairs. Emily stepped back in the hallway to let them by.

“What are you guys up to?” she asked.

“Spencer has never read Dr. Seuss, can you believe it?”

“I didn’t know that. But you love The Grinch at Christmas time. That’s Dr. Seuss.”

“I do like that. I love the end when he realizes Christmas doesn't come from a store. I like when he dresses as Santa and steals all the presents so the Whos can remember the true meaning of Christmas.”

“Let me know how you like it.” Emily said smiling.

“I will.” Spencer smiled too and let Ashley pull him into their bedroom.

He sat down on his bed as she went over to her shelf on the bookcase and looked for the book. For some reason she couldn’t find it but she did find The Sneetches and Other Stories.

“Read The Sneetches, Spencer. It’s one of my favorites.”

“OK.” Spencer reluctantly opened the book and started to read.

***


“It’s OK that I don’t care for him right? I mean not to say that I hate him, and I definitely get what he was trying to say in the book and I think the underlying meaning is important, but truthfully anapestic tetrameter really drives me nuts. It was lucky the book was short so I didn’t have to suffer so long.”

Spencer sat on Emily’s bed playing Trouble. He loved trying to get all the pieces in before the timer went off. On more than one occasion he explained that it was the perfect game for his hand-eye coordination, which wasn’t always the best. He could do a Rubik’s Cube in a matter of moments and put together a puzzle with little effort.

Those were stationary pastimes. This was a lot better than playing baseball or football with Morgan. He tried, wanted to have fun with his big brother, but Spencer frequently got beaned in the head. Board games were much safer.

“Of course it’s OK that you don’t care for him.” Emily replied. “Still though, you’ve only read one of his books. Maybe you should give another a try before dismissing him completely.”

“But its kiddy stuff Emily.” The timer clicked and pieces flew everywhere. “Oh crap.” He jumped off the bed, grabbing the pieces that fell on the floor. After collecting the rest from the bed, Spencer reset the timer and began to play again.

“Jason loves Dr. Seuss and he’s not a kid. I'm not saying that you have to love what Jason loves. I'm just using it to show it’s not kiddy stuff. Having an imagination and enjoying a whole new world will never just be for kids. Though I should take this moment to mention that you're just 11 Spencer.”

“I know.” He sighed, seemingly dismayed by the fact. “Well, maybe I will try him again. I don't know.”

“You only have to if you want to. There are some writers that I've only tried once and then never read again. It’s not illegal or anything, as long as you read something. You’ve got lots of writers that you do enjoy.”

“Who did you only read once Emily?”

“Faulkner.” She replied. “We had to read him for a class assignment and I barely made it through. I just don’t care for his work.”

“His stream of consciousness is the basis for most Southern writers of his day and beyond. My mother read The Sound and Fury to me when I was three. I reread it a few times last year. Flanery O’Connor is one of his contemporaries…you like her work.”

“I do.” Emily nodded. “But when it comes to books, when it comes to anything Spencer, everything isn’t for everyone. You love the imaginative worlds of Roald Dahl but not Dr. Seuss, and it’s OK.”

“Ashley thinks I'm crazy. She said not liking Dr. Seuss was lame.” His fingers moved as quickly as possibly trying to get the game pieces in place. Time was winding down. Spencer had only succeeded in this game once or twice.

“I'm sure she didn’t mean that you're lame. You're her favorite big brother.”

“You think?” Spencer looked at Emily as the timer clicked. Once again pieces scattered everywhere. “Crap.”

“I do think. I also think its time for your bath. Clean up your game; you can play some more tomorrow after homework.”

“OK.”

“Hey Spencer.” Jason knocked and poked his head into Emily’s bedroom. “I think its time for your bath.”

“I know; I'm coming.” Spencer was picking up game pieces everywhere, even feeling under the bed to see if they were there. He started to put the game in the box. “Hey Jason?”

“Yes?”

“What do you like so much about Dr. Seuss? How come we never read him together before?”

“We did; I read you Oh the Places You Will Go at bedtime a few times at the apartment.”

“You did?”

“You don’t remember?” Jason asked.

“No.” Spencer shook his head. “But that’s impossible…I remember everything.”

“I'm sure you don’t remember everything, Spencer.” Emily said.

“Don’t test that theory, Emily. He’ll never make it to his bath if you do.”

“I remember Penelope bought you the book for your birthday.” Spencer put the game box on Emily’s desk. “I never remember reading it at bedtime.”

“We’ll read it again tonight.” Jason put his hand on the back of Spencer’s head. “I bet it'll come back to you in a flash.”

“OK. If I like it though, Ashley will never let me live it down.”

“What do you mean?”

“If he tells you the story, he’ll never make it to his bath.” Emily smiled. “Are you OK running your own water, Spencer?”

“I'm fine. I’ll come back in my pajamas.”

“I’ll be here.” Emily smiled again as he ran out the door. Jason smiled at her.

“What were you two in here talking about?” he asked.

“Anapestic tetrameter and a little Faulkner.”

“Seriously?” he raised an eyebrow.

“Seriously. Apparently Spencer isn’t fond of Dr. Seuss and Ashley thinks he's crazy. I explained to him that everything wasn’t for everyone. It was alright to enjoy his things and to let her enjoy hers.”

“I think it might be too simplistic for him, even with the vivid world Dr. Seuss creates and the underlying themes of his works. Spencer needs more.”

“Do you ever think he's missing out?” Emily asked. She lowered her voice when she asked. Surely Spencer couldn’t hear them from the bathroom, especially with running bathwater, but she didn’t want to be overheard. They always spoke in hushed tones when discussing the children.

“Missing out on what?” Jason pushed the door up some and came further into the room.

He joined Emily, who was sitting in the window seat. In one more month it would be winter…the nights were getting colder. Still, it wasn’t too bad sleeping with an open window. He figured she had been waiting for the kids’ bedtime before having her nightly clove.

“Do you think he's missing out on being a kid?”

“That’s a difficult question. Even if Spencer wasn’t a genius, he was separated from his parents at the age of four. He was forced to grow up much faster than anyone would ever want to. He was able to use his genius as a shield of protection.

“He still does. I won't say it’s all he has; Spencer knows he has a loving family. But everything in his life has been ripped away from him at one time or another except his brain. He’ll always have that.”

“I get it.” Emily nodded. “All the kids are so different and we deal with very interesting things everyday. I just worry about him.”

“I know.” Jason said. “He's going to be OK. He’ll be OK because he has us. And he has his other siblings who pull him into what are considered “normal” kid things. Spencer won't ever be normal. But that doesn’t mean that he won't be fully functional in a “normal” world. We do the best we can.”

“I hope he enjoys the bedtime story tonight. I know that Ashley will.”

“I'm really happy that she's responded so well to reading. Now we just have to get her to settle down a little in school and things will be good.”

Gregarious was a good word to describe Ashley. She was social and funny and loved to entertain, whether she was all alone or in a group. She didn’t have tons of friends but a few close ones. Ashley was a talker.

She did well in school but found it hard to keep quiet when the teacher needed her to. Several notes had been sent home since the start of the school year. Both Emily and Jason had talks with her…she promised to try harder. So far the results were 50-50.

“Emily, can you check this algebra stuff for me before bed.” JJ came walking into the room. “Oops, I forgot to knock. My bad.”

“Good call, JJ.” Jason smiled. “I’ll leave you to it.”

“Will I see you later?” Emily asked looking at him.

“Oh God,” JJ looked back and forth from Emily to Jason. “Don’t make those lovey dovey eyes at each other.” she covered her eyes. “You're killing me.”

“Have I told you lately how hilarious you are?” Jason asked, smirking as he playfully pulled her ponytail.

“Lets take a look at this math.” Emily said.

“This is not math…this is evil. There's letters in it and formulas like science. I don’t know how anyone in their right mind could call it math. I'm pretty positive I'm never, ever gonna use this in my life.”

“I'm gonna check on Spencer.” Jason left the room as JJ climbed up on the bed.

Emily began to look over the work. JJ was getting better with her math. If she started to slip anymore they would look into getting her a tutor. She wanted to go to a good charter high school so her grades had to be excellent.

Emily knew how hard she tried, even when she didn’t want to. JJ was a hard worker. When she wanted something, or needed it, she didn’t mind putting in the time. And she needed a good math grade.

“I wasn’t interrupting anything was I?” JJ picked up the Vanity Fair on Emily’s pillow. She loved reading the stories about Old Hollywood.

“Yes, Jason and I were staring into each other’s eyes. Now we’re not.”

“That’s a joke right?”

“Yes.” Emily nodded. “This is looking good JJ. You're doing really well on finding the number. Make sure you let me know if you have any problems. We want to get you a tutor, if you need one, sooner and not later.”

“I'm fine with that as long as it’s not Spencer.” JJ got off the bed still holding the magazine. “He’s too demanding when he knows stuff and you don’t.”

“It won't be Spencer, I promise. Hey, did you like Dr. Seuss as a kid?”

“I love Dr. Seuss. My sister and I used to read Green Eggs and Ham all the time. We memorized it and used to recite it for my parents. I was always Sam I Am. Why?”

“I was just wondering.”

“OK. Well pop your head in to say goodnight.” JJ said.

“I will.”

JJ left and Emily reached over to grab her cloves from her desk. Spencer wasn’t “normal” but he was going to be OK. Ashley would get over him not loving Dr. Seuss, or it might turn out that he would grow on him. JJ would pass math. Now Emily would get to relax for an hour or so before possibly convincing her boyfriend to share a bed tonight. It was Thursday, odds were slim, but she always threw it out there. Tonight’s house problems were solved.

“Hey Em.” Morgan walked through her open door. “Can we talk?”

“Sure.” she smiled as she blew smoke out the window. “C'mon in.”

***

 
 
Where am I?: the lair
Feelings: fullfull
Background Noise: Unusual Suspects on ID