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Garcia and Gracie A - 1/3 *EDITED*

by BellaRoma

Warning: This work has been rated 16+ for mature content.

I: A Briefing Like Any Other


“Hey, ladies, briefing in five.” Just the words a girl doesn’t want to hear.

“Morgan! I was just thinking about you,” I teased archly, since all poor Agent Morgan had gotten for his trouble was two groans.

All three of us appeared to begrudge moving… anything that involved preparing for this new case. Of course, by preparing I meant being there in person to hear the brief. Other than that it was pretty much a case of anything goes.

Next to me Grace began to giggle, putting a delicate hand to her mouth, but not hiding the adorable crinkling of her nose. “Maybe not quite what you had in mind… eh, Penelope?”

My young colleague winked – I was unsure whether to me, Derek, or both. The satisfaction I’d sought came from their expressions just then. Mission accomplished!

“Sorry for interrupting your little chat, baby girl,” said Derek as he stepped back, about to leave.

“Well, duty calls us back together again in about three minutes anyway,” I pointed out, shooing him away with a coy smile.

Once Derek had departed, there was just time for a detour through the cave, as Grace and I called our shared office, to retrieve our coffees and a laptop – briefing essentials. I could hear the contrast between the footsteps made by my heels and those of her biker boots as we made our way across the bullpen to the BAU meeting room, where the round table and the rest of the team beckoned.

“There you go. We get the honour of being last this time,” remarked Grace.

The laptop was starting to feel heavy, and I could do nothing about it with a mug of coffee in my other hand. Thankfully, I made it to the table before the laptop all but jumped out from under my arm. I put my coffee down beside it and pulled out a chair, feeling a small draught of air as the door swung closed. One touch of my shimmering pink fingernail, and the now open PC started booting up with a whir.

“Quick, Grace. Sit,” offered Prentiss, who sat to my right. She motioned to the vacant seat next to me on the left. Grace sat down as I finished logging on.

JJ waited by the projector screen, turning the little remote over in her hands. After a quick glance around, to see we were all set up, supervisor Hotchner nodded the go-ahead.

“This one looks like a real piece of work,” began JJ. No one here said that without due cause.

With a click of the remote, the crime scene photos came up on screen. That was it. The blonde’s deduction needed no further explanation.

“So far three bodies have been found, all of them girls between the ages of sixteen and eighteen. Obvious signs of sexual assault.” JJ spoke in bullet points, trying to stumble through the details without paying them too much attention. “They’ve connected these three victims in the Quantico area, but the bodies are several months old, and the ME determined that they couldn’t have been killed much more than a fortnight apart. The reality is we’re missing victims.”

“I concur, especially if this guy has devolved into killing more regularly since then,” said Hotch. As if anyone had needed to hear the words.

So far, I couldn’t help thinking. The words people dread in any murder investigation, especially one grisly enough to warrant calling in the FBI.

“Here?” Grace spoke with an unsettled falter. “Now there’s a pleasant thought. Not.”

“Was there anything else in common, apart from the level of brutality?” enquired Rossi. “And basic victimology of course.”

“Yes, actually,” replied JJ, and presto! Like that, everyone sat up a little straighter and slacked biro pens were re-poised. “That’s the next thing. They each had the same wounds on their back, and I think you’ll want to take a look…” Three new photos appeared – almost perfectly identical – showing three bare backs sporting the same five semi-healed gashes.

“It’s his signature alright, but what does this pattern of lines mean to our unsub?” Reid wondered aloud, pointing his finger at the images and tracing downwards.

“It looks –” Grace trailed off, as if afraid her response would be deemed incorrect. “Like a hand, curled around something. A hold – could link to the need for control, or dominance.”

“Interesting interpretation,” Hotch commented. “Later we can look into this further.”

Meanwhile, I clutched the kitten mug I was drinking from tighter, engrossed in the pictures. Not by fascination or voyeurism, but recognition. I was startled from my trance by the sound of my name.

“Garcia, sending you the files for this case now.” As I looked up to acknowledge JJ, I noticed Grace squirming a little in her seat, just in my peripheral vision.

I thanked JJ and clicked the attachment on the new email, playing out various scenarios in my head with an internal sigh. Oh, Grace… what am I supposed to do now?

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1634 Reviews

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Reviews: 1634

Fri Feb 12, 2016 5:41 am
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Deanie wrote a review...

Hey Bella!

So this review has been a long time in coming but now I am back from traveling I am going to be reviewing these two parts next! I wanted to do so even though I haven't watched Criminal Minds, so this is coming from someone who hasn't seen the show and is reading this as a short story instead of a fanfiction. But even then, it can be well written, so I'll just dive right into my review!

I can see that this is pretty much an introductory first part. I am looking forward to seeing the crime mystery side of this thing unravel. From the title we can tell that Garcia and Grace are probably going to be vital characters. I'm looking forward to seeing how, although it does sound like Garcia is already important because there is something she knows about the murder mystery which could be important for the finding of the culprit. I am glad you haven't told us anymore yet because it leaves the reader to wonder and then in that case we'll be coming back for more and wanting to know what she knows! It was a good beginning and I can't wait to see the team in action and how they are going to crack this case.

One thing I felt at the beginning of this chapter was a little bit confused. For someone who is reading this as a story separate from the show, you are throwing quite a few character names at us in the beginning with no description or reference which could indicate how important they might be to the story. I don't know whose names I do need to hold in memory and those who are only side characters or not even important. So do be wary of the fact that as a story, the character names thrown in at the beginning are a little overwhelming and need to gradually be introduced.

The other thing is is description. We're lacking a lot of that here. Although I do know this is supposed to be a short story, I do get the impression it's allowed to be a little long because you've split it into three parts. So don't be afraid to put in description here! I want a little more focus on elements of the characters so I know their appearance, or the way that the team are required to dress in this office. So we can know how high a position this team has in the detective world and so on. I also want more description of the setting. I can barely imagine this building, let alone the offices and the inside. I get a general impression of the briefing room, but it is only because of the shows I have watched myself and not through the description - your words are a portal into the world. Just imagine that there is only black space there until your words fill it with the objects and so on that the reader reads. You have to fill this space because right now I'm drifting a bit and I want something grounding to be able to envision.

Having said all that, the mystery itself is unfolding nicely and I like the little hint they have. It seems like only a small thing to go on, so I wonder where they will take things and leads from there. Now it's time for nitpicks!

“Hey, ladies, briefing in five.” Just the words a girl doesn’t want to hear.

I like that speech as an opening line because it gives me a question to keep me reading seeing as I want to know what they need briefing for. I do think that the speech should be it's own paragraph, and that the 'Just the words... etc' should be on the next line. Just to give it a full effect.

I teased archly,

I haven't read the other reviews but I have seen this quoted a lot so I am just gonna breeze through it quickly. Can you really tease archly? I think I would choose a different adverb here. Although I don't think you really need one here at all.

trying to stumble through the details without paying them too much attention.

This made me curious. Why is she trying to stumble through the details without paying too much attention? Even though this job and she has been through several cases which must have been just as vulgar, does the woman feel especially emotional about this one? Is it way worse than anything they have previously had to deal with before? Is she just having a tough time lately? Or is she trying to stay professional by not dwelling on the details too much? Is it the end of the day and she is tired and just trying to work through this quickly so they can all go home?

See - I have plenty of questions just from that little sentence! So don't be afraid to take a little time and expand on this part a little more because it could tell us more about the time and setting, or more about the case itself, or this character. Look for points like this in your writing - where you can open deeper into the story and add a lot more to everything even though it is just a tiny detail you end up opening up a little more.

where the round table and the rest of the team beckoned.

I think that maybe waited is a more preferable word here than to 'beckoned'. I'm just imaging everyone at the table beckoning to them with their hands as they walk into the room and it is a little... funny. :P

So far, I couldn’t help thinking. The words people dread in any murder investigation, especially one grisly enough to warrant calling in the FBI.

Did I miss something? What were those words? I can't connect what they are supposed to be... so maybe in the italic writing you should repeat them instead of referring to them as 'those words' so we're sure everyone understands them.

“Garcia, sending you the files for this case now.”

I think you should have the 'I'm' there after the comma.

Okay, that's all I have to say for this part. Sorry for taking so long with this! As soon as I have time to read the next part, I'll be right there and start reading and reviewing it. Keep writing, Bella! Looking forward to seeing this case unfold.

Deanie x

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260 Reviews

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Reviews: 260

Fri Jan 29, 2016 1:08 am
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TriSARAHtops wrote a review...

Hey Bella! Here's a review for you on this kinda cloudy Friday.

Okay, so I don't watch Criminal Minds (which is what this one's based off, I'm pretty sure you mentioned it on your wall or something at some stage), but I've been watching quite a few crime shows lately (mainly CSI Miami, NCIS and Elementary, although even X-Files kind of counts, even if the crimes are a little weirder), so whilst I can't really comment on how well you've managed to recapture the show itself, I'm decently familiar with the genre, I guess.

I think that this chapter got stronger as it went on, which is not to say that the beginning was bad, but more that it took a couple of paragraphs to really get into the swing of the voice and once you did, it was really engaging.

The dialogue in the briefing all felt very authentic and crime show-ish. Obviously, I don't know how well it fits the exact characters, but it doesn't leap out as being off in any way. It's genre-suitable, would perhaps be the way to describe it.

I don't usually do this, but I might pull out a few examples of things that I noticed that you could perhaps work on. Nothing grammatical so much, but still specific things, rather than big-picture general stuff, because on the whole this piece is pretty strong.

All three of us appeared to begrudge moving… anything that involved preparing for this new case.

The word 'appeared' doesn't quite work here, I don't think. I can understand what you mean by it, but in saying that "all three of us appeared to..." it feels like you're writing as an outsider looking in, seeing three people who don't look like they want to move, when instead your protagonist is one of them, so is not said outsider. It's one of those careful phrasing things that would just help to make sure that your writing has clarity, and that it feels really polished. So if you said something like "the others appeared to begrudge moving as much as I did", or something to that effect, it would make more sense. Moral of the story, which applies across the board, be really picky in your word choice.

Speaking of clarity, reading over the first couple of paragraphs, they do feel a little muddled, and it takes a while for you to make it clear who's there and what's going on. It sorts itself out eventually, but I think adding a couple of sentences in there that give some clues about setting and who's there would clear things up right from the start.

I think you also need to give a bit more explanation as to why they'd be expecting more victims. Even though the bodies hadn't been found for several months, it doesn't necessarily mean that the assumption that there'd be more bodies would be as automatic as it has been here. Unless there's more evidence, which I think you might need to include, in order for the assumption to make sense - because whilst it's plausible the murders have continued, there might also be a reason why it was only three and that was it. So a little more explanation would be a good thing, just to make sure it's believable.

Ending was good, you made it mysterious but still evident that there was something going on. Good writing of character reaction. Nice hook.

That's about all I have to say. I'll see you at Part Two!

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Sun Jan 10, 2016 6:52 am
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TimmyJake wrote a review...

Timmy hereee

Yeah, I'm late again, as usual. Just to warn you, I don't watch whatever show this is about, so I can't relate to the characters at all. In fact, I have no idea who they are. xd What I see is what I get, and so that's what my review will reflect. I hope it still helps. :/

I wish I knew what this story was about, as it sounds so interesting. It just reads like I'm stuck in the middle of a book, which I'm sure is what you intended - more for readers who know what the TV is about. While I don't have a clue as to what this is about except for the surface, I did still enjoy this. How could I not? - you wrote it. c; You wrote this particularly well, especially when it came to small details. You're getting so much better at describing scenes and giving your reader quite a bit of detail, even though you're moving us along quite fast. I like this - the pacing, the descriptions, and while your characters aren't as emotive as I'd have liked to see, I know with more time spent with them, I'd grow to love them, too.

I've mentioned adverbs before, so I won't touch on them any more than this:
CUT MOST OF THEM OUT. BAD. Okay, there you go. I won't lecture you like I usually do. Just remember that a strong verb is always better than a verb+adverb combination, as it's more precise and stronger writing.

I teased archly, seeing that the mood was in need of lifting.

This is one of those places where you need to use your descriptive talents instead of falling back on just telling us that the mood was heavy. Give us something tangible to feel - an emotion we can hang onto while we go through the story. Remember: half of a story is conveying the feeling, and if you're only doing it halfway because you're telling instead of showing, then your readers are missing something. Fill our minds with the ambience you can give the story.

showing three bare backs sporting the same five semi-healed gashes.

Now this doesn't make sense to me. If whoever did this killed his victims after doing all this to them, the gashes wouldn't have healed... right? Just something I noticed that doesn't quite fit to me~

Meanwhile, I clutched the kitten mug I was drinking from a little tighter, engrossed in the pictures

This sentence confused me so much. o.o If you could just work with it to make it more understandable, that'd make it a lot easier to understand. It's basically a simple rearranging of the sentence to make it easier to read, as parts of it just make me go whaaa? xd

I wish there was something else I could give you to help you, but I just don't know what else to point out. I could run through this and pick out the little nitpicks I see, like punctuation errors, but you know how to handle those. And you did particularly well in the editing for this, too, if you even did edit. xd Your writing is way better than it used to be. I'm seeing so, so much improvement. I LOVE IT <3
Keep it uppp
~Darth Timmyjake

BellaRoma says...

Thanks, as always, for reviewing :)
The gashes were semi-healed because he had them for about a week between giving them the gashes and killing them.
Next part should be very emotive, so I hope it doesn't disappoint on that front.
How do you mean rearrange the kitten mug sentence? I'm not sure what's wrong there...

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29 Reviews

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Reviews: 29

Fri Jan 08, 2016 11:22 pm
SpencerReidIsMyLife wrote a review...


This was great! I feel Garcia's voice was perfect. I even imagined her saying those lines on the actual show! I think this is just fantastic and can definitely be continued in the future. I especially love the ending with Garcia's protective nature. Keep up the good work!

See ya soon,

BellaRoma says...

Thanks! I could imagine Garcia reading this aloud too.
There will be another part to this, from Grace's perspective and picking up where this left off.

BellaRoma says...

PS. I agree about the protective instinct thing. She cares strongly about her "babies", and in this story she has a major soft spot for Grace (you'll see why...)

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102 Reviews

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Reviews: 102

Tue Jan 05, 2016 8:23 am
BellaRoma says...

Hey, guys! Decided to post this in the end.
Let me know if you think the ratings need to be changed...

PS. Would appreciate some feedback on the voice of Garcia (*cough cough* people who watch CM)

And then, as if written by the hand of a bad novelist, an incredible thing happened.
— Bartimaeus of Uruk