Title: Want versus Need
Fandom: Resident Evil/Criminal Minds
Warnings: Brief mentions of drug use, alcoholism, and sex
Summary: Claire and Hotch sit down to discuss her stalker
"Claire, I hate to do this, but I have to ask," the agent began.
"How did I get tangled up with George?"
Claire heaved a sigh, "It's a long story."
"We have time."
"Yeah, we do," the redhead smiled softly and stared at her glass idly. "Well, it was my first year of college. I was eighteen and already a sophmore. I'd taken a lot of AP classes in high school," she laughed a little. "I dove right into my major, English education. I started shadowing teachers at local high schools my second semester. That's where I met George." She sighed heavily and knocked back her drink.
"He was a teachers' assistant at one of the schools I taught at. We had the same lunch hour and he said he couldn't stand seeing a pretty girl sit alone. Looking back, I'm positive he could tell how naive and inexperienced I was." Claire chuckled bitterly. "I was so enamored with him. He was smart and talked to me like he thought I was smart. I was so used to boys my own age who saw my bra size and not my IQ that it never occured to me that it was just flattery. George didn't even have to ask me out, he just asked when I'd be free for dinner."
"Claire, you can't-" Hotch began.
The redhead held up her hand, "Let me finish. We went out for a while. My spidey senses started going off after a few weeks." She sighed. "I knew something more was going on, that he wasn't completely on the level. At first, I thought it was another woman," she snorted. "Hell, at first, it may have been, but always I thought it was weird that he absolutely refused to allow me in his medicine cabinet. Then one day, the cabinet was completely empty, door ajar and everything. It reminded me of Dad trying to hide his alcoholism. He'd been borderline obsessive compulsive about his liquor cabinet and then I came home from school one day and it was empty with the doors swinging open."
Claire paused. "I think, deep down, I knew it was a bad idea to confront him, that I wasn't ready to deal with George the way Mom dealt with Dad when she confronted him. In the end, I did the cowardly thing. I just asked about the empty cabinet. George smiled a little condescendingly, tapped my nose, and said he didn't want me getting into anything and hurting myself. I wanted to believe him, so I did." She shook her head. "It went on like that until I disappeared to Raccoon City. I never went back to Boston U. I figured I'd never see him again." The redhead snorted. "That
worked out well."
Aaron sighed, "I hate to pry into your sex life, Claire, but-"
"Every time he saw me," the Redfield said bluntly. "When we went out on dates, they always ended back at his apartment. It got to the point that I set the alarm on my watch before we went out so I could make it to class the next day. He was demanding and it was exhausting but I was so in awe that I was willing to do anything to keep him around.
I didn't even tell Chris about him. I guess I knew he was bad news and that Chris wouldn't want me around him. That's why I just," Claire paused, "dropped George when I left. He was only worth the trouble when I was alone. Once I found Chris, I wasn't so lonely and I didn't need him anymore."