Pairing: None. Nick Monroe friendship
Synopsis: As he and Nick recuperate on the couch after an encounter with a particularly aggressive Wesen, Monroe lets his mind wander.
Disclaimer - I don't own Grimm
A/N - I've been re-watching season one recently, hence all the references to the earlier episodes. This is however set now-ish, sometime late season 2, purely because that means Nick is staying with Monroe. I may have put a slightly different spin on some of the actions of episode one Monroe, just for fun.
Monroe limped into the lounge, holding a bottle of his favorite beer in each hand. He passed one to Nick as he sank gratefully into the couch, exhausted. It had been a hell of a night, and that was putting it lightly. He groaned quietly to himself, rolling his shoulders.
“You okay?” Nick asked.
“Yeah. That guy had packed one hell of a punch though,” Monroe told him. “I'm going to be feeling it for the next week. And that's if I'm lucky.”
Nick nodded, taking a long slow drink from his bottle before resting on his knee. “Sorry about that,” he said. “I should have been quicker.”
Monroe shrugged. When a guy saves your life, you don't complain about his timing. “Hey, you got him in the end, what's a few bruises between friends?”
“Painful, mostly.” Nick said. He felt gingerly at his chin and winced.
Monroe glanced at him and noticed that part of Nick's face was rapidly turning a very unpleasant looking shade of purple. “Wow, when did that happen?” he put his drink down on the coffee table and pushed himself slowly to his feet, “That looks pretty unpleasant. Let me get you some ice.”
He limped back into the kitchen as quickly as his aching back would allow, before Nick could protest. He opened the freezer and scooped out some ice into his ice pack. The thing sat on his draining board most of the time now for easy access, since he had met Nick, it had gotten a lot more use. He screwed on the lid and tossed it across the room to his house guest as he walked back through the door into the lounge.
Nick's caught the bag expertly and pressed it against his aching jaw. “Thanks,” he mumbled through the fabric covering.
“Sure,” Monroe sank back onto the couch and took a sip from his beer and allowed his eyes to drift closed and his mind to wonder. “Any time.”
Monroe wasn't sure exactly when it was that he began to think of Nick as a friend. Somewhere between that first meeting – when he had arrested him basically just for being what he was – and now, something had changed. He had made the move in his mind from potential enemy through minor irritant to ally and friend.
Had it been after the fifth or sixth of seventh time the Grimm had appeared on his doorstep uninvited and unannounced and expected the Blutbad to drop everything to help him, when Monroe had realized that rather than being annoyed, he was actually pleased to see him?
Or perhaps it had been that time he had visited Nick in the hospital and seen him beaten and bruised after his encounter with the Siegbarste? The time he had realized how deeply the Grimm actually trusted him when he told him the location of his Aunt's trailer. Though, to be honest, Monroe isn't sure that Nick, even now, realizes the significance of what he did that night.
Maybe it had been even before that, that time in the woods, searching for an adolescent, feral Blutbad. The time that a man had pointed a gun at him and he had thought he has about to be shot. That had been the first time he had heard Nick describe him as friend. He had barely noticed at the time, what with the adrenaline and the gun and the almost certain death. It had only been later that night, when he was home and safe, with a glass of wine to calm his jangling nerves, that he had noticed the Grimm's choice of words.
But then, perhaps it hadn't been one specific moment that had done it. Maybe it had been a fluid thing, developing over time from the day they had met. Or rather, the night after, the time he had almost made a terrible mistake.
Sometimes, he wonders whether Nick knows how close he came to dying that night.
In his defense – not that there could be any real defense for something like that – he had had a very rough day. He had been arrested for nothing, for the crime of going out to collect his mail at just the wrong moment, and he had spent the better part of the day being interrogated in the back seat of a very hot and stuffy police car while cops and forensics teams trooped in and out of his house like they owned the place, leaving their scent all over everything. That kind of thing can wear a guy down. Then at the end of it all, when they finally let him go and he had set about re-marking his territory after the mass-invasion of people had weakened his territorial boundaries, the Grimm had come back.
So yeah, animal instinct, defending himself, defending his territory, blah blah blah. Whatever excuse his brain had cooked up for him at the moment, he had let go of years of self control and repression, given into instinct, and attacked. It had only been as he felt the glass shattering around him that the more reasonable side of himself had woken up and started to fight back.
Sometimes, he wonders what might have happened if he hadn't been able to regain control.
Most likely, he would be in jail now. Maybe he would even have been charged with the murder and disappearance that Nick had been investigating too, after all attacking a cop wasn't exactly the behavior of an innocent man. And if that had happened, the other Blutbad would still have kept the little girl and could have done anything to her.
On a more personal level, attacking Nick would have ended their friendship before it had even had the chance to begin. Even if he had escaped jail, he would probably never have met Rosalee. He would still be living the life he had before; solitary and lonely, sticking obsessively to routines and avoidance techniques as a way of controlling his behavior; forgetting, in his attempt to eradicate all the negative parts of his Blutbad heritage that there were good things too, like how to Blutbaden, family – both the one you're born with and the one you meet along the way – are everything. Your family, your pack, they keep you safe and they keep you sane.
So maybe jumping out of his window and landing on a Grimm had almost been the worst thing he had ever done, but it had also been the best.
Life's funny like that sometimes.
Monroe's eyes snapped open as he felt something poking into his ribs. “Ow! Bruising, remember?” he yelped.
“Sorry,” said Nick, quickly retracting his fingers. “You weren't answering me, I was just checking if you were asleep.”
“Well, if I had been, I'd be awake now.” Monroe rubbed his side, glaring over-dramatically. “But nah, just deep in thought.” He noticed that Nick had placed the ice pack on the coffee table, and from the way it was leaning, the ice was well on its way to becoming water. “At least, I thought so,” he added.
“Another beer?” Nick asked starting to get to his feet.
Monroe nodded, “I'll get it,” he said.
Nick was already on his feet. “If you stand up, I think you're going to fall down again,” he said.
Monroe watched him walk into the kitchen and listened the the sound of the refrigerator opening and closing, and two bottles being opened.
“By the way,” Nick said as he appeared at the door with a bottle in each hand. “I owe you for these. And for all the food I've eaten since I've been staying here.” He handed Monroe another drink. “I'll go to the store tomorrow and get some stuff.”
Monroe realized as he accepted the second beer that he had barely started the first. He placed it on the table and picked up the now slightly warm original bottle. “Great, I appreciate that,” he said, “but, and don't take this the wrong way, but do you mind if I go with you? I'm a little bit specific about what I eat, you know?”
Nick grinned. The bruise on his chin was already starting to change color around the edges and the smile warped its shape. If Monroe's guess was right, that was going to look even worse in the morning. “It's a deal,” he said.
Monroe nodded. He downed his warm beer and picked up the cold one. Life was strange. How many Blutbaden, Wieder or otherwise could ever say they ever had a Grimm do their grocery shopping for them? He was willing to bet not many.
Nick was a good guy. Sometimes, Monroe regretted making him pay for that window.