SPOILERS: All episodes, in particular the end of season 1 and the six episodes from season 2.
Disclaimers: I own none of the characters from Tru Calling, and I don't claim ownership of any of the episodes.
Summary: A 'virtual ending' to the series that takes place one week after episode 2x06. Tru finds herself reliving a day over and over when her friends and family just won't stop dying, while Jack realises that his calling might not be as clear-cut as he'd originally thought. Together, they fumble their way through a causal chain of events that lead to revelations about their interlinked fates, and what they must do to put everybody's destinies back in balance.
Author's Note: This fic is my personal answer to the unsatisfactory ending to the series. I hope it wraps up some of the more important plot points and questions. I know there are small indiscrepancies from canon, particularly concerning Carrie's backstory and the lack of Jensen's own contributory actions toward his fate, but for the purposes of this story being streamlined, I had to decide to overlook them. For those who have not been able to see episode 2x06, an understanding of the episode is not crucial to this story, though certain scenes will make more sense if you have seen it. Feel free to contact me if you don't know where you can get recaps of the episode.-----
That which is done out of love always takes place beyond good and evil.
The morning dawned cold and subdued, a thin layer of grey-white clouds shielding the sun from direct view, leaving only a bright blurry imprint in the sky. A chill winter breeze swirled through a clearing in the cemetery, making Tru Davies' hair stream out behind her as she laid a bouquet of white roses at the foot of a headstone.
She stepped back, her eyes cast downward. Beside her, Richard and Harrison Davies also stood, the father in a long black coat and the son in a muted suit, both their heads bowed: one dark, one fair.
Their eyes were trained on the name inscribed on the headstone, and for a long time no one spoke.
Beloved wife and mother
Tru stared down at the epitaph, her gaze travelling over the deeply-etched lines with a mixture of sorrow and pride. As she stood there, Harrison took a step forward and wrapped an arm around her shoulder. She leaned back into him, glancing up with a wistful smile.
Richard's eyes, too, travelled over the headstone. His expression was inscrutable.
"Hey," a low voice startled them out of their reverent silence.
Tru turned first, her expression of mild surprise quickly melting into a smile. "Hey Jensen," she greeted the intruder. "What are you doing here?"
"Taking a walk," Jensen Ritchie replied, looking quizzically at the Davies men. "And you…?"
"It's my mother's birthday today," she replied.
"Oh, wow," he said quickly, casting a contrite glance over the grave, then at the others, "I didn't realise… I'm sorry, Tru, I didn't mean to…"
"It's okay," she said. "Really. Jensen, you remember my brother Harrison. And you met my dad at the Christmas party."
"Of course, of course," Jensen said, nodding at Harrison while extending a hand toward Richard. "It's good to see you again, sir."
"Likewise," Richard said warmly, shaking his hand. "How are you, Jensen?"
"I'm good, thanks for asking," Jensen said, glancing nervously at Tru before turning back to the other man. "And you?"
"Still spry," Richard chuckled. "And that's about as good as we could expect at my age. Well," he glanced at his watch, "I'm afraid I have to fly, kids. I have an appointment at eleven."
"Great, I'll see you later, dad," said Harrison. "Did I tell you I'm movin' into the apartment today? Me and Tru are celebrating New Year's Eve at my new pad tomorrow. Think you could drop by?"
"Sure, son," Richard said hurriedly, checking his watch again as he began to stride away. "Give me a call this evening, okay? And Tru, you too, keep in touch. It's good to see you, Jensen. I must make Tru bring you to lunch sometime…"
"Bye dad," Tru waved at Richard's retreating figure, chuckling as she turned to see the look on Jensen's face. "What?"
"Lunch with the parentals," Harrison said in a singsong voice. "It's like a death sentence, man. I'll see you later, guys. Jensen, you're coming to my party tomorrow, right?"
"I'll be there," Jensen replied, smiling.
"Awesome," Harrison grinned. Turning back to Elise's headstone, he paused with an unusually solemn expression, his features softening. It was a moment before he sauntered off, waving goodbye over his shoulder.
Tru, too, said a quiet farewell to her mother's grave before she took Jensen's hand and turned away, casting another glance over her shoulder at the bunch of white roses resting on the ground, their satiny petals stirring in the breeze.
"I'm so sorry to interrupt like that," he said again as they walked toward the front entrance. "I just… I guess I wasn't thinking when I said hi. I'm so embarrassed."
"Don't be, we were done." There was a beat, and she glanced at him quizzically. "What are you doing here, anyway?"
"I dunno," he said after a long pause. "I was just… nah, you'll think it's weird."
"Try me," she said with a note of wryness to her voice.
His glance in her direction was measured, as though gauging her reliability. "Well," he said, somewhat reluctantly, "this is gonna sound weird, but lately I've been feeling kinda strange, you know? Like… distanced from everything. Coming to cemeteries and churches and stuff, it's morbid but it seems to help me think. It feels… peaceful here."
Her eyes widened almost imperceptibly as she looked at him. "Really?" she asked, trying to keep her voice light. "How long has this been going on?"
He shrugged. "Two or three weeks, maybe. I think… after you saved me from that car. It's been a life-changing experience for me, Tru. I'm just re-evaluating everything right now. Nothing feels quite real, you know what I mean?"
She stared at him, her dark eyes betraying a hint of disquiet.
"It's nothing," he shook his head with a smile, striding forward. "Seriously. I dunno what I'm talking about. Come on, how about I treat you to lunch?"
"Sure," she said automatically, following as he led the way out of the cemetery. But the unsettled look on her face remained, a deep unease, which she was careful not to let him see.
Meanwhile, at the other entrance to the cemetery Richard got into the back of his company car, for a moment studying his own sombre reflection in the tinted windows.
Jack Harper was waiting for him inside. "So," he said conversationally as Richard pulled the door closed. "How was the visit? First wife still dead?"
Richard glanced at him with a frown. "If I were you, Jack, I'd be less inclined to make wisecracks, and more focused on the tasks at hand."
"Come on, what's the harm?" Jack smiled crookedly. "What's a little wisecracking between friends?"
"We're not friends," Richard said as he signalled the driver and they began pulling away from the curb. "You're my disciple, Jack; and don't you forget it."
"Oh, no," Jack said, the enigmatic smile still hanging from his lips. "I won't. You won't let me."
"And for good reason," Richard replied without looking at the other man. His eyes were trained on the window instead. "We bumped into that charge of yours, just then. The new boyfriend."
Jack's brow lifted. "Jensen?"
Richard nodded. "Just another one you let get away."
"Like I said, Richard," Jack said, a note of impatience creeping into his voice. "Just give it time."
"Not necessary," Richard said, watching the scenery rush by outside. "That one has been marked for death. I could see it in his eyes."
The smile faded from Jack's expression. He studied the older man, his gaze contemplative.
"He has escaped once," Richard said, turning toward him. "But he was never meant to be brought back. Fate will have its way; it won't be long now, even without our intervention."
Jack didn't reply.
The next day, Tru awoke to the sight of silvery sunlight pouring through her apartment windows. The weather seemed frosty but clear, and she could hear the muffled sounds of the usual traffic congestion down in the street below. Yawning, she glanced at her desk calendar. It was December 31st.
"Another year," she murmured, stepping into her slippers and padding into the bathroom. Idly, as she usually did in the mornings, she wondered whether today would be happening more than once, and what trouble she'd be getting herself into if that were the case.
It didn't do to dwell on it, however; and a half hour later she was out the door, wrapping a woolly scarf around her neck and smiling at the feeling of the weak winter sun on her face. Heading toward City Morgue, she hit the first name on her speed dial. "Harry?" she said into her phone, "the party still on tonight?"
"You bet," came her brother's voice over the line. "You bringin' your friends?"
"Yeah, I mentioned it to Avery and Tyler yesterday, so they might be tagging along, if that's okay?"
"Avery, your hot blonde friend? Sure."
"Don't get fresh with her."
"Tru, it's me. Do I ever get fresh with your friends?"
"Do you want me to actually answer that question, or would laughing in your face be a good enough answer?"
"Good point. Don't answer that."
"So how's the moving coming along?" she chuckled as she crossed the street.
"I'm done," he announced. "Dad pimped out the apartment for me, remember? Furniture's all here. I, Harrison Davies, actually have a respectable place. How cool is that, huh?"
"Very cool. It was so generous of dad to give you the place. You must be doing well in your job."
"Yeah," he couldn't quite disguise the pride in his voice. "Hey Tru? I gotta go. I've got a bet on – gotta get some money for some new threads to match the décor, you know what I'm sayin'?"
"You're back at the track again?" she asked, furrowing her brows as she made her way into the morgue building.
"Just a small bet now and then, don't worry, I'm still on the straight and narrow. You know, Tru, it's not like it's hard, checking the horses every day in case you rewind. Easy money, right? Jack does it, you know."
"Yeah, and in case you've forgotten, Jack's evil," she rolled her eyes. "Bye, Harrison."
"See you tonight." He hung up with a click.
With a laugh and a small shake of the head, she got off the elevator and strode into the morgue. "What's up, Davis?" she called, spotting her advisor in the check-in room. "Got plans for New Year's Eve?"
"Actually," he glanced up from his seat at the computer, looking a little uneasy. "Carrie and I have plans."
"Ooh," she teased, "an evening of lurve. What have you got in mind?"
"Nothing much." A pause, and he added sheepishly, "Wine. And roses. And… uh, Barry White."
"Davis!" she laughed. "Didn't know you had it in ya! Plan to seduce the woman?"
"No," he said quickly, blushing. "Uh… maybe."
"Well, I think it's sweet," she grinned. "And you think she'll be into it, too?"
"I hope so. This is kind of… new territory for me, you know."
"Shocking," she teased good-naturedly. "Let me know how it goes."
"Yeah," he said, scratching his beard. "If the worst comes to the worst, maybe you'll rewind and give me some pointers."
"Here's hoping," she laughed.
"Anyway, what are you doing here?" he asked. "I gave you the day off."
"I wanted to invite you and Carrie to Harrison's party tonight, but I guess your plans sound better," she winked, walking out again. "Gotta go. I'm meeting Jensen for brunch. Have a good time, and…" she stuck her head back in the door, "Happy New Year."
"You too," he smiled, watching her depart.
At The Track bar, Harrison sat in his usual seat, watching the overhead TV monitor with avid attention, his hands clenched. "No," he moaned, "no no no… yes, go! Go!"
Leaping to his feet, his eyes were glued to the screen, paying no attention to the other bar patrons who, granted, were mostly doing the same. "No! No…" he shouted at the TV, shaking his fist. "Come on, Lucky Nine! No! Dammit!"
He slumped down on the bar stool again, the adrenaline dissipating out of him in a tangible rush. The onscreen display showed that his pick to win, Lucky Nine, had only come in third. The dark horse in the noon race - in this case both figuratively and literally - was an insipid-looking black stallion named Four Leaf Clover. Shaking his head, Harrison turned away in disgust.
"No luck?" a drawling voice piped up beside him.
Harrison groaned without looking to see who it was. "Jack, wonderful."
"Nice to see you too, Harrison," Jack said cheerfully, slipping into the seat next to him. "We could be a crack team, you and me. The money'd be rolling in."
"I'm sorry," Harrison looked askance with a disdainful smile. "I don't make a habit of working for Death."
"Harrison, Harrison," Jack shook his head with a mock sigh. "How many times do I have to tell you this? I'm not Death. It's not that simple."
"You help kill people," said Harrison without ceremony, getting up from his seat. "So yeah, it's pretty simple to me. Goodbye, Jack."
"See you around, buddy," Jack said simply, turning back to the bar with a small smile.
Avery and Tyler were pulling extra shifts at the clinic this afternoon, looking frazzled at the influx of patients, most of whom with ailments that pointed to drunken New Year celebrations that started just a little too early. Tru and Jensen found them taking a ten-minute break behind the counter. "Hey guys!" said Avery with a smile. "What's up?"
"Just dropping by to see my favourite doctor in the clinic," grinned Tru, reaching over to give the other girl a hug. "Happy New Year, guys."
"Watch the sweet talk," Jensen said, laughing. "I might get jealous."
"You'll never have what Tru and I have," chuckled Avery. "Ours is a fated love."
"If I can't have it," he raised an eyebrow. "Can I at least watch this fated love?"
"Good one," Tyler sniggered, exchanging a high five with his friend.
"Men," Avery and Tru said in unison, shaking their heads and rolling their eyes.
"Come on," Jensen laughed. "You walked right into that one."
"You think I'd know better after hanging around these clowns for years," Avery said to Tru. "Evidently, they can't control themselves when a new female comes into the mix."
"Hey, we heard that," protested Tyler, making a face. "So what are you guys doing here?"
"Just dropping by to remind you of my brother's New Year party tonight," said Tru, scribbling down the address on a spare piece of paper. "He's just moved in, so it doubles as a house-warming. Drinks, snacks… should be a good night."
"Hey, as long as he serves those little cheese cubes again," Tyler grinned, "I'm totally in."
"We'll be there," Avery promised. "Your brother's nice, Tru."
"Nice, huh? That's not a word people use to describe him very often," Tru laughed as she linked arms with Jensen and headed back out. "See you tonight."
Davis' apartment was set, as he liked to think of it, for the mood of love. The wine was flowing, candles were strategically placed around his furniture to give the little apartment a special glow that also served to conceal its spartan nature, and a Barry White CD was in the stereo, rearing to go. Carrie Allen was presently lounging on his couch, in a form-fitting lavender dress and elegant heels. She had a glass of cabernet in one hand, and was laughing at one of his jokes, her other hand resting easily on his forearm.
He was, of course, smitten. No one laughed at his jokes, not even Tru. Clearly this one was a keeper. "Uh, so," he said, getting up clumsily and wishing that her hand could have stayed attached to his arm; he was getting fond of it being there. "I ordered some dinner from this place downtown, they do this really good dish…"
"It sounds lovely," she said warmly, rising to her feet. "Let me help you."
"No, no," he said, gesturing for her to sit down. "I've got it. Uh, I've just gotta… go get the, uh, platter. Don't move."
"I won't," she said, laughing as she watched him dart into the kitchen.
"Hey!" Harrison greeted Tru and Jensen at the door, ushering them into his apartment. "Come in, come in! Check out my new pad. Pretty good, huh?"
"Happy New Year, Harry," Tru said, kissing her brother on the cheek and handing him a bottle of sparkling wine. "A little something from us."
"Thanks, and Happy New Year to you too," he said with a grin, exchanging a handshake with Jensen.
"I thought you went to buy new clothes today," she said, glancing at his well-worn trousers and striped shirt.
"Long story," he sighed, shaking his head.
"Really?" she looked at him, her voice coloured with equal parts exasperation and amusement. "You lost on the horses?"
"Okay, maybe it isn't that long," he shrugged. "Man, Lucky Nine was a freaking shoo-in for race four, so I went down and put all my money on him; and he came in third. Some stupid horse called Four Leaf Clover won; no one's ever heard of it before. And I tell ya, what kind of a name is Four Leaf Clover anyway for a horse?" With a sly glance in her direction, he added, "Pay special attention, Tru, just in case - "
"Why does Tru have to pay special attention?" asked Jensen, looking bemused.
"It's just Harrison being Harrison," she said quickly, shooting her brother a warning look just as the doorbell rang. As they went to answer it, she hissed under her breath, "Could you be any more obvious? He doesn't know."
"Sorry," he said. "I just thought… you know, a little extra cash wouldn't hurt now and again, something to supplement the earnings, you know what I'm sayin'?"
She swallowed her reply as they opened the door to reveal Avery and Tyler. "Happy New Year!" they exclaimed in unison, with Tyler shooting a streamer at the siblings as an added measure, which exploded with a loud pop.
"Come in, guys," grinned Harrison, choking a little on the streamer smoke. "Hi Avery. Tyler, the cheese cubes are over there."
"Good man," Tyler patted him on the shoulder and made straight for the snacks table. The others looked after him, laughing.
"And…" Davis said as he emerged back in the lounge, balancing a large, elaborate platter in his arms, "dinner is served."
Carrie was standing by the stereo, a CD case in her hand. "I've gotta say this even if it kills the mood," she laughed teasingly as she turned around. "Barry White? What are you planning, an evening of seduction?"
He turned an interesting shade of puce. "Uh…" he mumbled, setting the platter down, "N… no… uh… well, you see, it's like this - "
"Oh, Davis," she said, her eyes widening as she walked toward him, the choice of background music forgotten as she surveyed the platter. "Seafood?"
"Yeah, that place I talked about, they do these great lobster puffs," he said enthusiastically, eager to get away from the topic of Barry White. "And see here? The oysters are wonderful. And these crabcakes are pretty good too…"
He trailed off, suddenly realising that her silence wasn't exactly one of surprised pleasure. "Carrie?"
"I feel so bad," she looked at him, her expression filled with apologetic embarrassment. "I should have told you earlier. I don't know why I didn't. It just slipped my mind, I guess. Davis, I'm… I'm allergic to shellfish."
Tru wasn't even aware that she had fallen asleep on Harrison's couch until the ringing of her cell phone jerked her awake. Sitting up, she looked around in disorientation, rubbing her eyes. Her brother was standing in the kitchenette, talking animatedly to Avery. On the other side of the room, Tyler was still pondering over the cheese cubes. Shaking her head with a small smile, she answered her phone.
"Tru, it's Davis."
"Hey!" she exclaimed, grinning. "How's the hot date coming along?"
"Actually, it's more or less screeched to a grinding halt," his voice was low and disgruntled.
"Well, she laughed at my attempt to set the mood with Barry White; and then it turned out she was allergic to the entirety of my special-order shellfish platter; and when I suggested that we go out for something to eat that wouldn't kill her on the spot, I turned around and spilled half a bottle of red wine all over her dress."
"Oh, Davis," she groaned, trying to smother a laugh.
"To make matters worse, I instinctively went for the napkins and dabbed at the stains for about a full minute before I realised I was practically fondling her chest." He sounded crestfallen. "She's in the bathroom now, trying to clean up. How the hell do I get myself into situations like this?"
"It's not that bad," she said consolingly. "You can get it together. Just… be yourself. She likes you, doesn't she? She knows you're accident-prone when you're with her. Just… go with the flow. Don't try to be anything you're not. Look, while she's still in the bathroom, why don't you put away the seafood, call a pizza or something, and choose some other music? The evening doesn't have to be ruined."
"I guess…" he still sounded uncertain. "Oh, I've gotta go, she's coming out."
"Good luck," she smiled. "I'll talk to you tomorrow… next year. Happy New Year, Davis."
"You too." He clicked off. She hung up, grinning to herself.
"Tru," Harrison sauntered over, a mimosa in one hand. "Glad to see you likin' my new couch!"
"How long was I asleep?" she yawned, taking the drink from him. "God, I must be more tired than I thought."
"About an hour," he shrugged. "We didn't wanna wake you, you looked kinda beat. Hey, dad showed up."
"Really?" she raised an eyebrow and looked around. "That's… unexpected."
"Yeah, finally taking an interest in me after twenty years," he said, though without resentment. "He's out on the balcony."
Through the sliding glass door and white gauze curtains, she could see Richard and Jensen engaged in conversation outside, leaning against the balcony railing, their breaths misting in the cold night air. "Your new boyfriend went to talk to him out of his own free will," Harrison said with a grin. "Pretty bold, I say. He must really like you."
"We're getting there," she grinned back, ruffling his hair playfully. "So what's up with you and Avery, huh?"
Discreetly, he glanced over his shoulder at the other girl, who had joined Tyler with the cheese cube tasting. "She's cool," he said with a smile. "I think - "
But at that moment a strange metallic creaking filled the room like an unearthly wail. They looked around, confused; Tru barely had time to register that the sound came from the balcony before she saw the forms of Richard and Jensen waver beyond the curtains, the railing breaking off cleanly under their combined weight. For a second they seemed to be suspended in midair, both of them caught against the backdrop of night in postures of almost comical imbalance. As she cried out they fell.
Jack sat alone in the corner of a busy bar, observing the revellers with a couple of empty shot glasses beside him. His lips, as usual, were curved up in a slight, sardonic smile, though his eyes remained pensive.
He watched with disinterest as the crowd, looking up at the TV monitor with a shot of the ball over Times Square, began chanting in sync with the onscreen display. "Ten! Nine! Eight…!"
"Happy New Year, Jack," he said to himself, downing another shot.
Tru could hardly remember how she reached them so fast. She vaguely recalled yelling at Harrison to call an ambulance, and perhaps the jolting sensation of her feet striking the apartment stairs as she flew down two steps at a time. The night air had hit her like a sheet of ice water as she burst gasping from the apartment building to the courtyard outside, running toward the two figures sprawled on the ground. "Dad!" she shouted, her voice tinny and strained to her own ears. "Jensen!"
Neither of them stirred. As she came closer she fought a stifled gasp: they had both fallen on the broken railing. She could see a piece of jagged metal sticking up through Jenson's right calf from when he landed. A dark pool was spreading rapidly underneath them, both men with their faces down to the ground, both men with their flung-out limbs set in impossible angles. "Jensen?" she cried, diving for the nearer body. "Oh my god…"
He didn't move. A cold cavernous fear spreading inside her chest, she crawled on her hands and knees to the other body. "Dad? Answer me! Dad!"
His head turned, then. His blank grey eyes stared out at her through a bloodied face, crushed almost to the point of non-recognition.
The last thing she realised, before the familiar sensation of crackling warmth flowed through her body and her surroundings melted away, was that it was her father, and not Jensen, who did the asking.
Author's Note: Just thought I'd pop this in here since the question was asked and I thought it was amusing. A mimosa is a plant, but it is also a very nice cocktail made from one part orange juice and one part champagne. ;)