6:15 p.m. (Thanksgiving day)
Carlton sighed in relief as he watched Shawn leave the station. I need something to do. He still had some papers left to fill out from the previous case. Many people had already left, and the party was dying down. The head detective sat at his desk and set to work, the dull chatter of the remaining officers fading into the background. After a while, he realized he had been reading the same line over and over for the past ten minutes. Don't think about it, don't think about it, don't thi---
O'Hara. Great. If I just ignore her, will she go away? He sat silently, not answering.
She didn't go away. He could sense her still standing there, shifting awkwardly.
Fine. Let's just get this over with. "Yes?" He didn't look at her. When there was no response, he sighed and glanced up, repeating himself. "Yes?"
Her eyes were wide with concern. "…Are you alright, sir? I-I'm sorry about…before."
But you're not. Not really. "Forget it, O'Hara. It doesn't matter, and I don't want to talk about it." Don't I?
"Actually..." She stammered hesitantly. "I was wondering…well…before…when you and Shawn were eating lunch…I got the impression that…maybe you would be okay with...uh…you know..." She blushed. "I mean…I found out that Shawn was…gay…and…that he…uh…liked you, and…I thought that maybe you wouldn't mind if I helped him."
Carlton's heart leapt at her words. He IS gay? He LIKES me? He really likes ME? What…
"Was I wrong, sir? Because if I was, I won't help Shawn anymore, or interfere, or…just…I need to know if I was wrong."
Carlton smiled at her wearily. She looked surprised.
"No…" What the hell am I saying? "No, you weren't wrong."
O'Hara beamed at him. "Oh, that's wonderful, sir! I'm so happy to---"
He interrupted her, pleading, "Don't tell anyone, though…especially not Shawn, okay? Please? I…I'm really not sure of my own feelings at the moment, and…I just need some time to think about it."
"Of course, sir!"
Carlton looked at the blonde suspiciously.
"I promise! I won't tell!"
He nodded, turning back to the papers on his desk.
Back in the Psych office, Shawn hung up the phone and looked at Gus, grinning. Gus shrank back uneasily.
"Shawn, why are you looking at me like that? You know it gives me the willies."
Rubbing his hands together excitedly, Shawn told his friend what he had just heard. "Jules says I should wait a little while before going back over, because Lassy might need some space. Apparently, he's working busily, and you know what that means…"
"No, I don't. And why are you so happy?"
This time, Shawn was the one to roll his eyes. In a very condescending tone, he replied, "Well, Gus, it means that he's trying to distract himself from something…and what do you think he could possibly need a distraction from?"
Gus glared at the other man, who was currently sitting on top of Gus's desk. "I'm not five, Shawn! I just don't see why this is a good thing. Isn't it a bad sign if he's trying to distract himself from thinking about…what happened between you and him?"
"What, you mean me cornering him in a file room and kissing him?" Shawn grinned evilly at the look on Gus's face.
"Okay, okay! Listen, if Lassy needs a distraction, it means I actually got to him. If he had punched me out when I kissed him…that would have been a bad sign. This? Not so much. I don't mind waiting a little while for him to catch his breath, but not too long. I still have a bet to win, remember?"
"Humph. I was hoping you would have forgotten by now, what with that tiny attention span of yours."
Shawn shrugged. "Nah. This is one thing I plan to go through with."
Gus glanced at his friend, and said softly, "You're really serious about this whole Lassiter thing, aren't you?"
"Yeah." Shawn nodded. "Yeah, I am." He smirked pretentiously. "But don't worry, buddy…you'll always be my number one. No need to get jealous."
Gus choked momentarily, and then jumped at Shawn, scowling.
Shawn squealed, and leapt off of Gus's desk.
The two men ran around the desk for a few minutes, and then collapsed onto the couch.
"So…" Shawn questioned, "What now?"
The station was nearly empty, save for a few janitors who ambled about, wiping down the floor and cleaning out the bathrooms.
Lassiter rubbed his eyes drowsily. He had finally managed to complete most of the necessary work. Suddenly, he felt someone's hands on his shoulders. He froze - not because he didn't know who it was, but because he knew only too well who it was. He stood up abruptly. Unfortunately, his chair blocked his escape route, and doing so only brought him even closer to the person behind him. The hands gripped his shoulders and spun him around slowly. He couldn't resist. Bright green eyes met his wide blue ones.
Shawn gingerly wrapped his arms around the other man's neck. Hoarsely, he whispered, "Are you going to push me away again?"
Lassiter opened his mouth, and then clamped it shut. There was a moment of silence as neither man made a move or a sound. Then, slowly, Lassiter shook his head.
As comprehension dawned, Shawn smiled. I know he's not going to go first, but…it's a start. The younger man stepped closer to Lassiter, pressing up against him. Pulling down slightly with his arms, Shawn slanted his head up and kissed Lassiter tenderly. Although the detective did nothing to deepen the kiss, he made no attempt to flee. Shawn pulled back slightly and looked at Lassiter carefully. Unreadable blue eyes stared back at him. Shawn sighed. That's the best I can do. Now it's up to him. He stepped back completely, removing his arms from Lassiter's neck. Disappointed at the lack of response from the other man, he turned to leave, saying, "Call me."
As Shawn walked forward, he was prevented from doing so by the hand that grabbed his wrist.
He looked back at the detective, hopefully.
Lassiter took his hand away, looking confused. "I…I'm sorry. I don't…I…"
Shawn reached out and ruffled Lassiter's hair. "I love you, okay? If you don't feel the same way about me, it's alright, I'll survive. But…if you do…" He smiled genuinely. "Just…call me. I'll be waiting." Putting his hands in his pockets, Shawn exited the station, leaving the detective alone with his thoughts.
Carlton watched Shawn go, slightly bewildered. I…why did…uh… He touched his fingers to his lips, thinking about what had just happened. He felt like he had been dreaming; it was all so unreal. It had been nothing like this with his ex-wife. Why did I waste all that time trying to save the marriage? If I'd known I could feel like this… He reached down and pulled open a drawer, taking out the apple he had placed there earlier. The apple of his eye? So he was serious… Shawn's words echoed in his head. "I love you, okay? If you don't feel the same way about me, it's alright, I'll survive. But…if you do… Just…call me. I'll be waiting. Carlton sat down and put his head in his hands as the words continued to swirl around in his thoughts. I love you…if you do…I'll be waiting…love you…waiting…
Shawn sat in his apartment, playing video games. He sighed as his character died for the sixteenth time in a row. Throwing the controller aside and turning off the TV, he glanced at his watch. He hadn't heard from Lassiter; it had been over an hour since he had left the station, but he wasn't too worried. After all, this is new to him, too. Shawn lay down quietly for a while, stretching out on the couch, and staring at his phone. Suddenly, it rang loudly, breaking the silence, and making him jump. He lunged forward to grab it, accidentally knocking it off of the couch in the process.
Tripping over the controller, Shawn tumbled off the couch, nearly crushing the phone beneath him. Grabbing it on the last ring, he flipped it open and gasped out, "He-hello?"
"Good evening, sir. Would you be interested in buying a---"
"GO AWAY!" Shawn interrupted, screaming into the phone. He shut it quickly, panting. He paused. Wait a…
Juliet giggled hysterically, as Gus doubled up, laughing. Tears ran down his cheeks as he hung up his phone. "Did—did you h-hear him?"
"Of course! I'm sure your neighbors did, too!" Juliet gasped out. "He sounds a little nervous…"
Gus snorted. "Just a little…"
"You know he's going to kill you." Juliet looked at Gus, still smiling merrily.
Chuckling, Gus responded, "I know, but it was worth it."
Shawn sulked moodily. Gus dies tomorrow. He had been tempted to call back, but, as he was sure Gus knew, he was too worried about missing a call from Lassy to risk it. Instead, he sat on the couch, plotting revenge.
The watch beeped, startling Shawn awake. "Hmm?" Oh no! What if I missed his call? He quickly opened his phone and checked his voicemail.
-No new messages-
He sighed in relief, and then realized it was ten o'clock and Lassy still hadn't called. Nervous, Shawn debated with himself. Should I call him? It's been awhile. He's had time to think about it. Maybe he isn't going to---no! I can't give up yet! I told him I'd be waiting. It's still kind of early…
"Hi, you've reached Carlton Lassiter. I'm not here right now. Leave a message."
Shawn hung up the phone. He had tried calling Lassiter at the station, his house, and on his cell phone. Where is he? I hope he's okay…
"The weather tomorrow is---"
"…Members of an elite squad known as the—"
"Crikey! Wouldja just look at the size of that…"
Shawn's mouth twitched. There was something seriously wrong with him when he wasn't even amused by reruns of Steve Irwin chasing down crocs in a muddy river somewhere.
Shawn put his head in his hands. Can't…sleep. Can't…do…anything… He yawned. If he doesn't call by twelve, I'm going to bed. Whatever. It's not like it really matters to me whether he calls or not…I'm just trying to win a bet after all… Oh, who am I kidding? Of course I care. Dammit.
-Tick, tock, tick, tock, tick, tock-
Come on, come on, come on, come…
Shawn jumped, startled. Was that thunder? "Oh…" Someone was knocking on his door. Oh my GOSH…
He walked slowly to the door, and opened it.
Lassiter stood on Shawn's doormat.
Shawn stared at Lassiter. Lassiter stared at Shawn.
Baffled, Shawn opened the door wider, and stepped back silently.
The detective, still dressed in his suit, but devoid of his usual shoulder holster and gun, hesitated slightly, and then entered the apartment.
Closing the door, Shawn turned to face the other man, who was busy examining the grains of the carpet.
Lassiter scuffed his shoe on the floor. "Uh…listen Spen—Shawn. I-I'm sorry to come over this late. I can go if you—" He stopped talking as Shawn seized his hand.
Shawn bit his lip to keep himself from grinning. Is he blushing? "It's no problem, Lassy. No problem at all."
Finally meeting Shawn's eyes, Lassiter's cheeks flushed visibly. "Did…did you mean what you said before? About…everything?"
Shawn smiled, and answered simply, "Yes."
Lassiter smiled back.
Shawn's breath caught in his throat. He's SMILING! Really SMILING! And he's smiling at ME!
A watch beeped. Oh man! It's twel---
"Well, then…" Lassiter reached out with the hand that wasn't being held, and placed it under Shawn's chin. Forcing the younger man's head to tilt upward, Lassiter leaned down.
Shawn closed his eyes, and Lassiter kissed him on the lips.
Putting a hand to the other man's head, Shawn weaved his fingers through the short dark hair. Lassiter backed Shawn up to the wall, pressing him against it. Letting go of each other's hands, they found better places to hold onto, pulling themselves even closer together. They paused to take a breath, and then quickly resumed their positions. Lassiter's lips returned to meet the other man's. Shawn opened his mouth invitingly. Lassiter faltered momentarily before gently sticking his tongue in. The kissing got more passionate. Finally, losing control of his muscles, Shawn collapsed into Lassiter's arms, sighing happily. They stood there for a while, hugging each other contentedly. Unexpectedly, Lassiter swept Shawn off his feet and carried him to the couch. He sat down with the other man in his lap. Shawn rested his head against Lassiter's chest. Leaning back against the cushions, Lassiter wrapped his arms under Shawn's, holding him tightly. Minutes ticked by in silence. Feeling himself begin to doze off, Shawn mumbled, "I guess I lose the bet."
"Hmmm?" Lassiter sounded just as sleepy.
"The bet. The bet I made with Gus. You didn't kiss me before midnight." Shawn grinned. "It doesn't matter. I never thought I'd hear myself say this, but…I think I've found something even better than a free pineapple smoothie."
"What's that?" Lassiter murmured.
Lassiter squeezed Shawn, laughing softly. "This is going to be the strangest relationship I have ever had."
Shawn smiled drowsily in response. Relationship…
Within minutes, all was quiet again, as the two newfound lovers fell asleep in each other's arms.
Author's notes: Wheeeee! -grins- So…what did y'all think? Sorry for not posting in so long. –points at chapter- I hope this makes up for it. :) I think I'm gonna have to write a sequel to this at some point. It was just SO much fun to write! Do y'all want more? Anyway, THANK YOU to all my regular reviewers (you know who you are) and everyone else who took the time to comment:)