Disclaimer: I do not own any part of Psych. I just borrowed the boys for a bit.

Summary: Carlton muses slightly on the past while holding his present and future.

Carlton wasn't sure he could pin the exact moment when reality as he knew it shifted. It seemed to happen as most things do in life, gradually then suddenly. 'It really is astounding what one remembers and what one doesn't.' he mused to himself. He gazed down at the brunette in his arms, thoughts becoming as smudged as his perception of the past. No, he didn't know when everything started or when he became aware of it. Some would say it started the same time the letters from the lawyer did. They might be right but it seemed like there was so much more to it than that.

The divorce had been messy, brutally so and Santa Barbara's Head Detective found himself spending more and more time at the gun range. Shooting those little figurines was wonderfully therapeutic even if it did unnerve the rest of the department. They all stayed away from Carlton. Nothing new there, alone seemed to be par for the course with him. Victoria, Lucinda, and a few (a very few) others washed into and out of his life like the tide. Each one pulling him under and roaring over him then receding, heedless of him left behind sputtering and coughing on the sand. Not that it was completely their fault…but it wasn't completely his either and in the end it didn't matter because he was still alone.

Alone except for some con man who never respected boundaries so why should he start now? Somehow the fake psychic bypassed all the borders around the 

Irishman's bruised heart, gently picking it up and dusting it off. The first kiss was surreal and yet so very ordinary – a slight press of lips on the range followed by an admonishment not to spend all night there. Carlton had stood still, slowly realizing that although the younger man had left, his presence lingered. As did the faint taste of pineapple chapstick.

Had it been building for awhile? The detective couldn't be sure, didn't really want to know. All that really mattered was he was tired of being alone, tired of the ebb and flow. So he dove deep and let himself be swept out of his senses by a green eyed force of nature. Shawn surrounded him utterly and in the midst of the chaos that embodied the fake psychic, Carlton felt more at peace than he had in a long, long time. There was a distant fear of getting in too deep, of drowning but as his lover turned and nuzzled a stubbly cheek against his Carlton couldn't help but think 'What a wonderful way to go.' He ran his hands over the younger man and stopped wondering on how and why it came to be and just enjoyed the fact that it was.