Disclaimer: I don't own anything Psych and I am not making any profits off of this story. It all belongs to the Steve Franks and USA network and whatnot so, please don't sue and please don't be offended by the language or situations the characters find themselves in.
" Oww." Groaned Carlton Lassiter as he slowly came back into consciousness. His deep blue eyes fluttered open and blinked back into focus. When his vision cleared up, Carlton found himself staring up into a pair of deep, hazel green eyes that were brimming with relief.
" Hey Lassie-face, glad you're back." Said Shawn Spencer from where he was standing over the dark haired man who had collapsed like a how of cards some ten minutes earlier.
" Shawn?" Asked Lassiter, who was still in a bit of a fog.
" Yeah Carly, I'm here." Said Shawn softly as he reached out and placed his hand over the center of Carlton's chest.
The steady beat beneath his palm and fingers helped ease some of the fear that still lingered with Shawn even now that Carlton was awake. Carlton instantly became alert when he realized that Shawn's hand was shaking minutely where it rested over his chest.
" Shawn what happened?" Asked Carlton as he sat up on what was now revealed to be an examination table similar to the one Shawn had been laying on during the sonogram.
" You passed out Carlton; Dr. Rodriguez told us that we're having a boy, you spaced out, told me you loved me, and the dropped to the floor in a heap." Said Shawn softly.
Carlton blinked as he let these words sink in. Then he notice the look on Shawn's face. The younger man may have had a small smile on his face, but it was wane, and his eyes had this quietly haunted look in them. Without even realizing it, Carlton reached up and covered the hand that was still rest over his heart as he spoke.
" I scared you." He said in quiet comprehension and guilt. Shawn inhaled sharply and ducked his head. Carlton watched in silence as the one who was carrying his son clenched his jaw and clinked his eyes very rapidly. Shawn cleared his throat lightly before he finally looked back up to meet Carlton's gaze and spoke.
" It's just the hormones making me overly emotional, that's all. I mean, Gus did the same thing when it finally dawned on him that he was gonna be an uncle soon. He toppled over just like you did. Reality just hit you. I wasn't scared, what do I look like, some kind of pansy? I'm fine Carlton, honest." Assured Shawn, all the while contradicting himself with the slight tremor in his voice as he spoke, and the overly bright sheen that had developed over his eyes. Carlton felt his guilt increase ten fold, so within seconds he was climbing off of the examination table and standing on his own two feet.
Shawn could do no more than gasp softly as he was pulled into a strong, but surprisingly gentle embrace.
" I'm so sorry I scared you Shawn." Murmured Carlton into Shawn's long chocolate locks.
Shawn for his part, was unbearably silent and tense within Carlton's hold for a very long while. Then all at once every inch of the pregnant carrier seemed to sigh and he melted into the arms that were holding him. Shawn raised his own arms and wrapped them tightly around Carlton, his hands fisting into the back of the older man's light blue dress shirt as he spoke.
" I'm okay, just... just don't do something like that again, please. I thought you'd had an aneurysm or something. Please don't ever do that to me again." Said Shawn desperately.
" I won't, I promise." Said Carlton, meaning it with all he had in him.
Shawn nodded mutely and then promptly buried his face into the side of Carlton's neck. Carlton could scarcely believe that he was holding Shawn, and that the younger man was holding him in return. The off-duty police detective did not want this moment to end. He had longed for this feeling for so many long and lonely months and now that he finally had his lover back in his arms, he never wanted to let go. As he allowed himself to be held by the other father of the baby boy he was carrying, Shawn felt this strange sense of peace wash over him. Suddenly, all the hurt and betrayal that had happened between him and Carlton didn't matter so much. What truly mattered now was the future that loomed not too far away.
The sudden sound of someone lightly clearing his throat had Shawn and Carlton reluctantly parting. The two men turned to see Henry Spencer and Dr. Rodriguez standing in the doorway of the room.
" Nice to see you didn't clock out on us for very long." Said Dr. Rodriguez with a smile as he and Henry made their way over to Shawn and Carlton.
" You alright?" Asked Henry gruffly as he eyed Carlton critically.
" I'm fine, thanks for asking Mr. Spencer." Answered Carlton.
" Good, and it's Henry." Said Henry, not quite meeting Carlton's stunned gaze as he said this. It seemed that Shawn's father was also on the path of finally forgiving Lassiter.
Carlton wisely nodded in acceptance, emotion temporarily robbing him of his ability to speak. Henry gave a small nod as well before he turned to Shawn and spoke.
" You ready to go son?" He asked.
Shawn was just about to answer Carlton spoke up.
" Wait a second, what about the amnio-thing, don't you still have to do that?" He asked, feeling dread at the thought of the big needle that would be involved in this particular procedure.
" Well, it looks like passing out hasn't resulted in memory loss. To answer your question, it has already been done. I performed the amniocentesis while you were unconscious." Smiled Dr. Rodriquez.
" Everything went smoothly. Shawn and the baby are perfectly fine." He added.
It was here that Shawn spoke.
" Hey Dad listen, can I talk to you for a second?" He asked.
" Sure Kiddo." Said Henry.
Together the father and son quietly stepped out of the room leaving Carlton with Dr. Rodriguez. Rodriguez being the physician that he was, immediately set about making sure that Carlton was alright from his loss of consciousness and subsequent rendezvous with the exam room floor. Outside in the hallway, Shawn steadied his nerve and answered his father's questioning gaze.
" Dad, I'm gonna go with Carlton. There are some things me and him need to talk about." Said Shawn with more calmness than he actually felt.
Henry was silent for a long moment before he finally spoke.
" You're going to tell him the truth." He said knowingly.
" Yeah, I am." Nodded Shawn.
" You sure about this son?" Asked Henry.
" I'm sure dad, it's now or never. He deserves to know the truth and I need to tell him myself." Said Shawn quietly.
Henry's expression grew thoughtful and then he spoke.
" Call me if you need me, okay?" Sighed Henry. Shawn gave his father a small nod and then the two of them walked back into the exam room.
" Are you okay to drive?" Asked Shawn to Carlton.
" Yeah, I'm fine Shawn, why do you ask?" Asked Carlton.
" I'm going with you." Said Shawn bluntly.
" What?... Oh, okay." Said Carlton, feeling trepidation for what Shawn had in mind.
Shawn, Henry, and Carlton all bid Dr. Rodriguez farewell until Shawn's next appointment and made there way out of the clinic. Once the three of them were outside, Henry gave Shawn's shoulder a firm squeeze and sent Carlton a look that clearly told the police detective that if he didn't take care of Shawn and the baby then there would be hell to pay. Then the older Spencer took his leave and left Shawn and Carlton to each other. Shawn pulled his light jacket snugly around him in an effort to hide his current condition from any unwanted attention as he turned to Carlton and spoke.
" Let's get outta here." He said quietly.
Carlton nodded mutely before leading the way to where he had parked his car. Once they reached the crown Vic, Carlton first opened the door for Shawn and helped the pregnant carrier climb into the vehicle before he himself climbed into the driver's seat. The drive to Lassiter's apartment was filled with a strange kind of silence that was both wrought with mild tension and retrained giddiness. There was tension for what Shawn had decided to reveal to Carlton and there was quiet joy because they had just found out that they were having a perfectly healthy baby boy. All throughout the drive, both men kept stealing glances at each other. There was so much they wanted to say to each other, yet they hardly knew where to begin.
Thirty minutes later, Carlton was smoothly driving the maroon colored car into the parking garage of his apartment complex. The off-duty detective quickly found his reserved spot and parked. Shawn felt his heartbeat quicken as he carefully climbed out of the passenger seat with some help from Carlton. Once he was out, Shawn closely followed behind Carlton as the older man led the way into the apartment building. A silent, slightly awkward elevator ride later, Shawn was stepping over the threshold into Lassiter's apartment. Carlton stepped in himself and closed the door behind him.
Shawn's razor-sharp mind immediately took in even the minutest details of what he could see of Carlton's apartment; mainly the kitchen and living room area. Unlike the last time Shawn had been here, when the place had been in slight disarray, everything was now back in place with almost military like pristine.
" Nice to see that you tidied up since the last time I was here." Said Shawn as he turned to give Shawn a half smile.
" Oh, yeah. I guess I just got my motivation back." Said Carlton as he and Shawn made their way into the living room area.
Carlton lightly held Shawn by his elbows as the younger man slowly lowered himself onto Lassiter's tan colored sofa. Once he was sure that Shawn was comfortable, Carlton sat down himself. The two men sat facing one another, neither one sure what to say to break the silence. It was Shawn who finally broke the stalemate by speaking.
" I'd usually try some small talk, but that's just gonna be a waste of time so I'll just get right down to it. Carlton, there's something I need to tell you." Said Shawn softly
Shawn pressed his hands to the curve of his stomach to keep Carlton from seeing how they had begun to tremble. Carlton immediately felt unease settle over him as he spoke.
" What is it Shawn? What is it you need to tell me?" Asked Carlton, knowing full well that he probably wasn't going to like the answer.
Shawn took in a deep, steadying breath before finally answering Carlton.
" I'm not psychic, I never was." Said Shawn, finally revealing his most guarded secret to the man he loved.
Dead silence followed after Shawn's words of confession. Carlton stared at Shawn with pale blue eyes that had grown to the size of dinner plates. His mouth was working soundlessly, trying to ford words and failing spectacularly. In essence, Carlton Lassiter resembled a freshly caught tuna fish gasping for its last breaths. An eternity seemed to pass before Carlton finally regained his voice and spoke, though all he could manage was a chocked whisper.
" H-How Shawn?" He asked.
Taking in another deep breath, Shawn began to explain everything from being born with a photographic memory, to his childhood filled with Henry's constant training to be a cop. He told Carlton everything and witch each truth he revealed, Shawn felt more and more liberated. Shawn talked for what seemed like hours, revealing to Carlton how he had figured out so much and solved so many cases.
When Shawn finally stopped, he looked up at Carlton and saw that the older man was staring at him completely slack-jawed. A life-age of the Earth seemed to pass by before Carlton snapped his jaw back up and spoke.
" So there's no inside source in the department, you're just a better detective than me." Said Carlton as a storm of emotions raged behind his darkened eyes.
" I'm sorry Carlton, I-" Shawn began to say when Carlton held up his hand and silenced him.
Shawn watched as Carlton's eyes hardened and took of the color of pure a low growl from the back of his throat, Carlton shot up from his seat on the sofa and began pacing like a caged tiger as he spoke.
" You lied." He said flatly.
" You didn't believe me about the tip I phoned in, You were gonna put me in jail for something I didn't do." Countered Shawn softly.
Carlton stopped in his pacing and faced Shawn as he spoke.
" You still carried on lying after that Shawn, you lied right to my face." Growled Carlton before with a jerky shake of his head, he stormed off past Shawn towards the sliding glass doors that led outside to the balcony. Shawn watched Carlton with burning eyes as the older man yanked the sliding glass door open and stepped through it into the warm, early afternoon sun.
Shawn let out a shaky breath and slowly pushed himself up from where he sat. Once on his feet, Shawn slowly made his way to the open sliding glass door. The pregnant carrier stepped over the threshold and out onto the balcony. Carlton was leaning heavily against the railing with his back to Shawn and his head slightly bowed. Shawn could tell that the older man was very angry and in deep turmoil. Knowing this, Shawn slowly made his way towards the dark haired man regardless. Doing his best to ignore the part of him that was telling him to turn tail and run, Shawn came to stop just one step away from Lassiter. Gathering every ounce of courage he could, Shawn gingerly reached out and gently placed his palm against Carlton's back. Shawn immediately felt Carton tense under his touch, but the older man didn't shrug off Shawn's hand completely.
Shawn decided to take a complete leap of faith and closed the remaining distance that separated him from Carlton. Carlton let out a small gasp of surprise, but remained otherwise still as he felt Shawn gently press himself flush against his back. Shawn rested his lightly stubble covered cheek against the back of Carlton's shoulder and let out a shaky breath. They stayed that way for a very long time, both men simply breathing and trying to figure out what they were supposed to do.
Then Shawn finally spoke.
" I was gonna tell you everything all those months back, I figured since we'd been together for seven months that maybe we would be alright, we'd be stronger without the whole psychic thing being their between us. Then that fiasco with the road-block happened and it all just went to Hell. I'm sorry, I'm so sorry Carlton." Said Shawn softly as he blinked his eyes rapidly against the tears that were threatening to fall from them.
Carlton felt a good chunk of his anger evaporate at Shawn's words. The anger was replaced with melancholy as he felt Shawn tremble against him. With a small sigh of his own, Carlton slowly turned around and faced Shawn.
Sad pale blue eyes met those of slightly teary hazel green as Carlton spoke.
" How could you keep on lying to everyone, to me?" He asked quietly.
Shawn shrugged helplessly and sniffled softly as he answered.
" At first, it was to keep you guys from throwing me in jail. Then after I solved the first few cases, being a consultant started to feel like what I needed to do. And yeah, I got a kick out of amazing everybody and being the constant thorn in your side." Said Shawn with a shaky little smile. To his silent, but immense relief, Shawn watched as Carlton snorted softly and rolled his eyes, the corner of his mouth quirking upwards for a fleeting moment before disappearing all too soon. Shawn sobered up as well as he finally got to the heart of what he needed to say.
" Being a consultant and working cases were the most important things to me. I felt like I'd finally found purpose after drifting for so many years. But now everything's changed, I've changed. My purpose is different, it's something way better." Said Shawn.
" What is your purpose now?" Asked Carlton, his own eyes burning slightly from the tell-tale sting of tears.
Carlton watched as a soft and somewhat sad smile spread across Shawn's lips as the younger man reached out and gently gripped one of his wrists. Carlton gave Shawn no resistance as the younger man guided his hand to the top of his pregnant belly. Shawn pressed Carlton's palm to their unborn child as he spoke.
" He is my purpose now, he'd been my purpose from the second I found out about him. I'm alive is because of our son and I'm alive because you gave him to me." Said Shawn so softly it was almost a whisper.
Carlton was utterly speechless as he let Shawn's softly spoken words wash over him.
" I'm not going back to consulting Lassie." Said Shawn, and he was dead serious.
" What?" Asked Lassiter, thinking that he had not heard Shawn correctly.
" You heard me Carlton, I'm not going back to consulting, I don't wanna keep on lying to people like I was, and it's not what I want." Said Shawn as he gave Carlton's hand a firm squeeze.
Carlton was stunned by the huge decision Shawn had just revealed to him. When he finally gathered his thoughts he finally spoke a complete sentence.
" What do you want now Shawn?" He asked softly as he squeezed Shawn's hand in return.
Shawn could no longer hold back the tears he had fighting; two warm trails of salt carved their way down Shawn's pale cheeks as he finally spoke.
" I want him." Said Shawn as he looked down at his stomach, then he looked back up and continued.
" I want you." He said softly, then he reached up to wipe at the tears that stained his cheeks. Once he had wiped some of the wetness away, Shawn reached under the collar of his Henley shirt and pulled out a thin, braided silver chain with a beautiful agate cameo pendant hanging from it.
Carlton took a closer look at the pendant and immediately felt something inside his chest tighten as he realized what the image on the cameo was.
Two adult seahorses, and a little baby between them. A family.
" I want this, I want there to be the three of us together. That's all I want, and that's all I'll ever need." Said Shawn finally.
" Now I gotta ask you what you want Carlton?" Asked Shawn.
Carlton looked from the pendant that hung around Shawn's neck, to their joined hands where they rested over their unborn son, and finally to the painfully hopeful look that on Shawn's face, a look that told Carlton that there was no armor, there were no walls, just Shawn laying himself out in full.
It was in that moment that Carlton made his own decision about what direction his life was going to take from now on. With his mind made up, Carlton decided that showing Shawn what he wanted was better than merely saying it.
Shawn let out a small gasp of surprise as he was gently, but firmly pulled forward into a solid and warm chest. He felt arms wrap tightly around him and hold him close. Shawn opened his mouth to ask Carlton what was going on, but Shawn words died in the back of his throat as Carlton sealed his mouth over his, effectively silencing him. The second their lips touched, Shawn felt everything melt away, from the world around them, to all the anger and hurt he had still been holding on too. Every bad emotion evaporated, leaving only a sense of peace. Shawn's whole body seemed to sigh as he melted against Lassiter and responded to the kiss they were sharing. As he wrapped his own arms around Carlton's neck, Shawn smiled against Carlton's mouth and felt his own feelings of joy at this moment increase when he felt Carlton smile against his lips too. It was clear to Shawn what Carlton's answer was.
Yes, he wanted this too.