Disclaimer: I don't own Psych or its characters, etc.
--Santa Barbara, 1987--
Shawn stared out the window of the patrol car, watching in boredom as the trees and buildings sped past.
"Huh?" He turned to look at his father.
"Did you hear a word I said?" Henry demanded.
"No," Shawn said, sighing. "Sorry."
Henry started to speak, reprimanding him about not paying attention, and then apparently repeating what Shawn had missed. Shawn tuned him out again. It was easier to ignore him when he was driving; he didn't have to look at him. As Shawn was gazing blankly out the windshield, a black cat suddenly ran across the road in front of them. "Dad, look out!" Shawn shouted.
Henry cursed and hit the brakes, bringing the car to an abrupt stop. By that time, the cat had already disappeared into the darkness on the other side of the road. As Henry started to move the car again, Shawn called out for him to stop.
"Wait! We can't go unless it crosses back!"
"What? Why?" Henry asked, bracing an arm around the passenger seat and turning to look at Shawn in irritation.
"It's bad luck!" Shawn told him emphatically.
"Oh come on, Shawn," Henry said, dismissing his words immediately. "That's just a silly superstition."
"No it's not!" Shawn insisted. "Gus said that Johnny heard that a black cat ran in front of Andy once and then he broke his leg!"
"How did Andy break his leg?" Henry asked.
"Umm…I think he fell off his bike," Shawn said.
"And what does falling off his bike have to do with the black cat? Nothing," Henry answered for him. "Superstitions are for people who are too stupid to take responsibility for their own actions. Got it?"
"Yes sir," Shawn said sullenly.
--Santa Barbara, Present Day – Friday the 13th --
"For the record, I'm completely against this," Gus informed Shawn as they entered the station.
"What? Coming in today?"
"Yes!" Gus replied forcefully. "We're coming to a police station on Friday the 13th…doesn't that seem the least bit morbid to you?"
Shawn rolled his eyes at him. "Oh come on, Gus. Don't go all superstitious on me."
"I'm not superstitious," Gus said. "I'm just…careful. And I'm not the only one. Did you know that businesses lose seven to nine hundred million dollars today because so many people stay home?"
Shawn stopped walking and turned to stare at his friend. "Why would I possibly know that?"
Shawn's answer was cut off as Lassiter and Juliet, along with several other officers, started heading towards them in a hurry. Or rather, towards the main doors that they just happened to be in front of.
"Lassy-face! What's the rush?" Shawn inquired.
"Out of my way, Spencer," Lassiter said curtly, brushing past him.
"We just got a call," Juliet told Shawn quickly before following her partner.
Shawn and Gus looked at each other and shrugged before tagging along. No one made an attempt to stop them, apparently too caught up in the situation. After a short drive, they arrived at a normal-looking house located in one of the nicer neighborhoods. A pretty brunette who looked as though she had been crying opened the door when Lassiter knocked. Juliet and the other officers entered the building, followed by Shawn and Gus. Lassiter glanced up just in time to see them come in.
"No, absolutely not," he said firmly, pointing back at the door. "Out."
Shawn put a hand to his temple. "I'm sensing you're going to need my psychic abilities in this one, Lassy. Especially since it's Friday the 13th!"
Several of the officers exchanged uncomfortable glances, but Lassiter merely looked at Shawn angrily. He was obviously preparing to object when another voice cut him off.
"Did he say psychic?" A middle-aged man with eyes that were puffy and red emerged from a nearby room.
Lassiter clenched his jaw as Shawn took the bait.
"I sure did!" Shawn bounced over to the man, offering his hand. "Shawn Spencer, Head Psychic for the SBPD."
Hope lit up the man's face. "Maybe you can help, then--"
"Excuse me," Lassiter interrupted, sounding extremely annoyed. "Is my murder investigation getting in the way of your little chat?"
Shawn flapped a hand at him dismissively. "Nah."
Lassiter looked at Shawn as though he was barely restraining the urge to throttle him. Luckily, Juliet noticed, and managed to drag Shawn away under the pretense of needing to talk to him about something important.
While Lassiter talked to the man (Sam, Shawn corrected himself after hearing his name) and examined the body, Shawn lurked around the edges of the crime scene, trying not to miss anything.
Sam's voice rose above the other conversations. "This is all my fault!"
Lassiter looked at him in disbelief. "Are you admitting that you did this?"
Shawn rolled his eyes. For a detective, Lassiter was a bit clueless sometimes.
"I might as well have!" Sam wailed, collapsing onto the floor and sobbing into his hands. "If it weren't for me, my brother would still be alive!"
"Explain," Lassiter demanded. "Please," he added hurriedly as Juliet glared at him.
Sam struggled to control himself. "This morning…" he hiccupped suddenly. Startled, he paused, and then started to laugh. The gasping laughs soon turned back into sobs. Juliet rushed over to comfort him, looking up at Shawn and Lassiter helplessly as she patted his back.
Lassiter averted his eyes awkwardly. His gaze inadvertently met Shawn's and remained there for a moment before he forced himself to look in a different direction.
"What happened this morning?" Juliet prodded gently, letting her arm rest around Sam's shoulders.
Calmed down slightly, Sam explained. "I was at work, and without realizing it, I walked under a ladder. I didn't see it! I don't know how it got there! When I realized, I thought something bad would happen to me! I came back home right away, and that's when I found Billy!" He choked wetly as he tried to keep himself from falling apart again.
Noticing the confused looks everyone was exchanging, the brunette woman who had let them into the house stepped forward. "My dad is really superstitious," she explained. "Especially about Friday the 13th."
"He's paraskavedekatriaphobic?" Gus asked with interest.
"Say what?" Shawn said, bewildered.
Gus ignored him as the woman nodded. "So the ladder…" he started.
"It's bad luck to walk under one," she told them.
Lassiter looked at her in disbelief. "You're telling me he thinks this murder occurred because he walked under a ladder?"
Sam raised his head. "I don't think; I know. There can't be any other explanation."
"No, of course not," Lassiter said sarcastically. "O'Hara, would you please escort Mr. Sullivan down to the station for questioning? Just standard procedure," he assured Sam.
Juliet nodded and helped Sam to his feet.
"Can I come too?" the woman asked Juliet. "I'm Katey, by the way."
Juliet gave her a small smile. "Sure, Katey. Your father probably needs all the support he can get right now."
Shawn watched her leave until Gus elbowed him in the ribs. "Ow! What'd I do this time?"
Gus scowled at him. "Her uncle just died, Shawn."
"Yeah. So?" Shawn asked innocently.
"So forget it," Gus said firmly. Walking away quickly, he didn't give Shawn a chance to retort.
Shawn frowned and rubbed briefly at his side before following.
Almost everyone was out of the house and walking towards the cars when a dog's howl suddenly split the air. Shawn jumped, and noticed that he wasn't the only one.
Sam froze in his tracks, causing Juliet, who had been holding onto his arm, to stop as well. "What's wrong?" she asked in concern.
Sam had turned pale. "Dog…howled…" he whispered hoarsely.
"Dogs tend to do that sometimes," Lassiter said, exasperated.
"It means death is near," Katey told him.
"Yeah, and I'm a monkey on speed," Lassiter responded.
"Really?" Shawn piped up.
Lassiter glowered at him. "Let's go," he said to Juliet. While Juliet attempted to get the resistant man to move, Lassiter made his way towards his car. To get there he had to walk around Sam's car, which was parked along the curb.
"Lassy--" Shawn started, holding up a hand to stop him. Something wasn't right…there was…something…that sound…
Lassiter raised an eyebrow at him. "What is it, Spencer?" When Shawn didn't answer, he turned back to continue on his previous course.
"Lassy, don't," Shawn said. Looking to the left he saw a car approaching. It seemed to be going faster than it should have been. Some of the other officers noticed the car as well. Lassiter spun around to see what they were talking about. He reached for his badge, obviously intending to try and stop the driver. As he prepared to step out into the street, the car suddenly sped up even more and then swerved unexpectedly. Lassiter dove out of the way, cursing, as it headed straight for him. Seconds later, it crashed into Sam's car, setting off the alarm and causing a piece of the metal bender to go flying towards everyone standing in the driveway.
Shawn leapt to the side, shoving Katey out of the way just before the bender landed nearby, sending sparks into the air as it skidded against the cement. There was a moment of stunned silence, broken only by the wail of the car alarm, as everyone attempted to process what had just happened.
"GODDAMMIT!" Lassiter shouted angrily, getting back on his feet. Wiping his hands on his pants, he marched over to the car that had caused the crash.
"Are you okay?" Shawn asked Katey, offering her a hand up.
"Huh?" she said, slightly disoriented. "Oh, yeah…I think so." She took his hand and stood. "Thank you." Managing a shaky smile at him, she took a deep breath. "That was way too close. Maybe there's something to this whole Friday the 13th thing after all."
"Of course there is!" Sam said loudly.
While Sam tried to talk to anyone who would listen about his beliefs (namely, Juliet), Shawn and Katey chatted lightly.
Lassiter reached the driver of the car, and, finding that he seemed to be relatively fine, proceeded to reprimand him furiously. When Lassiter paused to breathe, the man took advantage of the opportunity.
"Look, dude, I'm really really sorry! I totally didn't mean to do that! I just looked down for a second to grab my coke!" He fingered his stained wet t-shirt ruefully.
"You were way above the speed limit," Lassiter gritted out.
"Was I?" the man seemed genuinely surprised. "Sorry, dude--"
"It's detective!" Lassiter interrupted.
"Oh, right…sorry detective, dude." The man gave him an uneasy grin. "No hard feelings, right?"
Lassiter gaped at him.
Shawn laughed as he watched the exchange. Turning back to Katey, he offered to drive her to the station in his car. Ignoring the glare Gus gave him, he grabbed the keys from his friend's hand without Katey noticing and directed her towards the car. Gus followed, and Juliet finally managed to tug Sam away as well.
Once they arrived at the station, Juliet questioned Sam while Shawn chatted with Katey and Gus nearby. After a while, as was inevitable, they got onto the topic of superstitions. Sam listed a huge number of things and events that caused bad luck, leaving them all somewhat spooked.
"Isn't there any way to avoid all this bad luck?" Shawn asked.
Sam looked startled at the idea. "Well…yeah. Sort of."
"Great!" Shawn clapped his hands together. "Lets talk about those!"
Shrugging, Sam acquiesced. "Mind you, there's no guarantee that these will work."
"Wow, do you have even a shred of optimism in you?" Shawn inquired.
"Today? No," Sam answered.
"Sorry," Shawn apologized.
"It's okay," Sam said. "Anyway…you've probably heard some of these before. Finding a four-leaf clover or a horseshoe; and if you nail the horseshoe up, you have to make sure the opening faces up, because otherwise the luck will fall away."
"Of course," Shawn said. "Even a good luck sign can't just be good luck. There's got to be a way to mess it up."
Sam scowled at him and Shawn held his hands up in surrender, allowing Sam to continue. "Evil spirits can't hurt you when you're standing in a circle, and you can break a bad luck spell by turning seven times in a clockwise circle--"
"Why didn't you just do that earlier?" Shawn asked.
"I did," Sam told him. "Must have been too late, though…"
"Anything else?" Juliet asked quickly, trying to distract him before he got upset again.
"Yeah…if you wear your clothes inside out, it'll bring you good luck." He plucked at his shirt, showing them that the seams were wrong way out.
"Seriously? Well that's easy enough." Before anyone realized what he was doing, Shawn pulled off his own shirt in one practiced move, grinning at Juliet and Katey.
Gus rolled his eyes as Juliet blushed and Katey hid an embarrassed smile with her hand. "Shawn, so help me god, if you take your pants off…"
Shawn smirked at him. "What? You'll have to jump me?"
Juliet and Katey burst out laughing as Gus glared at him.
"Mr. Spencer!" the Chief's voice rang through the station, drawing even more attention to them. Striding towards them quickly, she said, "Is there any particular reason why you're standing in the middle of this station without your shirt on?"
"I was just turning it inside out," Shawn informed her gravely. "It's good luck."
Chief Vick stared at him. "I see. Well, could you possibly hurry it up? You're distracting my police force."
Shawn peered around. Sure enough, almost everyone was staring at them now. He noticed that Lassiter had arrived, apparently while they were busy talking. The Head Detective had the driver from earlier in his grip, but his attention was focused entirely on Shawn. Shawn smirked as Lassiter's eyes raked over him and then moved up to his face. Lassiter turned red as Shawn waggled his eyebrows at him.
"Mr. Spencer?" Chief Vick prodded.
Oh, right. Shawn put the shirt back on, making sure to drag the action out. One of the female officers was still staring at him, so Shawn winked at her. Blushing, she pretended to cough, and then turned away. Other officers followed her example and got back to work.
Chief Vick returned to her office, leaving them alone again.
"Are you happy now?" Gus asked.
"Blissful," Shawn answered. "Full of bliss. And rainbows and flowers and--"
"Okay, we get it," Gus interrupted. Turning to Katey and Sam, he brought up the subject of superstitions again.
While they discussed that, Shawn drew Juliet into a separate conversation. "So, Jules. What'd you think?" He grinned and flexed his muscles. "Give me the down and dirty."
Juliet grabbed a bottle of water from her desk and tried to hide behind it. "Can we change the subject?"
"Aw, c'mon. Be a good sport." Shawn tried to give her his best 'sexy pout.'
Juliet struggled to keep a straight face. Her gaze moved upwards and focused on something behind Shawn. Before Shawn had a chance to turn, someone grabbed his shoulder roughly. "Carly!" Shawn said, tilting his head up until his neck twinged uncomfortably.
The detective glared down at him. "Spencer," he growled. The iron grip on Shawn's shoulder forced him to turn. Lassiter steered him away from Juliet without another word.
Shawn looked back at her as he was propelled along, managing a slight shrug.
Lassiter maneuvered him into an empty room and shoved him further inside while he flicked the light switch on and closed the door.
Shawn leaned nonchalantly against some shelves. "Gee, you sure know how to treat a guy."
Lassiter placed a hand on the shelf above Shawn's head, and leaned in threateningly. "Listen, Spencer. You're distracting my partner, not to mention everyone else, and you're hindering an investigation. I want it to stop. Now. Got that?"
Shawn shoved his hands into his pockets and grinned cheekily at Lassiter. "You mean you want me to stop flirting."
Lassiter's jaw flexed visibly.
Shawn's grin widened. "Come on, admit it. You're totally jealous."
The detective's expression darkened. "Can I help it if I don't want anyone else to have you?" Grabbing a fistful of Shawn's shirt, he pulled him into a rough kiss. Shawn responded immediately, running a hand through Lassiter's hair and tugging him closer. Lassiter thrust his leg between Shawn's, causing them both to gasp. The shelf was pressing painfully against Shawn's back, but he didn't have much trouble ignoring it.
They sprang apart as Juliet's voice emerged from the hallway.
As Lassiter reached up to smooth his hair, Shawn surprised him with another quick kiss before pulling away again. "I thought we agreed, Lassy. Nothing serious."
Lassiter didn't quite meet his eyes. "Right. Of course."
Shawn pushed nagging thoughts aside and gave the detective a quick smile before walking out of the room.
"Jules, hey! What's up?"
"I just got…worried," Juliet told him. "When you didn't come back."
"Aw, Jules, that's so sweet!"
Juliet rolled her eyes at him. "Listen, can you come baby-sit Sam and Katey for a while? I've got to work on the case, but Sam is too nervous to go back home."
"Katey's staying?" Shawn grinned. "Sure, no problem!"
"You are insufferable," Juliet informed him.
"That wasn't exactly a compliment."
Shawn smiled at her. "I take anything you say as a compliment."
Juliet shook her head in amusement. "If you say so, Shawn."
They reached the others, and Juliet headed off to her desk, leaving them on their own. After they had welcomed Shawn back, Katey asked, "So, what do you do for fun around here?"
"Tease Lassiter, play mini golf, intrude on interrogations…take your pick," Shawn told her.
"It's true," Gus verified.
Several hours later, after they had grabbed a quick lunch at the nearby diner, they sat in the basement of the station, which both Lassiter and Chief Vick had banned them to, trying to think of other methods of amusement. For a middle-aged manager of an accounting firm, who had just lost a sibling, Sam had been a surprisingly good sport. The random activities had helped distract him from thinking of his brother's death. Of course, in the process, they had had to avoid things such as mirrors, umbrellas, dogs, and brooms, but other than that…
They were still down there, playing a game of 20 questions, when Buzz came down to inform them that Sam's neighbor had just reported a possible break-in at Sam's house.
Shawn and Gus exchanged a look of disbelief. "Dude, is this for real?" Shawn said, stunned.
Buzz nodded. Turning to Sam, he said, "You'll probably want to go to your house and check if anything is missing. We sent someone over to check it out, but he won't be able to tell about personal items and stuff."
Sam gasped suddenly. "What about Billy? He was still in there when we left!"
Katey went over to him, explaining quickly, "The coroner got him, Dad; it's fine."
Sam slumped in relief at her words.
After giving him a few minutes to recover, they headed back to Sam's house. A uniformed officer was standing guard at the door, but he recognized Shawn and allowed them inside. The door had been open when he arrived, and some things had obviously been thrown about. Sam and Katey looked around, and then returned to Shawn and Gus to tell them about what was gone. From what they could gather, Sam's wallet had been stolen, along with some of the more valuable items in the house.
"It doesn't seem to be personal," Shawn remarked. "Just a random break-in…what are the chances?"
"It's this day," Sam insisted.
Gus opened the front door, letting a small breeze sweep in. Katey shivered, and crossed her arms. Turning back to Sam, she saw that he had turned pale. "Dad? What's wrong?"
"You just shivered," he whispered.
"Oh no, is this another bad sign?" Gus asked.
Sam nodded fearfully. "It means someone is casting a shadow on your grave."
"Dad--" Katey started.
Sam gasped. "Your name! It has 13 letters! We've got to get you away, safe somewhere!"
Katey began to object, but Shawn stopped her. "You know…with all the weird stuff happening today, maybe it is best if we just go back to the station. We can look after you there."
"Are you serious?" Katey said, taken aback.
"Look, I don't believe in all this stuff, but you've got to admit, this is pretty unusual."
"Shouldn't you believe in it, since you're a psychic?" Katey inquired.
"Oh…uh…right. Of course I believe in that, but this is…different…" Shawn stumbled over his words, trying to come up with an explanation.
"Yeah, psychics and superstitions don't go together at all," Gus said.
"You know what?" Shawn paused, unable to come up with a reply. "Let's just get back to the station, okay?"
Gus and Katey shared amused glances but followed him to the car with Sam trailing along behind them.
When they got back to the station, Lassiter and Juliet were waiting for them impatiently.
"Where the hell have you been?" Lassiter asked, annoyed at having had to wait.
"You didn't hear?" Shawn said.
"Mr. Sullivan's house was burglarized," Gus told them.
"Seriously?" Juliet looked stunned.
"Yeah," Shawn affirmed. "What's up with you guys?"
Juliet sighed. "Well, we've tried everything, but there doesn't seem to be any motive whatsoever for Billy Sullivan's murder."
Sam shook his head sadly. "I told you, it's my fault. That might sound self-centered, but it really is about me."
"You might be right," Juliet said. "So we need to know who would have a grudge against you. Has anyone threatened you?"
"No," Sam answered. "I don't know what anyone would have against me."
Juliet looked at Lassiter in disappointment.
"Unless…" Sam continued as something occurred to him. "We did have some lay-offs last week…"
Lassiter raised his eyebrows in disbelief. "You fired employees recently and didn't think that was worth mentioning?"
"Not really," Sam said. "I told you, it's just the day; it's bad luck."
Lassiter ignored him. "We're going to need a list of those employees."
"If you get me a piece of paper and something to write with, I could give you the names right now. There were only nine."
"Great. We can get that done fast, then," Lassiter said.
Juliet quickly found what Sam needed. Within the minute, they had a list of possible suspects. Lassiter ran the names through the computer and found their addresses.
"Come on, O'Hara. If we start now, we can finish the interviews by tonight."
"Actually," Shawn interjected, "Jules should stay here with Gus and the Sullivans. You might need me to divine the guilt of the people you interview."
"No way am I letting you come with me, Spencer," Lassiter said firmly.
"It might be a good idea, Carlton," Juliet suggested. "Could save us some time."
"Fine," Lassiter grumbled. "Traitor," he directed towards his partner.
"Don't worry," Shawn said to Juliet, threading his arm around Lassiter's. "I'll take care of him."
Lassiter shoved him off in annoyance and strode in the direction of the exit.
Shawn grinned and waved briefly at the others, saying, "See you later." He jogged after Lassiter, who had already disappeared from the station. When he caught up with the detective, Lassiter had just reached his car. "Shotgun!" Shawn called.
Lassiter scoffed at him. "Did you think I would let you drive?"
Shawn smirked and approached him rather than heading to the passenger side. Sidling up to Lassiter, he grabbed his tie, saying suggestively, "Sometimes you do."
Lassiter turned red and forced Shawn's hands away as he looked around cautiously to make sure no one had noticed. "That's different."
"If you say so." Shawn left the flustered detective and walked around to the other side of the car.
The interviews were interesting, to say the least. Shawn and Lassiter made awkward attempts to comfort the recently fired interviewees, if only to prevent them from taking their anger out on them. After they had gotten through seven people, Shawn was fairly sure he had not only heard every insult he knew several times, but learned some new ones as well.
When they reached the door of the eighth suspect, both men braced themselves, ready to endure another lengthy period of time filled with complaints and swearing. Surprisingly, Todd Cole didn't seem particularly upset with his new situation. He wasn't happy about being fired—far from it. If he hadn't been upset at all, they would have suspected something immediately. As it was, he acted as though it was merely an inconvenience—one that wasn't entirely unexpected what with the situation of the economy.
Shawn and Lassiter observed him curiously as he spoke. Shawn noticed that he seemed to be unable to keep his leg still. It jerked up and down in an irregular pattern, speeding up whenever they asked a new question. When Lassiter questioned his feelings about his boss, Mr. Sullivan, Todd reached a hand up several times to fidget with his ear.
"I guess I don't have any hard feelings against him, you know? I mean, obviously I wish he hadn't fired me." Todd laughed, but it seemed forced. "He's kind of a weird guy, you know? Real superstitious. Wouldn't let us bring umbrellas inside." He laughed again and scratched briefly at his neck.
Several questions later, they departed, thanking Todd for his time.
"That was so weird," Shawn said as soon as the door had closed behind them.
"Tell me about it," Lassiter agreed, shaking his head in bewilderment. "I've never met anyone less upset about losing their job."
"Yeah…" Shawn replied absently. "There's something about him…bad vibes, Lassy."
"Are you saying he's the one who did it?" Lassiter asked.
"Can't be sure. He's definitely sketchy, though."
"Sketchy doesn't cut it, Spencer," Lassiter informed him as they returned to the car. "We need probable cause to even pursue him as a suspect. Hard proof, not your voodoo."
"Okay, first of all, voodoo? Really?" Shawn opened the passenger side door and got in. "And second, if there's probable cause, I'll find it. You can't hide guilt from the spirits."
Lassiter rolled his eyes and refrained from lowering himself to Shawn's level.
The last name on the list led them to a dark house that appeared to be unoccupied. They tried the door anyway, but there was no answer. When they were back in the car, Lassiter pulled out a pen and circled the name. "All right, I'll try to track this guy down once we're back at the station."
"What, we're going back now?"
Lassiter looked at him in confusion. "Of course. Why wouldn't we?"
"Hmm, let's see…" Shawn placed a hand on Lassiter's thigh and leaned in towards him. "I can think of a few reasons…"
"No," Lassiter said, lifting Shawn's hand up and placing it back in his own lap. "We're working, Shawn."
"That never stopped us before," Shawn reminded him.
Lassiter flushed but held his ground. "The answer is no."
Shawn pouted. "You're no fun. I bet Katey wouldn't turn me down."
Lassiter's grip tightened on the wheel, and his hand hesitated over the key in the ignition.
Sensing victory, Shawn added, "Or Jules, for that matter."
The detective glowered at him. "I hate you."
"I know," Shawn said, grinning cheekily.
Pulling the key out and setting it aside, Lassiter switched the car light off and then pushed Shawn back against the door.
Shawn did his best to scoot back, twisting his body to face Lassiter and lifting his left leg up onto the seat. Reaching a semi-comfortable position, he pulled Lassiter down against him and forced their lips together. They shifted against each other in the dark.
"I knew you couldn't back down from a challenge."
"Shut up, Spencer."
When they finally arrived back at the station, Shawn stopped Lassiter under the lights by the doors. He smoothed his hands over the detective's rumpled suit, fixing it as best he could. Lassiter tugged Shawn's shirt to straighten it, and then gave a curt nod of approval. Shawn followed him into the station and then broke away to find the rest of their group.
Half an hour later, give or take a few minutes, Katey glanced at her watch. "It's getting late."
Shawn had gone over the details of their investigation, and after some discussion, they had finally run out of things to talk about.
"I think I'm going to go home," Katey continued.
Sam jumped up. "Katey, you can't! It's too dangerous!"
Katey brushed a hand through her hair wearily. "Where am I supposed to sleep tonight, Dad? Here?"
"We do have some empty cells…" Juliet suggested cautiously.
"I am not spending the night in jail," Katey said resolutely. "That's the end of the discussion," she told Sam.
"At least let me take you," Shawn offered.
Katey smiled gratefully. "Thanks, that would be great." Turning to Sam, she asked, "Are you going to be okay? You're welcome to come stay with me."
Sam shook his head emphatically. "I'm staying right here, as should you."
"Dad, enough already! I'll be fine! See you tomorrow, okay?" Not waiting for a reply, she placed a quick kiss on his forehead and then faced Shawn. "Ready?"
"Sure thing." Shawn quickly bumped fists with Gus. "You going home now?"
"Guess so," Gus nodded.
They left together, saying goodbye to Juliet and Sam. There was a moment of confusion in the parking lot as both Shawn and Gus headed for the driver's side of the car. Speaking up quickly, Shawn offered to drop Gus off before taking Katey home. Gus agreed reluctantly.
Shawn and Katey conversed easily as he followed her directions. Her neighborhood wasn't too far from her father's. When Katey pointed out her house, Shawn parked the car next to the curb and got out, insisting on accompanying her at least to the door. He emphasized the at least part, causing her to smile.
While she rifled through her purse for her keys, Shawn let his gaze wander, examining what he could see of the house in the dim light of the lamp. As he shifted his weight to his other foot, his view changed slightly, and something metallic reflected the light from the other side of the window. He leaned closer, hearing the jingle of keys in the background.
"Found them," Katey said.
There was a smallish metal square pasted to the inside of the window, hidden partially behind a curtain. Shawn's gaze followed a thin wire attached to it until the wire disappeared behind the wall that was in between the window and the door.
The key grated inside the doorknob as Katey turned it. Something in Shawn's mind clicked at the same time as the tumblers in the lock. Katey turned the doorknob.
"No!" Shawn exclaimed. Grabbing Katey, he dragged her away from the house and ran towards the street as the door swung open behind them.
"What—" Katey started to shout. The rest of her words were lost in the deafening sound of the house exploding. Shawn's grip on her hand broke as an invisible force hit them, hurling them into the air. Katey cried out in pain as she landed awkwardly against the unyielding asphalt of the street. Shawn's flight path was cut short by Gus's car. He yelped as his head hit the side of the vehicle.
Flames roared up from the house, casting strange, undulating shadows against the surrounding trees. Katey winced as she sat up. Forcing herself to her feet, she stumbled over to Shawn. "Are you okay?"
Shawn blinked and lifted a hand to inspect his head. "I—I think so. My head hurts, though. A lot."
Katey collapsed next to him, leaning back against the car. They sat there for a few minutes, still in shock. Finally Katey spoke again. "Thanks for saving my life."
Shawn looked at her. "You're welcome. I'm just glad I was here to stop you from going in."
Katey shook her head in wonder. "You're glad you were here. You could have died because of me."
Shawn lifted a shoulder in a semi-shrug. "Well I didn't."
Katey bit her lip. "Hey, Shawn?"
"Do you want to go out sometime?"
To be continued…
A/N: Hey, for a major procrastinator I actually did okay this time--only a little over a day late! Sorry for any mistakes--I really rushed to get this finished. There's going to be just one more chapter (hint: it involves Valentine's Day), and I'll try to write it as fast as I can. Thanks for reading!