All Bets Are Off
By Andie O'Neill
Genre: Romance, Humor
Pairing: Shawn/Lassiter, (Mention) Gus/Juliet
Summary: Juliet learns about a betting pool at the SBPD involving her partner Carlton Lassiter and Shawn Spencer.
A/N: I'm a firm believer that Juliet O'Hara wants Lassiter and Shawn together just as much as I do and I've been wanting to write this story ever since. Hope you enjoy! :D
Disclaimer: I don't own Psych or any of it's characters… rub it in why don't ya! :(
Juliet O'Hara, Junior Detective, didn't get where she was by being blind to the things going on around her. As a detective, she was trained to see what others missed. It was her job to fill in the jobs and find the answers no one else could. She'd suspected for some time that something was going on at the SBPD that she was unaware of, had believed so for months. The first time she'd gotten the strange feeling that something was going on was late at night at the Department. She'd been busy finishing some paper work when she noticed some officers gathering together in Wilkins' office. She'd tried to ignore it at first, glancing through the window of the office once or twice before she forced herself to focus… then Buzz McNab walked by looking around as if he were trying to sneak off.
That had been the last straw, and Juliet could take the suspicious behavior no more. She'd followed McNab into Wilkins' office only to see a black binder in one of the Detective's hands. Gregory Wilkins was taking some money from McNab and putting it in the binder. When she'd finally been spotted the binder had immediately been hidden away. Juliet never got the chance to find out what that damn binder was for. Since that time she'd watched the secret meetings go on quite a few times, normally at night, usually right after Carlton Lassiter left for the day. She tried her best to learn more, doing a bit of private detective work in the hopes of finally learning what her fellow officers were up to, but she was made painfully aware that they obviously didn't want her to know. She hated being out of the loop. Still, there was still a chance she could find out about the binder… it was just about asking the right questions, and picking the right moment to strike. Her target? Buzz McNab. He was the key, and she was getting desperate.
Carlton Lassiter was out on a case when Juliet finally saw the binder once again, only this time Buzz was holding it, what looked like a couple twenties in his other hand as he spoke with Gregory Wilkins. Her time had come, and she would learn the truth! "Hey guys, what's going on?" she asked, putting on an innocent smile as she jumped out before them, glancing down at the binder for a moment, making sure they were aware that she'd seen the black binder they were trying to hide from her.
"Detective O'Hara… h-hi!" McNab stuttered nervously, clearing his throat as he closed the binder. "H-how are you?"
Juliet gave him a long piercing stare that she'd learned from Lassiter after years of working as his partner. That stare had given her a number of confessions in the interrogation room, and she could only hope it would help her here as well. "What's up with the binder?" she asked, ignoring Buzz's question.
Buzz swallowed hard, giving her that 'deer caught in the headlights' look that told her the stare had worked it's magic. "What binder?"
"The one in your hand," she pointed out calmly.
Wilkins was a little more relaxed than Juliet would hope, and moved to take the binder from McNab's hand. "It's nothing Detective… just a little side project I'm working on."
"Side project? Interesting! What kind of project?"
Wilkins' eyes narrowed, as if he were trying to figure her out. He must have liked what he saw because he immediately smiled, patting McNab's shoulders. The poor guy was practically shaking. "It's okay Buzz… I don't think she'll be a problem," he assured the man. "So O'Hara, how do you feel about betting pools?"
Ah ha! She would have jumped up in triumph if not for the fact that they were currently at the Police Station… and there were other people around. "Betting pools? Depends on the bet." Juliet wasn't a stranger to betting. Growing up in a family obsessed with sports, she'd really had no choice but to follow along. Her Dad especially enjoyed betting on football and baseball, his two favorite sports and as she'd gotten older she'd dabbled once or twice.
McNab smiled, blushing just a bit. "Wilkins started it… he started to notice an interesting little romantic possibility between one of our detectives and a certain gifted psychic."
Juliet's smile immediately faded, her eyes growing sharp as she realized what was going on. She knew eventually Shawn Spencer's flirting would catch people's notice; it was just about narrowing down who the detective was. It would make sense that it might be her since they'd seemed so insistent on keeping her out of the loop. "Excuse me?"
Wilkins seemed to realize what she was thinking and immediately his eyes widened. "No, no, no! O'Hara… it's not about you. We know how Spencer can be. He flirts with everyone. The bet's about someone else," he assured her, and she immediately calmed down. It was then that curiosity once again got the best of her.
"Wait, if it's not me than… who exactly are you betting Shawn will hook up with?"
Buzz blushed almost immediately, glancing over at Detective Wilkins before he cleared his throat awkwardly. "Detective Carlton Lassiter," he answered hesitantly.
Juliet was sure she must have looked quite amusing with her eyebrows lifted so high they probably reached her hair line, and her mouth hanging open wide. Of all the bets in the world that she would have expected, a bet about when Carlton and Shawn finally hooked up was last on the list… if it were on the list even at all. Oh sure, she noticed Shawn's heart shaped eyes every time Carlton was around. She'd known from the beginning that Shawn had the makings of a crush forming for the Head Detective, but the chances of anything happening seemed so low! Carlton wouldn't give the poor guy a time of day… although, she had noticed him checking Shawn out when he'd been in that football uniform weeks ago during one of their toughest cases. There were certainly possibilities there. "Does the Chief know about this?"
Wilkins raised an eyebrow in amusement. "Are you kidding… she's already placed her bet! Half the Department has… and a few who don't even work here. Interested?"
Juliet narrowed her eyes, not quite sure it was ethical for her to bet on her partner, and friend. Still, if anyone could win the money that was surely piling high, she'd like to think she could. She was closer to Carlton than anyone being his partner, and her relationship with Shawn was just as strong. "Maybe," she admitted. "I'll have to get back to you on that." If she was going to place a bet she would need to do a bit of research first… and maybe use a little manipulation. Juliet smiled at the two before walking back to her desk. If anyone was going to win that money, it should be her!
The first thing her Father had ever taught her about placing a bet was to never go into the bet blind. If she wanted to come out on top she'd have to do her homework. The question was how exactly she would go about her secret investigation. Carlton was a very private man, and although they'd begun to bond as partners over the years they'd worked together, there were still some lines she'd learned not to cross. She would have to be very careful and discreet. Or maybe it was best she focus on Shawn first. Then again, there would be problems there first. How did one investigate a Psychic? Would he be able to see right through her? Maybe she could enlist Gus' help. She had her work cut out for her. It was at that moment that she heard the familiar voices coming from the entrance of the Department, and immediately smiled as she watched Shawn and Gus walking down the hall. "Shawn, just because his first name is Harry and he wears round glasses does not mean he's Harry Potter. He's a fictional character in a book."
"All I'm saying is they were round! And tell me that was not a scar on his forehead. They could be twins, Gus!"
"Fictional character, Shawn!"
"Gus, don't be such a blueberry muffin! I know he's a fictional character, but his last name was Potts! Irony doesn't even cover how insane that whole case was!" Gus shook his head in frustration, letting out a huff as they headed toward Juliet's desk. She immediately smiled at the pair, finding their conversation amusing. Before she could ask any questions about the man known as 'Harry Potts,' Shawn plopped down onto Juliet's desk. "Lady Jules, your Prince has arrived! Not an actual Prince, mind you, but I am the artist formally known as Prince," said Shawn with a raised eyebrow. Juliet looked over at Gus, trying to convey her confusion to Shawn's best friend, hoping for some explanation.
Gus just shook his head, slapping Shawn's shoulder until he got off her desk. "Don't ask," he muttered.
"Hey guys," she greeted with a friendly smile.
"Hey Jules, where's Lassie?" Shawn asked, looking over at Lassiter's desk.
Juliet hid her smile, head ducked down in amusement. "He should be back any minute. He's on a case."
"Without you?" Shawn questioned in surprise.
Juliet shrugged. "Paperwork."
Shawn and Gus just nodded their understanding. "So Gus and I were gonna head out and get some jerk chicken, you in?"
O'Hara would normally have jumped at the chance to spend time with the boys, enjoying their antics even if Lassiter never approved of her friendship with them. Shawn was always fun to be around, and she rather enjoyed her long talks with Gus… especially when they would discuss the latest comic books to come out. They were even planning on going to a comic-con soon together. "Sorry, can't. I really have to finish all this up, but if you meet me back here tonight we could all go out and get dinner? There's a new place nearby that I've been dying to try."
"Castino's?" Gus questioned, suddenly excited.
Somehow it figured that Gus would know. Juliet could swear they shared the same mind sometimes… perhaps Shawn wasn't the only one that was psychic. "Yeah! Have you gone there yet?"
"No, but I hear their food is excellent! They've gotten rave reviews from almost every newspaper around."
Shawn almost looked bored as he sat back down on Juliet's desk. "Italian again? Can't we just order a pizza? It'd cost less."
"What do you care, you'll probably just make me pay anyway," Gus pointed out with a semi-glare.
"And there you go, just assuming I'd be making you pay. I swear Gus, I never knew you thought so little of me!" Spencer said. He sounded quite offended.
Gus folded his arms. "So you mean you're actually going to pay for your own meal?"
"Well, I would, but I'm a little bit broke-ish. Spot me a twenty?"
Gus turned back to look at Juliet, as if asking her, 'see what I have to put up with?' All Juliet could do was laugh.
"Sweet justice, what are you two doing here?" mumbled Carlton in annoyance as he walked over. Juliet looked up, surprised to see him back. She hadn't even noticed him return.
Shawn turned around, suddenly smiling just as brightly as he could. "Lassie! You look good! Is that a new tie? What? Got a hot date?"
Lassiter rolled his eyes, taking a seat at his own desk.
"Hey Carlton," Juliet greeted before Lassiter had a chance to make some snide remark, most likely involving physical violence against Spencer. He didn't look like he was in a particularly good mood.
"O'Hara," he greeted with a nod. "How's the paperwork going?"
Juliet sighed. "I think there's actually more now than when I started," she muttered, opening up the next file."
"Jules over here tells me you have a new big case. What ya got?" he asked, moving over to sit in front of Lassiter, immediately resting his legs on Carlton's desk. Juliet watched silently as the Head Detective shot him a glare, but said nothing. Not long ago he'd be kicking Shawn's ass for putting his feet on Lassiter's desk. This had promise.
"Nothing I plan on sharing with you, Spencer," Lassiter told him, taking a sip of his coffee.
Shawn frowned. "Ah come on Lassie! But we work so well together! Think of all the fun we've had! Remember that time we had to take off our shirts in front of that dragon guy that looked like Will Farrell so he'd feed us information for a case?" Lassiter frowned, giving him a confused look. Juliet didn't remember that ever happening.
"That was 'Starsky and Hutch,' the movie, Shawn," Gus told him, rolling his eyes.
Shawn waved Gus' words away as if they were a fly buzzing around his ear, ignoring his friend completely. "The point is we have history. We have your back! Don't we Gus?"
Gus shook his head. "Not even close."
Shawn turned and glared at Gus, then looked back at Lassiter. "So what's the case?"
Lassiter sighed. "I've been investigating a murder. A stay at home wife was killed in her home a few days ago. The husband was on a business trip, out of the country. It was only her and her son. She was killed sometime in the night… stabbed by a pocket knife. The son was sleeping peacefully, woke up to find his mother dead and called the cops. Despite the husband's nice little alibi, I suspect it was him. His wife inherited quite a bit of money after her mother died millions of dollars and apparently the husband went on many business trips. He had at least four mistresses that we're aware of. I believe he hired a hit-man. He probably got a little nervous his wife would find out about his activities. He'd lose the money, so he had to take her out." Juliet watched with interest as Carlton handed Spencer the file, surprised at how easily he'd let Shawn in on the case. He'd been relying on Shawn's skills more and more over the years, another sure sign that their relationship had made great leaps and bounds. Also promising.
Shawn scanned through the fire for a moment, then looked up at Lassiter. "How old is the son?"
"It says here he was staying with them. He didn't live there?"
Lassiter shook his head. "He graduated early and moved away to go to medical school. He had to come back home and get a job because his father refused to support his schooling until his behavior improved. Apparently he was arrested a number of times for drunk driving and assault. His father had to pay for bail and everything else. He was forced to pay for his schooling himself. Apparently he was looking for a job. Until he could find one he was staying with his mother and his step-father."
Shawn raised an eyebrow, and Juliet knew he had something… was seeing something Lassiter had missed. She watched silently as he closed the file. "I think I may be able to help you on this."
Carlton gave him a tired look. "I already have a partner."
Shawn smiled. "What a coincidence! So do I! But seriously, I can help you solve this case. It's obvious you've hit a brick wall or you wouldn't be here so early in the day… not to mention the fact that you let me look at the case. You secretly wanted us in on it, but you had to give us a little show, be all stubborn and manly for the kids. Don't you worry Lassie, we'll catch this killer! You have my word," he said, standing up, eyes bright with excitement. "Come on Gus, to the Psychmobile!" With that Shawn rushed off, followed reluctantly by Gus who waved goodbye and let out a sigh.
Lassiter's eyebrows furrowed as he watched Shawn and Gus leave, then turned to Juliet. "What just happened?"
Juliet smiled. "I think you just hired them for a case," she told him in amusement.
Carlton immediately rubbed his temples. "I was afraid of that…."
Somehow, Juliet wasn't so sure she believed her partner. Oh yeah, she was SO in on that bet!
== Two Days Later ==
Her bet had been made, and she was as confident as she could be that she'd made the right choice. Juliet knew her partner. Lassiter had changed a lot since he'd first met Spencer. Not only was he trusting in Shawn's abilities, but he was fighting the Chief less and less when she decided to bring him in on their cases. Something was developing between them, and Juliet was sure it would eventually lead to romance. Opposites attract, after all. She had to force herself not to laugh in amusement as she remembered the surprised look on Wilkins' face when she'd had him put her down for early next week, but she knew they couldn't last much longer. Wilkins had mentioned how crazy the bets were getting, and that another had entered his bet for sometime later today. Poor guy… he'd put it for three hundred. That was a lot of money he'd be losing. Apparently most of the others had put bets for months and years ahead. McNab had placed his bet for two years. O'Hara doubted Spencer and Lassiter would ever be able to last that long.
"It was YOU who wanted the money! After your father cut you off you were getting desperate. Your search for a job wasn't going too well and you knew you'd never be able to collect enough to graduate. But your mother had just inherited millions of dollars, only she wasn't going to just hand it to you either. No, she supported your father's decision even though she was willing to let you stay at home until you could find employment. You had no choice. You could see your future going down the drain fast. You had to act, but you'd never see that money… not with your mother still alive. You knew she'd left it all in your name, especially after finding out that her dearest husband was having an affair with not one, but four other women! It was the your only chance at graduating and becoming a brilliant Doctor. You knew exactly where to put in the knife, didn't you Tyler! You'd been in school long enough, knew the fastest way to kill her without things getting too messy." Shawn closed his eyes, his hand moving to his temple. "I can see you walking into her bedroom that night. You'd been waiting for her to fall asleep. The knife is in your hand as you walk closer to her bedside! Oh god! I can see you stab her! She was defenseless, fast asleep with no idea of what her seventeen year old was capable of! You killed her!"
Juliet was blown away every time he did it. She still wished she understood better how he managed to solve their cases so neatly. Juliet glanced over at Lassiter, seeing the subtle look of pride in the Head Detective's eyes as he watched Spencer do his thing. She'd never seen it before, and immediately smiled, before focusing back on the case Shawn Spencer had just solved. Tyler shook his head. "You're out of your head, Psychic! I would never kill my mother! I loved her!"
Juliet pulled out her handcuffs. "Tyler Norrick, you are under arrest for the murder of Veronica Buller…."
Although Juliet would never admit it aloud, she enjoyed watching Lassiter grill a suspect. In the past she'd found it a little frustrating, especially when he took the whole 'bad cop' routine a little too far, but he'd mellowed a lot since they'd first been partnered up. "Tyler, we found the receipt… connecting you to the murder weapon. You thought it'd been thrown away, but our psychic managed to find it."
"Just because it was in my room doesn't mean I'm the one who bout it," Tyler fought.
Juliet smiled. "You're right, it was paid with cash, but the fact that we found it in your room is enough to cause suspicion. The jury will have no choice but to convict you for your mother's murder."
Lassiter stood slowly, hands on the table, cool as ice cream. "From what I hear, they want to convict you as an adult… especially since your days away from eighteen. You'd be put away for a very, very long time. Tell us the truth and we might be able to cut you a deal."
Tyler Norrick was cracking under the pressure and Juliet knew it. "Or we could leave this room and you can go to jail, possibly for the rest of your life. Your choice."
She almost shouted in triumph when she saw the sweat run down Tyler's face, as his head fell forward. He was giving in! "Okay," he whispered. "I killed her! I had no choice! You have to understand that! I had no choice!"
Lassiter smiled, walking away, ignoring Tyler's excuses. Juliet followed behind as they left the interrogation room, and ordered the officer waiting outside to book him.
"Lassie, you did it! That was great! You cracked him like an egg!" Shawn said happily, patting Lassiter's back in excitement, his eyes gleaming.
Vick turned from the window that showed the now empty interrogation room and smiled. "Good work Carlton, Juliet. Looks like this case is closed."
"Thank you, Chief," said Lassiter.
"Thanks," said Juliet.
"Well, I better get back… I have some paperwork that won't go away on it's own. Spencer, I'll have your check ready for you by tomorrow. Nice work, all of you," she said and left the room.
Gus turned to look at Juliet. "So, you coming with us to dinner tonight? Shawn and I were thinking about sushi."
Juliet looked at him in disbelief.
"Okay, I wanted sushi… Shawn owed me one."
Juliet smiled, following him out of the room. "Sounds great!" Neither seemed to notice that Lassiter and Spencer failed to follow.
It wasn't until after her conversation with Gus that Juliet realized she'd forgotten her coffee back in the small room, and immediately headed back towards it when she heard her name being called and turned to see McNab. "Detective O'Hara! Nice work today! I heard you and Lassiter totally nailed that kid! Guess it was good having Spencer there! No one else would have even suspected the son!"
Juliet nodded her agreement. She'd been pretty surprised by that one too. Tyler Norrick may not have had a spotless record, but drunk driving was a far cry from murder, especially when the victim was his own mother. "I don't think anyone else could have caught that. He had us all fooled," she said as she reached the door to the interrogation room, smiling at McNab before she opened it only to receive the shock of her life. Shawn Spencer was groaning against the window, desperately kissing none other than Detective Carlton Lassiter, who seemed to be enjoying himself as he kept the psychic pinned against the window, kissing back with more passion than Juliet ever remembered seeing from her partner. Shawn had an actual bite mark on his neck, his hair a mess as he only kissed Lassiter harder. Meanwhile Lassiter looked even worse. Not only was his hair all over the place, but his tie was loosened, and cocked off to the side, his shirt pulled out from his pants. Juliet was quite certain her mouth was hanging open, eyes wide. She simply had no words for the display.
McNab's expression was somehow a mixture of excited and disturbed swirled together as one. He too was standing speechless by the door, unable to pull his eyes away from the scene. Finally Juliet gasped, her face heating up and she was sure she was red when Shawn pulled away from the kiss and made Carlton aware that they had an audience. It would have been quite funny if not for the slightly murderous look on Lassiter's face as he immediately pulled away from Shawn and tried to straighten his appearance. "What the hell are you two doing here?!"
"I uh… I left my coffee," she tried to explain.
"Get out of here! Now! And I swear to god if you tell a soul what you saw-"
Juliet was gone before he could finish his sentence, McNab hot on her tail. So much for her bet… though she was more worried about losing her life than her money at the moment.
Juliet frowned as she watched the crowd gathering as Wilkins looked down the binder's list to name the winner. She simply sat by her desk, completely embarrassed and slightly angry that she'd lost a hundred bucks… in the end it didn't matter how well you knew the person. "And the winner is… Henry Spencer!"
Okay, now she knew there had to be some mistake. Juliet frowned, leaving her desk as she realized for the first time that in the front of the crowd stood a man wearing a bright yellow button-down top and a black baseball cap. He grinned proudly as he collected his winnings, bowing to those around him that groaned and moaned about the loss. "Mr. Spencer?! You placed a bet on your son?" she questioned, surprised.
Henry shrugged. "As much pain and suffering as he's caused me… I figured he owed me one! Guess I'm just a bit psychic too," he told her, counting his winnings. "Have a pleasant day, Detective O'Hara," he told her with a tip of his hat before leaving the SBPD with a skip in his step. Juliet watched him leave, not quite sure what to make of it all.
"Jules, Jules, Jules… didn't your father ever teach you the dangers of betting?"
Juliet swallowed hard, turning around to see Shawn standing behind her, a smile on his face. His appearance, though still a little rumpled, looked far better than it had hours before when she'd found him making out with Carlton. She could still see the bite mark on his neck, and her face immediately reddened. "You knew?! You knew about the bet?"
Shawn rolled his eyes dramatically. "Hi, my names Shawn Spencer… head PSYCHIC for the Santa Barbara Police Department. And who might you be?"
Right, she really needed to stop being so surprised when Shawn somehow knew things.
"Word of advice O'Hara, never bet on a partner," came another voice from nearby, and Juliet winced when she watched Carlton walk over to his desk while the crowd dispersed and went back to work. Carlton also looked far better than when she last saw him. His tie was fixed back in place, shirt tucked in, and hair styled back into place. She immediately tensed, certain she was fish food. Normally she wasn't afraid of the lanky Detective, but then again… usually she had no reason to be.
Shawn shot her a smile. "Relax Jules, I managed to calm him down after you and Buzz left. He's not exactly happy, but you won't be needing to update your will anytime soon."
O'Hara smiled at that, forcing herself to relax, if just a little. "How did you manage that one?" she asked, glancing cautiously at the Detective.
Shawn shrugged. "I just told him about the other bet everyone's been in on. Wilkins has quite a few you know."
Juliet immediately lit up, wondering if there might be a chance for her to win her money back. "Collins and Peterson?" They'd been dancing around each other forever, after all.
Shawn smiled, popping a lollipop in his mouth. "Nope… you and Gus. I would have put down a bet myself, but unfair advantage and all that. Anyway, I better go. Gus is busy working his 'other' job and Henry's my ride home. Later Jules," Shawn said with a wink, walking off.
Juliet stood in the middle of the office, letting Shawn's words sink in before she finally turned around just as the psychic was retreating. "Wait… what?!"