A/N: This is my first Psych fic. I love the show and I have got to admit...this was the funniest thing to write!
Summary: Shawn and Lassiter are stuck in an elevator and Lassie learns something about the pseudo-psychic. NO SLASH
Disclaimer: I (sadly) do not own Psych...or the characters...*sniff*
Head Detective Carlton Lassiter was annoyed. No, that just did not cut it. He was passed annoyed; he was pissed. Considering how much a certain consultant to the SBPD tended to annoy him it was no surprise that annoyance no longer cut it.
Lassiter grinded his jaw as he walked steadily towards the elevators of the old hotel, denying the futile suggestions from the former mentioned police consultant to take the staircase. Wasn't it enough that Spencer had just solved a case…again? It was Lassiter who was supposed to have solved this, not Spencer. He completely denied that these were childish thoughts because Head Detectives did not have childish thoughts and that was that.
"Ooh, Lassie, hold that," Spencer said happily as he slid into the elevator just as the doors closed. This was great, just great. Spencer halted his slide with his hands against the interior of the elevator before eyeing Lassiter with a thoughtful expression, though still rather amused.
"Spencer, I swear to you that if you don't look somewhere else I will personally make sure you don't leave this elevator," Lassiter threatened in order to not squirm. Head Detectives did not squirm.
"Lassie, Lassie, Lassie, paranoid again I see," Spencer said in that annoyingly thoughtful voice. "So, what did you think of the case? Pretty cool, huh?"
"No," Lassiter grumbled in reply, refusing to rise to the bait of entering a conversation with Shawn Spencer.
"Oh come on, Lassie, it was awesome," Spencer said with fake incredulity, "I mean, I was right, but then again that is hardly a shocker, right?"
Spencer was grinning and looking at him again. Was he honestly expecting a reply? What was it about Lassiter's stop-following-me-and-stop-talking-to-me attitude that Spencer seemed completely incapable of understanding? Lassiter purposefully ground his teeth together in an effort not to say anything.
"I think it was awesome," Spencer supplied immediately jerking Lassiter from his thoughts. "I mean, Lassie, everything was just as I had seen it and –"
"Spencer," Lassiter said with as much carelessness as he could muster, "I don't care."
The elevator suddenly rattled louder than before as the lights started flickering causing Spencer to finally seize his talking as the elevator came to an abrupt stop, the lights thankfully still on.
"Oh for the love of…" Lassiter growled, his words drifting as kept pressing the button to the ground floor.
Lassiter spun around to face the psychic who was looking at him thoughtfully, a bag of nuts held out towards the Head Detective. Lassiter growled and turned his back on Spencer as he continued to inspect the doors of the elevator.
"It's vanilla coated," the psychic added as though that would make all the difference.
"Spencer, I'm going to say this once, and so help me if I have to repeat myself I will use my gun," Lassiter said with a deadly calm voice as he turned around to look down at the younger man, "I do not want anything to eat, I want to get out of this elevator."
"Gotcha," Spencer said with that annoyingly cheerful-fake-obedient tone. The silence lasted for an entire five seconds. Five blissful seconds. "How's that going for you?"
"It would go a lot better if you weren't here in the first place," Lassiter said as calmly as he could muster.
"You should try –" Spencer began but Lassiter quickly interrupted him.
"No offence – actually I don't care if you take offence – I'm not the slightest bit interested in what you have to say."
"Lassie-face!" Spencer exclaimed in mock-shock. "Fine, I'll do my thing, you'll do yours."
Lassiter could only glare as Spencer took out his phone and looked at it.
"Ooh, will you look at that," Spencer exclaimed cheerfully, though Lassiter briefly heard a note of relief in the man's voice, "I have signal."
"Give me that," Lassiter grumbled as he quickly grabbed Spencer's phone, cursing himself for forgetting to charge his, clearly remembering it telling him the battery was dead just as he called for backup.
"Dude, calm," Spencer said and Lassiter was very annoyed to hear the cheerful tone in the psychic's voice.
Lassiter ignored him and instead quickly dialled O'Hara's number.
"O'Hara, it's Lassiter," he answered her quickly, again ignoring Spencer as the psychic looked at him hopefully. No way was he giving Spencer the phone so he could chat up his Junior Detective, "there's a slight problem."
"What's going on? I haven't spotted you outside. Is everything alright?" Lassiter thanked her silently for having to take a breath.
"No, I'm – we're – stuck in an elevator," Lassiter amended his initial phrase when Spencer gave him a pointed look. Lassiter was actually rather surprised he had managed to stay quiet for so long, but he didn't dwell on the matter, merely took full advantage of it.
"Wait; you're where?" Juliet exclaimed in disbelief.
"In the elevator. I don't know where exactly –"
"Second floor," Spencer cut in and when Lassiter scowled at him he continued, "Honestly, Lassie, have you ever been in an elevator," as he said it he pointed up to the numbers above the elevator doors. The number 'three' was lit up.
"That says three, not two," Lassiter said slowly with a glare at Spencer, momentarily forgetting O'Hara was on the phone.
"Yes, but if you had paid attention as we went down you would have noticed that we passed the third floor, and are hence on the second floor," Spencer explained and it pained Lassiter to realise he was right.
"Carlton!" Juliet's tone told him it was not the first time she had called his name.
"Yes?" He grumbled in reply, thoroughly annoyed that Spencer had indeed managed to distract him.
"Who's there with you?" Juliet insisted firmly, again a clue that she had asked this before.
"Spencer," Lassiter mumbled almost inaudibly.
"Shawn!" O'Hara cried out in disbelief…or horror.
"She missed me, didn't she?" Spencer said with a big grin as he bounced lightly up and down.
"No, she didn't," Lassiter retaliated, scolding himself for descending to Spencer's level.
"Carlton, which floor are you on?" Juliet tried again, sounding calmer than she did before.
"Second floor," Carlton mumbled just loud enough for her to hear as he turned his back on the psychic so he couldn't see the grin spreading across the man's face.
"I'm on it," Juliet said and as far as he could tell she was on the move, "just sit tight."
"What else were we supposed to do, O'Hara?" Lassiter questioned, feeling his patience wearing thin. How could it be that one of his worst nightmares was coming true? He was, quite literally, being forced to be alone in the same room as Spencer.
"Oh, one more thing," Juliet said, clearly pretending she had not heard Lassiter's previous comment.
"Why are you calling from Shawn's phone?"
Lassiter hung up and stuffed the phone in his pocket, fully expecting the psychic to comment on something completely pointless; like why Lassiter had not given him back the phone, but there was nothing. Spencer didn't say a word. Carlton was intrigued so he turned back around.
Spencer was standing as much in the middle of the elevator as he could, swaying slightly back and forth, his arms wrapped tightly around himself.
"Spencer?" Lassiter said questionably, rather annoyed with himself for not even having a hint of a growl in his voice.
"What?" Spencer asked looking directly at Lassiter.
"What are you doing?" Lassiter prompted.
"I'm not doing anything," Spencer answered.
"Exactly," Lassiter said as he noticed Spencer's attention was suddenly all around the elevator as though he was taking in every little bit of detail.
"So, what, now I can't do nothing either? Lassie, you're not giving a guy a lot of options here," Spencer said, his eyes still darting around the elevator. Lassiter would have normally said it was impossible but Spencer was speaking faster than he usually did.
"You're shaking," it wasn't a question but a statement because Lassiter had taken note that Spencer's hands were, indeed, shaking, no matter how hard the psychic tried to hide it.
"No I'm not," Spencer denied quickly.
"Yeah, you are," Lassiter returned slowly.
"No I'm not," Spencer repeated and the defensive tone in his voice surprised Lassiter. It was not one he had heard very often from the psychic.
"Spencer," Lassiter said as calmly as he could as he took one step closer to the younger man. He could put his annoyance aside because, to be quite honest, if Spencer had been hurt during the bust, he did not want to be the person who had been stuck in an elevator with him ignoring the fact that he was hurt, only to be attacked by the Furies as soon as he came face to face with the rest of the gang.
The only problem was that when Lassiter moved forwards, Spencer moved back, which in itself was so incredibly different from the psychic's usual behaviour.
He was stopped with the ringing of a phone which he realised was Spencer's because of the simple fact that he would never have such a ringtone. He quickly pulled the phone out of his pocket and answered it.
"You guys alright?" It was O'Hara again and Lassiter really hoped she had some good news.
"How's it looking out there?" Lassiter asked, ignoring her question because he was rather unsure on how best to answer that.
"Well, it's getting there," Juliet said vaguely, "just give it a little bit longer."
Before Lassiter had time to answer she had hung up. The Head Detective grumbled something inaudible under his breath.
"It's going to be a bit longer," Carlton said as he turned to face Spencer again, his tone surprisingly sensitive.
What he didn't expect was to see the psychic pushed up against the back wall of the elevator, his knees drawn up to his chest with his arms wrapped tightly around his legs. Even so, he still managed to sway. This was not good; that much Lassiter knew.
"Spencer, what's wrong?" Lassiter sighed as he resigned himself to actually slide down the wall to sit next to the psychic.
"W-why would you th-think something was w-wrong?" Spencer asked, his voice completely devoid of any humour.
"You're shaking – don't deny it – and you're stuttering," Lassiter informed the younger man, "Now, would you mind telling me what's wrong?"
Spencer ignored him as his eyes once more drifted around the box, his breath catching in his throat occasionally. A light bulb suddenly turned on in Lassiter's head, but surely that could not be right.
"Are you claustrophobic?" Lassiter asked, unable to hide the note of disbelief in his voice. At the word, though, something flickered in Spencer's eyes.
"Fear of Santa Claus," Spencer mumbled as he started to run his hands up and down his arms as though he was freezing cold.
"I'm sorry?" Lassiter said, unsure of what Spencer had meant by that statement.
"Define claustrophobia? The fear of Santa Claus?" Spencer answered with a questioning tone before adding, "It's a joke, Lassie."
That made more sense. It didn't satisfy the Head Detective, though, because the psychic's breathing was getting worse and he knew that he personally did not have a paper bag on him; if that would even work. He hated being in these situations; the situations where he didn't know what to do.
"Spencer," Lassiter tried again but the psychic did not seem to be listening. Carlton had a feeling the other man was never going to let him forget this but he had to try, "Shawn?"
That made a little more of a difference as the psychic whipped his head round to stare unfocusedly at the Head Detective.
"Lassie?" Shawn said almost desperately.
"Yes?" Lassiter answered, hoping for the sake of Spencer that he was not doing this as a practical joke, but he already knew that they were passed that. No one was this good an actor.
"I can't breathe," Shawn said quietly and this time he certainly did sound desperate.
Lassiter had no idea what to do.
"We'll be out of here soon, just take a deep breath and it'll be fine," Lassiter said smoothly, though he had no idea how he could sound so calm when his brain was screaming at him to do something…anything!
"I can't…breathe," Shawn repeated, though this time it clearly took more of an effort for him to speak. He was hyperventilating, that much Lassiter knew.
Lassiter shifted through his mind trying to remember what he had learnt about claustrophobia. The psychic was already hyperventilating, but the Head Detective remembered reading something about panic attacks that the person should lie down to reduce the risk of fainting. Fat luck that helped.
"Spen- Shawn," Lassiter corrected himself, finding that the psychic was more responsive if they talked on first name basis, "lie down."
"I can't…" Shawn brought a hand up to his chest as though to demonstrate to Lassiter that this was the area causing him discomfort. Well, quite frankly, the Head Detective could see that, but that certainly didn't change the fact that he wanted Spencer to lie down. He had remembered something about panic attacks and what to do and Spencer was not going to ruin that.
Lassiter abruptly got to his feet, slightly worried when Spencer's eyes did not follow him. Okay, 'slightly' was a major understatement but he still had an image to uphold. He grabbed hold of Shawn's shoulders and pulled the man onto the floor away from the wall. The psychic's breath hitched in his throat as he continued his battle to breathe. Spencer struggled to get up again but Lassiter pushed him back down. This was going to work…it simply had to.
Shawn's eyes were wide open as his eyes darted from wall to wall to the ceiling, his battle still raging. Lassiter had no idea if his next plan was going to work but he had to stop whatever thought was racing through the psychic's head. That was, if a thought was even present.
"Shawn, close your eyes," Lassiter said as calmly as he could, which he was annoyed to find was not very calm at all.
"I don't…want to…count hats," Shawn gasped out through his stuttering breaths.
"To be quite honest with you, Spencer, neither do I," Lassiter rambled wondering where that random little statement had come from, "just close your eyes."
Shawn closed his hands into tight fists as he closed his eyes. Lassiter crouched down next to him pressing his hand on the psychic's chest when Spencer tried to push himself up again.
"Good," Lassiter said as though he was talking to a child, "now breathe."
Shawn's breath hitched in his throat as he desperately tried to breathe.
"I…can't…" Shawn said with an almost pathetic pleading tone.
"Of course you can," Lassiter said, sounding more like a cop telling a rookie to bring him a case file, "breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth."
"I'm not…giving…birth," Shawn ground out through clenched teeth before taking another gasping breath. Carlton ignored him.
"That is not your nose," Lassiter scolded as he watched the psychic's struggles. "You have to breathe in through your nose and out through you mouth."
Spencer tried. He really tried and Lassiter was relieved to see that it was finally working. The psychic's hands were starting to unclench a little and his breathing was starting to even out, allowing Lassiter to breathe a sigh of relief. That had been way too much of a challenge. Shawn stayed on the floor as he continued to simply concentrate on breathing.
"Thanks," came a tired whisper from Spencer after a couple of minutes' silence. Lassiter had moved over to sit with his back against the wall again, though his eyes remained trained on Spencer, waiting for the smallest sign that the hyperventilation was about to resume.
"Anytime," Carlton answered.
"I'm holding your word on that," Spencer said as he tried to get a humorous tone back in his voice, but failed.
Shawn finally opened his eyes and they immediately darted around the room again as he pushed himself up in a sitting position.
"Hey!" Lassiter near yelled, startling Spencer into looking at him. "Get over here and sit down. Also, stop glaring about like that; just find one thing to focus on."
Spencer for once did as he was told, scooting over to sit next to Carlton with his back against the wall, his eyes trained on the elevator doors. Lassiter wondered if he thought he could get his little spiritual friends to help him open the doors.
"It's cold," Shawn said after yet another length of silence.
"No, you're cold," Lassiter retaliated, "there's a big difference between you being cold and it being cold."
"Are you going to define 'cold' for me now?" Shawn asked sarcastically, his eyes briefly leaving the doors to look up at Lassiter.
"Ha ha," Carlton said humourlessly. "Now, are you really cold or is this just some psychic imagination?"
"I heard that condescending tone," Shawn said with another quick glance at Lassiter.
"Do you even know what 'condescending' means?" Lassiter inquired, not caring anymore if this was stooping to Spencer's level, as long as it kept the psychic from hyperventilating again.
"Lassie, don't dish on my aura of intelligence," Shawn said with a fake-hurt tone.
"You do that so perfectly yourself, I can't possibly see why I would have to help you," Lassiter answered, satisfied with his comeback.
"Low, Lassie, low," Spencer retorted, though a small grin crept onto his face which quickly disappeared as he started pulling off his jacket.
"What are you doing?" Lassiter questioned.
"I don't swing that way, Lassie," Spencer said with a quick smirk, "it's just very warm in here."
"I thought you said you were cold," Carlton answered with a raised eyebrow at Spencer.
"That was so five minutes ago," Shawn retorted quickly.
Another part of that article he had read on claustrophobia was coming to him now. Wasn't there something about hot and cold spells? Great, Spencer was still having a panic attack.
"Would you just sit still and stop fidgeting?" Lassiter snapped when he noticed Spencer rocking backwards and forwards almost invisibly while he fiddled with his jacket.
Spencer stopped immediately as he closed his eyes and sucked in a deep breath.
"I thought you said it wouldn't be long now," Shawn whispered in such a vulnerable tone Lassiter wondered if someone had dropped a tape recorder into the elevator. It had certainly been easier to deal with Spencer when he was merely talking through his fear.
"It won't be long now," Lassiter assured him only hoping that he wasn't lying, because if someone didn't get Spencer out of this elevator soon he was worried of what consequences this particular event could have on his psyche.
Shawn didn't answer but instead pulled his jacket back on, hugging himself tightly. Lassiter watched him with mild concern as he wondered what else he could possibly be expected to do.
"Tell you what," Lassiter said suddenly causing Shawn to jump slightly in surprise and turn his head to the side to look at the Head Detective, "I'll call O'Hara again and see how things are looking."
Spencer turned back to looking at the elevator doors obviously not satisfied with what Lassiter had just offered. Carlton sighed deeply as he pulled the phone out of his pocket.
"You better have some good news," Lassiter growled into the phone.
"Yes, as a matter of fact I do," Juliet answered, her tone clearly displaying her displeasure of Lassiter's attitude. "We should have you out of there twenty minutes tops."
"What is taking so long?" Lassiter said slowly and almost calmly as he turned his head away from Spencer in the hope of having an almost private conversation.
"No one really expected that we had to rescue two people out of an elevator," Juliet offered as an explanation.
"Just hurry things up as much as you can," Lassiter answered tiredly before hanging up. He turned his attention back to Spencer who was still hugging himself and swaying. Lassiter sighed…again. "Do you want to call someone Spencer?"
"Why, am I under arrest?" Spencer replied and for a moment Lassiter actually thought he was serious.
"No, I just wondered if maybe you wanted to call Guster," Lassiter answered with a collected tone.
"Oh…oh no…we're going to die, aren't we?" Shawn cried out and his breathing immediately accelerated tenfold.
"No, Spencer, we're not dying," Lassiter said quickly, realising his unfortunate choice of words.
"Then why…?" Spencer questioned as he tried to catch his breath again.
"It was just a question because we have to wait another twenty minutes and I didn't want you to get bored," Lassiter assured him, though Spencer still looked suspicious. "Where is Guster anyway?"
"At some conference thing…I don't really know," Shawn said vaguely as he closed his eyes and rubbed his temples with his fingers.
"Psychic vision on the way?" Lassiter said sarcastically before he could stop himself.
"Funny," Spencer answered as he dropped his hands in his lap and opened his eyes again. He took in a deep shuddering breath as he clearly tried to calm himself.
Lassiter decided to take matters into his own hands.
"I'm calling Mr Spencer."
"Why would you commit to such a terrible deed?" Shawn asked incredulously.
"So, what you don't want me to call him?" Lassiter jibed as he held the phone out in front of him, ready to sent it straight to speed dial.
"No, I don't want you to call him," Spencer hissed before allowing his head to roll backwards with a hard thud against the wall as he took another deep breath. "You see, this…this is why I shouldn't solve crimes when Gus is not here, because if he had been here I would never have even been in this situation."
"Do forgive me if I'm wrong, Spencer," Lassiter said false formality, "but if Mr Guster had been here it would simply have been three of us in this elevator rather than just the two of us."
Shawn studied him for a moment, then shrugged. He looked exhausted. His appearance resembled a marathon runner who'd just come last in the race more than a police consultant who's been stuck in an elevator for the past fifty minutes.
"Shawn," Lassiter said, almost gently, but if anyone ever said that he had spoken to Spencer in a gentle tone he would personally make sure they had a very hard time working for some time, "we'll be out soon."
"You said that already," Shawn mumbled quietly under his breath.
"Yeah, but I know it now for a fact," Lassiter argued, "You hear that?" Lassiter questioned when they heard metallic clangs from the other side of the elevator doors.
"Yeah," Shawn breathed out a sigh of relief.
"Here," Lassiter said as he handed Shawn back his phone.
"Thanks," Shawn said quietly as he turned his head to look at Lassiter, "you know, for…"
"Your welcome," Lassiter answered knowing what Spencer was trying to say and how difficult that would be for the psychic to say, and as much as he usually enjoyed seeing Spencer squirm, today was different. "Will you be alright?"
"Lassie, is that concern I hear?"
There you have it. You like?