A/N: Okay, so this is my first ever Mentalist fic, be kind as it's kind of random. Jane and Lisbon friendship centric, perhaps more if you squint. Basic summary: penguins, weddings and secret operations :P I guess that's it, oh and there is the use of a naughty word, thus the 'T' rating, but other than that the fic is kid friendly. Enjoy!
Disclaimer: Like every other great show on TV, I don't own anything Mentalist related. Although some people think I'm mental :)
Teresa Lisbon had been staring at her computer for nearly fifteen minutes. She honestly couldn't believe what she was reading. An e-mail greeting sent from her pathetic excuse of a little brother had rendered her speechless. Mindlessly, she clicked on the bright yellow 'Replay' button. The tinny melody of the wedding march filled her ears yet again as a cartoon penguin dressed in a tuxedo and his bride danced across the screen. Confetti fell on a continuous loop spelling out the words 'We're getting married!'
"Awww, isn't that sweet?"
Thwack. Lisbon was so entranced that she didn't even notice Patrick Jane hovering right above her shoulder. He was now seated on his couch, pinching the bridge of his nose where she had accidentally slapped him
"Serves you right for sneaking up on me," she quipped, as soon as her heart returned to a steady rhythm.
"I think you broke it," he whined, checking his fingers for blood.
"Don't be such a baby."
Getting up from her seat, Lisbon walked over and surveyed the damage she inflicted. She turned his head gently from side to side, her long slender fingers just grazing the bottom of his chin.
"Really?" Jane asked. "Because honestly, I think you broke my nose."
Clearly unimpressed, Lisbon returned to her desk.
"Go home, Jane," she called over her shoulder as she slumped back into her chair.
He was grinning again, the grin that made Lisbon want to slap it right off his face.
"I can break your nose for real this time."
Chuckling, Jane shook his head.
"Oh really? Is that what the little voices in your head are telling you?"
"Nah, the little voices in my head are wondering why you're so against your brother's upcoming nuptials."
Lisbon said nothing in response as she logged out of her computer.
Jane was now sitting at the edge of her desk, regarding her with his patented scrutinizing gaze.
"I am not jealous," she said, staring straight back at him.
Her eyes held his for a long moment.
"You're right, you're not jealous."
Lisbon opened her mouth to say something, but the words escaped her as Jane stood up. Her hand instinctively grabbed a hold of his wrist. Jane stared at where Lisbon was grasping and sat back down onto the free corner of her desk.
"I'm not jealous," she repeated defensively, avoiding eye contact.
"Of course not."
His cool demeanour irked her.
"It's just, he does these sorts of things all the time," she let out a half-hearted laugh.
"Your brother gets engaged all the time?"
Looking up, she raised an eyebrow. Jane was obviously teasing her.
"No, Charlie does stupid stuff all the time. Cliff diving, jumping out of airplanes..."
"I jumped out of a plane once," he quipped.
"The point is, he's immature and he's not ready to get married."
"Are you upset because his fiancée is more attractive than you?"
"What?" she exclaimed incredulously.
"No need to worry, Lisbon, you are much cuter than a penguin," he said with a wink. "Charlie definitely has an interesting taste in life partners."
"I can't believe I'm having this conversation with you," she groaned.
"Hey, you're the one that started it and…"
Jane leaned in towards her and stopped when their noses were barely touching. Lisbon felt her breath hitch unintentionally at his close proximity, his blue gaze pinning her in place.
"You're still holding onto me," his voice barely audible.
She retracted her hand as if she had been burned and pushed back to regain space between her and Jane.
"I have to admit, it's nice to know that you want me."
The boyish grin was out in full force again. Putting on a scowl, Lisbon tried to hit him on the shoulder but he ducked out of the way.
"Tsk, tsk, Lisbon, you're losing your touch."
"Says the man that claimed I broke his nose."
"Oh you know that was all an act so that I could con you into fawning over me."
"It worked, didn't it?"
He had his palms raised skyward as the grin on his face broadened.
"Go home, Jane."
"You need to come up with a new defence mechanism. Honestly, telling me to go home is getting a bit too predictable."
"Go home, Jane."
"I have a better idea, we can talk more about Charlie."
Reaching for her bag, Lisbon ignored Jane's suggestion. He continued regardless.
"You don't have to be jealous of your brother. Most women are getting married later in life. You are a career woman. You don't have time to be all Martha Stewart," he paused before quickly adding. "Don't say it."
"I'm not jealous of Charlie."
"Good, you shouldn't be Jane, jealousy is not very becoming," she quipped as she headed out the door.
She had hoped he wouldn't follow her, wishful thinking. He quickly caught up to her and this time, it was his hand on her wrist.
"I'd love to."
"Be your date to your brother's wedding."
"Who said there's going to even be a wedding?"
"He sent you an e-vite."
"Dancing penguins does not constitute as a proper wedding invitation."
"We're in a recession Lisbon, a man's gotta do what a man's gotta do."
"Even if Charlie is getting married, you're not coming."
"Why not? It'll be fun. I love weddings."
"I'm not going."
"What? Your baby brother is going to get married and you're not going to give him away?"
"There will be no giving away."
"Because there isn't going to be a wedding," Jane filled in.
"You're so sure about that."
The question came out as a statement. Lisbon nodded her head.
"You can't seem to convince yourself."
"This has signature Charlie written all over it. It's probably some practical joke after one too many beers with his buddies."
"You're in denial."
"I am not."
"Okay, well, if you must know I'm free next Saturday."
"Do whatever you want, Jane. I'm not going."
"Suit yourself. I'm sure Charlie and I will hit it off smashingly."
Lisbon's green eyes widened in horror.
"You are not going."
"But you just said I could do whatever I want."
"I take it back."
"Sorry, no take backs."
"Jane," she growled.
"You're kinda sexy when you're steamed."
She pulled herself out of his grasp and impatiently pressed the down button for the elevator.
"I think I'll buy the happy couple something crystal. That's an appropriate gift for newlyweds, right?"
"I'm going to ignore you, Jane," she muttered mainly to herself.
"Or maybe I should get a onesie."
Ping. The doors opened but Lisbon wasn't paying attention.
"C'mon, shot gun wedding? Don't tell me the thought didn't cross your mind?"
Lisbon didn't admit it out loud but she had considered the possibility.
"There isn't going to be a wedding."
"You know you sound more tape-recorder than your usual self."
The doors had already closed, so she pushed the down button once more.
"Go home, Jane."
"Case and point," he said in a sing song manner.
"Go jump off a bridge, Jane."
"I would try to put in just a smidgen more effort."
This time when the doors opened, Lisbon walked straight in. Jane followed and stood next to her.
"So what's her name?"
"Does it really matter?"
"Not really. I just have an insatiable curiosity."
Lisbon rolled her eyes but caved.
"You don't like her."
"I didn't need a psychic to tell me that."
"I'm not a psychic. Psychics don't exist."
Getting out of the elevator, Lisbon picked up the pace to get away from Jane but he matched her stride.
"She must be drop dead gorgeous. I can't wait to meet her."
He was grinning again.
"Stay away from my brother."
"So I have your permission to hang out with your future sister-in-law and future niece?"
Her voice trailed off as her eyes trained on the person approaching from behind Jane. Noticing that Lisbon's attention diverted, Jane turned his head and followed her line of sight. A tall man with dark hair had his arm draped around a petit blonde. The pair was walking towards Lisbon. Speak of the Devil. Jane could see the resemblance immediately.
Jane snickered at her nickname as she was enveloped in a hug.
"Charlie," Lisbon greeted uneasily patting him on the back. "Whitney, what are you two doing here?"
"Well it's nice to see you too, sis."
"That's not what I meant," she sighed.
Folding her arms tightly across her chest, Lisbon was noticeably uncomfortable under Jane's watchful eyes during the entire exchange.
"Didn't you get the invite?" Whitney asked grinning.
"She did," Jane answered for her, "the penguins were a nice touch."
"And you are?" Charlie demanded, glaring at Jane.
"Where are my manners, I'm Jane, Patrick Jane," he replied clearly not intimidated by the taller man.
Jane held out his hand which Charlie shook firmly.
"Oh, so you're Jane, I've heard a lot about you."
Immediately, Lisbon shot both her brother and Jane a warning look. Neither one decided to take it seriously.
"I'm sure it's all been good things."
"My sister thinks you're a pain in the ass."
"She's so insightful, isn't she?" Jane beamed, as he pulled her towards him.
If she could, Lisbon would have easily vaporized Jane on the spot with her glare.
"Oh, by the way," Jane added. "Congratulations on the wedding. You two make a lovely couple."
"Thank you," Whitney smiled shyly up at Charlie.
"You're coming right, Terracotta?"
"Of course," Jane jumped in. "Terracotta wouldn't miss it for the world."
"That is it!"
Lisbon forcibly shoved Jane away from her and turned to her brother who was gawking at her sudden outburst.
"You two are not getting married."
"Yes, we are," Whitney insisted.
"No, you aren't. Do you have any idea what goes into a marriage? It's not all lovey dovey and happily ever afters. There are huge responsibilities involved."
"We know that," Charlie said in a firm tone.
"Do you? Do you really have any concept of the real world? Because neither one of you has a steady source of income and that apartment you're living in is way too small not to mention filthy, especially with a baby…"
The words tumbled out of her mouth before she could stop herself.
"How did you know about..." Whitney turned and glared at Charlie. "You told her?"
"I didn't!" he replied indignantly. "Besides, you're obviously showing."
"Are you saying I'm fat?"
"What? No, God, why do you always put words in my mouth?"
"You think I'm fat!" Whitney cried.
Lisbon gaped at the arguing couple when Jane finally piped up during the heated yelling match.
"This is way more exciting than Jerry Springer."
Her eyes visibly narrowed.
"This is your fault," Lisbon said, jabbing a finger into his shoulder.
"Me? I'm just an innocent bystander."
"Innocent, my ass," she scoffed.
"Fine! If you don't want to marry me then the wedding is off!" Whitney screamed shrilly as she stormed off.
"Fine!" Charlie roared back as he turned towards his sister. "There are you happy now?"
His accusation caused a pang in her chest as he turned his back on her.
He didn't stop, his retreating figure disappearing around the corner.
"Shit," she muttered under her breath.
"I expected Whitney to be prettier," Jane mused out loud.
"I screwed up," she groaned, choosing to ignore Jane's comment.
"Eh, you could have done worse."
"What is wrong with me?"
Jane was about to respond when Lisbon slapped her hand over his mouth.
"You answer that question and I will break your nose."
"Hummmph," his voice muffled against her palm.
"And I am not jealous," she insisted, keeping her hand in place. "I want my brother to be happy."
"He's just too sweet, too naïve and falls for these airheaded bimbos," she continued to rationalize. "He needs to grow up."
Dropping her arm, Lisbon closed her eyes.
"Say what?" Jane asked innocently.
"Say what you think I'm feeling."
"Why would I do that?"
"Stop toying with me."
"I don't toy. I Jedi mind trick people."
He wiggled his fingers in her face for effect.
"I hate you."
"Now that's not a very nice thing to say."
"I really hate you."
The two fell silent, Jane gazing intently at Lisbon, Lisbon staring back. Jane broke first.
"You need to get laid."
"Seriously, Lisbon, what did you expect," she grumbled to herself as she made her way towards her car.
"Fine, you want to know what I think you're thinking," Jane called out to her back. "You're not jealous your brother got engaged. You're jealous because your brother's so willing to take that leap of faith when you couldn't."
She stopped mid-step and slowly turned around.
"What's the point?" the question almost got caught in her throat.
"Love can be a beautiful thing."
"It hurts like a hell too. You know that better than anyone."
Lisbon instantly regretted her choice of words as Jane unconsciously twisted the golden band around his wedding finger.
"I'm sorry," she apologized. "That was uncalled for."
A sad smile tugged at his lips.
"No harm done," he shrugged his shoulders. "My wife was pregnant when we got married."
His admission surprised Lisbon. He never spoke about his family and Lisbon felt a sense of pride swell inside of her, proud that Jane wanted to share, even if it was just a small glimpse, his past with her.
"I was engaged once," Lisbon suddenly found herself saying. "Philip Townsend. I was deliriously in love with him."
Even as she forced a shaky smile on her face, she could feel the tears threatening to spill from behind her lids.
"He broke your heart," Jane said matter-of-factly.
Lisbon shook her head.
"I broke his."
Jane reached out and placed a comforting hand on Lisbon's shoulder.
"You'll fall in love again."
Lisbon covered his hand with her own.
"You will too."
They stayed just as they were for a moment longer, before Jane removed his hand from beneath hers.
"I say we should get started on Operation Penguin Love Reunion."
Smiling, Lisbon shook her head.
"I appreciate the help, but since this mess is technically my fault, I think I should first try to fix it myself."
"You sure? Because I can give Cupid a run for his money."
"I'm definitely sure."
"Okay, then, good luck."
"Oh, and Lisbon?"
He dipped his head and brought his lips to her ear.
"Saturday, I'll pick you up nine."
Lisbon rolled her eyes, but was unable to suppress the smile on her face as she gave him a shove.
"Go home, Jane."