Another songfic! I love the song I used for this so much, and I thought it was very fitting. The song is He Gets That From Me, by Reba McEntire. It's a heartwrenching song, but so beautiful. And this is a character death story, so you've been warned! Break out the kleenex and enjoy!
Disclaimer: Not mine!
Juliet O'Hara never thought it would come down to this.
Her hands trembled slightly as she kept her gun trained on Anderson. Beside her, Lassiter was holding his own gun, his eyes narrowed dangerously.
And between them and Anderson, Shawn Spencer was on his knees. Anderson held Shawn's shirt in his fingers, the muzzle of his gun pressed firmly into Shawn's skull.
Juliet shifted slightly, her eyes locked on Shawn's. Outwardly he looked calm for someone who was being held at gunpoint. But she knew him better. "Anderson, let him go. You can still walk away from all this."
Anderson shook his head. "That's not true. The second I let him go, you'll take my damn head off!"
"No, we won't," Lassiter replied calmly, but his finger itched to pull the trigger. "Let him go, and we won't shoot."
Shawn swallowed hard. "This won't end well for you if you shoot me," he said quietly, and Juliet sent him a scathing look, silently telling him to shut his mouth. But he continued anyway.
"You shoot me, and my buddy Lassiter over there will remove half your head without blinking. He's that fast."
Anderson paled slightly. "I'm gonna die either way."
"Unless you put your gun down, right now."
"Shawn, shut up!" Juliet hissed, half-pleading.
Anderson pressed the gun more firmly into Shawn's skull. "Everyone, shut the hell up!"
"Please, Jake," Shawn said quietly. "I know you have two little girls at home who would be heartbroken if their daddy died."
"H-How did you know that?"
"I'm a psychic, remember? And I'm a dad, too. Let me go, Jake, so I can go see my little boy."
"They'll be better off without me." But there was an underlying sadness to Anderson's words.
Juliet stepped in. "No, they won't. Every little girl needs her father."
For a moment, both Shawn and Juliet thought that this might all be over. Shawn could hear a sniffling sound behind him, and the grip on his shirt lessened slightly.
But a sudden noise from outside caught everyone offguard. Using the element of surprise, Shawn lunged toward Juliet and Lassiter.
An angry yell escaped Anderson's lips as he lost his purchase on the psychic's shirt.
Something sent Shawn into a panic. Maybe it was the fury in Anderson's yell, or his own intuition. He didn't know. But he spun around to face Anderson as three shots were fired simultaneously.
Anderson crumpled to the floor, his eyes wide and frozen in death. Blood spurted from two gunshot wounds, one in his chest and the one that had killed him instantly in his forehead.
Lassiter lowered his gun, his heart pounding in his chest. His gun had fired the mortal shot, but he had been justified. Slowly he put his gun back in its holster. But as he did, a sudden yell from his partner made him jump. O'Hara never screamed like that... "O'Hara?"
"Shawn's hit!" she yelled, struggling to hold his weight. He had fallen back against her after shots were fired, and it was then that she saw the devastating wound to his abdomen.
Finally Lassiter moved, feeling sluggish and uncoordinated. He grabbed Spencer and helped O'Hara ease him to the floor.
"Shawn, hang on, honey," she murmured as Lassiter yanked off his jacket and folded it, then pressed it against the wound in Shawn's abdomen.
Pulling out her radio, Juliet quickly called for a bus. Then she slid her hand under Shawn's head, easing his head into her lap.
Forcing his eyes open, Shawn groaned softly. "Jules..."
"Shh... I'm here, Shawn. Stay with me." She gently brushed his hair away from his forehead.
She swallowed a surge of panic. "I love you, too, Shawn."
"Tell... tell Mikey..."
"Shawn, please don't do this," she begged, running her hand over his cheek. "You're going to be fine. The bus is coming right now." She couldn't let herself believe that Shawn, the man she loved and the father of her son, was dying. She just couldn't.
Lassiter focused on applying pressure to Spencer's wound. He suddenly felt as though he was intruding on an immensely private moment.
Juliet looked away from Shawn long enough to glance at Lassiter. "How bad is it?"
"It's bad," Lassiter admitted. "Where the hell is that bus?"
Shawn coughed weakly. He was dizzy and exhausted, and he just wanted to sleep. "Lassie... take care of her."
Lassiter looked at Spencer. "Shut up, Spencer. You're going to be fine," he said gruffly.
The fear and uncertainty in Shawn's voice struck a nerve with Lassiter, and he finally nodded.
"I will, Spencer. I'll take care of her."
Juliet shook her head. "Shawn, don't. Please..."
He managed to snuggle deeper into her lap. He was finally comfortable, and the pain wasn't so bad. "Love you..."
A sob bubbled up in Juliet's throat as she leaned down and kissed him softly. He couldn't leave her. How could she do this without him? She loved him so much, and their son needed his father.
Shawn let out a soft sigh, and Juliet cried out when he went still against her. "Shawn!"
Freeing a hand, Lassiter checked Spencer's pulse. His heart had stopped beating, and he knew Spencer was gone. Juliet was sobbing and whispering into Shawn's ear.
Uncertain of what he was doing, Lassiter moved to Juliet and gently pulled her into his arms, turning her away from her dead husband's form.
Sobbing, Juliet struggled against him. "Let me go, Carlton! Shawn needs me!"
But Lassiter didn't let her go. He just held her tighter and let her cry into his shoulder as she truly began to register what had happened.
Shawn was dead.
Burton Guster grinned as he tucked a blanket around his sleeping nephew. Even at the young age of four, Gus could see the strong resemblance the boy had to his father. He could almost see the young boy he had played with for hours behind Shawn's home.
The front door opened, and Gus straightened up, expecting to see the next client he and Shawn would help. "Welcome to Psych. How can-"
His voice trailed off when he saw Juliet, and he smiled at her. "Hey, Jules. Mikey just fell asleep and..." She wasn't smiling, and a knot formed in his gut. "Juliet?"
Her movements were stiff as she came further into the Psych office. "Gus..."
It was then that he saw the blood on her shirt, and he immediately rushed to her side. "Juliet, are you okay?" he demanded, looking her over. "Are you hurt?"
Her knees buckled, and Gus grabbed her as she pitched forward. "Gus..." She groaned softly, her eyes filling with tears again. "Shawn..."
"Shawn?" Alarm filled his voice. "Shawn what, Juliet? Is he hurt? What hospital is he in?"
"He's dead, Gus." She clutched the front of his shirt and buried her face in his shoulder.
"Dead...?" Stunned, Gus wrapped his arms around Juliet. "What...?"
They both held onto each other desperately, until a small voice interrupted their grief.
Pulling away from Gus, Juliet went to her son and leaned down, gathering him into her arms. The little boy immediately burrowed his head in her neck and snuggled into her.
Juliet kissed his head and sniffled, her heart breaking all over again. How could she do this? How could she take care of their son, by herself? Why did Shawn leave her, leave them? What was she going to do?
"Mommy, where's Daddy?"
The alarm clock went off at seven a.m., and Juliet Spencer let out a deep groan. Rolling over in her big bed, her eyes settled on a framed picture that resided on her nightstand. It was of her and Shawn, a few weeks after they had started dating.
Every morning she woke up and saw that picture. Some days, it made her smile. And others, it made her want to curl back up and never leave her bed.
She finally sat up and yawned, then slid out of the bed to get ready for work.
After she was dressed, she grabbed her holster and slipped it on. Then she made her way down the hall, to her son's room. "Michael, it's time to get up," she called, smiling when she heard an annoyed groan. He certainly wasn't a morning person, not since becoming a teenager.
She made her way downstairs and fixed a cup of coffee. Then she sat down at the bar in the kitchen. Her eyes strayed over to the calendar, where Michael had been crossing off days. She knew what today was, but she couldn't believe it.
Shawn had been gone for ten years, and she still expected him to walk through the front door with that silly grin, or to find a pineapple waiting for her on the kitchen counter. Sometimes she even bought a pineapple, just to feel closer to him. But she never ate it.
Her finger twisted her wedding ring absently, a habit that she had developed years ago.
Finally she heard Michael trudge down the stairs, followed by Lucky, the lab mix Shawn had presented to Michael weeks before his untimely death. Juliet had been furious, but Michael loved that dog, and it helped keep him connected to his father.
Michael went to the refrigerator and grabbed the milk. Then he got a bowl and his box of Frosted Flakes.
Juliet had to smile. When Michael was two, Shawn had given him a few bites of the cereal, and ever since then it had remained Michael's favorite food. She always made sure that there were two or three boxes in the house, just for Michael.
As Michael poured his cereal, he looked at the calendar and bit his lip.
Juliet recognized the look on Michael's face, and her eyes softened. "Don't worry, honey. We're still going," she assured him.
He nodded, and they finished their breakfast in comfortable silence.
His early morning attitude
You have to drag him out of bed
Only Frosted Flakes will do
He gets that from me
Yeah, he gets that from me
"Grandpa says he's going to take me fishing again this weekend," Michael said as they left the house and Juliet locked the front door.
Juliet chuckled softly. Henry Spencer adored his grandson, and she couldn't fault him for wanting to be close to the only part of Shawn he had left. He took Michael fishing, swimming, taught him the same games he taught Shawn, and just enjoyed spending time with him. Michael adored his grandfather, and Henry Spencer returned that same affection.
They got into the SUV, and before putting her keys into the ignition, Juliet glanced at her son. He had her curly hair, but it was the same shade of auburn as his father's. He looked more and more like Shawn every day.
"And Uncle Gus says he might go, too."
Juliet started the car. "That'll be fun." As active as Henry was in Michael's life, so was Gus. Ever since Shawn's death, Gus had spent every minute he could with Juliet and Michael. The weeks after the funeral, he had practically moved in with them to help out. Juliet had offered a token resistance, but Gus had fully ignored it. She knew he missed his best friend, and being near his family helped ease some of that pain.
That time had been the worst in Juliet's life. She couldn't look at Michael without seeing Shawn, and in her darkest moments, she found herself wishing that she and Shawn had never met in the first place.
But she always reminded herself that if they hadn't met, she wouldn't have Michael. And she loved her son more than anything else in the world.
They drove away from the house, and she smiled to herself as Michael continued to talk. He was just like Shawn and herself in that aspect, and it always made her smile. Whenever Michael was nervous or excited, she could barely understand him. Shawn had always complained whenever she did that, even though she pointed out that he did the same exact thing.
God, she missed him.
His curly hair and his knobby knees
The way the sun brings those freckles out
Talk and talk, never miss a beat
Yeah, he gets that from me
He gets that from me
He turned his head and smiled at his mother, and Juliet's breath caught in her throat.
Michael noticed the change in her expression, and his brow furrowed. "What's wrong, Mom?"
Juliet struggled to speak for a moment. "Nothing, sweetheart." Her voice was soft.
"You miss Dad, don't you?"
Juliet blinked rapidly in an effort to dispel her tears. Sometimes Michael was so attuned to her emotions, it scared her. "Yeah, I do, sweetheart."
Juliet sniffled and looked at her teenage son again. His eyes so closely resembled Shawn's that, whenever she looked into them, she could almost see her late husband looking back at her.
Catching her watching again, Michael gave his mother a smile and absently picked at his jeans.
To Juliet, it was obvious that it was Shawn's smile on her son's face. Ever since he had been born, Michael had held her heart in the palm of his hands. Just like his father had.
Whenever he was in trouble, all he had to do was give her that crooked little smile, and she would forget whatever it was that had made her so mad and hug him. Shawn had been able to do the same thing to her.
Michael became more like his father every day, and Juliet lamented how fast he was growing up. She knew that she couldn't keep him a child forever, or even protect him forever. One day he would be gone, and she couldn't bear to think about it.
Michael was her baby, and without him she had no idea what she would do. Again she thanked God that she had him at all. Without him, she wasn't sure if she would have made it past Shawn's funeral.
He looks at me with those big brown eyes
He's got me in the palm of his hands
And I swear sometimes
It's just like you're here again
He smiles that little crooked smile
There's no denying he's your child
Without him, I don't know what I'd do
He gets that from you
He gets that from you
Michael reached into the backseat and pulled out his dad's old guitar, settling it in his lap. He had found it in the attic a few years ago, and since then it always remained close to him. It was his own way of remembering his dad and keeping a part of him alive.
Juliet glanced at the guitar, tightening her grip on the steering wheel. When they were dating, she'd had no idea Shawn even played a musical instrument. But the guitar made sense, for the personality Shawn had.
She swallowed hard when she remembered his proposal. He had shown up at the precinct with the guitar, earning curious glances from all who saw him.
He had strolled up to her desk, and without a word he sat down on her desk and began to play. The entire squadroom fell silent as the music wafted through the air, and Juliet had been mesmerized.
By then, everyone knew that they were dating, including Chief Vick. They had managed to keep it secret for a while, but eventually they came clean and were surprised by the positive encouragement and support they received.
When he finished the song, he had stuck his hand into his pocket and fished out a small plastic container. It looked like something that came out of a gumball machine, and Juliet had been confused.
Offering it to her, Shawn said, "Open it, Jules."
She took it and opened it, gasping softly. "Shawn..."
"Marry me, Juliet."
Pulled back to the present, Juliet looked at the engagement ring and wedding ring on her left hand. Ten years had passed since his death, and she still couldn't bring herself to take off his rings. She just couldn't.
Juliet glanced at her son. "What, sweetheart?" Tears were filling her eyes, and it was all she could do not to cry.
"What's the difference between a guitar and a tuna fish?" Michael asked, absently plucking one of the guitar strings.
"I don't know. What?"
"You can tune a guitar, but you can't tuna fish." He gave her a charming smile.
Instead of crying, Juliet laughed, and her pain eased. Shawn had always been quick with a joke in any situation. Michael had gotten that same ability, and at the moments when she felt the worst, he could make her smile or even laugh.
Happy that he had made his mother laugh, Michael continued to pluck at the strings.
Juliet focused on the road, but she listened to Michael fiddle with the guitar. She had thought about getting him lessons, but it seemed that he had a natural gift for listening to music once and being able to play it. Since she had never been very good with musical instruments, she assumed he had gotten it from Shawn. Another way Shawn lived on through their son.
How he loves your old guitar
Yeah, he's taught himself to play
He melts my heart
Tells me he loves me every day
And cracks a joke at the perfect time
Makes me laugh when I want to cry
That boy is everything to me
He gets that from you
He gets that from you
They stopped long enough to buy a flower arrangement, then they were on their way again.
Juliet breathed a silent sigh when they arrived at the cemetery. In all the time that she had known Shawn, she had never been able to see losing him. But at the same time, she could never picture him as an old man. He had grown up a lot after their son was born, but he was still in many ways a kid in a man's body. And she loved that about him.
She parked the SUV as Michael put the guitar back into the backseat. Then they got out.
As they reached Shawn's grave, Juliet felt her breathing hitch. Had it been ten years already? She could remember the day they had buried him so clearly, as though it had happened just yesterday.
Michael took a few steps back.
Leaning down, Juliet placed the flowers on Shawn's grave. Then she reached out and ran her fingertips over the letters forming his name.
"I miss you so much, Shawn. I can't believe... it's been ten years."
She knelt down in the grass and rested her head against the cool marble. "So much has changed. Gus is running his own business now, and he's married. They have a beautiful little girl." She smirked. "Michael really likes her."
Her fingers continued to trace the letters engraved in the stone. "Lassiter is Chief now. He still has his moments, but he's a great chief. And your dad is doing good. He's going to take Michael fishing this weekend."
She closed her eyes. "Michael... Shawn, I hope you can see him. He looks just like you. He already has little girls calling the house all of the time. I'm sure you would be proud."
An image of Shawn formed in her mind, and she smiled. "He went to bed last night, and when I walked by his door. I heard him praying. He asked God to help him and me make it, and..." She let out a deep breath. "He said to let you know that we'll be okay, and that he misses you. Really misses you." She cracked one eye open.
"There are a lot of things that he gets from you, but he gets that from me."
She finally got to her feet, keeping her hand on the gravestone as she stood. "I love you, Shawn. I always will." She pressed her fingers to her lips, then held them to the stone.
As she turned, she saw Michael watching her, and she gave him a sad smile. "Come here, sweetheart."
He moved to his mother and hugged her tightly.
Juliet kissed the top of Michael's head and sighed softly. "Do you want to talk to your dad?"
He shook his head slowly as he snuggled into her. "I already did, Mom."
"Do you want to go?"
He pulled back slowly, and Juliet was again shocked at how closely he resembled his father. "Are you ready?"
She smiled sadly, gently brushing an errant curl away from his forehead. "Yeah, baby. I'm ready."
They looked at Shawn's grave one more time, then walked back to the SUV.
And as they walked, a warm breeze brushed against her skin, and Juliet could have sworn she heard Shawn's voice carried on the wind.
Love you, Jules.
She paused for a moment, closing her eyes as she felt the gentle breeze.
"I love you, too, Shawn."
Last night I heard him pray
"Lord, help me and Mama make it through
And tell Daddy we'll be okay."
He said he sure misses you
He sure misses you
He really misses you
He gets that from me
A/N: I know, so sad! But please don't kill me! LOL. Thanks for reading, and hopefully no one's math homework got ruined... again. Please review!