So, this may be one of my personal favourites of the December fic. (I say one of, because I have several.) It's just so delightfully ridiculous. It's not quite crack!fic, but I feel it's almost crack-adjacent. This story shares a border with crack!fic, shall we say. And it's an open border, allowing for a friendly exchange of ideas. However, the territories themselves are separate.
In other words, this is another fluffy one. So Frogster, hope you like it. The prompt was J/L: Jane writes his own musical.
Clairvoyant Crime Fighters
a.k.a. Jane's musical
It was absolutely not a good sign.
Definitely not a good sign.
Lisbon knew it was not a good sign atall.
Jane was lying on his couch; that was fine. He wasn't reading a file or doing anything else productive, but they'd just closed a case so Lisbon figured that was also fine. He was all stretched out with his feet up. Fine. But he wasn't asleep or even pretending to be so.
That was when things became not so fine.
Because that meant Jane was actively watching the bullpen. Which meant that Jane was thinking about something. And since there was no case, the something Jane was thinking about had nothing to do with their jobs.
In other words, Jane was plotting.
He was even smiling to himself about it. (Really, really not a good sign.)
So, basically they were all in for a disaster.
Lisbon walked out into the bullpen in trepidation. Her team members were beginning to shoot odd looks in Jane's direction so she figured it was time to step in.
She discovered the reason for the furtive looks as she approached. Jane was humming aloud, though it wasn't a tune Lisbon had ever heard.
"Jane?" she asked. "How're you doing?"
"You're a trumpet I think," he told her.
"I'm a what?" she asked in confusion.
"A trumpet. Your theme. It's played by a trumpet. Especially when you enter a room, all guns blazing, or at the very least prepared to blaze." Then Jane turned, considering her for a moment, "Although, maybe you're also a violin, when you're not directly working on a case, when you're different..."
"Excuse me?" Lisbon interrupted, having no idea what on earth he was talking about.
"In the musical," Jane explained.
Lisbon blinked; then she mentally reminded herself who she was talking to. "What musical?"
"My musical, of course," Jane answered, like it was obvious.
"Of course," she muttered. Then in a louder voice, "Your musical?"
"I got the idea from our latest victim," Jane told her. "After all, it's not often we solve the murders of prominent California theatre directors."
"No, I guess not," Lisbon admitted. "I didn't realize you liked musicals."
"Of course I like musicals, Lisbon," Jane said with a wave of his hand. "All that singing, the projecting, the emotion right there on stage. It's irresistible. After all, human beings always love to share overwhelming emotion. The theatre provides a release."
"And sometimes that release results in murder," Lisbon couldn't resist pointing out.
Her remark made Jane pause. "Well, yes," he admitted. "But that's much rarer. Usually people just dance their way out of the theatre. And besides, it's also given me the inspiration to write my own musical, so maybe something good will come of it."
"Or at the very least something mediocre," Lisbon smirked.
"Just for that, I'm not writing you a keyboard theme as well," Jane replied with a barely visible pout.
Lisbon almost laughed aloud, "That's fine."
But Jane wasn't really listening, "I could see you as a keyboard..."
"Jane?" she asked again, when he didn't say anything more.
"What is this musical about?" she asked, her curiosity getting the better of her.
"The team, mostly," Jane explained.
"Right," Lisbon said after a moment. She should have realized that. "And I'm a trumpet," she double-checked.
"Exactly," Jane confirmed. Then he continued, "Whereas Van Pelt is a flute, for obvious reasons."
Lisbon smirked again without being quite sure as to why she found that fact funny (and unwilling to dig too deep to answer that question).
"Rigsby's something deeper," Jane continued. "But not too deep. Like maybe a tenor sax. Or possibly a guitar. Depends on how I orchestrate everything."
"What about Cho?" Lisbon asked.
"Cho's not very musical," Jane told her. "Or maybe he's just not very melodic. Either way, I'm thinking a couple of drums used for accents as necessary."
"I see, and you?" she prompted, finding herself intrigued by the whole ridiculous idea in spite of herself.
"The oboe," Jane replied cheerfully.
That surprised her. It was certainly unexpected, "The oboe?"
"Yes, it sounds a little sneaky, doesn't quite fit in with everyone else," Jane explained.
Lisbon frowned at his answer. She didn't like it when he talked about not quite fitting in, "Jane..."
"Don't worry Lisbon; it's fine," he assured her. "Besides, that's only one of my themes."
"You have more than one as well?" she asked with a quiet woosh of laughter.
"Obviously. I am the lead," Jane said, his tone superior.
"Of course you are," she replied dryly.
Jane shrugged as best one could on a couch, "Hey, it's my musical."
She watched the corners of his mouth turn up into a smile. "Not liking your instrument, dear?" he asked indulgently.
"It's fine," she assured him quickly. "They're all fine."
Lisbon sighed, wondering whether she should just go back to her office and leave Jane to, well, whatever he was doing. She met Rigsby's eyes across the room. He just shrugged.
That was when Jane started singing.
Who's the toughest CBI Agent of them all?
Who'll be there to pick you up when you fall?
She catches the murderers, though she's not very tall,
It's Lisbon, she's Lisbon..."
"Are you serious?" Lisbon demanded loudly, in hopes of making him stop, deliberately not looking at any of the members of her team. Bad enough that she could see Rigsby's smirk out of the corner of her eye.
Jane grinned. "I know it needs a little work."
"It needs more than a little work!" she all but screeched.
"Wait until you hear Cho's," Jane told her. "You'll love it. Who's the silent man with his nose in a book? Cho. Who's the quiet man who catches thief and crook? Cho, Who..."
"Jane." It was a warning.
"Fine," Jane said. "I'll sing the songs to you later, when they're ready."
"Great," she nearly snapped.
"It was a nice song, I thought," Jane told her. "Very flattering at least to you."
"I didn't hear any trumpets," Lisbon told him.
"They're later," Jane explained. "In Criminals beware, Lisbon's on the case."
"Oh, of course," Lisbon replied sarcastically. "So basically in this musical I just run around catching bad guys."
Jane looked at her. "Well, you know what they say about art imitating life..."
Lisbon didn't know whether or not to be insulted or flattered by that. It was a common feeling when it came to Jane.
"I think I'll cast Bertram as the villain," Jane mused suddenly.
"Bertram?" Lisbon asked in shock.
"Hm," Jane confirmed. "I was considering bringing back LaRoche to fill that role, but I figured you'd object."
"I would," Lisbon agreed with a decisive nod.
"So he'll have to be a comedic character," Jane concluded.
"See," Jane said triumphantly. "Comedic."
She smiled. "This is ridiculous."
"A lot of musicals are," Jane agreed.
"Which explains why you're drawn to them," Lisbon retorted.
Jane ignored that. "Besides, if Bertram's the villain, that gives my character an excuse to rush in and save yours."
She stared at him. "Excuse me?"
"Oh, calm down Lisbon," Jane told her with another wave of his hand. "No need to fret. I haven't made you a damsel in distress. That would be absurd."
Lisbon took a deep breath, slightly mollified. "Well, alright then."
"Not to mention, it would totally clash with your theme," Jane added.
"Played by the trumpet," Lisbon double-checked.
"Exactly. I just thought, since I'm the main character, it might be helpful if I could do something somewhat admirable, subvert stereotypes and all that," Jane said.
"And how exactly, is the male lead rushing in to save a woman subverting stereotypes?" Lisbon demanded sarcastically.
"Not gender stereotypes," Jane explained. "After all, of the two of us, you're obviously the more likely to rush in gun held aloft and save me. In fact, I think that's how I'll end the first act. Big action sequence and all that, complete with singing of course."
"Of course," Lisbon repeated.
"And then maybe I'll save you in the second act," Jane said enthusiastically. "I like the symmetry of that."
He all but laughed, "Oh, you don't like that, do you?"
"I don't care," Lisbon insisted primly, ignoring Rigsby, who was at this point nearly convulsing in silent laughter. Van Pelt was really quite interested in her computer screen. Even Cho had his nose buried awfully deeply in his book.
"Sure you don't," Jane agreed.
Lisbon scowled. "It's not like this musical is ever going to be put on anywhere anyway."
"What? You mean you're not going to help me stage it?" Jane asked, the light in his eyes dimming somewhat.
"Luckily I already have a job," she reminded him, trying not to snap.
"So do I," Jane shot back.
"Kind of." But they both knew she didn't mean it.
"That hurts Lisbon," he said, with a hint of a smile.
She almost smiled back. Almost. (She was still annoyed with him after all.) "I can tell."
His eyes smiled at her for a second, then the smile faded. "Maybe I want you to be involved," he muttered mostly to himself.
Lisbon froze. "What?"
"Nothing," he assured her quickly.
But it was too late. She'd heard him, and she had no intention of letting it go. "Jane?"
"It's nothing, Lisbon," he tried to insist.
But Lisbon suddenly realized that it was very much something. "Jane, I don't have a lot of experience writing songs and dancing around on a stage," she reminded him gently.
"Well, neither do I. Not the writing songs part at least, but I think you could be a little more supportive of my little project," he groused.
She stared at him. Had she actually hurt his feelings? "When have I ever not supported you?" she demanded.
"Well, there was that time..." Jane started to tell her.
"The times you broke, or wanted to break the law don't count," Lisbon interrupted.
"Exactly," she told him after a second, a small smile playing across her face.
Jane made a show of grumbling at her, but his eyes were twinkling again.
"So what's the musical about?" Lisbon asked him after a moment, trying to make peace.
"I told you Lisbon," Jane replied. "It's about the team. The details aren't quite worked out yet."
"Except that you're the male lead," Lisbon supplied.
"Exactly," Jane replied.
"And apparently you're his leading lady," Rigsby interjected, attempting to look innocent. "If the number of musical themes being he's planning on writing for you is anything to go by."
Van Pelt suddenly became very busy looking in her drawer, (and attempting to hide her smile).
Rigsby didn't even bother, smirking directly at his boss.
"What's that Rigsby?" Lisbon asked, eyes narrowed. "You're interested in Jane's musical? Does that mean that you want to help him in any way he might need?"
Rigsby blanched. "Uh, no boss. It was nothing... You know, I really should just get back to work now."
Lisbon (again, against her own better judgement) turned back towards Jane, who was beaming. "You are right though Lisbon, I do need to come up with a plot of some kind," he said cheerfully. "Shouldn't be too difficult, the average musical plot isn't all that complicated after all. I shouldn't need much."
"Especially not if you're already planning on having two characters require life-saving," Cho said deciding to join the conversation.
"Exactly!" Jane replied. "So I'll just plan the rest of the storyline around that."
"Plus you can use your personality," Van Pelt told him helpfully.
"Yeah, there must be someone like you in a pre-existing musical," Rigsby told him.
"Harold Hill," Lisbon said suddenly. "You're Harold Hill."
Jane looked at her, not sure whether to be pleased or insulted. "The con-man travelling salesman who tried to charm an entire town into buying musical instruments he had no idea how to even play?"
"Yup," Lisbon agreed cheerfully.
"Maybe you could be a fake psychic instead of selling fake instruments," Van Pelt suggested enthusiastically.
Jane tried not to wince.
"The instruments were real enough," Lisbon murmured, watching him closely, wondering if she should deflect the conversation elsewhere.
Then Jane's face cleared. "It's not a bad idea, Lisbon," he told her. "Although, that does make you the Marian the Librarian character, the uptight music teacher Harold tries to charm to get her on side."
Lisbon's cheeks turned slightly pink, and she studiously ignored Rigsby's snickering. She knew there was a reason why she hadn't wanted to get involved in this discussion. Jane's schemes were always trouble in one way or another. Always. "I thought we were just trying to think of a character to model you after, not stealing the entire plot," she reminded him.
Jane shrugged a shoulder in reply.
Lisbon resisted the urge to scowl and storm off. He really was unbelievably infuriating. She considered telling him just that.
Luckily Cho broke the silence first. "Actually, you might be more Crazy for You than The Music Man," he told Jane.
That caught the consultant's attention. "What?"
"You're more like Crazy for You," Cho explained. "Some guy completely out of his element, chasing after a girl, when you have no practical skills that relate in any way to what she needs."
"Hey! I help Lis-, you guys all the time with your cases. And in that musical, Bobby helps Polly out in the end as I recall," Jane objected.
"Through lies and deceit," Cho reminded him.
Rigsby started snickering again.
"Hmph," Jane grumbled. "He does help."
Lisbon realized she was smiling again. "Of course he does," she said, her tone as patronizing as possible.
Jane glared at her.
"And hey," Rigsby added. "Your male lead being completely out of his depth would feed right into your plan of having the female lead need to save him in the first half of the show."
"Exactly," Cho replied.
"Now you just have to write the music," Van Pelt put in cheerfully.
Jane deflated slightly. "Well, it still needs to be tweaked," he said lamely.
"I'll say," Lisbon replied. "And if I were you, I'd suggest changing your cast of characters a little. I'm hardly leading lady material. No one's interested in watching me run around after you all day."
"In the second act I'd be running after you," Jane muttered.
"Either way," Lisbon ploughed on. "I think I'll leave you to it. I'm going back to the work that the public actually pays me for," she said, fleeing to the safety of her office, glad for the opportunity to make a somewhat graceful retreat.
She'd known Jane was brewing trouble.
It was about an hour later when she heard her door being pushed open.
She looked up, unsurprised to see Jane slipping into her office.
"Oh look, it's the artist at work," she said dryly.
He smirked. "Well, you are always telling me to at least look productive."
"So what's the trouble?" she asked. "Writers block?"
He grinned. "Maybe. After all, my muse did leave me about an hour ago."
She rolled her eyes at him, before deciding not to dignify that with a response.
Lisbon noticed that her lack of reaction seemed to upset him. Or no upset him exactly, but he somehow looked less, pleased or something.
"What is it?" she asked.
"Nothing," he answered too quickly.
"Jane..." Sometimes she wondered why she bothered. He wouldn't tell her unless he wanted too. He'd made an absolute art out of keeping her guessing.
"Don't you want to help me with my musical?" he asked suddenly.
Lisbon furrowed her eyebrows in confusion. "I thought you were joking about that," she said slowly.
He shrugged again. "Maybe I was."
"Weren't you?" she asked softly.
"Well, I'm obviously not going to stage it, am I?" he asked rhetorically.
That made her smile for some reason. "No, I suppose not."
"Still," Jane said. "It would have been fun, just for a while."
"I didn't try and stop you," Lisbon reminded him.
"No," Jane admitted. "But you also didn't, you didn't..."
Lisbon stared at him. He was annoyed because she hadn't entered into his game? He'd wanted her to...? She'd talked to him about it, even if she hadn't rolled up her sleeves and gotten involved. But she didn't know how to write a musical. That was hardly one of her strengths, and she wasn't going to spend hours sitting around with Jane writing one. Certainly not at work, at least. "I didn't know you wanted me to," she said softly.
"It's more fun," Jane admitted, apparently in spite of himself.
It's more fun when you play too. Lisbon thought with a grin. She'd always known that in many ways Jane was a child, but... She walked around her desk towards him, smiling indulgently. "Well, if you're a very good boy at work today then maybe I'll help you write your musical tomorrow. How about that then, Patrick?"
He tries to glare at her, but it doesn't really work. She just smirked.
Jane finally conceded, sending her a smile. "Oh, fine then Teresa. Tomorrow then, but I might just hold you to that. Especially since it's Saturday."
Well, she supposed she'd walked right into that one. "Unless we get a case," she ordered.
"Research!" Jane said cheerfully.
Lisbon chuckled. "There's something wrong with you, you know that?"
To her surprise, he held her eyes, "It'll be fun, Teresa, I promise."
"We'll see," she murmured, though she had a feeling he was right.
"Excellent," Jane told her. "In the meantime, you can use this for inspiration." He handed her a folded piece of paper.
Lisbon took it, staring at it, trying to figure what on earth it could be. "What is it?" she asked curiously, looking up.
But Jane had already ducked out of her office.
Shaking her head indulgently, Lisbon slowly unfolded the piece of paper he'd given her. Then she had to bite her lip to prevent the full-blown grin.
It was a simple pencil drawing of a playbill. "Clairvoyant Crime Fighters" was scrawled across the top. "He sees things others don't. She sees him," was written just underneath, just above a drawing of the two of them, standing back to back. "Watch them solve the murder of the century – through song," written along the bottom.
And just below it, "I happen to think you're leading lady material."
Lisbon gave up biting her lip and laughed to herself. He was ludicrous, absolutely ludicrous.
But she kept the drawing anyway. After all, she might need it tomorrow for their planning session.
Iknow. But I think it's funtimes anyway.