This is the city - Los Angeles, California. I'm telling you just in case you can't read the signs. I can. I carry a badge.
It was Saturday, 1:15pm. It wasn't bad in Los Angeles. We were working the daywatch out of homicide. The boss is Captain Brown. My partner's Bill Gannon. My name's Friday.
We were called to the scene of a residential homicide. Upon arriving in the residential neighborhood where all residential homicides occur, we located the deceased on a front lawn, surrounded by curious civilians. When we saw Officers Pete Malloy and Jim Reed there as well, we immediately realized what was happening - a crossover.
"Friday and Gannon, homicide." Joe flashed his badge, almost blinding the two patrolmen.
"Wait a minute," Pete said, blinking the dots out of his eyes. "What happened to Miller and Hudson? I thought they handled all our homicides."
"Well, normally they would, but if they did it wouldn't be a crossover and we'd have to change the title of the story."
"So what have you got for us?"
"The usual. Man dead from a gunshot wound, a few of those witnesses whose leads are always good and a dozen people to say they thought the noise was a car backfiring."
Joe nodded. "Uh huh. Bill, get prints, photog, the coroner, SID, FX, TNN, and WWF out here pronto."
"Right, Joe." Bill nodded. Joe nodded. Bill nodded again and headed towards the car. Jim and Pete looked confused.
"Uh, sergeant?" Jim asked.
"What were all those things you said after SID?"
Joe lowered his voice. "It doesn't matter, they just need to sound important so the audience will be impressed."
"Oh." Jim looked around at the crowd - they did appear to be impressed. "What now?"
"Well, normally we'd send you two back out on patrol and get on with the investigation, but then all the Adam-12 fans would stop reading. So you can hang around here for awhile."
"What should we do?" Pete asked.
"Stand over there so the women will have something to interest themselves in."
"I hope Jean doesn't hear about this," Jim whispered to his partner. While the patrol officers stood around and attracted a growing number of females, Joe and Bill talked to the witnesses. Two of them suddenly remembered important things they'd forgotten to tell the patrolmen. Another, feeling left out, made something up. The photographer arrived and took photos which will never be mentioned again. The print man arrived and dusted everything, including two cats who happened to be nearby, but only managed to discover 203 unusable partials. The coroner came and took the body away just as 1-L-20 pulled up.
"Hi Malloy, Reed. Why are you here?" Mac asked.
"Window dressing," Pete replied. The females in the crowd whistled approvingly. "I guess we're a hit. Why are you here?"
"No reason, really, just making a cameo appearance. My status as a semi-main character requires it." Mac looked around. "Everything under control?"
"Yeah. If you're not busy, you could stand here with us and talk. I don't think the audience would mind." There was a further round of appreciative noises from the crowd.
"All right. Since nothing big happens that you two don't quickly become involved in, I guess this is the best spot to be."
Joe and Bill finally finished interviewing everyone within a square mile of the incident. They swapped notes, nodded at each other a few times, then walked over to the patrolmen. "OK, we've got some detective work to do now, so you'll have to get out on patrol. As soon as we corner the criminal we'll bring you back in for the capture."
"Thanks, sarge," Pete replied and all the officers headed back to their units. The men in the crowd dispersed, but the women remained for an impassioned discussion of whether Pete's twinkle or Jim's smile was more devastating.
"Hey, Pete?" Jim asked as they drove away.
"Do you figure we'll get involved in anything big before Sgt. Friday needs us?"
"Nah, just a bunch of annoying little calls that will keep us from getting 7."
"Ugh, I'm hungry. Why don't we just try for ..."
"1-Adam-12, 1-Adam-12, see the man, parking violation. Intersection of Gagemont and DeSoto, Code 2."
"1-Adam-12, roger. At least we got the not-so-subtle Emergency! reference out of the way."
Meanwhile, the detectives followed a chain of clues and coincidences, connected by a lot of legwork, until they identified the murderer and his last known address. They checked it - he'd moved out a year ago. They traced him through a multitude of moves from small hotel to small hotel until he finally didn't leave a forwarding address. Then they went to the only cheap hotel in the city he hadn't stayed in yet. The desk clerk said he was in room B9. They nodded and called Malloy and Reed, who arrived immediately after the commercial.
"OK," Joe said, "he's in his room. Let's go." They marched upstairs; they found the door; they drew their guns and stood to one side. Joe knocked on the frame.
"Who is it?" someone called from inside.
"Police, open up!" Joe shouted.
"It's not locked. Come on in."
The officers glanced at each other. "Cover me," Joe said. He scooted closer to the door and pushed it open with one finger.
Inside a man was sitting on his bed, with a gun and piece of paper on the nightstand. "Evening!" he said cheerfully. "Here's the gun I used and I've already written out and signed my confession. I know I haven't got a chance, given the crossover I'm in, so let's get it over with, huh? Slap 'em on," and he held out his wrists.
After the man was Mirandized and cuffed, they all drove to the station to book him. Then the four officers met in the hallway.
"So the crossover's finished?" Pete wondered.
"Looks like it. We'll..."
"But Joe, none of us have done our signature act!"
"What do you mean, Bill?"
"Well, I haven't talked about any crazy new schemes, you haven't given any speeches, Reed hasn't been depressed by a call and Malloy hasn't demonstrated his prowess as a patrol officer."
"Oh," Joe replied. "Well, you can see that it says 'The End' down there, so it's too late. Let's just shake hands and lay off for once."
They all nodded.