Title: The Tiger and the Lamb

Rating: Teen, for violent themes and imagery (though nothing more graphic than what is on the show) and perhaps some adult language here and there.

Spoilers: Everything through 4x22, So Long and Thanks for All the Red Snapper.

Disclaimer: The good news is, I have finally written my first novel. The bad news is, it's a Mentalist fanfiction, so I will never make a dime off it.

Author's (extremely long) note: Here it is, the epic I've been promising for so long. I've been hurrying to try to get this out to you all before the start of the new season, and while it's not quite finished, I figured I'm far enough along that I can still get away with starting to post it.

I started this story for two reasons. One, I was getting annoyed at the fact that Red John had all these disciples that kept popping up willing to die for him, but our favorite CBI team never seemed to bother looking into them further once they were conveniently killed off. Secondly, as a challenge to myself, I wanted to see if I could take a bunch of the questions and loose ends about the Red John storyline that have never been satisfactorily answered and see if I could come up with a reasonable explanation that could tie them all together. I started this story towards the beginning of season 5, but once I started to really plot out where I wanted to go with it, I decided I didn't want to take on the new questions raised by the characters of Lorelei and Kirkland, so this story goes AU after 4x22. As it was, there were still plenty of questions left to answer. The result of this effort was me allowing myself to be consumed by this story for the better part of ten months. Writing this has been an amazing learning experience for me and I feel like I've grown a lot as a writer just from the process of making the attempt. It's been a lot of fun.

Special thanks to the wonderful Chiisana Minako for beta reading this monster and for always providing the most lovely, thoughtful, and analytical feedback.

I have copied here two poems by William Blake: The Tyger, and The Lamb. Like the Mentalist, these poems do not belong to me, but they are important elements in the story, so I have provided them here as a reference. No copyright infringement is intended.

THE TYGER (from Songs Of Experience) By William Blake

Tyger! Tyger! burning bright
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Could frame thy fearful symmetry?

In what distant deeps or skies
Burnt the fire of thine eyes?
On what wings dare he aspire?
What the hand dare sieze the fire?

And what shoulder, & what art.
Could twist the sinews of thy heart?
And when thy heart began to beat,
What dread hand? & what dread feet?

What the hammer? what the chain?
In what furnace was thy brain?
What the anvil? what dread grasp
Dare its deadly terrors clasp?

When the stars threw down their spears,
And watered heaven with their tears,
Did he smile his work to see?
Did he who made the Lamb make thee?

Tyger! Tyger! burning bright
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Dare frame thy fearful symmetry?


THE LAMB By William Blake

Little Lamb who made thee

Dost thou know who made thee

Gave thee life & bid thee feed.

By the stream & o'er the mead;

Gave thee clothing of delight,

Softest clothing wooly bright;

Gave thee such a tender voice,

Making all the vales rejoice!

Little Lamb who made thee

Dost thou know who made thee

Little Lamb I'll tell thee,

Little Lamb I'll tell thee!

He is called by thy name,

For he calls himself a Lamb:

He is meek & he is mild,

He became a little child:

I a child & thou a lamb,

We are called by his name.

Little Lamb God bless thee.

Little Lamb God bless thee.