Disclaimer: I don't own Psych, To Kill a Mockingbird, The Hunger Games or Phineas and Ferb.
A/N: *cries* I.. I can't believe that this is it. The epilogue. The end of this story... but not the end. Like I said, I've set it up for a sequel, and you'll probably catch some of the sequel setup in the epilogue! Thank you all so much for reading, reviewing, following and favoriting! Since this is the last chapter, everyone please, please leave a comment and let me know what you thought, even if you don't normally review! I'd really like to know what you think! :) Enjoy!
The Finch and the Mockingbird
Epilogue: To Resuscitate a Mockingbird
Eight Weeks Later
Shawn sat in the Psych office in his desk chair, using his left leg to move the rolling chair back and forth as he poured over the file the chief had dropped by earlier. A heavy brace, ugly but necessary, was on his knee, and his left arm was encased in a bright green cast from his hand to his shoulder, held close to his chest with a sling. Every single inch of the cast had been marked up with Sharpie, so much so that it almost looked black instead of green. A big pineapple, ugly and awkward, was on the front of the cast, and it took up quite a bit of room. That was where Shawn had attempted to sign his own cast shortly after regaining the use of his right arm and shoulder. It was a clumsy job, but it could have been worse, and he was proud. How many people could say they'd signed their own cast, and with a depiction of delicious flavor, no less?
He was progressing very well, according to his doctor and physical therapist, and although he still had a long way to go with both his arm and leg, he was actually fairly mobile with the use of a crutch, and while he couldn't over-exert himself or do anything even mildly dangerous (A.K.A. interesting), he was still able to help out in investigations. Psych had technically been "closed" temporarily the past two months, and would probably stay that way until Shawn was able to truly come back to work in another few months, but he was still doing some consulting and had helped tie up several challenging cases, even in his physical state.
He'd stayed with his dad the first two and a half weeks after his release from the hospital, but once they had both been about ready to pull their hair out at each other's antics (metaphorically, of course, because Shawn's dad didn't have enough hair to pull out), and once the doctor and therapist had approved it, he'd moved back into his apartment, but someone was over almost all of the time to help him out if he needed it, and Gus had gotten into the habit of staying a couple of nights a week, just to hang out he said, but Shawn knew that it was also to make sure that Shawn was really okay. Shawn did appreciate it, since it always helped to have his best friend on hand when he woke up screaming from a particularly brutal nightmare – which had happened quite a few times in the last three and a half weeks of being semi-back on his own. He still had the occasional nightmare, but thanks to his friends and family, who had really shown how vital they were to his survival, he was starting to heal emotionally, too. He still didn't like mockingbirds very much, and he got nervous in courtroom settings, but he was working on it, and he was making a rapid recovery.
He'd actually had a rather profound revelation about his emotional and physical healing, and he'd shared it with Gus and Juliet last night over Hawaiian pizza. What made it so awesome was that it fit into the whole To Kill a Mockingbird motif that Aaron had twisted to his own purposes for evil, but Shawn had found a way to turn it back for good. "He wanted to kill a mockingbird," he'd said seriously, and Jules and Gus had looked at him with wide eyes, like he was a glass doll about to break (they'd been doing that a lot since the whole nightmare, even though he'd told them numerous times to stop hovering, he was fine – truth was, sometimes he needed to know they were there, paranoid as they were; they helped keep the darkness away). "But he didn't. Because of me, and my innate survival skills, he didn't kill a single mockingbird."
"Uh," Gus had said hesitantly. "He did, Shawn. He killed three of them actually."
"Gus, don't be the plastic tip on the end of my shoelace."
"It's called an aglet."
"I know. Phineas and Ferb marathon yesterday, whaaat?"
"Anyway?" Juliet had prompted, a cute smile forming at the corners of her mouth as she reached for another slice of heavenly pineapplely goodness. She'd figured out that this was probably not on the road to being a serious Shawn moment, although there had been a significant increase in those moments the past eight weeks, for obvious reasons. They were becoming a bit less frequent with every passing day, though.
"I was talking about metaphorically, Gus. Since you love that book so much, you should know that the killing of a mockingbird is equated with the destruction of something innocent."
"Right. And you were innocent in the whole thing, and the whack-job went after you. Ergo, killing a mockingbird."
"But he didn't destroy me, Gus! Don't you see? He knocked out my mockingbird, sure. He put me out of commission for a while. He hurt me, he hurt my dad, and he did some serious damage. I'll admit it. But. I'm going to be okay, yeah? I mean, I'm already making jokes about woodpeckers, and we all know that they are the closest relative of the mockingbird!"
"No, they're not," Gus and Juliet had said in unison.
"Just hear me out. This is what I've figured out. Maybe you're right. Technically, Stevens did kill a mockingbird with what he did to me. But I'm recovering, I'm going to come out even better and more attractive than ever – the ladies can't resist a manly scar," he'd added with a wink to Juliet, and to his delight, she'd blushed slightly.
Gus still didn't seem to be following. "So what you're saying is…?"
"He killed a mockingbird, but that mockingbird's about to be recessitated... rusticated... rec... brought back to life. Just slap those paddles on its feathery little chest and boom! My mockingbird is alive and making beautiful music again!"
Gus had blinked a couple of times and had then said, "It's resuscitated. But you know what, Shawn, that actually almost made sense."
"I get it," Juliet said, beaming. "It's a weird way of putting it, but I get it. And I'm glad you're starting to come to terms with what happened. I don't know if I could have done it in such a short amount of time. I think I'd still be a total mess."
"Well, that would never happen, because I'd never let anything like that happen to you, ever, Jules," Shawn had said seriously. He knew that his tone and eyes had been haunted, because for the shortest of seconds, he was back in the building, hanging from the ceiling, being beaten by a crazed ex-scholar for revenge. He'd added, "Or you, Gus," because he didn't want Gus to feel left out, even though he knew this already.
She'd smiled and reached over to squeeze his hand affectionately – or at least he hoped it was out of affection and not just pity or comfort, but he'd take what he could get at this point. At any rate, the physical contact, no matter how brief, was refreshing, and it helped pull his mind away from the past, where his mind still wanted to get trapped sometimes. It was because of moments like these, moments with his dad and Gus and Jules and Mom, that he had kept his sanity and had started to overcome the monsters that plagued him. Juliet was especially welcome to help him feel better any time. He wasn't entirely sure on their standing at this point, but he wasn't going to argue at the gesture. Gus had shot him an approving grin and thumbs up from beside Juliet.
He'd seen Abigail a couple of times since his kidnapping. She'd flown in as soon as she could, about four days into his twelve-day hospital stay. He'd been happy to see her, and he still cared a lot about her, but things had seemed a bit strained and different. They hadn't really settled anything one way or another, but he felt that they parted ways a week later with a mutual understanding of "we'll see what happens," which was fine with him, because he was still trying to sort out his feelings for Juliet, which had always been there since the first time he saw her in the diner, but which had grown so much more during the times that she came to visit him, to watch movies or debate the finer points of what made a good eighties flick, pigging out on pizza with him and Gus... She'd been an amazing friend, and he was falling for her more every time he saw her. He knew he'd have to come to some sort of decision concerning her and his feelings soon, but right now, he had a lot of other things on his mind.
Like the fact that Gus was coming by to pick him up for dinner at his dad's tonight, and that he was still trying to figure out the link between the missing electronics from Best Buy and the dead grocer found in a crate of his own cabbage heads – he knew there was one, but it was a bit more difficult to do his psychic thing when he was limited in his mobility... Maybe he could convince Gus that they needed to stop by the grocery store, the one the guy had been found at (though Gus didn't necessarily need to know that), under the guise that they needed to pick up something to bring to dinner. He technically wasn't supposed to be out and about at crime scenes, but he was getting to be a pro with the crutch, even with the full-arm cast on the other side...
The door opened and Shawn spun around, his heart beating wildly in his chest for a moment at the sudden intrusion. He was still a bit jumpy, which was understandable, considering what he'd been through, though he hated feeling that way.
Gus apologized quickly. "Sorry. Just me. Keep forgetting to warn you."
He plopped down on the couch, snagging a handful of Skittles from the bowl on the coffee table. Shawn scowled. "I'm fine. I was practicing my surprised reaction for when the chief calls me to the station so that Lassie can personally put a medal of honor around my neck for solving this case."
"You solved it?" Gus asked, choosing to ignore the ridiculous excuse and even more ridiculous assumption that Lassiter would ever do anything of the kind, even by direct order of the chief.
Shawn frowned. "Not yet. But I'm close. Speaking of which, I think my dad needs some greens or sprouts or something from the store..."
"I know what you're trying to do, Shawn."
"C'mon, Gus. Just for a minute. I'll let you color in the pineapple with a yellow paint pen," he bribed. Gus had been complaining that a lime green pineapple was ridiculous, and Shawn had refused to let him make it the right color - until now. He could tell Gus was seriously tempted by the offer. "It won't be anything dangerous. There won't be any birds, mocking or otherwise involved."
Gus didn't look happy at Shawn's little joke, and Shawn wasn't entirely comfortable with it either, but he had been trying to get over this stupid hurdle in his mind that made him a bit freaked out when the topic of mockingbirds came up. After all, the bird wasn't to blame. They were just as much the victims as he had been. And, he hadn't told anyone this yet, he'd actually hidden away the book given to him by Mrs. Moore. Maybe, someday, he'd take it out and... well, look at it, at least. It was far too long and old to read cover to cover. Maybe he'd actually watch the movie instead of sleeping through it. He'd been forced to be a part of the book, and somehow, that had made his desire to overcome his fears and demons by confronting them even stronger, and he'd found he was actually kind of interested in finding out what the book was really about, not just Stevens' jacked up revenge-riddled interpretation that he'd felt compelled to share with Shawn and his family.
"Please, Gus?" Shawn pleaded. "I'm so bored. All I've been doing is therapy and eating and watching reruns and looking over these files. I need to investigate something. Go to the scene. If we see Lassie and Jules, you can distract them while I run."
Gus raised his eyebrows. "Run?"
"Hobble. Gimp. Whatever. Just make sure it's a lengthy distraction. Maybe you should have an aneurism or contract Ebola or something."
"You're an idiot." He sighed. "Fine. But only for a few minutes. To get the greens."
"Sure, buddy. To get the greens. Goodness knows my dad needs them – told me that himself, which was way too much information – so it shouldn't look too suspicious."
"Except there are about five grocery stores that are closer to your dad's than the one we're going to."
"He's a very picky old goat," Shawn shot back instantly. As much as he needled his dad, and as much as their relationship seemed to have gone back to the normal bickering and griping over the past two months, there was something more there now, a shared bond, an understanding, and they were closer than they had been in a long, long time, and they were both much happier because of it. "Only eats the Ollie's Grocery store-brand greens. Says they have more fiber."
Gus rolled his eyes but got off the couch, reached out his hand, and helped Shawn to his feet, his right leg bent slightly at the knee and resting lightly on the ground. Gus handed him his crutch and held the door open, and together they left the Psych office, Shawn piping on about how the next psycho that went after them should be obsessed with a nice and safe book, like Green Eggs and Ham. That couldn't be too bad, right? It sure beat To Kill a Mockingjay.
"Mockingbird, Shawn, and you have no excuse for not knowing it now, especially since I made you watch The Hunger Games and showed you the difference." Shawn had insisted that the first step in his "Mockingbird Recovery Program" was to start with something like a mockingbird, but not one, so he'd allowed Gus to drag him to the Psych office for a Hunger Games movie night, since apparently woodpeckers and mockingbirds weren't all that closely related after all. Gus's response was irritable as he helped Shawn into the passenger's side of the Blueberry and walked around to get in the driver's seat.
Shawn grinned, feeling lighter than he had in days, thrilled to be doing something other than what he'd been doing for six weeks now – nothing. And going against the powers that be were a bonus. It wasn't just investigating this case or getting to spend time with Jules, or getting along with his dad or making steam come out of Lassie's ears, or driving Gus up the wall with his intentionally wrong references that had him in a good mood. He felt like things were finally going to start improving, and he was going to be able to look toward the future, to Psych and everything that mattered to him, instead of being trapped in the nightmare of the past few months.
The only hurdle really still in his way was Aaron Stevens' court date, which had been set for four months from now, and Shawn and Henry would be the key witnesses. He'd been assured again and again that the crazy scholar was undoubtedly going away for good as the evidence against him was overwhelming, and coupled with Shawn's and his dad's testimonies, there was no way he'd walk free ever again. Still, the thought of being back in a courtroom with his tormenter, despite the fact that Aaron would be the prisoner and it would be a real courtroom, terrified Shawn. The court date was a full four months away, though, and he was content for now to deal with his anxiety and trepidation in the way he did everything else - not thinking about it and making jokes. He knew that when it got closer to time that it would be harder to avoid thinking about it, but... he just didn't want to think about it right now. And so he didn't, even if he was running the risk of hurting himself even more in the long run with his avoidance.
"I know, I know," Shawn said as Gus started the ignition. "But you just get the most hilarious look on your face when I say it wrong. Your forehead turns into a grumpy black raison."
"I will drive you straight to your dad's, Shawn."
"Just kidding, dude. Mockingbirds are dope. You win."
"You're an idiot, Shawn."
But he got into the turning lane in the direction of the grocery store anyway.
Replies to Anonymous Reviewers:
To Jesusfreak: Thank you so much! I'm so glad you've enjoyed this story! :)
To PsychO99: Thank you so much! So glad you enjoyed it! Sorry I didn't post early, but I really wanted to milk the review time for all it was worth lol... I got greedy with reviews. Seriously, though, thank you so much for your support and reviews! It means more than I can say!
To Guest: Thank you so much! I'm so glad you're enjyoing the story and that you like Dr. Garfield! (And the chapter title, lol!) Thank you!
A/N: *cries louder* I can't believe it. It's over... but not really. The sequel will involve, among other things, the court date... and it's going to be whumpy and angsty as well... so be on the lookout for it sometime in the future! It will be a while before it comes out though, because I'm not going to start posting until I finish it, and I haven't started it, and I've actually just finished my first original novel and I'm working on publishing, not to mention I've got a Doctor Who/Psych crossover (full length) in the works. If you'd be interested in a sneak preview of said crossover, I would gladly oblige... just let me know in the reviews!
Anyway, thank you so much to everyone who reviewed this story (takes deep breath): Pippin Strange, mushushy, Hope, Checkerz, fantomfaire, ChucKelise, Guest, Clara Brighet, Feather32, ChutneyMarie, lampstand00, Leahelisabeth, Comma tot he Top, BubbleAngel, H, special agent Ali, PhantasmicFire323, mamapranayama, Final Precipie, ZeDancingHobbit, Squeegee Beckinhiem, ShamrockNinny, thewarpedmind1, Liberty Hoffman, Polaris'05, Vinividivinci, TheReinbachDragonlord, Said The Liar 13, ChigauBakemono, H0llyw00d-Heather, lazybum89, PsychO99, bigbangtheoryk8, ButterCat, Olivia94, EvilCelery, GlOmP3R, Juromuro, GrimmSistah, Dryad'sSong, ElmerFudFry95, Sammo352z, BrokenSky49, Jesusfreak, IrishPride1989 and LuffyLover! Thank you also to all the readers, to the 48 people who have favorited the story and the 83 who are following it! It means more than you know! :)
If you are interested in the Doctor Who/Psych crossover or my original novel, Angel, please let me know in your review or a PM and I'll happily post a sneak preview to the end of this story of the crossover and give you more information about the book. :) Thank you again, so so so much for sticking with me through the whole story, for all your reviews, support and encouragement! Seriously, this wouldn't have happened without all of you!
Please review one last time, let me know what you think! I love you guys sooooo much, and we've gone through a lot together through the course of this story (*sniff*Psych ending*sniff*), but I'm glad we stuck to it and hopefully it was as enjoyable of a ride for you as it was for me! Thanks again, and I'll see you guys soon with a new story, promise! Keep a weather eye open! ;)