Wow, it's been a while since I've been back in the Psych fandom! But my muse has led me here once again, and so I followed. I think the last story I wrote for Psych was years ago. Jeez, time flies. Hopefully this story doesn't come off too rusty lol.
Just so it's not confusing - I wrote pretty much the same moment in three perspectives, so each time you see a line break we're going to go back and see what was going on with the other person.
Hope everyone's doing well, and I'm definitely going to stick around here for at least a little while. :)
See you again soon!
Juliet silently echoed her partner's yell as she followed him into the stairwell as they both bolted up them, guns at the ready.
Not twenty minutes earlier, they received a phone call from Shawn, telling them he'd been psychically led to the location of their bad-guy-of-the-week. Juliet had calmly told - as Lassiter growled over her shoulder - Shawn to stay put, and not approach the man in any way.
But this was Shawn, and since when did a little thing like a direct order ever mean anything?
Moments after telling him to stay put, Shawn's tone sharply changed, and with footsteps from his line, he informed her that the target was on the move. And Shawn being Shawn, was following him. Somewhere along there, the call dropped, and Lassiter blew through every stop light.
The last thing Shawn had told them was that the man was inside this building, heading up the stairs, so that's where they were.
Lassiter was about to try a door to the second floor hallway when some panted breathing was heard somewhere above them.
"Who's there?" yelled Juliet, gun at the ready. "Show your hands!"
"It's just-" Pant. "Me!"
Juliet and Lassiter lowered their guns at the familiar voice, and found Gus on his hands and knees, breathing hard.
"Are you all right?" asked Juliet, suddenly concerned.
"Just… a lot…" Pant. "Of running," he explained. "Think I… pulled something…"
"Get up!" snapped Lassiter, yanking Gus up by the arm. "Where the hell is Spencer?"
Gus pointed a weak hand up the stairs. "They kept… going up, I think the… roof!"
"I am going to kill him!" growled Lassiter.
Lassiter and Juliet, guns back at the ready, kept up the stairs.
Finally at the top of the ten-floor building, Juliet's lungs burning, Lassiter kicked open the door and they spilled out into the fresh air, catching the last of a conversation going on ahead of them.
"-got nowhere to run, Harding!" said Shawn, panting himself. He was standing a few feet in front of Harding, whose back was a few feet away from the roof's edge.
"Freeze!" shouted Lassiter.
"Shawn!" called Juliet.
Harding's face twisted in anger. "You brought the cops?! You bastard!"
Shawn half-turned toward them, his shoulders relaxing with the arrival of the cavalry. "Lassie! Jules! Told you I'd find hi-"
But Harding had a last card to play, and he slammed it on the table.
He ran forward, closing the few feet between himself and Shawn. He grabbed Shawn around the back, an arm around his throat, and a hand pulled a switchblade from somewhere that was suddenly pressed harshly to Shawn's throat.
Juliet heard Lassiter hiss a curse and she nearly uttered her own.
How does he always end up in situations like this?
Juliet held her gun so tight it hurt, advancing along the rooftop, Lassiter at her side.
"Any closer and he dies!" warned Harding, jerking on his grip on Shawn as if to prove he had no qualms about killing another man. Not that he had to, because they were chasing him for his murder of four other men. Shawn grimaced against the blade, trying to stand and clawing at the grip around the arm crushing his windpipe.
"Shawn!" cried Gus from behind her, running out onto the roof. Without taking her eyes off the man and Shawn, Juliet yelled, "Stay back, Gus!"
There was a little silence then, a stand off, Juliet and Lassiter's guns aimed at the man, the man's white-knuckled grip on the knife that was already drawing blood from Shawn's skin.
The man held Shawn well, ensuring that Juliet and Lassiter had no shot that wouldn't hit Shawn. The only shot she might have had was a head shot, but Harding took that out of the equation by holding Shawn so that no head shot would miss hitting Shawn's as well.
Juliet felt her fingers shake.
Out of the corner of her eye, she saw Lassiter take a small step forward.
"STOP!" the man yelled, grabbing at Shawn harder, eliciting a gasp from the psychic. "Stop right there, detective!"
Another moment of silence passed. One of the longest moments of her life.
Then, it was shattered with her partner's voice: "Screw it."
And the bullet ripped through Shawn's chest.
Of course, Spencer would get himself in a chokehold the minute they arrived.
Something told Lassiter that without Spencer chasing Harding into this building, he may never have been caught, but he shushed that voice very, very deep down.
Because now, with Spencer held the way he was, they had no shot.
"Any closer and he dies!"
He gripped his weapon hard against Spencer's throat, making him gasp. It wasn't often Lassiter could see true, raw fear in the kid's eyes, but it was there now. Standing at the edge of a ten story building with a knife to his throat, wielded by a man who's already killed four people in cold blood.
Shawn tried to gain some sort of purchase, but the man was far stronger than he was. Spencer wasn't getting out of that chokehold. Period.
And no matter how he looked at it, not even a head shot was available. Lassiter gritted his teeth, half-closing one eye, trying to find even an inch of purchase. But the man was good, dammit, and there was no shot that wouldn't hit Spencer.
Guster had just joined the party, and Lassiter continued his fruitless search for a shot, vaguely hearing his partner shout to the man to stay back.
It was a Mexican standoff of sorts, and Lassiter hated standoffs.
At some point, someone had to make a move.
And just as he watched carefully, he could see that it wasn't just Spencer's struggling that was moving him in the grip of the bigger man. Harding was moving, inch by inch, backward. Lassiter didn't know why, but it made him tighten his grip on the gun.
And just as he began another search for even a centimeter of a window to strike, he caught Spencer's face.
It made him pause.
Spencer was looking at him, his face still in a grimace, but his eyes were boring into him, locking onto his. There was a heaviness in that gaze. There was a seriousness in it, one he's never, ever, seen from the younger man before. A seriousness he never would have thought the kid was capable of.
But then, he saw it - a very, barely noticeable movement of his head.
Spencer nodded to him, that seriousness in his eyes deepening.
Lassiter knew what that nod meant.
There was no doubt in Spencer's eyes, just a… a trust, that Lassiter didn't think he'd done much to deserve from the kid.
Spencer did it again, more meaningfully, more… urgently.
Damn it all…
He hesitated for half a second.
He's never hesitated with his gun before.
Lassiter took a step forward, not willing to mess this up with an improper stance.
"STOP!" roared the man. "Stop right there, detective!"
Lassiter lined up the shot.
Shawn gave a final, minute, nod, and shut his eyes.
Half a second more of hesitation.
"Screw it," muttered Lassiter.
And he fired.
Shawn felt the blade of the knife cut deeper into his neck, blood dripping down his skin. The arm around him didn't let up and it was almost impossible to breathe.
Juliet and Lassiter froze where they were, guns drawn and aimed at the man, and, well, Shawn. Gus stood, wavered behind them, eyes wide as saucers. Shawn decided he hated scaring Gus.
But Gus wasn't the only one scared.
And Shawn didn't have to be a psychic to know that this man was absolutely planning to kill him.
So, unable to speak, Shawn met Lassiter's eyes, even as Harding dragged him back an inch. The detective shifted his gaze, feeling Shawn's. They locked contact, and Shawn could see the uncertainty in the man's eyes. Carlton Lassiter, uncertain? Has hell frozen over already?
Shawn swallowed, then as slowly as he could, nodded.
Lassiter looked slightly surprised, a tiny lift of his brow. More uncertainty.
Shawn did it again, more meaningfully.
Lassiter set his jaw, fingers tightening in his gun.
Shawn shut his eyes, not wanting this branded into his memory like everything else.
The shot rang out loud, followed instantly by a piercing pain in his shoulder. White-hot agony spread like a wildfire, down his arm, his chest, and Shawn felt a cry ripped from him.
He fell, the arm loosening around him and going slack. They both hit the ground.
Shawn blinked his eyes open.
Pounding footsteps thundered toward him.
"Shawn!" Juliet. Shawn blinked, seeing her kneel beside him, face drawn with worry. "God—are you all right? Gus, call an ambulance!"
"I'm okay," Shawn forced out with a shaky grin. Oh, pain. Painpainpainpain.
"Carlton!" growled Juliet, whirling on him as he knelt on Shawn's other side, his jacket in his hands.
"This is going to kill," he warned Shawn in a quiet voice, and Shawn just shut his eyes. Lassiter pressed the material into his shoulder, hard, making Shawn stifle another cry of pain.
More pounding footsteps. "Lassiter!" yelled Gus angrily. "What the hell is wrong with you!"
"Shawn is a member of this team, Carlton!" exclaimed Juliet with the same angry passion, and Shawn felt her hand on his good shoulder, and whether enough time had passed or from the coolness of her touch, the flames within seemed to cool, just the smallest bit. Shawn breathed out.
"He's the one who told me to do it," said Lassiter defensively.
Shawn shifted his gaze to Lassiter, who was still applying pressure to the wound. "That was before I knew how much it would hurt," said Shawn tightly.
"Shawn!" Shawn blearily blinked at Gus' angry face. "He shot you!"
"He saved me," corrected Shawn seriously, grimacing as Lassiter's pressure sent waves of pain everywhere. "That guy wasn't goin'... goin' down without me, Gus. Lassie saved me." When Shawn had felt the man begin dragging him backward, when he felt the grip on him tighten… Without Lassiter, he'd be dead right now and he knew it.
Juliet's hand gently squeezed his shoulder. "You… wait, you had a vision?"
Shawn could have sworn he saw Lassiter roll his eyes. "Not a good one," said Shawn. "Th-there's a fire escape," said Shawn gesturing with his head - then wincing - toward the roof, where Harding was dragging him. He watched Gus and Juliet look, then back at him. "I reme-" Oops. "I had a vision," Shawn corrected himself. Damn pain. "...that there was a fire escape there, and h-he was gonna gut me and jump." And he had; the moment the man started heading backwards, Shawn had wondered why, and then recalled the fire escape on the side of the building he'd seen on his way in.
Shawn looked at Lassiter, who was still focused on stemming the bleeding. "Luckily, I sent L-Lassie here a psychic message to work some Lassie magic."
"You sent Carlton a message?" asked Juliet, shock and awe brimming.
Shawn caught Lassiter's half-glare. "Well he received it, d-didn't he?"
Lassiter just continued to glare, something foreign and unreadable in his eyes, then applied pressure, a little harder than necessary. Shawn gasped, catching the slightest amusement from the detective. "Or I didn't, and my aim unfortunately missed anything vital."
The light fingers tightened even more on his arm as Juliet used her other to whack Lassiter on the arm. Then, to Shawn, "Well… at least you're…" Alive? She didn't finish, since he wasn't exactly okay, even if he was going to live. "I should check on… him," said Juliet, gesturing to the downed bad guy, who was lucky as hell he didn't fall off the edge of the roof when the bullet went through him as well. She got up and went to him, checking for a pulse, then bringing out handcuffs.
"'Sides," said Shawn, looking back at Lassiter. "Just a flesh wound, right?"
"Are you questioning my accuracy?" asked Lassiter dangerously.
"I would n-never."
Gus knelt down in Juliet's place, looking only at Shawn's face, and away from the blood. "Ambulance will be here any minute."
Shawn suddenly laughed, then winced when it jostled his shoulder.
"Shawn?" asked Juliet worriedly, hearing his sort-of laughter.
"It's… 's just funny," said Shawn. "Always thought when Lassie shot me, it'd be to kill me. Y'know.. like he keeps tellin' me he'll do. Never thought he'd shoot me to save me."
"The night is young, Spencer."
Sirens wailed from not too far away. Gus stood. "I'll let the paramedics know where to find us," he said.
Shawn looked at Lassiter, now that they were alone. "Thanks," he said seriously.
Lassiter lifted a brow. "For shooting you?" he said, a little grin. "Any time."