It was mid morning in Santa Barbara, the sun was shining, birds were singing, and fake psychic detective Shawn Spencer stood outside the Psych office. He was currently leering at the front page of the freshly delivered Santa Barbara News Press, getting more and more pissed off the further he read. It was obvious that he hadn't been sleeping well, and the bags under his eyes were getting bigger every day, after every failure to solve their most recent case.
Before storming back into the office he happened to glance across to the park across from their back door. He noticed that the city had put up a new statue. It had to be new because it definitely wasn't there the day before. It was weird, but he didn't linger too long on the oddness of it, because there were bigger fish to fry. Much bigger.
He walked up to his partner Burton Guster's desk and slammed the paper down, before retreating to his own desk.
The paper's headline read, 'Fifth California Psychic Goes Missing.'
"There's another one Gus. Just happened yesterday. They're dropping like flies and I can't find a stinking thing to help!" The latest one was Miss Ivana, the psychic he visited a few months before when looking for a murdering coroner. It was right in town and that was hitting way too close to home for him.
"Shawn, you're going to kill yourself with this case." Gus warned as he sat down at his desk and looked at the paper. "You've been all over the first four and it's like they've completely disappeared."
The psychic did his best not to bite Gus, head off. Mostly because he was right. They'd been on the case for a month already, just after the third psychic went missing. And missing they were. There were no signs of them anywhere. No one saw them, they left all their belongings, and haven't contacted any friends or relatives since their disappearance. The police suspected foul play, because people who just run off tend to leave some sort of trail.
"You know, it wouldn't be so hard if those guys had been more original, and hadn't recycled names thousands of years ago! It's hard enough looking for one person." Shawn sat down with a pout. Most of their legwork and online searching had been coming up with so many mixed results between the modern and historical psychics with the exact same stage name, it was taking a while to get any leads.
Gus rolled his eyes. "1850 isn't a thousand years ago, but I see your point. It does seem that your competition hasn't been very original when coming up with their monikers."
"The problem is Gus, that I see things, and put things together." Shawn had his hands spread apart, and clapped them, illustrating his point. "When there are no things for me to put together, I get no-thing."
Opening his laptop, Gus asked, "What about the police? Do they have any leads they haven't been sharing?"
Shawn shook his head. "I haven't seen anything more than what we've been finding. I even looked through Lassie's reports when he was in the bathroom. They're running into the same roadblock we are. Historical figures with the same name and amazing track records, but no connection to the missing people and they'd died years before any of the missing were even born."
"Tsk, man!" Gus exclaimed and he turned the laptop towards Shawn. "Look, that latest one too! Maybe that's the pattern. We need to look for psychics who've taken their name from someone else."
"Maybe." Shawn sighed. "We'll have to run it by Jules and Lassie, see what they think."
"Shawn, you're missing something else that's important." Gus said hesitantly.
Shawn turned towards him, "What?"
"They're psychics, Shawn. All of them. Real or not they were running professional psychic businesses, and now they're missing. You need to be careful too. I don't want your name on one of these headlines you know." Gus emphasized it with a tap at the paper.
To tell the truth, Shawn was incredibly freaked out that he could be next, and had been on high alert once they realized what was happening. However, he didn't want Gus to worry about him too much, so he played it off. "Gus, don't be a beached hippopotamus. I'll be fine. My best friend is a detective, my girlfriend is a cop, and my father is a retired cop. No one in their right mind would target me."
Shawn almost tried to make himself believe his own words, but he was as skeptical as the look Gus was giving him. There was no knowing who was next, and it very well could be him. That's why he has to solve this case.
A knock at the front door interrupted their argument, and Shawn went to go answer it. He swung open the door and a young man in a FedEx uniform had a small envelope with them. "Oh, man. I didn't think anyone was really going to be here. That's spooky."
"Well, you are at a Psychic Detective's office. Spooky things are bound to happen. What do you have for me?" Shawn glanced at the letter.
"That's what's spooky man. Some psychic from like the 1800's wanted us to deliver a telegram to this address today. It's been sitting in storage for like, a hundred years or something."
Shawn looked at the kid like he'd grown two heads and tsked skeptically. "Right. Just let me have that and you can go tell your buddies that you had a laugh at my expense." He'd had weirder deliveries before. Most were Yin and/or Yang associated, but people found it funny to mess with a psychic once and a while.
"But−" The young man started, but Shawn didn't let him finish. He grabbed the letter and closed the door in the man's face. He then put the envelope on the counter, ignoring it.
"What was that about?" Gus asked curiously, eyeing the letter.
"Just some guy who'd seen Back to the Future too many times. Says the letter is from a psychic in the 1800's."
Gus started at him for a moment, before his eyes narrowed. "So, let me get this straight. We're on a case, where there are missing psychics, with the same name of psychics from the 1800s and you all of a sudden get a letter from a psychic in the 1800's... and you don't open it!? Dude, you've got problems."
Before Shawn could react, Gus had already snatched up the letter and started to read it. "What? Does it say Doc Brown is alive and well in the wild west? Does he know any of my ancestors? Tell him to send me a hover board."
"Hover boards are from the future Shawn, and no, Doc Brown isn't in the past." Gus said as he stared at the paper. "But it looks like Miss Ivana is."
Shawn gaped as Gus held up an old, faded photograph with none other than the missing psychic on it. Even stranger, was the writing on the back of it.
"No. No no no! This is not happening!" Shawn exclaimed and stood up. "This has to be a prank."
"Shawn, the inner envelope is postmarked 1866. You can't fake that. Besides, it would be a federal crime."
"Maybe she found an old envelope." Shawn tried to rationalize, but then a horrible thought came to him and he pointed at the words on the back of the photo. "Gus, she predicted Chip's death. Do you think that inscription means I'm gonna die?" He started breathing harder, and suddenly wished Gus had let him put in that panic room last year.
"Alright, just calm down. We have to get this to the cops. Maybe they'll have an explanation."
Shawn nodded quickly. Gus was right, maybe they would have some clue as to why a modern psychic was writing to him about angels from over 150 years ago. "Yeah, okay. Let's get this to them."
"C'mon Shawn. I'll drive." Shawn figured he must have looked pretty shaken up for Gus to be talking to him like that.
After closing and locking up the office, Shawn was just about to get into the car when the statue once again caught his eye. The statue was one of those classic winged women that were popular at cemeteries. Her face was hidden in her hands, and it looked as if she was crying. Further down, clutching the larger angel's robe, hiding it's face in its tresses, was a younger, cherub looking angel. It was a strange one to have in a park, and it didn't fit with any of the other stonework.
For a terrible moment he remembered Ivana's warning: 'Watch for angels' but it couldn't have been as straight forward as that. She was a psychic for crying out loud. Her whole profession was based on ambiguity. Besides, they were large, stone statues. It would have taken city workers hours to put them there.
Shawn, you're becoming paranoid. He could almost hear his father's accusing voice.
"Shawn, you coming?" Gus asked, his voice muffled from his position in the Blueberry.
"Yeah buddy." He said sliding into the passenger's seat and taking one last look at the statues. "Let's go."