"Hello, hello?" Shawn tapped on the microphone. "Is this on?" The room went silent as Shawn’s voice boomed through the bar.
"Don’t even think about giving out drinks on the department, Spencer!" Lassiter snapped from his seat at the back of the room.
"What?" Shawn laughed. "No, Lassie, I think we all learned our lesson last time with Baby Thor stealing your Ford Focus and Gus almost getting shot."
"Don’t even think about singing up there," Henry was sitting in the back of the room, arms crossed as he glared at his son.
"Dad," Shawn pretended to be deeply hurt. "My voice is that of a thousand angels, or so Father Wesley said." He grinned. "I’m not here to sing either. I’m here for the semi-almost annual Psychfic Awards!" He started clapping and waited for the rest of the room to join in.
"I thought we were done with those," Lassiter whispered to Juliet who had stayed silent while her boyfriend was talking. "Waste of department resources."
"Carlton, it’s nice to be appreciated." Juliet secretly liked these awards, even if stories written about her and her friends seemed a little odd at first.
"That might be, but there is a certain limit as to how much foolishness I can take from one man," her partner groused.
"Gus! Gus, where are you?" Shawn was still talking onstage. "I need a co-host for this. I can’t solo like Billy Crystal. I need a Tina Fey to my Amy Poehler."
"Since when am I Tina Fey?" Gus tsked as he made his way up to the stage area.
"Since you admitted to watching Once Upon a Time," Shawn grinned, turning back to the crowd. "Let’s get this ball rolling, shall we?"
"Anything to go home faster," a voice piped up from somewhere by the bar.
"Dobson, shut your trap," Lassiter snapped, even though he did agree with the sentiment.
"Thank you, Lassie," Shawn grinned. "Now, our first category is Best Standalone/Short," he pulled an envelope out of his pocket. He paused for effect as he wrestled with pulling the card out. Reading it silently, he frowned and then whispered something to Gus.
Gus sighed and took the card from his friend. "Ladies and Gentleman, we have some ties in this category, but all are well deserved winners. In third place with Genocide of Color, is Leaf."
"You’re a natural, Gus. This is why I picked you," Shawn winked before continuing to read, "Tying for second areTexasartchick with The Spencer Syndrome, Psychrulz with Cowboy Boots and Ballerina Slippers, and Penn Flinn withHabit. And for first place we; Gus, check it out! We have another tie, ladies and gentlemen, and Lassie! This Tag Sucks byMusicalLuna and Will the Real Cat Burglar Please Jump Out? by Kirei! Let’s give our winners a big round of applause!"
There was a muffled applause from the crowd as about a third were paying attention to the duo.
Shawn frowned. "I need more participation than that!"
There was a slightly less muffled applause, with Woody standing up from his chair to clap the loudest.
"Dr. Strode!" Shawn beamed. "Since you are such an excellent clapper, why don’t you help me announce the next categories’ winners? It’ll be like the Oscars!"
"Well," Woody blushed. "I suppose I could." He ran quickly for the stage, jumping onto it and waving to the crowd.
"Oh for Pete’s sake," Lassiter grumbled.
"Our next category is Best Tag/Missing Scene," Shawn read from the envelope in his hands.
"What does that mean?" Woody whispered loudly to the psychic.
"It means that they think they know how to live our lives better than we do." Gus shook his head.
"No," Shawn clarified. "It means that they love our cases so much they want them to go on forever."
"Anyways!" Lassiter shouted from his seat.
Woody jumped and then scrambled to open the envelope. "Alright, thirdly in this category are MusicalLuna with This Tag Sucks, Amphetamine47 with There’s a Time and Place for Naps on the Beach and this Ain’t It as well as Better Than T.J. Hooker, and finally, A Little More Than Barely Poisoned by YankeeFan87."
"That’s just third place?" Gus asked.
"Just third," Shawn nodded. "Our fans were prolific this year."
"Or maybe it’s because you forgot to host it last year," Gus pointed out.
"I didn’t forget!" Shawn protested. He was interrupted from going further by Henry clearing his throat. "Right, second place!" He pointed to Woody.
"Second Place," Woody repeated, grinning at the crowd. "Second place is awarded to Heeeeere’s a Tag! by dragonnan, Shawn in the Dark by YankeeFan87, and The Spencer Syndrome by Texasartchick." He squinted at the card. "Our First Place winner is Kirei, with The Ticket. Gosh darn it, these are some talented folks."
Shawn was happy that there were more people clapping as he had Woody head back to his seat. "Thank you, Woodrow! Our next category is a little spooky; it’s the Best Horror/Supernatural stories." He whipped out the envelope. "Gus, you can cover your ears for this if you want. We only had two entrants in this category. Coming in second; A Funny Thing Happened On the Way Into Hell by Am_I_Zombie. And in first is Cross The Sun by Elwa."
"Glad we got that category over," Gus sighed in relief.
"So you didn’t run screaming like a girl?" Shawn teased.
"You scream like a girl," Gus tsked at him. "My yells are very manly, thank you."
"Potato, tomato," Shawn shrugged. "Our next category is a very special one for me, since we solve a mystery every week. If you didn’t figure it out, we’re talking about Best Mystery."
Gus snatched the envelope from Shawn’s hands. "I’ll announce these winners." He delicately opened the seal on the envelope and cleared his throat. "The third place winner is The Resolution by thekk." His voice was overly smooth as he read through the list. "Second place is Headline News by Amphetamine47, and coming in first place is Hourglass by AwesomenessISmyGame."
"Thank you, Gus, that was a little weird," Shawn wrinkled his nose as he accepted the microphone back from his friend. "Also, I’d like to clarify something that we touched on earlier. I did not forget the awards last year. I in fact had them all planned to happen at David Hertzog’s bar mitzva, but then there was a problem."
"What was the problem?" Gus gave him a look of disbelief.
"I had to take my girlfriend on a romantic weekend," Shawn grinned at Juliet. "Hot air balloons, making new friends who turned out to be criminals, dead bodies in the wine barrels. So you see, Gus, I just couldn’t host the awards that day."
"That is a terrible excuse. Plus, you never sent out invitations," Gus frowned.
"I didn’t, because psychically I knew I would be otherwise engaged that weekend," Shawn defended himself."
"That still-" Gus started to argue again.
"This has been a great introduction to our next category," Shawn cut him off and pulled out the next envelope.
Gus crossed his arms. "And which category would that be?"
"Best Romance," Shawn answered, dragging out the second word as he winked at Juliet. "And since she is my beautiful flower, I think Jules should come help us read these."
Juliet was blushing at this point and was about to refuse when Lassiter sighed.
"Just get this over with, O’Hara." He took another sip of his drink. "If you don’t, he’ll spend the next fifteen minutes trying to convince you or win your heart back or something else as nonsensical."
Shawn began applauding loudly. "Let’s hear it for the most beautiful junior detective in California!"
There was more applause as Juliet came to stand next to Shawn, who gave her a kiss on the cheek.
"Your voting results, m’lady." Shawn made a grand gesture in handing her the card.
Juliet smiled at him and then, taking the microphone and the card, read off the winners. "In third place for Best Romance are The Sound of Rain by beccaundomiel, The Good Part Of Being Pregnant by Collegekid06, and An Immodest Proposal by FlannelShirtFriday. In second is The Gift of the Magi(c Head) by Kirei, and first place is: How Lassiter Stole Shulesmas by ZedPM."
"I like how all those are about you and me," Shawn grinned. "And that person who wrote the first place winner certainly knows Lassie well."
Shawn just grinned. "Don’t sweat it, Lassie; we love you just the way you are. Like that Bruno Mars song." He was still grinning as he pulled out the next category. His face clouded and he was more serious as he spoke into the microphone again. "I would like to remind you all that the stories being honored here tonight are works of fiction and not based on true events, past, present or future. Also that no psychics or other people were actually harmed outside of the written page."
Gus took the envelope from him and gulped. "The next category is Best Deathfic." His hands shook a little as he opened it. "Coming in third place are two stories by the same author, Five Stages and People, Just People by ZedPM." He frowned. "I hope I didn’t die in either of those."
"You didn’t," Shawn confirmed. "Lassie and I did." He took the card and read off the next winner. "Second place is Just Answer Me, Kid by AwesomenessISmyGame. In first place is I Don’t Know How to Say Goodbye by Psychrulz."
"Congratulations to all these winners," Gus started the applause.
"Our next category is definitely on a lighter note," Shawn waited until the applause settled down to start speaking again. "I’d like to invite someone in the audience to help us announce these," he said, looking out across the room. "Oh! Buzz, you’d be perfect!" He spotted the rookie on his left.
"Me?" Buzz looked surprised. "Well, I guess." He brushed himself off as he headed up to the stage.
"This category is best AU, or as the non-writers refer to it, Best Alternate Universe," Shawn explained. "These are stories that take us away from our normal everyday lives and create new us-es."
Buzz looked incredibly nervous as he took the envelope from Shawn and began to announce the winners. "In third place are How Lassiter Stole Shulesmas by ZedPM, Detective Lassiter's School for Girls by mia, and also Little Lassie Lost by ZedPM."
"Someone is certainly Mr. Popular," Shawn moped.
Buzz gave him a concerned look and then continued reading. "In second, Headline News by Amphetamine47, and in first Truth is Stranger Than Fiction by JWGrace."
"Wonderful, Buzz!" Shawn clapped him on the back. "A much better performance than the one at Lassiter’s wedding! And now," he continued as the officer made his way offstage, "we have the category of Best Crossover, in which the author combined our gang with characters from well-known or not so well-known television series of the past and present."
Gus took the envelope from his friend and cleared his throat. "In third place is Is There a Psychic in the House? by DTS, which crossed over with Doctor Who. Also in third is a crossover with Heroes, written by nurzubesuch: Identity - I am Shawn Spencer. In second place are also two stories, The Psy-ence of Numb3rs by DinerGuy, a crossover with Numb3rs, and a Supernatural crossover called Ghost Town by Vindicata. Then first place goes to A Parable of Pineapples and Parallel Planets by aakira, also with Doctor Who."
Shawn was staring into space. "Mm, pineapples. Gus, we need more pineapples. Let’s stop at the store on the way back to the office."
"What makes you think I’m going to the office after this?" Gus shook his head. "I’m about to bring out Last Night Gus."
"Last Night Gus can suck it," Shawn griped.
"You can suck it," Gus responded.
Then looking at each other, they chorused "Suck iiitttt."
Shawn shook his head. "That was a great lead-in to our next category: Best Banter." He undid the envelope and read off of the card, "Third place goes to Kirei for Will the Real Cat Burglar Please Jump Out? Second goes to Joy Has Its Own Justice by silverluna. And finally, tied for first place, are the stories Hostage Taking 101 by Syncop8ed Rhythm and You Give Me Fever by dragonnan."
After waiting for the applause to die down, Shawn continued. "Next up, we have a category that really tests the creativity-ness of our authors. This award goes to the ones who came up with the most awesome characters of their own making. For the category of Best Bad Guy and/or Original Character, third place goes to Anaconda from the aptly-named Anaconda by xpsychxssjs. In second place is the character Jake from A Funny Thing Happened On the Way Into Hell by Am_I_Zombie, and in first is the scary-sounding Hourglass Killer from Hourglass by AwesomenessISmyGame."
"Can I get some water?" Shawn gave a little cough. "All this announcing is hard on my vocal chords. Gus, entertain the audience while I get a drink." He hopped off the stage, taking the envelopes with him.
Gus stared wide-eyed at the audience. "So, you guys like tap dancing?" He gave a little shuffle step.
"Get a new routine, Guster!" Lassiter rolled his eyes.
Gus frowned but stopped dancing. "Coming from the guy who tried to pass off Irish Step Dance as tap?"
"It’s a noble tradition." Lassiter stood up in his chair. "I will not have you slandering it."
"Woah, easy there, Lassifrass." Shawn returned to the stage with a glass of water. "Let’s move on to the next category that really, I’m the most qualified to judge. Most Psych-Like Story, because really who is more Psych-like than myself?" He smiled when his ears were met with silence. "Exactly, no one."
"Give me that card." Gus snatched the envelope out of Shawn’s hands and opened it. "We don’t have anyone in third place for this category, so coming in at second place, we have The Good, the Bad, and the Soaking Wet by Vindicata. First place has three winners: The Gift of the Magi(c Head) by Kirei, You Give Me Fever by dragonnan, and Staying Still by sakoratay." He leaned over to Shawn. "Why isn’t there a third place?" he whispered.
"Don’t doubt the voters, Gus. They know what they’re doing," Shawn whispered back. In a louder tone, he continued, "Our next category is very much in the same vein. Most Psych-Like Title. This category, however, does have a third place, which goes to Lost_in_Translation for This Is Where the Title Goes. Second place goes to the titles How Shawn Got His Bruce Wayne Balls by PeterPanic and Will the Real Cat Burglar Please Jump Out? by Kirei. And finally, the title voted the very most Psych-like, is A Parable of Pineapples and Parallel Planets by aakira!"
Shawn pulled out the next envelope and then gave Gus a hug. "I know you don’t hug in public, buddy, but this next award is the American Duo Award, and it is an award dedicated to our bromance."
Gus frowned. "How do these people know so much about us?"
"I don’t know, maybe Lassie tweets too much," Shawn shrugged. "But they seem to have done their research. Like these following authors, who won the awards for this category." He cleared his throat. "In third place, we have X Marks the Spot by mia, in second, The Gift of the Magi(c Head) by Kirei, and in first, Hostage Taking 101 by Syncop8ed Rhythm."
"Who got taken hostage?" Gus was still frowning.
"I don’t know," Shawn shrugged. "You’ll have to read the story and find out." He pulled out the next envelope. "Oh, ladies and gentleman, this award will need some help from the audience again. I’d like to invite Chief Karen Vick up on stage to recognize the stories that won in the SBPD Award category."
Chief Vick had been sitting in the back near Henry, hoping to sneak out early, but had resigned herself to making sure Lassiter didn’t shoot Shawn after the awards had started.
"Paging Chief Vick." Shawn pretended to scan the crowd.
"Make it quick, Mr. Spencer." Karen came up on stage and held out her hand for the envelope.
"Yes, ma’am," Shawn nodded, placing the envelope and microphone in her hands.
"Before I hand out any awards, I’d like to thank all the wonderful men and women who serve on the SBPD and that all of them made it through another year." Karen smiled fondly at the room and then opened the envelope. After scanning the contents, she began to read. "The third place award for this category goes to First Impressions by Psychrulz. In second place, we have several stories: Just A Cat by PeterPanic, Failed Relationships and Empty Desks by ZedPM, Pitch Black by Psychrulz, and The Resolution by thekk. First place for this category goes to The Spencer Syndrome by Texasartchick."
Shawn clapped and motioned for the audience to do so as well. "Thank you, Chief. That was awesome!"
Vick smiled to acknowledge the applause and then headed back for her seat.
"Our next award," Shawn began, "is one that is dedicated to myself and my father and our weird relationship. I’d like to ask my dad to come up on stage and announce the winners of the How Many Hats? Award."
"Not happening," Henry shook his head.
"Dad," Shawn half-laughed, giving his dad a stern look. "Everyone else is helping."
"If everyone else jumped off a bridge, I wouldn’t." Henry crossed his arms and stayed firmly seated in his chair.
"Well, then I guess I’ll have to tell stories of my childhood, including the pancake incident of second grade," Shawn threatened.
"I still have syrup in my ear," Gus chimed in.
"Fine," Henry sighed, heading for the stage. "I will amuse you."
"Alright!" Shawn started clapping. "My dad everyone!"
Henry ignored the applause and grabbed the card from Shawn’s hands. "The winners for third place are On The Way Back Home, cowritten by MysteryMeg and Mrs-N-Uzumaki, as well as Ten Tiny Fingers by Psychrulz. Second place The Light on Someone Else's Porch by SydneyWoo and first place Paint It Black by dragonnan." He rattled off the winners as if they were a ingredient list for a boring recipe. "Whose parents are stupid enough to pick these names?" He shook his head in disbelief.
"I believe those are pom de terr’s," Shawn suggested.
"You mean nom de plumes," Gus corrected.
"I’ve heard it both ways," Shawn shrugged. "And thank you, Dad!" He waved at Henry’s retreating form.
Gus glanced at the category name on the next envelope. "Shawn," he whispered at his friend. Pulling him off to the side for a chat. "Do not tell me that you’re going to invite Lassiter up here to announce the winners."
"Well, it was either this one or the romance one."
"He will shoot us," Gus yelled in a whisper. "And then he will bury our bodies in the woods."
Someone in the audience coughed as Shawn turned around to see the entire room staring at them. "Gus, give me the microphone back."
Lassiter stood and buttoned his jacket. "I knew it was only a matter of time before you let me have a chance." He took the microphone and envelope from Gus’ hands.
"I think he’s been abducted by aliens and this is an imposter," Gus whispered behind Lassiter’s back at Shawn.
"If you keep talking, I will shoot you," Lassiter hissed at them. He then smiled and read the envelope. "These are the winners for the You Astound Me Award." He glared at Spencer; he still couldn’t believe that other people knew about that admission on Lassiter’s part. "In third place, we have PeterPanic with Stuck in an Office with You. Second, silverluna with Joy Has Its Own Justice, and first, Psychrulz with Pitch Black."
"Good job, Lassie!" Shawn clapped extra loudly as the head detective handed the microphone back to Gus and returned to his seat.
As the noise died down Shawn sobered up a little. "I want to explain something about these people that are winning the awards. They think that hurting us is entertainment. I’m pretty sure I got more fan letters when I was shot in the shoulder than when Gus and I almost won American Duos. Thankfully these people haven’t made any physical threats yet, just fictional ones. Our next award is the Boo-Boo Award."
Gus frowned. "That is a shame," he shook his head. "What kind of civilized person could read this stuff?"
"Some of it is actually very well-written," Shawn said defensively.
"Can you spell masochist," Gus muttered as Shawn opened the envelope.
"Gus, you know I didn’t win the spelling bee," Shawn retorted. "And I think you just made that word up." He turned back to the audience and in an extra loud voice he read off the results. "In third place are Psychics Are People Too by ZedPM and DinerGuy, The Ticket by Kirei, and Stuck in an Office with You by PeterPanic. Our second place winners are Sunday Bloody Sunday by YankeeFan87 and Pitch Black by Psychrulz. Alone in first place is Paint It Black by dragonnan."
"Shawn?" Woody stood up from his seat, drink in hand. "Can I announce another category? I don’t think I did a very good job last time and I want to try again. Of course, that’s what I say about most autopsies, but apparently you can only cut open a dead body once."
"Sure, Woody, you can," Shawn held out the card for the coroner. "It’ll give my vocal chords a rest, since Gus and I have auditions next week for Mister Les Ables."
"Les Miserables," Gus corrected.
Woody accepted the card and then cleared his throat thoroughly before reading off the next category. "This next category is called Most Wanted WIP. What WIP stands for I have no idea, but it doesn’t sound legal."
"It’s a work in progress," Gus informed him.
"The law to outlaw it?" Woody nodded. "That sounds like it would be beneficial for the community. Our stories that are about to be outlawed are... third place winners Open Up and Say ... Murd(Ahh) by JR88Fan and Happy Halloween II: The Haunting by NoirCat. Second place winner Gonna Wash That Man Right Outta My Snare by SydneyWoo and first place winners Yesterday Was Hard On All Of Us by Vindicata."
"Great job, Woody; that was much better," Shawn could see a few of the audience members falling asleep as the awards went on. "We only have a few categories left," he showed everyone the three remaining envelopes.
The room broke out in applause.
"Finally," Lassiter whispered loudly to Juliet who was hiding a yawn behind her hand.
"These next categories honor individuals for their talents in both writing and reviewing on the Psychfic Archive," Shawn continued, ignoring the jab. "These talented individuals tirelessly compose works of fiction for their readers and also read and comment on other people’s writings." He opened one of the envelopes that he had just waved in the air. "In the category of Best Reviewer, we have MagicAmethyst80 in third place, dragonnan in second, and silverluna in first!"
"This year we have something different that has happened in our last two categories," Gus had peaked at the last two envelopes. "The same writer has won both Best New Writer and Best Overall Writer, definitely a difficult feat."
Shawn snatched the envelopes from Gus and checked the facts for himself. "Gus is right; our winner for Best New Writer and Best Overall Writer is..."
McNab started a drumroll on the table, until Lassiter kicked him.
"Congratulations to redwolffclaw for winning!" Shawn shouted, throwing the cards in the air.
The applause was louder than before as people realized that the awards ceremony was over.
"Thank you all for your participation and your cooperation," Shawn continued talking as people got up to leave. "This has been the 2013 Psychfic Awards, and we hope to see you next year."
"Not unless you hold us hostage again," Lassiter muttered.
"Oh, Lassie, that’s the job of our writers," Shawn laughed. "And! Before I forget, drinks on the house!"
Gus leaned over and whispered something in his ear.
Shawn frowned. "Really? Since when is that what it means?"
"Since always," Gus rolled his eyes. "You can at least buy me a drink."
"Gus, Gus, Gus," Shawn shook his head. "You mean I can use your money to buy us drinks."
"As always," Gus sighed.