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Shawn had woken up a few times since Woody had left. There was a burning sensation that was steadily growing from the bullet wound, and Shawn knew that was a very bad thing. It was too early for infection to really start, but the fact that Shawn hadn't felt the need to go to the bathroom since it happened didn't bode well.

Woody's dog sat nearby, contently chewing on a small rawhide. Blissfully ignorant of the agony he was enduring.

He remembered his shoulder wound, and how his shooter had said he'd picked the specific area so the bullet would incapacitate him, but not kill him. The pain kicked back up slightly before big storms, but for the most part he was fine and the arm had healed nicely.

This though, there was no describing this.

"If I live through this, Max, I'm going to invest in Kevlar everything." The dog didn't acknowledge his words besides changing the side of the bone he was chewing on. "Thanks, good talk."

Shawn laid his head back down, deciding to try and keep his mind distracted from the pain. He decided to run the whole incident, minus the shooting part, though his head while questioning every decision he had made last night.

Had he reacted too quickly to the perceived threat? Why would a cop be protecting Gordon Krumpin? Who was the "Martino" that he'd been talking to?

He hoped Woody would get some answers, and some evidence, to exonerate him. He couldn't believe after all he'd done for the SBPD, that they'd accuse him of murder. Even if they'd done the same thing to Carlton only a few years prior.

Footsteps on the porch and the door opening caused Max to spring into action. As Woody entered the house, Max was jumping high enough to get a good sniff of the bundles he had in his hands.

"Oh no, these aren't for you." He moved the bag out of the way and set it next to Shawn in the living room. "I brought pain killers and some more gauze. I wasn't able to get any anti-biotics. Dead bodies don't usually have to fight infections."

Shawn's face scrunched in confusion, "Then where did you get the pain killers?"

"A gentleman never tells." Woody said cryptically as he lifted the caked on bandages over the bullet wound.

"AH! Damn it aren't you supposed to leave those on to stop the bleeding?"

Woody took that time to gently prod his stomach around the wound, despite his protests. "Well I could leave them on, but then I wouldn't be able to tell you that you're leaking peritoneal fluid from your intestines."

"I'm leaking what?"

"Peritoneal fluid, bowel juice. It is going to cause swelling in your abdominal cavity and can lead to infection if not treated." Shawn swallowed heavily, trying not to be sick. "Besides, I'm pretty sure that the bullet and the fact that you're bleeding from the stomach will cause you infection before that."

He turned his head towards the back seat of the couch before he got any ‘self pity' stuck in his throat. This whole thing was probably, sort of, a bit his own fault. Mostly Gus' for not stopping him. Shawn just wished he would have checked into things more, which usually leads to better outcomes. At least for him.

"Did you find anything out?"

Woody nodded as he wrapped the wound back up with clean gauze. "I found out that Chief Vick looks really good in a blue pantsuit."

Shawn cleared his throat.

"OH! About the case. Yes, the wound is from the front, not the back so they knew that Krumpin guy was lying about how it happened."

"What about the cop? The one who shot me. Did you find anything out about him?" Shawn had tried to place his face, but it was summer and there was a new crop of transfers that he hadn't gotten to take the time to know yet. It was very possible the officer was one of those people.

"Nothing besides he's new."

"New enough not to have a name badge?" Shawn asked, but Woody only shrugged.

"I'm not sure. Once I'm done here I'm going to meet your father for some legwork at the victim's job." He took out a syringe and flicked it to get the air bubbles out, before sticking Shawn in the arm. "Okay Shawn, this is Fentanyl, it only lasts for a couple hours, but hopefully we should have something by then."

He nodded, it was literally killing him to sit this one out, but it seemed Woody was trying his hardest. "Thanks Woody, for everything."

The coroner beamed at the praise. "No problem Shawn. I don't have many friends, and I'd hate to lose one so soon." He leaned in and gave Shawn a bear hug.

"AAHHH!" He shouted before Woody really had time to squeeze.

"Oh right! Gunshot, sorry..."

---------------------------------------

It was past 6am when Officer Terry watched the two older men go into the Santa Barbara Sunrise building. He'd seen the coroner around before, but didn't know why a medical professional was interviewing suspects, and hanging around the case more than he was.

It was too much of a coincidence to ignore.

He quickly dialed on his phone, waiting for the familiar voice to answer. "Hey pendejo, you're interrupting the shipment so this better be some good news." Martino stated.

"Let Mr. Krumpin know I have a lead on the location of Spencer. I'm going to go check it out and I'll let you know if it pans out to anything."

"You better come back with something. The boss is not happy with you." There was a sound in the background of the phone. It almost sounded like knocking. "I gotta go, something's up."

Martino hung up and the officer shrugged. There was enough guns in that place if something went down, but Martino act like it was too important and he had bigger fish to fry.

He smiled to himself. If losing Shawn put him on the outs with Gordon, catching him and looking the hero might just get him back in the boss' good graces. The worst thing that could happen was that Shawn wasn't there, but if he was, Finley would pull the trigger as soon as he saw him.

 I'll just say I found him and he was fleeing the law. Who knows I might even get an accommodation.

He laughed at the irony and used his onboard computer to look up the address for one ‘Woodrow Strode.'

-------------------------------------

Henry was waiting for Woody when he pulled up to Santa Barbara Sunrise Press. It was hard to find and was practically a hole in the wall place, not much bigger than Psych's office was. Inside, there were a couple people at crammed desks, with one near the center of the floor very obviously empty, and one separate office that Henry supposed was the man in charge.

He headed straight there and knocked.

"Come in!" A hurried voice called to them.

Inside the room was a very small desk and a balding man sitting at it. He sighed heavily and waved them in, seemingly annoyed with their presence. "Look guys, I've had enough officers talking to me today. I do have work to do here."

Woody raised his eyebrows, "How do you know we're cops?"

He glanced to Henry, and back to Woody. "You're kidding me right?" Woody couldn't argue with that. Retired or not, Henry's presence screamed ‘COP.' "Hurry it up would you? With my lead reporter gone I have a lot less time to dilly dattle."

Woody was giddy. He'd always thought it would be so cool to lay down the law and question a suspect. I gotta make up a sweet detective name.

 "Well sir, my name is… Max…" Oh my gosh, how do Shawn and Gus do this all the time? "Bark…ing…ton. Yep, Max Barkington and I'm here with- "

"I'm former detective Henry Spencer and this is Woodrow Strode, the coroner for the SBPD." Henry said, getting to the point and crushing Woody's dreams of detective glory. "We're here to ask you a few questions about Ray Andela."

"Okay, shoot, but make it quick." The man sat in his chair and looked up at Henry expectantly. "The name is Charles Wright by the way."

Woody, being closest, shook his hand, "Thanks for your time! I really like your paper. I read it every morning on the toilet."

Charles crinkled his nose in disgust, but Henry ignored him and continued. "We need to know what Ray was researching exactly. Why was he over at Gordon Krumpin's house?"

The reporter leaned forward, motioning them to come closer. "I don't know if you guys heard, but the consensus is that Krumpin is into some big time weapons dealing. Now, before you get too excited, no one can prove it. Ray though, he was sure he was on to something. Then yesterday, Krumpin calls up and says he wants to talk to Ray and give an exclusive interview."

"And Ray believed him?" Henry asked.

Woody agreed. "That does sound too good to be true."

"Ray would do anything for a story." The man shrugged, "It's not like we're swimming in scandals like that every day."

Henry continued, seemingly hoping for any scrap of information the man could give him. "I don't suppose there's anything else you can tell us? Do you know if he found any conclusive evidence?"

Charles shook his head. "No, other than the rumors and what Ray was working on, I don't know much more than that. He hadn't shared any of his notes with me, and I gave whatever was at his desk over to the detectives this morning."

Despite getting a small amount of useful information, it seemed like they were at a dead end. They'd have to make a lot more progress, and fast. "Alright. Strode, you stay with Shawn for now and make sure you call me if you see anything suspicious. I'll try to find Ray's girlfriend to see if he told her anything about the case."

A scoff brought their attention back to the reporter. "Ray? Have a girlfriend?" Charles' belly laugh caught the attention of everyone else in the office.

Apparently the man didn't do that much.

"You've got to be kidding me! Reporting was his life. He didn't have time for girlfriends. He said so himself when Grant over there tried to set him up with his sister."

"Then who the heck and I spend a half hour talking to last night in the interrogation room?" Henry blurted out.

Woody had no idea what Henry was talking about. The only people he'd seen him talk to was Gus and himself. "You don't remember who you talked to last night?"

Oh my gosh, he's gone senile.

Woody spun the former detective to face him. "Henry, do you remember my name? What day is it?"

Henry roughly pushed him away. "What the hell are you doing Woody?"

He pushed forward again and checked Henry's eyes to make sure it wasn't a concussion. "Shawn said this might happen in your old age. Poor guy, can't even remember who you talked to last night." Maybe it was just stress, his veins were really starting to bulge on his forehead.

The elder Spencer slapped Woody's hand away and put his finger right up to the coroner's nose. "First off, you are years older than I am. Secondly, I was talking about the woman who left before you came in. She claimed to be the victim's girlfriend. She's the one that hired Psych to go to that house in the first place!"

"Oooohhhhhh….."

Looking at the clock, Charles let out a long suffering sigh and stood. "Look, I've already talked to three people about this in the last hour. I don't mean to sound like an asshole, Ray was a good reporter and a friend, but news doesn't stop just because someone dies. I have deadlines to meet."

"Hold on a second. Three people? You've talked to three other people?" Henry confirmed and locked eyes with Woody.

Something was definitely up.

"Yeah. A couple of detectives showed up right as we opened the doors, and about ten minutes after that a uniformed officer came up and asked me the same questions."

"That didn't seem suspicious to you at all?" Henry asked incredulously.

"Not really." Charles shrugged, "I just figured he didn't get the memo that the other two were coming."

"Did you get the officer's name?" Woody asked, he knew most of them by sight, if not by name with all the time he spent in the precinct break room when between bodies.

Charles shook his head, "No, he wasn't wearing a visible badge, but he was about 5'9" with slicked back hair and a large nose."

Not that Woody put his nose into other people's business all that often, but it was sounding like there was something fishy going on at the SBPD.

Even though he was a coroner he knew that officers who forgot their name tags or badges could get seriously reprimanded. If he didn't have his name tag, you could bet that it was on purpose.

"No name tag..." Suddenly, Woody remembered something important. "Hey Henry, Shawn told me the officer that shot him didn't have a name badge!"

"Wait," Henry paused and squinted his eyes, seemingly at nothing. "Gus said the officer who shot Shawn had been hanging around the interrogation room. I hadn't seen him but Gus said he'd felt threatened just by the guy's presence."

Woody watched Henry as he seemed to piece a few things together. Shawn often did the same thing, and he wondered if maybe Henry was a little bit psychic like his son but a more cranky, bossy, and uptight version...

 "Get in the car Strode, we're calling this in and getting to your house." Henry ushered him to the door. "I've got it."

"Sure thing partner!" Woody chirped as they hurried towards the door to save Shawn.

------------------------------------------------

Despite his wild streak and occasional love of danger, Carlton Lassiter liked order; Items needed to be in their place, and he was happiest when things went according to plan.

So far, things hadn't gone according to plan.

The plan had been that they were going to check up on one of the murder victim's leads. Before he died, there were two things Ray Andela was going to investigate. Gordon Krumpin's house, and one of the seemingly endless supplies of warehouses that State Street has to offer. In his opinion the entire warehouse district should be made into a parking lot. The only people that rented or owned them in Santa Barbara seemed to be scum of the earth needing a place to conduct shady business.

With that point of view, he should have been more prepared when they showed up and the bad guys started shooting as soon as they knocked.

Bedlam rained down upon them as three men, with seemingly endless supplies of bullets, shot Carlton's car to smithereens. Luckily for them, he'd forked out some of his own money to have his police cruiser fitted with bullet proof glass and a few armored panels in the doors.

Goddamn it I'm going to be paying this one off until retirement.

"Get down!" Juliet shouted to their back up and they fired back at the perps, countering their barrage of bullets with some well aimed shots of their own.

Some smoke gas canisters, and shouts of pain, later... and the gun battle was over sooner than Carlton thought possible. Two men stumbled from the front of the warehouse, hacking their lungs out.

"HANDS IN THE AIR!" One of the back up officers shouted, keeping his rifle on the subdued pair.

"Don't shoot, chotas!" An older Mexican yelled and kneeled on the ground. Carlton saw the second man immediately copy him, so he assumed the Mexican was the leader of the group.

The detective jumped forward and cuffed him first. "You have the right to remain silent-"

Both his and Juliet's phones rang simultaneously. Just when I was going to show him who's boss. Carlton grumbled in annoyance as he pushed the detained subject off to another officer to finish up. He saw that it was Woody calling him.

Christ on a cracker what now?

"Henry slow down, I can't understand you." Juliet, already on her phone, put her finger in her ear to drown out the sirens and shouts around them.

That answered who called her, so Carlton answered his own phone, hoping to get an explanation as well. "What, Strode?"

"Well, good afternoon detective." The coroner's overly chipper voice was like nails on a chalkboard.

"What. Is. It. Strode?"

" Well, you see, I... um- OW! No hitting!" Woody shouted through the phone. "Shawn is at my house, ya see."

"Of course he would be." Nothing was turning out easy with this case, so why would that? "You're harboring a dangerous fugitive, and you're telling us this now?" He asked through clenched teeth.

"There's an officer, Terry. He's got it out for Shawn and might be working with that Krampus guy. He had to hide out."

"Krampus? You mean Krumpkin?" Carlton corrected.

"KRUMPIN!" Juliet shouted exasperatedly at him. He could hear Henry say the same thing on Woody's end of the line.

"We gotta go get Shawn, and need you guys to meet us there. He's hurt, bad."

"On our way, Strode." He hung up and turned to his partner, but it seemed like she'd gotten the same news.

She shoved her phone in her pocket and headed towards the car. "Shawn's in trouble. Let's get going."

"Shawn? Shawn Spencer?" The leader of the group asked from the sidelines.

Both detectives turned towards him, "What the hell would you know about it?"

Even though the man was connected to the same case, having gun dealer know Shawn's name put a chill up Carlton's spine. Either he'd seen Shawn, or was more involved in things then he was letting on.

The man laughed hard, "You may have caught us here homes, but that hombre is as good as dead."

Juliet's face drained of color and she looked to her partner. "Carlton..."

"Let's go!"

They didn't spare another second. Juliet and Carlton ran to their car and sped out of the parking lot to Woody's house as fast as their tires would go.

-------------------------------------------------

When Shawn woke, he saw Juliet.

She was dressed in a ball gown and was dabbing his head with a cold, damp cloth.

He was burning up, no doubt his gaping stomach wound was the cause of it. However, the cold sensation felt so good he didn't question how his girlfriend even knew where he was, let alone how she got there dressed like that.

"Mmm…. Jules that's nice."

Juliet smiled, and opened her mouth to say something, but all that came out was a whiney bark.

"Jules, what?"

"Bark!"

The louder noise startled him awake, and he realized that the sensation he felt wasn't Juliet with a cold cloth, it was Woody's dog licking the sweat off of his forehead.

"Aw… come on." Shawn groaned. The corgi mix jumped back enough that Shawn could see the empty food bowl now laying next to the couch. "I'm sorry, Max. I can't get up to feed you."

The response elicited a louder, more determined bark.

"Hey, give me a break," Shawn groaned. "I'm the one who's shot here."

Suddenly, Max happy face faltered and his jaw seemed to clench. He looked to the door with his ears straight up and tail down.

"What is it?"

A rumbling growl, almost too large sounding for such a small dog, reverberated through the room.

Someone was outside, and that someone wasn't Woody.

Shawn tried sitting up to see if he could see anything. Through the morning sun coming through the blinds, he saw the outline of a tall figure with short cropped hair. As the figure turned, he saw a large nose...

He pictured the officer on the dark stairway who'd shot him. He'd had a big nose too, in his mind he lined up the officer, with the man outside. It was a perfect match. They'd found him.

Oh my God, no.

A phone. He needed a phone, but his was gone and he didn't see a landline anywhere. He didn't have time to look for one either, and had to get up to hide. Now.

With clenched teeth, Shawn pushed himself off the couch and quietly wrapped the sheet he'd been laying on around his torso. He hoped it wouldn't bleed through before he could find a place to lay low.

When he took off the sheet, something underneath it caught his eye. It was a body bag, in his size.

Woody must have put it under there to save his couch from getting bloody... Shawn didn't even want to think of any other reason it could have been there.

Easy disposal...

"Damn it." He grumbled and went low to keep out of sight, slowly dragging himself down the hallway and heading to the main bedroom.

Hiding in the closet is cliché, but there was no way he was going to be able to out run anyone if he went outside.

Maybe they don't know I'm here for sure and won't look too closely.

The door started to crack from the impact just as he reached the master closet.

To Max's credit, the small dog hadn't barked yet to give away their position. Shawn hoped the he could sense the seriousness of the situation. He also couldn't leave him out in the open either. He'd have to take him inside.

Shawn pushed the door open and agonizing pain nearly dropped him to the floor. White hot flashes of agony seemed to spike his temperature even more and the blood loss was making his knees weak.

A lick on his leg spurred him on and he recovered enough walk inside. He motioned to the dog, "Come on boy, in here." Max followed him in the closet and he shut the door.

He managed to keep himself upright by leaning against the side of the wall. It was very crowded in there. He saw a familiar teddy bear head that took up a lot of room, and also a man sized corgi outfit, complete with tail.

"Oh Woody. You sad, lonely man."

The crash of the door popping open made him jump and look down. The sheet was soaking through, way too fast. Shawn knew he didn't have much time, and as far as he knew, no one but Woody and Officer Shootypants knew he was there.

"SBPD! Come out Spencer!" There was a crash from what Shawn could tell was the hallway, and another closer than that.

He's kicking open doors! There had to be something that he could use to defend himself, but the only thing around was clothes. Shawn looked at the hangers, but they were all plastic, and if he broke one to create a weapon, it would make a lot of noise.

Then, he remembered the teddy bear head and got an idea, but he'd have to do it now; He was losing too much blood to wait to be found.

"Max, I'm sorry if this gets us killed." He whispered to the dog.

"HEY ASSHAT!"

The banging stopped and he heard running in the hallway, then through the door. He could see the silhouette outside. The officer aimed at the closet door, and was going to shoot him through it. Shawn had figured that was what he was going to do, so he pushed with all the strength he had left and the doors flew open. The force pushed the officer back just enough that Shawn could lift his arms and shove the giant teddy bear head onto him, backwards.

"You son of a bitch! I can't see!" He flailed wildly, his hands trying to get purchase on the felt and failing.

Max, headed for the officer's feet and attacked them while Shawn grabbed the gun from his hand and pushed the officer over. Unfortunately with the action he shoved himself to the floor as well. He landed on his side, hard and knew that he was not getting up.

The warm feeling of the blood soaked sheet a testament to that.

Finally, the officer got the head off and kicked Max, hard. The dog yelped and ran out of the room, barking.

"Oh, real nice. Do you murder... baby kittens too?" Shawn groaned, making sure to keep the gun on the officer, but it was getting so heavy.

With a sneer, the officer nodded in his direction. "You gonna keep that on me till help comes? I'd say you don't have more than five minutes before you pass out and I get to kill you."

"I'll shoot you... before I even... start to nod off."

The officer laughed. Full out laughed in his face. "Really? What do you think is going to happen? Let's say you shoot me, and unarmed cop. You're gonna die anyway so who will be left to tell them what happened?"

"You made a mistake somewhere. Jules and Lassie will find it." His shaking hand stilled as his resolve grew. "You're the one who's screwed."

Some fear began to seep into the officer's features as Shawn propped his arm up with his other elbow, the gun still aimed at him. The edges of his vision were already getting blurry, but at least he'd have a clear shot.

Come on someone. Please.

He felt his consciousness waning. It was now or never. Kill or be killed.

He tightened his finger on the trigger.

"No, wait!" The officer lunged for the gun, and the shot rang off.

---------------------------

Henry and Woody pulled up in his truck less than ten seconds before Juliet and Carlton popped the curb in a bullet ridden Crown Victoria, ending up half on and half off of his lawn. Henry 's eyes widened at the condition of the cruiser.

"What the hell happened to you guys?"

"Don't ask." Carlton seemed to be ignoring the horrid condition of his usually pristine vehicle.

Woody, however, didn't seem the least bit interested in the shot up car, or the fact that his lawn had tire treads half way up his boulevard. He was too busy looking up at the house with a contemplative stare. "I don't remember leaving those lights on, and I don't think Shawn can get up to flip them."

All four froze and looked at each other as a distinctive "POP" resounded through the house. They all took off at a run as their back up began flooding the street with sirens and lights.

Henry, followed closely by Woody, took the steps to the porch two at a time. The front door was closed, but  His son was in there and he'd be damned if a door was going to stop him. He charged, ignoring the warning cries from both detectives to wait.

This is going to hurt.

He lowered his shoulder and rammed into the door...

...which proceeded to fly open at the slightest touch, sending him skidding across the tile floor and into a table with a lamp. He managed to stop himself from flipping over the table, but just barely.

A dog was immediately yapping at his feet, and Woody scooted by him to pick the animal up. "Oh, Max. Are you okay? How's my Maxie?"

"Henry, are you alright?" Juliet helped him to his feet as three more officers secured the area.

"Damn it Spencer, we tried to tell you the door was already broken in!" Carlton sniped as he hurried by, heading quickly towards the sound of the gunshot.

"I have the key too." Woody produced a silver ring with an obvious house key.

After making sure Henry was alright, she moved to follow Carlton to the back bedroom. "You two, stay here, and keep that mutt out of the way!"

"Like hell." Henry followed them down the hall.

"I'm fine with just waiting right here." Woody held Max closer to himself and true to his word, stayed put as more officers, including Buzz McNab, stormed the house. "They went that way!" The coroner pointed to his bedroom, and the other officer's joined the pursuit.

Carlton rounded the corner to the bedroom ahead of him, gun drawn. Juliet had her firearm drawn as well and they both leveled their weapons on the man standing in the center of the room.

Henry rounded the corner and saw Finley Terry was pointing a gun at Shawn, ready to fire.

"Terry stop!" Carlton commanded and stepped aside into the room, giving Henry a better view of the carnage.

Shawn lay between the closet and the bed, sprawled out and bleeding heavily from his midsection. Blood trails led out of the closet in both Puma shoe prints and paw prints. Not to mention all the blood smears and a giant bear head in the middle of the bed.

Officer Terry himself looked worse for the wear. There was a steady stream of blood coming from his left shoulder. An inch down and the man would have been done for.

"He tried to kill me Lassiter! I got a tip that he was here, and when I showed up knocking he tried to murder me too!"

"Bullshit!" Henry launched himself at the officer, punching him square in the jaw, knocking the officer back before the gun was leveled on him.

"Get back!"

Buzz grabbed Henry from behind and held him tight. He may not have been able to beat the crap out of the officer that almost killed his son, but at least his words would hit home. "The blood is coming from the closet you moron!" Finley's eyes flicked to the open pair of doors. "For someone hell bent on murdering you, it seems a bit off for them to hide in the closet first!"

Carlton inched forward, reaching out his hand. "Give me the gun, it's over. We're taking you in." Grabbing out her cuffs, Juliet tossed them to her partner, who caught them easily in his free hand. His gun never wavered from it's target.

"But I-" Officer Terry started, licking his lips in panic, obviously trying to find any way out of the lies he'd buried himself in.

Henry watched as the officer's eyes hardened.

He knew that look.

"NO!" The elder Spencer shouted as Finley switched his sights back to Shawn and pulled the trigger.

Henry's ears popped as Carlton's gun went off almost next to his ear. The bullet hit Finley in the head, causing his own shot to go wild and hit the floor less than a foot away from Shawn's own head.

Carlton rushed forward and kicked the gun out of the man's hand as Juliet grabbed the offered cuffs and secured his hands behind his back. They both knew it was all for nothing, but it was standard procedure; Just in case Finley wasn't dead before he hit the floor.

Even though he was.

Buzz finally released Henry's arms and he grabbed Shawn's hand, desperately feeling for a pulse, and gratefully finding one. It was weak, but it was there.

"Get the medics in here!" He shouted and Juliet was suddenly at his side.

"Is he okay? Henry, is he alive?"

"Yeah sweetie," Henry reassured her, "He is."

"Thank God."

Everyone in the room, despite the emergency paused, and looked at Carlton.

"Can you imagine breaking this news to Guster?" He quickly explained. "He'd be a mess, right?"

Juliet and Henry shared a look, but didn't press the older detective, or his emotional deflections.

-------------------------------

Two Hours Later:

Woody walked through the mess that was his house.

His door was kicked in, all his bedroom doors had foot sized dents in them, his bedroom carpet was full of blood and ruined, and he had two bullet holes in his bedroom walls with one in his floor for good measure.

Best of all though, his dog was fine, and the whole situation had made Woody look like a complete badass.

Even the hottie neighbor next door he'd been trying to catch the eye of for weeks came over to see what was up with the gunshots, and the officers, and the chaos.

She met his eye when he'd walked up and asked if he was okay.

He was sure that meant she was interested.

Probably.

He was never that good at reading women.

"Max, last night was awesome." He leaned over and pet his dog on the head before he walked into his guest bedroom and grabbed another body bag. It wasn't the best fit, but his other one had been used on Finley Terry.

Dying in the coroner's house was an irony that oddly tickled Woody's funny bone.

As for the fake girlfriend and the business man ringleader, he'd been told that McNab and Dobson were on their way to grab them and bring them in for questioning. There was talk about getting Gus out of lock up tonight too.

It felt really good to be a part of the team today.

Body bag securely stuffed under his arm, Woody pulled on Max's leash lightly. "Come on. Let's see if Shawn needs some company at the hospital."

-------------------------

Two days later:

Shawn was in and out of consciousness. He remembered snippets of his dad, Woody, and Juliet coming in to say hello. Carlton even came once or twice, which was cool of him.

However, when he woke to find his best-est friend alive and well, sitting patiently next to his bed, he couldn't help but smile.

"Hey."

Gus perked up. "Hey. How you feeling?"

"Like I'm missing a hundred feet of intestine." Shawn baited.

Gus seemed to have caught his intentions, but said it anyway. "Shawn, the human body only has about twenty feet of small intestine... and you only lost one foot."

Shawn pursed his lips. No one had told him that much. No spicy tacos or Quatro Queso, Dos Fritos for a while anyway, but he was glad to be alive.

"I heard what happened with the cop." Gus said timidly. Seemingly unsure as to how he would react.

He wasn't sure himself. He was glad to not be dead, but it was still his mess up that had gotten them in this situation in the first place. "Gus, I'm sorry. I didn't mean for you to-"

Gus held up a hand, "Shawn, believe me when I say, that I will lord this over you for as long as I can..."

"That's fair."

"...but for now, you need to get some rest." Gus got up and stretched, "I'll be back in a bit. The food in the prison was terrible and I need me some Red Robin."

As much as he wanted to deny it, he really was getting tired.

With a weary, but amused snort, he asked, "How'd you get out anyway? Did you crawl to freedom through 500 yards of sewer pipe just to come see me?"

"That's disgusting, and no they let me out. The girlfriend confessed to her part for a plea bargain, and Krumpin is going down."

That's good news. He smiled and nodded before meeting Gus' gaze. "But you would have though, right? To see me?"

It seemed to take Gus a moment to figure out what he meant, and snorted in amusement and raised his fist for a bump. "You know that's right. Shawshank Redemption style."

Shawn bumped their fists lightly. "That makes me Morgan Freeman..."

It must have been painful for Gus to give up that one, seeing how Morgan Freeman ranked just under Sydney Portière and Rupert Grint in his actor repertoire. Shawn saw the slightest lip quiver before he sighed in defeat, "Yeah, you get to be Morgan... but just this time."

Shawn smirked and settled into his bed, closing his eyes. "Thanks, Gus."

He heard the sound of Gus turning to leave, and a moment's pause before...

"Uh, Shawn. Why is there a body bag under your pillow?"

 

Chapter End Notes:

I hope everyone liked the changes if you had read the story before.

 

FYI: Max is based off of Dragonnan's cute as a button corgi mix.



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