Fandoms: Due South, Harry Potter
Pairing: Turnbull/RayV (Fraser/Kowalski, UST)
Rating: PG-13 (Language)
Summary: Something about Ray Vecchio doesn't sit right with Ray Kowalski.
Notes: Yep, I made another. Takes place before Nox and Lumos, Harry Potter-verse AU. Thanks once again to sl_walker for the wonderful encouragement and to l0stmyrel1g10n for the same and once again checking my canon. ♥ for you both.
Never been able to figure out what it is. I mean, Fraser's weird, too. And Turnbull? Shit. But that's just Canada weird. Comes with the pemmican and caribou and snowmen for imaginary friends when they were kids. Vecchio's Chicago-normal and still weird. And I'm not just saying that 'cause we share a name and he likes to throw out "Stanley" when he wants to be condescending.
He dresses just a little off. Kinda... flowy, for a guy. That ain't it either, 'cause Hell, who am I to criticize a guy's dress sense unless he's calling me Stanley? It's just like one of those... uh. You know the word. Indicator-things. Like how Fraser talks about Eskimos from Moose Armpit going fishing by following a bunch of birds around 'cause it's easier than following the fish. Vecchio's got a lot of birds.
Problem is, I've got not idea where his fish are.
Weird. Like, how when he's nervous he goes all fake-smooth and attitude if he knows you're watching but if he thinks he's alone he sticks his hand up his sleeve and rubs his wrist. Like how that Riv always gets the best fucking parking spot. Like how he seems more at ease with the Canadians than around guys like him. Like how he's not around as much as the rest of us anyway, but every now and then he just disappears off the planet and doesn't catch shit from Welsh. Like how every now and then he sticks his nose in somebody's case and the case suddenly disappears out from under them, never to be spoken of again.
It's frickin' bizarre.
The guy's no golden boy, it's not like Welsh is up his ass all the time or something. The two don't see eye to eye on anything but Vecchio gets his pick of cases just because?
I'm starting to wonder if he's a fed. Makes sense. Kinda. Except Vecchio hates feds, and even if that was all an act, I'd be able to see it coming off of Welsh if he had a fed in here calling the shots in secret. It'd be like itching powder in the guy's shorts. Wouldn't be long before he was humping the seat to get outta here.
If he's not a fed, maybe he's an alien. It's weird. It makes me nervous. Makes me wanna get all detective on the guy and don't think I haven't tried. Stonewall. Every time.
It's starting to bother me. I like the guy. I do. Vecchio's real smooth, but kinda sweet if you know how to look past the front to see it. You'd have to be to put up with either of those Mounties - and yeah, yeah, I'm flattering myself 'cause I don't know how I put up with Fraser, either - but Turnbull's a special kind of frustrating, so Vecchio can't be all bad. Fraser trusts him. It means something. Means a lot. Probably the only reason I'm not tailing the guy. I just don't like how the puzzle pieces look from up here.
What am I gonna do, though? Go to Welsh with 'He's weird'? I can already hear it.
"Oh, so that's illegal in Chicago now, is it, Kowalski? Thanks for turning yourself in, I'm too old to chase your weird behind down the street. What? Oh? It's not illegal? That's the damndest thing. Guess we're going to have to go back to playground law. You're under arrest for not having something nice to say but still saying something at all."
Being mocked is not on my schedule for today.
But this case is, and I dunno why I can't get my mind off of Vecchio long enough to figure this one out. Maybe it's 'cause it's a weird case. A couple found dead in their own business, not a mark on 'em. Shop all roughed up after closing, the door looks like it was blown off its hinges, nothing taken except for some random snack foods. Both owners dead, but damned if Mort can find a cause.
I've had the case for three days, and I don't like how Vecchio's looking at me right now.
I dunno if he's figured out I notice when he does that. Pretending to page through something over there at his desk, but he's watching me while I page through mine. That's making me nervous, too. Who stares like that? What, do I have something in my teeth? Did I forget to gel my hair? He got a crush on me or something? What the fuck?
I finally get fed up with it and look up. Smile my best pervert smile. Wink.
Vecchio doesn't miss a beat. That thoughtful look is gone in a millisecond, all his smooth in the smile that he gives me back, and he winks, too.
Huh. Maybe he does have a crush on me.
I look back to my file just in time for Welsh to shout my name from inside his office.
My look goes straight back to Vecchio. I squint. He's not looking back anymore. His big nose is buried in his own file like nothing happened, and it's about now I get it.
When I hit Welsh's office and shut the door, I get mine in before he opens his mouth. "Vecchio's not getting my case."
"Come on, Lieu, I've gotta figure this one out! I'll get somewhere, I can feel it." Fraser's been busy lately. I think maybe if I can get a fresh pair of eyes, especially his, it'd be enough to make the difference. This sucks.
"You've gotta walk in there and hand over your case notes to Vecchio."
"You don't think I can do it? What's he know that I don't? Why d'you keep giving him any case he wants, huh?"
"Kowalski, if you're gonna whine like that, I'll stick you in a corner. I'm not above giving a time out to my detectives."
"It's my case."
Welsh points at the corner. You know, I think he might actually do that? "Not anymore."
I throw the file down on his desk, wave my hands at him and walk out.
He gives me this one, I guess. He can be a hardass, but he doesn't always hold this kind of thing against us. I'm still half-expecting to hear him order me in that corner even while I'm picking up my crap to take an early lunch. Fuck this.
"It's not personal," Vecchio offers, like that makes it okay.
"Like Hell it's not."
"It's not," he says in this bizarre soft tone I've never heard out of him before. That's weird, too. Makes me feel weird. Like a kid or something. Like I wanna swing at him but that I should feel bad for wanting to. What the Hell?
I don't fucking like it. And I don't wanna stand in the corner, so I walk out to go find something to eat and think.
Fraser's still busy.
I feel like crap for what I'm doing. This is Fraser's friend, you know? He trusts him, and I always thought Vecchio was a good guy even though he was weird, but two plus two is coming out to 69 when it comes to this guy. Fraser's smart. Smartest guy I ever met, but he could still get mugged and think his mugger was the nicest guy in the world who tripped, fell, and landed in his pocket.
Never thought I'd actually tail another detective.
Seems normal so far. Hit a shop for a donut - man, some stereotypes never die - stopped to try on some sunglasses from a street vendor, flirted with a brunette pedestrian. I'm starting to feel like an idiot about now. And I'm starting to wonder whether he's actually gonna take a look at my case today.
He's slow about it, but he makes a turn and it's in the right direction. Thank God for busy streets. I'm not entirely sure he doesn't already know he's being tailed, and I'm good at it. And lucky he decided to walk from back there. It's not like a black GTO isn't a neon sign blinking my name, though a mint green fucking Riviera isn't much better.
He stops in front of the newsagents or whatever that was knocked over and I shrink back behind the corner, trying to be invisible. Vecchio does that sleeve thing again. Reaching inside like he's scratching his wrist or messing with a loose thread or something before he goes in.
Putting my glasses on, I sneak over. Standing in the skinny alley between that shop and the one beside it.
God, I feel like a pervert or something.
I have no idea what I think I'm gonna see, but the side window is blocked by one of those big metal magazine racks with the little holes all in it, and I figure that's the safest vantage point. Even though I can't see shit. I can see a little. Vecchio moving around in there. He's holding out a hand and I think for a second he might've pulled his weapon and I put down the spike of adrenaline that something's going down.
Oh. Must be a flashlight.
The place lights up inside - it's daylight out, why doesn't he just cut the lights on in the place if the windows aren't enough? - and he looks like he's talking to himself, and I don't get this. Seriously. This scene was cleared, what the fuck is he doing walking around like he might hit a tripwire or something?
He walks further back into the store and the magazines on the rack block what little view I had, and I'm screwed.
Yeah. Dunno what I thought I was going to see, except a guy working the case he stole from me. No feds. No aliens. Just Vecchio. I turn around, put my back to the wall and sigh, 'cause I'm a moron.
I'm not gonna hang around for him to find me. No reason to let him have my case and make a fool out of myself in one day. I'm two steps away when I hear a loud pop come from inside that shop. My first thought is gunshot and even though it doesn't sound like any gun I've ever heard the adrenaline's got my feet hitting the pavement, 'cause I might be a dumbass, but I'm not walking away from that.
Gun out, I'm in that shop and calling "Chicago PD!" before I even figure out what I'm looking at.
Which is.... uh.
Turnbull freezes where he is. Which just so happens to be pretty much where Vecchio is, because they're in mid-kiss in the middle of my crime scene, and I guess it's obvious why that's what I figure out first. It's not a face-devouring kiss, just like a 'hello' thing and somehow that's weirder. The second thing I realize is that the back entrance is locked and there's no way Turnbull coulda gotten in if he wasn't here already. The third is that they're both holding sticks.
Vecchio's is lit up at the end. I don't even want to know what that's about.
"--what." Okay, so it's stupid, but I've got nothing else. Would you?
I lower my gun. They're trying to hide their sticks faster than they are the fact that they're standing right up on each other, and Vecchio's goes in that sleeve and holy shit, that wrist-rubbing tic is some kind of weird sex game. Maybe it's that master/slave shit you hear about where people are so dependent on it they've gotta remind themselves when they're at work and oh, fuck he's brought me coffee with the same hand he's been touching his freaky sex-stick with and...
Vecchio finally speaks up, and it's with that tone like he's gonna launch into a big Italian tirade and I just don't wanna fucking hear it. "Kowalski, what the Hell--"
"What?!" I'm not sophisticated. So sue me.
"Ray," Turnbull says with that same patient tone he gives me on the phone or when he's fed up with me underfoot at the consulate waiting around for Fraser, only it's... I dunno, softer, sweeter and I'm really fucking freaked out for a second until I figure out that even though he's looking at me, I'm not the Ray he's using it on. "My apologies, you shouldn't have seen this..."
He takes a step toward me, holding up his weird sex-stick. I take a big fucking step back. Vecchio throws up his hands.
"Look, Turnbull, I'll try anything once but you people are freaks or something if you're coming here to do it so you can just keep your--"
Turnbull goes really, really fucking red, making this face and I really have no idea what the Hell is going on right now. All I want is away.
I'm backing up further, and Vecchio's pulling his stick back out again.
"Obliviate," he says from behind Turnbull, waving the thing at me and a fucking bolt of light comes out--
What the Hell happened?
Man, my fucking head hurts. Was I drinking...?
I open my eyes to Fraser staring back at me from above and I jump so bad my chair goes back.
Of course the guy catches it, Fraser catches everything, and the world starts to make sense. I'm at the Consulate. Of course I am. I was just... just...
"What the Hell happened?"
"You fell, Ray," Fraser says back and that does not help.
"I kinda guessed that. How?"
"I'm afraid I couldn't say, Ray. I didn't see it. There doesn't seem to be any permanent damage, however."
I'm still waking up, and I blink at him for a minute, trying to remember how the fuck I got here, much less fell over. Great. Greatness. Because what my week needed was falling on my ass like a doofus in front of Fraser, after losing that case to Vecchio, and damn, I meant to tail that guy--
Hang on. I glance at the clock.
"...I can't remember the last like... four hours, Frase, and you don't think there's any permanent damage?"
"No, Ray." He smiles, and my gut goes kinda funny, because Jesus. He gestures with one flat hand, using that same tone he gets when he wants to lecture me about Eskimos or manners or something, and I know I'm in for some kind of education about how fainting is perfectly natural and nothing to be ashamed of if I sit here for it. "I've examined you thoroughly. Perhaps if you started eating better, this type of thing--"
"--you know what? Never mind." I wave him off, 'cause my head hurts and I don't wanna hear about how I'm not eating enough moss or whatever, and for once, Fraser looks satisfied anyway. "You got any coffee made?"
"Yes, Ray," he says, but I'm already getting up and heading toward the pot, because you don't get stuck in this place for any amount of time and not know where the coffee pot is.
I pass Turnbull at the desk and upnod. He gives me a look, his eyebrow doing something funny, and suddenly I've got the biggest case of deja vu I've had since the last time Stella came by.
"Detective," he says.
"Turnbull." I stop, eyeballing the guy while I try and figure out what the Hell my deal is. I mean, sometimes I get deja vu about dreams I have, and I'm not gonna lie, Turnbull's turned up in a couple because my dreams can get a little... you know, fun, and what kinda guy would I be if my subconscious left a guy like him out?
I can't think of any recently, anyway.
"...can I help you?" He says finally, squinting just a little. It's a weird look. Makes me kinda nervous. Not one you'd expect off of Turnbull of all people.
I stare at him a little longer before snapping out of it to go get coffee. Fraser won't be far behind me, the guy's like my mother sometimes, and I don't want to get caught ogling the other Mountie, anyway. "Nah. Thanks."