my b-day is feb 26 (can't believe its come so quickly...)
Umm I would love something funny... If you could put me in it (the me
from the old fic laurie in the 27th) that would be cool... OHH!! Just
thought of something.. It might be too much work for a b-day fic, but
I'll just put it out there... A Due South Musical. Better post before I get any more BRIGHT ideas...
Laurie S (trying to get the image of a dancing Welsh out of my head
Laurie threw out a lot of different ideas. I don’t know how many listlings have read the original “Laurie in the 27th” (since it was only released on the now-defunct racinestreet) but many of the bits here refer back to that fic.
This isn’t going to be guffaw funny, but I hope you find it whimsical in spots. And, well, I may as well confess I’ve wanted Benny and an Original Female Character to do this song for a long time.
Fraser came into the bullpen to find the detectives all clustered around the window of Welsh’s office. The Mountie made his way over to the group and placed himself between his two Rays to see what it was they, and everybody else, were looking at. He saw Lt. Welsh, apparently oblivious to the fact that the blinds were open and that he had an audience. He was waltzing.
Back and forth he swung himself, sometimes turning around in a half circle and sometimes whirling in a whole circle. He had one hand on his own stomach and the other held out as though holding a partner. His eyes were closed. Lost in his own world, he still seemed to retain an awareness of where his furniture was and was able to waltz up and down the length of the office without colliding with anything. No music was coming out of the office. Welsh was dancing to his own mental music, seemingly.
The detectives were smirking and making snide comments.
“You’re all being unkind,” Fraser said to his blond friend. “And besides, it’s disrespectful,” he reproached his dark-haired friend.
Kowalski ducked his head in embarrassment. “You’re right. And the thing is, he’s not half bad. The big guy can really move.”
Fraser just shook his head. “Ray, Ray, Ray, just because someone is a few kilograms over their ideal weight, that doesn’t mean they forfeit their natural grace. Do you think you would lose your own ability to dance if you were to gain weight?”
“I guess not,” admitted the trim detective.
All the while his attention and everyone else’s as well was riveted on their boss who was dancing alone in his office, in his own little world.
“I wonder what gives?” said Jack.
“My guess is that he is pleased Laurie is coming back on duty,” Fraser ventured. “She just called him an hour ago.” Fraser knew this because he had been with her when she made the call.
The detectives turned to give him their attention. They hadn’t yet heard that Laurie was coming back. The dynamics between the Lieutenant and Laurie had been interesting ever since the day she first came to the 27th to replace Mort who had run off with a Swedish opera singer. Laurie wasn’t rude, exactly. She just had a way of blurting out whatever she was thinking that first annoyed Welsh and then later endeared her to him.
“That so?” asked Vecchio. Vecchio gave his Mountie friend a quizzical look, “how come she’s coming back to work and you’re still on sick leave?”
Both Laurie and Fraser had been badly hurt in their car accident but Laurie’s injuries had been far worse. The Mountie had moved himself and Diefenbaker into Laurie’s apartment to take care of her. Laurie’s room-mate, Lisa, for all her attempts, had been unable to get him to do anything ungentlemanly while he was living there.
“Well, it might be because the RCMP gives its officers more sick leave than the Medical Examiner’s Office gives theirs,” Fraser began.
“Yeah, or it might be Laurie’s just being ornery and coming back to work before she’s supposed to,” said Kowalski. “Fraser, you’d know. You’ve been staying at her place. Is she really okay to come back?”
“No, but that doesn’t stop Laurie,” Fraser said, and various mutterings of agreement rose up before the detectives returned their attention to the happy Welsh.
Laurie, Fraser and the Rays all sat in the canteen having their lunch. Fraser, still on sick leave, brought food for the four of them. It was no hardship since Turnbull did the cooking and also cleaned the trays and dishes that Fraser brought back to the Consulate. Both Laurie and Lisa had forced Fraser out of the apartment now that Laurie was back at work. Laurie wanted him out because she didn’t need him anymore and Lisa wanted him out because he wasn’t game for her, um, games. So Fraser returned to the Consulate and did his best to hide how much he enjoyed being looked after by the ever-attentive Turnbull.
“This is much better grub than the Mounted used to make me at home,” Laurie declared, her mouth full of the subject grub. “I should have got Turnbull to move in instead of this Mounted here.”
“Mountie,” Fraser corrected but smiled at his friends since everyone knew the ‘Mounted’ thing was a running gag between himself and Laurie.
“You know what I found out about this dude while he was under my roof?”
The Rays were instantly intrigued. They both felt they knew all there was to know about their friend and were curious to hear what little bit of oddity had attracted Laurie’s attention.
“He can sing. Really good. As good as me.”
“As well as me,” Fraser corrected sotto voce.
“Not as well as ‘I’?” Vecchio teased, “Mister Grammar?”
Fraser answered literally, of course. “Both are acceptable. You can consider the word ‘me’ to be the object of the preposition ‘as’. Or you can treat ‘as good as I’ as a clause with the word ‘do’ understood at the end.”
Kowalski chuckled around a mouthful of risotto. “You had to put up with this twenty-four - seven and you still got better? Got to hand it to you, Laurie.”
“Yup, he’s the most annoying man in the world. But that voice of his – it makes up for a lot. Um, and so does his massages,” she added, glancing mischievous looks at first one Ray then another before enjoying the sight of Fraser blushing.
“Purely therapeutic,” he explained. His friends only laughed at him.
“It’s handy to have a Malted in the house,” Laurie said.
“Mounted,” Fraser corrected, incorrectly.
“Anyway, you found out Benny can sing. And . . .”
“And we’ve been working on
a little number together, haven’t we,
Welsh came in at that moment and picked up the tail end of the conversation. “A little number, Constable? You and Laurie? Well, that’s good news because it’s getting close to the time when we have to organize this year’s Mike’s House Easter Benefit Concert.”
The two Rays, Laurie and Fraser found themselves back in the canteen that evening after work, together with Welsh, Francesca and Jack, to iron out the details of having Laurie and Fraser as part of the Easter Benefit Show. Jack was in charge of all the sound and light for the show, Welsh was handling the talent. Francesca and the two Rays just wanted to be in on the conversation.
“So, it’s a musical number,” Welsh started off. “What will you need?”
Fraser started to answer before Laurie could speak up. She was not pleased that he was taking the lead in the discussion and was about to open her mouth to interrupt when she caught a stern look from the Mountie. Of course, that only inflamed her and she spoke up all the more loudly.
“We need a follow spot. A really tight light that can zero in on us and get bigger or smaller at different parts of the song.”
Jack frowned. “Everybody else is using just normal lighting.”
Neither Fraser nor Laurie was the type of person to worry about what everyone else was doing, and the two Ray’s were amused that Jack even tried that approach.
“The lighting is rather important to the dramatic effect, Lieutenant.” Fraser used his ‘I’m so sweet and reasonable, how could you say no to me’ voice. “It would mean a lot to Laurie and me if you could manage this somehow.”
Jack grunted and made a note on the pad of paper in front of him on the table. “Follow spot for Laurie and Benton,” he grumbled to himself.
“Hold the phone! What kind of boring name is that, ‘Laurie and Benton’? You need something catchy,” said Kowalski.
“Such as?” Welsh said.
Kowalski thought about it for a moment. “Post-Mortem and Mountie. How’s that?”
There were puzzled looks around the table. Kowalski explained. “Laurie came to the 27th after Mort left. So: Post-Mort. After Mort, get it? And she does post-mortems so that’s a play on words.”
“Not a very good one,” muttered Vecchio.
“Hey, can you do better, Mister Armani-head?”
“I don’t wear Armani on my head, Spiky,” Vecchio countered. “How about this: The Mountie and the Maiden.”
Fraser cleared his throat at that. “We could only use that if Laurie qualifies as a maiden. I wouldn’t feel comfortable with an untruth.”
“Just what definition of ‘maiden’ did you have in mind, Fraser?” Jack asked.
Welsh said, “He means an unmarried woman, of course.”
“Or it could mean a virgin, if you want to get technical,” said Kowalski.
All eyes turned to Laurie.
“Are you a technical virgin, Laurie?” Francesca voiced the next logical question on everyone’s behalf.
“If you mean did I ever have sex with a computer, no I haven’t. Does that make me a technical virgin? Otherwise, it’s none of your business.” Laurie spat out. Some silence followed.
“Benny and Laurie. That’s simple and sweet.” Francesca broke the silence.
“Only I call get to call him ‘Benny’” Vecchio protested.
They all thought some more.
“I got it! I got it! The Bashed and the Bashful!” Francesca shouted enthusiastically.
“Hunh?” was the general chorus.
“She got bashed in the car accident and he’s bashful.”
“Fraser also got bashed,” Laurie said.
“Yeah, but ‘Bashed and Bashed’ doesn’t work. Sounds like they’re rappers or something.”
Welsh put in his two cents worth. “The constable’s not really bashful, except when he’s around women. Mind you, Miss Vecchio is a woman and so . . .”
Fraser started blushing at this discussion about himself.
Laurie noticed it and spoke up. “’Benton and Laurie’. That’s all we need.”
Fraser relaxed visibly and audibly. His shoulders which had been tensing up dropped down to their normal position and he let out a sigh. Then he said, “Laurie and Benton”.
“Alphabetical order, Mounted. You go first.”
“The lady should go first.”
Laurie snorted. “As in
“I insist you get first billing,” Fraser insisted. (Yes, I did that on purpose – too silly to pass up.)
Francesca elbowed the other woman. “Give in just this once, okay? Do what Fraszh wants.”
“Okay. Laurie and Benton. Unless we want to use our last names,” said Laurie.
Welsh said, “So, that would be Fraser and . . .?”
“I didn’t have a last name in the fic this is based on, so we better just stick with what we’ve got,” said Laurie.
“Well, then that’s settled. It will be ‘Laurie and Benton’” on the program, Welsh settled the matter, then looked towards Jack. “What more do you need to know, Detective?”
“Any special props?”
“A plain chair and a steering wheel,” Laurie supplied.
“The steering wheel to be attached to the chair?”
“No, just loose. A disembodied steering wheel.”
“Didn’t know steering wheels had bodies in the first place,” Jack opined and then made more notations on his writing pad. “Costumes?”
“We’ll supply our own,” both performers said together.
“I’ll bring a tape,” said Laurie.
“Anything else I need to know?”
“Not about our number. You got any other problems about life – you’re on your own,” said Laurie.
“Well, that’s all then. Thank you, ladies and gentlemen. Dismissed,” said Welsh.
But the others didn’t move and Welsh asked them what gave. “What gives?” he asked. (Sorry these things are just too much fun to resist.)
Kowalski spoke for the group. “Well, see, now that Vecchio’s back I don’t need him giving me a hard time about dancing with his kid sister. Don’t want to end up like that guy, Rankin, if you know what I mean.”
“Uh hunh,” said Welsh, non-committal but suspicious.
“And then I could do a nice soft-shoe number all on my own,”
“But that would leave Frannie without a dance partner.”
“She could dance with her brother,” Welsh pointed out.
“He’s too tall. Everybody’s too tall. Except, well, you, sir.”
Welsh shifted his bulk in his chair. “Who says I can dance?”
Fraser countered with “Are you claiming that you can’t dance, Lieutenant?”
“Well, no. As it happens I’m pretty light on my feet.”
“Then, it’s settled,” Jack
Last year Kowalski had taught Francesca some simple but elegant steps to get them through an old Danny Kaye number. But Francesca had been practicing since then and was ready to take on the tango that her boss suggested. Those in the audience that also worked in the 27th saw Welsh in quite a different light by the time he had finished alternately hugging his civilian aide close and then flinging her about the stage.
The musical act of Laurie and Benton came after them. While they were being announced, a stage hand put a single wooden chair on the stage. Above the audience, on a catwalk, Jack operated the follow-spot he had managed to borrow from a neighbourhood skating arena
The music started - soft ballad/rock. The audience recognized the tune of an old Harry Chapin song, “Taxi”.
The spotlight illuminated a small circle around the chair, leaving the rest of the stage in gloom.
Fraser walked out onto the empty stage. He was dressed in jeans, a white t-shirt and a checkered red flannel shirt. He was unshaven, scruffy-looking. Both Rays knew how painful it had been for him to go without shaving for a couple of days to get the required stubbly look. The clothes were the Mountie’s usual casual outfit except he had soiled them on purpose and let the flannel shirt hang out of his jeans.
In one hand, Fraser was carrying the prop steering wheel. He sat down on the chair right in the centre of the pool of light and held the steering wheel out in front of himself, pretending to drive. Every few seconds he glanced over one shoulder or another to make the pantomime look all the more real. His expression was sad and serious as he “drove” in silence to a few bars of music.
Then he began to sing:
Fraser:” It was raining
hard in 'Frisco,
I needed one more fare to make my night.”
Laurie walked out from backstage. At first she was barely visible. The circle of light expanded as she walked towards where Fraser sat. She paused, just inside the perimeter of the light circle. Laurie as wearing an electric blue satiny evening gown that would have been very elegant if it hadn’t been soaking wet. Her hair was also wet, dripping water about her shoulders. She stood still and drenched and watched Fraser.
A lady up ahead waved to flag me down,” Fraser sang.
Laurie moved over to stand right behind Fraser’s chair.
Laurie: “I got in at the light.”
For the next while they alternated singing the different parts.
Fraser (looking back at her):“Oh, where
you going to, my lady blue,
It's a shame you ruined your gown in the rain.”
Laurie: “I just looked out the window, and
Fraser: “Something about her was familiar
I could swear I'd seen her face before.”
Laurie: (Looking at the back of Fraser’s
”But I said, "I'm sure you're mistaken"
And I didn't say anything more.
It took a while, but I looked in the
mirror, (She leaned over as though looking)
And I glanced at the license for his name.”
Fraser: “A smile seemed to come to her slowly,”
Laurie: “It was a sad smile, just the same. And I said, ‘How are you, Harry?’”
Fraser: “I said, ‘How are you Sue’”?
The two in unison sang: “Through the too
and the too little smiles”
Then broke into harmony “I still remember you."
While they sang that line, Fraser rose and put the steering wheel on his chair, freeing his hands. He stepped to stage left of his “car” and took Laurie’s hand, drawing her towards him. The light followed him away from the chair and expanded slightly so that both could be seen. Fraser took Laurie in his arms.
Fraser: “It was somewhere in a fairy tale,
I used to take her home in my car.
We learned about love in the back of the Dodge,”
Laurie: (With a smile) “The lesson hadn't gone too far.”
“You see, she was gonna be an actress,
And I was gonna learn to fly.”
Laurie: “I took off to find the
Fraser: “And I took off to find the sky.”
Laurie faded back out of the light and the circle of illumination narrowed around Fraser all alone.
Fraser: “Oh, I've got something inside me,
To drive a princess blind.
There's a wild man, wizard,
He's hiding in me, illuminating my mind.
Oh, I've got something inside me,
Not what my life's about,
Cause I've been letting my outside tide me
Over 'till my time runs out.”
As Fraser sang the last line he faded out of the light pool and Laurie came into it. She sang in a very high, falsetto voice.
Laurie: “Baby's so high that she's skying,
Yes she's flying, afraid to fall.
I'll tell you why baby's crying,
Cause she's dying, aren't we all.”
While Laurie had been singing, Fraser had returned to his chair and picked up his steering wheel again. While Laurie was doing the last line of her segment she moved, together with her tiny circle of light, back towards where Fraser sat. They were together in the light again in their original position with her standing behind him when she finished.
Fraser: “There was not much more for us to
Whatever we had once was gone.
So I turned my cab into the driveway,
Past the gate and the fine trimmed lawns.” (He mimed making a large turn and looking out the window at the elegant surroundings.)
Laurie stepping out from behind him and stood beside as though talking to him through the car window.
Laurie: “And I said we must get together,
But I knew it'd never be arranged.”
Fraser: “And she handed me twenty dollars,
For a fare,”
Laurie motioned as though giving him the money.
Laurie: “I said,’ Harry, keep the change’."
another man might have been angry,
And another man might have been hurt,
But another man never would have let her go...”
Laurie (with a sad chuckle):“He just stashed the bill in his shirt.
Fraser did that while she watched.
Laurie (continuing):“So I walked away in silence
It’s strange, how you never know
But we’d both gotten what we’d asked for
Such a long, long time ago.
You see, I was going to be an actress.”
Fraser: “And I was going to learn to fly.
She took off to find the footlights.”
Laurie: “And he took off
to find the sky.”
And here I’m acting happy inside my handsome home.
Fraser: “And me,
I'm flying in my taxi,
Taking tips, and getting stoned,”
As he sang the last word, stoned, he got up again, put down the steering wheel again and stood arm and arm with Laurie. They sang together in harmony, drawing out the notes long and sadly.
Both: “I go fly – so high. . .”
Laurie darted out of the light to leave Fraser alone. He spoke rather than sang the last line, very slowly, his face voice and posture as drenched with regret as Laurie was with water.
Fraser: “When I’m stoned.”