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FIC: Déjà Vu, Homicide/Supernatual

Title: Déjà Vu
Fandom: Supernatural/Homicide: Life on the Streets
Rating: PG
Characters: John,Dean and Sam Winchester, Bayliss, Lewis, Gee, Howard,Crosetti
Spoilers: Up through season 1 of Homicide
Disclaimer: Both shows are owned by their respective creaters, who, by the way, rock. I, sadly, own nothing.
Note: Thanks to Sophie84 and Miss_yt for their mad beta skills.
Summary: In the summer of 1993, someone is killing young women on the streets of Baltimore and John Winchester is the main suspect.


There were three people in the fish-bowl, a man and two boys, when Bayliss arrived for the start of his shift. The man was dark, dark hair, dark eyes, and a dark leather jacket with the collar flipped up in the back. Of the two kids, only the youngest actually looked like his father, but the oldest wore the collar of his jacket in a way that immediately marked them all as family. They were a fairly ragged family too, all just a hair too thin in their meticulously clean Salvation Army clothes. The boys were huddled together reading a shared comic book, but every so often the older boy would glance at his father like he needed confirmation that he was doing it right. Dad, on the other hand, sat at attention and watched the room like he expected it to attack him.

“Hey,” Howard hailed him from her desk.

“Morning,” Bayliss returned as he ambled over. “Whose are they?” he asked, jerking his head towards the family in the fish-bowl.

“Oh, Lewis’s,” she answered distractedly, frowning into her empty coffee-cup like she wasn’t sure how it had gotten that way.

“The Carver killings?” Lewis had a couple of cases open but there was only one he was really working on these days. Four dead in two months and it was definitely a serial. One more and it would probably be a red ball too.

“That’s right,” Howard confirmed getting up. “And Papa Bear there” –she gestured with her mug– “he’s looking pretty good as a suspect.” She flashed him a knowing smile before heading to the break room.

Bayliss turned back to the man in surprise. Most serial killers were single men, and here this guy sat with his sons and fiddled with his wedding ring. The man’s eyes were hard and cold, but Bayliss wondered if he was really hard and cold enough to cut on those women while his boys watched TV at home. “Hu,” Bayliss murmured to himself as he joined the quest for coffee. He supposed they’d find out soon enough.

*****



Everyone had their own technique and, when he wasn’t too busy, Bayliss liked to watch. There was an art to it, an art in which the Adena Watson fiasco had proved him to be sorely lacking. Frank had it down to a science. His interrogations were friendly and intimate, seductive even, and by the end most people walked out honestly believing they’d confessed of their own free will.

Lewis was a bit more confrontational and oddly rhythmic. Angry and aggressive for a bit, then calmer and back again. Over and over until it wore someone down. Right now he was up in Winchester’s face, yelling abuse and accusations. It didn’t seem to be working. They were practically nose-to-nose and Winchester was still sitting calmly with his hands folded on the table in front of him and no expression on his face.

“This one’s got ice water in his veins,” Gee commented from where the two of them watched behind the glass. The smell of the smoke curling from the end his cigar trapped in the close confines of the room made Bayliss long for the cigarettes he’d given up.

“What do we have on him?” Bayliss asked.

“A witness placed his car at the scene of the Carlton murder,” Gee explained. “He’s got a fairly” –he paused briefly– “interesting rap sheet. Never any official charges, but he’s suspected of breaking and entering, credit card fraud, and” –he snorted– “grave desecration. Even has a nice collection of child protective services complaints.” He puffed on the cigar for a moment before adding, “From several states,” in meaningful tones.

Bayliss got the picture. Winchester was some low-life criminal nomad. He probably had lots of practice skipping town before the authorities got their act together. Well, not this time. In the box, Lewis was slamming his hand down on the table as he loomed over his suspect. “You killed those girls!” he yelled. “We know you killed them.”

Winchester finally decided to respond. His voice was a low, soft rumble. “I didn’t kill those women,” he told Lewis calmly.

Lewis pushed back off the table with a snort of disgust. “That’s right,” his voice dripped with sarcasm and disdain. “You’re as pure as the driven snow. Never hurt a soul.”

Winchester’s smile was gentle and slightly condescending. “I was in the Marines, Detective. I’ve hurt people,” His voice hardened as the rumble became menacing, “but I didn’t hurt those women.”

Gee sighed. “This is going nowhere.”

Bayliss had to agree. The two of them had been at this for an hour with nothing to show for it. “Child protective services,” he mused aloud. He thought about the older boy’s furtive glances earlier that morning. “Think his sons might know something?”

“You and Lewis get on that.” Gee nodded and turned to leave. He opened the door and paused. “Barnfather and Granger have been giving me a lot of grief over this. The faster we get this case closed the better.”

*****



They decided to question the older boy first. He balked at first when they came for him, but practically snapped to attention and marched to the box when his father told him to go. Once they had him alone, Dean Winchester looked smaller without his little brother next to him. His freckles and big green eyes that were too old for his face made his father’s stoic soldier routine impossible to replicate. Wisely, the boy didn’t even try. He just slouched insolently in his chair and went straight for bored tough guy, the perennial favorite of teenage boys everywhere.

Ten minutes of gentle cajoling and Dean was proving, in his own way, to be as tough a nut to crack as his old man. “You’re afraid,” Bayliss said soothingly, reaching across the table to lay his hand next to the boy’s. “I get that,” he reassured. “Your dad’s a scary guy. But unless you help us, we can’t stop him from hurting you.”

Dean actually seemed amused by that, the beginnings of a grin crawling up the edges of his face. “You really think my dad would hurt me?”

Bayliss shifted slightly in his uncomfortable chair. That wasn’t the response he’d anticipated. “We know–”

“You don’t know crap about my dad,” the boy interrupted. He jerked out of his artfully careless slump and glared at the detective. The look of genuine and righteous anger underneath his dusting of Tom Sawyer freckles probably would have been intimidating on a man his father’s size, and momentarily threw Bayliss as it was.

Lewis, however, was propelled into action. Up until then, he had spent the proceedings leaning against the wall by the door and watching with hooded eyes, but now he stalked forward into the kid’s personal space. He leaned down until they were eye to eye. “What we do know,” he told the boy in quiet, dangerous voice, “is that right now you” –he stopped just short of poking the kid in the chest–“are interfering with an oh-ffical poh-lice investigation.” He pulled back a little and gave the boy a sad and slightly mocking smile. “You have any idea the kind of trouble you’re in?”

The kid wasn’t the least bit cowed by the threat. In fact, he just seemed to get madder. “Oh, yeah,” he snarled as he stood up in ultimately futile attempt to get into Lewis’s face. “Well, you’re interfering with our investigation. You don’t let us out of here, the next body’s on you.” He too stopped just short of poking.

Bayliss smiled slightly at the image of Dean Winchester and his ten-year-old brother playing Hardy Boys. Lewis apparently thought it was pretty funny too. “Oh, your investigation,” he said in an amused tone that just seemed to piss off the kid even more. He gave the boy a gentle shove back into his seat and sat himself down on the edge of the table. “So, Detective,” he began, leaning down, “what, exactly, makes you think there’ll be another body?”

The angry teenager disappeared and suddenly Dean seemed to deflate inside his too large jacket until he was just a scared little boy. A scared little boy who had said too much. The kid’s eyes dropped to the table and Bayliss tried to control his excitement. They were finally getting somewhere. “Look, Dean,” he coaxed, “if you know something you need to tell us. You give us a better lead than your father...,” Bayliss trailed off meaningfully.

The boy hesitated and Lewis asked again, quietly this time. “Dean, what makes you think they’ll be another body?”

The kid worried his lower lip and looked from Lewis to Bayliss and back again. “It’s not my dad,” he blurted. “It’s...he’s...we’re investigating.” He took a deep breath. “It’s happened before. There’s always five. O’Meara, Conti, Johnston, Shultz and Miller. Richardson, Sullivan, Polaski, Jones and Dorian. There’s a pattern.”

The two detectives exchanged a look. As far as Bayliss knew, none of those names were on the board. Whatever had happened to those people, it hadn’t happened here. “Kansas plates,” Lewis murmured to himself, his eyes still on Bayliss. He turned back to the boy. “Where’d this happen?” he demanded sharply. “How long has your dad been tracking this guy?”

Bayliss was still trying to wrap his mind around the concept of Papa Winchester as wandering P.I. as opposed to petty criminal when Dean shook his head. “Not where,” he told them. “When. It’s always been Baltimore, just” –he met Bayliss’s eyes and shrugged– “a long time ago.”

*****



After lunch, he and Frank ran down a lead on one of his own cases and, by the time Bayliss made it back to his desk around 5:30, the stack of dusty case files had made it from the archives to his desk. Winchester was nowhere to be seen, probably off in the box with Lewis, but his boys were at Crosetti’s desk eating Happy Meals. The smell of the French fries Dean was inhaling made Bayliss’s mouth water as he passed. His little brother, on the other hand, seemed to have forgotten the burger congealing in his hand as he listened in rapt fascination to Crosetti’s latest theory on the assassination of Lincoln.

“–Working for the Canadians,” Crosetti was saying.

“Canadians?” The little one, Sam, frowned in puzzlement while his brother rolled his eyes and began stealing fries. “But why would they?”

“Two words, my friend,” Crosetti told him, leaning in. “Cheap cotton.” He counted the words off on his fingers.

Bayliss smiled to himself and tuned out the conversation as he studied the files in front of him. They were old, really old. The ones on the top of the stack seemed to date from the summer of 1893 and, while the folders themselves were relatively new, the papers inside were faded to yellow and smelled like damp basement. The reports were sadly lacking in useful details. There were no photographs, no coroner’s reports, and no fingerprints, just a general narrative.

It seemed that, starting in June of 1893, a serial killer had stalked the streets of Baltimore killing young women. The first was Molly O’Meara, a 23-year-old prostitute found strangled with strange, but otherwise undescribed, carvings on her face on the night of June 12th in an alley near Johns Hopkins. He struck again on the 23rd of June and the 6th and 17th of July. On July 20th, the body of Peter Miller was found hanged at his residence of 26 Mcelderry Street, along with a suicide note in which he confessed to all four of the murders. The note was not included in the files.

The second batch was from the summer of 1943. These reports had all the hallmarks of modern police work that Bayliss was used to. There had apparently been no prints to be found at the crime scenes, but there were coroner’s reports with accurate times of death and plenty of black and white photographs of dead girls with eerily familiar face carvings. According to the case files, Muriel Richardson died on June 12th, Kathleen Sullivan on June 23rd, Dacia Polaski on July 6th and Addy Jones on July 17th. They had all been strangled and all had symbols carved into their cheeks, but, as with their own Marissa Carlton, the killer had never completed the pattern on Jones’s face. A neighborhood canvas the following night turned up Marcus Dorian’s body and suicide note in—

“Son of a bitch!” A pointed cough behind him made Bayliss look to Crosetti’s desk where the Winchester boys were staring at him. The younger sat with Crosetti’s yo-yo hanging off his finger and his mouth wide open like he’d never heard swearing before.

“Problem, officer?” Dean asked with a smirk. The amusement was clear in his eyes, but his insolent teenager routine was spoiled by the fact he was playing with the plastic car from the Happy Meal along the edge of the desk.

Bayliss ignored the boy and hefted a folder. “Have you read this?” he asked Crosetti. “You or Lewis?”

“No,” Crosetti answered in his harsh smoker’s rasp. “They showed up just before you did.” He took a final drag off his cigarette before snuffing it out. “Why? What’s the matter?”

“This case.” Bayliss shook the folder in frustration. “Three different serials, each fifty years apart, each with the same m.o. And the first two perps,” –he dropped the folder on the desk– “they both lived in the same house.”

Crosetti’s eyebrows practically rose to meet his receding hairline, but neither Winchester looked surprised. “Maybe it’s the same guy,” Sam suggested innocently as he played with the yo-yo. It went up and down as he smiled up at Bayliss with dark, knowing eyes.

“The original killer’s dead,” Bayliss explained kindly. “He died a hundred years ago.”

“So?” The boy’s face was completely earnest, like he really believed it was possible.

The older brother flashed him a smile that never reached his eyes as he shrugged. “It makes sense if you believe in ghosts.” Crosetti gave a little snort at that, but Dean ignored him and held Bayliss’s gaze. “They died on the 18th. It’s” –he glanced down at his watch and then back up– “a quarter after six right now. Think you can make it in time?”

Bayliss stared hard at the boy in front of him. He was completely serious. A quick look at the little one revealed they both were. Over their heads Crosetti was chuckling. Bayliss’s hand closed into a fist on top of the stack of files. Across the squad room, behind the closed door of the box, Lewis was trying to get something out of Winchester, but he never would. Something was right there, right under Bayliss’s hand and in front of his face. It didn’t make sense, but there it was.

“Crosetti,” he said as he stood and reached for his suit jacket, “go get your partner. I’ve got a lead.”

*****



An hour later found Bayliss, Lewis, Crosetti and a couple of uniforms with vests on and guns drawn on the stoop outside of 26 Mcelderry Street. Lewis banged on the door and shouted “Open up. It’s the police.” When no answer was immediately forthcoming, he nodded at one of the sturdier looking uniforms to kick the lock in. After two good kicks, the doorjamb splintered and the door crashed open.

Lewis, as primary, was the first one in with gun raised and Bayliss and Crosetti hot on his heels. The place was eerily quiet except for a faint creaking noise. Lewis declared the hallway and stairwell clear and headed up the stairs with Crosetti and one of the uniforms while Bayliss moved to check the front parlor. There, hanging from the ceiling fan, was Mr. Steven Jumper, the current former resident of 26 Mcelderry Street. From the look of him, he had already been dead for a few hours, but there was no tipped over chair or footstool to show how he’d gotten that way.

As one of the officers began to yell for Lewis and Crosetti, Bayliss drifted over to a nearby in-table as though in a fog. The note on the table mentioned no names, not even Jumper’s, but in it he confessed to all four killings. The first three were, apparently, filthy whores who needed to be put down and marked to purify the city, but the last was a mistake. He had killed her from behind and only when he started to carve on her did he recognize her as a good girl and stop. The letter was verbatim to the one found here in 1943. Bayliss felt slightly queasy as he set it back down. Even the handwriting was the same.

*****



A few days later, Bayliss found himself wandering through the older parts of Green Mount Cemetery after the funeral for the victim of his most recent case. It was quieter here and there were no flowers on the graves, so he was surprised to find a grave where the soil was freshly turned. He leaned in close to the weatherworn and oddly scorched headstone and made out the name Peter Miller. Bayliss reared back. This was his grave? The original and, if the Winchesters were to be believed, only Carver Killer?

Bayliss stood and regarded the churned, blackened earth. If they were right, then it would never be over. Fifty, a hundred, hell, five hundred years from now, some other detective would be finding mutilated dead girls and hanged men. Bayliss took a deep, shaky breath of the oddly smoke-filled air and wondered how anyone could begin to kill a ghost.

Comments

( 71 comments — Leave a comment )
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ladyjanelly
Jan. 20th, 2008 02:46 am (UTC)
That was awesome. I don't know the homicide guys too well, but it still worked.

I love Dean's hesitance, and Sam's confidence. "So?"

Loved it.
redrikki
Jan. 20th, 2008 03:19 am (UTC)
Thanks for commenting. I'm glad you liked it. I heartily recommend becoming better acquainted withe the Homicide guys.
montisello
Jan. 20th, 2008 03:02 am (UTC)
Oh, Homicide, I have missed you.

You nailed Bayliss perfectly, and your ending was double edged with Bayliss' pessimism despite the happy ending he doesn't even know he has. Nice ghost, too. And Winchester in the fishbowl with Lewis -- that was genius.

Nice job!
redrikki
Jan. 20th, 2008 03:21 am (UTC)
I'm glad you liked the ending. That's pretty much what I was trying for, but I didn't want to whack anyone over the head with it. It's nice to hear it worked.
dannyblue
Jan. 20th, 2008 03:04 am (UTC)
Oh, my, that was good. Just excellent.

I love the outsiders point of view of the Winchesters. They really are a fascinating family, those three. And I loved how you wrote them, Dean especially. Even in his young teens, he's becoming the dangerous guy we all love. But he's still enough of a kid to play with a toy car. I loved it.

Actually, I loved the entire story.

Wonderful job.
redrikki
Jan. 20th, 2008 03:23 am (UTC)
Thanks. I was going for that mix of childish and dangerous ghost hunter for Dean and I'm glad it worked. Of course, he's still the kind of guy to play with a toy car, but, well, you get that idea.
tabaqui
Jan. 20th, 2008 03:24 am (UTC)
Ooooh, very cool. That's one 'crime show' i haven't seen much of, but i love seeing the Winchesters from the outsider POV. Very cool.
:)
redrikki
Jan. 20th, 2008 03:26 am (UTC)
Sadly, Homicide was pre-internet fanfiction. Glad you liked the story.
inlovewithnight
Jan. 20th, 2008 03:39 am (UTC)
Oh, *nice*. You really have all the Homicide stuff down cold, and this is a great pre-series bit for the Winchesters.
redrikki
Jan. 20th, 2008 03:41 am (UTC)
Thanks for saying. I was sort of on a Homicide dvd binge when I started this. I'm glad it paid off.
just_ruth
Jan. 20th, 2008 04:08 am (UTC)
What, no Munch? Nicely done! And you can't leave it there! They need to let the Winchesters salt and burn.
redrikki
Jan. 20th, 2008 04:22 am (UTC)
Sorry, no Munch. I'm glad you liked it, but, if you re-read the ending, you will note that the Winchesters did do the salt and burn.
(Deleted comment)
redrikki
Jan. 20th, 2008 04:46 am (UTC)
Thanks for commenting. I'm glad you liked it. I know what you mean about cop show crossovers. The cops always have such an amusing take on the Winchesters.
mre_quecky
Jan. 20th, 2008 01:12 pm (UTC)
Oh, Dean and Sam are just plain awesome! *squea*
redrikki
Jan. 20th, 2008 05:29 pm (UTC)
Aw. Thanks.
weesta
Jan. 20th, 2008 01:22 pm (UTC)
Great combo of Homicide and Supernatural! You had a great feel in the squad room and the Box. Excellent read!
redrikki
Jan. 20th, 2008 05:30 pm (UTC)
Thanks for saying. Glad you liked it.
labseraph
Jan. 20th, 2008 03:11 pm (UTC)
Fantastic. I've never watched Homicide before, but this worked beautifully. Great job. It's always fascinating to look at the Winchester boys and their papa from an outsider's POV.
redrikki
Jan. 20th, 2008 05:40 pm (UTC)
I'm glad you liked it. You should watch Homicide though. It is quite possibly the best cop show ever.
improperlydone
Jan. 20th, 2008 03:36 pm (UTC)
As a Supernatural and Homicide fan, I can not tell you the glee that I felt when I saw this listed in the SPN newsletter. And once I started reading, it was even better than I could have imagined.

You have the characters DOWN. I loved everyone - especially Bayliss, young Dean, and John. But you really nailed Meldrick (interfering with an oh-ffical poh-lice investigation). It just seemed so real and plausible and I truly wish that this could have been drawn out into a long, involved story. I would have paid to read it!

Excellent job!
redrikki
Jan. 20th, 2008 05:31 pm (UTC)
Thank you so much. I was a little worried about Lewis. His voice was sort of tricky to pin down, but I'm glad you liked it.
may7fic
Jan. 20th, 2008 06:46 pm (UTC)
My knowledge of 'Homicide' is pretty slim but the story still worked beautifully. Loved the outside POVs, John's calm assertiveness and both boys' portrayals. The added moment with Dean and the toy car was a lovely touch - very poignant and real.

I especially loved the ending, again very real and also so very satisfying. As a reader, I practically felt smug, knowing the truth, unlike Bayliss. That was a terrific choice on your part to leave it this way. Well done!
redrikki
Jan. 20th, 2008 07:16 pm (UTC)
Thank you for commenting. I'm glad you had that reaction to the ending as that was sort of what I was going for.
trinfaneb
Jan. 20th, 2008 06:54 pm (UTC)
Big Homicide fan, although I haven't had the chance to get into Supernatural yet. Great story!
redrikki
Jan. 20th, 2008 07:17 pm (UTC)
Well, I'm glad you liked it and while I always like to meet a fellow Homicide fan, I heartily recommend getting into Supernatural.
musesfool
Jan. 21st, 2008 01:16 am (UTC)
This is very cool.
redrikki
Jan. 21st, 2008 02:21 am (UTC)
Thanks. You have a Homicide icon. How cool is that?
time_testudinem
Jan. 21st, 2008 04:35 am (UTC)
I have probably seen more Homicide eps than Supernatural ones, but am not a regular watcher of either show. Still loved the story. I like outsider veiws of the Winchesters a lot. Thanks for sharing.
redrikki
Jan. 21st, 2008 04:05 pm (UTC)
You're welcome. I'm glad you enjoyed it.
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