“So, how was your first day, Detective Deeks?” Alex Tracinski asked, leaning against Deeks’ newly appointed desk. Alex had made detective a couple years before him, but looked like he was maybe 20– when he managed to grow a beard.
“Not as stellar as I was hoping,” Deeks said, pulling in a sharp breath between his teeth. “And Boyle doesn’t seem to appreciate my company.”
That wasn’t exactly a surprise. Detective Francis Boyle wasn’t exactly known for his cuddly personality and some might say (Deeks for instance when he’d been told about the pairing) he was a poor choice to be placed with a rookie detective. Bates had been insistent though, bluntly telling Deeks that Boyle needed to be separated from his former partner. Apparently Deeks had drawn the exceedingly short straw.
Deeks had heard the rumors about Boyle as a beat cop. Knew he and his former partner had a bad reputation and after years as a team had suddenly been split up, though no one would say exactly why.
“Yeah, but Boyle doesn’t like anybody.”
Deeks groaned, leaning back in his chair to stretch, and then glancing up at Alex from his half-reclined position.
“Plus our suspect wouldn’t talk and then he lawyered up.” He shrugged, trying not to show how much it bothered him. Their suspect, an armed robber by the name of Billy Pfeiler, already had three arrests under his belt and didn’t seem at all bothered by his or Boyle’s threats of a lengthy prison sentence.
“Really,” Alex said with a frown, his eyebrows lowered in mild confusion. He hooked his thumb behind him in the general direction of the office lounge. “Cause I just heard Boyle bragging to Detective Steadman that he closed his case.”
Deeks sat up immediately, warning bells going off in his head.
“Are you sure?”
“Definitely. Apparently they had a bet to see who would get a confession first.” He swore under his breath at Alex’s confirmation. “You OK man?” Deeks barely felt Alex’s hand on his shoulder and nodded distractedly.
“Yeah, no, I’m good. I, uh, I gotta check something out in evidence.”
Fortunately Alex didn’t follow him and see him go in the completely opposite direction. Deeks found Billy sitting in one of the last holding cells, rocking back and forth as he sat on the single metal bench inside. One hand was clamped firmly around his left forearm and when he looked up, and Deeks noticed beads of sweat dotting his forehead.
“Get away from me,” Billy hissed, jerking back.
“What did Boyle do to you?” Deeks asked, horrified at the fear and pain in the man’s eyes.
“I said get the hell away from me!”
“Tell me what he did and I’ll help you.” It was a rash promise, especially since he didn’t have any proof that Boyle was involved. Billy made a sound that might have been a laugh if it wasn’t filled with pain and derision.
“Don’t act like you don’t know what that psycho did,” Billy bit out, peeling back the sleeve of his shirt. “He poured boiling coffee on me.”
“Oh my god,” Deeks muttered, wincing at the patch of bright red that covered most of Billy’s forearm, the skin dotted with small white blisters. “Tell me exactly what he did.”
“Told me I better confess or I’d regret it. I thought he was playing. I didn’t say anything and he left. Came back a few minutes later with this pot of coffee.” Billy shook his head. “I still thought he was just trying to con me. Then he poured some on my arm. He said I could scream all I wanted and nobody would hear me.”
“So you confessed.” Deeks heard the anger in his own voice, was surprised that it wasn’t shaking. Billy bared his teeth, once again holding his arm.
“What would you do if a cop threatened to burn your junk?”
Bile rose in his throat at the vivid image Billy created.
“I promise I will make sure this doesn’t–”
Billy didn’t let him finish, his voice low as he said, “I stopped believing in anything cops say the day they took my momma away ‘cause she couldn’t pay the bills. So save it, Detective Deeks. I don’t need or want your help.”
He looked down, effectively dismissing Deeks, who numbly walked to the elevator. Deeks had known Boyle didn’t play by the rules, but he’d never expected anything like this. It was practically torture. And all for a bet.
Boyle wasn’t at his desk, but Deeks found him a few minutes later, casually sipping from a flask in the locker room. He barely looked up when Deeks flung the door open so hard it bounced back against the wall.
“Did you pour boiling coffee on Billy Pfeiler?” he demanded. Sighing, Boyle leisurely stood up and stuffed the flask in his locker and snapped the combination lock back on.
“Oh Deeks, you always ask way too many questions,” he said, making it sound like Deeks was a precocious child.
“What were you thinking? You violated his right to an attorney, inflicted bodily harm–”
Faster than Deeks could fully register the movement, Boyle slammed him into the row of lockers behind him. He grasped Deeks’ neck, forcing his head back, and shoved the tip of his gun between his lips. For a moment, Deeks’ heart felt like it stopped completely. The metal was cold and hard against his lips and teeth, cutting slightly into the soft tissue as Boyle used the weight of his body to keep him in place as he squeezed Deeks’ throat.
Boyle grinned then, the expression harsh and cold, and Deeks wasn’t sure he’d ever been this afraid for his life. Not even when his own father aimed a shotgun at him and his mother.
“Now, if you’re a smart guy, and I think you are, you’ll forget all about this little incident,” Boyle whispered into Deeks’ ear, leaning unbearably close. The harsh scent of alcohol made his stomach turn. “You’re going to figure out real fast that this is a game just like any other job. Nobody really cares how you get results as long as you do.”
Deeks made a noise in the back of his throat, anger once again overcoming his fear little by little.
“Got it?” Boyle waited a second, like he expected Deeks to actually respond and then jerked the gun from his mouth. He tapped it against Deeks’ cheek, letting the metal dig into his skin again and then stepped back. Deeks sagged against the lockers, reaching blindly for something to hold onto. He pulled in a couple ragged breaths.
When he looked up, Boyle was casually putting his gun back in his holster.
“Billy Pfeiler has 2nd degree burns on his arm,” Deeks said hoarsely. “How are you going to explain that?” It was a dangerous challenge; he didn’t think Boyle would shoot him there, in the precinct, but now he wasn’t completely certain what the man was capable of.
“He had them when we brought him in.” Boyle shrugged, heading for the door and then turning back as he was about to open it, his eyes cold as he added. “This was a warning, Deeks. Keep your mouth shut and stay out of my way.”
Deeks sank onto the bench after Boyle left, his entire body trembling. He pressed his hands against his mouth as he replayed Boyle’s threats in his head.
“Well, I’ve never been very good at keeping my mouth shut,” he muttered to himself.
The next day he would go to Captain Bates, his direct superior, and file two official complaints against Detective Francis Boyle. He knew it would probably earn him a reputation as a troublemaker, but he’d make the same choice every time.
By Guest Contributor Em. Check out more of her work on Tumblr and fanfiction.net under her penname ejzah.
Featured image on home page from the great thewingsofnight.