dalegardener: Illustration of black and white cats with broken plant pot (Cats)
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Written for Me and Thee 1000 on LJ. Gen, 600 words, mild profanity. The guys are doing a stake-out on a dark and stormy night.


Climatically Speaking


"It was a dark and stormy night," Hutch muttered.

Starsky jerked his head towards him but didn't take his eyes from off the street, where the rain pelted down. "What?"

"I was just thinking that if anyone ever writes a novel about our lives on stakeout it should start 'it was a dark and stormy night'," Hutch declared morosely. He'd stepped in a puddle earlier getting into the Torino, and his feet were cold.

Starsky shrugged. "But the thing is, this is southern California and it ain't always a dark and stormy night. And who's gonna write a novel about us on stake-out anyway? You?"

Hutch considered the idea, and found it wanting. "Oh, I don't think so."

"Exactly," Starsk said.

"Besides," Hutch continued, "you're the writing genius who puts the local colour into our reports."

Starsky ignored this jab, and worked on teasing out his chain of thought. "And often as not, it's a warm and quiet night – climatically speakin', you understand. So what's with the dark and stormy night stuff?"

Hutch huffed out an exasperated breath. "Starsk. Have you looked out of the car windows any time recently?"

"We've got streetlights." Said streetlights turned to orange glows as a blurring flood of water cascaded down the windscreen. "So technically it ain't dark. And stormy..." If a withering glance into a man's ear could be felt, then maybe Starsky was feeling it. "Well, I guess I could give you the stormy part of it."

"And wet. Let's not forget the wet."

"Dark and stormy night," Starsky said, rolling the words over his tongue. "That's a quote, right? Snoopy. Snoopy was always typing that out on his typewriter. Always did wonder how he got a typewriter in that dog house."

He took his eyes off the street for a split second. Hutch was keeping watch, just as Starsky knew he would be, but that didn't stop Hutch from shaking his head. "Actually, the original quote is from Paul Clifford."

"Always knew that Snoopy was a well-read dog," Starsky said, and shifted himself to infinitesimally change the pressure on his ass. He loved his car, but easy chairs the seats weren't.

"You're a nut," Hutch said.

"Hey. I come out here to fight crime, not be insulted."

Hutch turned his head long enough to check what was passing up and down the street, besides the torrents of water in the gutters. "Wonder what'll get washed out to sea from the sewers tonight?"

"Nothin' good. Still, there's roses that'll bloom better for all the water."

"I thought that was all the shit in this city."

"Your feet are wet, aren't they? You always get crabby when your feet are wet."

Hutch rubbed a hand over his chin, which was getting bristly. "Yes, I always suffer a dark night of the soul when my feet are moulding in my sneakers."

Starsky grinned, the white of his teeth a brief, pale line in the dark. "Dry feet. Solves all existential crisises."

"You were doing so well, with the 'existential' and then you had to let yourself down."

"I leave the cultural stuff to you, pal. I read Peanuts, and you read Paul whatsisname and so there's balance in the world."

Hutch gazed at the sodden, sleazy street outside the shelter of the car.

"You want to bet on how long it'll take for Vanetti to show up?"

"If he shows up." Blue eyes met blue eyes for the quickest of moments and quickest of smiles. "Like you said, it's a dark and stormy night."

"Only on the outside," Hutch said, and wriggled his toes.
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Dale

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