FANDOM: Hot Fuzz
AUTHOR: annlarimer; prompts by viedma and violetisblue
WORD COUNT: 4,500-ish
SUMMARY: You know those things that happened? These aren't them. They. Oh, whatever.
WARNINGS: Spoilers. Like, a lot of spoilers. Also American spelling, death, human sacrifice, death, goat pee, death, overwrought angst, death, cheap laughs, death, cussin', and death.
NOTES: C&C is nice.
DISCLAIMER: Obviously not mine.
ARCHIVE: Please ask first
1. You've Always Been Here
"It would appear the heavens have opened."
Angel's got this bit down cold. Rain, suitcase, plant, keys, fascist, hag, fascism, bless you.
He's tried not checking in, buying a fun-cam, and going straight to the crypt for photos. But of course they've been watching him since his train arrived. (There's probably nothing the matter with his cottage at all -- he's been put in the Swan because it's easier to keep track of his comings and goings.) The NWA are always waiting for him, and his only consolation is that he gets off a few cutting insults at Frank before he's shot or stabbed. That sort of thing is normally beneath him, but it's worth it for Frank's expression of surprise.
In any case, experience says it's best to check in.
He's tried recruiting Danny that first night, and even succeeded once or twice. But it only gets them both killed, Danny first. He doesn't have the heart to try it again.
He's tried various combinations of Danny, the Andies, the Turners, Tony, Bob, and Doris. Sometimes they live. Sometimes they don't. Angel never does, nor does Danny.
He's getting closer. Last time, instead of getting Danny calmed down and hatching a plan (it had been a really good plan, and a terrible failure), he accepted Danny's car keys and drove all the way to London, practically coasting in on fumes. He even managed to get help. The Met might not want him, but he's still got a surprising amount of credibility. Easy to forget he's only been gone two weeks.
They pulled in to the Sandford town square an hour too late, in the wake of a BBC news van and any number of ambulances. The shootout between the NWA and the surviving constabulary ended in a bloodbath, and he hopes he'll be allowed to forget it once he's got this sorted.
He has to believe he can crack this, that it isn't some weird, insoluble hell.
He's sure he's getting closer. The solution lies somewhere between Sandford and London. He doesn't know how he knows, but he does. Best not to over-analyze. He's found that he makes better progress when he doesn't think so hard.
He takes Danny's keys again.
And this time, this time Angel finally gets it. The next morning finds violence done to humans, antiques, window glass, frozen peas, tiny buildings, and a jar of bolognese; he faces a truly ridiculous number of hostage situations and at least four totaled cars. But nobody dies. Not Danny. Not Frank. They even rescue the fucking swan. He's never felt such elation. This, he thinks, must be what it's like to be well and truly high. (In fact it isn't. It's much better.)
Until Tom Weaver pops up with his blunderbuss, Angel in his sights.
I am going to die, Angel thinks. He's afraid -- he's afraid every time he dies -- but he's used to it by now, and if this is what the universe wants in order to end this, fair enough. He's still won. All Weaver's going to get is a good kicking from a roomful of angry cops, and a pointlessly short life sentence.
Half a minute later, it's all gone to hell. Danny takes a bullet for him, the sea mine detonates, Angel is drowning in fire, and he's certain he's killed them all. High score. New low.
He can't do this anymore.
He's very surprised to find that he doesn't have to. Well, he would be surprised, except now that he's finally fixed this particular hitch in the universe, he no longer remembers it happening any other way.
The world carries on.
Months later, Danny puts Run, Lola, Run in the DVD player, and Angel finishes the evening in Buford Abbey casualty, sure he's having a coronary. Danny makes cheerful, sarky remarks about German cinema, looking terrified all the while. Panic attack, the doctor tells him. No idea why. He's fine. It happens. He gets 10 mg of Diazepam. Danny gets 20. Don't worry unless it happens again.
It never does.
"Danny!" Angel's last word on this earth is Danny's name, and it's going to haunt. It takes all he has to plunge the knife into Angel's chest.
Then Danny realizes that he's cocked it up. The blade's gone into Angel's stupid fucking notebook. Danny feels like an idiot. He put the damned thing in Angel's pocket himself, not half an hour before, and should have known perfectly well it was there.
Angel is staring at him in shock.
For the smallest fraction of a second, there's a voice in Danny's head that says, Stop all this. Let him live. But the knife turns in his hand, and he's stabbing upwards, under Angel's ribcage and right into his heart. It has to be done, for family and home, and the greater good. Nothing else for it.
The shock doesn't leave Angel's face, even as he dies.
"Pint of lager, please, Mary."
Afterwards, it's the usual post-mortem at the Crown. Not a celebration -- say what you will, none of them actually enjoys these jobs. (Though certain members of the NWA are a different matter entirely. There may be a culling soon.)
Danny's on his third pint in ten minutes, and it's having no effect at all.
"...thought you liked him," Doris is saying.
I did, he doesn't reply. "You saw how he was. He'd never have fit in here."
"S'pose not. Weren't hard to look at, though."
The Andies smirk at her.
Danny says nothing.
His dad walks by, and claps him on the back in passing. Danny manages a smile for him.
He stays long enough for appearances' sake, then goes home to his own cottage. Despite his efforts at the pub, he's nowhere near numb enough to sleep, or drunk enough to pass out.
Normally in these circumstances, he'd anaesthetise himself with a half-dozen films and wait for dawn, but somehow, this time, he can't face a long dark night of Hollywood mayhem. Not alone. He sits on the sofa, unmoving, in the dark.
It's to Danny's eternal credit that he doesn't actually wet himself. Though it's a near thing. "Nicholas?"
There's an odd-eared silhouette in the corner, but it's got to be a trick of the light. He's not alive. He can't be alive -- Danny made sure of that.
Alive or not, he can, apparently, be very, very angry. "Miss me?"
"Dead? Were you going to say dead? 'Cause I'm feeling really fucking dead, you faithless, lying shit!"
"You don't understand."
"Don't I? Should I be grateful you didn't actually stab me in the back?"
"Well, no, that's actually a lot harder than you know never mind."
The ghost of Nicholas Angel sputters with rage, reduced to gesturing incoherently. Well, no - at least one gesture is perfectly clear.
"I did miss you, actually," Danny says quietly.
"Really? Good! Get used to having me around, because I'm going to be haunting your pathetic existence from now on."
Angel's expression is blacker than bad toast. "I'm sorry. Did you just say, 'Why?'"
"Yeah, that was...I mean, the murdering and all, sure you're gonna be cross..."
"Yes, the fucking murdering, you shitbrained yahoo!"
"There's no call for that."
"No call for -- good Christ, if I could have two minutes' corporeality, I'd use it to beat some brains into you with...with...I can't think of anything, but it would be heavy and blunt, and if bruises were GCSEs, when I finished you'd be the fucking Oxford Dean of Literature." Nicholas makes a few more sputtering noises, and finally sits down next to Danny. Now he's right in Danny's face, but his rage has diluted into a sort of exasperated, manic earnestness. But, weirdly, there's no hatred there. Maybe Nicholas isn't capable of it. Or maybe he just can't hate Danny. "Because you were right, Danny. You are missing out."
They sit in silence for a bit. Finally Danny says, "Should I say something, or...?"
"No. You shouldn't. You're listening to me."
"Shut it. I know how it is. Your mother loved this village. She loved it so much that she died of it. You only want what she wanted. Nothing wrong with that. Except you're doing it completely fucking wrong."
"No, you're still shutting up. You need instruction, Danny. This place needs saving, and so do you. And I am going to make sure that happens, whether you like it or not."
Danny stares at him.
"You can talk now, if you don't say anything stupid."
Danny is quiet for a long moment, shrinking under Angel's baleful glare. "You...you want to watch a Jackie Chan?" It's half one. It's not like they're going to go out and save Sandford at half one.
Nicholas' expression is still fierce, but finally he says, "Yeah, why not?"
3. Wickermania! (Sponsored by Somerfield Market)
Oh, Christ, what now? Nicholas Angel wakes with what feels like a nasty hangover, but he's certain isn't. The only thing he drank last night was a glass of milk. Skimmed.
He's in bright sunlight, and it's rather more breezy than he's used to in his cottage. But there's a simple explanation for that: he's not in his cottage. He's inside a cage made of...twigs? Wickerwork. You have got to be fucking joking. On closer inspection, it's part of a much larger structure -- several cages lashed together, each with an animal occupant, forming legs, arms, and on top, a head. He's somewhere in the torso, above a rooster and below a somewhat panicky goat. What the hell? Where do these people come up with this stuff?
He's been dressed in a white linen shift.
This is not the sort of thing one expects in Callahan Park.
"Hey." Danny Butterman's face presses up against the latticework, expression that of a small child looking at petting zoo bunnies. Of course, he pretty much always looks like that.
"Danny! Thank God. Get me out of this thing." Actually, there's a bunny in there, too. And a peacock. He finds himself hoping they've left the station hedgehog unmolested. The poor thing's been through enough.
Danny looks sheepish, combing through his hair with one hand. "Eeeeyeah... Bit of a problem there."
Angel wishes for a desk to bang his head on. "Is there?"
"Yeah. You seen how bad the crops are, right? See, back in the olden days, what they used to do for a good harvest was give stuff to the god, good stuff, so he'd be happy and make apples and corn and shit and everybody would get to eat for another year. And, well, it's been a really bad year, with the floods and all."
I hate this town so much. "Oh, do go on." Sarcasm may not be the best approach in this situation, but Angel's drizzled with goat pee and has no trousers. Or pants. He's not feeling diplomatic.
"And so everybody decided, maybe we need to go back to the Old Ways." Angel could hear the capital letters. "Let's give the god something really, really good. And for a favor this big, he don't just want a barrel of beer and some chickens. He's gotta have, well, live things, well, people. Especially virgins. And with you up from London, you're sort of, like, a representative of the Crown, which gives you extra juju, and, well...you're first pick. It's a big honor, actually. Congratulations!" Danny gives him an isn't-this-great? smile.
There are so many things wrong with this that Angel doesn't know where to begin. "I'm not a virgin!" comes to mind for starters.
"Yeah. Well. See, there's being a virgin, and then there's being a Sandford virgin."
What. The. Hell. "What?" Seriously. What the fucking hell?
"No, it's okay, see, 'cause I been thinking, and..." Danny leans in closer, conspiratorial now. "I can help you with that."
I hate this town so very, very much.
Danny looks at him expectantly.
Angel sighs, resigned. "Yeah, all right."
4. One Year
"I hope these are okay."
"Yeah, they're lovely. It was nice of you to bring some for Mum, too."
The bouquet slipped from Angel's nerveless fingers and hit the grass with a pwif sound.
Turning his head was the hardest thing he'd ever done.
Danny Butterman stood there, large as life, if just a touch more insubstantial.
"Ta-da." He gave Nicholas a small wave.
Nicholas had completely lost the power of speech. And, for that matter, thought. He could see, apparently, but since what he was seeing clearly couldn't exist, obviously there was a problem somewhere.
"Christ, are you gonna faint?"
Am I? It wasn't a bad idea. Let his eyes roll up in his head, maybe crack his skull on Mrs Butterman's headstone, suddenly everything has a perfectly rational, albeit retroactive, explanation.
But he couldn't. His knees went wobbly, but he only sat down hard in the grass, hoping he didn't make a divot in Irene's grave. She had been keen on proper lawn care, by all accounts. Sorry, Mrs Butterman, it's just that I seem to have gone mad. He pushed his sunglasses up over his forehead. Maybe it was just a trick of the light. That talked. And liked flowers.
And was still there.
"Nicholas? Are you okay?" Danny crouched in front of him, reached out to pat his shoulder -- a mistake, since his fingertips went right through.
It was the strangest thing Angel had ever felt. Not cold, as one might expect. Not warm, like flesh. A butterfly-wing whisper through his arm.
He really ought to have been screaming, but instead he just sat, stunned and staring, as though he'd been hit with a very large fish.
"Sorry. Sorry. I'm not very good at...you know." Danny settled for resting his hands on his knees. "I didn't mean to frighten you. I just -- please say something. Please don't be scared. It's just me."
Angel wanted to say, You're not real. Or, You can't be here, or Where in God's name have you been? What came out was, of course, "Danny?"
Danny nodded encouragingly.
Nicholas felt his face start to crumple.
Now it was Danny's turn to be distressed. "Oh please don't, you'll get me started and we'll both get headaches."
Nicholas got himself under control, gave Danny an I'm-okay wave. It was the least he could do, considering.
Danny nodded. "Okay then."
But Danny looked puzzled. Nicholas could see gears turning in his head as he looked at his own headstone, there next to his mum's. Then at Nicholas. Then back at the stone. It was rather a nice one, still shiny and new, probably giving off what Cartwright had called "That new headstone smell" right before Angel had lobbed a bin at his head.
Danny's eyes narrowed. "What day is it?"
This only increased Danny's confusion. "I just had a birthday, remember? Fire in the station? Cake? Comedy breasts?" Then realization dawned. "Oh, fuck. Oh fuck. What year?"
"What year is it?"
Now Danny looked horrified. "Oh, shit. Oh, fucking shit. I'm so sorry. I don't know what I did."
Nicholas didn't speak. He had no idea what might come out of his mouth if he did.
"I thought...I'm not very good with time. I think I lost track. I'm so sorry. I'm really sorry. It feels like it's been a day. It feels like five minutes."
Nicholas nodded, managed something that might, if one were feeling particularly dark or generous, qualify as a smile. "I know. Same for me."
"This isn't...Oh fuck."
Nicholas saw Danny's brow crease with effort. This time he managed to take Angel's hand. It wasn't warm, or cold, or quite as solid as one might like, but it was absolutely real. Angel clung to it, feeling lost and strange -- and, somehow, feeling like himself for the first time since that terrible day last May. He wished he wasn't wearing his stupid poncey black gloves -- a risky fashion choice, but he'd found a need for armor in recent months. Now he was afraid Danny would disappear if he let go of his hand to take the damned things off.
Danny sat next to him, back against Irene's headstone ("Sorry, Mum."), Angel's hand in his. They sat that way for a long time.
"D'you know what you are? A bloody busybody!"
Tom Weaver's gun was pointed right at Angel. He was not going to miss.
We forgot Tom Weaver. We fucking forgot Tom fucking Weaver. What the fucking hellfuck fucking fuck!
Angel didn't think it was possible for him to be more frightened than he already was, until Danny Butterman leaped into view -- yes, leaped, in the time-honored firing-your-gun-whilst-jumping-through-t
Something bad was going on with his arm, his head still hurt where Andy had hit it with the bin, and he probably wasn't dead, but... "Danny?" he said weakly. If he's dead, I swear I'll fucking kill him.
"Nicholas!" Danny stumbled over, looking disheveled and scared, but bullet-free.
Oh, thank Christ. I may still kill him.
Danny knelt at Angel's side. "Fucking hell, what the fuck is wrong with you? Stop getting shot!"
Danny was trying to take his pulse, or possibly hold his hand, but too freaked out to do either properly. "Twice in one day! How the fuck am I supposed to look after you? You're like one of those motorway squirrels that keeps throwing itself under cars."
Over Danny's shoulder, Angel saw Tom Weaver clambering unsteadily to his feet. Before he could get a warning out, Danny followed his glance, and flung the metal bin right at Weaver's head.
The impact made a satisfying clong. Weaver dropped to the floor like a stone.
Angel was impressed.
"Could you help me sit up?" he asked.
"Is that a good idea?"
"Yeah. Gravity thing. With the heart. So I bleed less."
"Okay. Okay. Here we go. I got you. Here we go." Danny sort of slid in next to him, put an arm round Angel and helped him up, very gently. For a moment, there was something wrong with the Earth's gravitational field, and Angel clutched at Danny's shirt to keep from flying off into space. But it passed, and no one else seemed to notice, so he thought it best not to harp on it. Danny's support was a great improvement over the lino and wall. "All right? Lean on me. You don't seem to be spraying blood or anything. That's probably good."
"So try not to die, okay?"
"Do my best."
"Only I'd be a bit upset."
"I know. Sorry." Angel decided not to point out that Danny was in fact crying. "Thanks for saving me."
Danny scowled. "Yeah, well, if my shoelace had been tied, you wouldn't have been shot at all. Let me have a look." He peeled back the remains of Angel's shirt sleeve.
"Ta. Thanks." It hurt like hell -- he didn't care to think about how bits of his shirt might be mixed in with his flesh -- but Angel supposed it had to be done.
None of this had taken more than a few seconds, and now Angel could hear the rest of the squad. Whatever else one might think of them, they were certainly better at ducking than he was. "Fucking hell!" and "Jesus Christ!" were the clear winners in the Ought-Six expletive stakes. They emerged from their various hiding places (mostly under the long table) and gathered round.
"Give him air!"
"He's not having a baby, for fuck's sake!"
Danny ignored them, peering intently at the damaged shoulder. Finally he looked at Angel and said, "I have absolutely no idea what I'm looking at. It's just sort of...meaty."
Thanks for that, Danny. Angel tried moving his fingers. It worked, though it hurt up his whole arm, and he decided to leave it be for the moment.
"Eargawannaperissonnit." Bob Walker appeared in front of them with a pile of locker-room towels.
Danny looked at him blankly.
"Officer Walker suggests that you use the towels as pressure pads to stanch the blood," Angel said helpfully.
"Ar," Bob nodded.
"Ohhhhhh. Good idea. Thanks, Bob."
"Okay. Let's have a go." Danny tilted him forward a little, arm still holding Nicholas steady. "Okay, we're starting to stick together from the blood, and I'd just like to say, one officer to another, ew." He tucked one of the towels between them and around Angel's shoulder, then held it firmly in place.
"Not so hard!" Angel yelped. The rest of the squad winced collectively.
"Nasard," Bob translated.
"Argrafollyerbs," Bob said.
Nicholas and Danny exchanged clueless glances.
"Saxkeepayeonnem." Bob thumped Angel on the leg reassuringly, and went off to do something else.
Saxon the dog took his place, eyes on Angel.
"Good one, Twat!" Andy Cartwright, now handcuffing the semi-conscious Mr. Weaver, gave Angel a sarky thumbs-up.
"You're bleeding all over the floor, you ...bleeding bleeder." Andy Wainwright carried Weaver's blunderbuss into the evidence room.
"Fuck off!" Danny told them.
Angel made a sort of snorty, pained laugh. He must not look too bad if the Andies were abusing him.
Both Andies put a dazed Tom Weaver on his feet, and prodded him in the direction of the cells. "One of you wankers might want to call 999 for Sergeant Thickbleedy, if it's not too much bother," Andy Cartwright said.
"Three's free," said a Turner (the crankier one), and trotted ahead of them to open the door.
"What, 999 that rings in the other room?" said the other Turner.
"Ambulance 999," said Andy Wainwright.
"Oh. Right." Turner thought very hard. "Erm, somebody call it and I'll pick it up and send you on to the ambulance service, then."
"I can do that!" Tony Fisher said brightly. He pulled out his mobile and dialled.
"I should just drive you," Danny told Nicholas. "This'll take a while."
"We destroyed all the cars," Angel replied.
"Oh yeah. Heh."
A phone rang somewhere.
"Ooo! That's the phone." Turner trotted off to answer it. After a moment, they could hear his cheery, distant "Hello?"
"Hello, Tony. How are you?"
"Fine thanks. Could you put me through to the ambulance dispatch, please?"
"Can do. Hang on a tick." There was a few moments' silence. "Whoop. Wrong button. Let me try that again. Here we go."
Angel found himself rubbing his forehead hard with his left hand. Kind of like it here. What the hell was I thinking?
"Could call a taxi," Danny offered.
"No. No. I'm anxious to see how this turns out." I miss the easygoing, predictible logic of the urban crackhead.
Fisher began to pace and chat. "Hello! Sergeant, ah, Fisher, over at Sandford. Hello. How are you? Well, we were hoping you could send over an ambulance. Yes, another one. Well, we've had a sort of shooting, and -- yes, another one -- and one of our officers has been a bit wounded. Yes. No, a different one this time. Yes, it has been a busy day. Yes. Ahahaha, yes. Yes. Oh -- round the station, I should think, please. Lovely. Yes. Uh...well, 999, I suppose? Yes. Thanks very much. Well, thank you. You have a lovely day, too. Buh-bye."
Turner poked his head round the door. "Did it go through?"
"Yes," said everyone else.
"Good-o. I'm going to put the kettle on." He disappeared once more.
Bob came back, this time toting the world's largest lunchbox. "Fownnafirssadekid."
Doris took it. "It's still got the seal on. I need a scissors or something."
"Well that won't help, will it?"
"Here." The first Turner, back from lockup, produced something that looked like a hyperthyroidal Swiss Army Knife. "Leatherman."
"Ooo, I've heard of them. Didn't know we had any round these parts." Doris grinned, and hacked at the wrapper.
Nicholas made a mental note to check, at the earliest opportunity, that any scissors lurking about the station had rounded tips. He pitched his voice low and quiet, for Danny's ears alone. "Don't let go, okay?"
"Not for anything," Danny told him.
"Here!" Doris got the shrinkwrap off, and opened the kit.
The others gathered round, surveying the contents in much the same way that mountain gorillas might examine a crate of squeaky toys that had fallen from the sky. Tony pulled out the manual and began to read. "'Thank you for your purchase of the BHC 4471 Little Surgeon Institutional Model First Aid Kit...' Hey, somebody shut the door before that sea mine starts rolling around."
"Ar," Bob agreed. "Splode."
Turner pulled the evidence room door closed. It beeped happily.
Angel was starting to go a bit funny and cold, but it was probably nothing to worry about. And not entirely unwelcome, since the fire in his shoulder had burned through that first rush of adrenaline, and he was starting to feel every single shotgun pellet, and realize just how badly frightened he was, and how much the last few days had taken out of him. All this would mean even more paperwork. And just when he'd nearly got his hand back in working order.
Surprisingly, still less painful than being stabbed.
Besides, Danny had him.
Everything would be fine.
viedma and violetisblue for their prompts (" 3. Skinner makes Nicholas and Danny fuck to save Sandford. Ok, that one makes no sense, but I'd love to see it. The dirtier the better. And hurt/comfort. And a pony!" " Now wait. That's, like, every goddamn Blake's 7 slash story ever!")
crantz for the usual, and liking the phrase "you faithless shit!" Now if only he'd come up with a prompt that isn't, "Black Books! Cross it with Black Books!"
KMTV for making 1975 extra-batshit with Randall and Hopkirk(Deceased) repeats, and bentleywg for kick-starting the Oughties by hooking me up with the remake. 2025 should see production of the third version, with Bindi Irwin and Elle Fanning.