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As we open up my story, I want to thank you in advance for taking the time to read it. I suppose I should put up some kind of disclaimer as well, so here goes: This story is not meant to be an infringement on whatever "franchise" or "business" that still might be "Starsky and Hutch". The story is for my amusement and hopefully yours as well. I have added a couple of characters that finish out Huggy's family: his lovely wife Candita and their son, Theodore. (He prefers to go by "Lunk," though--"Teddy Bear " Brown isn't really his idea of a great name!) I have also added a charming girl by the name of Katrina Marie Bella-Starsky. (The hyphenated name may fool you; she's NOT David's wife.) David does have a wife, though: Leslie, and they have twin boys: James and Marcus--14 years old. At the start of my story we find Hutch married to his third wife, Maggie. This is my story. I'm not Stephen King, but I hope you enjoy anyhow! TEE
"A Starsky and Hutch Reunion"
SOMETHING'S AMISS WITH HUTCH
"Hey Babe--it's your old pal Ken Hutchinson taking time out of his busy life to send you yet another one of his infinitely cheery letters. I know I never pick up the phone when you call, but I just can't bear to hear the disappointment that's bound to be there. I know you're thinking "what the hell happened to the Hutch I used to know?" Well, buddy, let me tell you--I wish I knew myself. There has to be something really wrong for me to be like this, and I can't figure it out myself. I mean, I know the obvious shit: The third woman I chose to marry can't hardly stand the sight of me, but now that she's dying I stick around to hold her hand, (I AM still a gentleman, after all!)--I found out the hard way that those 'don't mix with alcohol' warnings are on anti-depressants for a reason (or I wouldn't have wrapped my car around a tree and got my ass put on 'sick leave'--Nice Chief of Police, huh? Good thing the snow got blamed.) and last, but most certainly not least--I miss you Gordo, and my life I had when I was there.
"Can you tell me why the hell I left Cali, and what the hell I'm doing here? I remember coming to Colorado to fish and be alone to clear my head awhile. Then, my Hutchinson hormones had to kick in and find a woman--I always have been a weak bastard about that. NOW, I got sucked into this Devil's Triangle in the mountains and I need to be rescued so desperately, man. It has to be bad Karma stemming from my jealousy of you and Leslie. Yeah, that's right, pal. Jealousy over how goddamned happy you and Leslie were--and I was so damn lonely, Starsk! I know it wasn't your fault, but I felt so "fifth-wheel" that I just left. It was "me and thee"...then there were three. I'm happy for you, Starsk, but that's what I'm blaming my joyful life with Maggie on--jealousy over your happy life. Serves me right, huh?
"Actually, I think I'll blame you for my marriage to Angie, too--after all, you set us up for our first date, pal.
"'She loves sports,' you said.
"'One of the guys,' you said.
"'Guess what, Hutch? I'm gay,' she says.
"One of the guys was right, Starsky. I really can't blame you though--I guess I'm just so needy that I grab the first women who come along. Then, ludicrously, I marry them. It's a crying shame I married Van before I met you--can't pin that crime on you! I'm not really blaming you, you know. It's just so much easier to try and blame someone else for this ridiculous life I've been leading lately. And, you've always let me shit on you--then you're so good to always forgive me. That's very admirable, but maybe it's time you gave up on me. Lord knows I don't want you to, but I don't want to be an embarrassment to you anymore, either. If you choose not to answer this letter I will understand that your loyalty and patience have finally run out--and I would never hold it against you, pal. I swear.
"I'm sure you're getting bored with my ramblings, so I'll come to the main point of this letter: I'm writing to thank you for all these years of unconditional friendship. Even when I get lost and have to search in the darkness--I reach out to my memories of us together. I've tried so hard to figure out what's lacking in my life, (and I'm pretty damn sure it's not another wife) and I believe it's the way we were together--as friends--as partners. We were a completed set. Anyhow, thanks again for trying to find something in me that's still worthy of your love and friendship.
David Starsky had already read Hutch's letter twice trying to find some little glimmer of hope in there. He'd sorely failed to find anything even close.
When Leslie had gone into the study to check on her husband, he'd wordlessly handed the letter to her. Now that she'd read it, she wished she hadn't. David suffered so much after one of Hutch's letters. Even now, he was lost in some sad thoughts that were causing a scowl on his handsome face. A gentle touch on his leg momentarily drew him back from his bleak deliberations.
"He's getting worse, isn't he?" It was a statement, even if Leslie had posed it as a question.
Starsky shook his head miserably and let it drop into his hands. "I don't know how to help him, Les. He's hurtin' so damn bad and I'm just sittin' here...."
Moving to comfort her husband, Leslie wrapped her arms tightly around his slumped shoulders. Gently she told her husband, "Maybe the problem is Hutch needs more than just your love...but you're always here for him. He counts on that, David."
Hoping she'd "helped" somehow, Leslie moved to the study door and smiled at her husband. "I have to finish packing for my flight to Florida."
Starsky grunted, "Yeah, don't suffer too much in the sun."
Ah, a little bit of her husband's "normal" personality was creeping in again. Leslie took full advantage of the moment. "It's your fault I have to go!"
Starsky smiled brightly, making her feel a little better about leaving for 5 days. She had so much she wanted to say, but settled on one last thing before turning to go. "David, it won't do anybody any good if you're both depressed."
He grunted and hoped Leslie took it as agreement, but it wasn't. It was way too late for him not to be depressed. Suddenly, he jumped up and followed his wife into their bedroom. "What do you think about Trini takin' the letters to that head-shrinker she knows? Maybe he could help, huh?"
Leslie laughed a little at the hope in Starsky's voice. "Maybe," she replied.
"Think she'd do it for me?" he asked, and Leslie thought it had to be one of the dumbest questions she'd ever heard.
"Our niece loves you more than life. Ask her, and I know she will help."
The old Starsky blood started pumping as he paced a little from pent-up energy and too many thoughts in his head. "Yeah. I suppose you're right," he absently answered. "Thanks, Les. I love you."
Starsky wandered aimlessly out of their bedroom as Leslie smiled at his departing back. Even when her husband had a million thoughts going, he always remembered to tell her he loved her. She had married a wonderful man eighteen years before, and never regretted one day.
Starsky's restless wandering led him to his sons' room to watch them peacefully sleeping. He went in and kissed each curly head before journeying to the kitchen. Taking a beer from the fridge he drew a long drink off of it. "God Hutch--I wish you were here to share this with me or somethin'." Starsky took another drink before holding the beer up in the air, and willing Hutch to hear him across the miles he said, "Hang in there, Buddy. The Calvary is tryin'."
Trini realized that every part of her hurt as she drove home. Her feet and shoulders hurt from playing waitress in high heels to a bunch of sleezoids at a nudie bar. Her head hurt from the lights and shitty music, and her ass hurt from being pinched and groped all night. She'd decided undercover work sucked a long time ago, but this case took the cake. Yawning noisily--as well as hugely--made her laugh at how unladylike it must've been. Oh well, what the hell--no old man to impress anyhow. As tired as she was, it wouldn't even have mattered.
The drive home and the elevator ride up to Trini's apartment seemed to take days. Daylight was beginning to creep across the sky when she finally opened her apartment door. Trini shut the door, then tiredly leaned against it to take off her dreaded high heels when she sensed someone in her apartment. Quietly removing her service revolver from its holster, she braced herself and flipped the lights on. Seeing the slider open out to her patio, and the curly-headed figure sitting there made her relax. She was glad her uncle had a key, but sometimes he scared the shit out of her.
Re-holstering her gun, she made her way out to the patio to join Starsky. Trini fell tiredly into the chair next to Starsky and conversationally said, "Hey good lookin'." She could tell he was in a terrible mood by looking at the pile of beer cans at his feet.
Looking wordlessly at Trini, he placed Hutch's latest letter in her lap.
Oh shit, it must be bad. Silently Trini read the letter then let it fall back to her lap.
"He needs to be here," she whispered.
A snort of disgust came from Trini's beloved uncle.
"After the wife dies--as he so tactfully put it."
Trini sighed heavily.
"Wow. How did the man we all knew...?" She trailed off because she knew David Starsky already felt far too much guilt for "letting" Hutch leave. "Hey," she offered, "I'll take the letters to Maxwell and ask his opinion, O.K.?"
Starsky nodded, "I was hopin' you'd offer."
She promised, "We'll do what we can, David."
Starsky patted her hand in appreciation to her offer of help, but it saddened Trini. The movement made him seem old and tired in her eyes. She knew she had to help Ken to help her uncle--and she would do anything for her uncle.
Trini decided to take a chance and voice her thoughts out loud. "You know, I have to help Hutchinson so you'll stop hurting, too."
No comment from Starsky.
She decided to press on, "And, you know I don't call you David to be disrespectful." She held up a hand when he started to say something. "I need to tell you this all at once. You know how I am about mushy stuff."
Starsky smiled and let her continue.
"I only call you David because I can't call you 'dad'." Trini touched her chest lightly. "You're so much more than an uncle in here. And you've been more father to me then Nicky ever even tried to be." Trini had to swallow hard before she could go on. "And I remember these two heroes who saved me once upon a time."
He smiled at that--"heroes" she'd called them.
"I remember my Momma takin' me to Nicky's house, and I didn't even know him. They yelled for a long time before Momma came in and told me I had to stay there 'cuz she was tired of havin' a kid to try and take care of. We were barely surviving as it was--I guess drugs were more important to her than a kid and food, huh? You know, I still don't know where she's buried or when she died." A single tear escaped before Trini could finish.
Starsky was looking close to tears himself, but he didn't want to stop Trini. She had something very important to say and he wanted to hear it all.
Composed, she continued, "Well, all Nicky said was 'cryin' ain't gonna help' and, was I hungry or not."
Starsky nodded--Nicky all the way.
"I laid in that room and cried all day, then I must've fallen asleep. I woke up when you and Ken came up to my room. I remember the door opening and seeing your smile--I didn't know you, but I wasn't scared. You came and held me, and let me cry. When I was done, I looked up and there was Ken with food. He was smiling and talking to me like I was a skittish colt, but I wasn't afraid of him either." Trini grabbed Starsky's larger hand in hers and kissed it before she finished her story. "You two thought I was asleep when you were talking about my future--Nicky didn't even bother to discuss his newly-found daughter's care with you guys. Kids know when they're not wanted, David. Anyhow, you two made a plan to send me to that great private school--get me out of the city--remember?"
This time he answered, "Like it was yesterday."
"Well, all I know is when you were worried about how to pay the tuition, Ken never hesitated--not even for a second! He was on that phone cashing in savings bonds and stocks his rich parents had left him to help me. And you, of course, but he didn't even know me. " Rising to go to bed, Trini made one last comment. "You guys saved my life and gave me a line of credit I'd like to try and repay." Kissing her uncle, she then rose and staggered off to bed.
The next night found Trini at the Starsky house for dinner. She had grown tired of television with Leslie and the boys, so she wandered off to find her uncle. He was in his study rubbing his head madly in frustration, a pile of crumpled letters he'd started, then discarded, beside him.
Starsky had already been in there for an hour trying to write a letter back to Hutch. He just wished the asshole would pick up a phone and call--he hated letters.
Trini placed a tentative hand on her uncle's arm and offered, "Can I do anything?"
Frustrated, Starsky pushed the letter he was working on at Trini, "Yeah. Fix this mess," he said tiredly. "Make it 'cheery' like the doc said--make it convince him to come here--make it..." he broke off from his rush off words and turned away from Trini. Starsky was fighting down pain and it was killing her. "...Make it make Hutch all better," he finished.
Gently taking the pen from her uncle, Trini tried to sound hopeful. "We will." She placed a loving hand on Starsky to get his attention. When he looked at Trini she continued, "Together, and with Kens' help, we will." With a silent prayer to the powers that be, she hoped she was right--for everyone's sake.
"To my good friend, Hutch--
"Leslie and the boys send their love and say 'hi'. We are all very excited to be seeing you again, and I hope it's soon. I know you've had a rough time and all, but I also know you're a strong guy Hutch. You've beat tougher things than this shit you're going through now, pal. Besides, I have a case I'll need your help on when you get here.
"I need your backup, and your brains to help sort this one out. Oh yeah, your Spanish will come in handy, too. It's that case Trini's been working on for the past 8 months--remember the one I wrote you about? The Mexican kids coming up missing, only to reappear in the child pornography district--anyhow, I need you on this one.
"Trini says 'Hello, Ken.' She also said she wants you on the case, too. It seems you and I are the only two she trusts when this case blows open. Pretty impressive, huh?
"We are great together, Hutch. I can't blame her for wanting two of the greatest cops who ever lived as backup.
"Trini hit me, so I guess I better quit braggin'. Come as soon as you can, I'm tired of talkin' by mail.
Starsky studied the letter and commented, "O.K., we told him (1--everyone loves him and can't wait to see him, (2--we admitted life's been bad, but it'll get better (3--I practically begged him for his help..." hesitation..."did we forget anything?"
"Mail it, Dave." Trini handed her uncle an envelope. "Get the big lug here so we can really work on him."
Handing back the envelope he told Trini, "You do the honors. You're the one's been helpin' me with all these letters. Let's just hope this one is the 'cope de grace' and gets his dumb ass here."
"That's 'coup', you idiot," she teased.
Starsky laughed heartily. "Always correctin' me...just like Hutch."
Rolling her eyes she took the letter and headed to the mailbox. She had to get these two together again so she was out of the middle. They were weird. Loveable, but definitely weird.
"Damn, I was glad you decided to write back! I was sweatin' it thinking you'd had enough Hutchinson bullshit to last you a lifetime--but, no. You came back for more as usual. Damn, I love 'ya, Starsk...thanks again, man.
"The 4th of July was so depressing here, and all I could think of was the fun we used to have at the beach. Remember how we'd go there & watch the fireworks display? Me and thee--a cooler of beer--and our girls of the hour. Those were great times, man.
"This year found me sitting in a dark hospital room watching the display out Maggie's window. She seemed to enjoy the fireworks, but it's so hard to tell her feelings or emotions lately. Chemo and Morphine (Jesus, I hate that goddamned drug!) have a tendency to make people odd and distant. I'm sure you understand what I mean--about the Morphine anyhow.
"I do have a little interesting news, though! Maggie actually thanked me for being here with her. I said, "Well, till death do we part," and she actually laughed! It was a pleasant laugh, too, not the nasty one she'd throw in my face as she left on 'dates'.
"She also decided to add me to her will--with the step-monster's approval! So I suppose I will be financially (albeit, morbidly) set for awhile when I leave here.
"I know you're probably already thinking 'be still my heart', but there's more! Maggie apologized, yes apologized, for the affairs--all of them--then she said she was sorry for 'disgracing my manliness'. Yes, she said those exact words. What fancy words for a woman who felt the entire state needed to know the old 'Hutchinson rod' wasn't quite up to par. I don't hold any ill will, but I also don't want to be here anymore. Is that horrible of me, Starsk? I just want to come home and see you guys again.
"Jesus, it seems like we've been cops forever, but I'm not so sure I'm very good at it anymore. Still, if you want my help with Trini's case, I'll gladly be there for you guys.
"I'm gonna have a lot of leave and vacation time to kill until I find a purpose--don't get tired of havin' me around O.K.? Guess maybe there's a little life in me yet, huh, pal? Take care of that great family of yours. Maybe I'll call soon.
"Why always a fucking letter?" Starsky growled, but immediately looked apologetic for his language.
Trini either didn't notice or didn't care about his colorful use of the English language. "Safer," she answered her uncle. "He has time in between letters--no direct questions and answers--that kind of bullshit." Trini was trying to read Hutch's letter and talk to Starsky at the same time--it wasn't really working.
Starsky sighed, "Well, he's sounding a little better, but not quite the brilliant and arrogant wise-ass I knew. But, I have to take any glimmer of hope, huh?" he added quietly when he noticed Trini was still trying to read.
She read quickly to the end, then looked up puzzled. "The Hutchinson rod?"
Starsky was hesitant to reply. "Yeah, his uh...." He didn't finish and instead blushed as manly as a guy could.
Trini quickly added, "I know what he's talking about." Relief crossed Starsky's face."...But why? The anti-depressants?"
Starsky shrugged--still obviously uneasy discussing anything close to sex with his niece. "The doc wasn't sure--the meds--too much alcohol lately--not enough love in his life--maybe a combination."
Trini wrinkled her brow. "How sad. He's not that old."
The mention of age made Starsky sit up straighter in his chair, and he appeared a little ruffled. "He's my age," he fairly whined.
Trini had to bite her lip to keep from smiling. Men and their vanity! "Exactly--not that old."
"Oh," was all she got in reply.
Trini grabbed some paper and asked," You ready to fire off the latest Starsky happy-time letter? Let's help our boy get his life back together." She reached across Starsky's desk for a pen and quietly added, "And then we'll work on the rod problem." For the second time that day, Trini got another rare blush.
Trini had rented movies to occupy another dateless night, but they were less than she'd hoped for, and she'd gone to bed. The ringing of the telephone at 4 a.m. could only be one person since she wasn't on call. "Hey," she answered the phone--knowing it was Starsky.
"Maggie died an hour ago."
She sat up in bed--now fully alert. "He O.K.?"
Starsky seemed more at ease discussing Hutch then he had for a long time. "Actually, yeah. He was back to Hutch for a couple of minutes there, but then he got all melon..." he'd forgotten that damn word Hutch used to use.
"Melancholy," Trini supplied absently.
"Yeah, thanks. Said he felt sad but just 'cuz she'd suffered so long, and 'cuz another life was cut short. He seemed relieved it was all over, but I guess he felt guilty about feeling relieved." He chuckled. "Just like Hutch to feel guilty for not feelin' guilty. Anyhow, he'll be here soon. Gotta 'take care of business' he said--funeral and stuff I...."
Trini interrupted. "He's staying here," she blurted out.
Starsky was caught off guard. "Huh?"
Trini teased him. "Eloquent, David."
He snorted in her ear as a reply.
"He's not staying in a hotel, and you guys don't have room for him," she reasoned.
"Yeah...yeah, you're right."
"Of course I am."
"He can sleep there--I take him to work with me--he's with somebody all the time! Great plan, Jewel. Thanks."
She smiled at his use of the nickname he'd given her as a child. He'd told her "Treasure" was just too long.
"Welcome," she yawned.
"Oh yeah, sorry to wake you. Night Trini."
"Goodnight David." With that he had hung up, and was probably already asleep again by now. The man was irritating in that sense--he could fall asleep in a nanosecond. Trini couldn't. She sat up for awhile wondering if she'd made a mistake demanding Ken stayed with her. Trini was sure David would feel guilty about 'making' Hutchinson sleep alone somewhere, so she'd tried to take some of his burden away. But she hadn't seen Ken Hutchinson in years-what if they couldn't stand each other now? Maybe he'd gone off the deep end like "Hawkeye" on "M.A.S.H." and he was too far out there to help--or maybe, he'd just sit on her couch all day in a t-shirt and boxer shorts being flatulent. Her bizarre thoughts seemed weird--even to her--and she laughed out loud.
She reasoned with herself: For God's sake Trini, you two always got along fine--Hawkeye was never as "in control" as Ken could be--and lastly, the thought of Ken and his uptight little ass even considering farting...well, that one made her laugh out loud. That was too comic to even contemplate. On that note, Trini rolled over to try and fall back asleep.