This story is an amateur publication and does not intend to infringe upon copyrights held by any party. No reproductions without permission. Originally published in the Starsky & Hutch zine Penal Code 2, in 1990. A longtime fan generously donated digital scanning, typing and proofreading for the archive. Enjoy! Comments on this story can be sent to Flamingo who will forward them to the author.
No Place To Hide
Starsky came out of the ice cream store looking up and down the street, searching for the silver blond head he knew would reflect the strong winter sun. He spotted it and headed toward the man, watching as he brushed snow from the top of the split rail fence. Greeted by a smile and soft chuckle as he handed over one of the cones, he brushed snow away to make his own seat next to his friend.
Out of the corner of his eye he watched Hutch looking at the surroundings: the trees, the laughing people strolling along the street going in and out of the shops lining the way. Cars drove by slowly, skis tied on top while chains clanked and snow tires made traffic noisier than normal.
What do you really see partner? You sure get weird when we come up here.
Caught by an old idea, he fumbled off his glove and reached in his pocket to pull out a coin. He flipped it high in the air in front of Hutch who caught it out of reflex.
"I know what it is, what's it for?"
"Your thoughts...you get so quiet when we come up here."
"I'm just remembering, that's all...I used to spend as much time as I could with my grandfather."
"The one with the farm?"
"Yeah...all this..." gesturing around them, "brings that all back. Little shops full of home-cooked smells, quilts and potbelly stoves..." The voice trailed off. A sad and haunted face turned toward him as Hutch continued. "Everything's calm and simple...life's slower here. I don't think you'll ever understand how I long for that, Starsk. What scares me is that every time we come up here it seems more unreal. Like Disneyland."
He jumped off the fence and walked a few steps away toward the edge of the mountain. When he continued his voice was bitter. "The clouds block the view but we all know it's there. The smog and the dirt and all that pain. Things go by so fast down there you lose track. Not that you intentionally don't care...it's that you just can't keep up anymore. And pretty soon, God help us...it all starts to feel normal."
Starsky pushed off the fence and came to stand close in support. "Hutch, don't do this to yourself..." Even as he spoke he felt the futility of rehashing an age-old argument.
"I can't let go like you do. They're always there, the faces that haunt me, dead faces, one's I've killed, one's others have. Sometimes the dreams..." He lowered his head and let his voice die away. "There never seems to be an end to it."
"Look, I know this thing with Lionel and the judge has really bummed you out. I'm not deaf, dumb and blind, buddy. I hurt too. Man, that's why I suggested we hit Big Bear for the weekend; you needed it and so did I." Resting his arm across the taut shoulders, he spoke softer. "Hutch...we've got the rest of the day, let's enjoy it. Huh? A couple more runs down the slopes, a big steak dinner, then we'll head back and we can complain all day to Capt. Dobey about the stinking smell of paint in the squadroom."
Hutch responded with a genuine smile and playfully poked at Starsky with his elbow. "Last one down the run buys."
"You're on, Blondie."