Starsky came home with Hutch's bloodstained badge, the wallet and his broken pocket watch. They told him at the hospital there hadn't been any chance for Hutch. He wasn't even allowed to see his partner a last time.

Numbly, Starsky moved over to the coffee table and put the things on it. His gaze fell on a framed picture. It had been taken on Dobey's birthday. Hutch had his arm slung around Starsky's shoulders. Hutch was smiling.

Starsky grabbed the picture, and frowned at the familiar features. His hands began to tremble.

"Dammit, Hutch! What were you thinking, running after that little girl? Didn't you see the truck? I've told you a hundred times, I'm the one who watches your back. Why didn't you wait for me? Why'd you go after her? You never think about yourself. You're such a klutz! Stumbling over your own feet, running into glass doors -- but this is going too far!"

Starsky's finger traced Hutch's face in the picture.

"C'mon, tell me, it isn't true. You're still with me, aren't you? You look so happy in the picture. Hutch? Me and thee, remember? No, you aren't gone..."

Clutching the picture to his chest, Starsky cried.

The End


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