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Follow the Plot
By PaBurke
Summary: Castle critiques another author
Rating: PG
Spoilers: Season One of Castle, Season One of Pretender
Word Count: 450


“Did you read this?” Beckett asked Castle on their ‘quick’ trip to the bookstore.

Rick turned away from (yet another) adoring fan to the strategically placed display that Kate Beckett was perusing. “Ah yes, The Pretender by Jarod Clancy –obviously pseudonym. Shot to the top of the New York Times’ Best Seller List. Interesting characters despite of the fact that the main character -the narrator -is smarter than everyone else which is a writer’s no-no. His research is phenomenal. Extraordinary writing, his grammar is perfect, ‘cept when it’s even more perfect to have flaws. Which makes me wonder if the writer isn’t a genius. Left the reader hanging at the end of his book and begging for more.”

Kate blinked. “So you liked it?”

“I called the publisher in hopes of getting the guy’s real name and contact information… and maybe the first couple chapters of the next book,” Rick admitted.

“And?” Kate gave him her full attention, which often made him want to hide.

“Three strikes and I was out. The poker gang was disappointed.”

“They didn’t give you anything?”

“They didn’t have anything to give. Turns out that he was in the publisher’s office for three weeks and exposed the scandal. And then he disappeared. His name was fake –which, seriously, Jarod Clancy?- someone should have figured that out. He left the manuscript behind.”

Kate flipped the book over to check the publisher. “George Centre Publishing? That’s the place that was stealing children’s short stories from that charter school for disadvantaged children in the Bronx and selling them as work from an in-house author?”

“Yep,” Rick popped the ‘p.’

Kate looked at the book display and all the people picking up the book to purchase it. “So who gets all the royalties?”

Rick wagged his eyebrows. “So in the middle of getting the confession from the publisher’s CEO about the intellectual theft, Jarod Clancy also got him to sign an airtight agreement that all –and I mean all- of the profits from The Pretender’s sales goes to the same school that George Centre Publishing stole from.”

Kate was impressed. “He sounds interesting. Do you think he might need a muse?” She smiled at him and Rick winced knowing what was coming. “I could trade you in.”

“Funny,” Rick griped. “Very funny. Would you really want to work with a know-it-all?”

“How would that be worse than now? At least with Clancy, the know-it-all would really know it all.”

“I’m hurt,” pouted Rick.

Kate sighed dramatically. “Well, if no one can find him, I guess I’ll settle for you.” She paused. “If you get a hold of any of his work, I want to see it.”

Rick grinned. “Deal.”


Truant Mutants
By PaBurke
Summary: Other mutants at the concentration camps were influenced in other ways.
Cross: X-Men First Class / Pretender
Word Count: 200

Sydney and Jacob were blatantly ignored by both the government and the Mutant Brotherhood. They were trying to sit out of the hostilities of the brewing war. Magneto pretended they didn’t exist. Magneto pretended that the mutant twins had not been Shaw’s other subjects. The government liked that the Class 2 empaths and finders were employees of the Centre and thus their location was identified and their talents were indirectly available to them.

The Centre might have made some mutants disappear, but Magneto pretended that with Jacob as the Centre intake officer, the mutants were not abused.

Then the sixteen-year-old Pretender escaped. He was a genius shapeshifter, the ultimate covert operative and the Centre’s prize. The race was on. Everyone wanted young Jarod on their side, but he’d only be useful if he believed in the cause. The Mutant Brotherhood, the government and the Centre all had people searching for Jarod. The Centre had the distinct advantage with Sydney and Miss Parker on the scent.

But the Pretender had the biggest advantage of all: his intelligence.

No one found him.

And if Xavier’s School for Gifted Children gained a part-time (pint-sized) instructor, no one could prove that it was Jarod.


Head Games
By PaBurke
Cross: Pretender/The Mentalist
Summary: Rumors of smart, manipulating people get around
Spoilers: All of Pretender and Season One of the Mentalist
Rating: PG
Disclaimer: Not mine
Word Count: 200

When Patrick awoke from his nap, a stranger was staring at him and smiling softly. He was disarmed and he knew it and the stranger knew that Patrick knew it was intentional.

“I’m Jarod,” the man said expectantly.

Patrick refused to offer his name; the stranger already knew it.

The man smiled wider. “Very tasteful armor,” referring to Patrick’s suit.

“Why are you here?” Patrick asked.

“Miss Parker,” a multitude of emotions passed over his face at the unfamiliar name, “told me about you.”

“Childhood friend,” Patrick guessed.

Again Patrick saw emotions. He was close, but it was complicated.

“Why did she tell you about me?”

Jarod shrugged. “She knew I’d be interested.”

“Who are you?” It was an unusually artless question from Patrick, but he didn’t know.

“You’re asking the wrong question,” Jarod prompted.

“What are you?”

Jarod was grinning at him now. “No.” He stood; he had learned whatever he had come to learn from Patrick. “What are you?”

Patrick had no choice but to yell after the man walking away. “What am I?”

Jarod paused and turned. This answer was more complicated, beyond what Patrick knew of his own history. “You’re a Red File.” Then he left.



( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
Sep. 1st, 2011 08:16 pm (UTC)
Love! I especially like the last one since I just started watching the Mentalist a few weeks ago.
Sep. 1st, 2011 08:57 pm (UTC)
cool beans. I've only watched a little of Mentalist, but it begged for a Pretender crossover.
Nov. 24th, 2011 04:38 am (UTC)
never seen pretender past 1st season, so what is "red file"?
Nov. 24th, 2011 11:47 am (UTC)
Re: confused
A person with a red file has the potential to be a pretender. Angelo had the potential but Raines messed up the experiment and made him what he was instead. They ran different long-term situational experiments with different pretenders, both inside and outside of the Centre.
Nov. 24th, 2011 11:53 am (UTC)
Re: confused
There was a red file kept for several potential assests that they had their hands on at the Centre, I think 8 in all. We know the identities of four of those 8, but the others remained unknown.
( 5 comments — Leave a comment )