Characters: Benton Fraser, Ray Kowalski.
Word Count: 373
Summary: It’s surprising how easy it is for Fraser to fool a seasoned detective like Ray.
Written For: tanaqui’s prompt ‘Due South, Fraser and Ray, Fraser doesn't really taste things; he just likes to see Ray's face when he pretends to,’ at fic_promptly.
Disclaimer: I don’t own Due South or any of the characters.
“Oh, ewww! You did not just lick that!” The expression of disgust on Ray’s face is a picture and Fraser schools his features into a look of innocent incomprehension.
“Is there a problem, Ray?”
“You… That… Gross doesn’t even…” Ray splutters, at a loss for words. “Do you have any idea the number of germs and bacteria and… Ewwww! I don’t know how you don’t make yourself sick!”
As it happens, Fraser is fully conversant with the likely quantity of harmful microbes that he could expose himself to by going around licking and otherwise tasting random substances, but he’s not a fool no matter what some people might think. He’s not about to do anything that might prove detrimental to his health, so while Ray may be convinced he just plucked something unidentified off the ground and tasted it… well, sleight of hand is one of Fraser’s lesser-known talents.
Perhaps he’s being a little unfair to Ray, but really it’s just harmless fun. Ray seems willing to believe anything, and his reactions are so entertaining that Fraser can’t resist pulling his leg. The crazy thing is that even after so long, Ray falls for the act every single time. In a way it’s flattering; long acquaintance hasn’t detracted from Fraser’s ability to fool the other man, not in the slightest.
He should probably tell Ray the truth, perhaps one day he will, but not just yet, not when Ray is staring at him with that expression of disgusted, awestruck horror mingled with helpless curiosity over what Fraser might have learned from… whatever that was. Ray stands there, shifting his weight from foot to foot, simultaneously on the verge of recoiling and wanting to lean closer, unable to make up his mind which impulse to obey. It’s not easy for Fraser to resist the desire to laugh but he must, or risk ruining everything.
“So… what is it?”
“Nothing important.” Fraser rises to his feet, as pristine as ever. “I think I’ve seen everything I need to see here.”
“I’ll take your word for it.” Ray turns on his heel, striding back along the alley towards the street, and Fraser falls into step beside him. Maybe they’ll learn something useful at the victim’s apartment.