Steele Framed

A man with curly hair and a mustache, wearing white pants and an overcoat, is walking through a tunnel. Near the other side, he comes to a pay phone and dials a number. "Los Angeles. I'd like the number for Remington Steele Investigations."


In Steele's office, Laura laughs as she pops the cork on a bottle of champagne. As it flies across the room, Steele is heard, saying, "Ooh, boy!"

"Does it every time," Laura says, approaching him as he examines two champagne glasses. "Here we go."

"Um hmm," he responds as she pours the wine. She takes her glass. "An excellent year," he says.

"An interesting year," Laura responds.

"I was referring to the champagne," he tells her.

"And not to the anniversary of your appearance in our lives?"

"Oh. Has it been a year already?"

"Doesn't seem like it, does it?"

"Hardly. But tell me, is that the reason for the surprise you mentioned this evening?" he asks, sitting on the edge of the desk.

Laura moves closer. "Well, I think you'll find it stimulating. Maybe even a whole new experience." She drinks her champagne.

"I've always had a soft spot for stimulation. My horizons are yours to expand."

Laura puts down her glass. "I'll just get Mildred. She's barely been able to contain her excitement." She moves off, leaving a concerned Steele on the desk.

"Mildred, ey?" he says outloud, following Laura.

In the reception area, Mildred is practically drooling over a new computer system. "OOH, Mr. Steele. If I had this rig at the IRS, the revenues I would have wrenched loose. I mean, the ram and the rom capacity it has. And the power-" Steele bends to examine the machine, totally lost, as Laura smiles. "Mark my words. After tonight's computer class, the world is at our microchips."

Steele straightens to ask Laura, "Computer class?"

"Different, stimulating. A new experience," Laura points out. He nods, disappointed.

Mildred grabs her coat and purse. "And, if I get just a little instructions, I'm sure that I can clear up your checking account problem."

"What's wrong with my checking account?" he asks.

"Oh, it's probably just a glitch in the statement readout. Shall we?" she asks.

Laura puts on her sweater, and turns to find Steele looking around the room, as if trying to find an excuse. "You're not coming."

"It's not that I don't find computer class positively electrifying -" Mildred looks disappointed now. "But, umm- I promised to visit a friend. Been taken ill," he explains. Laura nods.

"Well, Fred's taking Mildred and me in the limo, but you're welcome to use my car if you like-" She tosses him the keys, and he catches them. "I hope your friend recovers soon."

He smiles, aware that he hasn't fooled either of them. "I suspect that he's feeling better already. Night, ladies!" he calls as they leave. Once they are gone, he sits at the computer, uses the screen to straighten his tie. "Oh, well," he muses. "I suppose you're not a total loss." The telephone rings, and he picks it up. "Steele here."

The man at the payphone says, "Mr. Steele. Thank God I found you." There's a hint of desparation in his voice. "My name is Henry Spellman. You don't know me. And I don't have time to explain- but I must see you. Please. There's no time. I'm in danger. I'll be at the Covington Inn on Highway 5, two miles past the river road turn off. Help me."

"Mr. Spellman," Steele begins, but the man hangs up.

He puts on a white cap and smiles.

Steele takes Laura's Rabbit to the meeting, and as he gets to the end of the tunnel through which Mr. Spellman passed to get to the pay phone, a man appears from nowhere, and Steele hits him, cracking the windsheild of the car. Stunned, Steele gets out. "Oh my God," he says. Going to the man, he turns him over. "Mister? Hey, mister-" He tries to revive the man, muttering to himself, then realizes he's not breathing and is about to start CPR when he hears the tinkling sound of an ice cream truck.

The driver, the same man who called Steele, gets out. "What happened?" he asks.

"One, two three four five six-There's been an accident. The man's hurt. Find a phone, get an ambulance, please will you?"

"Did you hit him?"

"Did you hear what I said?!" Steele yells. "Dammit! There's been an accident! Find a phone, please!" The driver turns back to his car. Steele is still trying. He takes off his jacket. "Come on, stay with me. Please." The driver moves away, smiling.


Later, in the midst of police cars and an ambulance, Laura finds Steele, sitting thoughtfully. "I got a message in class. Are you alright?" she asks.

"Oh, yeah, terrific," he says as a flashbulb goes off in his face. "I never saw him, Laura. He was just there, from nowhere." He looks beat. His jacket is still off, his tie is loosened, he's got three styrofoam cups in his hand and drinks out of them throughout the conversation.

"But up here? When I left you at the office -" The photographer is still trying to get some good shots.

"A man called, said his name was Spellman. Henry Spellman," he says and turns to the photographer. "Excuse me, please." When the man doesn't move immediately, he says, "Excuse me!" in a more forceful tone. The man backs off. "Said his name was Spellman, Henry Spellman. Said he wanted to see me right away. Gave me an address up here someplace."

"You know this Spellman?" she asks.

"He just sounded so desparate. And of course, my being the intrepid detective-"

A policeman comes up. "Sorry to bother you again, Mr. Steele, but- we can't seem to locate that ice cream vendor guy-"

"Ice cream vendor?" Laura asks.

Steele looks around the area. "Yes, he was the first one to stop. I sent him to call- He had one of those vans with the jingles going-"

"That's all right. A lot of folks leave the scene of an accident. Don't want to get involved. I'll just put it in the report." He turns to go.

"Excuse me, officer - " The man turns. "The man I- uh, the man I hit. Do you know his name?"

The officer looks at his clipboard. "Henry Spellman."

Steele is shocked and stunned. "Oh dear God." Laura rubs his shoulder.


Entering Steele's apartment, Laura talks while Steele goes over to the couch, exhausted. "You should have seen the way Mildred went after that computer keyboard tonight. I really think she has a rapport with those machines."

"A man calls, says he needs help, and the next thing I know, the same man's bouncing off the hood of my car." He turns to face her. "Is there any sense in that at all?"

"We'll see what we can find out about it in the morning," she tells him. "Could be he was running from something when -"

"When I killed him," Steele finishes. "I've never killed a man before. Don't think I much care for the feeling." He's past exhausted.

Laura comes closer. "I'll stay with you tonight, if you like." Steele smiles at her. "I mean, I was the dusk til dawn pinocle champion three years running at summer camp." She puts her hand on his shoulder. "A buck a hand? Whaddaya say?"

"I say that it's a good idea that you invented me, because if it were the other way round, I don't think I could dream up anyone quite like you. But it's all right. I'm better off by myself. Go on home." She kisses him on the cheek."

"I'll keep the phone by my bed - if you- need to talk." He nods.

"Sure." He watches her go..

"And- try to remember it was an accident," she reminds him.

He lifts his hand in acknowledgement, nodding. Alone, he sits on the coffee table, hands over his face. "It was an accident," he says. He slowly gets up and heads for the bedroom turning off the light on his way. As he enters the room, the telephone rings, and he goes back to answer it. "Yes?"

A woman is standing in a bed room. "Mr. Steele?"


"This is Julia Spellman." She sounds upset, as if she's been crying. "Henry's wife."

"His wife?"

"The police just left. They explained to me about the accident- I wanted you to know that- I don't hold you to blame."

"Oh, Mrs. Spellman, I- I- I don't know what to say- But- when your husband called me, he said he was in trouble. Do you think he *was* in trouble?"

"I think so, but right now, I can't--"

"Of course, of course. I understand."

"They want me to come to the morgue tomorrow to claim the --" She sits on the bed. "To get Henry. Maybe if you could - meet me there, we could talk then. Ten o'clock?"

"I'll be there," he assured her. "I'll be there. Mrs. Spellman, I am so sorry-"

The next morning, Laura and Steele enter the coroner's room. Laura asks - "Are you sure you're ready for this?"

He looks at something across the room. "She asked me to come. I couldn't refuse even if I wanted to." They start across, but the coroner's assistant approaches.

"Are you here for the Spellman, too?"

"Sort of," Laura tells him.

"Then maybe you know. Exactly where did the accident take place?"

"On highway 5, just north of river road, I think." Steele's attention is still fixed on something across the room.

"Hmm," the man says. "Shouldn't be that cold up there." He moves off, and Laura looks after him, curiously. Steele indicates that they should go on, and she nods.

Steele has been watching the woman who called him the night before, clad in black, crying into a handkerchief over the body. She puts the sheet back over him. "Mrs. Spellman. I'm- Remington Steele-"

She looks up at him, accusation in her voice as she says, "How dare you come here. How dare you."
"Mrs. Spellman-" Steele is confused, at a loss for words.

"You killed him. But Henry told me all about you. I know what you've done. I know!"

"I do understand how you feel, please, believe me -"

The coroner's assiatant overhears the conversation. "You'll get yours, Steele. Just like Henry. Just like McIntyre."

"Who's McIntyre?" he asks. "Mrs. Spellman, please listen to me-" He moves closer.

Julia backs away. "No. Get away from me."

"Just for two seconds," Steele begs.

"You murderer," she accuses again. Laura approaches Steele.

"Please," he says again.

"You butcher. No! Leave me alone!"

Laura takes his arms and pulls him away. "Let's go. Let's go." On the way out, they pass another man who's entered the room unnoticed. "Where did all that come from?" Laura wonders.
'Julia Spellman' enters the same motel room from which she called Steele the previous night. She throws her handbag and hat on the bed and then sits down, takes off her gloves and then removes her wig to reveal she is in fact a man. The man, with two wig tapes strategically placed and shaped like small devil's horns, starts to laugh.


Later, in Steele's office, the man, whose name is James Jarvis, who was standing in the coroner's room is inspecting the photo's on the wall with his pipe in hand. Steele is surprised to find him there when he walks into his office.
Jarvis turns around, "Boy, these are *really* something. I tell you the best picture I ever got was me and Tommy LaSorta saying, "Go for the fences Jimmy"." Jarvis notices Steele looking less than impressed. He tucks his pipe into his jacket. "Listen, I hope you don't mind *my* being in here, it's just that I have been such a *big* fan of yours Mr Steele."
"Oh, no problem Mr ahh..."
"Oh, Jarvis, Detective Jarvis," he introduces himself, shaking Remington's hand as Laura walks into the office. "I've got my I D right here." He reaches into his jacket.
Laura asks, "What can we do for you detective?"

"You must be Miss Holt. I can't tell you what a hoot this is, meeting the both of you. The fact of the matter is that traffic accidents aren't even in my department, but when that report came in and I saw the name 'Steele' on there-"

"Yes," Steele says. "You just couldn't help yourself."

"I guess I couldn't," he admits, then starts looking in his pockets again as Steele moves away toward the desk. He takes a notebook out of his pocket. "Boy. I hope I didn't leave my badge in the soapdish again." He has a boyish charm that would tend to put one off one's guard.

"You have some questions, detective?"

"Well, it's just a few little things. According to the report, Mr. Steele, you said that Henry Spellman called you and asked to meet you at the Covington Inn? Did you take that call, Miss Holt?"

"No. No, Mildred and I had already left for the evening."

"Right." He looks back at Steele. "So then, you spoke with him, and then you left for the Covington Inn?" Steele is watching the man closely, not taken in at all by the facade.

"That's correct."

"Well, I guess it just must have slipped your mind, then, when he called."

"What's that?" Steele asks, loosening his tie.

"The Covington Inn? It burnt down six weeks ago. Big front page headlines, remember?"

Laura looks at Steele. "He's right." Steele is shaken.

"Listen, I've imposed on your time long enough.-" he starts toward the door.

"Just a second, there, Detective Jarvis -" Steele says, standing up, as he unfastens his shirt cuff to roll it back.

Jarvis takes his hand. "Mr. Steele, I want to thank you. I'll take care of everything from here. It's all paperwork, anyway. And really, thank you. I am never, ever going to forget meeting you like this," he says, backing toward the door as Laura follows him.

"I'm sure that goes for both of us," Steele says.

At the door, Laura asks, "Tell me, detective, if accident reports aren't your normal area, what department *do* you work for?"

Jarvis hits himself in the chest as though frustrated with his lack of concentration. "I'm sorry. Homicide. Bye bye, now." He salutes and then leaves.

Laura turns to Steele with a sick expression, mouthing, "Homicide?" to Steele as he scowls.


Laura and Steele are in an old office building. "According to Mildred," Laura says, "Spellman had some kind of business down here."

Steele reads the names on the doors. "Newiki Mail Order."


"Bishop's All Girl Orchestra?"

"Spellman. Custom Hatters For Heads of Distinction."

Steele looks uncertain. "Shall we?" He opens the door. "Hello?" he calls. The cluttered office is filled with various hats.


Steele closes the door. "Shall we- have a little look around?" he suggests.

Laura goes to the file cabinet and puts on a hat before going through it, while Steele browses through the desk. She finds a file with his name on it, and upon looking inside, glances suspiciously in his direction.

Meanwhile, Steele has found Spellman's appointment book. The words "Meeting with Remington Steele- Steele's office, is there- more than once. He picks up the book. "This is ludicrous. Absolutely ludicrous. The door opens, and Steele hides the book behind him, Laura removes the hat, and hides the file in the same way as Steele.

An old man is there, carrying a spray of lilies. "Oh. Take all the time you like," he tells them. "I was just down the hall, putting on some tea-" He moves closer to Laura. "Perhaps the lady would like one of these," he says, pulling a lily out of the spray.

"Oh, no, thank you, really, I-" she takes it anyway.

"Please. I insist." She looks at Steele. "What sort of hat was it that you were looking for, Mr-"

"Pearson. Benjamin Pearson. And my associate, Miss Holtstein. Mutual Fidelity Insurance Company. It's Mr. Spellman's life insurance that brought us, acutally."

"Yes," Laura agrees. "You see, we need some additional information in order to approve final payment."

"Life insurance?" the old man repeats. "Final payment? I don't understand. Mr. Spellman isn't -You're not suggesting-"

Laura places a hand on his shoulder. "I'm afraid Mr. Spellman died last night as the result of an accident."

"Are you certain it was an accident?" he asks.

"Absolutely," Steele says. "Why?"

"Tell me, this accident. A man named Steele wasn't involved, was he?"

Steele is silent, scowling again. Laura frowns. "Yes. He was."

The man is shaken. "Oh, no." Steele helps him to a chair. "Oh, god, no."

"Sit down, sir. Sit down."

"I warned him not to push Steele. There are other ways to get money like that. I warned him that this could happen."

"What?" Steele asks. "What would happen? What money? What did he tell you was going on with Mr. Steele?" The tea kettle's whistle sounded, and the old man rose.

"No." He moved away. "I've said too much already -"

"It's important that we have all the facts," Laura said.

"I don't know anything. Please leave me alone. My tea. I have to get my tea." He takes off down the hall.

"Just a second, mister, please-!" Laura pulls him back. "Oh, boy." She shows him the file, he shows her the calendar. In the hallway, he tells her, "According to this, I've had four meetings with the ubiquitous Mr. Spellman in the last two weeks."

Laura looks at him. "But that's not possible. Is it?"

He's hurt by her distrust, and goes on ahead. Behind them, the old man comes to the corner, then waits for a thoughtful Laura to follow Steele. He then goes back to the office and sits down at the desk. He dials the phone. "Detective Jarvis, please. Yes, detective. I found that appointment book of Mr. Spellman's that you were asking about. . . " He pulls another one from the desk. "In fact, I have it right here in front of me." He opens it. "Mr. Steele, you say?" He starts removing his makeup. "Well, I don't know. Let's have a look, shall we?"


At the office Mildred is at the computer typing and clapping her hands pleased with herself as she starts printing In the reception area Laura reads the file she lifted from Spellman's office.
"I finally cracked it the boss' checking account snafu," says a delighted Mildred.
"That's great Mildred," says Laura distractedly. From the file she pulls out a newspaper cutting from the 'Los Angeles Tribune' newspaper with the headline, " MacIntyre Slain".

"McIntyre? That's the name Mrs. Spellman mentioned." She closes the file and turns to Mildred. "What about those checking accounts, Mildred?"

Mildred sits down. "Oh, I don't really think I should say, Miss H-"

"Mildred, he's the boss, but I'm in charge, remember?"

"Oh, right. Okay, see for yourself." She punches a button on the computer, and Laura sits on the desk to look at the display. "With all those checks to the Spellman Hat Company, you think we'd see our Cheif in a hat every once in awhile, wouldn't you?" Laura nods.

"Thanks, Mildred. And please keep checking those numbers on Spellman's phone bill for us. Maybe one of them will open a door."

Mildred takes her hand. "Miss Holt, I - I know I'm kinda new kid on the block, here, but with all this - I- well, you wanna tell me what's going on?"

"No, Mildred. Not yet." She walks back to Steele's office.

He's on the phone. "Right now, I need to ask about our match last Thursday."

The man other other end is a fencing instructor. "I remember that afternoon," he said. "Becasue just after you left, somebody called to apologize for not showing up. I think his name was Spellman or something like that." Steele is upset. "Then he said something about the McIntyre account. I'm not even sure now." Realizing that Steele hasn't spoken, he asks, "Steele? Steele? Are you still there?"

"Yes. Yes, Claus, thank you, bye." He hangs up.

Claus hangs up as well, and turns as Jarvis stabs his finger with an epee. "Ow. Hey, these things can really be dangerous without those little rubber tips." He hands it to Claus. "Here. I guess I got the point. Can you and I talk for a minute?"

Steele turns as Laura comes into the office. "I don't like this, Laura. It's bad enough that I accidently kill a stranger, but now I'm scratching for alibis that won't hold." She looks down at the file in her hand. "I'm acutally starting to think that I'm in real trouble."

"Yes," she agrees. "I think we are. Sit down."

He doesn't hear her. He's too busy pacing. "And then there's this detective Jarvis, keeps on popping up-"

"*Please* sit down," she says again, with more force. She holds up the file. "I need to show you something."

"Allright," he agrees, sitting. "All right. I'm down."

"I found this file in Spellman's office with your name on it." She shows him the file name. "It contains the following: copies of phone bills, showing calls from Spellman's place to here and your apartment." She gives them to Steele, who looks at them. "I checked them against your bills, you returned all those calls."

"I never recieved or made one of these calls, Laura."

"The phone company does not agree. There's also these. Clippings about someone named McIntyre." She gives him the clippings. The headline reads, Infamous Jewel Theif Found Dead. "The police believe he and an accomplice knocked over a jewelry exchange, getting away with something in excess of a hundred thousand dollars worth of gems. Sold hot to a fence, they'd be worth half that." Steele is watching her closely. "As the police started to move in, McIntyre was killed. Neither his accomplice- nor the jewels were ever found."

Steele comes to his feet. "Just what are you telling me?"

"Only what Detective Jarvis will a few days from now if we've got have that much time."


"*Please* listen! In addition, Mildred tells me our new computer reveals a second checking account in your name, containing about fifty thousand dollars. The bulk of which has been siphoned into Spellman's hat company in the last few months. If I were the police, I would say that you were McIntyre's missing accomplice-that most likely you murdered him. Spellman somehow found out and began blackmailing you for the jewel money. Maybe his demands got too rich - so you set up a secret meeting and then killed him too, trying to make it look like an accident." She's nearly in tears as she speaks, and Steele is stunned, angry, hurt by her accusations.

"But you're not the police, are you, Laura?"

"No! I'm not. But when I met you, you were after the jewels I was hired to protect."

"So?" he asks, coming closer.

"So, McIntyre was killed exactly ten days before you stepped into my life and became Remington Steele."

Steele throws the file across the room. "I don't give a damn what they say? Do you believe I'm clean? Or is Jarvis in the room as we speak right now, ey?!

"There's an awful lot to swallow here, but *yes*, I believe you're clean. But it doesn't change what's happening!"

"I'm being framed like a two dollar watercolour. *That's* what happening!"

"By who?!" she asks, still nearly in tears. "By someone from your mysterious past? Don't you see? It's Acupulco all over again! Everytime I turn around, there's another cop still looking for you! Another old score waiting to be settled!"

"All right, all right. So I put a few noses out of joint in my time, stepped on a few toes, made a few enemies, but I can't think of *anyone* who I've crossed so badly that they'd go through all of this to put my head on a platter!"

"Well you'd better go back and look again," Laura tells him. "Because as good as we are, and we *are* good, until we find out who's after you, I don't think we stand a snowball's chance in *hell* of beating this!"

Mildred comes in. "Good news. I found a safe deposit box in Spellman's name at Palmer Bank." Laura and Steele just look at her. "I mean, that's what you call a hot lead, isn't it?" She looks at them, concerned. "Isn't it?"


At the bank, Mildred is again IRS agent Krebbs, and she's fighting as Steele and Laura drag her inside. "It's illegal. Unprofessional. And I refuse to be a party to it. Oh, please. Don't make me do this," she begs. "I don't work for the IRS anymore. And impersonating an agent- oh, we could go to jail for this."

"We may anyway, Mildred," Steele tells her.

As they stand in front of the desk, a woman sits down. "Yes?"

Mildred puts her Agent face on, tossing an ID on the desk. "Mildred Krebbs, IRS. I gotta pick up that Spellman box and have it in court in exactly one hour. So stow the chatter, shred the red tape, and cough up the keys, dearie." Steele glances at Mildred, amazed. The woman hands the ID back.

"Do you have a court order?"

"You've been expecting this for over a month, now. Don't play the bureaucrat with me, honey. I *invented* the word."

"But I never recieved notice."

Mildred takes out a letter and gives it to her. "I sent you notification on my own letterhead. Are you calling me a liar?"

The woman reads the letter. "I'll go get the key," she saw with obvious reluctance.

"Snap it up, dearie," Mildred says. Steele is smiling now, Laura is frowning, backing Mildred up. Once the woman's back is turned, Mildred almost collapses.

Laura and Steele catch her, he starts fanning her. "Steady, Mildred," he says under his breath. "Steady, steady."

"Okay, Mr. Steele."

Inside the vault, Mildred looks out the wire doors as Laura and Remington retrieve the box. "Now I know how Bonnie Parker must have felt. I think it's safe to assume what- fifteen years? Maybe if we cop a plea, we'll get minimun security." Laura looks at Mildred. "Oh, Mother. I'm sorry." She notices they have the box open and goes over.

There's money in the box. "Fifty thousand in cash?" Laura asks.

"Close enough," Steele says, looking at a coin. "Collector's item, I should think. Does it fit anywhere?" he asks.

Laura takes it. I don't know. I just don't know." She finds an envelope in the box, and opens it to take out a photograph. "Oh, God. No." She hands it to Steele. It's a photo apparently of Steele and McIntyre, sitting in the care that McIntyre was killed in, a newspaper in Steele's hand. "The evening edition of the paper on the night he was murdered," Laura says.

"It's a fake, Laura," he tells her.

She puts the photo into her bag. "We're getting out of her, right now."

Mildred peers into the box. "Should we take the money?" Steele glares at her.

As they leave the vault, they all stop upon seeing Jarvis enter the bank. "Oops," Steele says, "Bandits at twelve o'clock." He tells them, "You two climb into the clouds. He'll only come out shootin' if he gets his sights on my tail, okay?" He moves into the people lined up for the tellers windows.

"What?" Mildred asks.

Steele shuffles through a couple of lines, borrowing a deposit slip, taking a pen from his pocket to write something. Jarvis gets to the desk of the lady who Mildred handled so well earlier, but she's not there. Steele hands his note to a teller. "Good afternoon. This is a stick up-" Laura and Mildred look at him. "Put all the money from your drawer into a bag. Thank you. P.S.- Please ring the silent alarm." She looks at him. "Excuse me, didn't you mean to write 'P.S. please *don't* ring the silent alarm?"

"On the contrary. You see that young man in the corduroy jacket standing behind me?" he asks, indicating Jarvis. "Well, he's armed and dangerous, and forcing me to commit this heinous crime against my will."

Jarvis scratches his back, revealing his gun. The teller panics. "He's got a gun," she says.

"Um humm," he says. She pushes the silent alarm, alerting the guards, who all come at Steele, their own guns drawn.

"No!" the teller tells them. "Not him! He's got the gun!" Jarvis finds himself the focal point of every guard in the bank. He ducks.

"Alright, everybody!" One of the guards yells. "Hit the dirt!"

"I'm too old for this!" Mildred declares, getting to her knees.

Jarvis keeps his hands up. "Don't shoot. Easy, fellas, I'm a cop." He sees Steele crawling to the doors.

"Alright, show us some ID," one of the guards says.

Jarvis reaches, frowns. "Damn. Listen. I left my badge in my other pants." He points to Steele. "That's the guy you wanna stop. I've got a warrant for his arrest right here." Laura and Mildred are trying to follow Steele's lead.

"We're sorry," Laura apologizes.

"Stop that," Mildred tells someone.

"Winslow," one of the guards says, "Get his gun."

"Come on, Winslow, quick," Jarvis agrees as a homeless man ( who happens to be the same one who's framing Steele) opens the door to aide Steele's escape, "Get my gun. Look at the warrant. Read it." Winslow takes the warrant.

"It's okay," he tells the others.

Jarvis goes over to Laura and Mildred. "Hey. Wait a second. Come on, Mildred, get up."

"Miss Krebbs."

"All right. I own you now, Miss Holt. Aiding and abetting, withholding evidence. Obstruction of an officer- if you don't cooperate with me, believe me, I'll play the full house." he says, as the homeless man looks on, smiling.

Laura sighs deeply, "I'll co-operate detective." She hands him the file from the safe-deposit box.
Mildred looks on in shocked surprise, "Oh, Miss Holt."
"Excuse me," the homeless man pushes between Mildred and Laura, "Excuse me." After he passes Jarvis he takes off his hat and smiles.


Back at the office, Laura is having coffee, looking at the file again. She asks Jarvis, "Tell me, detective- how fast does a body cool down from the moment of death?"

"Oh, gee, Miss Holt, I'm no expert-"

"I thought we were already past the Huck Finn routine."

He looks at her. "About five degrees per hour, weather permitting," he answers quickly.

"And if Spellman was hit at eight thirty, and the coroner recieved his body four hours after that, even figuring the temperature that night, it shouldn't have been below seventy degrees."


"So how come on your autopsy report, his body temperature is listed a full twenty degrees below that?"

"Like I said, Miss Holt, I'm no expert. A man was murdered. That's enough for me." The telephone rings, and as Laura moves to pick it up, Jarvis holds up his hand to stop her until he can join her to listen in. He gives her the reciever.

"Hello?" Laura says. "Hello, Mother. No, no, you're not interrupting. In fact, there's a very special young man here I'd like you to meet over the telephone-" Jarvis shakes his head, realizing what she's up to, tries to signal that to Laura. She smiles widely. "Don't be silly. I'm sure Jimmy would *love* to hear your recipe for Shrimp Mousse. Wouldn't you, Jimmy?"

"Well, actually, I-" He takes the phone when she gives it to him. "Hello, Mrs. Holt. How are you?"

Mildred comes in, giving Laura her keys. "Your car has been repaired," she announces. "Quisling."

"I beg your pardon?"

"You heard me. Quisling. He sold out to the Nazis."

Jimmy is still occupied with Abigail, but he's watching and listening to Laura and Mildred. Laura tries to explain her actions. "Mildred, I don't think that -"

"I mean, how *could* you, Miss Holt? I mean, the man is your leader. He trained you. Gave you this job. And this is how you show your thanks?" She shakes her head, disappointed. "Oh, tsk, tsk." She leaves a stunned Laura behind.

Jimmy turns away. "No, ma'am. I have no philosophical objections to the idea of marriage. As a matter of fact, I-"


Steele is in a computer store, talking to a salesman. "If you're talking business computers, I hear ya," the man says.

"No, no."

"Well, if you're talkin' home computers, I hear you. They're great. I mean, they're great. They'll balance your checkbook, do your taxes. A step into the future for your kids. Believe me, Mr. Steele, I hear you."

"To level with you, Sherman, I'm talking about a machine that can phone another machine."

"Aha. That's continuous asynchronus phone link. I've got six models, and two of them are on sale."

"I see. Is a free demonstration in order?"

"Does night follow day?" Sherman asks, moving off.

Steele nods. "I hear you."

Mildred is on her computer, when a message comes up. "Laura. Steele here. I must see you. Where can we meet?" Mildred pauses, then gets up, turning the screen away so that it can't be seen, and goes to Steele's office, where Laura is sitting at the desk, drinking coffee, while she watches a frustrated Jarvis still talking to her mother.

"No, ma'am. There has never been any serious illness in my family."

Mildred rushes in to Laura. "I just came in to tell you that-" she stops as Jarvis turns around as well.

"What is it, Mildred?" Laura asks.

Mildred hestitates, then announces, "I quit."

Laura gets up, surprised. "What?"

"Well, if you can't supply me with a 1020J computer which I asked for and instead you give me that clunker full of microchips that even Einstein couldn't manage-" Jarvis goes back to the phone as Laura tried to make sense of what's going on. "Then I'm *finished*," she declares, trying to indicate that Laura should follow her out. She runs from the office.

"Mildred! Wait!" Laura says, following as Jarvis looks after them, still tied up on the phone. At Mildred's desk, Laura says, "Mildred, I understand that this is not an easy situation for any of us, but I really think-"

Mildred points her at the computer screen. "Just look at that."

"You're overreacting," Laura finishes.

"I mean, that's nothing but electronic jarmain," Mildred tells her, smiling at the other detective that's sitting across the office.

Laura looks at the screen. She starts typing with one hand as Jarvis puts his hands on the monitor. "Great gal, your mom. And the recipes."

"Yeah, well, she's always had a flair for-"

"Gee, this is a very funny time to be worrying about your computer." Laura smiles nervously, standing up. He turns the monitor around as Mildred hits the off switch. Jarvis looks suspicious. "Now couldn't possibly have been a message from Mr. Steele, now, could it?"

"Yes it was, detective," Laura tells him as Mildred gives her an angry look.

"He wants me to meet him." Mildred is still upset by Laura's apparent betrayal. "Alone."

"*Quisling*," Mildred accuses again.

"Mildred, stop it," Laura says, then procedes to spill her coffee over both of them. Jarvis hands Laura a handkercheif.

"Here. I want you to keep that meeting, Miss Holt."

"Just give me time to change, detective," Laura says, giving Mildred a look before moving away.


Laura and Jarvis arrive at Griffith Park. She's changed into a red tunic top, black pants and red hat. Looking at the Observatory, she tells him, "We used to hang out around here when I was a teenager. Jimmy Dean made it safe for all us rebels."

"Well, I guess you come back everyplace sooner or later."

They get out. "I don't like what I'm about to do, Jarvis. A favor?"

"Maybe," he says.

"Give me enough of a lead to get to him. He sees you behind me and he's likely to run. I don't want anybody to die here this afternoon."

Jarvis checks his radio. "I don't either, Miss Holt. I'll do my best, but I make no promises." Laura moves off toward the observatory. Jarvis talks into his radio. "Alright, this is command. Is everybody in postion?"

A nondescript man says, "That's a roger."

A middle aged man wearing a Hawaiian shirt says, "All ready here."

A punker with spiked hair and sunglass, at the top of the building, says, "Just say when." Jarvis moves after Laura.

Laura approaches the building, looking around. She increases her speed to try and outrun Jarvis, managing to get around a corner well ahead of him. When Jarvis rounds the corner, she's not there. "All right, I've lost her. She should be in your area now, though, Davis."

Davis, the punker, says, "Negative. She hasn't appeared yet."

"Robbie? Conner?"

Robbie, the non descript man says, "No sign."

"Come on, you guys," Jarvis tells them. He's passing before a wall of graffitti. "She didn't just disappear." He pauses before a heart with an arrow through it. M.K/L.H.

"Wait a second," Davis says, "I got her makin' for the stairs."

"She's running! Move in! Now!" Jarvis orders. he and the others all take off. They stop the woman they think is Laura, only to find out that it's Mildred in a similar outfit. She's startled. Jarvis is angry.

"Detective Jarvis," she says, pretending surprise. "Imagine finding you here."

Above them, Laura drops down at the heart, patting it. "You may not have been much of a kisser, Marty Kloppman, but you sure knew where to do it." She removes her hat and unfastens the cuffs on her shirt as she takes off.

She drives the rabbit to the building where Steele's apartment is, starts inside before she hears him calling. "Laura! Laura!" Turning, she starts toward the voice. "Laura, over here," he says.


"This way. Come on This way." She takes a step and falls into the storm drain- Steele catches her. "You're alone, I trust." He replaces the grate.

"For the moment."

"That's good, anyway."

"I managed to send Jarvis to the store for a wild goose," she tells him.

"Really? How?"

"Let's just say you owe Marty Kloppman a box of kisses for Christmas."

"This way," he tells her, leading her into the tunnel. "I'm glad you came."

"Did you think I wouldn't?"

"I couldn't rule it out, could I?" He takes her to a telephone switchbox.

"What's this?" she asks.

"This is how I made all those calls to Spellman's office. "My number- rubbed clean." He picks up a workman's phone and the clip. "You clip this to the terminals, dial, and it comes out on the bill. Then it's the phone company's word against mine."

Laura gives a whistle and examines the box. "This guy's even better than I thought. Maybe even brilliant."

"If you're asking me who it is, Laura. I just don't know."

"Well *think* about it-"

"What do you *think* I've been doing?! I've gone back over everything. Every barroom brawl, every jealous lover. There's no one I know with enough savvy to grind an axe this sharp! I just don't *know*!"

"Look. Nobody sets up a scheme this clever without leaving a calling card. Just think of anything strange we've come across that might ring a bell! An ice cream truck in the middle of nowhere. An old man with a handfull of lillies. This coin in a box."

"You didn't hear me, did you?"

"I heard you. But I've put everything I've worked for on the line to come back here. The least you can do is to at least *try* once more!" She puts a hand on his shoulder.

He bows his head, then looks at her. "Maybe it's time I cut you free of this, ey? Met this bugger on my own."

Laura's hand falls. "You mean leave?"

"Well, at least that way, he couldn't pull you down with me, could he?"

"It's out of the question. so let's just drop it," she says, turning her back on him. Steele stands there, looking away.

"Laura, we have no more idea who we're up against than the general on that coin. I don't want to be remembered as the man who tore your life into little pieces-"

"Look, I just said drop it!" she screams, studying the coin. "Besides, the man on the coin is not a general. He's a major." Steele nods, and moves away. Laura stares at the coin again. "A major. An ice cream truck- a lily. A major on a coin," she muses. "Major Descoine," she says, the peices suddenly falling into place. "I know who it is," she says, turning to find that Steele's gone. She runs down the tunnel to a branch. "Wait! Come back! I know who it is! Come back! Wait! He's not after *your* Remington Steele! He's after mine!" She takes one of the tunnels.

Steele leaves the tunnels and is immediately spotted by Davis. "I got him!" Davis says into his radio, giving chase. Steele climbs over a fence and gets to the street, his thumb out for a ride. An old truck stops, and Steele gets inside.

"Thanks for stopping, mate," Steele tells the driver.

The driver is Descoine, who smiles. "Anytime," he says, pulling back out as Jarvis and his men reach the curb.

Out of the city, Steele tells his rescuer, "There's a truck stop up ahead. You can just drop me there."

"You sure,- Mr. Steele?"

Steele laughs. "You must have me confused with someone else."

"No, sir. I been thinkin where I seen you before. You're Remington Steele, all right, and that's a fact. Done a lot of reading up on you." Steele is beginning to worry. "Course, I had a lot of time for reading. Remington Steele, King of the private detectives."

"Well, that's an exaggeration I'm afraid. You know how the media can be."

"Indeed I do, Mr. Steele. Indeed I do. Why, I remember the fuss they made when you solved the Lily Martin case. Some tough case, huh?"

Steele, who's never heard the name before, nods sagely. "Hmm. Oh, yes. One of my most difficult."

"Too bad about poor Lily Martin. She got so upset when you caught her stealin' from Palmer Bank that she up and killed herself."

"Tragic. Quite tragic."


Mildred enters the office as the phone's ringing. "Krebbs here."

Laura is on a pay phone. "Oh, thank god, Mildred. I don't know how much longer I can shake Jarvis. Talk to me."

"This uh- Descoine. First name Percy. Former major in the Air Force. Right?"

"Yes. That's him."

Mildred consults the file she came in with. "He was released from Solidad Prison six months ago on parole. Served three years of an eight year term for a bank embezzling scheme."

"And Spellman?"

"Well, there's no birth certificate. And there's no tax returns. Like you said, probably an alias, but no real person. Oh. And I just got back from the chief coroner's office. It took some arm squeezing, but he finally admitted that there *was* a body stolen from a local morgue early last week. Don't ask me where they put it."

"In an ice cream truck," Laura tells her. "Mildred, we're going to give you a raise for this."

"Forget about the raise, honey. Can you tell me what's going on now?"

"Soon, Mildred. *Soon*." She hangs up.

Mildred does the same. "An *ice cream* truck?" she asks herself.


Laura gets into the rabbit and makes a u-turn, heading off to try and find Mr. Steele before it's too late. "You come back to every place sooner or later. Thank you, Detective Jarvis," she says.


In the truck, Steele is saying, "Well, with so many cases, it's hard for one to recall all the details, you know."

"Yeah. I reckon so. But this time-" He pulls out a shotgun and points it at Steele, "You're going to remember, Mr. Steele."

"Was it something I said?" Steele asks, moving as far away as possible.

"I'm disappointed. I assumed a man of your reputation would recall sending me to prision. He takes off his hat, and Steele makes a grab for the gun. "BOOM!" Descoine says, laughing as Steele lifts his hands. "Foolish move, Mr. Steele. And I planted the clues of my revenge so carefully." He takes off the fake sideburns he's been wearing. "But either way, we've reached the end game of our match."

"With a shot gun?" Steele asks. "A little crude for all the trouble you've gone to, ey?"

"Oh, I'm not going to kill you with this. Unless I'm forced to. In fact, I'm going to offer you a chance to find the evidence that will clear you of Spellman's murder. Just to make things interesting."

"How sporting of you," Steele comments.

"I just wanted you to twist and turn inside like my poor Lily did. Who's to say? You may find yourself making the same choice she did. Now. You have thirty minutes to reach our final destination, Mr. Steele. A man in perfect physical condition, running at top speed, should be able to reach it in twenty two. That leaves you eight minutes for the game itself."

"Where am I going?"

He stops the truck. "No more questions, Mr. Steele. Time for you to run. Get out." Steele opens the door and carefully gets out. Descoine rolls down the window and closes the door. He takes aim with the shotgun. "I really can't be trusted, you know." Steele looks away, bracing himself for the blast. Descoine pulls the triggers, revealing that the gun is empty. He laughs. "Just a little something to get the adrenaline pumping, Mr. Steele." He tosses the gun out, and drives away. Steele takes off running, not really knowing where he's running *to*.

Laura finds him, and when he keeps running, even though she's honking the horn, she parks the car in front of him, forcing him to stop. "Come here," she says, grabbing him and giving him a kiss. "Oh, thank God you're all right. When I found that shotgun on the road-"

Steele is resting his head on her shoulder, exhausted. "Couldn't you treat me like this at times when I'm less near death?" he asks, trying to get his breath.

"It wasn't someone from your past, it was from mine. When Remington Steele was just a name on an office," she tells him. I solved the case, but naturally Descoine thought you were behind it all."

"Oh, I'm sure- I'm sure sometime from now, this is all gonna make sense," he says as Laura showers kisses on him again. "But right now, I've got less than ten minutes to get somewhere up this road."

"The acid vats," Laura tells him, leading him toward the car.


"Lily Martin was a teller at Palmer Bank, and Descoine's accomplice in the embezzlement scheme. When she found out we were on to her, she killed herself up here at the acid vats."

Steele nods. "Oh. Fascinating story."

"Get in," she tells him.

At the vats, Laura parks the car and they are met by Descoine on a catwalk, holding something. "No fair, Mr. Steele. You were supposed to run!" He's now wearing an orange jumpsuit.

"So? Sue me!"

"I suppose the extra few minutes really won't change things!"

"We know how you staged the accident!" Laura yells, causing Steele to turn and look at her. "Stealing the corpse and then keeping the body cool before you pushed it in front of the car. We know that!" Steele is amazed.

"We do?"

She nods. "Yes! But can you prove it?" Descoine asks. "I'm afraid to convince Detective Jarvis, you're going to need the truck itself! And the evidence I've left inside!" He shows them a block of ice with something in it. "The key inside here is to a garage where the truck is hidden! My gift to you, Mr. Steele!" He holds it out. "I suggest you retrieve it from the acid before the ice melts! Or your chances will dissolve just as quickly! Best of luck!" he wishes, tossing the ice into the vat, the acid nearly hitting Laura and Steele as it hits the ground. Descoine takes off. Steele gives chase as Laura goes to the vat, and starts looking for something to get the ice block with.

She has an idea, and goes back to the car, where she retrieves the shotgun. Steele chases Descoine as Laura tries retrieve the rapidly melting block of ice. She wraps something around the end of the barrel. Steele gets to the top of a hill, only to stop as an ultralight flies over his head, Descoine at the controls.

Steele returns to Laura. "I can't get it! I need help! It's right there!" They look at it.

"Oh, boy."

"It's almost gone!" she tells him.

Steele loosens a wire. "Let me try this," he suggests.

"No, that's gonna dissolve as well!" she says.

"Well, have you got a better idea?"

"I don't know!" She stands there, thinking. "Wait a minute. Give me this wire." She starts wrapping it around the barrel of the gun.

"What are you making?"

"We need power," she tells him. "Electrical power. Got any ideas? Think fast!"

"Car battery," he suggests.

"Right! Go!" He goes down the ladder and drags the wire to the car. "Hurry!" Laura tells him. "There's not much left! I hope high school science has a place in real life!" Steele's raised the hood. "Come on! There's not much time!"

"Yes, I'm coming!"

"The ice is almost gone!" she yells. Steele attaches the wire to the battery. "Hurry!"

"Okay! Go!" Laura leans out as far as she can, but still can't quite reach it.

"You gotta help me! I can't get close enough!" He comes back up. "Grab onto me and pray," she tells him as he grabs the back of her belt and braces himself. "Ready?"


She leans far out over the vat, holding the rifle out to the block of ice. "Oh, it's coming! It's coming! A little futher! Just a little further!"

"Come on!"

"Just a little further, it's moving!" There is a "clink" as the key hits the barrell as the ice melts, and Steele pulls Laura back to the platform.

"Oh, boy," Steele sighs.


Jarvis enters the offices, tossing something and catching it. "Detective," Laura says.

"Hello." Mildred and Steele greet him, Steele looking at the item in his hand. He holds out the key. "Mr. Steele, I thought you might like to have this as souvenier of sorts."

"Well, it's not exactly an autographed picture of Tommy Lasorta, but under the circumstances -"

"And Major Descoine?" Laura asks as Jarvis starts to light his pipe.

"Well, a small plane like that can land almost anyplace. Now, we're still looking, but - I'm afraid the best I can offer you, Mr. Steele, is my sincere apologies,", he says, shaking Steele's hand.

Steele looks at Laura. "Accepted and appreciated," he says.

Mildred looks around. "Now are you gonna tell me what's going on?"

Laura looks at Jarvis. "Detective?" she asks.

Jarvis turns to Mildred. "Miss Krebbs- "

"Mildred," she corrects him.

"Miss Krebbs," he says again, confusing Mildred. "There was a man named Henry Spellman. . . "

Steele moves closer to Laura as she watches Jarvis trying to explain the case to Mildred. "Come to think of it," he says, holding the keys out, "this is really more you."

Laura takes them. "Ahh. The key to your innocence? Locked in my heart?"

"Think of it as an anniversary present, ey?"

"Only if it comes with a promise."

"What's that?"

"That you'll never again leave me for my own good," she says, poking a finger at his chest.

"It's a promise," he assures her, leaning forward, intending to kiss her cheek, but the computer beeps, drawing their attention to the screen, where a message has appeared.

"Steele, My congratulations! Until Next time, Major Descoine."

Steele glowers at the screen. "I've never liked that machine."