Between the Lines
- Between License to Steele,
and Tempered Steele
- by Gilmoradict
- Send feedback to: 12nostalgia77 @ gmail.com (without the
A field of sleek race horses breaks from the gate, with the ensuing
excitement and noise. As the group rounds the first turn, the
colt in the lead falters and falls back, limping noticeably,
and tossing his beautiful head. The jockey struggles to control
him, gradually bringing him to a stop near the fence, where he
leaps from his charge's back. Several men run to help hold the
spirited horse, followed at a slower pace by a trainer, who runs
a seasoned hand down the bay's leg. The colt is led carefully
off the track. His tack removed, he is turned out into a roomy
box stall, where he stands breathing heavily, nostrils flaring.
"This was the finest colt I'd seen in years. How could this
happen?" An angry man in business attire ill suited to the
stall outside of which he stands, studies the horse, shaking
his head in disappointment.
"It may be just a deep sprain, in which case he'll be good
as new with a little rest and TLC." the trainer suggests.
"I don't pay for horses to 'rest,' just race. Find some
investors who are foolish enough to take him on, or collect on
the insurance and put him down."
- With a look of concern on his face, the trainer watches the
A woman's hands pull the paper reading "Steele Pure Gold"
from a newspaper box.
A pair of dark skinned hands, belonging to a commuter, holds
the Daily Chronicle, with the headline "Steele Pure Gold."
- Another set of hands, this pair a woman's, extend over a
breakfast table, holding the same headline.
- The paper declaring "Steele Pure Gold" is seen
just in front of the lame horse's stall. A larger view reveals
the work worn hands of the lame horse's trainer holding the paper,
and smiling at the image of the man named Steele.
- Elegant, well manicured hands, extending beyond crisp French
cuffs and a dark vested suit hold the same headline. The handsome
dark haired man smiles at the photo of himself, in which he is
holding the arm of Mr. Gordon Hunter, who is flanked on the other
side by an "unidentified woman." It is this woman the
man's gaze focuses on. His right eyebrow rises slightly and his
smile deepens as his mind's eye replays the previous two evenings:
the soft deep brown of the woman's eyes as she had sat across
from him, the swing of her long, shinning hair catching the light
in a dozen shades of brown, the play of dimples across her cheeks
as she spoke so earnestly to him about her work... He doubted
she had any idea how lovely she was, so absorbed was she in her
excitement over the world around her. Audrey Hepburn - no, Katharine....Truly
this woman is a gem of much greater value than those he was supposed
to have saved....
- Laura and Bernice ride up in the elevator together.
"Unidentified woman... That's you." Bernice remarks
- "Poor Mr. Hunter." Laura murmurs sympathetically,
"He wasn't really a thief, just a man who saw his dream
going down in a sea of red ink. He wanted to use those gems to
finance the production of his automobile."
- The two women walk through the doors of Remington Steele
Investigations together. A man has been waiting in the reception
area for someone's arrival.
"Lester Giddons - I have a nine o'clock with Remington Steele?"
he says inquisitively.
"Oh, I'm sorry. Mr. Steele has been called out of town -
San Francisco I believe." Laura apologizes, adding brightly
"But we can use his office." Laura motions for Mr.
Giddons to precede her into Mr. Steele's office.
Before following him into Mr. Steele's office Laura looks sideways
at Bernice, "If anyone calls..."
"He won't." Bernice states matter of factly.
"Mr. Steele!" Mr. Giddons exclaims. "I thought
you were in San Francisco!"
Laura's face lights up. Glancing quickly at Bernice she follows
Mr. Giddons through the tall red door. Inside the office the
desk chair turns to reveal the well manicured man in the three
piece suit sitting at Mr. Steele's desk.
"Yes, well suddenly it seemed there was nothing there for
me. Now, what can we do for you Mr. Giddons?" the ersatz
Mr. Steele asks as he rises to close the office door behind the
startled and bemused Miss Holt.
- Laura's pulse races with the sudden rush of excitement one
might feel at the apex of a roller coaster, or the beginning
of a ski run down a black diamond slope. This was the feeling
that led her to become a private investigator - turning a corner
to discover the unexpected and slightly dangerous. 'What is HE
doing here?!' she thinks! Swiftly she gathers herself, however,
to focus on Mr. Giddons, his praise for Mr. Steele's work over
the past two days, and his thoughts on how Mr. Steele could assist
him with an urgent security failing in his own business. This
blue eyed stranger indeed makes a delightful Remington Steele.
Her gamble might yet pay off....
- The door to Mr. Steele's office opens and closes frequently
as the morning continues. Bernice fields continual calls from
those in need of the great Remington Steele's services, and those
who, having never met the enigmatic Mr. Steele, now wish to thank
him in person for services received. The reception area flutters
with these latter in particular, each holding their copy of The
Daily Chronicle with the photo and story of the royal lavulite.
Seeing an opportunity, Laura hollers for Murphy, who, still nursing
a headache from the previous day's events, is working on more
pedestrian matters in his office to the left of Laura's.
- "Grab the agency camera, Murphy! - let's get some publicity
Murphy sticks his head into Laura's office, peering through to
see 'Mr. Steele' chatting with a Hindu man in the office beyond.
"What's going on....whoa - you've got to be kidding me Laura!
You don't honestly want photos of HIM!"
"Don't knock a gift horse in the mouth, Murphy. Com'on,
just go with it. We'll talk later-" Laura begs around the
beautiful smile that Murphy can never resist.
"I can think of someone I'd like to knock in the mouth."
Murphy scowls. With a dark look at HIM, he grabs the camera from
a file drawer. Bernice blinks as flash after flash illuminates
the doorway of Steele's previously quiet office.
- At noon Laura turns her back on the office doors as she locks
them behind the last client she ushers out, encouraging those
who have not yet seen Mr. Steele to call and schedule appointments.
A grin slides across her face, and her eyes sparkle as she looks
conspiratorially at Bernice.
- "It would seem your Mr. Steele has generated some interest
in the agency Laura." Bernice remarks wearily. "I haven't
been able to get the phone away from my ear all morning. How
do things look from where you are?"
"Not bad, Bernice," Laura smiles broadly; "Not
bad at all! Come on - let's talk turkey with this turkey while
we have a moment to breathe."
- "All right, 'Mr. Steele'," Laura begins as she
strides purposefully into Steele's office and up to the impostor
himself. "You have shown an amazing talent for undercover
work, glad handing, smiling for the camera, and bluffing your
way through situations you know little or nothing about. Can
we back up just a moment now? Who are you, and why are you here?"
- Murphy and Bernice join Laura in staring the serenely composed
"Really, Miss Holt, I thought I'd made that quite clear
already. I'm a man who likes an impossible challenge. With the
gems currently out of circulation I find myself open to new endeavors.
'Mr. Steele' seems to offer some interesting possibilities -
for all of us." Steele smiles charmingly at Laura and Bernice,
his smile dimming a bit as he meets Murphy's scowl.
- "Laura," Murphy spits out darkly. "This is
insane. This guy's a con man we know nothing about, representing
us in the public eye. The people who were here today want copies
of their picture with the 'Great Remington Steele' - what are
we going to say when he leaves, or when he gets caught heisting
some other priceless gems in San Francisco or Fresno, or Catalina:
This is professional suicide."
- "Murphy - hang on just a moment." pleads Laura.
Turning to the handsome stranger, "Murphy has a point 'Mr.
Steele.' Can you give us your real name, some credentials, some
history of your past employment? What can you bring to this agency
if we decide to work out some kind of....arrangement?
- "My talents are more than apparent to all of you -"
'Steele' declares cheerfully. "a handsome face, a winning
personality, a certain worldly knowledge of people and business.
As to my name, I have used several as you have already ascertained,
and am quite taken with the one you fabricated for your little
ruse. REMINGTON STEELE - it has a nice flair, don't you agree?"
- "LAURA..." Murphy's eyes shoot daggers at his 'partner.'
- "O.K., O.K., Murph - we still have some things to work
out." Laura grimaces, turning once more to the dark haired
stranger. "You aren't giving us much to go on 'Mr. Steele'.
We don't know anything about you. How do we know we can trust
you not to embarrass this agency, or do us even greater harm?"
- "You don't." replied Steele, locking Laura's brown
eyes with his blue. "Aren't things more interesting this
way?" Steele's mouth turned up on one side in a most appealing
half smile. "It suits to me to stay in the City of Angels
for the time being. I will maintain your little ruse in return
for those few little niceties appropriate to Mr. Steele's lifestyle.
I believe we can have a most satisfactory relationship."
Steele recognizes in Laura the same thirst for adventure and
risk that set his pulse racing much as hers has all morning.
Appraising her, Steele thinks, 'This woman is afraid of very
little, and despite her child-like face, possesses the authority
and intelligence that are clearly the driving force behind this
agency. Murphy follows her lead, rather than the other way around.'
Steele finds Laura Holt most intriguing. She is nothing like
the women he is usually attracted to - he is almost afraid to
consider what he hopes to accomplish here.
- Laura, deep in thought, is pacing, as Steele admires the
view she presents.
"All right Mr. 'Steele', I'll admit you have brought attention
to the agency simply by appearing on behalf of us last night.
Say we consider giving you the use of this office, the use of
the limo, and the wardrobe in exchange for occasional appearances
as our figurehead." Laura continues to muse. "As far
as parameters go, if you are our public face there are activities
that we could not have our agency head known for - do you appreciate
- "Of course, Miss Holt, of course. Nothing I do must
reflect negative publicity back to you. I can be the soul of
discretion. Now, just exactly how much time do you anticipate
my spending working closely with you?" Steele's eyebrows
wiggle suggestively at this.
- "Murphy," Laura continues, ignoring Steele's question,
"If we do this, you and I will continue to function exactly
as we always have. We'll do the work, while Mr. Steele can attend
a few lunches, make a few remarks here and there, get his picture
taken - and we'll actually have more time for our cases. 'Mr.
Steele' will function as he always has, in a purely advisory
capacity. In other words, Murphy, he'll have nothing to do with
- Bernice alone watches Murphy struggle to accept Laura's proposition.
When he fails to respond Laura slows her pacing and turns to
seek her partner's eyes. Steele, as well, turns to Murphy briefly,
well aware that despite seeking Murphy's input, the final decision
is Laura's and Laura's alone. Murphy shrugs. "This is your
call, Laura. I'll go along with this insanity if you think it
will help the agency." Turning to the prospective titular
head of the agency he glowers darkly. "Believe me though,
'Pal, you don't want to mess with Laura, or with ME."
- Steele feels a chill run up his spine at the venom in Murphy's
voice. Laura too, at Murphy's cautionary threat, senses the risk
she is accepting for all of them by inviting this stranger into
their lives, in even a limited role.
- "Well, Mr. Nobody? Remington Steele Investigations could
issue a press release announcing that the recently seen 'Mr.
Steele' has once again retired to a less public role. We could
carry on as we did before, and you could return to - whatever
it is you do." Laura's chin rises, her demeanor is serious
as she challenges the dark man standing before them.
Soberly the nameless man replies. "Remington Steele suits
me quite well Miss Holt. I relish the challenge of becoming the
man you envision Remington Steele to be and offer you my word
that I will do my utmost not to embarrass or undermine your agency.
I look forward to earning the respect of my excellent staff."
A slow smile creeps across Steele's face.
- Laura swallows nervously. Still no hard facts about this
mystery man, and yet... his eyes are steady as he meets her gaze.
There is without doubt a connection between the two of them -
a connection that does not include Murphy - a fact that man is
painfully aware of. Blue eyes meet brown as Steele and Laura
test the future of their association.
- Bernice breaks the tension suggesting "Let's grab a
sandwich, folks, before our one o'clock arrives." She steers
Murphy out the door by his elbow, leaving Laura and Steele to
follow behind. As the group walks through the doors of the agency
toward the elevator the trainer from the racetrack, holding the
newspaper with Steele's photo, watches from the corner of the
hall. He smiles, recognizing the man trailing in the group of
four. 'What game is Harry up to now?' he wonders.
End Part 1
- "The flat is perfect - slept like a baby!" Steele
assures Bernice. "Miss Holt has a client who dabbles in
real estate who was able to secure it for me. Speaking of Miss
Holt, Miss Wolf, Do you happen to know where she is just now?
I'm hoping to tantalize her palette with a gourmet lunch just
a notch or two above your little lunch wagon downstairs."
Bernice rolls her eyes as the oblivious Mr. Steele cruises past
her on his way into the office he has happily now at 11:00 deigned
"Not that you're listening, 'Mr. Steele,' but the name is
FOX, and Laura and Murphy have been out on a case since early
Steele's head reappears in the reception area.
"Oh. Very well." Completely indifferent to Murphy's
absence, Steele inquires, "Do you know when Miss Holt intends
to return to the office?"
"No." Bernice sighs. "But you have a dozen messages
here, including several invitations to lunch if you're interested."
"Really!" Steele's face brightens. "Anyone I know?"
"With your talent for learning names, I doubt you'd know."
Bernice smirks. "Have at 'em. Feel free to answer the phone
yourself. I've had enough today already."
"No, no, carry on Miss Wolf. You do a splendid job, splendid
job!" Steele encourages cheerfully as he takes the messages
from Bernice. Striding purposefully into his office once more,
he declares: "Time to earn my wages."
"Wages of sin." Bernice mutters. "Hope I managed
to keep any real clients away from him."
"You should have seen him, Murphy." Laura grins as
she and Murphy sip coffee over sandwiches in Laura's Rabbit.
"Like the cat that swallowed the proverbial canary. Deborah
Hancock let us have the Rossmore place for a song since her Japanese
client had paid for the whole year before moving to a bigger
place - completely furnished - though he's already plotting getting
some framed movie posters to personalize it. I wonder if he's
ever had his own place, or always lived on the move. He couldn't
stop grinning, strutting from one side of the place to the other."
Murphy isn't really interested in any details of apartment hunting
with the 'Great Pretender' but finds it pleasant to have Laura
with him, and acknowledges aloud
"He's certainly generated lots of interest in the agency."
"I know - isn't it great?!" Laura rushes on. "We've
got security set ups tomorrow and Saturday, and some early morning
client meetings Friday and Tuesday. It would appear our 'Mr.
Steele' is not an early riser, so we can meet Jamison and Cutler
without worrying about HIM looking over our shoulder."
"Sounds good, Partner." Murphy agrees companionably.
"He does have a flair for the finer things in life. He wants
gourmet cookware, artwork, and wines-." Laura continues.
"It seems he knows quite a bit about all three - as well
as gems of course. I wonder where he comes from. The accent isn't
South African exactly, or entirely British either, not that I've
got much of an ear for these things. Do you suppose he's really
upper class, down on his luck, or just a consummate actor? He
can certainly talk a line to a total stranger, and wears those
$800 suits on as if they were made for him!"
Murphy rubs his eyes with one hand. Had Laura ever been this
excited about him and his background? But of course his life
is an open book. No mystery. Parents and family from Denver,
college and then Havenhurst, where he and Laura met. No mystery
"Miranda." Steele muses, looking through his messages.
"Sounds promising, in the absence of Miss Holt. Miss Wolf,
I'll be lunching at Chez Rive with a Miss Miranda Thicke of the
Los Angeles Artist's Guild; getting 'Mr. Steele' out into circulation
for the good of the agency."
Steele sails out of the agency. *** Fred opens the door to the
limo. Steele slides in with a smile. "The Los Angeles Artist's
Guild, Fred, 6th and Grande, near the museum, my good man. We'll
pick up the unknown Miss Thicke, and then off to Chez Rive for
Laura looks up from the blue prints she has secured from the
gallery earlier that morning. Security should be no problem.
Murphy is working on background checks of the staff. From the
lights blinking on the phone, Bernice is still busy handling
the newly increased interest in Remington Steele Investigations.
"Let's hope Mr. Steele can live up to that killer smile."
Laura whispers under her breath, wondering where he has disappeared
to. "Bernice?" her volume rising to reach the receptionist
Laura calls out "Is our Mr. Steele back from lunch yet?"
"Should be back in five. Fred phoned when they left Chez
Rive." Bernice calls with one hand over the phone.
The charming Miss Thicke was all Steele could have hoped she
might be, lovely, refined and most willing. As Steele steps out
of the limo upon returning to Century Towers, he is distracted
by thoughts of his lunch companion. The casually dressed man
steps toward Steele, 'accidentally' crossing so closely in front
of him that Steele steps back.
"Harry! Fancy meeting YOU here!" the man exclaims.
"Ah, Joey, what a surprise indeed." Steel replies with
a trifle less enthusiasm than Joey has expressed. "It's
Remington Steele, Joey, for the benefit of anyone passing. I've
only recently arrived in LA. I've been meaning to find out who
might also be in the city. What a delight to find you."
Steele's face suggests the opposite. His past threatens to undo
his present in this encounter - wouldn't do to have Miss Holt
Laura bursts through the front doors of the Towers just at that
"Mr. Steele," she greets the man with crisp courtesy.
"So glad to have caught you. You have a 4:00 meeting with
a Mr. Andrews. If we leave now we can just make it." She
looks with curiosity at the man talking to Steele.
"Certainly, Miss Holt. Ahh, Mr. Jostens, Miss Holt, - offering
the briefest of civil introductions. "Joseph, Good Day."
"I'll be in touch, Harry." Joey grins as he touches
his cap in a light hearted salute.
"Harry." muses Laura as she follows Mr. Steele into
the limo. "The Rossmore Place , Fred." Turing to Mr.
Steele Laura asks, "Another of your identities? Do you have
many acquaintances here in Los Angeles ?" A prickle of concern
furrows Laura's brow. How well, and among what crowd is Mr. Steele
known? Is 'Remington Steele' to be revealed to as a fraud so
"I have not yet had time to follow through on any ties I
might have to your fair city, Miss Holt. Mr. Jostens and I crossed
paths some years ago in South America. Quite a fine judge of
horses actually - perhaps his work has brought him here now."
Steele reassures Laura smoothly. "This is only the second
time I have been to Los Angeles, and my longest visit to date.
I have never had quite so lovely an incentive to remain before."
Steele turns all his charm on his companion. "Tell me about
our 4:00 meeting. Miss Wolf failed to apprise me of any afternoon
commitments when I left for lunch."
"About lunch," Laura continues, ignoring Steele's question
and processing her renewed hope that Steele's identity as the
agency's head might yet be safe, "How did your meeting with
Miss Thicke go? She carries a lot of weight in the arts community
locally. It might be best if in the future you include Murphy
or me in client development meetings."
"Miss Thicke - ah, Miranda and I got on wonderfully Miss
Holt." Steele ponders with amusement how awkward it would
have been to have a third person present during their lunch.
"She seems most enthusiastic about Remington Steele Investigations
being part of an event she is planning for a few weeks out -
at the Pills Mansion I believe."
"Really!" Laura has never been to the exclusive estate
before - what a terrific connection!
"Yes, Miranda hoped I could escort her as honorary chair
- dreadfully dull, I suppose, but this is the way I have committed
to support your agency. I'll get more information after I meet
Miss Thicke for dinner tomorrow. Now, our 4:00 Miss Holt?"
Realizing Steele is setting up his own social schedule. Laura
has a sinking feeling that managing the mysterious Mr. Steele
is going to be a bit like chasing a runaway train. "Mr.
Andrews is the building manager at Rossmore; he'll clarify the
amenities of the building with you." and then more thoughtfully,
"We need to go over some details of our working relationship,
Mr. Steele, and I think it might be best if we do that sooner
rather than later - this afternoon in fact."
"Certainly, Miss, Holt, wonderful idea! My home is your
home." Mr. Steele's blue sparkle at the prospect of entertaining
Miss Holt in his new flat. He has already stocked the wine rack
with several acceptable vintages. What a perfect conclusion to
lunch! Miss Holt is without question his preferred companion
- Miss Thicke merely a pleasant diversion. Whatever her excuse
for meeting might be, Steele feels certain Laura can be persuaded
to make their meeting last through dinner. Despite the surprise
of Joey Jostens crossing his path, things were definitely looking
up. He leans in toward Laura to search her sober brown eyes,
an irresistible crooked smile winning him a prim smile in return.
Things were definitely looking up.
Joey Jostens watches Harry and his lovely companion drive away.
Whatever scam Harry has tumbled into is an elegant one, limos,
upscale offices, business trim! Surely there was someway he could
benefit from Harry's good fortune as well. "Remington Steele
indeed' Joey smiles.
- Remington Steele lay back on the sofa in his elegant new
flat, staring up at the ceiling. Alone. At seven o'clock. The
African Queen plays quietly on the TV, ignored by Steele, an
almost unheard of occurrence. Perhaps he hadn't expected Laura
Holt to be swept off her feet and into his arms, but he had certainly
expected more than had occurred.
- The meeting with Mr. Andrews had been dreadfully dull; keys,
parking, laundry, doorman. Steele had paid more attention to
the building than to the manager; experience and training had
ingrained in him the benefits of knowing the layout of one's
surroundings: exits, airshafts, service tunnels. More than once
such knowledge had saved his neck.
- When the manager left them Laura had returned to his flat
with him and upon entering had removed and laid her suit jacket
across the back of the sofa. Her delicate shoulders were now
tantalizingly visible beneath the silky fabric of her blouse.
She took a seat on the sofa and invited Steele to join her, as
she crossed her lovely long legs. The perfect fit of the tweed
skirt matching the now discarded jacket emphasized her slender
build. Steele had found himself wondering again if she realized
the effect she had on those around her. She dressed the part
of a business woman, almost as if it were just that, a role she
was playing at. As exceptional as the business attire looked
on her, Steele had thought Laura better suited to something outdoorsy
such as Levi's and a sweater, or perhaps
.well, he had better
not go down that path just now. They had been close enough on
the sofa for him to smell her perfume - and to be entirely distracted
by the dusting of freckles that covered Laura's tanned skin,
from her nose and cheeks, down her throat, and disappearing into
the v formed by her collar. Laura's eyes were compelling, the
deep brown nearly one with the dark of their wide black pupils,
veiled by lowered lashes. The wine was chilled and ready, the
music ready to be enjoyed, his senses fully engaged in the apparition
before him, and then Laura had pulled out a list from her hand
- In her neat, loopy script, (unusual Steele thought, for a
lefty,) Laura had listed ten tasks that Remington Steele Investigations
would expect from its illustrious head. the list still lay limply
in Steel's grasp.
- 1. Attend publicity
events: Approximately 10 hours./week.
2. Meet with clients in office Approximately 10 hours/week
3. Meet with agency personnel to discuss weekly schedule
4. Refer clients needs to Murphy or Laura 1-2 hours/week
5. Refer publicity photos matters to agency
6. Maintain record of expenditures
7. Maintain record of travel times/destinations
8. Maintain record of social contacts made as Remington Steele
9. Maintain a record of any previously unanticipated needs
10. Firmly decline personal role in any cases
- Steele briefly runs his other hand over his body. He feels
shorter, smaller, somehow less, than when Laura entered his flat.
What power did this woman think she had over him? Still, raising
his eyes to look around the living room of the flat, Steele knows
part of that power surrounds him. The smartly framed movie posters
from Casablanca, and Notorious hanging on the wall behind him,
the chilled wine, the kitchen awaiting its meticulously selected
cookware, the lighted dining room breakfront ready to display
the newly purchased pre-Columbian sculpture, the lush bedroom
and bath just beyond the door, where he had slept so well the
last few nights, alone certainly, but content: this is as elegant
a set up as he has known since his time with Daniel. His eye
continues down the page Laura left him with to the methodical
list of expected remuneration for his assistance to the agency.
- 1. Use of Rossmore
2. Use of limousine and driver
3. Use of agency office
4. Use of agency credit card
5. Wardrobe,tailored to fit as needed
6. Access to agency funds through limited checking account
7. Membership at one or more appropriate club s(to be decided)
9. Medical benefits
10. Guarantee of no more than 25 hours/week work load
- 'Am I willing to sell myself to this agency, to this woman,
in exchange for these THINGS?' Steele ponders weakly. The answer
without question - 'NO.' He would have no difficulty obtaining
any of these things himself, should he want them. He has always
preferred traveling light, with little as possible to account
for and encumber him. Life for Steele is more about experience
than possession. And yet those eyes, her flickering dimples,
the wit, wisdom, and daring of the spitfire who had left him
alone to 'think things through'
he might be willing to accept
her lists to be with her, to possess her. Steele contemplates
the woman who had sat near him on the sofa earlier in the evening.
The business woman is as much an act as the outfit she wore.
Laura Holt is a conundrum of contrasts: disciplined - daring,
methodical - unexpected, sophisticated - naïve. The items
on the first list
.well the challenge is always to avoid
commitment and effort as much as possible, and still achieve
the objective. Steele rises to shower and order dinner - no,
go out for dinner. He reaches for the phone, "Claude, my
friend, Remington Steele here. Too late to squeeze me in tonight?.....Excellent,
.I shall be there by nine." And another call,
"Deborah? Yes, the flat is perfect! So terribly sorry to
be calling at the last minute, but I find myself alone tonight.
Any chance you could be persuaded to join me for dinner at L'Ornate?
Charming! We'll celebrate the successful conclusion of our search!
I'll be by in 30 minutes. You'll look lovely in whatever you
select." No sense in spending the evening alone. There will
be time to win Laura's confidence. His pursuit of Laura would
continue in the morning, meanwhile he would enjoy the creature
comforts of Laura's second list.
- Laura Holt stares up at her ceiling from the chair just inside
her front door, shoeless feet stretched out on the hassock in
front of her. Seven o'clock. She relaxes: alone at last, and
able to think and breathe more easily.
- Dealing with Mr. Steele this afternoon had been alternately
exhausting and exhilarating. Just being on the same sofa with
him in his apartment aroused feelings that Laura had struggled
to control. His perfect blue eyes, the smile that slid sideways
across his face, the thick dark hair that fell across his forehead,
tempting her to smooth it back into place, the accent of his
lilting voice as he made the most outrageously flirtatious remarks:
Laura's stomach had clenched and her pulse raced - it was all
she could do to remain business like. She is convinced, however,
that this is the only way Remington Steele Investigations is
going to survive her relationship with Mr. Steele. Business like.
- As she waited for her 'boss' to return from lunch today she
had outlined the parameters of the relationship between Mr. Steele
and the agency: a list of services and expectations, and list
of compensations. Business like, save signing a formal contract.
And how was that to be accomplished since the only name Mr. Steele
would acknowledge was the one she had created out of her imagination!?
Michael O'Leary? Douglas Quintain? Paul? Harry? Is there any
chance that any of them is Mr. Steele's real name? Does it matter?
Laura's stomach tightens again.
- 'What am I doing?' she questions herself for the umpteenth
time in the past several days! Murphy's glowering looks and head
shakes made it clear what he thought.
- Bernice found Laura's plight much more understandable, not
to mention amusing. Bernice's raised eyebrows and lascivious
grin made her thoughts on the interloper similarly clear. Though
Mr. Steele's refusal to call Bernice by the right name was wearing
a bit thin, Bernice responded to Mr. Steele's devastating good
looks and charm in much the same way Laura does - the way most
women apparently do.
- Laura knew her friend Deborah had been drooling over the
effusive Mr. Steele when they were looking for a place for him
to live, and had been quick to question his availability when
she thought Mr. Steele otherwise occupied. Apparently Miranda
Thicke of the Artist's Guild had found him fascinating as well.
The effect Mr. Steele has on other women strengthens Laura's
resolve to treat their relationship in as deliberate, and professional
a manner as possible. She has always prided herself on being
less boy crazy than other girls. 'My life does not revolve around
the men I spend time with.' Laura reminds herself. 'Men don't
make business decisions based on their girlfriends. There are
standards for a woman in the eighties!'
- But those eyes
.Laura's heart began to beat faster.
It had been all she could do to refuse his repeated suggestions
that she join him for dinner, for a glass of wine, to watch the
African Queen with him that evening. She had needed to bite her
lip to keep from smiling at his antics and quips. Business like
- that is the only way she is going to survive.
- Laura wearily rises, grabbing her shoes as she heads to her
bedroom to change from the tweed suit to something more comfortable
- a tee shirt, and running pants and shoes. A couple of miles
run will release her tension and invigorate her before she settles
in to study the papers she had brought home from her stop by
the agency. She needs her thoughts clear and focused. There is
no question that business is looking up with a 'real" Steele
in the picture.
- "Hang on Laura. It's going to be an exciting run,"
Laura muses aloud, thinking less of her athletic activity, less
of the business that needs to be attended to, and more of the
man she had left an hour before.
- End Part 3
- Part 4
- Murphy and Laura lean over the large desk in Mr. Steele's
office, his blond head close to her shinning brown, examining
the photographic proofs that cover the desk's surface. The pictures
are mostly those Murphy took that first day Steele arrived unbidden
to occupy Remington Steele's desk, and life, but there are others
as well, taken by zealous "beat" reporters. These have
been requested by Laura from various Los Angeles papers; one
taken at a luncheon with Captain Jeffers of the LA Police Department,
one of Steele dinning with Miss Thicke of the Artist Guild, one
backstage at the ballet. The rapidity with which Mr. Steele has
become a social focal point in the city has wildly exceeded their
expectations, as if they had had any.
- "The guy loves the camera, Laura; he's got an uncanny
instinct to smile at the opening of a lens cover." Murphy
mutters grimly. "You're still sure you want this exposure
for the agency? This conman is getting his face pretty well known
all over town
it's going to get harder to separate ourselves
from him every day."
- "Everything is working out great Murphy." Laura
responds evenly. "We've never had more interest in our services.
Focus here. We'll frame our favorites and create a photo montage
for Mr. Steele's office wall - a wall of fame so to speak to
impress clients. This one, these three, this one
- The two partners finish the project together, and Laura slips
the photos they have chosen into an envelope to take to a friend,
who had opened his own developing studio, to print. "I've
already spoken with Bernie Malcovitz, who told me he could have
them ready for us in a week or so. Ready for a break now Murph?"
- "Sure, Laura. Do you want to run down to Schlotzmann's
for coffee and Danish?" Maybe he could manage to get Laura
to stop working for just a few minutes and relax...with him.
- "Bernice offered to pick something up on her way in
this morning. Whatever she got should be on the counter by the
coffee -would you mind bringing me a cup when you come back in?
We can go over the Porterville matter together." Laura led
the way back into her crowded office, picking up a file as they
walked past the cabinet.
- All work and no play, Murphy muses, at least where he's concerned.
There is a certain rhythm to their interactions though, a familiar
comfort. Laura slips her shoes off and rests her feet on her
desk as she opens the file she picked up. Murphy sighs and leaves
to get coffee, briefly enveloping one of her tiny feet with his
hand as he walks past Laura's desk. Laura smiles without looking
- Steele whistles an Irish sounding tune as he leaves the Rossmore
building, heading toward the waiting limousine. Joey Jostens
steps quickly up to him, greeting him with a big smile and a
jovial slap on the back.
"Gotta minute, Harry? I've been hoping to catch you on your
way out - how about a bite of lunch?"
- "Just finished breakfast, Joey. Sorry - bit late for
the office now. I'll be sure to call soon" Steele assures
his acquaintance. Then with a wink, "Remington Steele, Joey,
- "Come'on Harry - that's too big a mouthful for a simple
guy like me. What's it gonna matter if you're a few minutes later?
You're the big detective, now, right? They'll wait for you."
- Steele hesitates at the door of the limo, and then shrugs
and gestures for Joey to precede him into the car. "Ride
along if you like, Joey, we can talk on my way to the agency."
- "Quite the wheels, Harry. No more buses or bumming rides,
- "Well," As he sits with Joey, Steele looks down
at his brightly polished Italian shoes, suddenly a bit uncomfortable
with his new found wealth. Thinking of the Royal Lavulite, and
the path it has let him on, Steele continues thoughtfully "I've
had a bit of good luck of late. Couple of things fell the right
- Joey shakes his head. "Down in Argentina we was both
living pretty hand to mouth, up one day and down the next, depending
on how the ponies ran, or how the cards fell."
- Steele smiles back at Joey. "We had some good days though,
mate. You have an amazingly good eye for a winner, Joey; we made
a killing or two. Didn't you finally land your dream job with
a stable there? Just before I took off as the Kilkinney Kid?
Working as a trainer with Andre Espernza?"
- "Yeah, well, always had a hard time resistin' a good
.they sort of frown on your bettin' against your own
colors. Looks bad, ya know, even if I had nothin' to do with
a certain horse winning or losin. So, anyway, I'm still looking
for that great horse, and I know of one
only he's pulled up lame and they're gonna put him down unless
someone can put together a group of investors to put him out
to stud. Gonna take a little time, but he's quality, Harry, he
could sire the next great colt."
- "You have about the best horse sense of anyone I know,
Joey, I'm sure he's a pip. Wish I could help you out, but I'm
afraid that sounds like more money than I can put my hands on."
Steele says gently.
- The limo reaches Century Towers, and Fred steps across to
open the door for Mr. Steele and his companion. (Fred laughs
to himself as he thinks how many different passengers he has
driven in the week since 'Mr. Steele' showed up in the flesh.)
Steele dismisses Fred with a genial wave of his hand. He reaches
to shake Joey's hand, offering his regrets once more, when Joey
makes one more impassioned plea.
- "Please, come see Danny, REMINGTON; I'm working at Bogart
Farm, out on Hollywood Road. Here's my number - call me, I'll
show you around the place - bring the lady, she might like a
day in the country."
- "I'll think about it, mate. I'll think about it."
The name of his hero, Bogart, with an address that had been the
origin of his escape for so many years, seems an omen to Steele,
along with planting the seed of an idea for wooing Laura. A day
in the country might be pleasant indeed. Stuffing the number
Joey had given him in his pocket Steele continues into the tower,
hitting the button for the eleventh floor at just about half
past eleven o'clock.
- There had been another two-liner in the "LA Word"
column today - 'Remington Steele spotted at late night dinner
with realtor Deborah Hancock.' Laura smacks the paper onto her
desk wishing she was bashing HIM. How had Steele found time to
meet Deborah for dinner when he had been pressuring her to stay
at his place to eat, and to watch a movie? The man was unbelievable!
Laura strides back and forth in her cramped office, then through
the door to HIS office to lengthen the path she paces.
- "How can he call this 'coming in tomorrow morning to
talk" when in thirty more minutes it will be afternoon?"
- "Relax - you told him he didn't need to be here early."
Walking into the office, Bernice places a calming hand on Laura's
shoulder and grins mischievously. "Besides, you and Murphy
get a lot more done when he isn't here to flirt with you and
push Murphy's buttons. Is there some reason you want him here
- Laura is distinctly uncomfortable with Bernice's insinuation.
"Don't be ridiculous, Bernice. I just can't wait around
here all day waiting to talk to him, and fill him in on where
we need him to be. I laid out all my expectations last night,
and I thought he understood that we need to spend a little time
each day going over things together
- Bernice's smile grows even broader. "Your expectations,
huh Laura? Going over what things?"
- "Bernice!" Laura growls. "Ours is a purely
professional relationship. That's the way it has to work. He
performs a service for us, in return for the use of the certain
- "Uh huhh. What service did he perform last night?"
- "Who?" Mr. Steele strolls into the office with
an inquisitive look in his bright blue eyes.
- Grabbing Bernice firmly by the shoulders and spinning her
around to head back into the reception area, Laura grimaces as
her face flushes with color. "Ah, the cleaning service,
I asked them to pay special attention to the carpets - which
I'm pretty sure they failed to do
- Bernice's hoot escapes from the other side of the door before
Laura can slam it shut. "Glad you can join us today, Mr.
Steele. I thought I made it clear we needed to discuss the day's
schedule each morning? Morning!? As in some time before
- "It's the shank of the morning, Miss Holt! And as beautiful
as you yourself are. Brilliant, fresh, and a bit brisk!"
Mr. Steele teased. "Time is such a subjective matter - one
man's early is another's moment to rejuvenate and appreciate
the sunrise from bed."
- "Mr. Steele, I need you here each morning to fill you
in on your schedule for the day. There's a luncheon for the "Protect
the Coastline" campaign. They've specifically requested
your involvement - it's a great publicity opportunity. You can
still make it there on time, but we should review some names
first." Laura's pulse rate rises as Steele coolly contemplates
her, his arms crossed, and that rogue eyebrow raised in amusement.
'Stay cool, Laura', she thinks.
- "Well, Miss Holt, a worthy cause I'm sure. I tell you
what. As much as I am enjoying our interaction now, I will leave
promptly, smile and exchange banalities with all those who wish
to commune with the coastline, if we can make a little bargain."
- How much of Bernice's teasing has Steele heard? Laura's cheeks
continue to burn, and she smoothes her already tidy skirt. "What
kind of bargain, Mr. Steele?"
- "Do you like horses, Miss Holt?" The observant
Steele recalls the photo of a handsome thoroughbred nuzzling
the ear of what could only be an elfin, adolescent Laura displayed
on the credenza behind her desk.
- Mr. Steele's question comes completely out of the blue, and
Laura's eyes lose their glare for a moment. More often found
in jeans and barn boots than dresses, for years Laura had mucked
stalls, groomed horses, and soaped saddles to earn riding time
at a public stable a bike ride away from her home. Steele has
unearthed a passion Laura has not indulged in for years. Recovering
swiftly, however, Laura strives for a casual response. "Most
girls in America go through a National Velvet phase, Mr. Steele.
I was not immune."
- "Elizabeth Taylor, Mickey Rooney, MGM, 1945
friend Joseph, the man I introduced to you yesterday? He has
invited me to visit the excellent facility where he works, and
specifically asked if YOU would like to come as well. Can we
make it a date for Saturday? I suspect he could arrange for a
couple of mounts for us." Steele watches Laura a bit anxiously,
gauging her response.
- Laura's cheeks are pink once again, but this time her flush
is not anger, but pleasure. A horseback ride with Mr. Steele?
- Laura's resolve to keep their relationship business like is
temporarily forgotten. "Murphy and I are meeting a client
to bid on a security contract Saturday morning, but perhaps later
in the day
" and then remembering her bargain with
Steele, as well as her resolve to keep their relationship business
only: "if you both attend the Coastline luncheon, and arrive
earlier Monday morning to meet with Murphy and me to discuss
your schedule for the day." 'Has she succeeded in sounding
- Taking Laura hands in his, and touching each in rapid succession
with his lips, Steele allows his smile to lift both corners of
- "Excellent, Miss Holt, I shall make the arrangements
with Mr. Jostens. Call Fred. I will depart to protect the coastline
now, and will return later this afternoon with details of our
outing." Steele turns and swings the office door wide, turning
to flash Laura a final smile as he heads out, past a laughing
- Laura sighs and sinks into the chair behind Mr. Steele's
desk, allowing her head to fall forward into her hands. For the
umpteenth time in the past few days she thinks 'What am I doing?!?
Get a grip, girl.' Straightening her back and picking up the
stack of discarded photographs from the corner of the desk where
she and Murphy had left them she walks back into her office and
tucks them under the blotter on her desk. Tossing the newspaper
with its gossip column into the trash, Laura sits down with a
list of contacts and picks up the phone to give Fred the details
of Mr. Steele's lunch with the environmentalists.
- Murphy tosses his keys onto his kitchen counter, grabbing
a beer from the fridge. Laura had been absolutely brilliant all
morning, as only she could be. She had thought of every possible
security risk to Randall's shipping business, and charmed the
man even as she pointed out his oversights. Nadine, Randall's
"executive assistant" had been obnoxious, hanging on
HIM, and asking endless pointless questions about the theft,
and Laura had been patient even with her. Laura's girl-next-door
sincerity and concern coupled with her insights were an unbeatable
combination. Of course she came to the meeting having thoroughly
researched every aspect of Randall's conglomerate. Her understanding
of complex business astounded Murphy - Laura would shine in almost
any financial career - other than the fact that such work would
lack the excitement Laura craved. As much as she excelled at
helping people avoid criminal intrusions into their lives, there
was a part of her that loved the possibility that such intrusions
would occur. Still, Murphy feels a bit wearied by her intensity
at times, and today has been one of those days. Sometimes he
just had to step back and let Laura rush by him, knowing she
will turn back for his solid back up in the next moment. He knows
she is vulnerable, even if she doesn't always acknowledge that
fact. Heck, she needed a male figurehead to get people to take
her seriously: a figurehead who has somehow now become a flesh
and blood pain in the backside. Now Laura was vulnerable within
her own agency. Vulnerable to whatever larceny 'Steele' was planning.
Murphy sighs as he allows the beer to flow down his throat.
- Laura tosses her keys on her hall table and undresses
as she walks swiftly down the hall to her bedroom. She will have
just enough time to change and pick up Mr. Steele for their visit
to the farm where his friend has invited them to visit. The morning
had been productive, Mr. Randall seemed pleased with the groundwork
she and Murphy had prepared, and if they could work without Nadine
falling all over Murphy they could have the security breaches
plugged within weeks. 'Poor Murphy,' Laura smiles. 'Not really
into brainless blondes - from what she had observed, Nadine was
more Mr. Steele's type.' Digging into the back of her closet
she emerges victorious with a pair of well worn boots. A splash
of water across her face, and a quick glance in her mirror as
she gathers her thick hair into a clip, Laura strides out the
door and into the Rabbit, tires squealing as she makes a u turn
and heads towards Rossmore.
- Steele tosses his new apartment key up in to the air,
catching it absentmindedly as he waits for Laura. Dinner with
Miss Thicke had been predictable. Getting women to smile and
flirt with him took no thought at all - a certain half smile,
slight movement of an eyebrow. Steele's good looks and quick
wit were gifts he had traded on for some time now. It was effortless,
and slightly boring, a way to pass an evening, but meaningless.
Miranda wanted him to escort her to a charity affair she was
chairing - for the good of the agency he would play the role
of Remington Steele with Miss Thicke. He would rather play Remington
Steele with Miss Holt. How fortuitous that Joey had been willing
to arrange for he and Laura to have the use of two what he promised
would be well mannered horses for a bit of a ride, assuring Steele
(Harry) that there was plenty of land to wander over. Pleasant
pleasant wandering thoughts of Laura
- "Well, Old World meets New?" Laura remarks dryly
as she looks Mr. Steele up and down with a self depreciating
smile. "What kind of farm are we going to?" Steele
is wearing formfitting white riding pants, tucked into tall polished
boots, along with what must surely BE a polo shirt, and a tweedy
blazer with suede elbow patches.
- "Haven't actually been there - I'm sure you are not
surprised to learn that my riding experience has been English,
and yours apparently Western. "You make a charming cowgirl,
Laura." Steele's admiration is completely sincere. His eyes
slowly take in Laura's jean jacket, faded blue plaid shirt, and
soft, washed out jeans. Her lace-up boots are battered. Somehow
it seems to Steele this Laura is more herself than the business
woman her tailored suits suggest. With her shimmering hair pulled
back in a clip, her freckles unconcealed, Laura looks younger,
and more vulnerable. Steele's heart constricts a little, as an
unfamiliar feeling of protectiveness rises in him. What is it
about this woman that so rattles him?! And finding Laura staring
at him with a quizzical smile, Steele moves to guide her with
a hand at the small of her back to the passenger side of the
Rabbit. "May I drive?" he asks, taking the keys from
her before she can answer. "We have a bit of a journey to
reach Hollywood Road.
- Warm breezes surround the couple as they spin along the streets
of LA in Laura's convertible. Steele seems entirely comfortable
navigating for a man who only recently arrived in town. 'Is it
possible for him to be ill at ease?' Laura ponders, watching
Mr. Steele out of the corner of her eye. Laura gently continues
her probe into Steele's background.
- "Tell me about your friend, Mr. Josten."
- "He is an expert trainer." Steele's responds warmly,
"Not only does Joey recognize the traits that make a horse
great; he brings out the best in every horse he works with. I
suspect he will have some fine animals for us to ride today.
How often do you get out riding these days Miss Holt?" Steele
deftly turns the conversation to focus on Laura.
- "Not often, Mr. Steele." Laura grins ruefully,
glancing down at her dusty boots, and then over at Steele's polished
pair. "Do you always travel with 'riding boots and jodhpurs?"
- "I find the finer things in life are available in most
cities if one looks about, Miss Holt."
- "I'll just bet you do, Mr. Steele."
- A pleasant hour's conversation finds Steele making the turn
onto Hollywood Road, and a short time later parking Laura's car
near the neatly fenced paddocks and stables of Bogart Farms.
- Joey walks forward quickly to meet Steele and Laura. "Harry,
ah, Remington!" Joey exclaims, "Great you could come,
and bring the lady too. Nice to see you again Miss Holt."
Joey pumps Steele's hand, and then gestures toward two stately
thoroughbreds waiting quietly at the fence. "These two are
yours for the afternoon - retired 'fellows,' happy to get out
for a stroll. Come into the tack room and we'll get you both
set. I want to show you my special project too, Remington."
- Laura breathes deeply of the country air and promptly sneezes.
Mr. Steele pulls his handkerchief out of his pocket and with
a slight flourish hands it to Laura.
- "Thank you Mr. Steele." Laura groans inwardly.
She had hoped it would be late enough in the fall that the rag
weed would have died back. Another sneeze shook her narrow shoulders.
Mr. Steele looks at her with a bit of concern.
- "All right, are we Miss Holt?"
- "Of course, Mr. Steele. I have a little trouble with
hay fever. Ahh cheoo!" Laura tries to mentally calm the
itching in her nose, and control the sneezing. Her mother had
always maintained that the sneezing was all in her head. 'In
my head is right!' Laura thought to herself, as a fourth sneeze
claims her. Mr. Steele's handkerchief was getting a workout -
it smelled vaguely of his cologne. That distraction is all it
takes to control Laura's sneezing. Could she ride with the fragrant
cloth pressed to her face? Walking into the stable Laura is overwhelmed
by the affluence. Stall after stall, labeled with each occupant's
name, the walkway neatly swept, and matching equipment trunks
neatly set outside every other stall. At the far end of the stalls
the wide walk turns to reveal offices, and a large tack room.
A door near the end stands open to the outside, and continuing
down this hall Joey leads them outside again and to a grassy
paddock . A handsome young stallion nickers and walks up to the
rail to greet Joey, who finds a carrot in his pocket for the
- "This is Danny," Joey states, looking hopefully
- "He's gorgeous!" Laura exclaims, reaching to stroke
Danny's nose. "What a beauty! I'll bet he can really tear
up a track."
- "Yeah, he's had some great races all right." Joey
chooses his words carefully, not sure how much information Steele
has relayed to his lady friend.
- "Yes, well, how about that tack now Joseph. Danny is
a handsome fellow. You must be very proud to work with such a
fine animal." Steele looks evenly at Joey, willing him to
- Joey takes the hint, and leads the pair back toward the tack
room. He will find time to work on Harry after he rides. The
smell of well oiled leather greets them as they enter the tack
room, where pegs hold bridle after bridle, and expensive saddles
sit neatly on racks beneath them. Joey throws two bridles over
his shoulder, then selects a saddle, handing it to Steele, choosing
another for Laura. Returning to the horses, the two men make
short work of saddling the horses, work Steele seems as comfortable
with as Joey. Laura watches, speculating on this new piece of
information about Mr. Steele's background.
- "You've done this before, Mr. Steele."
- "If one is going to ride, one must know the proper procedure
to accomplish the task, eh, Miss Holt? I imagine you would be
- "Thank you Joseph," Laura says, taking the reins
from Mr. Steele's friend. "Who am I riding?"
- "This is Kennedy," Joseph informs Laura, and looking
at Steele, adds "and yours is Jefferson."
Laura spends a moment murmuring to Kennedy, offering her hand
for him to nuzzle. Though dwarfed by the thoroughbred, Laura
grasps the horse's mane and the back of the saddle and is quickly
aloft. She sits comfortably, talking to her mount in a quiet
voice, while Joey brings the stirrups up high enough for Laura.
Steele then removes his blazer, and hands it to Joey, rising
easily onto Jefferson's back.
- "A presidential bent, eh Joey? Shall we be on our way,
- "Lead on - should I ask if you know where you're going?"
- "It doesn't matter as long as I'm with you." Steele
- Joey roles his eyes at Steele's words, though he knows Harry's
history with women. That tripe must work! He laughs as he offers
direction to both. "Up the road a bit, and then take the
path to the left. You'll circle around and come back over the
road a couple of miles farther on. Follow the path on to the
stable, or circle around the lake if you like. I'll be here waiting
when ya' get back."
- With a crisp click of her tongue Laura leads the way, Steele
falling into place at her side. Laura's sneezes once more, then
manages to control the impulse. The pair ride companionably down
the road, enjoying the warm sun, and beautiful California scenery.
Upon reaching the lake Laura guides Kennedy off the road, and
prepares to dismount. Steele slides swiftly off his mount to
reach for Laura's slender waist with his long fingered hands,
lifting her to the ground. Laura's stomach fills with butterflies
at this contact, her pulse racing. A glance up at those ocean
blue eyes and Laura comes close to loosing her balance. Stepping
back and focusing on the lake instead, Laura takes Kennedy's
reins from his neck and walks slowly toward the water.
- "How long have you been in America, Mr. Steele?"
Laura questions. "Did you come to Los Angeles directly from
South Africa? Or was that only the unfortunate Mr. Pearson?"
- The inquiry takes a decidedly chilly turn at the mention
of Ben Pearson.
- "The gems had been in South Africa, as you know Laura,
and I followed them here, as did Mr. Pearson." Steele's
demeanor is sober as he responds. "It is a relief that Kessler
and Neeff have been apprehended, and will no longer be able to
either pursue the royal lavulite, or harm others in that pursuit."
- "Of course. You know the agency will be called to testify
against them - 'Mr. Steele' has always managed to avoid court
appearances - business out of the country, relatives at death's
door... Things could get tricky now that you actually exist."
This new concern clouds Laura's thoughts. As she ponders the
now very real Remington Steele Laura asks,
- "How was your lunch with Miss Thicke
I were sent a copy of a photo of the two of you at Che Rive."
"Indeed? All in the line of duty, Miss Holt. A bit dreary
if truth were told." Steele replied.
- "And Miss Hancock?" Laura feels a prickle of irritation
creep up her neck as she recalls the newspapers report of Mr.
Steele's dinner exploits the same night he had supposedly wanted
- "I simply wanted to thank her for finding me the wonderful
flat, Laura." Steele senses his pleasant ride deteriorating.
"You will recall that yours was the company I sought Thursday
evening. You and Deborah are friends, are you not, Miss Holt?
She was most glowing in her praise of your work ethic, and competence.
Envious I think of the exciting life of a private dick."
Steele sought to regain the light mood he and Laura had enjoyed
during their drive to Bogart Farm.
- Laura struggles to maintain enough distance that she can
steer clear of Mr. Steele's obvious charms. "Murphy and
I have a client we could use your particular talents with, Mr.
Steele - a young woman whose efforts to help are hindering our
ability to meet our client's needs. Perhaps you would be willing
to keep this woman occupied so Murphy and I could work in peace."
- "Whatever you need Laura, within reason. I would prefer
to keep a modicum of dignity." Steele grins winningly at
Laura, almost refuting his request for dignity. How cruel that
she would use him to free her to spend time with Murphy, even
if under the guise of work!
- "I'll fill you in Monday morning, Mr. Steele."
Laura's delivery is all business. "As lovely as the ride
has been we had better head back now.
- Sighing, Steele joins his hands together to provide a step
for Laura, which she eschews as she pulls herself lightly up
onto Kennedy's back.
- "Thank you Mr. Steele, but I am quite capable on my
- "Clearly, Miss Holt, clearly!" Steele responds
- As they draw near the stable, Kennedy's ears prick forward,
his nose flares, and in memory of some long ago afternoon, he
leaps to a gallop to join pace with a group of young race horses
thundering around the practice track. Laura draws close to the
gelding's neck, hanging on despite the surprise start.
- "Laura!" Startled, as well as concerned for Laura,
Steele urges Jefferson to a gallop, to draw closer to Laura's
horse. Glancing over, he sees that Laura, far from being afraid,
is laughing as she firmly grips Kennedy's bridle and begins to
bring him under control.
- Gradually fighting the horse to a grudging stop, Laura is
completely exhilarated. Breathing as deeply as the horse, her
face shines with the joy of unexpected challenge met.
- "Miss Holt, you are amazing." Steele, watching
Laura, smiles. This woman is something, someone he fervently
wants to know.
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