Steele of My Innocence 2/4?
Date: Fri, 3 Mar 2000
Linda <>

Hello fellow fic-listers! Thanks to all who had such kind words about part 1. Here's part 2, but before you read it, an overdue round of applause, please, for my Beta buddies, Anne and Jax. They leave no verb unturned!

The day began as any other, a cliche perhaps but nonetheless accurate. Laura rose early, plodded downstairs to the kitchen to turn on the coffee pot, decaf in deference to doctor's orders, and headed to the shower. Methodical in her personal as well as her professional life, she chose her clothing and dressed with care. Applying a touch of makeup with attentiveness and slipping on her wedding band and watch completed her ensemble.

Her husband was never one to grace the day a minute earlier than absolutely necessary, but by now it was late even for him. Laura decided that a bit of inducement was in order. She soundlessly infiltrated their bedroom and tilted the wood blinds to allow a wash of sunshine to enter. A low groan followed by wordless thrashing was her reward. Tiptoeing to the bed, Laura glimpsed Harry's dark head of hair peeking out from under several pillows. She sat down and attempted to extricate him from the bed linens, no simple task. Apparently Steele was marginally more awake than Laura had given him credit for, as he abruptly turned over and reached up in one fluid motion to pull her back into bed with him. And perhaps because he was capable of charming her like no other man could, or perhaps simply because she loved him, she sat up a bit to make it easier for him to undo the buttons she had so recently buttoned.


Laura scrapped the outfit she had chosen earlier that morning, as it was wrinkled beyond repair. Her husband, meanwhile, made short work of showering, shaving, and dressing.

"Laura! Hadn't we better get a move on?" Standing in the foyer, Steele made last- minute adjustments to his attire, straightening his tie, re-fastening cuff links, and re- grooming hair, fastidiously scrutinizing his appearance in the hall mirror.

Laura practically catapulted down the stairs. "Look who's talking! I was ready way before you."

"Really? Hadn't noticed." A slap on the arm was his recompense for that remark.

In the car, Steele drove while Laura parsed their schedule for the day. He had always suspected that Laura planned her life down to the nanosecond, but even he was surprised by the level of accuracy in this assessment. He found that this attribute of Laura's drove him mad, especially given her desire to map out his day as well. While spontaneity was his watchword, hers was preparedness. Or organization. Or obsessive- compulsiveness. Or----

Harry suddenly realized that Laura was looking at him. And in a less-than endearing manner.

"Have you heard even a single word I said?"


Mildred hummed to herself as she readied the offices of Remington Steele Investigations for a new day. The single most important tasks she performed were to prepare Mr. Steele's tea and to position the morning newspaper, just so, on his desk. Mrs. Steele's demands were slightly more complex. Within her in-box Mildred placed the day's mail, already subjected to a letter opener, and any outgoing correspondence that was ready for her perusal. Open case files were stacked at a right angle to the in-box, just to the left of the telephone. Since today was the day to file the business's quarterly payroll taxes, these completed forms were prominently situated in the middle of the blotter, as the most pressing business of the morning.

Morning, hah, Mildred thought to herself. Those two were sure making up for
lost time. It was almost 11 AM. Although it had been a relatively quiet day so far, that broad with the foreign accent had called no less than four times for Mrs. Steele, and she was beginning to get on Mildred's nerves.

". . . if I can get us a reservation at this late date." And here were the two lovebirds now.

"Allow me, Laura. Maurice owes me a favor," Steele said with a winning smile. "Ah, good morning, Mildred, holding down the fort with your usual aplomb, eh?"

"Yes, Boss. Mrs. Steele, some woman has been calling you on the half-hour ever since I got here. Wouldn't leave her name. I--"

"Put her through if she calls again, Mildred." Pausing to walk into her office and hang her jacket on the hook behind the door, Laura turned her attention back to her husband. "Ok, dinner plans are in your hands, Har--Mr. Steele. But please, no Indian tonight, hmm? My stomach isn't up to the task."

The couple retreated to their respective offices, Mildred trailing Steele to ensure that the tea was strong enough for him. Mildred had heard that slip, though, and she heard it a lot these days. As far as Mildred knew, his father, Daniel Chalmers of all people, had died without revealing Mr. Steele's real name. Out of the office, Mrs. Steele had taken to calling him Harry, and although she had never explained her motivations to Mildred, it was apparent that she considered Harry the less. . . deceitful choice. Sometime during her five years with this pair, Mildred had been set straight about the business. She'd even learned that Laura had invented 'Remington Steele' out of whole cloth, and calling her husband the name inspired by a typewriter, Mildred speculated, was a little more than Mrs. Steele could bear. Nobody clued Mildred in on the reason she'd settled on 'Harry,' but Mildred thought it suited the Boss all the same.

"Mmm, yes, Mildred, the tea is splendid, but it could use a bit of warming up."

"I'll get right on it, Chief."


Like clockwork, Mildred thought wryly. At least maybe this dame would stop calling, once Mrs. Steele talked to her. She rose and knocked lightly on Laura's door before opening it slightly. "Mrs. Steele? It's that woman again. I think she's French."

"Alright, Mildred, thanks." Mildred shut the office door and left Mrs. Steele alone to deal with the caller, probably someone looking to have her two-timing husband tailed. Meanwhile Steele wandered into the reception area to start chatting with Mildred over the anticipation of lunch.

Five minutes later, Laura opened her door.

"Ah, Laura, just in time. What say we close up shop for a bit of a repast, eh?" Harry stopped when he looked closely at her. She was pale, white as the proverbial sheet in fact. "Darling? Are you all right? Sit down." He steered her to the sofa and sat down beside her. "What is it?"

"Mildred, book 4 seats to Paris on the next flight."

After one look at Mrs. Steele, Mildred didn't bother to ask for an explanation. She just started dialing. "For. . . .?"

"Mr. Steele and me. And Frances and Donald."

"Laura. . . ." in a tone that demanded a response.

"Well Mr. Steele, it looks like I've found my father. Or rather he found me. And now I've lost him all over again."

To Part 3