- Leading Up to Steele 1/1
Date: Friday, January 05, 2001
- Janice <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Leading Up to Steele 1/1
[Here's my take on what
might have happened shortly before "Benjamin Pearson"
arrived in Los Angeles. Enjoy!].
September 29, 1982, London.
"Well it's as simple as this Harry," the older gentleman
began explaining, holding a very serious expression on his face.
"If you don't go through with it, you and I might have to
spend the rest of our lives scaling walls and eating sardines
out of a can,"
Harry's face wrinkled in distaste. "Speak for yourself Daniel,"
"Try not to botch this one up Harry," Daniel advised
"BOTCH!" Harry shouted, leaping up from the settee,
feigning arrogance. "I've never botched up a job before
so why would I now,"
"Well that's true," Daniel had to agree in a light
voice. "But there's a first time for everything-isn't there
Harry," the older man pointed out to his former pupil, a
very worried expression on his face.
"I won't fail or as you put it-botch things up," Harry
hissed. "I am an artist remember-"
"Artist yes," Daniel said slowly in a quiet tone of
voice, as he removed an imaginary piece of lint from his jacket.
"But it won't be as easy as you think to get your hands
on those gems-" he added, looking up at Harry.
"Royal Lavulite wasn't it?"
Daniel nodded his response. "Worth over two million dollars,"
Harry whistled. "That could buy an awful lot of champagne
and caviar," Harry commented lightly, a devilish grin brightened
his handsome face.
"So you'd better get cracking and come up with a plan on
how to get your hands on those gems due to arrive in Los Angeles
Harry suddenly looked thoughtful, a hand to his jaw.
"Hmmm-do we know who'll be providing security for those
"Indeed I do-Remington Steele Investigations-more
specifically a female private detective- Laura Holt I believe-
will be overseeing the-"
"A female dick Eh," Harry cut in, a very curious look
on his face.
"She's quite capable of handling the job-that I can assure
you," Daniel warned lightly.
"Picked up the shovel again Eh Daniel,"
"So tell me what did you find out about our Laura Holt?"
"Enough to convince me that she's very good at her job and
will do whatever's necessary to stop would be thieves-"
"-from getting their hands on those gems," Daniel continued,
a serious look on his face. "Steele must have thought she's
quite capable of handling this assignment-why else would the
Boss of the establishment choose not to involve himself in the
thick of things," Daniel gathered.
"So Steele's not involved Eh," Harry said, wondering
how that bit of news might work to his advantage.
"From what I understand-no. Miss Holt will be-and Steele's
associate, Murphy Michaels, will be working alongside her,"
Now it was Harry's turn to frown. "Great," he complained.
"Oh I'm sure you can handle Mr. Michaels," Daniel said
quickly with a great deal of confidence. Harry on the other hand,
appeared doubtful. "This is who you should be concerned
about," Daniel added, handing him the black and white photograph
of the female private eye dressed in a business suit; Harry wasted
no time in retrieving it.
"Attractive!" Harry commented lightly, his handsome
brightened by a delightful smile. "She certainly doesn't
look like any of those female dicks I've seen in the movies,"
he went on.
"Wipe that very satisfying smile off your face young man,"
Daniel admonished. "Your visit to Los Angeles is strictly
for business-not pleasure might I remind you,"
Harry frowned. "A romantic devil you are Mr. Chalmers,"
Harry said in a very disappointing tone of voice.
"Suddenly I'm having second thoughts about this," Daniel
"Whether or not you're the right man for the job,"
he told the younger man.
Harry's temper suddenly flared up. "Well if you don't think
that I'm not capable of handling the job Daniel you can always-"
Harry shouted angrily. Daniel realizing that he has hit a sensitive
nerve, jumped in quickly to explain himself.
"All I meant was that you can't afford to get your heart
caught while on the job," Daniel explained in a soft tone
"Why are you so concerned?" Harry asked, setting worried
eyes on the man.
"Miss Holt might be pretty-and attractive as you put it,
but whatyou must keep in mind is that she represents the other
"And what side is that Daniel?"
"The law. And forgive me for being so blunt, but you are
"I see-no mixing business with pleasure,"
"None whatsoever," Daniel stressed strongly. "So
you can rule out seduction," he warned the young man.
"I must admit that I'm curious-"
"About what?" Daniel asked, looking very perplexed
and at the same time crossing his legs.
"What she'd look like donned in a very elegant evening gown,
with her hair up, with very expensive jewels decorating that
graceful neck of hers," Harry explained in a light tone
of voice, a hint of mischief in those oceanic blue eyes.
Daniel frowned, his patience wearing thin. "Well I guess
you're going to die of curiosity," Daniel expressed bluntly.
Harry glanced at the photograph once more before looking at Daniel.
Daniel saw a look of disgust written on the younger man's face.
"I thought you'd left it entirely up to me in the way in
which I'd proceed in getting my hands on the gems," Harry
"Well yes," Daniel confirmed in a sincere tone of voice.
"But I must caution you about something-"
"Miss Holt's nothing like Felicia. She's not going to fall
for that smarmy charm of yours," the older man reminded
his former pupil.
Harry gritted his teeth, resenting the fact that Daniel had the
ability to read his mind. Seduction was exactly what he had in
mind. By seducing Laura Holt, he figured that she'd fall into
his arms and ultimately into his bed, thereby spilling her guts
on the route the gems will take once they arrive in Los Angeles.
"Keep it strictly business Harry," Daniel warned him
in a light tone of voice.
<Okay,> he thought, <I guess it's on to plan B, whatever
"I don't see anything wrong with indulging in a smidgen
of pleasure while pursuing the gems," he said.
"By getting in too deep with this woman you're bound to
make the wrong decision-
"What's that suppose to mean?"
"It means that you'll end up leaving Los Angeles without
the gems because you've decided that stealing them from under
this young detective's jurisdiction might cause her to lose her
job and that's something you couldn't live with. You can't allow
your heart to rule your head, and believe me Harry heart always
"Been there have you Daniel," Harry said quietly.
"I was never that foolish," Daniel tried to say in
a very convincing tone but failing miserably.
"I see," Harry quipped, eyeing the man suspiciously.
"But I have to find a way to hook up with Miss Holt since
it appears that she's the one who'll lead me straight to the
gems. Am I right?"
"Why yes-and that's why I've come up with the perfect cover
for you. This way she won't be suspicious of your movements."
"Who am I posing as this time?"
"Well I've got it on good ground that a South African agent
by the name of Benjamin Pearson will be traveling to Los Angeles
to oversee the transport of the gems,"
"Tell me that that's not my cover,"
"It is Harry. You'll assume the name Benjamin Pearson for
"Are you bloody crazy Daniel," Harry shouted. "How
can I pose as this Pearson fellow when he'll be turning up in
Los Angeles. He'll no doubt be working very closely with Laura
Daniel's face suddenly lit up with a broad grin."Precisely!"
He exclaimed. "And she's no doubt expecting the man to show
up at the agency the moment he arrives in Los Angeles, and so-"
"You're forgetting one thing-" Harry interrupted.
"Maybe she's already put in a request to have Ben Pearson's
picture wired to her office-"
"Trust me Harry- she hasn't- well based on the information
I received from my source in South Africa, she's not yet done
so. And I sort of hinted-" Daniel added, smiling coyly.
"But that could change and if it does, where would that
leave me- and you for that matter?"
"Oh Harry- you worry too much. Don't worry- my source will
do all he can to prevent Ben Pearson's picture from getting into
the wrong hands,"
"You mean Laura Holt and Murphy Michaels don't you?"
Daniel nodded slowly, a ghost of a smile on his face.
"If Miss Holt discovers that I'm an imposter, she's bound
to call the authorities and have me arrested, then you can just
kiss your retirement goodbye. I won't be able to get my hands
on the gems if I'm sitting in a jail cell-"
"That won't happen," Daniel assured him. "By the
time she discovers that you're an imposter- not the real Ben
Pearson- you'll be on your way back to London with the gems,"
"What's to prevent her from coming after me?"
"She no doubt will," Daniel said reasonably. After
all, the woman is a detective and a damn good at that, he surmised,
judging from the information he dug up on the Stanford University
graduate. "Remember my boy that the distance between here
and Los Angeles-"
"What's your point Daniel" Harry cut in, sounding impatient.
"By the time she discovers that you're NOT the man you claim
to be and also discovers that you're the one who stole the gems
and as a result decides to track you down-"
"With the aid of blood hounds no doubt," Harry cut
"We'll be well on our way to-"
"I hope you're right Daniel-" Harry interrupted quickly,
looking very worried.
"I am Harry," he assured him again. "Now,"
he added in a cheerful tone. "Here's your passport with
your new name," he told him, handing that very item to the
younger man who retrieved it from him.
"Thanks- I think," Harry said, checking out the photograph
inside the passport. "When do I take off?"
"Tomorrow night. You can pick up your ticket at the airport-"
"You did make the reservations under the name of Benjamin
Pearson, didn't you?"
"Of course. And I took the liberty of digging up some background
information on this Pearson fellow, which I'll give you later
on. You should study it tonight and tomorrow morning I'll give
you a test,"
"Test-I didn't realize that I was still in school,"
Daniel had to laugh. "Now I'm a bit weary and so I think
I'll turn in for the night,"
"Hmmm-I on the other hand cannot afford the luxury of
sleeping-I have to stay up and do homework,"
"You'll be all the better for it my boy. Trust me it's for
your own good."
"Fine." Daniel said after a brief pause. "See
you in the morning," He added, putting one foot on the step,
attempting to climb the stairs. "Aren't you forgetting something?"
Daniel suddenly realized, turning eyes to Harry.
"What?" Harry asked, looking a bit self-conscious.
"Miss Holt's picture," Daniel told him.
"Oh?" Harry said skeptically. "I thought it was
part of my homework,"
Daniel smiled tightly, extending his right arm. Harry reluctantly
gave up the photograph. "Well goodnight Daniel," Harry
said quietly, his mind distracted by the brunette depicted in
the picture he'd just returned to Daniel.
"Goodnight Harry," Daniel returned quietly, an amused
expression on his face. As he ascended the stairs, Daniel wondered
what 'wicked' thoughts might be passing through Harry's mind
where that attractive brunette was concerned. Women, especially
very attractive ones, were always Harry's weak spot. A con man
and a thief coupled with a female private detective could be
extremely volatile, Daniel imagined. Tonight, he'll keep his
fingers crossed, hoping that the real Ben Pearson or his picture
doesn't turn up in Los Angeles before Harry hooks up with Laura
Holt, posing as the South African agent of course. If his well
thought out plan of having Harry steal those precious gems goes
up in smoke, Daniel can just kiss his early retirement goodbye.
September 30, 1982 - 9:30 AM
"So let's go over it once more Harry," Daniel suggested.
"And this time no stuttering," Daniel advised strongly,
causing Harry's shoulders to slump in protest.
"Okay. But I hope this chap-the real Ben Pearson doesn't
show upin Los Angeles and complicate matters. I can just see
it now," Harry added. Looking up at Daniel, the older man
saw worry lines set in the center of the younger man's forehead.
"Miss Holt going-will the real Ben Pearson step forward,
and when that man isn't I," he stressed, hitting his chest
lightly with his fingers, "what do you suppose will happen.
I'll tell you what," he went on, looking very worried. "She'll
call the coppers and have me arrested for impersonating a government
official. And might I point out again-" Harry said hastily.
"I know-you won't be able to get your hands on the gems
if you're locked behind bars," Daniel finished, knowing
fully well what the younger man was about to say.
"Then again," Harry fretted. "She might just discover
that I'm planning to steal the gems before she realizes that
I'm not the real Ben Pearson. Either way, I'll be in a lot of
"Oh Harry," Daniel said casually. "You worry too
"Easy for you to say Mr. Chalmers," Harry responded
quietly. "It's not your head that will be placed on a platter
"I could always send Monroe," Daniel threatened lightly,
lifting the telephone receiver to his right ear, his fingers
at the ready to dial the number.
"Now let's not be too hasty," Harry began quickly,
snatching the receiver out of Daniel's hand, returning it to
the hook. I'll get the bloody gems for you,"
"Good decision," Daniel said, smiling slightly. "Now
where were we?"
"I think I was about to be interrogated once more by you,"
Harry teased, causing his mentor to frown.
September 30, 1982, Remington Steele Investigations, approximately
"What do you suppose Ben Pearson looks like Laura?"
A wide-eyed curious Berneice Foxe asked her employer.
"Average looking I suppose," Laura Holt responded half-heartedly,
not looking up from her work.
"Don't tell me you're not dying to know what this South
African agent looks like. Is he tall, dark, and handsome or-"
"Have you finished typing that report on the Henderson case
I gave you earlier?" Laura cut in abruptly, finally lookiing
up at her secretary, whose face was covered with disappointment.
"Almost," Berniece answered quietly, looking slightly
"Almost isn't good enough. I'd like to review it before
I go home tonight," Laura said firmly.
"Fine," a disappointed Berniece hissed, then spun around
and walked out of Laura Holt's office, closing the door behind
Suddenly a bright smile lit up Laura's face. "Gee I wonder,"
she said rising from her chair. "What does he look like?"
"Berniece," she said after buzzing the secretary on
telephone. "See what you can do about obtaining a photograph
of Ben Pearson. I think it would be a good idea to see what he
looks like before he and I meet face to face,"
"I see," Berniece said. Laura sensed her secretary's
face covered with a smirk. "Okay, I'll try," Berniece
told her gladly.
"And wipe that smirk off your face," Laura instructed
"Me-smirk?" Berniece joked. "I'll get on it right
"Thanks," Laura said.
Back in London at Heathrow Airport, approximately 6:00 P.M.
"Well good luck my boy," Daniel Chalmers said, extending
his right hand. Both men exchanged a hearty handshake.
"Thanks old chap," Harry said with a smile, which quickly
faded away. Suddenly he looked very worried.
A bit of consoling was in order Daniel thought. "It's all
going to work out my boy. It will," he emphasized strongly.
"I hope so,"
"I know so," Daniel said strongly. "Now it's time
to board your flight to Los Angeles. Have a safe trip Harry.
See you in a few days,"
"Hopefully," Harry said, sounding doubtful. They exchanged
an affectionate hug just before Harry walked away to board his
After boarding the plane, Harry wondered what would be his next
move after he hooked up with Laura Holt. How's he actually going
to get his sweet little hands on those gems? "Slip in fakes
for the original perhaps when no one's looking," he said
in barely a whisper.
"Sounds good to me," he heard a familiar voice said
Looking up he saw the tall, curvaceous blue-eyed blonde who took
the liberty of taking a seat next to him.
"I hope this seat's not taken?"
Harry eyed the blonde with disgust.
"What the bloody hell are you doing here Felicia?"
Harry said angrily.
"I thought it would be obvious Darling," she purred.
"It's not. So would you care to enlighten me as to why you're
on this flight that's headed to Los Angeles,"
"Oh I thought you might need a little help," she said
"With stealing those precious gems,"
Harry should have looked surprised but he wasn't, which surprised
Felicia. "Your kind of help I can do without Felicia,"
he told her frankly.
"I don't know about that Darling. And furthermore you have
very little choice in the matter,"
"Really," he said skeptically. "And why is that
"Simple," she said fastening her seat belt. "If
you don't allow me to assist you on this assignment, the moment
we arrive in Los Angeles I'll go straight to Remington Steele
Investigations and inform the Boss that you're a fraud-not the
real Ben Pearson," she
threatened,keeping her voice low.
"Hmmm-blackmail," he whispered back. "But I think
wasting your time Felicia. For one thing Steele's out of town
and won't be involved in the case,"
"How can you be so sure?"
Harry grinned delightfully. "I'm not. But let's get back
to why you've decided to follow me to Los Angeles, shall we,"
he added, eyeing the blonde suspiciously. "The only reason
why you've decided to HELP me out on this little caper is because
of who I'll be working with,"
"And who's that?" She asked innocently.
"You somehow found out that there's a strong possibility
that I might be working very closely with a private detective,
and as it turns out happens to be female,"
"I didn't," Felicia protested.
"No?" Harry questioned skeptically. "Jealousy
rears its ugly head Eh Felicia. Might I remind you, that there
is no us anymore,"
"Don't be so sure Darling," she said quickly. "Well
I suppose I'd better leave before this plane takes off. Wouldn't
want to wear out my welcome," she said reasonably, unfastening
her seat belt. "Good luck Darling," she said.
"Thank you," he said genuinely.
Felicia departed rose from her seat, then hurried off the plane,
feeling slightly ticked off at the man she knew as Michael O'Leary.
Harry breathed a quiet sigh of relief that Felicia would not
be accompanying him to Los Angeles, and at the same time retrieved
the photograph of Laura Holt that he'd stolen from Daniel's room
to have a good look at it.
"A pleasure to meet you Miss Holt," he whispered, a
sweet smile brightening his handsome face. "A pleasure indeed."
And so it began...