- More Of A License To Steele 1/2
Date: Thursday, March 15, 2001
- By Ilsa Lund <email@example.com>
Firstly, thanks to my
beta reader Lauryn for all her wonderful help. Having an American
read over my work has been so enlightening in terms of dialogue:
the things we say, the things you don't - LOL!
Anyway, I decided that I'd been away too long from my own personal
favourite season so I knocked this up over the weekend.
I've always rued the fact that time constraints stopped us from
getting more of LH's ride in the limo with 'Ben Pearson' - so
I've expanded it. I've aimed for the style and tone of 'License'
itself - one of my all time fave RS episodes.
More Of A License To Steele
By Ilsa Lund
Rating: R for sexual innuendo.
Americans may come across odd spellings (grey instead of gray)
- I'm British.
Disclaimer: This is purely for entertainment purposes. No profit
is being made.
Feel free to archive.
All feedback welcomed.
"Pull up over here Fred," Private investigator Laura
She turned to the tall, dark, handsome man seated beside her.
God, what a cliche. Strike that. What a devastating cliche.
His eyes glinted - sparked by the streaks of light other cars
provided. It illuminated his face: warm, amused but deadly serious
at the same time.
"Is this okay Mr Pearson?"
"More than adequate Miss Holt." He flashed a billion-dollar
smile, a smile that glittered in the moonlight. "It appears
the gentlemen who murdered the courier are now in police hands.
I can't tell you how good that is for me personally."
"I'm glad I was able to help."
He tugged an earlobe. "Thank you Miss Holt, I appreciate
your invaluable assistance. Because of you, my job will be so
"I have the interests of the Royal Lavulite at heart Mr
Pearson," Laura replied. An uneasy feeling washed over her.
That sounded a little too authoritative. "On behalf of Mr
Steele, I mean."
"So I've gathered."
"I've been - the Remington Steele agency has been hired
to safeguard and deliver the Royal Lavulite and that's what we'll
do. Mr Steele's word is his bond."
"His word is his bond, eh? Pithy motto."
Laura brushed her skirt. "Yes it is. And I owe it to Mr
Steele to see that his word remains as intact as his reputation
because he's - he's unique."
"Is that so?" He discerned devotion in her tone. How
"Not only unique but the finest man any woman could dream
of. The most sincere, generous, kind -"
He shifted closer. "You sound almost enamoured."
She turned to him sharply. "Because I admire a man like
him? Because I respect those qualities in a man?"
"No. It's not just that."
The question hung in the air. Don't ask it, Laura told herself.
Don't ask it. He wanted her to, she could tell that he really
wanted her to. Staring out of the window she spied a couple strolling
by, hand in hand, laughing - caught up in their own secret world.
They embraced, then kissed passionately.
The words slipped out. "What is it then Mr Pearson?"
"You paint a virtually perfect picture of Remington Steele."
"Why shouldn't I? Conjuring up the perfect man is conjuring
up Mr Steele."
"Indeed? Well in the words of Irish novelist James Stephens,
'nothing is perfect. There are lumps in it.' "
"Well in the words of Laura Holt, I've worked with Mr Steele
for a couple of years now and he has no lumps."
"Perhaps your loyalty to him blinds you in that respect.
Tell me, Miss Holt, truthfully - would you even admit to seeing
Remington Steele's lumps?" He straightened his tie.
"I don't quite know how to -"
"His lumps. He has shortcomings doesn't he? How big are
"I can't believe we're having this conversation."
He nudged her. "Come on Miss Holt, you can tell me. One
lump or two?"
"Can we get off Mr Steele's lumps now please?"
"Fair enough. I prefer to think of you not thinking about
his lumps anyway. After all, you have to work with the man. If
you say he's perfect, we'll allow him to be perfect. That's how
much I trust your judgement Miss Holt."
"You've only just met me."
He scanned her face, eyes darkly blazing. "Call it an instinct.
I trust my instincts, do you?"
"Instincts about what?"
"About anything. About everything."
"I suppose you need them for what you do Mr Pearson."
"Oh yes. More than you'll ever realise." There was
something so coolly refreshing about her. An openness, an honesty,
a forthright attitude. His coterie of conquests stretched continents
but none was quite like this one.
"We detectives have to go with a hunch at times too."
"Got one about me?"
"Care to share it?"
The candour of his look made her heart start to race. "I'm
reserving judgement Mr Pearson."
"Don't reserve it for too long Miss Holt. You've got me
Laura was stunned into momentary silence.
"With curiosity - of course."
She exhaled slowly. What's with this guy? Relentless: that's
what he was.
"How long have you been a Special Agent?"
"A long time Miss Holt. I can't envision doing anything
else. On a personal level, my work is so rewarding."
"I know what you mean. I feel that way about my job too
- about working with Mr Steele."
He held her gaze. "One can't help wondering - you seem -
forgive me Miss Holt but is there something between you and your
Incredulous, she gasped, "What?"
"The way you talk about him, the way your eyes shimmer when
you mention his name, the way any suggestion that he's less than
perfect has you springing to his aid, leaping to defend his good
name - so I ask again, is there something between you?"
He crossed his arms.
"Why do you ask Mr Pearson? Still aroused with curiosity?"
"Something like that."
Laura inhaled then exhaled. She should tell him that it was none
of his business, she should shoot him down for suggesting such
a thing, she should feel insulted at his insinuation, yet she
felt - pleased. Pleased? Yes, pleased. The fact that this man
was taking an interest in her, a non-professional interest in
her, made her feel - what? Made her feel so damn good.
She met his eyes. "Yes Mr Pearson, there is something between
me and Mr Steele."
"Uh-huh. And there's the exact same thing between me and
"And what's that Miss Holt?"
"Oxygen," she stated crisply.
"You think all there is between us is oxygen?" He leaned
closer. "There's far more than that."
Laura swallowed. Deeply. "There is?"
"Yes," he murmured, lowering his face to hers. "Can't
you feel it?"
"The thing between us."
"The thing between us besides oxygen."
Her eyes glazed with astonishment. "Are you saying -?"
"I'm saying unequivocally that there is something between
us. Apart from oxygen."
"What is it?"
"Don't you know?"
His eyes ran over her, calmly watching her. "I think you
"No, I don't know." She struggled to keep up the pretence
"Your body knows Miss Holt." He glanced down, "You're
breathing very regularly: in and out, in and out, in and out.
The rhythm is hypnotic."
"Yes it is and it's because of the thing between us. Aside
She cleared her throat. "What thing?"
He bent his head, raised one dark eyebrow and stared deep into
her eyes. "Nitrogen."
Laura's brow furrowed in bewilderment. She swore he'd been leading
up to a kiss, she'd been so certain - subconsciously, she'd prepared
for it, slightly angling her head towards him, closing her eyes.
What kind of game was this man playing? Who the hell was he to
toy with her like this? Goddamn it. Emotions were running wild:
confusion, disappointment, frustration -
"Nitrogen?" she queried, utterly flummoxed.
He smirked. "Oxygen isn't the only thing between us. As
you can see, your assertion is wishful thinking. At best."
Laura suppressed an urge to fidget under his unflinching scrutiny:
it wasn't what he said, it was how he said it. She fought to
remain cerebral though she was aware of his closeness, of the
even rise and fall of his chest ... just inches from her.
Suddenly the temperature in the luxurious automobile shot up.
She pressed a button, comforted by the gentle hum of the window
lowering. The cool night air was a welcome relief. She felt it
envelop her, surround her, restore her equilibrium. She turned
to face her companion: a lopsided grin adorned his face. The
goddamn nerve, the barefaced cheek, the naked impudence, the
flagrant audacity of the man!
"What's South Africa like Mr Pearson?"
Another change of subject. He smiled as if he knew what she was
doing. "Hot. But some like it hot don't they Miss Holt?"
"I'm not sure what -"
"Oh. Well in that respect - " she broke off to gesture
with her hand, "We're very lucky in Los Angeles. Compared
to Minnesota or Seattle, for example."
"Hmmm. Thank heavens the Royal Lavulite is here rather than
there. It would've been virtually impossible for our paths to
"That's very flattering Mr Pearson but I don't -"
"Maybe we should keep this strictly business." To reinforce
her stance she added, "Mr Pearson."
"In that case, has he ever failed Miss Holt?"
"Remington Steele. Has he ever failed? A client, I mean."
Relieved to be on safe ground, Laura automatically reeled off
a response. "Mr Steele prides himself on his faultless record.
Every client is a satisfied client."
"And are you satisfied?"
"In your job."
"I'm a licensed private investigator working alongside L.A's
finest private detective."
"So you are Miss Holt, so you are. I'm very impressed with
your proficiency. You should open your own agency."
"It's been considered -" Laura began hesitantly, "
- but I'm very happy with my current situation. Mr Steele gives
me all the respect I deserve."
"But wouldn't you rather receive all the plaudits for the
work you do? Granted, I haven't been here very long but already
I've noticed that it's his name on everyone's lips. Not yours."
"My endeavours are for the good of the agency Mr Pearson."
He leant forward, pinning her to her seat with a searing
gaze. "Y'know, I almost envy your Remington Steele."
Breathe. Deep breaths, she told herself. "Really? Why?"
"Such close quarters with such a beautifully - " he
looked her up and down, lingering slightly.
"Yes?" Laura prompted.
" - able associate. Exquisite - "
" - taste too: a la mode office location, smart d_cor, deluxe
limousine. I'll wager any number of men in Los Angeles envy Remington
Steele. I certainly wouldn't say no to living his life."
She gestured insouciantly, "He's remarkable. I can honestly
say that I've never met a man like him Mr Pearson."
His eyes lazily traced her features. "So I've gathered.
What would your Mr Steele say if he could see us now?"
"I'm sorry?" Laura inched back slightly.
"What would Mr Steele say if he knew his most competent
operative was sharing a limo ride with a complete stranger?"
"He'd say - "
"He'd say that the Remington Steele agency is pleased to
assist you Special Agent Pearson."
He slid towards her. "And what does Remington Steele's most
competent operative have to say about sharing a limo ride with
a complete stranger?"
"She says - "
"Yes?" he responded, sotto voce.
"She says - a magnum of champagne doesn't make us strangers
"Ah, so champagne makes us acquaintances. Would dinner sometime
make us friends?" He moved even closer. "Think of the
ride we could share then."
Her eyes narrowed. "I make it a rule to never mix business
"In that case, I have a proposition for you. Let's dispense
with business as expeditiously as possible and then we can -
" he bent his head level with her face, " - concentrate
on pleasure ... "
" - over dinner."
"I don't -"
"Perhaps afterwards we could go dancing. I'll show you my
"I appreciate the offer but -"
"It's all about rotating hips."
"The fandango. It's all about the rotation of one's hips.
A very lively dance: the moves we could experience together?
Boggles the mind."
Incorrigible. That's what he was. "It sounds wonderful but
"It will be wonderful."
"But I have to take a rain-check because -"
"Perhaps my fandango isn't the right incentive. You look
like a slow dancer."
"I haven't danced for a long time and I don't think it's
in my immediate future Mr Pearson," she countered smugly.
"Really?" The smirk was clearly evident. "All
you need is the right partner Miss Holt."
"Perhaps. But I haven't met him yet."
"Bold declaration. Present company included?"
She smiled. "What makes you so sure that I like to dance?"
"What makes you so sure that I'm not the right partner?"
"You didn't answer my question Mr Pearson."
"And you didn't answer mine. I think we can safely say that
you answered my question by not answering it."
He uncrossed his arms and deliberately stretched his left one
over Laura, blindly feeling for the button to lower the window
on her side even further. Shifting his body, he supported himself
with his right hand by placing it next to Laura's left shoulder
- effectively trapping her in a veiled embrace.
She watched, transfixed by his proximity - what was that smell?
They listened to the whirr of the glass pane as it slid down,
oblivious to L.A's night-time traffic.
He cocked his head and looked into her eyes, barely suppressing
his humour as he pressed the button again.
The window crawled all the way back up.
Then down again.
Finally he removed his hand and sat back, wiggling his eyebrows
Laura injected firmness into her voice. "Very sure of yourself
"Why shouldn't I be? I'm a good dancer."
"I'll have to take your word for it Mr Pearson."
"You'd rather take my word instead of letting me take you?"
She shrugged. "Maybe some other time."
He stared at her with what he hoped was a nonplussed expression
but deep down he was utterly baffled. Felicia capitulated over
a bottle of port. Laura Holt had had a magnum of champagne yet
they were both still fully clothed. What was going on here? Normally
his conquest would be frantically undressing herself - and him
too - by now. This one hadn't even removed her jacket. Was she
playing hard to get? Foreign territory. But novel, almost welcome
in one sense: it added spice to the chase. Imagine how sweet
success would taste - imagine how sweet she would taste -
"I quite understand. You're supremely dedicated Miss Holt.
Mr Steele is lucky to have you."
"And I'm lucky to have him."
She gave him a smile, an appetising smile, a smile with warmth.
Shocked, he realised that there wasn't an ounce of flirtation
to it. A woman who wasn't flirting with him? Suite 1157's other
female was there for the taking - she'd made that clear. But
this one? He'd tried every trick he knew and she hadn't buckled,
she hadn't wavered. He almost respected her for it.
"Sure I can't tempt you?"
"I beg your pardon?"
"The offer of dinner and dancing still stands. Or perhaps
you'd prefer dinner and a movie Miss Holt?"
"You don't give up do you Mr Pearson?"
"I told you earlier, I like impossible challenges."
He opened the door and exited. Laura gaped at the space beside
"Goodnight Miss Holt." A voice boomed into the car.
She flinched and turned to her right. He was peering in through
the window. "Goodnight Mr Pearson."
"My apologies. Didn't mean to startle you. Thank you for
"Thank you for an eventful evening."
His lips lifted in a slow, dangerous smile. "It doesn't
have to end here y'know."
"Yes it does."
"You said yes - I'll sleep peacefully now. I was beginning
to think that word wasn't in your vocabulary."
"Goodnight Mr Pearson."
"Goodnight again Miss Holt. Sweet dreams."
The car pulled off. He stood and watched it. For some unfathomable
reason he was grinning like an idiot. A worthy adversary: he
fervently hoped she hadn't grasped what really lay behind his
hasty departure. What was the point of sitting there with a hard-on
if she wouldn't help him test out the mattress?
Pity. A little diversion would've been just what the doctor ordered.
Killing two birds with one stone: information on the Royal Lavulite
and getting close to Laura Holt. He turned and walked into the
hotel: brain ticking over - was she a heavy breather? A moaner?
A screamer? He nonchalantly shrugged his shoulders. He'd find
out tomorrow night.
End Part 1.
- To Part