- Mother of Steele 5/5
Date: Sunday, May 20, 2007
- From: "Lori Lanham" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
- Mother of Steele, Part Five
- "Wait a minute," Laura
said, pacing the office as Remington stood in front of the window.
"Are you seriously telling me that my mother is seeing one
of Daniel's cronies?"
He looked at her and nodded.
"Be careful what you wish for, eh?" he said softly
as he smiled at her.
"What?" she asked. She stood still and turned her whole
attention to him.
"Well," he said, tugging on his ear. "Just a couple
of weeks ago, you told me you regretted keeping Abigail away
She let out a long sigh.
"That was BECAUSE of Roger," she said. "He's nothing
like Daniel. Daniel Chalmers was a lot of things, " she
went on. "But he was always a gentleman."
A wide smile spread across Remington's face.
"Not always, Laura," he said. "And I can remember
a time when you wouldn't have thought of him so highly."
"I know," she said, walking over to join him at the
window. "So, tell me about Rudolph Wilcox-and just what
my mother's gotten herself into."
"I honestly don't know much about him. He was working with
Daniel during the period of time that I was running around the
Caribbean with Monroe. From what I recall, he was small time.
Never really reached Daniel's caliber."
"But what's his angle with my mother?"
"That's what we're going to find out," he told her.
"Feel up to hosting a little dinner party, Mrs. Steele?"
"Dinner was delicious, Remington," Abigail said, folding
her napkin and placing it in the table.
"Thank you, Abigail," Remington answered. "Would
anyone care for coffee?"
"That would be nice," Abigail answered.
"I'd like some, too," Laura replied. "But first,
I'm going to go check on Kate. Mother, would you care to join
"I'd love to Dear," Abigail said, standing to follow
her daughter upstairs. "It will give Remington and Roger
a chance to get to know one another a little better."
"It certainly will," Laura agreed, her eyes meeting
her husband's. "We won't be long."
"Don't rush, Darling," Remington said as the ladies
left the dining room. "I'm sure Roger and I will find plenty
to talk about."
Once Abigail and Laura were out of sight, Remington excused himself
to get the coffee. "I'll be right back."
When he returned, he handed Roger a cup and settled back into
his seat at the head of the table.
"So," Remington began, coolly. "What are you up
A wide grin spread across the other man's face.
"Took you long enough, Harry," he said. "You're
slipping. And to think Daniel used to love to brag about his
protégé, the great Remington Steele."
"I'll ask again, Rudy," Remington said as he fixed
an icy blue gaze on the other man. "What kind of game are
you playing with Abigail?"
"Mother," Laura began casually as she changed the baby's
diaper. "How well do you know Roger?"
"As well as anyone, I suppose," Abigail answered. "Why
do you ask?"
"Oh, curiosity," Laura said. "Call it a professional
hazard. I mean, you've been seeing him for a while now and Frances
and I barely know anything about him."
"I didn't think you were interested, Dear," Abigail
replied. "What do you want to know?"
"Oh, I don't know." Laura strained to remain casual.
"How did you meet?"
"Oh," Abigail answered her tone even more casual than
Laura's. "Daniel introduced us."
"No game, Harry," Roger answered. "Or should I
"You should," Remington said. "Look mate, Abigail
is family. She's my wife's mother. I can't sit by and see her
being taken advantage of."
"Abby said you'd think that," Roger said.
"That I was running a con," Roger answered.
"And just why would she think that, Rudy? How much does
she know about you?"
"Pretty much, everything."
"DANIEL introduced you?" Laura asked as she laid her
daughter back down into her crib. She didn't trust herself to
remain standing at this point, much less hold on to Kate.
"Yes, Dear," Abigail answered. "We met in Monte
Carlo when I was visiting Daniel."
"But that was more than five years ago," Laura said,
her confusion more than evident.
"Really, Laura. I'm disappointed."
"You're disappointed? You've been carrying on a clandestine
affair for over five years and YOU'RE disappointed?"
"I haven't been carrying on anything. Honestly, Laura. I
thought you were supposed to be a hot shot detective."
"Abby and I met a while back when she was visiting Daniel
at the villa," Roger told Remington. "Daniel said she
was off limits-in every way. I thought it was because he wanted
her for himself, but pretty soon it was obvious that they weren't
going anywhere, if you know what I mean."
"So you decided to go after her, then?" Remington surmised.
"No, are you kidding? Daniel would have killed any of us
if Abby had gotten hurt; he was very protective of her. I never
saw her again
until a few months ago. I ran into her when
I was checking out the winter lines down at the Mart."
"Winter lines?" Remington asked.
"Yeah," Roger answered, handing him a business card.
"I'm a buyer for Barney's. Strictly legit. After Marty Cohen
bought the farm last year, I realized life is too short to be
living from con to con. Besides, I was never really good at it.
So, I got to thinking, next to art
what do I know best?"
he asked the rhetorical question. "That's right, clothes.
I'm bringing class to the masses, Harry."
"I was surprised that Remington didn't remember Roger,"
Abigail went on, "being that he and Daniel were so close."
"Remington was living abroad when Roger and Daniel knew
each other, apparently," Laura offered.
"So you did know," Abigail said.
"Well I am a hotshot detective, remember?" Laura was
slightly annoyed. "I don't believe you knew all along."
"Knew what, Dear?" Abigail asked innocently.
"Mother, the man behaved like a boor. I couldn't imagine
what you saw in him
I was worried about you. I even brought
Murphy out here to help me investigate, for goodness sake. And
you knew about him from the beginning."
"All you had to do was ask, Laura," Abigail told her
"Class to the masses, eh?" Remington said. "So
what was up with that chauvinist pig routine?"
"Oh, "Roger replied. "That was Abby's idea. She
knew it would get your wife's ire up."
"And why would she want to do that?"
"I don't know, really," Roger answered. "Something
about seeing if Laura would come to her and ask her about me
"Or just go out and get the answers on her own," Remington
finished the thought. "So this whole bloody thing was a
"You were testing me?" Laura asked, incredulous. "Unbelievable."
"So your mother knew all about Winters' past," Murphy
said, pausing to look at Remington. "It IS his past, right?"
Remington nodded, "Strictly on the straight and narrow,
or so he says."
Turning his attention back to Laura, Murphy went on. "She
knew about his past and didn't tell you, why?"
"We're still trying to figure that one out, Murph,"
Laura admitted. "I think part of her wanted to see if I
trusted her enough to just ask her about Roger. But what she
doesn't understand is that I didn't think to ask her because
I honestly didn't think she knew. I thought she was being duped."
"I feel Daniel's hand in all of this," Remington said,
walking over to wrap his arms around Laura's waist. "I mean,
I know he's been gone for years now," he went on. "But
doesn't this little test feel more like something HE would do?"
Laura smiled, he was right
she'd been thinking about Daniel
and his endless tests of Remington's resolve and her mettle.
"Well, whatever the reason," Laura said, "everything
worked out for the best. Mother reminded me not to take her for
granted, and she's actually shown some respect for what we do."
"One thing, though," Murphy asked. "What about
the Chicago PD?"
"That was for real," Remington supplied. "One
of his old buddies had seen Roger in the area and gave up his
name to save his own skin. But the kicker was that even though
the heist was actually very similar to those Rudy Wilcox had
executed in the past, Roger had nothing to do with it. He really
was in Chicago on a buying trip for Barney's."
"I'm glad you decided to stay, Murph," Laura said,
changing the subject.
"Me too," he answered. "I think the three of us
will work really well together."
"Four," Remington corrected, "Don't forget Mildred."
"Right," Murphy said. "Speaking of, I need to
see her. She's the one who handles the payroll and employment
records, right? I need some paperwork to turn in with my loan
application if I'm going to take over the mortgage on the condo."
Laura nodded, "There's no rush on that you know."
"I do, Laura, and thanks," Murphy replied, "but
it's time to move into my new life, and I want to do things right
"Makes sense," she said as Murphy left the office and
left her alone with her husband. "I hate to think about
moving," she said, quietly leaning against him. "We
have so many great memories here."
"Moving? Laura, what are you talking about?" Remington
"Well, there's not room for everyone here," she said
with a smile. "Our family is growing."
"So it is, Mrs. Steele," he said, pulling her into
his embrace. "So it is. But let's not think of moving just
yet. I'm sure we can come up with some way to accommodate our
growing pains and still remain here."
All thoughts and worries disappeared as he leaned in to kiss
her. When she was in his arms, all was right with the world.
And all WAS right with their world. She was married to the love
of her life, and they had a beautiful little girl. She had her
family close by and her best friend back in town. Laura Steele
was a very lucky woman, and she knew it. Once again, her good
fortune amazed her.
- The End