Steele Giving Thanks 5/6
Date: Wednesday, November 14, 2007
From: "Lori" <>
"Your wife, I take it," Sara said, sipping on her tequila sunrise as Remington hung up his phone. When her companion didn't answer, she went on. "You're all alike," she said. "What happened? Did you just get bored?"
"What?" Remington asked, trying to refocus his attention. His thoughts were with Laura, worried about what she may be going through, but knowing at least that she was safe since their suspect was sitting across from him.
"Men," she said. "You're all alike. I'll bet she worked to put you through school, then she raised the kids by herself while you were busy becoming successful. Then what? She turned forty and you started shopping for another model?"
"No." Remington shook his head. "That's not it at all," he said. "I happen to love my wife very much."
"Then why are you here with me?"
After several attempts, Laura was able to wake Libby from her chemically induced slumber.
"Ms. Wexler," she said. "I'm Laura Steele," she paused for a moment as the other woman tried to gain her bearings. "Neil Larsen sent me to find you."
At the mention of Larsen's name, Libby's eyes grew wide and she began to panic.
"It's all right," Laura soothed. "Everything is going to be all right. My husband and I are private investigators, and we've come to take you home."
"Steele?" Libby asked, her head clearing. "Private investigator…"
"That's right," Laura said.
"Remington Steele?" Libby asked quietly.
"Yes," Laura answered with a smile. Sometimes fame was a good thing. Libby seemed to relax a little. She would trust the great Remington Steele. "That's my husband. He'll meet us very soon, but now we've got to get you out of here…"
She stopped talking as her cell phone rang. Recognizing the number, she answered.
"What have you got, Murph?"
"A Swiss bank account opened a few days after Ms. Wexler and Mrs. Larsen disappeared," he said.
"Three million in the name of S.R. Malloy," he went on. "And Malloy is Sara Larsen's maiden name."
"Perfect," Laura responded. "That's exactly what we need. I'm with Ms. Wexler now; she's been drugged, apparently by our suspect. I'm taking her out of here. Do me a favor," she said. "Call Mr. Steele, tell him what you just told me and ask him to meet me in our room A.S.A.P."
"I'm on it," he said as they hung up.
Laura turned her attention back to Libby, who was now fully awake and regaining her senses.
"She's crazy, Mrs. Steele," she said. "I don't think she intended to hurt me, but I don't trust her not to."
"You're safe now," Laura assured her. "But let's get you out of here."
"I'm here with you," Remington answered, picking up his glass, "because I don't like to drink alone."
"Oh, I see," Sara said, disbelieving.
"Tracy can shop for hours," he told her, draining his glass and setting it forcefully on the bar. "Not my idea of a good time. You seemed to be alone and I thought you might provide interesting conversation," he was saying as his phone rang. "Excuse me," he said before turning away from the bar to take the call.
"Richard Blaine," he said.
"Mr. Blaine," Murphy said from the other end. "I've got information from Mildred and a message from Laura."
"Go on."
"Mrs. Larsen opened a Swiss bank account in her maiden name with the missing money, and she's been sedating Ms. Wexler. Laura has Ms. Wexler with her and wants you to meet her in your room as soon as possible."
"That's wonderful news," Remington responded. "Thank you." He turned back to Sara as he hung up.
"Good news?" she asked.
"Yes, as a matter of fact. Business, actually. Some information I've been waiting for just came through," he went on. "Requires my immediate attention. I must get back to the hotel, I'm afraid," he said, paying for their drinks.
"I think I'll join you," she answered, pausing as he turned back to her. "If you don't mind," she said. "We could share a cab."
"Excellent idea," he said, stepping back and gesturing for her to lead the way out of the restaurant.
In the cab, he took out his cell phone to call Laura.
"Tracy darling," he said when she answered. "I got a call
from the office and there is an urgent matter that demands my attention. I'm in a taxi headed for the hotel as we speak."
"Tracy?" Laura asked. "Is Mrs. Larsen with you?"
"That's right," he answered.
"This could work," Laura said. "I think we have enough to
confront her. She might even confess. Bring her with you if you can."
"Whatever makes you happy, Darling," he said. "Have fun with your shopping and I'll see you when you get back."
"I love you," she said.
"Me, too."
Remington and Laura stood with Libby Wexler in the lobby of the Sierra Del Sol Hotel. The three of them watched as Sara Larsen was taken away by the police.
"I can't thank the two of you enough," Libby said to them. "Like I said before, I don't think Sara ever really intended to hurt me. And for what it's worth, I'm truly ashamed for my part in all of this."
Remington nodded, but Laura remained still and silent, happy that the case was solved but trying to keep her personal feelings in check.
"There's my taxi," Libby said. "I'll be glad to be home. And we've got the Nike presentation in two days," she said, patting her portfolio. "Thanks again," she said before picking up her suitcase and walking toward the waiting taxi.
"You're welcome," Laura said as Remington pulled her close.
That night, they had dinner in their room. Laura was quiet and her husband wasn't sure what to say to bring her out of it as they sat next to each other on the sofa.
"I don't know what I would do in her position," she said quietly.
"Whose?" he asked, already knowing the answer.
"Sara Larsen's," she answered.
"Ah," he said, pulling her close. He kissed her temple then said, "It's a good thing you'll never have to find out, then."
"I'm sure that's what the Larsens thought, too."
"We've come so far, Mrs. Steele," he said. "Don't go doubting me now."
"I'm not," she said, leaning into his embrace. "Not really. I'm just thinking about Mrs. Larsen. She was just pushed beyond her limits. After sacrificing her own career dreams to help her husband achieve his and then raising the children practically by herself while he was working, only to find out he was cheating on her---and not with some young thing, but with his business partner. She felt even more betrayed because he chose the `career woman' that she could have been over her."
"Not everyone is lucky enough to be able to mix business with pleasure," he said with a lopsided grin.
She smiled despite her mood, thinking of their weird and wonderful relationship. Her thoughts quickly turned back to the case.
"I don't think she was ever thinking clearly. She didn't really plan out leaving. I don't think she really wanted to---not in her heart of hearts. But then again, three million dollars is one hell of a start to a new life."
"And she found the note that Libby left for Larsen letting him know she'd be down here and followed her…"
"Right, again without a plan. I think she thought that if Libby went missing at the same time as the money that her husband would either suspect Libby or be so worried about her that he wouldn't realize she was gone until it was too late…"
"…She'd retrieve the money and move on with her life. By the time anyone realized she was gone, they'd never be able to find her," Remington said, picking up the story. "But I'm surprised she'd ever leave her children."
"I don't think she would have," Laura said with a sigh. "They were all she could talk about before the police took her away. I feel badly for her. She isn't a bad person. She's just a woman who was afraid she was losing her husband. She thought it would be easier to leave behind life as she knew it rather than have it taken away from her."
to be continued...
To Part 6

Home FileCabinet E-Mail