- Steele Peevish After All These
Date: Friday, January 10, 2003
- Michael <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Steele Peevish After All These Years
By Michael Bledsoe and Ellen Wilkerson
My thanks to everyone on the RSFic list who contributed to
story, in one fashion or another: Angie, Nancy, Jackie, Yuliya,
Robyn, NewSue, Adri, Debra, and Ace. Also, my thanks to Ellen
listening to my crazed ravings.
Thursday, June 8, 1989, late evening
It was a dark and stormy night as Remington Steele and Laura
before the fire in Steele's apartment at 5994 Rossmore. His piercing
blue eyes glittered in the firelight as he appreciated the long-
necked beauty of his companion. His hand caressed her cheek and
gracefully slipped behind her neck, drawing her willing lips
The doorbell rang.
"Hold that thought while I get rid of whoever it is."
He jumped to his feet muttering vague curses under his breath
dragged himself from the carpet to the apartment door. While
in motion, the doorbell rang twice more. Laura laughed liltingly
she followed him to the door.
He looked through peephole. Then he looked again, an expression
"Who is it, Remmie?" Laura asked, with concern.
Steele held a finger to his lips and slowly unlocked and opened
"You're wet," he said in a colorless voice to the man
in the hallway.
"Yes, it's raining," Daniel Chalmers answered.
"Yes... I think perhaps you better come inside."
"You're too kind."
"Aren't you dead?" Laura asked with amazing detachment.
"The rumours of my death have been greatly exaggerated,
as Mark Twain
"What do you mean, rumors of your death?" Remington
voice rising in pitch, "I bloody well saw you die with my
We arranged the transport of your dead body to Russia."
"Harry, its too late for that, damnit, there's work to be
Chalmers barked. "Linda, go put on a kettle for tea, we
have a game
"It's still Laura. And what are you doing here?" Laura
folding her arms. "I won't put a kettle on for tea, but
I will be
keeping my eye on you."
"Laura, Laura, snookums," Steele begins placatingly,
interrupted by the phone ringing, "I'll get the kettle,
why don't you
get the phone?"
Laura glares at Steele and Chalmers as they go into the kitchen.
sticks her tongue out at the phone and then lifts the receiver.
"Laura Holt, what do you want?" she demands.
"Laura, this is Frances, your, unh, sister," the voice
on the other
"Yes, Frances, what do you need?" Laura motions for
her to go on.
"I was watching the Discovery Channel a few minutes ago
and they were
talking about unidentified flying objects," she pauses to
thoughts. "They described a lighted object that looks a
lot like a
paint bucket with a rope attached to the handle that just hangs
not making a sound. Well, I had to go to the car and get Donald's
briefcase, he had forgotten it in the car, and I saw one. It
hanging there, not making a sound. I ran in to get Donald and
kids, but it was gone, just as silently as it had come.
"Laura, what should I do?"
"Frances, get a roll of aluminum foil and make a hat for
each of you,
your kids and Donald. That way they can't read your minds. Then
all the lights out and sit under the kitchen table, I read that
safer there. Make sure you have a flashlight and if any of your
open, shine it in their eyes." Laura sighs, "Call me
in the morning
and let me know how it goes."
"Thanks, Laura, I'll get right to it. Bye." The phone
Laura's ear and she hangs the receiver on the base, shaking her
"I don't know. I have a bad feeling about this," Laura
shakes off the
sadness for her sister and that brings back the madness of conmen
Marching into the kitchen, the first thing she notices is the
whistling on the burner, forgotten, it seems, by the two men
their heads over some rolls of paper. The second thing she notices
that Chalmers' wet coat was lying on the kitchen floor making
Laura proceeded making the tea, pouring the hot water into the
ceramic teapot, swishing it and pouring it in the sink. She carefully
measured the tealeaves, a teaspoon each for the three of them
for the pot. She then filled the teapot half full of the hot
and placed the top on the pot for steeping. She placed the cups
saucers on a tray with some biscuits out of a tin on the counter.
finished filling the teapot with hot water and picking up the
walked over to the table and poured a cup.
"One lump or two," she asked Daniel sweetly, but there
was fire in
Remington glanced up at the sound of her voice and rose smoothly
stand between his wife and her intended target. She continued
the teacups, filling the other two and adding sugar and cream
Remington took one of the others and also added sugar and cream,
Daniel was oblivious to the price of tea in China.
"Harry, we have to move quickly to secure these pipelines,"
continued. "I have heard through the grapevine, that because
deregulation of natural gas, once Transwestern Pipeline secures
line from West Texas to California that Enron will have a 2,600-mile
natural gas pipeline that will only transport and not distribute.
This will give them a strangle hold on the entire industry."
"So what's the game then?" Steele enquired.
"It's simple really, we sell them some of their own pipeline,
stand back and rake in the cash."
Daniel picked up his cup and took a deep drink. His face went
several gyrations and Laura smiled.
"Linda, what did you do to this tea?"
"Oh, well, nothing," Laura answers Chalmers sweetly,
"Why, do you
think I should?"
"Her name is Laura, Daniel, you know, my wife."
"Ah yes, my boy, I'd quite forgotten."
"Daniel, don't you ever think of anything but your own hair-brained
schemes?" demands Laura.
"Why should I? They have taken care of Harry and me for
than you've known him."
Laura stands and knocks the paper rolls off the table, noticing
they are blueprints of pipelines.
"Daniel Chalmers, don't you realize that you are a grandfather
she asks, her voice rising to an almost hysterical peak. "What
you done for the past two years that you didn't even know of
grandchildren?" She pointedly turns her back on her husband
father and stalks out of the kitchen.
"Quite a firebrand, isn't she, son?" Chalmers asked
Steele who had
knelt to pick up the blueprints.
"Oh, Daniel --" Steele begins, but he shakes his head,
papers to his father and follows his wife from the kitchen.
Daniel slowly sinks back into the chair he had risen from and
his face in his hands.
"Son, I've spent my whole life dancing around the edges
of truth," he
tells the empty room, "How can I embrace truth now?"
* * *
Friday, June 9, 1989, morning
Morning found Daniel Chalmers sleeping fretfully on the Steele
Someone had provided him with a pillow and blankets during the
The storm of the previous evening had passed and the morning
brand-new through the curtains. Remington and Laura were getting
ready for their day of detecting. He was in the kitchen, preparing
formula and she was in the shower
The doorbell rang, driving all sleep from Daniel.
"Could you get that," Steele called out from the kitchen,
my hands full, at the moment."
Chalmers struggled up and walked unsteadily to the door. He opened
the door and regarded the youngish woman who stood there. She
tall and thin with a mane of reddish hair. She wore blue jeans
white body suit, tastefully covered by a pastel jacket. Over
shoulder was a heavy, leather book bag making her look much like
"Hi, I'm Krystal," she said, "the nanny."
"And I'm Daniel, the grandfather," he said taking her
shaking it effusively.
"Oh, this is surprising," she said with a troubled
look on her
face, "I understood from the Steeles that you had passed
"Yes," Chalmers answered, seemingly embarrassed, "There
misunderstanding a few years ago."
"Well, that's good," Krystal said, "Every child
should get to know
"Ah, Krystal, how good to see you this morning," Steele
said as he
headed for the bedroom with two bottles of formula, "We
seem to be in
need of haste."
Krystal followed Remington and Daniel followed her. In the large
bedroom, Laura held one child in her arms. The other was in a
against the wall. Daniel had heard neither one cry during the
The nanny picked up the other child and sat in a chair close
"Daniel," Steele said, "I would like to present
He stepped over to Laura and the child she held, "This is
granddaughter, Destiny Irene Steele, the eldest - by seven minutes."
Steele touched his daughter's cheek and then his wife's. The
flame red hair and was full of smiles and dimples.
Steele stepped over to the child the nanny held, "This amazing
man is your grandson, Patrick Michaleen Steele." He picked
son, who had dark hair like his father, and nuzzled him. The
cooed and giggled in the arms of his father. Daniel looked on
fascination; this was a side of Harry he had never seen, the
nurturing father and husband.
"Remington, we had better go," Laura said, placing
Destiny in her
bed, "Fred will be waiting downstairs."
"Okay, but I want to tell Daniel something first,"
Steele said. "When
the children were born, five months ago, we had a little trouble
the hospital. Because Laura chose to keep her name, for professional
reasons, the hospital didn't want to announce the children in
paper as those of Remington Steele and Laura Holt. We had to
our marriage license before they would announce them properly."
and Laura chuckled in remembrance.
"Daniel, do you want to come to the office with us?"
Laura asked, "We
could delay a couple of more minutes while you get ready."
"No thanks, I'll get changed and take care of a few loose
then meet you there."
"Sure, see you later," Steele said. They quickly exited
Chalmers looked in awe at his grandchildren. It was an amazing
to consider, *his grandchildren*. He turned and left Krystal
grandchildren and prepared for his day working with the pipelines.
* * *
Friday, June 9, 1989, still morning
"Boss," Mildred Krebs said as the Steeles entered the
Remington Steele Investigations, "There's a lady waiting
office. Hubba Hubba."
"Oh yes," Steele said, straightening his tie and smiling.
"Laura, Tony is in his office and needs to speak to you,"
continued, "Something to do with the case he is working."
"Great, just what I need on a Friday," Laura said with
sarcasm, "Straighten up the mess of someone else."
"I'll go ahead and greet this, unh, lady in my office and
you." He stepped through the door into his corner office.
The woman standing in Steele's office was dressed to the nines.
fact, her clothes were not what you would expect at ten in the
morning. The dress was of black silk velvet with long sleeves.
off-the-shoulder neckline, cuffs and hem were trimmed with bands
ivory satin with a rolled rope border. She was tall, nearly six
and very blonde, naturally so it would seem, and her clothes
well with her coloration.
"So you're a private detective. I didn't know they existed
books, or else they were greasy little men snooping around hotel
corridors." Her voice was sultry and melodious. She held
out a gloved
hand, like a limp, dead fish. Steele shook it out of politeness.
"You're the great detective Remington Steele."
"Yes, I have that honor." Steele said, becoming irritated
the build-up. "And you are?"
"Brittany Hyde, at your service, sir," She said in
that voice, with a
flowery Southern drawl.
"And what can Remington Steele Investigations do for you?"
"We would like you to find my sister and return her to her
"Who is we?" Steele asked.
"Our family, in South Carolina, sent me to bring Tiffany
"Are you the oldest?"
"Actually, Tiffany is the oldest, but I've always had to
take care of
her. All through our school years I would make sure she caught
right school bus, brought home the right books, and dated the
boys. She seemed so lame in school."
"And since school?" he asked.
"Well, near as we can make out, she came here, to Los Angeles,
make it as a model or movie star, but she hasn't had a lot of
it. Instead she has gotten mixed up in gambling and the wrong
men. We want you to find her, clean up her messes and send her
"It shouldn't be too tough."
"Really. I would have thought a case like that took a little
"Not too much," Steele said, for some reason irritated
presumption of the woman.
"What will your first step be?"
"The usual one."
"I didn't know there was a usual one."
"Oh, sure there is. It comes complete with diagrams on page
seven of "How to be a Detective in Ten Easy Lessons",
school textbook," Steele ad-libbed glibly.
"Now look, Mr. Steele. My father is not well, and I want
handled with the least possible worry to him," Brittany
responded, finally realizing Steele sarcasm.
"That's just the way I was going to handle it."
"I see. No professional secrets."
"No," Steele said, with finality, "If you'll give
all the particulars
to Miss Krebs on your way out, we will get right on with finding
sister, Miss Hyde, but for now I have another case that I must
Meanwhile, in Tony's office, which had once belonged to Murphy
Michaels, Laura and Tony were having a discussion of another
"Tony," Laura said, "When we returned to LA, we
had hoped that you
could be an asset to Remington Steele Investigations, but you
constantly seem to be getting into trouble of one sort or another."
She sighed, "What do we need to fix for you now?"
"What am I, a baby?" he said, seeming somewhat hot
collar, "Anthony Roselli can fix any trouble that Anthony
gets into. I'm not a wimp, like some I know."
"What are you trying to say?" asked Laura, "Who
are you referring to?"
"Our popinjay boss, who would rather talk them to death
than duke it
out with the bad guys." Roselli said, "I know he can
fight, but he'd
rather use his mouth, not his fists."
"Mr. Steele tries to do the best thing for every situation,
"I... I find it hard to believe that you could ever be fond
of a man
who isn't a fighter." Roselli said, suddenly turning the
"Sometimes tenderness and kindness can also make a man,"
replied, "A very rare man." She looked into in space
with a wistful
"Laura," Tony said his voice growing husky. He stepped
her shoulders and gazed deeply into her eyes - bringing her back
earth, "You can't deny us. The heat and passion between
us is there -
it's real - it's urgent."
"Tony," Laura said uncertainly, "I'm married -
I'm a mom - how can
you keep doing this to me?
"It's easy," he said with a laugh, "I love you
and want you to be
* * *
Friday, June 9, 1989, late afternoon
"Don't you hate the turning radius on this thing?"
"It's not about the turning radius when you acquire one
Anthony," Steele said from behind the wheel of his 1936
Auburn speedster. "The Auburn is stylish without being flashy,
yet understated. It's not about how the automobile drives, but
you look driving the automobile."
Steele had slipped off his suit coat when he climbed into the
speedster with Roselli. They were on their way to the last know
address of Brittany Hyde. Once they got off the main road the
neighborhood took a swing to the worst. The yards were postage
sized and quite unkempt. The houses looked like they hadn't been
painted since they had been built.
"For a woman on her way, it doesn't seem like she found
path," Remington commented dryly.
"I'd agree with that," Tony replied.
The Auburn looked like it was from another world as it pulled
front of a seedy duplex. Steele and Roselli abandoned the protection
of the speedster and walked to the front door of the left unit.
Steele knocked briskly on the door after noticing that it had
or buzzer. They waited several moments and tried again. Steele
stepped to the right unit door and pressed the ultrasonic wireless
bell that was mounted to the door. Roselli remained at the left
and shook the handle sternly.
An older lady answered the door to Steele. "I told the last
lawyers that I wasn't leaving."
"Sorry, Ma'am, for disturbing you, but we aren't lawyers.
private investigators seeking a missing woman." Steele said,
truth was in order, for once. "Have you seen Tiffany Hyde?
know address is the duplex next door."
"Well, my husband and I own the entire building and the
rented our unit is Tiffany Hill. Nice young thing, real polite,
always paid her rent on time until this month."
"Has she been missing?" Remington inquired.
"I haven't seen much of her lately, but I can't say she
There was rattling of the left hand door and a short, dark haired
woman in dirty jeans and tee shirt with a huge sunflower design
popped out. Her blue eyes appeared wild and she was waving a
revolver in all directions. Roselli reached out and quickly disarmed
A shot rang out and Remington sank slowly to his knees, red coloring
his white shirt. A woman's voice screamed.
* * *
Saturday, June 10, 1989, shortly after midnight
"Hello," said the man coming through the swinging door,
scrubs, complete to the booties, which seemed to be covering
toed cowboy boots, "I'm the doctor?"
"Doctor who?" Laura asked.
"Doctor Charles Portera, surgeon extraordinaire, at your
specialize in operations that regular surgeons find too difficult,
too painstaking, or too expensive." He stopped in front
pulled his little mask down and smiled engagingly. "Now
problem that I need to correct?"
"I seem to have been, unh, shot, Charles," Remington
"Yes, yes, call me Dr. Portera. Now, let me examine the
The doctor quickly and efficiently exposed the entry wound; there
no exit wound. He felt around the room lightly, making Steele
with pain. Then he picked up the x-rays, slapped them on the
box and examined them carefully.
"These x-rays are inconclusive. The bullet appears to be
lying in the
major artery and against the bone, I would recommend a complete
"What?" Laura screamed, "A complete amputation,
"I feel that amputation would be the safest course of action.
traces in the body, no broken bones to mend, and no arteries
sown." Portera pulled his sleeve back and looked at his
give you a couple of minutes to decide." He stepped out
emergency room cubicle.
Steele looked down at his arm and sighed. "Sorry pal, it's
"Remington, you can't seriously think that you need you
whole arm cut
off, can you?" his wife implored.
"Well, Doctor Portera seems to feel it's for the best."
"Well, you can lay there and have your arm cut off, but
another opinion about this." Laura stormed off.
Steele lay there, tortured by his thoughts. A woman, also in
scrubs entered and picked up his chart.
"Mr. Steele, I'm Betty Foreman and I will be your nurse
"Ah, thank you, unh, Betty."
"No problem," she said, "now, Mr. Steele, we need
to prepare you for
surgery. Can you help me any?"
"In what way?" Steele asked, slightly confused. "I
can't seem to move
my left arm and I'm weaker than the proverbial kitten."
"Well, Mr. Steele, what I actually meant, was if you could
little this way I can remove what's left of your shirt."
"Ah, I see," he said complying, "Such a shame,
I liked that shirt."
Quickly he was disrobed and laying under the blanket.
"Thank you, Nurse Betty, effectively done, if not provocatively
"Mr. Steele," the nurse said reddening a little. "I'll
be back to get
"I'll be waiting."
Steele was once again alone with his thoughts. This was not the
simple case worked, there must be more to it. Then he wasn't
and the case became more irritating.
"Ah, Detective Jarvis, so nice of you to visit," effused
Remington, "I was feeling a bit lonely."
"Sorry, Mr. Steele, this is a professional visit."
"But I didn't die, why would a homicide detective want to
me, now?" Steele asks, clearly puzzled.
Jarvis doesn't answer; instead he reaches into his inside coat
and removes some photographs and a pipe.
"Recognize this man, Mr. Steele?"
Jarvis hands a picture Steele. It shows a man halfway into a
but is face is visible. He clinches the pipe in his teeth, but
doesn't light it.
"No, should I?" Steele is still perplexed. "I
don't believe I've ever
"Ah, well, it would have been nice, if you had," the
"He was stabbed six times, in that duplex where you were
"My God," breathes Remington, "I was just looking
for a missing
"Of course, you can check with Laura or Mildred. They knew
"So tell me, in your words, what happened?" Jarvis
notebook and a stub of pencil.
"Anthony and I -"
"Anthony Roselli, been working with you for a couple of
"Yes, we went to the address we had been given by the girl's
"What was the name of the girl you were searching for?"
"We knocked, but no one answered, so I knocked on the other
door. The owner answered it. While I was speaking with her a
woman came out of the duplex we had knocked on first, waving
around. Tony grabbed the gun and I got shot, the next -"
"Anthony Roselli shot you?" an incredulous Jarvis asked.
Steele cogitated for a few moments before answering, "So
seem. I hadn't thought about it quite that way."
"Sorry, I interrupted," Jarvis said, "Please continue."
"I can't believe that Roselli shot me, he and I have disagreed
a bit, but to out-and-out shoot me." Steele was staggered
realization. "Anyway, the next thing I realized is that
I'm on the
ground and Tony has grabbed the girl and taken my Auburn. Mrs.
Graham, the duplex owner, called an ambulance and Laura. And
"I see," Jarvis said, nervously chewing on the empty
pipe in his
mouth, "This brings up more questions than answers doesn't
"Excuse me officer," said a nervous looking man wearing
scrubs, "I need to talk to the patient."
"Sure, I'll wait in the, unh, waiting room."
"Mr. Steele, did you realize that you had a rare type of
"Can't say that I realized that."
"Well, I'm afraid that you do and this presents several
"What do you mean?"
"The day before yesterday, there was a tremendous car wreck
freeway and our blood supplies for rare types had been diminished
terribly." The nervous man grabbed several tissues from
a box in the
ER room and swabbed his face. "Do you know of anyone with
blood type as you?"
"Not really -"
"Wait," interrupted Laura, returning to the cubical,
father is in the waiting room. Could he have the same blood type?"
"He has a higher percentage chance than most people. We
can test him,
if they match, we'll do a quick transfusion. It would make, Mr.
Steele's chances of surviving the operation better."
"Great, I'll go get him."
"Wait, I'll come with you, we need to test him immediately."
and the blood guy left quickly.
"Mr. Steele, I'm Doctor Kamran Farrukh," said another
man, with an Indian accent, "And I will be your anesthesiologist.
will begin by injecting this into your drip."
"Thanks, Doc, I feel I could use a little rest now."
* * *
Saturday, June 10, 1989, early morning
"How are you doing, honey?" Laura asked as Remington's
"I'm doing pretty good." He answered faintly, "Although
was better than my today."
"Mr. Steele, I'm Annette White, I'll be your recovery nurse,"
small pert woman, "Could you drink a little of this?"
Steele a Styrofoam cup with a bendable straw.
"Thank you," he said with a little rasp.
"If there's anything you need, here's the call button."
the call button's cord near his hand and then handed Remington
"Sure," he said.
Steele sipped his cola substitute from the straw, he did feel
thirsty, but the liquid going down didn't have the effect he
Maybe he could fight it down. With a rumble his stomach subsided.
"Laura, can you love a one armed man?" Steele choked
"Oh, silly," Laura said with a grin, "You still
have two arms."
"Oh, thank God," he said, "I've been worrying
how I could continue -
holding you - holding the children."
"Remington, if you had no arms, I would feel the same about
said, gently kissing him on the forehead.
Suddenly, Steele sat forward, a metallic taste jumping into his
"Laura, the pan," he grated.
She handed him the pan and he used it.
"Harry, I guess I came at a bad time," Daniel's jovial
"Well, I can't say you're catching me at my best,"
Steele said, as
Laura wiped around his mouth, with a cool washcloth.
"Honey," Laura said, "Daniel donated several pints
of blood for you.
We were lucky that you and he had the same blood type. Usually
blood line flows with the woman."
"Mr. Steele," nurse Annette said, reappearing, "Would
you like a
little something for the pain."
"No, I'll rough it for now."
"As you wish," She said with a smile, "Let me
explain the doctor's
orders and it'll soon be time for you to go."
"Really, I don't stay the night?"
"No, sir," the nurse began, "Current studies show
that people recover
quicker in familiar surroundings."
"Well, that's wonderful," Laura, said, "I'll be
glad to get you home."
Steele wasn't so sure, but went along for the ride.
* * *
Monday, June 12, 1989, morning
"Oh boy, kids, that was some weekend." Mildred Krebs
fluttery as Remington and Laura entered the office. "Kinda
go, there for a while."
"I would say a lot more touch, than go in my case,"
dryly. He was sporting a suit coat draped over the sling and
on his left arm.
"Talking about going, Boss," Mildred began, "Tony
cleared out of his
office over the weekend."
"He did, did he?" Steele asked.
"Yes, Saturday. The building security people informed me
"Laura, once again your choices have worked to our advantage."
"Well, I knew there was a little animosity between you and
said a little sheepishly, "But I never expected him to shoot
"A *little* animosity," Steele snorted.
It was then that the earthquake struck.
To Be Continued . . .
I would like to apologize to the medical profession as a whole
and the person who I based Steele's surgeon on. Its not that
I thought he was a bad surgeon, its just that he had some quirks,
but then, don't we all.
I tried to include as many of the peeves as possible, that wouldn't
destroy readability. I discovered that some of them were extremely
difficult to stick to. I found that I wrote half a dozen reasons
to explain Daniel returning and then had to erase them all again.
Sentence provided by:
Lines incorporated into the story are from the following movies:
The Rocky Horror Picture Show, 20th Century Fox, 1975
Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, Paramount Pictures, 1982
1776, Columbia Pictures Corporation, 1972
Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back, 20th Century
The Big Sleep, MGM, 1946
The Court Jester, Paramount Pictures, 1956