Steele, Inc.-Atlanta Division
 
 
 Steele for Better or for Worse
Part 3
by
Debra Talley and Thekla Kurth

A couple of hours later, Remington was putting the finishing touches on his elegantly set table. Lighting the candles, he stepped back to admire his handiwork. Yes, the red roses definitely added the perfect touch. He was glad he had called the florist and arranged for the special delivery. The bottle of Dom Perignon '76 was chilling nicely and the soft music playing in the background added just the right touch to the romantic mood he was trying so hard to achieve.
 
He nervously adjusted his tie and slipped into his tuxedo jacket. With any luck, tonight might turn out to be his wedding night. If he could convince Laura to wholeheartedly accept their marriage, he would be the happiest man alive. If a little wining and dining would help matters along, it was worth the effort.
 
Remington had hoped to propose to Laura in Cannes, but that trip had yielded a fiasco instead of an engagement. Since that time, his dream of a life with Laura seemed to be slipping further and further away. He knew Laura still loved him; she just had too much pride to admit it and recant the childish decision she'd made their last evening in Cannes. But she had supported him during the deportation bomb, so perhaps she was finally ready to accept him. He knew they could build a good life together.
 
Remington knew in his heart that Laura had meant the declaration of love she had given to Estelle earlier that day. It didn't matter that she had said them for Estelle's benefit; it was enough that she had spoken the words in his presence. It had warmed his heart to hear Laura say the words, even though he did not need to hear them to know that she loved him. Her supportive actions during Estelle's visit were all the proof he needed of her love.
 
Remington had never understood Laura's desperate need to hear him verbally declare his love for her. Didn't his actions prove his love? Didn't the mere fact that he was still around after three years prove his commitment? Remington had learned early on to judge people by what they did and not by what they said; there were too many traps in that. Laura, however, felt as though him finally saying "I love you" would be proof that he would stay forever. Remington couldn't imagine ever leaving Laura of his own free will, but he knew that mere words spoken now would mean nothing should that day ever come. But that afternoon, he had finally verbally admitted his love to Laura. Surely now her desperate need to hear the words had been satisfied and she would be content with the proof of his love.
 
While Remington was busy contemplating the future of the evening-- indeed, his entire life-- an elegantly dressed Laura entered the elevator and punched the button for his floor. She, also, had done a lot of soul searching. There was no doubt that she was deeply in love with her Man of Steele. She had forgiven him weeks ago for the Cannes disaster--right after the fire at her loft, in fact--but her pride wouldn't let her admit it to him.
 
She also knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that Remington loved her. The mere fact that he hadn't run as far and as fast as he could when Estelle arrived was proof of that. But even so, Laura wanted more. She wanted to hear the words. Too many people in her life had loved her and left her; this time she simply couldn't settle for anything less than a verbal declaration of love and commitment.
 
True, she and Remington had exchanged marriage vows, but that was under false pretenses and really didn't count. And true, Remington had told Estelle that he was deeply in love with her. Laura knew in her heart that Remington meant those words, but they had been said merely for Estelle's benefit. Laura would be happy to accept their marriage wholeheartedly, but first she needed a declaration of love from him. She didn't want a marriage of convenience, but she had to be assured of his commitment. Surely he would realize she needed that. She said a little prayer that tonight would be their wedding night.
 
Her decision made, Laura exited the elevator and gathered what courage she could. Stopping before apartment A, she took a deep breath and rang the bell.
 
Remington answered the bell on the first ring. The two of them couldn't help laughing nervously when they noticed each other's attire.
 
"Guess we had the same idea," Laura said.
 
"Yes, great minds and all that," Remington replied as Laura entered the room and he closed the door. "We'll, uh, have to get you a key. It wouldn't do to have the Lady of the House picking her own lock."
 
"Right," Laura agreed. "Assuming, of course, that we decide to live here and not at my loft."
 
"Uh, what say we postpone that decision until tomorrow," Remington suggested. "Dinner is ready and I'd hate to spoil it by getting into a knock down, drag out."
 
"Alright," Laura agreed. "Shall we eat?"
 
Remington led Laura into the dimly lit dining room and held her chair for her. He then took his seat opposite her and began pouring the champagne.
 
"Everything is lovely," Laura said admiringly as she took a sip of her champagne.
 
"Nothing is too good for my blushing bride," Remington declared as he took Laura's china plate and dipped her a serving of the main entree' from a silver chafing dish. He then dipped her a serving of green peas and tiny onions from a smaller silver dish.
 
When he sat the elegant china plate before her, Laura couldn't help laughing.
 
"Tuna casserole with rice?"
 
"I know you said you didn't want rice, but I was out of noodles," Remington explained, defensively. "And it was either that or pork and beans."
 
"On Wedgewood?" Laura teased, referring to their past case on the Devil's Playground.
 
"That could have been arranged," Remington admitted.
 
They ate in awkward silence for several minutes. Both were afraid to get too serious, too soon. Finally, the silence became too much to bear.
 
Remington decided to take the plunge and get it over with. "I'd, uh, like to thank you for supporting me while Estelle was here."
 
"Well, I couldn't very well just sit there and watch you be deported, now could I? I've invested too much time and energy turning you into Remington Steele to have Immigration whisk you away. Besides, I've gotten used to having you around. Who else would I argue with if you were thrown out of the country?"
 
"Indeed," Remington said coolly.
 
Laura could have kicked herself. She hadn't meant to reply so flippantly to Remington's genuine expression of gratitude. Why did she always end up saying the wrong thing around him anyway? She had wanted to say that she couldn't bear the thought of losing him; that she would have willingly done anything to keep him near her. She wanted to say that now, to remove that look of pain she now saw in his eyes--but the words just wouldn't come out. Instead, she wolfed down more tuna casserole.
 
"I just want you to know that I appreciate it. I've gotten quite used to playing Remington Steele. I'd hate to have to give up the role and start all over again in Ireland or whatever country I was deported to."
 
Remington could have kicked himself. That wasn't what he had meant to say at all. Why did he always end up saying the wrong thing around Laura anyway? He had wanted to say that he couldn't bear the thought of losing her; that he would willingly have done anything to stay near her. He wanted to say that now, to remove that look of pain he now saw in her eyes-- but the words just wouldn't come out. Instead, he wolfed down more tuna casserole.
 
"Do you really think we can fool Estelle and Immigration for two years?" Remington finally asked after another long spell of silence.
 
"Well, for the good of the Agency, we can certainly try," Laura said matter of factly. "How hard can it be to convince the public we are married?"
 
Laura wanted to kick herself again. Why had she said that? That wasn't what she wanted to say at all! Why didn't Remington just take her in his arms and shake some sense into her?
 
"Laura, let's stop playing games and get down to the bottom line," Remington finally declared, tossing his napkin onto the table. "Whether we planned it or not, we were legally married this morning. There's no way we can gracefully get out of the marriage without jeopardizing the Agency. You know I care for you very much, and I think you still care for me--in spite of your recent icy disposition since Cannes. How many times can I apologize for that?"
 
"Are you trying to make a point?" Laura asked angrily, tossing her napkin on the table, also.
 
"Yes, as a matter of fact, I am!" Remington declared loudly. "I suggest we put our differences behind us and wholeheartedly accept this marriage! It's legal! That should satisfy your bloody conscience. I have no doubt that this new relationship could turn out to be highly satisfying for both of us."
 
Laura pushed herself into a standing position, still leaning heavily on the table. "I want more from marriage than a roll in the hay!" she yelled angrily.
 
Remington pushed himself up into a standing position and also leaned heavily on the table. "And I want more from a marriage than a good show in public and a cold bed at night!" he yelled just as angrily.
 
"How do I know you won't be gone in two years?" Laura demanded. "What guarantees can you give me!"
 
"How do you know I won't be gone tomorrow? Or next week? Promises aren't worth anything, Laura! Doesn't the fact that I've stayed around for over two years mean anything to you? What does it take to get through to you?"
 
"More than a wink and a tumble!"
 
"Do you honestly believe that's the only reason I've stuck around for two years?" Remington declared.
 
He and Laura just stared at each other angrily for several seconds.
 
"I think that we better stop before we say something we'll both regret," Laura suggested quietly.
 
"Isn't it already too late for that?" Remington inquired.
 
Laura left the dining room and walked to the bedroom door, Remington close on her heels. She paused in the open doorway for a few seconds and then turned to face him.
 
"I won't have you deported," she assured him. "As far as the public and Immigration are concerned, we'll be the happiest married couple in America. No one will ever suspect we strictly have a marriage of convenience. We may be living together, but we won't be living *together*. Do I make myself clear, Mr. Steele?"
 
"As a bell, Miss Holt. As a bell."
 
"Well, in that case, good night," Laura said, slamming the door in Remington's face and locking it.
 
That final indignity was more than Remington could take. He began pounding on the bedroom door.
 
"Laura! Laura! Open the door!" Receiving no answer, he pounded louder. "Lau-ra! This is your husband talking! Now open this door!"
 
To Remington's surprise the door opened. Laura stood before him holding an armful of bed covers, which she proceeded to throw across the living room one piece at a time. Last but not least, she flung a pair of his black silk pajama bottoms in his face. Before he could retaliate, the door was once again slammed in his face.
 
"That tears it!" Remington swore aloud as he stormed angrily into the kitchen.
 
He rummaged through several drawers until he located an ice pick. Returning to the living room, he placed the ice pick on the table by the door. He then angrily proceeded to rip off his clothes, slinging each piece across the room as he stripped. Once undressed, he put on the pajama bottoms Laura had flung in his face.
 
Using the ice pick as a lock pick, he attacked his bedroom lock with a vengeance. Within moments the lock clicked and he pushed the door open. Realizing Laura was not there, he stomped to the open bathroom door.
 
"LAU-RA!! "
 
Laura was standing before the mirror brushing her hair, wearing a very sheer nightgown of Mildred's choosing. She gasped, jumped and spun around all at the same time when she heard him call her name.
 
The man standing before her was a Remington Steele she had never before encountered. She was almost afraid of this stranger. Slowly, she backed away until she was stopped by the bathroom wall.
 
"You are my wife, damn it, and this is our wedding night. You will not lock me out of my own bedroom without at least giving me a good night kiss." With that, Remington grabbed Laura in a tight embrace and gave her the most passionate and demanding kiss she had ever received.
 
She was on the verge of fainting when Remington released her.
 
"Good night, Mrs. Steele," he declared as he turned and left.
 
Laura, leaning weakly against the bathroom wall, soon heard the bedroom door slam. Well, she had learned one thing on her wedding night-- a locked door was no deterrent when it came to an angry husband. She knew they had along way to go before Remington would finally be able to say those three little words to her that she needed to hear, but she was determined to hold out until he did. She knew with certainty that day would come.
 
In the living room, Remington angrily pounded the couch into a bed, using the covers Laura had so thoughtfully tossed out earlier. He stretched out, pulled the covers up to his waist and tightly crossed his arms across his chest. Laura may have locked him out of the bedroom on their wedding night, but at least he had shown her exactly who was the boss. He know without a doubt that she had enjoyed that kiss as much as he had. He realized they had along way to go before he broke through Laura's bloody defenses, but he was determined to hold out until he did. He knew with certainty that day would come.
 
Remington rolled over once more in his effort to find a comfortable position on the couch. He sat up and plumped the pillow, thinking that would help. Laying back down and crossing his arms across his chest, he tried not to think of Laura sleeping alone, no doubt very comfortably, in his queen sized bed. But the more he tried not to think of her,the more he did.
 
He gave up any hopes of sleeping.
 
**************
 
After what was undoubtably the longest night of his life, Remington became aware of the rosy glow of dawn peeping through the curtains. He didn't relish the idea of spending another night on the couch, so he vowed to do something to remedy the situation before another day had passed. After all, maybe Laura would be more receptive to him in the light of a new day. He was just about to rise when he heard a discreet knock on the door.
 
"Now who could that be at this hour?" he wondered aloud as he headed to answer the door. With his hand on the knob he asked, "Who is it?"
 
"Mr. Steele, it's me--Mildred. I have a little surprise for you and Mrs. Steele. I'll just deliver it and then be on my way. Is that O.K.?"
 
"Uh, sure, Mildred," Remington said, starting to open the door.
 
Suddenly he remembered his makeshift bed on the couch; if Mildred saw that, she'd be bound to ask questions.
 
"Just a moment, Mildred," he called out as he dashed to the couch and grabbed the covers. "We're not dressed. Have to make ourselves presentable and all."
 
He bolted over to the bedroom door with his bundle. "Laura..." he called out as he barging in.
 
Laura had just awakened and was sitting up in bed. She rubbed her eyes and ran a hand through her hair. Seeing Remington bounding into the bedroom, she became upset. "Just what do you think you're doing, barging in here again!? I suppose this time you want more than a good night kiss?"
 
"Laura, as much as I'd love to bicker with you, we don't have the time right now! Mildred is at the door!"
 
"What is she doing here?" Laura asked.
 
"She says she has a surprise for us. Now come on, Laura; help me get rid of these," he pleaded as he stuffed the blankets in the closet. "We have to keep up appearances, eh? We wouldn't want Mildred to know that one of us spent the night on the couch."
 
"And why not?" Laura asked as she continued to sit in bed.
 
"Need I remind you, Mrs. Steele, that you promised we would be the happiest married couple in America? We don't want Mildred to become suspicious, now do we?"
 
"Oh, very well," Laura conceded, flinging back the covers and padding out into the living room.
 
Remington couldn't help staring. She was still wearing the sheer nightgown that Mildred had so thoughtfully provided. He stood in the doorway and watched her bend over to retrieve the pillows on the floor. The view was most rewarding.
 
She threw the throw pillows onto the couch, then noticed him watching her from the bedroom doorway.
 
"What!?" she snapped.
 
"Just admiring how lovely my bride is in the morning," Remington explained with a smile.
 
"Aaargh," Laura screamed, pushing past him back into the bedroom and throwing the extra pillow onto the bed.
 
Remington rushed over to the bed and quickly lay down, rolling around to crumple the sheets on the opposite side to make it appear as if two people had slept in it.
 
"Oh, for heaven's sake..." Laura declared.
 
"Can never be too careful," Remington explained as he rose, finding his robe and pulling it on. Then glancing at Laura, he asked, "Do you have a robe?"
 
She grabbed her terry cloth robe from the foot of the bed and put it on. She was grateful she had remembered to bring that last night from the loft.
 
Remington glanced around to make sure everything was in order and then walked to the front door.
 
"Mr. Steele..." Laura started.
 
Remington paused just long enough to ask, "Laura, don't you think it would be better if you called you husband something besides 'Mister'?"
 
There were a great many things she wanted to call him, especially at that moment, but he was already opening the door and greeting Mildred before she could settle on one.
 
"Mildred, sorry to keep you waiting. So nice to have you drop by this morning," Remington said as Laura appeared beside him.
 
Mildred entered, followed by two waiters in white jackets who were pushing a wheeled cart.
 
"I wanted to do something special for your first morning together, so I brought you breakfast in bed," she explained.
 
Laura and Remington stared opened mouthed at her.
 
Finally, Laura said, "Ah, that's awfully sweet of you, Mildred, but we really don't have time for a long leisurely breakfast. It's a working day and we have to get dressed to for the office."
 
"Certainly you two aren't planning to come into the office today?" Mildred protested.
 
"Well, yes; of course," Laura said.
 
"I'm surprised you two have the energy to think about going *anywhere* today," Mildred explained in astonishment.
 
"Actually, Mildred..." Laura started again.
 
Remington hastily cut in, slipping his arm around Laura's waist. "Actually, Mildred, we just don't know how ever we'll thank you for your generous and thoughtful gesture. Isn't that right, Dear?" he prompted Laura.
 
"That's right, Dear," Laura replied through gritted teeth.
 
"Well, if you two will just hop back into bed, breakfast will be coming right up," Mildred ordered. "I've got everything under control."
 
Remington and Laura plastered big smiles onto their faces as they headed back into the bedroom. Remington slipped out of his robe and climbed into bed, pulling the covers over his legs and settling them around his waist. He then stuffed a couple of pillows behind his back.
 
Laura just stood staring at him.
 
He patted the bed beside him, saying, "In you get, Miss Holt... I mean, Mrs. Steele. Or do you prefer Holt-Steele, perhaps?"
 
"Holt-Steele will do fine," Laura growled.
 
She wished she could think of a diplomatic way out of this, but nothing came to mind. She had no choice but to crawl into bed with her new husband.
 
"Take off your robe, my sweet," he whispered.
 
"I'll leave it on, thank you," she hissed as she crossed her arms.
 
"Suit yourself," he shrugged.
 
Mildred bustled into the bedroom, followed by the waiters. They began setting up the breakfast, which consisted of coffee, orange juice, champagne, fruit compote, Strawberries Romanoff, hot buttered biscuits with jam, and ham & cheese omelets.
 
Mildred glanced at Laura. "Aren't you a little warm in that robe, Luv?" Remington looked at her, amused.
 
"Ah, no. I'm fine," Laura assured her.
 
"You do look a mite warm. Here, let me help you," Remington offered.
 
Laura silently grrred as Remington helped her off with the robe, revealing the gown underneath. Laura quickly pulled the covers up, but not quickly enough to stop Remington from looking at her appreciatively.
 
The look did not go unnoticed by Mildred, who grinned knowingly. "Well, I'll be going now. Three on a honeymoon is a crowd. And speaking of honeymoons--Have you two decided where you'll be taking yours?"
 
"Ah, no, we haven't given it much thought yet," Remington quickly replied before Laura could comment.
 
Mildred nodded in understanding and then headed for the door, saying, "Don't worry about the Agency, kids. I'll hold down the fort."
 
"That's a relief," Remington declared.
 
"Mr. Steele and I..." Laura began, but caught herself as Remington kicked her under the covers. "Ah, that is, Remington and I will be in a little later."
 
"I wouldn't count on it, Mildred," Remington contradicted as he pulled Laura towards him. "I think that in our new role as newlyweds, it's our obligation to linger in bed today. I think I can persuade my blushing bride to agree to the wisdom of that."
 
Mildred winked at Laura and disappeared with a wave into the living room. They heard her signal to the waiters and then they heard the front door being closed.
 
As soon as they were alone, Laura jumped out of bed.
 
"Coffee?" Remington offered, holding out a steaming cup to her.
 
She ignored him and continued walking away.
 
"Juice? Champagne?" he asked.
 
Laura whirled around and glared at him, but said nothing.
 
"Laura, it's not going to hurt you to join me for this delicious breakfast," Remington explained calmly.
 
She stared at him. For a moment he was afraid she would refuse to join him. But then she sat back down on the edge of the bed, as far away from him as possible, and he breathed a sigh of relief. It was not the most romantic breakfast, but at least it was civil. They didn't argue, but that was mainly because Remington was very careful to avoid the subject of their marriage.
 
Remington was leisurely sipping a second cup of coffee when Laura put down her cup and stood up.
 
"I'm going to get dressed," she announced.
 
He didn't know if she expected him to leave or not, but he didn't. He remained where he was, lounging in bed. Laura snatched up some clothes and disappeared into the bathroom, shutting the door and locking it behind her. She wasn't really sure why she had bothered to lock it; she knew for a fact a locked door was no deterrent to an angry husband.
 
Remington heard the sound of the shower for a very long time. He wondered if Laura was purposely taking an extended shower, using all the hot water out of spite so there'd be none left for him. He shook his head. They may have made it through breakfast, but the day had only begun and already Remington was having serious doubts about that night. Laura was not coming around and he needed a sure fire plan to soften her up. As he lay lazily in bed, he tried to think of possible ways to break down her defenses.
 
An hour later, Laura emerged from the bathroom fully dressed and ready for the day in a conservative business suit.
 
"You're really serious about going into the office," he said incredulously.
 
"Of course. I have an Agency to run and nothing is going to come between it and me."
 
Remington held up his hands. "Perish the thought!"
 
"I'll see you later then," Laura explained coolly as she picked up her purse.
 
"Wait a minute, Laura. If we're going in, don't you think it would look better if we at least go in together? Hmm?"
 
She shrugged. She couldn't see that it made much difference.
 
He quickly hopped out of bed. "If you'll just just give me a few minutes, I'll get ready."
 
"OK," she agreed, reluctantly. "I guess I might as well clean up things in here while you're getting dressed."
 
Having said that, she started gathering up the breakfast things.
 
Remington grinned. "That's my little woman."
 
Laura whirled around and growled at him. "I'm not your little woman. I am not anybody's little woman."
 
Remington nodded and then beat a hasty retreat into the bathroom, not even bothering to close the door completely. He noticed Laura's skimpy nightgown laying on the counter and fingered it, remembering how lovely she had looked in it last night. With a sigh, he took off his pajama bottoms and stepped into the shower. Amazingly, there was some hot water left.
 
Following his shower, he stood before the mirror with a towel wrapped around his waist and prepared to shave. After the first swipe he screamed and stormed from the bathroom holding his razor
 
"Laura!" he exclaimed loudly.
 
Laura stuck her head into the bedroom. "Did you say something?" she asked.
 
"Laura," he began, trying to remain calm. "Did you by chance use my razor?"
 
She shrugged. "Yes, I shaved my legs when I showered."
 
"Well, it nicked my blade," Remington explained as he gingerly rubbed his bloody chin.
 
"I'm sorry," Laura said, her tone indicating she was not sorry in the least.
 
"Well, just don't do it again," Remington instructed.
 
"I didn't know it would be such a crime," Laura exclaimed. "What other things of yours am I not allowed to touch? Maybe we should divide things up--You know, draw lines. That drawer is yours: this one is mine. That shelf is yours; this one is mine. That wall is yours; this one is mine. That half of the refrigerator is yours; this half is mine. That razor is yours; this one is mine."
 
"Laura, that's not necessary," he assured her. "We just need to respect each other's personal items. You wouldn't like it if I used your razor, now would you?"
 
"You have!" she snapped. "Remember when we took care of little Joey?"
 
"Need you remind me?" he cringed.
 
She wasn't sure if he cringed from the memory of staying awake all night tending a crying baby or from the memory of experiencing the worst shave of his life, thanks to her pink lady's razor.
 
"Just try to remember, Laura," he requested.
 
"Fine. Just mark whatever you don't want me to use. Make a list. Write your name on everything," Laura explained testily. Then she laughed. "Oh, I forgot. You can't do that, seeing as how you don't have a name." Then suddenly she became angry. "You suggested I call my husband something besides 'Mister'... Why don't you have a name?!"
 
"I have a name. Remington. You gave it to me, remember? If you don't like it, then make up another one," he suggested calmly. He was surprised and hurt by Laura's sudden reminder of this sore point between them, but he chose not to make an issue of it.
 
Laura suddenly turned on her heel, declaring, "I'll be waiting in the car downstairs. If you're not down there in 15 minutes, I'm leaving without you."
 
She left without another word.
 
"You're a difficult woman, Mrs. Steele!" Remington yelled after her. Receiving no response, he hurriedly finish dressing, muttering under his breath, "Well, at least we're starting to act like a married couple."
 
With only a minute to spare, Remington joined Laura in the Auburn. Her arms were crossed and she was nervously tapping her fingers. She glanced at him as he got into the car, but didn't say anything as he put the key in the ignition.
 
"Ready?" he inquired.
 
"I've been ready for quite some time now," Laura said tightly.
 
"Are you implying that I'm never ready on time?" he queried.
 
Laura gaped at him. "I suppose now you're going to limit my time in the bathroom, too."
 
"Why are we fighting about such petty things?" he asked.
 
"I don't know. Why are we?"
 
"Perhaps because we can't face the real issue."
 
Laura knew it was the truth. "You're right," she admitted.
 
"So what do we do about it then, eh?"
 
Laura gave it some thought. "OK, let's make a deal. We'll discuss our marriage tonight after we get home. It will be just the two us then. Surely we can come up with a solution that will make both of us happy. Until then, let's just put it aside and try to have a normal day. Deal?"
 
She looked to him for a response.
 
"Deal," he agreed.
 
Remington stopped his musings and turned his attentions back to starting the Auburn. Unfortunately, it was being as uncooperative this morning as Laura was. It made a lot of noise, but refused to make any headway. Remington turned the key in the ignition several times to no avail.
 
"Well, don't just sit there. Get out and find out what's wrong with it!" Laura demanded loudly.
 
"In case you've forgotten, Laura, I'm a detective; not a mechanic!"
 
"At least pretend you know what to do!"
 
Remington decided to change his tactic. Smiling broadly, he said, "Certainly, Dear. Your wish is my command."
 
Laura took a deep breath and rolled her eyes as she folded her arms even tighter across her chest. Remington continued to smile at her as he crawled out of the car and opened the hood, using his handkerchief so he wouldn't get his hands dirty.
 
He examined the situation for several minutes before locating the problem. "It seemed that several spark plugs and a few wires are missing," Remington explained as he closed the hood and wiped his hands. Without thinking, he then wiped his forehead with the greasy handkerchief and smeared himself with grease.
 
Laura couldn't help herself. She laughed.
 
"What's so funny?" Remington inquired, hands on his hips.
 
Laura just continued to laugh.
 
Remington, puzzled, sat back down behind the wheel. "While I prefer your lilting laughter to your bloody stubbornness, but I would like to know what's so funny," he explained.
 
"Check the mirror, Mr. Steele," Laura instructed.
 
Remington checked the rear view mirror and saw the problem.
 
"Allow me," Laura offered as she dug a handkerchief out of her purse, spit on it and slid over beside Remington. Putting one hand on his shoulder, she began vigorously scrubbing his forehead with the other.
 
In spite of the fact that she was scrubbing his forehead raw, Remington couldn't help but be very aware of Laura's closeness. Without her realizing it, he put his arms around her and drew her even closer. He quickly captured her lips with his and stole a kiss. She quickly pulled away, but to Remington's surprise she wasn't angry. Instead, she looked bemused. He took advantage of her momentary good will and planted little kisses all over her face and neck.
 
"Mr. Steele, just exactly what do you think you are doing?" Laura asked.
 
"You're not much of a detective, Mrs. Steele, if you have to ask that question," Remington said between kisses.
 
Laura was finding it hard to breath. He was definitely getting to her. Deciding to fight fire with fire, she threw her arms around him and gave him a heart pounding, pulse racing, spine tingling, blood coursing kiss. He was taken totally unawares by Laura's display of passion. Did this mean she was finally coming around?
 
When they broke the kiss, Remington looked at Laura with a dazed look of wonder and licked his lips. Laura smiled her most seductive smile and brushed Remington's dark hair from his forehead.
 
"Does this mean what I hope it means, Mrs. Steele?"
 
"What this means, Mr. Steele, is that tonight when you're sleeping on the couch, you can think about exactly what you are missing!" Laura said, fiercely grabbing him for another white-hot kiss that sent him once again to dizzying heights.
 
Then abruptly she let him go, slid back across the seat and crawled out of the Auburn. Pausing suddenly, she turned to him again and said, "I'm going back upstairs to call Fred. We have a business to run, remember?"
 
Then giving Remington a mischievous grin, she walked away, swaying her hips in a very suggestive manner that was quite unlike her.
 
Remington sat behind the wheel, thoroughly confused. Laura was truly an enigma. He never knew where he stood with her, but he was sure going to enjoy finding out. One thing was sure--there was no way he was going to spend another lonely night on that couch thinking about what he was missing. He may have been a gentleman, but he wasn't a fool.
 
To be cont...part 4

 

Steele, Inc.-Atlanta Div.

 
 

dtalley@mindspring.com

 
 This story copyrighted 1982-2005 by Debra Talley. The characters of Remington Steele
are used without permission. It is purely for entertainment purposes.