7.06.2011

Lazy Summer Serial: Curtain Call #3


Right on time, our third installment of Curtain Call, in which Chuck almost swallows his tongue.  Several times.

Enjoy!

mxpw and Frea

Despite her hesitance to start, once Sarah did, most of her reluctance disappeared.

The words came out in fits and spurts, spinning a pretty basic tale. Sarah had been on her way to the makeup trailer. She’d been attacked, grabbed from behind. Using some of the hand to hand combat techniques she’d picked up working with fight coordinators, she’d wiggled free and gotten away. All in all, it was kind of an impressive tale...or Sarah had gotten very lucky. She sat on the other end of the couch in her too-small trailer, wearing her bathrobe, and looked far more more impressive than even Sydney Dunham had after she’d saved Beijing’s subway system from a string of pipe bombs set up by the mad Dr. Laszlo.

Chuck, on the other hand, was just grateful he had seen enough cop shows to know it was a good idea to record everything when interviewing somebody. If he hadn’t hurriedly fished his iPhone out of his pocket, who knows how much he would have missed. As it was, he knew he was going to have to listen to it multiple times before sending his report to Bullworth.

Still, he could recall enough off the top of his head to have a good idea of where to start.

“How tall was he again?”

“He was a couple of inches shorter than you, I think.” He watched as her eyes moved up and down his body. He couldn’t help feeling a little self-conscious. Sarah Walker was giving him the once over, would his life get any stranger?

He hummed contemplatively and tried to remember other details. Lean body, she had said, and a faded scar on his right cheek. Brown hair, kind of short, possibly like a gladiator’s. She hadn’t had a good look at his eyes, thanks to sunglasses.

“When we’re done here, I’ll talk to Security about checking their surveillance for any sign of your attacker, Miss Walker.” That sounded like something a bodyguard would say, right? God, he was in way over his head. He knew Bullworth liked the hands-off managerial style, but this was ridiculous. What was he even doing here?

Sarah sighed and leaned back on the couch. She stared up at the ceiling, her incredible blonde hair tumbling backwards like a cascading waterfall. Chuck had to shake himself a bit to knock his concentration back into place.

“I don’t even know what the big deal is,” Sarah said. She folded her arms across her chest. “It was probably just some psycho fan that snuck onto the lot. It happens.”

Chuck was leaning that way himself.

“It was just a crazy fan,” Sarah repeated. “Sometimes they see me and they snap.” Chuck wasn’t sure if she was trying to convince him or herself.

Chuck had his own doubts. After all, he’d probably consider himself one of her oldest fans, and while he was sure he’d drooled on himself like an idiot and probably a dozen other embarrassing things, he’d never thought about hurting her.

And if it was a stalker or just a delusional, albeit violent, fan, he wasn’t sure what Bullworth expected from him. He was a tech geek. He worked with machines, data, other socially maladjusted individuals every day. He’d put in the transfer request for field agent status a million times and he’d had all the training, but since he’d never actually been in the field, he had no practical experience with anything like protecting somebody.

Too valuable where he was, Bullworth would always say. Normally he felt a little bitter about that fact, but now that he was actually in the middle of a field assignment, all he could think about was the safety of his cubicle. He wasn’t sure he was ready to pull off his best Kevin Costner impression.

Clearly Bullworth only meant for all this to be temporary. Chuck figured that this Neil guy must be golfing buddies with some pretty important people, as it was the only reason he could think of for Bullworth needing somebody immediately. As far as he knew, studios had their own security for this sort of thing, didn’t they? Of course, studio security had ended with them in this predicament, so maybe that wasn’t something to be relieved about. Either way, Bullworth probably had a plan. Maybe. That thought comforted him, as it meant he wouldn’t actually be responsible for the long-term safety of the Sarah Walker. He was just a stopgap.

God, she was so pretty.

He blinked and realized he’d been drifting. Sarah was even looking at him pointedly; he flushed. What was wrong with him? Could he embarrass himself in front of her even more? First he’d been a babbling idiot and now this? She’d probably rejoice when Bullworth eventually sent somebody to take over for him.

“Crazy fan or not, I’ll do what I can to help find the man responsible.” There, he hoped that sounded suitably confident and professional. “Though from what you’ve told me, your conclusion is probably the most likely reason.”

“At least somebody here listens to me.” Sarah shook her head, clearly frustrated. “I tried telling Neil that, but he never listens.”

“Well, you’re Sarah Walker,” Chuck said, and despite his best efforts, a little bit of awe still slipped into his tone. “I’m sure he just wants to keep you safe.”

Sarah rolled her eyes. “I’ve got a whole platoon of guys standing around my trailer. It’s not like whoever it was is going to get through them.” Then she set her jaw and passion filled her eyes and he suddenly felt a little warm because damn, it was an attractive look on her. He’d seen that look more than once on the silver screen. It had always been one of his favorite things about her. “I don’t need a bodyguard. I’m sure you’re very qualified, but I’ve never needed a bodyguard before and I don’t see any reason to start now.”

“To be honest I’m a little confused about why the police aren’t handling things.”

“Again, Neil. I’m sure of it.”

Chuck nodded his head, not really sure what that was supposed to mean. “Alright, well, um, I guess I’ll see if I can’t get out of your, um, hair. I’m sure you have important stuff to do.”

“Vanessa put us on house arrest, remember?” She arched an eyebrow.

He flushed slightly and gestured with his hand toward the door of her trailer. “Like you said, your trailer is surrounded. I can’t protect you if I’m stuck in here.”

Truthfully, he just needed some time away from Sarah so he could actually think rationally about everything she had told him.

She only shrugged, so he smiled at her and turned around to leave. “Oh!”

He spun around a little too fast and almost toppled over. Oh yeah, he was great bodyguard material. “What? What’s wrong?” He scanned the trailer for signs of any attacker. There was nobody there.

“I just remembered something!”

“Yeah?”

“Yeah. He called me the Cat for some reason. I forgot about it till just now.” She frowned and bit her bottom lip. “I know he was crazy, but I’m not even up for Catwoman. You’d think a stalker would be a little more on the ball about something like that.”

As soon as Chuck heard Sarah say “the Cat,” he blocked out everything else. What the hell? That didn’t make any sense. He knew that name. Hell, everybody knew of the Cat. What was some run-of-the-mill stalker doing calling Sarah Walker the code name of one of the CIA’s most infamous agents?

It was probably just a coincidence. Right? It had to be.

“What’s that look?”

Chuck startled and realized that Sarah was staring at him. He immediately tried to cover. “What look?”

“That look!”

“I don’t have a look!”

“Yeah? Because it looks like you recognized the name. What does it mean?”

Chuck backed away from Sarah, suddenly feeling a strong desire to run. “Uh...Selina Kyle?”

“Right.” Her tone stated she clearly didn’t believe him, though he couldn’t help but be impressed she even knew the name. As if he weren’t enough of a friggin’ fanboy already.

He tried another tactic. “It was nothing, I swear. I was just thinking how lucky you were that you took your training so seriously when you were preparing to be Sydney Dunham.”

“Oh.” She peered at him closely. “You’re not a very good liar, you know that? Never go into acting.”

The trailer door opened, killing any need for a response to that. Chuck spun, Coke bottle raised high. Vanessa stepped inside, took one look at him, and just raised an eyebrow. Chuck sheepishly lowered his improvised weapon. “Sorry.”

Vanessa shook her head, but evidently decided to let it go. “Bad news, Sarah. I talked to Neil and he says Mr. Bartowski has gotta stay with you 24/7 for the time being.”

“What?” both of them blurted out at the same time. Sarah continued: “This is ridiculous!”

“I’m sorry,” Chuck added. “I just hallucinated again. What?”

“Neil said you’d say that,” Vanessa said, once again ignoring Chuck. “He also said you didn’t have a choice. It’s part of your contract.”

“It’s what?” Sarah looked genuinely surprised.

“Yeah. Insurance purposes, apparently,” Vanessa said. She shrugged. “For the time being, wherever you go, he’s gotta follow.”

Previous
Next

16 comments:

  1. coffeegirl6.7.11

    sydney dunham. lol. what's next? aeryn summers? and i just remembered martina royce is a character that yvonne strahovski played in an australian tv show.

    ReplyDelete
  2. DUDE. Aeryn Summers is an awesome name! How come we didn't use that one, Maximus???

    ReplyDelete
  3. Haha, poor Chuck, can't keep his composure.

    Now anyone how I could freeze myself for 5 days? The wait is killing me (especially as there's no R&J coming soon, apparently).

    -SH

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hank6.7.11

    What a great way to start the day. I'll be looking forward to these all summer. Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Great story. This was my third choice but I'm good with it. Though I love bumbling Chuck I'm hoping he gets to show his abilities soon. Only so much I can take lol. If I was Sarah I'd have him thrown out by now lol.

    I think we are at that point where he will show something good and make Sarah want to keep him around instead of being replaced or at least I hope so lol.

    The Cat story sound intriguing. Does Sarah have a secret life she isn't telling anyone about? or a twin? Hmmm Hopefully Chuck shows her something soon!

    ReplyDelete
  6. mxpw6.7.11

    Probably because Aeryn Summers, as awesome a name as it is, has nothing to do with Olivia Dunham. And for some people here, not that I'm naming names, that seems to be a necessary requirement. That's why. :P

    Though nothing says Sarah can't have another character waiting in the wings. She's been very prolific over the years, after all.

    @uplink - Chuck is not bumbling, he's awed. I think there's a difference.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Anonymous6.7.11

    You guys are so awesome at writing; mxpw deserves a little elevation over minion by now. :-)

    I wasn't thrilled with the winning plot, but as always it's a fun ride so far. I am looking forward to Chuck getting his feet back under him soon, and thus knocking Sarah's out from under her!

    So this is Chuck's first mission outside the bunk - errrrrr I mean lab? Hope his shoulders have still been working out. *insert lascivious grin here.*

    What was SW's code name in the Cat Squad? Because if Sarah Walker, actress, is being mistaken for Sarah Walker, spy, and Chuck gets entangled with both of them, I think a few male (and female) heads are going to explode at the visual...

    ReplyDelete
  8. Maximus, Frea - I am awed by your work ;)
    Nice start to a lazy summer serial - thanks for taking the time to do this for us!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Anonymous6.7.11

    This is fun. It´s like a summer tv show. :)

    This wasn´t my first choice, mostly because I had a hard time imagining Sarah Walker as an actress, or at least her being in that profession. ;)

    But I like the way she is portrayed so far. And I love that Chuck thinks of himself as a fan. Also adore that this is his first field assignment. And he does come off more starstruck than bumbling to me. Additionally Sarah seems pretty clueless herself so far. That means Chuck´s newbie field agent status puts them on the same footing in some way. I like that.

    Plus I am a total sucker for characters getting stuck together in about any setting. So this 24/7 thing sounds fantastic. It´s also nice that it seems to unsettle both of them.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Ayefah6.7.11

    I'm sure Chuck will get inured to the celebrity awe effect eventually. Right? :P

    ReplyDelete
  11. It's possible. But then you add the fact that Sarah Walker is the celebrity? Dude's gonna be walking into walls for a long time. But that's okay. Chuck takes his shirt off in Fates, Sarah has the same problem. It balances out in some way or other, you just may have to jump universes to make it happen. Not that I blame her. Those shoulders are fantastic.

    ;)

    And Anonymous, I am very excited about the 24/7 and pleasant/unpleasant side effects that come from this much time together, too! *rubs hands together eagerly*

    Peter O, you're very welcome, and thank you for the lovely comment!

    Anonymous1, mxpw got that elevation months ago! He's Head Minion now. And I wouldn't say the Cat has anything to do with the Cat Squad, per se. It may be...something entirely unique.

    Uplink, wouldn't call Chuck bumbling in this story. He hasn't tripped, his dialogue's been pretty concise.

    Hank, you're very welcome. :) Thank mxpw for this one. He was the genius driving it.

    Speedhoven, as far as I can tell, no way to freeze yourself. Sorry. :) Otherwise I'd be all for freezing myself until the second season of Downton Abbey or the next season of Fringe hits. Whichever is sooner (Fringe).

    ReplyDelete
  12. Crumby7.7.11

    So was Sarah's attacker Tommy? The scar thing and description made me think of him. I don't know what a gladiator's hair look like though.

    Chuck has field training but never actually got in the field. That's interesting. That would explain why they would consider him for that assignment. It's not completely random, and they seem out of options. Or maybe there's something else. We can never tell with you too! :)

    The Cat thing is also very interesting. Before that, I hadn't really question Sarah's situation and her possible involvement with the spy world (she does use the name Sarah Walker though, which is the name Graham gave her in canon, so what happened there?). I also wondered if there was a link to the CAT Squad, but you already commented on that. I'm really curious to see how's Sarah's attack is related to "the code name of one of the CIA’s most infamous agents." Especially since she's well known, so why would her attacker have mistaken her?

    "As if he weren’t enough of a friggin’ fanboy already." Sarah is not making things easy for Chuck! :)

    Chuck's awe is funny and cute, and you guys always write great interactions between Chuck and Sarah. Loved the scene. So, thank you. 

    Finally, this 24/7 thing is definitely exciting. ;-)

    ReplyDelete
  13. hehehe, this is turning out to be quite a fun ride. I can't say I blame Chuck for being so starstruck. If I ever got the chance to see and talk to Yvonne one-on-one for a while, I would probably be in the same state, if not worse!

    Looking forward to Chuck starting to sweep Sarah off her feet. :)

    ReplyDelete
  14. Anonymous8.7.11

    This is a great start and I am super pleased my first choice won out. I'm really hoping there is an unannounced first dinner at Ellie's a la Notting Hill. With you guys writing it it would be downright hilarious!

    ReplyDelete
  15. Ayefah8.7.11

    Hm. The scar does seem to point to Tommy, and admittedly, my only visual reference for a gladiator is Russell Crowe, but Tommy's hair seems too long and floppy to be a match. He's also more like 6 inches shorter than Chuck, not 2. Who knows, though; Sarah's description could just be inaccurate or I could be grasping at straws. I'm still going to put myself out there and guess that the attacker was an OC - or at the very least not Tommy.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Crumby9.7.11

    Yeah, it's really just the scar that made think of him.
    According to IMDb, Anthony Ruivivar is Yvonne's height and Zach's 5" taller. But hey, Sarah could be wrong or have used the excuse to give Chuck the once over. :D
    And if it was Tommy, Sarah has definitely picked up quite a few things from her movies, he was supposed to be badass. Or he could have underestimated her.
    Probably not Tommy though. Don't know why I'm still commenting. ;-)

    ReplyDelete

Please remember to be courteous to all other Castle Inanity commenters.