HOUSE OF STEELE
By: Laura Wood
First printed: More Red Holt Steele #6
Summary: Remington purchases a house in the hope that Laura will agree to marry him.
Disclaimer: This “Remington Steele” story is not-for-profit and is purely for entertainment purposes. The author and this site do not own the characters and are in no way affiliated with “Remington Steele,” the actors, their agents, the producers, MTM Productions, the NBC Television Network or any station or network carrying the show in syndication, or anyone in the industry.
April 19, 1986
Laura Holt swiftly walked into the offices of Remington Steele Investigations determined to get a head start on the paperwork her associate had been putting off since late February due to a minor accident with a psycho and an elevator. Maybe she could even convince him to do some of the work himself if he ever made an appearance in the office before nine-thirty.
"Morning, Miss Holt" Mildred Krebs pronounced out of daily routine.
"Morning, Mildred. Any calls?" Laura asked as she picked up the day's mail. Bill. Bill. Bill. Nope, nothing of value there.
"Two. Your mother's coming Sunday morning instead of Sunday evening." Mildred said.
"Ugh." Laura was not to happy about her mother visiting. Well, maybe this time her mother wouldn't poke and prod into her love life or lack there of. Yeah right, Laura told herself. Keep dreaming. "What was the other call?" Laura asked as she tossed the mail back onto Mildred's desk.
"Some Realtor. Mr. Johnston, I think. Anyway, the boss took it in his office."
"You mean he's in already?" Laura asked in complete shock.
"He was here when I arrived," Mildred replied with growing concern. "Is there something wrong? He's been in early before."
"Only when he's up to something," Laura replied under her breath.
"What was that?" Mildred asked with growing curiosity replacing the earlier concern.
"Nothing. Thanks, Mildred." Laura said absent-mindedly as she briskly walked into her office.
"No... No... I... Yeah... Right... Today... No, not today... Why?... Tonight?... I don't know... All right... Yeah... Is seven... no... no... six-thirty is just fine... No... No she doesn't know yet... Yeah... Look... no... no... no worries... Yeah... I'm sure... Okay... Okay, I've got to go... Yeah... okay... I've got to go now... Yeah... Six-thirty... Okay, just bring the key's by the office and I'll sign everything... Okay... Okay... Yeah... Bye... BYE!!!" Remington Steele slammed the receiver onto the phone. "Bloody realtors."
"What was that?" Laura asked as she walked into her partner's office.
Remington's head whipped around to the connecting door he shared with Laura's office. This was not something she needed to find out about before everything was completed. She'd kill him for sure this time.
"Uh, oh, that was some stupid salesman trying to get me to buy life insurance of all things. Can you believe that?" Remington asked as he was mentally kicking himself in the rear for thinking up something as stupid as life insurance.
"Well," Laura replied as she approached Remington's desk, "you do put yourself in some pretty dangerous situations. I mean, it might come in handy one day."
"Yes, well, thank you very much Miss Holt. As you are well aware of, though, we already have life insurance. I don't need anymore." Maybe she believed me after all, Remington thought hopefully.
Yep, Laura thought, he's definitely up to something. Well, two can play at this game. Now, for the perfect way to find out what he was up to. "I thought that maybe we could go for dinner tonight," Laura said as she leaned over the front of Remington's desk to look him squarely in his bright blue eyes. "Maybe Mexican, or Chinese."
"Tonight?" Remington gulped. "I thought that maybe you'd want to come over for dinner. Do we have to go out?"
"Yes, we do," Laura responded with a voice like velvet. "You can pick me up at six."
"Six," Remington repeated as he gazed into Laura's deep brown eyes.
"Good." Laura slid off Remington's desk. "Now you can help me with some of the paper work."
Remington knew that Laura was on to him. For some reason, whenever he came up with a plan to win Laura's heart, she'd find out about it and ruin everything. Well, he thought. This time will definitely be different. He'd already bought the ring, made the down payment on the house and had canceled the lease on his condo. There were only a few more hours between then and now and Remington was not going to let Laura find out his plan. This was one surprise that she would definitely love him or hate him for, and he was desperately hoping for the former of the two.
Laura knew that Remington was up to something. He obviously wasn't going to tell her what, but she knew that it was going down at six-thirty. At least now she'd be with him for whatever it was that he was going to get himself in trouble for. She desperately hoped that it wasn't anything illegal.
Remington thanked the heavens that their new house only had one flight of stairs he'd have to climb. Three floors was ridiculous without an elevator. After all, wasn't this the twentieth century? Well, he thought as he approached Laura's loft, with any luck this would be one of the last times he'd have to ascend this damned staircase.
He knocked on the door, and Laura opened it to find an incredibly gorgeous Remington Steele, complete with tuxedo and one white rose, standing in her doorway.
"Hi." Remington had trouble speaking as he gazed at the woman who he hoped would soon be his wife. "You look beautiful."
Laura blushed slightly and took the rose as Remington handed it to her.
"Thank you. You don't look half bad either." Half bad? Come on Laura, she told herself, he looks great. Better than great.
"Are you ready? We have reservations for six-thirty."
"I'm ready." Laura smelled the beautiful rose as she walked through the entrance to her loft letting Remington close the heavy door.
Three flights of stairs later they were in the limo with Fred at the wheel. So far, so good, Remington thought. Only a half an hour to go... "You know Laura," Remington started as Fred pulled away from the curb, "I think that maybe it's about time we update the limo, don't you?"
"Not classy enough for you anymore, Mr. Steele?" Was this why he was trying so desperately to impress her? The tux, the rose, and his usual coolness couldn't be because he wanted a more updated style of limousine, could it?
"Well," Remington replied as he turned to Laura, "I was thinking of a newer model with a little more space in the back."
Laura knew where this was headed. "Why would we need more space?" she asked, playing along.
"For this," Remington said as he moved in to kiss her. Remington caressed Laura's left cheek with his right hand as he placed a soft kiss on her mouth. He gently pulled back to study Laura's reaction. By the looks of it, she wasn't backing down from his assertion.
Laura normally didn't like to kiss Remington in the back of the limo, but tonight he was pulling one over on her, so she decided to play along with his little game until she got to the bottom of things. Lucky for her that he was in the mode for love.
"We don't do this enough," Remington said as he moved in to kiss her again.
"Mmm," Laura softly moaned as she felt Remington's lips move slowly across hers again. This time, though, Remington didn't back away, but initiated a more intimate kiss as he ran his warm tongue across the outside of her lips, silently asking her to let him taste her.
What the hell, thought Laura as she parted her lips to let Remington explore her mouth. He's right anyway. We definitely do not do this enough.
Remington's warm tongue quickly darted between Laura's moist warm lips to explore the roof of her mouth, her teeth, and to tangle with her tongue in a playful jest. Laura's left hand moved to the back of Remington's head to pull him even closer, as Remington grasped her right hand in his left, gently squeezing her fingers in his grasp.
As his right hand made it's way down to Laura's hip things were getting a little too hot, too soon. Laura pulled back to breathe in a gulp of air. Remington did the same, but soon had Laura in another lip lock.
"We're here, Mr. Steele," Fred dutifully announced.
Remington and Laura reluctantly broke the kiss. Laura looked around completely puzzled.
"This isn't Raul's." Laura verbally confirmed. "Where are we?" she asked, a little more than ticked off.
"No. You're right. We're just making a little detour." Remington replied with his killer smile. "Trust me. You'll like this place even better." Remington opened the door and gave his hand to Laura to help her out of the limo. As Laura climbed out of the limo Remington patted to roof of the car to single Fred to leave.
"What—" Laura began.
"Before you say anything, Laura, I just want to know that there is nothing illegal about this. In fact," Remington said proudly as he directed Laura to the front door, "I believe that you'll actually like what I've done this time."
"I'll believe that when I see what we're here for." Laura replied not too thrilled with the situation. "Who's house is this?" Laura asked as Remington pulled the key from his pocket and opened the door.
"Ladies first. And, it's mine."
"What!?" Laura asked, shocked. "What do you mean it's yours? What's going on here?"
"Just calm down for a second and I'll explain everything." Remington led Laura into the large living room. This was his favorite room in the house and the main reason he had chosen it. There were large windows overlooking the backyard. The room was always lit by the skylight overhead, and the fireplace had that cozy look to it.
"Before you go on thinking that I stole this house from someone, or that I paid for it with blood money..." Remington stopped short, seeing that Laura was not yet convinced. "I think that I have something that will explain everything," Remington said as he reached into the pocket of his jacket.
Laura's response to his statement stopped dead in its tracks as she saw what Remington had extracted from his pocket. It was a box. A small velvet box. A very expensive looking box no doubtedly containing something very expensive inside.
Remington carefully handed the box to Laura. He had seriously considered the time and place that he would ask her. If she said no, he didn't want anyone else around to see her rejection of him. If she said yes, he didn't want anyone else around to witness his reaction to her acceptance.
Laura gazed at the box in her usual manner: curiosity. Part of her was saying "Open the damned thing already," while the other half was scared silly. Finally, Laura slowly opened the small box. Inside was a ring with a small, very familiar looking stone.
Remington couldn't stand still. This very moment would decide his fate for the rest of his life. He would either spend the rest of his life with the woman he loved more than anything, or she would reject his proposal and he would forever be the enviable bachelor.
Laura was speechless. Was he proposing to her? She tore her gaze from the beautiful ring and looked Remington in the eyes.
"What are you trying to tell me?" Laura managed.
As Remington fell to one knee and took the box from her trembling hands, Laura almost laughed out loud. This was exactly like a movie she had seen recently.
"Laura Holt," Remington said with a not so sturdy voice, "Will you marry me?"
"Uh..." No way. No way in the world was Remington Steele proposing to me, Laura thought. No way.
"Laura?" Remington asked, still down on one knee.
"I... I don't know what to say." Laura wanted to say yes, but something was keeping her from it.
"Say yes." Remington pleaded. "Say that you love me enough to spend the rest of your life with me."
"Is that why you bought the house? You want me to marry you and live in this house with you and sleep with you." Laura knew that she was rambling, but her mind was working overtime.
"Well... yes. Isn't that usually how it works? Look," Remington said as he stood up, "this isn't something I decided on a whim. I wanted tonight to be perfect. I bought this house with the belief that you are in love with me." Remington took the ring from the box and looked into Laura's eyes with all his love for her exposed.
"You always said that you wanted me to prove my commitment to you. Well, I assumed that marrying you would be proof that I am committed to you. I do love you, Laura, so very much." Remington said softly. "And yes, I want to marry you, and live in this house with you, and make love to you. I want that more than anything I have ever, or will ever, want."
Laura was beyond stunned. Her fantasies about Remington sweeping her off of her feet were coming true, and she was beyond words.
Remington sensed her confusion and looked down at his feet feeling rejected. With all the hope and faith he had in his love for Laura, it still wasn't enough to push past her fears and into her heart.
"I'm sorry," Remington began. "I shouldn't have surprised you." He started to back away.
"No!" Laura said as she grasped his wrist. "It isn't you." Remington smiled. "I...well, I didn't expect for you to ever tell me that you love me. I wasn't sure if you really did."
"Then what's wrong?" This was not going how Remington thought it would.
"I... you.... Are you sure that this is what you want. Forever?" Laura asked.
"Laura, I bought a house! This isn't something I do everyday." Remington calmed and took Laura's left hand in his. "I'm quite sure this is what I want."
"Then this is what I want," Laura finally answered. "I'll marry you, Mr. Steele."
"You will?" Remington replied, dumfounded.
"Yes!" Laura asserted her answer by pulling Remington's head down for a deep kiss.
"Mmm... Wait." Remington pulled back. Slowly, he slipped the engagement ring onto Laura's finger. He then kissed her softly on the lips.
"I thought that you would appreciate the rarity of this gem." Remington teased.
Laura smiled. "I won't ask how you got it."
"Good," Remington said as he pulled Laura close for another kiss, "Because you don't need to know."