Hello there my lovelies! This is it! The final chapter! Not to worry, though, there is an epilogue.
thekiller00: You'll find out who it is... Maybe in this chapter, maybe in the epilogue.
Mufc87: Well... this is the end... kind of. I hope you find it worthy.
Flash On A Bone: HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU! Well... it's belated now but the message still stands. :)
uplink2: Yeah... I'm kind of known as the fixer so finding solutions is kind of my thing. It makes writing so difficult since I usually find a solution to a problem or conflict so easily and I have to choose to keep it running for long periods of time.
Disclaimer: I don't own the characters of Chuck as Chris Fedak and Josh Schwartz are the gods of their creation and Warner Brothers hasn't put up the brand for sale.
"Everyone please welcome Charles Carmichael and Sarah Walker!" Despite all the scandal surrounding the two, the crowd still went wild at the mention of their names. The couple walked out onto the stage, hand in hand, smiling and waving at the audience and cameras. When they reached the couches, they hugged Ellen and sat down, Chuck letting Sarah sit closer to the center. The musician got comfortable and put an assuring arm around his girlfriend and gave his brightest smile. "Hi there!" Ellen greeted.
"Hi!" Chuck replied with the same amount of enthusiasm.
"Hello," Sarah added with her elegant, heart-melting smile.
"How are you two doing?" she asked, jumping right into it.
"Great! We are doing great!" Chuck answered. Sarah simply smiled in agreement.
"That's fantastic! First of all, Sarah, I wanted to congratulate you on your new movie…"
The audience cheered and the actress gave her thanks. "It was a lot of fun to film. I don't want to spoil anything since it isn't out in theaters yet, but I want to say that the pit scene is probably my favorite scene ever to shoot so keep an eye out for it. I'm really excited for everyone to see it."
"As you should be, I was there with Portia at the premiere and I must say that I was so impressed with the work that you all did. You are an amazing actress."
"Well, thank you. But, I couldn't have done it without the whole cast and crew."
"Of course. And Chuck! We can't forget about you! You recently finished your tour and now I hear that you're already working on some new music!" The audience applauded and cheered again.
"I have! It's been different with this album. I've been working with a lot of different writers and producers to kind of give a slightly different sound. It's been interesting."
"You know, a couple years back, I recorded a song for a major film," Ellen informed.
"Yeah. It's a huge hit."
"Oh, yeah. It goes like this, 'Just keep swimming, just keep swimming…" The audience and couple laughed.
"I know that song! It's my absolute favorite!" Chuck exclaimed. "I actually could not stop humming that while we were down in Australia!"
"It's true," Sarah affirmed. "Both him and his sister. It was kind of driving everyone else insane."
"Oh, you know you loved it," Chuck smirked. He turned back to Ellen. "Maybe we should do a collaboration or something."
"Alright. I'm definitely up for that! Just text me the time and place," the comedian said.
"So," Ellen said, switching gears. "I hate to bring this up because I love you both so much, but there have been rumors floating around that this whole relationship between the two of you isn't even real." Chuck took a deep breath. This was it.
"You know," he began. He, Sarah, Morgan, and Beckman decided that he would take point and Sarah would drive it home. This way, they came off as a supportive team. It's true that they already were but they wanted to avoid any possible complications or stumbling. "The media finds so many different ways to get under people's skin and make things difficult for people's lives. However, as much as I want to deny those rumors, I can't." There was a collective gasp from the audience and Chuck waited a second before continuing. "It's true that our relationship started out as a deal to build publicity for the both of us," he explained. He looked down at Sarah who looked back up at him at the exact same time. It wasn't planned. It was simply a testament to how in sync they were with each other. "But, over time, we really did fall in love." The audience 'aww'd' at his words. Sarah smiled.
"We tried everything we could to get the contract broken up so that we wouldn't feel like we were lying to everyone," Sarah continued. They knew they had to twist the truth slightly in order for everyone to come out relatively blameless. "The timing was really bad with the two of us constantly travelling and working, but, once everyone who was involved was able to gather to one location, we sat down, talked it out, and agreed that nulling the contract was in everyone's best interest." It wasn't a complete lie. In a way, it wasn't a lie at all. They just left out the part about Graham doing everything in his power to keep them apart.
"We don't want anyone to think we've been lying to them," Chuck added. "Sure our relationship was founded on a publicity stunt, but we really do care about each other and all we ask is that you guys, the fans, forgive us for trying to pull one over on you guys."
"Please don't lose your trust in us," Sarah concluded. "We love you all so much."
"Mmm," Ellen hummed. "I forgive you," she said, slightly breaking the somber mood that had filled the set. A few chuckles broke out in the audience. "And I'm sure everyone else can find it in their hearts to forgive you as well. But I'm the most important one so…" The audience laughed and the tension was nearly nonexistent once again. "But in all seriousness, I think everyone wants to know how much of it was fake?"
Chuck looked at the ceiling in thought. "Well, I'd always had a crush on Sarah from like way long ago so on my part, none of it. I've always been in love with her. Just meeting her was a dream come true." He looked at Sarah who was also staring at him. There was a smile on her face. It wasn't small or shy. It was one filled with love. She knew about his childhood crush on her but instead of it freaking her out, she thought it was cute and Chuck absolutely loved that.
"I don't think I ever told you this but I fell for you a long time ago somewhere after you helped that little girl and her father in the Buy More and before I got to watch you goof off in the studio. I didn't realize it until you kissed me outside of my apartment building when we were trying to keep up appearances." Chuck smiled at the honesty of Sarah's statement.
"That was kind of our first date," he stated.
"It was." The moment between them was interrupted by Ellen jumping in.
"Oh! You two are so adorable!" Chuck blinked. He totally forgot they were filming and in front of a live audience. "I'm so glad we were able to clear this all up."
"We are, too," Chuck said. He kissed Sarah's temple and smiled at the audience.
"Thank you for coming by!"
"Thank you for having us!"
"We're gonna go to break but once we get back, we have a performance by Maroon 5!"
"And, we're out," a producer called out.
"Thank you again for coming by," Ellen said, giving them both a hug. "I wish you two all the best. You deserve it."
"Thank you, Ellen. You've been so good to us."
"I know how hard it is to try and keep up an image with the media," she said. "They all expect so much from us that sometimes, they forget that we're human beings, too." Chuck and Sarah nodded in agreement. "Well, I'll see the two of you around. Good luck!"
"Thank you again. See ya." The trio hugged once more before Chuck and Sarah made their way back to their joint dressing room where Morgan was waiting for them. Until Sarah found herself a new manager, Morgan was stepping in as a proxy. Chuck was sure that the little guy loved being in charge of Sarah's career while she needed someone to look out for her. However, he knew that managing musicians and managing actors were two different jobs. And while it was going great at the moment, he knew that the arrangement probably wouldn't last once Sarah was travelling for work again and Morgan would virtually have to be in two places at once. "That wasn't so bad," Chuck commented once the door was closed behind them.
"No, it wasn't," Sarah agreed.
"Are you kidding? That was fantastic!" Morgan exclaimed.
"Thanks, Buddy." Chuck started changing into his own clothes while Sarah grabbed her things so she could change in the bathroom.
"Oh yeah, Sarah," the bearded man said, grabbing her attention right before she closed the door behind her.
"What's up, Morgan?" she asked, her head being the only thing visible as she stuck it back into the room to look at him.
"Beckman has been helping me look for another manager for you and she says she might have a candidate."
"Who is it?"
"Roan Montgomery." Chuck saw his girlfriend raise a perfectly sculpted eyebrow.
"Yeah. Apparently, the two of them go way back," Morgan informed.
"Roan is one of the best managers and agents in Hollywood," Sarah stated, awe evident in her voice.
"That's great, Sweetie," Chuck smiled, excited for his girlfriend.
"Can you set up a meeting with him?" she asked.
"How does tomorrow at two-thirty sound?" Morgan asked.
Morgan stepped out to make some phone calls and get the car ready. Sarah disappeared into the bathroom to finish changing. Once she reemerged, there was a new sparkle in her eye – one that Chuck was dying to see since this whole thing spiraled out of control. Chuck buttoned his jeans and threw his favorite nerd T-shirt over his head. He opened his arms and Sarah stepped into them. They hugged and kissed. "Things are starting to look up," he said.
"Yes. They. Are," she smiled before leaning up for another kiss. "Come on, we're meeting your sister, Awesome, and Alex for dinner."
"Is that so?" He raised an eyebrow.
"Yup. How does sushi sound?"
"I don't care. As long as you're happy." He smiled at her and the couple separated in order to finish packing up their things. Once they were finished, Chuck carried their bags as they made it out to the car where Morgan was sitting in the driver's seat.
"You guys ready?" his bearded best friend and manager asked.
"Yeah," Chuck said once he and Sarah were settled into the backseat.
The sushi place they had dinner at was, thankfully, fairly empty. The three couples enjoyed their sashimi and rolls in peace, telling jokes and generally having a good time. Chuck even ordered Sarah's food. In fact, it wasn't until after they had paid and stepped out onto the sidewalk that they were approached by both fans and paparazzi. As usual, Chuck and Sarah gave time to their fans but paid no attention to the paparazzi. Once the small group of fans got their pictures taken with the couple, they thanked them once more and walked into the restaurant the group had just exited. Ignoring the questions from the paparazzi, everyone climbed into their respective vehicles and made the drive home, circling a few times to lose any paparazzi tails.
Chuck and Sarah got ready for bed in silence. It wasn't an awkward silence or a tense silence. It was a comfortable silence: the kind that was just there. No one was angry or upset. It was the kind of silence that built over years in a relationship, which was something to say about the relationship between Chuck and Sarah. They haven't been together for a year and yet, the bond they had was strong. They didn't feel the need to talk just to fill the room. They could simply exist with one another and have that be enough.
When they climbed into bed, Sarah cuddled into his side and he held her close. No words needed to be said. They had each other and that was all the assurance they needed. They would get through this. They both knew that. Already, thing were starting to look up. Aside from recording a new album, Chuck had been busy with ideas for a software company. He wanted to create software to revolutionize filmmaking and game developing. He also wanted to make video games. Maybe somewhere down the line, he could produce hardware as well. He didn't know the specifics just yet. All he did know was that he was going to take his time going into it. This company was going to be his baby and he wanted it to have the proper care and development before releasing it into the world. There were big companies out there that would be tough competition. He'd be starting out small and it would be difficult so he needed to make sure that everything was thought of and taken care of. He didn't mind waiting a few years. Meanwhile, Sarah was going to meet with a prospective manager. She didn't have any projects lined up because of her vacation; however, by the time she would be ready to jump back into the game, the buzz on their current scandal would have died down and jobs would come easy. But, for now, he would hold her and support her. Chuck planned on flying with her around the country as she promoted her movie. He had nothing else to do and he loved watching the sparkle in her eye when she worked or met fans. He could feel Sarah shift in his arms and looked down at her. They shared a small smile and he kissed her.
It was slow and soft. It held promise for the present and hope for the future. It was Chuck's way of telling her everything he wanted to tell her. And in that same kiss, she responded. He knew she felt the same about their relationship. He loved the fact that they could communicate through touch and looks. They'd grown so close that they practically shared a brain. When they pulled apart. Chuck spoke, breaking their silence. "I love you," he said.
"I love you, too," she replied without hesitation.
"Do you wanna move in with me?" he asked. He'd been planning it for a while but had no idea how to go about it. He figured, in that very moment, he should just go for it. Lay it down flat.
"Here?" she asked, looking into his eyes.
"Yeah. I mean, you spend the night here most nights anyway and…" Chuck trailed off, not sure where he was going with that sentence. He should have thought this through a little more.
Sarah smiled. "I'd love to."
"Yes really." She cuddled back into him, resting her head on his chest. "We can start moving my things here when I get back from my promotional tour."
"When we get back," he corrected.
She looked back up at him. "'We?'"
"Yeah," he replied. "Of course I'm going with you." He smiled his special Bartowski smile, the one he reserved only for her, and captured her lips once more. This time, when they broke away, they stayed silent, drifting off to sleep in each other's arms.
Sarah was nervous. She'd never had to meet with a prospective agent/manager before. Graham had come to her at the start of her career. Graham had given her a career. And, Roan Montgomery was one of the best. The fact that he wanted to work for her was an accomplishment in itself. Morgan had set up the meeting to take place at Castle Records in one of the conference rooms. It worked out fine since Chuck needed to head there to meet with his label representatives. He'd wished her good luck before stepping into the conference room beside hers. Unsure of what to do, she knocked before stepping inside. On the end of the table closest to the door, but not at the head, an older man with snow white hair and a very James Bond-type-attitude sat, smiling at her. Sarah was confused by it. The smile was both predatory yet comforting.
"Mr. Montgomery," she greeted politely with a smile of her own.
"Please, Ms. Walker, call me Roan," he said.
"Only if you call me Sarah," she replied back, a small smirk on her lips.
She sat down in front of him. "I hear you want to represent me?"
"Why is that?" she asked, genuinely curious.
"Although your current reputation is 'Wild Card', I see that you have talent. Hell, anyone who has two eyes can see that you have talent. You've been with the same manager for years and the entire time, he has been controlling you, no offense to him. You're a grown woman who has been in this business long enough to know how it runs. You don't need someone to tell you what to do or how to do it. I have no interest in doing that. My interest is in building up your name and career. I want to give you the choice in which projects to take. I want to help you run your own career and life. Whatever decisions you want to make, you make them. I will back you up." He paused and seemed to backtrack. "Although," he continued, "I cannot condone nor approve of anything that will bring harm to your person or anyone around you. I want you to continue to be responsible."
Sarah thought about his offer. It sounded as though Roan was offering to be a father figure as well as a manager. It was very similar to her relationship with Graham. Only, Graham was controlling and Roan seemed more supporting. Either way, she knew her choice. "Thank you, Roan," she said. "I'd very much like to work with you. We'll have to meet with our respective attorneys to draw up the proper paperwork and contracts."
"Let me know when you would like to meet," he said with a smile.
"I leave for New York in three days. I'd like to have this settled before then. How does tomorrow sound? Same place, same time? We can set everything up and have it all finalized by Thursday."
"That sounds perfect." They stood and shook hands. Roan left the room and Sarah fell back into her seat, a goofy smile on her face. She was excited for this new chapter in her life. It was as though everything was falling into place. Figuring that Chuck was still in his meeting, Sarah pulled out her phone. After shooting a text to her attorney the time and place, she checked Twitter. There wasn't much going on in her feed so she checked her mentions. The actress was surprised to see that there weren't as many hate tweets as she thought there would be. Most of them were supportive of her and Chuck. In fact, #CharahIsLife was a trending topic. She decided to send out a tweet.
S_Walker: Thank you all for your love and support. I don't know what I'd do without you guys standing behind every step of the way. I'm so lucky to…
S_Walker: Have you all in my life. You are literally the greatest fans in the world. I love you guys. xoxo
She laughed at some of the responses she got to her tweets and smiled at others. She retweeted and favorited a few that really stood out to her. Someone did ask her who she thought was the leak and to be completely honest, she didn't care. If she could guess, she would probably guess it was Daniel since he would be the kind to follow her and Chuck out into the forest for the sole reason to eavesdrop. She figured that that was the moment the leak would have gotten his or her information since it was the only time she and Chuck really talked about their 'game plan' the entire time in Australia. The leak, however, chose to stay anonymous and finding out his identity was nowhere near her priorities list. She didn't care about it mostly because it didn't matter who squealed. Anyone could have and the results would have been the same. All she cared about was righting her wrong and getting back on track. With her new manager, Chuck and his family, and her fans to back her up, Sarah was sure that she'd get there.
Yes. Things were looking up for her and Chuck's future. She was excited to start living it.
And there you have it! A bright note to end the story. Sorry it's pretty short... Oh well... I mean... like I said... THERE IS STILL AN EPILOGUE!
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