A/N hello this is a new one that popped into my head. AU set after the Marlin but before S2. I was interested in what would happen if Chuck saw something in Sarah's apartment that he wasn't supposed to.
Sarah Walker was sick down with the flu, at least she hoped it was just the flu, as she kneeled clutching the toilet after last nights dinner found its way out of her, by retracing its steps. She had spent the previous 72 hours trying to keep Chuck out of the custody of both the CIA and Fulcrum, and everything that comes along with being the personal protector of Chuck Bartowski. Her latest adventure involved fighting agents from both respective entities, falling off a ten story building, and finally swimming inside of a dumpster trying to find a diamond ring.
Confident enough to get on her feet, and after splashing some water on her face, she made her way into her darkened bedroom and collapsed on the bed. Her head pounded and her stomach felt like someone was using it like a trampoline. She reached for the aspirin that was on her nightstand and knocked over her tissue box.
"Son of a bitch," she said as she reached down to retrieve her tissues.
She was about to put them back on the table, when she spied the picture that was under the glass, where the box was previously placed. She stopped when she saw the big stupid grin, and even though he was responsible for this death flu that was gripping her, she couldn't hide the slight smile that came to her face.
He was safe and he was still with me...she thought.
Sometimes we never know when a seminal moment hits us, but Sarah Walker knew something changed in her the day she met Chuck. She thought back to that fateful day as she looked at the picture. She had made contact with him and arranged to go out on a date with him, but something about him was different, or maybe something about her was different. Spies don't live long unless they cover their ass, so she had installed a hidden camera outside of her apartment, which nobody knew about. She was reviewing the camera data the morning after Chuck diffused the bomb when she saw it.
The camera had managed to capture Chuck's image from the night before when he came to take her on the date. The exact second that was captured was when she first opened the door and his expression was priceless. He looked like a kid who just got his puppy on Christmas morning, and for some reason she needed to keep the picture. She didn't really know when or how it got it's way below the glass of her nightstand, but she found herself looking at it every night before she went to bed. There was something about it that always made her smile, and made her feel better about herself.
She was not accustomed to this feeling, and quite frankly it scared her. Spies needed to be cold and hollow, unfeeling and without mercy. Sarah defined herself in this world and needed to have an edge to operate the she did and be ready at anytime to burn anyone, despite any attachment. That kind of life takes a psychological toll on a person and makes them start to resent others and themselves, turning them into bitter defective human beings, living only to exploit another's misfortune for some kind of gain. This behavior is encouraged in this world and cloaked in the axiom "the greater good" as a way to rationalize it to yourself. To many people that feeling would be depressing, but to Sarah it was almost comforting, because it told her she still had her edge, and could still operate in this world. Felling good about herself was alien to her, but since she met Chuck, feeling good about herself was becoming more to her. She looked at the picture again and smiled when she saw how happy he looked at just seeing her open the door. Sure it was before he knew who she really was, but the expression on his face has greeted her many times since then.
She had more fun just talking to Chuck then she ever had with any other person. He wanted to know about her, he didn't care about Agent Walker, he cared about Sarah and that more then anything else led her to do something she thought she would never do. She began to trust him, and that was what really scared her. She was a seasoned agent who was trained not trust anyone because trust will get you killed, but she couldn't help herself, she trusted Chuck. This was so scary to her because she knew deep down that she couldn't trust herself with him anymore, that the "greater good" was outweighed by Chuck's greater good.
The change in Sarah's priorities began to manifest itself subconsciously in her early on. First she refused to seduce Chuck during their first few days together. Graham had ordered her to get close to him and find out any information he had, and she would normally do this by seducing him. She was prepared to do that the night of their date, but once again, Chuck had thrown her a curve. His expression when she opened the door that night was what initially stopped her in her tracks, and as the night wore on she found herself enjoying the date more and more.
She knew she could seduce him or any man she needed to, but with Chuck she didn't want to. Of course she was attracted to him, but she didn't want to ruin him. He was different from a mark, or a mission, and as she continued to enjoy herself she saw him for what he really was to her that night, her first date. She thought back to how close she and to blowing it that night, and was actually relieved that Casey showed up, because if she hadn't then she had no idea what to do. It stopped being a mission to her over dinner, and he stopped being an asset to her over dancing. Was it love? Sarah didn't know, but it was defiantly a big change. Carina had noticed the change in her the last time she was here and they were at dinner together, and although Sarah denied it to her, she knew her friend was right.
"You're only fooling yourself Sarah," she said.
"What do you mean Carina?"
"You know what I mean."
"C'mon Sarah. Chuck? Really?"
"What the hell are you talking about," Sarah said with more then a hint of annoyance.
"You are in love with Chuck."
Sarah couldn't immediately respond, but her substantial blush was all the evidence that Carina would ever need.
"No I'm not!"
"Oh bullshit. Listen if it makes you feel better he is in love with you," Carina said with a smile.
"What? No he's not he understands the situation," Sarah replied as her heartbeat quickened.
"Yes he is and I can prove it," Carina said.
"Carina just stop alright. We are just cover nothing more," Sarah said.
Carina saw the hurt look in Sarah's eye and knew that she had hit the mark. Her friend was in love and from the looks of how possessive and protective she was of him, very much in love. The rest of the conversation turned into girl talk and good-natured teasing but Carina put the "L word" out there, and Sarah couldn't help but feel a little quiver in her heart when Carina told her about Chuck's feelings.
Sarah could try to deflect all she wanted, but it wasn't just a mission parameter that called on her to almost kill a fellow agent, fall off a 20 story building, and search through a dumpster for a diamond ring. She wasn't sick today because of anything she did for her country, she was sick because she was protecting the man she loved. She couldn't allow him to be taken from her, nor from his family. Even though it was probably best for the intersect, it wasn't best for Chuck and that was where her loyalty now rested. She tried to close her eyes and go to sleep, and as her head pounded and stomach flipped; she slightly smiled knowing that her present condition was more then worth it, just to see his smiling face again. She was just about to doze off when she heard her phone buzz, signaling an incoming text and she knew instantly who it would be.
Casey told me you were sick..how do you feel?
Sorry. Was it the dumpster you think?
Among other things.
I will be by to check on you after work
You don't need to it's fine
Nonsense it's no trouble. I will make you some soup and Ellie for me some medicine for you
No problem :) 'get some rest.
Sarah smiled after the exchange and closed her eyes, hoping to be able to sleep.
Six hours later she awoke to 3 missed phone calls from Chuck and a banging on her door, and slipped off the bed and wrapped herself in a robe, then made her way over to the door.
"Hi...oh Sarah you look sick," Chuck said as he was holding the soup.
"Thanks very much," she replied.
"Oh sorry I meant that you must feel awful," he replied.
"Thanks again," she replied.
"I brought soup," he said trying desperately to dig himself out of the hole he dug.
"Thanks," Sarah said smiling as she moved inside and he followed closing the door behind him.
"Why don't you just relax and I'll make the soup," he said as he headed toward her kitchen.
"Sounds good," Sarah said as she plopped on the bed and back under the covers.
He grabbed a saucepan and put it on the stove, the opened the soup and began to warming it, while rummaging through her refrigerator trying to find something to add to the soup.
"Sarah your refrigerator is worse then any bachelor known to mankind. You have any vegetables or anything bland?"
"Just what's in there," she replied tiredly.
"Well I need to give you crackers or something with the soup. You need to have something in your stomach bland so you can keep it down," he said as he looked through a collection of take out boxes,
"In the cabinet," she called.
A few minutes later Sarah heard some commotion and Chuck came out of the kitchen carrying a tray over to her bed.
"Now sit up. Here you go soup in bed, "he said with a laugh as he set up her tray.
"Chicken soup, crackers and ginger ale. Flu food, guaranteed to be as bland as me," he laughed.
"Thank you," she replied laughing.
"Wow it smells good. I'm really hungry," she said as she picked up a spoon.
"Well just eat slow, and you need to take your pills that Ellie gave me with something in your stomach," he said as he sat down in the chair next to the bed.
"Yes sir," she replied as she took a spoonful and let it slide down her throat.
"How are you feeling? Are you sore?"
"Not too much, a little achy but nothing major," she replied.
"That's good. Casey has been a little slice of heaven since you have been sick."
"Yeah he seems to like his lunch hour to himself," Chuck replied.
"Why do you say that?"
"Because he told me I like my lunch hour to myself."
Sarah laughed hard, setting off a chain reaction, which caused her to break into a coughing spell, inhale the soup, and push the soup out of her nose.
"Oh Sarah sorry," Chick said as he got her napkin.
"It's fine," she said as she calmed down.
"Just don't make me laugh again," she winked.
"I promise," Chuck smirked
They talked a bit more while Sarah worked on more of her soup, and although she tried to resist, she found herself laughing and spilling most of her soup all over herself. He cleaned the dishes and went to get her pills, while Sarah got a message on her phone from Casey.
Given a priority assist mission by the general tonight. Can you watch Bartowski?
Good deal..behave yourself Walker
Bite me Casey
"Here we go," Chuck said as he came in carrying her pills and a big glass of water.
"Thanks," Sarah said as she downed the pills and the water.
"Chuck I got a message from Casey."
"Do we have a mission, because the general would understand your sick...,"
"No it's nothing like that. He can't watch you tonight so you will have to stay with me. If you don't mind," Sarah said sheepishly.
"Sarah you are sick I planned on staying here with you tonight anyway to take care of you."
"You did," she asked with a little smile.
"Yeah..well..Ellie knows and it would be good for the cover," Chuck said as he turned beet red.
"Oh right," she said with a tinge of disappointment.
"Ah well how about we get you in the shower."
"Oh no not me! Not you and me! You and you...I mean..why don't you take a shower and I will help you."
"Help me," she smiled.
"No not help inside! I mean...I will run..,"
Sarah started laughing hysterically on the bed.
"You are so cute sometimes," Sarah said.
"Huh," Chuck replied.
"You are so funny sometimes," she quickly corrected.
"This medicine is getting to me," she laughed.
"I'll go run your shower and get you some fresh clothes," he said as he helped her up.
"Thanks. I have my extra robe in the garment bag in my closet," she said as she took off her robe.
"Hey that's a nice shirt," Chuck said as he saw Sarah draped in pajama bottoms and one of his old t-shirts.
"That's why I like it. It's soft," hurry up chuckles," Sarah said as she made her way to the shower.
"Chuckles? Sarah are you ok," Chuck asked.
"Yes. Just put my new clothes by the door, and no peaking mister," she slurred through the bathroom door.
"Ok. Then you gotta get to bed. I think the medicine is making you drunk," 'he replied as he went into her closet.
He found a new pair of pajama bottoms, underwear, and, surprisingly another one of his t-shirts in her closet, but he couldn't find the robe.
He hears the shower finished and put the clothes by the door. A second later the door opened and Sarah brought the clothes inside.
He heard the sound of laughing coming from the bathroom.
"Everything ok in there?"
"Yeah. I just realized that you were in my panties," Sarah laughed drunkenly as she opened the bathroom door.
"It's ok Chuck I don't mind," Sarah laughed as she saw a visibly red and embarrassed Chuck.
"I couldn't find your robe," Chuck said as he helped her to the bed.
"Chuck it's in the garment bag," she moaned as he headed back to the closet an she slid under the covers.
"On the first or second shelf," he called.
"On the lower shelf. Next to your bag," she replied sleepily.
"My bag? I don't have a bag here," he replied.
She must be out of it and thinking of Bryce Chuck thought and he went back to the bedroom just as Sarah was almost out.
"Sarah just get some rest I think your thinking of Bryce. I don't have a bag here," Chuck said as his mind suddenly flashed with images of Sarah and Bryce together.
"No Chuck...you..not Bryce it's always been..you," Sarah slurred.
"But Sarah, I don't have a bag here," he said softly
"Yes you do. It's the bag I made for you," she replied.
"Why would you make a bag for me?"
"Because Carina is right," she replied as she faded off to sleep.
"Sarah? Sarah," Chuck said.
He got no response, so he gently tried to wake her up.
"What," she said startled.
"Sarah why did you say Carina was right?"
"Yes Chuck Carina is right! Now go to sleep," she said as she slipped back into dreamland and began snoring loudly.
What bag? Carina right about what? Chuck thought as he looked at her and quietly made his way to the closet.
He opened up the doors and started scouring the bottom shelf and found her garment bag, but couldn't find anything that looked like it was for him. He looked up and down each row and shelf, but all he found was Sarah's extensive wardrobe. He was on his way out, when he banged his head on top of the closet rail and knocked it off.
"Shit...what the," he said as he leaned down to pick up the rail and saw out of the corner of his eye, a small panel open in the closet wall.
He crawled to the open panel and looked inside, there were two bags stacked nearly inside, with a clear plastic bin on top. He fished his hand in and pulled out the bags and bin, bringing them into the light of the living room.
"Jesus Christ," he said as he opened the plastic bin and saw more money then her ever saw in his life.
Stacks of hundred dollar bills, an even some thousand-dollar bills piled high and deep, the total value easily in the hundreds of thousands, if not millions of dollars. He put the money back in and opened the first bag, it was filled with women's clothes and cosmetic products, including hair dye. He opened the side pocket and a multitude of different forms of identification and passports fell out. They had different names and languages on them, but the picture was always the same, it was Sarah.
"Sarah what the hell," he said as he looked through the various materials.
She had light hair in some and dark hair in others, and was every nationality from Australian to polish, but it was always her. He opened up the last bag and found an identical set up to Sarah's except this bag was for a man, an the pictures in the identification materials were all of him.
"What? How did she get these pictures," he said as he looked through pictures of himself with varying shades of hair color and length.
The pictures looked like they had a time range from his high school graduation, to his current buymore photo ID, and looked like they were computer enhanced to change hair color and weight. It took him a few hours to go through everything and as the first rays of daylight hit the window, he was still deep in thought.
In the garment bag next to your bag...The bag I made for you...Carina was right Chuck...the bag I made for you...Carina was right Chuck...I made the bag to take you away and keep you safe when they come for you...I made the bag because Carina was right Chuck...I love you..
"Whaaaa...," Sarah said as she awoke with a start.
She sat up and began to think through the haze of the last few hours and suddenly her eyes went wide.
"Oh shit..please god no..not yet," she said as she got up and silently crept out of the bedroom
"I gotta put this back," he said as he started fumbling to put everything back into the bags.
"Sarah I was just...,"he said as he turned to see Sarah standing above him.
"We need to talk," Sarah said as she looked down at him.
"Yeah I think we probably do," he replied.