I still don't own Chuck. I'm not sure who does at this point.

This chapter title has a dual meaning. It's time to wrap this up, but you'll also see that it has a meaning to Chuck and Sarah.

The Short Chapter

x-x-x-x-x

Sarah was finally home. Spending a few weeks at a world famous Mediterranean resort that catered to the jet set could hardly be called a sacrifice. They spent their days on the beach and their nights partying. They even made the trip to Paris and Sarah kept her promise of a quickie at the top of the Eiffel Tower. And really, any place where Chuck was standing next to her, holding her hand… or holding her anything, when it came right down to it, was pretty much okay in Sarah's book. But she quickly discovered what most normal, non-spy people already knew… nothing beat sleeping in your own bed.

Home.

It was a word that a year ago would have been uncomfortable for her. She would have avoided using it. Now she found that she couldn't say it enough.

The past six months had been a whirlwind of activity. First, there had been Ellie's wedding to plan. Since they didn't elope to Russia, Devon's parents put their foot down and insisted on a huge, elaborate ceremony. They could no longer claim poverty, so money became no object. That was, quite frankly, hard for Ellie. After living her entire life counting pennies, being rich was something she would have to get used to. Devon's parents turned out to be a bit… well, controlling was probably the nicest word. Sarah had to bite her tongue several times. Letting people push her around wasn't her style. So to save any embarrassment for Ellie with her new mother-in-law, she tried to stay away from them as much as her 'maid of honor' title would allow. It didn't help that Devon's mom referred to her as 'the blonde.' For all of the tension, the long weekend actually turned out very nice.

Normally a maid of honor duty, Carina was recruited to plan the, what promised to be wild, bachelorette party. And for a while, Sarah feared that it might degrade from wild to out of control. After all, what Carina thought was mild fun, most normal people would find shocking. But she needn't have worried. Steven had really tamed her. Oh, there was the obligatory party bus trip to tour a selection of the many clubs in Southern California that featured male erotic dancers. There was enough tequila to float a cruise ship. But it was actually Ellie's friends from the hospital that put Carina to shame when it got time to get wild. They somehow avoided getting arrested, and then it was back to the relative safety of Sarah's packed basement for some nice catered food, a lot of dancing, and more rounds of tequila shots. Maryanne even flew in from North Carolina for the long weekend and wedding. It was a nice, silly time. At least the parts Sarah could remember.

She had made a deal with Chuck not to talk to each other about the respective parties. After all, it was a sure bet that Devon's party had included some imported naked women. This wasn't a topless beach. The nudity wasn't casual. In fact, the whole point of having strippers perform for you was to ogle them. She wanted to make sure that he knew that, for this night anyway, he was allowed to have a wild time… up to their 'looky, no touchy' line, and she'd try hard to do the same without any jealousy.

Since Maryanne mysteriously disappeared from Sarah's basement for a couple of hours, it was another sure bet that her perfect chest had been part of the imported entertainment. She mumbled something about losing a bet with Casey. And after the football fiasco, Casey would surely extract a high level of payment. Since being married, Sarah knew a thing or two about losing that kind of bet. The thing is, there wasn't any sand in Casey's basement to give it up on in front of everybody. Knowing how wild Maryanne got when she was around the Bartowski family, Casey's pool table was probably the next best thing.

Sarah wasn't sure if Devon's doctor friends were as wild as Ellie's. But she was sure that his brothers more than made up for it. Maybe Maryanne would learn a lesson about being so eager to… um, entertain at a bachelor party. Sarah was dying to sneak over and take a peak. After all, it was right next door. Ogling naked women he had never met and would never see again was one thing. Maryanne was a little different. She had never made any bones about the fact that she had a huge crush on one Agent Charles Carmichael, and that she'd love the chance to get him in bed. In fact, she felt like she owed it to him. But in the end, Sarah resisted. Maryanne had fully earned her spot as a close, trusted family friend… and this was Chuck. Spending any time worrying about him being tempted to cheat bordered on insulting. At least he had seen her naked before.

This would be the first time either of them would be in that type of wild environment without the other since they had gotten married. And honestly, Sarah had to fight a few pangs. But when it came down to it, she trusted him… just like he trusted her. It sure didn't hurt when, the next afternoon, Chuck broke the spirit of their deal. He told her that the naked women only served to remind him of how lucky he was, how much he missed being with her, and that he had spent most of the party awkwardly sitting there counting the minutes for it to be over. It was today's example of the sweetest guy in the world knowing exactly what she needed to hear and delivering it on cue.

The end of the war meant that they could finally relax a little. Ted Roark still hated them. And he was still a very rich, powerful man. But with his private army gone, he really wasn't the threat he once was. With his hopes of world domination gone, he'd have to settle for being one of the richest men in the world. When push came to shove, that wasn't half bad. And Steven's promised technology was making that happen. It worked out well for both men. Steven got to play with his beloved magic. Roark got to make billions of dollars and become the acknowledged leader of the tech world. So to say that they came to accept each other wasn't close to being true. But they did tacitly agree to pretend the other didn't exist as much as possible.

Mary was able to come to her daughter's wedding, and even brought the new and improved Alexei Volkoff. Of course, they had to be very secretive. Bryce was dead, but his new partner and team were still on the case. There were also still the two Intersects that had been created at the same time as Bryce roaming around someplace. Alexei and Mary had already spent a fair amount of their fortune repairing some of the evil he had caused over the years. Even so, the CIA still would have loved to get their hands on him. Suppling nuclear weapons to rogue banana republics was something they would have a hard time forgiving. So Orion had to pull some of his magic to get him out of Russia and back again undetected.

It turned out that, without the Intersect, he was a mild mannered, friendly, and very charming guy. Sarah was surprised. For someone who had been at the top of her CIA 'hate' list for ten years, she found that she even liked him. They were already talking about making that trip to Russia to see them someday.

Carina had that constant gleam in her eyes that always spelled trouble for someone. Oh, she had made Steven a promise, so she behaved in front of Mary, well mostly. She did take obvious care to cling to Steven provocatively, wear as little as possible whenever Mary was around and rub in the fact that she was… well, rubbing. But there wasn't anything wrong with that. If Mary realized what she was doing, and how could she not, she never said anything.

Frankly Mary's main concern was Sarah. She was still protective of her baby boy, and knew what it was like to be a CIA agent. Being in love wasn't part of that job description. Sarah had never backed down from anyone, and wasn't about to start now, especially when it came to her feelings for Chuck. So their first meeting was, understandably, a little tense. Finally, Steven had to talk to Mary. Whatever the tensions of the weekend, her new father-in-law going to bat for her more than made up for it.

Sarah had never been to this fancy of a wedding before, much less been the maid of honor. She never liked to be the center of attention. There was the tension of Devon's parents, along with meeting her mother-in-law for the first time. Not to mention the fact that she would be walking the aisle arm in arm with the best man, Devon's brother, who was obviously one of those guys who thought that being good looking was a license to have any woman he chose. He most definitely took full advantage of being a temporary couple and made absolutely no effort to conceal his trying to brush up against her or look down her dress at every possible opportunity. And the posing for all of the pictures that Devon's mom insisted on gave him his fair share of opportunities. Normally, she would have swatted that kind of man away like an annoying fly without a second thought. But this was Devon's brother, so to keep family unity she held her tongue.

Knowing that there was a bridal dance coming at the reception, combined with his borderline crude innuendo, and that even Chuck had seen about enough from him and was visibly growing more and more annoyed, the rehearsal was fairly tense. At the actual wedding, it was hard to tell who was more nervous walking down that aisle, Ellie or her. Fortunately for the best man's wellbeing during the bridal dance, the bridesmaid's dresses they had picked out protected her ass under multiple layers of lace.

Of course, Chuck's gratitude at the dress's protective design ended later when her rather tipsy husband tried to drag her into one of the back rooms for a quickie. Sarah could only giggle helplessly as he struggled to find an opening, only to finally give up. Naturally, promising Sarah sex, even a quickie, and not paying off wasn't going to fly… ever… even if he was tipsy… even at Ellie's reception. So she took charge and it ended being a little more than a quickie. It was a little embarrassing for him when the photographer needed some additional pictures, Casey came looking for them, and walked in on them in mid… um… stream. But that was life in the fast lane.

After the wedding, it became time to discuss the living arraignments. Their simple house in the Pasadena suburbs was upscale, but it really wasn't a place for billionaires. The thing was, Sarah already had her heart set on growing old and raising their family there. So Chuck, like always, came to the rescue. He had already used some of their ridiculous wealth to buy the two houses on both sides, including the five that bordered in back. So they now owned an entire block.

That gave Casey a place to move out of their basement, which was one of Chuck's priorities. It also gave Steven and Carina a place of their own. After they got back from their honeymoon in Hawaii, Ellie and Devon moved out of their small apartment and took one of the houses in the back. They kept two houses open for guests. The four corners were converted into a full time security center with plenty of room to house the housekeeping staff.

If you drove around their block, it looked like a normal suburban neighborhood. It really wasn't. It was a complex that was protected 24 x 7 by the finest security that Casey could develop, including laser motion detectors, thermal imaging, and always a minimum of ten guards armed to the teeth. In the common area, Chuck had a huge heated pool, twin tennis courts, and hot tub put in.

The common clubhouse was only a few dozen steps from any of the houses and held the fitness center that Sarah designed, or as Chuck named it, Sarah's den of torture. It also assumed the role as the default place for family parties, replacing Chuck and Sarah's basement. It was completely hidden from the public, which was good, because any hot tub where Carina had access, was de facto designated as clothing optional. That wasn't going to fly in conservative Pasadena.

Ellie quickly decided that she loved the ginormous hot tub that was almost as big as a small pool. It could hold everyone comfortably and then some. So there was plenty of room to invite their wild doctor friends and the guest houses got a lot of use. Ellie even got with the clothing optional program sometimes after a few shots of tequila… and when dad wasn't around. It wasn't unheard of for a family member to head over to the hot tub for some quiet relaxation, only to interrupt Devon and Ellie naked and getting very friendly. Apparently hot bubbles were a huge Ellie turn on.

It was a truly magical time for their sex life, which had always been robust. Now that the war was over, their two year deal quickly elevated it to a brand new level. Chuck, God love him, had really stepped up to take control, and even push her… in wonderful ways. Once Casey moved out, there was no reason for Sarah not to respect Chuck's clothing free area… which was basically the entire house. One of the things that Sarah loved about Chuck was that he could always make her laugh. So he kept her in stitches describing the new house rules.

Chuck immediately decreed that being in Europe for three weeks meant that they would have to start over in their quest to christen every room in the house. Some of his definitions of 'room' pushed credulity, like every pocket in the pool table, every cushion of the sofas and love seats, every leaf in the dining room table, or every walk in closet, being a separate room for christening purposes. So for that first month, they were pretty busy. He developed a complex set of rules governing, well, everything when it came right down to it, but especially the christenings. In true nerd fashion, he used a program on his phone to invent a 'random' system to determine the specific 'act' to be used for each christening.

If one particular act came up much more often than any random drawing would deem mathematically possible, Sarah laughed and chalked it up to his revenge at losing that football bet. The boy was obviously a quick study. Although she loved when he asked for that probably more than he did, she teasingly filed an official protest, which was well within her rights under the rules that Chuck had decreed.

The protest really didn't work out too well for her. It turned out that Chuck had also decreed himself as judge. Not only did she lose her protest and receive a rather long scolding about embracing the joy of service, the judge pointed out that there was a fairly steep protest filing fee hidden in the rules' fine print that was now immediately due. Since Chuck had already decreed that sex was the official currency of this realm, before she knew it, she was laughing and providing… um, an extra-long version of the exact service she had protested… as payment. His warning about doing an extra good job or who knew what might happen to the pictures he was taking on his phone of her in action was probably just as empty as hers had been… just another bit of revenge.

As soon as she could speak after finishing paying the original filing fee, she immediately appealed. Again, it was well within her rights. The filing fee for the 2nd appeal was even wilder. The judge was of the opinion that she was mocking the court and ruled her in contempt. She needed to be taught a lesson about authority. So her next payment service took some time. It was pretty wild… definitely as far to the edge as Chuck had ever demanded from her.

As she sat there on that sofa across from him, giggling while she performed for his amusement… and his phone camera, Sarah thought about her options… mostly to see if he would actually push her even farther. Unfortunately, the huge favor she was doing for herself while he watched, making sure that she was doing it correctly, rather predictably changed silly giggling into white hot arousal. She was well beyond the capacity for the calm, rational thought that would be required to finalize any legal strategy. The rest of that afternoon was a wonderful blur. Of course, Chuck pretending to demand wild bedroom things from Sarah was her very favorite thing. It didn't take her long to figure out that's exactly why he was doing it. It was so hot for both of them that Chuck gave her performance an official title. In Latin, it was now forever known as 'Do tibi gratiam.'

After taking an hour or so to recover from her devastating legal defeat, Sarah started teasingly calling him Caesar… Caesar Charles the First. As it turned out, Chuck actually liked the idea of being an emperor even more than being a judge. Charles the First's next decree was bolder. Sarah was nominated to Caesar's cabinet as the realm's Entertainer in Chief. The confirmation hearing got a little silly as the one member panel asked some detailed questions about her entertainment experiences during her time as a CIA agent. She was finally able to provide enough physical reenactment evidence to satisfy the panel, she was quickly confirmed by unanimous vote of the one member voting body, and sworn in.

The formal swearing in ceremony was perhaps the most aroused Sarah had ever been in her entire life. Certainly such an important position came with certain responsibilities. There would be a nightly private lingerie, lap dance, and erotic story show. All Sarah could do was giggle helplessly as he explained that in Latin it was called 'luxuriâ de nocturnis horis', or in English 'nightly hours of decadence.' Naturally, a regularly required component of luxuriâ de nocturnis horis was some variant of the Do tibi gratiam that they both loved so much.

It went without saying that anything that got Chuck's eyes to sparkle like that became Sarah's very favorite part of the day. Chuck 'demanding' a performance from her, even if he was teasing, never failed to get her knees weak. As official Entertainer in Chief, it became her quest to make the next night's performance better and more erotic than ever. She often found herself planning that next performance in the middle of the afternoon.

Sarah had to get special dispensation to sometimes trade the lingerie in for a schoolgirl uniform to strip out of with a sexy pout. It was a tough sell. The fee to even get a hearing took over… well, it was a most interesting afternoon. She was able to use her authority as Entertainer in Chief to have the stripper pole installed in their bedroom all on her own. The good news was that she had hundreds of erotic stories to whisper in his ear and reenact during the lap dances. All she had to do was recall her C.A.T. days, tell him something that actually did happen in first person, and substitute her name instead of Carina or Zondra. Often, an unfortunate negligee didn't survive the process. But she had a closet full of them. After all, they were rich. Shopping for replacements was practically the only time she could get Carina to leave the complex. Apparently Carina was going through some negligees of her own.

And naturally, Caesar Charles the First was a benevolent dictator. He made very sure that his loyal subject was well taken care of, in some amazing way, each night. Thankfully, Casey had moved out so there was no longer the need for Sarah to bite her lip while in the throes to keep from screaming out and embarrassing anyone. Of course, she always was required to pay the new 'screaming tax' that the Emperor had imposed. But that was just part of the nightly fun.

And they still had their two year game of showing each other off going strong. They got dressed up, or in Sarah's case, dressed down, and went to a different club dancing about twice a week. Sarah was never going to complain about going dancing. Sometimes Devon and Ellie went with them. Surprisingly sometimes even Casey went. He was actually doing great scoring with Chuck's rejections on the rebound. But mostly it was just the two of them.

Sarah always knew that her new wedding ring wouldn't make much difference to the men who frequented those pick up places… and it didn't. But it didn't keep her from trying. Her so blatantly shoving it in their faces became a running joke between them. It also took away any guilt from so brutally shutting them down. That part was fun. There were a couple of fights from guys whose egos couldn't take such a harsh rejection. That was to be expected. Of course, any moron, with more testosterone than brains, picking a fight with Chuck was about to have a very bad experience.

He was so great at just walking away. Sarah even told him a couple of times that it was okay to teach some particularly obnoxious jerk a lesson. Once he had permission, the fight was invariably short. Sarah never wanted to feel like a damsel in distress, but she also stopped pretending that Chuck defending her honor wasn't a massive turn on. So on those rare fight nights, luxuriâ de nocturnis horis invariably became extra luxuriâ and the screaming tax entered the surcharge area of the scale Chuck had devised.

Sarah was even able to take her new husband and introduce him to her mom and dad… separately. They really, really didn't get along. Neither had heard of her 'death' anyway. They had to be very carefully covert in both cases. Sarah's mom still had a secret that the CIA would be all over and her dad would have been arrested on the spot. Getting to know something real about her past was a special treat for Chuck. Sarah was certainly right that her mom would love her new son-in-law. She hugged him so tightly that he joked about having a stiff neck for days. Sarah's 'sister' was a little afraid of them at first. She was only three. But she quickly warmed up, especially to Chuck. He was already making plans to take them all to Disney World.

Chuck and Sarah weren't the only ones whose sex life had kicked into a new gear. As for the rest of the family, Carina didn't talk much about hers. That was surprising. She always wanted to brag about her expertise between the sheets. But that was mostly because she wasn't around much. Steven and Carina became homebodies, at least for the first couple months or so.

They all met for dinner in the clubhouse dining room most nights. A private gourmet chef came with being rich. Sometimes Carina would show up at the clubhouse in the afternoon to work out while Steven was working on some magic technology to make untold millions for RI, whose stock was going through the roof. Sometimes she talked him into spending some time in the hot tub. Every once in a while, she was even able to get him to stay after dinner and join the family for an impromptu dancing and tequila party. But mostly they stayed in, getting to know each other. The look on her face was clearly lovesick, bordering on pathetic. Sarah would have loved to tease her… except that she had the same look on her face.

Casey was the surprise. He adjusted to civilian life better than anyone could believe. It wasn't at all unusual to think that Ellie and Devon were fooling around in the hot tub, only to find that it was Casey, and some woman. It was hardly ever the same woman. It turned out that the women were pursuing him. Maybe it was a gold digger thing. Maybe Maryanne taught him something. Maybe Maryanne had bragged him up to Ellie's doctor friends. Sarah found that she really didn't want to know. Whatever it was, Casey was only alone when he wanted to be.

x-x-x-x-x

They had just finished playing tennis. Well, it wasn't really playing… not yet anyway. They were still honing their skills. Chuck discovered that mixed doubles tennis was the Pasadena social scene sport of choice. So he, knowing Sarah's competitive nature, hired a pro to teach them the ropes with the idea of mopping up the floor with their new neighbors.

It almost went without saying that the instructor immediately developed a major crush on his new beautiful and very athletic blonde student. It really didn't go anywhere. He wasn't stupid, just more open about using his hands to show Sarah the positions her body should be in, especially her hips.

Sarah was hypersensitive to the thought of making Chuck jealous and she came close to saying something a couple of times. But why start something? He wasn't the first, and probably wouldn't be the last, man to find an excuse to touch her ass. Besides, sometimes the 'coaching' actually helped. Chuck was always standing right there, and he thought it more funny than anything. He even retroactively granted her request for a special exemption from his no panty decree. After all, the tennis outfit he picked out for her didn't hide much anyway… and the lack of panties would represent a visual her new admirer probably didn't need. Naturally, the filing fee for the exemption was paid in the shower immediately after their first lesson.

It had been about six weeks, and they were both getting very good. Sarah signed then up for a tournament the following month that they were looking forward too.

Sarah was currently sitting on Chuck's lap with her head on his shoulder. Even though they were both naked, this wasn't sexual, not really. Even Sarah was starting to realize that you couldn't have sex twenty-four hours a day, every day. Lately, they had pretty much reserved actual sex for nighttime. They had just gotten out of the shower, winding down a bit after today's intense workout. Even the shower wasn't sexual. The Emperor calmly explained that they were in a drought and even billionaires shouldn't waste water. Having someone to playfully wash your back… and sometimes your front, made some sense. This was more loving… resting comfortably with each other. They were at such a good place.

Sarah's hand brushed his chest, and finally found the scar where Casey's shot had entered all those months ago. It was today's reminder of how close she had come to losing him. Sitting at his funeral was, by far, the saddest moment of her life. But she was given the great gift of a second chance. She could still remember every detail of lying in that hospital bed saying their unofficial vows to each other like it had happened ten minutes ago. Her life forever changed that day when she decided she wasn't going to blow it. That was still just as true. "If I ask you a question," she asked. "Will you give me an honest answer?" Part of that was obviously rhetorical, because she didn't wait for his response. "Am I out of control?" she asked. "I'm sorry about that. It's just that my life is perfect."

Chuck smiled. "Hold that thought," he said. "Can we talk?"

Sarah pulled back a little to look at him. She wasn't expecting such an odd question. "What's wrong?" she asked. "So you do think that I'm out of control? You can tell me."

"Nothing's wrong," Chuck insisted. "It's nothing like that. At least, I don't think so. Maybe you will. I just wanted to thank you."

Sarah smiled. "You're welcome," she teased. "So exactly what are you thanking me for?"

Chuck made a broad waive with his hand. "For all of this," he sighed. "A year ago I was a loser working in a Buy More. Now I'm a billionaire married to the most beautiful woman in the world who makes it her life's work to keep me content, in bed and out. And that's all because of you. I love you."

Sarah quickly got emotional. "Please, don't thank me," she insisted. "That makes me feel horrible. For one thing, I think we've had the discussion about calling yourself a loser more times than I can count. I was the loser. I slept-walked through life. I didn't laugh. I didn't love. I didn't live. You rescued me. You loved me, for me, even when you knew that you weren't going to get anything out of it. No matter how many times I pushed you away, you never gave up. You gave me a home, made me part of a family. I spend my days laughing and my nights on fire. The truth is, I could never do enough for you. I especially don't tell you how much I love you nearly enough. That's something I have to get better at. We've gotten very good at the sex thing. If I could think of anything else that would make you happy, in bed or out, I'd do it without thinking. My life is perfect. And you can deny this all you want. But that's because of you."

Chuck paused for a long moment. "There is one thing you could do," he finally said. "I'd like to start working on our family. Sarah, our war is over. Our lives are perfect. There's only one thing missing. I know we have a deal. And I'm not going back on anything. I'll keep up my end. If you want to wait for the entire two years… that was our deal."

"The two years was your idea," Sarah pointed out. "I was against it. I want this more than you do. So… are you sure? Once I'm pregnant, there's no changing your mind again."

"I'm very sure," Chuck assured her. "It was a nice chapter in our life, short but nice. But it's time, don't you think?"

"You know that I do," Sarah said. "I can't wait to see you as a dad."

Chuck smiled. "Let's start trying right away," he said. Then he paused for a long moment. "We can still have hot sex, can't we? I don't want to turn into Ellie and Devon just yet. I would really miss the luxuriâ de nocturnis horis."

"Why, Caesar," Sarah said with a grin. "Surely, luxuriâ de nocturnis horis isn't going anywhere anytime soon, is it? Besides, I think that Ellie and Devon may have caught their second wind. This is actually perfect. Not only are we already naked, but hot sex that leads to a family? Two birds, one stone? What could possibly be better? What is your first decree? Should I get things started with some Do tibi gratiam?"

That got them both laughing. She had just called him Caesar. He pretty much automatically playfully assumed the role. She never objected and rarely asked for anything. She just smiled gratefully and immediately and enthusiastically performed whatever task he assigned, no matter how ridiculous or vivid, and trusted him to find a way to take care of her. After it was over, she never failed to look him directly in the eyes, make a huge point of thanking him for the wild time, and find some way to hint that he could go even farther next time.

The illusion was that he was firmly in charge. But make no mistake. She was in complete charge of their sex life. She always had been… and they both knew it. When his wife put on that molten sex goddess look, she could get him to do anything she wanted without saying a single word. And the funny thing was, she could make it his idea. Sexy didn't come close to describing her. She was hard as nails, yet soft as an angel. She could act ditzy when she wanted, yet she was brilliant. She could act submissive when she wanted, yet she was a natural leader… the most dominant person he knew. She could make herself look like an average pretty suburban housewife when she wanted, yet she could speak a thousand languages, throw a knife into a fly's ass from across the room, kick anybody's ass that objected, and keep the smile on her face while she was doing it.

It was now obvious. He had just lit her, very short, fuse. Even if Chuck wanted to object, that time was past. They were about to have a long session of wild sex… in the middle of the afternoon. Maybe he would be able to pick some of the foreplay activities… but she was firmly in charge. Offering Do tibi gratiam was her, not so subtle, suggestion that it was something she was in the mood for him to demand. Why fight it? So he pulled her in close. "I wasn't really talking about starting this very instant," he teased. "But you do have something of a point. Maybe you should go get prepared first. I think I'd like to see your bedlah slowly hit the floor as my belly dancer gets me in the proper mood."

Sarah was already half way to the bedroom. It was no secret that belly dancing as a sexy blonde genie suppling three wishes had replaced the schoolgirl striptease act as their new hot thing. It never failed to get them both on fire. "Yes, Caesar," she called over her shoulder. "Your wish is my command."

It wasn't thirty seconds before his one girl harem was back, in full bedlah uniform, grinning as she softly swayed her hips in rhythm to the music coming from her phone.

"Slowly," Chuck advised as he watched her wiggle erotically out of her top until it became irrelevant… and then slid to the floor. "We have lots of time. I find that I have lots of wants this afternoon. My first wish is for ten more wishes."

Sarah had to struggle to keep from laughing. Here she was on fire… and he could still make her laugh. "Yes, Master," she teased. "You now have twelve wishes left." And the plain truth was he didn't have twelve wishes left… he had a lifetime of them. Chuck asking for something from her and not instantly getting it wasn't remotely possible.

Chuck could only laugh. As she stepped out of the bedlah bottom, she was as naked as she had been just five minutes ago. But it was night and day. Standing before him, trembling with desire as she waited for his next instruction, was the sexiest woman in the world. Why do anything other than enjoy it? "Once you've set the mood, my second wish is for some Do tibi gratiam," he teased. "We'll see how it goes from there. And to answer your original question."

"Yes. You're totally out of control."

The End

x-x-x-x-x

A/N: I don't think that it's any secret that I was reluctant to end this story. The war has been over for some time. But Chuck and Sarah were in such a good place that I didn't want it to end.

So here we are. I've already written this retirement speech far too many times. But let's face some facts. The show has now been off the air longer than it was on. Netflix was a pleasant surprise. It brought in some new fans. But now that it's no longer available there, interest has dramatically dropped off. My daily hits currently are about a fourth of what they were a year ago. I'm not complaining. Frankly I'm surprised that it took this long. I thought that things would quickly fade right after the show ended. It's only natural, right? Especially given the polarizing nature of the finale. It's possible that a reunion or movie could still happen and revive interest, but every passing day probably makes that less and less likely.

I'm not trying to be a downer. If you're reading these words, you're obviously still interested. I'm still every bit as in love with the Chuck and Sarah love story as I ever was. If I got an idea for a story that was burning a hole in my brain, like this one from Charahkids did, I might write it. But I just don't see enough interest to justify the amount of work it takes. That's as it should be. For me, writing has given me the closure that the show denied me. So I'm now content that Chuck and Sarah are someplace together now, happy, and probably working on baby #3.

My thoughts on the show have evolved over the years. On the one hand, you have to give Chris Fedak his due. He gave us Chuck Bartowski and Sarah Walker. He also gave us some genuine 'fist pump' moments that you just don't see on television. I'll be the first to admit that I have no idea what it takes to produce an hour long network TV show for five years. He did that. He deserves credit.

On the other, I don't think it's at all unfair to point out that the show's writing was often sloppy, that they looked to be making it up as they went along, sometimes it seemed the writer of an episode had never seen the show before, their worship at the WT/WT altar often made the main characters unlikeable, I could care less if the Buy More and everyone in it was swallowed by a black hole, and there were plot holes that could swallow Texas.

There are so many amazing storylines that they never pursued. I'd love to know the backstory behind Chuck's parents… or Sarah's family… or the parallels with Orion/Frost and Chuck/Sarah… or who Vivian Volkoff's mother is… or what Bryce and Orion's relationship really was and how did it happen… or how some mild mannered British man became a Russian billionaire oligarch… or what happened to Jill… or what was in the Dark Intersect that Chuck downloaded… or what happened to Manoosh's intersect glasses… or, so many more. Instead, we got Daniel Shaw, the red test, and dreaded trapezoid. Sigh. I firmly believe that, with a better effort, the show could still be on the air.

To me, it's unforgivable that they would take the central theme, the Charah love story, and leave us not definitively knowing that they were together and happy. I still think that was intentional and a bit vindictive, a final shot at the shippers who made his life so miserable over the years. So if a movie was going to be one more round of that WT/WT, I say no thanks. I have my closure, even if I had to write it myself.

I sometimes have to pinch myself when I realize the tremendous support I've gotten over the years. This has always been just a hobby for me. I never imagined that people would become so invested in it. I get it. Even though Chuck and Sarah are fictional, in a very real way they became our friends. We don't like seeing bad things happen to them. Unfortunately, an interesting story requires some tense situations. To me, the more impossible the situation our heroes found themselves in, the more fulfilling the eventual triumph. But I always promised the happy ending. So when we were in those impossible moments, you always knew up front that it would work out somehow. I always kept that promise. If you've ever sent me a review, or a PM, or talked to me on any number of forums, or just read in anonymity, I thank you.

Much like the British Empire at its height, the sun never sets on the people from around the world that I can call friends because of Chuck. I've worked with some amazing talents. BrickRoad just published her first novel. Vicki isn't going to be far behind. And as always, a big thanks to Michaelfmx for his beta services over the years. I really appreciate it.

So, if this is the end, it's with no regrets. I'll miss it. I'll miss you. But we've had a great run playing in this Chuck and Sarah sandbox for the past… oh, my goodness, over ten years.

It's time to move on.

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