I know. I missed a week and I'm a terrible person. In my defense, it's Finals week and I've had an insane amount of papers, exams, and presentation to do. So... not really a lot of time for me to be writing. But! I'm here now so enjoy the next chapter!

Disclaimer: I don't own Chuck. Never have and I probably never will. *sigh*


Chuck Versus the Beach

"So… you're going with Sarah for a weekend in Malibu?" Ellie asked in her classic sing-songy voice. Chuck rolled his eyes.

"Yeah. I am," he replied as he continued to pack his clothes. "I thought we discussed this when we had dinner on Monday."

"We did, but I need details, Chuck. How long have you been planning this? Or was it a spontaneous thing?" Ellie laid across his bed ready to gossip like Chuck was one of her girlfriends. To be fair, they did talk about everything.

"Sarah's been wanting to do something like this since Valentine's Day," he said with a shrug.

"Chuck, that was over two months ago!"

"Yeah, I know," Chuck admitted. "But I've been really busy with trying to get the finishing touches on this game done. We're almost there and we're going to start beta testing soon." Ellie huffed. "Plus, it wasn't like we could go to the beach in February. It'd be freezing."

"That's true. Well, at least now you're spending time with your girlfriend," she said. "Oh, by the way, I wanted to tell you…" Ellie trailed off, not bothering to continue on.

"What?" Chuck prompted.

"Devon and I are planning on moving," Ellie said. Chuck froze from packing and looked up at his older sister.

"What? When? Where? Why?"

Ellie shot him a look. "You wanna throw a 'How?' in there too? Complete the set?" she deadpanned.

"I'm serious, El," Chuck argued. "Why are you moving? If anything, I should be moving. I'm on steady feet now." Ellie shook her head.

"Not really," she reminded him. "Not until your game gets released and you turn a profit."

Chuck deflated. "Thanks for the reminder."

"But really, Devon and I want a bigger place," she said honestly. "We're getting married and we're gonna have kids, eventually."

"Well, where are you going to move to?"

Ellie gave a sly smile. "Not far… In fact… We're just across the courtyard. It opened up and we're taking it."

"Really?"

"Yeah. I'm sure you can find a roommate to help cover the cost for this apartment since it's much cheaper. Maybe… Sarah?"

Chuck thought about it. Sarah did practically spend the night every night anyways. And, if she moved in with him, then Zondra would have her own place, too. Besides, Casa Bartowski was so much closer to Il Castello than Maison23. It was definitely a good idea. "I'll think about it, Sis."

"Good. You've got some time. We're working on the paperwork and everything."

"Let me know, then."

Ellie flipped over so she was laying on her back and continued to talk to Chuck about the stuff she'd been up to at the hospital. She told him about an aneurism she'd clipped and a gnarly tumor that she'd helped remove with one of the attending neurolsurgeons. Of course she mentioned no names due to HIPAA laws, but it was nice to just talk and hang out with each other. Chuck told her all about his progress on his video game. They were polishing the coding and sprucing up the graphics so that they ran smoother but soon, they'd release a playable trailer to gain an idea of what the general public thought.

He also talked to her about the fact that Morgan was working for him. The little bearded man really stepped up ever since he started working for Chuck. Actually… Chuck had started to notice a change in his best friend ever since he and Casey's daughter, Alex, started talking. The pair had even spent Valentine's Day together, much to Casey's chagrin, and disgust. Morgan had received a scowl from the kitchen manager and a very possible threat – "You break her heart, I break your everything." Chuck had laughed when Morgan had told him about it and assured him that he'd received the same threat when Casey found out Chuck and Sarah were together. Casey was a poppa bear like that. Morgan had grumbled and stated that it wasn't the same because Alex was his only daughter. Chuck simply shrugged and turned back to work.

Morgan was a huge help for Orion Tech as the vice president in marketing. The man knew his video game and distribution companies, and he knew exactly how to sell the game to them. It was amazing. A couple of emails fired off from Morgan and Chuck was already getting offers to meet with representatives so that they could take a look at his game and maybe put in an offer.

Ellie was even more surprised than Chuck that Morgan was becoming more mature. She of course also attributed it to Alex's influence on him. "Maybe with Alex in the picture, he'll finally let go of that ridiculous crush," she said. Chuck snorted.

"Here's to hoping." Chuck lifted an invisible champagne flute and Ellie matched him, the siblings pretending to do a cheers. Ellie's phone rang not long after that and when she saw that it was a page from the hospital, she got up from the bed.

"I've got to go. There was a pileup on the 405. They need all hands on deck," she explained.

"Go save lives." They hugged.

"If I don't see you before you leave," she said. "Tell Sarah I say, 'Hi', and stay safe, okay?"

"You got it, Sis." Ellie left shortly after that. When Chuck finally finished packing, he brought his suitcase out into the living room, sitting it by the front door, ready to go.

He'd watched a couple of rerun episodes of Friends before Sarah finally showed up. He greeted her with a kiss and a hug. "You ready to go?" she asked when they pulled.

"Born ready," he answered. "Well, I wasn't actually born ready… I was just saying that… I'm ready… For this trip…" Sarah giggled and placed another kiss on his lips.

"Then let's get this bag in the car and we can go." Chuck nodded and grabbed his suitcase. Locking the apartment door behind him, he followed Sarah out to her car and stowed the luggage in the trunk along with Sarah's then climbed into the passenger's seat.

The Porsche roared to life and Sarah peeled away from the curb toward Malibu. They'd rented a small, but nice, beach house for the weekend and Sarah couldn't wait to finally get to spend time with Chuck without the worry of work or responsibilities. They still saw each other daily, of course, but their meetings were short and completely unsatisfying. Sarah used the excuse that she was too tired to drive all the way back to her own apartment after the dinner service or that Zondra's boyfriend was staying over too many times to be believable. Thankfully, Chuck was too much of a gentleman to call her out on it – hell, he probably enjoyed the fact that she spent the night almost every night.

Getting the opportunity to have her boyfriend all to herself for an entire weekend was quite literally a dream come true. As they merged onto the 10 East toward the 1, she lowered the roof of her convertible and Chuck turned up the radio so that it blasted KIIS-FM. He sang along loudly, but not terribly. Sarah chose to sit back and just enjoy being in the presence of the talented nerd. They hit a small bout of traffic on the interchange from the 10 to the 1 and Chuck had garnered some strange looks from the surrounding cars as he belted out 'I Kissed a Girl' by Katy Perry. The recently released hit was so catchy that it only took Chuck a day to learn the lyrics and he constantly sang it just to mess with her. Sarah rolled her eyes at how insane Chuck looked but laughed when he leaned in close to drop a kiss on her cheek. The song finally ended just as the traffic started to let up.

"You are so crazy," she giggled.

"Yeah… But you love this crazy," he smirked. She took his hand over the console.

"Yeah, I do."

It was over an hour later that they arrived at the beach house and Sarah and Chuck had divvied up the work so that Sarah carried in the groceries they'd bought to last them the weekend while Chuck lugged their luggage. Sarah made a beeline for the kitchen. Chuck rolled his eyes in amusement before setting off to find the master bedroom so that he could deposit their bags there.

Chuck found Sarah still in the kitchen putting away groceries. "Does it satisfy your tastes, oh, master chef?" he joked. Sarah turned around to face him with an unamused look on her face.

"Aren't you just a comedian," she deadpanned.

"I'm here all week." He smiled and walked up to her; he wrapped his arms around her waist and dropped a kiss to her lips. "Need any help cooking lunch?" he asked. "You know… I've been told that I'm pretty good in the kitchen now." He smirked. Sarah playfully slapped his chest.

"Shut up, you goof," she giggled. "Actually, I was thinking we could get changed and then take a walk down the beach to the pier and see what kind of food they've got over there."

"Now, that sounds like a plan."

•-•-•-•-•-•-•-•

The walk to the pier wasn't very long. Maybe about fifteen minutes, give or take. Of course, walking to the pier with Chuck… That was a different story. The large nerd was like a child on the beach. He pointed out every little thing and insisted on splashing Sarah whenever a wave lapped their feet. Sarah, on the other hand, loved treasure hunting and stopped them every time she saw something that looked like sea glass. That fifteen minute walk became forty-five. But, it wasn't all for naught. Sarah had found various seashells and sea glass – which she kept in Chuck's pockets because he had them and she didn't – and Chuck had worked up an appetite for some food. They settled into a table by the pier railing so that they had a view of the ocean and the endless line of beach houses. A waitress walked up to them and handed them menus after briefly introducing herself. She left them after taking down their drinks – lemonade for Chuck, iced tea for Sarah – so that they could look over the menu. They quickly decided on some crab cakes to start, a burger for Chuck and a grilled salmon sandwich for Sarah. After placing their order, Chuck turned to admire the ocean view in front of them. "It's incredible, isn't it?" he marveled.

"What is?" Sarah asked, her attention solely on him.

"This view," he clarified. "I mean… look at it. The Pacific Ocean. It's the largest ocean on Earth and it's right in our backyard." Out of the corner of his eye, he saw Sarah look out toward the ocean as well. The blonde didn't say anything and Chuck couldn't exactly get a read on her thoughts because her eyes were hidden behind her sunglasses. Figuring that she wasn't going to say anything, he continued on. "I always loved the ocean. You know… Whenever I was troubled or just wanted a place to think, I would go to the beach. I don't know, I just… The ocean just always made my problems feel so much smaller. It helps me think clearer." Chuck turned to look at his girlfriend to see that she was looking right back at him. There was a soft smile on her face. He took her hand in his and placed a kiss on her knuckles.

"Thank you for sharing that," she said. Chuck opened his mouth to respond but the waitress showed up right then to give them their food. That seemed to end the moment between the two and they moved on to lighter topics.

After lunch, Chuck and Sarah found themselves strolling along the beach again, this time simply enjoying the serene environment. Spring Break was long over and it being the middle of April meant that there weren't quite as many vacationers and tourists around, so the only other people on the beach were mainly locals.

There was a game of sand volleyball going on that looked really interesting and Sarah motioned to Chuck to go check it out. She'd also seen a surf shop along the street when they first arrived and she was already planning on renting a board and buying a suit. The blonde absolutely loved surfing, despite being born in New York. During her time at the CIA campus in Napa, she'd picked it up and fell in love. She'd also picked up some volleyball as a pastime. Getting work in Italy didn't really lend herself to do the two sports she actually enjoyed. She was hoping she could rekindle that flame over the weekend and maybe even get Chuck – who was not athletic by nature – at least open to the idea.

She led Chuck to where a crowd had formed around the court and the two enjoyed the game that was currently going on. It looked like a co-ed doubles game and from what she could take in, they were on the third set, the score being 13-14 with the set point belonging to the brunette couple on the court.

"Man! This is intense!" Chuck said to Sarah as the blond couple got the deuce.

"You know how to play?" Sarah asked.

"Yeah, sure, you could say that," he answered. "I played with Ellie whenever we took trips to the beach when we were teenagers and I played for fun in college with Brett – my roommate. You know, before everything that happened. I wouldn't say I'm very good, though. The only real thing I've got going for me is my height and the fact that I don't have to actually catch anything." Sarah nodded in understanding with a slight chuckle. She also couldn't help the surge of pride that Chuck could talk about his Stanford days without getting that far off, melancholy look in his eyes like he used to. "You play?" His question spurred her back to reality.

"Yeah. In college when I was in Napa," she responded, not bothering to elaborate. Just then, the game ended with the brunette team winning 18-16.

The girl had a smug look on her face. "Any other takers?" she asked arrogantly. The rest of the crowd groaned and started to disperse. "Seriously? No one? Figures. We're the best team on this beach!" Sarah felt a surge of annoyance at the girl's bragging. She hated bullies and this girl clearly was a bully on this court.

"I wish someone would beat them already," the person standing beside Sarah muttered.

"Really?" she asked, getting the guy's attention.

"Yeah," he said. "They're undefeated and at first it was cool, but then they started getting really annoying about it. Now, it's all they ever talk about it." Sarah looked back the couple who was going around the remaining crowd. Then, she spotted Sarah.

"You there! Blondie!" she called out, pointing at her. Sarah was taken aback slightly. "I haven't seen you around here before. You think you got what it takes?" Sarah furrowed a brow at the challenge.

"Excuse me?"

"Am I not speaking English?" the brunette taunted. "You gonna play or what?" Sarah felt Chuck's hand on the small of her back. She felt the tension in her shoulders, one that she didn't even realize she had, release and just like when she was facing down Hugo Panzer, she felt confident. She looked at Chuck. He gave her a wink that told her that whatever she did, he would be right there with her.

"Yeah, sure," she said, her eyes not leaving her boyfriend's. "Let's play."

Sarah shed her cover up, leaving her in a dark teal bikini and Chuck removed his shirt so that he only wore his board shorts. They huddled up quickly to come up with a game plan. It was the first time they've played volleyball in years and the first time they've ever played with each other. "So what's the plan?" Chuck asked.

Sarah bit her lip. "As the challengers, we get first serve. I'd rather you be up by the net because of your height so I'll serve first." Chuck nodded as Sarah laid out their plan of action.

"Alright. Sounds good," he said. The volleyball bounced over to them and Sarah picked it up. Chuck took her head in his hands and placed a kiss on her forehead. "Let's kick some ass," he said. A beat. "Or at least… let's try." Sarah chuckled before walking back behind the boundary tape.

She stretched her arm and prayed that she would get a good serve. It'd been so long. Taking a deep breath, Sarah tossed the ball and hit it. She ran forward back into the court and bit her lip as the ball flew into the top of the net and by some miracle, fell on the other side of the court. That was a point! She scored a point! The brunette cursed and called for her partner to move forward for the short serves. The ball was tossed back over to Sarah and she went back over to her spot behind the boundary line.

She got lucky on her last serve. It would take more than just luck to win this game. Taking a deep breath, Sarah served and thankfully, it sailed clear over the net and toward the brunette who was covering the backcourt. She received the served with a perfect pass to her partner, who bump-set it toward back over so the brunette could kill it. Sarah got in a defensive position, her eyes trained on the ball. The brunette practically flew to meet the ball but then she disappeared and all Sarah could see was Chuck's tall frame in between the two women, his arms up and fingers outstretched. The brunette, not expecting the man, spiked straight causing the ball to bounce off of Chuck's arms, which were clear over the net, and ricochet right into the sand. Another point for Chuck and Sarah. Amazed at what had just happened, Chuck and Sarah celebrated with a hug. They were up 2-0.

Unfortunately, Sarah's next serve fell short into the net, bringing the score to 2-1. The other team rotated so that the guy was serving. He served it right to Sarah, who received it. It flew a little too far for Chuck to set up so instead of going for a set, he tipped it right over into an open spot on the sand. Sarah blinked. 'Open up Chuck to the idea of sports,' my ass, she thought. He was practically carrying their team. 3-1.

The game continued on, Sarah and Chuck actually doing pretty well for not having played together before. They found their rhythm really quick as soon as the rallies got more and more intense. By the end of it, they lost the first set. 18-21. It was a tough effort but Sarah knew that beating the brunette's team wouldn't be easy.

Chuck was incredible. He'd gotten plenty of blocks and kills to score them points and slowly, Sarah warmed up to where she'd killed a couple of balls, too. But, Sarah could tell that he was right; the main reason that he was able to get so many of those hits was his sheer height. At 6'4, Chuck towered over everyone on the court and his hands easily cleared the net when lifted over his head. All Chuck needed to get a good soft block was a hop. Stronger blocks required only slightly more effort. The second set was more fast-paced than the first. With Chuck and Sarah in sync, they figured out how to communicate what they wanted with each other. It was a close game, but Sarah and Chuck managed to snag the second set 21-19.

As the two couples geared up for the third and final set, Sarah found herself deep in thought. The third set was the tiebreaker set. The first team to fifteen won – by two, of course. In both of the previous sets, the brunette and her partner made it to fifteen before Sarah and Chuck. Sarah approached Chuck as he prepared to serve. "Alright, Chuck," she said. "This is it. First to fifteen." He nodded and gave her a reassuring smile.

"Sarah, I know how much you hate to lose," he said. "So, I'm going to give it everything I've got." Sarah smiled at him.

"I love you." They shared a kiss and another smile before Sarah found her starting position near the net.

The third set went by as quickly as the second and soon, Chuck and Sarah found themselves in a tie at 13-13 with the other team. It was the opponents' serve and they barely managed an ace, the ball landing just on the outside edge of the boundary line. Sarah cursed under her breath. It was match point. 13-14. Luckily for them, the brunette's overconfidence messed her up and she served the ball into the net. 14-14. Chuck and Sarah just needed two more points to call it a match and it was her serve. She plucked the ball out of the air as it flew toward her and got into position behind the boundary line. She lined up her sight to the hole in their position and fired. The ball sailed over the net and into the sand, just out of reach of the brunette. 15-14.

"Woo! Way to go, Honey!" Sarah heard Chuck cheer. "Just like that!" Sarah shot him a wink and got back in her service position. She lined up her sight again and served.

Like before, the ball flew toward the open spot in the sand. However, the brunette was ready for it this time around and managed to receive it. The ball flew high in a perfect setup and the brunette's partner went in for the kill. Chuck was a second off in his block and the ball ricocheted off of his open palm and way out of bounds. There was no way that Sarah could have possibly recovered it. 15-15. Back to a deuce.

The rallies carried on and the scores climbed slowly. One rally, Chuck and Sarah would have the advantage and then the next the opponents would have it. The back and forth was tiring on both teams and entirely captivating to their audience. Finally, the score made its way up to 19-20, the opposing team with the advantage; it was also their serve. "Service!" They'd figured out early on that Sarah's speed and agility was more effective in receiving and Chuck's height gave him the advantage at the net.

As the ball flew over the net, Sarah got into her receiving position. Chuck, in turn, ran forward to cover the net. The receive was solid and the ball went straight to Chuck a quick set and spike brought the ball back to the opposing team. The brunette managed to pop the ball up to her partner. As she went up for the spike, Chuck met her stride for stride and jumped for a block. Everything seemed to go in slow motion at that point and Sarah could see the subtle shift in the brunette's posture. She was going to go for a tip rather than a spike. Sarah, on the other hand, was all the way in the back ready for the dig. She sprinted just as the brunette slowed her hand and tapped the bottom of the ball, getting it to fly just inches over Chuck's finger tips. The ball fell just behind the tall man's body and into the sand, Sarah reaching the spot it landed in just a second too late Everyone was frozen for a whole five seconds before the crowd started groaning and sighing. Chuck and Sarah stood shocked. They were so close. Sarah dusted off the sand that caked her stomach and arms. Chuck pulled Sarah into his arms and pressed kisses to her face and neck, despite the sweat and sand that caked her skin. Sarah mood lifted and she laughed and pressed one more kiss to her boyfriend's lips before pulling away slightly.

"I'm sorry we lost," he said. The blonde shook her head with a soft smile.

"Chuck, it's fine. By the way, you were incredible."

"Umm… Not as good as you," he countered.

"Oh please, I wouldn't have been able to receive half of those balls if it weren't for your blocks."

"It was a team effort." Chuck shrugged.

"And we do make a pretty good team."

Chuck smiled widely. "That we do."

"And, you know… Even though we lost, we had fun playing together. That's what matters."

"Yeah we did." Chuck held her face in his hands and gave her another kiss before walking them back to where Sarah's cover up and Chuck's shirt lay. A couple of people came up to them, complimenting them on their skills. On the other half of the court, the brunette was boasting about their latest win. Her partner however, walked up to Chuck and Sarah.

"Hey, you guys did really well. You almost had us," he said.

"Thanks, man," Chuck smiled. Another 'woop!' from the brunette briefly put the trio's attention back on her.

"I'm sorry about her," the guy said. "I don't know what's gotten into her."

Chuck shrugged. "No hard feelings." Sarah wanted to roll her eyes and say otherwise, but she figured it would be most prudent to let Chuck handle all the talking. "Well, we're gonna get going." The two men nodded in goodbye and Chuck and Sarah started their walk back to their rental house.

"So the guy isn't bigheaded and annoying," Sarah noted. Chuck chuckled.

"No, I guess not."

"That was a really fun game, but you know what'll be even more fun?" Sarah questioned with a sly smile. Chuck raised an eyebrow, curious as to where she was going with her statement. "The shower once we get back." Chuck stopped walking, frozen to his spot in the sand. He gulped. The look on his face was an amusing mixture of embarrassment, lust, love, and about a million other emotions. Sarah did her best to contain her smile but failed. Then, like a computer getting rebooted, Chuck sprung to action, lifting Sarah up bridal style, carrying her all the way back to the house, the blonde laughing and squealing the whole time.

•-•-•-•-•-•-•-•

Chuck woke up the next morning with the scent of grapefruit bombarding his olfactory senses. He hummed in content and snuggled closer into the source of smell. When his lips came into contact with the skin of Sarah's neck, he smiled and placed a soft, sleepy kiss on the spot, his arm tightening more around her body. He felt her chest, which was under his shoulder, bounce lightly as she chuckled, her hand, which rested on his back massaged the muscles around his shoulder blade.

"Good morning," she said, her voice still muddled with sleep.

"Mmmm. A good morning indeed," he hummed. He continued to press kisses to her neck, his morning stubble tickling her slightly. Sarah giggled at the feeling.

"Chuck, stop," she whined half-heartedly. "You need to shave."

"Oh yeah?" he asked, pulling up just enough for Sarah to catch a glimpse of the mischievous glint in his eyes before he dove back in rubbing his morning stubble all over the soft skin of her neck.

"Chuck!" She squealed and pushed at his face, breaking down into laughter along with her boyfriend. The tall man had managed to move from half on top of his girlfriend to fully on top of her, his arms on either side of her, holding him up.

He gave her a full Bartowski smile before leaning down and placing a loving kiss on her lips. "God, I love you," he said when he finally pulled away.

"Mmm… And I love you…" Sarah hummed in contentment. "But, as much as I want to see where this particular position leads us, I'd really like to head out and maybe hit a couple of waves today." Chuck groaned as he flopped onto the bed beside his very naked girlfriend.

"You're gonna kill me, aren't you?"

"What are you talking about?" Sarah asked, torn between being amused and annoyed.

"Between yesterday's volleyball game and… the activities afterward… I'm so sore I can barely move, let alone surf," he complained. Sarah sat up, not bothering to keep her bare chest covered.

"Are you complaining about what we did yesterday?" she asked. Chuck's eyes went wide as he realized his implication.

"What? No! No. Not at all. Nope. No complaining here." Sarah narrowed her eyes at him. "You know what? Surfing sounds great. We should go. Right now." Chuck hopped off the bed, ignoring his muscles' protests and got dressed in a pair of board shorts and a T-shirt.

"Eager to get out of bed now are we?" she said. Chuck froze at the door to the en suite bathroom. He spun around, his eyes narrowed and he walked back over toward his blonde girlfriend.

"You're trying to trap me," he accused, a mischievous glint in his eyes. Sarah raised a brow.

"I am not," she denied, trying hard to keep the smile of her face.

Chuck nodded slowly, "Yeah, you are." He reached the bed, towering over Sarah's form.

"And if I am? What are you gonna do about it?" she challenged, getting up to a kneeling position to meet the nerd eye-to-eye.

"Oh, I'll show you what I'm gonna do about it." He grabbed her and allowed them to fall back onto the bed.

Eventually, Chuck and Sarah managed to get up and ready for the day. They chose to walk the short distance to the surf shop to rent out some boards and buy some body suits. "So, you surf, too?" Chuck asked as they browsed the selection of surfboards available for rent. Sarah hummed in affirmative, running her hand over a red and white board. "Is there anything you can't do?" he joked.

"There are plenty of things that I can't do," she said pulling the board off the wall.

"Yeah right," he muttered.

"Have you picked a board yet?" she asked, choosing to ignore him.

"Uhhh… Now would probably be a good time to tell you that I don't surf…"

Sarah turned to look at her boyfriend, who had sheepish smile on his face. "What?"

He shrugged. "Awesome tried to teach me once," he admitted. "It didn't go very well."

Sarah chuckled. "I think I can do better than Awesome," she said. "I mean, I did teach you how to cook." Sarah smirked in confidence at her ability.

•-•-•-•-•-•-•-•

"I can't teach you how to surf," Sarah gasped once she broke the surface of the water. Chuck pushed his hair out of his eyes and clung to his rental surfboard just a few feet away.

"I told you!" The two had just collided while riding in on a wave. Well, more like Chuck collided with Sarah. She'd shown him the basics on the sand and taught him how to pop up and balance. When they got to the water, Sarah realized that Chuck was too uncoordinated to stay standing on the waxy board.

Chuck was a land animal. She knew that now.

Sighing, she pulled herself up on the board. Chuck tried to do the same but his board teetered and he flipped over the other side. Sarah suppressed a smile. When Chuck resurfaced again, he shot her a withering look. "It's hopeless."

"Well… Looks like I can't do it," she said. Chuck did not miss the significance of her statement.

"Okay, fine. One thing," he conceded. Sarah gave a victorious smirk. "I'm going back. You wanna stay a little longer?" Sarah nodded. She wanted to catch a few more waves before heading in. "Alright. I'll see you in a bit."

Without bothering to try and climb up on his board, Chuck maneuvered back to shore where he carried the board up toward the house. Sarah turned her attention back to the waves and managed to catch a few good ones before the sun started to set.

Tired from a long day in the ocean, Sarah rested her board against the porch railing, next to the one Chuck had rented. She stripped off the top of her wet suit, leaving it on from the waist down, her bikini top the only thing still covering her torso. Chuck was in the kitchen cooking… pasta. Sarah leaned against the counter. "I'm pretty sure pasta isn't the only thing I've taught you how to make," she said. Chuck spun around, a surprised look on his face.

"You're back!"

"And you always concentrate so hard that you don't hear me come in, even though I make a shit-ton of noise." Sarah pushed off of the counter and walked over to him. She placed a soft kiss on his lips. "I'm gonna go shower," she told him when they separated. "Try not to burn anything?" Chuck gasped scandalously,

"I haven't burned anything since–"

"Last week?" she replied smugly.

"You will never let me live that down."

"I have no idea what you're talking about," she replied. "You're the one that brought it up." Chuck blinked as he thought about it. He frowned. Sarah laughed pecking his lips once more. "I'll be back." She stepped out of his embrace and left the room to take her much-needed shower.

Chuck watched as Sarah disappeared into the bedroom and reached into his pocket, fingering the small box that sat there. He would ask her tonight. It was going to happen. Hopefully she'd say yes.

He finished preparing their dinner and set the table for two, lighting a candle and setting some mood music. By the time everything was set, Sarah emerged from the bedroom, dressed in shorts and a nice blouse. "Smells great!" she commented as they took their seats and ate their meal. "Tastes great, too. You're getting much better." Chuck gave her a proud smile, which she returned.

As they cleared the table of their empty plates and moved to the couch to watch a movie, Chuck started to feel a little nervous. He started to doubt himself. What if she said no? What would happen? What if she wasn't ready? If they weren't ready? Then, he got a good look at his blonde girlfriend, who'd just sat on the couch with a large bowl of popcorn in her lap, a glass of red wine on the small table beside her. He knew in that moment that he was ready to take the next step. With a renewed confidence, Chuck popped his beer bottle open and joined her on the couch, ready to enjoy a movie with his girlfriend.

Two hours later, Chuck's head had replaced the bowl in Sarah's lap as he laid across the couch and Sarah's legs rested on the coffee table. One of her hands played with his on his chest, while the other combed through his curls. "I love doing this with you," she said suddenly. "Just enjoying a night in, watching movies, relaxing." Chuck blinked. It was the perfect opening for him to make his move. Attempting to keep it from looking like he was freaking out, he kept a calm look on his face as he looked up at her, his brown eyes meeting her blue ones.

"We can do this," he said. "Every night. We can do this if you want." Sarah looked down at him, her brow furrowing in confusion. He sat up, his hand dipping into his pocket to pull out the palm-sized box. At the wide-eyed look on Sarah's face, he placed a hand on her cheek to calm her. "Don't freak out." He opened the box to reveal a key. Sarah blinked.

"Chuck… What is–"

"I want you to move in with me," he interrupted her. Sarah hit him. "Ow! Hey! What was that for?!"

"That was for making me think you were going to propose!"

"What? Propose? We've only been dating for like five months. It's way to early for that."

"And I agree," Sarah conceded. "You don't need all the theatrics, Chuck. I'm a simple girl. I would have been fine if you just asked me."

"Duly noted," Chuck nodded. "So… Is that a 'yes?'" Sarah rolled her eyes.

"Yes I'll move in with you, you goof!" She kissed him before a realization hit her. "Wait, what about Ellie and Devon? It's technically their apartment…"

"It won't be right away. I already talked to Ellie; her and Devon are planning on getting the bigger apartment across the courtyard. Something about wanting the extra room for when 'little Awesomes' started running around," Chuck explained. "So we get the apartment all to ourselves. And, if you move in, then Zondra can stay in your apartment."

"You drive a hard bargain, Mr. Bartowski. One that I absolutely cannot refuse."


And there you have it, folks! Another installment of Chuck Versus the Kitchen. Just wanted to let you guys know... Maybe start to expect slower updates? I've kinda hit a road block with writing and my buffer is dwindling and I'd like to keep at least a couple of chapters between my recently posted and my currently writing. So... Yeah. ANYWAYS...

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