Warning: There is some adult content in this. Nothing major but please use discretion. I still don't own Chuck.

This is the follow up story to Chuck vs. The End of Hope that was submitted for the famous angst contest. I felt so badly that the story was so sad that I decided to fix it. Since that story was rated M, a lot of you might not have read it. Here is a brief Teen rated synopsis.

Soon after Chuck and Sarah start a relationship, Sarah is ordered to sleep with a foreign diplomat. After unsuccessfully trying to talk Sarah out of it, Chuck finally supports her. Unfortunately, the diplomat physically abuses Sarah. When Sarah is ordered to sleep with him again, Chuck explodes. When he is unable to talk Sarah out of it, he follows her to the hotel and kills the diplomat just as he was about to abuse Sarah again. The story ends with Sarah arresting Chuck for the murder. Now that you're up to date, here is;

Hope Renewed

- - - -

Casey burst into the conference room and saw Sarah standing there. It had been about forty five minutes since he had received the call. Sarah looked a mess. Her hair hung in a tangled web. Her shoulders were noticeably slumped. Her eyes were glassy and not really focused.

"Walker," Casey said loudly. "What the hell happened?"

Instead of responding, Sarah glanced over to the wall. When Casey followed her gaze, he saw the monitor with Graham and Beckman waiting.

"Thank you for joining us Major," said Beckman sharply. "We have a crisis here. Agent Walker, what in the hell happened tonight?"

Sarah drew a deep breath and paused a moment to compose herself before speaking.

"Ma'am," Sarah said shakily. "I was executing my assignment at the hotel. Just as I was about to become, um, engaged, Ch…, um the intersect burst into the room and shot the ambassador several times, killing him. I then placed the intersect under arrest."

"And how did the intersect know where you were?" asked Graham.

"I'm not sure, sir," said Sarah. "My assumption is that he followed me."

"And, Agent Walker," said Beckman. "Why would he do that?"

"Again, ma'am, I'm assuming," said Sarah. "But I believe that he was concerned for my safety."

"Why would he be concerned for your safety?" asked Beckman in a puzzled tone.

"Well ma'am," said Sarah. "My first mission with the ambassador got a little rough. The intersect saw the bruises and scars on my body."

"What," exclaimed Casey as he looked at Sarah? "What did that bastard do?"

"At ease, Major," said Beckman firmly. "We'll get to that in a moment. Agent Walker, why would the intersect care so much about your safety to take such a dramatic action?"

"I'm not sure ma'am," Sarah replied softly.

"Come on Walker," said Casey loudly. "Give it up already. General, he is in love with her."

"Agent Walker," said Graham. "Is this true?"

"Yes sir." said Sarah sadly as tears began to slowly fall down her cheeks."

"Agent Walker," said Graham harshly. "I need you to be totally candid with us here. Exactly what is the nature of your relationship with the intersect?"

"I'm sorry, sir," said Sarah sadly. "I'm completely in love with him."

"And why haven't you reported this?" Beckman asked firmly.

I'm sorry, ma'am," said Sarah. "It was a serious lapse in duty not to have reported it. I feared that I would be reassigned."

"And why would you fear that," Graham asked flatly. "We encourage you to form a relationship with the intersect. That would insure that we would get his maximum cooperation. I assumed you knew that."

"I'm sorry sir," said Sarah. "I feared that violating the rules against fraternization would cause you to fear that I had become compromised and reassign me."

"Agent Walker," said Beckman. "We want you to become compromised. The intersect is far too valuable to leave his protection to professionalism. We would prefer someone who loves him to make sure that they are fanatical about his protection."

"Yes ma'am" said Sarah.

"Agent Walker," Graham said. "Considering your relationship with the intersect, why did you agree to such an intimate mission?"

"Yes," said Casey with a fire in his eyes. "Good question."

"At ease, Major," said Beckman.

"With all due respect ma'am," said Casey angrily. "What is the CIA doing asking Agent Walker to be the sex toy for this pervert? I can see the bruises on her wrists from here. Not once, but twice? If Chuck hadn't shot him, I would have."

"Major Casey," said Beckman sternly. "Either shut up or leave the room. Am I understood?"

"Yes ma'am," said Casey stiffly. "Sorry ma'am."

"Agent Walker," said Graham. "Answer my question. Why would you agree to such an intimate assignment?"

"I believed it was my duty, sir," said Sarah. "It was an important assignment."

"It was important," said Graham sternly. "But not nearly as important as the intersect. He is vital to national security."

"Yes sir," said Sarah

"Come on Sarah," Graham said much more softly. "I understand your zeal and dedication to duty. I totally admire it. There is not your equal in the entire agency. But sometimes discretion has to rule. If you had made us aware of your relationship with the intersect, we would have never given you this assignment. And in any event, we would never want to subject you to the degrading, physical abuse that you endured. In the future, please talk to me about these issues and perhaps we can prevent an international incident like the one that I'm about to spend my night making go away. Am I clear?"

"Yes, sir." said Sarah.

"And Major," Graham said with a spark in his eye. "Our female agents are sometimes asked to do some very uncomfortable things. I think that you know that. That's unfortunate but a grim reality of our business. But rest assured, had we been aware of the extreme nature of Agent Walker's first encounter, there wouldn't have been a second. And, trust me, had I been aware of the circumstances you would have been immediately dispatched to take care of this sadistic bastard. Satisfied?"

"Yes, sir," Casey said with a smile. "Thank you, sir."

"Agent Walker," said Beckman. "What is the current status of your relationship with the intersect?"

"I'm not sure, ma'am," said Sarah with her voice shaky and tears rolling down her cheeks. "Our last conversation was pretty heated."

"Can this be fixed?" asked Beckman.

"I'm not sure ma'am" Sarah said.

"Sarah," said Beckman softly. "Talk to me. Do you want it to be fixed?"

"Yes ma'am," said Sarah, unable to contain the sob. "Very much."

"Major Casey?" Beckman said firmly.

"Ma'am?" Casey responded.

"You are ordered to take whatever action is necessary to restore the team to full operational status as soon as possible," said Beckman. "Do you understand?"

"Yes ma'am," Casey said hesitantly. "But ma'am, this is a little outside my skill set."

"I understand that," said Beckman softly. "But you're the only one that currently is in any position to do this. If this can't be fixed quickly, we'll have no choice but to replace Agent Walker with another agent and start over."

"Yes ma'am," said Casey. "I'll do my best."

"And Sarah?" Beckman said.

"Yes ma'am?"

"For goodness sake," said Beckman with a smile. "Go to the ladies room and brush your hair. Maybe put on some makeup. We're trying to attract a man here."

"Yes ma'am." said Sarah as the screen went blank.

As soon as the call disconnected, Casey turned to Sarah.

"Are you ok?" he asked softly.

Instead of answering, Sarah just looked at Casey with her lip quivering. Suddenly she collapsed in Casey's arms sobbing uncontrollably. Casey didn't know what to do so he just stood there with Sarah hanging on him for a long moment. After a while he put his arms around Sarah and hugged her as she sobbed.

"My orders are to do whatever is necessary," Casey whispered to himself. "I sure as hell hope she didn't mean this."

- - - -

Chuck was sitting in the holding cell when Casey walked in. His hands were still cuffed behind his back. He was in much worse emotional shape than Sarah was. That made sense as he didn't have the benefit of her training.

"I'm Major John Casey of the NSA." Casey said to the guard as he unlocked Chuck's cuffs. "This is a class a national security situation. This man was never here tonight. I was never here tonight. You've never seen either of us before in your life."

"Yes sir." was the guards reply.

"Come on Chuck," said Casey, trying to sound upbeat. "Let's get out of here."

"Are you going to kill me?" Chuck asked sullenly as he kept his eyes trained on the floor.

"Not tonight anyway." Casey said, still trying to sound upbeat.

"Am I going to prison?" Chuck asked softly without looking up.

"Come on Chuck," said Casey with a short laugh. "We can't have the intersect in prison now. Can we?"

"Are you mad at me?" Chuck asked.

"No, Chuck," Casey said softly. "I'm not mad at you. The truth is I'm proud of you. You did what I would have done."

"How's Sarah?" Chuck asked as a single tear escaped his eye.

"She's fine," Casey lied. "She's worried about you."

"Does she hate me?" Chuck asked as the single tear was joined by many more.

"No, Chuck," Casey said as soothingly as he could. "She doesn't hate you at all. She is worried about you though. She is waiting to talk to you."

"I couldn't let him." Chuck said as he threw his arms around Casey and sobbed openly. "I couldn't let him hurt her again."

For the second time is the past thirty minutes Casey held a sobbing partner in his arms. Only this time, Casey surprised even himself as he felt the tears streaming down his own cheeks.

- - - -

When Chuck entered the interrogation room where Sarah was waiting his hands were shaking so badly that he could hardly open the door. Sarah was standing there waiting for him. She had brushed her hair but her eyes were still swollen and filled with tears.

"Hi, Chuck," Sarah whispered. "How are you doing?"

I'm sorry," Chuck whispered as he looked at the floor. "I'm so sorry."

"Chuck," said Sarah softly. "Will you please look at me?"

Chuck slowly lifted his head to look at Sarah.

"I'm so ashamed." he said.

"Why are you ashamed?" said Sarah. "You protected me. Everybody thinks that you're a hero. I do too."

"But that's the thing," Chuck said so softly that Sarah had to strain to hear him. "I didn't do it for you. If I had been thinking about you, I would have supported your decision. I was thinking about me. I know that you probably can't forgive me but I just want you to know that I'm sorry."

"Well, Chuck," Sarah said softly. "Someone needs to thinking about you. Because I sure as hell haven't been. I'm the one that should be ashamed. I took someone that I love very much and almost destroyed him. I'm so sorry. I know that I don't deserve it but I would love a second chance. I promise that things will be very different."

"How is this going to work?" Chuck asked, almost as if to himself. "You're still an agent, right?"

"Let me tell you a story." Sarah said with the begging of a smile. "When I was in training I was horrible at throwing knives. I was so bad that people would duck whenever I grabbed one. I practiced and I practiced. I had a very patient instructor and she wouldn't let me quit. So, eventually, I got to be ok at it. But that wasn't good enough for me. So I practiced some more. I lived and breathed throwing knives. Eventually I got real good at it, wouldn't you agree?"

Chuck nodded with a confused smile.

"So right now," continued Sarah with a bigger smile. "I'm pretty horrible at relationships. I think we'd both agree that I'm as bad as you can imagine. But if you would be willing to be that patient instructor, I'll promise to work as hard at putting you first as I did throwing knives. You'll never have to worry about me with another man. I'll practice and practice. I'll live and breathe for you. And I won't stop until I'm as good at it as I am at throwing knives."

Chuck's grin couldn't have been any bigger.

"Or," said Sarah with an equally big grin. "You have a heart attack from all the practice."

- - - -

"Casey, secure."

Yes ma'am. I just wanted to report that my mission was a success."

"Yes ma'am. I just dropped them off at Walker's place."

"Yes ma'am. I'm very sure."

"Thank you ma'am. I'm happy too."

"Yes ma'am. They're very good together."

"I don't know ma'am. Walker said something about being unavailable for a couple of days."

"I'm not sure ma'am. She said something about practice."

- - - -