Notes: I don't do song fiction, I don't do song fiction, I don't do song fiction. . . . But then I heard this on the radio today and the story came into my head and would not leave.
Setting: Post season four (but not much)
Disclaimer: Wonderful Tonight is copyrighted to Eric Clapton. Scarecrow and Mrs. King belongs to Warner Brothers and Shoot the Moon Productions. The intertwining of the song and our favorite couple is mine. Please do not distribute without permission.
it's late in the evening
"Lee, are you sure you want to go?" Amanda asked from the bathroom.
"Yeah, I'm sure." Lee peeked into the bathroom and admired his wife as she smoothed lotion on her legs. "But you'd better get dressed or I'm going to get distracted awfully quickly."
Amanda smiled at him. "Shoo, then. Get out and let me finish."
Lee smiled and walked into the living room. He took a sip of wine from the glass he hadn't finished during dinner, and thought of his wife. She was surprised that he wanted to go to Francine's tonight, and he realized that he had in fact surprised himself in wanting to go. It was to be a small gathering, and Lee was looking forward to just being with Amanda and a few friends. The secrecy was getting old. He'd look at her in a crowd and want to shout out "Hey, that gorgeous lady over there married me! ME!"
she's wondering what clothes to wear
"Amanda," Lee went back to the bedroom, "aren't you done yet?"
"No," she replied. "I don't know what to wear." She turned to look at him, a vision in white lace.
"Well, you'd better put on something more than that, or we'll both be in trouble," Lee teased. "How about the red sun dress?"
She took the dress from the closet, inspected it briefly and pulled it on over her head. "Can you zip me up?" Amanda felt her husband's hands caressing her as he slowly pulled the zipper up. She laughed softly as he kissed her neck. "I'm almost ready. Five minutes." At the expression on his face she laughed again. "Honest."
she puts on her make up
and brushes her long blond hair
Lee watched her as she went back into the bathroom and grabbed her lipstick and her hairbrush. Amanda returned to what had been his desk, and was now a vanity, and applied a bit of red to her mouth. She then brushed out her damp hair and clipped the sides back. Giving it a final fluff, she turned to her husband.
and then she asked me
do i look alright
"Is this okay? I can never tell with Francine."
Lee smiled. "I think it's pretty casual. Just another hot summer night in D.C."
and i say yes
you look wonderful tonight
Amanda turned to watch her husband. He sat on the bed, staring off into space with a small smile on his handsome face. His usual jacket, shirt and tie had been discarded in favor of a more casual short sleeve polo shirt. In deference to the summer heat, his usual dress shoes and socks had been replaced with bare feet and boat shoes. 'Lee Stetson, husband. No, correct that,' she said to herself, 'Lee Stetson, most handsome husband in the world.'
Lee caught her look, stood up and walked over to her. He took both of her hands into his and smiled. "I love you, Mrs. Stetson," he told her softly. "You look wonderful."
Amanda smiled at the compliment. She knew he was trying to relax her; she was ill at ease at the prospect of the party tonight. She knew that it was going to change everything; Lee's decision to have them go together was a public declaration of their relationship. She knew he was tired of their secret and so was she. She knew that it would, in fact, be fine. Still, there was a small flutter in her stomach.
Lee removed his hands from hers and put them on her shoulders. She smiled at him. He moved his hands to her neck, and pulled out the long thin chain on which hung her engagement ring. Slowly, he passed the chain through his fingers until they came to the clasp. He opened the clasp, and removed the ring from the chain.
"Your ring," he said softly as he put it onto the third finger of her left hand.
"Lee?" This they hadn't discussed. No, this public declaration surprised and scared Amanda. She looked into her husband's eyes and was comforted by what she found in them. "Are you sure?"
"You keep asking me that," he laughed gently. "I was sure when I put it on your finger last fall. I was sure when we said 'I do' in February. I'm sure now. It's time, Amanda." He stroked her face gently with his hand. "Besides, it will be fun to see if anyone in a room of spies notices it."
Amanda sighed in relief to realize that Lee wasn't planning any big announcement. She held his hand to her face. "Okay," she whispered. "I love you."
He kissed her softly, and led her to the door.
we'd go to a party
Lee knocked on the door to Francine's apartment with his left hand; his right hand firmly on Amanda's waist. She held her hands together, self-consciously hiding her left hand. The door was soon opened by Francine.
"Lee, Amanda," Francine raised an eyebrow at the hand that had not moved from Amanda's waist but did not comment. "Come in. There are a few people in the living room. Jeannie is mixing drinks on the patio."
Amanda shot Lee a worried look. "You didn't say Mr. Melrose would be here," she whispered, worried. He smiled in reply and led her into the room. Now was not the time to tell her that he had made sure Francine got both Billy and Jeannie to attend. He hoped that there was enough gourmet chocolate to be found tomorrow to repay the debt.
and everyone turns to see
this beautiful lady is walking around with me
"Lee, Amanda," Billy Melrose greeted the pair. "Nice to see you tonight." He smiled as he too noticed Lee's hand on Amanda's waist.
"We didn't know you were coming, Billy," Lee told him, a slight stretching of the truth. "It's good to see you not in a suit and tie."
"We don't get the chance too often," Billy answered. "Jeannie was looking forward to it." He turned to Amanda. "Why don't you go out and say hi to her? I know she's been looking forward to seeing you. It's been a while."
Amanda turned to go to the patio, only to discover Lee was still with her, his hand still on her waist. "Oh no," he whispered with a smile, "you're not getting rid of me that easily." They walked to the patio, stopping briefly to speak with friends and coworkers: Beaman and Leatherneck among them. Neither noticed Francine's expression as she caught a glimpse of Amanda's hand, nor the whispered comment made to Billy seconds later.
and then she asked me do you feel alright
After several minutes, Lee and Amanda had finally reached the patio doorway. Engrossed in small talk on their way across the room, neither had noticed that Billy had proceeded them outside and that Francine was behind them with glasses on a tray.
As they exited the apartment for the patio, Amanda noticed Billy whispering to his wife and backing away. He caught her eye, and smiled broadly. As Billy passed by Lee, he gave his friend a broad wink.
"Oh no," moaned Amanda, "it's started."
"Amanda," Lee sighed, drawing out her name.
"Are you okay? I'm okay with this if you are," Amanda felt herself beginning to ramble. She always did when she was nervous. "It's just that. . . ." Any further comments were cut short by the kiss placed upon her lips by her laughing husband.
and i say yes
i feel wonderful tonight
"Um, Lee," Francine tapped his upper arm gently, as she balanced a tray of champagne glasses.
"Yes?" Lee separated from Amanda to smile at his coworker and friend.
"You're lucky I had some good stuff put away." She held the tray out to them, and nodded to acknowledge the question in their eyes. "Congratulations."
Surprised at the simple and sincere comment, Lee was still trying to find his voice when Billy joined the small group.
"Congratulations to both of you," he said softly. He leaned over and gave Amanda a kiss on the cheek. She felt tears burning in her eyes and blinked quickly to keep them from falling.
Lee handed one of the glasses of champagne to Amanda. "To my partner," he said to her, "I love you."
i feel wonderful
because i see the love right in your eyes
and the wonder of it all
is that you don't realize
how much i love you
Amanda was speechless. This was not the Lee Stetson of almost five years ago. It was not even the same Lee Stetson of one year ago. This man, this wonderful man, was her husband. She smiled at him and shook her head bemused. They had been at the party not quite an hour, and it seemed like a dream. She knew that if it was, she didn't want to wake up.
Lee was watching her eyes, trying to read her thoughts. He knew he had surprised her tonight. He was pretty sure that it was a good surprise. Lee knew that they hadn't been fooling many people lately. Gossip had died down slightly at the office during the late spring while the two of them worked apart. But Lee also knew it was picking back up now that Amanda was fully recovered from her injuries and he was recovered from both the scare of almost losing her and his attempts at keeping her at her desk. If Amanda had been tired of keeping secrets, Lee was even more so. He hated going home alone, not being a daily part of the life of their family. He needed her: more than his job or his coworkers, he needed his wife.
Slowly the pair once again made the rounds of the small gathering. Quiet congratulations were offered; comments on Leatherneck winning the office pool were made, and Lee found his glass constantly being refilled. All through it, he held tightly to either Amanda's hand or her waist as if afraid that breaking contact with her would somehow break the magic of the night. All through it she watched Lee with a slight smile on her face, politely declining any more to drink and graciously accepting the well wishes of her colleagues and friends.
it's time to go home now
"It's getting late, Lee," Amanda whispered. Lee looked at his watch and nodded in agreement. He didn't want to keep her out all night, not when they were able to take advantage of the boys being at Joe's for the weekend. He wanted to go home, to their apartment, with his wife.
and i've got an aching head
As they said their good-byes, Lee rubbed his eyes.
"Tired, Scarecrow?" Billy asked.
"Just a little too much bubbly tonight, Billy."
Billy laughed. "I'm glad we came. Francine told me how you bribed her to get us here. I think given the reason, I'll have the chocolate on her desk in the morning."
"Thanks. I owe you," Lee told his boss and his friend.
"No, you don't. Not this time." Billy clasped Lee's arm as he shook his hand. "I would not have missed this for the world. Jeannie has been listening to me speculate about the two of you for almost a year now. I'm sure she'll be happy to hear the end of that."
"You need to find a new topic for the rumor mill," Lee told him.
Francine approached the trio by the door. "Good night Lee, good night Amanda." She was unsure what more she should say. She knew Lee had been planning something tonight, but THIS had taken her by surprise. She felt that she should be upset at having been usurped at her own party, but she found that she was not. Surprisingly, she found that she was happy for her friends. Francine had to also admit that Lee and Amanda had broken the news with class. They presented themselves to their friends as they were (or so she thought), and their friends graciously accepted them. No big announcements or loud celebrations were needed.
so i give her the car keys
"Amanda?" Lee turned to face her.
"Can you drive?"
"Yes," she laughed. "I barely had one glass." She took the keys that he offered and turned to Francine who was still standing silently by them.
"Thank you for all of this." Amanda gestured back to the room where most of the guests were still gathered. "He surprised me. . . . I wouldn't have wanted to upstage you."
"He surprised me, too," Francine admitted, "but in a different way. Tonight was good. I don't think I've had a party in a long time that left so many people feeling so happy."
Amanda smiled at the sincerity of the blond woman. Impulsively, she gave her a small hug.
and she helps me to bed
"Lee? Wake up," Amanda shook her husband gently as she removed the key from the ignition.
"Are we there yet?"
"We're home. Time to get out of the car, sleepyhead." Amanda smiled as she watched him struggle to open his eyes. "Oh, all right, I'll help you," she grumbled without any sincerity.
Lee opened his car door and took the hand that offered itself to him. Arms around his wife, he made his way into his building. "I really didn't mean to fall asleep on the drive back," he said sheepishly.
"That's okay," she told him as she opened the door to the apartment. "We have all weekend. Let's get you to bed."
He squinted as she turned on the bedroom light. She helped him remove his shirt and shoes and she pushed him to the bathroom. When Lee finished, she entered and he walked over to lie down.
and then I tell her
"Oh my gosh," Lee said using his wife's favorite phrase. Amanda exited the bathroom, a vision in white bathed in the dim light of the bedroom.
"I know it's your favorite," she teased as she gestured to the gown she wore. "I was hoping it might wake you up a bit."
"It did. Come here," he said softly.
as i turned off the lights
Amanda walked to her husband and joined him on the bed. She gazed into his eyes and was again amazed at the depth of love she saw in them. Amanda realized she was continually amazed at the things Lee did for her. Tonight had stunned her and left her breathless and filled her with more happiness than she would have thought. She caressed his face with her hand, and he reached behind himself to turn off the bedroom light.
i say my darling
you are wonderful tonight
oh my darling
you are wonderful tonight