So, I finally got around to watching Season 5. The S4 finale left my head kind of cold, so I wasn't exactly proactive in following the show's last season when it first aired. And while it definitely had it's share of problems (the villain is Decker! No, wait, it's Shaw! No, wait let's introduce a whole new guy in the 3rd to last episode!) I still enjoyed watching it. And for a guy who originally loved the show for the way Chuck and Sarah kind of nervously danced around the issue of their attraction to each other, the way the show ended was an interesting return to that chemistry.
So, here's what I imagine would have happened right after they faded to black:
The kiss finally ended.
Chuck and Sarah separated slightly, and then finally looked into each other's eyes. Chuck looked at Sarah hopefully.
Sarah smiled sadly. "Nothing. I'm sorry."
Try as he might, Chuck wasn't able to keep the disappointment off of his face. He nodded and looked to the sand. Sarah touched his shoulder.
"It was a nice kiss, though."
"Yeah?" Chuck asked, looking back at her, a bit cheerier.
"Very nice," Sarah replied. "I definitely wouldn't be against doing it again. Soon."
The two smiled at each other for a long moment. Finally Chuck broke the silence. "How'd you get here, anyway?"
"Took a cab."
"Can I give you a ride?"
Sarah nodded, and after Chuck stood she took his offered hand. They walked in silence back to the Herder and got in. As Chuck started off back towards Sarah's hotel, a familiar song came on the radio.
One hand on this wily comet,
Take a drink just to give me some weight,
Some uber-man I'd make,
I'm barely a vapor
Chuck smiled as he recognized the song. It had been going through his head that morning on the beach years ago, when Sarah has first told him to trust her. And now here it was again, revisiting him at another crucial moment. It had to be some kind of sign.
Sarah leaned down and peered at the radio. "You mind if I change this?"
Chuck vs The Radio
"You know, this is a long-standing point of contention between typical couples," Chuck said, glancing over as Sarah deciphered the controls to the Herder's radio.
"Really," Sarah said, finding the tuner control and searching for the next station. "Deciding who controls the radio?"
"Kind of a sacred thing to some people," Chuck responded. "Usually the driver controls the radio. That tends to be the rule. At least, among typical couples."
"And was it with us?" Sarah asked as she found a station.
"No," Chuck answered, his voice a little lower. "It wasn't the rule with us."
The reedy melody sounded through the speakers, and after a moment Chuck recognized the song.
Do anything to make you smile
It is a better part of you to admire
But they should never take so long
Just to be over then back to another one
And no one's ever gonna love you like-
"Ugh," Sarah said, spinning the dial.
"Not for you?"
"Yeah, I dunno," she replied, focusing on the tuner. "Pretty but not a whole lot of substance."
Chuck crooked an eyebrow at that. "That was awfully definitive for twelve seconds of exposure."
Sarah shrugged. "Just a feeling."
"Right," Chuck said, eying her suspiciously before turning back to the road. A moment later Sarah found another song:
I see signs now all the time
That you're not dead, you're sleeping
I believe in anything
That brings you back home to—
"Phhhlbt." Sarah twisted the dial again.
"Well, that one was kind of weird. It seemed like the kind of song I should like, but for some reason I just didn't."
Chuck smirked. "Happens sometimes."
-I swear I'm so confused
The signs you wear are making me
Feel like I'm the one to lose
But the canyons and the seas
Are they just what you need
Or are they less than what
You'd expect to see
Sarah growled and turned the dial with a bit more force than necessary.
"Wow. You must have really hated that song."
"I can't really explain it," she said, a scowl still on her face. "It just kind of grated at me. Is it possible to be evil and boring?"
"Absolutely," Chuck replied. He looked over again at Sarah, brow furrowed, concentrating on the radio. His Sarah was in there. He knew she was. And it didn't matter how long it took – if she was willing to let him, he'd find her. He knew he would. They just needed that one thing, that starting point. Once they had that, he knew they'd be all right.
Sarah settled on a station, and immediately Chuck felt a jolt.
Dragonfly out in the sun you know what I mean, don't you know
Butterflies all havin' fun you know what I mean
Sleep in peace when day is done that's what I mean
Sarah listened for a moment, then finally leaned back in her seat and closed her eyes. Chuck glanced over at her face nervously, taking in as much of her serene expression as he could before looking back at the road.
And this old world is a new world
And a bold world
Chuck looked over just as a tiny smile broke out on Sarah's face. He fought to keep the grin off his own face, knowing Sarah would be able to hear it in his voice.
"You like that one?"
"I do," Sarah said, turning her head lazily over and looking directly at Chuck for the first time since they'd gotten in the car. "I really do."
Chuck's grin finally won out, spreading across his face. "Well," he said. "I'm glad to hear that."
Stars when you shine you know how I feel
Scent of the pine you know how I feel
Oh freedom is mine
And I know how I feel
"What are you smiling at?" Sarah asked, her own smile widening.
Chuck shrugged. "Nothing," he said. "Just a good song, right?"
Sarah nodded. "It really is."
Chuck nodded with her. "Well," he said. "Sometimes that's all you need."
They drove off into the morning sun.
It's a new dawn
It's a new day
It's a new life
And I'm feeling good…
For those who care, here's the reasoning behind the song choices:
The first song is "A Comet Appears" by the Shins. It played during the beach scene at the end of the Pilot episode.
The second song is, of course, "No One's Gonna Love You" by Band of Horses, which seemed to be the Bryce and Sarah theme during "Chuck vs the Nemesis."
The third song is "Signs" by Bloc Party, which played at the end of "Chuck vs the Lethal Weapon."
The fourth song was a little bit forced. It's Matt Costa's "Astair," and it played during "Chuck vs the Mask," which is the episode where Sarah and Shaw start dating. They don't really have a signature song, so I went with that.
And if I have to tell you what the final song is, then I have failed you as a storyteller.
Okay, shameless plug time. In the next few days, a story is going to pop up on the site by "Doc and Nick" entitled "Chuck vs the Lockdown." It's a collaboration between myself and the mighty Doc in Oz. John is largely the reason I started writing for Chuck again after a long absence, so I pestered him to do a story with me where we trade off on chapters. "Lockdown" is the result of that. If you've read any of John's stories you already know that he's one of the best at combining humor with action and drama, so you won't be disappointed – with the odd numbered chapters, at least.
Thanks to all for reading.