"Visiting Carmichael Industries"
Disclaimer: Better be thorough. I do not own: "The Cape," "Chuck," "Ark Corporation," "Orwell is Watching," "Carmichael Industries," or "Anarchy."
"Greta?" Chuck asked his potential client. Carmichael Industries, the company he and his wife Sarah had founded with the money from the Winterbottoms' wedding present, had been reborn. No longer was the company the Bartowskis' excuse to continue working as spies without being under the thumb of the government. The only form of espionage the firm dealt in these days was electronic. Right now, Chuck Bartowski would swear that the woman in front of him had been a Greta.
Not that he thought she looked like the name Greta would fit her. To Chuck, this had a certain significance. Back in the days when he had been a spy for the C.I.A. and the N.S.A., the government had assigned a number of female agents to work with his team—agents that would reuse the same code name, Greta.
He supposed a lack of creativity on the agencies' part was just another reason he was glad to be rid of that life. Was this Greta here now to try to drag him back in?
"I think you have me confused with someone else, Mr. Carmichael. My name is Julia Greenwood. Orwell is Watching sent me… Are you alright, Mr. Carmichael?"
The reason Chuck Bartowski, computer nerd and proud of it, had once been a secret agent was because of the computer in his head. The Intersect, designed by his father, Stephen, was a database of top secret government info. (Or it was in its simplest form. The updated version Chuck now possessed had extra features.) Certain stimuli would trigger Chuck to "flash" and see a series of encrypted images that would unlock information for the young man.
In this case, the stimulus was the name "Orwell is Watching." Chuck hadn't heard of it before, but he suddenly knew that Orwell's blog was devoted to publishing exposés against Peter Fleming; his corporation, ARK and the super villain Chess that had plagued Orwell's home, Palm City before being unmasked as Vince Faraday. No one knew Orwell's true identity or at least, no one in the government did. And there was something else… Orwell had known ties to a cyber-terrorist named Anarchy and was himself suspected of possible involvement in cyber terrorism.
When you knew what to look for, you could always tell when Chuck flashed. His eyes would roll back and his lids would flutter, almost as though he were having some sort of seizure. Chuck recovered himself quickly.
"I'm fine. And you can call me Chuck. You say that Orwell sent you, Miss…?"
"Julia," Orwell repeated, just catching herself before she could contradict her statement. She never gave her real name to anyone anymore and it was sometimes hard for her to keep track of her different covers.
Even her partner in fighting crime, Vince Faraday, didn't know her true identity. How could she admit to him that she was secretly the daughter of the one man he loathed most in this world?
"Right, Julia. Sorry, you just really look like someone I used to work with. What brings you to Carmichael Industries?"
"Well, first, you have to understand that it's difficult for Orwell to admit that he needs help," she said. The public had assumed that the infamous blogger was male and she encouraged the misconception, as she felt it could only cement her anonymity.
"Orwell is a master of technology, an artist if you will," she continued.
"You didn't come here just to recommend him for a job, did you?"
"No." Orwell was not blushing because Flemings did not blush. "I'm just trying to emphasize that it was a big step for Orwell to seek help from another computer expert."
"Duly noted," Chuck said before falling silent and waiting for the visitor to proceed.
"For some time now, Orwell has been unable to hack into ARK Corporation's computers. I've been sent to hire you to get the job done."
"I see," Chuck exhaled slowly.
"Will you do it?"
A buzzer sounded. Chuck picked up his office phone.
"Chuck, you've got another potential customer here to see you," Morgan Grimes informed his best friend.
"Can it wait?"
"Well, he does have an appointment."
"Who is it?" Chuck asked.
"It's Peter Fleming," Morgan replied. Speak of the devil. Peter Fleming, the CEO of the corporation he was now being asked to virtually break into, was also interested in retaining his services.
Why did the words 'conflict of interest' come to mind?
"Thanks, Morgan. Have him wait for me in the conference room. I'll be right with him." Chuck turned back to Julia.
"I'm afraid I'll have to get back to you on that."
"You need to discuss it with your business partners?" Jamie Fleming, Peter's daughter asked.
"Something like that," Chuck replied. "Why don't you leave me a number so I can give you a call and let you know the decision—?"
"I'd prefer to wait here."
"I'd rather wait for your decision."
"But I have to meet another potential client. And talk with my colleagues—"
"I don't have anything pressing to do at the moment. If you're going to blow me off, I'd like you to do it to my face."
"…Alright then, go back out and see Morgan and he'll show you where you can wait, okay?" There was no way in hell he was going to leave a possible cyber-terrorist in his office unsupervised.
"Fine," Jamie replied, rising from her chair.
Shaking his head, Chuck braced himself to hear Peter Fleming's story.
It was just his luck that the billionaire had come to ask him to track down the elusive blogger, Orwell.
He really wished Sarah was working today. He'd need her help to decide which client to take.
Author's Note: "Anarchy" is IronAmerica's Original Character. Hopefully IA won't mind me borrowing him like that.
And hopefully IronAmerica will forgive me for writing a Cape/Chuck crossover that does not involve either of Vinnie Jones' characters. The truth is that I barely remember Vinnie Jones' character from Chuck. (He only guest-starred on Chuck once! What do you want from me?) Further, I can't really remember Summer Glau playing one of the Gretas, but I dared not ignore that fact. I already feel guilty enough as it is for forgetting Summer Glau's appearance on "The Big Bang Theory" when I wrote "The Anniversary Present Hypothesis."
Anyway, this is probably a one-shot. I do have three works-in-progress going, after all. But I wanted to make another effort to try to introduce more people to the Cape fandom, and a crossover with Chuck is something that had been discussed, but not yet accomplished.
All I can do now is ask for feedback—positive, negative, whatever. I didn't use a beta for this, so everything's pretty much fair game. Also, feel free to ask any questions the fic may have raised. Hey, look at that. There's a review box right over there…