Title: "Close Your Eyes and Think of England"
Fandom: Veronica Mars/Casino Royale 2006
Rating/Classification: Veronica/James, crack!fic, humor, adult language, some porn.
Disclaimer: I really don't know what Rob Thomas and Ian Fleming would have to say about this. Please don't kill me.
Summary: 3075 words worth of complete insanity. This guy was totally a spy.
Veronica's only experience with Monte Carlo, if you could even count it as an experience, was watching the Herbie movie with her dad and mom when she was eight. The real thing was decidedly less fraught with the cheeky VWs and amiable Dean Joneses and more overloaded with sleazy guys, women in slinky dresses, and luxury cars who wouldn't be caught dead with names as plebian as "Herbie."
But this was Logan's idea of a new and exciting Spring Break adventure, not to mention a great way to spend Aaron's fortune, and she was determined to put on a happy face and stick it out.
Okay, maybe a "trying fervently not to look bored" face. With a dash of, "I really hope this snakeskin Versace thing I'm wearing doesn't fall off."
The dress was red and short and emphasized what little cleavage she had. "If they're staring at my girl, they're not staring at my cards," Logan had pointed out. As if that wasn’t the biggest gambling cliché *ever*. But he'd been right. Almost every straight man in this private salon had tried to hit on her at least once.
And right on cue…
"Bond. James Bond," said the husky blond guy leaning against the bar beside her. As if he expected her to applaud. Or swoon. Or cry, 'take me now, you hot hunk of man, you.'
He was somewhere in his late thirties or early forties. His face looked like someone had punched him one too many times. And his tuxedo fit him like it had been made on his body. Interesting. Very interesting. Especially the inseam. How had he gotten through airport security with that particular weapon of mass destruction? When you looked at that, you forgot his face. "I'm Veronica. Veronica Mars," she replied, copying his tone exactly, down to the smug note of 'you should be impressed.'
"Veronica, you're not marring anything. You're perfect," he growled. And since it was more than three words, she got the full force of a ridiculously sexy British accent. The kind that needed to come with a 'Warning: May cause dizziness' label.
God save her from bored continental playboys. She widened her eyes, pulling out her old stand-by, the bubble headed flirt voice. "So, if I were to return the compliment, would I, like, be making a bondage joke?"
"Why joke? I'm actually quite serous about bondage."
Veronica choked on her white wine spritzer. To his credit, this Bond guy didn't even blink. His eyes were completely sincere, a really stunning shade of blue, and she knew he probably played a killer hand of poker.
He glanced over at the high stakes table where Logan was attempting to do just that and then at the glass in her hand. He still had the poker face going as he gestured, subtly, at the bartender. "Get the lady a real cocktail, would you? Perhaps something in the dry martini family?"
"You're my hero." Veronica just barely kept the desperation out of her voice. Logan had ordered it for her, making some crack about how she could pretend to be upscale all the while turning up her nose at the hoi polloi. Unfortunately, all she'd ended up doing was turning up her nose at her crappy drink. White wine? Really? Had dating her for two years taught him nothing?
The efficient bartender, the kind that was seen and not heard and didn't moonlight as a therapist, made a dirty martini with three olives appear at her elbow. "They must go to the same school that ninjas do," she murmured, picking up the slender glass.
"Actually, they train beside the likes of MI-6 and the CIA."
She was ready for the deadpan one-liner that time and didn't choke. Besides, the martini was way too good to waste snarfing down the front of her dress. What there was of it. The dress, not the martini.
"So, Bond James Bond, why aren't you in the game?"
He smiled just slightly, as if the full deal would be too much for her to handle. "Who says I'm not?"
Oh, this guy was good. A lesser woman would've been toast by now. "Let me guess, you trained with MI-6, too?"
"Nonsense. I'm just a dilettante flirting with a nice American schoolgirl."
It was the complete lack of reaction that gave him away. Or maybe the fact that he called her a 'schoolgirl.' Or maybe the fact that she'd never met a dilettante who looked like him.
He was totally a spy.
One who'd totally underestimated her.
She traded a few more insignificant quips about her date's skill (or lack thereof) at cards -- "If you're here speaking to me, Miss Mars, I daresay he can't hold 'em in Texas or anywhere else" -- and took in the reddish grit beneath his otherwise perfectly manicured nails. Whenever his eyes weren't strategically on her face or ogling her admittedly less-than-ogleable cleavage, she followed his line of sight.
And when he bid her goodnight, thanked her for her charming company, and walked away, she did what any self-respecting girl detective from southern California would do: she slipped off her three inch red leather Franco Sartos and followed him.
She kept a discreet distance, tagging several feet behind him as he made his way through the casino. She gave the appearance of a ditzy ingénue calling up her equally ditzy best friend and trilling about what a "fabulous" time she was having in "Monte Cristo."
Of course, her equally ditzy friend was actually Mac, who was grumpy about time differences and being rudely awakened just so she could hack into a British government mainframe.
"You're lucky I can do this in my sleep," she half-grumbled, half-yawned, as Veronica skirted an exotic potted plant and watched Mr. James Blond head towards a set of fire stairs.
"Chop chop and cheerio, oh brilliant one. I'll lose my signal once I hit the stairwell."
"Alright, I got past the first security clearance and this should tide you over. I'll e-mail you anything else I find. Your hunch was right. He's with MI-6, quaintly referred to as Her Majesty's Secret Service. His name is James Bond. He's half-Scottish, half-Swiss, and he's what they classify as a 'Double O.' 007, to be exact."
"What does that mean?" The door to the stairs closed behind Bond.
"It means he has a license to kill."
"Or butcher Beastie Boys songs at Karaoke." Veronica enjoyed Mac's tired 'ha-ha,' promised to contribute to her next memory upgrade fund, and then found herself sprinting down a set of dimly lit steps.
Okay, to be accurate, she sprinted down about three and then found herself being grabbed by a pair of really powerful arms and hauled against the body they were attached to.
It was times like this that she hated international travel.
They hadn't let her bring her taser.
"The last guy who grabbed me like this wound up floating face down in the Pacific Ocean," she warned, trying to level a kick backwards at a pant-clad leg as whoever had her flattened himself against the railing and tried to keep her from squirming.
No cologne. No identifiers whatsoever except for the basic scent of Guy. And that was enough to flip the switch. Duh, of course…
Mr. License to Kill laughed, quietly, his breath warm against her ear. "I thought Mr. Fitzpatrick's untimely demise had no connection to your families' mutual animosity?"
Oh, how sweet. He'd checked up on her, too.
Bond let her go and she slid down to the next step, turning to scowl up at him. He was haloed in the light from the landing. His sleeves were pushed up and his tuxedo jacket was missing. He looked rumpled, fresh from a fight. He'd managed to do a background check and kick somebody's ass since they'd left the salon? And he looked this good? How could a guy with a face that looked like it had survived all six Rocky sequels be this efficient and this hot?
She kicked him just on the principle of things but only succeeded in bruising her toes. "Ow."
He arched an eyebrow. "Would you like me to kiss them and make it better?"
While she was actually contemplating the offer -- Logan licked a lot of things very well but neither of them had particularly ever been into feet -- she noticed some dark shapes on the flight of stairs above. "Is that some of your work up there?"
"Yes." Again that quarter-smile. Not even a half. Wow, he was a cheapskate. "They expired from ecstasy."
"Ooh, incentive." She rolled her eyes. "Since when is the little death on par with actual death? Is *that* how you got your fancy license to kill?"
He looked entirely nonplussed by her sleuthing skills. In fact, she doubted he ever got plussed at all. "Why don't you run along back to your boyfriend?" he suggested, dryly. "Charge a few more martinis to my room, 518, and forget this lovely tete-a-tete happened."
First 'schoolgirl' and now 'run along'?
She opened her mouth to retort something suitably offended and bitchy but, then, Dark Shape #1 suddenly materialized behind him and it turned into a "Look out!"
Twenty-eight seconds and a snapped neck later, James was grasping her by the elbow and steering her towards the door.
And she really, really missed her taser.
He half-dragged her through three different corridors, speaking rapidly into the comm device in his wristwatch, dropping terms like "Spectre" and "Blofeld" and "pick up point."
And then, when there was a flurry of rapid footsteps behind them, he didn't even bother to glance back…he scooped her up in his arms. "Hey!"
"Hey to you, too," he whispered, right before he fell back against a door, pulled her head down, and kissed her.
Thankfully, she was a quick study. Even with late thirties-early forties, British tongue in her mouth. She wrapped her legs around his hips, leaned forward even more so her hair covered the sides of his face. And since she was there, she kissed him back. For the sake of Queen and country, of course.
His stubble scraped at her cheek. It was going to leave burns that no amount of love for Mother England would explain away. His mouth looked hard but it felt soft and tender and tasted like vermouth and a twist. She couldn't help it. She moaned a little, low in her throat, as Bond's palm closed around her ass, squeezing it through Versace that might as well have fallen off for all the good it was doing her. She retaliated by rubbing her crotch against his hip…only it wasn't his hip. It was that dastardly impressive inseam. As whoever was chasing him kept moving, so did they.
His lips trailed down to her pulse and he circled the delicate skin there with his tongue. She dug her hands into his hair, kissing his jaw and his broken nose and swearing to never again criticize a face with character.
His cock was huge and hard, tenting against the front of his snug dress pants and the hemline of her dress was entirely too short to count as an effective barrier. They were practically having sex in the hallway of a Monte Carlo resort.
No, correction, they were dry humping in the hallway of a Monte Carlo resort.
All in all, it was more comfortable than the back seat of a Nissan XTerra.
"Oh, James," she gasped.
He pulled back just long enough to fix her with a stare that was absolutely, completely plussed. "I'm scheduled to leave for Geneva in one hour. Your escort's game should reach its final hand at that time as well. What do you say, Miss Mars?"
'Take me now, you hot hunk of man, you,' came to mind. But it wasn't a joke he'd get. So she cycled back to one they'd shared. "How serious *are* you about bondage?"
True to his word, James kissed her toes.
And the rest of her, too.
And made it *all* better.
There was no way a rousing chorus of "God Save the Queen" was going to explain this to Logan.
At the moment, Veronica didn't care.
Proving that he was, indeed, quite serious about bondage, James had tied her hands to the bedposts with two silk neckties that probably cost more than her entire wardrobe. "You're frightfully young, aren't you?" he'd observed, rocking back on his heels.
The impolite response would've been, "you're frightfully old." Except that he had a better body than Logan's or Duncan's at 20 years older than them and it wasn't frightful, it was gorgeous. So, she'd said, "Think of my energy levels, Mr. Secret Agent. All those untapped reserves."
He was now industriously tapping them. And she could not stop kissing him. Probably because her hands were out of commission and her lips were the only part of her that she could use to touch all that unstereotypically tan English skin.
Truth be told, she'd been hoping he'd be the one tied up, but she suspected he was going to sleep with her around twice and then pull a vanishing act with all of his superspy gear. He wasn't going to risk missing his ride to Geneva.
Once again, she didn't care.
So she whispered, "More," and hooked her legs around his and got exactly that.
He called her "darling," and "sweetheart," and said all the right things as he slid inside her. She'd read somewhere, probably in the Sensuous Woman or something that it was all about girth, not length. James Bond had both in spades. And holy fuck but was she all about it.
He was so big and so, "oh my God, oh God, yes," that she was surprised he didn't have his name scrawled in every women's bathroom between here and Marrakesh. Hell, she hadn't actually checked, so maybe there actually was a whole slew of "For a good time, call 007" graffiti all across the planet.
It actually almost hurt. Now she finally understood what John Mellencamp had been singing about all those years. And she was going to have a hard time going back to Logan and not asking, "is it in yet?"
"Did they…train you…for this…too?" she panted in time to his thrusts.
James looked down at her, smug and cool and smiling. Actually smiling. All the way. 100 watt. "Nonsense," he chided, leisurely stroking the side of her face with his fingertips. "I'm a dilettante."
It took a good ten minutes to get circulation back in her wrists. Fortunately, James was enough of a gentleman to rub them for her, vigorously, and then help her back into her dress. Her strapless bra and panties were pretty much a total wash. Oops.
"I have to say, this evening's been very educational," she told him, hoping that someone downstairs had managed to send her high heels to the lost and found. "With me being a nice American schoolgirl and all..."
James stopped buttoning his cuffs long enough to drawl, "Really?" What *was* it about Englishmen and words like 'Really'? Not only did they add a zillion extra syllables in it, but they managed to load it with innuendo and snobbery to boot.
She ticked the points off on her fingers as she headed for the door. "I learned I like my martinis dirty, how to snap a neck, and that 19 isn't actually a man's sexual peak."
"Hmm." Bond quirked his eyebrows with amusement, picking up the jacket that was apparently the only superspy gear he needed. "How shall you ever go back to your mundane life of catching murderers and poking your pretty little nose where it doesn't belong?"
She grinned, glancing down at his...inseam. "I guess I'll close my eyes and think of England."
Veronica adjusted the pillow beneath her as she hunched over her laptop. Sure enough, Mac had sent her several encrypted files on the mysterious James Bond, going back decades. In fact, there was a D.O.B. of 1920, which made absolutely no sense whatsoever. The man who had walked her to the elevators and kissed her hand (actually, he'd kissed each finger, one by one) was most definitely not pushing ninety.
Maybe it was just a name, another code or classification. Like the Dread Pirate Roberts. Maybe the real James Bond had been retired fifteen years and was living like a king in Patagonia.
"What did you do, get that out of his Wiki entry?" she typed in the pop-up window of her chat software.
"Don't mock the hacker unless you want a Trojan," Mac warned.
"Had them, actually. A whole box."
Mac typed back '8o,' which Veronica took to be an expression of shock. God, she hated emoticons. "What about Logan?"
What about Logan? He'd actually signed on for another high stakes game, according to the text messages he'd left on her Sidekick. He missed her, he wondered where she was, hoped it was sleuthful, etc. Kiss kiss. Had they been back in Neptune, she would've gone down and dumped a white wine spritzer on his head. However, this was Monte Carlo, no Gamblers Anonymous meetings in sight, and she'd just had the most athletic sex of her life with a man whose weapon of choice was a Walther PPK.
She couldn't judge. She wasn't going to be able to sit down without padding for at least a week.
"Mac?" she typed, letting her friend hang for a few minutes as she chuckled. "Let's just say that Mr. Bond is a 'Double O' for a very good reason."
"Do wipe that self-satisfied smirk off your face, Bond. Have you forgotten that you were nearly caught by SPECTRE?"
"Of course not. That would be unprofessional." He eyed M across the desk, enjoying the pinched look on her face that seemed to be on reserve solely for him. "Does it help it all that I was able to secure Al-Hussam's flash drive?"
"You know it does." M pinched even more. Perhaps her shoes were too tight? Actually, this was M...doubtless *everything* was too tight. "But it was a near thing. Too near. So why are you so bloody amused?"
James leaned back, closed his eyes and contemplated the beautiful blond warmth of southern California.
"Let's just say that England has now put a man on Mars."
November 20, 2006
Brace Yourself, Bridget