License to Steele – 12

Laura excuses herself from Cut-Rate-Con-Man’s embrace (WHY?) and goes to join an agitated Murphy and Bernice. I think we can assume Bernice is rattled by her unfortunate choice of evening wear (pretty sure she’ll need to see her chiropractor after carrying around that ginormous bow all night). But Murphy is upset about something else:


“Laura, that guy’s a fake!” Murphy declares triumphantly, pointing his symbolic “rod” toward his enemy. Oh, Murphy. That’s not a symbolic rod.


THAT’S a symbolic rod!


Murphy points out that he warned Laura about that guy!

She knows! She knows!


Bernice (and her ginormous bow) give Laura the skinny on the dead courier: He’s Otto Denmer, born in Johannesburg, age 63 or 64. My! His older brother, Cut-Rate-Con-Man, is remarkably well preserved!


Meanwhile, Well-Preserved-Cut-Rate-Conman is kibitzing with the guests and media.

But wait! What’s up with that guy in the foreground. Who would wear a godawful shirt like that? Only one person I can think of …



Laura and Murph leave Bernice (and her ginormous bow) to keep an eye on Well-Preserved-Cut-Rate-Con-Man. They dash off to his hotel room (What hotel? How did they know where he was staying?) to check the guy out.


“He certainly gets around,” Laura notes, perusing his collection of passports:

Douglas Quintain passport

“Douglas Quintaine, England;

Michael oLeary passport

Michael O’Leary, Ireland;

Paul Fabrini Passport

Paul Fabrini, Italy;

John Morrell Passport

John Morrell, France;

Richard Blaine passport

Richard Blaine, Australia.”

Hey! There’s something fishy about those passports. Murphy has it figured out:


“Each of those names is from a character Humphrey Bogart played in the movies.”

Well, at least they know one thing: He likes Humphrey Bogart. Laura decides to search the room more thoroughly.


Hm. Nothing in the bathroom. How about the closet?




Looks like she found something!


A startled Laura flies into Murphy’s strong, waiting arms! (Don’t get used to it, Murph. I’m pretty sure this is the only time she’ll ever fly into your strong, waiting arms.)


Murphy hurries to call the police, but Laura objects. Murph objects to her objection!


“Laura, the guy’s dangerous!”

But Laura is determined that the agency is going to bring Douglas-Quintain-Michael-O’Leary-Paul-Fabrini-John-Morrell-Richard-Blaine in! It’s the only way they can come out even on this fiasco! Besides …


“He’s made the whole thing very personal!”

She’s sure he won’t leave until he’s had a shot at the gems. Murphy is concerned:


“Laura? I hope it’s only the agency you’re trying to protect.”


“It’s the only thing I’m interested in, Murphy,” she lies protests.

I’ll leave it there. It looks rather bad for our Humphrey Bogart impersonator, doesn’t it? Is Laura REALLY only interested in seeing justice done? Did our Cut-Rate-Con-Man kill the helpful South African agent? And will Murphy be pointing his pretend rod at anyone else tonight? Stay tuned! (And add your thoughts!)


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4 responses to “License to Steele – 12

  1. eaz35173

    Cut-Rate-Bond-Man! LOL!! Love the passport pix! I don’t think Laura is interested in justice so much as protecting her agency. I think the line about it being personal is meant in 2 ways. He’s obviously aroused HER curiosity, but now the reputation of the agency and the reputation of Mr. Steele are on the line. And Laura’s worked too hard to see this go down the drain.

  2. Dapg

    I can’t help but feel that if Laura had called police right then, her agency may have been able to weather the storm that would have followed. Of course she still would have had to produce RS in the flesh. Yes she was thinking of agency but I think she wanted Cut Rate Con Man more. Maybe I’m being overly romantic but her motive had only a little to do with the agency. Everything that happened so far could have been explained away as a trap to catch a thief. She was a goner ever since he came to her office / she hurriedly put on her shoes. She’s no fool.

    Wow. Love the passports. I’m enjoying your blog so much. Thank you.

  3. So glad you’re enjoying the blog – I am, too! I do think Laura is worried about the agency’s reputation (remember, her comments at the beginning of the episode suggest the business is on shaky ground). But I also agree that part of the “personal” aspect is she found herself drawn to the man – liked him, trusted him. In part she’s surely feeling stupid for having been hoodwinked (I’m sure she considers herself an excellent judge of character with infallible instincts), with just a glimmer of hope that if they don’t involve the cops right away, this guy could still prove himself to be something other than the “cut-rate-conman” she labeled him.

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