While Chuck was having his flash, Wendy had pulled a mostly square weapon from her satchel. From the way she was holding it, Chuck was guessing it was some sort of a gun. Probably an energy gun, based on its non-traditional design. And the blinking battery life indicator.

"All right, Chuck, in a few moments, we're going to have some company. Don't freak out, but things could get a little dicey," Wendy informed him.

"Casey! I think we're going to have trouble!" Chuck hissed into his watch.

"Finally, you answer! I've been able to hear you yapping but not that harpy with you. What's going on? This shindig hasn't even started and only a handful of you geeks are even in here!" came the angry voice in Chuck's ear. "And what's that thing she's holding?"

"Nerds, Casey. How many times do I have to tell you, we're Nerds. You know, from the Nerd Herd? Anyway, I have a feeling things are about to get messy!" Chuck shot back.

"A feeling? I need more than a feeling, Bartowski!" John Casey answered.

Chuck lowered his voice. "I just flashed, and the girl next to me is a member of some sort of intergalactic peacekeeping organization. And she's just pulled some kind of a ray gun, so you might want to be ready for trouble."

"Son of a gun! Only you, Bartowski, only you," Casey grumbled.

Wendy's jaw dropped at Chuck's comment. She was about to demand an explanation of how he knew who she was, but before she could, her attention was attracted to the opening of one of the doors. A moment later, a non-descript man stepped in. He scanned the front of the room and immediately hurried towards one of the closest tables.

"That's our intergalactic terrorist, a Snoodian shape-shifter called Mr. Mustache," Wendy declared. "I'm going to go take care of him."

"Wait!" Chuck cried as he grabbed her arm.


"Let's see who he's going to talk to first," he said.

A moment later, the man stopped. Chuck got a look at the profile of his contact and had another flash. "That guy he's talking to is Slovakian assassin named Floyd the Barber. We need to get them both."

"I've got the Slavic slimebag," Casey said gruffly as he chambered a round in his pistol, surprising Chuck, who hadn't noticed Casey's approach.

"The alien's mine," Wendy declared as she shrugged off Chuck's hand and started to stalk towards her target. Casey followed in her wake.

"Stay at the table, Chuck," they both turned and ordered at the same time.

The capture was almost a non-event, as far as Chuck was concerned. Casey and Wendy were able to sneak up behind each of their targets. With weapons in the smalls of their backs, the men left the room peacefully. Not more than a minute later, the pair of captors returned.

"That was quick," Chuck commented as they approached his seat.

"My boss has them subdued, restrained, and ready for transport," Wendy replied. "I'll be heading out with him in a few minutes. Before I go, though, how did you know about me?"

"That's classified," Casey responded before Chuck could say anything.

"Oh, you want to play it that way?" Wendy challenged as she raised her eyebrows. "Fine. But I will find out sooner or later."

Wendy's cell phone beeped. She pulled it out and looked at the text message she'd received. Her eyes went wide.

"Sooner it is," Wendy added. "Well, I have to go, but I hope we can work together again soon some time. Mr. Intersect, give my regards to Agent Walker."

Both Chuck and Casey's mouths fell open.

"Oh, and Major Casey? I'd suggest getting Chuck some training with Sensei Ping of the Clan of the Pointed Stick, for all of your sakes."

"Wait just a minute!" Casey balked as Wendy grabbed her bag and started to walk away. "This is a matter of national secur- OOF!"

Before Casey could finish his objection, he found himself flat on his back with his wind knocked out.

"Casey? Did you just get taken down by a girl half your age and like a third of your size?" Chuck asked with a mixture of disbelief and glee.

"Don't worry, Agent Casey. Chuck's secret is safe with the Middle organization. Trust me, we see weirder things on a daily basis than a guy with a government supercomputer full of secrets in his head," Wendy said, addressing the man she had just felled.

She turned to Chuck with an amused smile on her face. "Nice meeting you, Chuck. I look forward to working with you again. If you and your team ever uncover any threats infra-, extra- or juxta-terrestrial, feel free to contact me at this number."

Wendy handed Chuck a business card from the Jolly Fats Wehawkin Employment Agency. She shook his hand again. Casting another amused look at Casey, who was still struggling to regain his breath, she headed out the door.

Chuck couldn't help but chuckle. "Boy, I can't wait to tell Sarah about this!"

Published 01-05-10