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03 February 2010 @ 07:05 am
As the sparks fly upward  
Title: As the sparks fly upward
Fandom: Chuck
Author: bookaddict43
Pairing: John Casey/Chuck
Rating: PG-13
Disclaimer: Chuck and all related characters are the property of NBC
Warning: Mentions of character death
Word count: 906
Comment: Thanks to the majorly awesome evilmaniclaugh, who is cheerleader and beta all rolled up in one :) This is a continuation of sorts of All the things that led to us.


You attend the funeral as a workmate should and successfully (you think…until Ellie slips her hand into yours and Awesome clasps your shoulder and doesn’t let go) maintain your façade of indifference.

The wake is even worse than the funeral, and after Grimes’ tenth cutesy story you’re tempted to shoot him and put everyone out of your misery. Awesome puts paid to that by separating you from the crowd and sitting you down next to Ellie; and you both remember Chuck in an oasis of quiet.

Afterwards they ask you to stay; and the temptation to settle and lick your wounds is almost overpowering. But you can’t intrude on their grief, or admit your emotions. So you return to work and go through the motions so well that no-one notices you were ever compromised.

It’s six months later when you hear through the grapevine that they’re looking for another host for the Intersect. All those great minds and they can’t put it back into a machine. They need a human and you know what Chuck would’ve said about that. And you can’t let it happen again, not to anyone. So you stop going through the motions and this time you fight… and take the Intersect down. You’re thorough and vaporize every crumb of Intersect related activity you can find. It won’t be resurrected anytime soon and you smile and spirit Orion away. You’d thought about literally burying him, but can’t do it in the end. The Woodcombe kid needs a grandfather, even if he is mostly an absent one. So you locate the most obscure place you can (hiding him in plain sight), and make sure no-one will ever find him.

The general is vengeful and you’re running… with every agency in the States looking for you. You’ve burnt your bridges in a very Chuck-like blaze and have no notion what to do now. You’ve spent so long working for the government and believing in them, that you’re still invested in loving your country and can’t betray it. But you’re a bred-to-the-bone spy with a degree in Buy More salesmanship and don’t have many career prospects.

Till Walker’s bleeding heart gets tangled up with her asset again and she needs your help. You cut through the bullshit and extract the moron from the governmental tangle they’re mired in; and become a fixture on the agency’s hit list. But you don’t mind. You’ve shown that you’re still capable of both rational thought and action and it gives you ideas.

Over the years that follow, you call in all your markers and resurrect more old covers than anyone was ever aware of, and fall into the wronged hero business. You take on anyone with an ‘I’m an innocent pawn’ story. And although you’re not that far gone you don’t ask for payment; more and more of them get by paying with promises instead of good hard cash. You think it’s ironic that you’ve turned into one of Chuck’s comic book fantasies (one of the darker ones, since you rarely leave anyone alive), but know how much fun he would get out of it. You just hope you make him proud.

It’s been five years now and you wonder why The Powers that think they are haven’t caught you yet. You take a warped kind of pride in the fact that they haven’t. Your skills and training haven’t deserted you. But none of that compensates for the loneliness.
It was never like this before the Intersect assignment. You were self contained and never needed anyone. Now you find yourself missing the fools at the Buy More.

Walker went two years back, you’re not sure how or even when. You just know that she’s luckier than you and hope that maybe, with nothing to interfere between them, she and Larkin eventually get it right. The general finally adding two plus two, realizes that your taking down the Intersect probably had something to do with Chuck, puts a permanent watch on the Woodcombes. You haven’t spoken to them since the funeral. Devon, proving once again he’s not the fool some people think (and a better friend than you deserve), manages to insert his family into the media on occasion. So you assure yourself of their safety and protect them as best you can from a distance.

You tell yourself that you don’t miss Chuck anymore. It’s stupid after all this time. So you don’t think of him more than five times a day, or imagine his incessant talking and goofy smile, or remember his total inability to do as he was told. You try not to focus on the times he was in your bed, and resolutely turn your thoughts away from how good it was. But you’re still human (on a good day anyway) and need some sort of companionship that isn’t your hand. On rare occasions you give in to physical needs, and go looking. After a while you realize you have a type and your lips twist…because the type may be familiar, but none of them will ever be him.

You give the looking up and go back to being the lonely, noble hero. But you’re getting older, and one day someone better than you will come along; and you’ll be gone. You just hope it will be sooner rather than later. Because then you’ll be where you’ve always wanted…and that won’t be a bad thing at all.
Current Mood: curiouscurious
daria234daria234 on February 2nd, 2010 10:58 pm (UTC)
I love this take on Casey. How he tries to be Chuck's hero after he's gone, and also his take on Sarah and Awesome.
bookaddict43: caseythankyoubookaddict43 on February 3rd, 2010 11:50 am (UTC)
Thank you. I think Casey would think differently from others.
untherapy: CHUCK: chaseyuntherapy on February 3rd, 2010 12:42 am (UTC)
wow. I'm seriously tearing up right now! These two fics are absolute beauties.
bookaddict43: caseyarmsbookaddict43 on February 3rd, 2010 11:51 am (UTC)
Sorry for the tears! *hands you a tissue* Glad you liked them :)
ru_salki99: chuck - casey glassesru_salki99 on February 3rd, 2010 03:33 am (UTC)
this brought a little tear to my eye - but in a good way :)

I'll admit, i was a bit weary of reading it because of the character death (we all know how much I hate angst) but this was really beautiful. I can see Casey doing this, needing to make sure that Chuck didn't die for nothing, to continue to protect those less fortunate than him cause that's what Chuck really wanted... see, it's writing like this that got me into this fandom in the first place. I hope you write more, your talents with these two are sorely missed.
bookaddict43: caseyassbookaddict43 on February 3rd, 2010 12:01 pm (UTC)
Glad you read it, despite the wariness! This story surprised me, I never expected another part after the first. But Casey was sad. Hopefully I'll write more :) Also thanks for the comment - I was beginning to wonder about the story.
ru_salki99ru_salki99 on February 3rd, 2010 12:07 pm (UTC)
chuck_slash is full of newbies. They just don't know your stuff, so that's why they won't be running over to read it. Don't worry about it. You're a great writer and this just proves it.
Lizevilmaniclaugh on February 3rd, 2010 10:24 am (UTC)
This is one of the best fics I've read. The emotion is there, festering under the surface, and it's utterly Casey.

So beautifully sad.

bookaddict43: chaseybookaddict43 on February 3rd, 2010 12:04 pm (UTC)
Poor Casey. He keeps his cards too close to the chest.

Thanks honey for the lovely comment! And thanks for the help too. I get all nervous.
virtualbettie: smile caseyvirtualbettie on February 3rd, 2010 11:31 pm (UTC)
Ah, my inner Casey approves of this fic, I think it might be even smiling just not as much as me. Real nice, very touching, was tugging the ol' heart strings.
bookaddict43: caseyarmsbookaddict43 on February 4th, 2010 10:34 pm (UTC)
Glad I tugged the strings! And am really glad that Inner Casey approves :D
little_dumpling: Chuck - Chasey against the Walllittle_dumpling on February 4th, 2010 05:51 pm (UTC)
I never got to read either of these, so this was a great chance for me, as I love reading your writing!

The first one was absolutely heartbreaking, and then you pull this?


This was beautiful! Every time I write something I try for this intense feeling that you captured with such ease that I am jealous, and yet in love with this fic.

What a lovely fic hun!
bookaddict43: pensivecaseybookaddict43 on February 4th, 2010 10:36 pm (UTC)
Awwwwww, thank you! *hugs and hands you a tissue* I could just see Casey trying not to let things affect him, but they still do. I'm happy you were sad! *grins*
t1gerlilyt1gerlily on February 7th, 2010 07:46 pm (UTC)
The purpose-driven life
A death and a resurrection! Interesting that Bryce is still alive in your fic - unless this is a season 2 fic? Personally, I can't believe he's really dead, so I was happy to read that.
I loved the line 'after Grimes’ tenth cutesy story you’re tempted to shoot him and put everyone out of your misery' - you perfectly channeled Casey's wry anger.
The thing I like most is that Casey puts himself back together by finding a purpose. That really jibes with who he is. I mean, the character in canon lives a really lonely life - never mind anyone dying - but sustains himself by his dedication to a larger purpose. I would really love to read a fic where he realizes that his old purpose - serving the gov, has become secondary to his new purpose - chuck. (Wiggles bunny tail hopefully).

Edited at 2010-02-07 07:47 pm (UTC)
virtualbettie: Baldwin's backvirtualbettie on February 8th, 2010 12:08 am (UTC)
Re: The purpose-driven life
I second that motion, don't make me pick up that bunny and shake it at you. Maybe even hold it hostage and have to call in a SWAT team.
(Deleted comment)
bookaddict43: caseythankyoubookaddict43 on February 16th, 2010 08:42 pm (UTC)
So glad you liked it! Though I'm sorry for the tears :)
noctuabunda: EP by iconziconsnoctuabunda on December 29th, 2010 11:11 pm (UTC)
Oh my God. Just when I was reading this, Bruce Springsteen's "Paradise" came on. A deadly combination. *cries*
bookaddict43: chaseybookaddict43 on December 30th, 2010 12:34 am (UTC)
Sorry to make you cry! *huggles* But thanks for reading and commenting - it made my day :D
blcwriter: chasey quitblcwriter on May 31st, 2011 10:26 pm (UTC)
So sad & lonely, and I love this AU take on the series!
bookaddict43: caseyarmsbookaddict43 on June 1st, 2011 10:00 am (UTC)
Thank you! I sniffled a lot writing this one.