yumyumpm: Napoleon and Illya (Man from UNCLE)
 Damn If I Know

By YumYumPM

2006

(What if something happens to Illya while they are not on assignment?   How will Napoleon handle it?  Damn if I know.)

December 31, 1969

 

Normally Napoleon Solo enjoyed celebrating the New Year.  He nearly always starting it out with an enjoyable bang...providing THRUSH didn't try to do him in first.  This year the female staff of U.N.C.L.E. seemed intent on pestering him about his plans for New Years Eve.   What plans he had were now irrevocably changed.  And now it was New Years Eve.  

 

The day had proven to be the longest Napoleon could ever remember.  It was all he could do to keep his mind on year-end reports.   Eventually Solo arrived at the reception area, anxious to leave. 

 

“Na-pooo-leon?” a sultry female voice sang as he started to exit through the changing room into Del Floria’s.

 

Solo closed his eyes and silently counted to ten before snapping.  “No.  I don’t want to join anyone.  I don’t want to celebrate.  I just want to be left alone.” 

 

“Really, Napoleon,” Mark Slate's voice rang out indignantly.  “That is no way to talk to my partner.”

 

Napoleon opened his eyes to look at the woebegone face of April Dancer.  His voice softened.  “I’m sorry April.  I thought you were someone else.”

 

“It was my fault.  I should have realized,” April apologized.  “Mark and I are having a quiet evening at my apartment.  Why don't you join us?”

 

“No,”  Napoleon refused, his voice sharp.   He took a deep breath, then softened his refusal.  April did not deserve the anger that he had directed at her.  “Thanks for the offer, but I don’t think I’d be very good company.”

 

“Look, old man,” Mark offered.  “If you should change your mind…”

 

Napoleon sadly shook his head, not trusting his voice enough to thank them for the thought.  He just wanted to leave U.N.C.L.E. and everyone in it behind. 

 

The sounds of happiness cut through him like a knife as he made his way to his apartment building.  Once inside he automatically locked his door and set the alarm.  He pulled out the envelope, with his name written across the front in his partner's scrawl, that the Legal Department had handed him before his departure and stared at it.  For the first time since the events on Christmas Eve Napoleon, finally alone in his apartment, broke down.

 

mfu.

 

On this particular Christmas Eve all the section two agents that were in town had adjourned to the commissary to help decorate a Christmas tree.  Egg nog had been passed around and there was Christmas music playing softly in the background.   The decorations were either handmade and edible ornaments,  or castoffs from previous Christmas'.  Even his stoic Russian partner had been there, a rare occurrence.    Napoleon remembered Illya moving toward him to take an ornament that he held out in his hand, a pleased smile lighting the Russian’s face when...it happened. 

 

He remembered the shocked look on Illya’s face as a shot rang out and the bullet struck the Russian agent in the back.  That moment was forever burned into Napoleon’s mind. He would forever remember the light leaving the blue eyes as death claimed his partner and friend.   In the background  Napoleon barely heard the shrieks from the clerical staff, nor noticed the medical personnel’s quick arrival, as he held his partner in his arms.  All to no avail.  Illya was gone.

 

In spite of being frozen inside he had managed to snap out of it, becoming all business, doing what had to be done.  Ordering that no one move, that everyone stay in place.  Only the medical staff and the Russian’s lifeless body had been allowed to leave the room.  Everyone was a suspect and a special team had to be called in to investigate.  Finding the gun had been easy.  Finding the person who had pulled the trigger had not.  After an intensive investigation, they had found the culprit.  The worst of it was not finding out that someone he had known had pulled the trigger.  The worst of it was that Illya had not been the intended target.  He had.

 

He had even managed to hold it together, although he felt like an actor in a bad movie playing a part as he attended the funeral, saying a final goodbye.  Remarks had been made that he was cold and unfeeling toward his partner’s death, but he couldn’t help it.  It was his job.  And it wasn’t true; a part of him had died that day along with his partner.

 

How he had managed to get through the past week he never knew.  He only knew that he had no desire to see the New Year in.  Not without his partner.  Alone in his apartment he gave himself permission to finally grieve, then he made himself a drink and withdrew his gun from his holster and laid it on the counter. 

 

Only then did he open the envelope.   He started laughing and was unable to stop.  The sheets of paper were entirely blank. Tears were running down his cheeks, of course they were blank.  The Russian with his warped sense of humor had probably used invisible ink.

 

Napoleon downed his drink in one shot, and brought the barrel of the gun to his head.

 

mfu

 

Outside Napoleon’s apartment Mark tried to pull April back.  “April, we shouldn’t be here.  Napoleon needs some time alone.”

 

“Mark, I just have this terrible feeling,” April protested as she started to knock at the door.  The report from a gun cut off anything further April might have been planning to say.

 

“Oh, shit,” Mark cursed as he threw his shoulder against the door.

 

mfu

 

A specter dressed in black watched from the corner of the room.  It had been strange watching his lifeless body being carted away, but oddly liberating.  He’d approved of Napoleon’s professional handling of the incident.  He had been following Napoleon around not knowing what else to do.  For some reason, there had been no white light to take him to a better place.  Fortunately there had been no fire and brimstone waiting for him either.

 

He had tried many ways to get the American’s attention, but nothing worked.  He had even stood at his side, at the gravesite.   He had not mistaken his partner’s reticence for not caring, as had others.  He knew the dark-haired agent better than that.  He would have left Napoleon alone if he could have.

 

He knew that Napoleon was deeply upset at his loss.  So much so that he was near to taking his own life.  If only there were something he could do.  He just needed time to figure out how to stop this travesty.  Unfortunately, time had no meaning for him and it was fast running out for Napoleon.  It was one moment until the clock struck midnight.

 

He moved closer to the despondent agent and did something he had never done before.  He prayed.  Miraculously his prayer was answered.

 

mfu

 

January 1, 1970 

 

Napoleon Solo squinted, his eyes partially open.  Where was he?  He tried to move his arms, but they were strapped down.  He looked down at his body and found himself clad in a hospital gown.  A hospital?  Is that where he was?  Why was it that hospital personnel always refused to turn out the lights? 

 

A dark form loomed to one side.  His eyes focused as the silhouette assumed the shape of his partner.

 

“You’re dead,” Napoleon croaked.

 

Illya nodded.  Must Napoleon state the obvious?  Death still felt unreal.  He existed, yet he didn’t.  He was neither hot nor cold.  He just was.  He could still feel the fear that ran through him as Napoleon brought the gun to his head, and he realized there was nothing he could do.  In his present state of nothingness, he could not connect.  Somehow, by accident, he managed to slide inside Napoleon, becoming a part of him.  That and the knocking at the door were the only things that managed to avert the tragedy that was about to happen.

 

“I’m not dead,” Napoleon stated, sounding disappointed.

 

“Be thankful that you are not.  It is not something I would wish upon anyone,” Illya replied solemnly, surprised when Napoleon turned to the sound of his voice.  He hadn’t been sure he could be heard.   

 

Napoleon dropped his head back onto the thin pillow.  “I’ve really screwed up this time.”

 

“No more than usual.” 

 

“What would you call waking up finding yourself strapped to a bed and talking to someone who isn’t there?”

 

“A typical assignment?”

 

“You’re dead,” Napoleon repeated emphatically.

 

“Obviously,”  Illya observed dryly.

 

Their discussion was cut short by the sound of a key turning in the lock and the door opened to admit the doctor.  Seeing his patient awake Dr. Samuel Reins said with fake joviality.  “Well, Mr. Solo, how are we feeling today?”  At the sight of Napoleon’s fierce glare, the doctor cleared his throat before continuing. “Yes, well.  Let’s get started then shall we?”

 

“First, could you do something about this?” Napoleon asked, pulling against the restraints that held him down.

 

“All in good time,” the doctor stated as he pulled up a chair next to the bed and flipped through his chart, his pen poised to write.  “Tell me what you remember.”

 

Illya read the chart over the doctor’s shoulder.  There were a lot of conjectures, no real facts.  “Tell him you don’t remember.” 

 

Napoleon lifted his head, the lines in his forehead creased, to look at the image of his partner.  “Um…about what?” he asked the doctor.

 

“Hmmm,” Dr. Reins said, tapping the pen on the chart.  “What is the last thing you remember?”

 

Illya was pacing.  “Whatever you do, do not tell him you tried to kill yourself.  Tell him the last thing you remember is decorating the tree in the commissary.”

 

Napoleon frowned.  “Being in the commissary decorating the Christmas Tree.”

 

“And your partner?”  queried Dr. Reins.

 

“Illya?  He was there too.”  Napoleon kept the pain he felt from showing on his face.  “What’s going on?  Why am I here?”

 

Dr. Reins looked intensely at Solo for a few minutes before slowly closing the metal covering of the chart.  “Tell you what, why don’t you just rest for a while and I’ll get right back to you.”

 

As the doctor rose from his chair and made for the door, Napoleon demanded, “Hey, let me loose first.”

 

***

 

“You need to sleep.”

 

“No.  What if I wake up and you're gone.”  Napoleon stretched out a hand.

 

Illya had no answer for that.  He didn’t know if he would be there longer or not.   Illya reached for the outstretched hand, his own, sadly, slipped through.  Unable to connect in an ordinary fashion, Illya once again slid through taking possession of Napoleon’s body.  He had no idea how he managed it, he just did.

 

He could feel Napoleon’s body shudder in reaction.  Then the laughter that filtered from his mouth.  “When I thought of you being inside me, this was not how I pictured it.”

 

Illya rose halfway out of Napoleon’s body, staring in astonishment at the recumbent form.  “You’ve thought about me that way?”

 

The dark brown eyes crinkled with amusement.  “Not often, but yes.” 

 

It was shocking in a way.  Napoleon was handling this very well.  Much better then he was himself.  “You don’t think I’m a figment of your imagination?”

 

“If you are, I wish never to be sane again,” Napoleon said with feeling.

 

Illya lowered himself again, finding shape and substance.  He experimentally raised a free arm, surprised that he could do so.  He touched the face, feeling the cleft chin, the distinctive mole.  He ran the fingers through dark hair. 

 

He willed the eyes to close and they did.  Shortly after he felt Napoleon slip into sleep, and he lay within him keeping watch.  He was debating on doing something he had never done before, exploring Napoleon’s body with Napoleon’s hands when the door to the room opened admitting a nurse.

 

She checked Napoleon's vital signs, then brushed an errant strand of hair back, before leaning forward to plant a chaste kiss on Napoleon’s forehead.  Illya decided it would be best to leave the exploration of Napoleon’s body to another time and place, when there could be no embarrassing interruptions.

 

He lay there and surprisingly enough his consciousness faded too.

 

mfu

 

A feeling of panic engulfed Napoleon as he opened his eyes the next morning.  'Please don’t let last night be a dream' he thought sincerely.  He fought to regain control of his breathing as he looked inward, and managed to breath easier when he felt the stirring of his partner’s presence.

 

The doctor entered, his eyes upon the medical chart in his hand, and cheerfully started remarking on the state of Napoleon’s health.  Napoleon had to press his lips tightly together as Illya murmured droll comments that were interspersed with the doctor’s.  Comments only he could hear.

 

After making some notes, and consulting the chart yet again, the doctor decided that Napoleon could be sent on his way.   A much relieved Solo, hurriedly dress and left U.N.C.L.E. headquarters post haste.

 

 

Once Napoleon returned home he paced his apartment, going from one room to another.  His release had been too easy.  He was right to be worried.  In each and every room he found a hidden video camera.

 

Since the night before his discharge he hadn’t felt his partner’s presence.  Without Illya there to center him he felt bereft.   He stood in the middle of his living room trying to come to some sort of decision.  Should he disable the cameras?  Bad idea, they obviously didn’t trust him, after all why set up cameras?  Hell he didn’t trust himself.  Would they let him work in the field again?  Problematic. 

 

He closed his eyes and took a deep breath.  When he opened them, Illya, a wicked grin upon his face, was sitting on his sofa, his arms stretched out across the seat back and his feet, ankles crossed and clad in flip flops, propped on his coffee table. 

 

Napoleon did his best to keep his face blank and walked out the door of his apartment.  Illya was already in the hallway waiting for him.

 

“Where have you been?”  Napoleon asked and felt foolish doing so.

 

“Isn’t that my line?”  Illya blinked.

 

“They have cameras all over my fucking apartment,” Napoleon ranted.  He frowned.  “What’s with the weird footwear?”

 

“What?  They are no different from those stupid clogs you wear.  Calm down.”  Illya ordered.  “Do you trust me?”

 

Napoleon looked doubtful.  “Trust you?  I’m not sure that I trust me!”

 

“Trust me.”  Illya demanded and pointed to the door.

 

Going back inside, Napoleon held the door for Illya only to find that he was already in the apartment.

 

“I wonder if they’ve bugged the bathroom,” Napoleon muttered, he felt a headache coming on. 

 

mfu

 

From that day forward they had a new type of partnership.  One that U.N.C.L.E. was not aware of.  Napoleon became the best 'solo' agent U.N.C.L.E. had and that was because he wasn't alone.

 

"Owww!"  Napoleon moaned from the cot.  Having been caught and worked over he wondered what had happened to his early warning system.

 

"Napoleon?"

 

Napoleon turned his head, finding Illya looking down at him through the bars of his cell.

 

"Where the fuck have you been?"  Napoleon groaned.

 

Illya shrugged.  "I'm not really sure. One moment I with sitting next to you in your car, the next I was...elsewhere."

 

Sitting up slowly and somewhat painfully, Napoleon asked.  "Can you get me out of here?"

 

Early on they had found that Illya could now manipulate things.  Locks, guns, lights.  And hands.  Napoleon was familiar with masturbation, but jerking off had taken on a new meaning with Illya. Strangely that talent had saved Napoleon's ass on more than one occasion.  It was an interesting way to keep Napoleon's mind distracted when things went wrong.  When things got rough on an assignment, Illya got horny.  Half the time it kept Napoleon  incapable of chasing after a pretty skirt, usually the wrong skirt, and landing in more trouble.

 

Normally Illya focused on the lock and within seconds there was a click.  Not this time.

 

"Ah, Napoleon." 

 

"What?"  Napoleon snapped.  He turned his head in time to see Illya fade from sight.

 

Five years later, on New Year's Eve, Napoleon limped down toward the banquet hall of a local hotel.  The limp had been a souvenir of his last official assignment as an agent and the last time he'd seen of his partner.  Tomorrow he would no longer be employed and he wasn’t sure how he would handle that fact.  All his friends were to be here to wish him a fond farewell.   He stopped in front of a full length mirror to check his attire.  Reflected in the mirror was a face he thought never to see again.  The man who had shot Illya all those years ago stood behind him aiming a gun at Napoleon's back, his face twisted into cruel snarl.  Napoleon had thought him still in jail.

 

Napoleon went to pull out his gun, debating on switching from sleep darts to real bullets when suddenly Illya appeared in behind him like an avenging angel just as the assailant's gun went off. 

 

“Noooo!” Napoleon cried out.  Not again, he can’t go through this again.  He couldn’t help but watch the refection in the mirror.  There was a look of surprise on Illya’s face, which quickly changed to anger.  His hand reached into his advisory’s chest and pulled out a beating heart.  Illya’s face took on a stunned look as the blood dripped through his fingers.

 

“Hell, Illya, just how am I supposed to explain that?”  Napoleon demanded as soon as he got his breath back. 

 

Illya threw him a devilish grin, the grin left his face as the heart slid from his hand when Napoleon slumped to the ground just as everyone came pouring out the banquet room.  Even the most hardnosed of them were sickened by the gruesome sight.  .  Lying splayed out in the middle of the marble floor was the one man that Napoleon would have thought had everything.  Stefan Valdar, the husband of the only woman that Napoleon Solo had truly loved.  His blue eyes wide open in horror, his bloody heart lying atop his chest.   On the floor in front of the mirror Napoleon's body lay crumbled.  Screams rang out from every side.

 

Though nobody notice, standing in his place was a much younger Napoleon then the one from that Christmas that had ended his life.  Napoleon moved closer so that he was standing next to Illya to stare down at the body

 

"I suppose I should never of had that curse put on him," Illya said pragmatically.

 

Napoleon looked up dumbfounded.  "What curse?  And why?"

 

"It was nothing, really.  You were hurting, even the gypsies could see it.  Sooo....when they offered..."  Illya shrugged.

 

Napoleon shook his head and stared at Illya with amazement.  "All this because of Clara Richards?  Do you have any idea of how guilty I've felt all these years?"

 

Illya just stood there, his head down.  The curse had given the man boils, caused his farm to decline, made him lose his hair.  But he had never lost the one thing that should have mattered most to him.  The love of his wife.  So, no, it was not because of Clara.  Not that Illya would ever say so.

 

"So what now.  Heaven or hell?"  Napoleon asked.  The past already forgotten.

 

"Damn if I know," Illya responded.

 

Napoleon slung his arm over Illya's shoulder and the two walked off toward whatever the future might hold.

 

 

 

 

 

 

yumyumpm: Napoleon and Illya (Man from UNCLE)
 Count Kuryakin

By YumYumPM@ aol.com

2008

Published in Kuryakin File 28

Continued in ‘The Better Lover’
In the Alexander the Greater Affair episode Tracy Alexander asks Illya if he's Count Kuryakin

(Reminiscent of The When in Roma Affair, Napoleon once again misplaces a vital piece of information,

and it's Count Kuryakin to the rescue)

 

Paris-late evening

 

On the surface, the mission should have been simple enough.  Ridiculously easy in fact, even without his partner there to help him.  A reward for suffering through several nerve-racking assignments, as Alexander Waverly had worded it.  Hah!  It wasn’t turning out that way.  He had the document ready to deliver, and the bad guys were nipping at his heels.  Sounds of heavy footsteps on the cobbled pathway behind him faded as Napoleon paused in an alley to catch his breath.  He wasn’t as young as he used to be and to top it off, his partner wasn’t around to back him up.  After a moment, he straightened his tie and adjusted the fit of his jacket then made one last check to make sure the coast was clear.  All he needed now was to find someplace to lie low for awhile before getting back into the game. 

 

Fortune smiled upon him and the infamous Solo’s luck was intact.  Rounding the corner, he saw her.   She was young and lovely, and he couldn’t help the smug smile that flitted across his face.  Her blonde hair shining under the streetlights, making her standout from the crowd that surrounded her.  All he had to do was make her acquaintance.  Illya would not have approved, Napoleon smiled, that thought alone making the idea seem the perfect solution.  But with Napoleon and a woman involved, nothing is ever simple.

 

The next morning he’d woken up in a hotel room…alone … with a monumental headache brought on by the bottle of champagne they had shared.  On the bright side, there had been no obstacles in his path.  No foreign powers to deal with.  No Thrush agents to avoid, and alas, no information to pass on.  Somehow, during the brief interlude, Napoleon had managed to misplace the information as well as several articles of clothing, his tie, one sock and strangely enough, his underwear.  In spite of all that, he wasn’t worried.  All that needed to be done was to locate and charm back the intelligence that she wasn’t even aware that she had.  Simple, right?  Wrong. 

 

***

 

Feeling rumpled and untidy, Napoleon sat at the communication console in the Paris office.  He pinched the bridge of his nose, not looking forward to reporting his failure to Alexander Waverly.  With reluctance, he flicked on the switch.  Immediately the screen lit up showing the craggy features of Mr. Waverly,  Behind him in the background he spotted his partner, Illya Kuryakin, looking all too fresh and well rested as he sorted through papers spread out before him on the familiar round conference table.    

 

“Well, Mr. Solo.  Your report.”

 

“Ummm.  There’s been a slight problem.”  Napoleon looked away, wanting to avoid the disapproval he knew Waverly’s face would show.  A sudden rude noise caused him to glance up in time to see Illya’s head snap upward and the slight smirk on his lips, quickly suppressed.  Napoleon shifted uncomfortably in his seat as a twinge of irritation flowed through him.

 

“Hummph.  Exactly what do you call…‘slight’?  Waverly leaned back in his chair, waiting expectantly.  Something about the way he said it gave Napoleon the sinking feeling that Waverly already knew what his report would be.

 

 “Well, sir, it was like this…”

 

When Napoleon finished giving his edited report, Waverly sat, staring into space and strummed his fingers on the computer console in an uncharacteristic manner.  “And you have no idea who the young lady is?”

 

Napoleon shrugged.  In his opinion, she had been the means to an end and he had not wanted to take it, as enjoyable as it had been, any further than that.

Waverly’s secretary came into view.  She glanced up at the screen and Napoleon winked at her as she passed her boss a folder with the embossed seal of the U.N.C.L.E.  After glancing through the folder, Waverly turned his back to the communication center.  “Mr. Kuryakin, perhaps it would be best if you joined Mr. Solo and took charge of sorting out this mess.”

 

Napoleon straightened up with surprise and a slight bit of resentment.  He was momentarily distracted by the fact that Waverly felt he needed the help and the thought rankled.  Normally he didn’t mind having the Russian’s help, but he was number one of Section Two and perfectly capable of finding a missing document…again.  When his attention returned Waverly was gone and the taciturn Russian was looking at him.

 

“So…what really happened?”

 

“Don’t you have an office of your own to work in?” Napoleon snapped. “I just reported what happened.”

 

Illya snorted his disbelief.  “Let me reword this...what actually happened”

 

Napoleon was a tad indignant that his partner could read him so well.  Wishing that Illya would drop it and knowing he wouldn’t, Napoleon tilted the chair back as far as it would go and closed his eyes as he reluctantly called up all the details that he’d omitted while Illya took notes.

 

Two-thirds the way through he opened one eye to find Illya leaning over the console.  “You want intimate details?” he asked his eyes alight with devilish delight, knowing full well that that was the last thing Illya wanted.

 

“I think I have enough information, thank you.  See you in Paris.”  Illya said testily, before flicking the switch with finality.

 

When the connection broke, Napoleon smiled, in a much better frame of mind then when this interview had started.

 

***

 

Napoleon had gathered a few of the Paris Office’s Section II agents in anticipation of Illya’s arrival.  Jacque Bouche, his partner Yvette Sonnier, a red-haired pixie, and Paul Garnier, the U.N.C.L.E.’s newest member.

 

“What is Messieurs Kuryakin like?”  The youngest member of the group asked.  “Iz he as difficult to work with as they say?”

 

Napoleon and Jacque exchanged glances.  The menacing reputation that his partner had managed to pick up over the years was a source of constant amusement to Napoleon. 

 

“It has been awhile since I’ve work with him…”  Jacque shrugged haphazardly.  “But I would suggest that you not make him angry.  It would be best to stay away from his bad side.”

 

Paul paled.

 

Jacque turned away to hide his smile.

 

Napoleon decided it was time to change the topic.  “Let’s get back to the subject at hand.”

 

Bien, Napoleon', where do you suggest we start?”  Jacque asked, not really paying attention to the door of the office as it swished opened.

 

“Finding out her name would be a nice,” Yvette threw out with a flirtatious glance Napoleon’s way.

 

“Tut tut, my friend, it is so unlike you to not, at the very least, have gotten her name?” Jacque Bouche teased.  His partner, Yvette, giggled.

 

The loudness of folder slapped down on the table in front of them caught everyone’s attention. 

 

“Her name is Nicole Jordance,” a softly spoken voice stated.

 

Heads turned.   Everyone’s reaction a tad different toward the slender, blond-haired man, attired in a dark turtleneck underneath a gray jacket, his blue eyes hidden behind tinted glasses.

 

Jacque jumped up, both hands outstretched in greeting.  Bonjour! Comment allez vous, mon ami?”

 

Je suis très bien, JacqueIt is good to see you again,” Illya responded, a broad grin spread across his face, as he took the hands extended and let the older man pull him into a hug along with the traditional greeting of a kiss on each cheek. 

 

Yvette looked on enviously.  She compared the two agents from the New York office; to her eyes, both men were handsome in completely different ways.  Napoleon, the darker of the two, had a devilish handsomeness about him that led you and everyone else to believe he could charm any woman he wanted.  Illya, the blond haired one appeared much younger, in spite of there being an age difference of only a year or two.  It might have been his boyish good looks, though from his reputation, he could stare at you with those incredible blue eyes that could scare the pants off you when he wanted.  Of the two, Illya Kuryakin was considered the more intimidating.  From what she had heard, they were the best the United Network had. The Dynamic Duo, deadly and dashing.

 

“While you are here we must go to the…”

 

“Is it still there?”  The two talked over each other in their enthusiasm leaving the others to wonder about what.

 

Napoleon curled his lip in annoyance.  It was bad enough that Illya was there to bail him out; he had to steal his thunder by knowing their target’s name. When they were alone he intended to find out how.  He cleared his throat in order to get his partner’s attention.  “Umm, Illya?  Can we get back to business?  You can do the mutual admiration thing later.”

 

Illya smiled sheepishly as he slid into an empty chair.

 

Pardon, Napoleon.  It has been much too long since we’ve seen each other.” Jacque bowed to Napoleon before turning back to Illya.  “May I introduce my associates?   Yvette Sonnier, my partner, and Paul Garnier, our bright new star and recent graduate from Survival School.”  

 

Paul looked on incredulously.  Was this the same Kuryakin that he’d been told so much about?  The fearsome Russian?  He looked about as intimidating as a teddy bear.

 

Illya nodded to each in turn.  “Okay, bring me up to…speed?  So what is it you have got so far?”

 

“Not much,” Napoleon admitted.

 

 “All we have so far is a description.  Blue, blue eyes, and blonde hair.”  Jacque contributed, having returned to his seat. 

 

All eyes, except for Napoleon’s, turned to his partner.  Illya Kuryakin calmly took off the dark glasses that covered his blue eyes and ran a hand through his thick blond mane.  Illya’s expression grew serious as he leaned forward.  “We have a name, now we need to find out more about her.  Jacque, you have connections.   See what you can find out.”

 

Jacque nodded his acceptance.  “Come along, mes enfants.  We have much work to do.”

 

A slight smile graced Illya’s face as the others left the room and he turned back to Napoleon.  “What?” he asked, not that he had to.  Reading Napoleon was much too easy.  Napoleon obviously wanted to know how he knew Jacque.  “We worked together under Harry Belden.”

 

“Ah.”  Napoleon nodded.  He tapped the folder that Illya had dropped on the table.  “How did you find out the girls name.”

 

“Simple.”  Illya shrugged.  “I went to the hotel and asked.” 

 

Shaking his head Napoleon rose from his chair, why was it he’d never thought of that.  “Look, it could be awhile before they come up with something.  Want to go get something to eat?”

 

Illya’s face lit up.  “I know just the place.” 

 

***

 

“Don’t sulk, Illya.”

 

“But, they used to make the best Coq au vin,” Illya complained.

 

“It wasn’t that bad.”

 

 The restaurant they had stopped at had been just where Illya remembered, but the food and service had not lived up to Illya’s expectation.  By the time they got back to the Paris Office Jacque along with Section IV had worked miracles.  They now knew a little more about Nicole Jordance, with more information coming in.  Nicole, it seemed, was a model and globe-trotter and along the way she somehow managed to meet a lot of interesting and important people.  Her picture and antics appeared in the news fairly regularly.  One would have thought that she would not be too difficult to locate.  Except that, now that they needed to talk with her, she seemed to have dropped out of sight.  Even Section IV’s valiant efforts were unsuccessful.

 

Napoleon shook his head.  The two agents were now ensconced in a quiet room with a very large table. There they sorted through a very large pile of photos. Photo’s of Nicole.  There were quite a lot of them and she never seemed to look the same in any of them.  Hair color ranged from blonde, brunet, auburn, even pink.  Likewise her eyes were different shades of blue, green, hazel, brown, and in one shot completely white.  How were they ever going to locate her? 

 

“You like puzzles, Illya,”

 

“True.  But there is a difference between a puzzle and an enigma.”

 

“We need something draw her out,” Napoleon Solo muttered to himself.  She was obviously drawn to celebrities judging by the ones with whom she managed to get herself photographed.

 

The two agents requested a list of events and resorted to sorting through the vast amount of information searching for the perfect venue that would tempt the aloof maiden out.  Illya Kuryakin drew a slip of paper from the pile that covered the desk.  Passing the article over to his partner, he suggested, “The Cannes’s Film Festival?”

 

“Maybe.  Maybe,” Napoleon murmured as he read over the fact sheet.  “There must be a couple of hundred parties being held.” 

 

Soon the rustle of paper was the only sound in the room while they sorted through the extensive lists provided. 

 

“There are several parties here that might catch her attention.  It’s going to take a lot of man power to cover them all,” Napoleon groaned.  “I think we need something more.”

 

“A party so spectacular that she will not be able to resist,” Illya responded enthusiastically.  He stood up and gathered a half-dozen of the sheets together.  “I have an idea.” 

 

Napoleon quirked a brow questioningly, but Illya just smiled as he headed to the door.  When he reached it, he turned back.  “There just might be one problem.”             

 

“Only one?”

 

Illya’s eyes brimmed with mischief. “Oui. Coming up with a good reason why they should invite you.” 

 

The door slid shut in front of him just seconds before a hurled binder slammed up against it. 


 

In a shorter time than Napoleon thought possible, everything was arranged.  How Illya, with the help of U.N.C.L.E.’s travel section, had managed to arrange it all Napoleon couldn’t even guess.  He and Illya were ensconced in one of the top hotels in Cannes.  In his hand was an invitation to what was reportedly the event of the season hosted by none other than Princess Grace of Monaco.  The invitation list had been finalized months ago with only the best people receiving invitations.

 

Setting aside his invitation, Napoleon turned to where his tuxedo was hanging.  Adjusting the fold of the lapel, brushing imaginary lint from the shoulders, Napoleon tensed up as he heard the door behind him open.  He relaxed when a quick glance over his shoulder confirmed that it was his partner entering.

 

Carefully shutting the door to their suite, Illya called out, “Section III has confirmed Miss Jordance’s presence in Cannes.”

 

Napoleon nodded, relieved to hear the news.  He frowned as he returned to examining his tux; there had always been the chance that Nicole would not respond to the invitation.  “I just hope she shows.”

 

With a careless shrug, Illya tossed the folder he carried on a nearby bed.  “How could she not.  Would you refuse an invitation from the crowned Princess of Monaco?”

 

Napoleon agreed.  “This assignment’s as good as in the bag.”

 

“What makes you think you are her type?” 

 

Napoleon ignored the jibe and jerked his head toward a garment bag that hung from the closet door.  “By the way, your outfit is over there.”

 

Biting back a smug smile, Napoleon pretended not to show interest as Illya unzipped the black bag, revealing the waiters’ outfit inside and waited. 

 

“Why must I always be the help?  I can charm the girl just as well as you can.”

 

It was then that Napoleon made his mistake.  He laughed. 

 

The zipper went back up with a loud jerk and Illya glared at his partner.   Before Napoleon could apologize, he moved across the room, slamming the door loudly behind him.


 

The ballroom glistened, the crystals from chandeliers shone brightly down on the well-dressed and bejeweled people that mingled in groups.  Waiters weaved their way through the crowds with trays of hors d’Oeuvres and Champagne.  Napoleon grabbed a glass as it was offered and stood in a corner where he could watch the door.  He glanced irritably down at his watch.  Illya was late

 

Something made him look toward the entrance and there she was.  The light caught her honey-color hair swept up off her elaborately made-up face.  Her green eyes, matching her low-cut cocktail dress, glistened as she handed over her invitation.  He watched as Nichole was quickly surrounded by a group of young men, most of whom she blew off within the first five minutes.   Straightening his tie, he put a smile on his face and headed confidently her way. 

 

“Hello there.”

 

Her eyes traveled up and down his tailor-made tuxedo and showed no sign of recognition.

 

“Do I know you?” was her bored response.

 

He faltered, his smile dimming.  This was not the reception he’d expected.

 

Then she brightened.  “Ah, yes.  Paris.  The man from the street.  Magnifico!”  she purred, surging closer.

 

Napoleon beamed.  Things were beginning to look up, when a sudden hush descended across the room.  Napoleon’s, as well as Miss Jordance’s, attention was caught by it and they automatically turned toward the entrance. 

 

The crowd parted revealing a gentleman; his perfectly styled blond hair brushed back off his forehead, shimmered under the multitude of lights that lit the room.  Even from across the room Napoleon couldn’t help but admire the faultless cut of his tuxedo which spoke of exquisite taste, and his shirt, not the usual white of everyone else, but a sophisticated tone-on-tone stripe in bold black.  His lack of a tie, showed a distinct disregard for men who wore them with their formal clothing. 

 

Familiar blue eyes caught his and Napoleon’s jaw almost dropped as he realized the man was none other than his partner.  A soft smile graced Illya’s face as he strode confidently through the opening made by the other guests and handed over an invitation to the royal announcer.   

 

 All was quiet as “Count Kuryakin” was announced loud enough for everyone to hear.

 

Napoleon was stunned when his partner reached their host and hostess, to be greeted warmly by both, kissing cheeks continental style.  Princess Grace looped her arm through Illya’s then led him around the room, introducing him to the major players. 

 

Nicole’s eye’s glittered cat-like as she watched, all the while pretending as if she wasn’t.  Napoleon frowned.  Finally, the pair stood before them.  Illya clicked his heels and bent from the waist; bowing over Nicole’s extended hand.  He turned slightly in Napoleon’s direction, acknowledging his presence, and nodded.

 

 “Napoleon,” he murmured politely before allowing the Princess to pull him along to introduce him to yet another group of guests.

 

“You know him?”  Nicole pulled close to Napoleon to ask.

 

“I thought I did,” he muttered, more to himself then in response to her question.  His eyes narrowed as he followed Illya’s progress around the room.  More unsettling was knowing that Nicole was also following his partner’s moves as well.

 

Illya looked perfectly at ease with all the glamorous people around him.  For some reason that annoyed him.  Mentally shaking himself, he set his mind once more on the mission all the while wondering what Illya was playing at.

 

Music had been playing softly in the background, when suddenly the tempo changed.  Prince Ranier was leading his Princess to the dance floor.  Illya was escorting a slender brunette.

 

“Shall we dance?” Nicole asked eagerly.  Much too eagerly for Napoleon’s frame of mind, but if there was one thing he was confident in was his dancing ability. 

 

His arm went around her and he pulled her close.  Getting back the information he’d lost was within his grasp.  He whispered sweet nothings into her ears, but she didn’t seem to be listening.

There was one other problem…Nicole seemed intent on leading. 

 

The music finally stopped and as they clapped their appreciation, Napoleon was surprised to find them standing next to Illya and his partner.  He was startled when Nicole suddenly pushed between them.

 

“Count?”  she purred, her arms raised expectantly as another song filled the air. 

 

Napoleon watched flabbergast as Illya willing drew Nicole to him and danced away.  Before he could respond there was a tap at his shoulder and he turned downward at a much bejeweled matronly lady.  She fluttered her eyelashes flirtatiously at him.   Napoleon glanced Illya’s way, wanting nothing more than to go after Nicole, but his ingrained courtesy got the best of him and he reluctantly took the lady in his arm.  No sooner had they finished dancing, when another well-dressed matron took her place. 

 

As the evening progressed, Napoleon grew more and more annoyed.  Elderly women of all shapes and sizes seemed to make it their mission in life to entertain him.  He tried to keep his eye on the couple but it didn’t work.  Sometime later, the two simply…vanished.

 

Frustrated he returned to the hotel where he tried to get in touch with Illya on his communicator and received no response.  Just as he gave up and was preparing for bed, he heard a key turning in the lock.  Napoleon scrambled to get his gun just as the door opened.

 

Illya yawned, ignoring the fact that a gun was pointed at him and tossed a manila envelope at Napoleon while slipping out of his tuxedo jacket, letting it fall carelessly to the floor.

 

“How did you manage it?”  Napoleon asked, having slipped the safety back on and tossed the gun down.  Rummaging through the envelope, he came across his missing tie, sock, and BVD’s, not to mention the important information. 

 

Illya sat wearily on the edge of his bed, slipping his shoes off.  “You know a gentleman never tells.”

 

Napoleon twitched his nose, too busy redressing to answer, since it was his first priority to complete his ill-fated mission and deliver the information.  He adjusted his jacket around his shoulders, patted his pocket one last time just to make sure he had everything.  There were a few questions he wanted answered before he left, like what exactly was Illya’s relationship with the Prince and Princess of Monaco and what was it with this ‘Count’ business.  Count Kuryakin indeed!   He also wanted to know exactly what lengths Illya had gone to in order to get the information back.

 

When Napoleon turned from the door intent on getting answers, it became obvious that he was not going to any.  Lying on his back, still clothed, Illya snored.  It appeared that ‘The Count’ was out for the count.

 

 

 

 

 

 

yumyumpm: Napoleon and Illya (Man from UNCLE)
 

 

 

 

                                       A Turkey Tale

                                                       By YumYumPM

Originally posted 2003Raven’s Lair

Revised 6/10/09

 

Napoleon had slept in late that morning and was in his living room, still in his pajamas and robe, reading the newspaper when a knock sounded on his door. Going to answer it, he was taken aback to see a giant turkey standing before him.  The turkey entered the apartment babbling in half a dozen different languages, all the words bad, and finally took off its head revealing the face of his partner, Illya Kuryakin.

"Whoa there, slow down what's the matter?" he asked trying to calm his partner down.

"Mr. Waverly!!! Section IV told him they were sure THRUSH was going to try something at the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade and he ordered me to wear this stupid turkey outfit and keep an eye on everything," Illya spouted as he began removing the turkey suit.

Napoleon looked at him, eyes wide. "Illya, you don't have any clothes on."

Illya looked down at himself puzzled."Was I supposed to?"


HAPPY THANKSGIVING

 

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