U is Underestimate

Author: DocBevCulver

Rating: PG (just to be on the safe side)

Season: 4th.

Disclaimer: "Scarecrow and Mrs. King" is copyrighted to Warner Brothers and Shoot the Moon Productions. I retain rights to the plot, but not the characters. This story is meant for enjoyment purposes only. No infringement is intended.

Summary:  This story is part of the ABC Round Robin 2 for smkfanfic@yahoogroups.com.  A bet in The Agency has Francine asking questions. Any more said, and I'll spoil it.

Author's Notes: Thanks to Ceeg, Mikki, and Sally for their input. It was a great help ladies!

Feedback: Yes.

Archive: Yes with the other ABC stories, anywhere else please let me know.

Amanda King entered the bullpen of the Agency.   She was studying the report that she and Lee Stetson, her partner, had just
finished in the Q-Bureau.  She was double-checking it to make sure it was perfect, before giving it to her supervisor, Billy Melrose.  It had taken her and Lee over two hours to complete, but she was sure that something was wrong with it.  Lee had been planning their second trip to Pinetop, and she'd found herself being distracted constantly while she typed it.  Remembering
exactly *how* he'd distracted her, she couldn't help but smile.

"What are you smiling about, Amanda?" Francine Desmond asked as Amanda nearly bumped into her.

Amanda jumped slightly, taking a step back. "Oh, sorry, Francine, didn't see you."

Francine rolled her eyes and chuckled, "Typical.  So, what has you in such a *good* mood?"

Amanda blushed slightly, but wasn't about to give away her secret...not yet. "Oh, nothing. Just happy to have the case over with."

"I know *exactly* what you mean. So, is that your report?" Francine asked, pointing to the folder.

"Yeah, I was going to give it to Mr. Melrose and head on home for the day."

Francine turned and headed for her desk. "Well, Billy isn't in his office right now; he had an emergency meeting with Dr. Smyth."

"Oh. Well, I guess it can wait until Monday," Amanda said, turning to leave the bullpen.

"Wait, Amanda, I could give it to him when he comes back," Francine said as she sat down.

Amanda stopped dead in her tracks. She turned, a puzzled look on her face. She wasn't quite sure she'd heard right. 'Did Francine offer to do me a favor?' she thought as she followed Francine to her desk.

"Don't look at me that way, Amanda. It'll save me the trouble of having to go look for it later when Billy asks for it," Francine stated, extending her hand.

'Now, that's Francine,' Amanda thought as she handed the folder to her. "Oh, I see. Well, thank you all the same."

Francine placed the folder on her desk and huffed.  Just as Amanda was about to walk away again, she asked, "So, what plans do you have for the weekend, Amanda?"

Caught off guard, Amanda replied, "Um, I'm not sure yet. Why?"

"Just curious."  As Amanda was about to start out the door again, for the second time, Francine spoke. "Oh, I have another question for you," Francine said as she motioned for Amanda to come closer. "There's a rumor going around that Lee has a new girl and that it's getting serious. He's even taking her to Pinetop for a second time." Francine looked around to make sure no one was eavesdropping. "It must be serious. Especially since he hasn't been out on a date with anyone from the steno pool in a long time. Do you know anything about it?"


"Oh, come on, Amanda. You're his partner and you know him better than anyone. Besides, I want have the 'inside' scoop." Francine smiled. "So, does he have a new woman in his life and is it serious?"

Amanda didn't know what to say; she didn't want to tell Francine that, yes, Lee had a new 'girl' and that, yes, it was serious. She had to think of a way out of this conversation. "Francine, I don't keep tabs on Lee's love life and I don't gossip."

She turned on her heels and headed out of the bullpen.  Just as she opened the door, she felt a hand on her arm. "Oh come one, Amanda. Don't be such a fuddy-duddy. I want to know, and I think you have the information."

"Francine, please," Amanda pleaded as she headed for the elevator.

Francine smiled, "You do know something. Oh, please tell me. I have to know."

Amanda pushed the button for the elevator, and then turned to Francine. "Why do you need to know?"

Francine smiled, leaning closer to Amanda and whispered, "Well, you see, there is a bet going on, as to when Scarecrow will settle down with *one* woman. My bet is that he'll settle down ten years from now, with Cindy in the Steno pool. They were hot and heavy a few months ago." Amanda rolled her eyes at the comment. "Besides, I'd like to know if I'm going to win that bet."

"Francine!" Amanda stared in shock. She couldn't believe that people were placing bets on Lee's love life.

"Well, he is, after all, the most eligible bachelor in the building. His love life has been the topic of talk at the water cooler for years. We'd just like to know when someone would be able to tame the 'great' Scarecrow," Francine stated.

The elevator doors opened and Amanda turned to enter, not wishing to continue the conversation. Just as she was about to cross the threshold she decided to give Francine a taste of her own medicine. "Okay, I'll tell you, Francine."

Francine began to grin like the Cheshire Cat from "Alice in Wonderland". She was going to have her scoop. Amanda smiled, too, as she spoke. "Lee is seeing a nice woman, who is *not* part of the steno pool. She's a caring and honest woman, who enjoys just sitting on the couch, watching a movie with him, going to a nice restaurant, and doesn't care about what type of car he drives. In fact, I think she's rather nice."

"Oh, you've got to be kidding me. She sounds so boring. Not Lee's type at all. I give it two more weeks." Francine pouted and then pointed to Amanda. "Besides, she sounds like you and I know that you're boring."

Amanda laughed, letting the *boring* comment go. "I think you underestimate her, Francine. She adds a lot of excitement to Lee's life."

"How? I just don't see how someone like that could keep Lee interested for very long."

"Well, she's just your average housewife. With her family and her job, she keeps him on his toes." As Francine's jaw dropped, Amanda continued, "I haven't heard any complaints from Lee about her."

"I. . . uh . . . uh. . . " Francine stuttered, not being able to form a complete sentence.

"See, Francine, don't underestimate the power  of an American housewife. Even somebody like me could *tame* the Scarecrow. We're more then meets the eye." Amanda stated, smiling, as the elevator doors closed.