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A different And Baby Makes Four (R - Strong language & Situations)
Maxwell Smart came down the steps from the bedrooms and stopped. He unsuccessfully tried to smother a smiled. 99, in her ninth month of pregnancy, was struggling valiantly to get up from the sofa.
I see you standing there Maxwell Smart! Get that silly grin off your face and get over here and help me!
Max went over and put his arms around her waist . . . best he cold. She put her arms round his neck and, after a minor struggle, he finally managed to get her to her feet. He smiled and kissed her.
Ohhh . . . 99 moaned, clinging to him.
You okay? Max asked, concerned. He knew full well the kiss hadnt caused the groan this time.
My back hurts. It feels like Im going to have a basketball.
Max gently rubbed her back. Not too much longer.
I feel like Ive always been pregnant. Two weeks seems like forever. Hows that map to the hospital coming?
Ive got it finished . . . I think. Its in my trench coat pocket.
The phone rang, Max picked it up. It was the Chief.
Max, I need a favor.
Chief, I wont . . .
Max, its sort of a courier assignment.
Oh. Well . . . He gave 99 a side-long glance. Okay. Be there in a few minutes.
Max . . . are you getting that I want to go on a super secret mission feeling? 99 asked.
I know you miss it sometimes.
Were still agents, 99, Max said, shrugging.
The most dangerous assignments Max and 99 went on these days was courier duty. 99 spent her time working in the file room or helping the Chief. Max spent most of his time, surprisingly, working in the lab. Carlson now worked out of the New York office. He occasionally came to Washington and on those days Max avoided the lab like the plague. Parker was now head of the lab. He and Max had always shared a love of any type of gadget. They were currently working on several. 99 had walked in one day to find them laughing hysterically over a small, remote-controlled figure. Max was at the controls and he was purposely causing the figure to fall over and walk into walls. When 99 questioned them on it, they looked embarrassed and shrugged. After a bit of interrogation, they admitted the figure was patterned after Carlson. They never did say exactly what its purpose was. 99 had her own ideas, however.
Are you sure, Max?
Yes. Sit and talk to me for a minute. I promise Ill help you back up.
You better . . .
They sat down again. Max took 99s hand.
99, when we finished that horrible time with Colonel Landau, we retired from the field. Ive never been sorry for that choice, I sleep better at night. Dont you?
You know most of our fellow agents consider me a coward . . .
99 had heard some of the comments leveled at Max since the events of ten months ago. She had also watched him whether them with a courage beyond anything she has ever witnessed. One inventive idiot had thrown a live chicken in their office. 99 hadnt been there at the time, but Hymie had told her that it had clucked and strutted about the room while Max simply stared at it in quiet, hurt frustration. The worst had come only a few weeks after their decision to retire from the field. Max and 99 had been walking down the empty hallway toward their office when someone suddenly yelled Ready, aim . . . Fire!!!, and tossed a bundle of firecrackers in their general direction. They exploded about ten feet away, taking out a water fountain and scattering shrapnel all over the hallway. Max dove for cover, taking 99 with him. They landed in the open doorway of the supply closet, with Max on top, using his body as a shield to protect 99. It had frightened Max so badly, his hands shook for hours and it had taken the better part of the day to calm him. 99 had been furious. She stormed to the Chiefs office and, rather calmly, considering the circumstances, told him what happened. The Chief had already made an on-the-spot investigation after hearing the explosion and he immediately called an urgent meeting of every Control agent on duty in the building. The office was jammed. The Chief had railed on the agents until Agent 36 started laughing and admitted to throwing the firecrackers as a joke - to see what Max would do. The Chief cleared the office, shrieked at the agent for the better part of fifteen minutes, then suspended him for a week without pay. Most of the time the abuse against Max was confined to snide remarks. These cut Max deeply, but he never let on to 99. 99 knew, however, how much these comments hurt him and she did everything possible to keep a positive, upbeat attitude.
99 touched Maxs face. Weve been on more dangerous missions than those macho idiots who think its a cool thing to throw live chickens. Max, youre no coward.
I know, but it hurts . . . and Im embarrassed for you. And what about the kid? Hows he going to take it when he gets older and they tell him his dad is afraid?
99 sighed. You dont ever have to be embarrassed for me. As for our kid, well deal with that if and when it happens. Now . . . didnt you just tell the Chief you were on your way?
Yeah . . .
You better get going.
Wanna come along? You havent been out much lately. You feel okay enough to go out?
99 smiled. Im tired, but I feel fine. I was hoping youd ask.
You can protect me against chicken flingers, Max joked, helping her up.
Ill fricassee anyone who dares throw one in our direction, Love, 99 said. Unexpectedly, tears formed in her eyes.
Max gently wiped them away. No tears. Its okay.
I love you, Max, 99 said softly.
I love you, Max replied.
Max and 99 entered the Chiefs office. Max helped 99 to the couch and put a pillow behind her back.
Comfy? He asked.
As comfy as I can get.
Max . . . I have a big favor to ask of you.
What? Max asked, suspicious.
I want you to watch someone.
Max, its safe and simple. Weve received word that Simon The Likable, a notorious Kaos agent, is in this country to attempt to steal the Hufficer Plans.
I thought they were in the Chief of Staffs office in the Pentagon.
They are. But Simon can get into any place he wants.
All you have to do is look at his face and you instantly like him.
What does he look like?
I dont know.
Max frowned and shook his head. How do you expect me to watch someone when we dont know what he looks like?
Hes scheduled to come into Washington this evening at Union Station. Hes going to hang his coat on the fourth hook in the coffee shop. A contact is going to slip a piece of paper into his coat pocket. That piece of paper contains instructions on how to get to Kaos new headquarters. I just want you to watch him and call me as soon as you see the map has been delivered. I have other agents that will take over and follow him as soon as we hear from you. Will you do it?
How can I do it if I dont know what the guy looks like? Max repeated testily.
Hes scheduled to come in at 7:00. Just be at the coffee shop early and watch for the guy who hangs he coat on the fourth coat hook. Or look for a guy everyone is especially nice to.
Max glanced over at 99, trying to read her. She gave him the same hesitant look that he was giving her.
Chief, I dont know . . .
The Chief was suddenly annoyed. He desperately needed someone for this case and he said the first thing that came to mind.
Maybe the chicken contingent is right? He instantly regretted his words. He knew Max wasnt scared. He had talked with Max and 99 for hours regarding their decision.
Max turned to 99, so only she saw the hurt in his eyes. You see? He said.
99 managed to get off the sofa by herself and went to Maxs side. She grabbed his arm and held it tightly. She glared at the Chief, who got up and came over to them.
Max, Im sorry. I didnt mean it, honestly I didnt. I know youre not afraid.
Then why you say it? Max asked angrily.
Because I need someone to do this! The mission is simple and safe.
Thats what you told me when you sent me to Montania as an advisor . . . Max snapped.
There was a strained silence in the room.
Oh, all right, Max said. Ill do it. But I have to take 99 home and be able to leave if she goes into labor.
Fine. Go. And keep in touch. The Chief went back to his desk and sat down. He rubbed his nose with his fingers. Im sorry, Max. Really.
Max and 99 turned to go.
Yeah . . . right, Chief, Max said.
As they exited the Chiefs office, Agent 36 sidled up behind them.
Well, well, if it isnt Max Rooster and his hen.
They turned and 99 glared at him
Lay off, She warned.
Cant he stick up for himself?
Leave him alone, 36.
Brawk, brawk, 36 clucked. What color egg are you gonna lay?
Lets just how brave you really are, asshole, Max said calmly, and threw a sucker punch that landed 36 several feet away. Max picked him up and slammed him against the wall.
I am not afraid. If you must know, love my family and dont want to lose them. Theres no shame in working in the lab or in the file room. As a matter of fact, my next invention just may save your worthless life.
Max? 99 tapped him on the shoulder.
Uhh . . . you better turn around.
Max turned and found the Chief standing behind them. Max immediately let go and 36 dropped to the floor, rubbing his jaw.
I saw and heard the whole thing. You, he said, pointing at 36. Get to my office. NOW! Max, you drop 99 off at home and get to Union Station.
Yes, Sir, Max replied.
99 took his hand and they left the building, leaving 36 with a very angry Chief. What do you think hell do?
I dont know and I dont care, Max said,
You know, you were very brave back there
Max stared at her.
No, Max, I mean it! He weighs about 230 lbs and thats fighting weight. Hes on the Control boxing team . . . and you laid him out with one punch, 99 was beaming.
Max smiled at her.
Max dropped a worried 99 off at home and headed to Union Station. It was raining, so he wore his trench coat. When he got there, he bought a newspaper and entered the coffee shop. He took off his coat and hung it on the third coat hook. Then he sat down and ordered a cup of coffee, sipping it slowly as he read the paper. Five minutes later, a slightly older, good-looking gentleman came in and put an almost identical coat on the fourth coat hook. He sat next to Max and gave him a polite smile. Max nodded back without really looking and went back to his paper. A little guy entered and, unnoticed, stuffed a piece of paper into Simons coat and slid out the door.
The phone on the end of the counter rang - the waitress asked if there was a Maxwell Smart there. Max grabbed the phone.
Max . . . The pains have started. I had the first one ten minutes ago and just had the second one.
Okay, 99, Im on my way.
Max threw a dollar on the counter, grabbed his coat off of the fourth coat hook and ran out the door . . .
Max roared though the streets of Washington.
Wheres the first turn? It should be coming up.
Uhh . . . right here! 99 said, pointing to the right.
Max made a sudden sharp right turn, scaring the hell out of 99.
Slow down, Max.
I want to get you there in time.
Were fine. The pains are still ten minutes apart.
They followed the map and ended up at a beautiful hospital about six miles from their apartment.
Max and 99 went through a lengthy interview with a Dr. Kruger and his nurse, who asked every silly and unnecessary question possible, then left the room. Puzzled, 99s Lamont Cranston instincts started surfacing. She was extremely upset. As Max tried to calm her, the nurse returned and said she had 99s room ready. After a quick kiss, and a loving look, 99 followed the nurse. Dr. Kruger insisted Max make himself comfortable in his office. Max picked up a book and started flipping through it. It wasnt until he looked in the mirror that he knew he was in trouble. The doctor had a gun pointed at him. Max drew his gun and fired . . . riddling the mirror. Rolling his eyes at his stupidity, he slowly turned around with his hands up. At that moment, the same little guy who had put the note in Simons pocket burst through the door, smashing it into the doctor, causing him to drop the gun. Max scooped it up and pointed it at them, and said he was going to report them to the AMA.
The doctor laughed, I dont belong to the AMA. I work for Kaos, Mr. Smart.
Kaos? Wheres my wife? Max ordered, brandishing the gun a the two men.
In the next room.
Max forced the men away from the door and locked it behind him. He burst through the door of the room next door just in time to shoot a syringe and needle (that looked like it should have been used on an elephant) out of the nurses hand. After locking the nurse in the room, he and 99 hurried down the hall, trying desperately to remember how to get out of the building. Meanwhile, Dr. Kruger kicked open the door open and the three were searching the halls. Since 99 couldnt run, Max and 99 hid in a closet, only to discover, after the trio had passed, it was equipped with a self-locking door. Max climbed several floors through small openings in the ceiling, only to discover all the closets all had self-locking doors, except the top floor - it had just four walls. He climbed back down, but lost his footing when he reached the floor above 99. When he landed, he bounced and banged his head on the closet door, jarring it open. They looked at each other, hurried out of the building and roared away, hotly pursued by the Kaos agents.
Which way do we go, Max? Theyre right behind us!
Hang on, Ill lose them.
Max sped up and made twelve left and right turns, losing the Kaos agents . . . and himself. 99 was now in full panic mode . . . her pains were five minutes apart and very strong. She clutched at the handle of the door so hard, she bent it.
Max finally stopped and pulled out a Washington street map to get his bearings.
Max, here they come! 99 yelled.
Max gunned the engine and spun away. A few turns later he saw an auto wreaking yard. He slammed on the brakes and barreled through the entrance. Creeping in and out of the skeletal cars, he finally found a spot near the back. He squeezed the small car in-between a van and an old school bus, effectively hiding it from view.
Okay, lets sit here a minute.
I dont think we have a minute, Love.
What?! You said the pains were five minutes apart.
I think theyre about two minutes apart and . . . 99 winced in pain.
Max looked around frantically. His eyes lit on the van.
Come on, Sweetheart.
Where are we going?
The van?! Get me to the hospital!
I CANT! Those Kaos agents are still in the area. Max got out of the car and dug in the trunk. He hurried to the van. The back doors creaked open and he climbed in. After several minutes he was back. As he helped 99 from the car, her water broke.
Oh, shit! Max said. Come on!
He half carried her to the van and helped her in. He had laid out a sleeping bag and several blankets.
Lay here a minute. Ill be right back.
Where are you going!?
To the car. You think Id leave you?
She shook her head.
Max ran back and grabbed a canvas bag out of the trunk. He tossed a lot of dirt and several pieces of scrap metal onto his car, hiding the license plate. Then he climbed into the van and shut the doors.
Okayyourwatersbrokethatmeanswedonthavemuchtime, Max said.
Max . . . calm down.
Max nodded and took a deep breath. Lets see how far apart those pains are. Let me know when you have - Maxs voice was cut off as 99 grabbed his arm in pain. He waited patiently, looking at his watch. 99 grabbed his arm again.
Geeze, 99, theyre less than a minute apart.
Maxwell Smart, I swear, once this is over were never going to . . . she squeezed his arm again, grimacing in pain.
Never going to what?
99 simply stared at him.
He frowned at her in confusion for a moment, then realization dawned. He laughed. Are you serious?
Right now I am . . . Of course, Ill change my mind later.
Sorry about that, 99. He leaned over and gently kissed her ear.
Maxwell! What are you doing? He knew he was in trouble - she called him Maxwell.
Feigning ignorance, he asked, Isnt that a way to help with the birth of the baby?
Not now! Thats supposed to help induce labor. If you try that again, Im getting out of this van and walking to the hospital!
Max burst laughing. He placed a calming hand on her stomach and gave her such a outrageous grin she had to smile back, in spite of the pain. Max dug into the canvas bag, pulling out enough supplies to stock a small hospital . . . towels, baby blankets, scissors, two gallons of water, soap, rubber gloves (misappropriated from the lab), string, a bulb type syringe, baby clothes, plastic bags, a plastic bucket and a book on childbirth.
He picked up a washcloth, dampened it with water and wiped the perspiration from her face.
99 . . . Ive read and reread this book eight times, He said, holding it up. I know what to do and how, where and when to do it. Lets get you undressed, then Ill scrub up.
He helped her off with her clothes and got her into the proper position, trying to make her as comfortable as possible.
Stay just like that, 99, He said, pouring some water into a small container and washed his hands.
Okay, He said, Lets see how dilated you are.
Max . . .
Hold on, 99 . . .
Max . . .
About three centimeters. Youre doing great.
Max . . . theres something I have to tell you.
Hmmmm . . . ?
Im having twins.
Maxs head jerked up. What?!?!?!
Twins. I wanted to surprise you . . . guess I should have known better.
Max frowned in frustration, then gave a deep sigh. Okay, no problem. Ill handle it. Then . . . Oh, no!!
I didnt call the Chief!
I called him.
Hes gonna kill me! Simons probably already at Kaos headquarters!
Max . . .
Im in so much trouble!
Max . . . how did Simon get to Kaos headquarters?
With the map! How else?
Max . . . you have the map! Simons at the hospital! Max . . . I think the first ones coming!
Take it easy, 99, I can see the head.
Max easily delivered their first child, a girl. He turned her over and gently patted her back He cleared more fluid from her lungs with the bulb syringe. Then he tied off the umbilical cord with a piece of string and cut it forward of the knot, close to the baby. He cleaned her with the water in the small container. He handed her to 99 for a moment.
Their eyes met. Shes beautiful, He said softly, reaching to take the baby.
What are you doing? 99 asked weakly.
Weve got one more to go, Max said. Shell be fine here. He wrapped her in one of the baby blankets and laid her beside him on a sleeping bag.
Howre you feeling?
Something doesnt feel right, Max.
What? Max looked, but couldnt see the babys head. What he did see scared him badly, he saw a bottom - the baby was breach. His heart started racing and he tried valiantly to remain in control of his emotions. 99, able to read Max like a book, saw the look on his face and knew something was wrong.
Whats the matter, Max?
The babys breach.
Oh, Max! What are we gonna do?
Take it easy, 99. I know what to do . . . but its going to hurt. Im going to have to reach in and turn the baby around. Ive got to go slow and easy so I dont hurt either one of you. He closed his eyes and took a deep breath. Okay . . . DAMN! He ducked down.
Now what? Kaos?
The Kaos agents had decided to search the auto yard. They slowly made their way through the yard, looking for them. They stopped right next to the van and studied the gold car sandwiched between the van and the old school bus. After a few minutes of discussion, they cruised on.
Max breathed a deep sigh of relief. When he looked up at 99, he saw she was biting down on piece of the vinyl seat cover to keep herself from screaming in pain. He gently touched her thigh and asked if she was ready. She nodded. Max reached in and felt around. Not finding the head, he reached in farther, eliciting a loud groan from 99.
Im going to have to remember this one, He joked.
99 laughed. Stop! It hurts to laugh.
I found the head, Max said, stifling his laughter. Hang on, Sweetheart.
Max slowly moved the baby into the correct position and removed his hands. The baby boy slid out almost before Max had a chance to react. He repeated the same cleaning procedure with his son.
Listen, 99, I have to get this afterbirth.
Max pushed on 99s stomach, flushing the sack into the plastic bucket. He cleaned her gently with soap and water, then stuffed everything back into the bag. He got the twins and placed them on 99s chest.
Hang on, Ill be right back.
He looked carefully before stepping out of the van. He put the bag in the trunk, then opened the passenger door. He put the seat forward and made a comfortable spot with a blanket for 99 and the twins in the back seat. He wrapped her in another blanket and carried them all from the van, settling them in the back seat.
Finally getting the right map from the glove compartment, Max shouted, Hang on, 99. Lets go! He started the engine and roared back, sending dirt and pieces of metal flying in all directions.
He didnt stop when he reached the street . . . and he didnt see the Kaos agents car hiding a half block down. When he looked in the rear view mirror, he swore in frustration.
Theyve found us again, 99. He settled in the seat like a race car driver and floored it, easily losing the much slower car in the afternoon rush hour traffic.
Yee Haw! Lost em, 99! He yelled.
Max? 99s voice sounded weak.
Yeah . . .
Im not feeling too good.
Max forced himself to be calm. Hang on, were almost there.
He roared into the emergency entrance to the hospital, leaving tread as he skidded to a stop. He jumped out of the car and opened the passenger side. As he reached in, an orderly appeared and started yelling at him to move the vehicle. Max grabbed the man by the front of his shirt.
My wife and I just delivered twins . . . I need to shut your mouth about the stupid car and HELP ME!!
Im sorry, sir, He ran inside and was back in two seconds with a gurney and an emergency room nurse.
Be careful, Max said, handing the orderly the twins. With the nurses help, they got 99 out of the back seat and rushed her to the maternity floor. The nurse ordered Max to the waiting room, where he collapsed in a chair and leaned his head against the wall.
The Chief suddenly appeared and sat down beside him. Max! Where the have you been?
Running from Kaos, He replied, knowing full well how it sounded.
Max sighed. I grabbed the wrong coat at the coffee shop. I took Simons instead. I didnt even know he was there . . . wait! He shook his head in dismay. The guy sitting next to me! He had to be Simon, he was just too nice. Anyway, 99 called . . .
I know that! the Chief interrupted.
Max glared at him and continued. We got to the hospital. It turned out to be Kaos headquarters . . . Max continued, telling the Chief the whole story . . . where Kaos headquarters was, their escape, the delivery of the twins and the wild ride to the hospital.
The Chief told Max that Simon had arrived at the hospital looking for a Dr. Kruger. The Chief had recognized him immediately. And it was Larabee, of all people, who had been able to capture him. He said he looked just like his wife.
At that moment, 99s obstetrician arrived. He told Max that the twins were doing great. 99 was a bit weaker than she would have been under normal circumstances, but was fine. Then he praised Maxs research and told him he had done everything exactly right during the delivery.
Can I see her? Max asked.
Sure. She refuses to sleep until she sees you and the twins. Theyre waiting for you in room 286.
Max smiled. Lucky number.
Max slowly opened the door and peered around the corner. 99? Are you awake?
Max stopped halfway across the room. Even though he had delivered his children, he was in total awe.
Theyre beautiful, 99!
Come closer, Max.
He got partway across the room . . . and promptly fell over a cart, sending everything crashing to the floor - including himself.
99 rolled her eyes as Max disentangled himself and stood up.
Sorry about that, 99.
Here, Max. Hold your son.
Max took his son and cradled him gently in his arms. He looked up at 99 and grinned.
Hey! What are we gonna name them?
Well . . . I thought Zachary and . . . Maxine? What do you think?
Max gave her a big grin. Sounds good to me. But . . .
Max sighed. How about Thaddeus for Zachs middle name?
Zachary Thaddeus Smart. A bit long, but - whatever you want, Love. What about Maxines middle name?
Maxine 99 Smart??? Come on, Max, really now.
Well, if youd tell me your name, that could be it.
99 whispered to him. He smiled and nodded.
A nurse entered the room and said the twins had to go back to the nursery.
Ten minutes, Mr. Smart, then out you go.
The nurse wheeled the twins out of the room.
Max? Love . . . Im so proud of you.
Max gave her a wry smile
Max gently sat on the bed next to 99 and hugged her. She cuddled against his shoulder. They sat there for while, not saying a word. Max took 99s hand and held it tightly. His hand was shaking.
Max? Whats wrong?
Delayed reaction. I was scared shitless, afraid Id do something wrong.
But you didnt. And you saved all our lives.
But I was scared, 99. Maybe the chicken contingent is right,
I dont ever want to hear those words out of your mouth again, Maxwell Smart. I was scared too. There arent many men who could have done what you did today.
99 . . .
The door opened and the nurse came in. She motioned for Max to leave. Max shrugged and got up.
Max? What were you going to say?
Max turned to the nurse and asked for two minutes. The nurse nodded and left.
He knelt down beside the bed. Youre my partner, best friend, lover . . . and now the twins . . . A tear rolled down his cheek. 99 wiped it away. I never thought Id have anyone care for me like that, never thought Id have a family.
Max, I always have and always will love you, more than anything in the world.
I love you, 99. He sighed and got up. I guess I better go before the nurse comes and kicks me out. Im going to go tell the Chief we named our son after him.
Okay, Max. You need to talk to him anyway.
Yeah . . . He kissed her. Get some sleep. Ill be back in the morning.
You look so tired.
Not as tired as you.
99 smiled. Good night . . . Dad.
He returned the smile. Good night . . . Mom.
Max gave her a wink and turned to leave. He suddenly remembered something, and as he turned back to tell her, he fell over the cart again.
The Colonel Landau incidents that Max and 99 refer to can be read in Etras story SPY! and my sequel New Thoughts On Spying.
Max mentions that 99 won the Lamont Cranston Award for shadowing in the episode Diamonds Are A Spys Best Friend (#91 - 1968). Lamont Cranston was The Shadow a radio show from the 1940s. One of the key lines in the opening sequence was a disembodied voice intoning Only The Shadow knows . . .
99 says, It feels like Im going to have a basketball. This line comes from a minor character the outstanding, but horrific TV movie The Day After (1983), about the effects of nuclear war on the people of Lawrence, Kansas.
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