A Wooster in Smallville

by LaCasta

What if Bertie Wooster ends up visiting Smallville?

Not even going to try to make the premise credible, just having fun.

All kinds of liberties taken with Smallville geography, I think. For all I know, things actually are where I put them for my convenience and the sake of Bertie's and Jeeves' feet.

I just picked one episode at random to Bertie-ize, you know how to communicate if you want more!

"I say, Jeeves, these American cities have odd names." I pointed at a sign that said that we were driving through a place called Smallville and to add to the wild excitement, claimed that it was the meteor capital of the world. "And why would a town say that a chappie could get hit on the head by a rock at any time? Worse than lunch at the Drones, though that's buns and the occasional bowl of s., not a rock."

Jeeves must have eaten fish for dinner last night, developing the brain cells no end. "The events the sign refers to took place fifteen years previously, there have been no recurrences since."

I put the roof down, confident that no rocks were going to damage the Wooster or Jeeves noggins. Jeeves must have softened his attitude towards the blending with the locals, don't you know? I'd bought a pair of blue jeans and I thought they gave me a kind of man of the people look, casual, dashing, ready for anything, the kind of bean who would go rock climbing or breaking wild horses at the drop of a h. Jeeves disapproved and had tried to leave them in every town we were visiting but we Woosters will not be dictated to about matters of fashion. Jeeves said that fashion was not the word in question but I fixed him with the cold, firm eye and he bubbled down.

I was writing an article on traveling in America for my aunt's `zine, as we writers call them. I wasn't quite sure what to say about cornfields and wheatfields and cowfields that would grab the reader's attention and not let go until he'd sent in the doubloons for a lifetime subscription. Meteor capital of the world didn't exactly promise the thrills and I was wondering if even Jeeves could make it cause tinglings up and down the s.

The car engine started to make the kind of noise a cat does when it sees the cat it quarreled with ten years ago about the cat in the first part stealing the mouse of the cat of the second p. and then it stopped, abandoning the Wooster expedition in the middle of nowhere.

"I will attempt to diagnose the problem."

"I'll try to flag down the passing motorist. There are probably all kinds of Boy Scouts around here, ready to commit good deeds on distressed travelers." Jeeves opened the car and began to be firm with its innards.

I don't know if you know what the word ostentatious means but the car that went zipping by fit it to a T. I waved the arms and it backtracked.

"A classic Bentley in trouble?" asked the chappie who got out. "That's an occasion." The clothes matched the car but he was balder than Roderick Glossop, the psychologist chappie who thinks that Bertie's natural habitat is an asylum, but that's not a reason to hold a grudge. Having no secrets from this man, I introduced self and companion and told him that the car had sputtered to a halt and asked if he could summon up a mechanic. He said that he was Lex Luthor and the name rang bells in the Wooster brain but I couldn't remember if he was a notable newt fancier like Gussie Fink-Nottle or a famous author like humble self or a golfer, so I just said, exercising the Wooster bonhomie, that I knew the name.

"I'm not surprised." Using a phone that he could have dropped in his ear to keep safe, he called his mechanic and said that we were two miles east of the castle.

It never rains but it pours, as Jeeves neatly put it one day, and another vehicle came along, this time what Jeeves told me is called a pickup truck. It stopped, too, and out hopped the kind of chappie that the rugby coaches would say is just what the doctor ordered.

"Hi, what's up?"

The Luthor bean introduced him as Clark Kent and I explained that the old mode of t. had gone on strike but that the U.S. Marines are on their way, thanks to the Luthor bean.

"Wow, Lex, a car that could actually rival yours."

"Mine happens to run," he said repressively, if that's the word I'm looking for. I wondered if I could set up a little match with him against Aunt Agatha when she's explaining in some detail that life is real and life is earnest and other such concepts that otherwise interfere with the digestion.

"Well, it doesn't look like you need any help, and I've got to get this produce in. See you later, Lex, nice to meet you, Mr. Wooster, Mr. Jeeves, I hope it's not anything serious with the car." He got into his truck again and waved as he drove off.

The ministering mechanic drove up and after poking respectfully at the car said that it had a drip in the old something-or-other and he'd have to order a new one. I nodded as though I knew what he meant and he towed the car away. The Luthor chappie offered us a ride into the bustling heart of the city and when I mentioned that the Wooster expedition would search for the source of tea, said that a place called the Talon should provide what's needed.

Jeeves and I found a bed and breakfast where mine host greeted us as long-lost brothers. I told Jeeves that it was probably the blue jeans and he raised the eyebrow skeptical but couldn't argue the point.

Two girls were sitting at the counter of the Talon, talking and laughing. One was the spiritual-looking type, if you know what I mean, the kind who might write poetry about dewdrops and rainbows and other things of that n. and the other was the bright and lively type who would have made a perfect flapper. The spiritualish one asks if she can help us and we communicate that tea is what is called for.

"I love your accent, are you from England?" the flappery one asked and since we Woosters always fly the flag of honest dealings, I say as much and add the Wooster and Jeeves names to her storehouse of information.

"I'm Chloe. How did you get here all the way from England?"

"Duty called and when the voice of duty calls, Woosters don't roll over and ask for another fifteen minutes, please. I'm writing about my travels in America for my aunt's `zine, if you know what that is."

"Oh, you're a journalist. So'm I. Listen, let me interview you for The Torch."

I demured a bit at that but as a matter of form, don't you know, and she had her computer out.

"So have you seen anything weird in Smallville?"

I must have looked a bit taken-aback since she said that she thinks Smallville is the World Capital of Weird.

"I've only been here a few hours, but it looks as normal as a cat on a vicar's lap."

The spiritually girl, who brought the liquid r., laughed and said that here, Chloe would probably say that it's a mutant cat. Chloe explained that everybody laughed at her but she had documentation on her Wall of Weird. Since the team of Wooster and Jeeves has faced down angry swans, ravening aunts, and romance novelists, I was able to raise the unfazed eyebrow and hoist the calm demeanor.

When I asked what kinds of revels the town presents for an active young man and escort, the spiritual one, adding that her name is Lana, says that there's a poetry reading at the Talon that night. I wouldn't say that the Wooster cheek paled but it was a near thing, and we made what Jeeves said would be considered a streategic retreat.

He suggested an exploration of the town and not having anything better to do and thinking of building up an appetite for d., I fell in with his suggestion, adding that the jeans made for perfect walking attire and I might even get some gym shoes while here, a remark he pretended not to have heard.

Our stroll took us to the outskirts of the town where we saw a sign labeled Kent Farms. I speculated that that was the source of the rugby-looking chappie and Jeeves agreed that it was a strong possibility. The team of Jeeves and Wooster was proven right as the chappie zipped past us. Zipped is just the right word, since he was moving faster than the cocktails at a Drone's Club party.

"They must feed these farm boys," I noted to Jeeves, who was pondering the situation as well.

"It seems quite likely." He seemed a bit subdued and I knew the signs of the clouds of thought gathering and retreated respectfully. Jeeves' brain is a thing of wonder, don't you know?

Jeeves and I made the return trek to town and dropped in on a place where a gin and t. could be applied to restore the tired tissues. Jeeves said that according to Shakespeare, it's sleep that knits the raveled sleeve of care but I put it to him with great logic that his pal wasn't on the mark that time, though he still said a lot of bright and breezy things, I added encouragingly.

Jeeves picked his corner to nurse a drink in while I found myself engaged in conversation by a member of the f. sex who told me her name is Nell and that she's the local florist. She was definitely a hard-boiled egg and I found it hard to believe that she's Lana's aunt, but then my aunt Dahlia says much the same about me. Not that she finds it hard to believe that I'm Lana's aunt, because I'm not, of course, but that she finds it hard to believe that she's my aunt. Another g. and tonic slipped down the Wooster hatch and conversation continued.

I regaled, if that's the word I'm searching for, her with some of the chronicles of the Wooster existence and even admitted that part of the reason I came to the states was to avoid further confrontations with Esme Hetherington who interpreted normal friendliness as declaration of undying l. and necessitated escape. She looked a bit frost-bitten at that and I thought to myself that she probably thinks of solidarity in the gender and all that.

Since the camaraderie between self and Nell had dwindled and Jeeves finished knitting his raveled sleeve, we headed out into the night.

Perhaps the sense of direction was muddled by the consumption of beverages because despite my leadership, we found ourselves on what could be called the outskirts of the town. Another ostentatious car went by and we tried to flag it down to ask for directions, but even though it looked like the Luthor bean at the helm, it didn't stop.

I argued that it might be heading into the town and that we should follow its tracks. Jeeve demured but the Wooster spirit held strong and steadfast. I shouldn't be surprised if the Woosters were hot peppers in the Battle of Hastings.

It was like a meeting of old friends when we followed the car to a petrol station and saw the rugby chappie, the Luthor chappie, and two other chappies. The Luthor chappie invited the rugby chap and his pal into the car and I was just about to hail them and see if any of them had boy scout blood enough to point us in the right direction when the Luthor chap started spraying gasoline all over the outside of the car, then set it on fire.

I thought what a bad show that was as Jeeves and I started to run to render assistance, don't you know, but rugby chappie had the situation in h. and tore the car apart, then took other chappie into the station. Jeeves advised caution as we crept forward to observe. Unless it's police or aunts or girls with the light of determined romance in their eyes, we Woosters don't often creep but there are strange circs and Jeeves' pal Darwin whom he mentions often in the casual conversation says that it's important to adapt to said circs, or something along those lines. Adaptation comes into it, anyway.

The Luthor chappie got what looked like a gun from those gangster films and went inside, cautiously tracked by self and Jeeves. We were about to locate a phone to call the gendarmes when Luthor chappie starts shooting. Jeeves and I exchanged the worried glance and I felt pretty helpless, if you know what I mean, when the poor rugby fellow went down before we got to the phone.

I couldn't believe my eyes when the rugby chap got up and dealt firmly with the Luthor chappie, looking as though being shot like that was like a minor boxing match. When we saw other cars and police cars and such come along, under Jeeves' advice that as he put it, our incomplete understanding would complicate matters, we crept away.

Maybe Jeeves' Shakespeare pal is right after all, because that night, when I had a choice between another g. and t. and a good eight hours, I picked the eight hours.

Even Jeeves' mighty brain was puzzled when that next morning, the Luthor chappie called to say that his mechanic had gotten the part that the car needed, and he sounded all cheerio and as though God's in his heaven and all's right with the world, as Jeeves says his girlfriend Pippa puts it. It would take a while to get it installed and up and running again, he said, and Jeeves and I lingered in the town a bit longer, drinking tea and watching the people go by. Late afternoon, rugby chappie came into the Talon and looked remarkably full of beans, even when Luthor chappie came in a few minutes later. They even had a cup of coffee together, which caused some furrowing of the brow on the parts of Jeeves and self.

The mechanic bean came along with the mode of transportation and Jeeves loaded the luggage.

"You know, Jeeves," I mused, "Americans are decidedly odd. No wonder they threw away all that perfectly good tea in Boston."

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