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Too Real to be a Show

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Harold Finch is a devoted person to his career in saving lives, but even so, he never expected this. Now he's wearing an evening dress, a long blond wig in Victorian style and a gown in pink silk. Not using a bustle, but the petticoat is thick enough letting layer upon layer of gloss flowing and waving on its surface.

That's so awkward.

"Are you ready Mr. Sparrow?" A young man walked in his dressing room, Finch realized he's the assistant director in this show.

"I... suppose so."

"Wow, you look gorgeous."

Finch frowned, he's not used to be called like that, especially when he was wearing a woman's dress.

"Let's go back to the stage, shall we? Norma definitely will be mad if you're late." The young man looked at his watch.

"OK. Just lead the way."

This was not Finch's plan, at least being an actor...well, actress in a show was not his plan.

It's all started at this morning when Finch received a new number. Norma Desmond, an actress passed her glory days, now live reclusively in a mansion not far from Broadway. She hadn't been offered any role in a play for years, but with her old-days fame, Finch thought, she's still rich enough to attract violent offenders.

Mr. Reese could play the bodyguard once more, but Norma was not hiring. The only person she trusted was her butler, Max, and there seemed no way to get close to her without getting though him.

When Finch hacked and checked every play calendar on Broadway directors, he found Norma was offered a role in a new show, Oscar Wilde and his Salome. Maybe adding Mr. Reese's name as an actor would be a good idea.

Reese was watching all these over Finch's shoulder. "You know this kind of thing is quite nature. Actresses started their career as in some supporting roles, if anyone was pretty, she would be offered as a leading actress in some shows. When they're older, they might get married and back to supporting positions again...and fade out."

"I guess there'll never lack of pretty young faces in Broadway." Finch said, "But Norma, she used to be big."

"She will join this new show? I didn't know she were even planning a comeback."


"I hate that word! It's a return!" Norma almost shouted. "You young actors have no appreciation on the creations I made. Without me you wouldn't have any job...because without me the theatre would be dead decades ago."

"All right, Miss Desmond." Reese said, he played along with her pathologically capricious manner to fit his new cover identity, a newly promoted actor first in a leading role.

She looked at him with edge of her eyes as if he was some kind of young boy too naive to know the great history of hers, so she forgive him, trying to start a more relaxed conversation. "When were you born? I mean what sign of your zodiac?"

"I don't know."

"What month?"

"April 24th."

"Taurus. I like Taurus. They are determined, stable and loyal, protectors and peace lovers. You can trust them." She almost seemed delighted.

"Well, thank you." He's pretty sure Harold would have something to say about why it's impossible for the trajectory of the sun affects your life, but anyway they'd better let their number like them.

"What's your name?"

"John Hayes."

"John the Baptist, what a beautiful name. Now sit down and read your script." She told him as if it's an imperative order.

Reese didn't like that, although he took orders from Finch before, but Finch was not an obsessive person and he never considered himself to have the power over him as a boss. Norma, however, was different. She was born a star, center of the spotlight. She's been so long as a queen that she would never go back to minor again. Reese wondered how she'd act when she found out she was not the only candidate of this role. Defying other actress or maybe begging for a chance in her own proud way to get it?

Then the assistant director come by, just to claim that the other candidate was involved in a car accident. "What a pity." Norma said, she thought she lost a stand-in to do the leg work. "There will be someone else stand on that stage looking gormless when the boys are fixing the lights. It's so easy even a chimp can do that." She required for the understudies list, and that's when Harold Finch's name on it. Oh, it's Harold Sparrow now.