Piper Perabo's entire career has been building to this moment, as her character on Covert Affairs gets to answer one of humankind's greatest questions.
Does a kiss change everything?
"It does!" Perabo says. "I'm so excited to say, yes, it does!"
At the end of last season on Covert Affairs, Perabo's character, CIA agent Annie Walker, finally shared a kiss with her co-worker Auggie Anderson, played by Christopher Gorham. Now, with the fourth season of Covert Affairs debuting across Canada Wednesday on Showcase, it's a different world for Annie and Auggie, a technical operative who was blinded on a mission to Iraq.
"You know, Chris Gorham and I always hoped that they would start writing in this direction," Perabo says. "We tried to sprinkle in that kind of energy.
"So when the two characters finally kissed at the end of last season, we were sort of waiting with bated breath to get the premiere script (for the fourth season). And boy, does it change everything.
"He and I always would talk about, 'We're just trying to keep it on a low simmer.' I'd be like, 'So, what if I just accidentally brushed up against you, does that seem like a low simmer?' And he'd be like, 'Yeah, but make it quick, otherwise it might start to boil.' "
Perabo believes that had the Annie-Auggie kiss happened, say, at the end of the first season, it wouldn't have had nearly as much impact.
"Really, when you decide to start dating someone who has been a good friend of yours, that's always years in the making," Perabo says. "We built this up for three seasons."
Perabo, 36, has been a staple on the entertainment scene, mostly in movies, since her breakout role in the 2000 film Coyote Ugly. Covert Affairs, which originates on the USA Network, is Perabo's first leading role in a television series, and it earned her a nomination for a Golden Globe Award in 2011.
"When I read the pilot for this show all those years back, I never believed it would get this far," Perabo says. "So many pilots get made, you just roll the dice and cross your fingers.
"But it's a golden age for television writing. And when you do only a summer season (no season of Covert Affairs has been longer than 16 episodes), you still have time to do films in between. It gives you down time away from the show to sort of dream about it and think about it. It's fun to go away and come back to a character that you like."
Not only is Annie Walker a character that Piper Perabo likes, Annie also serves as confirmation that smooches have power.
"This season definitely is about, 'Can you have a personal life and be a spy?'" Perabo says. "It's one of the major questions that the writers are posing. And by bringing Annie and Auggie together, they are putting that question at the forefront.
'It's true, a kiss changes everything."
But now that we're on the subject, Piper, I sure hope that Christopher Gorham kissed you decently and wasn't some sort of wimpy, weak-lipped wonder.
"Oh, he brings it," Perabo says with a laugh.