Carson Kearns' Highlander Fanfic

Lost in the Loving: Coming Home

Chapter 8

by Carson Kearns

 

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Apart from the intense memory of being completely, totally, thoroughly and undeniably fucked, (by Methos), Duncan decided that the next best feeling in the world had to be his current one.

//Being cocooned.//

Lying wrapped up in a quilt in the large double bed drifting in and out of sleep……fantasizing……

It could only be improved, he decided, by both feelings and fantasies of Methos - 

//..in this bed, …

…caught up in a hot cloud of down feathers, …//

…fucking him to death. 

//…again and again. …..

…and again…

feathers and fucking....possibilities…

...feathered fucking...//

He smiled...

There were times that his creativity surprised even him. And for such a tired mind, it was being unbelievably innovative with the uses of feathers...

He dreamed....…//fanning the fine edge back and forth over Methos' balls, up and down his penis until it was rock hard…weeping…taking two feathers and fanning them up and down the tender insides of Methos' thighs...lingering over that slightly swollen area…mmmmmmm......where the inside thigh meets the torso...running the feather down either side of his balls …behind the backs of his knees…across the tender inside elbow joints...alternating with soft, wet kisses...deep kisses…deeper kisses..…tonguing him...down his thighs and calves...over the soles of his feet…up the backs of his legs...across his buttocks…lingering there…turning him over…basting him with hot kisses…tenderizing him with juices, back and forth across his nipples…….suckling at his breast...kissing and nibbling and filling his mouth with Methos' nipple …following the feather………….//

Something about shamanism started to intrude……distracting his delicious thoughts. 

//Feathers..... a link…..something to do with the ritual ascent into Heaven …second sight … divination. //

He grunted in assent as he thought of the ecstasy of ascending into heaven with Methos - and feathers.

//Ascent and Assent.

Both.//

He wanted both…..

He thanked the gods for regeneration... 

Languidly, he rolled over, reminding himself that he had promised to join Methos and Mary on their horse ride.

//Horse ride…Whore's ride...//

He'd enjoyed being ridden by the horseman.  Revelled in the feel of his solid thighs steering him. 

Controlling him. 

Fucking him stupid. 

Enjoyed the pain of Methos' fist clutching his hair, as if it were reigns. Leather restraints. Feeling Methos' knees pressing against his thighs, spreading him. Stretching him..

//Whore. //

He smiled a lazy half asleep smile. A decadent smile that only the truly satiated would recognise.

He'd been Methos' whore, and loved it. Didn't have to think about anything. Didn't have to control anything. Just had to lie there and be used …//…amused…fused. //

He breathed deeply...remembering...., breathing the memories in. ..Amanda. Beautiful Amanda.

//...trusting Amanda.//

He continued to enjoy just luxuriating in the hot feathered dome of the quilt, wrapping himself up in his memories of Methos ravaging him.  Amanda ravaging him.  Ravaging them... thoughts tumbled across each other -

//.....sick of being the responsible one. Never gets me anywhere. Be irresponsible, like Methos. Everyone just expects it of him.

I'm staying in bed.//

Bed thoughts came creeping.....//Colored feathers, tickling his anus……slowly, surely exposed by Methos' amazing fingers and thumbs…spreading his buttocks…Methos pleasuring himself on Duncan…pleasuring Duncan...

...possessing him

..becoming him…//

He had no recollection of slipping into darkness - into nothingness -  but at some stage, he realised after, he must have.

Rest had indeed come to him over the past few hours. But so had his responsibilities to those he loved. Excruciatingly painful, - but clear. Methos might not have meant what he said about Mary. But why, Duncan had wondered in the warmth and security of the bed, why had the possibility of Mary's death come so quickly to his lover's mind and tongue?

//Because it's true...//

Methos' words had slashed and burned his soul. //Because,// he had finally admitted, pulling himself deeper into the cocoon of the quilt, hiding, wanting the world to go away, refusing to join Methos and Mary on their ride......//because.....because .....it...was....the truth.// Whilst ever Mary MacLeod Lindsay moved in the same orbit as her beloved "Unca Duncan" she was doomed. As he tossed in the bed, his more rational and mature thoughts had returned, as they so often did, to his meeting with the Dali Llama in Seacouver five years before:

//"...tell me Duncan MacLeod, have you found peace in the path you walk?...And do you still guard the gates?"

....."Someone still must, Your Holiness."

"And will you never find a way to put down your sword and enter the gate?"

"Perhaps in time, Your Holiness. When the Great Wheel spins again."
//

And so the time had once again come, he realised, as it always did, for him to stop indulging his wants and needs and to accept his responsibilities. For surely the fresh graves were testimony enough to his utter inability to stop the spinning of the wheel. But, he could, he decided, at least move those he loved out of the line of impact. The decision taken, he had fallen back into a deep sleep, the better to prepare himself for battle: with a six year old and her Mother. If he told them at all.....//maybe Methos has the right idea in this as well......just disappear from their lives.....slowly.....surely.....//

And then welcome oblivion rescued him, and Duncan MacLeod slept.

And so it was that Methos had the exquisite pleasure of waking him, precisely ten hours after he had left Duncan to go riding with Mary while Duncan caught up on some much needed sleep. The soundness and the deepness of the Highlander's sleep could be gauged by the fact that he hadn't stirred when Methos had entered the room. Methos had stood by the bed, simply staring at his lover, laid out before him. At some stage Duncan had become hot and thrown off the quilt and the black gown, which was now lying in a crumpled heap on the floor. Methos gathered it up and deposited it in the laundry basket. Inspecting it closely he smiled, hoping that the the laundry staff didn't  inspect it too closely or he feared that the Vice Squad might be called.

Thinking of Duncan's sensibilities concerning such things he quickly retrieved the incriminating clothing and linen, and left them to soak in the large basin.

Returning to the bed, he collapsed into the large arm chair by the doors and sat studying the Highlander. He looked calm. And positively filthy. Sweat, semen and blood stained him - and drew his ancient lover. The smell was earthy. 

//So masculine…

Sleeping like a baby.//

Duncan, he reflected, loved sleeping on his back, arms thrown wide or resting on his chest. His head had rolled to the right side and his beautiful, but now badly matted hair, was scattered and flung all over the pillow. 

He thought about the pleasures to be gained by the shampooing of it - the combing out.

//Washing you.

Bathing you.//

A strand of the matted hair had snaked its way across Duncan's cheek and even made its way into the corner of his mouth. It was so tempting, to just reach down and lightly flick the offender out of his lover's mouth, giving him an excuse to let his fingers linger and caress those beautiful, passionate lips. Duncan's upper torso was completely exposed and Methos delighted in continuing to watch the large chest breathe in the oxygen and quietly expel it. His eyes wandered to Duncan's left hand, lying across his chest, fingers just touching the edge of his nipple.

//... already filthy. So am I. Reek of horse. Might as well make the bathing worthwhile…//

Bending down Methos was about to start cleaning Duncan's chest with his tongue and mouth when the Highlander awoke with a start. In that netherworld between sleep and wakefulness, Duncan had too little control to disguise his initial feelings - total fear and mistrust. 

Methos saw him pull back and saw the look of fear that washed across his eyes. It only lasted micro seconds but it was enough.

"What?" Methos asked, starting to smooth his hand back and forth across the proud chest.

"Just a dream. It was nothing." Duncan attempted to smile, clearly still chasing away the gremlins that had disturbed his rest. He reached up to rub his face and beard growth with the flat of his hand..

He gazed up at Methos, his mind working to stay one step ahead. He was determined to not get into a discussion about his intended actions concerning the leaving of Mary and the best way to ensure Methos couldn't talk was to cover his mouth. Reaching up, he cold-bloodedly set out to remind Methos of how much he was loved and desired. And if there was a certain element of manipulation in the Highlander's actions, he mused, then Methos really had no-one to blame but himself. There would be no discussion of his intentions concerning his and Mary's relationship. 

By anyone

For by the time Duncan severed the relationship with Mary, he was determined that it would be too late for Methos to do anything about it.

Blissfully unaware of the thoughts racing through his lover's mind, Methos looked down at the used and abused man below him, and sighed.  He really was a sight for sore eyes - even so stained and filthy.  Indeed, even more so. Leaning into the kiss Duncan was offering, he was aware of something unreadable flashing across his lover's eyes. Dismissing it, he decided that he would enjoy what was being offered, and then tell Duncan of his delightful day with Shirley - and her melodramatic secret - that Unca Duncan was not, in fact, known to this delightful child as Unca Duncan at all, but that secretly she called him Daddy!  And that Mary intended inviting him to a special school occasion "...for the most special person in the student's life..."

As he fell into the kiss being offered he laughed, inwardly, at his now useless plan to steal in and seduce the Highlander. He had worried that a brooding Duncan, left to his own devices all day, would be an angry Duncan. That the more he thought about how he had been tried and executed by Methos, the night before, the more furious he would become. And, perhaps, angry at his enjoyment of his submission? So Methos had blithely decided to distract him, to weave him in wondrous sensuality, entice him into the bodily delights neither of them ever tired of. Dilute his darkness with playful pleasures. The older Immortal had even, he grimaced, considered telling Duncan he was sorry. 

//And now I know how truly madly, deeply I am ensorcelled….saying sorry……must be centuries...//

Duncan continued his own physical counter-attack. 

Methos reasoned, (with that small part of him still capable of reason, that part still unaffected by the waves of heat and passion passing around him and through him and over him) that it wouldn't hurt to remind Duncan that the brutal lover of the night before could also be gentle and caring with his lust and love. To let his body's responses talk of the strange and wondrous occurrence that had happened to him since meeting Duncan MacLeod. He closed his eyes, and breathed the Highlander in, reminding himself what his life now was. That being lost in the loving of the Highlander meant that sometimes Methos was caught adrift. 

Left drowning. 

Being unfair. 

Being wrong. 

That giving himself meant losing himself in the sensuousness of Duncan...

 and the everpresent, ...

everconstant, ...

neverending, ...

unrelenting ache that thrummed the loving of him. 

The stunningly simple, hopelessly complicated loving of him.

And with the keen instinct of centuries he felt himself being seduced by the power - the power of word...the moans and groans and growls, ... pure sexual sensation... being totally wanted, needed, loved and loving. The physical power of control and domination, and of voluntarily yielding to delightful submission. 

He revelled in the feeling of being trapped inside these images and feelings as they layered themselves around the coupling, feeding them, insulating and protecting them from everyone and everything. And inside that insulated space the energy had nowhere to go but back on itself, re-feeding itself, like a Quickening, charging and re-charging, striking at those parts of his body, heart and soul that Methos used to think was dead. 

Before Duncan. ??BD……….BD……..Before Duncan??…….when he used to be so clever…..so insightful (inciteful)……so distant…so removed….so right in his reading of people……….

And as Duncan's hot mouth continued its unrelenting assault on him, and the large callused hands searched out the yearning, yielding planes and surfaces ...as his fingers began their excruciatingly painful, exquisitely wondrous playing of him, Methos….suddenly……stopped. 

And, finally, listened. 

And heard, for the first time since Duncan had started his amorous assault, the dis-chord in the thrumming.

Thousands of centuries was almost enough to give him such finely honed senses that his early warning signals were rarely ignored, except when he knowingly chose to do so. Being played like a rare instrument by the Highlander's mouth, hands and eyes almost qualified. Being so savored, tasted, wanted - loved - almost qualified.

But survival always took precedence. Even over great sex, he marveled.

Pulling back from Duncan's mouth tested every ounce of will and determination he prided himself on having. But pull back he did. And when he saw the look of frustration on his lover's face and listened to the genuinely angry groans, he knew he was right.

"What's this about, Duncan?" he demanded, taking Duncan's face in both hands and not allowing him to turn those eyes away. He moved further back, distancing himself, away from the sheer sexual and animal magnetism spread out before him.

Duncan reacted predictably. "What do you mean, 'What's this about?' I thought I was making love to you." The flush of his skin and the shine in his eyes were proof enough that, despite other agendas, there was no doubt that the Scot was thoroughly aroused and in no mood for more games. "Repelling boarders, Methos?"

Methos' eyes narrowed as he appraised the man before him. Despite his best efforts, Duncan was totally incapable of lying to Methos and getting away with it. Few people ever could. Methos always said that it was the small things that betrayed people.  And he had had five thousand years to study the small things. 

The extra swallow. 

The sudden furling or unfurling of a finger or two. 

The look askance. 

The one million uncharacteristic movements that any part of the face suddenly engaged in. And no-one had studied Duncan like Methos had studied Duncan. //Couldn't lie if your life depended on it.//

 And then there were the big things. Like being so accommodating, so thoughtful, so solicitous of Methos' comfort, when Duncan MacLeod should have been at melt down over Methos' actions of the night before.

Duncan pulled further back, but not enough to break his lover's hold of his face - his most powerful weapon.  He had been learning a lot from Methos, about weapons. About manipulation. But, he conceded, he had always been a superb manipulator, albeit an unconscious one. Methos had enabled him to start to make an art form of it. So much so that now  he could be very deliberate in the weapons he chose. And on the very very rare occasions when his body, or some part of it wasn't enough to get him what he wanted, he was finding that pragmatism served to fill the gap very nicely.

"What if I do have another agenda? There are only so many ways to find it out. Why not choose the most pleasurable?" 

He reinforced the suggestion by further exposing his neck, and taking Methos' hands and guiding them where he wanted them to be.  Pulling  the  hands and fingers to cover it, using them to make love to himself, using them to stroke his own golden flesh,  moving the exquisite centuries old fingers up along his jaw line and over and over his face and, finally, into his mouth. Opening his eyes, he let their power and beauty transfix Methos as he let his tongue and mouth devour the palms and the long sensual fingers, echoing other pleasures that could be Methos' for the mere price of letting this line of questioning drift away……forgotten…….to open himself to being boarded…..take what was being offered…….the price of admission into that hot hot body being so cheap, so very reasonable…

…//so exorbitant//……

Duncan waylaid any further distractions by rising from the crumpled sheets and enfolding his momentarily stunned lover. Forcefully, he turned him so that his greater bulk now pinned the slighter man. "I love your smell Methos…..

//no Diorissimo here//

….you smell of battle. Sweat. Animals….horses." Moving further down Methos' body he breathed in loudly and deeply, taking the heady animal smell from between Methos' thighs deep into his lungs. Saturating his insides with the smell of battle. 

"Want you….I want you….." 

Insistent. Unrelenting. He continued to catalogue the smells and tastes of Methos, removing his clothes roughly as his hands and tongue sought to trace and taste the addictive moisture and sheen coating the lean and refined naked body beneath him. The smell of sweaty horses and Methos was too powerful a combination. Particularly in this landscape with its memories of adrenalin overload, warriors, battles, deaths, submissions, defeats and victories. There would be no further defeat, he decided, to add to his stock. Only the heady smell and prize of victory. //And surely, to the victor go the spoils??…..

"Pragmatism Duncan? The last refuge of the guilty….."

Duncan took his mouth off Methos' stomach only to draw breath. "Want me to stop? Because I'm not going to…….you'll have to fight me….." He closed his large hand possessively around his lover's balls, squeezing and releasing and positioned himself so that he lay between the magnificent powerful legs.

His matted hair now framed one of the most deliciously decadent scenes that Methos had ever seen. Focussing only on the glazed eyes and the wet, swollen mouth he simply surrendered. "Who said I had a problem with pragmatism, MacLeod?"

The boarder moved quickly and savagely to signal possession. There was to be no slow teasing and enticing…..//no feathered fucking//……his body commanded. "Feral fucking," he laughed, aloud. It was the last fully coherent thought either of them had for the next twenty minutes. With no warning at all Duncan gripped each of Methos' hands and immobilized them behind his back, taking the opportunity to rub his face back and forth across Methos smooth skinned stomach - knowing that his whiskers would scratch and hurt - and stimulate. Gradually he crawled up Methos' torso and savagely took possession of first one nipple and then the next, never letting Methos' hands free…using his own weight to keep the beautiful body trapped beneath his foraging mouth and tongue and teeth.

And just when Methos thought that he may go well and truly insane, Duncan would pull back, look at him with those eyes, and simply start to graze again, over whatever bodily plane below him he wished to - never asking permission. Never brooking denial. And finally, the marauder had what he wanted - had every nerve ending screaming its pleasure and ecstasy, releasing sweet sweaty juices all over the tortured torso, sending rich, thick blood to stiffen and feed every possible organ and orifice in preparation for the Highlander's most welcome and most desired entry.

So that when Duncan roughly threw him onto his stomach, and reached under him to circle his lean hips, it was with every expectation of having his hips pulled backwards onto the gorgeous engorged cock Methos had  been yearning for. He almost came as he felt the large hands grip his hips and pull him backwards and felt the Highlander's heavy body fall over his back. The large hands came immediately to rest on top of Methos', once again immobilizing them. 

And then he felt it - felt that large, thick beautiful cock nestling against his anus…could feel the seeping pre cum that signaled the intensity of Duncan's own reactions and feelings. He prepared himself for a rough coupling, if the pre cum was to be the only lubrication. 

Indeed, he welcomed it. 

He moaned deeply as Duncan moved their hips and teased him with soft pushes….quietly insistent …..pushing against the puckered opening but refusing to enter. Methos felt his own cock getting painful as it desperately sought the added stimulation of a hand or a passage to squeeze its juices and entice them to leave his body, forever. And nothing gave him more pleasure than to release those juices into the body of the Highlander, so that they were never wasted on silken sheets but were sprayed into the silken throat or the hot tight anal passage of his lover, to become part of the living, breathing wondrous creature that was Duncan MacLeod.

But his lover was offering no such release...no hand, no mouth, no anus. He wouldn't release either of Methos' hands so that he could stimulate himself to orgasm. And as his frustration mounted he heard it, once again - 

the dis-chord in the thrumming, as it started to repeat itself…..

...and he felt Duncan's cock move away from his anus and begin to thrust itself between the soft skin of Methos' upper thighs, where enough sweat was running to provide any lubrication required to bring on the Highlander's final explosion.

"Duncan - please…please. I want you . Fucking fuck me. Now!"

He could hear Duncan's efforts to control and delay his release….hear the breathing get slower and deeper. And then his lover spoke.

"Say 'I'm sorry Duncan.' "

"You are a fucking, spoiled brat. Fuck me. Hard. Now."

"No. And don't try and move or I'll hurt you…."

"What happened to the fucking boyscout?"

" Say "Sorry..'."

And all the while the thrusting continued, its rhythm never broken, its intensity at fever pitch.

"I'm sorry Duncan. Sorry…."

He could have sworn that Duncan took far too much delight in the laughter that accompanied his verbal acknowledgment of the sweet fucking obvious. "Too late, old man……" and Methos cried out in frustration as his thighs were covered in what seemed like pints of rich, creamy sweet sweet Scottish semen, now wasted, trailing down his legs instead of coursing through his insides, washing up against his prostate, searching out the familiar inner trails and paths.

He was furious. 

And still the heavy, heaving Scottish warrior kept him imprisoned. And still his own cock cried out for release. "You are a fucking cunt MacLeod. A vicious, manipulative, spiteful, fucking A1 bastard."

Deep panting was his only immediate response, as Duncan's orgasm finally subsided. The particular fucking bastard was flattered. Leaning in to kiss the vulnerable neck below his mouth, he whispered, "Thank you. Coming from you that's quite the compliment. I knew you'd be proud of your handiwork. I was always a quick study."

And as Methos had the good grace to at least start laughing, in silent salute, his lover at least had the equal good grace to slip around under his body and take his weeping cock into his mouth as he used the large callused hands to grab each rounded buttock and help Methos pummel his release into the hot throat now encasing Methos' cock.  Duncan refused to let his lover's penis leave his mouth until every last drop of liquid, - external and internal, - had been mercilessly milked. And even then he refused to let it go…insisting on licking it and caressing it and biting it until he could taste of its sweetness again….and again………

"Stop ….please Duncan. I'm going insane." Pulling the larger man up to face him they both collapsed back on the bed, laughing. "If you even try to say that "Payback's a bitch" I swear I'll personally behead you." Leaning over he pulled the Highlander into his arms and kissed the swollen mouth, tenderly.

"Mmmmmm. I liked it. You're right Methos. Being a bastard is so satisfying. I'll have to keep on practising."

"There wasn't too much in that display that was me MacLeod. You were a bastard a long time before you met me. Maybe I just bring your natural tendencies to the surface."

"Maybe. I need a bath," he conceded, wrinkling his nose at the mess and the stale odours permeating the room and his body.

"On that we are most definitely agreed. You stay here and I'll go run it. Come in, in five minutes, and I'll help you try and get some of that filth out of your hair and off your body."

Duncan watched Methos' lithe body retreat into the bathroom and found himself falling once again into musing about their relationship. //Feral Fucking//…….it was no mean feat, he mused, that such creative alliteration could still come so readily to mind, when all synaptic connections seemed fused and useless. But Methos always had that effect on him. Sex was rarely just sex. Loving was never just loving. He always invoked so many other layers to surround them with - poetry, wit, literary allusions, art. Centuries of living and imbibing the cultural, political, spiritual…and Methos was such a generous lover, most of the time, that he couldn't help but somehow weave all of this magic into their love making.  Phrases were scattered, wondrous allusions invoked along with earthy, primal references…stimulating…motivating… enrapturing….wonderful moans and groans, in so many languages…so many phrasings and cadences…Though, he had to admit, he hadn't heard too many high brow phrases in the past 30 minutes. 

//Fucking cunt//….that was a new one, he laughed.

Methos had to finally come and drag him out of the bed, after the Scot revealed that he never, ever, intended leaving it, even if he simply stuck to the sheets forever and forever. That it was his cocoon…and he was dreaming about feathered fucking and that Methos should fuck off and leave him alone…or go and find some feathers……..and finally sinking into the scented steamy water he luxuriated in the water cocoon as his entire body was cleansed and scrubbed and his hair was shampooed three times and combed through with all the conditioner still in it, so knotty had it become….and he didn't open his eyes once…..just let Methos tend him, clean him, love him.

Finally he felt alert and awake and was surprised to find that it was only 3pm. Turning to find his running gear, he announced that his body needed a hard run and that Methos was free to join him.

"You have got to be kidding. Jog indeed. I'll be in the library when you get back. By the way, you're in trouble with Shirley. Your word's mud with her."

Duncan stopped at the door, but didn't turn around. "What do you mean?"

"You promised her that you would join us. You didn't. You've just fallen from a very high pedestal. Fortunately I was there to sing your praises and salvage your reputation as her white knight. We need to get our lies straight by the way. I told her that you were probably fighting the Loch Ness monster or killing some dragons that were getting too close to the house."

"Wonderful Methos. What's wrong with you? You can't tell
a six year old those sorts of things. She'll have nightmares for days." He looked back, exasperated, as he pulled his wet hair into a tight ponytail.

"No she wont. She told me that she never has bad dreams because you chase all the bogey men away from her. She said that you told her that even if you're not around, that she only has to think of you and…." But he never finished as Duncan interjected.

"I don't want to hear it. Any of it."

"Why?" Sudden realization dawned and Methos settled back against the fire mantle, his arms spread out on either side as he faced the newly tense body across the room. 

//So, Highlander, decided that it's time to say goodbye to our little golden haired girl, eh?//

 He decided to up the ante. "You know that she calls you 'Daddy'."

Duncan froze. "What! I'm not her father? Does she think I am?" He turned and faced Methos, incredulous. "Has Anne told her that I'm her Father?"

"No - at least I don't think she has. It was all Shirley's idea. It's her secret name for you. She's constructed quite the fantasy world ….she pretends that you're really her loving Daddy who can't live with her all the time because you're a great Worrier who is always having to help people with their problems and fight bad people……and practise your dancing for when you're in the circus……"

"In the circus?" Duncan shook his head, trying to dislodge the ludicrous image of him dancing in a Circus…made all the more bizarre by sudden images of Amanda - and him, dancing - in a circus
!

"Well don't ask me!  I'm just the faithful recorder of this little girl's fantasies. Her very real fantasies, Duncan. You'll have to act surprised when she asks you to come to her school. Apparently they have a Special Person Day and Shirley has decided that you're the only person who qualifies, apart from Joe and me, who come a very distant second and third. She said…."

But Duncan had thrown up his shields, as he simultaneously threw open the door, and quickly left the room.

Methos moved to the window so he could watch him run down the drive, before reaching the road. Even from that distance the new tension in his body was obvious.

"Well, well, well. Won't this be interesting." Feeling particularly meddlesome he decided to seek out Joe and tell him of his suspicions.

Following the sounds of a gentle strumming, Methos soon found the Watcher sitting alone by the fire, sipping a beer. Telling him his suspicions, Joe shook his head. "So tell me Methos. Why would MacLeod suddenly get it into his head that he needs to stay away from Mary?"

"It may have been something I said in a moment of anger."

"It may have been! Has anyone ever told you that you can be a…"

"Yes Joe - you have. Hundreds of times. So - what's your solution?"

"Buddy - I don't have one. You know MacLeod. Once he gets a notion in his head there's no changing it. And if you can't change it, no-one can."

"Very flattering Joe, but not much help."

"The Watcher looked over his glass at Methos, before resuming his strumming. "Why do you care anyway? I thought you had no time for Goldilocks, or whatever you call her."

Methos sneered. "The fact I find all children, all immortals, (including MacLeod), most mortals and most pets thoroughly tiresome and, certainly in this century as far as children are concerned, precocious with so little to be precocious about, doesn't mean that I don't have a certain soft spot for her. And besides,  - Duncan loves her."

"Ah - I see. Duncan loves her. Well - have you stopped to think he may be right. Imagine how he'd feel if anything happened to her."

"I'm going to count to ten and pretend that you didn't just say that. Hasn't anybody ever heard of individual responsibility? If her Mother says it's okay, then it's okay. Christ, how many more safety measures can we put in place? He's never alone with her, off holy ground. You've totally bastardized your non-interference oath to tell us whenever another Immortal is around. He even carries a fucking gun for Christ's sake. When your time's up, it's up. He's just been thrown by seeing Tessa and Richie again."

"Yeah - well, they're both pretty stark reminders of what can go wrong."

"And what can also go right Joe. Who's to know what might have been, had he never met them."

The conversation was terminated by one very sweaty, hot Highlander arriving in the hall, stretching and massaging his legs. Gazing up he watched Methos and Joe staring at him, and smiled. "Talking about me?"

"You've got delusions of grandeur MacLeod. I've told you before, conversations do take place in the world without your immortal presence fueling them."

"Hah! That means 'Yes' in Methosian."

"Joe raised his glass and turned to Methos, laughing. "He's getting good."

"He was always good, Joe. Always." And leaving the room, he followed the dripping Highlander up the stairs and into their bathroom. Preparing for a long and tiring conversation, he asked, "So - what have you decided to do about Mary?"

Duncan turned and gave him one of his best disparaging looks. "I've decided to let things stay as they are. But we need to talk about sex. And women."

And as the bathroom filled with steam, Methos simply stood there, shaking his head, wondering what a five thousand year old immortal had to do to get some peace and quiet and certainty into his life. But the answer, of course, was obvious. There was only one course of action that could ever deliver those requirements.

Leave the Highlander.

Or get hopelessly drunk.

Or both.

"I'll be in the conservatory. Comatose. Don't try reviving me for at least three days," he sighed to the steam, despairing of ever being able to understand the younger generation.

Go to Chapter Nine

 


Re-edited 15 May 2001
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