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This is my challenge story- Allanis Morrissette's song Thank U was the inspiration. I'd hope to post before Christmas, but Real Life got in the way. Just consider it a late arrival. This takes place after Indiscretions. thanks to Kamil for Beta reading Duncan, Methos and Joe belong to Rysher. I make no money from this. Comments welcome.
It was December in Paris, a fresh white blanket of snow covered the ground, giving the city a fairytale appearance. Methos waited on customers at Shakespeare and Company on the busy pre-holiday Sunday. The radio was on playing a mix of Christmas Carols and top forty. Potpourri was simmering in several areas of the store giving off wafts of cinnamon, pine and spice. It was the middle of the afternoon and there was a lull in business as the last of the lunch time customers completed their purchases. Methos sat down on the stool behind the cash register, watched the snowfall, and listened to the music on the radio.
How about me not blaming you for everything How about me enjoying the moment for once How about how good it feels to finally forgive you How about grieving it all one at a time
<MacLeod , that song was written with us in mind. We play see-saw like two small children. I make you mad, you forgive me. You make me mad, I forgive you. We canít live in peace and harmony. It would be so much easier if Iíd never met you, never read your chronicle, never talked to Darius...
Methos hadnít seen MacLeod in several weeks. Heíd been too mad at Macís latest tirade. Joe and Methos had been working in Joeís office on a slow Tuesday night. It had snowed earlier in the day and the happy hour crowd had gone home to their nice warm houses rather than brave the roads. Joe sat at his desk, looking at his computer and Methos sprawled on the couch as usual. Methos had been telling stories to Joe .
'So tell me another story, Methos. Its slow tonight and I've got no where to go," Joe coddled Methos.
"Let's see, Dawson, how about the time I was a plantation owner."
"A plantation owner," Joe whislted. This I gotta here." Joe turned his chair and looked at the ancient immortal.
"Remember Morgan, the Immortal who chased us after kidnapping Amy."
"Yeah, I remember the Son of A Bitch. What about him?"
"Well I didn't just sleep with his slaves, I stole them from under him and set up my own little shop."
"You did what. Tell me."
" I was very angry with Morgan after killing Charlotte and I wanted to get back at him. He chased after me that night, but I didn't stay to fight."
"I know, you told me," Joe acknowledged.
"I was very angry. I needed a way to hurt him that would make a lasting impression."
"But didn't sleeping with Charlotte accomplish that?" Joe asked Methos.
"He was angry, yes. I wanted to make him pay for Charlotte's death."
"Oh I see." Joe stated, shaking his head.
Joe went out to the bar to get Methos and himself beers. Coming back in to the back room, he urged Methos to continue his tale.
"I wanted to keep him in the dark about my retribution." Methos smiled as he remembered this devilish deed of revenge. He took a swig of his beer and continued. "Every Thursday my office served the slave population. It was good business to ensure that slaves stayed healthy as a sick slave couldn't perform its work. One Thursday after our little "encounter" a slave from Morgan's plantation was brought in. He had yellow eyes and appeared a little jaundiced. He suffered from a mild infection, but only I knew it wasn't contagious. I ordered the local law enforcement to shut down the plantation.and placed all the slaves in "quarantine". " Methos laughed as he told his story. "Of course, that wasn't the end of the tale. I told the sheriff that the slaves had to be taken to sea as they were a threat to the population. I took all of his slaves and left town. "
"You didn't?" Joe replied laughing.
"Oh yes, but that wasn't all I did."
"Go on, finish the story." Joe replied eagerly as he took another swig of beer and leaned toward Methos.
"Then I took the slaves up to Mississippi and started my own plantation.
"Yep. I'd say you got revenge., Old Man." Joe laughed again. "Anymore stories? You can entertain me anytime.."
Methos started to talk, but Joe saw the unmistakable look in his eyes, another Immortal was near. "Someone's here?"
"Yes, Joe. Duncan's coming." Methos responded, a smile growing on his lips.
He turned toward the door to welcome his friend, but saw Mac walking away from the door. He yelled for him to wait up, but Mac didnít stop walking. Methos caught up with him.
"Hey Mac, Whatís up?" he asked his lover.
"Whatís up? He asks. I heard the last of your tale is whatís up. I'm always asking you to tell me about your past, share some of yourself, but you always refuse. Then I walk into Joe's and hear you telling him stories from your past." Mac looked at Methos, the disgust in his eyes evident. "I will never understand you Methos. Iíll see you around." Duncan walked back to his car, not turning to look at Methos.
That had been their last conversation and Methos wasnít certain he really wanted Mac back in his life. After all he was sure that Mac would overhear another conversation and theyíd go through the same song and dance again. Couldnít Macleod trust him? Methos missed him, but was not sure he wanted to start over again. Maybe this time Mac had gone too far. He wasnít sure he wanted to get involved with him. It meant so much pain, so much hurt and fear, but it meant love, passion, and meaning to his life. The bloody Scot got him so confused sometimes. Customers began filling the store and Methos was too busy to think about MacLeod.
It was 8:00 p.m. and the last customer left Shakespeare and company. Methos counted the days receipts, put them in the bank bag, locked the doors and left for the evening. The snow continued to fall and it looked like there would be a white Christmas. He dropped the money at the bank and continued walking. He didn't have a destination in mind, just allowed his feet to walk. He'd been walking for half an hour when he felt presence. As he looked around, he saw he was in front of the barge.
How had he gotten here? Of course he knew that he walked here, but why?
<Destiny must be playing her hand again. I wish she'd just leave me alone. I don't need MacLeod. Oh hell, I'll go wish him a Merry Christmas.
Methos walked up the gangplank of the barge and Duncan felt his unmistakable presence. He looked out the porthole and saw the ancient immortal walking up the plank. Anger, frustration, relief all fought his mind for primary control, but the emotion that won one was love and loneliness. He loved the man and he missed him.
Duncan opened the door before Methos knocked and beckoned him in.
Silence permeated the barge. Methos started to speak, but Duncan stopped him by putting his finger to Methos' lips.
"I was wrong again. I'm sorry. I'm glad you stopped by. Take your coat off. It's wet. I'll grab you a beer."
"Mac, thanks.....but "
"But what Methos?" concern in his face. "Methossssss," Duncan responded with irritation.
"I can't do this Mac. I can't keep the see saw up any more. You find out about my past, get angry , walk away and then forgive me. I get mad at you for something or other, walk away, and then forgive you. Why can't we just live our lives today, not yesterday, not tomorrow. I don't want to keep track of my every move to ensure it meets your approval."
How about me enjoying the moment for once How about how good it feels to finally forgive you How about grieving it all one at a time
Methos turned to leave the barge and Duncan pulled him back.
"You're not going anywhere old man," Duncan groaned as he pulled Methos to the couch. "You're right you know. I need to live in the present, not your past." Duncan leaned close to Methos as he whispered softly to his lover.
Duncan took off Methos' coat and kissed him. Methos responded and he forgot his resolve to not play see- saw again.
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