Comments Welcome. E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks to my beta readers Cassidy and Susan. I owe the progress in my craft to these ladies.
As Duncan parked the car into the allotted space in the Orly airport garage, he rubbed his eyes with his hands and stretched his arms toward the roof of the car, trying to shake off the slight discomfort he felt in the pit of his stomach. When they'd begun working on a special project to write Joe's memories, sort of his own chronicles, Joe had asked to see Methos and MacLeod had contacted him. MacLeod hadn't seen Methos in several years, but their relationship appeared to have been mended from their days after the Horsemen fiasco. Walking through the doors of the airport, he felt for his Katana, safely hidden in the folds of his duster. He walked toward the screen listing the incoming flights on Japan Airline and noted that Methos' flight was on time and at gate 27. As he walked down the aisle to meet his ancient friend, he recalled their last conversation only days ago and the undercurrent of excitement he felt at the prospect of seeing his friend.
"Hello. Grand Matin, hotel. May I help you?" the clipped voice at the other end of the phone answered in French.
"Can you ring Michael Adams's room, please?"
"Of course. One moment please."
"Hello." Methos answered the phone, a little hesitantly since few people knew his location.
"Methos. It's Duncan. How are you?"
"MacLeod, How should I be?"
"I'm sure you are fine."
"What do you want, MacLeod. I'm sure you didn't call me to discuss my health." Methos replied, his sarcasm and impatience growing.
"I'm calling about Joe."
"Joe. Is he okay? " He felt his heart race and his body flushing as he heard the Watcher's name.
"Joe's fine. He'd like to see you."
Feeling his heartbeat slow and his body cooling from the air condition blowing in the room, he repeated, "Joe's fine."
"Yes, he's fine, but he is getting old and I'm not sure how long he'll be around. He asked me to call and see if you'd come visit."
"Visit? " The ancient man replied as if it was a foreign idea.
"Yesss. Visit. Get on a plane, fly to Seacouver, stay a few weeks. You know, visit." MacLeod replied slowly and succinctly.
"Sure MacLeod. I can visit. I'll be there at the end of the week." ________________________________________________________
Methos' flight was on the tarmac and now Mac's stomach felt like butterflies were performing Olympic maneuvers in it. He chided himself on his exaggerated anticipation and chalked it up to fatigue and worry over Joe's declining health. As the passengers debarked from the plane, Duncan sensed his friend and a smile developed on his lips. Joe's 75th birthday party had been a large gathering of his friends and Methos had attended. Since that time, they had exchanged a few e-mails and postcards. Wearing jeans and a baggy gray sweater, Mac noted that Methos hadn't altered his graduate student look.<Or is he sporting that look to make me at ease? As Methos walked into the waiting area, Mac hugged him.
"Methos. Good to see you. Flight okay?" He asked, trying to make small talk, not letting his anticipation show.
"Fine, Mac." Methos returned the greeting, taking in MacLeod's warrior frame, his firm, well-muscled chest covered by a white T-shirt that accented his biceps and triceps, and his faded black jeans that fit over those muscular thighs and cupped his tight ass so nicely. The brown long locks that were held back with his silver Celtic clip reminded Methos of his many fantasies of running his fingers through Mac's glorious mane.
Looking around for Joe, he asked," Where's Dawson? I thought I came to visit him; least he could do is be here to greet a weary old man after he's flown thousands of miles for a visit."
Appreciating Methos familiar banter, Duncan replied, "Joe had some business to attend to. Said he'd meet us at his place."
"Mac.........Joe isn't a Watcher anymore. Don't try to fool me." Methos sternly rebuked.
"Okay. He's getting old Methos. It's a long ride to the airport and it's late. He wanted to come, but I told him to rest and that I would bring you by his place when you got in." he replied, a tinge of sadness lingering in his words.
"Mac, is there something you aren't telling me? Is he dying? I want to know."
"Methos, he isn't dying per se. He's just old and his body is wearing out. He refuses to have any part of the new medical technology that is available. I'm afraid he will be dead soon."
"I'm sorry. I know how much he means to you. I'll miss him greatly." Methos placed his hand on Duncan's shoulder and squeezed it firmly, offering his unspoken support to his friend.
"That's why I called, Methos. He wanted to say goodbye." Duncan said softly as he looked at Methos' eyes and saw his pain there as well.
"Thanks for calling, Mac. I've known him longer than you have and he has a special place in my heart." He picked up his duffel that he'd dropped and told Duncan, "Let's go. I have a feeling Joe won't sleep until he sees me."
The two men drove to Joe's home where he eagerly awaited their arrival. As he saw the headlights in the driveway, he wheeled himself to the door to greet his guests. The two men got out of the car and Methos gathered his bags. Joe opened the door as they reached the porch.
"Methos. Glad you could come. Thanks for getting him Mac." He reached out his hand to shake the Immortal's but changed his mind and stood up on his prosthetics and hugged him instead.
"My pleasure, Joe. It was time to see old friends."
"Come in you two. No need to stand at my front door. Beer's in the frig, grab yourself one and make yourself at home." Joe motioned toward the kitchen then wheeled himself into the living room.
Methos grabbed a beer for Mac and himself and went to the couch to sit down.
"Thanks for the beer." Looking at his friend, he noticed the new wrinkles, the squint of his eyes, and the use of his wheelchair. He knew Joe recognized the understanding in his eyes, but mentally he wasn't ready to accept that his friend was getting old, dying and that this was probably his last visit with the Old Watcher. "How you been old man?"
"Fine, old man, but you know I've been feeling my age lately. These bones aren't getting any younger. Course you wouldn't know what that's like, being Immortal." Joe chuckled.
"No, sorry I can't relate to old bones, but Joe let me assure you aches and pains I can relate to. Just because my bones don't age, doesn't mean when they've been broken, bruised and battered that I don't feel them hurting." Methos smiled as he spoke and took a draw from his beer. "Besides, after hanging out with MacLeod, the magnet for Immortals, I've had more than my share of aches and pains in the last thirty years"
"Enough on old bones. What's been happening in your life, Methos? Tell an old Watcher a tale or two." He felt a yawn coming and drew his hand to his mouth to hide the sign of his quickly tiring body.
Methos took a drink from his beer as he watched Joe attempt to hide his yawn. "Let's see, I've been busy lately...." and then yawned himself. "Joe I think we're all tired. Why don't we start this little reunion tomorrow after we've all slept? Deal?"
Thankful to his old friend for providing him with a legitimate excuse, Joe wheeled himself over to the two men and shook their hands. "Deal." He maneuvered his chair toward his bedroom, but as he approached the hallway, he turned and smiled." Thanks for coming. It's good to see you." He proceeded down the hall as the two friends watched his slow progress.
Watching Joe, Methos looked expectantly at Mac, "Shouldn't you be leaving, too? It's a long way to your place from here."
"No. Joe and I decided it would be easier for planning things if I stayed here during your visit. I'll be in his front guest room and you'll stay in the back."
Visions of MacLeod sleeping so near brought a smile to Methos' face.
"What are you smiling about?" Mac asked mischievously.
Hearing the door to Joe's room close, Mac asked, "You aren't really tired are you?"
Lifting his beer bottle in order to discern the amount of liquid that remained, he softly replied, "No, but Joe is and I want him to enjoy our time together."
Methos walked around Joe's living room noting the few changes since he last visited. Joe had a new picture of the ocean that hung on the wall and a portrait of Amy and her family hung above the couch. The place was clean and tidy, clutter removed so he wouldn't stumble. Methos finished his beer, grabbed another from the frig, and sat on the couch.
"Mac......." his voice tentative, not certain where he should begin this conversation.
Looking at his friend's familiar unchanged face and physique, he pictured Joe wheeling himself to his bedroom a few short minutes ago and he questioned MacLeod, "Mac. He looks old. I don't remember him getting old. Yesterday he almost gave up his life to O'Rorke and the day before that the Watcher's shot him for being your friend. Where did the time go, my friend?" Pausing, he took a draw of his beer and continued. "Damn, he used his wheelchair in front of me, something he was always too proud to do in the past. At his recent birthday party he was spry. What happened?" Methos looked at Mac; his eyes filled with pain and sorrow, knowing Mac really didn't have any answers.
"He's mortal Methos. They don't live forever." Mac answered softly, his face trying to soften the harsh words. "You only see him when you come into town, a few times a year at best. I live here, he's my Watcher and my friend and I see him often. I've known him for almost 40 years. That's half a lifetime for him, but for us..........it's barely a blink of an eye."
"I know Mac. He's one of the good guys, it's just not fair."
"The world is not fair, Methos, but I don't need to tell you that. They die; they all die and we must remember them in our hearts and in our minds. We've been lucky, Methos. Joe has graced us with his presence longer than most mortals. I don't think I remember having a mortal friend as long as I've had him in my life."
Methos stood and gestured with his hands, his finger pointing at Mac accusing him, "You just sit there and spurt bloody aphorisms. Where is your heart, man? I love that man in there, Duncan, and that very mortal man is dying, while I can't do a damn thing about it."
MacLeod schooled his voice, talking softly he replied, "Methos. It doesn't help to get mad or angry. It won't change anything, he'll die whether we like it or not. I hope you will make his last visit with you a memorable one for both your sakes." A small tear filled his eye and he wiped it away with his hand.
"I'm sorry, Mac. You're right, It's just so unfair......"
Methos sat down for a few minutes; drinking his beer and letting his ire die down. He looked at the man sitting opposite him on Joe's couch. He saw the ache in his heart, the sorrow in his eyes and a desire to comfort him came over him. He fought the desire, knew the time wasn't right to address this need, but someday......
"Mac, how are you? What have you been up to?"
"Oh, you know the usual. Selling a few antiques, working out, spending time with Joe, keeping my head."
Methos' brow rose. "Keeping your head? Still an Immortal magnet?"
Sheepishly grinning, Mac replied," Well if you're asking if the Immortals still seek me out for my quickening, then the answer is yes. If you're asking if I fight a lot or seek them out, then the answer is sometimes." Mac took a sip of his beer and placed it on the table. Looking at Methos, he saw the concern in his eyes.
"Methos. I practice, I try to stay out of trouble, but if trouble knocks at my door, then I fight."
"Then you are still carrying your sword, MacLeod?" he questioned as he looked around for the Dragon head Katana.
'Yes, I haven't stopped carrying it since O'Rorke but that was over 30 years ago. Nothing's changed. Why do you ask? " His forehead scrunched and his eyes tried to bore into the Old Man sitting on the couch.
"Just want to make sure. MacLeod, you are still too important to lose." Methos commented and smiled as he realized that saying had become almost a cliche between the two men.
"Be sure. As I said then, 'Never again' and I haven't changed my mind." He replied with a touch of steel in his voice." It's late and I'm tired. Let's continue this tomorrow." He stretched in his place as he yawned.
"Good night, MacLeod." He tipped his head in Mac's direction and took the last swallow of his beer.
"Good night, Methos. Leave the beers; we'll clean up tomorrow. Glad to have you in town."
The two men retired to their respective rooms and readied themselves for bed. As Methos lay in his bed, his mind turned and twisted as he thought of his two friends in the other part of the house. Finally he fell into an exhausted sleep.
Walking into Howard Bein's bar......the gravely voice of the silver-haired man with a cane..... Mac and him lying in bed arms around each other......... listening to music at Shakespeare and company........ Richie's death and Mac's death wish.....doctoring Joe after Gallati shot the Watchers........a warehouse, Joe and Walker................the other Methos.......... Joe weeping at Richie's grave.....finding out Amy was Joe's daughter........Kalas and the Eiffel tower.........Kissing Mac until their lips had caressed every inch of each other's skin.........Mac walking to greet his plane........Kristen.......the double quickening and Kronos' death......Watcher poker games........Mac's goodbye when he left with Alexa........ Elysium cemetery...... Joe's bar and his music.......his cock enveloped in Mac's ass........ shooting MacLeod in Luxembourg garden......Joe's call about the Dark Quickening.............
Methos awoke exhausted. He came to visit Joe, not to hit on Mac, but his mind kept wandering to the Scot. He didn't want Joe's last memories of him to be bad ones because he'd upset Duncan and he knew if he acted on those feelings, that would be the end result. <Better put those thoughts deep inside your psyche, Old Man or you're asking for trouble. He dressed and went to the living room where he found Duncan and Joe talking about the day's activities.
"Mac, I haven't been to the bar in ages. I know Mike would love to have me sing for my supper and I'd love it too. What do you say we go to Joe's for old times sake?" Joe looked at his companions with the expectancy of a child looking forward to a special treat.
"Sure, Joe. Whatever you want to do. I've come to visit and spend time with you, but you're the boss, I'm just here for the company." Methos replied as he walked into the kitchen to pour himself a cup of coffee.
"Joe, you make this coffee? It smells absolutely wonderful. Maybe you should patent it. It got me up out of bed and anything that can do that is worth a small fortune." Methos chuckled and walked to the sideboard to pull a plate down and place some fresh strawberries and cream on his plate. "I could get used to visiting you Joe. Fresh coffee, breakfast ready when I walk out of my room, free beer...... What a life."
"Yeah. Yeah. Sit down Methos and eat your breakfast. Tomorrow, you get the job of fixing the coffee and food." Joe replied smiling and took a sip of his coffee.
The three friends discussed their days' itinerary and left Joe's apartment about 10:30. Their first stop was the Seacouver Art Museum where they enjoyed a new exhibit featuring Monet and other impressionistic painters.
Each man drawn to different paintings, they made their way through the first room in the exhibit. As Methos entered into the second room, he saw a painting by John Everett Millais entitled Ophelia that called to him. In the picture, a fully dressed woman lies face up in a creek. Images of Shakespeare's play Ophelia come to mind as he sees the woman drowning in the creek, but apparently oblivious to her actions. "Mac, come here." Methos called across the gallery. "You've got to see this painting. The artist captures Shakepeare's character so well."
Mac walked to the painting that Methos was viewing and examined it with a critical eye. <Shakepeare- Ophelia , yes I can see that, but many of the artists used Realism to interpret great works as well as living subjects......"Methos, What strikes you about the painting?"
"Many things, but I think the voluntary nature of her act."
Studying his ancient friend, the Highlander shrugged and replied," Okay......, but that is the gist of Ophelia" Turning toward the remaining paintings in the exhibit, he stated, "I'm going back to my viewing."
Methos looked around the gallery and spotted Joe viewing another piece by Millais. He walked to his friend and suggested he view the Ophelia work..
"I may not be as worldly as you, Old Man, but I can still find my way around a museum. Now go enjoy." He replied with a tinge of sarcasm.
Returning to the Millais work, he noticed that the work was painted in the 1850's, over a century ago, in a different time and place then existed today. < 'The world was different, MacLeod. Times were different. Everything was different.' The words reverberated in his head today as much as they did thirty years ago. He'd lived in so many different times, so many cultures, and so much had changed that sometimes he had a difficult time grasping the magnitude of the changes.
<Where was I in the 1850's? Ah yes. I remember I spent those decades in America, trying to survive the civil war and then the breakdown of the slavery trade. Those were some of my happier times, helping the sick, the slaves, but lonely, no deep friendships like Mac and Joe.
Mac glanced over at Methos, saw him deep in thought and walked over to his friend and tapped him on the shoulder. "Methos, where were you? For a moment there, it appeared you weren't with us at all."
Startled by the touch, he refocused his mind to the present. "Not to worry, MacLeod. Just remembering my past."
Mac turned toward him, debating if he wanted to ask or would the answer be another dark time in the Old Immortal's past. "Really?" The question in his voice was evident, but didn't beg for an answer.
"MacLeod, MacLeod. Not every one of my memories is filled with evil. I did lead many pleasant lives," he smirked as he placed his hand on Mac's shoulder. " At the time of the impressionistic movement, I happen to have been a doctor in New Orleans where I treated many slaves as well as free men. In fact, Morgan Walker, the Immortal that captured Amy, was a plantation owner at the time and I treated many of his slaves."
"Walker. Wasn't he the one you killed during that fiasco, too?" Duncan looked at Methos, scrutiny in his eyes and questions on his lips.
"Yes, he's the one." Methos turned to walk toward the next room, but Mac caught him by the arm and demanded," Talk to me, Methos."
Slowly Methos turned around and eyed a bench toward the corner of the room. He walked to the bench and motioned for Mac to follow.
He took a slow breath and looked at Mac, catching his eyes in his own.
"I was a doctor, one of only a handful who would treat the slaves. One night I was called to his plantation to stitch a nasty gash. Afterward the mistress of the slaves thanked me, and she also propositioned me. Never one to turn down a beautiful woman, I agreed." Pausing, visions of the tryst flashed through his mind. <Maybe Walker wouldn't have killed her if he'd declined her offer. "When Walker returned home later that evening, he slapped her so hard she fell against the window and plunged to her death. Morgan quickly came outside and accosted me, but I didn't want to fight him. I got on my horse and left." He broke the eye contact with MacLeod and waited for the tirade to begin.
Mac had learned his lesson long ago and tried not to be judgmental about Methos' past "I'm sorry, Methos. It wasn't my business. Let's go finish the tour." Mac's smiled, stood up from the bench and reached for his friend's hand to assist him up off the bench.
Raising his eyebrows at the lack of judgement from his friend, he thought to himself. <If I live a million years MacLeod, I'll never understand you.
Joe turned around to comment to Methos about his impressions of the Mallais painting and saw the two friends deep in conversation. Watching them with his trained eye, he saw reluctance on Methos' face and acceptance on Mac's. He hoped that this discussion would not start another argument between the two friends. Seeing the Highlander help Methos up from the bench, he breathed a sigh of relief and continued on his own tour, not wanting them to know he'd watched their discussion.
They continued their tour of the museum and went to lunch, returning to Joe's for a few hours so everyone could rest for the evening. After a light supper, the three men went to the bar.
When they arrived at the bar, they went to their favorite table in the back, ordered their drinks and kicked back to listen to the music. The first band played a lot of instrumentals and the second set was heavy blues. Methos drank his beer and looked frequently at Mac, admiring his gray linen slacks and green silk shirt, thinking that he looked absolutely edible. He envisioned his hands caressing that sensitive neck, playing in those long locks and kissing those sumptuous lips. He saw him without his shirt, those deltoid muscles bulging under his fine ministrations. He could feel his cock constricting in his khaki dockers. <I need to stop this, before I get into trouble.
"Methos. Methos. Earth to Methos. Join us my friend. Daydreaming again? " Duncan teased as he touched the Oldest Immortal on the arm.
Startled, he jumped a little in his chair. <If you only knew my friend. Thinking quickly, he gruffly replied, "MacLeod, can't a man drift off in his own memories sometimes?" He tipped up his beer feeling the cold brew slide down his throat. He held the neck of the bottle, caressing it absent- mindedly and again his mind wandered to the Immortal next to him. <Damn. I need help.
Joe eyed him suspiciously, but said nothing. Joe walked up to the platform and settled himself on the stool. He hung the guitar strap over his head and leaned into the microphone. "Friends. I want to dedicate this next set to two of the best friends a man could have. They are sitting over at the back booth. Here's to you guys. God love you."
Joe started the set with more instrumentals and concluded with his hits, That River, No Special Rider, Treat Me This Way and he ended with Every Waking Moment.
I can't get you out of my head the way I feel The things that you said everything that I try to do I can't help but to think of you
I need you, but I know it ain't right I know these feeling I should try and fight But every waking moment I dream of you girl- oh baby
Looking at Duncan, Methos internalized the words to the song. < I need that man, I want that man, but I know if I try I'm a dead man. Pulling his eyes away from the object of his desire, he looked toward Joe; like a deer looking into the spotlight of the oncoming car, he was caught. <Joe, are you singing that song for Duncan and me? Am I that obvious? Lord I hope not or I'm a dead man. ...... As he sung the song, he watched Methos look at Duncan as the words of the song seemed to connect with his feelings.
<Methos/ Duncan. Nah
Then again, his Watcher eyes might be out of practice, but he recognized that look, that longing.
<I'll be damned. Will wonders never cease?
Getting up from his stool, he caught Methos' eyes and tilted his head toward Mac, letting him know his secret was out. Methos smiled; the deer had struck the headlights, no longer able to run away from the oncoming collision, he shook his head, acknowledging Joe's unspoken question and shrugged his shoulders.
Joe returned to the table and they listened to the band play their last set. Joe watched Methos watching Duncan. In all of his years, he didn't think he could be surprised by anything Immortals did, but he was surprised tonight. Methos and Mac, strange pair, but he could understand the attraction. Mac was a stunning male, had a great sense of humor, embraced loyalty, and was available. What he didn't understand was why Methos didn't act on his obvious attraction.
After the last set, the men returned to Joe's house for the night. "I'm really bushed guys. You two can stay up and burn the midnight oil, but I know one man who is hitting the hay." Joe yawned and walked to his bedroom where he lay on the bed, unstrapped his prosthetics and quickly went to sleep.
"Mac, want a beer?" Methos yelled from the kitchen as he reached into the refrigerator to grab a cold one.
"No, Methos. I've had enough for one night." Mac sat down on the couch and placed his feet on the ottoman. " I had a great time tonight. It's been so long since we've been together. I forget what fun we have." Mac sighed as he watched Methos walk out of the kitchen and head for the sofa.
"Yes, MacLeod we do have fun together." He agreed as he tilted his head down, then took a pull from his beer.
"I miss you not being around, Old Man. Why did you leave?" Mac asked quietly.
"I didn't leave. I can't leave if I wasn't ever here."
"What do you mean?"
"Leaving implies that I lived here and departed. I don't live anywhere MacLeod. I have apartments and rooms, but I don't live anywhere."
Leaning forward, his body almost in the ancient man's space, he questioned, "But .......You worked for the Watchers and lived here. I' don't understand."
"My job with the Watchers ended twenty years ago. I left them or have you forgotten? I can't afford to stay in one place too long. Don't want anyone to figure out who or what I am." He stated ascerbicly.
"But all Immortals have to change identities every twenty or thirty years to keep their anonymity." Duncan looked at Methos trying to discern if he was serious or having another one of his philosophical conversations.
"Yes, we all change who we are, but if I don't stay in one place long enough for people to know who I am, then I can be many people at once." His sly smile belying the truth behind his words.
"I don't understand you Methos. Doesn't life get lonely, without a purpose every day?" Duncan stood and walked to the window and looked out at the street.
"Sometimes." He answered as he nodded.
"Why don't you move back to Seacouver?" Mac eyes lit up with his suggestion and he expectantly turned toward his friend.
"No, MacLeod. That would not be a good idea." He got up from the couch and walked to the kitchen to grab another beer.
"Why? Why wouldn't it be a good idea?" MacLeod asked as he watched the ancient man sleek into the kitchen as if avoiding his eyes.
"It just wouldn't be, MacLeod. End of discussion." Methos hissed.
Acknowledging his request, Mac asked, "Okay. ....... I had a great time today. What do you want to do tomorrow?"
<Round one to me. "Let's see what we feel like tomorrow. Right now I'm going to bed." Methos finished his beer and walked toward his room.
Duncan stood in Joe's living room feeling bereft. <What happened here.? I think I missed something. He picked up their beer bottles and put them in the recycling bin, shut the lights off, and went to his room.
Methos went to his bedroom and undressed, sliding under the covers so he could sleep, but sleep eluded him. He knew Mac wanted him around and that he would love to live here, but he knew he could not stay. Slowly he drifted off to sleep.
"Mac, I'm home. " Methos yelled as he placed his backpack on the couch and walked to the kitchen to grab a beer.
"Good. How was your day? Did you find that book you were looking for at the auction?"
"My day was okay and no I did not find that book, but I found a book on Egyptian burial practices and bought that instead." Methos walked to the couch and took a draw of his beer as he sprawled on the piece of furniture.
Duncan walked over to the couch and moved his legs, placing them in his lap as he sat down. He removed his shoes and massaged Methos feet as he continued the conversation. "Why did you buy a book on the burial practices of Egypt? It's not like you weren't there?"
"MacLeod.......It's just part of my past that moved me today. I had some wonderful years in Egypt, they are some of my fondest memories. Don't tell me you've never made a purchase because it reminded you of your past?" Methos moaned and wiggled his toes to encourage Duncan in his ministrations.
"Okay, old man. You win. Come here. You didn't even kiss me when you came in." Duncan teased.
Methos removed his feet from Duncan's lap and scooted toward the Highlander where he tenderly kissed Duncan's proffered lips. The two men gently explored each other's mouths, relishing the smooth caresses each offered the other with their tongues. Duncan's hands held Methos' head as they shared their kiss. Duncan broke the kiss and moved his mouth to Methos' neck, taking small nips and smoothing them with kisses. Methos arched into the tender caress and moved his hands over Duncan's back, caressing and massaging his lover. Duncan moved his mouth to Methos' ear and then reached his hands under his shirt to caress his nipples where he stimulated the tender buds into small pebble like protrusions. Methos felt his cock fill with blood and his need for touch increased. He attempted to direct Mac's mouth or hand toward his aching steel, but Mac ignored the silent directions. Methos arched his erection into Mac's thigh and Duncan returned the grind. Methos felt his cock leaking cum and was ready to join his lover.................. _______________________________________________________
A loud noise sounded in the kitchen followed by muffled curses,"G-d damn chair. Who didn't put the chair back at the table? I'm going to kill myself if they aren't more careful."
Methos sat up in bed and shook his head to rid himself of the dream cobwebs still floating in his brain. He pulled off the sheet and saw a small wet spot on his silk boxers. <That dream was too real. Changing into sweats and dry boxers, he walked into the kitchen where he found Dawson making coffee.
"Good you're up. If I remember correctly, it is your turn to make breakfast this morning." Grinning, he handed Methos the frying pan he held in his hand.
"Well..... I do remember something being said about this, but don't you think it is a little early for breakfast? After all I just came out to see about the racket." Methos grabbed the frying pan and laid it on the stove, turned around and poured himself a cup of coffee.
"Racket. Hmmph. You guys didn't put the chairs back last night and I almost hurt myself tripping over that one." Dawson pointed to the chair he had moved toward the table. " Come sit with me for a few."
"What have you been up to, Old Man?'
"Recently or in general?"
"Both. I haven't seen you since........I guess that big birthday bash three years ago."
"Well......In general, I've been taking it easy, lying on the beach, drinking beer, eyeing the women.......nothing exciting." He answered easily. "Recently, I've been working on a translation of some texts an archeologist found in a cave near the Sinai desert." Taking a sip of his coffee, he continued. " Very interesting stuff really. At this point I've deciphered a quarter of it and it should keep me busy for another six months or so. Earning some good money for it."
"That should keep you out of trouble, but what have you been doing with yourself? You've been conspicuously absent from the shores of Seacouver."
"You know how it is Joe? I get busy on a project, time flies, and before I know it three years have elapsed." He answered flippantly.
"Methos, have you been avoiding Seacouver?"
Swallowing his coffee, he schooled his face into innocence. "What are you talking about, Joe?"
"I watched you last night at the bar. Hell I've been watching you since you got here and I think you've been avoiding MacLeod. You wouldn't be here now if I hadn't asked you to visit."
"Your old eyes are playing tricks on you, Joe." Methos replied non- chalantly.
"No Methos, my old eyes do not deceive me. I'm his watcher and I've been watching people for over 25 years. You were giving Mac the once over."
Methos shifted in his chair, took a sip of his coffee and sighed." Guilty as charged. I could never fool you."
"Why?" Joe's eyes squinted, and his mouth twisted as he asked the Old Immortal.
"Why Joe?" Fighting to keep his temper in check, he turned the questions toward his friend. "What do you think? You seem to have all the answers before you ask the questions." Getting up from his chair, he walked toward his room.
"Come back here, Methos" Joe shouted. " We haven't finished this discussion."
Methos stopped in the doorway and turned around. "This is a discussion? I seem to feel it is an interrogation and I've committed a grievous crime." Pausing to let the effect of his words penetrate, he sighed and continued. "Yes, I've been avoiding Seacouver, Mac particularly, in the last few years. It was easier than dealing with the situation."
"You're talking in circles. Let's try English."
"Okay, English it is...... I love Duncan MacLeod of the Clan MacLeod. He has no clue and if he knew I'd be a dead man. Is that plain enough for your Watcher Chronicles?"
Joe almost dropped his coffee cup and his mouth gaped for what seemed like several minutes. He didn't think he could ever be surprised, but this revelation shocked him.
"You love him?"
"Yup. I do." Methos took another sip of his coffee, but found the cup empty so he got up to pour himself another one. "I love MacLeod."
"You love MacLeod. Woah Methos. It is too early in the day to drop a bomb on my old heart like that." Joe replied grinning at the ancient immortal who had just returned to the table. "When did this happen? Does he know?"
Methos put out his hand to still Joe's questions. " One question at a time. It happened some time ago and no I have not told Mac nor do I intend to."
"Methos are you telling me you love MacLeod, but have no intention of telling him?"
"Yup. That about sums it up. Can I fix breakfast now? This conversation has made me hungry."
Methos walked to the refrigerator and got out some eggs, cheese, bell peppers, and onions. He reached for a bowl and egg- beater and began to make an omelet.
"Why won't you tell him Methos? He has a right to know, to make his own decisions." Joe questioned his friend.
"It's complicated, Joe. I'm not sure I even understand it myself."
"Try me. I'm a good listener." Joe urged as he watched Methos continue to fix their breakfast.
Methos flipped over the omelet in the pan and sighed, "All right, but only because I like you. I don't know when I realized I loved Duncan, but I've known for several years. Each time I'm with him it's harder and harder to keep up the friendship facade, but I want to remain his friend, it means everything to me. He is the only Immortal I trust and the only one who I would die for. Joe, I've been alive for 5000 years and I would let someone take my head if it meant Duncan would live. I can't explain why I feel this way, but I do."
"Okay, you love him, but you didn't tell me why you haven't told him." Joe pushed Methos to continue his story.
"Duncan isn't ready for my love and I won't tell him until he is."
"Isn't ready, my ass. How do you know he isn't ready if you haven't told him?"
"It is my decision and I say he isn't ready." Methos flipped the omelet on its other side, tested it and turned off the flame. He grabbed plates from the cabinet and placed half of the omelet in each plate and brought the plates to the table. "When he is ready, I will tell him."
"Methos, I do not understand you, but I respect and trust you." Joe bit into the omelet and swallowed the delicious concoction. "You do make a mean omelet, old man. I'd like to know when you tell him; I think you two would be good for each other."
"I would tell you my friend, but I fear you may not be around to witness the great event." Methos smiled at his friend and shifted his eyes toward the clock. " Time is not on your side on this one."
Swallowing the bite of food in his mouth, Joe looked at Methos. "How long will you wait?"
"As long as I need to. Duncan has to need me and he has to figure out that he wants me. When he does, I will be waiting with open arms."
"Your patience amazes me, Old Man." Joe nodded toward Methos. " Do me a favor, will you?"
"When it happens, think of me. I'll be watching from up above and I'll send you a little something special."
"Sure. I'll do that." Methos smiled at the thought of Joe sending a special gift. "Promise me you won't tell him."
"I promise. I don't agree, but I won't tell him.
The front door opened and Duncan walked in, hot and sweaty from his morning run. He glanced quickly at the two men seated at the table and saw their guilty looks. "What's up guys? Talking about me again?"
"Nah. Just finishing up a philosophical discussion. You are paranoid, Mac." Methos quickly responded.
"Whatever. mmm Smells good. I'm taking a shower and when I'm done, I'd like one of those nice fresh omelets you're making."
Duncan walked to the bathroom and peeled off his clothes, placing them in the hamper. He turned on the shower and enjoyed the warm spray of water on his hot body. Methos and Joe cleared the table of their breakfast dishes and Methos gathered new supplies to cook Duncan's breakfast.
"Remember, Joe. Not a word." Methos cautioned.
"I keep my promises, Old Man, but I think you're making a mistake."
Joe poured himself another cup of coffee and sat down to read the newspaper while they waited for Duncan to finish his shower. When he finished his shower, Duncan dressed and joined his friends.
"Morning, gentlemen. What's on the agenda today? Is that omelet ready yet? I'm starved."
"Patience MacLeod. You would think that a man who is 400 years old would have more patience." Pulling down a plate from the cabinet and placing the omelet on it, Methos brought it to him. "I chose yesterday, it's your turn today, Mac."
"Hmm What about the zoo? Or we could hit the space needle? I haven't seen that in years. We could just go to the park and rent a boat, lay out on deck, enjoy the wind and sun on our faces. I just want Joe to have a good time and enjoy the company." He took a bite of the omelet and smiled at Methos. "Good breakfast. Maybe we should let you cook every morning."
"Let's go to the park." Methos answered.
"Okay, park it is; we can even pack a lunch." Mac smiled as he remembered other visits to the park.
"Whatever. I'm getting dressed. You two figure it out." Joe grinned as he went into his bedroom to dress.
Methos took Mac's plate and placed it in the dishwasher. He wet down the wash rag and proceeded to clean the counter tops and the table.
"When did you get so domestic, Old Man? My memories clearly paint you as a slacker." Mac playfully jabbed Methos with his finger.
"You'd be surprised; I've been many things in my lifetime."
"I don't doubt that my friend." He chuckled. "Why don't you grab the bread, meat and cheese and I'll grab the mayo and mustard?"
The two men made sandwiches and packed the cooler with beer and soda. They grabbed the sun-screen, chairs and blanket and proceeded to pack the car. Joe came out from his bedroom as they were finishing their preparations for the day. They reviewed their inventory and left to spend the day in the park.
The sun shone on the three friends as they enjoyed its rays and each other's company. Joe sat at the redwood picnic table with Duncan and Methos sprawled on the blanket that he lay near their table. They reminisced about Kalas and the quickening on the Eiffel tower.
"You know, MacLeod you were pretty arrogant back then." Methos teased.
"Arrogant. What do you mean, Old Man?" Duncan eyed the smile on his friend's face and laughed with him.
"You figure out I'm Methos, hear I haven't taken a head in 200 years and decide I need protection. Whatever possessed you to think I couldn't take care of myself and that I needed you to fight my battles?"
"Come now Methos. I'd just met a myth, one I'd heard about for at least 350 years and I saw he was just like the rest of us. I didn't want to meet you and just let you be killed in one fell swoop. I wanted to see if you had any magical answers to Immortality."
Methos bit into his sandwich and saw the sincerity in his Mac's eyes, the genuine caring for his friend's welfare and a warm feeling filled his heart. "Mac, I could take care of myself then and I'd been taking care of myself for 5000 years. You worry too much, but then you always did when it came to your friends, your clan."
"Yes. I suppose I do, but I will always worry about you my friend. You are too important to lose." Mac smiled as he watched his friend.
Joe watched this interchange between the two friends and remembered Methos and his conversation from this morning. As he saw the two men interact and dance around each other, his heart soared and ached at the same time. He saw the chance for MacLeod to be happy again for the first time in a long time, but he accepted Methos' premise that Mac wasn't ready to be in his life on a full time basis. <Sad, so sad. I'm glad I'm not immortal.
The three talked about Kristen, Kronos, the fake Methos, Byron, and of course Richie. Tears welled in all three men's eyes when they shared their memories of MacLeod's student.
"Every day, I remember him. I see something and think that he would have loved this or ask myself what he would have thought of that event. It doesn't hurt so much, but I will never get over his death." MacLeod shared with his two friends.
Shaking their heads in acknowledgment, the two men sighed as they each revisited their own memories of that fateful night so many years ago.
"We remember them all, Mac. That is how they continue to live on. No mortal or Immortal is forgotten if someone remembers them." Methos said softly as he placed his arm on Mac's knee and squeezed.
The touch to his friend's knee brought illicit thoughts to Methos.< If only he knew, if only we were alone, if only he were ready.....if only
The rest of the day the men talked and laughed and enjoyed each other's company. About 5:00 in the afternoon, Methos and Duncan saw that Joe was stifling more yawns and that his contributions to the conversation were far and few between. The Immortals suggested they leave and return to Joe's place and he agreed.
The week continued as the previous days had and the three friends enjoyed each other's company. It was the last night before Methos returned to Bora Bora and Joe wanted to have one last private conversation with him.
"Mac, I'm in the mood for some Thai food. Why don't you go get us some of that stuff from that restaurant on James street."
"I'd be glad to, but you know if you wanted to be alone with Methos, you should have just asked. I can make myself scarce." Duncan smiled and a small grin creased his lips.
"Am I that obvious, Mac?" Joe queried, afraid he was losing his touch.
"Not really. I know Methos is leaving and you want one last private conversation with the Old Man. I'd want that if I were you. What do you want from the restaurant?"
"Thanks for understanding. I don't care what you buy, surprise me."
"What about you Old Man? Anything in particular you want?"
"Nah, just don't forget the beer."
Laughing he said, "Never. If I forgot the beer, I might not live to see another day." He left them alone to have one last conversation.
The two men sat in Joe's living room, Methos on the couch and Joe in his favorite chair. They had finished watching a movie on television and the television droned softly in the background. "So Joe, what is so all important that you had to shoo Duncan away?" Methos laughed at Dawson's squirming body.
"I just wanted to talk."
"I've been thinking about you and MacLeod. I think I understand what you were trying to tell me the other morning." Joe began the conversation.
"I've been watching Mac and you these last few days. You are giving out signals, but he is not receiving them. Am I right?"
"You will continue to give out the signals and when he starts receiving, then you'll know he's ready."
"Bright boy, Joe. That about sums it up. He's not ready. His life is full or as full as he is ready for it to be. I fear he will want me in his life when he feels bereft and needy." Methos said sadly.
"Yes Joe, fear. When you love someone, you don't want him to hurt. I fear that Mac will only recognize his need for me when he is very sad and has lived that way for a while."
"So you want to be his knight in shining armor? Rescue him. Be the Boy Scout you are always teasing him about."
"Not really Joe. I'd much prefer he realize his love for me when he wasn't falling into a deep chasm of self despair, but I fear that will not happen."
"Do you think he will realize it when I die? After all, I am the only person that is still here from the last century of so."
"No, Joe. Unfortunately I don't think your death will be the impetus for us. Duncan loves you like a father. He will be here until you die and will mourn your death like one mourns a favored parent. He won't seek solace for his grief from me or anyone else. No, Joe. I can't see this happening soon."
Joe's eyes filled with unshed tears for his friends, but especially for Duncan.. He hadn't really thought about Duncan's loss when he died. <I'll have to leave Duncan something special to remember me by. And the Old Man, him too. Joe wiped his eyes and looked at Methos.
"I'm sorry. I wish I could interfere, but I feel that my Watcher oath is similar here too. I must watch, but never interfere."
"Yes, Joe. I think you finally understand." Methos glanced at the clock in the kitchen and urged, "Joe we need to get ready for dinner. Mac'll be back any minute and the last thing I want to do is to explain this sad scene.
"Your right, as usual Old Man. Those 5000 years of living has made you a great judge of humans. Sometimes I envy you and your long life. I would love to be around when Duncan and you........."
The door opened and Mac yelled to the two men," Food's here. Help me out, guys. This stuff is heavy and I'm dying of thirst."
"Okay Mac. I'm coming." Methos yelled from the kitchen as he smiled at Joe.
The three men ate their dinner in relative silence. Mac and Joe thought about Methos' departure; Joe and Methos thought about Methos and Duncan's potential relationship; and Duncan and Methos thought about Joe's impending death, realizing that this would probably be the last time the three men were together. After dinner, Methos and Duncan cleared the table and threw out the trash.
"I think I'll go write some in my journals. I'm sure you two would like some time alone before the Old Man here leaves our humble town." Joe wheeled himself into his bedroom and closed the door.
"He is one great guy. I will really miss him, Mac." Methos remarked as he walked toward the frig and grabbed himself a beer. He motioned to Mac to see if he wanted one and grabbed one when Mac shook his head.
"Yeah, he is." Mac swallowed his beer and went into the living room. "Coming, Methos; or are you afraid to be alone with me?" Mac asked with a barb.
"Yeah, Yeah. Patience, Mac. I'm just putting soap in the dishwasher." Methos yelled as he finished his task and walked out to the living room.
"Aren't you going to sit, Mac?" Methos asked as he saw his friend standing by the window.
"So you are leaving tomorrow? " Duncan remarked as he looked out the window.
Methos sat on the couch and placed his feet on the cushions. "That's what the plane ticket says. Why? Is there a problem?"
Mac walked over to the chair and sat down, his shoulders slumping, and his back curved. "No problem. Just verifying. What time does your plane leave?"
"2:00 p.m. and I arrive in Bora Bora about 10:00 p.m. It's a bitch of a trip, but Joe was worth it. Why? Thinking of coming along? " Methos grinned mischievously.
Duncan got up from his chair and picked up the television guide that had dropped on the floor. Placing it on the coffee table, he straightened the other books there as well.
"No, I'm not thinking of coming with you. I'll miss you old man and so will Joe. Thanks for coming. It meant a lot to him."
"My pleasure, MacLeod. Now if you'll excuse me, I have some last minute packing to attend to." Methos got off the couch and turned to take one last look at his Highlander before going to his room.
Mac watched Methos leave and his heart felt heavy and his vision became misty from the tears he refused to shed. He walked to the bar and poured himself two fingers of scotch and turned on the television for company.
Joe sat at his desk; thinking about his conversation with Methos earlier that evening. He needed to leave Duncan something special, but couldn't decide what. He discarded the idea of material items since Mac had everything he wanted and he definitely had the money to purchase anything he desired. It had to be very personal, something only he could give Duncan. He wracked his brains for a long time and then decided a letter would be the perfect gift. Duncan always admired Joe's skill in writing down his story and knew Mac would appreciate this personal token. He moved to his desk to write the letter by hand, wanting it to be as personal as possible.
If you are reading this, I must be dead. Hope I went fast and didn't go violently. I've seen enough violence to last me a lifetime. (Wait I'm dead, so I guess it did last me.) I wanted to take this opportunity to share my last bits of wisdom with you.................
He finished the letter and placed it inside his personal journal, intending to give it to Duncan the next time they met. Satisfied with his present, he readied himself for bed and slept.
Methos knew he would not see Dawson again and wanted to give him a last present as well. Deciding a letter was the best present, he went to his laptop to compose it, but then decided that paper and pen better suited this occasion.
Thank you for asking me to visit. It has allowed me to put closure to one of the most important relationships I have had in all of my long 5000 years. By nature I'm a recluse and I think I've managed to keep my head because of this trait. You and MacLeod made me come out of my shell for 50 years, longer than I have in several centuries. Your influence in my life is immeasurable and I won't ever forget it. I haven't felt life in all its joys and sorrows until you two forced me into living again. Your death will leave a gaping hole in my life, but I do not regret having known you. Regrets have filled my long life, Joe and I'm happy to report that you are not one of them. I promise to come to Duncan one day and share my love with him. Hopefully he will be able to share my love too. Take care, my friend.
Methos folded the letter and placed it in an envelope. He placed it on the dresser, intending to give it to Joe before he left in the morning.
When he awoke the next morning, he dressed and found Joe drinking coffee in the kitchen.
"Good Morning, Joe. This letter is for you, but do not open it until after I'm gone and do not let our friend the Scot read it either. It is for your eyes only."
Joe smiled and took the proffered envelope. "I promise. Today we're going to brunch before Mac takes you to the airport. Why don't you gather your things and bring them out to the car while Mac finishes his run?"
"Good idea. Joe."
After Mac returned to the house, he showered and the three men went to brunch. They ate and enjoyed each other's jokes and company. Soon it was time for Methos to leave.
Methos walked over to Joe and leaned down to hug him. "Joe, take care my friend. I will miss you." He whispered as he wiped tears from his eyes.
"Take care, Methos. And Methos- Watch your head."
"Always, Watcher. Never think I won't" Methos grinned and was thankful for Joe's levity.
"Come on Methos; we've got to leave if you're going to make that plane." Duncan urged.
The ride to the airport was silent.
"Mac, Just drop me off at the curb. No use you waiting with me. We've all been in way too many airports." Methos stated. "Besides I don't think I'm up for anymore goodbyes."
Duncan and Methos arrived at the airport and Methos got out of the car. He waved to MacLeod, his heart heavy and emotions in turmoil as he walked to the counter to check his bags.
To be continued
* Note the full text of the letter that Joe wrote MacLeod can be found in "Dawson's Tale".
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