|Methos' Journal: November 1995
by Lisa Hughes
following the Quickening in the episode "Chivalry"
Strange to think that just a few days ago I was still in Paris... pretending to look for Methos. Pretending I wasn't bored. Pretending I didn't miss MacLeod. Marking time. And now... now I am sleeping on his couch and drinking his beer. Living in his life. I wonder how long it can last.
Quite suddenly the urge to go to see MacLeod became overpowering. I'm not really certain what tipped the balance, but whatever it was propelled me out of my flat and onto an airplane in under three hours. It only occurred to me halfway through the flight that I couldn't just show up on MacLeod's doorstep without some kind of an excuse. So once I got there, I went to Joe, hoping for an idea. He told me about Kristin. And Richie.
Armed with that excuse I took my courage in both hands and went to his place. As soon as I felt his presence I almost lost my nerve. Wasn't I simply adding fuel to a fire that was already dangerous to me? But I knocked, and when he opened the door I even managed a suitably facetious greeting. At least I was in control of outward appearances, if not my emotions.
MacLeod's loft is a very different space from the barge, and yet it is still a reflection of the man. A study in contrasts: spare yet luxurious, cool and formal and yet warm and inviting. Its scent is one of worn leather, exotic oils, and fresh coffee The abode of a man who is at once an ascetic and a voluptuary.
Sure enough, MacLeod asked me what brought me to him almost at once. It wasn't until I told him about Richie that he dropped his careful pose of indifference. But when he confronted her, she threw him totally off- balance with a few reminders of their past together, and sent him into a complete retreat. Round One to Kristin.
I found myself entirely unable to see this hole in MacLeod's defenses and just walk away. Just let it be. Kristin represented a threat to MacLeod and I couldn't just stand by and watch it happen. When I walked in on MacLeod doing a kata with his sword, it seemed like the perfect opportunity for an object lesson in naiveté. And I thought I'd made my point, even if he did knock me on my bum when I drew it out too long.
Sparring with him was invigorating. Blades flashing. Matching wits more than strength. He won of course, I need to practice more. And for the second time I had MacLeod's sword at my neck. He startled me again, sliding the sword forward, making his own point. That sent another MacLeod-version adrenaline rush through my body. He insists on surprising me...
Then I met MacLeod's student, Richie Ryan. So young. MacLeod, with his four hundred years, is like a breath of fresh air, but Richie... he's just a baby. Just finding his way... Was I ever that young? I can't remember.
MacLeod is renovating an old house and he roped me into helping him paint. Okay... so he didn't have to twist my arm very hard. Both of us working side by side, talking... what can I say, the idea appealed to me.
And he was looking to me for answers. (Maybe I should have given *him* my "I'm just a guy" speech) He wanted me to give him the key to keeping Richie's foolishness from killing him, while keeping his own principles and ethics intact. He's killed male immortals for less cause than the murder of a woman he loved. But just because he slept with Kristin, he lets her walk away. I suppose that I admire MacLeod for the clarity with which he believes in his principles. Or maybe I just envy him the black and white, where I see only gray. But I couldn't let his principles get in the way of his survival... he must live.
I told him that I hadn't lasted 5,000 years by worrying about anyone but myself. And he caught me out. I'm standing there spouting off about "every man for himself," working hard to keep him from getting himself killed, trying to get him to see... and he called me on it. He saw the distance between what I was saying and my reason for saying it, and made me look at it. And then he painted my nose... interesting, that.
MacLeod does have a point, one that bears investigation. When did my well-honed self-preservation instincts expand to include MacLeod? I don't need him, at least not for physical protection. I may not be the best fighter, but I'll survive, that's what I do. So why is it so important to me that he survive? Good question...
Right on schedule, Kristin tried to kill Richie. MacLeod must have a very large blind spot when it comes to women, if it can blind his student as well. He dumps her, and then he turns his back on her?! Unbelievable. Round Two to Kristin. And she was up to her old tricks, trying to kill that model friend of Richie's. Well, at least we got there in time to stop that. MacLeod could never have lived with himself if he'd let another mortal die for his code of honor.
But even faced with irrefutable evidence that Kristin was the same deranged murdering bitch she was 350 years ago, even after he defeated her, he still couldn't bring himself to take her head. He had her on her knees, and all he did was warn her off. Those much-vaunted morals of his are going to get him killed if he's not careful... or if someone isn't careful for him.
So I stepped in. I forced her to fight, and I took her head. MacLeod was actually stunned that after everything I'd said, I would actually follow through. Was I talking to myself?! Someone had to. Someone had to kill her or she would eventually have found a way to kill MacLeod... and I couldn't just let that happen.
The quickening... it's been a long, long time. Waves of energy, of power, coursing through me, in me, around me. Expanding and contracting, making every inch of my skin tingle, the raw energy flowing into me through every pore. It was a powerful, erotic, mind-bending experience that I had denied myself for 200 years. I've lived without it, and could again... but it was wonderful.
My thoughts keep returning to MacLeod's point, to my own motivations. Why am I so intent on keeping him alive that, for the first time in two centuries, I force a fight? I knew that I was drawn to him. I even knew that I missed him. But when did I begin to love him? (And it is love I'm talking about here, no getting around that) Was it when I looked into his eyes after he refused to take my head? Or was it when I saw him return alive from his battle with Kalas on the Eiffel Tower? Or was it when he opened the door just a few days ago and welcomed me into his home?
Love... the Greek philosophers divided love into three parts: filios (love of the mind), eros (love of the body), and agape (love of the soul). I suppose the filios started the moment my desire for life was unexpectedly rekindled, when he refused the offer of my head. I remember looking into his eyes, and in that moment my mind was opened to him, seeking a way to mesh, to learn about this extraordinary man. His lack of bitterness was refreshing. And I was intrigued by his sense of himself, his sense of purpose. I remember the immediate spark of affinity I felt for him. I remember... many things about that moment.
What I can't seem to pinpoint is when my feelings for MacLeod began to include agape. Maybe the reason I can't remember is that it happened so gradually I failed to notice. All I know is that MacLeod's existence has become important enough for me to break my own rules, ones that have worked well for me for centuries, millenia: don't get involved, don't look for a fight, don't let anyone get in the way of your own survival. And yet... less than 24 hours ago I got involved, I forced a fight, and I did it for someone else.
He intrigues me with his clarity. He suprises me in almost everything he does. He infuriates me with the chances he takes. He frustrates me with the rigidity of his moral code. He maddens me with a glance. He brings tears to my eyes with his caring. He invigorates me with the intensity of his anger. He delights me with his humor. He astonishes me with his tenderness.
Duncan MacLeod of the Clan MacLeod... I love you, my friend. Dangerous for me, I know, but... there it is.