Alexa looked guarded at her new cellmate as the door closed and the key was turned. The other woman returned her stare, defiant and proud.
.. Alexa finally said as the silence between them became too much for her to bear. Im Alexa, she introduced herself and reached out her hand to the other woman. Cassandras hands were handcuffed together in front of her so Alexa knew she could accept her hand if she wanted to. For a moment Alexa didnt think her hand would be accepted but then Cassandra took it, shaking it.
Alexa gashed in shock. Was this woman Cassandra?! She was beautiful in a mysterious kind of way. Her hair was deep brown, lightly curled, she was wearing a long skirt and blouse, the colours light reddish or brown.
..Immortal? Alexa asked to confirm her identity. Cassandra nodded.
Not much of a talker, was she? Alexa thought dryly. Cassandra scanned the room, trying to see if there was a chance of escape.
Ive already looked. We can only get out through the door, Alexa nodded to the locked door. She was sure Methos had a plan, all she had to do was keep her faith in him and that she would. Hell see they both got out.
Theres no chance of that with Kronos and Methos holding us, Cassandra said darkly.
Kronos; probably not but youre wrong about Methos. Hes not like that anymore, Alexa protested, hoping to give Cassandra some hope but instead her eyes blazed with anger and fire.
Hes exactly like Kronos. Do you have any idea what he did? What they did? Her voice was rising as she spoke. Alexa held her ground.
Cassandra looked stunned by her reply.
You know?! What exactly are you to any of them? Cassandra demanded to her, her eyes narrowed.
Im Methoss wife. I have been for the last 14 years, there was pride, love and joy in her voice as she told of this fact; the best 14 years of her life. Cassandra laughed, it was a cruel sound.
Poor you. Hes brainwashed you more than he did me.
Alexa shook her head.
Its not like that. Hes not like that, as she spoke she came closer to the other woman so they now stood face to face. He has really changed. It has been over 3000 years. Dont you think its about time you let the past go? If not for his sake then for yours. Be able to start over, her voice was soft, compassionate.
How can you say that? You have no idea what he did to me, Cassandra protested, her eyes far away on unpleasant memories.
I know enough. I know that whatever he did to you, you have done ten fold worse to yourself through the years. He left the scar, you never let it heal, Alexa knew she was stepping on unsure ground, knew that like any Immortal Cassandra was able to kill her in an instant but she was betting on Cassandra first and foremost being a woman, a woman who had suffered. Someone who were using anger to signal a need for help. Alexa closed her eyes for a brief instant and remembered her cousin, Ann. She had used anger like that, as a signal for help but none had seen it. Alexa had never forgiven herself when Ann had killed herself. She should have done something, should have seen it. Well, she could see someone who needed her help now and this time
shell get it right.
you dont see, Cassandra whispered pained. Playing on a hunch that Cassandra wouldnt mind a womans touch Alexa softly and carefully pulled Cassandra into an embrace. How long had it been since she had last been embraced? 3000 years? How long had it been since someone had cared?
I may not be able to know exactly what youre going through; no one does but I may still be able to help. I know some of what Methos did to you and what I dont know I can guess. Methos told me and he also told me about the Stockholm syndrome. Have you heard of it?
Cassandra drew back and out of Alexas arms, turning to look out of the bared window.
Yes. The captive falls in love with the captor.
Exactly and I think you did just that and when you escaped
you hated yourself for it. Hated yourself for surviving when your people didnt, hating yourself for loving him or thinking you did, Alexa explained softly.
I hate him, Cassandra whispered. I hate him.
Yes, but not as much as you hate yourself. Cassandra, you have to forgive yourself. You have to move on. Dont let this ruin your life, Alexa plead. Cassandra turned to face her.
Why do you ask this? Do you not think I deserve revenge? Do I not have reason to take it?
Yes, you do deserve revenge and yes of course you have right to take it but
Alexa sighed. She began to understand why Methos avoided other Immortals. If a crime done 3000 years ago was still actual today
how could any two Immortals meet more than once without killing each other?
killing him wont solve anything, Alexa ended, knowing it sounded lame.
Give me a reason not to kill him, Cassandra challenged.
Because he has changed. Because he loves me. Because he fell in love with me and married me though we both thought I had only a year left to live in. Because he searched for a cure for me everywhere and didnt give up until he had found it. Because second chances are possible. Because violence solves nothing. Because hes been good to me. Because he has regretted his actions towards you and what he did then, Alexa stopped for breath and saw nothing in Cassandras eyes that would imply she was even listening to her. And because
..I love him, Alexa added softly.
How can you love him when you know what he has done? Cassandra asked disbelieving.
It is because I love him that my love doesnt die. It is because of my love for him that I can find forgiveness and acceptance, Alexa explained. Cassandra thought about it.
Very well. I wont try to kill him for as long as you live, she offered.
I dont ask that you forgive him or even like him but please
promise me you wont kill him, Alexa begged. She couldnt live with the knowledge that the day she died Methos would be in danger. Cassandra considered it. The love that Alexa had, the love that shore in her eyes and her voice when she spoke
it was that kind of love Cassandra had searched for but never found.
Very well. For you
Ill not kill him unless he attacks me, Cassandra finally gave in and Alexa smiled brilliantly at her and hugged her close.
Thank you, she said warmly and meant it with all her being. Cassandra smiled at her as they drove apart and Alexa sat down on one of the old potato sacks. Cassandra did likewise. In that moment it was like there was a common bond between them, created from shared experiences and being thrown together in what could seem like a hopeless situation. Suddenly they heard the key being turned in the door.
Stand behind me, Cassandra ordered as both women jumped to their feet.
Kronos has reason to kill you, not me, Alexa said and moved in front of Cassandra.
. Cassandra blinked surprised. A mortal protecting an Immortal?!
Cass, youve done so much for me. Let me try and give a little back even if this is just a gesture, Alexa asked softly and Cassandra nodded, liking the nickname the other woman had giving her. Cass
it reminded her of her friend Duncan MacLeod as he also called her that.
The door opened and revealed Methos, carrying two bowls of something hot. The smell reminded Alexa that she hadnt eaten since earlier that morning.
You alone? Cassandra asked, her voice hard and cold as she addressed him.
No, the one word was said as a warning and Cassandra backed down and Alexa moved, letting Methos come into the cell. The door was locked behind Methos, too fast for Alexa to see who did it.
You alright? Alexa asked worried as Methos put the bowls down on the floor.
Im fine, Methos calmed her and drew her into his embrace, always keeping Cassandra in clear sight.
I sensed another Immortal
. Caspian or Silas? Cassandra asked, her voice hate-filled, especially towards the first name.
Methos wanted me to try and locate them. Caspian wasnt so hard to find. He was locked up in a mental prison nearby, Methos explained.
Where he should have stayed, Cassandra said coldly. Methos didnt reply.
Silas? she asked.
Im to find him too, Methos admitted.
Will we get out of this? Alexa mumbled softly against Methoss shoulder. Methos stroked her hair.
We will, adaliiaquatseliadanvdo. We will, Methos promised and she drew a little back from him and forced a smile. He drew her down besides him and gave her one of the two bowls, a spoon in each of them. It smelled good and she was hungry. She began eating and Methos took the other bowl and reached it towards Cassandra. Angered she knocked the bowl from his hands, spilling the food all over the floor.
This seems familiar, Methos mumbled, remembering all the times Cassandra had refused to eat in the past.
Im not your slave anymore. I know what and who I am now, Cassandra said, her eyes blazing.
dont fight, Alexa begged, putting a hand on Methoss arm.
Methos! Kronoss voice yelled from outside. Methos sighed.
I have to go, he said and gave Alexa a kiss. I love you, he whispered in her ear.
I love you too, she said softly and reluctantly let him go. She stood up with him to make sure she saw him for as long as she could. As the key in the door was turned Methos turned to look at Cassandra.
Im sorry. For everything, he said sadly to her. Before she could reply the door was opened and Methos went out, forcing himself not to look back.
What did you find out? Scott asked as Logan and Rogue returned after having checked Cassandras place out. Or rather, hotel room as they had found out she had checked in to a hotel close by. She had probably followed Methos or Kronos
. or it was one of those twists of fate that someone enjoyed to play so much.
She wasnt there, Rogue told him as soon as Logan had closed the door to their hotel room behind him. The room reminded him of some badly set up police stakeout with Scott sitting at the desk with his laptop and Ororo sitting on the floor, papers all around her and a phone close by. It had been 24 hours now. Time was running out. They had to act fast.
Wonderful, Scott mumbled darkly. Well, at least now we know who did it.
Actually we dont, Logan said and Scott looked confused at him.
What do you mean?
I mean that she didnt do it. Not unless she had a fight with herself first. The place was a mess. Almost too much so, Logan explained.
What do you mean; almost too much so? Ororo wanted to know, concern in her voice.
It was like it was done on purpose, making it look like a struggle. I doubt there ever was a fight though.
But youre sure she didnt do this herself? Scott insisted.
I smelled gunpowder. My guess is she was shot and whoever shot her messed her room up.
Why? For us to find? Ororo frowned.
We also found this, Rogue gave a napkin to Scott. On it was written red castle with a black pen.
Red Castle. A place? A person? Scott wondered out loud.
Wait a minute
isnt Red Castle what the castle around here is called because its built with red bricks? Ororo asked and they all looked at her.
I dont know. I didnt get to read the tourist guide before we left home, Logan remarked.
It sounds right. See if you can get it confirmed, Scott ordered and Ororo called the reception to see what she could find out.
Who do you think left the note for us? Rogue wanted to know.
Methos? Scott looked to Logan.
That means he kidnapped Cassandra. Why? Scott mumbled.
To keep Alexa safe, Rogue answered his question though it hadnt really been a question.
We can then assume that at least one of the horsemen will be there, probably them all. Unfortunately they all changed names over the centuries and since I dont know what either of them looks like I cant say for sure if were up against three Immortals or less, Scott explained.
The big castle above the town IS called Red Castle, Ororo clarified after having hung up the phone.
Right then. Tonight, in the cover of darkness we go in, Scott suggested and the others nodded.
Lets go, Logan said and went towards the door.
Wait, we need a plan, Scotts voice stopped him.
Oh, yeah. You have one in mind?
Yes. Kind of. Lets assume that Alexa cant protect herself. I seriously doubt Methos would teach her swordfight and its a very big maybe on a gun. So, our priority is to keep her safe as she dies a lot more permanently than Methos, Scott thought out load.
Alexa and Cassandra would probably be kept downstairs, preferably in a basement. Too many escape opportunities upstairs, Logan figured. He refused to even think the thought that maybe they were already dead.
Theres four of us and lets assume three of them, Scott began as a thought suddenly occurred to him. What if Methos had changed sides? Could he have been turned? He had no doubt that there had to have been a special bond between the horsemen and especially between Kronos and Methos but had Kronoss control over Methos faded or
I know what youre thinkin, Cyke. He wouldnt, Logan denied, sure of it.
He wouldnt what? Rogue and Ororo asked at the same time. Logan and Scott looked at each other, one of them having to back down to trust the other. Scott broke the stare.
Okay, Scott nodded and Logan smiled.
Nothin, darlin, he answered Rogues question and gathered her in his arms. He knew what it was like to have a dark past and a darker side to your soul as he had with the animal side of himself; Wolverine but love was the best way to control such basis needs and he had no doubt that Methoss love for Alexa would keep him sane
..for as long as she lived as Rogues love would keep him sane
for as long as she was with him.
Well all need a gun and a dagger or a sword. Logan and I will go after Kronos, he sounds like the hardest one. Ororo and Rogue will look for Alexa and Cassandra and bring them to safety. Ill leave Methos to deal with either Caspian or Silas. If theres one left Logan or Ill go for him. Agreed? Scott looked around and the others nodded.
Its a plan, Logan agreed. Now the only question was
.would the plan work?
Methos sat in the livingroom, pretending to read a book. All he wanted to do was go get Alexa as far away from here as possible but that wasnt an option. He looked at the two other people in the room. Especially now...
Dont you dare touch it, Silas yelled angrily as Caspian had gone towards his cage with his three small white nice. He had been here for some seven hours yet already Silas had gathered several pets.
Youre more nuts than me. Its a stupid animal, Caspian said coldly and took out a nice, holding it up in its hale.
Put it back, Silas demanded, picking up his awe to back up his threat. Now, this was familiar. Silas and Caspian had always fought
.only before Methos had always tried to stop them, stepping between them. No way was he risking his life getting between them now. Ignoring them his eyes returned to his novel.
Ha! This onell make a nice appetizer. I think Ill take the rest for dessert, Caspian teased cruelly and Methos remembered that his sick humour and desire to play games with trapped beings, mortals or animals, was something he had always had.
No, Silas yelled furiously and attacked him, his awe raised. Caspian quickly sidestepped and picked up his sword, blocking the blow. Silas was a big, heavy man with a not unpleasant face. Caspian was slender but more cunning and cruel. Methos wouldnt bet on the outcome of this fight.
Stop! Kronos yelled, anger in his voice. Reluctantly Silas and Caspian drew apart. We never raise a blade against each other, isnt that right, Methos?
Methos lifted his head from his novel, forcing a smile.
You said it, he settled with.
A dozen times I tried to take up the old ways. I failed. The others I rode with were trash. Scum. I had no one to plan my raids, no one who understood the true use of terror. You are one of a kind, Methos. As we all were. There was never a band like us. Never in all history, Kronos explained, his eyes shinning with the anticipation of a fight.
When do we attack? Silas wanted to know, holding his mouse in his hand, gently stroking it. It was strange to imagine that those hands, so gentle towards animals, had killed, tortured and raped so many.
Methos, I trust you have a plan, Kronos said as he raised an eyebrow at him. Earlier that day Kronos had showed Methos all his weapons and there werent anything he didnt have; he had everything from guns, viruses and even a nuclear bomb though having lived for more than 3000 years it didnt surprise Methos that hell have the cash for it. He himself had the cash if he chose to use them on weapons but as far as he was concerned mortals did a pretty good job blowing each other up on their own as it was.
Ill focus on the virus you have. Incurable, you say? Methos began.
Yes, Kronos confirmed.
Start spreading the virus through the air channels in city hall, even now he couldnt help but to suggest strategies and ideas which he knew could make Kronos win.
Thats your big plan? A few hundred people in a public building? How many do you think that would kill? You've gone soft, Methos. Kronos said disbelieving. Maybe I was wrong about you, the last was added with a clear warning.
It's a prelude. Have you read Aristotle's Poetics? No, of course not. You haven't even seen Casablanca, the others didnt seem to know if that was an insult or not. Dont you know the first rule of drama? Methos asked irritated. It was a good plan. Start small and build. A government building now to kill a hundred, a city next to kill a thousand, one drop of the virus in the water supply
Methos spread his arms out to indicate they could guess what was next. Then we give them a choice; the horsemen rule or they all die, Methoss voice sounded excited as he explained. It was a good plan. It could work. They could rule the world, no one could stop them; no one. Suddenly, Alexas image came to him as it had before. Her voice, soft and gentle as she whispered; Ill always love you. And Ill always forgive you. He couldnt help but smile just at the thought of her. Ruling the world or loving her for the rest of her life. There was no comparison; he had tried the first and wished nothing more than to do the last.
The horsemen rule or the world dies, Kronos corrected. Oh, yeah. Great plan. Kill everything and everyone we were supposed to rule over, Methos thought darkly. Kronos and Caspian had always loved killing more than anything which often made them make irrational decisions
at least in Methoss opinion.
Something like that, Methos agreed.
We are the Four Horsemen. No band of men has ever been crueler or more feared. Remember that, Kronos said, his words were for them all but his eyes were on Methos. Kronos stretched out his hand and Caspian immediately laid his above it. Silas did the same. Slowly, with a cats grace, Methos stood up from his chair and put his hand above Silass. Kronos nodded in satisfaction as they drove apart.
Caspian, help me get the virus ready. Well spread it tonight, Kronos ordered and he left with Caspian. Tonight. That didnt leave a lot of time. It had been a little more than 24 hours since he had tried to contact Logan. They had to come now or never. He couldnt stop three Immortals all alone. If Logan didnt arrive
hell have to take the chance and release Alexa and Cassandra, hoping that hell be able to get away and that Kronos wouldnt find him.
Hey there, little friend, Silas said softly and smiled at a monkey in a cage. Kronos had tested his virus on monkeys and had tons of them in another room down the hall. Silas must have taken a monkey from there. As he stood there, playing and talking with the small animal who like all animals liked him, he reminded Methos of a child or his baby brother; both ways in which he had thought of Silas. Methos nearer Silas, deep in thought. If it came down to it
.could he, would he kill a brother, a friend
..a man who was the closest to family he had left?
Silas, Methos began but didnt know what to say. Silas turned his attention from the monkey to him.
Methos, you look troubled, concern was in his voice and Methos couldnt help but smile. He had always been the only one who could see if something was troubling him.
Just thinking, Methos blocked. Maybe he could convince Silas to help him. Then hell never have to make a choice for his life or death for it was a choice he hoped he didnt have to make.
Ah, you were always good at that, eh? And after all these years, you still are, Silas remarked, his voice in his soft tones. Only in battle would his voice ever raise above that childish softness.
It's nothing like the old days, is it? Silas added as he turned back to watch the monkey.
What do you mean? Methos asked, hoping hell say he didnt like it, that he had changed.
I don't like this killing from a distance. I like to feel my axe in my hands. Look into my enemy's eyes before I strike, Silas explained, his eyes shinning with bloodlust. No, not you too, Silas, Methos thought sadly.
Soon enough, Methos answered, his voice soft. Only it may not be an enemy youre facing, old friend. It might be
You don't think the virus will work, Silas stated, surprised. Methoss plans always worked.
It will work, Methos shook his head. Silas, for 2000 years, we've lived without this. We have lived without the blood, the fear, the power, he tried to explain; hoping Silas would see what he meant.
And for 2000 years, I've dreamed of the day when we would ride again! Like you always said, Methos we live, we grow stronger, and we fight, Silas said excited. Please, dont throw my own words back at me, Methos begged silently, closing his eyes briefly. When Methos opened his eyes again he looked intensely at Silas. Why couldnt you have changed? 3000 bloody years! Even mountains change in that time! Why couldnt you?
I'll see you later, Methos finally said, his voice sounding tired. Silas nodded, for the first time not sensing Methoss mood or maybe he didnt want to. Silas looked at his monkey, his lips going up in a smile.
Do you think he'll let me have one? he asked, turning back towards Methos.
What? Methos asked surprised, turning back to face him.
Monkey. I like this one, Silas pointed to the monkey in the cage. Methos smiled softly, bittersweetly. A child of heart, a murderer by hand. What a strange combination.
I'll ask him, Methos promised, knowing Silas never had and still didnt dare ask Kronos for anything. If Kronos would object to this, Methos would be the one to take the blame. His eyes softened as he looked at Silas again, his eyes shinning with happiness as he played with the monkey. It was the least he could do.
Thank you, brother, Silas said warmly, continuing to play with his new pet. Methos watched him for a while before he turned on his heels and walking away, his hands deep in his coat pockets.
Dont thank me
little brother, Methos mumbled ever so softly, so softly that no one heard.
It is time, brothers, Kronos announced as he walked into the livingroom, holding a devise in his hands. A bomb holding something of the virus, Methos guessed. It was now or never. Where was Logan?
Then we ride, Caspian said and with Kronos in the lead they began walking towards the front door. Come on, come on. Whats keeping him? Methos thought fanatically. What if he had been mistaken? What if Logan wouldnt speak for him, wouldnt come for him?
Suddenly the weather changed from a clear star filled night to dark clouds, thunder and rain. Ororo was here!
Somethings not right, Kronos warned just as the light went out in the entire castle. Good call Logan. Or had it been Scott? Whatever. Methos used the darkness to move away from the others, going towards the stairs to downstairs. He would remember the way to Alexa in his sleep and had no trouble finding it in the darkness. He was halfway down the stairs when the lights came back on. Kronos quickly looked around and spotted Methos disappearing down the stairs.
Silas. Go after him. Make sure he kills the women, Kronos ordered, far from sure that was Methoss plan.
I will, Silas promised and went down the stairs after Methos. Before Kronos could think of anything further the front door was blasted open, a red beam cutting through it.
Seek cover, Kronos ordered and Caspian and him sought cover in different rooms. Kronos saw four people enter, two men and two women, all mortals. The power display at the door betrayed that they wouldnt be all that easy to kill but still not impossible. They were mortals after all. Getting an idea Kronos moved silently from his hiding place in one of the living rooms and towards the room where he had stored the guns. He found the door open and saw that some of the guns were missing; Caspian must have gotten the same idea as him. Quickly Kronos took two guns and two knifes before he went out, a smile on his face. Hunting time!
Methos, Silas yelled and Methos cursed. Why had him followed him? Why him? Methos forced himself to wait as Silas came to him and the fact that he had his axe in his hand, ready to attack didnt go unnoticed by Methos.
Kronos wants the women killed, Silas explained and Methos nodded.
I thought he might, Methos admitted and as they reached the womens cell and he turned the key he hoped for a miracle he knew wouldnt happen. As he opened the door Silas entered and Alexa and Cassandra moved towards the back wall. Casting a look at Methos Silas went for Cassandra, getting a hold of her arm and forcing her towards the door and down on her knees on the floor.
No! Dont! Cassandra protested, her still handcuffed hands making her attempts at escape useless. Methos knew Silas had taken Cassandra first to let Methos kill his woman himself. It was considerate in a twisted sort of way but when had their relationship been anything but twisted? Taking a deep breath Methos took out his sword and stepped forth from the shadows and into the cell.
Methos, Alexa said relived, not sure what to do. She couldnt take on Silas, she had no weapons and no battle training at all but she didnt want to see Cassandra dead. Methos smiled at her, relived to see her well before his whole attention returned to Silas and Cassandra. He hadnt helped her all those years ago, he had let Kronos drag her away, hearing her beg for him to help her yet he had done nothing. Not again. As Silass axe were inches from Cassandras neck Methos blocked the stroke with his sword. Silas looked surprised at him.
You're challenging me? For the girl's head? Take it. She's yours, brother, Silas offered, stepping a little back.
I am not your brother! Methos yelled.
Dont call me, brother. Not now when Im to kill you. Dont, he thought desperately. He forced himself to take a swing at Silas who surprised drew back and backed out the door to the womens cell, seeking somewhere with more room for a swordfight.
How can you do this? How can you go against what you are? Silas wanted to know, truly puzzled. Methos watched Silas carefully as he stood in the hallway, his awe raised.
You don't know anything about me! Methos yelled and that was the problem; he had changed; Silas hadnt. He turned back to look at Cassandra, now on her feet, standing close to Alexa. They both seem all right though scared and upset.
Step closer, Methos instructed Cassandra. Cassandra looked suspiciously at him.
Please. Do as he asks, Alexa asked softly and guarded Cassandra stepped closer, ready to bolt if he tried anything. Methos lifted his sword and cut through her handcuffs; freeing her.
Stay here, Methos said to them both.
Be careful, Alexa asked, giving him a quick kiss and an embrace.
I will, Methos promised and turned to go to Silas, still standing waiting in the hallway. Only Silas would have done that; given him time to say a few words to his woman. Back then, Silas had been the most humane of them all and the only one Methos had truly cared for if he lived or died. How ironical that they should now fight, knowing only one of them would walk away.
Logan, can you hear anything? Scot asked, his right hand close to his glasses. Logan and him were after Kronos as planned, keeping down and close to the wall behind some furniture for cover. Logan sniffed the air.
Hes close, Logan whispered.
Thanks, Sherlock, Scott mumbled, trying to see movement. Kronos had most likely been a warrior, a killer, all his life. They had to be really careful. Suddenly they heard a shot and a hiss of pain. Ororo, Scott thought worried. Please, let her be all right.
Rogue! Logan yelled, going towards the sound.
Dont, Scott protested as Logan stood up and all but ran over the floor, his only concern his wife. Scott ran after him when he suddenly saw a man with a gun raised from the other room, pointing straight at Logan. A shot sounded.
Down, Scott yelled and knocked Logan to the floor. Scott hissed in pain as the bullet grazed his right arm. More shots followed and Logan all but dragged Scott to safety behind a sofa.
God damn it, Logan swore hotly. He could feel a bullet had grazed his left leg but it was already healing. You alright? Logan turned to Scott.
Just great, Scott hissed and Logan saw that besides the wound in his arm, a bullet had also entered his right leg. It looked and was painful.
Stay here, Logan demanded and Scott nodded, grimacing.
I cant do much of anything else, he admitted, trying to keep the pain from his voice.
Ill get that bastard for this, Logan promised and put a gently hand on Scotts shoulder.
Be careful, Scott asked as Logan carefully walked towards the room from where the shot had sounded. Logan half smiled though Scott couldnt see it.
Careful is my middle name, he teased and Scott choked a laugh that turned into a grimace from the pain. Logan took his gun from its holster. Normally he never fought with guns but he knew how to use them and use them well and in this case
.he didnt take any chances. He sniffed the air. He was close. A sound too low for any normal ear to hear caught his attention. He was still in the other room. He concentrated hard. The mans breathing. Slow, even, controlled. From the far left corner. Logan stood by the wall just outside the room. He took a deep breath. Now. Quickly Logan knelt on one knee, aimed at the far left corner and fired. There was a sofa in the corner but Logans shooting had the desired effect; Kronos was forced to leave his hiding place and he ran to find another, shooting back at Logan. Logan clashed his teeth together against the pain as several bullets caught him and he saw that Kronos did the same. Logan knew he had the advantage; Immortals died as quickly and from as few wounds as mortals. Only difference was they woke up again. Logans healing powers however, made him able to stay conscious and awake for far longer than normal people; his endurance to pain was stronger and his bodys own healing rate so fast that so far he had never been ill or died from any wounds
which of course was a good thing as he couldnt return when first killed.
Who are you? Kronos yelled, his voice pain filled as he hid behind a big old wooden chest. Logan had hit him 3 places; in both arms and his right leg. He knew he had hit his opponent at least five times. Why wasnt he dead by now? Any mortal would be died.
Would you believe; your worst nightmare? Logan said grimly as he walked further into the room, his gun ready and pointing straight at the chest.
Oh, I believe that, Kronos thought darkly. A man he couldnt kill? An opponent who wouldnt die? That was a nightmare indeed. Kronos felt how his life was running out, the wounds were deadly. He had to kill his opponent now or else it wouldnt help him that gun wounds only gave him a temporally death for Kronos doubted fair play was in his enemys vocabulary. Not that it was in Kronoss but that was another story.
Now or never. Kronos checked both his guns, took a deep breath and stood up from behind the chest, shooting wildly at Logan while running as fast as he could towards the other room. Logan swore as more bullets entered him and fired at Kronos, again and again. Kronoss legs gave under him and he fell to the floor, his guns slipping from his grip as his own blood running from wounds in his arms made his hands wet. Logan went to him and hovered over him.
Who *are* you? Kronos hissed, hate but also a hint of fear in his voice. Having lived for 1000th of years didnt make the thought of death easy; on the contrary. Logan smiled deadly and popped his claws, enjoying the look of alarm in Kronoss eyes as he saw his opponent standing over him, three claws from each hand. Three very sharp claws looking like small swords.
Told you, bub
yer worst nightmare, Logan grinned mercilessly as Kronos fought death a few seconds more until his eyes closed and he lay still. If you have harmed Rogue this is too good a death for you, Logan mumbled darkly as he bent down and with a quick move, slashed his claws through Kronoss neck, killing him for good.
Can you see him? Ororo whispered to Rogue, both women walking slowing, silently, down the hallway. Well, Rogue walked, Ororo flew a few mms above the floor to be sure she made no sound.
No, Rogue said frustrated.
They reached a dark room, probably one of the living rooms. Ororo considering making a wind in the room but if their opponent wasnt in the room but in one of the others hell hear it and have a clear opportunity to kill them.
We have to check this room, Ororo whispered, nodding towards the dark room. They were just outside the entrance to the room, keeping away from it so not to be seen should their opponent be in the room. Rogue nodded.
You go in, Ahll cover you, Rogue said, holding her gun ready. Ororo disliked weapons and though she like the others had a gun with her she hadnt taken it up, relying on her control over the weather to help her. Ororo nodded her accept.
Now, Rogue said and Ororo quickly flew into the room, her eyes trying to get used to the darkness to make out the shapes of the room as she was flying towards a big chair to hide behind. Suddenly a shot sounded from the far side of the room and Ororo hissed in pain. Having lost her concentration she fell to the floor, lying valuable in the open.
Ororo! Rogue yelled and ran to her, firing towards the place where the shot had come from. A dark figure moved away, seemly into the wall but as Rogue looked more closely she saw that this room and the next was connected sideways.
Is he gone? Ororo asked, trying to keep the pain from her voice as she sat up. Rogue helped her to her feet and they walked towards the hallway. Ororo held her right hand over the wound in her left shoulder. It wasnt deadly Rogue noticed relived.
He ran off. The other way, Rogue explained. He hoped he wasnt going after Logan and Scott.
Methos blocked another blow from Silas, moving further down the hall. To Methos the fight seemed to have gone on for a long time but it probably wasnt so long. Silas forced Methos backwards and they reached a round, globe like structure that connected several hallways. Seeing his opening. Methos walked around Silas and forced his sword down on Silass head, using a backhanded beheading he was familiar with. In the Bronze Age swords had been short and not very sharp. They werent able to behead a man from the front, lacking the power. A backhand that started over the head developed enough power to cut off a head. Though Methos carried a sword from the Middle Ages he still relied heavily upon his old techniques and moves.
Methos took a deep breath as he saw Silass body fall.
Im sorry, baby brother, he whispered softly, his voice sincerely sad. Suddenly lighting developed and it all entered Methos, making him fall to his knees, lose his grip on his sword and scream in pain. Never had it been so painful in every way to kill another Immortal. Gradually the intensity of the lighting faded until it disappeared.
I killed Silas! I liked Silas! Methos gashed, lowing his head to his knees, sobbing.
Yeah, someone said from behind him; Caspian. Then he laughed Well, to tell the truth I never really liked him much anyway.
Methos drew his breath in gasps, still too weak to do anything. Caspian raised his sword and held it to Methoss throat.
I like you even less. Bye, brother, Caspian said darkly, ready to strike.
NO! Alexa yelled frightened. Both men turned to look and saw Alexa in the entrance to the globe, Cassandra standing behind her. Quickly Alexa ran towards Methos and picked up his sword, lifting it to point at Caspian who looked disbelieving at her.
Are you challenging me, woman? he asked disbelieving.
You will not kill my husband. I wont let you, Alexa warned though her voice wasnt as strong as she hoped itd be. She had no fight experience, she couldnt win.
no, Methos got out, fighting to get to his feet but still too weak.
Fine. I kill you and then him. Works for me, Caspian said and took a swing at her. Alexa backed away. She tried to swing the sword at him but missed by miles. She hadnt been prepared for the sword to feel so heavy in her hands. Methos had always made it look so easy when she had seen him practice moves at home.
Alexa. Throw me the sword, Cassandra asked, coming up besides Alexa.
Here, Alexa threw the sword to Cassandra and ran to Methos, embracing him. Caspian swung at Cassandra but she easily blocked.
Shes gotten better, Methos mumbled as he with Alexas help got to his feet. They stood together, watching the fight. Caspian seemed to have gotten over the shock of Cassandra actually being able to give him resistance and now seemed to have the upper hand, driving her back.
She might lose. Cant you help her? Alexa asked, looking up into his eyes, a plea in them.
Im not supposed to, Methos admitted. He looked around. There stood a shelf close by, old bottles and books on it. Having almost regained his strength Methos walked to the self and took down a bottle. Cassandra was now fighting with her face towards him; Caspian had his back to him. Hey! Over here, he yelled and threw the bottle to Cassandras right. Instinctively, Caspian turned towards the sound. Cassandra had of course seen Methos throw the bottle and wasnt surprised by the sound. She used Caspians split second of lost concentration as she brought her sword down against Caspians neck, killing him.
For my people, she mumbled as lighting developed, entering her and she yelled in pain, going to her knees and losing her grip on her sword. Methos thought it a good time to make sure Cassandra didnt have a sword nearby when she regained her strength and picked up his sword before he stood back with Alexa. Finally the lighting died out.
You alright? Alexa asked worried and ran to Cassandra, helping her to her feet.
Im fine, Cassandra insisted but she was still a little unsure on her feet. Suddenly more lighting developed, seeming to come from above.
Kronos, Methos whispered. The lighting reached in and entered him and again he fell to his knees.
Move, Cassandra yelled and pushed Alexa away from her as lighting focused on her too. Alexa ran to stand as close to the wall as she could as lighting kept entering Methos and Cassandra. She flinched in sympathy at their yells of pain. Finally the lighting died out and Alexa ran to help Methos to his feet.
What was that? she asked confused. I thought it only happened when you killed one of your own.
It does. Logan must have killed Kronos, Methos explained. When Alexa was sure he was strong enough to stand on his own she went to Cassandra, helping her up.
If mortals kills an Immortal
.. Cassandra began.
The lighting will still enter the closest Immortals, Alexa guessed and Cassandra nodded.
Well, one things for sure; you people sure know how to kill your own kind. Your fireworks beats the fourth of July, Logan remarked dryly as he stood in the entrance to the globe, his clothes torn and bleeding from several places.
Logan! You came, Methos said and walked to him, smiling sincerely and giving his friend a hug.
Thats twice you owe me, Logan teased.
Dont remind me, Methos grimaced. He hated owing anybody anything.
Ill repay my debt to you. Anytime, ask anything of me and I shall do it, Methos vowed. Within reason, he mumbled more out of habit than anything. He doubted Logan would save him just to ask for his head but one never could be too careful. Logan laughed.
You never stop.
Only a blade would do that, Cassandra remarked as she came to them but her voice didnt hold the edge of hate it had before. Alexa smiled as she saw Logan.
Logan! So good to see you, she said and hugged him close.
Good to see you too, kid, Logan said warmly and this time Methos smiled. Live long enough and everyone is a kid.
Logan, we have to get Scott to the hospital. Ororo too, Rogue said as she appeared behind the corner of the hallway.
Rogue! Youre alright, Alexa said relived and smiled. Logan smiled too as he saw Rogue. The first ting he had done when he had killed Kronos was going to look for Rogue. He had been relived to find she hadnt been the one who had been shot. He had left Rogue to take care of Scott and Ororo while he had gone to see where Caspian had disappeared to.
So are you, Rogue answered happily and the two women embraced.
Lets go then, Methos said and walked upstairs, Logan purposely walking between Methos and Cassandra.
Part 10, one month later:
John. John, dont play with that, Scott reproved his son, carefully taking Methoss expensive and very old China bowl from him and put it up on one of the upper shelves so John couldnt reach it again.
Methos, will you make the table? Alexa asked from the kitchen as she and Ororo put some glasses and plates out on the table.
Sure, Methos agreed and stood up from the sofa where he had been talking with Logan and Scott while the little rascal to Scotts son had wreaked havok.
Ill help. Logan, look after John and Alexa, Scott asked and Logan nodded. Alexa was a quiet girl and easy to watch, she sat in one corner of the livingroom, playing with her dolls. John on the other hand
No, Logan yelled as John had reached over to one of the small tables next to the sofa, taking a crystal statuette of a rider on a horse down to play with.
Go, go, John said, smiling happily as he all but hammered the statuette down on the wooden floor. Logan winced as the lower part of the horses legs broke off. John didnt seem to mind and played on.
No, no. Give that to uncle Logan, Logan insisted and took the statuette from him. He looked to the pieces of the statuette on the floor. He looked up and saw Methos and Scott still making the table in the dining room. Oh, what the Hell. Logan picked the pieces up and threw them into the fireplace and placed the statuette up on the small table again, making sure an ashtray supported it.
Hon, come take the salad to the table, Ororo asked and Scott carried the salad in.
What are we missing? Alexa asked, looking around in the kitchen at the plates of food and then to her three friends.
I think we have everything, Cassandra insisted. It was only on Alexas invitation that she had agreed to come to dinner at hers and Methoss home though she had to admit that her desire to see Methos dead wasnt as strong now that she had seen first hand the kind of love Alexa shared with him.
Okay, lets get this inside then, Rogue said and they took plates of food to the table and Methos and Scott took the rest for them. Logan took Alexa and John to the table and reading the place cards, sat down, seeing hell have Rogue to his right and Methos to his left. Alexa had made place cards to be sure Cassandra and Methos wouldnt by accident be placed next to each other. She had placed Cassandra between herself and Ororo, hoping some of Ororos calm and sense of peace could be given to Cassandra. The children sat between their parents, as they were still so young that they should have help when they ate. After some normal confusion they all sat down. Soon, the food was passed around and normal chatter filled the room, giving Alexa a wonderful feeling of normality and peace.
But you had to know Kronos would come for you one day, Logan said to Methos.
I tried not to think about it, Methos admitted. Just like he tried not to think about he had killed Silas.
You didnt kill Kronos. Why? Logan wanted to know.
For several reasons. Foremost because I couldnt beat him. But also because he was my brother, in arms and blood and everything except birth, and if I judged him worthy to die, then I judged myself the same way, he explained, the same reason which had kept him from killing him so many years earlier. And I wanted to live. I still do, he ended, the reason for doing almost anything; survival.
You were sure I could kill him?
I never had a doubt. There are rules which you dont follow, there are certainties you dont have
. you were the only one who could do it.
Now, you havent anymore old friends from the past who wants to kill you, now do you? Logan teased, raising his glass to his lips.
Actually, now that you mention it
.. Methos began and Logan almost choked in his wine. Methos laughed. Just kidding.
Not funny, Logan bummed but his lips had turned upwards in a smile.
Why did you save me? Alexa asked Cassandra, curious. Cassandras eyes became clouded as she remembered something she wished she could forget.
Ive killed and been killed. I wished something, someone I knew to not be a murderer; to remain pure, she said softly and Alexa nodded.
Cassandra accepted her thanks with a nod of her head. Alexa looked at Methos across the table, laughing at something Logan had said. He looked so young, so carefree in that moment. He looked
.I know I have no right to ask this
You can ask me anything but Ill not promise Ill do it, Cassandra offered.
.gone, she forced out. She didnt like to think of her own mortality but she was almost forty now. She had time, more than she had first thought, but compared to Methos still so little time. So very little time.
..when Im gone, look in on him for me. I dont ask you to love him or even like him
..I know Immortals get very lonely. If not for his sake then yours as well. Ill make him promise never to attack you or kill you unless in self-defence, she explained, having it all planned out. She wished she could stay with Methos forever but she couldnt. She wished to make sure that when she was gone, Methos wouldnt be all alone and Cassandra was the only Immortal she had met who hadnt tried to kill Methos which was kind of ironical considering she had wanted him dead for so long.
I will look in on him from time to time, Cassandra promised, the deep of Alexas love having touched her soul and heart. She wished she had such a deep felt love.
Thank you, Alexa said warmly, knowing she could ever express with words all what that meant to her. Methos wouldnt be alone; not all the time at least. When she was gone therell still be one soul who would look after him. It calmed and pleased her.
You look so serious. Something wrong? Methos asked in her ear, startling her. She had been lost in thought and hadnt seen him walk around the table to her.
No, Im fine, she smiled at him. He kissed her on the lips before he went to kneel beside her chair, taking her hands in his. Cassandra was surprised by his display of affection and that he was kneeling before her. Maybe
maybe he had truly changed.
I love you, aquetseliadanata. Youre everything to me, I dont know what Ill be without you and I dont wish to know, Methos said softly, his eyes holding hers.
I love you too, Alexa said softly and he stood up and drew her into his embrace and kissed her deeply. When they drew apart cheers were heard from around the table and Methos smiled as he held Alexa tight. Laughter, smiles, love and humour filled the rest of the night; seven friends bonding and having fun.
Tonight was a good night and theyll always remember it as such no matter if they lived for another 40 years or another 4000 years.
Translations to this story:
 Cherokee for My Heart
 Cherokee for Wife of my heart
 Cherokee for My soul