Lucrezia Noin was not happy
By Chyna Rose
Disclaimer: I don’t own Gundam Wing. I don’t own Highlander.
Warnings: Playing fast and loose with the cannon; partially AU and ignoring most of Episode Zero
“I’m telling you, we’re lost.” The argument had been going on for over a hundred miles already with neither man in the car willing to back down from their position.
“And I’m telling you that we aren’t.” said Methos as he turned to glare at the man in the passenger seat.
“You must be going senile Old Man. Look the map says…” Duncan began before Methos interrupted him. Neither man seemed overly concerned that Methos wasn’t paying attention to the road.
“Screw the map! I’ll have you know that I helped build this road, and I’m telling you that it goes straight through.”
“Yeah, the original maybe. But that was how many millennia ago? This road doesn’t go where you think it goes. Ergo, we’re lost.”
“For the last time, we are not lost. I know exactly where this road goes, and we will get there from here!” The last exclamation was accompanied by a solid slap to the dash board. Almost as if it was alive and in retaliation, the car gave a bang and gradually began to slow down.
“Great. Just great.” Duncan groused, glowering at Methos as if this was Methos’ personal fault. They managed to pull over to the side before the car died completely.
“Don’t. You. Start.” Methos ground out, his voice edged steel sharp and warning not now and possibly not ever. Old as he was (and he was older than memory) he might know how to wait but that didn’t mean that he was in any way patient. And Duncan’s nagging for the past three hours and gods know how many miles had worn away what little patience he had down to virtually nothing. And now… the only thing stopping Methos from killing Duncan (and it wasn’t as if he was talking about permanently killing him; just a quick little stab in the heart, or some well deserved strangulation, or even a very satisfying gutting) was the fact that it would give him yet another thing to nag about and drag into any further arguments the two had for at least the next hundred years or so. As if he wasn’t going to hear about their getting lost and then stranded in the middle of nowhere.
For once in his life it seemed, Duncan did the wise thing and kept his mouth shut, although his sour expression clearly said ‘now what o great and fearless leader’. Methos, after taking out his cell phone in hopes of salvaging things only to find it deader than a doornail, idly wondered if Duncan would let him live it down if he killed himself. Probably not. At least it wasn’t raining.
Things had gone smoothly. Too smoothly in Methos’ opinion. After about an hour of walking along the road with only trees for company and no sign of life other than the forest, they had stumbled across a private driveway. And now they were nearly at the door with nothing (baring a small disagreement about whether or not they should be trespassing like this which Methos won by saying that while Duncan could wander for days and most likely die of exposure, he was going to take the risk and ask to use the phone to call for a tow up at the house that had to be at the other end of the drive) happening; it was all too good to be true really.
Mere inches from the door, the other shoe dropped; hard. Immortals. [Given the nature of the Game, it was rare but not unheard of for groups of Immortals to form. Methos had been part of group back when civilization was still trying to figure out what it was all about, and Duncan seemed to just collect Immortals like other collected stamps, and then there was that insane group of wannabe Mafia misfits he’d run into in the early 21st century AD…] This is just what they didn’t need. Both Methos and Duncan were good – you didn’t survive the Game as long as they had without being good – but even as good as they were, they still were outnumbered. Oh, they could still win if they were lucky and their opponents were honorable enough to stick to the ‘two Immortals per fight’ rule and let them have a bit of a breather in between bouts (something Duncan was more likely to do since it was the ‘fair’ thing to do), but the odds of their survival would’ve been lower than Methos would’ve liked. Better to retreat now before a challenge could be issued than to fight and face a good chance of loosing his head.
Unfortunately fate, fickle bitch that she was, didn’t give them a chance to cut and run before things got sticky. The door flew open and the duo found themselves looking down the barrel of a gun being held by a glaring teen. The other that Methos could see looked equally armed and uninviting.
Ever the diplomat, Duncan moved to defuse the situation and keep anyone from being shot. Arms up in the universal sign of ‘don’t hurt me, I’m unarmed’, he began to back up slowly. “We’re sorry to disturb you, but our car broke down and we were looking for a phone to borrow to call for a tow truck. But since we don’t want to intrude, we’ll just be on our way now.”
“Try again.” The teen ground out, flicking off the safety with a practiced ease.
“No really; it’s the truth. We just wanted to borrow the phone to call for a tow.”
“You are trespassing on Preventer property.” Zechs Merquis said as he made his way to the door, gun out. It was a shock to find out that Zechs was an Immortal, after all everyone believed that he was the biological son of the late king and queen of Sanq.
“And we apologize for that. It was an honest mistake. We mean you no harm, and we’ll be going now.”
“I’m afraid that I cannot allow that.” Zechs replied, cocking a gun of his own.
“Try again.” The gun holding teen bit out.
Methos would’ve sighed if he hadn’t been sure that doing so wouldn’t have gotten him shot by one of his captors. In some ways, things had gone from bad to worse. After Zechs had made it clear that he and Duncan weren’t going to walk out of this so easily, the two teen who weren’t holding guns on them had forced their arms behind their head and began the matter of fact process of patting them down while Zechs and the other teen kept them covered. Which would’ve been fin and dandy for both parties had it not been for the discovery of a pair of swords hidden under their coats. In short order Duncan and Methos found themselves systematically stripped down to their boxers, tied up, and being interrogated. Any attempt Methos or (more likely) Duncan made to explain that they were merely a pair of travelers seeking help after a mechanical breakdown were met with hostile disbelief and being forced yet again to explain who they were and why they were there. After all innocent men like they were claiming to be didn’t walk around carrying hidden swords (although why swords went unasked; even with the general disarmament and the fact that projectile weapons were exceedingly dangerous off earth, virtually no one these days used something as outdated as a sword). Suffice to say they weren’t getting anywhere beyond stuck in a vicious cycle.
“Who are you?” the teen asked for what had to have been the hundredth time.
“I am Duncan McLeod of the clan McLeod.” Duncan replied, annoyance at the repetition lacing into the words as well as the pried in clan of that simple declaration.
“Why are you here?”
“Our car broke down and we were looking to call for a tow.”
Once again Duncan’s words were met with obvious disbelief, and the tense standoff continued. No matter how many times he was questioned, Duncan’s answer wasn’t going to change because it was the truth. And no matter how many times Duncan had answered, they weren’t going to believe him even though their story checked out and they could show them the proof of one broken down rental car a few miles down the road. The only way this could end baring a miracle, was badly with at least someone dead (even if only temporarily). Hell, part of Methos was starting to hope that these people would just shoot them and dump them in the woods. Sure establishing a new identity was a pain in the arse, but at least it’d get them out of here. And while painful, getting shot was quick and survivable; it was actually a preferable way to die really (and you know that you’ve been alive too long when you started rating deaths the way other people rated movies or baseball players).
“So what brings an antiques dealer and a…”
“Pre-colonial historian.” Methos ‘helpfully’ added. All he got for his efforts was a glare.
“…way out here?”
“We were trying to get to Pratz.”
One of the teens snorted. “To get there you need to take Rue de Folschette or Rue de la Grotte.” Which, it went unspoken, you would’ve known if you were telling the truth.
“I told you we were going the wrong way. But no Mr. I’m-older-than-Ur says the road goes through, so the road has to go through; never mind what the fucking map says. Well guess what Old Man. You. Were. Wrong. This is all your fault.” Duncan yelled.
“Spare me the lecture; as if you’ve never made a mistake in your life. Get off you high horse McLeod.” Methos shot back.
“At least I’m man enough to admit when I make a mistake.”
“Tell that to Richie.”
“Why you… you…” Duncan shook with inarticulate rage, Richie’s death still very much a sore point even after all these years. He attempted to lunge at his old friend and ally, but was stopped by the fact that he was tied to a chair. Still, he had put enough force into the lunge that he managed to knock both himself and the chair over on their side. “I’m sure Silias would disagree.”
“I should’ve taken your head years ago.” Methos muttered darkly, loud enough for Duncan to hear.
“Enough!” Zechs roared, accompanied by all four guns being cocked and ready to fire. Both Methos and Duncan jumped a bit having forgotten about their current predicament in the heat of their argument. A tense silence reigned; waiting expectantly for that one little twitch which would set off a flurry of violent activity that would leave Duncan and Methos dead and bleeding on the floor as frayed tempers and nerves were stretched past the breaking point. After what felt like an eternity, everyone began to calm down although no one was stupid enough to let down their guard. “Now then,” Zechs continued, “Let us try this once again. Who are you, what are you doing here, and what does decapitation have to do with anything?”
“You wouldn’t believe me if I said.” Methos said dryly. Inwardly he was wincing; of all the things for their captors to pick up on in their little fight, it had to be that beauty of a regret.
“Try us Old Man.” The braided agent said. Apparently that wasn’t the only thing they had picked up upon.
Making a mental note to kill Duncan once this was over and if they both still had their heads (what was a little murder between friends after all), Methos answered. “My actual name is Methos, and I am well over five thousand years old. Duncan – and yes, that is his real name – only dates back to the late 1500s old calendar. We are some of the best for having survived as long as we have; these days, you’d have to be a fool to go after one of us – let alone both of us. Unfortunately there are enough fools running around willing to do that – not to mention the fact that Cassandra still doesn’t forgive me for what happened during the Bronze Age. Since we had money and time enough, we decided to take a vacation driving around Europe; revisit some of our old haunts as it were. Our car broke down and instead of starving to death while we waited for anyone else to pass by, we decided to try to find a phone we could use to call for a tow. Obviously we chose the wrong house, but it was the first house we saw. Now could you either kill us or let us go so we can find a phone, call for the tow, and get the hell out of here?”
“I admit that’s one hell of a story. Must make a hell of a pickup line. But we still have a bit of a problem you see. I mean, what are the chances that two ‘immortals’ just ‘happen’ to have a very ‘convenient’ break down practically on our doorstep. You can see why we’re so suspicious.” The braided agent put in –complete with air quotes – somewhat jovially. Then he dropped the friendly act going as cold and deadly as the other two teens. “Where is your proof.”
“Well you could always shoot one of us and wait until we revived.” Methos offered. As distasteful (and more often than not, painful) as dying to prove their immortality was, it still was the best way to do so. The ‘yeah right’ snort of a reply (and really, did he expect any better? If anyone was going to be shot, they would’ve been already) was met with a ‘you go any better ideas’ look.
Fifteen tense minutes later, Methos smirked as the agents watched in shock and awe was the not quite gentle gash on his chest (courtesy of the agent and the small but wicked looking knife he’d pulled from… somewhere) healed right before their eyes leaving nary a scratch. True it hadn’t been anywhere near fatal (at least not in this day and age; with modern medicine being what it was), but hopefully it would be enough proof. If not, well surely the figurative bomb he was about to drop would be enough to goad at least one of them into trying and killing him (and thus, giving the agents undeniable proof of his outlandish claim). “Of course, there is an easier way to tell if a person is an Immortal or not. All Immortals are able to feel another of their kind; it’s a sort of buzzing kind of awareness – as I’m sure you’ve noticed.”