Chapter 19 - First (Second) Samhain
Several Months Later
The silver, interwoven, viking ring had been in his possession since their first double date with his parents, but Jamie was having trouble with planning the when, where, and how to propose to Claire. He wanted to give her everything, including the perfect proposal. Each and every scenario filtered through is mind in the months since, as the ring grew heavy in his consciousness and pocket. The ring was begging to be given to its new owner. Jamie wasn’t sure if he was going to be able to wait to give it to her.
Jamie considered a public display type of proposal at a restaurant, or hot air balloon, or something big, but decided that wasn’t them. He thought about her birthday, but then her birthday would always be about them and not just her, he never wanted her to feel compelled to be doing something for him on her birthday. He pondered a trip away, some cottage on Skye, maybe a trip to Paris, and even Craigh Na Dun, but nothing seemed right. Nothing seemed to match his love for her. Then her deep love of romantic comedies popped into his head, and he asked himself, What would “movie Jamie” do in this situation? The idea hit him like a spark as a flash of a red cape came into his mind.
Jamie presumed he had been more or less the same size since University. He found out how wrong he was when he went to put on his superman costume after more than a decade. It was extremely tight. When he donned the costume for the first time, he was still recovering from his injuries. His muscle mass had been on the lower end of his normal scale. Once he could work out again and return to sports, his naturally toned bulk came back. The old costume highlighted that for him in exquisite Lycra detail. It was a memory previously lost to time over the years. He had to get a new costume and fast.
Intent on surprising Claire on their first Samhain together as an official couple, Jamie searched the shops before finally buying an extra tall costume online. He had it overnighted to Ian and Jenny so that Claire wouldn’t find the package accidentally. Even though they were not officially living together yet, Claire was at his flat most nights of the week. As soon as the costume arrived, he drove to Lallybroch to picked it up. He spent no more than five minutes at the estate before frantically getting back into the car to return back to the city. Chastising himself all the way home for not trying on his old costume sooner, he hoped he would have enough time to prepare before Claire arrived home.
Claire was thrilled to have Samhain night off from the hospital. She clocked out at four that afternoon and thanked the scheduling gods for not having to treat a single person in costume this year. No shattered ankles from inexperienced high heel walkers, no broken noses from someone eyeing someone else’s mate too eagerly in costume, and no cutting anyone out of a costume in order to get to their injuries. She laughed to herself thinking of her personal experience with that. Her mind wandering a pathway back to that very first night with Jamie all those years ago when he was not able to free her from her costume.
Jamie hadn’t said anything to Claire about Samhain, which she felt was rather odd considering it was a special night for them and especially since it would be their first as an official couple. She thought that maybe he just forgot, consumed with his latest story. Her mind trailed off and pushed thoughts of something romantic deep down the expectation crevasse.
As soon as Jamie heard Claire’s key in the door, his pulse began to race. Sweat broke out over his whole body which he could have done without considering how much spandex he was wearing. He launched himself into a mental pep talk. I can do this. She loves me. I love her. It’s never been more right. But she could still say no. What if she doesn’t want to get married after all once she is faced with it? Will she freak out at the ring? Is this too cheesy? Is she going to hate it? Am I really worthy of her? She loves me. We want the same things. I can do this!
The flat was completely dark. Unusual, thought Claire.
“Jamie?” she called out.
“In here, mo nighean donn,” Jamie called from the bedroom.
Claire swore she saw a flash of red by the door as she turned towards the bedroom. Dismissing it as being tired from work, she pushed it away from her mind.
As Claire approached
their his bedroom, her breath caught in her throat as she froze in the doorway. Candles dotted the window sills, tables, and dressers, creating a soft romantic glow. Desperately trying to catch her breath, she caught sight of her man, dressed in a collar bone to ankles, form-fitting Superman costume, cape dangling behind him. On the bed stood a fully replicated Craigh Na Dun, in miniature. Resting in the center of the circle, lay a navy blue velvet box.
In one big swooping step, Jamie was at her side. He grabbed her hands, and knelt down in front of her at the end of the bed. Tears started to run down her face, she couldn’t believe this was really happening.
Jamie leaned over the bed, put his hand in the stone circle, removed the box, and held it in front of Claire.
“Claire, mo graigh, thirteen years ago today I met ye seemingly by chance. I now know, without a shadow of a doubt, there was no chance involved. We were supposed to meet. We were supposed to find each other. We belong to each other, and always have since that fateful day. I never knew how much I was missing in my life all those years we spent apart on our own paths, but now I do. I am grateful everyday ye met my mother, and that it brought us back together. I have never been happier. I never want to be parted from ye.”
Jamie opened the box, revealing the twined ring. “This ring is the symbol of our two lives intertwining and has been the engagement ring of my family for generations. Will ye wear it? Will ye marry me?”
Gasping, trying to find breath through her tears, Claire screeched, “ Yes! Yes, of course, I’ll marry you!” Flinging her arms around him, he toppled back seated against the bed, her landing in his lap, as she attacked his mouth with hers.
The ring box fell out of Jamie’s hands as he caught Claire. She was in a lust vortex and he immediately succumbed to her and forgot about putting the ring on her finger.
Claire began clawing at him, trying to figure out how the suit worked, as she rubbed her body against his. His erection was clearly visible against his costume as she pressed her pelvis into him. Pulling back, Claire asked “how do I get you out of this thing?”
“I thought you’d never ask Love, I’m dying in this thing. I feel like my cock’s about to snap off, right before I die of heat. The back, there’s a zipper under the cape,” he panted, tugging at the front of his suit and wondering if the first one he wore was so…revealing.
Jamie and Claire stood. Claire lifted his cape and examined the taut lines of the back of his body in the costume. She brushed her hands over his arse, featherlight, eliciting a groan before dragging her hands slowly up his back. Resting the cape over his shoulder, she inched down the zipper and for the first time noticed how erotic it was to undress him in this way. Jamie loved slowly unzipping her out of dresses, and Claire “got it,” but never really “got it” until she was doing it to him.
Slowly revealing his mix of muscled back and scars, she felt her desire dampen between her legs. The zipper ran all the way to the base of his spine. She became an animal. She licked the track the zipper had just taken before threading her hands inside the costume and around his front to take him in her hand. The suit was still tight enough that she was almost trapped, so she got creative. Her hands glued between his body and the fabric, she began to use only her fingers to stimulate him. It was an unusual sensation and she was not sure he was going to like it, but his moan said otherwise.
“Claire I canna take it, get me out of this thing!” Jamie growled, tugging at the shoulders.
Claire helped him get out of the shoulders, wondering how on earth he got into the getup in the first place. She dragged the red, blue, and yellow fabric down to his feet, slowly exposing his exquisite form that she loved so much. The minute he stepped out of it, she tackled him back to the ground, ravishing everything within lips distance with ferocity of a starving Serengeti cat. With no further foreplay, she took him in hand and brought him to her, sighing with delight as he filled her completely. No matter how many times they lay together, the initial joining was always like the first time. It lit both of them with an all-consuming fire, blazing a path to the deepest layers of their soul.
The woman was on a mission. She rode him harder than she ever had in their entire time together. Jamie was just trying to keep up, dancing between sexual bliss, unconsciousness, and orgasm. Claire came with a shattering cry, convulsing, panting, and becoming dizzy enough to sway to the side before Jamie sat up and caught her in his embrace. He collected her into his arms, breathed, “I love you,” into her mouth, though he wasn’t sure she was back in her body yet. Hugging her, to his great surprise she started to move against him again. He flipped her on her back, as she curled tightly around him, her legs and arms locked around his back. He managed to free her arms, spreading them wide, interlacing their fingers, as he filled her with his entire being over and over again, screaming her name in incoherent Gaelic until he found his release.
Jamie and Claire laid on the floor panting on their backs, having never made it to the bed. Replica Craigh Na Dun remained unharmed in the center of their bed. Jamie looked over at Claire to find her eyes already on him.
“Hi,” Claire said.
“Hi,” Jamie said.
“Did that really just happen?” Claire whispered.
“Which part?” Jamie laughed.
“Did you just propose to me in real life? Did I just attack you?” Claire asked with all sincerity.
“Absolutely, mo graigh. How about we find that ring, and put it on your finger, so you can KNOW it’s real,” Jamie said, shifting his body weight, to look around them, locating the ring box under the bed after a minute.
Placing the ring on Claire’s finger, they both sighed in relief, as if the ring had always belonged there. Jamie brought Claire’s hand to his mouth, kissing the ring, he said, “I can’t wait to be yer husband. I love ye.”
“I can’t wait to be your wife, Jamie. I love you too,” Claire said, as she leaned in to join their mouths, sealing their promise to each other for years to come.
Claire pulled back abruptly and said, “I have a surprise for you tonight too.”
“Oh aye?” Jamie said quirking his head.
“Aye,” Claire said sarcastically, as she got up to turn the light on and rummage through her bag.
As soon as the light flipped on, Jamie gasped.
“What?” Claire asked.
“Claire…yer knees, they’re bleeding,” he said with a hint of both horror and amusement, as he made his way to sit on the edge of the bed. In that moment, a flash of intuition sparked his brain. Blood. They’d had uninterrupted sex for 8 weeks. Usually so good about keeping track, he had been so consumed with the proposal that he hadn’t noticed that she’d missed her period. His heart started to race as the realization started to settle in. Could it be?
Claire looked down at her knees, then looked up eyes wide at Jamie before she burst into laughter. Claire, you animal, she thought to herself.
Rummaging through her bag, she found her surprise, and held it up for Jamie to see.
In one hand she held a red wig, her fae of the stones wig, her other hand rested behind her back.
Jamie beamed at her as she put it on and sauntered back over to him, crawling into his lap, straddling him.
“Well fae of the stones, what a pleasure it is to see ye again,” he said bringing his lips to her neck.
“There’s one more thing Superman,” she said, taking her hand out from behind her back, revealing a plastic future-telling stick, “…I’m pregnant.”
Jamie immediately began to cry and enveloped her in a deep bear hug.
After a few moments, Claire, shook herself free and asked, “Happy tears?”
Jamie nodded his head and smiled through his wet face, “This is the best day of my life Claire.”