It had felt like months since that evening at Craig Na Dun, yet it had only been a week. A week of pure hell for Claire. For she had gone through so many different emotions, her body and mind felt battered and broken yet she still had him.
The hot hand of her husband held within her own, hotter even than usual for although Jamie usually radiated warmth, throughout his fever he was like a furnace. Still her stubbornness as well as his own had kept him alive, for she had saved him on the way to Lallybroch, had refused to leave his side ever since they had arrived home. Even when Jenny made her promise to sleep, she refused to be away from his side.
She could remember it clearly, the night before Culloden when Jamie had taken her back to the stones, yet unlike before she couldn’t go back, she could hear the stones yet no matter how hard Jamie wanted her, Claire's heart was on Jamie, it was he that she wanted, he that she longed for and he that she was tethered too. During the battle Jamie had sent her away with Murtagh, wanting his wife to get back to Lallybroch as soon as possible and he would return to her. Of course Murtagh had gone back to him, as Claire stayed with Fergus, hidden from sight only a couple hours east of the battle. When Murtagh had eventually reached them, her husband’s wounded and fevered body in the back of a cart, she was reminded of Wentworth and having to treat him as they escaped.
One hand went to her stomach as she glanced at Jamie, her other hand still holding his own. A stray tear rolled down her cheek.
“Wake up Jamie, once you wake up we can get away from here, get to safety maybe to Island or to the America’s, we could always go to Italy as well. I wish we could stay here, but they are going to keep searching, us being here will be a danger to Ian and Jenny. Jenny has made sure I’ve gotten plenty to eat since we got back, made sure to keep my strength up for our child. I know that Faith is looking down on us Jamie but I can’t do this without you”.
“Claire?” Eyes flying open, she gasped in joy as she glanced at Jamie. Her husband lay now looking up at her from the bed. “Christ Sassenach”. The blue eyes that she loved so much, his nickname for her that she would always cherish.
“Oh Jamie”. Burying her face against his chest, she curled against him now on the bed in the laird’s room. The familiar surroundings they had gotten used to before and after their time in Paris, where she so longed to stay, yet knew that she would be unable to. Warm tears falling against his bare chest as she held him. “I thought I was going to lose you, I’ll never let you do anything like that again!”
Though her cries was muttered into his chest, her body trembled until he engulfed her smaller frame in his own. For as he had said before, he could handle his own pain, but not hers.
“Dinna weep mo chridhe, I am here”.
As the months passed Jamie had recovered, his progress moving quicker thanks to the healing touch and determination of his wife, as well as his own stubbornness. During the days Jamie would pass his time in the fields, helping the farmers of Lallybroch to prepare for the famine and make sure they had enough to provide for all of the tenants of Broch Morda, as well as keep the Redcoats happy when they visited. His nights would be spent looking over the bookkeeping that Ian had prepared or curled up beside his wife around the large fireplace at Lallybroch, telling stories of his travels as well as Scottish fairy tales to his nieces and nephews, as his own wee laddie moved in Claire’s belly.
As for Claire, she was glowing. Now that she was at home at Lallybroch and being looked after by Jenny and Mrs Crook, things had been wonderful. She had been feeling their baby few weeks now, an it warmed her heart to know that soon Jamie would be able to feel the baby too. Of course she was worried, but as the days passed and the pregnancy advanced further her worries about their child began to ease.
“But mama”. Young Jamie turned towards his mother a frown on his face. “I want another story from Uncle Jamie!”
The young Murray did this most nights, not wanting to go to bed but instead wanting to listen to the tales that his Uncle would tell every evening.
“But nothing Jamie Murray, it’s past your bedtime!”. Jenny huffed in annoyance at her eldest. “Your sisters have already gone to bed now scram!”
Jamie looked at Claire and then at his sister and brother in law.
“Come on ya wee gomerel”. Scooping up his nephew, Jamie held him upside down for a moment before moving the lad over his shoulder to carry him upstairs.
“I’ll go up after him, you should probably have a whisky or two”. Claire smiled at Jenny and Ian as she got up, one hand rubbing her bump. “Good night”.
“Night Claire”. Ian smiled over at her, while he wrapped his arm around Jenny.
“Goodnight Sister”. Jenny smiled at her and Claire felt her heart soar, she could still remember the way she had been greeted her very first day in Lallybroch, to fit in so well now and be welcomed, to have a family it meant everything to her.
Following her husband upstairs, Claire stood in the doorway as he put young Jamie down in his bed, his sisters already fast asleep. She waited, not saying a word simply watching as Jamie tucked him in. The sight brought tears to her eyes, soon that would be their own child it would happen with, her mind couldn’t help but go to Faith. If Faith had survived if she had made it, she would be asleep now besides her cousin Kitty, just a few months older than her. It broke her heart, knowing that their daughter had been taken from them so cruelly.
It had been the worst time of Claire’s life, she had gone through that moment separated from the man that she loved more than anything, her husband thrown into the Bastille as she was forced to live with the devastating loss of their daughter, a moment that had nearly killed her.
Brought out of her thoughts, she felt the brush of his palm wiping the tears from her eyes, bringing her out of the room and towards the Laird’s bedroom.
“Sorcha?” Jamie glanced at her as he pulled her into his arms. “What's the matter sassenach? Is it the bairn?” The worry was evident both in his voice and upon his features.
“I was just thinking of Faith, and what it would be like if she was here with us”. Glancing up at him, a few more tears fell as she gazed into his eyes.
“She’s our angel mo chridhe, she will always be with us”. Jamie placed his larger hand over his wife’s, entwining their fingers as his other hand moved to her bump. “Our son”.
When her child kicked, she knew then that he had been able to feel their baby for the very first time for the smile that lit up his face said it all. As she noticed the tears stinging his own eyes.
“Sassenach was that him our lad aye?” Though his gaze was directly on his wife, both his palms now moved along her swollen stomach.
“Yes Jamie, that was our baby, our little girl”.
“Shh sassenach, ya know it’s a lad ya ken?”
“What makes you say that Jamie? Either way ill remind you we won’t be naming our child after a Castle, boy or girl”.
“Sassenach Dalhousie is not a bad name, it’s a strong name”. Though he was serious, he couldn’t help but break out into the biggest grin, bringing his wife closer to him as he led her over towards the bed.
Oh god she wanted him, she always wanted him but pregnancy only served in fueling that fire more, she couldn’t get enough of him.
“Jamie...I need you”. Her fingers found the bottom of his shirt, pulling it up and over his head and discarding it on the floor.
“I didna think it possible to want you any more than I always have Claire, but christ I still want you so much that I can scarcely breathe sassenach”.
His own large palms found their place now on their back, before moving to the front of her gown and undoing the laces.
“I’m glad you’re not wearing them corsets still like Paris sassenach, I dinna need to spend as much time undoing so many fancy laces”. As his hand brushed the underside of her breast, over the thin material of her shift, a tiny moan escaped her lips, the effect of such wee moan going straight to his cock.
It didn't take long for him to have her out of her dress, as his own pants soon joined her dress and his shift on the floor. He hated not being able to wear his kilt anymore, but he had no other choice.
Guiding his wife to the bed, he laid her down. Finger finding her wet centre and pushing slowly inside as his lips found her own, kissing her passionately as he hovered carefully above him. Claire needed him so badly, wanted him so much that she was already wet for him. Reluctantly breaking from his lips her she pushed him down to the side, moving so that she could straddle him now.
Jamie was already hard for her, his cock erect and to full attention as she took him in hand. The way his eyes drew back, the groans that escaped his lips, only made Claire want him more. Hovering over him for only a moment, she moved her hand to slip down onto him, her warm heat soon enclosing his cock as she started to move, tiny moans of pleasure escaping her lips.
As she moved, Jamie watched her his eyes filled with nothing short of love and passion for his wife, the swell of her stomach pressing against his own body as she moved him. For Jamie knew that he only loved her more when she was with child, carrying his son or a wee lassie inside her only served to make him swell with pride.
Thank you so much for all the lovely and supportive comments. You truly inspire a writer to keep going and made my day.
Chapter 3: Chapter 2 - Red Coats
Thank you all for your lovely comments and kudos. Sorry for the delay in getting this one out to you all, I've had very busy days at work this week so my muse hasn't been at it's best. Got a bank holiday this weekend in England so hopefully ill be able to get a bit of writing done and ahead on the story.
Entering what she now believed to be her eighth month of pregnancy, Claire was far more settled knowing that she had gotten a lot further along this time. The worry of course still remained, memories of Faith remained with her always. As did the nightmares, many a night she would wake from her nightmares to Jamie holding her close, reassuring her that everything would be okay. Yet still the worry and panic of their child being still born was something that caused Claire much distress.
Sat in the chair she huffed putting down the knitting needles as she looked at Jenny. She felt hopeless, Jamie had already knitted the baby mittens a hat, socks and even a jumper. Jenny had also knitted many a thing for the baby, yet she could barely manage a thing.
“I’ll never get it Jenny I’m useless”. Moaning she tried to reach forward for a bannock and milk, yet the large swell of her bulge made her struggle to get up so easily as her balance was thrown off. The combination and her raging hormones soon meant that the dam erupted, tears streaming down her pale face.
“Dinna weep Claire, ya ken your way about other things leave the knitting to me and Jamie aye?”
Helping her sister, Jenny reached for the milk and a bannock for her sister in law, deciding to take one herself too.
“I feel so helpless”. Despite that though, Claire placed one hand on her bump as she ate the bannock.
“Your job at the moment is looking after your bairn Claire, soon you will be able to do more again aye”.
“Well hopefully Jamie will be less busy once the Harvest is over”. Ever since he was well enough after a long period of recovery in the months after Culloden most of his day had been spent out in the fields, preparing the crops, even more so knowing that they had a growing family and tenants to feed as well as keeping the army happy when they came for ‘their share’.
She must have dozed off after that because next she knew Jamie was rousing her from her slumber as he knelt at her side in the chair, his large palm resting over the large swell of her stomach.
“Are ya hungry Claire? Ya must eat for the bairn aye?” The concern was evident in his voice, Claire rather relished the fact that now they had the second chance that they never got the first time as things got closer to her baby’s due date. This time she was also glad that not having to partake in court life or trying to stop an uprising meant that despite the long time he spent harvesting she still got to see far more of her husband than in France.
“Starving”. She laughed softly inhaling the scent of food drifting in from the kitchen.
“Help me up please Jamie?” An he did, helping her to her feet, guiding his wife into the kitchen to join the rest of the family.
“Glad to see ya joining us lass, I was worried Jamie wasna gonna be able to wake ya, with how deep you were sleeping”. Ian gave her a friendly smile while raising his tankard.
“Carrying a bairn is very tiring aye Ian?” Jenny clouted her husband round the head.
“Dinna fash Jenny, I was only joking Claire”.
It was her husband’s urgent shaking that woke her from her slumber the next morning. Eyes reluctantly opening as she felt him urge her out of bed, even with eyes half closed. It was when she saw Jenny in the room too that she knew something was wrong.
“Priest hole sassenach”. She heard her husband urge her as he guided her that way, Claire was grateful that it was in the Laird’s room. Jamie went down first, before reaching out his arm to help guide her down. A few careful steps down the ladder and she was joining him as Jenny secured the trap door shut, placing the rug back down as well as the dresser over it.
Looking over at Jamie, she noticed he had sat down against the wall and was reaching his palm out to her, steadying herself down next to him she placed her tired body between his legs.
They hadn’t been sat silent for long when Claire felt an unfamiliar pain immediately reaching out to squeeze Jamie’s hand.
“What is it sassenach?” His whisper barely audible in her ear. “Is it the bairn”.
Nodding her head she closed her eyes as she leaned against him.
“We should be able to leave soon sassenach, keep holding my hand it will be okay I promise Claire”. Again he whispered letting his wife hold his hands, placing soft kisses in her hair so that she would know that he was here with her.
With each sharp pain she squeezed Jamie’s hand, until eventually they stopped. When the door to the hatch was opened again a while later with young Jamie and Fergus peeping their heads inside, Claire had realised that thankfully what she was experiencing had been false labour.
“Milord, Madam”. His arms reached down towards us.
“Thank you Fergus”. Accepting the outreached hand Claire made her way wearily with the young boys and her husband’s help out of the priests hole.
“Rest some more sassenach”. Jamie placed a kiss to her head as they settled her back into bed.. “You’ve had an eventual morning, i'll wake ya for some breakfast lass”.
Settling down beside his wife he placed one palm on her large bump, relieved to feel their bairn moving inside her. When he had thought for a moment that Claire may have been in labour within the constraints of the priests hole it had terrified him. No he would stay with Claire today, he wanted to be here for her this time, besides he didna think it very safe for him to be helping out on the fields today.
Chapter 4: Chapter 3 - The Grey Brothers
Sorry that this has taken over a week to come out, work and real life was far busier than I imagined so I just found my muse lacking this week. Hoping to get the next chapter out to you sooner rather than later this week as I'll be heading to Paris next weekend.
Thanks again for the Kudos and comments.
As December drew closer, so did the chill. The mornings and evenings frosty although they’d had no snow yet. Claire’s stomach was now heavily swollen, her large belly full with the new life that she held.
Sitting at the dresser her hands remained cupping her bump as her husband came up behind her and wrapped his arms around her.
“Ya look so beautiful when your belly is swollen with our bairn sassenach”.
Getting down onto his knees in front of her he lifted up her shift to place a kiss against her bump, the baby kicking under the skin.
“I’m scared Jamie”.
“It’s all going to be okay Claire, I promise you sorcha”.
His hands took her own now bringing them to his lips to kiss softly.
“How do you know that Jamie?”
“I pray all day for you and the bairn to be safe Sassenach. Our Lord and Faith are looking down on you, making sure that no harm comes to you or the bairn”.
Tears rolled down her face as she squeezed his hand at memory of their beautiful girl taken too soon to be with the angels.
It was outside the stables, making sure that the horses had enough straw and hay to keep them warm and comfortable that the flash of red caught Jamie’s eye. Immediately he flipped the pitch fork he was using it, holding it out in front of him threateningly.
“Easy, we haven’t come to arrest you Sir, simply we wanted to see how you are”. The older of the two Redcoats asked, though Jamie did not recognise him, he soon realised that he knew who the younger boy was. It was the young laddie he had nearly killed before Culloden but had saved him.
“You saved my life Sir and my brother saved yours, we simply wanted to check on your progress and also collect some more food for our soldiers”.
“How much more do you need? We only have so much to give aye? Soldiers last took some not even a month ago.”
“Just enough to keep the men going a bit longer aye? We will make sure that it is ourselves who come for collections in future, make sure that your identity and presence here remains secret.”
Again it was the older of the two Grey brothers that had spoken to him this time, a reluctantly Jamie nodded, they had indeed helped save them after Culloden, as well as knowing of his presence here at Lallybroch.
“Aye, i'll help get ya another bag of what we have”.
Locking up the stables, Jamie walked with the Grey brothers glad that they did not know of the secret supply of food that they kept in the cellar, enough to feed the family and help the tenants over the coming winter. Though he did of course worry, Jenny’s bairns needed food as did Claire to make sure that their bairn who was so close now to arriving, it was his duty to make sure that she and their bairn had enough.
All day she had felt off, not wanting to eat much, the way that her back ached and hurt her all day in addition to the contractions that she had been feeling, of course she had put these down to false contractions, having suffered those numerous times this past month only for it to be a false alarm. Instead she had suffered silently, grimacing as she sat knitting with Jenny while the Murray children played around them, young Kitty had even taking to crawling around Claire’s feet and then pulling herself up to stand at Claire’s knees.
“Dinna try to fool me Claire Fraser, I know that look upon your face how long has it been going on for?”
Jenny’s voice startled Claire, but before she could answer her sister in law, the sudden release of her waters told her all she needed to know.
“Jenny I do believe that my waters have just broken”.
Jenny scooped up young Kitty and handed her too Mrs Crook, taking charge like she knew exactly what to do, which Claire supposed she had done this now numerous times herself.
“Mrs Crook go and get the midwife and give Kitty to Ian aye? Fergus, Jamie go get ya Uncle Jamie aye?”
Making his way back towards the house longing to kiss his wife and get some lunch once John and Hal had left, Jamie noticed the two dark haired boys charging towards him.
“What is it lads, catch ya breath aye?” Jamie glanced at the two of them red and exhausted from their run.
“Milord, it is milady the bairn is coming!”
An all at once Jamie felt himself fit to explode with emotion, excitement and fear surging through him. With not a word he sprinted through the fields, Fergus and his namesake at his heels making his way back to the house, to Claire.
Chapter 5: Chapter 4 - Brianna Ellen Fraser
A new life begins in Lallybroch.
Sorry for the delay in this chapter coming to you had a lot going on and both my muse and my confidence left me. Thank you all so much for reading and for your encouraging feedback.
“I hope you are not with child madam because if you are, you won’t be for long”. Looking into the eyes of the monster, doubled over from pain as Randall punched and kicked her in the stomach. Closing her eyes, the horrors played over an over in her mind, until she felt the cold cloth against her head and Jamie’s solid weight as he slid in behind her.
Coming too she realised that she wasn’t there again in Fort William with Black Jack but instead safe here with Jamie solidly behind her obviously having finally convinced Jenny and the midwife that he was fine in the room and wouldn’t be going anywhere.
“You’re doing fine Claire”. His soothing tones whispered in her ear while she started to push with another contraction.
“It’s not time to push just yet mistress Claire”. The midwife scolded, obviously still mad that Jamie was in the room.
“I want to bloody push!” Screaming in pain, the horrors of what had happened in France filled her mind, she had lost Faith then and almost died herself. Yet then she didn’t have Jamie with her, this time he was here and had refused to leave her side, having made his way back inside once they’d tried to keep him away.
“Shhh Mo Chridhe”. The soft feathery kisses against her forehead, brought Claire to calmness once again and she found herself wondering how much more of a wreck she would be if he wasn’t here, one of the things that she could remember about the day that Faith had both been born and died was calling out for him over and over in her brief moments of consciousness.
“I don’t think I can do it Jamie”. The voice so weak she barely even registered it as her own as it left her mouth.
“Ya can Sassenach, you’re the strongest woman I know aye?” Another light kiss was placed against my head with his words.
Glancing back towards Jenny and the midwife at the bottom of the bed the healer in Claire suddenly came back to the forefront of her mind, a coping mechanism to get through this.
“Make sure everything’s sterilised, hot water and wash hands”. She then glanced back at Jamie. “Whatever happens Jamie make sure it happens, our child must live even if I die”.
“I’m not gonna lose ya Sassenach”. His voice was strong and reassuring a tower of strength in her moment of weakness.
Claire wasn’t sure how long it had gone but yet it felt like forever. Jamie hadn’t moved, hadn’t left her side but stayed like a tower of strength, her support behind her, holding her body when she had slumped and nearly passed out from exhaustion. Looking down the bed, her face met Jenny’s, her sister by heart if not by blood. A woman who had in time become her best friend, not just a relation by marriage.
“One more Claire!” Jenny’s voice was full of love and strength as she helped the midwife guide the baby. “The head’s out, nearly done aye Claire”.
Closing her eyes, she pushed hard squeezing onto Jamie’s hand as she slumped back against him. Through all of the pain, all of the exhaustion it was all over as she heard the cries of her baby fill the Laird’s bedroom.
“You’ve a wee lassie Braithair”. Opening her eyes at the sound of Jenny’s voice announcing the sex of the baby, tears rolled down her face as she felt Jamie showering her in kisses.
“A wee lassie Claire! Another wee lassie”. The excitement in Jamie’s voice was evident, Claire thought that she may never feel happier than in this moment when their baby daughter was laid in their arms, swaddled in cloth and crying like a banshee. For now it was the three of them, no one else in the room mattered, all forgotten but the three of them. Husband, wife and daughter.
Hours passed by and Claire came too seeing the sight of her husband holding their daughter, as he lay beside her in the bed, his back propped up against his pillow.
“Decided to join us Sassenach”. An though he smiled she noticed he only glanced at her for the briefest of moments, he was entranced on their daughter curled up within her blanket as he held her against his chest. “She’s so wee Claire”.
“She is”. Claire smiled at the sight of them, taking the baby from her father so that she could feed the baby. “I’m your mama Brianna”. Claire brushed her daughter's cheek as she latched on.
“Brianna?” Jamie glanced at her a puzzled look on her face as to why she would choose such a name.
“You wanted to name the baby after your Da didn’t you?” Claire spoke up, although her eyes didn’t leave Brianna’s.
“Aye I did Sassenach, but I thought it was a wee laddie?”
“Brianna Ellen”. Claire smiled up at him then back down to their daughter. “I like it”.
“Aye Brianna Ellen”. Jamie leaned down and placed a kiss to his daughters head. “Mo nighean”.
Chapter 6: Chapter 5 - The Frasers
Fergus gets to meet his little sister and Jamie & Claire have something to ask him.
Thank you so much for the comments and kudos that keep coming in. It means a lot that people are reading and enjoying.
Somewhere over the rainbow way up high
There's a land that I heard of once in a lullaby
Somewhere over the rainbow skies are blue
And the dreams that you dare to dream really do come true
Someday I'll wish upon a star
And wake up where the clouds are far
Where troubles melt like lemon drops
Away above the chimney tops
That's where you'll find me
Somewhere over the rainbow bluebirds fly
Birds fly over the rainbow
Why then, oh, why can't I?
If happy little bluebirds fly
Beyond the rainbow
Why, oh, why can't I?
Combing her fingers through Brianna’s curls Claire sang softly to her daughter, one of her favourite songs from her time from The Wizard of Oz, she could still remember seeing it at the pictures before she went off to France.
She didn’t notice Jamie coming in until she felt his palm on her shoulder as she finished. Smiling she leaned into his embrace, letting him wrap his arms around her waist as he held the pair of them.
“That was a bonny song Sassenach”. Smiling adoringly at his family he placed a kiss to her head.
“It’s a song I liked from the future and it seems to help get her off to sleep”. She smiled down at their daughter who was cradled in her arms sleeping softly.
“Our bonny wee lass”. His own finger found Brianna’s face, brushing over her smooth skin.
“She’s just like you Jamie”. Brianna was very much like him, from her eyes to her hair, you could make no mistake who her father was.
“Milord?” Fergus bumped into Jamie as he wandered outside in the hallway.
“Yes Fergus?” Jamie smiled down at the lad, he believed now would be a perfect time for him and Claire to ask Fergus what they had been hoping for some time, what they already believed to be the situation.
“Can I see Milady and the petite fille?” Claire who had spent the rest of yesterday and this morning resting hadn’t left the Lairds quarters yet with Brianna. The three of them had been spending time together as a family, away from others.
“Of course Fergus”. Opening the door he let the young french lad rush in ahead of him, smiling as he saw Claire sat up with a wide awake Brianna in her arms.
“Fergus this is Brianna Ellen”. Claire smiled as she patted the spot beside her on the bed for him to join her, Jamie decided to take a spot on the other side of Fergus.
“She looks like Milord”. Fergus smiled and was taken aback as Claire laid the fussy baby in his arms.
“I’m Fergus ma petite fille”. The lad was cooing at Brianna and Claire’s heart soared at the sight.
“Aye Fergus this is your little sister Brianna”. He smiled at Claire, waiting for reassurance that now would be the right time.
“Milord?” Fergus looked up at the two of them.
“We would like to make it more formal Fergus, we want to know if you would like to be a Fraser officially?” Jamie wanted the lad to know that in their hearts it was already the case.
“Oui Milord”. The young boy had tears in his eyes and Jamie took Brianna from him so that he could hug both Claire and himself.
“Your family Fergus”. Claire smiled as she held him tight. “You have been since Paris”.
A week had passed when Ned Gowan arrived with the documents as Jamie had requested he answered the door while rocking Brianna, Claire having seen to wee Jamie who had skimmed his knees as Jenny saw to Maggie and the washing.
“Agh this must be your little girl, I’d heard the news of the Dun Bonnet and his wife having a child”. Ned smiled and Jamie realised that despite the fact that they kept quiet since Culloden, things still could change at any minute. What if Hal Grey and his men no longer had control over these lands and another group of soldiers came to visit.
“Aye she’s only a week old and just like her mam she stole my heart”. Leading Ned into his study, he handed Brianna over to his sister who promised to get Claire so that they could go over what needed to be done.
“It’s good to see ya Jamie, you and the family I did worry that you’d gone the same way as the others at Culloden”. Ned spoke gravely as he set the papers down at the table.
“Do ya need the lad to sign anything too or will it be just me and Claire?” Jamie asked as they took a seat, he didn’t want to think of how close he had come to losing it all at Culloden, instead he stayed quiet focusing on studying the documents at the table.
“I will just need the three of you to sign the documents as well as myself Jamie”. Ned looked over at him before Claire and Fergus made their appearance.
“Ned it’s good to see you!” Smiling warmly Claire made her way over to him and hugged the man.
“Claire you don’t look like you’ve just had a baby at all, you look as beautiful as ever”. Ned greeted her. “You have a beautiful family, I’m so pleased for the pair of you. I was just explaining to Jamie that ill need the three of you to sign the papers and then everything should be cleared”.
It didn’t take Claire or Jamie long to read over the papers, they already knew what they wanted as did Fergus. It was Jamie who signed first followed by Claire and then finally Fergus. Claire felt herself get emotional and brought the boy into her arms.
“Thank you so much for letting us adopt you Fergus”. She kissed his curly hair. “I want you to know how much we both love you like our own”.
Chapter 7: Chapter 6 - Murtagh Returns
Murtagh returns while Jamie meets up with Lord John and discusses plans for his families safety.
Thank you for all your support. I'm grateful for those of you who are reading and enjoying my work.
A month later Jamie stood over the cradle, watching their daughter sleeping as his wife lay in the Laird’s bed behind him catching up on much needed sleep of her own. Leaning down he carefully retrieved the sleeping bairn from her cradle, bringing her against his chest and wrapping her up in his plaid, despite them being outlawed he wouldna have his daughter miss out on such. They’d simply hide them if anyone other than the Grey’s came calling.
Sitting down he continued to watch her, whispering softly to her in Gaelic, thoughts of the future of what they must do, he knew they couldna stay here, with him a wanted man and even his wife was wanted. No he could not do that to Brianna bring her up to that nor Fergus, what future do they have here with the banning of anything even remotely Scottish and the Highlanders ways of life. Just like with Kitty when they’d returned from France, he could talk to his daughter about anything and have nothing to fear, knowing that no one can answer back.
Brushing a finger over her face, he smiled as she smiled softly from the small gesture despite being lost to peaceful slumber, Jamie was certain his heart would weep at the sight, such a bonny sight that he could watch all day. He wasn’t sure how long he’d been sat there when he felt the familiar arms of his wife wrap around him as she came up behind the two of them.
“She smiles in her sleep, as ye say I do”. He whispered, not taking his eyes off her.
“She looks just like you Jamie”. Claire couldn’t help but smile as she glanced down at Brianna over her husband’s shoulder. “What was you talking about Jamie?”
“We can’t stay here Claire, we can’t keep hiding away in the cave or in the priests hole every time a patrol other than Harold Grey and his brother comes, the patrols are only going to step up”. The more he spoke the more he frowned. “When will Brianna be old enough to travel Claire? Away from Scotland across the waters”.
For though he did not want to leave, what choice did they have. He would cope with the worst sea sickness if it meant getting her to safety.
“Where would we go Jamie? We can’t go to France again and the coast is so heavily guarded”. She frowned as she took the fussy Brianna from him, their daughter having awaken from hunger and wanting the nourishment that only her mother could provide.
“You spoke of America? I will speak to the Grey’s see if they know of any ships leaving from the north or the west coasts, it’s easier to find passage that way. Jenny’s also sent another letter out to Jared he may be able to help us Sassenach, with one of his ships even if we canna go back to France”.
“Then we will do whatever it takes Jamie, I trust you”. Looking up at him she smiled softly, taking his hand with her free hand as she nursed her daughter.
The next day, Jamie was stood near the cave waiting to meet with the youngest of the Grey brothers when he felt a hand on his shoulder. From how silent the approach, as well as the familiar outdoor, unwashed smell he knew it wasn’t Lord John, no it could only be his wayward Godfather.
“Ifinn Ghoistidh!”Jamie grumbled. “Tis good to see ya again”. He couldn’t hide his grin as he greeted his godfather in a bear hug.
“Mac Dubh!” Murtagh greeted returning the hug. “I hear Claire’s had a wee lassie? Sorry I couldna get here sooner Jamie lad”.
“Aye a wee lass Brianna”. Jamie grins proudly at him. “Mo nighean ruaidh”.
Before Murtagh could answer Lord John approach, Jamie quickly had to grab hold of Murtagh to stop him from reacting to the young redcoat.
“Lord John, this is my god father Murtagh, Murtagh this is Lord John the lad we met before Culloden?”
“Aye I suppose it is”. The elder man grumbled.
“I’m not here for trouble”. John addressed the elder man before turning to Jamie. “You wanted to see us?” he smiled at Jamie. “I’m afraid my brother couldn’t make it today he’s been called down to London”.
“Aye I needed to speak to you about how one may get away from Scotland”. Jamie spoke quietly despite his trust of the young officer. “I canna stay here putting my family’s life in danger from being here, nor do I wish to live where I can not be the Scot that I wish to be”.
John was shocked for a moment, taken aback by the revelation. It didn’t help that the last thing he wanted deep down was for the handsome redheaded highlander to leave despite the fact that the man was happily married with a wife and daughter.
“You wish to leave Scotland with your wife and child sir?” John spoke trying to compose his thoughts.
“Aye I do”. Jamie added, it didn’t go unnoticed that Murtagh looked like he was still ready to kill the young lad.
“Very well I can speak to Hal about helping you arrange passage, the safest way would be to travel North West sir, far less patrols that way then travel down to Ireland. Still it would be best if myself and Hal accompanied you on the way so we can speak to anyone that we do encounter incase they recognise you”.
Outside the house an hour later Fergus was outside playing with wee Jamie when he saw the familiar figure next to his papa. The young boy still couldn’t get used to Claire and Jamie being his mama and papa but he was over the moon. Running out towards the Lallybroch archway he greeted the older man with a hug.
“Murtagh!” The young french hug.
“Aye ya wee rascal, it’s good to see ya laddie”. Murtagh chuckled ruffling the young boy’s hair. “Where’s ya wee sister then?”
Fergus looked at Jamie who was now holding his young namesake and grinned.
“Ma petite fille is with mama Claire inside”. Fergus answered running inside.
“Mama Claire Murtagh has come to see ma petite fille”. The boy was so excited that he woke the sleepy Brianna who started to fuss in his mother's arms.
As Jamie came inside behind him with Murtagh, he put young Jamie down and immediately took his crying bairn from his wife’s arms.
“Much, mo naoidheachan, much”. He whispered hushing her gently as he bounced young Brianna, who seemingly calmed down at her Da and his gaelic tones.
“He’s good at getting her to do that”. Claire smiled softly and got up to greet Murtagh with a hug. “It’s good to see you again Murtagh”.
“Murtagh this is Brianna Ellen Fraser”Jamie couldn’t help but grin as he showed off his wee bairn.
“Christ lad she looks like ya mam”. His godfather was taken aback by the similarity. “Look she already has your fiery curls”.
“Aye she does”. Jamie grinned proudly.
Chapter 8: Chapter 7 - Departure
The Fraser family depart Lallybroch and head out on their journey to get to Ireland and onto the Colonies.
Sorry this is a short one, I struggled with muse so this is something I've managed to get down and hopefully I should be able to get things flowing a bit more. Going to try and get a few chapters written out so I can post more often and be ahead of myself.
The weeks passed by, Brianna growing stronger and healthier with each day. Each day another day closer to the new family leaving Lallybroch, leaving their home and family but what choice did they have. They couldn’t stay here, not how things where, no they would go to keep Jenny and Ian safe, to stop Lallybroch from being taken or worse. Murtagh would go with them, they’d be safe out of harm’s way at least for a long time. The Grey’s had arranged it, they would leave Lallybroch tonight the five of them. Jamie, Claire, Brianna, Fergus and Murtagh by horseback and head North West, they’d travel for as long as they could without stopping until they reached a cave that they knew about to hide in for the day, then they would continue on until they reached the coast.
“What if they find us Jamie?” Claire whispered that morning as she stood stroking Brianna’s hair as the baby stirred in her arms.
“They won’t Sassenach, not if we stick to the heather”. As much as he wanted to stay, he knew they could not.
“We will be safe Sassenach, John is going to accompany us for most of the way, until we are safe out of harm's way, the route, especially this time of year and at night will not be frequented by the English”. He left out the part that if they came across any then he and Murtagh would kill them, still he knew that Claire would know that they'd been together long enough now.
“I’m sorry you have to leave your home Jamie, our home”. Claire glanced to her side as he wrapped his arms around her from behind.
“You are my home Sassenach, you and Brianna. I will build a new home, our home where we will be safe, I promise you that.”
“Dinna weep Janet, I am doing this to keep you safe”. Pulling his sister close, his palm rubbed her back gently as he glanced towards Ian. His own wife was fussing over his brother in law, making sure that he had all he needed for his leg as well as for the farm, to make sure they could still provide for the family and the tenants over the winters and any coming famine.
“I’m no weeping a Brathair!” Still she swiped at her eyes frantically then took a step back from him. “Make sure he writes Claire, at least once a month”.
“I will Jenny don’t worry”. Claire moved closer now to hug her sister in law. “I’m going to miss you Jenny”. The two of them had become particular close again and the thought of having to leave again broke her heart, but she knew Jamie was right, they must.
“Keep this clot-heid in order aye Claire?” Ian moved to Jamie now patting him on the back.
“I will”. She promised watching the two best friends embrace.
“Goodbye Fergus, look after your sister”. Jenny was bent down now, embracing the younger boy before placing a kiss to Brianna’s head as she lay fast asleep resting in the wool wrapped around her mother.
“I will”. Fergus returned her hug before he made his way to Murtagh’s side.
“We better be going Jamie aye?” The older Fraser muttered. “Stay safe the both of ya”. He glanced towards Jenny and Ian before leading the others out. The Fraser’s and the Murray’s both broken hearted.
Fergus was already with Murtagh on his horse as Jamie jumped up behind Claire on Donnas, his arms wrapping around his wife and the child she cradled to her chest. Protected from the winter in the wool, it killed Jamie that they could not show his plaid, could not keep that wrapped around him. Though he knew once they reached the Americas and even once in Ireland they would be safe.
“Dinna weep Sassenach, for all I’ve lost I’ve still got you. You are my home”. He placed a kiss to her head, not daring to look back towards Lallybroch as the tears already fell into her curls.
“Our home together”. Claire whispered softly, trying to stop her own voice from breaking. For though she was not from here, Lallybroch had truly been the very first place she would call home, she’d never had that growing up.
Chapter 9: Chapter 8 - Setting Sail
The Frasers escape the Highlands and make it aboard a ship to Ireland.
Thank you so much for all the lovely comments that have been left and for all the Kudos. Apologies for this being later than I had planned to post it real life has been very busy and I didn't find as much time to write as I would have liked.
By yon bonnie banks and by yon bonnie braes,
Where the sun shines bright on Loch Lomond,
Where me and my true love were ever wont to gae
On the bonnie, bonnie banks o' Loch Lomond.
O ye'll tak' the high road, and I'll tak' the low road,
And I'll be in Scotland a'fore ye,
But me and my true love will never meet again,
On the bonnie, bonnie banks o' Loch Lomond.
'Twas there that we parted, in yon shady glen,
On the steep, steep side o' Ben Lomond,
Where in soft purple hue, the hieland hills we view,
And the moon coming out in the gloaming.
O braw Charlie Stewart, dear true, true heart,
Wha could refuse thee protection,
Like the weeping birk on the wild hillside,
How graceful he looked in dejection
The wee birdies sing and the wildflowers spring,
And in sunshine the waters are sleeping.
But the broken heart it kens nae second spring again,
Though the waeful may cease frae their grieving.
The journey to the coast the past few days had been long and tiresome, they moved at night and took to sleeping during the day. John accompanying them the whole way, keeping watch and making sure that they could get through.
“I can’t believe she is but a few weeks old and already spent so much time on horseback”. Claire glanced down at the sleeping baby nestled against her chest as they rode.
“Aye Sassenach that’s because she’s my lassie”. Smiling at the girl bundled against his wife’s chest his own arms wrapped around her as they held onto Donas’s reins. “She’s a bonny lass Sassanach”.
“She is”. Claire smiled and then glanced over next to them as she glanced over towards where Fergus rode with Murtagh. “I hope you aren’t annoying Murtagh too much Fergus”. She teased.
“Aye ya know it doesn’t take much to annoy the grumpy old cout laddie”. Jamie added with a glance towards his godfather and adopted son. Even the young Lord John snorted at that as Murtagh grumbled.
“We should make it to the Port within the hour giving us enough time to get you all aboard before sunrise”.
“I’m looking forward to it”. Jamie mumbled, the mere thought of even the journey over to Ireland making him sick.
Upon arrival at the Port Jamie helped his wife and daughter down from the horse before making his way over to the young man who had helped them so much.
“How can I ever repay you for helping us, you and your brother have done something for me that we will never be able to repay ya for”. He brought his hand around the young boys clasping it firmly in thanks. “I thank ya, please thank ya brother for me as well, aye?”
“I will Jamie and we simply returned the favour you granted me when you did not take my life”. Lord John couldn’t help but feel like his skin was on fire as Jamie touched him.
“Goodbye Lord John”. Jamie smiled watching him while also keeping an eye on his family as they boarded the vessel first.
“Goodbye Mr Fraser”. John himself waved then, watching the man as he boarded the ship behind his family and horses he didn’t mind one bit that he had paid their fare. Money to him was something that he had plenty of, he knew that Jamie and his family needed their own money more than anything he only hoped that Jamie would not be too mad upon finding the own sack of money that he had left within Claire’s satchel as the family slept one day.
Settled in a small room that they had to share aboard the ship, it was more a storage room that had been given to them to use than a cabin for sleeping in, but it would do. It was enough to keep them safe on passage to Ireland. With Brianna against his chest, Jamie tried to focus on his daughter rather than the rocking of the ship.
“It shouldn’t take too long, I only hope that the ship will not make Brianna sick as well”. Claire whispered as she placed a cool cloth against her husband’s head making a fuss of him.
“Fergus do you think you can help Murtagh bring some soup down please?” She smiled at the boy as he sat playing with Sawnie on one of the crates.
“Oui Milady”. He was at his feet straight away.
“Thank you Fergus”. Claire smiled at him before turning back to her husband and daughter.
“I dinna think I can keep anything down Sassenach”. Looking up at his wife, he was using all his strength not to be sick, though he did manage a smile when his daughter opened her eyes and smiled up at him.
“My precious wee bairn, do ya find ya da being sick funny aye?” Lifting her up, he placed a kiss to her head. “Christ Sassenach, you truly have blessed me with such a precious bairn”.
“I’m blessed”. Sitting down beside them she lay her head against her husband’s shoulder. “I love you Jamie”.
“I love you too Sassenach, you and the bairn”. He placed a kiss to her head, then smiled at Fergus as he reemerged with Murtagh. “An you Fergus child of our heart”. Silently the two of them spoke a prayer for their lost child, their precious Faith who would always hold a place in their heart.
Chapter 10: Chapter 9 - Ireland
After a tough journey at sea the Fraser's make it to Ireland.
The journey from the Northern Highlands towards Ireland was far too long for Jamie’s liking. The seasickness truly hadn’t improved since his return from France over a year earlier. What was even more heartbreaking for them all was the long winding journeys around the Isle of Skye, the longing for home already on his heart and mind yet Jamie knew that he had no option they needed to leave for not only his own families safety but for his sister.
Entering the cabin again Claire frowned as she glanced over at her sick husband, placing Brianna in Murtagh’s arms she couldn’t help the laugh as her daughter gave a smile up at her husband’s godfather and reached her hand towards the man’s beard. She got distracted for a moment watching them, glancing at the tender moment between them as Murtagh actually smiled down happily at their daughter.
“Looks like our bairn’s got the old coot wrapped around her little finger Sassenach”. Jamie’s voice startled her back to attention and she made her way over to him, placing a cloth to his head.
“How are you feeling Jamie?” She sat at the end of his bed. “I see you haven’t eaten your stew”.
“I couldna keep anything down Sassenach even if I wanted”. Stubbornly he lay back down into the cupboards. “I canna eat”.
“You stubborn Scot, you know eating a little may help you”. She frowned concerned for him.
“I’m no going anyway Claire, dinna fash soon we will be in Ireland”. He was about to place a hand on her knee when the nausea hit him again and he quickly lent over her to be sick in one of the buckets that had been deposited by the bed.
It was another day before they finally arrived upon the Irish coast. Claire couldn’t help but laugh as she saw Jamie practically jumping from the ship the moment the boat docked at port. She could only hope to think of something to aid her husband when they would make their journey over towards America.
Making her way behind Jamie, Murtagh and Fergus who looked after the two horses that they had brought with them Claire cradled Brianna in her arms as she stepped foot onto land for the first time in almost two days.
“It’s rather like Scotland don’t you think?” She smiled at her husband coming to his side as he saddled up the horse.
“Aye Claire it is bonny for sure lass”. Helping his wife up onto Donnas he then jumped up behind her. “It could look like a pig stye and I’d just be happy to get off that bloody ship”.
“Christ lad if we are to make it to the colonies ya must grow a stronger stomach laddie, I dinna think you’ll make it if you fair so badly”. Murtagh chortled as he looked at them.
“I will find something”. Claire kissed Brianna’s head as she started to fuss. “Shh darling, it’s okay. Go back to sleep my darling”.
With the money they had they managed to find a small tavern that they could stay for the night, they should manage with enough for a couple of weeks until they got word of Jared’s ship arriving at the port ready for it’s journey to the colony. Jamie was thankful that they’d be able to use his cousins ship for this journey it would at least mean that he would be able to get a more comfortable cabin for himself and his family. Rather than make shirt store area they had used on the last ship, but still it had delivered him safely.
“He’s worn out”. Claire gently stroked her fingers over Fergus’s curls as the young boy slept. Murtagh had gone down for a drink in the Tavern below as Jamie helped his wife by soothing their daughter with comforting words of gaelic.
“Aye I suppose it's rather nice for us to settle again, even if it’s only for a short time”. Jamie glanced over at them while placing a kiss to Briann’s temple. “Christ she’s so bonny Sassenach, I canna believe how lucky we are to be a family and here together”. He walked over to them then, sitting beside his wife on the bed. “Our own wee family”.
“We will write to Jenny Jamie, even if we don’t write it in your own name we will write”. Claire told him as she placed her own palms on his leg now glancing down at Brianna in his arms before searching out his eyes capturing his gaze with her own.
“I love you Jamie Fraser”. Whispering softly she leaned closer now.
“I love you too Mo Chridhe”. Capturing her lips, he kissed her softly, mindful of the bairn in his arms who started to whine the moment they did, hungry for the nourishment that only her mother could give.
“Oh my darling come here”. She took him from Jamie’s arms as she got to her feet to sit in the chair by the window. “We love you too my darling Brianna”.
Chapter 11: Chapter 10 -
Sorry for the delay, it's been a very busy month. I'm hoping to get another chapter up maybe on Christmas Eve, a small Christmas themed chapter.
Hopefully in the New Year I can get to a more regular posting interval.
Oh Danny boy, the pipes, the pipes are calling
From glen to glen, and down the mountain side
The summer's gone, and all the roses falling
It's you, it's you must go and I must bide.
But come ye back when summer's in the meadow
Or when the valley's hushed and white with snow
It's I'll be here in sunshine or in shadow
Oh Danny boy, oh Danny boy, I love you so.
But when ye come, and all the flowers are dying
If I am dead, as dead I well may be
Ye'll come and find the place where I am lying
And kneel and say an ave there for me.
And I shall hear, though soft you tread above me
And all my grave will warmer, sweeter be
For you will bend and tell me that you love me
And I shall sleep in peace until you come to me.
Rooting through the trunk that they had filled with their belongings, Jamie rooted around for Sawny a frown on his face as he failed to find his wooden snake.
“OCH! There ya are!” Grinning he grabbed for the object as he did so the contents of the small sack that he had been dislodged from coming to his attention.
“Jamie shh Brianna is sleeping”. Claire hushed from the bed, she had been trying to get some sleep herself when the exclamation had woken her.
“Christ Sassenach, but where did this come from?” Walking over to the bed and sitting beside where she led, he emptied the contents of the pouch into his hands. “Their must be at least one hundred pounds sterling in here Sassenach but I dinna know where it’s come from”. He puzzled.
“That wasn’t with what you bought from Lallybroch then?” Claire blinked, she knew he had left most of the money with Jenny and Ian for them to survive on with only a minimum and enough for them, he would find labour when they got to the colonies, he and Murtagh was already helping a local farmer by doing labour there until they got word from Jared. The look on his face said it all. “Then who could have done this for us?”
“Lord John”. Jamie glanced towards her placing the money back in the pouch and taking his wife’s hands in his own. “It must have been him, he and his brother are the only two with that kind of money Sassenach”.
The reality of it all came over Claire then, one hundred pounds sterling in her own time was a lot less than what it was worth in these times.
“If only we could thank him”. Claire whispered as she lay her head to rest now against her husband’s chest as she sat up, placing a kiss to her head Jamie nodded.
“Aye Sassenach this will sort us out once we get to the colonies, we can find a place, buy some land and build a home our own home”.
“Oh Jamie”. Looking up at him, their eyes locked before he leaned down to kiss her tenderly.
“I must have ya Claire”. Murmuring softly against her lips, he gently laid her back against the bed his body coming down over hers, hovering above her as his lips found hers again. “Christ your beautiful Sassenach”. The feel of his lips niping against her neck and down her body, working the shift up over her head had Claire shivering under him.
“Jamie!” The cry of pleasure escaped her lips.
“Shh”. Was his return, Jamie not wanting to wake the baby girl in the crib, needing and wanting nothing more but to show his wife how much he loved her. Claiming her lips he hoped that she could keep her wee moans under wraps, his cock hard beneath his kilt, ready as it pressed up against her leg while he prepared herself for him. “I want you Claire, I want you so much I can scarcely breathe, will you have me”.
“Then have me Jamie”. All it took was the words escaping her mouth and the knowing glance exchanged between them for him to take her. Claire’s moans caught by his lips as he thrust into her, letting her warmth engulf him as he lost himself in her over and over.
Sometime later wrapped in each others arms, their bairn resting against her Da’s chest as she slept peacefully Claire placed a kiss to her husband’s cheek.
“Oh I do love you Jamie”. Whispering softly she let her fingers trace over the stubble on his face.
“An I you Sassenach”. Smiling back at her, he let one hand brush against her own face, the other gently stroking Brianna’s hair.
“I’m not letting you go anywhere Sassenach”. The idea of the stones and sending her home, left now in Scotland.
“Wild horses couldn’t keep me away, I’m not going anywhere Jamie”.
Chapter 12: Chapter 11 - Christmas Eve
The Frasers celebrate Christmas Eve in Ireland.
Time over the past month for Claire seemed to have flown by, now she had barely even registered the time of year other than the frost that covered the windows of the inn they stayed, an the deep snow that blanketed the village outside. Cradling young Brianna in her arms she jumped slightly when Jamie walked over placing a single candle in the window near where she sat.
“For the Mass Sassenach”. Jamie smiled at her. “The Inn had put their own up Sassenach, they haven’t been able to surpass the Catholics here as much as they have been able to in Scotland sorcha”.
Walking over to her now, he beckoned for her to stand for a moment, taking a seat in the chair and then pulling his wife down into his lap, Brianna still cradled in her arms.
“Tonight at Midnight we will wake Fergus and together with our wee Brianna and Murtagh we shall do Mass and tell of Christ’s birth”. He placed a kiss to her head.
“It is really Christmas Eve, I hadn’t even realised it had got to the twenty forth of December with all that had gone on”. She curled into his chest then laying her head on one shoulder, while placing Brianna to curl up against the other side. His large hands holding both his wife and daughter in place close to his heart.
“Aye tis Yule Sassenach, an Hogmanay will soon follow”.
She found herself drifting for a moment then, remembering of Christmas both before and during the war. She could barely remember Christmas with her parents, having sadly lost them at such a young age. She and Lamb would celebrate together at whichever country they had been in at the time, but it certainly hadn’t been what most would call Christmas.
Her mind drifted to the last Christmas that she could vaguely recall with her parents, she could remember the tree and sitting around it with her parents in the morning opening some of her presents, she could remember the doll that she had received, a small teddy bear. Items that she had kept hold of for so long after their deaths.
“Wow mummy, look!” Claire exclaimed as she held the doll in her hands. “She’s so pretty mummy, look daddy!” She then got to her feet and raced to show her father.
The touch to her shoulder made her jump, snapping out of her memories. Jamie placed a kiss to her temple.
“Sorry Sassenach, I didn’t mean to startle ya lass but you seemed to vanish elsewhere for a moment”.
After a moment to calm down she smiled back at her husband.
“I was just thinking about the last Christmas that I could remember with my parents, Christmas is different in my time, I guess more like how you Scots celebrate Hogmanay”. Claire looked up at him again then and brushed her palm over his stubble.
“How was it celebrated in your time Sassenach?” He looked at her with so much curiosity that it made her smile, he was always eager and willing to learn of the future, always filled with fascination about the various objects and contraptions that modern time.
“Well you have a tree inside the house, that’s decorated with ornaments and lights. The whole house will be decorated and a reef hung on the doors of all the houses. Also a large meal shared by the family with Turkey, potatoes and vegetables. We didn’t always have that not after my parents died, me and Lamb travelled so much and then during the war it wasn’t really possible to celebrate in the same way that we used to, not while I was serving or with the rationing that had to be implemented”.
“Maybe when we get to America, we can celebrate some of those things Claire”. He hoped that he could do things for his wife and daughter that would make her happy, he was sure Fergus would enjoy such festivities too.
Later that evening on the stroke of midnight gathered round the fire in their room, Claire couldn’t hide her smile as she listened to Jamie share the story of Jesus to his family, to their family. The picture of happiness where all their worries had been forgotten. Murtagh sat beside him as Jamie cradled Brianna, who had stopped her crying and been soothed by her father’s tones until she had found slumbered. Claire herself sat with Fergus to her knee, arms wrapped around the young boy that she and Jamie had taken as their own.
She may not have had as many things that people had in modern times, but she didn’t need presents or the tree, for she had Jamie, Brianna, Fergus and Murtagh the true meaning of Christmas was about family and loved ones after all.
Chapter 13: Chapter 12
Sorry it took so long to come. It has been a rather busy year, first I was supposed to be getting married this April so I had been very busy in the build up of all of this. With the wedding now postponed a year due to the virus, an being furloughed from work I should have a lot more time on my hands for updates over the course of the next few months.
Thanks for reading along, I know it's a short chapter but hopefully I should find my muse returning to me and I can continue on with this story a lot more quickly.
The week flew by for the Frasers gathered in the small rooms of the tiny inn. Murtagh and Fergus in one of the rooms while Claire, Jamie and baby Brianna shared the other. For Jamie this was one Hogmanay he would never forget and one filled with both joy and yet so much sorrow. For now he had his wife, wee lassie as well as young Fergus and Murtagh here with him he also longed to see his sister, Ian and their young family. For now he knew that he would be unlikely to see them again, the very thought ripped out his sole. Hogmanay was usually a time for family and celebration, for large gatherings of the clan and now what was left of the clans broke his heart.
Still he would sacrifice that if it meant being here with his Claire, Brianna, Fergus and Murtagh. He was grateful that he had them here with him, that Murtagh unlike so many of his other friends, his family, his blood had lost their life at Culloden.
This time it was Claire who found her husband lost at the window, Brianna sleeping snuggly against his chest.
“Jamie?” She placed one hand over his own softly as it covered their daughter protectively.
“Aye Sassenach?” Glancing up at her he brought her down so that she could join him and Brianna in the window’s alcove.
“You looked lost Jamie”. She had just woken from a good sleep, she was thankful that Brianna had given her a couple hours rest.
“I was just thinking of home Sassenach, of Jenny, Ian and the bairns ya ken?” He wrapped his other arm around her then, bringing her closer so that her head fit against his chest.
It hit her then, that usually this would be a time of so much celebration for the clans.
“I’m sorry that we can’t be with them for Hogmanay Jamie? Maybe once we make it to America we can settle, get land and make a home”.
“Aye lass I’ll build us a bonny home, with tenants to man the fields, to rebuild what we have lost”.
A few months later.
Claire had never thought she would have seen her husband quite so eager to get on a ship as he was so now. Yet she supposed they would no longer need to hide in a small inn, the sooner they made the sailing the sooner they could set up their own home without hiding in the cottage, away from the fears that they could still be found, for Red Jamie and his wife would be believed dead now and no one would believe to look for them in the new world. Still she could tell that he was worried of the long journey, of the sickness he had no doubt would come to him.
“Are ya sure we can cope with him for the next few months?” Murtagh whispered to Claire as they watched Jamie stand with Brianna at the foot of the ship, young Fergus having already ran on board the vessel that belonged to Jamie’s cousin Jarred.
“We will think of something, still it will be worth it once we get there”. Smiling at the kinsman before she made her way to her husband’s side. “Jamie?”
“Aye?” Looking up at his wife his finger still rested in Brianna's tiny fist as their daughter looked up at them both with her father’s eyes.
“Come Jamie we must go now”. Walking with the pair of them up the gangplank on board, it felt like boarding the ship to France all over again, yet this time she knew they would not have a rebellion to stop, an when the rebellion did arrive to the United States they could stay on the side of America, they had the chance to be on the right side of history.
“I dinna ken, how I will make it Sassenach”. Jamie muttered as they got on board.
“You will, you’re stubborn a bhalaich”. Murtagh mumbled from behind them, his palm batting the back of his head. Claire laughed softly as she reached for Brianna to hold, that her husband certainly was.