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Taking leave.

Chapter Text

Claire finished her box of medicals and tied the top before taking it to the wagon, trying not to cry. Was it always hat her children would leave?
Jamie was helping Fergus stack the wagon and tie it down, as Germain was corralling the hell kittens. Fergus saw her coming and jumped down from the wagon to take the box.
“I’ve put everything, I could think of, just in case Marsali needs anything on the journey and for when you get there. “Claire said handing the box over.
Fergus took it and turned to give it to Jamie.
“We will be alright Milady, you have taught Marsali well.” He pulled Claire into his arms and hugged her hard.
“Milord will bring you to see us in the spring. And we will come back when we can. It is not forever” Fergus told her.
“I know I know, it’s just” she gestured to the children now playing. “I so wanted to see them grow, as did your Father.”
Jamie climbed down from the wagon and took Claire from Fergus. “ Fergus, is a good printer Claire. Ye ken that, and he cannae do that here, at least not yet, Frasers Ridge is no big enough. He needs to support his family” he whispered in her hear.
“I know I know” she repeated.
There had been so many leavings though.
Marsali came out of the house carrying Henri Christian, followed by Lizzy carrying the baby’s basket.
“Now stop greeting ma, or I shall surely start, and that will start the bairns, and then where will we be” Marsali said, her lip trembling.
Claire swallowed hard and took the warm bundle of the baby, and Jamie caught a granddaughter in each arm and swung them up onto the wagon. Germain waited till they were in then threw himself into Jamie’s arms.
“You will not forget us Grandpere?” he asked anxiously.
“Now as if that would ever happen” Jamie said. “Jem has gone away but do we forget him?”
Germain shook his head. “Well then, and we will see you soon, and you must write, nay just ye parents, I will want to see how ye schooling is doing mind” Jamie said ruffling the blonde head.
Germain pulled a face, then turned to Claire. “Grandmere, I will miss you, but I will look after the little ones and help Mama, as I promised” he said formally.
Claire hugged him tight. “I know you will Germain, and you will make all of us very proud.” Claire wiped her tears away and gave him a watery smile.
She handed the baby up to Marsali and with waves and a click to the horses, the Frasers drove off, wagon stacked high with children and belongings.
Jamie wrapped Claire in his arms as she wept, when the corner was turned, and they were out of sight.
“Oh lass, we will see them soon, but I think it is also for Bree and Roger and the children you weep”
Claire nodded and muffled into his shoulder said.
“Why must all our children leave”
“As we did, our children must make their own way in the world, whether in this time or theirs. But they will always be with us, here, in our hearts, All of them, Faith and William too.” Jamie said and turned her to climbed the steps to the Big house, at the top Lizzy stood and took Claire’s hand as they walked back in.