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Just for the Weekend

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Claire sat down on the hotel bed and let out a deep sigh. The conference was finally over; her talk about her most recent medical journal article had received rave reviews. She was done, and she had the weekend to play around in New York City before returning to London late Sunday.

She could order room service and eat it in bed while watching Netflix — no one would be the wiser, she thought. At that moment, her phone buzzed. She dug it out of her purse and said, “Geillis Duncan. That’s bloody who would be the wiser.” 

She rolled her eyes as she answered her phone, but she was smiling. “Hi, love, how are you?”

“Don’t bloody change the subject,” Geillis said, using her best imitation of Claire’s English accent. 

“Geillis. I just said hi!” Claire protested as she threw her arms up in the air, gesticulating wildly, as if Geillis could even see her.

“Yer getting dressed and yer going OUT, Dr. Beauchamp. We planned everything down to yer bloody knickers. Yer NOT staying in that hotel room.” 

“I was not —“ Claire started. 

“Aye, ye were. Don’t even try to argue w’ me,” Geillis said, her voice going up an octave toward the end as she chided Claire.

“Okay, FINE. I’m getting dressed. I’ll go out.” 

“And ye will look feckin’ hot AND ye will meet a delicious man for fabulous vacation sex.”

“I am not ON vacation!” 

“Aye, aye, but ye’re on a different continent, so the same rules apply. Get in the shower noo. I’ll talk to ye in an hour.” Click. With that, Geillis was gone. 

“Bloody FINE,” Claire sighed as she tossed her phone on the bed. “I’m going.”

Claire turned on the hot water as high as it would go and stepped into the shower, closing her eyes in bliss as the water hit her skin. 

Geillis is right. It’s been too long since I’ve been on a date, much less had sex with anyone. This will be perfect. It’s the perfect setting: I’m just a tourist in New York this weekend, and I’ll be on another continent by Monday. No strings. Just fun. 

Claire did wish she had Geillis with her; she would have much preferred to explore the city with her effervescent friend. She’d spent too much time in medical school, residency, and pediatric surgical fellowship and not enough time flirting with eligible bachelors. She went on dates, of course, but her last long-term relationship had ended almost five years ago. 

She bit her lip as she turned off the water and grabbed the plush towel to dry off, wondering silently if that put her squarely in the “Red Flag” category. Surely not.  She shook her head, unconvinced. Ah well, nothing to do about that at the moment. 

Claire looked herself over in the mirror. Eyeliner, check. Lipstick, check. Highlighter, check. Mascara, extra coat, check. Curls intact? As much as they’d ever be. Check. 

She turned, the short black cocktail dress shimmering as it caught the room’s lights. Damn, Beauchamp. Your arse looks bloody fantastic. And it did. 

She nodded and opened Facetime to call Geillis, who answered on the first ring. “Ah, Beauchamp, look at you! Ready to bewitch New York City? Claire snorted. “Sure, G, that’s what I’m going for."

Geillis ignored her. “Are ye wearing the special knickers, then? 

Back in London, Geillis had dragged her to a high-end lingerie store one weekend while Geillis was visiting from Edinburgh. After spending at least an hour looking at every garment in the store, Geillis refused to let up until Claire had put a decent dent in her bank account. “Every woman needs sexy lingerie, ye ken, Claire.” 

Claire smirked, making sure to look pleased with herself. “ Aye, I am wearing everything you picked out for me. I don’t think this bra is really magical, though yes, okay, I do look amazing. And I feel amazing. Are you happy now?”

She was currently wearing a cherry red bra and matching thong. The bra was covered in beautifully embroidered lace with delicate trim. The cups hid her nipples, but only barely. The red thong matched the pattern of the bra and hid very little. Nothing. It hid nothing. As she was putting them on, she promised herself that she’d make more of an effort to buy more pieces like this. She felt incredibly sexy. 

Geillis barked out a laugh, bringing Claire back to the present. “Oh, aye, verra pleased. But let’s go over the plan. What’s the name ye have picked out?”

Claire sighed and shook her head. “Ok, how’s Elizabeth Henry? Dr. Elizabeth Henry.”

Geillis raised an eyebrow. “Yer middle name and yer da’s first name is not that thrilling, but aye, it’s verra English,” she conceded. “Ye don’t have to tell anyone yer a doctor, ken.”

Claire scoffed. “I’m not going to lie about everything . That’s too much work for me to pull off, and you know it.” 

Geillis nodded wisely. “Verra true, ye do have a terrible poker face. Anyway, just trust me. Giving someone a fake name will be verra fun. No one can look ye up and find where ye live and work. No strings, all fun, just like ye wanted.” 

Claire smiled. “Well, I’m thrilled you approve. I’m going to go now, so wish me luck."

Geillis made a kissing noise. “Don’t forget the condoms, hen. Love ye.” With that, she hung up. 

Claire picked up her clutch. She had an IUD, but that obviously wouldn’t be enough for a fling. Earlier in the day, she had ventured into the corner store to buy condoms. She’d felt a bit like a teenager when she had finally chosen a pack out of the many varieties they had available.  “Yes, I do have condoms, G,” she announced to the room before grabbing her coat and closing the hotel door behind her. 

When she exited the elevator on the ground floor, she looked around to the well-appointed bar and restaurant. This is as good a place as any to start, she thought as she walked toward a seat. When she’d booked the boutique hotel, she’d been pleased to see that this particular one boasted a wide variety of whiskies. Geillis had mocked her, noting that she could just take Claire with her to Edinburgh with her next time she went home. Claire had just shrugged. “I like what I like, G!” 

Claire sat down at the bar and picked up the extensive whisky menu. Her eyes roamed past the brands she knew by heart. Laphroaig. Macallan. Glenlivet. She shook her head. Okay, I do feel a bit silly now, she thought. I can drink these bloody anywhere.  “What can I get ye this evening?” asked the bartender, bringing Claire sharply out of her reverie. 

“Oh!”  Claire looked up, a bit surprised by her sudden appearance. “Yes, hi, I can’t quite decide here. Do you have any specials, or maybe a favorite whisky you have that I wouldn’t have heard of?”

The bartender nodded happily and turned around, talking excitedly. “Oh, an English lass!” she exclaimed. “Aye! We just started carrying this one.” She picked it up off the shelf and passed it to Claire. “It’s a smaller, family-owned distillery from the Scottish Highlands. Like me, ken,” she beamed. 

Claire grinned at the woman; she had a grandmotherly smile and rosy cheeks. I’m evidently in the right kind of bar, then, she thought. 

Claire looked over the elegant label, which featured a large “F” in ornate lettering. She opened her mouth to say something, but stopped when a man behind her spoke first.

 “It’s called Fraser’s Distillery,” said the man’s voice, in a deep Scottish burr. 

Claire turned toward the man as he approached the bar on her left side. “It’s my family whisky distillery, actually,” he said with a wide, dazzling smile. The man was tall, with a muscular frame, and eyes of bright blue.. He had red hair that was short, but long enough that she could see the beginning of curls at the nape of his neck. He was, Claire thought, one of the most gorgeous men she’d ever seen. 

“Wow,” she said, before snapping back to her senses. “I mean, wow, that’s really impressive.” She felt the rush of embarrassment and shook it off, quickly distracting herself by gesturing at the seat next to her. “Here, please sit. Can I, erm, buy a round for you?”, she asked, feeling pinpricks of sweat break out on her temple. Why would he want me to buy him a drink from his own distillery? God, Beauchamp, do pull yourself together. 

The man thanked her and took a seat, still smiling. “Oh, aye, we’ll have a round, but yer not paying.” He turned to the bartender. “Glenna, would you mind pouring us a couple of drams, please?” 

“Oh, o’ course,” Glenna said happily, turning away to fetch the glasses. 

The man turned back to her and put his hand out. “Jamie Fraser,” he said. Claire smiled, extending her hand to connect with his. “Elizabeth,” she said. “Elizabeth Henry.” 

Looks like I might not have to leave the hotel after all, she thought as he took her hand in his.

Chapter Text

Claire looked down at their connected hands and felt her pulse quicken. His hand was large and very warm. Reluctantly, she pulled her hand away. Breathe and stay calm, Beauchamp, she said to herself. “It’s nice to meet you, Jamie,” she said. He smiled back and looked away suddenly, as if shy. “It’s verra nice to meet ye, Elizabeth. What’s a Sassenach like you doing in America?”

Claire laughed. “A SASSENACH? Wow, I haven’t heard that term in some time. Did you just step out of the 18th Century or something?” she teased. 

Jamie gave a small shrug and shook his head. “I’ll never tell, Sassenach,” he said in a low, raspy voice that made Claire feel lightheaded. He’s flirting, she thought, feeling absurdly pleased.

Glenna brought their drinks over and beamed at them. “Here ye are, dearies. Let me know if I can get ye anything else.” They thanked her and she walked toward the end of the bar, which was getting crowded with people watching a game on TV. 

“I’m a surgeon in London,” she said, answering his question. “I was here for a medical conference that just wrapped up.” And that’s all true, she thought, as if she were already trying to atone for giving this almost total stranger a fake name. 

Jamie raised his eyebrows. “Impressive,” he said. Here, we can toast to being done with work for the week, aye?” He moved his glass over to Claire’s, his knuckles brushing hers in the process, again making her feel like she’d just been spinning in rapid circles.

Aye,” Claire agreed. She watched as they clinked their glasses together. She felt a thrill of excitement course through her, followed by a brief stab of disappointment as he moved his glass away from hers. I want him to keep touching me, she thought. Please, please touch me again.

As they made their way through their first round of drinks, Jamie and Claire spoke about work and what brought them to New York.  Jamie’s family distillery was growing, and he was traveling in the States to meet with potential vendors. He was going to North Carolina after New York before returning home to Scotland. He loved staying at this particular hotel because he and Glenna, who was actually one of the hotel owners, were (somehow???) related. 

“Why North Carolina?” she asked, amused by how random it seemed. “New York City makes sense, sure, but North Carolina?”

“Well,” he said, “Tis a fair bit of Scottish history in North Carolina, ken? I have ancestors who settled there after Culloden. We still have Fraser kinfolk all over the state.” 

Claire nodded and winced slightly, out of habit. “Erm, I’m sorry about all of that, by the way,” she said, striving for a light tone. “My best friend is from Scotland and gives me grief about being English all the time.” 

Jamie smiled and nudged her with his right arm. “Oh, aye. My best friend John is English, too. It would seem that I attract Sassenachs e’erywhere I go.”

Claire noticed that he’d scooted his chair closer to hers and felt another jolt of excitement go through her. Feeling emboldened, she nudged him back, laughing. “You attract Sassenachs, do you? Are you sure it’s an attraction? Maybe we just feel verra sorry for you, ye ken?”  

“Oh, ye wound me,” Jamie said, laughing as he put his left hand over his heart in feigned indignation. He then turned his chair so that his right knee was touching her left and very gently touched the back of her hand, moving his pinky finger back and forth over her skin. “I think,'' he said, pausing to take a fortifying breath, “I think I’m only interested in attracting a certain Sassenach, ken ” he said, his voice low.

Claire swallowed heavily, feeling her excitement take root somewhere deep within her.  “Aye,” she breathed, smiling back at him. 

Three rounds of drinks and two appetizers later, Claire and Jamie were talking easily about nothing in particular, but it felt intimate and comfortable. 

Claire was relieved – and a little giddy – to find out that Jamie was definitely single. He’d explained that he’d had a couple of long-term relationships, but nothing stuck. He told her about his parents and his sister. She told him about being raised by her Uncle Lamb after her parents died when she was a child. He’d squeezed her hand when she told him, and she had given him a small smile and squeezed his hand in return, a quiet acknowledgement of loss.

As they continued to talk and flirt, Claire began absentmindedly drawing small patterns on his thigh. Meanwhile, Jamie’s hand was busy doing the same to her shoulder. Earlier in the evening, he’d casually looped his arm over her shoulders when he’d noticed that she had goosebumps. He’d offered his jacket to her, but she declined, wanting to feel his skin on hers. Claire thought she was probably being obvious, but she really couldn’t be bothered to care at this point. 

What with the whisky, the flirting, and all of their shy touches becoming bolder by the minute, she was feeling consumed with her need to be closer to this near stranger. 

Suddenly feeling both hot and cold, Claire excused herself to the restroom. As she walked to the other side of the bar, she made sure to swing her hips a bit, just in case he happened to be watching. She fumbled with her clutch, allowing her to casually twist herself around to look back at the bar. His eyes were locked on her, wearing an expression she could only call smoldering. She moved her gaze down to see him slowly tracing his pinky finger around the rim of his whisky glass. When she moved her eyes back to him, he bit his lip with a devilish smirk. 

Claire flushed and returned what she hoped was her best sultry look before turning back toward the restroom. Her stomach clenched with desire, making her breath come short. Oh dear God, I want him. Christ, but he’s good-looking.

She walked in the restroom and promptly whipped out her phone to text Geillis. “I met a man. His name is Jamie. He’s actually from Scotland; how random is that? And he’s gorgeous as fuck,” she typed. Claire grinned when she saw text bubbles as Geillis was typing out a reply. 

“GREAT WORK, Beauchamp - I mean HENRY! I hope ye have such a fun night that ye won’t be able to walk around tomorrow! ;)” Along with her text, Geillis sent several eggplant emojis, heart emojis, and a single peach emoji. “I bet he’s an arse man. Keep me updated, ELIZABETH.” 

Claire snorted. “I will do my best and will let you know if he’s an arse man. Xoxo,” she texted back.

She dropped her phone back in her clutch and popped a mint before refreshing her lipstick in the mirror. She raised her arms and did a quick sniff test, nodded at her reflection, and walked out back toward the bar. She raised her head and saw that Jamie was indeed still watching her with the same intense stare. She suddenly felt like they were the only two people in the room. . Her stomach clenched and she gave him a heated look in return. He smiled and lowered his eyes, drawing attention to his hand and the finger he was running up and down the whisky tumbler. Good Lord, he’s good at this, she mused. 

“Oooohhh, what’s this?,” she asked as she sat back down. In addition to a fourth round of drinks, he’d ordered a dessert of berries and cream for them both.

“Well,” Jamie said, lowering his voice and putting his hand lightly on hers. “I was thinkin’ that mebbe we could get out of here after this last round.” He smirked, but she saw that his cheeks had darkened. 

Claire flipped her hand over and lightly grazed her fingers over Jamie’s palm. “I think that’s a brilliant idea,” she breathed. 

At this answer, Jamie gave her an incandescent smile.” “Well then,” he said, breathing out in something Claire recognized as relief, “What do you think we should do next? Do you want to go anywhere?” 

Claire felt her chest tighten and suddenly it seemed she could hear only the rush of blood in her ears.  Only to your hotel room, she thought to herself, heart beating wildly. Jamie’s eyes widened and he blew out a laugh. 

Claire froze. “Bloody fucking Hell , did I say that out loud?”

Jamie merely laughed harder. “Aye, ye did, and thank Christ for it.”  Claire relaxed and laughed along with Jamie. 

“Well,” she said, looking down at her unfinished drink and deciding to go for broke. “That’s all I want to do. Go to your hotel room, I mean. If you’re interested, I mean.” She grabbed ahold of her whisky and took a long drink, needing the cover as an excuse to look anywhere else but him. 

She took a breath and looked back to Jamie, who was giving her another heated look. She felt like he was undressing her with his eyes. Her skin suddenly felt too tight, and she felt delightfully dizzy. Jamie gave her a half smile and bent his head to her ear. “God, yes. Yer the sexiest fucking woman I’ve e’er seen. And I am dyin’ to get my hands on that arse of yers.” His fingers twitched impatiently against Claire’s leg.

Claire gave a surprised jolt and snorted, which caused Jamie to suddenly look serious. “Oh Christ,” he said quickly. “I didn’t mean fer it to sound like that, Sassenach. Truly. I mean, I don’t expect anything to happen that ye don’t want tae – ” Jamie broke off, running an anxious hand through his hair, clearly feeling agitated. 

Claire gave him what she hoped was a reassuring smile and leaned in toward him, putting her hand on his thigh. “What if,” she said as she lightly moved her hand up and down, “What if I told you I’d been waiting all night for you to finally put your hands on me?” 

Jamie smiled in relief and turned slightly to get Glenna’s attention. “Glenna, we’re ready for the bill, aye?” Glenna came over, beaming at the two of them. “Jamie, ye weren’t going tae try an’ pay fer yer own whisky?”, she said, putting her hands on her hips. “Oh aye, I must insist,” Jamie said. “What would the lady think if I didna pay fer her drinks?” Glenna laughed heartily at that and walked away to get the check. 

Glenna brought back the check along with a large box full of sweets. Claire started to argue that she needed to put that on the tab, but Glenna refused. 

Jamie settled the tab and they said their goodbyes to Glenna. As they walked aways, Jamie cleared his throat, and Claire noticed that his ears were turning bright pink.” Claire nudged him, silently asking what he was thinking about.  

He shrugged and said,  “Weel, my mam will be calling soon to ask me all about the beautiful Sassenach tha’ Glenna saw me leave with, but I dinna think I care at the moment.” Jamie gave her that sexy half smile and put his arm around Claire. She leaned into his side and reached up to squeeze the hand resting on her shoulder, hoping it conveyed her excitement. “Neither do I,” she said quietly. “Lead the way.”

Chapter Text

Jamie and Claire stepped onto the elevator, awkwardly breaking apart when more hotel guests followed them in, as though they knew Jamie and Claire were on their way to have a one-night stand. Claire smirked, feeling pleased. Maybe a two-night stand? 

Claire shook her head slightly at herself. Jamie put his hand on her lower back, moving his thumb gently back and forth. Claire shivered in response and looked over at him. Yes, a one - or two - night stand. A delicious, debauched night or two with this gorgeous man who just basically fell into my lap. Claire steeled herself. Oh, do shut up, Beauchamp.

The elevator dinged, bringing Claire out of her reverie. Jamie grabbed her hand and steered her out of the elevator onto his floor. The hall was empty and quiet. Jamie cleared his throat, his fingers absentmindedly caressing hers as they walked. Claire took a deep, cleansing breath. The sexual tension crackling between them felt heavy on her skin. 

Suddenly, Jamie halted their progress down the hall. Surprised, Claire started to say something, but was cut off abruptly by Jamie when he turned toward her, grabbed her by the waist, and gave her a scorching kiss. Stunned, Claire quickly recovered by looping her arms around his neck and kissing him fervently in return. He responded by kissing her even harder, walking her backwards until she hit the wall. Gasping, she tangled one hand in his hair while her other was on his lower back, pulling him closer to her. His hands busily roamed down her body until they landed her arse, gripping her to him. She felt at once how hard he was and how desperate she was to feel him all over her. How can I be THIS desperate for someone I just met? She moaned as she broke the kiss. “Jamie,” she whispered against his lips. “Take me to your room.” He kissed her once more, smiling into the kiss. “Aye, Sassenach, as you say.” He grabbed her hand and all but dragged her down the deserted hall. 

When they reached his door, Jamie kept hold of her hand while he swiped the keycard. As he opened the door, he stepped aside to allow Claire to enter before him. “Ladies first,” he said wryly. “That’s what I’m hoping for,” Claire giggled and winked as she walked past him. He reached out to grab her bum, giving it a quick squeeze. Claire laughed, delighted. No, that was a full-on giggle. God, Beauchamp. He closed the door and moved toward her, but didn’t close the full distance between them. She bit her lip and returned the look, suddenly rendered speechless. Jamie straightened himself up and gestured toward the room. 

 “This is my suite,” Jamie said unnecessarily. Instead of teasing him, Claire obligingly looked around and took everything in, recognizing it as a gesture to ease their sudden nerves. “This is a gorgeous hotel, Jamie,” she said, as though she thought he were responsible for it. “I mean, beautiful furniture…and such,” she ended lamely. The couch was stately and dark, with richly appointed fabrics in a tartan pattern. There were two large wing chairs in complementary colors of dark green. Off of the main sitting room stood a small kitchenette, complete with an espresso machine and electric tea kettle. “Cozy,” she said. 

Jamie smiled warmly and Claire felt some of the tension dissipate. “Aye. It’ll do. Would you like a drink?” he asked. She nodded. “Water, please,” she said, realizing she was suddenly parched. “Aye,” he breathed, walking to the fridge and grabbing two waters. 

They moved to sit on the couch; the bed was in another room through a pair of french doors. Should she just get up and lead him to the bedroom door? That’s absurd, she thought. It’s not my bloody hotel room. She drank the water quickly and set the bottle down, clearing her throat as she did so. 

“Jamie,” she said, scooting closer and angling her body toward him. He reached out and gently took her hand, caressing it as he moved closer to her. She smiled encouragingly at him. “Kiss me again,” she said simply. He brought his hand under her chin and tilted her face toward him. “God, yes,” he said. He licked his lips and brought his other hand up to tangle in her hair. He slowly pressed his lips to her and kissed her, hard. Claire moved closer to him, one hand on his thigh. He moaned, deepening the kiss and tightening his grip on her hair. Claire suddenly couldn’t stand to have any space between them. Without breaking the kiss, she gripped his thigh tighter and used her free hand to push herself up to straddle him, her knees on either side of his thighs. Jamie kissed her neck and ran his hands up back before moving them down again. “God, this arse,” he breathed. “Ye have the roundest arse I’ve ever seen!” Claire responded by rolling her hips against him.  “So, you are definitely an arse man. My friend will be pleased.” “What?" Jamie said, confused. “I’ll tell you later,” Claire said breathlessly. She reluctantly broke the kiss and pulled back to look at him. “Take me to your bed, Jamie.” 

“Christ, yer sexy,” Jamie said as he stood up, gripping Claire so she could wind her legs around his waist. She pushed at Jamie’s jacket and nipped at his neck as he walked. “Take this off,” she demanded. “Aye,” he whispered. Claire felt her back hit the wall; she took her cue and helped him push the offending garment off. 

As Jamie disentangled himself from the sleeves, she tightened her legs around him and moved to unbutton his shirt. “This. Off. Now.”, she said, in between fervent kisses. Jamie kissed her and bit her lower lip gently. “Nah, now you have to take something off,” he said with a playful tone in his voice. She grinned and kicked her heels off. “Like this? Is that what you meant?” she said in a mock innocent tone, chasing Jamie’s lips with her own. 

Jamie made a sound somewhere in between a growl and a whine.  He pulled her away from the wall and kicked the bedroom door open. “Playing innocent now, hmmm? Alright, then, we’ll see just how innocent ye really are,” he said as he slid her down gently to stand back on the floor. 

Claire laughed breathily and cupped him over his pants before he could say anything else. “ Aye , we will,” she said, laughing at his sharp intake of breath. “My, it certainly seems you have a situation here,” she teased. 

She kissed him again, pawing at his belt in an attempt to unbuckle it. He smiled into the kiss while moving his hand to her thigh, pulling up the hem of her dress to touch the soft skin on her upper thigh. She made a squeaking noise as he slowly edged his hand higher up her leg. Claire made another noise, more desperate this time. When he reached the top of her thigh, he slowly traced the lacy edge of her underwear with his index finger. Claire moaned and momentarily dropped her hands away from his belt. Emboldened by her noises, Jamie moved his finger further up to trace gently along the top of her underwear, then back down again to trace the edge on her other leg. He paused, adjusting his arm to band around her lower back before finally dipping a curious finger inside of her underwear. 

Claire moaned again and fisted her hands into the front of his shirt. “Christ, you’re soaked, Sassenach,” he said, his voice heavy with desire. “A situation , is that what ye called it?” 

Claire made another incoherent noise and pushed his hands off of her. She spun around and moved her hair to the side. “Take my dress off, Jamie. Touch me like that everywhere.”  

Jamie hurriedly removed his belt and finished unbuttoning his shirt before throwing it off to the side of the room. He moved behind Claire and placed his hands on her hips. He leaned forward toward her ear and dropped his voice to a whisper. “Aye,” he breathed, kissing her neck. “I’ll kiss you anywhere and everywhere you want. I promise.” He planted another kiss on Claire’s neck, delighted at the goosebumps that erupted in the wake of his lips against her skin. He slowly dragged one hand up until it reached the top of the dress’s zipper. He heard Claire’s sharp intake of breath and tightened the grip on her hip with his other hand. He ghosted his lips across her shoulder and placed a delicate kiss at the base of her neck before moving the zipper down slowly. He stopped the zipper halfway to kiss her spine along the exposed skin, pleased to hear her keening noises. He resumed his path down her back until the dress was fully unzipped. He kissed his way back up her spine until he was next to her ear again.

 “Turn around,” Jamie whispered. “I want to see ye when ye take this silly wee dress off.” He felt Claire nod and as he pressed his lips to her neck, he turned her gently to face him. 

He traced his hands along her arms until he reached the sleeves of her dress. He kissed her slowly, almost reverently , Claire thought in a haze. He pulled the dress down Claire’s arms and it hit the floor with a barely audible “whoosh.” Claire threw her arms around Jamie’s neck and kissed him, feeling desperately aroused. His hands roamed down her back until he hit the strap of Claire’s thong. He felt his way along the length of the thin band and froze. He disentangled himself and held Claire away from him. His eyes moved slowly, taking her all in, his eyes comically wide.

He gave her a sweet smile that made her feel like she was melting into the floor. His hands moved up the length of her torso until he reached her breasts. He moved his fingers across the fabric and groaned. “I canna believe ye were wearing this under yer dress all night. If I did ken you were wearing this, I think I woulda had to take you right there on the bar.” He continued to trace his fingers all along the fabric, a move that made Claire’s heart race. Claire smiled and moved her hands to his pants. 

“Same,” she said, moving to pull Jamie’s pants and underwear off. “Let me look at you,” she begged. Jamie nodded his assent and moved to allow her room to work. She kissed him slowly and then moved to kiss his neck, jaw, pecs, and stomach until she was kneeling in front of him. She gently pulled his pants down, kissing the band of his boxer briefs before grazing one hand down along his leg until she reached the ground. He shivered at the feel of her nails gently tracing his skin. She moved her hands up, grabbing onto the band of his boxer briefs. She locked eyes with him and kissed his stomach before scraping her teeth along the edge of the fabric. Jamie made a strangled sound as she took the elastic between her teeth and began working them down. He made a hissing noise and felt her answering smile. She used her teeth and her hands to pull them down until Jamie was able to kick them off. Still on her knees, she pressed a kiss to his cock, making Jamie release a low moan. 

Fuck,” he breathed. Claire moved to stand as she kissed her way back up to his lips, her hands ghosting along his skin. He breathed in and out slowly. “Well then,” he said, with a burning look that went straight to her core, “Take off yours as well.” 

Claire stepped back and reached behind her to unhook her bra. Jamie moved forward, almost in a trance-like state, and ran his hands along the top of her panties before grabbing the elastic band to pull them down and off. Claire giggled at his eagerness as she peeled her bra off and handed it to Jamie. Without missing a beat, he accepted the flimsy garment and threw it behind him without a word.

Jamie again stepped back to gaze at Claire hungrily. Claire pulsed with desire as he looked over her now completely nude form. I’ve never felt so erotic, she thought, and meant it. 

 “Elizabeth, yer the most beautiful woman I’ve ever seen.” Claire stifled a gasp. She had been so caught up in the moment that she had completely forgotten she’d given him a fake name at the bar. She felt her chest constrict, momentarily seized with the wild notion that she should stop everything and confess the truth. She realized that she desperately wanted to hear him whisper her name into her ear. 

She snapped back to the present, clearing her jumbled thoughts. She refocused, taking in Jamie standing completely naked before her. She moved closer to him and traced her fingers up along his arms, feeling the muscles of his arms and shoulders. “You’re beautiful,” she sighed. “And I like it when you call me Sassenach, Jamie.” 

Jamie moved forward, wrapping Claire in his arms and kissing her deeply. Claire walked backwards with Jamie until her knees hit the bed. She moved up the mattress and leaned up against the pillows. He crawled up to her, kissing every inch of her body as he moved toward her. Claire moaned, sending Jamie into overdrive.

 “God, Sassenach,” he breathed, finally reaching her mouth and kissing her. He moved to kiss her jaw, her neck, and finally, her breasts. Claire moaned as he kissed each nipple; then, without warning, he took her left nipple into his mouth and sucked, hard. Claire moaned again, stifling a louder noise. Without realizing it, she began to undulate her hips, seeking more.

Jamie released her breast and then moved to the other to repeat his ministrations. Claire, chest heaving, was almost in tears with how much she wanted him. He started to move down to her core, but Claire, bold with barely contained desire, stopped him. “Jamie,” she said, barely able to form words. 

Jamie paused, waiting for Claire. She gulped. “Will you let me ride you?” She watched, fascinated as Jamie features underwent made an almost comic transformation. Before Claire could say another word, he flipped them over so suddenly that she squeaked in surprise. “Say that again,” he begged.

Claire, now straddling Jamie, moved her hips to brush against his cock. She leaned down to his ear and whispered, “Jamie, I want to ride your face.” She nibbled his ear, and Jamie grabbed her hips to move her up until she was straddling his face. He grabbed her arse to stabilize her, all the while nibbling, licking, and kissing every inch of her thighs he could reach. He snaked one hand up her body to pinch her nipple and looked at Claire, spread out above him. “If I die tomorrow, I will die a happy man.” Claire’s laugh turned into a heated moan as he chose that moment to bring his tongue to lick slowly up her center to her clit. Claire gasped, falling forward to grip the headboard. “Oh, FUCK ,” she moaned. Jamie moaned in answer, licking her again. “Ye taste so fucking good, Sassenach,” he breathed. “Nothing will ever taste this good.”

She tried to respond, but he wasted no time in setting himself to his task, thus rendering her incapable of speech. Lost in the pleasure he was giving her, she gripped the headboard harder as she moved her hips back and forth, left and right, and back again. She moaned louder and pushed herself against Jamie’s mouth, causing him to tighten his grip on her hips. 

He had been making quick passes of his tongue over her clit as he listened to her noises for guidance. She started to grind harder, searching for release. Jamie looked up at her as she threw her head back, moaning and cursing. He pushed on her hip to get her attention. She moved her head forward to look at him, her eyes glazed over with lust.

 “Jamie,” she moaned, closing her eyes again. “I’m so close. God, I’m so close.” Jamie hummed in response and gave her two more long licks before he moved back to her clit and started sucking gently. “Oh, FUCK,” she screamed. She grabbed a fist full of his hair with one hand and held the headboard with her other. Claire pulled his hair, making him shudder from head to to e. She moaned brokenly, and he felt her legs begin to tremble. She made a sobbing sound and rolled her hips against him. Jamie kept sucking until she cried out again, her voice shaking with ecstasy. She started to pull away, at which point he slackened his grip on her hips. She swayed, her body unsteady in the wake of her orgasm. He brought her down until she was lying on her back, still breathing rapidly. She finally opened her eyes and looked dreamily over at him. He gave her a wide smile as he looked over her flushed skin, her breasts still heaving as she fought to catch her breath.

“That was,” she paused for a breath, “that was so fucking good. Oh, God.” She closed her eyes again as Jamie leaned over to kiss her tenderly. She moaned when she felt his tongue and tasted herself on him. He rolled until he was hovering over her and gave her a scorching kiss. Jamie ran his cock along her core and broke the kiss. “I need to be inside ye, Sassenach,” he said breathlessly. With great effort, he forced himself off of her and went to his bag in search of a condom, cursing out loud as he fumbled around.

Claire smiled, quietly thanking herself for being prepared. When she was in the restroom at the bar, she had stowed a condom in the pocket of her dress. She gulped, trying to breathe. “Dress. Left Pocket. Condom,” she babbled. 

Jamie turned and walked over to the dress.  He grabbed the dress and searched madly for the pockets. “Aha! Thank fuck,” he said triumphantly, seizing the square package before ripping it open. He rolled it on while Claire looked at him with a sultry gaze on her face. It felt strangely more intimate than what they just did, but he didn’t seem to mind. He followed her eyes as she raked over him slowly, staring at his cock and absentmindedly biting her lip.

 “Eyes up here,” he said with a grin. She grinned back and hummed contentedly. “If you insist,” she said in a flirty ton e. He crawled over her, lining himself up before rolling his hips and running his length over her core once again. She moaned, moving her legs to wrap around him while kissing him thoroughly. “Please, don’t tease me,” she said quietly. He reached down and guided himself into her, watching her face as she squinted her eyes closed to focus on the sensation. “Ah dhia,” he said as he slid fully inside her. She moaned in response, opening her eyes and rolling her hips against him, causing him to shudder in pleasure. She saw and felt as much, so she did it again, making him moan. “I love the sounds you’re making,” she said, rolling her hips again, this time harder. 

He kissed her and took his cue to move faster. “Ye feel – gah – ye feel sae good,” he said, barely able to talk through the intensity of the moment. She didn’t say anything, but tightened her legs around his waist and buried one hand in his hair, pulling his head down so he could bury his face in the crook of her neck. This is more intimate than I could have expected, she thought to herself before keening at one particularly well-placed thrust.

 “Oh, fuck,” she said through a broken moan. “Oh, fuck, harder, Jamie, harder , oh please, fuck, ” she begged, barely conscious of what she was even saying. Jamie moved one arm under her to shift her pelvis upward as he fucked into her.

 “Oh, God, yes,” he moaned through gritted teeth as his body answered her pleas, over and over again. He cupped one hand to her jaw as he moved his head up to kiss her sloppily, teeth clashing. They kissed desperately, only breaking apart to moan softly into each other’s mouths. Claire heard herself making noises and felt powerless to stop them. She clung harder to Jamie, moving her hands to grasp onto his arse, making him feel like he was even deeper inside her than before. 

“I’m so close,” Claire all but sobbed. She dug her nails in, grinding herself against Jamie’s pelvis. “I’m – Jamie, I’m com – oh, FUCK,” she cried loudly. Her body went rigid, clinging to him as she convulsed. He moved faster, fucking her through the orgasm as her moans and curses propelled him toward his own finish. Rhythm faltering, he thrust forward once, moaned into her mouth, and thrust again before coming hard . Going still, Jamie held Claire tightly against him, shaking and gasping. 

Neither Claire nor Jamie moved for several beats as they came down from their highs. Jamie felt Claire’s hold on him slacken, and he raised himself up to pull out of her. Both covered in a thin sheen of sweat, they looked at each other, stunned. He kissed her on the nose and told her not to go anywhere. She gasped out a laugh as he got up to hastily dispose of the condom. 

Claire took a deep breath, feeling her heart rate slowly returning to normal. She was cooling down and suddenly felt chilled all over. As she slid under the covers, Jamie came out of the bathroom and climbed in behind her. “Oh, aye, mo nighean donn, come here and get warm. He opened his arms, indicating the open spot on his shoulder. She smiled, rolling over to him. He enveloped her, absentmindedly smoothing his hand up and down her back and arm.  She kissed his chest and sighed. “That was amazing,” she said quietly, sounding almost embarrassed. “I just - I guess didn’t expect it would be that intense, you know?” She pulled away to look at his face. “Aye,” he said, his voice matching her awed tones. He kissed her forehead, nose, and finally her mouth. “Aye, I don’t expect I’ll be moving anytime soon.” She hummed in agreement before they both drifted off to sleep, feeling sated and warm.

Chapter Text

Claire awoke sometime later with a full bladder. She walked to the bathroom, picking up her clutch as she went. As she sat down on the toilet, she pulled out her phone to see text alerts from Geillis. She smiled and opened her messages. “So, this Jamie must be really good or he must be a murderer. If the former, please text me back.” Geillis always had a way to let Claire know how much she cared without dropping her breezy facade. Claire typed out a quick text.  

“Definitely the former. Definitely good. Definitely an ass man 🍑.” 

She sent the message and shivered slightly at the thought of Jamie. She washed her hands, splashed her face with water, and ran her fingers through her tangled hair. Great sex hair, Claire thought, pleased with herself. She went back to lie down next to Jamie. She thought he was out cold, but a moment after she got back in bed, he rolled toward her and pulled her back into him. A woman could get used to this, Claire thought drowsily before drifting to sleep again.

She awoke again in the early hours of the morning. She'd been having a some sort of dream involving horseback riding with a man pressed up against her. She was naked in the dream, and so was he. She smiled, remembering where she was: In a hotel bed with a very naked, very hard Jamie. She rolled over as carefully as she could so as not to wake him. He really is so gorgeous, she thought as she looked him over. She laughed to herself as her next thought came to her. It was the line from When Harry Met Sally when he tells her she’s attractive. “Empirically, you are attractive,” Harry tells Sally. Empirically, you are attractive, Jamie Fraser. And he thinks your name is Elizabeth, she thought, frowning. No. Stop. Just enjoy. No strings, Beauchamp. This is good for you. And it’s not like he’s complaining.

That line of thinking perked her up. She wanted him inside of her again. She’d wanted him again the moment after they’d finished last night. She smiled to herself and moved to shimmy down the king-sized bed until she reached his cock. She placed a kiss on the tip and looked up. Still asleep. She moved down to the base and licked her way up to the tip. He groaned, so she did it again. More groans. She ran a finger down the length of his cock and gently took hold of him, slowly licking her way around the frenulum. He stirred at her ministrations. Smiling, she ran her tongue around again. She looked up just in time for him to open his eyes and see her take his cock in her mouth. 

“Sassenach,” he gasped. She sucked him hard in response, this time taking her free hand to stroke him near the base. He moaned and gently grabbed her hair at the roots. The move spurred her on, making her feel wild and wanton. She sucked him harder, feeling the wetness between her own thighs. She straddled Jamie’s leg between her thighs so she could slide herself up and down while she worked him. She wanted him to feel how aroused he made her. At this development, Jamie groaned and thrust his hips, causing Claire to thrust her own in response. He tugged on her hair to get her attention. She looked up and released him with a pop. 

“Good morning,” she said in a sultry tone.

 “Mmmm, tis, but why don’t you move up here now,'' he said before abruptly stopping her progress. “Wait, I need to find more condoms.”

She sat up and leaned forward to kiss him gently. “Listen, I haven’t been with anyone else in over six months. I’m clean, and I have an IUD.”

He nodded and said, “Aye, same. I havena been with anyone in almost a year. I’m clean. Are ye sure yer okay with this?” Claire learned forward so that her nipples were hovering over his mouth. He took his cue and sucked on her nipple for a long moment. Claire gasped, closing her eyes for a moment before forcing her eyes open again. 

“I wouldn’t have brought it up as an option if I weren’t okay with it. Are you okay with it?”

He smiled at her. “Aye, I trust ye.”

At this statement, Claire cringed internally and moved to kiss him again before she could get lost in her own thoughts. “I trust you, too,” she whispered. He nodded and moved her hips flush with his. She took his cock and stroked him a few times before sliding down the length of him, watching his expressions change as he slipped fully inside of her. She rocked back and forth at a leisurely pace, luxuriating in the pleasant ache coursing through her. Jamie watched her for a moment before tightening his hold on her hips and thrusting upwards into her. Claire bit her lower lip and made a high-pitched whining noise in answer. She moved to place her hands on his chest before grinding her hips against him in a figure eight motion, slowly retracting the pattern again and again.

Jamie threw his head back with a deep, rumbling groan. “Yer going to be the death of me, woman,” he moaned, gasping for breath. Claire leaned forward to capture his mouth with hers. “I think you’ve proven that you can handle me,” she whispered with another slow, delicious grind of her hips. She sat up again, grinning at him as she watched his facial expressions contort in pleasure. She reached down to rub small circles on her clit, already edging closer and closer to her peak. Jamie moved to sit up, bringing Claire with him; evidently, he was unwilling to pull out of her for even a brief second. He carefully situated her on his lap, moving until his back was flush with the headboard. Claire moved to wrap her legs around him until they were in the Lotus position. Claire rolled her hips, gasping at the heady sensation of the new position. He wrapped his arms around her and buried his head in her mass of curls. Claire moaned, and Jamie sat back to look at her again. Still rocking against him, Claire watched as his eyes suddenly grew wide with lust. He looked positively feral. He moved to bury his face in her hair again, bringing one hand up to grab her hair. 

“That’s it. Come for me, mo nighean donn, ” he whispered, his breath warm in her ear. 

“God, Jamie, yes,” Claire moaned, sounding strangled to her own ears.

“Aye, I want to hear yer wee noises. I want ye tae come hard. All. Over. My. Cock.” He enunciated the last sentence slowly, and Christ but was it effective. Claire moaned as she fell forward, her teeth grazing along the sensitive skin on Jamie’s neck. “Aye, that’s it, lass,” Jamie said coaxingly, “All over my fucking cock. I want to know I’m the one who made you scream out like that.” Jamie thrust up into Claire again, grabbing her breast and twisting her nipple between his fingers as he did so.

 “Oh, God.” Claire bit down on his neck and came in racking spasms, shaking and crying out through her orgasm. He thrust up into her a few more times before following her into oblivion. Claire slumped against him, still shaking and breathing heavily. He stroked her hair gently until Claire stirred. Breaking apart, they melted down the bed until they were once again horizontal.

Jamie heaved a deep sigh. “ Tha mi 'n dùil sgàin mo chridhe.” Claire moved closer until Jamie wrapped his arms around her. “I said that I thought my heart would burst.” He licked his lips before going on. “I, um, I hope it’s okay that I talked to you like that.”

Claire snorted. “I think I could come again by just thinking about it. It’s more than okay.” 

Jamie smiled, looking pleased and relieved. “I just wanted to check,” he shrugged, suddenly looking shy. “I mean to keep you in this bed as long as I can”  Claire kissed him languidly in response. “I think that’s an excellent plan,” she sighed, drifting off to sleep again. 

___

Claire awoke sometime later to the sound of the shower running. She grabbed a hair elastic to tame her mass of curls into a messy bun before walking to the bathroom. Standing at the doorway, she paused to watch Jamie. He  stood under the shower head with his back to her. Claire watched as water droplets traveled down his muscular body in smooth rivulets, fingers aching to trace their path. She smiled at the sumptuous view afforded to her as she padded over to open the shower door. At the sound, he turned toward her with a huge smile on his face and bent to kiss her.

“Mmmm, good mornin’ again, Sassenach.” She put her hands on his chest. “A verra good morning,” she replied in a teasing tone. She smoothed her hands over his shoulders and paused to inspect the bite mark she left. 

“I’m sorry for that; it looks like it might be a nasty bruise.” Jamie made a low noise of assent before gently turning her around to pull her in closer. He kissed the back of her neck and ran restless hands down her curves. “Oh, Sassenach, dinna fash. Bed a vixen, expect tae get bit.” He closed his teeth gently over her shoulder, causing her to shiver. She placed her hands over his and entwined her fingers with his, leaning into his body. “A vixen, am I? What makes you so sure of that?”she asked, pressing her back harder against him. 

“Weel, ye flirt with me all night and ye ply me wi’ my own drink before coming tae m’ bed, hair wild as Medusa. Then ye ask me to let ye ride my face. Then ye wake me up wi’ your wee mouth on my cock, lookin’ up at me wi’ those eyes that are th’ same color as m’ whisky. Then ye bite me and act surprised that I call ye a wee vixen.” He laughed and kissed her other shoulder. “My God, what an arse,” he sighed dreamily as his hands cupped her fondly. Claire sighed, relaxing into him.

“Here, let me get ye clean.” He grabbed a washcloth and added several pumps of body wash to it. It smelled fresh, Claire thought. First and foremost, it smelled like Jamie. She breathed it - him - in deeply, feeling like her body was dissolving entirely into liquid. 

“Well,” she finally said, looping her arm behind Jamie’s head and pulling his head toward hers, “in fairness, YOU bought the drinks and you DID whisper filthy things in my ear about coming all over your cock.” 

She felt him smirk. “Ye did like that. I thought ye might. I read that line in a book once and always wanted to try it for m’self.” Claire laughed. “What sort of book was this, Mr. Fraser, hm?” Without missing a beat, he said, “Oh, m’ sister’s book, o’course. I nicked it from her room when she went off to university. I was verra innocent in my reading materials, ye ken.” Claire snorted, but elected to say nothing; she was too amused imagining a younger version of Jamie taking steamy novels from his big sister’s room. 

As he talked, he brought the washcloth to her breasts, making sure he cleaned them verra thoroughly before he made his way down between her legs to gently start his ministrations between her thighs. Claire winced a little when the washcloth met the skin of her vulva. Jamie noticed, of course, and moved to soften his touch.

 “A bit saddlesore, aye?” he asked. Claire shut her eyes, enjoying the feel of him washing her skin. “A little,” she admitted. “But being the vixen you say I am, I suppose I should have expected that.” She felt a rumble of a laugh against her back. “Too right,” he said.

 “Now, if you don’t have any objections, c’mere and bite me some more.” He turned Claire around in his arms and pressed her to him. He was already hard against her stomach, making Claire clench in eager anticipation. He kissed her like a man starved before moving his lips restlessly down the elegant column of her neck. His hands continued to roam all over her breasts, her back, her curves, and her arse until he finally - finally - dipped a finger into her. Jamie, finding her “verra wet,” hummed in bliss.

And that’s how Claire found herself bent over at the waist – holding onto the shower rails for dear life – as Jamie gently fucked her, their cries becoming the only sounds left in world.

Chapter Text

Jamie pulled on his jeans and looked over at his Sassenach, smirking at her as she came out of the bathroom wearing one of the ridiculously oversized hotel robes she’d wrapped herself in after their shower. Not yers. Yer a right idiot, Fraser. Ye just met her last night, fer fuck’s sake, he thought. 

Ignoring his inner monologue, he grinned as he raked his eyes over her body, already regretting that she was wearing anything at all. “Mebbe a wee bit too large, but ye make it look like ye could model it for a robe commercial, Sassenach. Knowing what ye look like with nothin’ on, though…that makes me want to get ye naked again this verra minute.” He smiled wider as he noticed her cheeks and neck flush. “Quiet, you,” she said with a smirk. “I’m ravenous. For food,” she added as he opened his mouth to make a comment. 

Jamie grabbed a granola bar from the small kitchen. “Here ye go,” he said as he handed it to her. “ We missed breakfast, so I was thinkin’ about getting pizza for us. Some good New York-style pizzas that Americans won’t shut their gobs over, aye?” 

“Do you want to go anywhere else today?” Claire asked, affecting a casual look that didn’t fool Jamie. 

“Weel,” he said, walking over to open the curtains to a beautiful vista of the New York City skyline. Or,  it would be a beautiful vista if not for the pounding rain and dark, ominous clouds. “Weel,” he repeated. “Nae. We canna do a lot o’ sightseeing, ken? And anyway, I’d rather keep ye naked in my room, like I said earlier… if yer givin’ me a vote, that is.”

Claire threw him a heated look, evidently thinking along the same lines, which made his pulse quicken and his breath catch in his chest. 

“I suppose I can be convinced,” she said in a posh English accent. 

Jamie smiled. “I think I better feed ye ‘afore I try tae convince ye of anything else.” 

Claire hummed in assent. “I do like a lad who feeds a lass,” she said with a sly grin. 

My lass, Jamie thought again, stupidly. He looked away, rolling his eyes as he sat down on the bed next to her. “Would ye mebbe,” he started before pausing to clear his throat and forcing himself to look at her, “Would ye mebbe stay here w’ me again tonight?” 

A small smile formed on Claire’s lips. Claire looked away before looking back at him. “I’d like that,” she said, pulling her knees up to her chest. 

Jamie exhaled, feeling relieved. “I think ye should mebbe get you wee things an’ bring them here tonight,” he said. “I don’t plan tae have you wear anything else, mind.” 

She rolled her eyes at him, blushing deeply. “That can…that can be arranged,” she said, swallowing hard. 

“Aye, perfect. Ye do that while I go and grab our authentic New York-style pizza. Yer right, I must feed my lass,” he said, wincing when his brain caught up to what he had just said. 

She ignored him, but her cheeks reddened again. I have to keep making her blush like that, he thought. She looks beautiful. Well-fucked and beautiful. 

Claire nodded and smiled. “It’s settled. Now go get my food.” She leaned over to give him a quick kiss. 

“Alright,” he whispered against her mouth. “I won’t be long.” 

“Good,” Claire said in a serious tone. “I don’t like being made to wait.” 

Laughing, Jamie stood up and fished an extra keycard out of my wallet. “Here’s my room key. I’ll see ye soon.” 

He bent down to kiss her once before turning to leave. “What an arse,” she said as he walked to the door. He turned and gave her the most ridiculous wink, which was really more of an exaggerated blink. “Ye’ll be the death of me, woman, truly,” he said before closing the door behind him. 

Jamie waited until he was in the elevator to pull out his phone, opening his texts.

[Jamie]: I met someone. I’m spending the weekend with her in NYC. 

[John Grey]: Idiot. 

Jamie read the text and snorted, watching the dots as John was evidently composing a longer text. 

JG:  If you marry an American, you know Jenny, Benedicta, and Minnie will literally murder you. LITERALLY. Not to mention what ELLEN would do. You could never live out of Scotland. Idiot. 

JF: First of all, no one mentioned marriage. We’re just spending the weekend together. Second, she’s English, like your sorry arse. London-based. A surgeon. 

JG: Hmmm, so what’s her name? 

JF: So Minnie can find her entire life history? Nae, fuck off. 

JG: You fuck off. We both know you’re not great at weekend flings, but have fun. Hector says he thinks you’re an idiot, too. Call me later. 

JF: Aye. Talk soon.

Jamie reached the lobby and stowed his phone, anxious to return to his wee vixen.

"Idiot," he mumbled to himself.

Chapter Text

Claire waited until she couldn’t hear his footsteps retreating to fall back on the bed, covering her face with her hands. “Oh, God,” she groaned. “Fuck, fuck, fuck, FUCK. What am I doing?” 

Not wanting Jamie to beat her back to his room with the pizza, she hopped up and started frantically rushing around the room, searching for her clothes. She threw the robe aside after finding her bra ( thrown haphazardly behind the bedroom television, somehow ), and dressed quickly back in her little black dress and put on her heels. She grabbed her clutch before walking out into the hall. Jogging to the elevator, she pressed the button over and over again, willing the doors to open faster. When the doors finally opened, she was relieved to see that no one was inside. As she hit the button to her floor, she realized Jamie’s room was at the top. Jesus H., did they give him the bloody fucking Honeymoon Suite? 

She pressed the button for her floor again and waited, rocking back on her heels. Feeling relieved that no one else had joined her on the elevator, she ran out when the doors opened on her floor. She took her heels off and sprinted to her door, swiped the keycard, and threw the door open. 

Claire stopped herself inside the door. “Beauchamp, you’re a surgeon. A bloody surgeon. Pull yourself together,” she said aloud to the empty room. 

First things first. She kicked her heels off, unzipped the dress, and pulled out some more comfortable yoga pants and a long-sleeved shirt to wear. Wait until he sees my arse in these pants, she thought. 

She repacked her work bag and frantically dumped all of her toiletries and wrinkled clothes into the suitcase. Having grown up traveling in the summers with Lamb, she never overpacked for trips. She silently thanked her uncle for bestowing his packing skills to her. She looked over the empty room once more before closing the door and all but running back to Jamie’s room. 

Upon returning to Jamie’s suite, she was relieved to see that he hadn’t returned yet. She sat down on the couch, frowning as she thought about going back home tomorrow. Her mind was still racing. It’s just a weekend thing. Stop it. Calm down.

She rubbed her temples, feeling suddenly tired. It’s true that her job in London wasn’t permanent; she didn’t have to stay in London. Claire was open to the possibility of moving, but she wasn’t open to starting a relationship while she was job hunting. Plus, a relationship? Based on what Jamie had said earlier, it seemed he was interested in nothing more than a fling.  

Even IF he were interested, pursuing something wouldn’t be fair to him, Claire reasoned. Certainly not if she could wind up on another continent in six months’ time. The day before she met Jamie, she had been approached by someone at the conference practically begging her to join their team at Harvard. That would be an amazing opportunity for her career, and she wasn’t about to make things more difficult for herself in that department. She shook her head, upset with herself for going down this rabbit hole. No. You JUST met him. This has to be a weekend thing and nothing more. She leaned back on the bed, closing her eyes. 

This was ridiculous. She was just enjoying herself in another country. Jamie was certainly enjoying her company, so why was she being so dramatic about everything? Don’t make promises to him that you can’t keep right now. You’ll just break his heart, Beauchamp. He doesn’t deserve that. She rubbed at her eyes, willing herself to get her emotions firmly in check. But why are you willing to break your own heart? 

Claire whipped out her phone and texted Geillis. 

[Claire]: G, I think using a fake name was a huge mistake. What should I do? He asked me to spend the night with him again tonight. 

[Geillis]: Claire, this was exactly what your plan was, remember? You’re fine. Stop worrying. It’s just the weekend. 

CB: I just really like him. He’s been calling me “Sassenach” since we started talking. (In a good way, I mean. It’s a cute nickname.) He’s sweet. Also, he’s extremely good in bed. I mean, JHRC, really, really good. 

GD: So what, are you going to say, “Hey, Jamie, I know we’ve been absolutely screwing each other nonstop this weekend, but I’ve actually been using a fake name, so are we still good”? Why risk starting a fight with a fling? Plus, you’re by yourself now, so what’s your plan there? Would you just go back to your hotel and dwell on it until your flight? Just relax. P.S. Good for you. 🍆  Get it. 

CB: Okay. I’ll think of something before I leave. And thanks; I am having a lot of fun and a lot of sex. 

GD: So proud.

Claire snorted before throwing her phone aside. Heaving a deep sigh, she finally felt herself starting to relax.

Chapter Text

Jamie returned with an enormous pizza and some plates that he’d procured from downstairs. Along with the pizza, he’d also bought three different types of mini cheesecakes he’d found at a bakery next to the pizza place. Claire laughed, asking why he didn’t just get a single, plain cake.

He’d shrugged and said, “I just didn’t want tae disappoint ye, Sassenach.” Claire had kissed him senseless at this; he responded eagerly, kissing her back in a long, passionate kiss as his hands roamed all over her until he cupped her arse. He finally broke the kiss to spin her around. 

“Incredible,” he said, spinning her back around to embrace her once again. “The roundest arse I’ve ever seen.”

“I thought you’d like these pants,” Claire said, giggling. “Oh, Sassenach. I haven’t found anything about ye that I don’t like yet, but I’d have tae be exceptionally daft to not see what a work of art it is, aye?” He fondled the object in question. “Paint a portrait of your entire backside and put it in the Louvre.” She playfully pushed on his pec, telling him that he was ridiculous. Still, she was undeniably pleased with his effusive affection. 

After they’d eaten pizza and some cheesecake, Jamie changed into a pair of soft, gray pants that did nothing to hide his arse or, quite frankly, his cock. Eyes sparkling, he crossed his arms as she stared unabashedly at him. “Eyes up here, Sassenach,” he said in a perfectly serious tone. She pretended like she didn’t know what he was talking about as they climbed into bed. 

“Ye ken exactly what I’m talking about. Come here.” Jamie dragged Claire over to him, rolled her onto her back, and kissed her deeply. Claire responded eagerly, wrapping her arms around him and pulling him closer.

Jamie moved one hand under Claire and traced his fingers down her back until his hand was cupping her backside. He squeezed before moving his hand up and under her shirt. Slowly, teasingly, he felt his way around and up until he reached her nipple. Eyes fluttering closed, Claire groaned and arched into his touch. 

“Oh, you like that, do ye?” Jamie smiled, lazily tracing her nipple with his index finger. 

“Mmmm, why don’t you see what else I like, hmmmm?” Claire ran her hands down his back and squeezed his bum. “But yes, I do like that,” she whispered. 

At her admission, Jamie squeezed her nippple between his fingers, making Claire gasp. Jamie released her nipple and sighed. Moving his hand to the bottom of her shirt, he tugged it, making Claire sit up a bit. She looked at him and, smiling, bit her lip encouragingly as she raised her arms. 

Jamie smiled. “Wee minx,” he whispered as he pulled her shirt off. 

“You like it.”

“God, yes, I canna get enough.” Jamie kissed her, exploring her mouth with his tongue. 

“Ye taste like strawberries,” he said, his voice gravelly with arousal. He laid Claire back down on the bed, straddling her. Looking down at her, he kissed her again before moving to kiss her jaw, earlobe, and neck. 

“This neck,” he breathed, kissing the body part in question. “This neck is sae elegant, sae sexy.” He bit her clavicle gently. “Like something ye’d see on a statue of a Greek goddess.”

Claire bit her lip again, feeling herself becoming wet with arousal. In response, she arched her back again. “What about these?” she asked coyly, gesturing at her breasts. 

Jamie obligingly kissed his way down to her left nipple and took it gently into his mouth. Meanwhile, his right hand moved up to caress her right breast, making Claire shudder.

“Nae, I havena seen a statue of a Greek goddess wi’ nipples like these,” he assured her as he released her nipple. Claire moaned, impatient for Jamie to continue. 

He looked at her as he slowly traced her areola with his tongue before sucking the nipple back into his mouth. Claire threw her head back and groaned in bliss. She felt Jamie smile against her before he dragged his mouth over to her right nipple and repeated his ministrations.  “Perfect for cuddling on a rainy day, aye?” Jamie said, releasing her. 

Claire momentarily froze and snapped her head up to look at him. “Excuse me?” she rasped out. 

Jamie laughed, “I’m jus’ teasing ye.” Moving his hips against her, she felt herself relax again. Jamie was obviously as turned on as she.

Claire bucked her hips in response, willing him to pick up where he left off. 

“I canna keep my hands off ye,” Jamie said softly before swiping a nipple with his tongue. Giving each of her breasts another kiss, he then moved to continue his path down until he reached her belly button. “As much as I like yer arse in these pants, I need ye naked.” 

Claire immediately raised her hips, eager to comply. After he had her completely naked, she yanked at his shirt. “You too,” she said. 

Jamie stood up and stripped naked, his hard cock bobbing proudly as his pants fell to the floor. 

“Eyes up here, Sassenach,” he said with a smirk. 

“Bloody Scot,” Claire retorted. 

Jamie climbed back on the bed, moving his hand to her center. “Yer sae wet,” he breathed. 

Claire could only moan in reply, willing him to put her out of her misery.  Jamie moved to spread her legs wider. “I wonder if ye taste like strawberries here,” he said, his breath warm against her. 

Claire decided this remark didn’t warrant a response. Instead, she grabbed his hair and rolled her hips toward him. “Please,” she begged. 

“Please what?” Jamie said, arching an eyebrow at her. 

“Please lick me, please eat me out, please ,” she whined, sounding desperate to her own ears.

Jamie kissed her hips and moved to lick around her, so close to where she wanted him. He traced her with his tongue before moving to lick slowly down her vulva with his tongue. 

Claire closed her eyes. “Yes,” she said simply, throwing her head on the pillow. “Yes.” 

Still moving at a glacial pace, Jamie licked her again, this time tracing both labia before swiping his tongue at her clit. Claire tightened her hand on his hair, feeling her heart race. “Ahhhh,” she breathed out, rolling her hips again and again as he devoured her with his mouth. Briefly pulling away from her, he moved to insert two fingers into her, making Claire almost scream. 

“Beautiful,” he said, moving to resume working her with his tongue. 

Claire, moaning incoherently, urged Jamie to continue. “More,” she choked out. 

Jamie crossed his fingers inside of her, making Claire cry out. “I’m so close now, don’t stop,” she whimpered. 

Jamie moved to suck on her clit, continuing to move his fingers inside of her as he did so. 

“Right there, don’t you dare stop,” Claire cried.  A moment later, she came hard, her body shuddering as she reached her peak. Chest heaving as she gradually felt her heart slow, she felt herself relax against the bed, the tension draining out of her as her orgasm subsided. 

Le petit mort ,” Jamie sighed, moving up to kiss her on the lips. “That sounded like a powerful one.” Claire whimpered in affirmation, tasting herself on his tongue. 

“I don’t taste anything like strawberries,” she declared as she kissed him again. 

Jamie moved to push up on his elbows as he positioned himself between her thighs. 

“Nah, ye taste even better,” he said, slowly sliding inside of her. He sighed, biting his lip as Claire rolled against him. “I canna get enough.” 

Sighing contentedly, Claire wrapped her legs around him as he started to move. 

“Same,” Claire said before losing herself to him once more. “I can’t get enough, either.”

Chapter Text

Sometime in the early evening, a persistent knock at the door jolted Jamie and Claire out of their somnolence . Jamie disentangled himself from Claire, giving her a gentle kiss on the temple before moving to throw on a robe before going to answer the door. Claire heard him talking to someone and slowly moved into a sitting position. Jamie walked back in the room holding a large basket and smiling that bloody brilliant smile of his. He set the basket down next to Claire. “What’s this?” she asked, smiling as she stretched. Jamie shrugged one shoulder. “Jus’ some things I paid the lad out front tae pick up for me this afternoon,” he said. 

Claire gawked at the basket before looking back up at Jamie. The basket was filled to the brim with bottles of lotion, bubble bath, and massage oil. There were two bottles of wine, an expensive-looking bottle of champagne, and a box of fine chocolates. 

“Jamie,” she breathed. “What on Earth?” She looked up to find him looking at her with a soft smile. “Weel, I thought since I didn’t take ye on a real date, I could, um, bring the date tae ye, I guess,” he said with another half shrug, affecting nonchalance.. “It’s our last night afore ye go back to London, and then I leave fer North Carolina on Monday…I thought we’d have a nice night in and…” he trailed off, looking down at the floor. 

Claire at once felt an odd mixture of relief and profound sadness. So he didn’t expect anything beyond this weekend, either. Perhaps he did this more often than he let on, she thought, suddenly feeling as though she’d like to tear apart the mysterious, anonymous women that her mind was rapidly conjuring out of thin air. 

Claire forced herself out of her thought spiral, choosing instead to wrap her arms around Jamie to kiss him senseless . After a long moment, they broke apart. “Thank you, Jamie,” she said simply. “This is so sweet of you.” He beamed at her, once again lighting up the room with his bone-melting smile. 

Jamie cleared his throat and pulled out the bottle of bubble bath. Looping an arm around her waist, he dropped his voice to a sensual tone just above a whisper. “I fully intend on havin’ ye naked in that massive bathtub,” he said, gesturing towards the bathroom. 

Claire pretended to think for a few seconds. “Hmmmm, now why would I want to do that? I suppose it could be fun. What’s in it for me, though?” 

“Weel,” Jamie said, moving his hands gently to her shoulders, pushing her to lie back on the bed. “Mebbe ye would like tae have me naked wi’ ye in the tub, ye see?” Licking his lips, he bent down to kiss her.

Claire kissed him back and thought briefly of dragging him into the bathroom that very moment. “Well, I’m already naked under this robe,” she whispered against his lips, squeezing his bum.  

Still smiling, Jamie released her. “Oh, I ken , but ye’ll have tae wait before havin’ yer wicked way with me because I also took the liberty of ordering us room service,” he said, taking one of her curls and pulling on it so he could watch it spring back into place. “ Mo nighean donn ,” he said, more to himself than to her. 

“What does that mean?” she asked. You said that last night. Jamie flushed and cleared his throat. “Brown haired lass,” he said. “It’s the Gaelic.” Claire’s breath caught in her throat, and she swallowed before trying to speak. “That’s beautiful, Jamie.” Feeling incredibly turned on, Claire moved to kiss Jamie again, but another knock at the door interrupted them. Jamie nipped at her lower lip. “Christ, yer sexy. I’ll make it worth the wait, Sassenach,” he whispered before going to answer the door. 

Claire took the opportunity to slip into the bathroom to throw on the plush robe. She walked out to the living area of the hotel suite and gasped when she saw the spread. 

“Jamie, did you order the whole bloody menu?” Claire exclaimed, marveling at the cheese board, savory hors d'oeuvres, and a couple of decadent entrées. 

Jamie smirked, looking pleased. “Dinner for two, what d’ye think?” She smiled and shook her head in disbelief. 

Jamie told her more about his work; she reciprocated as much as she could without going into specifics. He spent most of his time in Edinburgh, but had recently taken to helping his sister and brother-in-law with their new business venture. She told him about her Uncle Lamb and his nomadic tendencies. She felt warmth spread through her as she shared her stories of their adventures together. They talked about their time in university; she regaled him with some of her most gruesome tales from medical school and training; he told her of his decision to join his parents in the family whisky business in his mid-20s. He was 33 now, and he was pleased with his decision. His family seemed close, and Claire tried to quell the twinge of hope that she’d get to meet them one day. Not going to happen, she thought.

Beyond that, they talked about books they liked, movies they’d recently seen, and other random and mundane topics that make up the nuances and intricacies of a person’s day-to-day life . It was undeniably intimate, and Claire felt a warm glow of contentment take root deep within her.

Draining the last of a bottle of wine, Jamie took her hand gently in his. Rising from the table, he kissed her knuckles and moved to stand behind her. Brushing her hair to one side, he bent until his mouth was next to her ear. Claire closed her eyes, melting into the chair.

“Now,” Jamie said, voice low and sultry, his breath hot against her neck. “Now,” he repeated, briefly capturing her earlobe before continuing, “I’m going tae run this wee bubble bath while ye open the champagne.” He parted his lips and ran his tongue along the shell of her ear, making her breath catch in her chest.

 “Are ye with me, Sassenach?” 

“Yes,” Claire whispered.

“Hmmm,” he responded, moving his hand to run his finger along the sleeve of the robe, ghosting up along her clavicle before dipping in to find a nipple, rolling it between his fingers. “I mean tae have ye naked. Then I mean tae touch ye all over until yer moanin’ and thrashing’ in the tub, aye?” 

Claire made a sound that was almost a whimper. Swallowing hard, she nodded. “Yes,” she said weakly. 

Squeezing her breast in answer, he turned to go to the tub, whistling as he went. I can barely stand up and the bloody man is whistling, Claire thought as she opened the champagne. 

A few minutes later, Claire threw off her robe and walked into the bathroom carrying the two flutes, each full to the brim with champagne. She stopped to admire the view before her. 

Jamie was already in the tub, head thrown back, eyes closed, with his arms resting along the side of the tub. His skin was flushed with the heat of the water and he was smiling blissfully. 

Claire made a noise, causing Jamie to open his eyes. Reaching to take the champagne flutes, he raised an eyebrow appreciatively. 

“Ye have a lot of fine skin, Sassenach.” Jamie raked his eyes slowly up her body until their eyes met. “Come here.” 

Claire smirked and stepped into the tub, turning away from Jamie to sit in between his legs. 

“Wait,” he said, halting her progress. “Seeing this round arse in my face is a dream come true.” 

Claire made a clicking noise and moved to sit down. Leaning back, Jamie moved his arms around her, situating her between him. 

“Mmmm, this feels nice.” 

“Ye feel nice,” Jamie said in response. 

Claire adjusted herself to rest her head in the crook of Jamie’s shoulder and stretched. Jamie absentmindedly caressed her arms, drawing random patterns across her skin. Fuck, this feels good, Claire thought. 

After sitting in comfortable silence for a couple of minutes, Claire grinned to herself and made a low humming noise. 

“Hmmm?” Jamie inquired. 

“I don’t believe I’ve ever had so much sex in a 24-hour period.” 

Jamie snorted. “Nay, I dinna think I have, either.” 

Claire raised her eyebrows, knowing he couldn’t see her expression. Unlikely, she thought before briefly wondering why she was doubting him. 

“Lucky me, I didn’t even have to leave my hotel to meet someone.” 

Claire winced, realizing what she said. 

Jamie cleared his throat. “So ye were lookin’ tae meet someone, then.” He said it as a simple statement, his voice low and even. 

Claire hesitated, feeling her heart thump wildly in her chest. “I…erm…just didn’t expect to meet someone like you this weekend.” 

Jamie’s hands stilled on her arms, but he didn’t say anything for a few moments. Claire suddenly felt cold. 

She cleared her throat, feeling dizzy. Now. Tell him everything NOW, she thought. This is getting ridiculous. She took in a deep breath, willing her voice to remain calm. “Well, my friend Geillis did think I should try to go out and, erm, enjoy myself with someone. Apparently I’ve been working too much and she’s not wrong and I just –” Claire was cut off by Jamie kissing her shoulder gently. 

“I understand, Sassenach,” he said quietly, gently turning her head to reach her lips with his. “I’m glad ye seduced me,” he said, smiling. 

“Pardon?” Claire said, feeling relief bloom in her chest. “I believe YOU came on to ME first, Mister.” 

Jamie chuckled, sending vibrations through Claire’s body. “I believe that I made ye come first, that’s true, aye.” 

Claire rolled her eyes and tried to feign offense, but she was laughing. “Well,” she hummed, “I can’t very well argue that point.”  Jamie’s hands ( large, capable hands) had already begun to wander across her slick, warm skin, causing her to lose all coherent thought. Later,  Claire thought, relaxing against him. Later.

Chapter Text

Claire slammed her palm against the tiled wall, crying out - screaming - as Jamie, kneeling before her, sucked on her clit. Her other hand gripped Jamie’s hair as she bucked against him, desperate. “Ye–yes,” she choked out, voice quivering. Falling forward slightly, she felt Jamie tighten his grip on her, pinning her firmly to the wall as she rode out her orgasm. 

Claire slowly came back to herself, feeling the spray of hot water against her skin. Jamie relaxed his hold on her hips, rising from the shower floor to kiss her. Claire opened her eyes and stared at Jamie, still breathless. 

“You’re…so good…at that,” she breathed, punctuating her praise with deep gulps of air.

“It’s easy when ye taste sae good, Sassenach,” Jamie said with a smile. “And I try tae excel at things I enjoy,” he added modestly, nipping her neck. “Come ‘ere, let’s get out.” 

Drying off, Claire walked to the sink to ready herself for bed. While brushing her teeth, Claire glanced back at the tub, feeling her stomach clench deliciously at what had just transpired. 

He’d started with his hands, just like he’d promised. Gently caressing her arms, he ghosted his fingertips up and down her arms, leaving pebbles flesh in his wake. “Yer not cold, are ye?” he’d asked, clearly smiling, the bloody bastard.

"Mmmm,” Claire had answered, arching her back as he moved his hands to her clavicle. “More,” she’d said, already feeling her consciousness narrow to feeling only his touch on her willing flesh. 

Jamie reached her breasts and slowly circled her nipples with his fingers before ghosting his hands down, down, down, tracing patterns on her torso as he went. Refusing to give in to Claire’s pleas - again, the bloody bastard - he’d instead moved his hands to her thighs. Claire gasped, arching her back to lift her pelvis out of the water.

“Patience,” Jamie whispered in her ear. “Patience.” 

Claire whimpered and pushed herself against Jamie, feeling his hardness against her back. She wiggled herself against him, making him groan. “I am not inclined to be patient at the moment, Mr. Fraser.” 

She stretched her leg out and yanked the tub stopper from the drain, sighing as she stretched her leg. 

"What are ye do –” Jamie stopped mid-sentence as Claire flipped herself over and straddled him, slowly grinding against his length, grinning wickedly.

“I rather think you’ll enjoy what I have in mind for you.” Leaning forward, Claire took his lip between her teeth and bit down gently, making Jamie moan. She released his lip, swiping her tongue slowly across his lower lip as he swerved her hips again. “I am, after all, a ‘wee vixen.’” 

Jamie, for his part, seemed to be rendered speechless. His eyes, full of lust, raked over Claire as she continued to roll her hips against him. As the water dipped below mid-level, she took his cock in her hand and stroked him, making him squirm. 

“Sassenach,” Jamie choked out, looking almost pained. He closed his eyes and bit down on his lower lip.

“Patience, Jamie,” she whispered. “Patience.” 

As she stroked him, she moved her other hand to the edge of the tub to steady herself. She leaned forward to capture his lips with hers as she steadily lowered herself onto his waiting cock. 

Jamie sighed in relief, placing his hands on Claire’s hips, squeezing firmly. Claire stayed stock still for a few moments, eliciting an urgent noise from Jamie. He moved his hands up and locked his arms around Claire. Giggling, Claire began swiveling her hips, making slow circles – first counterwise, then counter-clockwise, repeating the pattern over and over – until Jamie sat up higher and gripped her neck, causing her to squeak in surprise. He kissed her hard before bringing up his other hand to roughly grab her breast. Claire answered him with a choked gasp and began grinding against him desperately. 

Jamie groaned and bucked his hips up, tensing as he gripped Claire harder. “Oh, God, this angle, I canna stop, I canna…” 

Then don’t stop,” Claire purred, attempting to kiss him. Both too far gone to meet each other’s lips, they kissed messily, hungrily. 

Jamie gave a strangled "gah" sound and gripped Claire even harder, snapping his hips into her. With another delicious groan, he stilled inside of her as he reached his climax. 

Claire slowed herself, tipping his chin up to kiss him. “That seemed like a strong one.” 

Jamie sighed, shaking slightly from the tremors of their lust. “Aye, a nighean , but what about you?” He attempted to raise Claire up in the tub. 

“No! I’m already feeling too cold right now!” Claire protested. 

Jamie moved to stand from the bathtub, grabbing a towel from the nearby ledge. “I ken ye were close. I’ll get ye warm, I promise.” 

Jamie wrapped Claire in a towel and literally swept Claire off her feet, causing her to utter a surprised, “Whoop.” 

Jamie kissed her and walked over to the large shower. He let Claire down gently as she giggled. “I think I could have made it over here using my feet,” she said through her giggles. He ignored her, turning his attention to the nozzle. Once he deemed the water hot enough, he collected Claire and deposited her in the shower. After a few seconds, he grabbed her waist. “Warm enough now?” he breathed. 

Claire smiled up at him. “Yes, much better, thank you.” 

Jamie kissed her, walking her backwards until she was against the shower wall. “Good. Now I’m going to make ye come so hard that yer screams will echo through this entire room.” 

“Oh, God,” Claire breathed as Jamie found her nipple with his mouth. “Yes.” Claire arched into him, feeling herself begin to dissolve as he continued his path down, down, down. 

“Sassenach?” Jamie’s voice pierced through Claire’s foggy thoughts, breaking Claire’s concentration. He was behind her, watching her in the mirror. He brought his arms around her and kissed her neck gently. 

“Hmmm?” Claire asked, dreamily. “What did you say?” 

“I was asking you how long ye were going to keep brushing yer teeth,” Jamie said, smirking at her. “I dinna think they can get any cleaner.” 

“I, erm, yes,” Claire stammered. “I was just thinking about how well your, erm, skill set transfers from land to water, that’s all.” 

Jamie chuckled, sending the vibrations through Claire’s bones. “I always have to eat somethin’ after I’m in the water for a long time, ken? Now, let’s get in bed,” he whispered. 

Claire felt her skin pebble again, but nodded and rinsed her toothbrush, setting it down to the side of the sink. She turned to follow Jamie out of the bathroom.

This man, she thought, will be the death of me.

Chapter Text

Jamie woke suddenly, feeling momentarily confused by his surroundings. He was burning up, but why – Oh, Taing Dhia, because she’s here, he thought drowsily to himself. She was completely wrapped around him; no wonder he was overheated. As his eyes adjusted to the dark, he trailed his gaze down the length of her body. She hadn’t bothered to put on any clothes after the bath – and the shower – and he drank in the sight before him. Her hair was in a messy bun and, in all honesty, a complete disaster by this point. The sight of her. Beautiful.

They’d fallen into bed last night, exhausted from their hotel room date and evening activities. Jamie smirked, thinking back to her comment about how much sex they had managed to have in such a short period of time. Elizabeth is exceptional, and I have no idea how I’m going to let her go. Jamie’s smile vanished.

After gently extricating himself from his Sassenach , he grabbed his phone and went to relieve himself. It was 4:30 in the morning; it was truly too early to be awake, much less thinking about anything important. 

She could be important , he thought as he flushed and went to wash his hands. He shook his head and splashed some water on his face for good measure. Shut up, Fraser. He retrieved his phone from the counter to check for messages. Jamie gasped when he saw the red bubble announcing new text messages. 15 new messages? Opening the app, he groaned. John had repurposed a massive group text they’d created from the last get together of the Frasers, the Murrays, and the Greys. Good Lord.

[John Grey]: Hey, everyone, Jamie met someone in NYC! 

[Mam]: I already heard! Glenna texted me earlier and said our Jamie was swooning over a bonny woman. Canna wait to hear more. - Love, Ellen

Jamie snorted, continuing to scroll. 

[Jenny Fraser Murray]: I’ll kill ye if ye move to the States for a lass. 

[Ian Murray]: What’s her name, then, Jamie? Tell us, aye?

[Hector Grey]: John and I are dying to hear more. 

[Minnie Grey]: Just give me her first name and where she works. I promise I won’t stalk her. Too much. 

[Hal Grey]: He’s obviously BUSY, everyone. Go easy on our lad. 😉

Jamie closed his messages and tossed the phone onto a spare towel sitting on the counter, muffling the careless “thunk” of the phone hitting marble. He’d read the rest later. John, ye bastard, he thought, grinning even as he thought it.

Maybe he should have felt more embarrassed, but as he walked back toward the bonny woman – the verra naked, verra bonny woman – tangled in his hotel sheets, he couldn’t bring himself to care that much. 

Claire drifted awake and shivered. She was cold, and it was immediately clear why: The bed next to her was empty. She reached out a hand to Jamie’s side. Still warm. She glanced around the room before hearing Jamie moving about in the bathroom. 

Beauchamp, Claire said to herself in a warning tone, Beauchamp, you’re leaving today. Don’t be a coward. 

Claire covered her face with her hands and took a deep breath. Exhaling slowly, she relaxed a bit and took her hands down as Jamie came out of the bathroom. 

“Hi,” Claire whispered.

“Sassenach, did I wake ye? I’m sorry.” Jamie slid under the covers and pulled her toward him until she was fully enveloped in his arms again. Jamie breathed her scent in, feeling at once aroused and relaxed. 

“It’s okay,” she said, reaching back to feel his arm before running her fingers through his hair. “You were keeping me warm.”

“Me?” Jamie said incredulously. “Ye feel like yer on fire,” he said in a light tone. “Are ye always sae hot when ye sleep?” 

“I don’t know,” she said before making a pretense of getting up. “I’m happy to sleep on the couch if that would help you stay cool, though.”

Jamie grabbed at her shoulder, pulling her back down to him and their sea of bedding. “Absolutely not, Sassenach. Yer staying here.” 

Claire hummed, feeling happy. “If you insist,” she breathed. 

“Aye, I do.” Jamie kissed her gently on the neck and sighed. “Let’s go back to sleep.” 

They did.

Chapter Text

Claire
Claire jolted awake later that morning and instantly felt the knot sitting in her stomach tighten. She was going back home today. Away from Jamie. She rolled over to look at him while he still slept. She’d had the best weekend with him. And now…what? Now what? Claire felt her pulse quicken and sat up, careful to not wake Jamie. She climbed out of bed, picking up one of the discarded hotel robes and her phone as she made her way to the bathroom. 

Beauchamp, you did this to yourself, Claire thought, rolling her eyes. She looked at herself in the mirror for a long moment before turning to lean with her back against the counter. Her flight was in six hours. 

Claire shook her head as though trying to dislodge the wild monologue running through her brain. She unlocked her phone and opened Google Maps to show a map of the UK.  He’s based in the Edinburgh area. That’s not that far from London. I can take the train. He can take the train. Right? It’s not that far. I could tell him that I’m open to it. No, Beauchamp, no. Remember, you could be anywhere in six months’ time. 

And this was just a fling for the weekend. 

Claire took a few deep breaths in an attempt to release the tension that was suffocating her.

“Jesus H. Roosevelt Christ,” she whispered to herself. “You’re a goddamned bloody surgeon , Beachamp , so act like it.” 

Claire straightened up in an effort to steel herself. She knew what she needed to do, as much as she hated it. As she walked out of the bathroom, she glanced over at Jamie to confirm that he was still asleep before she carefully tiptoed over to her bags to retrieve a pen and legal pad. She sat down on the couch and began writing. 

Dear Jamie…

*** 

Jamie 

Jamie woke to an empty bed and empty bedroom. She’s gone, he thought wildly. Panicked, he leapt out of bed and made it to the door in three strides. 

“Sassenach,” he said in a breathy voice. “There ye are.” 

Jamie smiled and took a deep breath. She was still here.  She jumped at his voice. “You’re awake,” she said, not quite smiling. 

“What’s wrong, Sassenach?” Jamie moved to sit next to her on the couch, taking her free hand as he sat down. 

“I’m leaving in a few hours,” she said, attempting to give him a weak smile. 

Jamie’s heart beat wildly in his chest. I’m not ready for this, he thought. 

He took the coffee cup from her and set it down on the table.

“Then we’ve some time,” he said softly, leaning over to kiss her.

“Come back tae bed wi’ me,” he said, his voice still gravelly from sleep. “Tae bed. Not tae sleep.” 

Chapter Text

Claire

Claire stretched and sighed contentedly. “That was…amazing,” she said dreamily. Jamie pulled her close and kissed her. 

“Aye,” he whispered between kisses. He reached up to twirl some of her hair in his fingers. “That seems tae be a specialty of ours.” 

Claire sighed again, pausing to enjoy his hands in her hair. He traced his hand gently from her hair down her shoulder and arm, his fingers skating across her skin until he reached her hand.

Claire moved to sit up. “I actually have to get ready soon, Jamie.”

“Aye, I ken,” Jamie said, moving to raise himself up on his elbow. “Sassenach, I —” Jamie’s eyes met Claire’s as he hesitated, licking his lips and taking a breath before he took her hand in his. “I’d like tae go wi’ ye  – tae the airport later. Would that be okay?” 

Claire looked away, breaking the intimacy of the moment “Yes, I think that would be fine,” she said slowly. She cleared her throat. “I’m going to get ready now.” 

Jamie squeezed her hand as she moved to get out of the bed. Claire could feel his eyes on her, watching her carefully as she moved around the room. Steadily avoiding his gaze, she went into the bathroom and shut the door behind her. 

*** 

Jamie

Jamie sat and stared at the closed door for a moment, feeling unnerved. He grabbed his phone and opened his texts to his conversation with John. 

[Jamie]: I need advice. If I tell you her name, will you help me? I know you won’t let it go. 

[John Grey]: Seems fair. I won't tell anyone right now. Promise.

JF: Her name is Elizabeth Henry. She’s a surgeon. London-based.

JG: Very English. Am I going to get to meet her? 

JF: I hope so. She said I could take her to the airport. I don’t know what I’m going to say to her. 

JG: Maybe “I enjoyed screwing your brains out and would like to maybe do that more sometime and then maybe casually marry you and casually father your children and casually grow old together.” Would that do? 

JF: Fuck off. I’m serious. I want to see her again.

JG: I knew you’d be terrible at the casual weekend thing. 

JF: Thanks, super helpful. Appreciate it. 

JG: Okay, I’m sorry! Look. Tell her you had an amazing weekend with her and that you’d like to figure out how to see her again for a date? It’s London; it's not like she's clear across the world. Say you’re coming to see your BEST friend and his husband and that you'd like to take her out while you're here. Don’t make this so difficult. She obviously likes you or else she wouldn’t have spent the entire weekend with you, right? 

JG: ...Also, you do ACTUALLY owe us a visit.

JF: I know. You're right. Thanks.

JG: Anytime. It’s really not that difficult, Jamie. Really. 

Jamie put his phone down and sighed. He stretched his arms and neck before moving to dress in his day-old jeans and a rumpled button-down shirt. He looked at his watch as he fastened the clasp on his wrist. Why is she taking so long? 

As though his thoughts summoned her, she opened the door. Freshly showered, her hair was down. She was wearing black leggings and a long-sleeved loose shirt that looked incredibly soft. He wanted to pick her up and throw her on the bed – just to cuddle with her and beg her to cancel her flight to stay with him another night. She looks sexy as Hell , Jamie thought. 

“Hey,” she said. 

“Hey,” Jamie said automatically. They looked at each other for several moments before Claire cleared her throat. 

“Elizabeth,” Jamie said, stopping when he saw her face fall. “Hey, what’s wrong, Sassenach?” 

She looked at him. Her eyes were glassy, but she wasn’t crying. 

“Nothing,” she said, trying to smile. “I just have a lot of work to catch up on when I get on the plane.” 

“Ah,” Jamie said, not sure what to say or do next. He watched her as she flitted around the room, packing up her things, all while steadily avoiding his gaze.

“I have all of these things to do from the conference, and I have to catch up on my patients, and I can’t believe I haven’t so much looked at my email since Friday and I just –” 

Jamie cut her off. “Sassenach,” Jamie said carefully, folding his arms across his chest. “Yer rambling.” 

She sipped her bag and stood up, finally turning to look at him directly. 

“Look,” she said, her tone suddenly sharp. “We had an amazing weekend, we really did, but I think –” 

“Stop it,” Jamie said warningly, his tone turning icy. “Dinna say it. Dinna say what I think yer about to say.”

“Jamie,” she said. 

“Elizabeth,” he said, internally cringing at the pleading tone he could hear in his own voice. 

“That’s not even my real name, Jamie.” 

Jamie stared at her, clearly stunned. “I – what are ye on about?” 

“My name isn’t Elizabeth. Well, it is. It’s my middle name. My first name is actually Claire. Claire Elizabeth Beauchamp.” Her voice cracked on the last syllable.  

Claire .” Jamie said, testing how the name sounded on his tongue. 

Elizabeth – no, Claire – looked at him warily, waiting for his response. He could tell that she was trying to hide her feelings, but she swallowed hard and her chin wobbled slightly. 

Jamie saw as much, but didn’t stop to think about what it meant. 

“Ye lied about yer name? All weekend? ” Jamie asked carefully, deliberately over-enunciating each word. He swallowed the bitter taste in his mouth.

“Jamie, I –” 

“What else did ye lie about?” Jamie’s mind was running wild. “Are ye even a surgeon? What else? Are ye married?”

Claire’s face crumpled. She swallowed and bit her lip before responding. “ Married? What? No. And of course I’m a bloody surgeon,” she said, gritting her teeth to control her voice. “I didn’t use my real name because I thought it would just be a weekend fling, and I –” 

“A fling, ” Jamie said, grimacing when he heard the raw, unguarded emotion in his voice. “Ye didn’t even give me a chance, then, aye?” He clenched his fists by his side. “Ye trusted me enough tae let me fuck ye all weekend, but ye didn’t trust me enough tae tell me what your real name is? Jesus, Claire.” 

Claire clicked her tongue. “You don’t have to be such an arrogant bastard about it,” she said, clearly trying to keep her emotions in check. 

Jamie felt another wave of anger course through him at her words. His head swirled. He felt dizzy, and his chest felt tight. Inhale, he thought to himself. Exhale. 

“I thought it was sweet how ye said ye liked being called Sassenach. I get it now. It was just guilt, ” Jamie said harshly, his voice clipped. “I just…I think ye should leave now.” 

Claire swallowed again. “Look, I didn’t mean to hurt you. I just - I didn’t want to - I’m sorry. I didn’t know how to tell you. So I’m telling you now.” She looked away, blinking back tears. 

Claire stood stock still, waiting for him to continue. 

Several long moments ticked by before Jamie finally moved to turn away from Claire. He walked to the window by the bed and looked out, willing his temper to stay in check. “Ye didn’t hurt me. It was just a weekend thing, anyway. I think it would be best if ye left now,” he said quietly.  “Goodbye, Claire.” 

Jamie heard her stifle a sob, but he didn’t turn. Don’t look at her right now, he thought. Don’t turn around.  

Claire cleared her throat. “You’re right,” she said, and Jamie heard the steely resolve in her voice. “It was just a weekend thing. Goodbye, Jamie.” 

And then she was gone. 

Chapter Text

Claire opened her eyes and groaned, finally hearing the incessant knocking on her door that had, moments ago, been a giant woodpecker trying to break down the door of the hospital operating theater while she was in the midst of performing a delicate surgery. 

Stress dreams. Why a bloody woodpecker, of all things? she wondered abstractedly as she stumbled to her door and opened it. 

“Geillis, thank God you’re here.” Without waiting for her friend to answer, she threw herself into Geillis’s arms and started crying fresh tears.

“Aye, Beauchamp, o’course I’m here. I just emailed the office to tell them I’ll work from the London branch this week.” Geillis patted her friend’s wild curls, gently walking her friend back into her flat. 

Claire had called Geillis in tears from Heathrow, hardly making any sense as she explained what happened with Jamie at the hotel. She’d paid an ungodly amount to move to an earlier flight. And she’d paid even more to upgrade to first class for the sole purpose of having more space to cry. The sooner I’m out of New York, the better, she’d reasoned as she forked over her credit card. 

Geillis, the best friend that she was, had evidently booked it to the station to take an express train from Edinburgh to London, just as Claire had hoped she would. 

“I’m so glad you came,” Claire said, grabbing a tissue to wipe her already raw nose. “I didn’t want you to come all this way on a Sunday, but –” 

“I brought the necessities,” Geillis chirped, interrupting Claire as she heaved a brown bag and a large tote onto the kitchen counter. “Our favorite Thai takeaway. The greasy stuff, ken?”

Claire nodded, sniffing. “What’s in the tote?” 

Geillis smiled. “Gin. Wine. Whisky. I brought all of the available options for this.” 

“Get the gin. I don’t want to see the whisky.” 

“Aye.” 

— 

“So what happened, Claire?” Geillis prodded her friend gently as she set the empty Thai container down on Claire’s coffee table. “Tell me everything.”

Claire shook her head as she poked at her pad thai with her fork. “God, Geillis, I’m so ridiculous,” Claire said, raising her glass to drain the rest of her second (or maybe third) gin and tonic. 

Geillis grabbed the glass and walked into the kitchen to refill her drink. “Nah, that’s not true, Claire, and ye ken it.” 

Claire looked over the back of the couch and glared at Geillis from where she sat. 

“Fine, fine.” Geilis rolled her eyes as she poured a generous amount of gin into Claire’s glass. “Yer ridiculous.” 

“I just…” Claire sighed, closing her eyes against the pinpricks of the fresh tears in her eyes. “I just rambled, and I panicked. I started to say something about ‘having a great time with him,’ but it came out all wrong. I panicked. And then I blurted out that Elizabeth wasn’t my real name - not my first name, anyway, and I didn’t even try to argue with him when he asked me to leave. Why didn’t I bloody argue with him? I’m a fucking surgeon who is supposed to fucking work well under fucking pressure, for God’s sake.” 

“And you wish that you’d said something about how you actually really liked him and wanted to see him again, hmmm?” Geillis returned with a fresh drink, which Claire gratefully accepted. 

“Something like that,” Claire said quietly. 

“Weel,” Geillis said, watching her friend carefully as she sat down on the couch. She reached her hand out to touch Claire’s arm reassuringly. “Give him a few days and then I’m sure ye could give him a call. This is something ye can fix, aye?” 

“Ha!” Claire said, taking a large drink of her gin and tonic. “I didn’t bloody get his bloody fucking number, Geillis.

“We have ways to find a bloody fucking phone numbe r, love,” Geillis smiled and squeezed are arm. “That’s not a real problem, especially with my skill set, ken?”

Claire rubbed her temples and sighed. “No, I will not be the one contacting him. I wrote him a whole fucking letter, Geillis. A whole fucking letter about what the weekend meant to me and how amazing I thought he is - was - and how I had some difficult work decisions to make soon, but that I wanted to see him again, ugh.” Claire took another large gulp of her gin and tonic, willing it to calm the raging waters of the thoughts swirling around in her brain. “If he wants to contact me, he can.” 

Geillis took a long sip of her drink, pausing to think of her reply. “Ah, I see.” She nodded, understanding. “Ye do really like him. A lot. Of course ye panicked,” Geillis said wisely. 

“I did like him until he acted like such a goddamned bloody bastard,” Claire said hotly, feeling her cheeks heat at the memory of the letter. At the moment, she wished she’d picked up the letter as she left. She didn’t want him to read it, and yet she desperately hoped he would read it. What if he’d read it already and shredded it? What if he really couldn’t stand to think about her anymore?

“But I left him my contact information in it, Geillis.” Claire set her drink down and grabbed the couch pillow, hugging it to her. “As you can see, I have no fucking phone calls or texts or anything from him.” Claire stopped to gesture at her phone, currently balanced on her thigh. “He was furious with me.” Claire sighed again. “This was so bloody stupid of me.” 

“Stop talking about my best friend that way,” Geillis said firmly. 

“You know what I mean, and you’re right. I did like Jamie. I mean, I liked him,” Claire corrected herself, shaking her head. “ It’ll just take some time to get over it, that’s all.”

“Aye,” Geillis agreed. 

“I know what it sounds like,” Claire snapped, suddenly feeling defensive. “I know I barely knew him, and I know it was just a couple of nights that probably didn’t actually mean that much to him. I know what it sounds like, okay?” 

Geillis sighed. “That’ll be the gin talking, aye?” She paused, waiting for Claire to look at her. “He doesn’t sound like a lad who thought the weekend was meaningless. He wouldn’t have been so mad if he thought that, ken?” 

Claire felt her heart squeeze at Geillis’s logic, not wanting to acknowledge the hope that was blossoming in her chest. “I guess.” 

Claire looked down at her phone, willing it to come alive with a call or text from an unknown number. Beauchamp, stop it. Claire threw her phone on the table, accepting its deafening silence as defeat. 

“My face hurts from crying,” Claire said. “For God’s sake, I can’t believe I’ve cried so much over a man I met on Friday.” 

Geillis opened her mouth to say something, but Claire forestalled her by throwing one of the couch pillows at her. “Don’t say a word, Duncan.” 

Geillis caught the pillow and lobbed it back at Claire. “Beauchamp, ye don’t want tae tangle wi’ me, especially wi’ all the gin ye’ve had.” Geillis grinned mischievously. 

“Fine, but we’re not talking about Ja - about him - anymore tonight,” Claire said. “But give me the rest of the gin.” 

— 

On Friday night, a week since she’d met Jamie, Claire lay in bed, willing herself to fall asleep. She was exhausted. Work had been hectic and she’d been able to keep her mind busy, but she’d also spent the entire week constantly feeling like she was floating outside of her body, just watching herself go through the motions of her daily life as though she were a detached spectator. 

Claire rolled over onto her stomach, trying to find a comfortable position. She was on edge, and she hated it. Yes, she was still upset at how Jamie had reacted to her, and yes, she was furious with how arrogant he’d been. Her mind wandered to their argument, turning over Jamie’s words in her head. “Ye trusted me enough tae let me fuck ye all weekend, but ye didn’t trust me enough tae tell me what your real name is? Jesus, Claire.” 

Ye trusted me enough to let me fuck ye all weekend. Claire’s breathing hitched, and she bit the side of her cheek. “Fuck off, Jamie Fraser,” she said aloud. 

She rolled over onto her back as her thoughts inevitably turned to the good memories of their weekend together, and Jamie’s voice echoed again in her head. “Aye, I want to hear yer wee noises. I want ye tae come hard. All. Over. My. Cock.” 

Claire felt the rush of arousal between her thighs; the mere memory of his words heated her blood. She gripped the pillow, willing herself to fall asleep without touching herself. She didn’t want to think about how much pleasure he’d brought her. 

Her heart beat wildly in her chest as her thoughts continued, unbidden, to Saturday night and the “date” Jamie had put together for her. The way he touched her. The way he kissed her. The way he spoke to her. The way he called her “Sassenach” in the husky tone that immediately turned her knees to water. The way he’d made her come and come and come, like he was born to know her body. The way she felt completely safe and at peace with him. 

Claire stared up at the ceiling. She sighed, her breath shaky. Sitting up slightly, she opened her side drawer and poked around until she’d found one of her more powerful clit vibrators, the one that Geillis called “an investment piece,” as though it were jewelry or fine art. As she lowered her underwear, she thought, Just tonight. Just to help me sleep. 

But as she opened her thighs and moved the vibrator to her clit, she knew that she was lying to herself. Claire simply couldn’t stop thinking of Jamie. It was Jamie touching her. It was Jamie’s tongue on her. It was Jamie inside of her, filling her. It was Jamie on top of her, moving faster and harder at her breathy pleas of “more.” It was Jamie below her, watching Claire as she writhed on top of him. It was Jamie, making her scream with pleasure. It was Jamie, bloody everywhere. She couldn’t stop thinking of their weekend together. She couldn’t stop thinking about him. 

Later, Claire had one last, unguarded thought before she finally succumbed to an uneasy sleep filled with uneasy dreams: 

You ruined it, Claire. You made a mistake, and now he’s gone. 



Chapter Text

Jamie 

Jamie sat at his desk, staring blankly at his calendar, completely lost in his thoughts of her. Her curls. Her smell. Her curves. Her round arse. Her smile. Claire. 

It had been an entire month since he’d met her that night at the bar. One month since he’d touched her. One month since he kissed her. One month since he turned his back on her and told her to leave.  

He moved his right arm, wincing as pain shot through his arm. And one month since the accident. He closed his eyes and pinched his nose as though that would be sufficient to stop him from thinking of her. 

Jamie had jumped when the door slammed behind Claire. He turned to face the empty room, feeling his anger begin to drain away. He paced around the room, trying desperately to gather his fragmented thoughts. 

She’d lied to him, and that’s it. That had to be it. He’d had relationships break up over lies, and he’d made himself a promise not to be with anyone who lied to his face like she had just done. Like she’d done for the entire weekend. 

Jamie paused. Except we’re not in a relationship, he thought. I just met her. 

Maybe she’ll come back, he reasoned, feeling his stomach curdle . And maybe she won’t come back. Closing his eyes, Jamie thought about what he’d said and how he’d acted. The look on her face. I just met her, and I ken already that I never wanted to be the reason she looked so hurt. Fucking Hell, Jamie, you are a bloody bastard. 

Jamie jumped up, searching for his socks and sneakers. “Fucking Hell,” he said, tripping over himself as he attempted to put his shoes on while hopping awkwardly toward the door. Running down the hall, he reached the elevator and pressed the “Down” button incessantly. Too slow. 

He ran to the fire exit and threw open the door. Running down the steps two at a time, he shot out of the first floor door like a bat out of Hell. Someone sitting in the lobby near the door jumped and gave him a stern look. 

“Sorry,” Jamie said, breathing hard. 

He looked wildly around for her telltale wild curls. Of course she wasn’t here, Jamie. You wanker.

Jamie ran outside and anxiously searched the street for a cab. Fucking Hell, this is New York City. Where are all of the fucking cabs? He whipped out his phone and opened the ride sharing app. He froze. 

Fucking Hell. 

He didn’t even know which airport she’d be going to today. He hadn’t even thought to ask because they were going to go together. They were going to go to the airport together, and then he was going to tell her that he’d had the most amazing weekend with her and ask if she’d agree to see him again. Hell, he was going to beg her to see him again, if that’s what it took. 

And then. Then he’d gone and wrecked it with his temper. His mam always said that his “hot heid '' would get him in trouble. 

“Fuck, he said under his breath. He finally selected JFK as the destination and requested the car. “Please be right. Please be right.” 

Three minutes later, he was sitting in the cramped backseat of a Honda with a driver named Rufus. 

“I’ve got tae get ta the airport as fast as ye can.” He fished a bill out of his wallet and stuck his arm out by Rufus’s right shoulder to get his attention. 

“Yeah, sure,” Rufus said gruffly, maneuvering the car to merge into traffic. He looked down at the bill. “What am I supposed to do with that?” 

Jamie followed the driver’s eyes to his hand. “Oh, fucking HELL,” Jamie said, yanking his arm back and stuffing the Scottish banknote back into his wallet. He found his American bills and thrust it at Rufus. “Here,” he said. 

Rufus took the cash and raised his brows. “$100 to get you to JFK? So you’re chasing a woman? I thought they just did that in movies.” 

Jamie settled back against the seat, feeling foolish. “Aye, something like that.” 

– 

Jamie shook his head, moving the mouse to keep his monitor from going to sleep. 

He’d never made it to JFK, of course, or to any NY airport that day. Perhaps Rufus had been going too fast. Perhaps he’d seen Jamie’s urgency and driven too recklessly. Perhaps it was nothing but sheer bad luck. But whatever it was, when Jamie woke up in the hospital, the last thing he remembered was looking out of the right passenger window to see a car barreling toward him.

The accident could have been worse. He wasn’t gravely injured, but he did have to spend a couple of days in the hospital while they ran tests, saw to his broken bones (his arm and a couple of ribs), and made sure he didn’t have any internal injuries. John, the best friend that he was, had dropped everything to fly to New York, bringing with him extra clothes and everything he’d need to get Jamie back home to Scotland. 

As soon as he was released from the hospital, he’d gone straight to the airport with John. He didn’t bother going back for his things, knowing that Glenna would keep them safe. He didn’t need them, and moreover, he just didn’t care. 

A whole month had passed now. Jamie thought that time had never moved like this. He swallowed, flexing his jaw. She hadn’t come back, and she hadn’t tried to contact him. She knew what he did and where he worked. He was itching to Google her name - her real name - and locate the hospital where she worked. And then what? Call her? Show up at her workplace? Apologize for being such a wanker to her and beg her? 

Her voice echoed in his ears. “ You’re right. It was just a weekend thing. Goodbye, Jamie.”  He closed his eyes, wishing he’d stop hearing her voice. Imagining her touch. Imagining her smell. Imagining her taste. 

Back in the hospital, through the drug-induced haze of painkillers, he’d experienced strange, fragmented dreams of Claire. The dreams were vivid, but they always ended abruptly before he could touch or kiss her. And the dreams made him miserable. She was gone, and he was ashamed that he’d ruined it. 

John had asked about her – about Elizabeth , of course – and he’d been kind enough not to press him when he’d ask him to drop it. He hadn’t told John anything about what had happened the day she left, and he wasn’t planning to tell him any time soon. Talking about her would only make it worse.

He just needed to forget about her and move on. Easier said than done. Every night, he’d stare at the ceiling, thinking of her wild curls, her laugh, and just her. And every night, he’d vow to stop thinking about her, starting tomorrow. 

To compensate, he tried to stay angry with her. Angry with her for lying to him. Angry with her for almost suggesting that they just keep it as a weekend thing.  Angry with her for leaving. Angry with her for not contacting him. This tactic worked on occasion, but only for short periods of time. Sure, the people in his life understood how “hot-heided” he could be, but Jenny had told him flatly that he needed to learn the importance of getting his anger under control. “No brother o’ mine is going tae act like he’s never learned about toxic masculinity,” she’d said. Jamie smiled, not wanting to admit that his big sister always knew what she was about. 

A knock at the door jerked Jamie out of his reverie. Before he could say anything, the door opened. 

“John,” Jamie said, surprised. “Ye remember how tae wait for an answer when you knock on a door, aye?” 

“After bringing your miserable arse back to Scotland all the way from New York? You’re lucky I knocked. Wanker,” John said, but he was smiling. “How’s the arm?” 

“Still broken,” Jamie said flatly. “Why are ye in London?” 

John ignored this. “It’s Friday. Come with me to have dinner and a drink.” 

Jamie huffed his acceptance, standing up to gather his things. He turned off the lights and followed John down the hall and out of the building. 

“John, really. Why are ye here? Where’s Hector?” Jamie asked as they walked toward their favorite pub.

John smiled. “He’s at home. I told him I needed to come check on my idiot best mate, and he agreed with me.” 

Jamie pressed his lips together. “I’m fine, John, aye?” 

“Oh, aye, ” John said in a mocking tone. “ Clearly fine . Your whole family definitely hasn’t been texting me about your terrible moods and your shitty temper.” 

“I was in a car wreck a month ago,” Jamie said defensively. “I’m allowed to be in a bad mood.” 

John chose not to comment on this remark, but looked at Jamie for a long moment before fixing his gaze ahead of them as they walked. 

“You haven’t heard from her, then.” John said simply. It wasn’t a question. 

“Nah,” Jamie said, straightening his back. “And I’m not expecting to hear from her, aye? So drop it, and that goes for all of ye, ken?”

John ignored this, too. “You’re really not going to tell me what happened?” John asked carefully. “I’m sure you can work it out if you just call her.” 

“Nay. I said there’s no chance of seeing her again,” Jamie said in a warning tone. “It’s over, and it’s been over. It was just a weekend thing.”

John sighed. “You’re the most stubborn man I’ve ever met, Jamie Fraser.” 

Jamie made a noise at the back of his throat and shrugged.  “Wanker,” John said under his breath as he pulled open the pub door for Jamie. “Bloody wanker.” 

— 

John 

John watched his friend covertly as Jamie perused the menu, poring over it as though he hadn’t set foot in this pub before in his life. Without exception, Jamie had always ordered the same thing - fish and chips with a whisky, neat - every damn time they ate here. 

Jamie was clearly avoiding John. Avoiding everyone, apparently. He’d never seen Jamie this rattled by a woman in the entire time that he’d known Jamie. True, Jamie had dated plenty and had a couple of serious relationships, but John knew he hadn’t met his person - his Hector - yet . Or maybe he had. Making up his mind, John threw open his menu in front of him and pretended to be engrossed by its contents; if Jamie was going to act like a stubborn fool, so could he. 

Glancing up to confirm that Jamie’s nose was still safely buried in his menu, John carefully picked up his cell phone. Comfortable that the menu was concealing his actions, he opened his texts and quickly tapped out a message. 

[John Grey]: “Okay, Min. You win. Her name is Elizabeth Henry. She’s a surgeon in London. Let’s find her and put Jamie out of his pathetic misery. He’s a wreck, just like Jenny and Ian said.” 

John watched the three bubbles, indicating that Minnie was already responding to him. 

[Minnie Grey]:“I’m sure you could try to Google her yourself first, John,” Minnie wrote. 

[JG]: Stop acting like you haven’t been waiting for this moment since Jamie got back.

[MG]: True. I’ve been DYING for this to happen. 

John smirked and managed to stow his phone right before Jamie raised his head from the menu. 

“Since when do you read the menu?” Jamie asked, giving John a narrow look.

John bit back a retort, amused that his friend wasn’t even registering what he was doing. John shut the menu and laid it on the table.

“I’m sure I’ll just go with the fish and chips again, what about you?”

Chapter Text

Claire cracked open her front door to see her friend smiling brilliantly at her. “Morning,” Claire yawned, opening the door wide to admit Geillis.

“I see yer still no’ much of a mornin’ person, Beauchamp,” Geillis quipped, sidling past her. “Help me w’ my bags?” 

Claire shook her head and reached out to pull Geillis’s suitcase in from the hall. “It’s a bloody Saturday morning, what do you think?” Claire closed the door and turned to face Geillis, who hugged her and pinched her on the butt cheek, making Claire yelp. 

“What was that for?” Claire asked, slapping Geillis away and rubbing the spot where Geillis had pinched her. 

“Tae remind ye I’m more o’ a sister than a best mate, aye?” Geillis said in a stern tone as she made her way to the kitchen counter to deposit the brown bag and coffee carrier she’d been holding. 

Claire smiled, feeling grateful for her friend. “ Aye, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. What did you bring me?” 

Geillis opened the bag and dumped the contents out on the counter. “Breakfast sandwiches and croissants. I didna want tae be on the receiving end o’ yer grumpy arse, ken?”

Claire shrugged he shoulders as she helped herself to a warm croissant. “I’m fine, Geillis. Obviously.” 

Geillis grabbed her coffee and leaned up against the counter to look Claire up and down.  “Yer still thinkin’ about yer man,” Geillis said, her sharp, green eyes boring into Claire, making her feel like she was under a microscope. 

“Stop acting like I’m a hostile witness in your courtroom,” Claire said coolly. “Jamie isn’t my man.” 

“Oooo, so defensive, Beauchamp,” Geillis said, arching an eyebrow at Claire. “I’m no’ judging ye. I just…think maybe ye should reach out tae him now, ken? It’s been a month, and he’s still on yer mind, sae…” 

Claire put her croissant down went to the fridge, steadily avoiding Geillis’s stare as as she made a production out of searching for the cream. She finally pulled the carton out and turned to carry it back to the counter, sighing as she did so. 

“I know, Geillis. You aren’t wrong, and I know you’re trying to help, but I’d rather just work on moving on, you know?” Claire stirred in the cream and looked up at Geillis, waiting for her to answer. 

Geillis huffed a sigh in return. “If that’s how ye feel, ye ken I’ll be here for ye, but for the record, I think it’s a shit excuse, Claire.” 

Claire shrugged, affecting a nonchalant attitude. “Fine. Believe it or not, I can live with that, Duncan. You can always go stay at a hotel on your firm’s dime.” Claire raised her eyebrows expectably. 

Geillis smiled broadly. “Absolutely not, Beauchamp.” I’ll be staying HERE all week while I work at the London office, ken? Maybe we can go out tonight and find ye someone tae meet up with fer coffee during the week?” 

“Maybe,” Claire said in a doubtful tone. “Let’s just have fun together this weekend while you’re here and I’m not at the hospital.” 

Geillis smirked at her friend. “Aye, and we can discuss yer job applications to other hospitals, ken? Maybe even one in Edinburgh, hmmm?”

Claire rolled her eyes, but couldn’t help smiling. She relaxed her shoulders, which she hadn’t realized were so tense. She took a deep breath, willing her body to relax further. “Yes,” she said, nodding enthusiastically. “I’ve been waiting to tell you, but yes, hospitals in Edinburgh and Inverness have invited me out for interviews within the next month.” 

Geillis clapped her hands together. “That’s wonderful! I’m so thrilled for you!” Geillis cried, reaching over to hug her friend tightly. “I’m sae proud. There’s nae way I’m letting the States have ye,” Geillis said, releasing Claire from the hug. 

“We’ll see,” Claire said with a smile. “Let’s get ready to go enjoy London for the day.” 

Minerva Grey sat at her desk, rubbing her temples. It was Monday morning – no, a quick glance at the clock confirmed that it was almost Monday after noon – and she was getting nowhere. She’d been quick to tease John on Friday when he texted her the name of Jamie’s mystery New York woman, but now she was getting irritated. Why couldn’t she find this woman? Elizabeth Henry, a surgeon in London. E-L-I-Z-A-B-E-T-H … H-E-N-R-Y. She read it to herself again. There were only so many ways you could spell this name, right? 

Minerva, known affectionately to Hal and her family as "Minnie," sat back in her chair and sighed. She’d been in private consulting – which, in her world, was just another fancy word for investigating  – for most of her life. She adored her work; it was in her blood, after all: Her father, Raphael Wattiswade, started his own company when she was a child, and she’d learned everything she knew from him. And now, at this point in her career, she was better than even he had been, something Raphael had been quick to point out to her. She looked over at the framed photo of her with her father and smiled fondly at the twin pairs of blue eyes staring back at her. The photo had been taken a few years ago at John and Hector's wedding. Minnie loved that she looked so much like her father: Same blue eyes, same hair -- well, not anymore -- his hair had long since gone white, but at one time they’d both had hair her stylist called, "the color of wheat."

Her father had finally retired, and she missed working with him. She stood up and stretched, frowning. Minnie felt frustrated that she’d wasted so much time over finding this mystery woman. "Maybe he'll want to help me out with this one," Minnie said aloud, shaking her head at her lack of progress.

She’d checked every paid subscription service she had at her disposal and exhausted social media sites, Google, and every other free site she could possibly use. There were plenty of women named Elizabeth Henry out there, of course, but none of these people were surgeons in London. Maybe Jamie was wrong about what she did for work, Minnie mused. 

Minnie’s office was in a large, sleek building in London. She and her father had leased offices in a building that housed several large legal firms, which made up the majority of her business outside of her highly specialized government contracts. 

She twirled in her chair, spinning around as she thought where she’d search for Elizabeth next. 

“Knock, knock,” a woman said from the door. Minnie stopped spinning and rotated her chair toward the door, standing when she saw who was standing there.

“Geillis Duncan! Darling, how are you? I didn’t know you’d be in the London office this week!” 

“Aye, I came tae work in London and spend some time wi’ my friend, but she’s at the hospital today, sae here I am,” Geillis said.

M innie perked up, practically vibrating with excitement. “Hospital? Is your friend a doctor then?” Minnie asked, striving for a casual tone. She was mentally trying to stop herself from forcing Geillis into the chair until she agreed to give her more information. 

“Yes, well, she’s a surgeon, actually. Anyway, I wanted to see if our firm could engage you on this case that -” Geillis trailed off, noticing Minnie’s excitement. “What is it?” 

Minnie resumed her seat and gestured to the seat in front of her desk. “Can you sit for a moment? I’m trying to find a surgeon in London and having the worst time of it.” 

Geillis smiled again. “You? Having trouble finding someone? Impossible.” 

Minnie shrugged impatiently. “Okay, I’m looking for an ‘Elizabeth Henry.’ That’s spelled E-l-i –” She stopped mid-sentence and gasped when she saw Geillis’s green eyes flash in recognition and surprise.

“You know her!” Minnie exclaimed, clapping her hands together in an exaggerated motion. “Is she your friend? This is just perfect.” 

Geillis gave her a level look. “And who is looking for Elizabeth, exactly?” 

Minnie tapped her pen against the desk, impatient for Geillis to answer her question. She took a deep breath and cleared her throat, deciding to be honest. “Fine, it’s a favor for John, my brother-in-law. Our friend and John’s best mate, Jamie –” 

Minnie threw her pen down. “You just did it again. Your eyes. Your expression. You KNOW this woman, don’t you?” 

Geillis put her files to the side and leaned toward Minnie’s desk conspiratorially. “What do you know about Jamie? Do ye know him? ” 

Minnie nodded. “Yes, our families have been close friends for years, but –” 

Geillis threw her head back and laughed loudly “This is ridiculous!” 

“Geillis!” Minnie exclaimed. “You sound insane.” 

Geillis laughed and shook her head. “Oh, aye, ‘tis insane. Minnie Grey, I do know Elizabeth Henry, except that’s not really her name. Tell me what’s to do and perhaps I’ll tell you her real name,” Geillis said, grinning mischievously at Minnie.

Minnie was practically salivating to know details, and Geillis's wild-eyed expression told her that she was dying to spill what she knew. Abandoning the pretense that she was going to do any actual work for her actual job, she opened her bottom drawer and produced a small bottle of whisky and two glasses.

“Close the door. Tell me everything. Now.” 

An hour later, Geillis opened the door to leave, looking over her shoulder to wave and smile at Minnie as she exited. Both women were ecstatic with themselves. They had a plan, and it was a bloody good plan at that. 

Chapter Text

Claire sipped on some lukewarm coffee from the doctors’ lounge, immediately spitting it back out when it hit her tongue. “Blegh,” Claire exclaimed, making a face. She poured the coffee down the sink drain and tossed the cup in the trash. She turned to go out, stopping short when the door opened. 

“Lady Jane,” a deep, baritone voice said as the door opened to admit her best friend from medical school. 

 “Joe Abernathy, Thank God you’re back.” Claire ran to Joe and opened her arms to give him a hug. 

Joe hugged Claire back, chuckling. He pulled her away from him to look her over. “I missed you too,” he said. “Lady Jane, are you getting enough sleep? You look a little tired.” 

“Thanks, Joe,” Claire said in a sarcastic voice. “You always know exactly what to say.” 

Joe raised his eyebrows. “Well, fine, I’ll tell Gayle that I’m in the market for a new work wife,” Joe said, his voice lowering to an almost whisper. “Especially since you might be leaving me anyway.” Joe squeezed Claire’s arms affectionately and released her. “Let’s go get some better coffee.” 

Claire sat across with Joe and inhaled the hot, fresh coffee in front of her. “So, your vacation was good, then?” she asked. 

Joe nodded. “Yes, absolutely. The kids had so much fun exploring Paris for the first time.” Joe grinned. “But we can save that for later. Tell me what’s going on.” 

Claire looked down at her coffee, considering her words carefully. “Well, you remember me telling me about the man I met at the conference in New York?” 

Joe rolled his eyes. “How could I forget? It sounded like you were living in one of my favorite romance novels, from the limited information you gave me, which, by the way, is more than enough. It’s like hearing about your sister with someone,” Joe said, wincing a little. 

“Oh, hush,” Claire said, taking a long drink of her coffee, relishing in the way it burned her throat as she swallowed.  “I am still thinking about him,” Claire said, nodding. “But I wrote him a whole fucking letter and haven’t heard a thing from him,” she said, waving her arms in irritation. “I’d strangle him if I saw him today.” 

Joe made a throaty noise and chuckled. “I wouldn’t want to be on the receiving end of your wrath, Lady Jane,” he said sagely, shaking his head. “I’ve seen you argue with some of the other surgeons.” 

“Well, they’re the ones who had their heads in their asses, especially that ortho surgeon visiting from the States,” Claire said, feeling anger building in her chest. 

Joe reached out and wrapped his hand around her wrist. “Yes, but that’s different, and you know it.” Joe nodded, encouraging her to continue. 

Claire nodded and took a calming breath before continuing. “Well, I am planning – I mean, I’ve always been planning – to apply to hospitals in Scotland, and well, I have two interviews set up in Inverness and Edinburgh,” Claire said, lowering her voice and looking around to make sure she and Joe were still mostly alone. 

“Congratulations, Lady Jane!” Joe said. “So are you going to look this guy up and murder him? Should I contact Interpol and warn them that a posh English woman is on the warpath, ready to terrorize all of Scotland?” Joe raised his eyebrows playfully. 

“Ha, bloody ha, ” Claire said. “No, I told Geillis that I think it’s time to get over it. I mean, it was just one weekend, and we were in New York, and honestly I’m embarrassed that I’m still thinking about him.” 

Joe shook his head and patted Claire’s hand. “Oh, Claire,” Joe said quietly. “Just because you only spent a short time with him doesn’t mean that you don’t deserve to feel the way you do about the situation.” 

Claire gave Joe a small smile. “You only call me Claire when we have a stressful surgery or something’s going wrong,” Claire said. 

Joe shrugged. “Well, evidently something is wrong,” Joe said carefully. “Just go to the interviews and think it over. If either of the hospitals are a good fit, you’ll have a good reason to reach out to him, right?” 

Claire nodded slowly. “Yes, I suppose that’s good logic,” she said, taking a sip of her coffee. “I suppose I won’t feel more rejected and angry than I already do.” 

Joe laughed and took a long drink of his coffee. “Well, there’s only one way to find out, right?” Joe asked. “As my mother in law is fond of saying, ‘Nothing is final until you’re dead.’” 

“Too right,” Claire agreed. “Thank you, Joe,” she said, raising her coffee cup in a salute before draining it. “Let’s get back to the OR.” 

— 

Two Weeks Later 

Claire pulled onto the side of the road and threw the gear shift into park. “I’m going to kill Geillis Duncan,” she said aloud to the empty car. 

She dialed Geillis’s number and tapped her fingers on the steering wheel as she listened to the dial down. 

“Claire, love, where are ye?” Geillis said in a sing-song voice. 

“What are you in such a good mood about?” Not waiting for Geillis to answer, she continued, “I don’t see this place on the GPS. Are you positive it’s there?” 

“Claire, yes, an’ I told you it’s not going to be on the GPS because it’s a new business, ken?” Geillis said in a matter-of-fact tone. 

Claire nodded. “And when will you be joining me, exactly?” Claire asked. 

Claire had spent the last two days immersed in the first round of interviews at Raigmore Hospital in Inverness. Geillis had begged her to stay for the weekend, sweet-talking her into meeting her at some sort of spa for a relaxing weekend. Claire gladly welcomed the idea, feeling more than ready for a weekend away with one of her best friends. 

“Soon, Beauchamp, just finishing up here,” Geillis said. 

“Sounds good,” Claire said, feeling somewhat soothed. “Talk soon.” 

Claire disconnected the call and gave one last look at the directions Geillis had sent before she got back on the road. A half hour later, Claire pulled into a small parking area next to a massive, ancient-looking stone house.  Claire looked around, wondering where the other cars were. Shaking her head, she grabbed her coat and wrapped a scarf around her neck before getting out of the car. It was freezing out, and the small, fat snowflakes were falling sporadically.  It was close to springtime, but evidently the Scottish weather hadn’t received that memo. 

Shivering, she popped the trunk and slung her overnight bag over her shoulder. Slamming the trunk closed, she walked toward the large house. She paused, suddenly overcome by the tranquil beauty of the place. In the distance, she saw stables and a couple of horse grazing nearby. Several smaller buildings dotted the landscape. Cottages, maybe? Claire thought to herself. Near the main building, there was a pen filled with fat sheep and a few cows grazing placidly. 

Suddenly feeling more charitable towards Geillis and her enthusiasm for this place, Claire continued to the front door and stepped inside. She looked around the empty foyer and dropped her bag near the door’s entrance. Walking further inside, she inhaled deeply. The smell of homemade bread and the heady scent of burning firewood wafted through the air. She closed her eyes, feeling the tension drain from her shoulders. 

“Hallo!” She opened her eyes, startled. Looking up, she saw a small boy on the second floor landing. 

“Mam!” the boy yelled. “Mam! Da! A lady is here!” The boy ran down the hall gleefully, not even waiting for Claire to answer. Claire heard a door open and registered a woman’s voice. After some back and forth between the woman and the boy – something about taking a bath soon, with the latter of the two attempting to argue his way out of it  – she heard the door close and footsteps coming toward the landing. Claire busied herself with unwinding her scarf in an effort to show that she wasn’t actually attempting to eavesdrop. 

A short woman with dark hair appeared at the top of the stairs. “Hallo!” she said, walking quickly down the steps of the large, ornate staircase. “Ye must be Claire Beauchamp, aye?” 

Claire smiled. “Yes, hi, I’m here to check in for the weekend. I’m staying here with a friend.” She looked around, feeling a bit confused by the lack of activity. “I’m not in the wrong place, then,” Claire said hopefully, her voice rising at the end to indicate that it was a question more than a statement. 

“Oh, aye, yer in the right place,” the woman said in a cheerful voice as she came to stand in front of her. “I’m Jenny Murray. Welcome to Lallybroch Bed and Breakfast.” 

Chapter Text

Claire smiled warmly and extended her hand to Jenny. “Jenny, hi. It’s nice to meet you.”

Jenny was looking at her with an odd smile on her face, like she was trying to make sense of something. For Claire’s part, she couldn’t take her eyes off of Jenny; she was stricken with the sense that she knew her from somewhere. 

“Erm,” Claire said, looking away, realizing that she must have been staring. “I guess I need to check in?” 

Jenny nodded, still smiling. “Oh, aye, we will get ye all checked in, nay worry. Listen, yer actually not in the main house. Ye’ll be in one o’ our newly renovated cottages. Can I ask that ye wait in the library? The room isn’t completely ready yet, aye? We actually aren’t fully open to the public; we’re in the midst of a soft launch, ye see.” 

“What about my friend Geillis Duncan? She booked the rooms for us, but she didn’t say anything about cottages, and I don’t have a confirmation number or anything…” Claire trailed off as Jenny shook her head. 

“Oh, I’m sae sorry, but Ms. Duncan canceled just before you got here,” Jenny said with a pleasant smile. 

“She what ?” Claire barked out, surprised. “There must be some mistake??” 

“I’m sorry, I dinna ken anything other than that, Claire.” Jenny stretched out her arm to guide Claire in front of her, placing her hand on Claire’s shoulder. “Let me take ye tae the library for now, aye?” 

“Of course,” Claire said, striving for calm.  “Lead the way.” 

Jenny led her up the stairs and down the hall, stepping aside when they came to a large, ornately carved door, which was likely an original to the house. 

“Here we are,” Jenny said, opening the door and gesturing for Claire to walk in ahead of her. Claire gasped as she looked around the room. 

“This is gorgeous,” Claire said, eyes wide in wonder. “Are all of the rooms this beautiful?”  

“I like tae think they are,” she said, obviously pleased with the compliment. “This was my family’s home, ken? It dates back to the 1700s.” 

Claire nodded, continuing to take in her surroundings, momentarily forgetting about her friend’s great betrayal. 

“We have a nice bar wi’ whisky, tea, and some water. Just here.” Jenny pointed to a small bar near the middle of the room. “Please make yourself at home, aye? I’ll be back soon.” 

Claire thanked Jenny, turning to watch her bustle out of the room before she opened her purse to fish out her cellphone. She hit Geillis’s number and started pacing by the couch in the middle of the room. Geillis’s phone rang several times before going to voicemail. 

Claire gritted her teeth as the voicemail tone beeped. “Geillis, what the bloody hell is going on?” Claire spat out. “I’m at Lallybroch and the owner said you called to cancel? Call me back. NOW.” 

Claire huffed as she ended the call and stowed her phone back in her purse. Placing her purse next to the couch, she took a couple of breaths and looked around the large library, rotating in the spot where she stood. 

The library was breathtaking. Large, built-in bookshelves adorned the walls from ceiling to floor, and the shelves covered most of the room in its entirety. The large, leaded glass picture window sat in the middle of the exterior wall and boasted a built-in window seat that appeared large enough to comfortably lie down on. Claire fizzled with excitement at the thought of stretching out with a good book for hours. She’d have to ask Jenny if she could come read during the day tomorrow. 

A large, ornately carved fireplace stood sentinel at the far end of the room; the fire in the grate crackling happily. Above the mantle stood a large oil painting of Lallybroch and its grounds. Turning her attention back to the bookshelves, Claire walked over and gently moved her fingers along several of the countless leather-bound books lining the shelves. The spines, soft and worn with age, felt like butter against her fingertips. She breathed in the scent of leather, old books, and the smell of the fire and felt at peace. Geillis or no Geillis, she thought, I’ll enjoy this place just fine. 

The bar that Jenny had referenced sat in front of the window; Claire made her way to it and picked up a finely-made crystal glass to pour herself a drink. The glass she selected was heavy; its weight reassuring to her. Moving closer to the assorted dark liquors, she froze, gasping when she saw the label of the bottle closest to her. She quickly set the glass on the bar and picked up the bottle, feeling light-headed and nauseous. 

She hadn’t needed to pick up the bottle to see the label; she’d memorized it, after all, she thought, but she was still too stunned to believe what she was seeing. The elaborate “F” printed on the label stared back at her. “F” as in Fraser’s Distillery. “F” for Jamie Fraser. Claire closed her eyes, trying to calm her now racing heart. “Bloody Hell, of all the whisky in Scotland,” she said quietly to herself. 

Regaining her composure, she poured a healthy measure of whisky and brought the glass to her nose, inhaling deeply. Jamie , she thought, her heart twisting. She took a long drink, savoring the flavors on her palette, feeling another sharp stab of memory as she tasted the whisky. Tastes exactly like Jamie Fraser. She felt her stomach clench and shivered, remembering how he’d introduced himself to her at the bar. His eyes. His smile. His voice as he talked about his whisky. His hands as they shyly explored hers. The heat of his body as he inched closer to her at the bar. 

Still feeling lightheaded, she moved to sit on the couch to watch the snow fall outside the window. She placed the whisky tumbler on a coaster and brought her hand to her neck, massaging a sore spot in slow circles, still thinking of Jamie. For the moment, she thought herself unable or unwilling to stop thinking of him, and closed her eyes, allowing the memories to wash over her. She sighed wistfully as she thought of him, first at the hotel bar, then in the hallway where he kissed her for the first time, and then their first time in bed together. “ Nothing will ever taste as good as you,” he’d whispered in her ear. Claire let out a small whimper at the memory. Her eyes flew open as the sound she’d made jolted her from her reverie. 

 She picked up her whisky and tossed it back, draining the amber liquid in a single gulp.  “Bloody Scot,” she said under her breath. She’d done a decent job of shoving the memories away as of late, finally arriving at a place where she could think of the weekend as a fun experience instead of dwelling on what could have been if they’d parted on better terms.  

Standing up, she went to refill her whisky and moved across the room to the fireplace to admire the painting of Lallybroch above the mantle. The stately stone mansion stood out among the brilliant pinks, oranges, yellows, and reds of the setting sun. At the corner of the painting, she noticed the initials. “E-M-F,” she read aloud to herself. Claire remained fixed at the spot, staring at the fire and painting until her eyes began losing focus. She still felt restless, but the whisky was doing wonders to calm her nerves, making her feel warm and relaxed all over. This is cozy, she thought. 

She was still admiring the painting when she heard the door open. “Jenny, this library is a dream,” Claire gushed. When no one answered, Claire turned to face the door and gasped. 

Jamie ?” she asked, her voice barely above a whisper. 

Jamie Fraser stood at the doorway, wearing an expression of surprise and shock on his face. Claire, slack-jawed and momentarily speechless, stared at him in disbelief. After a moment, he crossed the room in four strides until he was standing in front of Claire. 

The vision in front of her was doing nothing to stem the flow of illicit memories she’d been thinking of only moments ago. “You grew your hair out,” she said.

Jamie Fraser, the bloody bastard, has become even more gorgeous since I saw him last, Claire thought abstractedly . Jamie’s hair now came close to brushing his shoulders, and his auburn and cinnamon curls danced in the firelight. Claire couldn’t help but think of running her fingers through it. 

Claire continued to stare at Jamie as though he were an apparition; her heart raced and her palms felt clammy. 

“Claire,” Jamie said in a cool, clipped tone. “What are ye doing here?” 

The chill in Jamie’s voice brought Claire back to the reality in front of her. “Well, hello to you, Jamie. I’m fine, thanks for asking,” Claire said, feeling heat spread across her skin as adrenaline began pumping through her veins. 

Jamie swallowed harshly and squared his jaw. “Who invited ye here? I wasn’t aware you knew my family,” Jamie said, his voice steely and impersonal. 

“Your family?” asked Claire, stunned. “I don’t know your family, Jamie.”

“This is my family home. I told ye that Jenny and Ian were starting a bed and breakfast, remember? I’m sure I mentioned it the last time I saw ye,” he said slowly, enunciating the last few words to emphasize his meaning.

“I sure as Hell didn’t bloody know that this place was the one you told me about,” Claire said venomously, her voice rising. Claire’s face felt hot, and she bit the inside of her cheek in an effort to control herself. If this is how he was going to talk to me now,  she thought, then I’m definitely not going to give him the satisfaction of crying in front of him. Not now, not ever. “And I sure as Hell wouldn’t have come here if I knew it had anything to do with you,” she added, feeling defensive. 

Claire saw Jamie’s face fall momentarily before he quickly rearranged his features in a more stoic expression; Claire felt pleased to see that he appeared to be having difficulty keeping his feelings in check. 

“Weel then, I suppose ye’ll be leaving now,” he said. “Ye certainly know how to do that well enough, aye?” 

Jamie’s blow landed squarely in Claire’s gut. “I did no more and no less than what you requested of me, or perhaps you’ve already forgotten that part? The part where you asked me to leave? I’m sure you picked up plenty of women while you were in the States selling your stupid whisky,” she said bitterly. “I’d understand if you’re having a hard time keeping us all straight. I was the one you fucked in New York, does that help?” 

Jamie’s eyes flashed with blue fire. “Ye have nae idea what yer talking about,” Jamie said evenly, taking a few steps toward her. 

Claire took a few steps toward him in response, eager to match him blow for blow. “Oh, don’t I?” she said, her voice high. You spent an entire weekend with me, making me feel…” she paused before going on. “Making me feel the way you did, and then you just, what, dismiss me without even attempting to talk to me about it? Was I that easy to throw away? Jesus, Jamie,” Claire spat out, feeling breathless. 

Dismiss ye ,” Jamie huffed out. “Are ye serious?” he asked, his accent thickening with his temper. “Ye lied tae me all weekend, and now yer blamin’ me fer being mad about it, and now ye stand here - in my home - accusin’ me of fucking my way through the States?” Jamie said, the trace of bitter laughter evident in his voice. 

Claire shook her head, realizing that they had gotten so close to one another that she was forced to crane her neck to look him in the eyes. She took a couple of steps back, unable to stop herself from breathing in his scent, something woodsy with a hint of whisky. Something entirely Jamie. 

“Ye lied about yer name, Claire,” Jamie continued. “What was I supposed tae do? Say ‘thank ye for telling me, nae problem, and then what? Take ye back tae bed? Ask ye tae cancel yer flight and stay wi’ me another day? What did ye want? What did ye expect tae happen?” Jamie swallowed as though he were willing himself to stop talking. Claire could see his pulse throbbing wildly in his neck. 

“It seems you’ve given quite a bit of thought to that, doesn’t it?” Claire said, trying her best to sound as furious as she now felt. “Just - it doesn’t - fucking Hell, it doesn’t fucking matter now,” Claire said, biting back the tears threatening to fall. She felt her face crack and admonished herself silently for not being better at controlling her features. 

Jamie’s face flickered and momentarily softened before he rearranged his features to a more neutral position. “Fine, yer right. It doesna matter,” Jamie said, his voice low, almost a growl. “Clearly the weekend didna mean anything tae ye anyway, or maybe ye would ha’ reached out tae me.” 

Claire felt something snap at his words. “Don’t you dare tell me what I felt about our weekend together,” Claire yelled, her voice sharp. “You couldn’t find the courage or decency to reach out to me after you read the letter I left for you,” she said, her hands gesturing wildly in a show of frustration and agitation. “Are you going to pretend you didn’t see it or read it Jamie? It’s not like I intentionally hid it from you.” 

“I have nae idea what yer on about,” Jamie said, his eyes narrowing in genuine confusion. “What letter, Claire?”

Claire folded her arms in front of her chest. “So, yes, you are going to pretend like you didn’t read it, then,” she said, answering her own question. “That’s fine . Like I said, it doesn’t matter now,” Claire said, shaking her head and turning to move toward the couch to collect her belongings. “I’m leaving, so you can quit being such a goddamned, bloody bastard. Coward.” Claire spat the last word through gritted teeth. 

Jamie followed her to the couch, his fists balled at his sides.

“A coward now, am I?” Jamie yelled. “Aye, and I ken what it looks like when ye leave,” Jamie said in a dangerous voice. “I said I had nae idea what ye’re talking about, so quit acting like such a self-righteous cun –”

“James. Alexander. Malcolm. Mackenzie. Fraser,” said a woman’s stern voice from the doorway. 

Claire and Jamie jumped, both turning toward the owner of the voice. 

A tall, elegant woman with long, brilliantly red and white-streaked hair stood in the doorway, staring open-mouthed at Jamie, wearing the same furious expression Claire had just seen on Jamie’s face. 

“Mam,” Jamie said, his voice flat. 

Jamie’s mother crossed the room to join Jamie and Claire by the couch. Claire, for her part, couldn’t stop staring at her - at Jamie’s mother. She imagined that her hair must have once been the same tones of copper, auburn, and cinnamon of her son’s hair. She was wearing a beautiful ivory cashmere sweater that brought out the color of her eyes, and as she looked closely at her features, she could see how much her son favored her. Claire gasped in sudden recognition. Jenny. That’s why she looked familiar. Good Lord, she thought , how many other Frasers are running around this bloody house? 

“Don’t ye dare speak that way ta anyone in this house, James,” she continued. “Or ever,” she added for good measure. 

Jamie had the good sense to look abashed. “Sorry, mam,” he mumbled, looking down at his feet. “We were just arguing and I lost my heid.”

”That Fraser temper, I swear, Jamie,” she said, shaking her head. “Ye certainly didna get that from the Mackenzie side of the family.” 

Jamie snorted. “Oh, aye, the Mackenzies are kent well fer their sweet personalities, Mam,” he said sarcastically. 

Jamie’s mom ignored this, instead turning her attention to Claire and giving her a radiant smile, which Claire returned shyly. “My son seems to have lost all of his manners, so it seems I’ll introduce myself. I’m Ellen Fraser,” she said warmly. “And ye must be Claire ,” she said, looking at Claire as though she hadn’t heard Claire fighting with her son. 

Claire winched, feeling her cheeks heat once again, this time from embarrassment. Perhaps the floor will open and swallow me whole, Claire thought, silently begging for her wish to come true. She steeled herself, extending her arm. “Yes, I’m Claire. Claire Beauchamp,” she said, striving for an airy tone that she definitely did not feel. Ellen enveloped both of Claire’s with hers. “I’m sae pleased tae meet ye, Claire,” Ellen said, beaming.  

Jamie snorted. “Aye, Claire. Claire. Elizabeth. Beauchamp,” Jamie taunted. “Or sae she says.” He swallowed, clearly trying to stop himself from saying anything else in front of his mother. 

Claire’s eyes widened, feeling her anger bubble back to the surface. “That’s it.” She extracted her hands from Ellen’s gentle, warm grasp. “It was so lovely meeting you, but I’ll be going now. I can’t stay here and listen to this,” Claire said, moving toward the door, stopping abruptly as Jenny materialized in front of her. “Jenny,” Claire said weakly. 

Jenny walked into the room, looking from Claire, to Jamie, to Ellen, and then back to Claire. “What’s the kebbie-lebbie about?” she asked. “Ian is just getting Young Jamie tae sleep, and we can hear ye down th’ hall.” 

Jamie drew himself up to his fullest height and crossed his arms in front of his chest. Inclining his head toward Claire, he said, “Nay bother, Jenny, Claire was just leaving.” 

“I very much doubt that, brother,” she scoffed. “She’s our first guest here, sae dinna be sae rude,” Jenny said, eyes sparkling. 

Jamie made a deep noise in his throat. “Janet, dinna be daft, the place isn’t even open yet. And ye dinna even ken who Claire is.” 

“We ken fine who Claire is, brother, and we all think ye both needed tae see each other and talk some things out, ken?”  She flashed Jamie a large, superficial smile – something Claire thought Jenny probably reserved specifically for her sibling.

“How did ye – what did ye mean we – I didna even tell John her real name,” Jamie stammered. “Ye invited her here?”  Jamie’s eyes went wide as he looked from Ellen to Jenny in disbelief.

Jenny beamed, giving him a look that was so quintessentially Jamie that Claire would have laughed if the circumstances were different. “Aye, we, ” Jenny said patiently. “John gave Minnie the other name and o’ course Minnie figured it out.” Jenny was glowing with satisfaction. 

Claire pinched her nose, suddenly feeling tired and dazed; clearly, the effects of the whisky was finally catching up to her brain. “Jenny,” Claire said, hesitating, “Did you somehow know Geillis before she even called to book this place?” 

“Weel, as it sae happens, Claire, Minnie works in the same building as Geillis, an’ they got tae talking, an’ things kind of fell into place, ken?” Jenny shrugged in a playful gesture, her eyes alight with mischief. 

“And who is Minnie?” Claire asked, turning toward Jamie in demand of an answer. 

Jamie sighed, rubbing his nose with his thumb and forefinger just as Claire had done moments ago. “She’s a family friend,” he said. “Look, ye all had nae right tae do any o’ this, Janet,” he said, walking toward his sister and stopping inches from her face. “Keep yer neb out of my business.” 

And with that, Jamie stalked out of the room, leaving the women silently looking after him until they heard the front door open and slammed shut.

Chapter Text

Claire looked from Ellen to Jenny and back. “Jesus H. Roosevelt Christ!” she exclaimed, her voice tight with emotion. 

Jenny and Ellen exchanged a look and both burst out laughing before Claire could say another word. 

“Oh, aye, yer a firecracker,” Ellen said, coming toward Claire to put an arm around her shoulder. Ellen beamed at her fondly, making Claire relax into her touch. 

Jenny snorted and shook her head. “Aye, and yer both are stubborn as they come,” Jenny said, shaking her head. “Ye both, erm, have things tae discuss, sae maybe this plan isna sae bad after all, ken?” 

Claire moved to extract herself from Ellen’s grasp. “Oh no, I can’t stay now. I absolutely have to leave this minute. You both saw how he reacted when he saw me.” Claire paused, swallowing hard. “So how many people are in on this plan?” Claire asked, narrowing her eyes.  

Ellen tightened her grip on Claire’s shoulder. “Oh, don’t ye worry about that,” Ellen said happily. “And dinna be giving me this nonsense about leavin’. Ye’ve been drinkin’ whisky and it’s snowing, for God’s sake. Ye won’t be goin’ anywhere tonight, sae let’s get ye tae yer cottage.” 

Claire suddenly felt drained. She gave Ellen and Jenny a weak smile and nodded in defeat, realizing that she knew better than to argue with either of these women at the moment. 

Jenny grinned, looking positively pleased with herself as Ellen and Claire moved toward the door. “Aye, good then. “We’ll see ye in the morning, Claire.” 

As they walked out of the house, Ellen gestured at the sky. “It looks like we’ll be gettin’ a fair amount o’ snow, aye,” she said, not actually asking a question. “Tis fine, ye will be welcome here as long as ye need. The cottage is fair stocked to the brim w’ food! My husband Brian made sure o’ that.” 

As they rounded a corner, the small stone cottage came into view, the door wide open. “Aye, speaking’ o’ Brian,” Ellen said fondly, “he must be startin’ a wee fire fer ye.” 

“Oh,” Claire breathed. No help for it, then. Can’t stop, won’t stop until I’ve met every single Fraser here, Claire thought to herself, grimacing internally. 

Ellen and Claire walked inside to find a large man kneeling at the hearth, poking at the logs with an antique fire poker. 

“Brian,” Ellen said happily, “Look who I found in the library. Claire, this is my husband, Brian - and Jamie’s father, ken.”

Brian beamed at her, taking her hand between his. “Aye, Claire, it’s so lovely to finally meet ye. I was fair fashed that I’d never get the chance.”

Claire returned Brian’s smile and shook his hand. “It’s so nice to meet you, Biran. Ellen found me, erm, arguing with your son in the library.” Claire gave a small shrug, still feeling hopelessly awkward. “And yelling at him.”

Brian guffawed and tightened his clasp on Claire. “A lass who isna th’ meek an’ obedient type, praise be.” 

Ellen laughed. “Aye, weel, we’d expect nothin’ less,” she said. “And nay worry, Jamie often runs his mouth without thinkin’ first.” 

Claire shook her head.  “It’s really so kind of you to let me stay here, but I’m just,” she paused, searching for words. “I’m just, well, I — oh, to Hell with it — seeing as how your son isn’t likely to speak to me ever again, I promise I’ll be on the road first thing tomorrow.” 

Ellen placed her arm around Claire’s shoulder again and squeezed gently.  "Och, Claire, that’s nonsense. Ye’ve just been introduced to the Fraser temper, aye? Thrown in the deep end, ken?” Ellen fixed Brian with a pointed look as she spoke.

Brian, who had the good sense to look abashed, simply shrugged and looked at the floor, a small smile playing on his face. “Aye, weel, Ellen is right. He’s as stubborn as they come, with a heid as thick as an iron pot, but he has a good heart,” Brian said fairly. “He’s obviously crazy about ye, so I hope ye both will talk at some point while yer here.” Brian paused, giving Claire a meaningful look before continuing. “When he had his accident, he —“

What accident?” Claire asked, unable to stop herself.

Ellen and Brian gave each other a knowing, married look before Ellen nodded at Brian to continue. “Weel, it would probably be better for Jamie tae tell ye more,” he said, hesitating for a moment.  “But I reckon it wouldn’t hurt tae tell ye what happened in general.”

Ellen gestured at Claire to have a seat at the bar. “I’m just going to get the kettle on, aye? Here, Claire, sit.” 

Claire situated herself at the kitchen counter bar and watched Ellen pour fresh water into the kettle and set it on the burner. Brian, meanwhile, was pulling mugs from the cabinet. Claire bit her lip in an attempt to keep herself from begging for more information. 

Brian set the mugs on the counter and moved to lean against the cabinets, sighing as he folded his arms and looked at Claire. “Twasn’t as bad as it coulda been, but aye, Jamie was in a car accident the day before he was due tae be leaving fer North Carolina. He did break his arm and have to spend a couple o’ days in hospital while they ran tests.” 

Claire gasped at this revelation. “I had no idea.” 

Brian walked over to where Claire was sitting and patted her hand gently. “Weel, o’ course ye didna ken, Claire.” 

Claire felt a bubble of dread boiling deep in her stomach and let out a small noise of distress. “Where was he going?” she asked. 

Brian and Ellen exchanged another knowing look. “As we understand from John, he was headed tae the airport,” Brian said gently. “John is –”

Claire nodded. “His best friend, I know. He told me,” she finished for Brian. 

Brian smiled. “Aye, that’s right, a nighean .”  

“Oh my God ,” Claire said, closing her eyes and covering her face with her hands. “This would have never happened if we hadn’t fought that morning,” she said. Neither Brian nor Ellen said anything, choosing instead to let Claire guide their reaction.

The kettle whined, breaking the silence. Ellen turned to retrieve a mug and poured the boiling water over the waiting tea leaves. “Och, Claire, certainly no one blames ye; dinna give that another thought,” Ellen said, evidently divining Claire’s thoughts as she placed a steaming mug of herbal tea before Claire. “Here, ma husband may be th’ better cook, but I make better tea.” 

Brian clicked his tongue in mock affront, but smiled lovingly at Ellen. “Some people like weak tea,” he said genially. 

Claire smiled weakly, feeling tears prickle at the corners of her eyes. She took a long drink of her tea in a quiet effort to gain a modicum of control over her emotions. 

“Anyway,” Brian continued, taking a mug of tea from Ellen, “Jamie has been moping constantly, an’ it’s clear it’s not because he was fashed about a broken arm.” Brian took a large sip of tea and then gave Claire a knowing smirk. “We think ye should talk it out wi’ each other, sae mebbe ye’ll stay long enough for that to happen, ken?” he asked, placing the unfinished mug of tea in the sink.

Claire nodded, her eyes beginning to blur. “I suppose I can do that. Thank you both for being so sweet to me.” 

Ellen leaned down to where Claire was sitting to give her a hug. “Get some rest,” she said soothingly. “Brain put yer bags in th’ bedroom.” Ellen released Claire and gestured for Brian to follow her. “C’mon, sweetheart, I think she’s had enough o’ meetin’ Frasers fer today.” 

Clair laughed at that. “Thank you both again,” Claire said. “I’ll see you two later.” 

*** 

Claire finished the tea and placed both her mug and Brian’s discarded one into the dishwasher before opening the curtains above the sink. Fat snowflakes were falling fast, blanketing the landscape in a pristine white. Claire took a deep breath and closed her eyes. It would be so romantic here, save the fact I’m missing one bloody Scot, she thought. I hope Brian is right.

 

Claire locked the front door before making her way into the bedroom to change into her pajamas. She hoisted her weekend bag onto the bed and pulled out a change of clothes, selecting some cozy leggings, an oversized cashmere sweater, and a pair of fuzzy socks. 

Claire stripped to her underwear and groaned with relief as she unhooked her bra. As she changed, she thought of Jamie. Seeing him in the library had turned her stomach and legs to jelly. He looks so damn good , she thought, thinking of one particular time in bed when she’d gripped his hair as he thrust into her, over and over. He kissed her hard as she moaned against his mouth. “ That’s it, lass,” he’d whispered. She shook her head and shivered, unable to stop herself from remembering what happened next. And then he made you come harder than you’d ever come, she thought, failing to stop herself. 

Oh, do shut up, Beauchamp, she thought as she made her way back toward the kitchen area. The kitchen, while modern, still felt rustic and cozy. Claire admired the plaids that adorned the  curtains and small, random knick knacks around the kitchen, all carefully selected to make guests feel completely at home in the Scottish Highlands. 

Claire made her way over to the small bar that stood at the end of one counter and selected a bottle of whisky. Fraser’s Distillery , naturally, Claire thought, shaking her head. She picked up a glass and walked over to the living area to sit on the massive leather couch in the center of the room.

Pouring a large glass of whisky for herself, she sat back and took a large swig, enjoying the sharp burn of the liquid as she drank it down. Claire felt more tears stinging her eyes and forced herself to take a deep breath. “Fuck it,” she said, throwing her glass back and draining the whisky in two swallows.

Claire put the glass down on the table with more force than strictly necessary. Groaning, she stretched out and grabbed the plaid blanket that had been folded neatly across the back of the couch. Covering herself, she closed her eyes, feeling pleasantly tipsy and very tired. 

***

Claire’s eyes flew open and she sat up quickly, feeling at once dizzy and confused. She’d dozed off and felt heavy-limbed and slow, like she was fighting her way to the surface after being submerged under water.

Someone was pounding on the door, she thought muzzily. Rubbing her eyes, she pulled herself up and wrapped the plaid blanket over her shoulders before heading toward the foyer, her heart thumping in her chest the entire time. 

Opening the door, her heart gave a jolt as she saw him standing before her. “Jamie,” she breathed out, her voice sounding tight to her ears. 

“Sassenach,” Jamie said, looking Claire over, his eyes going soft as his eyes landed on the plaid Claire had wrapped around her. “Can I come in?” 

Claire pulled the plaid protectively to her body and felt her heart jolt when Jamie used his nickname for her. “I suppose you can,” she said quietly, stepping back to let Jamie step inside, retreating further as he shook his head to throw off the white flakes that had accumulated in his hair. 

Claire stared at Jamie as he methodically removed his wet shoes and scarf.  As he moved to take off his coat, Claire finally shook herself into action. 

“I don’t want to fight with you, Jamie,” Claire said, forcing herself to sound more confident than she felt. “So if that’s why you’re here, please just go back home.” 

Jamie stood still for a moment before turning slowly to look at Claire. “I’m not here to fight,” he said softly. “I promise, ken?” 

Claire cleared her throat and squared her shoulders. “Okay, then,” she said, turning away from the door toward the kitchen. “I’ll make some tea.” 

Claire busied herself in the kitchen as Jamie made an ordeal out of locking the door and hanging his clothes on the hat tree sitting in the foyer. He’s nervous, Claire thought as she poured water into the kettle. She snuck a look toward Jamie while he still had his back toward her. Fuck, he looks good. Claire bit her lip and looked back at the kettle in front of her, mindlessly going through the motions as she placed the kettle on the burner and gathered the various tins of tea selections. 

Claire cleared her throat. “Erm, it seems like your parents make sure to stock every tea imaginable,” she said, desperately hoping that he couldn’t hear the slight shake of her voice  as she spoke. 

Jamie snorted, coming to stand exactly where Claire had been with Ellen and Brian earlier that evening. “Aye, I suppose they did,” he said. “They dinna know how tae do anything besides go overboard, ken?” 

Claire nodded, feeling the corners of her mouth twitch into a small smile. “They’re very kind, Jamie,” she said, finally allowing herself to meet Jamie’s eyes. 

Jamie smiled and nodded. “Aye, they are,” he said. “Even when they’re schemin’ behind my back.” His eyes crinkled as he smiled, but he didn’t take his eyes off of Claire’s for several long moments. Jamie opened his mouth to say something when the kettle interrupted with a shrill whine. 

Claire jumped, turning toward the burner to remove the kettle from the stove. She turned off the burner and poured the boiling water into the waiting mugs. 

When she turned back toward Jamie, she gasped as her eyes found a piece of paper on the counter. Jamie placed his palm flat across the surface of the letter, not saying anything for a few moments before he finally cleared his voice and spoke. 

“I came here to talk with you about your letter, Claire?” Jamie said. "Did ye mean what ye wrote?"

Chapter Text

“Can we talk about your letter, Claire?” Jamie asked. “Did ye mean what ye wrote?”

Claire stared at the paper sitting before her on the kitchen counter. She placed the mugs on the counter and turned away, breathing hard. 

“Claire,” Jamie said. “Sassenach.” 

Claire shook her head, ignoring Jamie’s entreaty. “Whisky, then?” she choked out. 

Jamie said nothing as Claire made her way over to the couch where she’d left the whisky bottle. She grabbed the whisky and her empty glass. Returning to the kitchen area, she sat both down in front of Jamie. “Would you like something stronger than tea?” she asked.

“Aye,” said Jamie, finally answering her after several beats of silence. 

Claire nodded, turning to retrieve another glass for Jamie. Glass in hand, she turned back to Jamie and placed it in front of him on the counter. Uncorking the whisky, she moved to pour herself and Jamie a glass. Jamie stood stock still, watching Claire with a dark blue gaze. 

“You did read my letter,” Claire said flatly. She picked up her whisky and took a fortifying sip, waiting for him to respond. 

“Aye,” Jamie said in affirmation. “I did.” 

Claire took another sip and nodded, careful to avoid meeting Jamie’s eye. She looked at the floor. “Your parents told me about your accident,” she said hesitantly. They didn’t want to tell me everything – I mean, they wanted you to tell me. But I know,” Claire said, feeling like she was rambling. She stole a glance at Jamie, watching him carefully. 

Jamie said nothing, opting instead to sip the whisky Claire had poured for him. “Aye,” he finally said. “I broke my arm. Some ribs. ‘Tis fine,” he said. 

Claire raised her head and finally met his gaze, turning the words over in her head as she attempted to steady herself enough to speak again. 

“And I figured out that you were in the accident on your way to the airport,” Claire said quickly, the words tumbling out on top of one another. She swallowed. “I mean, the same day that you asked me to leave,” she added in a weak voice.

“Aye,” Jamie said again. “Tis also true.” 

Claire felt her cheeks heating with anger – and something else. Lust , she thought, looking him over. Claire hadn’t been alone with him – save for their fight in the library – since they were together in New York, and her body was attuned to every subtle move Jamie made now that he was solidly in her orbit. Claire was well and painfully aware that she hadn’t been touched by anyone since Jamie . She felt her nipples harden and folded her arms across her chest as though to protect herself; evidently, my body considers the fight over, she thought. 

“Are you going to say anything besides ‘Aye,’ or is that all the explanation I get?” Claire asked, steeling herself.

Jamie threw back the rest of the whisky in a single gulp. Sitting the glass on the table, he walked around the bar and into the kitchen, stopping inches away from where Clare stood. “I told ye that I didn’t come here to fight with ye, and I meant it,” he said quietly. 

Claire took a deep breath and looked at him carefully. “Well, why didn’t you call me after your accident? I mean, you clearly read my letter and then came after me that day,” Claire said, her voice tight with emotion. 

“I didn’t read it then,” Jamie said. “I swear.” 

Claire furrowed her brow as she looked him over slowly. “I don’t understand. I –” 

Jamie cut her off. “Did ye mean everything ye wrote?”

Claire took several steps away from Jamie, stopping when her back hit a pair of cabinet doors. “Of course I did,” she said, rolling her eyes. “I feel pretty idiotic about it at the moment, too, if it took you this long to ask me this, then I –” Claire trailed off as Jamie moved so close to her that she had to crane her neck to look at him, just as when they were in the library. She closed her eyes and breathed him in, intoxicated by his mere proximity. 

“I didna get the letter until tonight, Claire, I swear,” Jamie said in a pleading tone. “Claire – Sassenach – look at me. Please believe me.” 

Claire opened her eyes and looked at Jamie, her brow furrowed. “That doesn’t make any sense,” she said. 

Jamie moved closer to her. Claire could feel his warm breath on her. “I didna see it before I left the hotel tae come after ye in the taxi,” he explained. His hand came up to stroke Claire’s jawline. “Glenna packed all of my things and sent them here after I had already come home to Scotland. I didna even bother to open the box, Claire. I couldna stand to open it.” 

Claire shut her eyes again and tried to calm the thumping in her chest. Jamie leaned further in, effectively pinning her to the wall. She could feel his body heat shimmering against her. “Ask me why I didna open the box, Claire,” he said, his voice ragged with restrained desire. 

“Why didn’t you open the box?” she said, opening her eyes a fraction of an inch to stare at him. 

Jamie brought his index finger to Claire’s lips and slowly traced her bottom lip, his touch gentle as a butterfly’s wings. Claire bit back another whimper as he leaned closer to her ear. “Because I didna want tae be able to smell ye on my clothes,” he said, swiping her earlobe with his tongue. “I can’t get you off of my mind, ye see. I can taste ye in my dreams at night, did ye ken that?” Jamie’s teeth closed on her earlobe, making Claire squirm under him. “I canna remember ever tasting something - some one - in my dreams. Yer everywhere, and I canna take it,” Jamie continued, his voice low and sultry. “I was sae horrible tae ye when I told ye tae leave that day, and I canna stand how we left things.”

He lowered his right arm and ghosted his fingers down Claire’s left side until he reached her hand. Claire watched, speechless, as he raised one arm over her head. Claire started to raise her right arm to touch him, but he caught her hand in mid-air and raised it to join her left. He gathered her wrists with one hand and held them firmly against the cabinets. Claire’s breath was coming in shallow pants, and she stared at Jamie’s mouth, biting her lip unconsciously. Jamie smirked, clearly enjoying this wicked game of his. 

“Imagine how I felt when I found ye in the library tonight,” he continued, swallowing hard. “Seeing ye nearly drove me mad, and when ye got close tae me, I could smell yer hair, yer perfume...” He ran the fingers of his free hand through her hair, inhaling deeply. Claire could feel his heart racing against her heaving chest. “...An’ I couldna help but wonder if ye’d taste exactly like I remember,” Jamie said in a choked voice. “I’ve never been sae angry and sae turned on at the same time,” he said, chuckling low in her ear. 

Claire shuddered against him. “Why don’t you find out how I taste?” she asked impatiently, rolling her hips against him in invitation, expectantly waiting for him to kiss her any moment. 

Instead, Jamie released her wrists and spun both of them around, making Claire shriek as he pinned her back to his chest. “Oh, I intend to,” he said in a dark, dangerous voice. “Not yet, mo nighean donn . We need tae talk about this letter.” 

Claire struggled against him, making him grab onto her hip, his large hand digging into her flesh and neatly anchoring her to his body.. Claire whimpered, wondering if she could faint from simply being too aroused. 

“Tell me,” Jamie said, using his other hand to yank the collar of her sweater over the cup of her shoulder. His tongue darted out to swipe at the delicate skin of her collarbone. 

Claire made a hissing noise. “Tell you what?” she sighed, rotating her shoulder in a gesture that was plainly a silent request for more.

Jamie splayed his hand across her stomach, pulling her even closer to him so that she could feel him, hard and urgent against her lower back. Claire emitted a high-pitched squeak, surprising herself and Jamie. He laughed, the vibrations of his chest sending shock waves through her. “About how much ye said ye’d miss me,” he said, voice rough with emotion. “About how scared ye were about starting anything because of your job…about how no one could…do ye remember what ye wrote then, Sassenach?” Jamie dipped a curious finger into the hem of Claire’s leggings, making her jolt. 

Claire whimpered as he removed his finger, feeling too light-headed to attempt coherent speech. 

Jamie chuckled again before taking her earlobe between his teeth. “Okay, Sassenach, let’s play a little game. I’ll reward ye for each thing ye remember writing tae me,” he said, drumming his fingers absently across her abdomen as he spoke. 

“I could just – I could just read the letter to you,” Claire said in a whisper. 

“Where’s th’ fun in that, my Sassenach?” Jamie asked playfully. “Tell me what ye wrote, Claire,” he implored. “Tell me now and I’ll give ye what ye want. What we both want.”

“Aren’t you mad at me?” Claire asked, her voice shaking slightly. 

“Och, Sassenach,” Jamie said. “I didna want ye tae go, an’ I shouldna have lost my temper. I ken it’s my fault ye left, and I punished ye for it because I was busy acting like a stubborn idiot. Seeing ye tonight in the library, an’ then finding yer letter…as long as ye still feel the same way, I just want ye.” Claire tried to turn in his arms, but he held her firmly in place. “But I need ye tae tell me, Claire.” 

“Stubborn Scot,” Claire said, closing her eyes and leaning her head back against Jamie’s shoulder in the hopes that he would lavish her neck with his attentions. “Fine,” she sighed.

“Good lass,” Jamie said, lightly kissing her neck. 

“Dear Jamie,” Claire said, breathing out. 

“Aye, good start,” Jamie said, moving his hand under her sweater toward her breasts. He brushed her nipple lightly with his thumb, making Claire gasp. 

“Mmm…and then I wrote that I couldn’t believe what an amazing weekend I’d had with a man I’d just met at a bar,” she said, earning her a twist of the nipple from Jamie. She gasped, exhaling slowly. Jamie patiently stroked her nipple back and forth, waiting for more. 

“I apologized…for giving you the fake name, and that I hoped you understood…and then I said that I didn’t want to leave; that I wanted to see you again…and spend…more time with you, but that… I was having a difficult time figuring out how to make it all work with my job up in the air,” she said, pausing in between her words as Jamie’s other hand wandered across her body. 

She swallowed, hoping Jamie would put her out of her misery soon. “Aye, go on, Sassenach,” he whispered, his breath warm in her ear. “I think yer gettin’ warm,” he teased. Claire sucked in a breath. “I said…I said that no one had ever touched me like you did, and that…I’d never felt so much chemistry with someone…ahhhhh,” Claire broke off as Jamie moved his hand under her leggings to cup her pussy gently. He gently bit her neck, making Claire pant. Claire reached back with one arm to grab a fistful of Jamie’s hair, making him groan. 

“No knickers,” Jamie said, a note of wonder in his voice. “My, my, Dr. Beauchamp, I wasna expecting that, but I’ll no’ be distracted by yer feminine wiles. Go on.” 

Claire huffed her frustration, but didn’t argue. She slackened her grip on Jamie’s hair and wove her fingers gently through his curls as she spoke. 

“Fine,” she said. “I wrote… that I knew that we’d just met, but that I already knew I wanted more time with you.” Jamie planned light kisses down the column of her neck and traced his fingertips along her vulva. 

Sae wet ,” Jamie said approvingly, squeezing the breast that he’d been fondling. “Go on, Sassenach. What did ye write next?” 

“Um,” Claire said, licking her lips. “I think I made a joke about how good you were with your tongue and that I’d be a fool to pass up someone who’s such a cunning linguist.” Claire felt Jamie smile against her neck. He moved both hands to the top of her leggings. 

“Was it just a joke, then?” he asked teasingly. 

“Of course not,” Claire said, biting her lip in anticipation. 

“Aye, good lass,” Jamie said, hooking both thumbs in her leggings before pulling them down her legs, trailing his fingers slowly along her legs as he went. 

“Jamie,” Claire whined as Jamie made his way back up her body. “This is torture.” 

“Is it then?” Jamie asked playfully as his hands found the hem of her sweater. 

Claire lifted her arms as Jamie moved to peel the sweater slowly off of her body, careful to trail his fingers along her hot skin as he went. “Continue,” he whispered. “Ye ken there’s more.” 

Claire hummed and took a deep breath before continuing. “I can’t believe I wrote this part…I said that no one had ever made me come as hard as you,” she said. “And that I wanted more than just for the weekend.” 

“Aye,” Jamie said, moving his hands to her hips and spinning her around to face him. “Ye’ve a filthy mind, Sassenach.” 

“Jamie,” Claire said, looking at him as she smoothed her hands over his chest. “Please.” 

Jamie wrapped his arms around Claire and kissed her hard, making her moan in approval. Jamie moved his arms down and tapped Claire on the back of her thigh as a cue for her to move; she didn’t hesitate before wrapping her arms tightly around his neck and jumping up into his arms. Jamie moaned as Claire wrapped her legs around him, giving Claire a radiant smile as he leaned in to kiss her again. 

“I thought I’d never feel these fine legs wrapped aroun’ me again,” Jamie said with a contented sigh. Moving one hand to her bottom, he added, “And tae think I’d never feel this arse again, Christ.” 

“You’re talking too much, Claire said, wiggling impatiently in his arms. “Take me to the bedroom,” she ordered, biting his lip for good measure. “Now.” 

“Aye,” Jamie said, adjusting Claire in his arms before moving toward the bedroom. “I’d thought ye’d never ask.” 

“Bloody Scot,” Claire said, kissing every bit of his face and neck that she could reach as he walked her across the cottage and into the bedroom.  

Once inside, Jamie tapped on her leg as a signal for her to get down. Placing her on the floor, he pulled her in a tight embrace and kissed her, his tongue tracing her lips in a silent plea for access. Claire complied eagerly, moaning quietly as Jamie cupped her face with his hands. 

Claire moved her hands across Jamie’s body, trailing her fingers down to his abdomen, brushing his skin with her fingers as she traced her way along the top of Jamie’s jeans, stopping when she reached his belt buckle. Jamie sucked in a breath, trembling slightly at her touch. Claire smiled up at him. “My turn,” she whispered, moving her hands to slowly unbutton his shirt. “Shirt first,” she teased. 

Jamie made a growling noise deep in his throat as he watched Claire unbutton his plaid shirt. As she finished undoing the top button, Jamie shrugged his shirt off and tossed it on the ground behind him. Claire fumbled with his belt buckle as he attempted to simultaneously kiss her and peel off his white undershirt. He stumbled slightly as he pulled his shirt over his head, making Claire giggle. 

Jamie kissed her hard as she worked to unbuckle his belt and remove his pants. Her stomach clenched as she felt his rough stubble on her face. She moaned as she placed both of her hands, palms flat, against his chest and pushed, causing Jamie to stumble in his tangled jeans. Both giggling, she helped him step fully out of them before continuing to him toward the wall of the bedroom. “Sassenach,” Jamie said, laughing between kisses as she pinned herself against him. 

Now stripped down to nothing but his boxers, Jamie placed his hands on Claire’s hips and gently walked her backwards toward the bed, eyes locked on hers. She sat down and shimmied up towards the headboard. Jamie paused to divest himself of his boxers before crawling onto the bed after her. Claire, meanwhile, was dragging her gaze down the length of his body and back, smiling when her eyes locked eyes with Jamie. 

Jamie lowered himself to Claire’s breasts and took a nipple in his mouth, sucking hard when she arched upwards toward him. 

“Jamie,” Claire groaned out shakily, the needy sound in her voice surprising her. “Please.” 

“Not yet, mo nighean donn , I have tae taste ye first, if ye’ll recall ” Jamie said, smiling mischievously up at her.

Claire opened her legs wider in anticipation of Jamie’s next move. “That was easy to convince ye,” Jamie teased as he swirled his tongue on her hip bone. Claire grabbed a handful of Jamie’s hair and pushed him down, urging him to continue. 

Jamie held Claire’s legs down and bit her inner thigh, making Claire shriek and tighten her grip on his hair. Smiling against her leg, he re-positioned himself and licked her slowly, pausing as Claire cried out in ecstasy. He flattened his tongue to lick, bite, and suck around her labia before  he finally made his way back to her clit.

Claire sucked in a shallow breath before pulling on Jamie’s hair again. “Jamie,” she said, gulping for air, “...as much as I love that, I need you up here.” 

Jamie raised his head and crawled up to kiss Claire. “Ye taste like the strawberry cheesecake we ate together at the hotel,” he said teasingly.. He leaned down to kiss her nose, rolling his hips against her as he did so. “I missed yer beautiful cunt, Sassenach,” he said, moving to plant kisses along her jaw. “I missed all of ye.” 

Claire gasped and rolled her hips against him, relishing the feel of his hard length against her. She repeated the motion, this time gripping his biceps and digging her nails into him as she did so. “I missed you, too,” she said quietly, her eyes closed in bliss. “And your cock.” 

“Sassenach,” Jamie said. “Claire.” His tone prompted Claire to open her eyes and look at him. She reached up and traced a thumb along his lower lip. “What is it?” she asked. 

“If we do this, I am yers, and yer mine, Claire Beauchamp. I am no’ letting ye go again, aye?” Jamie looked down at Claire with such softness that it squeezed her heart. 

Claire squeezed his biceps and stuck her tongue out to trace his lips. “Yours, James Fraser,” she said, gasping as Jamie positioned his cock at her entrance. She could feel his entire body pulsing with need for her. Claire moaned again, her own blood humming through her veins, desperate for Jamie to be inside of her after weeks of yearning for him. “Then say it, my Sassenach” he said. 

“Say wha – oh,” she smiled, realizing what he was after. She kissed him gently. “I’m yours, and you’re mine , Ja —ahhhh,” Not waiting for Claire to finish her thought, he drove into her hard, making her scream and sigh in turn. 

Claire moved her hand to the back of his neck, tangling his hair in her fingers. Pulling him down, she kissed him hard, winding her legs tightly around him. She rolled her hips, sighing as she did so. 

“God, Claire,” Jamie breathed, stilling himself inside of her, taking a moment to look down at her with an expression of equal parts love and lust.

Claire rolled her hips impatiently against him as she tightened her grip on his hair. Her other hand slid down his back to his arse, squeezing him hard to encourage him to move. “I need you,” she breathed out. “Please.” 

Jamie nodded, pulling his hips back and snapping forward, making them both moan. Claire gasped and thrust her hips up in answer. Jamie drove himself into Claire over and over again until they found their rhythm. 

After several minutes, Claire tightened her grip on him, rambling incoherently between moans. “I can’t - fuck - I can’t get enough of you,” Claire whined, pulling Jamie down for a messy kiss. 

Jamie made a desperate noise and dove into her harder in answer, evidently recalling the last time she’d said that to him. 

Jamie grunted and suddenly moved his hips in a figure eight, keeping his pelvis flush with hers so as to grind deliciously against her clit. Claire screamed, pulling up to bury her face in Jamie’s neck. “Jamie, fuck .” 

Mo sorcha ,” Jamie groaned, his own rhythm faltering as he came closer to the edge of losing himself in her.

Yes, right there, don’t stop, don’t stop, I’m — fuck , I’m — coming,” Claire choked out. Jamie gave her a hard kiss as her orgasm rendered her incapable of further speech. She stilled as her muscles contracted hard around Jamie’s cock. 

Jamie chuckled darkly, making Claire open her eyes to see Jamie staring down at her with a glazed look in his eyes. Claire could see that he was close, so she leaned in toward his ear and coaxed him on. “Come inside of me,” she whispered encouragingly. “I need to feel you.” 

Jamie groaned and began thrusting erratically at her words. He buried his face in Claire’s shoulder and stilled as his own orgasm overtook him, causing him to shake tremulously in her arms. Claire held him close, gasping for air as they slowly returned to themselves. Unwilling to move, she reveled in the weight of Jamie’s body, the feel of his rough chest hair against her skin. She closed her eyes against the tears prickling against her eyelids. 

Jamie lifted his head, reaching a hand up to cup her face. “Claire, he whispered gently. Unable to stop herself, Claire let out a sob and began crying in earnest. “Look at me, my Sassenach,” Jamie implored again. Claire finally forced her eyes open and met his gaze. He kissed her nose and moved his thumb across her cheek to wipe away a stray tear. “It’s okay, my Sassenach, we found each other again,” Jamie said. 

“I love you,” Claire said without thinking. “I know it’s soon, but I’m in love with you.” 

Jamie kissed her as he felt a tear run down his own cheek. “And I love you, my Sassenach.” 

Chapter Text

“Sassenach,” Jamie said, gently shaking Claire’s shoulder. “Claire, I need to say something.”

Claire, who’d been pleasantly dozing and floating along the edge of peaceful sleep, came slowly to the surface. She turned in Jamie’s arms and placed a gentle hand on his jaw. “What is it?” she asked, suddenly worried. 

“Claire, I’m sae sorry,” Jamie said, taking her hand from his face and kissing her palm gently before squeezing her hand. “I was in such a rare temper in the library, an’ then I found yer letter. I couldna think of anything but having ye again, and we didna really talk enough about everything.” 

Claire smiled and felt her chest tighten with emotion. Swallowing hard, she leaned in and kissed Jamie gently. “I accept your apology,” she said, wiggling further to burrow her body further into his. “I'm afraid we were both being so stubborn, and I was so hurt. I missed you every day, but I was too stubborn to contact you because I didn’t want to be in a position to be rejected.” She kissed his nose and dragged her nails gently up and down his arm. “And I understand why you were angry. I just — seeing that look on your face that day — God, I didn’t think I could hurt someone I had just met — I don’t know, I panicked in so many different ways.” 

Jamie gave her a small nod and propped himself up on his left elbow. He began weaving his fingers through Claire’s curls, occasionally stroking her on the forehead with his thumb. Meanwhile, his right hand began tracing meaningless patterns across her breasts, making her entire body melt. He watched Claire for several moments before saying anything. 

Mo nighean donn, I understand. I ken that ye had every right to give me a fake name. I just couldna believe I had gotten ye into my bed in the first place, and by the end o’ the weekend, well, ye didn’t feel like a stranger anymore,” he said, grinning widely as Claire’s eyes popped open. 

"Excusez- moi?  I’m quite sure I got you into bed, Monsieur Fraser, ” she said, dropping into a perfect French accent.

Jamie’s eyebrows went up. “Elle parle français? ”[She speaks French?] Jamie asked. “ Moi aussi, madame. ” [Me too, ma’am]

Claire smiled and leaned up to kiss him. “Vraiment ?” [Really?]

Jamie traced her naked breasts in a spiral pattern until he was circling around her areolas. “Oui, je suis chaud para cette femme .” He made a motion towards her breasts. “ Et Elle etaite bonne… ” he said seriously. “ [I am horny for this woman…and she was very good in bed.]

He leaned down to her breasts and peppered them with delicate - but effective - soft kisses. “Et elle a des seines parfaits. ” [And she has perfect breasts.] 

Claire rolled onto her back, bringing Jamie with her. “Mmm, oui,” she said with a sigh. "Je suis très mouillée pour toi, Monsieur Fraser.” [I am wet for you, Mr. Fraser.]

Nous devons faire quelque chose à ce sujet” [We must do something about this], he said, taking a nipple in between his teeth and biting down gently. 

Claire raised a shaky hand to run her fingers through his curls. “ Je veux jouir, ” [I want an orgasm] she moaned, arching her back to encourage him. 

Jamie smiled up at her as he crawled down her body, kissing her stomach, belly button, and hips. “ Je veux te manger, ” he said between kisses, “. ..et alors…je peux te baiser . [I want to eat you out, and then…I am going to fuck you.] 

Claire moaned again, willing Jamie to continue his ministrations. “ Est-ce que ça te va, Sassenach ?” [Is that okay with you, Sassenach?] Jamie asked, raising his head to look at her. 

Oui, caresser et lécher ma chatte maintenant, Jamie,” Claire begged. [Yes, stroke and lick my pussy now.] Claire smiled and added, “ s’il te plait, Jamie. ” [Please, Jamie] 

Jamie grinned as he placed Claire’s legs over his shoulders and settled himself in position between her thighs. Claire moaned when she felt Jamie’s hot breath on her. “Now, Sassenach,” Jamie said, bringing his mouth to her clit, “I have tae ken if I can make ye scream in French.” 

Claire nearly sobbed with relief when his tongue touched her, closing her eyes in bliss as he finally placed his mouth back on her clit.  “Je suis prête,” she sighed.   [I am ready, feminine form ]