Seek, and You Shall Find: Chapter 7
Her skin was smooth, the finest of foreign silk. A scent–her scent– attacked his nostrils, fine and musky. Earthy, but undoubtedly feminine. Her thin fingers caressed his back, steadily tracing the scars that marred the skin. Long legs were hooked loosely around his own, small feet rubbing gently against his calves.
She assaulted his senses. She was the air around him, surrounding him with her touch, her taste. He couldn’t escape, didn’t want to.
“Claire…” He moaned into her ear, lips brushing the soft shell.
She rolled her hips against his in response– an entirely new sensation for Jamie. A quiet giggle whispered from her lips, much like the one from earlier that evening. “Yes, love?”
Love? Surely, he must be dreaming. Only in dreams did wishes come true so thoroughly.
“I… I want ye, Claire.”
Her legs rose, and hooked around his thighs. She pushed her hips again until their centers were flush. They groaned in unison. “I’m here, Jamie. Have me.”
“I… I don't… I think…”
“Don’t think. Just do. Please?” Her heels dug into his arse, urging…
So he did, pressing into her slowly… slowly… until all he could feel was warm slickness. He crushed himself to her, the hardness of her nipples poking into his chest.
He began to move without thought, a motion as old as time itself.
“Jamie… Jamie, please…” Her voice rasped, the shallow breaths interrupting her words. “Oh, God…”
She seemed to glow, as if lit from within by a candle. The world around them darkened; she was the only light.
“Claire, I canna…”
Jamie woke, surrounded by hay and shit, cock in hand. Of course it was just a dream…
Jamie kept watch of Claire from afar. Perhaps it was the embarrassment after his dream that caused him to keep his distance. For weeks, he could not speak to her, could not look her in the eye without flashes of pale legs and full breasts filling his vision.
She didn’t seem to notice, though. She kept herself busy, surrounding her in the greenery that was the Leoch gardens. He saw her mind work as she contemplated each plant, each herb. Her lips moved quickly, whispering secrets to herself.
Sometimes she was joined by Geillis Duncan, wife of the local fiscal. Most times, though, she was alone. In those times, he felt compelled to join her, reach out to her. But her never did. His excuses came readily: he did not want to interrupt her, he was embarrassed by his dream.
Deep within his mind, a subconscious part, though, he knew the truth. He felt strongly about this woman, an emotion pulsed through him that he had never felt before.
He didn’t want to admit it, didn’t know it fully himself. But it frightened him.
The stream bubbled softly, lulling Jamie into a gentle daze. Thoughts escaped him– dreaming without falling asleep.
This was his place, a place he came to be alone. It was far enough from the castle grounds that others didn’t stumble upon it. It was truly nothing special, just a clearing beside a brook. But Jamie held it in high regard; he told his secrets to this earth.
“Jamie.” He started at his name. He knew that voice, but he turned anyway. Claire stood amongst the trees, halfway hidden between two trunks. A faerie, she seemed to be, comfortable and glowing in the nature surrounding her.
“Mistress Beauchamp, hello. How did ye find me out here?”
She walked over to him as she spoke. “Well, I saw you, and I called your name. But I suppose you didn’t hear me. So, I followed the red hair.” She motioned to the mop in question.
“Oh, aye? Did ye need anything, then? Please, sit.” Jamie moved over, giving her enough room to perch on the rock beside him.
“Actually, yes. I wanted to speak with you.”
“What is it, Mistress?”
“You’ve been avoiding me.” It wasn’t a question; it was a statement of fact.
“Avoiding ye? No, no, that’s no…”
She continues as if he hadn’t spoke. “I was just curious as to why. I mean… I hope I haven’t offended you in any way.”
“No, Sassenach, ye haven’t.”
“Is it your… umm… your lady? Did you not want her to get the wrong… idea about us? I would hate to get in the way of two people in love.”
He had no idea what she was speaking of. Love? “Wait. I’m sorry, Claire. My lady?”
“Oh… umm… yes. The pretty girl with the yellow hair?”
“You mean Laoghaire?”
“I suppose. I saw the two of you in the alcove by the kitchens.”
Jamie would have been grateful to disappear. He could feel his cheeks burn red. She saw that? “Oh… ummmm… no, no. That's… that isn’t my lady. That didn't… that wasn't… anything.”
He couldn’t look Claire in the eye. “So, you just kiss girls without meaning it?”
“N-no! It’s just… she kissed me! And then… I just… I didn't…”
“You didn’t stop her?”
God, what did she think of him now? A man with no morals? A man that takes advantage of women? He chanced a peek at her. A glint sparkled in her eyes, one side of her mouth turned up.
She was teasing him. Oh, Jesus.
“Yer mocking me.”
She didn’t deny it. “A bit,” she said through a chuckle.
He felt a sharp elbow in his ribs. “Oh, come on. Just a bit of teasing. I was serious about you avoiding me, though.”
He couldn’t tell her the truth. “It’s just been… a hectic couple of weeks, is all. I’m sorry.”
“No, no! You’re fine! I just wanted to make sure I hadn’t upset you in anyway.”
“No,” he reassured with a smile. “Ye hadn’t.”
She grinned back before turning back to the stream. They both watched the water in silence. What was she thinking?
He watched her from the corner of his eyes. She sat as a statue, except for her hands. He watched her fingers twirl the gold band on her left hand, a hypnotizing steady rhythm.
“Ye miss him, don’t ye?”
“Hmm?” She followed his line of sight. “Oh, yes. Very much.”
“I’ll listen, if ye want to talk of him. I ken it helps sometimes.”
She turned, staring straight at him. A deep sadness clouded her face, her eyes a sunset disappearing into a starless night.
“His name was Frank…”