mo gradh

The Very Bones Of You.

This is a continuation of Sonas/Happiness which was supposed to be a one shot but it had a fantastic reaction and actually this instalment will lead directly to another prompt I have received (watch this space!) So please enjoy my own version of events for early Voyager times - *spoilers for fans of the show only* H xxx P.S this is the first time I have ever written in Claire’s voice so please do bear with me if it feels a little off - I’m working it out :-)

I remembered a time in which the cold did not seep so easily into my bones, a time when my calves did not ache with the ascension of a single slope. I looked down at the grassy bank, just visible beneath the clutch of fabric in my hands and frowned. The grass, if it could reasonably be called grass at the length it was, had made various little nicks and cuts across my knuckles and for a moment I considered shrugging out of the woollen dress and continuing upwards in just my shift and stockings and bitter March wind be damned.

“Alright, Sassenach?”

I looked up, still grinning fiendishly at the thought of leaving the heavy garment to the elements and saw Jamie smiling back at me with a mix of amusement and pity. Clearly my laboured breathing had been more pronounced than I realised and I forced my trembling legs back into motion, lunging up the hill with a renewed determination.

“Of course, just … enjoying the view.”

The cheeriness of my tone and the vacant wave across the expanse of valley below us did nothing but cause Jamie to raise one arched red brow in my direction and hold out his hand.

“Let me help ye, lass.”

“Unless you mean to carry me …”

“I probably could. Ye’re a wee wisp of a thing! Did they no’ have proper food in Boston?”

Jamie caught my elbow as I huffed past him and helped me over a sudden rocky patch of earth, his own feet sure and steady on the uneven ground.

“Ha! Flatterer! They had plenty of food and I assure you, I ate plenty of it!”

I immediately regretted trying a form a full sentence as the air left my lungs in a rush of words and seemed to remain empty whilst I gasped, sweat prickling beneath my hair.

“Ach. Weel if ye did, I ken where it’s all gone.”

Jamie grinned with an exaggerated glance at my posterior. I rolled my eyes but didn’t have the energy for further banter. We crested the top of the hill and I all but collapsed onto the nearest boulder, mopping my forehead with my already sweat soaked handkerchief and grimacing. Jamie had settled on the ground before me, like a little boy in class ready for story time from his favourite teacher but his face was carefully blank – like Brianna’s before confessing to some naughtiness when she was a little girl.  

“So, we are now safely in the middle of nowhere - what is it you have to tell me?”

The element of surprise most often worked with Bree and sure enough, colour touched Jamie’s cheekbones that could not be put down to the cold alone.

“As a matter of fact there is something, Sassenach. I should have told ye sooner but … well. I should have and I did not and ye may hold me accountable in whatever manner ye please but I would ask that ye let me finish the telling before ye have your say.”

His head had been bowed but he looked directly at me as he spoke, his eyes fixed on my own and I saw both fear and love, each battling to outdo the other and I noticed that his hands were shaking.

“Jamie, whatever it is … I’m here. We’re here. We can tackle it together.”

He made a sound half way between a laugh and a moan and stood up, his whole body seemed to vibrate with nervous tension and my own leg twitched beneath me in response.

“What is it then?”

“I … Claire, I …”

He came and stood before me, arms held rigidly at his side and his gaze burning through me, furious and wild, his emotions barely contained and for the first time, I was afraid.

“Jamie, please…”

He nodded once, then twice and finally took a breath that drew his shoulders upward before releasing it slowly through his nose. I felt almost ready to scream, panic rising in my chest with every heartbeat but forced myself to stillness, waiting for him to speak.

“I got re-married, Claire. A few years ago when I was released from my debt of servitude in England, when I came back to Lallybroch and Jenny couldna stand my listlessness anymore… it was arranged and I was wed to a widow … and …”

Jamie had started pacing, gesturing with his hands when the words stuck in his throat but I could barely hear what he was saying. The wind seemed to howl around me, through me, blocking my ears and wrenching moisture from my eyes that I did not want to feel against my cheek. Everything seemed to sharpen into focus. The way the grey light of the sky above accentuated the deep bronze threads of his hair and muted the gold. How his shirt pulled against the powerful swell of his shoulders and his lips, slightly chapped with the cold, formed the words he spoke with a delicate precision. The rough feel of his hands on my skin as he cupped my face between them and his eyes, those beautiful, slanted eyes that he had passed down to his daughter, our daughter. Brianna. Oh Bree! To have put her through all that I had only for it to come to this …

As swiftly as thick grey blankets of fog engulf unsuspecting moors in winter, misery covered me like a shroud and I found myself too numb even to weep for all that I had lost and all that I had given away.

“Please say something Claire. I ken ye must be…”

I pushed his hand away and drew upon what little courage I had left.

“We don’t need to talk about it Jamie. If you could ask Ian or one of the boys to see me back to Craigh na Dunn…”

“NO!”

The violence in his voice shook the layers of shock cocooning me from the full impact of his confession but it was his hands on my arms that penetrated it, the sudden heat of him, and the feel of his fingers biting into my flesh. I looked away and closed my eyes, unable to bear the sight of him. Mine and yet not mine at all.

“When we first wed, you were marrit and ye had to make a choice. There is no choice for me Claire, it is you. It has always been you.”

“Jamie, don’t …”

“Look at me.”

I kept my eyes shut and felt the air stir by my cheek a split second before the warmth of his palm settled there again, as gentle as a hummingbirds kiss.

“Look at me, damn ye Claire. See the truth of it for yourself and know what ye are to me, what ye have always been and will always be.”

“I can’t. If I look at you … if … I … I won’t be able to leave you.”

My voice cracked and broke over the words as Jamie lifted me to sitting.

“Please Claire.”

I swallowed and forced myself to look; I didn’t want to but something deeper than want compelled me to it and I moved on instinct for it was all I had the strength to do.

He looked tired and afraid and in the moment before I blinked, I saw his twenty-six year old self, sending me away to protect our un-born child, the same haunted lines of misery in the corner of his mouth. Yes there was love, as there had always been love. But I had been a fool to think it was enough to overcome all other disruptions of life for twenty years. I had been a fool to come back and expect it to all be the same.

“I should not have disrupted your life like this. I had no idea you had … I found no mention of a … a second wife in the history books … but I am glad you know of Brianna. You deserved to know about her.”

My voice shook again but held firm and did not break.  

“I am glad ye came back.”

“You shouldn’t be!”

I shook my head and slapped my hand against the earth in frustration.

“Jamie, you are married!”

“Aye! To you!”

“No … I mean… yes but …”

“You are my first wife Claire, the only woman I have ever truly loved and you think I would cast ye aside for a sham marriage that Jenny concocted? Christ!”

“It’s not about casting me aside! It’s about what is right!”

“THIS IS RIGHT!”

Jamie roared, his face flaming as the fire of his temper lit and caught

“You are my heart Claire! I love the verra bones of ye! Do ye ken what it has been like to live without ye?”

“Of course I fucking know! I’ve done the same as you and more! I raised your child!”

We were nose to nose, our voices raised and echoing off of the ancient stone around us, twenty years of hurt compressed into the clipped sentences we could manage to form coherently.

“Then dinna speak of leaving for I canna bear it!”

“You think I can? What would you have me do?!”

“STAY WITH ME!”

I could not say which of us started it, perhaps it was him, perhaps it was me, but we came together with the fierce and desperate longing that I had remembered from our parting twenty years before. It was not the cautious love-making of Edinburgh, nor the joyous coupling of our days since. We were fighting with the need to consume each other, the metallic taste of blood between our lips and teeth marks blooming from stark white to heavy bruised purple on collar bones. The slap of hands against taught flesh and muscles quivering with the assault of our combined efforts.

The salt of his tears stung the abrasions his teeth had left on my breast as I clutched him to me at the last, the colours of him exploding behind my eyes as my voice rose toward the grey sky above, the noise entwined with his own cry.

“Thoir maitheanas dhomh. Thoir maitheanas dhomh, mo Gradhe.”
 

Jamie’s voice was hoarse, his cheek pressed into the damp earth beside my ear. My fingers stroked the thick tresses of his hair almost without my bidding. The weight of his body pressed me into the earth, our joining an anchor for us both. I clenched my muscles and felt him move, an answering touch at the very core of my being.

“There is nothing to forgive, Jamie.”

“Whatever there was between us is there still Claire, do ye no’ feel it?”

I nodded. Whatever else was true, it was between us still, the force which had been powerful enough to survive war and starvation, even lift the veil of time itself. I love the verra bones of ye he had said and I knew it to be the absolute truth for us both for even separated by two hundred years when all that had remained of him was bones, my heart had pined for its mate and here in his arms was where I felt the most alive I ever had.

Turning my head to face him, I realised that the decision was not mine to make. To say good bye or to move forward was not a choice I had; for I had placed my bets and allowed the chips to fall as they may and I had won more than I had any right to dare hope for. Jamie was alive, I had found him, and we loved one another still. Now I needed only to gather my winnings and carry on.

“What do we do now?”

scotchbutterfly91-deactivated20  asked:

I just found it interesting how Jamie Called her "mo Gradh" twice in this episode; Once while he's comforting her and then the other when she startles the horse. :) Sam said he'd get alot of mileage out of that one ;) Just didn't expect it so quickly. Not that I should be surprised, having read the books and knowing that he fell in love with her last episode ;)

OKAY I TWEETED ABOUT THAT BC I WAS LIKE DID HE JUST SAY MY LOVE DID HE ACTUALLY WHAT ARE MY EARS DECEIVING ME

ok im glad i wasn’t going crazy bc someone answered me and was like no i think he said something in english and i was like no but can he please have just said mo gradh haha bc i need it

i didn’t know he said it twice?! I didn’t hear him saying it when he was comforting her but, again, my tv kept fucking up so I have to watch it again to hear it. ok GOOD yeah I thought it was kind of early for him to be saying that, even though we KNOW he’s already in love with her, bc we’re not supposed to know that yet but like GAHHHHH JAMIE YOU PERFECT SON OF A BITCH 

FYI to everyone else: Mo Gradh means ‘my love’ in Gaelic

youtube

Ishbel MacAskill - Gradh Geal Mo Chridh (Fair Love Of My Heart)  

Time for bed as I listen to a beautiful Gaelic song

Anglicised version below

Bheir mi ò hu ò hò  
’S mi fo bhròn ’s tu gam dhìth  

’S iomadh oidhche fliuch ‘us fuar  
Ghabh mi cuairt 'us mi leam fhìn  
Gus an d’ ràinig mise 'n t-àit’  
Far an robh gràdh geal mo chridh’  

Sèist:  
Bheir mi ò hu ò hò  
Bheir mi ò hu ò hì  
’S mi fo bhròn ’s tu gam dhìth  

Dhèanainn treabhadh dhuit is buan  
Chumainn suas thu gun dìth
Bheirinn as a’ ghreabhal chruaidh
Do mo luaidh teachd an tìr  

Ged nach eil sinn fhathast pòsd’  
Tha mi'n dòchas gum bi
Fhad’ ’s a mhaireas mo dhà dhòrn  
Cha bhith lòn oirnn a dhìth  

English Translation:

Bheir mi ò hu ò hò
I am sorrowful without your company

Many nights wet and cold
I took a trip all by myself
Until I reached the place
Where was my heart’s fair love

Chorus (after each verse):
Bheir mi ò hu ò hò
Bheir mi ò hu ò hì
Bheir mi ò hu ò hò
I am sorrowful without your company

I would plough and reap for you
I would keep you unfailingly
I would like to take from the hard gravel
A livelihood for my love

Although we are not yet married
I hope we will be
As long as I have my two hands
We will want for nothing