Guardian Scotsman | Chapter 2
Continuation of this: Guardian Scotsman
Anonymous said: Will you be carrying on with your murtaugh raising Claire fic?💜
Anonymous said: Are u going to carry on the fic with murtaugh being Claire’s father figure?❤️
The sun backlit the white of the Lallybroch Estate from behind in a familiar welcoming glow. Murtagh felt his muscles sag in relief at the sight of home. The lass was still slumped against his chest in deep sleep.
“Lass,” he said, jostling her shoulder. No response. “Lass,” he tried again with slightly more force.
A moan and grumble of annoyance came from the sleepy child, who promptly turned attempting to bury her head deeper into his tunic. Instead of blocking out the light and fading back into sleep, she tilted, losing her balance and started to fall from the saddle.
“Ifrinn!” Murtagh exclaimed as he quickly flung his arm around the child to keep her upright. Her eyes popped open wide with the shock of the near fall as a shriek escaped her lips. Her fingers dug into his forearm trying with all her might to find her balance.
“Easy there, lass. I’ve got ye. Ye’re safe.” He said soothingly, as he felt her heart hammering against his chest.
Short, curt nods were the only response Murtagh received from the lass.
“Y-yes?” She breathed out, her voice hoarse yet shaky.
“Are ye ready to dismount? We’re home.”
Claire turned from Murtagh and looked forward at the towering estate, chimneys smoking and animals rustling in their morning routine.
“This is where you live?”
“Aye,” Murtagh smiled at the obvious awe in her voice. “The house should be rousing as we speak. I ken Mrs. Crook will have breakfast underway and Ellen will want ye to get cleaned up and more comfortable before eating.”
“Okay.” She replied nervously. After a second’s hesitation, she turned back to him and asked, “What’s your last name and Mr. Brian’s? I can’t very well call any of you by your given name, it isn’t proper or polite during first introductions.”
Murtagh let out a bark of laughter. “Proper, eh? Lass ye’re in the highlands we dinna care too much for English properness.”
Claire scowled. “I don’t feel comfortable simply calling any of you by your given names. Especially a lady such as Mr. Brian’s wife.”
“Weel if ye are insisting all that much on being proper,” Murtagh said, wiping an errant tear of laughter from his face, “Our last names are all Fraser. If ye’re wanting to be formal, Brian is Laird Fraser and his wife is Lady Fraser.”
Her eyes widened in shock. “Laird? As in ruler of these lands?”
“Och, aye, that he is. But dinna let that worry ye o’er much. Brian is a good man, and his wife is the strongest woman with a kind heart ye’ll ever meet. They’ll no harm ye. Not a single person who lives on this estate, nor the folk who live on his land will dare harm ye whilst ye’re under his protection.”
Claire gave a short nod and looked back to see the Laird dismounting and handing his horse off to a stable boy.
“You think he’ll really protect me?”
“Aye, lass. I ken wi’ all I am that he will.”
“Do you…” she trailed off, looking down at the pommel and ignoring Murtagh’s outstretched hand to help her down.
“Do I what, Claire?”
Her head whipped up at her name and looked at the gruff man’s kind eyes. “Do you think he’ll help me get home? Or find my Uncle?”
Murtagh let out a sigh and grabbed Claire by the waist, hoisting her off his horse.
“I believe he’ll try to help ye as best he can, lass.”
She sighed and let the matter drop for the moment.
A woman with flowing red hair stood in the doorway to the estate, her stomach round with child and face bright with joy.
“Brian!” She exclaimed, catching the Laird’s attention. A beaming smile broke out on the man’s face as he ran across the dooryard and scooped the woman up into a romantic embrace. Claire felt her cheeks heat and she looked down, giving the couple privacy. A moment later, the woman had strode down the steps and lifted her chin.
“Hello dear,” she said, her eyes kind and voice the soft comfort only a mother could bring.
“Hello Lady Fraser,” Claire said quickly.
Ellen laughed, “Ach none of that, just call me Ellen. What should I call ye?”
The warm smile Ellen gave Claire did not go unnoticed by either man. It was a smile of acceptance, of love and concern; a smile of genuine affection. Murtagh released a breath he hadn’t realized he had been holding as he watched Ellen take Claire’s hand and lead her into the house. Brian thumped Murtagh on the back.
“Ellen’ll see that she’s comfortable. Dinna fash yerself man!”
Murtagh shook off his cousin and gruffly said, “I’m no worried!”
Brian let out a laugh and followed his wife into the house.