Title: Entangle
Author: Amy Fortuna (amyfortuna@yahoo.com)
Rating: R for violence and m/f sex.
Characters: Kate, Duncan, Methos
Summary: What happened to Kate after she became Immortal?
Spoilers: For Endgame.
Notes: Yeah, I know this isn't slash. Shut up. It's just an idea I couldn't get rid of.

****

I saw him standing above me. Some odd inkling of danger woke me up and I looked at him in the starlight, holding a long knife in his hands. Then I knew. He was going to kill me. His bride, on our wedding night -- why?

I flinched as the knife sank deep into my chest. As I tried to say faintly, why, why, I love you, why, on our wedding night, my mind went black and I faded into oblivion.

The waking was more frightening than the death. I could suddenly feel again. Blood trickled down my neck. My blood. And my face crumpled. I stared across the room at my husband, whimpers of fear escaping my mouth. What was this? What was I? What was he?

"Don't be frightened, Kate," he said, looking up from bloodstained hands. "You're Immortal, we both are...."

My faint whimpers turned to cries of fear and anguish. Immortal! I had heard of them, the folk who never died, but who could never have children.

"No!" I gasped, and stumbled out of the bed, leaving a trail of blood. My shift was deeply stained with it. I felt like a murderess for a moment, hiding her deed.

On the doorstep of our home, I paused, glancing back. He was standing there, hands stained with my blood, and I shrank from him in absolute terror. He was a monster, no husband of mine. I ran into the rain, into the night. Feeling the chain he'd fastened about my neck bump against my skin, I yanked it off, throwing it to the ground.

The river. I collapsed into the water, limply. The current caught me. I was drowning, but I didn't care. Water filled my lungs quickly. I let it, didn't even struggle. If the man I loved was such an evil thing as an Immortal, if I was one of them, surely, I thought, if I killed myself, maybe God would forgive and I would still go to heaven.

It didn't matter either way. The world went black for the second time in ten minutes, and when I came to again, I was lying on the bank of the river in my white shift. It was morning.

****

My clothing had been tattered by the rocks I had crashed into during the night, but I was whole, perfect as the day I was born, no scar or blemish on my body anywhere. I dropped back to the earth and let myself weep.

I was roused by a sudden sickening feeling that swept through my body, and an awareness that someone was near. I found I could move and sat up.

It was a young man who walked around the curve of the river toward me, every sense on alert and a long pale sword held out before him. He saw me and his face did not relax.

"Who are you?" he said, as if he had a perfect right to. I remembered my state of undress and tried vainly to cover myself up.

"Kate, sir," I said, trying to be courteous. "Kate Mac- --"

Well, I wasn't going to take the name of Kate MacLeod, anyway. "Just Kate," I finished.

He had reached me by this time. "You're not a Challenge, are you?" he asked.

I shook my head, bemused. "I do not know what you speak of, sir," I said. Only then did he put away his sword and reach down to help me up.

"Just-Kate," he said, looking me over. "I'm Benjamin Adams. And I assume you've just become Immortal."

"I suppose so," I said. "If that's what you mean happens when a person throws herself into a river and can't die."

His eyebrows went up, just a little. "Throwing oneself into a river can play hell on the body, even if it doesn't die every time. I'll bet you're still aching."

Now that he mentioned it, I began to feel my very bones aching all over and a strange thrumming noise going on in my head.

"Yes, I think I am," I answered.

"Come, then, let's get you to some decent clothes, and to my medicine bag," he said.

****

Benjamin Adams was a doctor. An Immortal too, yet no one would have guessed. That began to give me hope that I too could pass undetected through life, without becoming known.

He was my first teacher. For all his seeming youth, he knew ten thousand tricks and I could never outwit or outguess him. He taught me sword fighting, how to keep the sword hidden on my body at all times, and the rules of the Game.

Taking heads sounded horrific. I quickly made a decision that I would never do it unless there was no other choice. Benjamin heartily approved of that, but cautioned me to keep in practice with the sword anyway.

I traveled with Benjamin to London, where we lived for several years, domestic, but unmarried. Such a thing was shocking to me, but I could not marry him, for I was already legally wed, though I did not desire the relationship. In all that time Benjamin never took a single head. And he never told me how old he really was. Something in me suspected he was ancient indeed, but he never would give me a straight answer.

I had almost completely forgotten Duncan MacLeod. I now know that I never truly loved him, that he wooed me to the beguiling of my own senses.

Benjamin and I almost never discussed the day he had found me on the riverbank. I had grown ashamed of my too-swift reaction to my first death, and he simply never talked about it.

That was all about to change.

"They say a man named Duncan MacLeod is in London this week," Benjamin said to me one morning, casually. "He's one of us, and I have been warned to watch out for him."

The glass that slipped out of my fingers smashed unheeded on the floor.

"Duncan MacLeod?" I whispered. "Duncan MacLeod?"

"Kate, what's wrong?" He was on his feet in an instant.

My eyes welled up with too-sudden tears. I stooped to pick the pieces of glass with my fingers. "Duncan is the man who killed me for the first time."

I cut my finger on a piece of glass and watched it pulse out blood for a second, then grow faint and heal. I looked up at Benjamin. "He was also my husband."

I heard his sharp exclamation overhead, and then he knelt beside me, helping me pick up the broken glass.

"What do you want?" he said. "Do you want to face him? Do you want me to face him?"

"No!" I shook my head. "I want to stay as far away from him as possible."

He took my hand. "That's what we'll do then."

The next week we traveled to Italy.

We stayed another two years in Italy. Benjamin was fluent in Italian, so I learned it from him. I also began to learn of the effect my body had on men other than just the two I had known.

And one day I questioned Benjamin about something I had pondered many times.

"Immortals cannot have children," he told me.

"How do you know this?" I asked. "Are you sure?"

"Certain," he said. "I have never fathered a child, and I know of no Immortal, male or female, who has had children of his or her own."

"But," I started and then fell silent, wondering again. "If I had not been killed for the first time, could it have been that I could have had children, like a normal woman?"

He shook his head. "I don't know," he said. And we fell silent again on the topic.

****

One evening, as I was walking home, sword carefully concealed at my side, I felt the strange sickening that signaled the approach of another of us, and reached for my sword.

The Immortal who found me had the appearance of a middle-aged man. He smiled coldly when he saw who I was.

"Easy pickings," he mocked. "Maybe I can think of other things to do with that body before I destroy it."

"Why not afterward?" I snapped back, and we joined swords.

It was a hard fight. I made a mental note to never wear heavy dresses again but rather something light that would not trip me up.

He wasn't even trying to fight, I could tell. I had learned from Benjamin Adams, though, and I could exploit all those little tricks, while still letting him think I was easy to take.

I drew him out into the darkened fields, under the cover of the gathering storm, and we fought in the dimness of the crops, slashing, parrying and cross-cutting. Much to my own surprise, I found I could keep up.

The end, when it came, was more of an anti-climax than anything else. He slipped. Lost his balance, and fell. I cut downward without thinking, and before I could stop myself, I had separated head from body.

The Quickening was strange and beautiful. It caught me into itself, and I would swear that I danced in the fields, laughing with some kind of maddening joy. So this was what drove Immortals to take heads, this reward of knowledge and power. Glorious!

And when it was over, I sank back into myself, limp with the power and wonder of it. I still do not know how I made it back home. I do remember the worried look on Benjamin's face when I slipped through the door, my skirts tattered and bloodstained. But there was triumph on my face.

"It's wonderful," I found myself saying.

"Are you all right?" he asked.

"Oh, yes!" I gasped out. Slipped over to him, letting my clothes fall to the floor. "Better than all right."

"Is that so," he whispered, a hand reaching out from his seat on the bed to tease at my breast.

"Uh-hum," I whispered, straddling him and pulling his hair, playfully. Somehow we got his clothes off, together, and before long we were kissing, he was in me, and I was back in that flying place I'd touched in the Quickening.

In the morning, we spent some time talking. He told me, in no uncertain words, that I, having now taken one Quickening on my own, was ready to go out and try to live as an Immortal by myself. He could not forever be my teacher.

I heard the words, I understood them, but inside my heart was breaking again, in a different way. I knew he did not really love me as a man loves a woman forever, but I had hoped that this would not end so soon.

But I smiled with new-found courage, and we parted soon after that, he to somewhere else in Italy, me to the New World to make a life on my own.

I suppose, looking back at all this, I have succeeded. Sometimes I miss my first teacher, but I have no idea where he is.

This is one thing I do have an idea about: someday I will be the one to kill Duncan MacLeod. He was the one who destroyed the chance I had to have children and a normal life. He needs to pay for that.

END