"Kith and Kin"
Summary: Richie's introduction to Tessa's family doesn't go smoothly.
Author's Note: Sequel to "Hearth and Home". Richie is only fifteen; takes place in season one after "Family Tree".
Warning: This story will contain spanking of a teenager. If this offends, PLEASE don't read it.
Disclaimer: I don't own these characters, nor will I ever. I am simply writing this story purely for my personal enjoyment.
Chapter 1: Addressing an Issue
Duncan MacLeod sighed.
Who ever it was that said Immortals couldn't get headaches obviously hadn't ever had to deal with a fifteen year old.
"Come on, Mac," Richie begged, pleading. "Please?"
"I've already told you, Rich," the Immortal said, "and my answers still the same. No."
Richie groaned. "Why not?" he asked, flopping down onto the sofa dejectedly. "It's not like I haven't ever gone out of town with Gary and the guys before."
"Don't go there, Rich," Duncan told him, firmly. "You are not about to go spend the weekend in Seattle with guys eighteen and nineteen years old without there being a responsible adult present."
"But I'm…" Richie started to say, but then stopped himself. He had been about to argue that he was eighteen, but that simply wasn't true now.
Duncan nodded. "That's right, Rich," he told him. "You're just fifteen years old and you're not going. That's final."
Richie glared at him, and then muttered something rather unflattering under his breath.
Duncan, however, had very sharp hearing. "That had better not have been what I thought it was, young man," he told the boy, sternly. "Not unless you'd like to find sitting down very uncomfortable."
Richie blushed. "Sorry, Mac," he said, sincerely.
Duncan sighed, again. "That may be part of the problem right there, Rich," he told the boy.
Richie looked confused. "What is?" he asked, trying to figure out what it was he said.
"Mac," Duncan told him. "It's just a little too informal an address."
"Okay," Richie said, "you wanna run that by me in English, Big Guy?"
Duncan grinned. "I mean," He said, "that I think because you call me "Mac" you forget just who I am."
"I know who you are, Mac," Richie told him, confused.
"Do you, Rich?" Duncan asked him, raising an eyebrow. "Really? Because I don't think you'd have called me what you did just now if you had. "Mac" is a nickname, and one you'd use for a boss or friend."
"You are my boss," Richie told him.
"No, Rich," Duncan said, seriously, "I'm not and I'm not your friend, either."
"You're not?" Richie asked, hurt written all over his face.
Duncan sighed a third time. Sometimes with Richie, you had to go the LONG way around to get to your main point. "Rich," he asked, "what's my last name?"
"MacLeod," Richie told him, still not quite following where this was going.
Duncan nodded. "And what's your last name?" he asked him, pointedly.
"Ryan…" Richie started to say, and then blushed. "I mean, MacLeod." Understanding finally dawned in his eyes.
Duncan smiled. "That's right, Rich," he said, gently. "When we signed those adoption papers, I stopped being JUST your boss and friend. I also became your father, and I take that role far more seriously than I do the other two. When you call me "Mac" I think you forget that I AM YOUR FATHER." He pronounced that last statement slowly and firmly.
"So," Richie said, "you don't want me to call you "Mac" anymore?"
Duncan nodded. "That right," he said, gently. "From now on, when you address me I want you to use something that in some way means 'father'." He hadn't meant to push this issue yet, due to the fact that parental-child relationship was so new and they were both still getting used to their new roles, but he knew it was probably best to get it over with now rather than wait 'til later.
"Like what?" Richie asked, curious. Was there even a word out there that would fit the Immortal?
"That's up to you, Rich," Duncan told him. "Whatever you feel comfortable with is fine, as long as it means 'father'."
Richie grinned. "So, I guess 'the old man' is out, huh?" he asked, smirking.
Duncan rolled his eyes. "What do you think?" he asked, reaching over to ruffle the boy's reddish-blonde curls.
Richie laughed, dodging. "If I can't go to the concert with them," he asked, "can I still at least go over to Gary's tonight with Angie?"
"Rich," Duncan said, "it's Friday, of course you can go. Just be home by your curfew."
Richie's face brightened and he hopped up. "I will," he promised. "I'm gonna go use the office phone and call Angie!"
"Hey, Rich," Duncan called after him.
Richie stopped in mid-step. "Yes, Sir?" he asked, turning to look at the Immortal.
"I love you," Duncan told him, sincerely.
"I know," Richie said, smiling. He then turned and headed down into the office.
Duncan sighed, again. He felt a hand on his shoulder and looked up to find his beautiful lover staring at him. 'Hey, Tess," he greeted her, smiling.
Tessa wasn't fooled. After twelve years with the man, she knew him pretty well. "Give him some more time, Duncan," she told him, gently. "He just isn't ready, yet."
"I know," he said, gently, "but that doesn't mean I'm going to stop telling him."
Tessa smiled. "Good," she said, sitting down on his lap with a sigh.
"So," he asked, "redirecting" the conversation, "what did Jeanette have to say?" He was referring to the two hour phone conversation she had just finished with her mother in France.
"Quite a lot," Tessa told him, smiling. "It seems she and Papa are celebrating their fiftieth wedding anniversary next week and they would like us to come. Apparently, it's going to be…how would Richie put it...oh yes, a 'big shindig'."
Duncan smirked. Her French accent sometimes made quoting American slang sound weird, but he wasn't about to laugh. Not if he valued his manhood, that is. "Do you want to go?" he asked her.
Tessa smiled and he knew the answer before she said anything. "Yes, I would," she told him. "It has been a couple of years since we last visited, and I would love for them to meet Richie."
Duncan nodded. "I'll make the arrangements," he said. "We'll leave first thing Sunday."
Tessa nodded. "Do you think Richie will mind terribly?" she asked. "Perhaps it is too soon?"
"He's going to have to meet them sometime, love," Duncan told her, shrugging. "Might as well be now. Don't worry, I have a feeling our bonnie lad will make quite the impression."
Yes, but will that be a good thing…or a bad one?