Disclaimer: I don't own Burn Notice, all that is written here is just for fun.

A/N: A series of one shots telling the tale of Michael's time in Ireland inspired by events in Dodging Raindrops.

WHO WE ONCE WERE.

Chapter one.

A Night in Amsterdam.

The Leidseplein District of Amsterdam, Feb 1999

On a cold, dark, stormy February evening in the heart of Amsterdam, a tiny auburn haired woman strode along the Weteringschans next to a busy dual carriageway. She walked with a long purposeful stride, ignoring the water that splashed up on her bare legs, her attention firmly fixed on the church-like structure ahead of her. A car horn honked. A man leaned out of the car window shouting something to her, but she didn't react. She knew what was causing the stares of the few people on the street as well as the occasional passing motorist.

She was dressed to impress. A little black dress which left little to the imagination, black four inch stiletto heels to give her more height and a matching clutch bag made up her total ensemble. Even in Amsterdam, her appearance was such to cause comment with no coat or wrap; her only acknowledgement of the weather was a clear plastic umbrella. This was a mission where she needed to appear the complete opposite of what she really was.

Reaching the club's car park, she paused for a moment. Closing the umbrella, she threw it into a nearby bin and then ran her fingers through her hair, turning the long curling locks into a tousled mess. Taking a long look at the magnificent gothic exterior to the club, she stepped forward towards the entrance. The purposeful stride was gone, replaced by the loose clumsy stroll of a party girl who had had a little too much to drink.

Her dress and good looks got her through the front door without having to queue and after paying her entry fee she made her way inside, nearly falling through the doors. Giving the nearest bouncer a drunken smile, she made it on to the dance floor.

Slipping nimbly through the crowd of writhing and swaying bodies, she made her way towards the stunning stain glass window, which was the back drop to the stage at the back of the first floor of the club. It was the narrow door that led behind the stage that held her attention. As she gyrated on the dance floor, she studied the man on guard duty. He looked like the typical rent-a-thug that she had seen the world over, large muscles and more than likely a little dim witted.

While she kept moving to the music, her hand went into her little black clutch bag and came out holding a small syringe. Flicking the protective cap off the end of the needle, she staggered off the dance floor, stumbling in her high heels and giggling at what somebody had apparently said to her in crowd.

Seeing an obviously drunk tiny woman staggering towards him in a barely there dress, the guard stepped forward to stop her from falling on her face. As his hands caught hold of her shoulders, he felt a sharp pain in his leg and everything began to get hazy. For such a delicate looking woman, she was stronger than she looked. She pushed the sedated man, who had a good eight inches and a hundred pounds on her, back to the door and propped him up against the wall.

A quick look around and she was satisfied that, with the help of the dark room and flashing lights, she hadn't drawn attention to herself. Making quick work of picking the lock to the door, she slipped backstage. Taking a deep breath she looked around, her focus on the voices she could hear coming from a room at the far end of the backstage area. Slipping her shoes off her feet, she left them by the door and reached into her clutch bag, this time bringing out an H &K compact handgun. For a second she paused to look at the gun, remembering when she got it. It had been a Christmas present and this was going to be her first chance to fire it in anger. Running her fingertips, along the barrel she couldn't help the beaming smile that made her lips part in anticipation of what she expected to be an eventful evening. Flicking off the safety, she moved forward towards the voices. The thought of a little violence and hopefully some gun play gave her a warm tingling feeling in the pit of her stomach.

She pressed her ear against the door and listened, her lips thinning in frustration. The occupants were speaking in Dutch.

Okay I can't understand a word. But I can try to make out how many are in there.

The sound of a fist hitting flesh caused her to throw caution to the wind and she flung the door open and stepped inside with her gun held out before her.

"Karen, I wondered when you would make an appearance." The speaker stood in the middle of the room. He too held a gun; his was pointed at the figure lying on the floor at his feet.

"Let him go," Karen ordered, her blue-green eyes fixed on her target.

"No. You drop your gun or Jan here," he kicked the figure on the floor with the toe of his shoe. "Gets bullet in the brain and you get to answer my questions."

Karen took a moment to study the room. Gerard Hendrickson was the man standing over Jan. On Hendrickson's left was one of his bodyguards and on his right standing in the background was his business partner. The mystery man they had been trying to find.

"Now, Karen!" Hendrickson gave her a condescending smile. "Or your boyfriend dies." To make his point, he cocked his gun.

Instead of obeying the command, she looked down at her fallen lover. He looked back at her, his intense stare flickering to the bodyguard and the man hanging back in the corner. She gave him a barely perceptible nod.

"He's not my boyfriend," she smiled and turned her gun away from Hendrickson and fired towards the bodyguard.

As Karen finished speaking, the man on the floor turned slightly and delivered a hard kick to the back of Hendrickson's knee. The man's leg locked up in agony and he collapsed to the floor. Jan leapt to his feet, jerking the gun out of Hendrickson's hand.

When he saw his boss fall to the floor, the bodyguard brought up his own gun only to drop it as a bullet entered his shoulder. Karen had fired hitting the bodyguard high in the left shoulder.

"Fi!"

The woman who was known throughout the Amsterdam underworld as Karen Walker moved fast, ducking down as a bullet hit the wall above her head. Jan who now had Hendrickson's gun fired at the business partner, dropping the man to the ground with a head shot.

"Run!" he ordered. Reaching the door, he pushed her through it ahead of him.

"What happened, Michael? You were supposed to wait for me." Fiona Glenanne, aka Karen Walker, demanded as they ran towards the door leading back to the dance floor.

"Yeah, well, Hendrickson called and wanted a meeting." Michael Westen's American accent replaced the Dutch one he had been using as Jan. He opened the door, slipping back into the club with Fiona close behind him still trying to put her high heels back on.

Together the two of them pushed their way through the crowded night club. The loud music had hidden the sounds of the shots. As they reached the doors, four men moved into sight blocking their escape.

"Four," Fiona hummed. "It's almost a fair fight."

Michael caught hold of her arm. "We can't afford to have the police involved."

"You're no fun, Michael," she grinned at him, pulling off a shoe.

Before he could stop her, she stepped in front of him holding her shoe by the toe. Without warning, she caught the first man with the steel stiletto heel of her shoe. He dropped like a stone with a neat little hole in the centre of his head. The second man she went for howled when she stamped on his instep with her still shod foot and followed up by delivering a blow to the back of his head with the heel of the other shoe.

Michael had already put one man down with a blow to his throat and the second was about to lose consciousness as Michael had him in a head lock. As the last man sank to the floor, a cry went out and they realized their escape was not going to be as easy as they had first hoped.

Dashing out on to the street, Michael turned to the left and they began to sprint away from the club. Fiona had kicked off her one remaining shoe and was now bare foot. Behind them, they could hear Hendrickson shouting for his men to give chase. Passing a small park, Michael led the way on to a side street. His plan was to lose their pursuers on the crowded narrow streets.

Unfortunately, the heavy rain and thunder storm had emptied the normally busy streets and with no crowds to hide in they soon found themselves beside one of the many canals that ran through the city. A quick look up and down and Michael began to silently curse. They had come across what must have been the only part of a canal not lined with cafes. Behind them, Hendrickson's men were closing in. Looking to the left and right he could see more men outflanking them.

Fiona could read the situation as well as Michael. She pulled out her hand gun.

"Well, it's been nice knowin' ya, McBride."

She aimed at the men coming towards them along the canal footpath.

"No! No Fi!" Michael grabbed her wrist and yanked her towards the water.

"Michael!" she shrieked. "No, I..."

She got no further as he launched them both into the inky black waters of the Prinsengracht Canal.

Michael kept a tight hold of Fiona's wrist, forcing her under the water. He kicked out against the fast moving current, his eyes focused on searching for the opposite canal wall. Over head, they could hear the muffled sound of bullets hitting the water, but Michael had taken them deep enough for the bullets to have lost their momentum.

By the time he had got them to the far side, his hand feeling along the wall, Fiona was no longer struggling. Surfacing he looked around. Hendrickson's men were still running along the other side of the canal looking for a way to cross. Fiona's head fell limply against his shoulder; his only feeling of relief was the chattering of her teeth.

"I'm sorry. Hold on, Fi. I'll get us out."

He was freezing himself, but he'd had training years ago and his body had been conditioned to sudden immersion in freezing water. Holding her in his arms, he bobbed up and down in the water a couple of times before managing to get her up onto the footpath. Hauling himself up after her, he caught her up in his arms. Holding her close, he vigorously rubbed her arms and her sides until she began to cough.

"Y-you s-sh-shoulda le-lemme sh-shoot 'em." She stared up at him, her eyes shining under the dim street lights.

"And we would have both died," he replied calmly.

"At l-least w-we w-w-wouldn't have ta freeze ta d-death," she complained, wrapping her arms around his soaking wet body trying desperately to get warm.

"We can't stay here."

Michael was already looking for somewhere to hide. Fiona would not be able to go far in her present condition and it wouldn't be long before Hendrickson's men found a bridge to cross the canal.

He spotted the wooden front of a run-down building sitting nestled between luxury apartment blocks. Taking her hand, he led her over to the door.

"Keep watch," he ordered, plucking a hairpin out of her lank wet hair.

"I've lost me gun, Michael. Tha one yer bought me fer Christmas."

"I'll buy you another one. Just keep watch." He was struggling with the large ancient padlock; his fingers were numb and shaking almost as badly as Fiona was as she stood keeping watch for their pursuers.

"C'mon... D-do you want me ta do it?" She glanced down at where he knelt, his face twisted in concentration as the padlock finally clicked open.

"There," he smiled, as he took her hand and pulled her inside.

They quickly barricaded the door and moved deeper into the building. Passing through a rather bare reception area, they came to another door. Michael made a half hearted effort to pick the lock and then, out of patience, he smashed his hand through one of the glass panels.

"Mi-Micheal what a-are you doing?"

But he wasn't listening to her, he wanted to get deeper into the building before Hendrickson caught up with them. Only once they were through the door, she pulled him round to face her.

"L-let me look at your ar-rrm," she stuttered the words out. After a close inspection of his hand and wrist, she decided it was bloody but not too deep. "W-we n-need to find a f-first aid kit and I'll b-bandage it."

"There was one in the other room," he muttered. "Really, Fi, it's not necessary."

She didn't answer, just stared up at him with her arms crossed over her chest, the only noise the soft chattering of her teeth. With an angry huff, he went back into the reception area and grabbed the first aid kit from off the wall.

"Here," he held the box out to her.

"Stop sulking. If- if they c-come inside we can har- hardly hide with you d-dripping blood everywhere."

Five minutes later, she had picked out all the slivers of glass embedded in his hand and bandaged his hand and wrist.

"There," she smiled up at him. "Now we can continue."

They moved deeper into the building, until they found a small side room. Hearing somebody banging on the doors, they sunk down low and waited hoping Hendrickson's men would move on. Neither one of them was really up for another fight or chase through the city centre. They waited for an hour huddled against each other before they were sure they were safe.

"Michael, there has to be somewhere more comfortable to stay than this." She was cold and wet and they both stank of canal water. Getting to her feet, she urged Michael get up too.

"We're better off staying here until morning." He grudgingly followed her towards the door.

"I'm not saying we should leave. I'm saying we should find somewhere more comfortable. Maybe one of these offices has a couch or some..." She came to a stop in the doorway to the next room, her words stuck in her throat.

Stuck behind her, Michael reached around her and hit the light switch and he too stared at the sight before them.

"Well, it's not a couch," he commented as they stared wide-eyed at the row upon row of plastic wrapped mattresses lining the long walls.

"But at least we'll be comfortable." Fiona was still trembling, but managed a weak smile. "Now if they just had some nice linen this would be perfect."

"Perfect?" Michael rested his chin on top of her head while wrapping his arms around her shoulders. "You have a strange idea of perfect."

"There must be something we could use." She twisted in his embrace to kiss his cheek.

Taking the hint, he knew she wouldn't rest until he found something to cover their bodies.

"Wait here. I'll go and take a look."

He left her with the stock of mattresses and in the very next room came across massive rolls of material. Digging into his pants pocket, he found his pocket knife. Slicing through the plastic covering the rolls of fabric, he cut several large squares and then carried back into the other room.

Dropping the fabric onto the mattress that Fiona had pulled from its place on the wall, Michael turned to her, lightly brushing stray strands of wet hair off her face.

"We need to get out of these wet clothes," he told her.

She stared up into his eyes noticing how they had darkened as he leaned in to place a kiss on her forehead.

"I thought you would never ask," she murmured. Reaching down she grasped the hem of her dress and in one move pulled it up and over her head.

She smiled at him, the tip of her tongue snaking out to wet her lips.

"I heard it said once in a Bond movie."

As she spoke, she ripped his shirt open sending buttons flying out in all directions. Her hands moving smoothly over his pecs, her thumbs circled and scraped across his nipples before moving lower, dancing over his freshly bruised ribs reaching for his belt buckle.

"Shared bodily warmth." She pressed her lips against his bare chest trailing kisses over where her hands had been moments earlier. "And a positive mental attitude."

Her nimble fingers made quick work of the belt and started on the fastener and zip until his pants were undone, too.

With his pants undone and hanging low on his hips, Fiona moved back, dropping down on to the mattress she had chosen. Landing flat on her back, she raised her arms over her head and arched her body upwards.

"I'm cold Michael. Come warm me up."

Michael stared down at her. Under the warehouse lights, her body appeared to glisten.

"My pleasure Fi," he murmured his voice husky with passion.

As he spoke, he was already stripping off what remained of his clothing, his eyes fixed firmly on the alluring body stretched out before him. With his shirt flung down to join the rest of his soaked clothing, he knelt down on the edge of the mattress.

"I think if we're going to share bodily warmth," his hands slid up her calves and over her knees and along her inner thighs gently spreading her legs apart, "We need to get rid of these." His thumbs hooked under her flesh colored lace panties, pulling them down slowly. He leaned forward to lay kisses over her newly exposed flesh.

With her panties carelessly thrown aside, he moved up her body placing tantalizing kisses along her torso. When he reached her breasts, he moved even slower causing her to gasp as he took one and then the other into his mouth nuzzling and gently nipping the sensitive nubs. All the while the fingers of one hand were playing a teasing game between her legs, circling the place where she wanted him most, his touch so light and fleeting offering her a hint of what was to come.

She squirmed underneath him panting with desire. One of her hands was in his short hair, her fingers scraping across his scalp as she pulled him up and into a deep ardent kiss. Her other hand was on his wrist, trying to get him to touch the spot so desperate for attention.

"Are you warming up, Fi?" Michael smiled down at her, enjoying the effect his gentle and teasing touch was having on the woman writhing underneath him.

"Michael," she groaned his name. "I'm - going to - kick - your - ass..."

He stopped her words by covering her mouth with his own in a hard demanding kiss, his body covering hers completely as his fingers finally went to where she desired. Sighing into his kiss, their tongues dueled for dominance as her fingers began their own dance over his back, sides and then lower. Her touch was igniting a fire inside him, as he thrust into her touch.

As he withdrew his fingers and attempted to pull her even closer, Fiona brought both hands to the sides of his head and pushed him away her.

"This mattress is too soft," she gasped into his ear.

He paused, studying her intently. Slowly a smile curved up his lips. Placing his hands on her hips, he twisted until he was on laying on his back and she was sat astride him.

"That better?" he asked.

"A little." She leaned forward burying her head into the crook of his neck nipping, at his flesh before kissing the same spot better.

"I- just- need." She lifted herself up slightly and took him in her hand. "To get comfy." The last word came out as a sigh as she slid slowly down on to him. She paused letting her body adjust to the sensation and then slowly began to rock back and forth.

His hands came up and encouraging her to lean further over him so his mouth could close around her right breast. His teeth gently grazed on her hard little nipple as he nuzzled against her chest, sucking her soft sensitive flesh deeper into his mouth. Her moans of pleasure spurring him on, encouraging his fingers to skim across her skin exploring every part they could reach.

Their breaths became harder and faster as they were hit by wave after wave of rapture. He lifted his knees and placed his hands on her hips, driving her down onto him, their pubic bones clashing against each other. As she began to pulse around him, drawing him in deeper, his own breath became ragged and gasping. They fell over the orgasmic cliff together, clinging onto to each other and finally laying quiet as their bodies recovered.

Still breathing heavily and now thoroughly warmed, Michael shifted slightly, easing his hands up to run his fingers through Fiona's still damp hair. Cupping her face between his hands, he looked into her blue-green eyes and then at her swollen and kiss bruised lips.

"You're right this mattress is too soft."

She laughed, lifting herself free of his body. Getting to her feet, she held out a hand urging him to get up too.

"Let's find another." Her voice so low he wasn't sure he had heard her correctly.

"Fi - another?" He was up on his feet standing behind her.

She turned back to him, running a finger down the centre of his chest, over the ridges of his abs and lower still.

"Another." She smiled, her tongue flickering out as she felt him begin to respond to her touch.

He swallowed and took a step closer intending to pull her into his arms, but Fiona had other ideas. Slipping from his grip, she glided over to the rows of mattresses her hands skimming over each one in passing until she saw one she wanted to try.

"This one," she told him and watched as he pulled it down onto the floor.

Collecting his knife from the pocket of his discarded pants, Michael cut away the plastic wrapping. Placing his foot on the mattress he pressed down. "It feels hard."

"Hard?" Fiona stood behind him, her arms encircling his waist. "Are you sure? Let me be the judge of that."

She slid her hands lower, stroking along his length.

"The - mattress," he dropped his head back trying to keep control of his breathing as one of her hands took hold of him. "The mattress, Fi, the mattress is too hard."

"Oohh, I'm not so sure. I think there's - something harder." She gave him a squeeze and he gasped. Taking hold of her hand, he carefully freed himself and turned to face her, capturing her in an embrace.

Nuzzling her ear, he whispered, "Choose another."

"No, I like it when things are - hard," she smirked before pushing him down on to the offending mattress.

She followed him landing on top of him, her hands on his shoulders pinning him down. "See, it's not so bad."

"Ah-huh, well, you try it out," Michael surged up, quickly changing their positions. He used his body weight to keep her trapped under him while he began to kiss her forehead, her cheek and on to her neck, concentrating on the sensitive spot behind her ear.

"Comfy?" he breathed against her neck, "Because I am."

As he continued to lay feather light kisses along her neck, he was using his knee to tease her legs apart.

"I can make you sooo much more comfortable." She brought her legs up around his waist, her heels hooking just below his ass drawing him inside her.

"How's that?" She grinned as he began to move.

"Beautiful." He dropped his head down to kiss her forehead.

He took her over the edge twice before he finally followed her there, eventually collapsing down onto his side next to her. They lay side by side trying to catch their breaths until Fiona shifted to lay her head on his chest.

"You okay?" He brushed her hair away from her face.

"Ermmm," was the only answer he got as she snuggled against him.

Sighing, Michael stretched out and pulled the pieces of cloth he had cut over from the other mattress and covered them over. As Fiona slept, he couldn't help but think about what had led to them being hunted down.

He shouldn't have let her come with him. He'd actually gone against his handler's orders by bringing her along. But he had grown used to working with her, and he valued her skills. Besides she was one of the few people left in the world that he trusted with his life.

But this time he could have got her killed and all because he had grown over confident. When Hendrickson had called and demanded that their meeting was brought forward, he should have refused or called Fi to come as back up. But he had been so sure he could deal with the diamond smuggler on his own that he had gone in alone and nearly got them both killed. Now the mission was blown, Dan Siebels would know he went against his orders by involving his IRA asset and he knew that once they were home there would be a price for his insubordination.

"Michael, go to sleep." Fiona lifted her head to stare up at her lover. She could see the worry lines creasing his forehead. "What's the matter? Hendrickson is long gone. We're safe."

He didn't want to try to explain his fears, so he slapped his hand down on the mattress. "I told you it's too hard. I can't sleep on it."

Huffing, Fiona shifted so she was laying half on his chest and she was level with his eyes. "You've slept on a lot worse since I've known you. Why are you being such a baby?"

"I've got used to our bed." He gently lifted her off his chest and got to his feet. "Let's find a better one."

She watched him walk back to the rows of mattresses and after a moment got to her feet following him. "You're looking for a twenty year old lumpy old thing with a coupla busted springs?"

"No." He treated her to a charming toothy smile. "But if I wanted to sleep on a lump of concrete, I'd have slept on the floor." He stopped and started to maneuver another mattress out of its rack. "Let's try this one."

Half an hour later neither one of them was happy as it became obvious Michael's choice was one of the cheaper mattresses in the storeroom.

Fiona made the fourth choice: a double thick foam mattress with a silk lining. It was a great success until they tumbled off the edge, Michael banging his head hard enough on the concrete floor to see stars. Fiona sat on his stomach laughing at his stunned expression.

Finally, just after the chimes of the Westerkerk clock tower struck four am, they fell into a deep sleep wrapped in each other's arms on a king size memory foam mattress.

The sun broke through the small dust covered window in the store room. Michael woke up, shaking Fiona awake when he heard voices raised in alarm. Glancing at his watch he saw it was eight am, the factory workers must have discovered the open padlock and the smashed glass.

Without a word they slipped into their clothes, Fiona wrinkling her nose at the smell of canal water. "You ruined my dress," she hissed, "and you lost me ma gun."

"Would you have preferred to die?" he growled back.

"I coulda taken them."

They tiptoed out of the storeroom making their way to the back of the warehouse where Fiona had spotted the loading bays for the delivery trucks.

The voices of the factory workers could be heard clearly now shouting loudly.

"What is he saying Michael?" Fiona asked as they slipped outside. "Michael?"

She slapped his arm when he smirked.

"Nothing Fi,"

The grin had got wider and he flinched as another blow caught him around the ear.

"Okay, Goldilocks." He dodged away from another blow. "I think he must have kids he was saying something about Goldilocks and the three bears."