Title: Highlander Christmas Carol Rating: G Disclaimer: I don´t owe Christmas nor the people acting in this story. I did owe Sue Townsend, but she died. Summary: The title about says it all. Methos tells Duncan a Christmas Carol he experienced. The woman mentioned starred in a German fic I wrote a long time ago. But it´s not necessary to know neither her nor the story.

"It was on December, 21, three days before Christmas, and..."

"Oh, shoot me!"

The attractive blonde, who had started to tell a from her point of view marvellous Christmas Carol in the most unbeatable of all her low voices, turned to look at the interuptor of her story.

"I beg your pardon?" she asked in a high-pitched voice.

The man, who strolled next to her, avoiding to step in the snow wherever he could, lifted his head to look at her.

"I said "shoot me"", he repeated, smiling friendlyly.

The other man, who walked on the woman´s other side, sighed deeply, before interfering in the soon-to-be heated up argument he´d expected the second the three of them had left the house.

But was anybody ever listening to him?

"So what´s your problem, now?" he asked the other one, who, by the way happened to be the oldest living life-form on earth except Nessie.

"Three days before Christmas, bla, bla, bla... Why does everything start three days before christmas?!"

It was Christmas Eve by the way.

"I don´t know", the blonde said frustratedly. "But it does. Now let me tell my story."

"Oh please", the Old One crumbled beggingly, "no more Christmas Carols! Please! Really, you kids are killing me."

"Duncan, you said he would not grinch around!"

"Amanda", the one titled as Duncan replied, "I can´t help it, he is the grinch. - You promised", he then turned to the Old One.

"I promised to acompany you", he corrected, "to watch all the blinking and ho-ho-hoing without a comment, but I´d never ever promise to listen to Christmas Carols settled in jail."

"Now that´s enough!" Amanda stated. "You know what, guys? Why don´t you go down there and collect some drinks for tonight, and I go that way and tell my story to the very first nice looking fellow I find? Hm?"

Duncan opened his mouth to safe what could be safed, but the Old One had grabbed his shoulder, draging him the other way before he could even move his tongue.

"That would be great", the Elder grinned back at Amanda. "See ya."

Without another word, she turned and went away within her own spirit of Elder-hate.

"Why do you always have to do that, Methos? Every single year you go out on your own private crusade to ruin Christmas for everybody."

"It´s tradition", Methos replied. "And, anyway, her story is, too, you know that. If I´d to listen to that goddamn story of her breaking into the palace of King Henry who invited her for Christmas Diner one more time, I assure you, I would have killed someone just out of reflex."

"She does like that sory", Duncan said defensly, though in his heart he was grateful for the opportunity to escape the Amanda Christmas Carol at least this year.

"And I don´t like it. Mix it together, you got nothing. That´s how I like Christmas best."

"I used to like Christmas", Duncan recalled, suddenly sentimental, as Methos noticed with surprise. "In the old days."

"Define old days", the Elder said. "Like in old days before Christ, old days after Christ, old days before World War, old days after World War..."

"Old days with Tessa", the highlander replied. "Old days with Richie."

Methos smiled in sympathy. "You´re getting in the right Christmas mood, he? Listen, how about going somewhere really christmassy, where you can see the wonder of it all?"

"You´re not about to drag me to Jerusalem, are you?"

"Bethlehem, you unbelieving Thomas, and no, I am not. I´m dragging you to...."

"...a pub?" Duncan looked around. "Here I´m gonna find the wonder of it all? In a pub?"

"Well, part of it", Methos admitted and relaxed as only he could, in his chair. "Actually I´m just up for a beer. You want something, too?"


"And when I got my beer - soon, I hope - I´m gonna tell you a Christmas Carol."

Duncan frowned. "You what?"

"I am gonna tell you a Christmas Carol."

"And that will lighten me up, because...?"

"...it is a really beautiful story full of elegancy,angels, lights, children, spirit and me."

"I don´t think I can bear hearing a story about you and Christmas when I´m in the mood I´m in now. Actually, I don´t think I could ever bear it."

"Oh, don´t insult me, highlander. That´s not Christmas-like, is it? Just lean back and listen."

"I´m regretting this already", Duncan sighed.

"It´s nice, it really is."

"It is about you, isn´t it?"

"Just shut up, and listen, okay?"

And when the highlander had closed his mouth with a last sigh of frustration, the oldest man in the world began his story.

"It was three days before Christmas...."

It was three days before Christmas, and the year was 1863. The snow turned grey the moment he touched the ground of old grey London.

The only person standing on the ground of the Westminster graveyard that evening was nearly covered in grey, mud-like snow. But he didn´t notice. Actually he noticed nothing. He was crying.

The epitaph read "Sue Townsend Beloved", and the man standing in front of it was no other than Adam Townsend, the grieving young husband. ( Some readers might recall the Townsends. They were the ones who´d helped Charles Dickens to write his Christmas Carol.)

Night had fallen down on him a long time ago, and still he wouldn´t leave the graveyard, wouldn´t leave his late wife. He just couldn´t imagine entering his home ever again. To step through the great wooden door Sue had been so proud of and to enter the warm living-room they had spend so many hours in, including her last on this earth.

They had bought the house nearly ten years ago with the money Adam had collected over the centuries.

Adam Townsend, by the way, happened to be the oldest living life-form on this planet except for Nessie.

The house was great and big and elegant and just the place Sue Townsend loved more than anyplace else in the world. He would have to sell it, he thought.

Though his hands were trembling from the cold and had turned into a fade blue like his face, he touched the stone slightly, stroking it as he had done many times before over the last hours.

He had been married to Sue for about thirty years and though that timespam was a second compared to his age, he had loved her so very much, so dearly, that he was sure her death had broke his heart forever.

"How´s that gonna make me feel better?!"

"Have a little patience, highlander. It is getting nicer, I promise."

Duncan watched the Old One distrusfully.

"Believe me, it´s a real happy Christmas Carol. There´s even an angel in it."

"Okay, but try to avoid speaking of death too much, okay?"

"It´s not my fault it starts with death. Anyway, you could show a little more sympathy, though. I´d lost my wife back there."

"It really tears my heart."

Methos sighed deeply. "Gee, why am I doing this?"

Having stood in the icy cold for hours and hours, the young (- looking ) man was nearly unconscious when he at last sank down in the snow, unable to leave his wife and having no place in the world to go to.

He just sat there in the snow, huddled against the stone, closed his eyes and drifted off to a deadly sleep. If he hadn´t been immortal he would have died for sure.


"That´s how it was, I can´t help it. I said it would get wonderful, `kay? Just let me carry on and you´ll see."

"Did you really sleep in the snow?"

"I even died in the snow."

"Okay, that´s enough."

"No, wait, please! It´s great, really. It is. There are orphans in it."

"How wonderful! Orphans."

"No, nice little happy orphans. Full of faith. Who get a new home."

"You´re not going to tell me that you helped orphans, are you?"

"Ow, that hurt."

"Okay, now I´m curious."

Days passed and the body still hadn´t been found. Adam had come to a couple of times, but he´d never found the will to stay alive long. Though he wouldn´t have chosen eternal death - `cause after all he was still Methos - he had decided to spend at least Christmas as dead as he felt like.

But then, it was on Christmas Eve, he heard voices near him. Small ones, very young. Tiny fingers touched his skins, warming it as they did so.

He waited till he heard the children leave his body in the snow and then opened his eyes, but he had missed one child, a little girl, just about five or six, who had stayed with him, if out of shock or little-children- faith he couldn´t tell.

But now her big blue eyes widened in disbelief and she screamed out.

"No, shh, don´t be afraid. No, please", Adam said and reached out to gently touch her, when he realized, she wasn´t screaming out of fear. It was a happy cry.

"An angel!" she cried, and her fellows turned to watch and returned in a heartbeat, staring at the wonder in shock and fear.

"He´s an angel", the little girl explained.

The formally dead man frowned.

"Ahm..." he tried to state, but was interrupted by the curious, begging gazes of the children sourrinding him. Especially the one who´d "discovered" his supernatuarility stared at him with big blue sparkling eyes.

Suddenly he felt very, very small and very, very scared.

"Yeah, well... ´kay, so I´m an angel", he finally admitted with slight frustration. "Now, go home. - Merry Christmas", he added after a short pause, which the children had used to widen their eyes even more.

As if admitting was reason enough for doubt, the little girl suddenly frowned like a grown-up woman. Adam lifted his brows surprisedly. It was that kind of look every man knows much more than he likes to.

"And where are your wings?" the child asked distrusfully.

"Huh?" Adam turned to get a look at his very wingless back while sitting up in the snow as if he´d actually expected wings to be there. "I...ahm...I lost them", he explained smiling about his brightness. "I lost them when I... fell on earth."

The little girl started to cry. The others watched helplessly at Adam who watched helplessy at the girl in front of him.

"Jesus Christ!" "What? What now?!" Methos asked in a high-pitched voice. "What´re you moaning about now? No more death, no more..."

"You actually said that to a little kid?" Duncan shook his head in disbelief.

"I considered telling them the truth was not an option."

"But telling them you were an angel who´d fallen from heaven?"

"Actually", the Old One grinned, "I..."

"Don´t!" the highlander interrupted. "Don´t you dare tell me you really like that metaphor."

"Once you said yourself I was an fallen angel."

"Yeah, like the ones in the bible, son of Cain."

There was a short pause in which the Elder seemed to think about wether or not he should feel insulted. "Well", he finally said, "anyways, you want me to continue?"

"Did you do something to those kids?"


"´kay, you may continue."

The small girl cried, and Adam felt his heart fly out to her. Hastily he came to his knees, stroking the blonde´s hair and hugging her protectively.

"Hey, it´s alright. I don´t mind it. See, I´m not...lost, that is... Angels who´ve lost their wings can return to heaven when..." He tought and finished with a bright smile: "When they helped a child . That´s a rule we have up there."

The girl looked up at him from down on his chest.

"Really?" she sniffed.

"Absolutely", he answered, smiling. "Because you have to be a very stupid angel to lose your wings, and then you have to make it up by helping a child."

He stroke her cheek. "So, would you help me to get back my wings? You know, it´s cold down here, and I´m kind of home-sick. So - know a child who needs help?"

The girl grinned happily. "Yes!"

"That´s cute", Duncan smiled.

"I told you, but you never listen."

"You sure you didn´t read this somewhere?"

"Gee, what did I do to make you think I´m not good with children?"

Duncan lifted one brow slightly.

"That was thousands of years ago!" Methos stated angrily. "By all the gods!"

Duncan looked away, feeling slightly guilty. "Yeah right, go on."

"I like children, you know", the Elder went on being upset instead, "Sue and I even thought about having one - adopting one - but things were sort of different back then. Sue loved children. Sometimes I felt so guilty, because I..."

He looked up at Duncan´s face full of sympathy and grinned his own sly grin, but it couldn´t cover everything as Duncan noticed.

"Must be you, highlander, you get me in the right Christmas mood, too."

"I´m sorry." "Never mind. Were was I? Oh yes, I just lied shamelessly to a couple of innocent young human beings."

Duncan smiled embarrassedly while the Old One went on without looking at his friend, as the highlander noticed with guilt.

Within ten minutes Adam found out that the girl´s name was Sue-Anne and that she and her friends had run away from the Chelsea orphanage. Not because the people there were mean, as Adam would have thought in the first place, but because the house was going to be sold and crashed in order to built a new factory.

"We´ll all have to go back to the streets again", Sue-Anne said sadly.

It teared Adam´s heart to hear the bitterness in such a young girl´s voice. He didn´t want to imagine that she´d had to live on the street ever in her lifetime.

"And Miss Lucy", Sue-Anne continued, while the tears were welling up in her eyes again.

"She´ll be so sad to lose us. We´re her family. She cries all day long."

"Miss Lucy owns the orphanage?"

"She works there. She´s our mom We love her." "I see", Adam said and thought. Gee, why not? He looked back at Sue Townsend´s headstone and smiled.

"Maybe it´s not that bad after all that I lost my wings, eh?"

"You mean", Sue-Anne brightened, "you´ll help us?"

"Didn´t I tell you so?"

"You didn´t give them your house, did you?"

"You´re way ahead of me, I see." "No, no wait, you didn´t. You sold it to Miss Lucy, right? Or, no, I got it, you persuaded little Miss Lucy to go to..."

"Duncan! Slowly, but surely you´re getting on my Christmas nerves!"

The highlander grinned. "Oh really? I feel better already."

Methos rolled his eyes.

"So you gave them your house and left?"

"Yes. I send Miss Lucy the papers and left that very day."

"You didn´t even met her?" "No, I send the children to tell her that they´d found an angel who´d lost his wings and gave them a new home. And then I caught a ship to South- Africa and left London and Adam Townsend."

He smiled lost in his memories. "And I swear by all the gods up above that I saw Sue waving at me when the ship left the harbour. She stood on the jetty and waved, covered in bright white light."

Duncan stared at his friend.

"Well", Methos added as he noticed his companion´s astonished gaze, "I did have a very bad cold, you know. Kind of pneunomia, gets to your brain at times..."

"You can´t get pneunomia."

"Really? Oh. Then", he grinned, "I guess it really happned, right?"

After a short pause, Duncan nodded with hestitation. "Okay, I admit: It was a nice Christmas story."


"But what?"

"That sounded like there is a "but" to follow."

"Oh. - But of course I don´t believe a word of it." Duncan smiled warmly.

Methos understood and sighed mockingly. "Got me. I made it all up. You know how Christmas was back then in reality. Cold and damp and that ugly self- cut trees people had in their dusty, small gulags. Gee, I hated it."

The two men grinned at each other.

"How ´bout the old days?" Methos finally asked.

"They were great", Duncan answered.

"Yes, they were. How ´bout now?"

"Guess it´s great, isn´t it?"

Methos nodded, humming: "We wish you a merry Christmas".

They laughed, when suddenly...

"Here you are!"

... Amanda entered the pub with an accusing look on her pretty face.

"Amanda", Duncan greeted her by placing a kiss on her lovely cheek. The blonde sat down. "You know, when I told you to collect the drinks, I didn´t mean collect them in your bellys."

"Oh sorry, we forgot", the highlander excused.

"I told him a Christmas story", Methos added. "Really? The one about you being visited by three ghosts, who all fail on you and commit suicide by hanging themselfes on a Christmas tree in the end?"

"Don´t scare Tiny Duncan", Methos answered.

Duncan rolled his eyes. Here they went again. When they left the pub it had started to snow, the dark blue sky sparkled in the moon light.

Amanda took a deep breath and started singing.

"Angels we have heard on high..."

Methos watched her, then finished in a perfect bariton: "...tell us to gou out and - buy."


The highlander smiled. "Can´t help it, Amanda. He´s a fallen angel."

Methos didn´t listen, he looked at the snow falling from the sky. Somewhere back there, behind the blue darkness and the snow, there was a bright white figure waving at him. The lights of her wings were shining down on his way, as they would forever and ever.