Modern Glasgow AU by gotham-ruaidh

Imagine Claire and Jamie as a couple in present-day Glasgow. Related ficlets written for Imagine Claire & Jamie on tumblr

Categories: Outlander Characters: Brianna, Claire, Faith, Jamie, Murtagh
Genre: Alternate Universe, Drama, Romance
Spoilers for: None
Warnings: None
Series: None
Chapters: 13 Completed: No Word count: 12786 Read: 171581 Published: 18 Jan 2016 Updated: 18 Jan 2016

1. Chapter 1 by gotham-ruaidh

2. Chapter 2 by gotham-ruaidh

3. Chapter 3 by gotham-ruaidh

4. Chapter 4 by gotham-ruaidh

5. Chapter 5 by gotham-ruaidh

6. Chapter 6 by gotham-ruaidh

7. Chapter 7 by gotham-ruaidh

8. Chapter 8 by gotham-ruaidh

9. Chapter 9 by gotham-ruaidh

10. Chapter 10 by gotham-ruaidh

11. Chapter 11 by gotham-ruaidh

12. Chapter 12 by gotham-ruaidh

13. Chapter 13 by gotham-ruaidh

Chapter 1 by gotham-ruaidh
Author's Notes:

Originally posted on tumblr - I would like one of you to write a huge jealous scene between them. I mean Jamie is blind by his jealousy from someone in the French court (I haven't read the 2nd book yet if it is in the book please imagine another scenario with the same players). Please take the fight by the river as your guide.

Original prompt: I would like one of you to write a huge jealous scene between them. I mean Jamie is blind by his jealousy from someone in the French court (I haven't read the 2nd book yet if it is in the book please imagine another scenario with the same players). Please take the fight by the river as your guide.

“Jamie, please – ”

His grip on her wrist tightened as he pulled her across the dance floor, away from the man at the bar, closer to the exit.

“Jamie – ” But her voice was drowned out by the thumping bass as they wove through the crowd. He turned to make sure she was all right, but his iron grip did not relent until they reached the vestibule and he had to fish around in his pocket for their coat check stubs. Claire awkwardly rubbed her bare arms as they waited; Jamie wordlessly glowered at the attendant as she placed their coats on the counter. He helped Claire into her coat before winding the tartan scarf around his neck, shrugging into his own coat, and almost dragging Claire into the cool autumn night.

Claire’s ears rang in the sudden quiet – and she whirled to face her husband, yanking away from his grip.

“I cannot believe you did that.”

His brows shot up almost to his hairline. “What else was I supposed to do, Claire? The man was coming on to ye verra strong and his eyes were staring right down your dress and he didna give a damn about that ring on yer finger.”

Claire shoved suddenly cold hands into her pockets to prevent herself from slapping him. “I was doing just fine, Jamie. You know I can handle myself – I manage perfectly well with all those handsy doctors at the hospital. There was no need for you to threaten him with violence.”

“No need?” Jamie exasperatedly ran his hands through his hair until the shorter pieces stood on end. “No need? Am I to just stand idly by and enjoy watching another man try to get your attention? Watch him ogle ye, and then watch ye laugh at something he said?”

Furious now, Clare stepped closer to him. The mist of their breaths came fast in the chilly air. “What are you saying? Do you think I was encouraging him? Christ, Jamie – his brother was treated at the hospital a few months back and he was telling me about – ”

“I dinna care one bit, Claire.” He stood nose to nose with her, breathing hard. “He had this look about him – he wanted ye. And you’re mine.”

Claire narrowed her eyes, jaw set. “Oh, really? So I’m not allowed to make conversation with men I’m not married to, then?”

He huffed, frustrated. “That’s no’ what I mean, and ye ken that well.”

“Well, what does it mean? You can’t dictate what I do and don’t do. You left to go to the restroom, for God’s sake! He just started talking to me. I was being polite, Jamie.” She hesitated, but continued. “I swear, sometimes I think you don’t know me at all.”

That set him off. “What are ye saying, then? Ye ken fine that we’re still getting to know each other – but I know you, Claire. Ye can be a bit foolish when ye’ve had some drinks, and I didna want him to think – ”

Claire slapped him. The smack of flesh echoed in the quiet street, and Jamie could only blink at her, stunned.

“What the hell, Claire?”

She raised her hand again, but this time he caught her wrist. “Claire – ”

“Foolish? Foolish? You have no right to say that. Don’t talk down to me.”

“I’m no’ talking down – ”

“Yes you are. You can’t stand the thought of me enjoying myself in the company of other men. Because only you, James Fraser, have the right to do that.” Her voice was livid, and she struggled against his grip. “Just like you can’t stand hearing about anything to do with Frank.”

“Dinna mention his name to me,” Jamie seethed. “I’m yer husband now. And how many times to I have to say that it’s the other men I don’t trust? I trust you implicitly, Claire. I trust your vow to me, I trust what’s in your heart.” He paused, and when she made no attempt to interrupt or strike him, he continued.

“I ken we may have rushed into marriage – we didna truly date or take time to really get to know each other. But Claire – ” He swallowed. “Claire – you are my life. I so worry about ye – working wi’ ill patients, or wi’ male doctors who only want to get up yer skirt, or taking the bus home by yourself late at night. Because if something were to happen to ye – ”

His voice broke and he released her, quietly turning away. Claire watched his broad shoulders heave up and down in a tremendous sigh.

Touched, she rested a tentative hand on the scratchy wool of his coat. “Jamie – ”

“I panicked tonight, Claire,” he said quietly. “I saw ye talking to that man, and laughing wi’ him, and I felt my own heart’s blood leave my body. Because I saw him, and I thought he’s the man ye deserve. He’s no’ a bumbling lad of twenty-four – he probably has a nice car and a well-paying job and he was wearing a nice watch. I canna support us in the way ye deserve wi’ my salary from the printshop. We live in a two room flat wi’ spotty heating and ye had to pay for yer own wedding ring. I have no idea how we’ll afford yer medical school but I’ll do whatever it takes for ye to achieve yer dreams.”

Claire softly spun him around, but still he refused to look at her.

“Jamie?” Her heart clenched at the tears shining in his eyes. “I know you’re looking out for me and protecting me in your own way. I know you trust me. I know I can get a bit ridiculous when I’ve been drinking. But you just need to relax – I’m not going anywhere. I want you. I want what we have together. Nothing else. Nobody else. We married quickly, yes – but we didn’t rush into it.”

Gently she rubbed his cheeks with her thumbs, tangling her fingers in his thick curls. His eyes – open, fathomless – bored into hers.

“You’re mine, too – you know that, right?”

He nodded. “I’m sorry for what I said, Claire. I know I need to think more – ”

“Shh.” She silenced him with a finger to his lips. “I’m sorry, too. I shouldn’t have reacted in the way I did. Forgiven?”

“Aye,” he rasped. She tenderly grasped his chin – rough with the day’s stubble – and pulled him close for a kiss.

“Take me home, Jamie,” she murmured against his lips after a long while.

He exhaled, feeling the dark knot of jealousy loosen in the pit of stomach – to be replaced with joy, and something a bit headier.

“I love you,” he whispered.

He felt her smile against his lips. “God help me, I love you,” she breathed.

Chapter 2 by gotham-ruaidh
Author's Notes:

Originally posted on tumblr - imagine jamies thoughts when he first met claire and she was fixing him up

Original prompt: imagine jamies thoughts when he first met claire and she was fixing him up

He feigned sleep like a coward, completely at a loss as to how to speak with her again. They’d been airborne for some time now, the rustle of her turning pages beside him the only noise save for the hum of the engines.

What was it about her that had his stomach in knots?

“Sir?” The weathered flight attendant had returned, and he rubbed his eyes against the harsh fluorescent light. “Something to drink?”

He sat up a bit straighter and undid the tray table. “Just water, please. With ice.”

He looked straight ahead as the flight attendant set a plastic cup full of ice and a little bit of water on the tray. The woman beside him quietly ordered a coffee – black – and he committed her preference to memory.

Just as the flight attendant finished filling the Styrofoam cup, the beverage cart jerked and she lost hold of the cup. Jamie started bolt upright as scalding hot coffee poured down the back of his neck.

Ifrinn!” he exclaimed, panting. Two seconds of numbness before a searing pain shot through him.

“I’m sorry, sir – I don’t know – ”

Quickly Jamie felt the woman beside him push up the armrest, turn him to face the aisle, and untuck his shirt. “Get me some ice!” she hissed at the bewildered flight attendant. “Or cold soda cans, if you have them. Now!”

Dimly Jamie sensed the flight attendant pushing the drink cart further down the aisle and heard her digging through it. But all he could feel was the sudden rush of cool air on his back, and the Englishwoman’s soothing hands as she drew his shirt over his head.

“Easy – just help me get this off,” she said gently. He ducked his head and shrugged out of the shirt, sodden and drenched in the scent of weak industrial coffee. She dropped the shirt on the floor and gently drew her fingers along his back, checking for blisters.

Heaven. And Hell. His body burned at her touch – and his back flamed in pain.

“Here you go – some cold packs. And the aloe cream from the first aid kit.” Jamie felt cold drops of water drip onto his forehead – that must be from the bags of ice.

“Thank you,” the woman said quietly. And his back was instantly cool.

He shivered. Was it due to the coolness of the ice, or the heat of her hands on him?

She rubbed the bag of ice gently up and down his back, soothing away the angry red burns. “It won’t be too bad,” she said softly. “It shouldn’t blister. I don’t think you’ll have any lasting marks.”

He swallowed. “I should hope not,” he said softly, turning his head over his shoulder to face her. “I’d expect no less from a doctor.”

She smiled despite herself. “I’m not a doctor,” she said softly.

He smiled back, meeting her eyes. “Not yet. But ye will be one day.”

Chapter 3 by gotham-ruaidh
Author's Notes:

Originally posted on tumblr - Imagine Jamie meeting Joe Abernathy

Original prompt: Imagine Jamie meeting Joe Abernathy

“Stop fidgeting.”

Claire lay a gentle hand on Jamie’s knee. He sighed and shifted in the uncomfortable plastic chair.

“I just – weel. I dinna ken how to start talking about –” he gestured vaguely, wedding ring glinting in the harsh fluorescent light.

Claire captured his hand and threaded their fingers together. “Relax. I’ll do all the talking. It’s all worth it, right?”

He licked his lips and squeezed her fingers. “Aye,” he murmured quietly.

“Mr. and Mrs. Fraser?”

Jamie rose – hand still linked with Claire’s – and allowed her to lead him across the waiting room, past the nurse with a pasted-on smile, and into the hallway beyond. They turned a corner and stepped into a small, bright office.

“Claire! So good to see you!”

Jamie blinked awkwardly as Claire dropped his hand and leaned across the desk to kiss the doctor’s cheek.

“Hi, Joe,” she smiled, standing straight beside Jamie. “Thank you for seeing us. This – ”

“Ah! The Highlander I’ve heard so much about.” Dr. Abernathy’s kind eyes crinkled as he gripped and pumped Jamie’s hand. “I’ve always wanted to meet the brave man who stole the heart of this English rose.”

“Pleasure,” Jamie replied cautiously. “Claire didna mention you’re American.”

Joe gestured for his guests to sit, and stepped around them to shut the door. “Boston, actually. Came here on an exchange a few years back and never left. Scotland is a beautiful country – despite all the rain and fried food.”

Claire smiled as she settled into her chair, taking Jamie’s hand once more. “Joe and I were the only non-Scots here for a long time – we worked together to decipher what you all were saying. And he is one of the most well-known and respected doctors in his field. I trust him.”

Jamie’s thumb traced the back of her knuckles. “So. He knows, then?”

She squeezed his fingers. “Yes.”

Dr. Abernathy pulled a notepad from a desk drawer. “Claire tells me you’d like to start a family. Do you mind if I take some notes while we speak?”

“Aye. Ehm – no, no I don’t mind.” Jamie paused, uncertain. “You see, Dr. Abernathy – ”

“Joe, please.” The doctor smiled behind his spectacles.

Jamie uncomfortably cleared his throat. “Joe. Weel. Claire and I – we’ve been marrit two years now. She isna taking any birth control and maybe it’s the stress from her classes but she hasna gotten pregnant. And we want to know whether she can have bairns.”

Joe scribbled on his pad. “I see. And you’re both healthy otherwise?”


“And how long have you been trying?”

Jamie’s brow furrowed. “We havena been trying - not officially, anyway.”

“I’ve been off the pill since before we married,” Claire said softly.

“I see. And how frequently do you have intercourse?”

Intercourse?” Jamie’s face flamed.

Claire smiled. “Daily.”

“By daily, do you mean –”

Jamie muttered in the Gaidhlig under his breath. Claire ignored him. “Always once, usually twice a day.”

“I see. And your monthlies are regular?”

“Every twenty-nine days,” Jamie murmured, knee bouncing up and down beneath the desk.

“Have you ever been pregnant before, Claire?”

She shook her head. Jamie untangled their fingers and settled his arm around her shoulders.

“And you’re –”

“31 this October. Jamie is 26.”

Dr. Abernathy quirked a dark eyebrow at Jamie but said nothing. “Any family history of difficulty conceiving?”

“I don’t know. My parents died when I was five – and I was an only child. But definitely not on Jamie’s side.”

“Aye. My mother was pregnant wi’ my brother Willie when she wed my da. My sister has three children already. So.”

“So. You’re curious as to why two young, healthy people who – enjoy – each other daily and clearly want children have not yet gotten pregnant.”

Claire sighed. Jamie gathered her closer. “Yes.”

For a moment, Joe Abernathy watched them from across his desk. They were a decidedly unlikely couple – English and Scottish, medical student and typesetter, five years apart in age. But for all their differences, they were clearly devoted to each other – they hadn’t stopped touching since entering his office, and they clearly drew strength from each other amid an undoubtedly difficult conversation.

“There could be any number of reasons. Stress, for one. Timing with the woman’s cycle – but that isn’t likely in your case. The viability of the man’s sperm, for another – but that’s probably not the case, either.”

Jamie, alarmed, briefly glanced down at his crotch to make sure everything was still – there.

“I’ll start with a physical exam of Claire, and I’ll take some blood for tests. And I’ll need a specimen from you, Jamie.”

“Specimen?” he croaked.

Dr. Abernathy nodded. “And then if all of that is inconclusive, we may need to start with some hormone shots for Claire.”

Claire gently rubbed Jamie’s shoulder. “It’s all right, love. Whatever it takes, right?”

“Aye,” he replied quietly. “Ye’re meant to be a mother. Whatever needs to be done, I’ll do it.”

“Good. So – Claire?” Dr. Abernathy gestured to the exam table in the corner. “Shall we?”

She smiled tightly. “Only if Jamie is with me.”

The doctor nodded. “Of course. And then – I’ll need Jamie to give me that specimen.”

Jamie’s cheeks flushed. “Only if Claire is wi’ me.”

Dr. Abernathy gaped. Claire’s mouth split into a lovely grin, and she playfully shoved her husband’s shoulder.

“What? Whatever it takes, aye?”


Chapter 4 by gotham-ruaidh
Author's Notes:

Originally posted on tumblr - Can you write a story about why they got married so fast? Or just them getting to know each other. Thank you!

Original prompt: I love the Jamie/Claire modern Glasgow AU. Can you write a story about why they got married so fast? Or just them getting to know each other. Thank you!

The skin on his back was so fair that the burn looked much worse than it likely was. She had rubbed him from nape to tail with the aloe gel and helped him into the spare button-down shirt packed in his bag – “Just in case,” he had grinned at her.

Now they faced each other directly, cross-legged, the armrest still up between them. Any sense of awkwardness was long gone. They were three hours into the seven-hour flight – and if he never saw her again, he wanted to cherish every single moment he had with her. Every single moment God had blessed him with.

“You need to get some aloe cream as soon as we land,” she said softly.

He nodded. “Aye. Any particular kind?”

She paused, head down, considering. “Well – ” She hesitated, then drew in a deep breath. “I’ll be on duty tomorrow. You could come by the hospital and I could see to it myself.”

Jamie’s heart, already thundering in his chest, almost stopped. “Ye’d do that for me?” he said in a small voice, so full of promise.

She nodded, shyly. “I feel responsible for what happened to you. It’s the least I can do.”

“Dinna fash yourself,” he said quietly. “I’ve been hurt much worse, and by people much less pretty.”

She blushed prettily and held back a smile, eyes still downcast. Jamie watched her idly twist the diamond around her finger.

“You’re a kind woman,” he said gently. “Wi’ a good touch.”

He paused. What the hell.

“He’s a verra lucky man, your professor.”

She swallowed, and he hoped desperately that he hadn’t crossed a line – that he hadn’t severed the so very fragile connection between them.

He watched her slowly remove the diamond ring and hold it between her thumb and forefinger. “I’m leaving him,” she said softly.

“What?” Jamie said stupidly.

She licked her lips. “I came to New York to surprise him – his sabbatical is for a year, and I haven’t seen him for three months. I didn’t tell him I was coming, so I showed up at his flat without warning. Just in time to see him kiss his research assistant goodbye on the landing.”

Overcome, Jamie reached across the space between them – where their knees nearly touched – and softly, gently took hold of her right hand. He twined their fingers together, hoping she couldn’t feel how badly his hand was shaking.

“I’m so sorry.” And he was.

She nodded absently and gripped his fingers. “I confronted him. He couldn’t deny it, so he told me everything. About how – how he felt we’d grown apart. How I had my own life, separate from his. I decided not to move with him, you know – I fought so hard to rise to my position at the hospital, and I wasn’t going to give that up.” She sniffed. “He didn’t understand – he thought that I could just pack up and find another nursing job in New York. But I couldn’t, and I wouldn’t. So.”

She swallowed. “I didn’t even make it inside the flat. I couldn’t stay. So I hailed a cab, came right back to the airport, and got on the next available flight.”

He reached his other hand to tilt up her chin. Her tear-filled eyes met his.

God, she was beautiful. Trusting him with her vulnerability. It stirred something protective, deep inside him.

Softly, gently he traced her cheekbones with his fingertips.

“I’m sorry. I don’t normally break down, but - I gave him six years of my life. And now it’s all gone,” she whispered, closing her eyes.

She was ashamed. His heart clenched to see it.

He wiped away one tear with the pad of his thumb. And then before he could think, he gathered her into his lap and held her tightly against him, pressing her face into his neck.

She shook silently in his arms, gripping the front of his shirt. His heart surged with feeling. What kind of man would do that to a woman? Do that to this woman? What he wouldn’t give to protect her, to love her in the way she deserved…

So he did the only thing he could – offer her comfort, and whisper his feelings in a language she wouldn’t understand.

Hush, my heart. Be still. No one can harm ye. I’m here,” he murmured over and over in the Gaidhlig.

She sighed deeply. He nuzzled his nose in the clouds of her hair. This was what Heaven must be like, he thought dimly.

“What are you saying?” she said, almost soundlessly, against his neck.

He swallowed. “Ach – just some silly things. Like what my Mam used to say to me when I was a bairn, and needed comfort from her.”

She sniffed. “She must be a remarkable woman.”

Jamie grit his teeth and breathed in deeply. “She’s dead,” he said softly. “My father, too. That’s why I left home.”

She sat up straight, face level with his. Even with smudged mascara and reddened eyes she was so beautiful he almost couldn’t breathe. Slowly she cupped his cheek with her right hand. “I’m so sorry,” she whispered.

He closed his eyes and leaned into her touch. “Dinna fash,” he said, voice thick. “I can mind myself.”

“I don’t doubt that. When was the last time you let someone take care of you?”

His heart rose to this throat, a witty rejoinder dying on his lips. He opened his eyes and met hers, squarely. God, how he could lose himself in her…

No. Not while she still wore another man’s ring. He could never do that.

“I let you take care of me, just now,” he said softly. Teasing.

She sighed and shook her head slightly. “You Scots. Bloody effing heroes, the whole lot of you.”

His smile echoed hers.

Chapter 5 by gotham-ruaidh
Author's Notes:

Originally posted on tumblr - Imagine the wedding night of Claire and Jamie in the AU fic in modern Glasgow

Original prompt: Imagine the wedding night of Claire and Jamie in the AU fic in modern Glasgow

For a moment it seemed almost like any other day when they walked home together. But once they reached the landing and Jamie turned the key in the door and flipped the light switch – it hit her.

She was married. To Jamie. And now –

“Ach – Claire?” She turned to face him and watched him swallow, suddenly unsure. “Will ye – will ye wait here a bit? I willna be long.”

She nodded. He grabbed her hands, formally kissed her knuckles, and quickly disappeared behind the bedroom door.

Claire set down her purse and stepped out of her heels. They both needed the moment to breathe – to put some space between them, to collect their thoughts. Everything was about to change between them – for the better, she was sure of it. And even though she was experienced, this was Jamie. A man who clearly loved her with his whole heart, unconditionally. So her palms were clammy, her hands trembled slightly with nervousness. And excitement.

The door opened. Jamie stuck his head out. “Ready?” he asked softly, extending one hand. Before she knew her feet were moving, her hand was in his. He softly drew her inside and locked the door behind them.

He had turned down the quilt and lit three large candles on the bedside table. The flames bathed the room in a soft glow – just enough to see him, and to enjoy the way that the shadows played on his cheekbones.

“Is that verbena?” she asked softly, twining her fingers through his.

He moved closer and settled his forehead against hers. He breathed in deeply. “Aye. I remember it’s yer favorite. I – I want verra much to please ye, Claire.” His thumb traced her wedding ring, over and over.

“Shh. Just be still, Jamie. You do please me. I’m not going anywhere.”

For a long moment they breathed each other in, calming each other. Enjoying this moment on the threshold to something new and exciting between them.

“Claire?” Jamie rasped after a while.

“Hmm?” She kissed the tip of his nose.

He swallowed. “Will ye – will ye do something for me?”

She pulled back slightly and met his eyes. “Of course. What is it?”

He licked his lips and moved quickly to pick up something from the end table. The blade glinted in the candlelight. Claire raised one eyebrow.

“It’s called a sgian dhu – a small knife. It’s a ceremonial part of the kilt nowadays, but traditionally in the Highlands it was a man’s most intimate weapon.” Jamie’s eyes focused on the blade. “We use it for a wedding tradition. It’s – it’s a bit pagan, and some priests dinna like doing it in a church. But it’s just you and me now, Claire, and I want – I need to do it.”

“Do what?”

He inhaled sharply. “Do ye trust me?”

“Yes – Jamie - what –”

“Hold out yer right hand, palm up. Please”

She did, and watched him flick the blade over the tender skin of his right wrist before making a shallow cut over her own wrist. Quickly he dropped the knife and, cradling her arm with his left hand, brought their wrists together.

“Jamie – ”

“Claire. This is a blood vow. This ties you to me, and me to you.”

Her breath quickened as she felt the blood slowly ooze between their wrists. The fingers of his left hand gripped her forearm, fingertips caressing softly.

“Do I – do I need to say anything?”

He nodded. “Repeat the words after me.” He spoke in Gaelic, and she tried her level best to repeat. Her eyes locked on his the whole time, the pure intensity in his gaze absolutely riveting.

And then suddenly it was over. He pulled away and she felt a rush of cool air on her wrist. And a slight tearing sensation – their blood had started to clot together.

Jamie produced a damp washcloth and gently held it to Claire’s wrist, dabbing at the blood that still welled. She wriggled her toes at the sensation and was pleased to feel his own bare feet against hers.

“Will you tell me what we just said, Jamie?”

“Aye,” he said after a long moment, focusing intently on her wrist. “Later. All ye need to know for now is that the words are – weel. Basic. Serious. Deep.”

She raised his wrist to her lips and reverently kissed his cut. Then her lips anointed every one of his fingers, followed by the well of his palm.

His breathing picked up sharply. “Claire,” he said, breathless. “Claire – I dinna know how to start. Ye need to – to show me what to do.”

She smiled widely and turned around, pushing her hair off the back of her neck. She almost jumped at the heat of his fingers on her nape gently removing the pearl necklace. Then he unzipped her dress, slowly and deliberately. He snaked his hands through the open back to wrap around her front and cup her belly, drawing her tight against his chest. She swallowed and slowly turned to face him.

She caressed his flaming cheeks. “I’m yours,” she whispered. “And you’re mine. Don’t hesitate. I want you, Jamie. I want this.”

Effortlessly she shrugged out of the dress and let it pool at her feet, so that she stood before him in only her underwear and bra.

Jamie, thunderstruck, reached out to touch her and quickly lowered his hands to his side, at a total loss for what to do.

So Claire flung her arms around his shoulders, edged up on her tiptoes, and kissed him hard. He bent to pick her up and she wrapped her legs around his waist.

“Don’t think. And don’t stop,” she murmured against his lips.


No, Claire. I canna – enough!”

Jamie threw one elbow over his eyes, laughing. Feebly he swatted his wife’s head away from his belly, but she rested her cheek against his navel, nuzzling into the coarse hairs.

“What? You’re twenty-three – you’re supposed to get it up all the time.”

He tangled his fingers in her hair, grinning like an idiot. “Aye, ye ken that weel now. But Claire – I dinna want it to break off. That wouldna make either of us happy.”

It was dawn. Two of the candles had long ago burned out, and the single remaining flame glowed brightly within its hollow of wax.

They had slept in fits and starts, neither willing to lose one moment together, neither believing that this experience, the depth of feeling for each other, could be real.

But it was real. So real that Jamie had to push away his wife’s attentions.

He hissed as her hand wrapped around him, caressing gently. “Ye’re going to chafe me, Claire,” he gasped, turning his face into the pillow in ecstasy.  

She smiled and released him, crawling up and lying on top of him, belly to belly. He opened his eyes dreamily.

“Am I awake? Are you truly here, with me?”

She kissed him long and slow and deep. He flipped them over and gently eased himself inside her. They gasped.

“What about the chafing?” she breathed against his lips.

He laughed, swallowing her moans. He held still inside her, not moving, feeling her pulse race.

After a long while he pulled away from her mouth to see tears glistening in her eyes. So much emotion between them now. Gently he kissed her eyelids, the tip of her nose, then her lips, still not moving inside her. She arched against him, gasping.

“Jamie –”

“Hush, mo nighean donn. How I love ye so. I’m right here.”

Slowly he withdrew, then pushed inside. Gradually he increased his pace, marveling at how her body roused to his, memorizing the thousands of emotions flitting across her face. So beautiful.

Then he gripped her hips and surged into her hard. She cried out. Again. And again. And again. He swallowed her whimpers, her moans, her screams.

And some time later, still joined, he nuzzled his nose with hers. She wound her arms around his shoulders and pulled him closer.

“This is real, Jamie,” she whispered. “So real. If I’m dreaming, I hope I never, ever wake up.”


Chapter 6 by gotham-ruaidh
Author's Notes:

Originally posted on tumblr - LOVE modern Glasgow AU I really do hope for more either to fill in on how Claire left Frank for Jamie OR maybe some more fast forward to them finding out that they're going to be parents.

Original prompt; LOVE modern Glasgow AU I really do hope for more either to fill in on how Claire left Frank for Jamie OR maybe some more fast forward to them finding out that they're going to be parents.

“Claire?” Jamie appeared in the doorway. “We got the last box in the car. Murtagh won’t fit, so he’ll meet us back at the flat.”

She nodded absently and set the note on the table, fished the engagement ring from her pocket, and gently lay it on the piece of paper, weighing it down.

“I’ll never be able to give ye a diamond like that,” he said quietly.

She rose and slung her purse over her shoulder, smiling at him. “I wouldn’t want you to. It just gets in the way.”

He licked his lips and ran his thumb down her nose. “I would give ye the world if I could.”

She grabbed his hand and kissed his palm. Warmth pooled in his belly.

“You’ve given me yourself – unconditionally. That’s more than I could ever want.”

He nodded absently, gaze unfocused. She tugged his hand to bring him back to the present.

“Come on. Let’s get back home.”


The men insisted she go straight upstairs, and for once she kept silent. Better let them deal with the boxes – and make the phone call she’d been dreading.

She closed the door to Murtagh’s spare bedroom and sat on the bed. She knew she could have asked Jamie to be with her, but this was something she needed to do on her own. Had to do on her own, in order to move on with her life.

With Jamie. He was worth it.

Her hands shook slightly as she dialed Frank’s number.

Please pick up. Don’t make me call back. I’m not sure I have the strength to call back.


She swallowed. “Hello Frank.”

“Claire?” The surprise in his voice was evident. “I didn’t think you’d be calling so soon.”

She licked her lips. “Of course.  Frank – I – I can’t be with you anymore. I won’t be with you anymore.”

Silence. She knew he was there – could hear him breathing on the other side of the phone. “Just like that?”

“Just like that. It’s easy, right?” She paused. “When were you going to tell me? How much longer would you have played me the fool?”

He sighed. “I deserve that. I – Claire, you’re an extraordinary woman. You don’t deserve a professor.”

“Don’t you dare make this about me!” She rose, limbs shaking. “You’re the one who moved away. You’re the one who chose to see her.”

“Claire, I’m sorry. What else can I say? I’m sorry.”

“I don’t want or need your apologies, Frank.”

Jamie poked his head in the door, arching his eyebrows in a question. She nodded and he slipped in quietly, sitting on the bed.

“I’ve moved out of the flat. I’ve taken all my things – you needn’t worry about it. It’s waiting for you whenever you decide to come back. I even left my key on the table.”

Jamie’s hand found hers and squeezed gently. I’m here. I support you.

“Claire, don’t be rash. I’ll come to Glasgow, we can talk about this – ”

“No, Frank. It’s done. There’s nothing to talk about. I’m not going back.”

“This is foolish, Claire. You can’t do this.”

“I’m not foolish. And I can. No need for you to sneak around – you can see her – them - openly. I won’t get in your way anymore.”

Jamie’s thumb traced the lines on the inside of her palm.

“Claire, I’ll be back in Glasgow in a few weeks. We should meet then.”

“No, Frank. I’m finished. I loved you, you know. But you threw it away.”

“Where are you staying?”

“That’s none of your concern. Let me know when you’re here and I’ll decide whether I want to see you. But it will be at a time and place of my choosing.”

He sighed into the phone. “I did love you, Claire,” he said quietly. “This distance between us – it became too much.”

“It was too much for you, Frank. It was never too much for me.” She sighed. “Good-bye.”

She hung up before she could hear whether he returned the good-bye. Silently she sank to the bed, knee pressing against Jamie’s.

She sighed deeply, eyes fascinated at just how large his thumb was as it traced the bones of her hand over and over.

Jamie was so patient – he was giving her space. Again. He knew more about her, and gave her more room to be herself, than Frank had in all their years together.

“Do ye want to talk about it?” he asked quietly.

She shook her head. “Did you get all the boxes upstairs?”

“Aye. Murtagh nearly ruptured himself hauling those heavy books of yours. All the boxes are in the living room. We can keep them there or move them in here – whatever ye prefer.”

Claire rose. “I’ll bring some of them in here – I don’t want to take up all the space in – ”

Jamie gently tugged on her hand so that she landed in his lap. He settled his arms around her shoulders and drew his forehead against hers. They closed their eyes, breathing each other in.

“Ye’re so brave.”

She exhaled. “I don’t feel it.”

“Ye are. Braver than I am.”

“Not possible.”

A long moment.

“I dinna deserve you, mo nighean donn.”

“What does that mean?”

He smiled. “It’s the Gaidhlig. It means ‘my brown-haired lass.’ I’ve been longing to say that to ye.”

She butted her nose against his, pleased. “Did you grow up speaking Gaelic?”

“Aye. My parents made sure of it. I – I have no English sometimes, when I am upset or deeply emotional. So.”

Eyes still closed, Jamie trailed tiny kisses along her cheek to her earlobe.

“What did you say to me on the plane yesterday?” Was her voice really that breathless?

He hummed against her jaw. “Silly words. Ye’d laugh at me.”

“I promise I won’t. Tell me.”

She felt him swallow. “I told ye that if ye were mine, ye’d know every single second of every single day how much I love and cherish and respect ye,” he whispered, breath hot in her ear. “And I promised to protect ye, and give ye a home filled wi’ love. And give ye the space I know ye need.”

He inhaled shakily. “I’m in love wi’ ye, Claire. I want ye to know that I’ll never change a thing about ye. I couldn’t.”

Claire pulled back. Jamie saw her eyes shining with tears. His heart sank.

He licked his lips. “Is it too much, Claire? Too soon? Am I – am I being too forward?”

She had no words. All she could do was smile at him and gently, gently bring her lips to his for the first time.





“I love you,” she whispered against his lips, breathless.

He stole another kiss, tears mingling with hers.


Chapter 7 by gotham-ruaidh
Author's Notes:

Originally posted on tumblr - I know there was just a a part 4 in modern glasgow au of Jamie & Claire getting to know each other on the plane. Will there be more to fill in the gaps, maybe from there wedding or first date?

Original prompt: I know there was just a a part 4 in modern glasgow au of Jamie & Claire getting to know each other on the plane. Will there be more to fill in the gaps, maybe from there wedding or first date?

They had no plan – just to be outside, in the balmy weather, with each other.

Truth be told, Jamie wanted to walk down the largest streets in Glasgow, holding Claire’s hand so the whole world could see that this wonderful, strange woman was his.

But more immediate needs came first.

“I canna believe ye’re no’ feeling any ill effects from last night,” he said, chewing a piece of toast. They’d stepped into a local café for a hearty breakfast, taking a table that allowed them to sit side by side.

“Black coffee and protein cure almost everything,” she said between bites of omelet, nudging her knee against his. “I should know. I’m a nurse.”

He smiled into his teacup. “Aye, weel. I dinna wish to argue wi’ ye in any medical matters. Or ever, to be honest.”

Her eyes fell to her plate. “But you know it’s bound to happen, sooner or later. We can’t always be happy, Jamie. We’ll disagree.”

“And if it happens – it happens.” He absently pushed a pile of potatoes with his spoon. “I asked ye to promise me honesty, Claire. And I’ll pledge the same to you.” He lay a big hand on the smooth, bare skin of her thigh, right below the hem of her dress. “I’ll never lie to ye, Claire. I’ll always let ye know what’s on my mind. I dinna make false vows.”

She set down her fork and cupped his cheek. “I know, Jamie. You can’t know how precious that is to me.”

“I’ll never play ye false, Claire. I truly will forsake all others. Gladly.” He swallowed. “I’ll never hurt you like he did.”

Not caring one bit of the other diners, she brought his mouth to hers. It was a slow, wet kiss and it lasted for a long while.

Finally she pulled back, eyes shining. He held her chin between a thumb and forefinger.

“How come every silly conversation between us becomes so serious, so quickly?” she asked softly.

He ran his thumb along her lower lip. “Because we dinna waste time wi’ empty words and flowery promises. And we have honesty and respect.”

“And love,” she smiled.

He sighed, heart full. “Oh, lass. So much love.”


By early afternoon it dawned on her that although she’d lived in Glasgow for almost three years, she’d never really gotten to know the city.

Jamie led her up small, winding side streets and large leafy avenues, bustling with people at mid-day. They stopped at a few boutiques where Claire lovingly touched a few gorgeous dresses and Jamie whispered silly dreams in her ear, smiling. She insisted they duck into every art gallery. He showed her the doors leading to underground clubs where he’d spent a few ill-advised evenings during his time in the city three years before. They drank pints and ate meat pies at a nondescript pub.  

And the whole time her hand was tightly clasped in his. She had no idea where they were or where they were going – but it didn’t matter. They were together. It was truly that simple.

She said as much to him as she leaned against a shade tree in a large public park, his head in her lap.

“My Da told me that most folk make things too complicated for their own good,” he replied after a while. “And if I ever wanted happiness in my life, it had to be based on something simple.” He ran a hand up and down her bare leg, marveling. “He and my Mam had such a deep love between them. But it was also a simple love. They – they marrit after knowing each other for only a few weeks.”

She ran a hand through his hair. “Like father, like son?”

He smiled. “Weel. When we Fraser men see something we want – we grab it wi’ both hands, aye?”

“Hmm.” Her eyes followed his fingers as they gently traced the shape of her ankle. “Has there ever been a lucky woman in Murtagh’s life?”

“Murtagh? Women?” Jamie snorted. “That man is a confirmed bachelor. I think he’s terrified of women, as a rule.”

“Really? No woman has ever wormed her way into his heart?”

Jamie closed his eyes. “I know he was in love, once.”

Claire traced the ridges of his eyebrows. “Who was she?”

He sighed. “My Mam.”


“Aye – it was my Mam. He knew her, growing up. Never told her, as far as I know. And once she met Da, weel. That was that.”

“And Murtagh is your father’s cousin?”

“He’s…I suppose. Something like that.”

Claire’s heart clenched. “Whose idea was it for him to be your godfather?”

Jamie’s eyes opened and met hers. “Mam’s. Da kent weel that Murtagh still loved her. And they both knew that he’d likely never settle down on his own. So – Jenny and I became his children.”

“That’s so…tragic. And romantic.”

He raised one brow. “Romantic? I dinna understand women sometimes.”

She traced his smile. “Don’t worry, lad. You’ll have all the time in the world to get to know how we think.”


Chapter 8 by gotham-ruaidh
Author's Notes:

Originally posted on tumblr - Imagine Claire and Jamie spontaneously getting married!

Original prompt: Imagine Claire and Jamie spontaneously getting married!

Claire perched on the straight-backed chair in Murtagh’s kitchen, sipping a strong cup of tea. The late afternoon sun streamed through the high-paned windows, leaving pools of brightness on the dark-stained wood floors.

What a whirlwind. In three days she’d been to New York and back, said her goodbyes to Frank, packed up her things, and met Jamie.

Dear God, Jamie.

It was quick and intense with him. But so sincere. She knew that he meant every word he had said to her – that he would always keep his promises, that he would always put her first. That he would always love her, never change her, and do his best to make her happy.

Such simple things, really – but so rare. The depth of his feelings stirred echoes within her. How could she not be as devoted to him as he clearly was to her?

Was she jumping too quickly into a new relationship? She hadn’t spent any extended period of time with Frank in three months – and even then it had been a strained three days. Truth be told, they’d been drifting apart long before he’d taken the sabbatical. They’d been engaged for two years already, and had never set a date. It hadn’t really seemed to be that important to them.

Was it fair to compare Frank to Jamie? Two men who could not have been more different from each other. Frank had always put his work before anything else. Jamie’s intentions were clear: a life with her in it. He had such a disarming way of making everything so simple.

She sighed and sifted through the pile of mail she’d collected from the kitchen table in Frank’s flat. Bills, catalogs. And – oh Christ, the invitation. The hospital held a fundraising gala every year – a black-tie affair at a ritzy hotel. Her position entitled her to two free tickets. She hadn’t had anyone to escort her when she received the invitation three weeks prior. But now –

“There ye are.” She looked up as Jamie stepped into the kitchen and settled in the chair across from her. Automatically their hands sought each other on top of the table, fingers twining together. Strength.

“I didn’t realize you were looking for me,” she smiled.

He shrugged. “We got all the boxes where ye wanted them. Murtagh is bellyaching about how we younger folk are wearing out an auld man. He’s hungry for his supper.”

Jamie paused, thoughtful. “How old are ye, Claire? I never thought to ask.”

“I’m twenty-eight.” She pushed away her empty mug and rested her other hand atop his.

“Ah.” He smiled. “I don’t suppose ye mind robbing the cradle then?”

She quirked one brow. “Don’t tell me you’re eighteen, lad.”

He grinned. “No, but three and twenty may still be a wee bit young for the tastes of an auld woman like you.” He twisted his hand in between hers, fingers lacing and unlacing.

“You like it. Admit it.”

“I do,” he said huskily.

Then he didn’t speak for a long time, lost in thought, fascinated by their joined hands.

“Claire – is it usual? What it is between us – when I touch you? Kiss you? Is it – is it always so?”

Her heart stuttered. “Jamie – ” she rasped, throat thick. “Jamie, love – no. This isn’t usual. This is different.”

He nodded, thoughtfully. “I – Claire. I want everything with you. Do you – are ye willing to open yer heart to me? Fully? Because I understand if ye are not ready – ”

“Shh.” Her thumbs gently stroked the back of his hand. “Yes. I’m ready. I’ve been thinking – Frank hasn’t truly been in my life for a long time. We’ve been so far apart from each other for so long. Jamie – I look at you, and I feel – linked. Joined.”

He nodded. “I – I feel it too.” His eyes were so wide, the pupils dilated – his iris was almost entirely black.

His thumb traced the base of her ring finger. “If I give ye a ring, Claire – will ye wear it? Will ye have me?”

Her heart raced. Oh God, this was so fast. Oh God, this was so right.

“Yes,” she breathed. “Yes, I’ll have you.”

He raised her left hand to his lips and kissed her ring finger gently. Then he bit down on the knuckle.

Heat pooled in her belly. She met his gaze, eyes so dark.

And held it as he knelt before her, fingers still gripping her left hand.

He broke her gaze only to fish in his pocket. Quickly he produced a thin, worn silver band and held it, considering.

Tears slipped down Claire’s cheeks.

“This was my Mam’s wedding ring. Da gave it to Murtagh after she died. It’s Murtagh’s responsibility to stand up for me at my wedding and make sure I give it to a worthy lass, ken.” He swallowed. “I asked him for it this morning, Claire. You are that worthy lass. So.”

His eyes met hers. “Will ye marry me?”

She nodded furiously.

He smiled, breathless. “Say the words, Claire. Please. I need – I need to hear ye say them.”

She inhaled deeply. “Yes, Jamie. Yes.”

His fingers trembled as he drew the ring over her knuckle. It fit snugly – perfectly.

She launched into Jamie’s arms and they crashed to the floor, laughing.

“I love you.” He kissed away her tears.

“I love you.” She dug her nose into the hollow of his throat.

They held each other for a long time, just sharing the same space. Sharing breath.

Until Murtagh’s shuffling steps came right up beside them. Jamie looked up over Claire’s curls to see his godfather scowling.

“Have ye no decency, Jamie? Ye canna even lie wi’ her on the couch?”

Jamie grinned stupidly up at his godfather. “We’re getting marrit, Murtagh.”

The older man sighed. “God bless the puir lass.”


Chapter 9 by gotham-ruaidh
Author's Notes:

Originally posted on tumblr - Imagine Claire and Jamies first date or the wedding itself in the Modern Glasgow AU

Original prompt: Imagine Claire and Jamies first date or the wedding itself in the Modern Glasgow AU

Jamie paced on the rug in front of the window, hands clasped behind his back.

What was taking her so long? Murtagh had assured him all was well – lasses did take a bit more time to get ready, after all. But never had he had to wait for something like this –

The door to their bedroom creaked open. Jamie turned, and his heart stopped.

Claire smiled widely at him from the doorway, glowing in a beautiful grey dress. The neckline scooped to show off her beautiful collarbones and just the tops of her bonny breasts. Her hair floated gently around her face. God, he wanted to bury his fingers in it and swallow her mouth -

He blinked, watching helplessly as she slowly walked toward him. Quickly he grabbed her hands and twined their fingers together.

“Claire – ” he choked. “My lady. Claire – you’re – ”

She squeezed his hands. “I could say the same to you, lad. I didn’t know you owned a kilt.”

Jamie blinked, looked down at his tartan, and then back at Claire. God, her eyes were so beautiful.

“Aye – Fraser colors. I want – I want to honor ye. To wed ye in the same clothing my father did, and his father before that, and on and on and on back.”

Her eyes darted to his feet. “My, what bonny knees you have,” she teased.

And with that, the tension between them broke – to be quickly replaced with excitement.

“We’re really doing this, Jamie.”

He nodded. “Aye, Claire, we are.” He dropped her hands and fished in a small pouch at his waist.

“These were my mother’s,” he said softly as he drew a lovely string of pearls around her neck and closed the clasp gently at her nape. His fingers lingered for just a moment before pulling back.

Claire’s fingers ran along the pearls. “They’re lovely, Jamie.” Her eyes locked with his, and she licked her lips.

“Aye, weel.” Jamie flushed. “They’re only Scotch pearls – and antique ones at that. They always looked so bonny on her – ye’ve got a long graceful neck, just like she did. So.”

Overcome with emotion, Claire tilted up her chin for a kiss.

“Oh no you don’t!” Murtagh quickly stepped between them. “It’s bad enough ye’re seeing each other before the wedding – I willna break wi’ every tradition today.”

Jamie glared at his godfather, and Claire smiled. “Any other disruptions ye’d like to make, then?”

“Aye, lad. Yer rings – give them to me. Elsewise I’d have nothing to do during the ceremony.”

Quickly they removed their rings. Murtagh deposited them with a soft clink in his sporran and picked up his phone from the side table.

Another man in a kilt! Maybe he’ll catch some lucky lassie’s eye today,” Claire teased, winding her arm around Jamie.

“Enough wi’ ye,” Murtagh glowered, holding up his phone. “Give us a good pose, aye? Ye’ll want yer bairns to see what lovestruck idiots their Mam and Da were on their wedding day.”

Jamie, glowing with joy, settled one hand possessively in the curve of Claire’s waist. She turned her body so it was flush against his side, her head settling into his shoulder.

Murtagh cursed gently as he tried and failed to get the camera to focus. It finally cooperated and he snapped one photo. Claire lifted her head and Jamie turned his to nuzzle her hair. Murtagh snapped another photo, shaking his head slightly. He cleared his throat.

“Well then. Let’s get to the Morris. Canna be late to yer own wedding.”

It didn’t take too long to get to the registry office. Murtagh dropped them off in front. Jamie scrambled out of the back seat to open the passenger door for Claire and take her hand. Her wide smile at his gallantry warmed him straight through.

A few steps inside the door and a short trip up a flight of stairs were all that separated them from their future. Claire paused on the landing. Jamie stopped, inquisitive. “What is it?”

She shook her head. “Aren’t you afraid that people down below will see your - parts?”

He grinned. “And here I thought ye’d changed yer mind. No, I’m not worrit. It’s no’ like most people have never seen a pair of ballocks before.”

She smiled and suddenly darted up the remaining steps, holding her skirts in one hand. Jamie, laughing, chased behind. They made it to the top, panting and giggling, to meet the disapproving frown of a middle-aged matron slumped behind a battered desk.

“James Fraser and Claire Beauchamp,” Jamie pronounced. “Three o’clock. For a wedding.”

The woman scowled. “Aye – that’s all we do on this floor. Weddings.” She made a note in her ledger. “Do ye have yer own witness?”

“Yes – he’ll be along presently.” As if on cue, the elevator chimed and Murtagh stepped through.

The clerk listlessly waved toward a battered bench on the other side of the landing. “Take a seat, then. Yer name will be called when it’s yer turn.”

Jamie thanked her and tugged Claire’s hand, leading them toward the bench. She watched him gingerly sit down, carefully keeping his legs as close to the bench as possible.

“I thought you said you didn’t care whether people saw your ballocks,” she whispered.

He smiled conspiratorially and brought his lips to her ear. “Aye, but I certainly dinna want that old bag to see them.” Claire noticed that one of his knees was quickly bouncing up and down. “She’s probably never seen a pair in her life – the shock of seeing mine would kill her.”

Murtagh gently pushed Jamie’s shoulder and they exchanged clearly rude remarks in the Gaidhlig. Claire sat up a bit straighter and drew in a deep breath.

“Are ye all right?” Jamie tilted her chin to meet his eyes, full of worry.

She touched his cheek. “I’m not leaving. Just – we’re here. It’s happening. Truly happening.”

He nodded. “I know. I – I canna wait for it, Claire.”

She touched his cheek, moved. “Just a bit longer, lad.”

He turned his head to kiss her palm, eyes locked on hers.

And he would have kissed her, right there, had the door not opened at that moment.

“Bowchamp and Fraser?”

Claire rose. “It’s pronounced Bee-cham, not – ”

“It doesna matter, Claire,” Jamie interrupted, setting a big hand at the small of her back and drawing her closer to the door. “Not for much longer, anyway.”

And together they stepped toward their future, Murtagh close behind them, grinning ear to ear like an idiot.

To Jamie, the ceremony was over almost as quickly as it began. Claire never let go of his hands. She was so captivating – her gorgeous face, her beautiful eyes. The bonny way her chest rose up and down with short breaths. How right his Mam’s pearls looked around her neck.

He said his vows. He was hers.

She said her vows. She was his.

Then Murtagh touched his elbow and handed him his Mam’s ring. The shock of cool metal after the warmth of Claire’s hands grounded him as he slipped the ring over her knuckle.

Then her small fingers slipped his ring onto the base of his finger. They smiled, giddily. And with the confirmation it was over, Jamie framed his wife’s face between his hands and kissed her properly.

He drew back only after Murtagh cleared his throat. Tears spilled from Claire’s beautiful eyes, and it would have bothered him had he not been blinking back his own tears.

No words could convey the gravity and euphoria and absolute joy of the moment.

Murtagh stepped between them and laid a hand on each of their shoulders. “Welcome to the family, Claire,” he said softly.

She gripped Murtagh’s hand and he gently raised it to his lips for a kiss.

Jamie thumped him on the arm. “She’s my wife, man. Dinna try to steal her from me now.”

 Murtagh quirked one bushy eyebrow. “Dinna fash yerself, lad. She’ll never let herself be stolen. Now are ye ready for a wee bite?”


Chapter 10 by gotham-ruaidh
Author's Notes:

Originally posted on tumblr - Love to read a Modern Glasgow AU wedding/engagement. Thank you this one it's a favorite of mine

Original prompt: Love to read a Modern Glasgow AU wedding/engagement. Thank you this one it's a favorite of mine

Murtagh insisted they go to the pub around the corner to celebrate their engagement. He’d expected them to continue their lovestruck behavior in public, and that he’d be very much the third wheel.

But he hadn’t expected Claire Beauchamp to just about drink him under the table.

She slammed down the empty shot glass, grinning like an idiot. “That’s ten, Mr. FitzGibbons,” she crowed, voice only slightly slurred. “To your seven. Better give up now – I don’t think you’ll survive another three.”

Blinking back tears, Murtagh slid another shot of whisky down his throat. Jamie thumped him on the back in encouragement. Bloody fool had withdrawn himself after the third shot, grinning the whole time.

This lass was full of surprises – a Sassenach, older, a nurse. Mouth like a sailor. Rescued like a damn damsel in one of the fairy stories he’d read to Jamie when he was a bairn. And she drank like a fish.

He couldn’t have picked a better match for wee Jamie if he’d tried.

“Eight, mistress,” he gulped. “I dare ye to stand up. It’s no’ winning if ye havena got yer legs about ye.”

Flushed with alcohol and excitement, she rose. Wobbled a bit, to be sure, but steadily held her ground. Jamie instantly rose beside her and offered a steadying hand.

“No! Not allowed!” Murtagh bellowed – though he could barely be heard above the din in the pub. He pushed his chair back and rose, feet planted firmly on the ground.

And dropped like a stone.


“Come on, man,” Jamie nudged Murtagh, who had crumpled against his side as they waited for the crossing light to change. “Dinna embarrass yerself in front of my wife.”

“She’s no’ yer wife yet, laddie,” Murtagh mumbled slowly, deliberately. “That’s – why – we – were – celebratin’.”

Jamie slung Murtagh’s arm around his shoulder. A rather unladylike snort came from Claire, somehow still walking under her own power. “I don’t know how we would have ever gotten you home, Jamie.”

The light turned green, and Jamie practically dragged Murtagh into the crosswalk. “Weel, Murtagh’s done it for me a time or two before, when I was a young and foolish lad.”

“Yer still a young and foolish lad,” Murtagh croaked. He could move his legs, to be sure – but gripped Jamie’s shoulder for all he was worth.

“I’d smack ye if we weren’t in the middle of the street,” Jamie hissed. As they reached the other side and turned onto the sidewalk, he glared at Claire. “And you – you encouraged him. He hasna had this much to drink in a long time.”

She giggled. “He’s a grown man – not my fault he didn’t want to be beaten by a woman.”

They arrived at Murtagh’s door. Jamie fumbled in his pockets for the key.

“Yer no’ a woman. Ye must be – a witch. No woman could drink that much.”

Claire eased Murtagh’s other arm over her shoulder, helping Jamie guide him up the stairs. “I’ll let you try to best me again, then – but next time, let’s do it at home? I have a feeling Jamie would have preferred leaving you to fend for yourself at the pub.”

Murtagh broke into a beatific smile as they eased him through the door and onto the couch. “Maybe – maybe I’d ha’ met a beautiful lass like yerself, then. Like Jamie did.”

Jamie snorted as he unlaced Murtagh’s shoes. “Hush, a bhailach. Go back to yer dreams. Claire will tend ye in the morning.”

She draped a blanket over him as his eyes closed. Jamie stepped into the kitchen. Suddenly Murtagh’s hand darted from under the blankets and gripped her wrist, tightly.

“Dinna break his heart, lass. He wouldna survive it.”

Gently she pried his fingers from her arm. “I won’t. I couldn’t.”

He sighed, and within seconds began to snore.

Jamie returned and set a glass of water and some aspirin on the bedside table. “Puir bugger. He’ll have a sore heid in the morning.”

Claire stepped beside him and grasped his hand. He turned to face her fully. His other hand tilted up her chin for a soft kiss.

“Christ, ye taste like the bottom of a bottle,” he breathed against her lips.

She laughed softly. “Let’s go to bed, Jamie.”

He stilled. She felt the pulse in wrist race.

“To bed or – to sleep?” he whispered, breathlessly.

She smiled and kissed him for a long moment.

“Just hold me?”

He kissed her forehead. “Aye. I can do that. I wouldn’t want to take advantage of a woman half gone wi’ drink, anyway.”

She playfully pushed against his shoulder. “Wait until I try to drink you under the table.”

He laughed softly. “God help me if I’m fool enough to try.”


Chapter 11 by gotham-ruaidh
Author's Notes:

Originally posted on tumblr - Imagine Jamie reassuring Claire as she becomes insecure about her body whilst pregnant.

Original prompt: Imagine Jamie reassuring Claire as she becomes insecure about her body whilst pregnant.

Before (three days after meeting)

“Hush,” he said softly. Gently he ground his pelvis into hers. She gasped against his lips, holding him tight, wanting to give him everything.

“Will you still want me when I’m fat and pregnant?” she whispered into his ear.

He groaned. “Ye canna say those things to me,” he whispered. “I think I’ll want ye even more, when I see ye all swollen wi’ my child.”

He drew back and butted his nose against hers. “So I’ll want to keep ye pregnant as much as I can, aye?”

She stole a kiss and bit his lower lip. “We’re going to have so much fun together, Jamie.”

He rolled off her but kept his arms locked around her side, their legs tangled together, cupping her belly. “I canna wait to feel a bairn move inside ye.”


During (three years after meeting)

Jamie quietly shut the door, slipped off his boots, hung his coat on a peg, and padded across the living room to the open kitchen - mindful of Claire, head bent, four textbooks and three notebooks haphazardly strewn across the dining table. Her feet were propped up on the other chair, clad in the soft tartan socks Jenny had sent for Christmas. Her hands rested on the swell of her belly, flipping through the flashcards he’d made last week.

He pulled the carton of orange juice from the refrigerator, stepped over to kiss Claire’s head, and eased into the chair across from her, gently placing her feet in his lap, caressing the tender arches. “Have ye memorized the names and places of all those tendons and bones yet?”

She lay down the pack of flash cards and sighed in bliss. “The metacarpal is connected to the metatarsal, which -”

“Ach, so ye’ve got it then.” He grinned as her toes curled against his steady hands, seeking more. “And how’s the wee bannock?”

Claire set the flash cards on the table and caressed her sweatshirt-covered bump. The flash of his Mam’s wedding ring caught his eye as he watched how Claire’s hands - spread wide - could no longer cup the entire swell.

“We’re good. A bit active today. And very hungry. I swear I’ve eaten half a loaf of bread and an entire block of cheese.”

“That’s normal, aye?”

She sighed again - not in pleasure this time, but resignation. “Yes. I just hate how much weight I’m gaining. Not to mention all the water I’m retaining. Can’t you feel that?”

Jamie met her gaze squarely. “It’s all for the bairn - so ye shouldna mind. I don’t, one bit. You are so beautiful to me, Claire.”

She shook her head, and shifted her foot in his lap, brushing against his groin, and - oh.

Warmth - emotional and physical - flushed through her body. “Oh,” she remarked with feigned casualness, one eyebrow arched.

Jamie grinned wolfishly and resumed his ministrations. “I did promise ye honesty, aye?”


After (five years after meeting)

“She willna eat?”

“Poor thing can’t seem to make up her mind,” Claire sighed, wearily swaying back and forth before the window, a fussy Brianna tucked against her shoulder.

Jamie rose and settled behind Claire, kissing Brianna’s brow. Her small eyes were finally starting to drowse. He paused, deliberating, and slowly sank his face into the curve of Claire’s neck, hands settling at her hips. He stepped closer, pressing his back to her front, lightly sucking her shoulder.

She melted against him. “Jamie-”

“Do ye know – it’s the longest we’ve gone wi’out lying together since we wed?” He kissed her shoulder languidly, thoughtfully. “I ken well that yer body is still not quite yer own again – but I mind what ye said to me last night, about being someone’s mother now.” Careful of Brianna on Claire’s shoulder, Jamie moved one hand to cup her breast, thumb teasing the tender nipple.

He smiled, feeling Claire’s breath hitch. “I find ye even more beautiful, even more desirable, now that ye’re someone’s mother. You created and bore life, mo nighean donn. Ye did so, and endured such a terrible ordeal, for me. How could I not love you, and desire you, even more?”

He rocked his hips slightly into the small of her back, seeking friction. Her face reflected in the window – eyes closed, mouth open, deep breaths - was the picture of desire.

But as much as he wanted her – and he wanted her badly – he wanted, needed her to give the final yea or nay. “Is it too soon, Claire?” he whispered, nose buried in her hair. “Are you tender inside, still?”

She turned to face him – cheeks flushed, lips parted, hair all curling around her face. Slowly she smiled, took his hand, and led him to the bed, pausing only to quietly lay Brianna in her bassinet.

Her skin glowed in the firelight. He cupped her breasts and gently kissed her forehead, clearly wanting to go slow. Greedily she pullled his mouth to hers, finding and sucking on his lower lip.

Gasping, she pulled back after a moment. His eyes were fire – as were hers.

“I can’t wait any longer, Jamie. I can’t. I want you. Just please, please be careful. I don’t know – ”

He swallowed her words, smiling, and eased her back onto the bed.

Chapter 12 by gotham-ruaidh
Author's Notes:

Originally posted on tumblr - Imagine Claire pregnant for the third time

Original prompt: Imagine Claire pregnant for the third time

“How could this have happened?”

Jamie arched a bushy red eyebrow at his wife, hunched across the kitchen table, face buried in her hands. “I’d think after the two girls we’d ken our way about it by now.”

Claire sighed, suddenly feeling so drained. “We tried for three years - and nothing. Now three babies in a little over three years. You damn Scot with your bloody powerful sperm.”

“My sperms have nothing to do wi’ it! I canna help -”

“Nothing to do with it, my arse!”

Jamie rose, propping his hands on the table, leaning closer to Claire. “Aye, it’s your arse that got us into this situation to begin with! I canna help that every time ye move past me in the kitchen or the bathroom or in the nursery I just want to pin ye to the ground and -”

Claire straightened up in her chair and narrowed her eyes. “Shh! They’ll be up any second now and I won’t have a moment’s less peace than I can get! God knows I’ll never get any sleep again, between the babies and my residency and needing to roger you every time we have five minutes alone -”

Jamie rounded the table and knelt beside Claire, gently taking her hands in his. His thumbs caressed the backs of her hands - the veins more prominent now than before she’d borne the bairns, but no less attractive to him. She was even more beautiful than the first time he’d seen her, thumbing through a medical journal on that fateful plane ride.

“Claire. Do you not want this bairn?”

She moved to snatch her hands away - but he gripped them tight.

“How can you say that? Of course I want the baby. I don’t -”

He twined their fingers together. “And were we no’ terrified when we had to juggle wee Faith and yer classes? And then wee Faith and wee Brianna and yer clinical time?”

She huffed. “Yes, but -”

He edged closer, eyes locked on hers. “And did ye no’ graduate near top of yer class and land a spot in the best surgery program?”

A small smile. “I did. But Jamie - you had to sacrifice, and we had to lean on Murtagh so much -”

He kissed her wedding ring. “Ye ken fine that he doesna mind one bit - it’s no’ like he has much to do anyway. The girls are his life. And they’re also used to being wi’ me at the printshop - you know that Rupert and Angus and Willie all love them something fierce. We’ll make do. Like we have already.”

A full smile now. “Aye,” said softly.

“So. I’m terrified too, Claire - but we’ve faced such challenges before. We’ll face them again.”

“And always come out stronger.”

His smile matched hers. “Yes.”

“Yes.” She bent for a kiss.



“Maybe no more after this one? Just to give ourselves a break?”

He kissed the lovely, sweet curve of her neck. She shivered. He smiled.


Chapter 13 by gotham-ruaidh
Author's Notes:

Originally posted on tumblr - What happens when Claire and Jamie leave the plane, and decides to move into his/Murtagh´s flat ?

Original prompt: What happens when Claire and Jamie leave the plane, and decides to move into his/Murtagh´s flat ?

This was crazy. She was crazy, pouring her heart out to a stranger and soliciting his help to move her things from Frank’s flat. He’d convinced her to wait until the morning, when he and his godfather could both help. And she didn’t want him exerting himself too much, and give the burn enough time to heal.

Right. Keep telling yourself that, Beauchamp. Convince yourself he’s a patient, when he’s something else entirely.

She glanced at Jamie, beside her in the back seat of a cab. The dark, rain-slickened streets of Glasgow glided by. Her hand hadn’t left his since the airplane, not even in customs or immigration, when they’d gone through together. As a couple.

Jamie’s thumb gently traced the backs of her fingers. Her left hand felt naked, but free. Liberated. But at the same time she felt the invisible weight of another band – the one Jamie could give her. He was an amazing, selfless man – but still very boyish in some ways.

Idly Claire wondered just how old he really was. Not that it mattered – but she was curious. Frank was ten years older than her, and Jamie was clearly younger.

“It’s just a wee bit up the street,” the cab driver said over the roar of the rain.

“I feel terrible intruding on you and your godfather – you haven’t seen each other in ages,” she said softly.

Jamie squeezed her fingers. “Dinna fash yourself. He’ll be delighted to meet you.”

Claire wasn’t so sure. She’d taken such a big risk with Jamie – but he’d proven to her in their short acquaintance that he could hold her heart – and her feelings – with such gentleness and thoughtfulness. And respect.

The cab eased to a stop. “Here we are.”

Jamie reluctantly released Claire’s hand. “Here are your bags – wait for me just under that alcove.”

She opened the door and darted through the raindrops to a small covered entryway. Beside the glass door were six doorbells, glowing in the dark.

The door slammed, and Jamie hurried to the alcove, pressing tightly against her. Her heart surged.

He pressed one button and settled an arm around her shoulders as they waited.

“Come on…” he said under his breath.

“Aye?” A deep voice scratched over the intercom.

“It’s me,” Jamie yelled over the din of the rain. “Fer the love of God, man, let us up!”

The door buzzed, and Jamie turned the doorknob. Claire gathered their bags and followed him into the hallway and up a flight of stairs.

The door at the end of the landing was already open, a bearded man in a navy dressing gown waiting in the doorway. She hung back as Jamie rushed to greet his godfather.

They embraced, and the older man held Jamie for a long time. They spoke Gaelic in excited tones. Jamie’s voice saying those strange words…she wondered again just what exactly he had murmured to her on the airplane.

Murtagh looked up over Jamie’s shoulder and noticed Claire. “Jamie?” he asked, switching to English. “What’s this? Have ye something to tell me?”

Jamie turned and extended an arm to Claire. She stepped forward and gripped his hand tightly.

“This is Claire. She sat next to me on the plane ride home. She’s in need of a place to stay tonight.”

Murtagh looked her up and down in frank appraisal. “Ah. Weel. And here I thought – weel.” Belatedly Claire realized that Murtagh was a bit flustered.

Seeking to break the tension, Claire stepped forward, hand extended. “Claire Beauchamp,” she said softly. “Jamie told me quite a bit about you.”

Murtagh stared at her hand before gripping it and giving two hard pumps. “Mmphm,” he said warily. “She’s English, Jamie?”

“Aye. So?”

Murtagh shook his head. “Of course. Anyway. I suppose I’ll be making up the extra bed for ye, lad. No way this lass will sleep on the couch.”


“Really, I’m fine – I’m quite comfortable. Thank you.”

“Truly? I know it’s no’ much, but…” Jamie glanced around the small bedroom, lit only with the glow of a single bedside lamp. There had been no question that she’d get the bed and he would make do with the pull-out mattress of Murtagh’s battered living room couch. Though truth be told, he’d prefer to slide in next to her and just hold her through the night…He shook his head to clear it of those thoughts. Better save them for later – not with her standing right in front of him, so bonny in the dim light.

She gently rested a hand on his chest. Only now when they stood, face to face, did she realize just how bloody tall he was.

He closed his eyes. Dimly she realized that his heart was racing under her palm.

So he was as affected as she was.

“Thank you, Jamie. You’ve been so kind – offering me help, a place to stay.”

He swallowed. “It’s nothing. I hope you know I’d do anything for you, Claire.”

His voice was so eager – open, and honest. And the way he said her name – so gently, and with that burr – warmed her insides. Her breath quickened.

“I’ll take you to the pharmacy in the morning to get more of that aloe cream. You don’t want that burn worsening.”

He nodded, and opened his eyes. His blue gaze burned into hers.

Heady. Intense. What was this between them?

His hand gently rested on top of hers. He licked his lips and kissed her knuckles, so gently.

“Good night,” he said, voice husky. He stepped quietly toward the door.

She smiled widely. “Good night.”

He nodded and shut the door. She rested against it and let out a deep sigh.

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