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Fanfic page with pictures, music, previews, staff bios and episode listings, all you could want, and more, for Highlander fiction fans. HFS season one is finished, we have a total of 23 episodes, and they're all available if you follow the HFS link.

Disclosures by Tasha

This is the third in the Dividing series, the others may be found at:
Dividing of The Ways


Part 4

The hotel wasn't exactly the place anyone would expect to find a man who'd come into town on a crowded bus, but Greg's means of transport had been one of choice not necessity. His place of residence was also chosen carefully, and the doorman let him in with a smile as he wandered up the pristinely clean steps. Depression may have robbed the Immortal of his reason, it had not taken away a keen sense for a good investment. Greg, like most Immortals over a hundred years old had plenty of money on which to live. He'd been out exploring since his meeting with MacLeod and what he didn't really expect was a message waiting for him already. The receptionist handed him the piece of paper with his key and he began to read as he stepped into the sparkling elevator.

"Meet me at the docks, tonight at seven," was all the note said, there was no name.

The first thing that Greg's eyes settled on as he walked into his room was the black bag in the corner. He'd had his clothes shipped on ahead, and they'd all been carefully hung up ready for his arrival. It was a very different man who walked out of hotel to that which had walked in from his chat with an old friend. Greg had chosen a light brown jacket, pressed shirt and jeans and a shower had revived him completely. His coat hung in a telltale way that any Immortal would recognise, Greg was recovered, he was not stupid.

The dark haired Immortal was not quite sure who he expected to find when he arrived at his destination. If it had been a message from Mac, he'd have put his name to it, unless of course it was just an administrative cockup. It was possible that one of the others wanted to meet him for reasons of there own. Mac had explained that they were all friends, but that had never stopped Immortals going behind others backs if they perceived a threat. The significance of the docks was not lost on him, but any of those close to Duncan could have that knowledge. That it might be Richie crossed his mind, and the sword fell heavy against his side every time this occurred to him.

When he stepped out of the cab and paid the fair he was resigned to whatever turned up. It wasn't exactly the best lit part of the city, but the odd warehouse light and street lamp lit his way to the place that had once been his workshop. He sensed no-one else and checking his watch he realised he was more than ten minutes early. With a little bite of nostalgia he sat down on an available post and waited.

He caught sight of the approaching Immortal at the same time he felt his presence and the dark figure stopped in the shadow cast by a large stack of boxes. Greg stood and peered into the darkness, but he couldn't make out who it was.

Richie hadn't known what to expect of the photographer or himself, and he was surprised by the way his whole body froze. Greg was framed by light, and even though he couldn't see the younger Immortal, Richie could see him very clearly, and it sent him into the spirals of unbidden memory. It was like turning time back and then slowing it down to a painful crawl. The sense of another Immortal was forgotten as the twin was caught in a tidal wave of remembered Mortality.

He remember the same face etched with rage, the same eyes glaring into his own and it took away his will. There had been something wrong the moment Greg had walked into the shop that night. An instinct had told Richie that the Immortal was not the man he had befriended so recently. The pots smashing as a leather clad arm swept them off the glass case played itself out in infinite slowness, as the young Immortal's mind worked. The brooding calm and then the sudden episodes of furious rage had warned of what was to come. Reason had just run off the psychotic photographer like water on wax, and fear had started in the pit of Richie's stomach. He remembered that fear so clearly he could taste it in the back of his mouth.

His muscles were tense as his thoughts replayed the run to the exit and the pressure of being held against a door by a hand threatening to cut off his air. It was almost as if he could feel the fingers clasped around his neck, the nails slightly digging in to the sides as the fear began complete terror. The words sounded in his mind, distorted by the slowness of time, and he saw the insanity that had been in his captor's eyes. The moment he'd realised all hope of talking was gone passed in his head with painful clarity. The exact second he'd known that his only way out was to act, was there in it's entirety. He remembered the pain of being thrown against the door and the release into blackness that had probably saved his life, passed through his minds eye. It all came and went, all except the terror, that stayed, and it wouldn't go away.

The paralysing fear made him feel so helpless, and that made him angry. The rage burned very hot, and suddenly he was glad he'd left the sword on his bike. He could see Greg was carrying, but his rational side trusted Mac's judgement, and he knew that both of them being armed would have been a very bad idea. It didn't change the fact that he was furious, but the small part of his brain that was still acting rationally was thanking every deity of which it could conceive. The mixture of emotion freed him from the statue like pose into which he had frozen and he took one step into the light.

What Greg saw was an Immortal whose gaze could have destroyed the strongest man, and he really expected to see a sword in Richie's hand.

"You know," the blond individual said in what sounded like a frighteningly calm voice, "I really want to kill you."

His tone had gone beyond emotion, it was totally cold.

His opponents thoughts went immediately to his own blade, but unless he was very much mistaken, Richie was unarmed. The younger Immortal had chosen his garb so that there could be no doubt. Not even the most cunning of their race could produce a sword from a pair jeans and a T-shirt.

"You seem somewhat unprepared to take my head," Greg observed slowly, he was a little confused.

"I said I wanted to kill you," Richie replied in the same heartless voice, "I never mention anything about wanting your Quickening."

The other was still puzzled, but he was beginning to catch the drift.

"You seem to bring out some very Mortal ideas in me," the blond Immortal continued carefully. "I had nightmares about you for weeks, I think I discovered true hatred. You had no right to do that to me, and I can't seem to get beyond it."

The rage that burned through the younger man was so obvious in his stance that it not being in his voice was particularly eerie. Richie was a study in contradictions as he stood there, but then he had been that for some time now.

"I'm sorry," Greg said with genuine feeling, and even through his anger the blond man realised this.

"I know you're sorry," he returned, a little of the heat finally showing in his tone. "If you weren't Mac would never be suggesting some of the things he is. There's only one problem: it doesn't make a damn bit of difference. You have the same face, the same voice, and I can't just forget what you did. Believe me, I've been trying. All day I've been attempting to rid your glaring eyes from my mind, but I can't."

"So what are we going to do about that?" Greg asked, he attitude one of true enquiry.

"I don't know," the other returned.

They stood there in silence, just watching each other as if they'd never seen the other before.

"Would it be any easier if I put my sword down?" the ex-photographer suggested, much to his opponent's surprise.

"It might," was all Richie said.

Greg was determined to try and make up for what he had done. It wasn't often an Immortal had a chance to right a mistake, usually they were quite fatal, and this one was taking the chance he was given. He knew what it was like to carry scars of other people's deeds and he couldn't just let this one slide. He eased off the jacket and placed it on the post he had just vacated. Then he moved away, and the two men were facing each other totally unarmed.

Quite perversely, Greg's attitude was infuriating to Richie. It would have been so much easier if he had been the monster the blond Immortal remembered. He wanted to destroy the image in his mind, the madman that still made part of him quake. The memories had been buried so deep, but now they were like an open wound that wouldn't heal. His mind briefly considered what would happen if Greg became one of the group. All hostility would melt away, Richie knew that, but it wasn't good enough. A small section of his being demanded vengeance, and he felt compelled to feed it's need.

It wasn't hard to see the explosion coming, and the dark haired Immortal did nothing to avoid the blast. The fist came flying and Greg didn't even try to move out of the way. It connected with his jaw with all the force of Richie's anger and the victim went flying backwards. He landed in a heap two feet from where he had been standing, and the world swam. It was all the attacker could do to keep from kicking him when he was down.

The fire dimmed a little, but the flames still hurt. Part of Richie so wanted Gregor to climb to his feet, but instead the Immortal just lay there. The animalistic centre of the blond man's soul screamed for him to leap in for the kill, but an honour driven just as deep held him back. Once there had been a Richie Ryan that would have taken his advantage and followed it through, but he hadn't been Immortal, and he hadn't been around Duncan MacLeod.

He half screamed, half yelled out his frustration. It was a feral cry that Greg understood all too well.

"The dojo, two hours," Richie shouted hotly, "be there."

Then he turned on his heel and literally ran from the fallen man. Greg was left dazed, confused, and unsure of whether it would be good for his health to obey Richie's command.

Some would have said that Greg was a little crazy for actually turning up at the appointed place, but one thing he never did was run from a fight. He was no closer to figuring out exactly what awaited him after two hours of wandering around in a thoughtful daze. The only small glimmer of hope he had was that the dojo would be a bad place for a real challenge. A Quickening would wreck the place, and Immortals had a thing about not destroying their homes.

One thing he did not expect was to be hit by quite such a powerful sense of his kin as he walked up the steps. It was never really possible to tell how many Immortals were waiting, but that it was more than one was perfectly obvious to Gregor. When he actually strolled through the door in his best nonchalant manner, he was stopped dead in his tracks as he saw how many people were actually waiting for him.

There were two distinct groups in the room, and his eyes tracked across the smaller one first. It consisted of Beren, an older man with a walking stick he did not recognise, and another unfamiliar young woman. It was the other group that was somewhat more fascinating, however, and he took a moment to really look at them. He found MacLeod first, who smiled encouragingly, and partially wound around him was one of the female Immortals he'd met earlier in the day. Next to her was Manheim, and after him came a tall hawk nosed man he'd never laid eyes on before. The look that he sent back was calm and although not hostile, seemed to be reserving judgement. His hand was grasped by the other woman who had entered the dojo with MacLeod's friend, and she nodded a greeting as Greg's gaze passed her.

They were all waiting for something, that much was obvious, and when he reached the last two occupants of the room, the ex-photographer found out what. To say that Greg was shocked would have been doing him an injustice, his reaction was much better than that. His heart nearly stopped, and almost every thought evaporated out of his mind, and all that remained was a feeling that he was in big trouble. Richie's gaze was still hostile, and it was difficult to miss that his carbon copy was having problems keeping the same emotion out of his own eyes.

Methos' face broke into a broad grin as he watched the sheer incomprehension register on the newcomer's face, and remembered a similar reaction on his own part. The momentary alarm that shifted through Greg's features also seemed to provide the ancient Immortal with some amusement.

Every one had been somewhat surprised to get the call earlier in the evening, especially from Richie, but they had all heeded it. There was really no reason for them all to be there to explain the situation to the now very bemused Immortal, but since they'd been asked they had agreed. If their numbers increased much more, meetings like this would be somewhat impractical on a regular basis.

Mac was very glad that his student was trying to put his own feelings aside for the good of the group. The fact that his anger was almost tangible in the room was a little of a worry, but it took time to leave such things behind. The silence was heavy and it didn't seem as if it felt like ending, so the Highlander took on the role of host. He was, after all, the only one in the room who could actually profess to really know the man who had just walked through the door.

"Breathing's good, Greg," he said lightly as he watched his friend forget what his lungs were for, "oxygen tends to do wonders for the brain."

The other Immortal's eyes were glued in place, he was dumb-struck, but at least he reasserted the unconscious instinct to maintain his air supply.

"Well you know four of us here," Duncan continued, as if Greg was paying complete attention. "The young man you're staring at is Chris, and you seem to have noticed the startling similarity between him and Richie. It's a long story that we'll get to in a minute. Then there's Madelaine, Adam, you've met Craven, this is Amanda, and our Mortal comrades you haven't seen before are Joe and Karina."

The dark haired newcomer's eyes did track slowly with the information being imparted, but he was having difficulty believing what he was seeing.

"This is freaky," were the first words that came out of his mouth.

"We're quite aware of that," Adam put in, his grin becoming broader by the minute.

Watching the discovery from the other side seemed to be giving the oldest of them no end of mirth. Observing the explanation was going to be nearly as much fun as giving the local Watcher network the run around. Since joining the group, Methos appeared to have lightened up considerably on his desperate need to keep his true identity completely buried. It wasn't that he was being careless, or wanted anyone to find out who he was, but it was as if it was much more of a game now. Some of it was his new found comradeship, and the rest was probably a great deal to do with Madi.

Greg had no knowledge of Watchers, and certainly hadn't a clue that one of the Immortals in the room was the oldest of those left. If he chose to join them, everything would have to be explained, until then Joe was just a friend and Methos was just Adam.

"What's this all about?" the ex-photographer finally rediscovered coherent thought.

"Things have changed since you were last here," Mac offered calmly, "and it means we have a secret, something we want to share with you. Don't worry, no-one here wants your head, and if you think we're crazy once we've explained feel free to just leave."

A little of the tension ran out of Greg's stance as he heard the assurances, but he was still very much on edge.

"Go for the quick explanation," Craven suggested amiably, "then he can ask questions later."

There was only one problem with that, it was difficult to come up with a short description of what had occurred without sounding completely insane. The Scotsman gathered his thoughts and tried to decide where to start.

"Something happened here earlier this year," he began, erring on the side of caution, "and it had rather a startling effect on those involved, and the Game in general."

End of Part 4