“I give you five, no make that two, years before you’re bored silly and chuck it all for the big city,” Methos said, leaning against the granite countertop, a glass of red wine in one hand.
Duncan MacLeod just shook his head, pouring more wine into Methos’ glass before refilling his own. “You’d be wrong. Look, Methos, I wanted a change, new vistas, and this suits me fine.”
Methos looked around the tasting room of Mac’s new winery and sighed. “Fine, but if you wanted to play vintner, couldn’t you have picked a winery in France or maybe Argentina? I’ve always liked Argentina.”
“I like it here.” Duncan was practically beaming has he patted the gleaming countertop.
“You could have at least gone to Napa. That’s close to a major city with nightlife, microbreweries, and great restaurants. But you had to pick San Luis Obispo of all places!”
“The wine from this region is better than Napa, and the fact it’s not near a major metropolitan city is a plus in my book! Central California is beautiful; it’s warm, the beaches are great, and it has lots of charm. You’re just a snob, Methos,” Duncan declared.
“Moi?” Methos mouthed dramatically placing his hands against his chest.
He just snorted, taking a cloth from his pocket to polish the counter.
“How many times are you going to do that?” Methos demanded. “That has to be the tenth time in the last hour.“
“I want to make a good impression. The woman who owns the winery next to mine is coming over to welcome me to the neighborhood. I’m making lunch.”
“Ah? What is that supposed to mean?”
“Oh, just that it explains all the fussing. A woman, a pretty one, considering all the effort.”
Duncan sputtered, “That has nothing to do with it!”
“Uh huh.” Methos sounded unconvinced. “Are you going to tell me she isn’t pretty?”
Duncan didn’t quite meet the other man’s eyes. “I haven’t actually met her.”
“But…?” Methos prodded.
“Fine! She photographs really well! Happy?”
“Ah ha! I knew it!” he crowed.
“You don’t have to stay, you know,” Duncan informed his friend testily.
“Oh, perish the thought! I’m very eager to meet your photogenic neighbor.” Methos snickered as Duncan shot him a dirty look.
The intercom buzzed. “That’ll be her.” Picking up the handset, Duncan listened for a moment before replying, “Sure, come on down. I’ll open the gate.” He pressed a button next to the intercom. “See you in a few minutes.” Putting the handset in its cradle, he turned back to Methos. “Behave!”
“You know me, Mac. I’m always a gentleman,” Methos said, his eyes twinkling.
Methos actually helped Duncan set out the lunch he’d prepared; getting his hand smacked when he tried to eat one of the shrimp stuffed mushrooms. But both men’s good humour vanished as the wave of another immortal presence swept across them.
Turning to Duncan, he shook his head in disgust. “What is it with you? Can you go nowhere without a strange Immortal showing up?”
“You would know,” Duncan replied wryly, “being one yourself.”
Methos glared. “Maybe you two could start an Immortal Wine of the Month Club,” he said testily.
Anything Duncan might have said in response was cut off by the large ironbound oak door opening, letting a wash of noonday sun into the dim interior of the tasting room. The woman who entered did so warily, removing her sunglasses as she shut the door behind her.
Duncan stepped forward, extending his hand. “This is unexpected,” he said, smiling reassuringly.
Taking his hand, she shook it firmly. “You have no idea,” she replied, but she wasn’t looking at Duncan. Her attention was fixed on Methos.
Noticing, Duncan quickly added, “This is a good friend of mine, Adam Pierson. Adam, this is---“
Methos cut him off. “Yes, I know.” He walked forward, taking her hand to kiss it in a courtly fashion. “It’s been a long time, Charlotte. “ He didn’t release her hand, and she didn’t seem to mind.
Reaching up, she brushed her lips across his. “Too long.”
Surprised, and not a little bit disappointed — Charlotte Sparrow was a very pretty woman -- Duncan didn’t really know what else to say other than, “So you know him then?”
Charlotte glanced over at Duncan with a smile that was full of secrets. “I do indeed, Mr. MacLeod.” She looked up into Methos’ eyes. “He’s a pirate.”
The warmth of Methos’ laughter filled the room
This is something of a sequel to 'One Day'. But this one won't make you reach for a tissue. Hopefully!