An Evening at Joe's by Aeron Lanart
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Author's Notes:
Title from the book of the same name

~*~

It was late, and there was no-one left in the bar except Joe and his two guests, seated around a table with their beer.

“So are you finally going to explain *why* Methos refused to come back with you?” Joe asked, trying out one of his glares on them. Not that the glares usually worked on immortals but it was worth trying.

“Nope.” Duncan grinned as he took a swig of his beer. Joe sighed.

“You did say *I’d* invited him, didn’t you?”

“Yes.” Joe realised he was going to get no answers from that quarter and turned his gaze to Amanda, who dimpled sweetly at him and nodded.

“He did. Twice. The old man turned the offer down flat. Imagine that; turning down an offer from *both* of us.” Joe narrowed his eyes; when Amanda was being this nice she was usually up to something. A strangled gurgle from Duncan’s direction distracted him momentarily.

“You Ok?” He asked. The Scot might be immortal, but Joe didn’t want him choking to death in his bar unless he was intentionally responsible.

“Fine, fine...” Duncan waved a hand at Joe as if to emphasise the point, but Joe was fairly certain he was actually trying to hide the grin on his face.

“So... Methos. Where the hell has he disappeared to now?”

“Disappeared?” Amanda echoed, ensuring Joe directed his attention back to her.

“Well, he’s not here, and he doesn’t usually turn down the offer of free beer.”

“That’s true.” Joe frowned at the two pairs of inscrutable brown eyes that met his. It was like pulling teeth. Mortal he may be, but one thing he had developed in his long years as a Watcher was patience.

“Well, it’s his loss. Refill?” Duncan nodded and Amanda refused with a graceful shrug, so Joe left them to it and grabbed another couple of bottles from behind the bar. On the way back to the table he decided he really could not be bothered with patience after all, but Duncan offered a tidbit of information after he’d sat back down.

“He’s been spending time in Cardiff — in Wales.” Joe couldn’t help his snort of utter disbelief; he did not have good memories of Cardiff.

“Why on Earth would Methos want to spend time in that God-forsaken place?”

“Apparently they have good beer.” The fresh bottle was raised in a silent toast. Joe tried not to sigh again in exasperation.

“Yeah, right.” He commented and waited until Duncan had taken the first mouthful from the bottle before asking what he really wanted to. “So, who is she?” Duncan spluttered gratifyingly, but Amanda kept her composure.

“I have no idea *what* you’re talking about, Joseph darling,” she said with a smile, eyes wide and innocent looking.

“Like hell you do.” Joe couldn’t help but smile back. In the meantime Duncan seemed to have regained control of his swallow reflex, and gave an experimental cough.

“He, actually,” he mumbled.

“What? Methos has a *boyfriend*?!” Joe made sure he sounded more surprised than he honestly felt; after all, the guy was 5000 years old and probably got bored without a bit of variety.

“Boyfriends.” Amanda put the emphasis heavily on the s.

“You’re kidding me?” That did surprise him a little and he was met with 2 vehement headshakes. “Well that explains Cardiff anyway; at least he’ll be warm.” He grinned, and raised his own bottle. “And I’m $100 richer. Here’s to success; for everyone.” The chink of glass on glass was drowned out by the sound of laughter resounding through the near-empty bar.