The whole Scene
The realization of Jamie’s imminent departure was deeply depressing; I suddenly realized just how much I looked forward to seeing him at dinner after the day’s work, how my heart would leap when I saw him unexpectedly at odd moments during the day, and how much I depended on his company and his solid, reassuring presence amid the complexities of life in the castle. And, to be perfectly honest, how much I liked the smooth, warm strength of him in my bed each night, and waking to his tousled, smiling kisses in the mornings. The prospect of his absence was bleak.
He held me closely, my head snuggled under his chin.
“I’ll miss you, Jamie,” I said softly.
He hugged me tighter, and gave a rueful chuckle.
“So will I, Sassenach. I hadna expected it, to tell the truth—but it will hurt me to leave ye.” He stroked my back gently, fingers tracing the bumps of the vertebrae.
“Jamie…you’ll be careful?”
I could feel the deep rumble of amusement in his chest as he answered.
.…bla blah about the Duke and Geilis.….
I put my mouth on Jamie’s nipple, flicking it lightly with my tongue. He made a small sound deep in his throat and pulled me nearer.
“Open your legs,” he whispered. “I mean to be sure you’ll remember me while I’m gone.”
Sometime later, I woke feeling cold. Groping sleepily for the quilt, I couldn’t find it. Suddenly it came up over me of its own accord. Surprised, I raised up on one elbow to look.
“I’m sorry,” Jamie said. “I didna mean to wake ye, lass.”
“What are you doing? Why are you awake?” I squinted over my shoulder at him. It was still dark, but my eyes were so accustomed that I could see the faintly sheepish expression on his face. He was wide awake, sitting on a stool by the side of the bed, his plaid flung around him for warmth.
“It’s only…well, I dreamed you were lost, and I couldna find ye. It woke me, and…I wanted to look at ye, is all. To fix ye in my mind, to remember while I’m gone. I turned back the quilt; I’m sorry you were chilled.”
“It’s all right.” The night was cold, and very quiet, as though we were the only two souls in the world. “Come into bed. You must be chilled too.”
He slid in next to me and curled himself against my back. His hands stroked me from neck to shoulder, waist to hip, tracing the lines of my back, the curves of my body.
“Mo duinne,” he said softly. “But now I should say mo airgeadach. My silver one.
Your hair is silver-gilt and your skin is white velvet. Calman geal. White dove.”
I pressed my hips back against him, inviting, and settled against him with a sigh as his solid hardness filled me. He held me against his chest and moved with me, slowly, deeply. I gasped a little and he slackened his hold.
“I’m sorry,” he murmured. “I didna mean to hurt ye. But I do want to be in you, to stay in you, so deep. I want to leave the feel of me deep inside ye with my seed. I want to hold ye so and stay wi’ you ’til dawn, and leave you sleeping and go, with the shapes of you warm in my hands.”
I pressed firmly back against him.
“You won’t hurt me.”