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War of the Gods
Casey grinned at Amanda Seeney. "I can’t wait to tell him who you are," she said, giggling softly.
Amanda smiled nervously. "For the first time it occurs to me that perhaps he won’t be so happy to meet us. He has a family, he had loving parents, and from what you tell me, his childhood was pleasant enough. Perhaps…"
She put her hand on the older woman’s arm. "Trust me, he’ll be thrilled to meet you. Ever since we found the tablets, the one that listed all of the DNA donors, well, every Immortal has wanted to meet his or her parents. He would have been thrilled just to have learned your names," Casey said softly.
The Ancient nodded. "It’s been some time since I’ve been through a Stargate, as well."
"It’s still a wild ride," Casey said, grinning. She offered her hand to the woman.
Smiling gratefully, Amanda took the slender hand firmly. "I am ready. Take me to meet my son," she said.
Casey grinned and winked at her father, nodded at Liam. "Let’s go. You’re gonna love Gamma. Hope is the greatest little town." She led Amanda to the event horizon. "Okay, this is it."
They stepped onto the ramp on Gamma, Duncan waiting at the end of it. Amanda would have stopped, but Casey led her gently to where the Highlander stood.
"Duncan," Casey said, "I’d like for you to meet Amanda Seeney. Your…uh…mother."
The Scot looked from Casey to Amanda and back again, his eyes wide.
By now Liam had joined his wife at the bottom of the ramp. "You are Duncan MacLeod?"
Duncan looked at him, frowned slightly. "Of the Clan MacLeod, yes. And you are?"
"Your father," Liam said, grinning broadly. Before the younger man had a chance to move or speak, the Ancient had pulled him into an embrace. "Casey has told us all about you, my son. We’re proud of you, Duncan. Very proud of you."
The Highlander looked at Casey. "Now I know exactly how you felt."
She giggled. "Just don’t take as long as I did to welcome them into your life," she replied. She looked up at Aaron and hugged him tightly. "Don’t waste time. We might be Immortal, but time lost is still time lost."
Duncan looked again at the woman who was his mother. She had tears in her eyes. Slowly, as if she were afraid he would disappear, she reached out to touch his face. He reached for her, and hugged her tightly. "Hello…mother," he said softly.
The words broke down what little reserve Amanda had left. She clutched tightly to broad shoulders and wept softly. "My son, my son, my beautiful son," she whispered softly between her tears.
Casey felt tears fill her own eyes. She looked up at Daniel. "I have a son of my own that I desperately want to hold," she said softly.
Daniel looked over at Jack. "We’re going home, see you in a couple of days."
Jack nodded. "We’re right behind you."
Aaron rode to their house with them, took Erin home to explain what had happened, and to prepare the guest room for the Seeneys.
A A A A A A
Casey sat down on the floor later that evening, watched as Nicholas rolled from his back to his stomach. "Hey, little man, when did you learn that?" she asked softly. She reached out and patted his back, smiled as he reached for and grasped his favorite rattle.
Daniel settled himself beside her, Emily hanging on his back as if she were a cape, her little arms locked around his neck. "Are you okay, babe?"
She looked up at him. "Yep. I’m fine.’
He watched her eyes, remembering the anguish she suffered when Emily was a baby, missing those important milestones. "You’re sure?"
She sighed. "Okay, I had thought that we'd be off the roster long enough to let me stay home to witness his firsts. But it didn’t happen. As long as he loves me, I’ll be okay."
He leaned over to kiss her. "That’s a guarantee, babe," he said softly. He raised up on his hands and knees, to the delight of his daughter. Playing with Emily was one of his greatest joys. Again feelings of absolute wonder, of complete happiness, washed over him.
"Giddy’up, Daddy!" Emily giggled, still clinging to his neck. She squealed with laughter when Daniel began to move around the floor, trying to ‘buck’ her off.
Casey giggled as she watched them, laughed out loud when Emily succeeded in ‘taming’ her bucking bronco, then settled Nicholas into the infant seat. She flipped on the stereo, let the strains of George Benson fill the room. The baby cooed and smiled at her as she made dinner, taking a casserole from the freezer and defrosting it. She made peach crumble, and found dinner rolls in the freezer to bake, an idea from Sam.
Nicholas gave her a toothless grin and blew bubbles. She leaned down to kiss his downy cheek, opened his fingers to remove the strands of hair that he had grabbed.
Emily bounced up to her, tugged at the bottom of her tee shirt. "Help you, Mommy!"
Casey frowned. Everything was ready for the meal, it just needed to go into the oven. There were no fresh vegetables for salad…the only thing left to do was set the table. "Oh, Emily, I’m so glad you offered your help. I need to set the table for dinner. Can you carry these napkins over there?"
The toddler took the linen napkins and placed them carefully. The salt-and-pepper shakers were next, then the flatware. Casey carried the plates and glasses, but allowed Emily to arrange them.
Daniel had picked up his son, and was tossing him in the air the way he had done with Emily. He tucked Nicholas into the crook of his arm and watched his wife and daughter. A shudder washed over him as the thought of how close he had come to losing all of this suddenly crossed his mind, conflicting with the feelings of happiness he had felt only moments earlier. Needing reassurance, he reached out and touched her mind gently, felt her return the caress, felt her love flow over him like warm water.
"Are you all right?" she asked, standing in front of him, her hands on his chest.
"Yeah, babe, I’m fine."
She smiled up at him.
Suddenly a rush of love washed over him, so strong that his knees nearly buckled.
"Get the message?"
He grinned. "Loud and clear, Angel." He sent out his own love, watched her eyes widen, her hands grip the counter beside them.
"Wow! Don’t do that when I’m holding one of the kids…or a knife!"
He chuckled. "I promise. You be careful, too. I nearly hit the floor that time!"
Casey put her arms around his waist, rested her cheek against his shoulder. "I’m glad we can do that. It kept me sane while we were looking for you," she said softly.
"Me, too babe. I don’t know what I would have done if I couldn’t have felt your love. It was the only thing that let me know that I hadn’t screwed up my life permanently. I’d have probably just given up if I was sure I had lost you."
She raised up and pressed her lips to his neck. "It will take a lot more than that to get rid of me," she said. "Just don’t try to push your luck!" she warned.
He kissed her forehead. "Babe, I promise to walk the straight and narrow from now on."
She giggled. "As long as we stay away from drugged wine and pot, we should be okay. Although I have to admit…the pot was-" she stopped suddenly, dropped her eyes.
"Was what, Angel?"
"It…god, the feelings were so…incredible…so…enhanced."
"Yeah, pot will do that to you," he agreed.
"Daniel, have you ever smoked pot?"
"In college. A few times in grad school."
She nodded. "Me, too. But then, I didn’t have the money for it, and for awhile I was either in class or working, I didn’t have time to party. When I started my job, I didn’t have enough extra money then, either, and didn’t have a clue where to even find it." She was still looking at the floor.
"So you enjoyed the pot?"
Her cheeks flushed, then paled. Finally she nodded.
"Babe, that’s no big sin."
She looked up at him. "You’re not upset about it?"
He shrugged. "Don’t see why I should be."
She smiled. "Good."
He smiled, kissed her forehead again. "Timer’s getting ready to go off. I’ll get the kids settled," he said. He put Nicholas into the high chair, and settled Emily onto her new booster seat.
She poured coffee for him, iced tea for herself. She carried the rolls and the casserole to the table, and they had their first family meal together in nearly a week. It was wonderful!
Daniel watched as Casey helped Emily with her glass of milk. Smiled when Nicholas began to coo. His family. His family. He would never get used to it…never get tired of thinking about it, hearing it. His family. Casey glanced at him, and again he felt the gentle touch of her love.
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