One-Night Stand
by Shrift

The plastic bowl clattered against the floor, but MacLeod didn't seem overly concerned about the sudden death of his orange glaze. "You slept with Richie?" he repeated numbly.

Methos lifted one shoulder in a shrug and hummed an affirmative. He continued reading the personal ads in MacLeod's newspaper. They were always so entertaining.

"You slept with Richie?" MacLeod said again.

"Yeah," Methos said absently.

"You slept with Richie!"

Methos looked up from the newspaper at MacLeod's sudden increase in volume. "Yes, I know. I was there."

MacLeod's expression was thunderous, his jaw clenched and the skin squinched up between his eyebrows. "Why the hell did you sleep with Richie?"

Methos blinked a few times, trying to remember. "Um. He was there? It seemed like a good idea at the time?"

"What?" MacLeod squawked, brandishing a wooden spoon glistening with orange glaze. "That's not a reason!"

Methos snorted and went back to reading the personal ads. "Of course it is. You've slept with more than one person for that reason. I've read your Chronicle, remember?"

MacLeod opened his mouth to retort, then closed it a moment later, shooting Methos a mulish glare. "Yes, well, this conversation isn't about me, is it?"

"Whatever you say, MacLeod," Methos muttered, jumping when MacLeod rapped his hand with the spoon. He licked the sauce off the back of his hand, and said, "Needs more ginger, I think."

"Really?" MacLeod said, momentarily distracted. "What about the zest?"

"It's perfect." Methos pointed to the floor, and MacLeod made an inarticulate noise of disgust as he bent to pick up the bowl. Methos skimmed down the page, passing over several boring entries featuring bisexual males looking for 'discreet fun.' "Got any sherry left? You're out of beer."

At the sink rinsing away his glaze, MacLeod spluttered, "You'll get nothing until you tell me what's going on!"

"What's there to tell?" Methos said.

MacLeod turned off the faucet and turned around, drying his hands with a towel. Then he crossed his arms and loomed, something he always did impressively. "When would be a good place to start."

"Oh, I dunno," Methos said. "While ago, I think. It was just the once."

MacLeod slapped his palms onto the counter and loomed a bit closer. "You had a one-night stand with Richie?"

Still reading, Methos said, "Yeah, well, he wasn't very good." An entry caught his eye. 'Attractive professional white male, open to anything that won't land me in jail.' Methos chuckled, and briefly thought about looking him up. He hated going to jail. There was a reason he hadn't been back to Venice since that visit in 1817. Byron and his bloody mad schemes. Byron and his sweet, sweet mouth. That mouth got Methos into trouble every time...

MacLeod smacked the paper out of his hands. "I don't believe you!"

"Oh, you don't believe me?" Methos scoffed, narrowing his eyes. "You want details? He's young. Goes off fast. No finesse. That sort of thing."

"Please," MacLeod said, holding up a hand and looking pained, "no details."

"Fine," Methos said.

"Fine," MacLeod said, and then suddenly blurted, "Richie's not gay."

"Of course he isn't," Methos said, reaching across the counter to snag some white grapes from the bowl of fruit. "He just went through a phase where he propositioned strange men in bars. Asked them to -- oh, what was it? To go bowling. In the nude." He popped the grapes into his mouth and munched noisily. "I've heard worse pick-up lines, actually."

MacLeod smiled tightly. "Anything else I should know?"

"I thought you didn't want any details."

"Never mind," MacLeod said, no longer looming. Instead, he was leaning against the counter with his eyes closed, pinching the bridge of his nose.

"You asked," Methos pointed out.

"I did," MacLeod admitted with a heavy sigh. "Will you stop talking now?"

"Gladly," Methos said, leaning over to rescue the newspaper from the floor.


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