This is the kernel of a story I might write up fully one of these days!
Joe was following Duncan MacLeod at a discreet distance, as always, when his
searches in the Cairo Watcher house turned up an old document wedged behind the
plaster and only re-discovered due to renovation work. He found Duncan in a
cafe and handed over the parchment discreetly.
"Here, Mac. Read this. It seems your new Immortal friend Angela goes back a really long way...." Duncan took the scroll carefully in-between his fingers and slowly un-rolled it. Egyptian hieroglyphics weren't his strong point, but he'd learnt enough from dealing with antiques. In any case, there was a translation in an old form of French at the bottom. That was better. He read aloud, in English.
"I don't know if anyone will ever find this parchment. That there could be a spark of goodness in the one who rescued me from death and long imprisonment may seem impossible to some. He is known as a butcher, murderer, even ravisher. But once, a long time ago, he did me a great service. My name is currently unknown, the Pharoah I called my husband forgotten by history. We were married very young, as was the custom in those days. He died far too soon. Some say it was murder. I saw the wound on my husband's head when they brought his lifeless body back from the hunt and I knew my uncle had succeeded in his aim to gain the throne for himself. I tried writing for help, but that was unprofitable. They killed the princeling sent to my aid. I may have been a princess, but a woman was never equal to a man, for all their fine words. But the princeling did not die, not like a mortal man. Now I know the truth. Methos had been living for at least thousand years already."
Duncan gasped, "Methos? You mean that before the Four Horsemen, he was
one of the good guys?"
"It seems that way," Joe responded, "Read on." Duncan bent his dark head back to the parchment.
"I endured a dreadful marriage to my uncle. He raped me and took all the treasures for himself. I buried my husband with the two still-born children of my sister. I knew my time was short. Luckily my uncle did not live long. An army general staged a military coup and married me to solidify his claim to the throne. Before long, I knew the poison chalice would be given to me and I would be expected to drink it. I paced my quarters in the palace frequently, wondering how I might escape. The throne and double crown of Egypt by now meant little to me. I had lost the husband I loved and the joy of being Queen had been taken from me. I sat on the throne beside Horemheb, merely a cipher, stripped of any real power. He was a good Pharoah. We certainly needed a change." Duncan looked up again, with his eyebrows raised in shock.
"Horemheb? Then....good Lord. Another Egyptian, and a real Princess
and Queen this time. Ankesenamun, wife of Tutenkhamun. You mean our Angela
is.... Good grief! No wonder she disappeared from the pages of history. Early
to mid twenties too - about the right age." Duncan resumed reading.
"Every week, petitions could be brought to Pharoah. People came, offering their children as slaves for the royal house. Horemheb and I sat under the ostrich fans, dressed in the finest linen, laden with gold, jewels and our crowns. Horemheb held the crook and flail as though he had been born to rule. I knew he would rather have his first, beloved wife beside him. I sat, watched and waited. That day, there was a new face. A fairly tall, slender man with paler skin than our own. He said he was an envoy from the Philistine peoples to the north. Horemheb made what would now be called polite conversation while our scribes surreptitiously checked his credentials. A subtle nod from our vizier granted this Methos the extension of an invitation to the evening banquet. He accepted graciously."
"Over the banquet, Methos was just as charming to the guests and
Horemheb. One advantage I had over my husband at that time was my knowledge of
foreign languages. Methos evidently knew this. He passed me the wine and
murmured something in Nubian."
'"Are you in danger, majesty?"' I looked at him. Our eyes met. '"Trust me? I am the prince."' I made my decision and inclined my head very slightly. That night, Horemheb sent the poisoned drink. I suspected he planned to throw the blame at Methos' feet if circumstances proved difficult. Under the goblet was a tiny piece of paper. 'Drink it.' In Sumerian this time. I drank and soon became insensible."
"Gentle hands lifted me upwards from a cold, hard surface. I gasped.
'"This is the embalming room!"' Methos nodded. He was dressed like one of the priests, his short hair hidden under the veil.
'"I'll explain later. We have to leave, now."' He led me into the dark courtyard where we mounted his horse.
'"We're leaving Egypt?"'
'"I'm sorry, your Majesty, but I'm saving your life."' We rode through the night, up out of Egypt, making our way along the fertile crescent and into Turkey. It was nearly a week before he condescended to explain."
Duncan skimmed down the next passage.
"As I expected. He told her about her Immortality. They became lovers - well, I never... I suppose that's understandable. Since then, she's travelled all over the place." Duncan chuckled, "She was even in Egypt when they found her husband's tomb. That's why she put this here, in the Watcher's headquarters. How the hell did she find out?" Joe looked uncomfortable.
"When she came to Cairo, she recognised Methos. He was only passing through, with Alexa. He swore her to secrecy. I suppose now that you and a lot of Immortals know, it's not such a big deal any more. Angela was a great help during the two World Wars. She enabled some of your lot to track down Nazi sympathetic Immortals."
A medium height, beautiful woman with chestnut hair and almost black eyes
walked into the room with very regal, smooth style and grace. Despite her
modern clothes, there was something about her that spoke of the exotic, the
different, the timeless. Duncan and Joe rose to their feet. She smiled.
"Gentlemen. I see you've found my scroll." Duncan bowed slightly.
"Yes, your Majesty." Angela's smile warmed.
"I haven't worn a crown in over three thousand years, Duncan. It's just 'Angela' now." Joe kissed her hand.
"You sure act and move like a Queen." Angela chuckled.
"Yes, well. Old habits die hard, I suppose." She moved closer to Duncan, who placed the scroll in her hand. Angela looked at it, "I think this had better stay with you. If every Immortal knew whose wife I'd been, I'd never live in peace." She gave the scroll to Joe.
"What now....Ma'am?" Angela shook her head, laughing. She linked arms with a stunned pair of men.
"I think this deserves a meal. Can I treat you two to the best food in Cairo?" Duncan's eyes glowed down at her.
"Lead on, my lady."
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