Title: A Woman's Work...(Reia's Story) 
Series: consider this part of the backstory to the "Immortal
Underground" arc, but its not necessary to have read that first.
However, I would recommend reading 'A Teacher's Tale (Blaer's Story)'
first, as this occurs, chronologically, after that. 
Author: akire
Email: akire@mailcity.com
Status: Complete/Unbetaed
Category: Crossover: Highlander/The Sentinel/personal universe
Spoilers: umm, got a basic grasp of the Highlander universe?  Fine.  Oh
yeah, we're a Clan Denial fanfic.  In The Sentinel, we pick up after
TSbBS. 
Disclaimers:  D/P and Pet Fly really DO own them.  If you don't
recognize it, its probably mine.  If it's silly or crazy, definitely is
mine.  But if anyone sends the lawyers after me, I'm sending out the
boys with swords ;)  Oh yeah, and imitation is the sincerest form of
flattery.  If you recognize a specific fanfic creation, it belongs to
its author (when this series is finished, I may tally them up). 
Rating: PG, prob.  Hey, I'm not offended by much, if it should be rated
higher, tell me! 
Content Warning: purists beware.  Language may offend some readers.
Intimations of domestic violence.
Summary: Whilst Reia takes her student off to spar with the Seacouver
clansmen, Joe takes the opportunity to tell Jim a little about the
other VIP in Blair's life. 
Dedication:  To Lucy, Queen o' Spunk

That's long enough. On with the show!

~~##~~

Jim drank deeply of the beer his host had pulled for him.  Sighing
contentedly, he watched Joe fiddle with the till, opening and closing
the drawer several times until he was satisfied whatever little
mechanical niggles it had were fixed.  He then pulled up a stool on his
side of the bar and smiled at his guest.

"How's Cascade?"  Meaning  how is the tribe and the people in your
protected territory, Sentinel?

"Fine.  Seacouver?"  How goes your Immortals in the Game, Watcher?

"Ditto."

Pleasantry out of the way, the pair enjoyed their drinks a little more.
"I hear that Reia's been your houseguest these past few days.  Been
behaving herself?"

Jim laughed.  "Yeah.  She's been paying her way by sharing every
embarrassing story she has of Blair with us."  He took another pull of
his beer.  "Hey Joe, can I ask you something?  I know Blair is nearly
2K.  But how old is Reia.  I know she's older than he is, cos she
taught him, and when we first met, you said she was 'one of the old
ones.'  Janet pretty much said the same thing.  But how much older are
we talking here?  When did she go through first death?"  Some part of
Jim was amazed he could discuss such a topic so casually.  How long had
he known of Immortality again?

"Have you asked her?"

Jim raised an eyebrow.  "No, and I won't until I figure out where she
keeps her sword."

Joe laughed.  "Smart move.  Okay, fine," he continued, conspiratorially
lowering his voice. "But you didn't hear this from me."

"Deal."

"Fucking old."  The bluesman chinked his glass against his guests'.
"We haven't got an exact date, but she's over twice Blaer's age,
easily."

Jim let out a low wolf whistle.  "Ouch.  I can't...wow, that's old."

Joe grinned.  "Makes your head hurt just thinking about it, doesn't it?
And she's not even the oldest, by a few more millennia at least."

Jim groaned and rolled his eyes.  "Jesus, Joe, how the hell do you deal
with numbers like that."

Joe shrugged.  "You said it yourself.  They're just numbers.  Anyway,
it is my learned and considerable experience that they rarely mature
beyond the age of first death.  Oh, they'll learn new ways of living,
adapt, civilize themselves even.  But they all died somewhere between
19 and 35, and they've behaved like 19 to 35 year olds since our great-
grandparents were in short pants, and they'll continue to do so long
after we're dusty in our coffins.  Don't go looking for any mystic
sources of wisdom from any of them.  They'll just laugh and make you
buy the next round."  Joe picked up the now empty pair of glasses and
went to refill them.

"Do you know how she died?"  The question had been on his mind for days
now, but he could think of no way to ask the girl herself.

Joe snorted again.  "Yeah, but this you definitely didn't get from me. 
It's not even in her Chronicle.  My last birthday, no, year before
last, she gave me as a present the chance to ask her one question, and
she would answer me honestly, on the condition that it never made it
into the Chronicles."  He smiled.  "Of course, as soon as she said that
my mind went completely blank!  Anyway, that's the story I asked for,
and she actually told me."

"The real story?"

"Yep, some of the other old one's backed it up, and it's totally
understandable given the social mores of that time and place."  Joe
took a sip.  "I guess you lot would call it a fatal DV."

Jim blinked.  "Domestic violence?  I was expecting something a little
more..."

"Exotic?  I think she's a little pissed now, that she doesn't have some
exciting story to tell.  Nope, beaten to death by her husband...and I
use that term loosely."

"Did she tell you why?"

"Do those bastards need a reason, any century?  She said that
particular beating was because she had not produced an heir.
Apparently the lad was pissed that he had bought this exotic wife, real
big dowry, and she wasn't popping out kids every other day."

"I thought Immortal's couldn't have children."

"Hence the lack of sprogs.  This guy was the Smith.  They were real big
shots back then, thought to have magical powers because they could work
metal.  Also meant there were lots of big heavy implements to beat your
woman with, and no need to hide the bruises cos it was considered
perfectly acceptable.  Anyway, he got drunk and angry, cracked her
skull and tossed her on the midden heap.  She revived, showed more
sense than most newbies and stole his horse and most of his portable
wealth while he was drunk out of his skull on the local moonshine, and
then made for the hills.  I'm afraid I don't know who taught her or
anything like that."

A light laugh came from the doorway.  "Maybe I should give you that
story for Christmas, Joe?"

The Watcher had the grace to blush.  "Reia, um, I thought you were over
at MacLeod's?"

"Yeah, but Connor had to go run some errands and the lads were quite
happy sparring with each other."  She slid onto the stool next to Jim
and winked.  "Secret men's business no doubt.  Got a drink for a girl,
Joe?"

He began pouring without even asking her what she wanted.  "Shall I add
it to your tab?"

"Is there room left?"

"No, but that's been the case since I opened the joint."  He slid an
optik down the bar at her.  "So, since I've been caught gossiping,
anything you want to add?"

"Just that I had my revenge."  She sipped the amber liquid, savouring
the taste.

Jim regarded her coolly.  "You killed him."

"Nope, Time did.  My revenge was that whilst he's just so much wormfood
and has been for millennia, I'm sitting here in excellent company with
a finger of very good whiskey, and nobody, not even I, can remember the
bastard's name."  She looked at Jim and chuckled softly at her private
joke.  

Jim slowly raised his glass in toast.  "Here's to the fact that even
though the good die young, they come right back."

"Salud."

~FIN~