Methos is Ruthie-less
by Rob Morris

The two friends were trying to have a conversation. But one had a penchant for what he called plain-talking and the other had a short fuse when it came to that-which he, by the way, did not call plain-talking.

"Oh, I am so naive. That's your words, right? So how is it I count so many heads to my blade? Explain that, Wisest Guy!"

The Oldest sneered.

"I could say a few words about stopped clocks and whom fortune favors and protects, but do I really need to?"

Macleod stalked off, and while Methos had few enough friends, he was in no mood to fetch him back. A little girl walked up.

"I heard you and your friend arguing."

Methos shifted his sight.

"Didn't your parents tell you it is impolite to listen in on other people's conversation?"

She shrugged, in a way Methos was sure she felt was cute.

"I guess they have. But I think I know how to help you and your friend out. See, friends forget sometimes need to fight like that. It honors the differences between them without letting it tear them apart. So just accept that this isn't the end or anything. It's just part of the whole process of being friends."

The child was speaking with wisdom beyond her years.

"What's your name, child?"

Methos despised all such children.

"My name's Ruthie Camden."

He really didn't care for them at all.

"Are you a counselor?"

Richie and Duncan combined and at their worst did not annoy him near as much as this child.

"No. But my Daddy's a Minister."

He knew her type. She was the relative baby of the group, watching the elders screw up and thinking that she would glide through merely by avoiding what they had done wrong.

"Oh, how very nice for you."

Life had some hard lessons ahead for this poppet. As Methos had told the Chinese Ambassador, merely because his regime closely observed how others fell, it didn't at all mean that his was forever insulated.

"Yeah. But even he needs my advice sometimes. Especially about my brother Simon."

When she chuckled while saying this, Methos decided to move up those same hard lessons.

"Ruthie, having considered your sage advice developed as it is over one decade of living, I now have some advice for you, developed over-more than one decade of living."

At least four-hundred-ninety-nine more.

"So?! What's your advice?!"

Her pushiness only made this easier for Methos. He smiled right in her face.

"My advice, Ruthie Camden, is as follows: Little Girl, Shut Up And Go Away. Far Away."

She stood stunned for just a moment, so Methos finished her off with the same sort of shrug she herself was so good at.

"That is all."

Ruthie ran off screaming, tears running down her face as she went. Feeling a bit relieved, Methos sought out Macleod at the park's commissary. The Highlander had a burger, cola, shake and fries on a tray.

"No comments. I didn't want to get drunk while I was that upset. It never goes well."

Methos turned to the clerk.

"Another one of the same. Both on me."

The Oldest didn't exactly apologize, but something needed to clear the air.

"Listen, Macleod. Next time I get all pedantic-kill me then and there. All right? Because I've just seen what a know-it-all looks like."

Duncan nodded.

"I'm gonna hold you to that. But I've got all this."

Methos wouldn't hear of it.

"No, I've got it."

"Methos-I yelled for no reason. Let me."

A third voice was heard, and a young man handed the clerk a twenty.

"No to both of you. I've got it."

Methos looked at the light-haired teenager.

"Why are you doing this?"

The young man smiled.

"My name is Simon Camden. God Bless You, Sir. I've waited my sister's entire life to see her brought down to Earth."

As he walked off, still smiling, Methos and Macleod decided that they had no desire to find out the rest of that story.

Besides, the fries were ready.