February 6, 1762
We are finally settled into the new house. Jamie and the children wouldn’t let me do anything, other than direct where things were to go. It’s frustrating, though I do understand. Being pregnant at 44 is dangerous. I am strangely not concerned. I’m healthy and between Jenny, Marsali and Brianna, I’ll have plenty of assistance if something should go amiss.
Jamie on the other hand, is terrified. He doesn’t even leave the house anymore, hovering at my side. He says it’s just to spend time with me, and I would believe him except for the look in his eyes. I know that his mother died in childbirth, and she was younger than I am now. Jamie is spending every minute with me in case I die too.
I would promise him that I won’t, but I will not lie to him and that is always a possibility.
February 10, 1762
I didn’t write anything yesterday, the baby came a week early. It was another easy birth, and we have another son. After a great deal of discussion, it was decided to name him Alexander Fergus Franklin Beauchamp Fraser. Little Alex will be our last child I think. Jamie was so relieved he started sobbing this morning. It took him over an hour to stop. I finally got him to explain that he had a dream last night, that I would be dead when he woke up this morning.
I can’t put him through this again. We have six children now including Fergus. That will have to be enough.
October 17, 1762
Brianna finished our family portrait today. She did a marvelous job, although I think she forgot to paint some of the lines on my face. I don’t think I look that young. Jamie of course insisted that I will always be beautiful to him, when I mentioned it.
We also told Brianna that we are sending her to Paris to study art. Italy might be better, but Fergus doesn’t speak Italian. He and Marsali are going with Brianna. Jared’s son Michel has agreed to let them stay with his family. Brianna has such a talent. I’m happy for her, but I will miss her too. Marsali is excited and nervous. She’s never been more than five miles from Broch Morda.
June 7th 1767
Brianna was a lovely bride. Jamie took awhile to warm up to Roger. Roger is a scholar, not a warrior and that made Jamie nervous about his ability to provide. I’m not concerned. They’ll stay here at Lallybroch for awhile and then they plan to go to London. Oxford College has offered Roger a position, and Brianna can paint there too.
May 17th 1793
Alex and his wife Joan brought the children to visit today. It was a lovely time. Jamie’s eyesight is failing him. After supper we spoke with Brianna and Roger about moving into the manor with us. They have been at the little house with Jenny since Ian died, but we need the help. Jamie can’t keep up with everything by himself, and too many things are missed because he doesn’t see them. I know that I am the same with patients. Marsali is a wonderful assistant, and I have been letting her do more and more on her own. Her oldest daughter helps as well and is coming along with her studies.
October 20th 1800
Jamie’s eyesight has failed to the point he can’t write his journal anymore. I offered to take dictation, but he said no. Whatever he has to say, I can write in my journal. I think it embarrasses him.
He can still see, just not well, even with spectacles. Fergus and Alex have taken over running the farm and the distillery completely.
I told Jamie that he would have more time to spend with the grandchildren this way, and he agreed. Still, it’s a transition for him.
January 2nd 1801
I officially turned over the surgery to Marsali this morning. I’m still here if she has a question, but I want to spend more time with Jamie. I feel the cold more these days and don’t want to leave the bed so early. Jamie is still a human furnace.
July 4th 1803
Jamie and I went for a picnic by the Mill today. Even in the bright light, Jamie needed my help to navigate. I could tell it made him sad, and so I teasingly said that he would just have to find his way by touch. That brightened him right up, and we made love right there in the grass. Part of me is glad that the grandchildren didn’t happen by. Part of me doesn’t care.
April 26th 1805
Jamie’s birthday is in four days. Why couldn’t he wait just four days? I… I can’t… Oh my love. Why didn’t you wait for me?
May 1st 1805 Journal of Brianna Mackenzie Fraser
Momma died in her sleep last night. I found her this morning in Da’s chair by the fire, wrapped in her arisaid.
I think Momma was just waiting for Da’s Requiem to be sung so she could be sure it was done properly. We laid Da to rest yesterday.
I shouldn’t be surprised. Momma and Da were never apart in life, except for that brief time after Culloden, before Uncle Frank helped Momma get back to Lallybroch. It must have been hard for her to wait four days.
Momma left a letter on the desk telling me not to bury her with the arisaid, she wants to make sure that there is a copy of the original pattern for the weavers to follow. She left a number of other instructions as well.
I’ll follow them all Momma, I promise.
Frank closed the journal. He had worked his way through all of the original generations and was now working on Claire and Jamie’s children’s journals. The latest one belonged to their youngest child, Alexander.
The first book on the Fraser Collection had been published a year ago. It contained information from Claire’s journals and Janet Murray’s.
Frank was already being contacted by scholars and universities from all over the world. He had speaking engagements booked for the next two years. He was listed as the author, and Sandy was given credit as his research assistant.
Dr. Innes was ecstatic. The publicity that Aberdeen was receiving was priceless. The graduate student applications to the history department were increasing already. Frank had tenure and Sandy was on the fast track to receiving it as well. They still split classes with Sandy taking the undergraduates and Frank taking on the graduate level students. They taught on alternating days.
They were already working on the second book, this one based on Jamie and Ian’s journals. They would be listed as co-authors for this one.
When he had started referring to Fraser as Jamie, Frank wasn’t sure. It had been a gradual transition.
Frank looked over at his wife. He and Sandy had been married for almost four years now. They had purchased a house closer to Aberdeen, and now brought journals home from Lallybroch a few at a time. Frank had all of Claire’s and Jamie’s. They were stored in special cases in his study.
He and Sandy had adopted a pair of twins whose mother had died in childbirth, a year after they married. Samuel and Diana were three years old. Frank found that he liked being able to be with the children on the days that Sandy was teaching. It was wonderful being an involved father. His own had been rather distant.
Maybe it was reading the journals and all of the antics that Fergus had gotten up to, along with Claire and Jamie’s commentary that made Frank change his mind about adoption. Whatever the reason, he was glad. Sandy had been thrilled.
Frank had finally shared with Sandy the complete truth of his connection to Claire two weeks before their wedding. It had gone much better than he anticipated.
Sandy had already seen references to ‘uncle Frank’ in the second generation of journals. When he let her read all the letters addressed to him, it made much more sense. Sandy agreed that this should stay between the two of them and the Fraser family. If it became widely known that some people could time travel, it would destroy history as they knew it.
Just then he heard the baby cry. “I’ll get her darling.” Frank said.
He and Sandy had adopted another baby girl Elizabeth Claire, just six months earlier. The mother had been a student, who wasn’t married to the father and didn’t want to be. She was beautiful with brown curly hair and hazel eyes.
Reaching over, he picked her up and hugged her close. “Shhh…it’s alright you’re alright. Daddy’s got you.”
The end...really the end.