CM/HL idea, pt. 4

Back to the victims (and excuse my fiction-only knowledge of law enforcement and weaponry): because MacLeod hasn't been found out yet and seems to be reasonably intelligent, I imagine that he does, in fact, dispose of his challenger's bodies in the modern era, likely both to thwart forensics teams and to show respect to the dead (even if he didn't much appreciate or respect them in life). This respect may have varying degrees (Kalas and Kronos, for example, he felt such hatred towards that he would have wished them an ignominious period of decomposition, had not concealing his involvement in their violent deaths been necessary), but he generally treated them as opponents, as people; he destroyed any evidence of his DNA on his victims and (most of) the kill/challenge sites, and he disposed of the bodies in a convenient area not exceedingly close to the kill site. Although the victims were Immortal, some of the worse defensive wounds sustained during the challenge would not have healed by the time of decapitation, leading the BAU to find wounds (once mortal-fatal, partially healed before decapitation) and know that a fight of some kind occurred, especially when coupled with the fitness of all of the victims-- as well as how many of them were buried with their swords. Although perhaps MacLeod took a few swords as trophies or to show respect to someone that particular Immortal killed (as he gave Kanwulf's battleaxe, which Kanwulf had used to kill Ian MacLeod, to his father in death), and therefore some of the swords are missing, most he put to rest with their owner (again a sign of respect to the dead). Seeing the swords (and any other type of weapon wielded by a challenger and subsequently buried with one) and matching them up with the victims' calluses, the BAU believes that the victims were likely sought out because of their skill with a blade. So, they call in an expert in bladed weapons, who identifies the blades as mainly antiques ("Marvelous blades! Great value, although it's surprising that they show such recent signs of use. Usually, you put blades as valuable as these away in display cases... And I've don't remember many of their sales, which is a bit odd... Maybe family heirlooms?"), but just a few are of relatively recent make. In fact, sword consultant points out the smiths' marks. One smith is an elderly Japanese American man, actually a mortal friend of MacLeod's whom he frequents for maintenance of his dragon's head katana, who has been in business for decades. He forged this particular blade slightly over twenty years ago, but he identifies the victim as the one who commissioned the blade. Oddly, despite having forged the blade upwards of fifteen years ago, the smith easily recognized the man the BAU believe the victim to be-- he seemed hardly to have aged. The other smith is a woman in her early thirties, living somewhere in southern Europe, who as an apprentice helped forge the blade on commission, not to the victim found with it but to a Rebecca Horne, to be given as a gift to Horne’s protege. Both Horne and the protege are now dead. The blade wasn’t sold, either: the victim may have either inherited or stolen it.

CM/HL idea, pt. 3

So, at this point, the BAU is looking into Adam Pierson. Immediately, red flag: the guy watched his employer, to whom he was apparently close, get tortured to death. Trigger-city. The problem is, they don’t know if he’s MacLeod’s submissive partner in killing, or if he was just vulnerable to the man. He was never the most steady guy, a British national studying at the Sorbonne, yet going off for months on a time on international business trips for a historical society. Then, yet another potentially triggering event: he meets a woman, Alexa Bond, and apparently grows wildly attached to her. He takes her around the world on a jet-setting trip mere weeks after their first meeting, and they travel together for several months, until her hospitalization and death-- Pierson by her side as she died. (I’m assuming that Methos didn’t travel under his Adam Pierson identity whilst saving Duncan from the dark quickening or trying to, ah, appropriate the Methuselah Stone.) Over the next few years, he quit the historical society and found no steady employment, mainly seen in MacLeod's orbit when in Seacouver. He continued to go off on long trips, now just disappearing for months at a time.

While the profilers interview Adam Pierson, catching him between classes at the university, Garcia is attempting to compile a list of people gone missing from areas that MacLeod was known to be in at the time and/or bodies found. A very ambitious project, but those do seem to be her specialty. Yet again, the plot thickens. A number of distinctively beheaded bodies follow MacLeod’s movements-- killed in EXACTLY THE SAME MANNER a man known to have been killed by MacLeod in apparent self-defense was killed. (see the s1 episode “Mountain Men”) Beheaded, neck-stump cauterized peri-mortem. This is huge! That beheading was a concrete, physical indicator of serial killing, as beheading is deliberate and even ritualistic, taking a great deal of effort and not a convenient way of killing someone. Plus, it takes a certain amount of skill as well as raw strength to cut through a neck cleanly, as one must avoid getting one’s blade stuck in bone. Not just something one gets right on the first try, especially in the less-than-optimal conditions of one’s victim struggling and attempting to fight back. They know that MacLeod wasn’t responsible for the victims of his latest Immortal victim, but rather a second serial killer who managed to cross paths with their investigation into the first, the odds against which are astronomical. So they need to find out why.

After more investigation into the headless corpses Mac trails, they find that a significant portion of them were unknown, identity-less in the digital world. They lived off the grid, but by the quality of their clothes they didn’t seem to be homeless, and the clothes were also diverse enough that the BAU doesn’t think MacLeod played dress-up after killing them. Others, upon vigorous examination of their background, showed cracks in their ostensible identity, throwing suspicion on even the rock-solid looking victims’ identities. And rather a few of these victims were known to be unsavory or persons of interest in murder. Despite the identity-less victims, MacLeod seems to not have minded taking victims from all walks of life, some quite well-known. MacLeod seems to have killed a bunch of people who got away with crimes, or people running from something... Is he a vigilante killer? That would explain the intersection of his kills and the investigation. The BAU is curious as to how he determines guilt, seeing as many of his victims were not known to have been guilty of any crime.

But this is even bigger than two(!) serial killers. This ties into a weird phenomena that’s been occurring apparently since law enforcement agencies have kept records. MacLeod’s weird cauterized beheadings match the MO of what the BAU thinks may be a long-standing cult, because this odd type of murder has been committed since who knows when. And, creepily,in the past decade there has been an uptick in these ritual beheadings around MacLeod.

CM/HL idea, pt. 2

Basically, the police reports and society papers tell the BAU that MacLeod is dominant/controlling, highly charismatic, and unafraid to use violence and physical intimidation in order to achieve his ends.

But, because I just love Peter Wingfield’s acting, Methos/Adam Pierson must play an active role here. Asking around the dojo’s customers, the BAU finds that a young man, a Professor Pierson, often stays at MacLeod’s apartment. In fact, he is currently residing there. They figure that MacLeod must be quite attached to Pierson in order to allow him to stay in his apartment, what with his rather controlling tendencies-- and one’s home is one’s *own* space, highly personal. The BAU thinks that Pierson is MacLeod’s boyfriend. He’s a shy fellow, retiring, bookish-- easy for MacLeod to control. He’s a bit too old to be a foster son like Ryan, and some of the dojo customers confide that Pierson and MacLeod are “together”. (Whether or not this is truly so in the fic remains to be seen. This is fanfiction, folks.)

So, the BAU decides to take Professor Adam Pierson to the local police station to interview. And there the fun starts. Methos thinks that getting arrested is rather aggravating, and he is a bit stressed that Duncan is now being noted by people who put people in federal databases-- and getting him noted, too, the bastard!-- but playing mind games with psychologists is kinda fun, disregarding that federal databases fiasco. Especially when he realizes that the BAU thinks he’s in a romantic relationship with MacLeod. Playing up this assumption seems a convenient opportunity to needle the guy, who is now on his petty revenge list. He'll just have to make sure that he and Duncan get off free while having his fun.

CM/HL fic idea, pt. 1

As MarbleGlove mentioned, Criminal Minds and Highlander both deal with serial killers... Just from opposite points of view. Unfortunately, I haven't found many crossovers online, perhaps because of their separate running periods (90s v 00s/2010s) and vastly different genres and takes on the serial killer characters. But what HL fan wouldn't want to see an immortal get psychoanalyzed? Seriously, our beloved, long-lived characters are *messed up*.

And Duncan is just way too careless. He gets caught up in police business all the time and headless corpses dog his trail (though I suppose perhaps the show just doesn't cover the gory clean-up), all beheaded in the same highly unusual manner: clean, one stroke, very sharp implement, cauterized, and if they find the kill site there was a huge mess like a localized electrical storm. Since there isn't blood spatter everywhere, the authorities probably think the blade used to behead the victims is what's doing the cauterizing. Extremely unusual. Plus, Duncan's rather cagey about himself and his past.

I picture this as after Tessa's death, but before Richie's. After Duncan beheads yet another serially mortal-killing immortal, the BAU, who were originally looking into the other immortal's murders, are turned onto Duncan. Because, knowing him, he was seen rather publically with the soon-to-be-missing (a head) person of interest in the case. The 'evil immortal' wasn't considered to be a truly likely unsub until after he disappeared, when Penelope looked even further into him, and found that his birth records were suspect, even though he was actually fairly well-known in his field. So, Duncan, who was seen arguing with the guy, gets investigated-- the BAU needs to figure out if the evil Immortal of the week disappeared in connection with the serial killings, or if it was just coincidence (Guess who on the team believes in coincidence? That's right, none of them). But, in her thorough examination of her records, Penelope discovers something else not groovy: although his records are all technically perfect (thanks to Duncan's anal retentive and money-no-object attitudes, he gets his papers done by a mortal friend of Amanda's), she also turns up quite a few police reports. Ex) Duncan and his now-deceased fiance and unofficial(?) foster son (who was himself often in trouble with the law, albeit for less serious matters) were caught in a hostage situation. When the hostage-takers separated MacLeod from the group, he somehow survived and all the hostage-takers killed each other- not in a blowout, but one by one via traps and surprise attacks bare-handed and with a sharp object, despite having guns. The hostages describe the head hostage-taker getting more and more agitated, sending out more underlings. During this entire time, MacLeod, an accomplished martial artist was unaccounted for. And on, and on...

The BAU discovers that MacLeod was fairly tight-lipped towards the police. He took in his foster son, Richie Ryan, after dropping burglary charges against the boy (who claimed that he responded to the intrusion by pulling a sword). Later, he bailed Ryan out of jail several times and provided for the boy, uprooting him from his former social circle, whom Ryan fell out of touch with, and providing for all of Ryan's needs, including his first subsequent job. That seemed pretty controlling. Eventually Ryan moved away, but while he was with MacLeod, MacLeod was very much in charge. A friend from Ryan’s delinquent past (I know of 2 past girlfriends who showed up on the show, but I forget their names), when questioned by the BAU, professed that Richie fell out of touch after being taken in by MacLeod. Make that the first ex-girlfriend, whom the BAU called up due to being arrested with Ryan in the past. She was involved in selling drugs and got the clan MacLeod involved by staying with them-- Mac was very stern about the whole thing, dumping $$$ of cocaine(?) down the sink and eventually setting off to defeat the Immortal mob boss in mortal combat. She mentions that MacLeod was very stern, very in charge, and at first what with Richie just disconnecting from his old life she was somewhat wary of MacLeod running Richie’s life, but he ended up helping her out of a bad place. He was actually an upright guy, she says.

Duncan's early-series family life gets even more suspicious to the BAU. In the series, we don’t really see many (if any) of Tessa’s friends. Such a reportedly friendly, kind, beautiful person having so few friends seems off to the BAU; in fact, it's a textbook hallma of abuse. I imagine that keeping the secret of MacLeod’s immortality making her feel as though she could never fully confide in anyone but him, combined with the anticipation of having to move in order to keep people from noticing his lack of aging, was like an invisible barrier between her and the rest of the world. In the series, Duncan acts as family patriarch. He’s sweet, sure, and always trying to look out for his family’s best interests, attempting to protect them. But he expects to be in charge. He values Tessa’s and Richie’s wants and needs, acting to best provide them, but his word is law. To the BAU, though, this smacks of controlling, isolating behavior. It seems as though MacLeod, possible unsub, wanted Tessa Noel to be his, and only his.