Typed fantasies inspired by Jack Davenport

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Heart over mind
JackDav-9
blackpoetcat_2
Title: Heart over mind
Author: blackpoetcat
Rating: G
Characters: James Norrington, Jack Sparrow
Disclaimer: Mouse owns all, just playing with
Summary: Sequel to Unexpected Encounter; for the prompts “Turnabout is a fair play” and “Rescue” at potc_drabbles
Thanks to: porridgebird - Happy Birthday, dear!



Of course he knew what he planned was not only extremely dangerous, but almost (if not certain) suicide. But James went through it nevertheless, took his leave of absence for a month, set sail and changed his whole appearance during the voyage. He wore plain clothes, grew a beard, not only let his naturally dark-brown shoulder-length be slightly bleached by the sun, but withstood any urge to keep it neat and kempt and let it be tousled by the elements.

When he finally reached the small port he had been headed for, he added an eye patch to his piratical shabby look, took a deep breath and went ashore.

He had no trouble finding the tavern Jack had mentioned a couple weeks ago. Not only because it was the biggest one here -- the shouting and singing which sounded into the street told of a wild party already going on inside even though it was just early afternoon.

He entered, let his gaze wander through the hall and soon spotted his target right in the middle of a group of pirates, who were just clinking their mugs together.

“To Captain Jack Sparrow! May he and his Pearl roam these waters forever!” one of the men shouted.

The others agreed loudly and all took deep gulps of what would be probably rum.

James carefully approached the group, grabbed a mug from a passing server’s tray and lifted it to his lover.

“Happy birthday, Captain. And fair winds,” he snarled in the common sailor’s accent he'd practiced during his trip.

Jack’s eyes went wide; he even choked for a short moment on his rum, before he managed to answer.

“Thank ye, mate. ‘tis very nice to come over and offer yer felicitations; but…”

He didn’t get any further. A tall figure pushed away one of Jack’s crew members and stared directly at James, his hand on his cutlass.

“Now ain't that a surprise,” he hissed loud enough to get anyone’s attention. “Look who’s joining our merry celebration: none other than The Scourge!” he declared, finally drawing his weapon and sweeping the mug out of the officer’s hand.

Shouts and murmurs went across the tavern; in no time they were surrounded by nearly everyone, and James found himself held by two men from behind and facing the tall man’s sword tip at his throat. His breath became flat and he suddenly felt his heartbeat exactly where the sharp tip touched his skin.

“Remember the merchant captain you first ruined and then threw out of your office last year? The one you made responsible for delivering rotten seed?”

Well, at least now James recognized the man. He was indeed that former merchant who claimed to be absolutely innocent regarding the foul condition of those badly needed seeds. The inspection of the cargo holds nevertheless revealed that he took no care to protect the load from getting soaked by saltwater during a storm, so…

“Ah, lads -- let's not overreact,” Jack finally tried to cut in, but was interrupted by another older pirate.

“Is he telling the truth? Are you really Norrington?” he asked the officer. His whole demeanour as well as the respectful silence around them told James that this was likely to be one of the Brethren, a man of influence and power in the pirate world.

He hesitated to answer at all while he held the man’s gaze without flinching. To reveal his identity would inevitably lead to being killed. There was no way that anyone here -- except Jack, of course -- would miss this unique opportunity to get rid of the famous pirate hunter for good. And far worse, Jack would have to witness whatever they would enjoy doing to him. He doubted that they would grant him a quick, painless death.

Before his thoughts and regrets for Jack went further, the older pirate stepped nearer, had a closer look at the eye patch -- and removed it, presenting everyone two healthy green eyes. James swallowed and set his jaw, the grip on his arms tightened, the pirate nodded slowly.

“As I guessed. You are The Scourge,” he stated. “But I doubt that you came here to spy on us, did you?” he murmured, too quietly to for the others to overhear when he leaned in even closer, their noses nearly touching, his eyes focused on Norrington’s. Then he suddenly looked directly at Jack who winced back and tried to hide the fear James could clearly see in those nearly-black eyes he so much loved to drown in.

A small, knowing smile flitted across the older pirate’s face before he slowly shook his head and gazed at James again.

“It’s a shame your reputation makes it perfectly clear that you would never cooperate with the likes of us. It would save your life, lad, if you would provide us with your knowledge of the bloody navy and the merchant’s routes. But you won’t do that, will you?”

“Certainly not!”

James’ answer was out, loud and clear, even before he could waste any thought on this unexpected offer. He didn’t dare glance at Jack, didn’t want to see the deep pain in his lover’s eyes. No, he didn’t come here to hurt the one person who meant more to him than anyone else in the world. He just wanted to prove that he loved Jack enough to be as daring as the pirate when he came to London and participated in James’ ennoblement festivities; just wanted to spend his birthday with him -- not ruin it by dying right in front of him…

“I didn’t expect anything else. Well, then it’s settled, Commodore -- you will be executed by sunset,” the elder pirate announced, accompanied by applause and shouts of verve, interrupted by a loud question.

“That’s all? That bloody bastard deserves far more than death!” cried one of the pirates. “I say, let’s tie him to a tree and flog him 'til he’s beggin’ for the noose!”

“Yeah!” -- “He’s right!” -- “Show him Navy’s own bad habit!” -- “We wanna see him bleed!”

For some moments the voices went on, demanding more and worse suffering for their fiercest enemy; then the old pirate leader raised his hands and ordered them to be quiet.

“I know all of you have more than one reason to make this man’s death as slow and miserable as possible. But if we condemn him to torture, we’ll make him a legend that will never die -- a martyr! I won’t let that happen, understood? When the world learns that he died like all our mates he sent to the gallows, choked to death by a simple noose, no one will remember him as more than any other Navy officer killed on duty. They’ll just think we’ve got even. So, calm down, take him to the magazine and lock him up there. Arrange shifting guards, choose a fitting tree for the execution; until sunset, we continue celebrating our mate’s birthday; right, Jack?” he turned to address Sparrow.

“’Course we celebrate,” Jack nodded and somehow managed to grin. “First me birthday and later the Caribbean’s newly achieved freedom!” His words were accompanied by rousing cheers.

Though the pirate didn’t look at James, the officer clearly noticed that neither his tone nor his gaze were as merry as they used to be when Jack was in fine spirit. Of course not -- he was going to watch his lover die in a few hours! And James doubted that there would be any chance to get away on his own or sprung free with guards around. This old man was definitely well aware of whom he was dealing with…

A few minutes later, James was led into the magazine. It was the only stone-built structure in the whole place and its few window openings were barred, a perfect gaol. He was forced to sit down with his back pressed to one of the wooden piles; his wrists were bound tightly behind it. Then the door was closed and locked. He heard the men organize the guards, their laughter and joy about his impending death.

Finally, he allowed himself to groan quietly, leaning the back of his head to the pile, closing his eyes. He was so goddamn arrogant and stupid! How could he ever think to get away with a re-visit, to put his head into the centre of a place so similar to Tortuga? He should have been more realistic than enthusiastic about surprising his beloved, that was for sure!

As if he of all people could pull a scheme like Jack! That he would be able to blend in like the famous pirate did in London’s finest company! If the situation were not as threatening as it was, he would have liked to laugh at himself for being such an idiot.

A single tear ran down his cheek, his deep regret for what he had done to the man he loved more than his life nearly overwhelming him. Not only because of the pain he inflicted upon Jack, he nearly endangered his life, too! The old pirate seemed to guess that there was something between them. Something no one must ever know.

He slowly shook his head. He always feared that Jack would be caught and that he himself would have no chance to rescue him. That he would be the one whose life ended first never occurred to him, much less by hanging. The prospects of dying slowly by strangulation made James clench his jaw. He would rather a short drop and a sudden stop, the way he always saw executions through. A clean break of the neck and justice was fulfilled. He detested brutality and any form of torture, but he was well aware that the pirates would not bother with building a platform and a trap door just to make it easier for him. He could be grateful at least that he was spared the required flogging…

After a while he tried to chafe the rope against the pile, but all he achieved were bleeding wrists. So no luck here; and he was well aware that Jack couldn’t dare to rescue him without revealing their true relationship. That would be just as fatal for the pirate in these circumstances. If he himself would be caught by freeing Jack they would hang together. There was absolutely no reason to believe that the pirates would react any other way.

***

The sky’s colours slowly started to change into a soft shimmer when James heard a guard’s voice.

“No one is allowed to pass!”

“Oh, but Captain Emerald gave me permission,” a female voice answered. “See?”

He couldn’t recognize the low sounds after her statement, but the next moment the magazine’s door was unlocked and shut right after a dark-skinned, beautiful young woman slipped through. Her blouse’s plunging neckline betrayed her profession as clearly as her lascivious smile when she squatted down in front of James and stroked his cheek with one finger.

“Ye’re a pretty one,” she cooed, and breathed a kiss on his lips before he could turn his head away. Whatever this Captain Emerald, who he assumed to be the old pirate leader, was thinking -- and though a part of James couldn’t deny some kind of respect for the gesture -- an officer of the fleet would not stoop to this kind of ‘last meal’! Especially not while he was bound and helpless.


He cleared his throat and leaned his head back as far as the pile allowed before he addressed her:

“Excuse me, Miss… I really appreciate what you are trying to do here, but I assure you that it is not necessary. I am perfectly able to die without… well, a last chance to…”

“To escape?” her smooth voice whispered into his ear. “Play along, bloody fool! Jack sent me. Though it’s far above me why he bothers at all. Stupid Navy, comin’ here and almost gettin’ yerself and all of us killed!”

James’ eyes widened, he had to swallow hard, and he stared at the young woman, dumbfounded.

“You… you are…”

“Anamaria. Consider yerself lucky we didn’t meet before; I never approved of Jack’s taste for ye aristocratic pricks. But I owe him, so…”

Her hand wandered along his face, his neck, and finally she grabbed the back of his head, directing his face nearer to hers. Simultaneously she wrapped the other arm around him and the pile. She winked at him, pressed her lips on his -- and exactly that moment he felt his bonds being cut.

As strange as the feeling of kissing her was, James could not deny it was nice and soft, rather warm, if lacking any of the passionate emotions he always had along with Jack’s kisses. Perhaps this was how his future would have been if he had married Elizabeth?

But now was not the time for contemplating matters like that. Anamaria finished the kiss and tousled his hair, her other hand shoved the small knife she had used to cut the rope into his palm.

“Wait until they come to fetch ye. Jack’s prepared a diversion, but ye have to be damn fast. If ye fail to get away on first attempt…”

“I know. No second chance.”

James smiled at the young woman and when she removed her hand from his hair, he quickly grazed it with his lips. To be on the safe side with the guards, he didn’t dare to move his arms, but rather continued holding them as if he were still bound.

“Thank you,” he whispered. “Please tell Jack…”

“Tell ‘im yerself. I’m not the bloody Navy’s messenger,” she hissed before she got back on her feet. “Just try not to ruin ev’rythin’!”

The next moment she bent down again -- and hit him across the face, causing his head to bump into the pile.

“Feelin’ too high and mighty for the likes of me, eh?" she barked. "Go to hell, ye arrogant bastard!”

With that she rushed to the door which was opened even before she could call the guard. The pirate who let her out grinned at his prisoner and James, though still a little bit foggy after the blow, recognized malice in the man’s expression. From outside he could still hear Anamaria lamenting, accompanied by a remark about how satisfying being paid for almost nothing could be.

His head hurt, his muscles felt not only tense but on the verge of cramping since his hands had to remain behind the pile without being held by the rope, but James was happy. Jack was actually ready to risk everything -- for him. The most notorious pirate of the Caribbean loved the most feared pirate hunter enough to scheme a rescue plan for him. Of course he had only intended to be just another guest celebrating his lover’s birthday and sharing his cot afterwards. He had definitely not wished to cause such a precarious situation, least of all after Jack already risked his life to participate in James’ ennoblement festivities.



***

Though it was probably not much time after Anamaria left until the guard’s entrance, for James it felt like an eternity. He inhaled deeply, concentrated on his grip around the knife’s handle -- and the very moment one of the pirates bent down to untie him, he stabbed him right in the chest, relieved to see him slumping down silently. Immediately after that he kicked the second man’s legs away before he had his cutlass ready and any scream could alert anyone, got back on his feet and with another well-aimed kick sent him into unconsciousness. He then carefully approached the door. He wanted to glance around but suddenly heard loud shouting. When he risked looking down the street he saw several people running up from the beach in the same direction, buckets of water in their hands. Seconds later he smelled smoke, then finally saw the flickering light of flames from somewhere behind the next houses.

A short smile played around his lips, because he was certain of the fire being Jack’s diversion, then he hurried to slip out of the magazine and into the shadows of the trees and bushes next to the building. James didn’t bother planning where to go or how to reach his boat. He knew that there was only one place for him to be safe.

Even though Emerald seemed to suspect their relationship he would never dare to order a search of the Pearl. Jack would shoot everyone who as much as tried to set foot aboard without his permission, and no one would think otherwise than him still being paranoid because of Barbossa’s mutiny and ten years of hunting him down…


***

“Ye never listened, Jamie. What did I tell ye? Again and again?”

With a sigh James hung his head and nodded before he slowly lifted his gaze back to Jack’s.

“Not to do anything stupid,” he repeated quietly. “I apologize. Sincerely. Though there is no excuse for hazarding you -- and your crew. Not this way. I mean, it is something different when we meet at sea, the Dauntless pursuing the Pearl, but…”

“Hush, luv.” Jack put an index finger on his lover’s lips, brushed a strand of hair out of Norrington’s face and smiled. “I know why ye did it. And despite the trouble, and that Marty had to set fire to that nice li’l tavern -- what by co-incidence got me rid of payin’ for me birthday feast ‘cause no one could save the keeper’s cash box and his tavern maids were confused and afraid and of no use for rememb’rin’, therefore no one knows if I have or have not paid -- and, even better, no one knows how much barrels of rum were really lost, means I don’t need to re-stock for a good while -- there’s only one thing left.”

Even accustomed to Jack’s way of speaking, to his extraordinary long sentences, James needed several moments to understand what he had been told and couldn’t suppress a lopsided smile.

“You are unbelievable. Maybe that is the reason why you are so different, so special. You don't just create chaos, you reign it!”

Jack's gold teeth flashed when he grinned and visibly beamed.

“Aye. But there’s one exception. I can’t reign that for the love of Calypso. As much as I’d like to; especially now. I’m sorry, luv -- but ye have to deal with that chaos yerself. But ye can be sure I’ll put ye back to yer feet afterwards and show ye how much I adore yer courage to join me birthday feast, savvy?”

James’ eyebrow climbed up involuntarily, he opened his mouth to ask what Jack was referring to -- and then he heard it loud and clear from outside the cabin.

“Where the hell is that bloody fool of a Navy prick? Show yerself and I’ll teach ye a lesson, Norrington! And don’t ye dare to avoid facin’ me ‘cos I’m a woman, ye coward! I’m worth me salt as much as any man, including yerself!”

With a sigh he looked at Jack.

“No chance to calm her down?”

The pirate shook his head, causing his braids to swing, but he gave his lover a peck on the cheek.

“Good luck, luv. Ye’ll need it!”

Again James smiled, if still slightly lopsided.

“Then I have nothing to fear, because -- my lucky charm is right here.”

With that, he kissed his lover’s lips, then turned and left the cabin to face the most intriguing challenge that ever crossed his path. Well, except Captain Jack Sparrow, of course.





~~~ The end ~~~

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(Deleted comment)
Glad you like it :D

Yes, I'm sure he'd rather face a dozen pirates than her *ggg*

Love love love love!!

And Anamaria, what a treat! You have a great Ana voice there.

THANK YOU!!!!

I thank you, dear! And I'm absolutely happy you love it!

*bounces + hugs the bird*

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