Okay so, I've been writing on this on and off for a few years. I've lost it to two computer crashes and because I'm incredibly paranoid, I'm posting it here. Also because I've been getting a lot of comments on the YouTube trailer I made for it from people who wanted to read it. It's slow going. Like I said, I've been working on and off for a few years, so don't expect a lot of quick updates. I also have a bad habit of changing stuff when I finally do come back to writing something, so expect that too. If I do change something I'll leave a note but I'll try to keep from doing that as much as I can.
Umm. I had wrote out the story plan for this when I was...14?...I think. I'm 21, now and looking it over I don't really like it anymore, it seems kinda cliche, but I'm gonna work it around some. If you want to see the trailer for this story, it's on YouTube with the same title.
I don't use betas so if you find a grammatical error, please excuse. Normally, I find them when I read back through before a post but I do tend to miss a few, so please bear with me.
Flames are fine, if you have a problem, everyone is entitled to an opinion, but please message me directly and no swearing. Also, please no comments on when I'm going to update next, like I said, it's not a scheduled thing. There's not a lot of art for this story on my DA, other than a grown up version of Peter Pan and Jane, that's about it. I'll get around to doing more. The link is in my profile if your interested.
If you have questions, please feel free to message me. :)
Memory is the selection of images - some elusive, others printed indelibly on the brain. Each image is like a thread, each thread woven together, to make a tapestry of intricate texture. And the tapestry tells a story and the story is our past…
The natural state of motherhood is unselfishness. When you become a mother, you are no longer the center of your own universe. You relinquish that position to your children.
There was a stitch of pain in his side and he faltered mid-flight, his body dropping several feet before he regained himself. Flying had never been so hard. He'd never needed happy thoughts to fly before; it had always come naturally. Now he was fighting to find them. Peter landed clumsily on the rooftop of the Darling household, his feet slipping on the shingles, slick from a recent rain. He sucked in a breath and sat still a moment, his heart rate slowing. His body ached and burned with fever. Sweat dappled his brow and he wiped it away with tired hands. They were shaking as he clenched them.
'Jane. I have to get Jane.'
A tinkling of bells beside his ear caught his attention and he turned, swatting the little, golden fairy away. "I'm fine, Tink." He said tensely. He knew she was worried, but he didn't like to be petted or fawned over. He wasn't a baby. Tinkerbell crossed her arms and glared at him and he glared back.
A light flicked on below them and slowly he crawled to the edge of the roof to peer over. A woman (a small woman, he thought, she wasn't much taller than he was) with red-gold hair walked to the window, brushing the long, damp locks over her shoulder and braiding it with nimble fingers. On the breeze he caught a whiff of her scent; freshly cleaned from her bath, she smelled like soap and perfume. It rustled the gossamer fabric of her bathrobe, revealing petite ankles and slender calves as she perched on the window seat. She was humming, her voice soft and gentle, like a mother's voice. Peter sighed and crept closer so he was hiding just around the window sill. 'Wendy.' He thought wistfully. He missed her.
When she turned, he ducked back behind the wall but he'd seen her face. Sure he'd been tricked somehow, he chanced another look. That was not Wendy perched in the window seat. It was Jane.
Her face and body had changed with age and while she wasn't as old as her mother had been when he saw her last, she most certainly wasn't a child anymore. Something inside him shattered at this realization, because it meant that she couldn't help him after all. He sunk back against the wall; his breath burned in his chest and fought the urge to cry.
Jane turned away from the window when her mother called for her somewhere downstairs. Peter waited until her door closed before burying his head in his arms. He was a strong boy, he didn't cry often but he cried now. Neverland was dying and he thought with childish hope that if he could find Jane and bring her back maybe, just maybe, she could save his home. But Jane – like all the others he'd known and left behind – had grown up. He doubted she even remembered him, let alone believed. And when a dream has no dreamer, it cannot last.
A thousand plus years of stories and adventures and…he was going to die.
Tinkerbell tugged at his hair, and he looked up through watery brown eyes. "It's over Tink." He said and she shook her head. 'Get Jane! Jane can help!' She said, her voice ringing around him. Peter sniffed and wiped furiously at his nose and eyes. "No! She's too old now."
She looked like she might argue but he took off before she could. With a resigned sigh, she glanced back at the window then at Peter who struggled to fly a steady line. She followed after him, knew how stubborn he could be. But she could be stubborn too, and she was determined to get Jane's help one way or another.
She dreamed of Neverland. That she was flying over that all too familiar island and it was dark and frightening. The waters, once so clear and blue had turned black. The flowers, once so vibrant and colorful, were gone, replaced by craggy trees with gnarled and knotted limbs.
Hook was fighting Peter again. Jane wasn't really sure how it had started or when, she only knew that they were fighting. The ship was lying on its side in the shallows, a gaping hole in its flank and frozen to the shore by great pillars of ice, sharp and white like the grinning visage of some monstrous beast.
Half the crew lay scattered in the water, swimming to shore while the handful that had already made it were standing on the sidelines' cheering their captain on. Hook was enraged, his face beet red with purple veins ready to pop out of his forehead. His bright red overcoat was gone, revealing the torn sleeve at his right shoulder. Blood blossomed and streaked across the fabric, soaking through the hastily tied bandage and dripping down his arm, making the hilt of his sword slippery in his hand. His shirt hung half open, as if he'd ripped the buttons away in his haste to remove his cravat and tie the wound. His hair was a wild fray of black curls that seemed like the snakes of medusa, writhing in the wind. Hook bared his teeth like a wolf, growling and screaming, his eyes shot through with angry red veins giving him a crazed, frightful appearance.
"Get down here you bastard!" Hook screamed, his sword stabbing at the air around his opponent as he dodged. "I'm going to run you through and tear every limb from your devilish body and feed you to that damnable crocodile!"
Peter, who almost always held a cocky little grin whenever he fought the bumbling pirate, held no such smile now. He was bleeding just under his right rib; the blood dripped down his side and making his clothes cling to his frame. He was slower, almost sluggish and clumsy as he bobbed in the air. Jane faintly noticed the dark circles under his eyes.
Something, a blur of a memory that was not her own, bled into her mind's eye. For a moment, she saw Hook cackling manically to himself in his cabin. A vial, holding a dark, sticky substance clutched in his hand as he poured the contents over his sword. Somehow, she knew that it was poison.
Then she saw Peter laughing as he flitted through the air. Saw as Hook's sword flew up and around, catching him deep in the side and sending him falling to the deck of the ship. She watched with fingers pressed tight over her lips as he screamed when the poison burned through him. As Hook strode cockily, maliciously towards him, kneeling over the boy who scrambled backwards to get away. Hook grabbed him roughly by the collar, twisting his hook securely in the worn material and halting his escape. He pressed a knee into firmly his arm, holding him to the deck and with his other hand, pressed the tip of his sword into the dip above his collar.
Jane, for the short time she had known him, had never seen even the slightest hint of fear cross Peter Pan's face. But as she watched Hook cackle above him, she saw it now. Raw, sheer terror in its purest form settled across his features like a mask. His pupils dilated, his face drained of blood and color, his limbs froze and his throat worked beneath the blade, whether trying to speak or breath she wasn't sure.
She tried to go to him, tried to help but something held her firmly in place though she couldn't see what.
And then, his eyes jerked to the side and his hand grappled across the deck. Hook saw the movement and snarled, drawing back his sword as she fought to break free. She heard both Hook and Peter scream at once but Peter's was different. High pitched and feral as the sword flew across the deck and Hook fell back, the jagged, broken neck of a rum bottle protruding from his shoulder.
Hook, the crew and she herself watched in amazement as Peter staggered to his feet, stumbling backwards until he leaned heavily against the mast. The seas churned beneath them, brought to life by a storm that seemed to come from nowhere. Dark clouds swirled above them, angry and daunting. Hook ripped the glass from his arm shoulder with a cry of fury and as he rose to his feet again, Peter cried out, raising his bloodied hand as if to block the pirate. Instead, the waves rocked and surged as if beckoned by the movement. Suddenly, the ship tilted and rolled.
The memory faded. The fight appeared again, and Peter flew higher, pressing his fingers over his wound to staunch the bleeding. Faintly, Jane wondered where Tinkerbell was as there was rarely a moment without the fairy by his side. She flew closer to Peter, but he was bigger somehow, larger than she remembered. He turned to her, grimacing. "It hurts, Tink." He whimpered and she was suddenly starkly reminded of just how young he was.
Jane frowned. Why had he called her that? She wasn't Tinkerbell, she was Jane. She opened her mouth to tell him so but an explosion of noise interrupted her. Jane looked back toward the beach where Hook squatted in the sand, rifle cocked at his shoulder, grinning. She panicked, tried to push him out of the way but he was too big.
The shot was loud, and it deafened her. Peter screamed as it grazed his shoulder and sent him hurling out of the sky and down into the jungle below. Hook sat stunned, and then his brows lowered as he motioned towards his men. "Get him! I want to be good and sure this time."
The scene changed before she could go after him and Jane found herself in the hideout. Peter sat in his bed, wrapping a crude bandage around his shaking arm while she tended his side. What a brave, young boy he was. Where she would have been a crying mess had she been shot at that age, he was taking it in stride. She didn't know whether to be awestruck or afraid. Wondered briefly what other injuries he could have possibly endured to have built up such a tolerance. "We have to get Jane." He was telling her. "She can help us. She beat Hook before, she can help us beat him again."
Jane shook her head. "But I'm right here, I'm here Peter." But he didn't seem to hear. He stood shakily, sweat dotted his brow. He was very sick, she could tell. He needed rest.
His breathing was labored and though she tried to touch him her hand passed through, as if he were no more than air.
"Peter!" She called but he began to fade away, everything began to disappear. "I'm here Peter! I'm here!"
'Help us, Jane.' A voice, soft and gentle, like the ring of bells echoed in the darkness. 'He's dying! I don't know what to do! Please Jane.'
"Who are you?" She called out.
'Wake up, Jane.'
Jane frowned, confused. "What…?"
She jolted awake, nearly colliding head first with Tinkerbell who'd been hovering above her, tiny hands perched gently between her eyes. It took a moment to register what she was seeing, and even longer to hear the frantic chiming of the fairy's voice.
The little fairy flew a ways toward the window then back, motioning for her to follow. Jane swept the coverlet aside and stood shakily. "Tinkerbell, what are you doing here? Where's Peter?"
Tinkerbell shouted something at her, but she couldn't understand and it showed plainly on her face. Jane's dream flooded back to her and she scooped the fairy up into her hands. "Tink, what happened?"
Tinkerbell took fistfuls of her own hair in her hands and pulled in exasperation. She waved at the window, mimed choking and falling and then lay still. Jane's heart lurched. "Peter?" Tinkerbell nodded and pointed towards the window.
"He's sick, he may be dying!" Jane's imagination ran wild then. She envisioned him lying prone on a bed in the dark, depths of Hangman's Tree, pale and sickly, his breaths coming shallower and shallower. "I have to help him; you have to take me to him!"
Jane ran to the window and flung it wide. The night air swirled around her, swept into the room, blowing the curtains into a frenzy. A storm was coming; thunder rumbled in the distance. "Wait." She said. She looked down, suddenly realizing that she couldn't remember how to fly. She'd forgotten somehow. Tinkerbell turned back, and the little fairy looked so torn and lost that it scared her. Jane backed away and crossed the room to her desk. She had to breathe, she had to take a moment and think this through. Her mother would be frantic if she woke to find her gone, and…if Peter was sick, he would need medicine which was something she didn't have. Looking down at herself she also realized she couldn't go traipsing back to Neverland in her socks and gown again. Remembered all too well how hard it had been last time.
She took a black bag from under her bed. A girl can learn a lot during a war and at seventeen, Jane had already learned so much more than most her age. She often volunteered as a nurse's aide at the hospital, and while she wasn't allowed to help much, she was allowed to bandage and care for the less critical patients fresh from the battlefield. But all the medicine was at the hospital; she'd have to sneak in and told as much to her companion.
Tinkerbell brushed a hand through her bangs and kept glancing at the sky, where thick, heavy rainclouds blotted out the stars. Her fingers fumbled together in front of her nervously. They should hurry, if not, they might not beat the storm.
Jane went to her dresser and changed into a pair of worn trousers she'd hidden away during the war and a button up blouse. Her mother didn't like that she wore them, said that young ladies weren't meant to dress as men do but times were changing. Jane didn't very well see the sense in flying around in a skirt where any male eye could glance up to see her unmentionables. No, she'd had to dress as a boy often enough while scrounging the streets for food and supplies, she didn't feel so perturbed by it now.
While the shirt fit her, the pants were about two sizes too large. She tightened one of her father's old belts around her waist and sweeping her short-ish braid behind her, went to the desk again. Tinkerbell alighted on her shoulder as she scribbled a note to her family.
Stepping back, she read it over, swallowed the butterflies in her stomach and settled the letter over her pillow.
"Ready?" She said to no one in particular. Stepping up on the window seat, she tried desperately to steady her trembling by rubbing hands together. Jane took several deep breaths as Tinkerbell doused her in dust, feeling the slight tingle seep into her skin. Suddenly, the ground seemed to rise up to meet her, mocking her. What if she wasn't able to fly, what if she was too old now?
Tinkerbell motioned for her and the desperate pleading in her face urged her on. Jane closed her eyes and stepped off the ledge.
The wind rushed around her as she fell, a scream froze in her throat and the ground rushed up to meet her.
It's not gonna work! She realized. No! Peter, Neverland, the Lost Boys, they all flashed in her mind and just as she thought she would hit, she stopped.
She floated mid-air, heart racing, tears burning behind her eyes, fear and adrenaline slicing through her veins. She thought again of them, thought of the hideout, of treasure hunting, of pirates and fairies and pixie dust and Indians and mermaids.
When she opened her eyes again, the ground was far below her and Tinkerbell was patting her cheek worriedly. "I-I'm fine, Tink." She said shakily. "Let's go."
It was difficult at first, she thought that if she ever stopped thinking of Neverland that she'd plummet again to her death and while she wobbled in the air every now and then, she didn't fall. She was more than relieved when the hospital came into view and she landed in the alley behind.
She jiggled the handle on the back door. It was locked but she could pick it easily enough with a bobby pin and wasted no time in doing so. Easing the door open, she peeked inside. She found herself in the kitchens. It was dark, a shaft of light under the opposite door her only sign that anyone was still around. Stepping inside, Jane gently closed the door behind her. A glitter of light caught her attention and she turned her head a little. Tinkerbell hovered by her shoulder, and it was only then that Jane realized that the little fairy emitted a sort of glow about her that could prove dangerous if it were to draw any attention. "Tink, I need you to hide for a little bit. Can you do that for me?" She held open her breast pocket and waited while the little fairy stared hesitantly between it and her face.
"It won't be for long, I promise." She reassured her.
With a gentle sigh, Tinkerbell flew down and settled herself comfortably inside. Satisfied, Jane hefted her bag over her shoulder and quietly stepped into the hall. The storage room was just around the corner, she'd be in and out in no time flat.
She hurried down the hall, ducking into one of the doorways when a night shift's orderly walked by, yawning sleepily and shuffling through an armful of paperwork. When the hall cleared again she all but ran the rest of the way to the storage room. The lights were off when she went in and she flipped them on. She didn't have long, somebody was bound to notice and come investigate.
"Okay, Tink." She said, prying open her shirt pocket. Tinkerbell shot out of her hiding place and settled on a nearby shelf while Jane rummaged through the cabinets, stuffing her bag with what she thought she might need.
"Is he feverish? Does he have chills, what about injuries? Is he injured?" She asked, receiving a frantic nod in return. "Where?"
Tinkerbell mimed a gash under her right arm, where her ribs were and another at her shoulder. Jane paused, her hand hovering over a vial of penicillin. "That dream." She murmured. "It was you. Those were your memories, weren't they?" She asked the fairy.
Tinkerbell paused, bit her lip and wrung her hands in front of her before giving a curt nod.
"And that voice, asking for my help, that was you too?"
Another nod, then an impatient gesture towards the cabinet. "But…"
Voices in the hallway interrupted her and Jane gasped as shadows danced behind the crack under the door. "Hide!" She whispered urgently as she turned back to the fairy. Tinkerbell dove into her pocket and Jane searched frantically around the room for a place to hide herself. The door opened and a tall, lanky man entered, light glinting off his spectacles. Jane's pulse leapt into her throat. It was Doctor Shuler, who wasn't particularly fond of her to begin with. He glanced up from the clipboard he was carrying and frowned.
"Miss Darling, tell me, why am I not surprised to find you skulking about at such a late hour?" He asked derisively. Jane rubbed her arm as she carefully eased herself around him. "I am very sorry, Doctor, I forgot to take inventory before I left and…"
"Be that as it may, Miss Darling, that doesn't give you free roam of the hospital whenever you so please."
She bit the inside of her cheek to hold back a saucy retort and nodded. She was on thin ice as it was and didn't need to lose her job over this. "I'm sorry sir, it won't happen again."
He angled his head down at her, his glasses sliding down his nose to reveal two glaring, green eyes. "See that it doesn't."
His eyes narrowed as he took her in. "What are you wearing?" He sneered. Jane almost choked as she glanced down at herself then back up again. She'd forgotten she was dressed like a boy. She grinned sheepishly. "Oh, would you look at that!" She laughed nervously. "Why, I-I've gone and…you see I-um." She paused, trying to frantically come up with a solution. "I sleepwalk."
Dr. Shuler quirked a brow at her in annoyance. "Sleepwalk?" He asked irritation etched clearly in the word.
Jane smiled and rocked on her heels. "Oh yes, must have went and dreamt I was a boy again, silly me! You know, one time I dreamt I could fly and leapt right out my window! Broke my arm in two places…"
The doctor removed his glasses and pinched the bridge of his nose with a heavy sigh. "Miss Darling…"
"Oh but I won't bore you with the details. Goodbye, Doctor. Have a pleasant night." She smiled her best smile and fought the urge to roll her eyes as she backed out of the room.
"Indeed." Was his only reply as he turned away.
With the door closed safely behind her, Jane took off in a dead sprint back to the alley. Any minute now and he'd likely discover the missing prescriptions. Tinkerbell poked her head out of her hiding place. Jane ignored her, focusing instead on being as quick and quiet as possible as she maneuvered her way through the halls towards the back. Another nurse crossed her path and she bumped her shoulder causing the box of bandages she was carrying to scatter across the floor. "Hey, watch it!" She yelled as Jane stumbled past her.
She heard shouts down the hall just as she reached the kitchen and began to panic. She couldn't get caught! At least when she got back she could lie her way out of losing her job, but if she was caught, she might as well kiss it all goodbye.
She reached the back door, fumbled with the lock a moment then flung it wide. Her feet had left the ground before she'd even left the doorway. She shot up into the air like a rocket, hiding behind a smokestack as the doctor stormed out shortly after. He looked up and down the street for a few minutes then with a growl, he turned and went back inside, slamming the door behind him.
Jane slumped against the smokestack and didn't bother to suppress the laugh that bubbled up from her throat. That had been too close for comfort. Tinkerbell hovered in front of her and patted her cheek impatiently. Jane sighed and shuffled through the contents of her bag. She would have liked to have gotten more, but there was no time and it was impossible to go back now. "It'll have to do." She muttered.
A drop of rain splashed down on her arm, then another. She looked up as rain started to sprinkle around them, steadily growing. "Can you still fly if your wings get wet?" She asked because somewhere she'd heard that if an insect gets its wings wet, it can't fly. She didn't know if the same applied to fairies. Tinkerbell stood on her shoulder, wringing her hands nervously and stared up at the sky. She shook her head and Jane opened her shirt pocket so she could hide inside.
"I'll get us there." She promised. Slinging the bag over her shoulder, she took a deep breath and shot into the sky.