* A/N I do not own Pirates of the Caribbean, or any of the characters. I only own my own original character. Story contains spoilers for the movies.
Two young girls stood side by side at the bow of the ship, singing softly as they stared into the foggy depths before them: "We pillage, we plunder, we rifle and loot. Drink up me hearties yo ho."
The twelve-year-old twins were dressed in identical sky blue dresses, frills nipped and tucked appropriately, and their hair primped into curls held back behind their faces in neat half-buns.
"We kidnap and ravage and don't give a hoot. Drink up me hearties yo ho."
That was where the physical differences ended, however. The girl on the right was a pretty blonde with dark brown eyes and a slightly square face, and there was something about her expression that spoke of sweetness and romance. The girl to her left was darker haired, a beauty even at age eleven, with startlingly blue eyes that could sometimes look like grey storm clouds, and a slim oval-shaped face.
"Yo ho, yo ho a pirate's life for me."
And yet, the resemblance between the pair was undeniable. Both held a brightness in their eyes that spoke of intelligence, and each had a gleam hidden there that spoke of playful spirit and passionate independence. Their mannerisms indicated a natural rebel, particularly the brunette whose hands refused to sit still for any period of time, tempered with the best upbringing status could afford.
"We extort, we pilfer, we filch and sack. Drink up-"
The pair were interrupted as a heavy hand landed on each sister's shoulder, startling them. They gasped and whirled around to face Mr. Gibbs, one of the sailors on the ship and the most blatantly superstitious out of all the crew and passengers.
"Quiet, missies!" Mr. Gibbs whispered at the two girls. "Cursed pirates sail these waters. You don't want to bring them down on us, now, do ya?"
The two girls blinked back at him, when a voice called: "Mr. Gibbs!"
Mr. Gibbs turned while the girls peered around the sailor to see Lieutenant Norrington standing there, giving Mr. Gibbs a disapproving look. Governor Swann stood a few paces behind the Lieutenant, watching them as well, particularly his daughters.
"That will do." The young Lieutenant said firmly, and Gibbs replied as he pointed at the girls: "They was singing about pirates. Bad luck to be singing about pirates with us mired in this unnatural fog. Mark my words."
"Consider them marked." The Lieutenant replied dryly before he nodded his head to the side. "On your way."
"Aye, Lieutenant." Gibbs answered before glancing back at the girls and muttering as he walked off: "It's bad luck to have a woman on board, too, let alone two… even two miniature ones."
Governor Swann raised a brow, but Elizabeth piped up: "I think it'd be rather exciting."
"To meet a pirate." Annalise clarified for her sister as she saw the Lieutenant's questioning look. "I think it'd be rather exciting, too."
Norrington gave a thin smile before he said brusquely as he walked over to the girls: "Think again, Miss Swanns . Vile and dissolute creatures, the lot of them."
He stared out into the waters as he said pensively: "I intend to see to it that any man who sails under a pirate flag or wears a pirate brand gets what he deserves – a short drop and a sudden stop."
He smiled at them before looking back out at the sea, while the twins glanced at each other in confusion before looking to Gibbs for an explanation. He mimed a hanging with his scarf, startling them both, and they stared at Norrington in horror.
"Lieutenant Norrington ," Governor Swann murmured as he stepped up beside the younger man, "I appreciate your fervor, but I'm, uh, I'm concerned about the effect this subject will have upon my daughters."
"My apologies, Governor Swann." Norrington excused before he walked off to see to his own duties, while Elizabeth piped up: "Actually, I find it all fascinating."
"Lizzy and I have read a lot about them, and they seem so interesting." Annalise agreed, and Governor Swann just gave the pair an aggravated look.
"Yes." He answered flatly. "That's what concerns me."
The girls frowned after their father as he walked away, before they looked at each other.
"I still think they're interesting." Annalise said defiantly, and Elizabeth smiled a little as she agreed: "Father does seem a little too strict about it, doesn't he, Lisa?"
"When isn't he?" Annalise sighed, turning back to look out from the bow of the ship, and Elizabeth joined her with a similar sigh.
The two girls knew their father meant well most of the time, and after their mother's death at a young age, he had worked hard to ensure they were raised properly and yet with all the warmth of a loving family. But sometimes, it all felt so stuffy, especially to the younger Annalise.
The girls stared with disinterest at the sea, before they both frowned as something appeared through the fog.
"Is that…?" Annalise wondered, peering over the edge of the railing to get a better look.
"It is." Elizabeth agreed in surprise as they stared at the parasol floating beside the ship.
The blonde girl waved down in amusement at the parasol while Annalise looked up, before she gasped, grabbing her sister's arm as she said urgently: "Lizzy!"
Elizabeth looked over and her eyes widened as she saw the piece of wreckage with a small, prone figure lying on it as it floated on the water towards them.
"Look!" Elizabeth shouted, turning to the adults and catching their attention. "A boy! There's a boy!"
"He's in the water!" Annalise added in alarm, pointing at the wreckage.
Norrington was the first to react as he leapt over to hang by the ratlines to get a look over the side of the ship, but the sailors were quick to follow as Norrington shouted: "Man overboard!"
The crew sprang into action as Norrington jumped back onto the ship, ordering sharply: "Man the ropes. Fetch a hook! Haul him aboard."
The sailors and crew moved swiftly to do as their lieutenant said, while Annalise and Elizabeth stayed back to make sure they didn't get in anyone's way, though they peered around to watch worriedly. Annalise peeped around the men to get a better look as they hauled the boy aboard, watching as one of the sailors held the boy carefully while Norrington bent over, checking the boy's condition.
"He's still breathing." He murmured, when Gibbs gasped from where he was still hanging off the shrouds: "Mary , Mother of God!"
They all looked up before the whole crew gasped and murmured, while Elizabeth and Annalise also leaned over the railings to stare with wide eyes at the burning remains of a ship in the distance. It was clearly where the boy had come from, and it wasn't too hard to see that he was lucky to have survived – the debris all around the ship and the broken remains indicated that the ship had blown up in the middle.
"What happened here?" Governor Swann gasped in horror, and Norrington replied firmly: "It's most likely the powder magazine. Merchant vessels run heavily armed."
They all stared at the debris, while Gibbs growled: "A lot of good it did them."
As the crew murmured uneasily, Gibbs glanced at his lieutenant as Norrington gave him a look, and the sailor defended: "Everyone's thinking it, I'm just saying it."
He looked back out at the burning ship as he hissed: "Pirates."
Annalise's eyes widened, and she exchanged looks with her sister even as their father scoffed: "There's no proof of that. It was probably an accident."
The two girls nodded in silent and mutual agreement before Elizabeth glanced back and moved to peer more closely at the rescued boy while Norrington called: "Rouse the Captain immediately! Heave to and take in sail. Launch the boats."
The crew all moved back into action, sailors calling: "Heave to!" as they readied the rowboats. Annalise moved out of the crew's way and went to stand beside her sister, the pair watching as a sailor arrived to carry the boy out of the way and onto a makeshift cot in the corner of the deck.
Their father joined them, and he asked, leaning down close to the two: "Elizabeth, Annalise, I want you two to accompany the boy. He'll be in your charge. Take care of him."
They nodded in understanding, and walked over to stand by the boy once more while the crew made ready to row out to the destroyed ship. Elizabeth peered down curiously at the boy while Annalise watched from behind her sister, also examining him intently. The boy looked about a year or two older than them, no older than fourteen at the most, and he had dark hair that contrasted almost painfully with his deathly pale skin.
There was a golden chain around his neck, the rest of the necklace and its pendant hidden beneath his loose shirt, and Annalise's curious eyes were drawn more to it while Elizabeth focused on the boy's face. The older twin gently reached out to touch his hair, stroking it softly, when he suddenly gasped awake, grabbing Elizabeth's hand as he sat up a little and making both sisters jump a little.
Elizabeth was first to recover and she soothed gently as the boy panted and gasped for breath: "It's ok. My name's Elizabeth Swann," she introduced, "and this is my sister Annalise."
"Hello." Annalise said with a small wave and a smile of encouragement to the boy.
He stared up at them, clearly dazed and confused but he answered, albeit in a frightened stutter: "W-W-Will Turner."
Elizabeth smiled as well as she said softly, calmingly: "We're watching over you, Will."
Will's eyes fluttered, before he passed out once more, though the girls were pleased to see he looked slightly better than before. He seemed almost peaceful in sleep now, and as Elizabeth touched Will's head once more, Annalise glanced back down at the boy's chest. Or more specifically, to the hidden pendant under his shirt.
She reached down to take a better look, and Elizabeth glanced over with similar curiosity as Annalise slowly removed the pendant. She held it up, the chain giving way almost instantly and falling off the boy's neck in its broken state, and both girls' eyes widened as they took in the skull emblem in the golden circular pendant.
"He's…" Annalise murmured in shock, and Elizabeth gasped as she stared down at Will: "You're a p-pirate."
"Has he said anything?" Norrington asked from a few paces behind the girls, making them gasp a little in surprise.
But they quickly regained themselves and Annalise hid the medallion behind her back naturally as she and her sister turned to face the lieutenant, Elizabeth explaining quickly: "His name is William Turner . That's all we found out."
Norrington nodded a little thoughtfully, before he ordered his sailors: "Take him below."
As the boy was carried away, the two girls glanced at each other and Elizabeth nodded to the forecastle. The pair headed to the forecastle deck once more, moving away from the adults and out of sight, before Annalise opened her hand and the girls studied the medallion once more.
Elizabeth took the medallion to peer at it closer while Annalise looked out thoughtfully, and then she frowned. She touched her sister's arm, and Elizabeth also looked out to see the faint outlines of a ship with black, ragged sails and a black flag with a white symbol flying at its mast. Annalise was frowning at the ship as it disappeared into the fog, and Elizabeth matched her sister's expression before both their eyes widened as they saw exactly what the flag emblem was: a white skull with a pair of cutlasses crossed underneath.
Annalise shut her eyes in disbelief…
Annalise woke up with a start, her eyes flying open and she blinked in confusion.
Her eyes slowly adjusted to the darkness of her room, the only light coming from the candle on her bedside table, and she lay for a moment in thought. It had been a while since she'd dreamt about that day, the day they'd rescued Will. She and Elizabeth had discussed it worriedly many times as children, though carefully so as not to let any of the adults or Will hear, but as time had passed they had moved on.
'I wonder why I remembered it now?' Annalise mused as she sat up in her bed, stretching her arms and ruffling her dark curls carelessly.
She paused, glancing at her room door and wondering if she should bother her sister, even if just to take a peak at the medallion again, but decided against it. Elizabeth didn't need to remember that day either, for the somewhat chilling vision of the pirate ship had haunted the two girls as children.
Annalise didn't want to bring up those bad memories again unnecessarily; it wasn't worth it just to look at the medallion again, which Elizabeth had taken possession of. Annalise hadn't argued, knowing even then that a large part of the reason Elizabeth had wanted it was because it was Will's. It had been painfully obvious from the start that Elizabeth was attracted to Will, just as he was to her – something that still hadn't changed.
Annalise sighed as she thought about her sister and her best friend, before she looked up in surprise as there was a knock on her door.
"Annalise?" Her father called, and Annalise answered in surprise: "Yes?"
"Are you decent?" Governor Swann called, and Annalise laughed as she climbed out of her bed: "Why not come in and see for yourself, papa?"
He chuckled as he opened the door, smiling at her fondly as he walked in though he shook his head at her for her lack of proprietary in wearing a dressing gown.
"Still abed at this hour?" He wondered while the maids behind him moved into the room to open the curtains and the French bay windows.
"Forgive me, papa." Annalise laughed as she reached out and hugged him, and he chuckled again, especially when she squinted against the sunlight as the curtains and windows were opened.
"It's a beautiful day." The Governor mused and Annalise nodded as she agreed: "Yes it is, though I doubt you came just to give me a weather report."
"No, no." He laughed again. "I have a gift for you."
A second maid held out the box she'd been holding, and Annalise peered at it curiously while her father opened the lid proudly. Annalise's eyes widened in surprise, and she exclaimed: "Oh, papa! What's the occasion?"
She pulled out the beautiful light-blue dress with white ruffles and silvery-white filigree embroidery, examining it admiringly while her father scoffed good-naturedly: "Does a father need an occasion?"
"Perhaps not." Annalise smiled, before admiring the dress again as she murmured: "It's so beautiful."
"Isn't it?" Her father agreed. "I thought this would suit you best, and I prepared a different one for Elizabeth."
Annalise smiled delightedly, and her father shooed her towards the room divider. She hurried around, the maids moving silently to help her dress, while her father continued a little embarrassedly: "Actually, I, um…I had hoped you might wear it for the ceremony today."
"Ceremony?" Annalise repeated questioningly, and her father explained: "Captain Norrington 's promotion ceremony."
Annalise's jaw dropped and she poked her head around the divider to stare at her father as she exclaimed: "I knew it!"
"Commodore Norrington," her father agreed, "as he's about to become."
"So this is for Lizzy's impending engagement." Annalise stated rather than asked, and her father gave her a pointed look, his eyes moving to the divider and where the maids were hidden as he silently asked her not to start something.
Annalise pouted at him but disappeared back behind the partition to finish getting dressed while her father went on: "Yes, I think the soon-to-be Commodore will ask your sister. I should be pleased if he did- he is a fine gentleman."
"Hmm." Annalise hummed noncommittally, making her father quench the urge to roll his eyes.
Instead, he began tentatively: "You know, I am still waiting to hear what you think about your own offer."
"I already told you how I feel about it, papa." Annalise reminded, before she winced as the maids started to pull on the corset for the dress.
"Yes, but really think about it, Annalise." Her father urged. "He is a fine gentleman I hear, and a Lord. You wouldn't find a better offer," he sighed as he thought about her status as a second daughter before ploughing on, "and he would be a good match for you."
There was no response, so he called tentatively: "Annalise?"
But she wasn't listening anymore, too busy gasping as she struggled to breath around the corset, that was only getting tighter and tighter.
"Annalise, darling?" Her father asked, and she got out: "Yes, papa?"
"Just think about it, please." Governor Swann sighed, and Annalise answered quickly, wincing against the corset: "Yes, papa."
He stared at the divider pensively for a moment, distrusting her quick response, but then he simply sighed and shook his head, letting the subject slide for a moment as he focused on the more immediate issue.
"I'm going to wake your sister." He called as he walked out with a third maid trotting behind him. "I'll expect you to join us downstairs when you're ready."
"Yes, papa." Annalise answered, before muttering under her breath: "That is, if I even make it down there."
"Now, don't be so pessimistic, mi'lady." Her personal maid and good friend, Marta, chuckled. "You'll be fine."
"I really don't think I will." Annalise gasped as the maids pulled on the final strings for the corset and her lungs got crushed. "This is beyond propriety, this is madness."
"You said the same of petticoats, mi'lady." Marta laughed, and Annalise was cut off from replying as the dress was pulled on and even more tightening strings pulled until she honestly thought she would pass out from lack of air.
'Who on Earth thought these were a good idea?' She wondered as she literally struggled to breath in her dress.
*A/N Please let me know what you think so far! Also, for anyone who was curious, I have taken a few liberties with the characters' ages, in an effort to reduce the age-gap between Annalise and Jack.