Swear On Her Name
The sun is blinding as Hook glances up at the beanstalk, his hands bound and he is still clothed in that bloody ridiculous robe. Swan stands next to him, her mouth agape as she stares up at the beanstalk. Close your mouth, love. You'll catch flies.
"It's a little freakier than I remember from the story." She says causing Hook to smirk slightly. The two other women comment on it, but he doesn't care to pay attention, eager to start the climb.
"Well, your compass awaits. Shall we?" He says, smiling slightly and starts walking, not caring to gain a response from the women. Just let me climb the bloody thing and get it over with...
"Wait. If these beans create…portals, why not just pick one and go home? Why the compass?" Swan asks awkwardly, seeming to still be struggling with the idea of magic beans and fairytales, despite being in the presence of apparently a well-known pirate captain. But still, she poses a good question but one that is easily refutable.
"Because there aren't any more beans. Whatever story you think you know, my dear, is most certainly wrong."
Swan spins a poorly explained story that sounds far more wonderful and pleasant than the one he knows to be true. Bit more to it than that, Swan. And a hell of a lot more death...
"Sounds like a lovely tale," he responds,"but the truth's a little bit more gruesome. The giants grew the beans, but rather than use them for good, they used them to plunder all the lands. Jack, was a man who fought a terrible war, defeating all but one of the evil giants. The beans were destroyed by the giants as they died." Hook glances up at the beanstalk as he speaks, the tall, seemingly never-ending stem reaching high into the clouds. "If they couldn't have their magic, then nobody could. It's really very bad form."
"Evil giants, who made magic portal beans?" Emma replies, apparently not overly believing the true story. "Why doesn't anyone just go up and grow some more?"
Hook smiles at her. "Because one giant survived. The strongest and most terrible of them all. And we'll have to get past him to-"
"The magic compass." Snow White interrupts. Do all heroes talk over other people like this?
"Indeed. The treasure remains, and amongst it is the compass. Now it will guide us to your land." He starts to get irritable, sick to death of providing explanation after explanation.
And yet, explaining seems to be all he is doing. He talks with the women painstakingly, describing to them his plan and reasoning for siding with them. Finally, he manages to get them to trust him enough to removes his bindings; Snow White staring him down as she roughly tugs them from his wrists.
Hook leans forwards close to her, smirking at her as she stonily stares into his eyes. "Thank you, milady." Hook whispers to her, winking. Life's no fun without a little flirtation. He finally tears off those blasted robes, tossing them aside. Damned garment…
"I've got one more of these." He says, tapping the leather cuff around his wrist, causing it to glow bright yellow. The women watch his every movement. Well, I've always enjoyed the attention of ladies…
"Cora was to accompany me. So… Which one of you four lovelies shall take her place?" This ought to annoy them… "Hm? Go on, fight it out." Oh, how I wish they would. "Don't be afraid to, you know, really get into it." Hook knows exactly how his statement will be taken, with a roll of the eyes and a scathing look at him. And he is absolutely right.
Hook stands in the background, arms crossed and waiting patiently. Finally free of that infernal robe, he looks every inch the pirate again, leathers glistening under the sun.
He listens in to the women debating over who will join him, a smirk on his face. I know who I want to come with me… He looks at the Swan girl, her pale yellow hair glowing around her pretty head like a halo.
His smirk grows even wider when Swan steps up and takes control. "It's me. I'm going, and I'm not going to fail." Snow White makes a comment, clearly not supportive of Emma being a 'newbie' in this world. Then Swan says something that surprises him and shows him the reason why she's so determined to return to this 'Storybrooke'.
"It's about getting back to Henry. I don't care what I have to face. You're not going to argue with me?" Ah, so this is all about a child… Hook feels a slight pang of disappointment, but the lack of a ring on her finger or mention of a significant other allows him to remain hopeful. He's watching her closely when she turns to Mulan.
"Anything in that bag that's going to help me with a giant?"
"Or Hook?" The warrior woman responds. Hook holds up his hand and hookless brace in defense. That's just bloody rude.
Mulan pulls the Swan girl further aside, and Hook struggles to overhear the conversation, his ears straining. Bloody secretive types... Mulan mentions something about poppy powder, a form of sleeping magic he is familiar with. But their voices are lowered further, and he simply has to watch and wait for any indication that they've reached the end of their conversation.
Alright, I've got to end this…"Ladies. In this world we are slaves to time, and ours is running out. In other words, tick tock." With that, Emma approaches him and he grins at her. Perfect. "I was hoping it'd be you." She holds her wrist out to him and he grabs her hand, placing it on his shoulder.
"Just get on with it."
"Put your hand right here." He pats her hand softly. "That's a good girl." He snaps the second magical cuff to her wrist, smiling at her. "This will allow you to climb. There are other dangers. Thankfully, you've got me to protect you." She gives him a sarcastic smile when he gestures to the empty brace at the end of his wrist. "I can't climb one-handed, can I?" Taking advantage of a cripple, love?
She very reluctantly hands him his hook, and he grins happily as the familiar and comforting weight returns to the end of his arm. Much better.
"Don't think I'm taking my eyes off you for a second." She glares at him.
"I would despair if you did."
And so the climb up the beanstalk begins. And my my my, does Hook enjoy the view.
Hook feels like he and Emma had been climbing forever, his limbs screaming at him for relief, but they keep going. Scaling the beanstalk is tougher than he had anticipated. I would willingly lose many doubloons to see Cora doing this…
He must say, he's been enjoying listening to the little sighs, grunts and moans of exertion coming from Swan. But the silence is starting to grate at him, the need to find out just who this woman is forces him to open his mouth.
"First beanstalk? Well, you never forget your first." He grins at her, but she doesn't respond. This bloody woman… He tries again. "You know, most men would take your silence as off-putting, but I love a challenge."
Sure, love. That's what it is.
"No, you're afraid. Afraid to talk – to reveal yourself. Trust me – things'll be a lot smoother if you do."
"You should be used to people not trusting you."
"Ah, the pirate thing." It always comes back to my choice of a lifestyle… "Well, I don't need you to share. You're something of an open book."
"Am I?" Ohhh, Swan… Poor, innocent, Swan...
"Quite. Let's see – you volunteered to come up here because you were the most motivated. You need to get back to a child."
"That's not perception. That's eavesdropping." Aha, think you've got me there, love? Think again.
"Ah, but you don't want to abandon him the way you were abandoned."
She looks at him in slight shock. Knew it. I'm right.
"Like I said, an open book."
"How would you know that?"
Because I was abandoned too. But that's for me to know. Hook may be pushing Emma to reveal herself to him, but that doesn't mean he's obliged or willing to return the favour.
"I spent many years in Neverland – home of the Lost Boys. They all share the same look in their eyes… The look you get when you've been left alone."
"Yeah, well, my world ain't Neverland." So it's been a rough life for Emma Swan? He gets that. So it seems there's more similarities between him and this woman than he initially thought. And that intrigues Hook, the idea of kindred spirits.
"But an orphan's an orphan. Love has been all too rare in your life, hasn't it? Have you ever even been in love?"
"No. I have never been in love."
He doesn't believe her for a single second.
Finally, after hours of gruelling and labouring, they reach the top of the beanstalk. Before them lies a giant, destitute looking castle. The surrounding is empty, broken pieces of the castle littering the floor.
"What happened here?" Swan asks, gazing around, her eyes almost sad as she stares at the desolate scene before them.
"It's where the final battle was." Hook says, glancing around before his eyes fall on the red wetness on her palm. Time to be a hero. "Give me your hand."
She whips around to look at him, evidently still not trusting him at all. "What?"
"Your hand – it's cut. Let me help you."
Swan tried to back away from him, shrugging the clear and evident pain she's feeling off to avoid having him help her. "No, no. It's fine."
Not on my watch, love. He grabs her wrist with his hook, pulling her towards him. "No, it's not."
Hook starts to root in his jacket for his flask, needing to disinfect the wound.
"So, now you're gonna be a gentleman?" Swan says, trying to act as though she doesn't care for how he's trying to help. But Hook knows better.
"Giants can smell blood." He whispers, his voice teasing and mischievous. "And I'm always a gentleman." Always.
He uses his teeth to pull the cork from the flask, spitting it out. He pours his favourite brown liquid over her hand, his hook holding it in place despite her attempts to get away. Goodbye, my sweet, trusted friend.
"Ah! Ow! What the hell is that?" She cries out.
"It's rum. A bloody waste of it." He pulls his scarf from around his neck, wrapping it around the now-clean injury. "Now here's the plan – we wait for the giant to fall asleep. And when he does, we'll sneak past him into his cave. It's where the treasures are…" He stops talking to secure the knot with his teeth, eyeing her and smiling slightly at how it evidently affects her. "...where the compass lies." Oh, she definitely enjoys a man who's good with his mouth it seems...
"And then we run like hell."
"I don't have time to wait for a giant to fall asleep. The powder Mulan gave us – we need to use it. We got to knock him out."
He smirks. Clever lass. "Well, that's riskier."
Swan raises her eyebrows at him. "Than waiting for a giant to fall asleep when we need him to?"
"Point taken." God, she's delightful... "Oh, you're a tough lass. You'd make a hell of a pirate."
Her next comment makes his stomach drop, makes him regret ever extending his arm out to her to see.
"Who's Milah on the tattoo?"
Bugger. He doesn't have time to discuss his lost love with some woman on top of a bloody beanstalk. "Someone from long ago."
"Where is she?"
"Gold." Who? "Rumplestiltskin." Damn Crocodile. "He took more than your hand from you, didn't he? That's why you want to kill him."
So she does understand love. He's not about to let her just use him like this, push him for information when she's unwilling to reveal herself in return. "For someone who's never been in love, you're quite perceptive, aren't you?"
"Maybe I was, once."
Knew it. There's more to this woman than she wants me to believe.
This bloody thing is heavier than it looks… Hook thinks as he wields a large bone, looking up at Emma who sits atop a statue, the poppy powder in her grasp. Time to set this plan in action.
That's all the response he needs. He slams the bone against a huge metal shield, the sound echoing across the surrounding area. A loud roar signals the waking of the giant, and the shaking floor and pounding footprints let's him know exactly what to expect. Oh, bloody hell...
The giant, a bloody huge beast, exits the castle, anger at being disturbed showing clear as day on his unbelievably large face. Hook takes a deep breath before stepping back slightly, taunting and provoking the giant, leading him in the direction of Emma. Time to play the hero.
"Hey! You big git! Yeah, you. Huh? You want to kill a human? Huh? You want to kill a human? Well, I'm the worst human around. Come on. Come on, then! Come on, then!"
The giant's enormous hand stretches down to grab him and Hook has a momentary moment of complete and utter fear. I'm going to die being crushed by a bloody giant… But Swan comes to his rescue, flinging the powdered poppy in the giant's face, knocking him out cold. The ground shakes when the tremendously huge body hits the stone, directly in front of Hook.
He's surprised to hear Swan call out in fear, apparently worried that he's been hurt. Well, well, well...
He doesn't prolong her misery, standing up over the sleeping form of the giant and looking down at the large man. "He's out cold." Hook looks up at Emma, a large grin on his face at the look of relief on hers. "I don't mean to upset you, Emma, but I think we make quite the team!"
Gold. Gold everywhere. Stacks of coins, trinkets and treasures littering the entire hall. Hook gazes around in awe and wonder as they wander through the large space.
"They hoarded all of their greatest stolen treasures in here. Piles of jewels, and every room filled with coins." Hook's voice trails off as he heads over to a pedestal. He lifts one to his nose, sniffing and smiling in satisfaction. A pirate always loves his treasure.
"Let's get to it." Swan says, sounding almost exasperated. Bloody women and wanting to hurry constantly. "The compass."
"What's your rush?" He responds nonchalantly, still smirking at the gold between his fingers.
"How long do you think magic knockout powder lasts?"
"I have no clue." Honestly, does she have to talk in questions..?
"That's my rush." Point taken…
Hook taps his finger against the coin as he ponders her answer. "Too right, lass." He pockets the coin, slipping it away neatly. "Come. Everything we need is right in front of us." He smiles widely as he leads her deeper into the treasure room, knowing that she will follow him no matter how much she glares and frowns.
"They kill all the giant housekeepers, too?" Emma says as they wander through the hall, Hook's eyes skirting around for any hint of a compass. " How are we going to find a compass in this mess?"
"By looking." He responds, pointing to the left-side of the room. "Start searching." Hook gets distracted by more coins, more treasures. Lovely lovely gold… "I wonder how much treasure we could carry down the beanstalk." He looks over at Emma, who is shooting him another one of her 'really?' glances. "…In addition to the compass, of course."
They walk a little further, coming across a skeleton holding a sword, the name Jack etched into the blade. Ah, there he is...
"What the hell?" Swan says.
"That… Would be Jack." Hook states bluntly. As if it wasn't bloody clear enough. Might as well start calling me Captain Obvious.
"As in Jack…" Emma trails off, looking up at Hook, her eyes almost grieving after looking at the decaying bones on the stone floor of the hall. Does Swan have a heart behind that leather-clad, walled-up exterior?
"The giant killer." He shrugs, once again pointing out the obvious.
"With that toothpick?" That 'toothpick' is laced with poison, love. Could take a giant down with the tiniest nick.
"Well, it packs quite a wallop. You'd be surprised." Hook smirks, walking past the skeleton and starts to head deeper into the treasure room.
"Whoa! Whoa! Whoa!" What the-? Before he knows what is happening, Swan's arms are wrapped around him. It takes him a minute to register what is happening, but soon enough he pulls her closer, smirking.
"It's about bloody time." Swan struggles in his grip but he keeps ahold of her tightly. Try to resist me all you want, lass. But we both know that there is something between us. He does relinquish his hold after a few moments, being a gentleman and all that.
"It's a trip wire. Quite a security system." He follows her gaze, spotting the large cage suspended from the ceiling via a cord and pulley system. Clever giants...
"Well, that's a plausible excuse for grabbing me…" He says softly, fiddling with a loop in her blonde hair flirtatiously. "But next time don't stand on ceremony."
"Let's find the compass and go home." Let me guess, I'm pushing my luck. The look on her face seems to confirm his thought process, but he retains his smirk as he motions to the wire for her to move, "After you." Swan says, gesturing him ahead of her. He hums softly, giving her another once over before stepping over the wire, heading deeper into the room of treasure.
"So it's just…in here somewhere?" Swan exclaims after a good long while of rooting through treasure. Aye, love. Why did you think we were up to our elbows in gold? Still, Swan's evidently irritated and bored composure doesn't bother Hook. He knows he needs that compass, and there is no way in hell he's leaving this beanstalk without it. I'm getting my revenge. And I'm going to enjoy myself while I do it.
"Allegedly." He looks up at some kind of golden cage, spying a chest and more treasure resting atop it. Aha, a hiding place. He reaches out to Emma. "Give me a boost would you, love?"
But of course, Swan declines. Stubborn lass.
Hook catches her arm as she walks over, trying to convince him to let her perform the task for him. "Try something new, darling." He finally loses his jovial appearance, falling serious as he tries to get her to let him in. This will go a lot smoother if you do, love. "It's called trust."
There's a brief flicker of something in her eyes as she looks at him, and his heart catches slightly in his chest. Is this the moment she opens up? But he sees those walls fly back up, only slightly crumbled as she finally accepts that she doesn't have to do this alone, even if she won't trust in him enough to let him face the climb by himself. "We do it side by side and fast. Who knows how long before the-"
A loud boom catches them both off guard, Swan's speech interrupted by the pounding footsteps of the newly awoken giant. Buggering hell… "Someone's up." The footsteps grow heavier, the entire room shaking. Hook nearly loses his balance as the floor rumbles, coins and treasures falling around them due to the force of the large feet against stone. "Quickly. Get under something."
Hook leads Emma away from the cage, running to find cover. Before he realises what is happening, stones fall from the ceiling, the shaking form the giant running having caused part of the ceiling to collapse. The last thing Hook hears as the rocks crash down on top of him, one striking his head and knocking him out cold is his moniker falling from Emma's lips in a worried cry. "Hook!?"
Hook wakes minutes later, everything muffled by the rocks pressing him against the ground. He hears voices, crashes and shouts as he lays there trapped, but he can't manage to make anything out. Come on, Swan… Trust me enough to help me, please…
Finally, light starts to appear as rocks are shifted away, fresh air filling his lungs again as Swan works on making a gap for him. He laughs as he reaches out to grip her hand, letting her help pull him from amongst the rocks. He tries to ignore the small sparks that run up the base of his arm when their skin touches.
"You are bloody brilliant. Amazing." He says breathlessly as he works his way from between the rocks, still laughing softly. "May I see it? The compass." He asks her. Hook is slightly stunned when Emma actually heeds his request, reaching into that strange leather jacket and presenting her hand to him. Bloody hell… The golden trinket is one he would envy of any fellow sailor, the carefully sculpted circular rim holding together the well-crafted glass-covered machinery of the nautical object. "It's more beautiful than legend."
As he reaches his hand out to touch it, only touch, Emma's eye grow suspicious once more, hand withdrawing as she slips the compass back into her pocket. Still not going to trust me? As you wish, Swan… He feels a pang of disappointment that she still refrains from having faith in him, perhaps he was hoping that someone would see past the lifestyle that he has found himself living. I guess that doesn't matter... "Come. Let's go."
It's surprising once again when Emma's soft palm slips into his. They look at each other for a moment, almost seeming to communicate just through their eyes. Hook smiles at her softly, giving her a gentle nod. Trust me, you can trust me, Emma. But the moment is shattered when a golden cuff is snapped around his wrist by the woman. No.
"What are you doing?" He mutters as she quickly steps away. He stands up, eyes sad and hurt as he repeats his question. She can't do this…
Emma apparently struggles with her decision, her face betraying her by showing that she truly doesn't want to do this. Those bloody walls… "Hook, I… I… I can't…"
"Emma, look at me." Please, love. See that I'm telling the truth. See that I won't betray you. "Have I told you a lie? I brought you here. I risked my own safety to help you. The compass is in your hand. Why do this to me now?" His voice is thick with emotion.
"I can't take a chance that I'm wrong about you." That hits him in the heart hard. Wrong about me. She trusts him. And she's afraid of that. So she's just going to let him die. What kind of hero does that? "I'm sorry."
Anger flares through him as she backs away. Hook steps forward, eyes blazing as he yells at her. "You're sorry? You're sorry?!" The damn chain stops him following her. " I got you here! I got you the compass!"
"I got the compass." Sorry, love. But you wouldn't have survived for two minutes without me here to help you. He glares at her in pained anger, he won't die here. He's lived for too long to have his life ripped away from him by a bloody giant.
"Well, you're just going to leave me here to die? Have that beast to eat me, to crush my bones?"
"He's not a beast." She retorts. He's a bloody beast from where I'm standing. "And you're not going to die. I just need a head start – that's all." And without giving him a chance to register what she has said, she turns and walks away. No. He pulls against the chain, but the damned metal won't budge.
"Swan. Swan! SWAN!" But she's already gone. And he's alone.