Last part of this segment (wow, it was huge. And was even bigger by the time I was done editing it. Whew!), and then unfortunately, the updates are going to slow down a little bit. I have more written, yes, but it's...severely displaced. Plus, I'm adding in another section after this one that wasn't there originally, but I think it'll help things smooth out a little better. And holy cow! We at 11 chapters already, and I'm not even halfway through the rest of it! Daaaang….
Anyhow, the chapter I personally like the most, so far. Here we get to see that he can be nice, when he's so inclined. *winks*
Sexy Salazar/Pirates of the Caribbean = Disney, Blue/Isabeau = Me!
I yelped at how close he sounded and hurriedly glanced down to see Salazar standing right underneath me, staring directly at my hiding spot. Directly at me.
God damn it! What the fucking hell! No longer hidden, I bared my sharp canines and viciously hissed at him, causing him to jerk back in surprise. "I want nothing to do with you," I spat, curling further into my nook. "Piss off."
Salazar was quiet for a long, uncomfortable stretch, staring up at me with a borderline thunderous expression, either at what I'd said or how I was acting, then shook his head slightly. "You cannot stay up there all night-"
"Watch me," I sneered.
"-and we are not yet finished with our discussion," he continued, raising an eyebrow in warning to not interrupt him again. "Come down so that you can explain yourself and I can treat your bruises."
I curled my lip and was about to blatantly ignore him when he added quietly, "I will not harm you. I will not imprison you. I give you my word on this."
That promise made me pause.
In this day and age, when honor actually meant something more than just a word, I believed him at his oath. I couldn't say why, especially since he was proving to be an extremely tempestuous individual, but I trusted him that he'd keep his word. Besides, my bruised back was protesting at having been curled into a cramped ball for so long and my aching muscles were making themselves known. And my feet were cold.
Still keeping a hold on my anger, which was somewhat of a challenge since I was usually a mellow person, I warily crept out onto the rafters, keeping an eye on Salazar as he tracked my progress. I didn't feel like torturing my knees with crawling all the way over to the crates, so I levered myself down from the rafter and flinched in surprise when I felt warm hands grip my waist before I could drop to the floor.
"I've got you. Drop." That accented baritone shivered across my skin, along with the heat from his hands through his gloves, and God, the man had a sexy voice. Why couldn't he be a fat pig who stank of garlic or something?
I let go of the rafter and he lowered me to the floor. Soon as my feet touched the boards, I twitched forward, out of his grasp, only to feel one of his hands grip my shoulder before I could move to a comfortable distance. Grateful as I was for the small fact that he was wearing gloves so it wasn't direct skin-on-skin contact, the gesture made me more than a little irritable.
"I'm not going anywhere," I snapped, twisting to try and throw him off, cringing as one of my movements made my arm pulse with a sickening lurch.
Instead, he slipped his hand higher, the feel of the motion sending tingles tickling up my scalp, until he was holding the back of my neck. "I'd rather not take that chance, señorita. You've already proven to be quite adept at thwarting discovery."
My jaw dropped in astonishment at the man's audacity in this restraining gesture. His palm all but scalded my skin, his fingers almost wrapping all the way around my neck. I couldn't move, just stood frozen, gaping like a fish. What. The. Fuck. Are you kidding me?!
I eventually managed to get my tongue unglued enough to snap back, "Apparently not, since it took you all of two seconds to find me."
"I know my ship better than you do. There are only so many places for a small girl to hide in the hold. To my cabin, con su permiso," he ordered, tugging me along with him as he strode forward, his pace clipped but not so fast that he was dragging me by my neck.
Small…girl? My anger began to simmer back to life and I irritably twisted my neck, grinding my teeth when all I felt was a readjusting of his huge hand to secure his hold. What an fucking asshole! Why the fuck is he so hot, yet such a dick?!
Still, his grip didn't falter, even when we passed other crew members who paused their duties to ogle, and I could feel my face flushing in embarrassment and humiliation. I felt like some little chastised child, and that fed my anger like gasoline on an open flame.
I was of mixed feelings upon seeing Salazar's cabin door; relieved because he'd let go of me, anxious for what was coming, and irritation that my arm was still fucking hurting, along with a healthy dose of general anger. At least the violent tumult of emotions was enough to murder those stupid little butterflies in my stomach from the captain's presence.
He let go of my neck as soon as I was through the door and I bolted away from him, whipping around to place him in my sights. Leaving the door unlocked, he moved away from it, indicating that if I wished to flee once more, I could. But until he had his answers, I knew he'd just come after me again and bring me back, and there was no guarantee it wouldn't be in a more humiliating position, though I was hard-pressed to imagine something worse than being dragged around by the scruff of my neck.
I gracelessly plopped down on the settee and curled up with a grimace, tucking my arm where he couldn't reach it if he got the idea to grab me again as I awaited my interrogation. I refused to look at him, though, instead focusing on not crying from the sheer stress of it all.
A door clicked and I knew he'd left the room. If only he was gone for good. Rat bastard. Deep down, I knew that this situation wasn't all his fault. After all, he hadn't known I was bruised there and he was probably as frustrated about all this as I was, but still! I had no qualms about placing a large portion of it squarely on his distractingly broad shoulders.
The door clicked again and the tread of his boots on the soft rug grew closer until I felt weight suddenly depress the cushion next to my head.
"Give me your arm, por favor," Salazar murmured softly, a complete one-eighty from his earlier fury. The abrupt change threw me for a loop, and I took a moment to process that, before my anger swept any damn I might have given deep under the rug.
I don't fucking think so! "Don't want your help, thank you very much, kindly fuck off!" I snarled at him and shoved his hand away when what I really wanted to do was punch him and go hide under my bed until this nightmare was over.
He muttered in Spanish, probably something about my language, then wrapped a large hand around my wrist and gently yet firmly pulled my arm free of my curled ball, holding it an unbreakable grip. "Shhh…let me see."
I furiously twisted about, trying to get out of his restraining hands, but he was much stronger than I'd expected. He carefully stilled my movements with little effort, restricting his hold and slipped his other arm around until I found myself half on his lap and clenched in a firm embrace. And after all that, I still didn't have my arm free, dammit!
By now, I was so angry and frustrated I was half in tears again, and I wanted nothing more than to sink my teeth deep into his arm, but who knew what the temperamental Spaniard would do to the half-baked crazy lady then. I couldn't escape, and I couldn't fight back, and my muscles were protesting the tension.
So instead I just gave in and went limp, gasping from my exertions, waiting in resignation for whatever it was he was going to do to me. There were a couple of dark spots on his pant leg and I realized they were teardrops. Oh, goodie. We're crying again. I had an unfortunate tendency to start bawling when I was really angry, which only pissed me off even more. Like now.
He softly ran a hand over my hair, the gesture unexpected and calming, then he pulled up my sleeve to show the deep purple bruise covering almost my entire upper arm. He hissed in a breath upon seeing the almost black coloring and began applying some herbal-smelling concoction onto my pained skin that almost immediately soothed the pulsing waves. I gathered it had some sort of numbing agent and wished I could put some on my back…
"What is this?" He lifted up the hand I'd bitten and inspected my teeth marks. It surprised me to realize that somewhere he'd ditched his gloves, and his warm, calloused hands were sending waves of goosebumps that emanated from wherever he touched.
"Coping mechanism," I spat through gritted teeth, keeping my arm tense and resisting his inspection. But my anger was flagging, my exhaustion making it difficult to keep the deep burn fueled.
He ignored my subdued struggles and carefully rubbed a thumb over the marks, testing how deep they were. To be honest, I was a little amazed I hadn't broken the skin, as hard as I'd bit.
"Does it hurt?"
I paused for a second as he pressed lightly into the marks, but there wasn't enough pain to bother me. Certainly not enough to distract me from the warmth of his touch. Stop that! "No, it doesn't hurt."
He hummed under his breath at my quick response, but didn't push further. He let go of my hand and moved to expose the bruise on my collarbone, carefully pulling my shirt aside, his gaze darkening as he took in the purple mottling of my skin.
"I apologize for my conduct, Señorita Revanne," he said quietly as he lightly rubbed in more salve with a warm, careful touch. "It was uncalled for, and I should not have treated you as I did."
My anger I'd been struggling to hold onto cracked and broke, vanishing as quickly as it usually did. I had never been good at holding onto my rages. Now, instead of feeling energized by that churning temper, I just felt hollow, numb. Drained.
I slumped over his arm that was holding me in place, a little grateful that I had something to prop me up. It was a relief to finally have a respite from the pain and I diverted my concentration to striving to ignore how good it felt to be touched. "It's not all your fault. You didn't know I was bruised there-"
"I shouldn't have grabbed you like that no matter how angry I was," he broke in, his voice darkening with anger I assumed at himself, yet his touch remained gentle, soothing. It was difficult to discern if the warmth in my skin was from a reaction to whatever was in the salve or if it was from where his hands had practically scalded my skin as he'd rubbed it in.
I turned just enough so I could see his face, saw the regret clouding his handsome features. With my anger gone, there was just tiredness and being…overwhelmed. Probably like just he was feeling if he believed even a sentence of anything I'd said. "I'll be alright. Being shook like a ragdoll is better than being tossed into a cell again."
Salazar grimaced. "I never should have threatened you with that, nor should I have acted on my ire. You've had enough dealings with being in prison…and that was a terrible breach of restraint on my part."
I shrugged, trying to edge out of his hold as I did so. Being this close to this exemplary specimen of a male in his prime was extremely unsettling, and more than a little too much for my brain to process, especially now that I no longer had pain or anger to provide distraction. "To be fair, I was kind of expecting something along the lines of "Witch!" and to find myself breathing water, so in hindsight, you handled it far better than I would have thought."
He rumbled at that and minutely tightened his grasp in response to my escaping. "I do try to make it a habit not to execute innocent women simply in the name of madness." His wry tone might have made me laugh if I wasn't already about to climb the walls. "You have more bruises, yes?"
I inwardly cringed at the thought of more touching and stroking. I was already on sensory overload from the feel of his hot hands burning my skin, even though he wasn't doing anything "improper", and didn't particularly need to be pushed over the edge. Hell nah, we need to get out of here before we turn into a limp noodle and really embarrass ourselves. "Nope, just the one," I lied while not meeting his eyes, trying to squirm out of his hold.
He caught me before I could slip free and held me firmly still against him, giving me a stern look. "Where?"
I grumbled under my breath about the highhandedness of Spanish captains, but rolled my eyes and answered, "Back, mostly. Rest are fine." The feel of being pinned against his firm chest was leeching my brain of rational thought, and the heat from his body felt beyond wonderful. The feel of hard muscle against my back was especially distracting...
Twisting about once he let go and swiftly kicking myself for missing that warmth, I sat up and carefully pulled up the back of my shirt and slid the cotton band up out of the way so he could see. He audibly sucked in a breath at the sight of the apparently lovely bruises peppering my sides and back. I hadn't taken a moment to see them yet, but I could certainly feel them.
"Díos, what did they do to you?" he breathed, lightly stroking a finger down my back, making me shiver at the hot, tingling path it left behind.
"Nothing like what they were going to do," I said, barely noticing what we were talking about as I felt his finger trace lower along my spine, reaching my sensitive lower back. I yipped and my back flexed hard as the muscles convulsed under his touch. "Ticklish! Please don't!"
Salazar snorted, then started to rub some more of the concoction into each fist-sized bruise. "Remain still. I'll be finished shortly."
I bit back a groan at the lovely sensation of his warm hands on my back, the heat he rubbed into my skin feeling oh so good. What did surprise me was how little he seemed bothered by touching me. People didn't generally manhandle one another, especially in this time period. I also knew that Americans as a culture required more personal space than most other societies, but it was still odd that he kept touching me as if it was the most natural thing in the world.
Or maybe it was just me, and this level of touching was normal. It could definitely be said that I didn't do a whole lot of tactile contact on a day to day basis. In fact, there were stretches where I went for days without even seeing another human being. That being said, the feel of his hands on my skin felt like heaven…
I gradually slipped into a doze, slowly leaning over until I was all but sprawled across his lap again, as he silently rubbed the salve in until it was absorbed into my skin, basking in the feel of the heat he generated. He smelled good too, like tobacco, sunshine and spice, with a tang of something I didn't recognize but I liked, the faint hint of a mouthwatering cologne. Mmh, he smelled so delicious…
A thought popped into my head, that I'd always been told that if I ever found someone I liked, I should be sure that I enjoyed the way they smelled. It never made sense to me before, but as my head began to slowly spin from this man's scent, I was starting to realize what they'd meant.
"Finished." He pulled away and I bit back a groan at the loss, struggling to sit up with muscles that had taken on a jelly-like consistency. I felt truly relaxed for the first time since I'd woken in this era. Was I that needy or was he just that good? Or a bit of both?
"Difficulties?" he asked me with a raised brow, noting my struggles as I flopped backwards, away from him on the settee.
"Nope, got it." I curled up and waited for his questions. I knew he would have plenty. The space between us rapidly shrunk as I found myself slipping towards him, his heavier weight dipping the cushions so that I was on an incline. The man takes up way too much room on this little thing. I propped my feet against his hip and hoped he wouldn't mind terribly the breach of protocol.
He didn't even seem to notice, leaning forward to stare hard at the wall, his expression pensive and brooding.
So I leaned back and stared at the ceiling, counting the whirling knots in the wood, humming softly to myself as I waited patiently, giving him the time he needed to gather his thoughts. My toes were toasty, almost hot, where they were pressed against his uniform coat, and the thought of how lovely it would be to hug him flickered into existence before I realized it and wouldn't go away.
The silence had almost become comfortable when he finally spoke, interrupting my struggles of banishing the errant fantasy of getting a blissfully warm, tight hug...
"Say that I…allow the notion that you…," he trailed off, seeming unable to finish his sentence.
I pulled a cushion from behind my back and hugged it, watching him over the fluffy poof with faint alarm at his deep frown. "Are from the future."
Salazar abruptly stood and took his wonderful heat with him as he began to pace, striding the length of his quarters. "This is not possible- It is simply not possible that you are from-from the future!" he sputtered, the sternness in his face gradually growing darker.
I watched him worriedly as he paced the length of the carpet, muttering under his breath in what sounded like a mixture of English and Spanish. What would happen to me if he reached a conclusion he didn't like? Like that I was lying to him? Or that I was just simply crazy? My stomach lurched with a wave of anxiety and I felt like I was going to throw up.
As soon as the thought occurred to me, he stopped and slowly turned to face me, a hardness settling over his features as my fears came to life.
"How do I know you're telling the truth?" he asked with a menacing glower, towering over me even though he was at least three feet away, making me all but cower against the cushions. "All of your actions and claims can be construed as ramblings of a madwoman. How can you prove that you are indeed from the future?"
If I'd just had my phone, ten seconds and I could make him believe that the moon really was made out of cheese. As it was, "My clothes that I was wearing when you took me out the cell aboard the pirate ship? You know, "Come to the Dark Side, we have cookies"? Where on this green planet have you seen something like that before?" I knew he'd be hard-pressed to deny that, but it was still fairly unstable ground. And I was surprised by feeling a little disappointed that he was back to his normal severe demeanor. I liked how gentle he'd been as he'd treated my bruises…
"Hmm…." The stormy appearance didn't abate very much, but at least he didn't seem quite as livid. "I concede to a fair point, but it is not much evidence to your case. If you truly are from the future, I would have expected…more..." He gestured at me before pacing closer to sit in the armchair across from the settee to pin me with that piercing gaze.
I blew a harsh snort, relieved that he picked a seat that wasn't sucking up my space, but his toasty warmth was a loss. "If I'd known beforehand that I was going to be deposited unceremoniously into whatever time this is, I'd certainly have packed. I'm sorry that the fact that I was sleeping when all this headache happened is something of a letdown."
His brow furrowed in confusion as he sorted through my words, understanding eventually clearing out his puzzlement. "You speak…much differently now..."
I shrugged and hugged the pillow protectively, putting it between me and the cross Spaniard. "Not particularly. I just toned down my wording some so I didn't sound too odd, but it's not as easy as it looks. Things slip through."
He narrowed his eyes slightly, but let it slide for now. "Am I to understand that no one else aboard my ship has noticed your…errant behavior?"
Wincing, I knew it'd only get nasty if I lied to him now, but I really didn't want to get Reíno in trouble. I opened my mouth to try and spare Reíno, but Salazar held up a hand, halting me before I could say anything.
"Reíno noticed, didn't he…and I assume you asked him not to say anything?" he asked, his features darkening again as his irritation with the disobedient officer rapidly grew apparent.
"I told him that I was going to tell you shortly, and he only found out last night," I said quickly, wanting to keep any repercussions off of Reíno, who'd been nothing but kind to me since this whole fuzznucked mess. "Please don't be mad at him. If anything, you should be mad at me. But I wanted to try and figure out a way to tell you the truth without you exploding into a rage…" I squeezed the pillow tighter, wishing I could use it as a shield against the man in front of me. He didn't frighten me per se, but he increased my anxiety to the point of pain at the thought of what he was capable of, and with my future was in his control, it was a scary contemplation. Promising not to hurt me or lock me up still left a lot of options.
"That explains a few things...ese chico...Voy a tener palabras con él más tarde." Staring at me over his hand, I got the impression he didn't quite know how to proceed. He rubbed his face, his irritation abating to be replaced with a tired stoniness, and I was beginning to wonder if he had a fairly tumultuous nature or if this was just so far out of his book of procedure that he was just having a hard time coping. I would have been more than happy to trade places with him. I was pretty sure that in the end, he had the better deal of this mess than I did. At least he hadn't been displaced several centuries and few thousand miles. But it was disconcerting to realize that my entire future was in the hands of a stranger who thought that I was lying to him-
"Stop looking at me like that," he suddenly snapped with a shortness that surprised me.
"Like what?" I asked, utterly confused. As far as I knew, I'd only been looking at him like-
"Like I'm about to force you to walk the plank at the point of my rapier," he retorted, summing it up fairly well. He abruptly stood and resumed pacing. "I shall allow this notion of your…futuristic origins to continue, but you will be off my ship at our next stop-"
"I thought you said it wasn't safe," I interrupted him quickly, not thinking how it would aggravate him more until I'd already spoke. "You won't even know I'm on board, I'll disappear into the woodwork-"
"Señorita, I already know you're aboard," he sharply cut off my protest, whirling to halt in front of me with an icy glare. "And it's safe enough, passage will be arranged and you will be out of the port before anything can happen, but you are not staying on my ship any longer than that. That, I can promise you."
I gaped at him, feeling an odd stab of betrayal at his statement. To my horror, I could feel tears prickling my eyes as the hurt grew and spread. Goddammit! I hate being a fucking watering pot!
Struggling to get my emotions under some meager control, along with that unexpected feeling like he was breaking his word, I could feel the mental shutdown beginning and shakily rose from the settee, sucking a deep breath as I met his hard gaze. "As you wish…I would like to return to my cabin, please, if there's nothing more you want from me tonight."
He opened his mouth as if to say something else, then closed it, nodding slightly as he gestured for me to precede him to the door. I felt him fall into step behind me, an intimidating presence of confidence and command that twisted my strung-out, exhausted insides into knots.
"We will be making port in approximately a week," he said in a smoother tone, as if sensing my emotional unbalance and wished to offer some small, polite consolidation.
I tilted my head in acknowledgement, refusing to look at him. There was a sneaking suspicion that I'd break down into tears if I did, and that was not something I wanted to contemplate.
He opened the door and before I could escape, laid a heavy hand on my arm, stalling my momentum. I looked up at him in bewilderment, but his face was impassive, betraying nothing of what he was thinking. "Please refrain from interacting with my men, Señorita Revanne. The less you have to do with them, the better."
I forced my face to go utterly blank to quickly cover the anger and disappointment that lurched into being. How on earth could I still find this fucktard attractive?
"By your command," I told him flatly, flinching away from his touch and padded away at a brisk clip, resisting the urge to glance behind me to see if he was still standing there. He could go eat shit and die. I wouldn't care.
Unfortunately, I knew I was only lying to myself. I would care, and that irritated me to no end.
Translations (Courtesy of Google Translate)
Con su permiso - If you please
Ese chico - That boy
Voy a tener palabras con él más tarde - I will be having words with him later
Hurr, better late than never, right? I'd planned to post this yesterday, but things happened, and I suppose one day isn't much in the long run. But anyway, hope you guys enjoyed this! I'm not 100% happy with it, but I'm close enough happy that I'm not going to poke at it anymore. And just a warning, it'll probably be a short spell until I update again. As I said, more writing's needed and time is not something I have huge quantities off, plus life's probably going to get hella lot busier for a short while, so just hang tight and I'll feed the need soon as I can!
Seeya lata! X3