Forever

She couldn't just leave him like that.  As much as she told her self to give him space, she knew deep down in her heart that space would not fix Jack's problems.  All the same, she didn't fool her self into thinking that she could fix his problems either. 

Therefore, instead of talking, or demanding, she simply sat down beside him.  At first, he didn't acknowledge her; she knew he was waiting for her to make the first more.  Waiting for her to tell him to stop drinking, waiting for her to tell him what to do.  She didn't say a word.  Not yet.  She remained silent until she felt him shift beside her; she waited until she knew she had his full attention. 

"What do you want?"  He spoke first. 

"Do remember the island with the waterfall." 

"What about it?"

Knowing she threw him off balance with her question, she felt ready to continue.  "Remember how it felt?  The spray of the mist, how cool it was compared to the heat in the air?"

After a few moments of contemplation, he finally looked at her.  "I remember." 

She smiled, but made no other move.  Yet.  "I liked it there.  It was just after we sacked Port Andrew of her new shipment of spice and silk.  Remember that?  Do you think they've noticed it missing yet?"

This time he smiled with her.  "Not that I've heard." 

So far, the events she mentioned happened before their relationship took a turn for the intimate.  She tried to think of something more recent, something that they shared between only themselves.  It wasn't a difficult task.  This time she reached out to him, she took his hand and trailed her fingertips gently across his calloused skin.  Her own hands, she knew, were equally rough.  Jack accepted her for who she was, and she cherished him for that.  He didn't need a woman to be weak, or dependant, or subservient, the way she knew other men did.  She didn't need soft smooth hands in order to excite him; he didn't need to over power her to prove his strength. 

Slowly, she leaned closer to him so that her lips barely brushed against his ear.  "I love you."

The words were no more than a breath. 

She felt him respond.  She understood now what Jack needed, and what he did not need. 

He did not need a mother, or a caregiver.  He did not need someone to take care of him as though he could not take care of his self. 

Jack needed her.  He needed her love.  And for Ana, that was exactly what she needed to give.