Disclaimer: As this is a continuation of the events of the movie Pirates of the Caribbean, most of the characters we have included in our writing do not belong to us and never will. They are simply here for your enjoyment :) The ones you don't recognise are most likely our own creations, but they won't be coming into play for a while yet.

A/N: Hey everyone! I'm naughty little munchkin and this Pirates of the Caribbean story is a result of the combined efforts of myself and talented author, JoeyStar, and takes place approximately two months after the movie's events. We're both anxious to hear what you think of it, so please read and review! We'd love to know your thoughts on our ideas and writing, and any constructive criticism you might have up for grabs :)

But now, Chapter 1 awaits you…


'For the Love of a Woman'

Written by: JoeyStar & naughty little munchkin


Chapter One:

The last of the sun's rays vanished abruptly into the west, leaving behind only a dim orange light. Beyond the extensive docks of Port Royal, the ocean had turned a dazzling orange-blue from where the last shafts of light danced across its surface. Above the large Swann manor, the sky was already a dark purple and the first of the evening's stars now studded the clear stretch of velvet.

The passageway was quiet when the door to the servants' entrance creaked gently open, and a tall, slender girl crept silently through. Her honey-coloured hair was pulled loose from its normally immaculate coiffure, and her elegant blue gown – clean and smooth only that morning – was now creased and covered in thick grey streaks. With a furtive glance around her, she closed the door and leant against it with a relieved sigh.

In the faint orange glow of a nearby lamp, her hazel eyes danced – mirroring the candle's graceful flicker. A peculiar smile curled the edges of her mouth, her nose gently smeared grey with ash. She wore the look of someone who knew something others did not. A well-kept secret perhaps that she would disclose to nobody – and a particularly delicious one at that. All the same, her eyes were wary as she looked down the corridor ahead of her. If she had timed it right, the servants would be dining in the kitchens and her father would be up in his study, attending to the matters that frequently occupied his time. If she had been mistaken in her judgement, the usual sharp reprimand would not be the only chastisement awaiting her.

However, it appeared that luck was with her that night. Lifting her skirts slightly, she quickly moved down through the passageways and into the main part of the house. She peered around the corner that led into the empty entrance hall. All of a sudden she chuckled softly, eyes amused. To think she was be acting like a burglar in her own home! She laughed quietly again and, checking once more to make sure this part of the house was deserted, she flew up the stairs to her room where she quickly and quietly opened the door and closed it again once inside.


Elizabeth Swann stifled a shriek at the sound of the voice. She spun around, eyes widened in alarm, but relaxed as she saw her father, Governor Swann, standing by the window that overlooked almost the entire bay.

"Father, you scared me," she said with an uneasy laugh as she sagged against the door. She tried to give him her most winsome smile, but failed miserably. Beneath her feigned casualness, she felt far from relieved.

He was frowning at her, no doubt in disapproval of the disheveled state of her appearance. It was understandable, Elizabeth supposed. Normally she was impeccable in presentation – after all, she was the daughter of the Governor! But things were slightly different now – the spectacular events of nearly two months ago had made sure of that.

Yet somehow, it still surprised Elizabeth that her father already seemed to have forgotten what had happened – the memories gone as if they had never been. It shouldn't have surprised her though. This was exactly the type of thing she'd have expected of him, particularly as she knew he was intensely opposed to change of any kind. But the thing that amazed her more than anything else, was the fact that he fully expected things to revert themselves back to the way they were – the way they were before Captain Jack Sparrow and Barbossa had cannoned themselves into their lives. That was asking the impossible! And it was even more so regarding the subject that she knew was about to come under discussion – again.

"Elizabeth, where have you been at this ungodly hour? It has been dark for quite some time now! I've been extremely worried."

"Oh, don't be silly," Elizabeth scoffed, knowing full well that he knew where she had been. She moved to the wooden cupboard and began rummaging through it. "Oh, it's not here," she exclaimed in annoyance. "Do you happen to know where Martha is? She said she would have my robe washed and back today!"

Governor Swann sighed. She always acted like this when he wanted to talk to her about something important. "Elizabeth," he tried again, "did you hear a word I said?"

"Hmm?" Elizabeth looked up from her vigorous search with a deliberately innocent look. "Oh, yes of course, Father," she said when he sighed again. "Firstly, I know that you know exactly where I've been. Secondly, the sun has only just set; and thirdly – ah! Here it is!" She held up the white dressing robe in triumph.

"Elizabeth," he said warningly.

Now it was Elizabeth's turn to sigh, her hands falling to her side. "Yes, Father. As I was saying, thirdly – " she moved to spread the robe across the coverlet of the large canopy bed " – it is perfectly safe in Port Royal after dark anyway."

Her Father looked at her in shock. "Elizabeth! How could you say such a thing? Particularly after what happened with – with the – "

"Pirates?" Elizabeth supplied, fixing her father with a narrow-eyed look. "I thought you had forgotten." She shrugged, turning to the chest of drawers to look for her nightdress. "It appears I was wrong."

"Oh, Elizabeth!" he said for the umpteenth time that night. "You know I haven't forgotten what happened with the – yes, I know," he said warningly as he saw his sharp-witted daughter open her mouth again. "But that isn't what I want to talk to you about."

With her back to him, Elizabeth rolled her eyes. In all honesty, she really did love her father; but it was just that he was so… slow.

Nevertheless, she decided to humour him. "Very well then, what in all possibilities can you want to talk to me about that so insistently demands my immediate attention?"

Governor Swann started to speak, but then stopped and narrowed his eyes at her flippant tone. Elizabeth stopped as well and turned to look at him, dropping into a nearby chair as she did so. She folded her arms across her chest with an irritable look. "Well? Go on then. I'm listening."

He sighed again and moved to look out through the open window. "Elizabeth, you know I love you with all my heart, and ever since your mother died I have striven even harder to provide you with everything you could possibly want." Elizabeth impatiently began tapping her foot, knowing exactly what he was leading up to. She wished he would just get to the point already! But Governor Swann ignored her act of protest and continued on in his own sweet time. "But as your father, I also have it in mind to look after your best interests, and considering you are still so young and possessed of such youthful impulsiveness, I believe – "

"Father, I know you don't approve of Will," she said bluntly, finally unable to take his tiresome prolixity any more.

He turned to her then, looking briefly startled. "Then you will understand that I am not too thrilled at your proposed engagement," he said, gazing at her solemnly. "William Turner is a fine young man to be sure, but – "

"But nothing!" Elizabeth yelled, jumping to her feet. Two angry spots of colour now bloomed in her cheeks. "Father, we've had this same conversation before – twice! And both times it ended the same way! I don't care that you preferred I married Norrington. I've made my decision and I've chosen Will!"

"He is a blacksmith, Elizabeth!" her father cried. "Just what kind of future do you think he can provide for you? For your children! Commodore Norrington is wealthy, respectable and of excellent social standing. He is the one that can continue to give you the life you lead now."

"Will is an expert at his trade," she shouted furiously. "Already traders and merchants from England and other parts of the world have seen his craftsmanship and are willing to do business with him! All he needs now is a little time to wean himself fully away from that old drunkard, Brown, and establish a name for himself."

"But with your behaviour – that silly way you carry on with him – I would say that that is highly unlikely. Look at you! You are absolutely filthy! What is that, ash and soot on your face and clothes? What will the people say? I shudder to think! And my daughter too!"

Elizabeth's eyes darkened in fury. "Oh, and is that all you're worried about – a good reputation and a scandal-free picture? Are you really as shallow as all the other finicky nobles in this town? Will Turner saved my life! Or have you forgotten that ever-so-slight detail that everybody seems so willing to overlook? When Captain Barbossa kidnapped me, Will was the only one loyal and brave enough to try and rescue me!"

"No, he was the only one rash enough to attempt such a foolish course of action!" Governor Swann promptly returned. "And will you disregard the fact that Commodore Norrington too was planning to rescue you? And certainly by no dishonest acts as well."

"But it was Will who saved me, not Norrington," Elizabeth snapped, her anger reaching fever pitch. But all the same, she was nevertheless relieved that he had never discovered the truth regarding Will's pirate origins. If he thought the act of piracy was bad, how would he react if he knew that Will really was a pirate? "And what happened to your deciding that – oh, what was it now – oh yes, that the right course of action can sometimes be one of piracy? Tell me, Father, are you proud of being such a hypocrite?"

Governor Swann drew himself up indignantly. "Hypocrite?" he spluttered, blinking rapidly as if he did not quite know how to respond.

"Yes, a hypocrite," Elizabeth said furiously. "First of all you go back on your word as soon as it does not suit your needs, and secondly, you would never have spoken so severely of Will had he not been trying to marry me."

"I am only trying to look after your best interests," Governor Swann said, obviously trying to calm his anger – but apparently without much success.

"But marrying Will is in my best interest!" Elizabeth cried, throwing up her arms in a combination of ire and exasperation. "We're in love."

"Love," the Governor said bitterly. "In this world, love is not a good enough reason to marry someone. It won't give you the fine clothes you are so fond of wearing, nor the food you eat. Love does nothing for you. For anyone!"

"It makes me happy," Elizabeth finally said, resorting to her last defense. It wasn't a very good one, in her opinion; but perhaps it was something a doting father just might accept. "Will makes me happy like no other man can. Don't you want me to be happy?"

It worked. "Oh, Elizabeth, of course I do," her father said in exasperate resignation, moving to stand directly in front of her. "But – "

"But just not Will, right Father?" she finished harshly.

His jaw clenched as if he was pressing his teeth together very tightly. The tight grey curls of his periwig twitched in irritation. "I had hoped you would marry someone from your own social class. Your equal."

"So you feel that Will can never be my equal?" Elizabeth said, stepping away from him. Her eyes were accusing. "Money and class does not – cannot – determine that."

"Well, in this world they can. I'm trying to be realistic. Please listen to me, Elizabeth!" he suddenly pleaded. His voice sounded desperate.

But Elizabeth was unrelenting. "I have listened to you, Father, and I have heard nothing to my liking." She turned away, grabbing the nightdress and robe from the bed as she did so, and moved behind the dressing screen. "I've nothing more to say to you. I'm tired."

At first there was no sound, but then she heard him sigh in defeat. The sound of footsteps reached her ears and then the door opened.

But before she could move, Governor Swann spoke again. "At least think over what I said, Elizabeth. And despite what I said in the beginning, I know you are capable of good judgement and I have faith that you will make the right decision, both for your benefit and William's. He would be trapped, you know, if he married you. He would be drawn into the whirl that is nobility, intrigue, gossip and politics. Commodore Norrington is well equipped to deal with such delicate complexities, but William Turner is the equivalent of a boy with a sword in these matters. Power can debase even the most respectable man, even if he has good intentions to begin with. Just remember, Elizabeth, that the road to corruption is paved with good intentions."

And before she could say anything more, the door clicked shut and she was left alone with his ominous parting words and her own troubled thoughts.


Later that night, when Martha had finished readying her for bed, Elizabeth tossed and turned restlessly, unable to get to sleep. Her father's words had unsettled her rather more than she'd like to admit and her mind was as active now as it had been during their argument. Suddenly, her stomach gave a sickeningly lurch. Her mouth soured. Quickly she threw back the covers and ran to the adjoining washroom where she retched up all the contents of her stomach into the basin. She groaned as the heaving stopped and drank a glass of water to dispel the vile taste that lingered in her mouth.

Clutching her stomach, she walked slowly back to her bed wearing a puzzled frown. This had been happening a lot lately – sudden upsets that made her run to the washroom in panic, her stomach churning violently. And there were also those wretched headaches, which hammered at her like a blacksmith would his anvil, and really just a general feeling of queasiness that came and went at irregular intervals.

Elizabeth climbed back into the deliciously warm bedcovers and groaned in frustration. That was not troubling her so much tonight. It was rather a different matter. She closed her eyes but immediately opened them again, knowing already that sleep would not visit her for a long time yet.

Abandoning her futile attempts at slumber, she climbed slowly out of the bed and dropped into the nearby window seat, gazing out across the bay. The full moon cast its silver light upon the ocean water, illuminating it like an endless silver-blue jewel. A few lights flickered in the main part of the town below, but otherwise it was dark and quiet. Elizabeth smiled to herself. If she knew Will Turner, one of those lights would be his as he continued to forge and temper his beautifully crafted swords. He had told her he worked better at night, when it was quiet and peaceful and there were fewer distractions.

Her smile widened into a grin. He had looked at her with a mischievous twinkle in his eye when he said that, which said quite clearly that he considered her a distraction. She had laughed at his jest and playfully reprimanded him, although her protests had stopped when he carefully encircled her in his arms and gave her a gentle kiss.

"But you're one of the better ones, Elizabeth," he had then whispered softly with a loving smile after breaking away.

Elizabeth blushed at the thought of what had happened after that – what had happened quite a few times in the last month. She knew she was quite bold in character, but had not thought herself that bold! Yet, ever since she had begun seeing Will, she seemed to have become a little more reckless, a little more impulsive than before. Perhaps it was due to the wild adventure they had both embarked upon together, less than two short months ago. Those events had stirred an excitement within her that she had not realised existed until she had prepared to settle back into her routinely life in Port Royal. She had discovered then that the endlessly boring life of a noble no longer held any interest for her. Now Will was the only one who managed to stir that same thrill within her – and in more ways than one…

A pleasurable tremor suddenly shivered down her spine, causing that same secret smile she had worn earlier to tickle the edges of her mouth. The touch of skin upon skin, the mingling warmth of each other's breath, and the passion they had shared… a pleasure restricted only to the time after the vows of matrimony had been taken. Convention of the upper houses demanded it. But then again, Elizabeth mused, her relationship with Will was far from conventional according to general standards. And they were to be married anyway. There was no way her father, or indeed anyone for that matter, would ever find out.

At this thought, Elizabeth scowled darkly and brought up her knees upon which to rest her chin. Lately, little doubts had been tickling her mind as to whether their marriage would ever take place. Her father had become more and more opposed to the match as days went by. Tonight had certainly illustrated that! All the other 'discussions' they had had concerning her betrothal to Will had never been as heated as this one. It was strange, for he had seemed perfectly accepting the day they had made it known they had feelings for each other – when they had helped Jack Sparrow escape from the gallows. But as time had passed, her father's anxiety did not diminish.

It was quite understandable, come to think of it, Elizabeth thought suddenly. After all, she had just been rescued from Captain Barbossa by Will and her father had probably been too overwhelmed with relief at having her safe at home again to be aware of the other 'implications' their marriage would bring.

"After all, he is a Blacksmith," she quoted her father out loud, bitterness lacing her voice. So perhaps he had not been so blind. She wasn't sure. She already knew his thoughts on the issue at hand. What did it matter that she didn't know it then?

Her father's opinion wasn't only reserved for himself, she knew. Many of the other noble families here – not many in total since most had not wanted to leave the comfort and luxury of the English Court – shared his view. Their smiles were somewhat stilted as they greeted her, and whispers and gossip followed her around like trails of smoke from a fire. To the noble ladies, Will Turner was merely another handsome young man to flirt with – certainly not a prospective husband! Nobody said anything openly though. As daughter of the Governor she still commanded a certain respect, and the fact that Norrington was on her side – surprising, given that he had lost her hand in marriage – stilled those with looser tongues.

Commodore Norrington. He was a fine and noble man – everything her father had said and more. He was what every woman should dream of marrying. But he was too reserved for her, too distant and too strictly adhering to the rules of convention that governed social behaviour. This made her all the more surprised that he would stand by her, siding with her over something that definitely exceeded the boundaries he was so fond of. Or maybe…

"No, that can't be right," Elizabeth snapped out loud to the open window. "That's impossible!" He couldn't still be in love with her! Not after she had accepted and then rejected him – and rather cruelly too, she admitted silently. The idea was preposterous! No man, not even the noble Commodore Norrington, would stand for that kind of insult. What she had done to him was terrible, but she could not help that Will had so thoroughly captured her heart.

Thinking of Will made her smile once more. She rested her folded arms on the windowsill, her thoughts softening. With his dark features and dashing good looks, he made her sigh every time she saw him. It was more than that, of course. He was kind and gentle, with a loyal and passionate spirit that always ignited a fire in his eyes, embers that smouldered with love and fondness whenever he looked at her. He was brave, almost to the point of rashness, but it was tempered by a persistent shyness that she had tried and tried again to draw him out of, but without success. Nevertheless, Elizabeth suspected that if he had been any different, she would not have loved him as much as she did now.

Yet sometimes, his sensitivity vexed her. Elizabeth sighed as she remembered. He had been telling her of the time he had spent with Jack while on his way to rescue her. "It was absolute genius the way we stole the Interceptor right out from under his nose, Liz! You should have seen his face!" he had crowed, his eyes bright with the remembered excitement.

She had hidden a grin at that and instead pretended to be offended by his familiarity. "Why, Mr. Turner, I daresay you forget yourself! In future, please refrain from addressing me with such intimacy, for it is Miss. Swann to you!"

She had been jesting of course, and her tone – she had thought – had clearly indicated that. But instead of the laugh and quick smile of his that she had expected, his expression sobered and he looked at her with something almost akin to hurt in his eyes. "I am sorry, Miss. Swann," he had said in perfect seriousness. "I had forgotten. Forgive me, it won't happen a second time."

There it had been again – that endless reference to their very different social backgrounds. It had taken her weeks to reassure him. Could they never escape? Probably not, particularly if Will kept seeing fit to remind her of it. One would think that he wanted her to stop seeing him.

A sudden shout from somewhere in the darkness jolted her out of her thoughts. She sat up straighter in the chair and gripped the windowsill. Unable to see a great deal, she leaned further outside, squinting into the darkness. More shouting then joined in with the loud clamour of voices and dimly she could see figures running back and forth across the battlements of the fort where the torches of fires burned brightly. Something was happening down there but she couldn't be sure what.

Before she could investigate further, however, a quiet noise from somewhere down below her window caught her attention instead. She looked down, trying to pierce the shadows but with no luck at all. She was still straining to make out the shadowy shapes below when there was a step behind her and something hard slammed into her head. Elizabeth cried out at the sudden fire that stabbed her, but it quickly disappeared as she sunk gratefully into a black, painless cloak of unconsciousness.