This idea has been buzzing around for a while. It takes place a couple of weeks after the Black Pearl fiasco and is entirely set in Port Royal. I know Norrington was supposed to set off after Jack the day after, but I think he might have had paperwork and explanations to do. Whatever you think really. Feel free to concoct your own ideas.
Disclaimer- I do not own PotC tCotBP.
Dedicated to nekohebi- my own little dark angel. Do I love her? Hell yes.
WARNING: This also goes out to those reading Fallen, I am in Spain from the 1st August to the 15th August, with no Internet access. Many apologies, I will try to update ASAP.
It was early evening. In the high society houses of Port Royal, the high society lords and the high society ladies were getting down to that most serious business of polite conversation over starters. In the inns and taverns, that drinking had begun in earnest, but no one was singing and dancing on the tables yet. In the Governor's mansion, a certain Miss Elizabeth Swann was sitting in her room musing dreamily on her unofficially betrothed. In the smithy at the centre of the town, said unofficial betrothed was beating out a red-hot strip of metal to be used in the construction of new cell doors for the prison.
Will Turner, blacksmith, was not expecting any callers. Which was why he did not notice the polite knock at the door of his master's shoppe- the aforementioned Mr Brown was sleeping off his usual daily dose of liquor in his usual chair. It was only when the polite knock became a heavy handed thump on the timber that the young blacksmith heard. He hastily placed the metal safely to the side, dropped his tongs on the anvil and rubbed a rag over his hands and his features in an attempt to make himself presentable. He grabbed his brown coat as another thump reverberated throughout the smithy, trying to fathom out the purpose of a visit so late in the working day.
He ran to the door and opened it, mumbling apologies to his guest. The tall lean form of Commodore Norrington met his eyes. He dipped his head respectfully to the protector of Port Royal and gestured for him to enter. The Naval man stepped inside the warm smithy, removing his feathered tricorn as he did so. Will quietly closed the door and turned to Norrington. "Good evening, Commodore. How might I assist you? I fear my master is too weary to provide his normal standard of service."
"I would think not. When it is you who produces much of his finest work," the Commodore replied, his rich blue velvet voice containing a hint of disapproving sarcasm.
Will opened his mouth to protest, but was cut off by a wave of Norrington's hand. "I apologise, Mr Turner. That did not need to be said."
The two men stood in silence for a moment, both aware of the tension between them. Will was unsure of this man who was –still could be, his mind shrieked- his rival for Miss…Elizabeth's affections. Despite his words on the ramparts of the fort that day, Will didn't entirely trust that Norrington would give up this particular hunt so easily.
Norrington sighed suddenly and placed his hat on the table in the corner of the room, his sea-mirror eyes weary. "May I speak frankly to you, Mr Turner? I do not wish to offend you, but there are things I feel I must say."
Will hesitated, then replied. "Of course, Commodore. Speak your mind."
Norrington nodded his thanks then turned his head to stare pensively at the mechanism that dominated the room. "I will not deny that my feelings towards you are not the most warm. Despite this, I wish you to know that I bear you no ill will for what has happened and I wish no harm on either you or Miss Swann. You love each other, and I am no man to deny your love."
"However, the rumours and gossip flying around Port Royal suggest that, contrary to my true feelings on the matter, I am set to hunt you down and murder you both bloodily and horribly, or in some other way exact a terrible revenge. In normal circumstances, such idle talk would not bother me, but I have heard other slanderous accusations against yourself and Miss Swann which suggest some sort of sordid affair between the three of us." The Commodore paused, shaking his head distastefully. Will's eyes were huge; he had no idea how vicious the gossips could be. Or how maligning.
Norrington began speaking again, turning to face Will. This time his words were more deliberate, as is he was giving each a careful consideration. "I suggest, Mr Turner, that we take action against these accusations in such a way that we challenge them in public, let nothing be hidden. Would you agree?"
A memory flashed behind Will's eyes of a similar event. Do we have an accord? He smiled wryly to himself. "Yes, Commodore, I would agree. Such talk should not be left to fester and spread."
A brief smile flashed across Norrington's face. "I believe you have exactly summarised my feelings on the matter. We must show them once and for all the…truth of the matter. And as for the method," Norrington's eyes flicked back to the sabre rack. "I suggest an unorthodox solution."
Will followed his gaze, wondering at the hesitant use of the word 'truth.'
Will pulled on his best brown coat and took a deep breath, smoothing down his best suit of clothes. He strode to the door and opened it, hurriedly making his way to the town square, squinting slightly in the Caribbean sun. It had been a week since his meeting with Commodore Norrington and word had quickly spread of the 'unorthodox solution' that they had planned. Hounded by inquisitive locals demanding answers and explanations, he had resorted to keeping the doors to the forge and his home locked at all times, only admitting those whom he recognised as 'non-gossips' and customers. And now, the reckoning came. Time to lay the rumours to rest.
A large group of people had already gathered at the appointed place, all chattering about the events to come no doubt. Even the Governor's carriage was present, with a very worried looking Governor Swann and daughter sat inside it. As she caught sight of him Elizabeth's face lit up and she waved. Her smile, however, was decidedly nervous and she looked exceedingly tense. Will smiled back at her warmly then began to fuss with the hilt of his favourite sabre, whose sheath was buckled to his belt.
A parting of the crowd indicated the arrival of Commodore Norrington, resplendent in his Naval uniform. Lieutenants Gillette and Groves accompanied him. He strode into the centre of the square and nodded at Will in greeting. Will returned the greeting in kind. The people around them had gone quiet, waiting expectantly. Governor Swann and Elizabeth both stepped out of the carriage to view the exchange between the two men.
Norrington broke the silence. "Mr Turner, you and I know why we are both here. But alas, our spectators do not." There again, that dry biting sarcasm. Will desperately tried to keep a straight face as he watched several of the people in the crowd shift on their feet sheepishly.
"We are here today to settle a score. We have been rivals for the love of one woman…" here Norrington's eyes strayed to Elizabeth. "…for too long. It is time to resolve the matter as one man to another. I met with Mr Turner a week ago and challenged him to a duel for Miss Swann's hand in marriage."
I know, evil cliffy. But please, tell me your thoughts on it so far and thank you for reading.