Usual disclaimers – you'd think after all the stories I've written about the man, The Mouse would let me have him – even for just one night…
Well here it is, the final story in the series. I have added various month headers to help both you and me to keep track of where the time is going!
Chapter one: 'A man is only as good as his wife…'Mid November
Governor James Norrington looked up as a sharp rap sounded at the door. 'Enter,' he called, pushing aside the papers he had been working on, grateful of the distraction of trying to sort out yet another example of the former Commodore Boothe's incompetance during his term in office. He had personally informed the man after the escape of both Jenny Crompton and Jack Sparrow, that he was no longer in office and he himself had resumed his role as Commodore of the Fleet until the Admiralty sent a new man to the Caribbean.
'Commodore Beauchamp, Sir,' Second Lieutenant Murtogg informed him as he opened the door.
'Ah, Beauchamp,' James Norringtom smiled, standing and extending his hand. 'I'm glad you are here at last.' He nodded at Murtogg, dismissing him.
'I'm glad to be here,' Elias Beauchamp smiled. 'Although it was a bit of a rush getting things sorted in the Carolinas before coming here.'
'Yes, I'm sorry about that…'
'No. No, Sir, that is not what I meant at all. I'm grateful you recommended me for this position.'
'I have heard good things about you from various captains and merchant seamen that come to Port Royal.'
'I take it you mean my success with ridding the waters of a number of pirates?'
'Amongst other things, yes,' James Norrington smiled.
'I can assure you, I will do everything in my power to be as successful here, Sir.'
'Jenny!' Luke Martin hurried into the kitchen of the house in Newcastle, a broad smile on his face. 'Jack's back!'
'He is?' she grinned, drying her hands on her apron then unfastening it and smoothing her hair. 'I had better go and meet him then, hadn't I?'
She had been grateful of Luke's company since Patience had left for Ireland. The former naval surgeon had not felt entirely safe on board The Black Pearl, even though Jack had made sure the crew knew the consequences if they threatened him in any way. So it had been decided between Jack, Jenny and Luke that he would stay at the house as company and a guardian for her.
'I'll see you later,' Luke called as Jenny ran out of the kitchen door and down the path to the lane.
'Cap'n suh, is that Jenny?'
Jack turned to face the bow of the boat, which contained himself, Olabisi Ba, Billy Wheeler and Drew McCarrick, and grinned as he saw her figure standing on the wharf, waving her arms frantically.
'It is indeed,' he drawled laconically, disguising the eagerness he felt to get ashore. It had been a long and rather unsuccessful three weeks, and rumours were abound of the new commodore, with virtually all of them saying the same thing - that he was a tough man and had a good record against pirates. 'Just what I need,' he lamented to himself. Jack was shaken from his reverie by the sound of Jenny's voice calling his name as they drew closer.
'Hello luv,' he called back, waving to her. 'God, she looks good,' he mused, suddenly more keen than ever to get ashore.
'Jack!' Jenny cried, jumping up and down excitedly.
'Yer goin' ter make a hole in th'jetty,' he laughed, throwing her the mooring rope as they approached and climbing out once the boat was secure. 'Come 'ere,' he growled, throwing his arms about her and swinging her around.
'I missed you,' she breathed, burying her face in his neck and inhaling the salty tang of sweat and sea water.
'How much?' he teased then pressed his lips against hers, oblivious to the stares they were getting from passers by.
'I'll show you how much later,' she chuckled as they broke away. Jenny looked him up and down, taking in his fine clothes and bound hair, his disguise whenever he came home. A shiver of excitement ran down her spine as she imagined undoing the mother of pearl buttons down the front of his well-made shirt. 'Hello gentlemen,' she smiled at the waiting crew, needing something to take her mind off Jack – for the moment at least.
'You lot still here? Off ya bloody go, yer know what's needed. Tell Gibbs, strict watch rotation while we're here, savvy? Th'rest can come ashore.'
'Aye Cap'n suh,' the former slave assured him, although he knew that Joshamee Gibbs probably recited Jack's instructions in his sleep.
'Come on, you can tell me all that's been happening.' Jenny took Jack's hand and led him away from the wharf and towards their house.
'You first,' Jack grinned. He had gathered some useful information, thanks to Jenny paying attention to the town's gossip, and had used the knowledge to hit a ship carrying a valuable cargo of sugar, rum and coins. But it was not something he would make a habit of. He didn't want suspicion to fall on Jenny.
'Wait until we're inside, you never know who's listening.'
'How's Luke?' Jack had been disappointed when the former naval man decided he was not going to serve aboard The Black Pearl. He felt it was a slight against his captaincy, that Luke did not trust him to keep him safe. But Jack also knew how certain members of the crew felt about the Navy, and how they would always see Luke as the enemy, even though he had aided Jack and Jenny's escape from the fort at Port Royal and killed his captain, Charles Gillette, albeit unintentionally.
'Luke is fine. People are already starting to come to him for aid and advice.'
'They're not suspicious are they?'
'No, and even if they are, they're the sort who cannot afford proper treatment, so they're not going to be saying anything.'
'All right,' Jack agreed, feeling slightly uneasy at strangers going to his house.
'Captain, Mrs. Hillier.' A gentleman doffed his hat as they passed.
'Ah, Mr. Dukas,' Jenny smiled. 'How nice to see you again.'
'Perhaps you could come to afternoon tea whilst you are ashore, Captain Hillier. I'm sure we would have plenty to talk about.'
'I will do my utmost to make time,' Jack assured the man, nodding as they carried on their way. 'Bleedin' nonce,' he hissed, winking at Jenny.
'Jack!' she admonished, squeezing his hand and frowning at him, hoping the gentleman had not heard.
'Well…' he laughed as he pushed open the garden gate to their home. 'He is a bloody nonce.'
'Hello Jack,' Luke smiled as they entered the kitchen. 'Don't worry, I'll make myself scarce.'
'Ya don't have to…'
'The room at the tavern is very comfortable from what I hear, and the company is good too,' he winked, picking up a rucksack containing his effects. 'I'll pop in tomorrow, goodbye.' He bent and kissed Jenny on the cheek, then disappeared out of the door, a knowing grin on his face.
'All alone…' Jack grinned ferally.
'What is a girl to do?' Jenny whispered, her voice dropping an octave or two.
'She could try undressin' her husband,' he suggested with a throaty growl.
'And then what…?'
'An' then she could perhaps undress herself – slowly, her hands caressing her breasts as her husband watched, stroking himself.'
'Would she be allowed to touch her husband?' Jenny asked, undoing the top button of Jack's shirt.
'No. He would lead her up to their room and she would lie down on their bed and pleasure him by pleasuring herself and then watch as her husband then pleasured himself and poured his juices over her body.
'Oh…' Jenny moaned breathlessly. 'Then…?'
'Then, he would take her again an' again until she thought she could stand no more. But when he stopped, she'd beg him, plead with him to take her one last time.'
'Oh yes,' Jack rasped as she worked her way down his shirt. 'He would take her until they both collapsed with exhaustion.'
'Sounds like a wonderful husband to me,' she murmured, tugging the shirt from his shoulders.
'A man is only as good as his wife…'
'So what has been happening?' Jack asked lazily as they lay in each other's arms in their bed.
'Not a lot, really. Benjamin Roberts has brought some more land off Thomas Jenkins. Douglas Phelps has been gaoled for attacking a slave girl of Mr. Dukas's, but that's about it. How about you?'
'There's a new commodore at Port Royal,' he sighed heavily. 'He's good from what I hear. Used to be top man in th'Carolina's where he had a number of successes against pirates. One or two of them are talkin' of moving elsewhere ter get away from him.'
'Oh… you'd better take extra care then.'
'I intend ter luv, don't ya worry about that. Might be a bit tricky here though, what with th'Navy just 'round th'corner as it were, even if they only have one ship. I might start orderin' th'Pearl away when I come back here – tell them ter pick me up a few days later.'
'We should have moved to Tortuga, shouldn't we?'
'Nah, yer didn't want to. Too many ghosts there,' he replied quietly. 'We'll be all right here, you'll see.'
'If it gets too dangerous, we'll move to Tortuga, savvy?' Jenny smiled, trying to calm the unease welling inside her.
'We'd have ter wait fer Shay an' Patience ter return first,' Jack reminded her. 'Oh, some good news,' he grinned. 'Ned has become a grandfather again. Yer remember he's got a daughter on Antigua, she had a son a couple of months back.'
'Oh that's wonderful!' she exclaimed. 'I bet the crew celebrated that!'
'Yeah,' Jack grinned. 'Although I think it also means that he's goin' ter be leavin' fer sure, sooner or later,' he added, sighing heavily once more. 'Don't suppose Luke's changed his mind?'
'I don't think so. I get the feeling there were a couple of… incidents whilst he was on board,' Jenny admitted, propping herself up on an elbow and staring into Jack's languid brown eyes.
'Bloody 'ell! Why didn't he tell me?'
'Maybe he is too proud. Maybe he doesn't like admitting that he was perhaps scared.'
'Could be…' he mused. 'Enough of th'gossip – where were we…?'
'Oh, around about here…' Jenny chuckled, rolling on top of Jack and nibbling his ear lobe.
Elias Beauchamp stood at the bow of HMS Courage and surveyed the waters of the Caribbean, satisfied with the turn of events that had lead him here. He had started to feel bored after five years in the Carolinas and this was just the challenge he needed. 'The weather is a bonus too,' he thought to himself, savouring the feel of the hot sun on his back. There was neither point nor purpose to him taking the ship out on the water. He just wanted to feel the swell of the ocean beneath the deck as it helped him to think and he needed to do a lot of thinking at the moment.
'Sir?' Captain Theodore Groves approached him hesitantly, unsure as to the reception he would get.
'Yes Captain,' Commodore Beauchamp smiled.
'Is there anywhere specific you wish to head for?'
'No Captain Groves, just sail until I ask to head back.'
'Very well, Sir.' Captain Groves ordered his men to make for the area around Port Antonio, to the east of Jamaica. 'It's not too far to head back home,' he reasoned to himself.
'Tell me what you know about Jack Sparrow,' Elias Beauchamp enquired, once the captain of HMS Courage had finished issuing his orders.
'What do you mean, Sir?'
'What sort of pirate is he? Where does he usually target – that sort of thing.'
'Well… he is quite unlike any pirate I have ever come across, Commodore. He is intelligent for a start, despite initial appearances.'
'What do you mean?'
'He comes across as a drunken, insane sot, but he sees and hears everything. Underestimate him at your peril, Sir. He is also totally unpredictable – you swear he is going to do one thing, and he will do completely the opposite.'
'I see… what else?'
'His crew are not like other pirate crews. They don't pillage and rape at will – although, from what I hear, they are one of the toughest crews on the Spanish Main.'
'So what you are saying, Captain Groves, is forget most of what I've learned about going after pirates, if I want to capture Jack Sparrow?'
'Yes Sir, that's exactly whatI'm saying.'
'Thank you Captain Groves. I can see we're going to get along famously.'