Author's Note: This is the first fic I ever really thought out, put effort into, and didn't steal bits and pieces of other things to put it together. It's my baby, my pride and joy, and I expect it to be treated as such. No unreasonable flames. If you can defend them intelligently, than by all means do so.
Disclaimer: I do not own "Pirates of the Carribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl" or any of its affiliations. (i.e., characters) I would like to own them all very much, but what can you do?
Claimer: I own Baby Fischer, Venice, Mariana, and any other unknown characters.
Update Schedule: I will try to update every three to four days, reviews impending.
CONTEST: The twentieth reviewer will recieve a role in the final two chapters. This reviewer needs to get a character profile to me.
The first night of June that year was a night Captain Jack Sparrow would always remember. It was the night he stopped living the life of a pirate and began to live the life of a murderer.
Many insist that there is no real difference between a pirate and a killer. Most pirates do kill, and ruthlessly, simply because someone is in their way. But the real difference between a pirate and a murderer is that a pirate has passion.
A pirate, no matter how despised or infamous, has a passion, usually for the seas. Their passion is what keeps them sane. It is what keeps them alive.
A murderer, on the other hand, has long lost his passion. It usually dies along with a loved one, and the rage and hatred consumes him, so much that he is trapped in it and he cannot escape no matter how he longs to.
And murderer was what Jack Sparrow was to become.
Jack started awake at the sound of a gunshot, kicking a few of the silk sheets he had picked up on a raid of a merchant trade ship. Instinctively he grabbed the pistol at his bedside but did not get up out of bed. He waited until he heard footsteps thundering down the steps to the below quarters before turning off the safety and aiming at his door. "Come along, then," he said huskily and stared hard at the door. "What've you got for me?"
Almost on cue, Anamaria's heaving figure burst through the doorway. Jack quickly lowered his pistol and the familiar grin graced his features. "'Ello, Ana," he said cheerfully. "What's going on up there, eh? Little Baby, thinking he's a pirate again?"
Anamaria didn't answer, and just stood there, taking deep breaths, as if she were desperate for the air. Jack's grin slowly faded and his eyes traveled to Anamaria's hand, which was grasping a growing red spot on her other sleeve. His brow furled.
"Ana," he said, brushing some dirty hair out of his face as his features grew more concerned, "What's happened, love? What's happened to you?"
Anamaria finally gulped in as much air as she needed and she lifted her sword, which was stained with blood. "Jack, we're under attack," she said. Jack finally noticed that the gunshot that had awoken him to begin with had burst into several other little gunshots mixed among hoarse yells and commands. Jack kicked his legs to the side of his bed and stood up shakily.
"I can infer that we're under attack, Ana," Jack said with a grin, though it was not as self-confident as the other ones he often displayed to the crew in times of grave danger. "But I cannot infer as to whom is attacking us."
Anamaria frowned in disdain and disappointment. "Unfortunately, Sir, it's Commodore Norrington and the Royal Navy. Finally caught up to us, Jack."
Jack suddenly got his balance back and looked at her quite seriously. "Norrington?" he repeated and Anamaria nodded. Jack's face fell into an almost melodramatic confusion. "But…that bloody scum…we had a deal! Not James Norrington, to be sure, Ana?"
Anamaria let out an exasperated sigh and nodded again. "Aye, Captain. The Commodore James Norrington. Surely you've heard he's been after us since the marriage of the Turners?"
Jack shook his head in denial. "That's bloody impossible. We had an agreement...a treaty…"
Anamaria brandished her tainted sword at him, an outraged scowl on her face. "An unwritten treaty between a pirate and a Commodore of the Royal Navy?" she said, in an almost mocking tone. "You can't be that naïve, Jack. Norrington wouldn't keep a treaty with you even if he signed with his own blood." Jack almost looked vulnerable and Anamaria immediately felt she had said too much. She smiled a little bit at him as reassurance. "He's blowing holes in the Pearl, Jack," she said after a moment, her frown running back to her lips. "She's going to go down if you don't do something quickly."
Jack swaggered over to her, further exhibiting his problem with personal space. "How's your arm, Ana, love?" he asked. Anamaria looked at him as if he were mad.
"I mean, were you shot? Or stabbed?"
Anamaria fumed. "Jack, you are going to lose the Pearl..."
Jack stopped her in mid-sentence. "Ana," he interrupted. Anamaria shut up, still looking furious. "For the first time in a long time, I'm not concerned about the Pearl." He grinned and touched the side of her face and Anamaria flinched, mostly out of not expecting such a show of affection from the captain, especially towards her. Jack lowered his head and brushed his lips softly against hers. It wasn't a kiss, really: just a tease. But it made Anamaria weak in the knees nonetheless. "What I'm more concerned with is you."
Anamaria stared at him for a moment, wide-eyed, until an all-too-familiar scent reached her nostrils. Her eyebrows knitted to a sharp angle. "Jack…Are you…drunk?" she asked accusingly.
Jack gave a boyish grin and held up two bottles that had surely once been filled with rum, but the empty spaces in them were now audible. "What can I say?" Jack chuckled. "I'm a slave."
Anamaria slapped him and tore away from his grasp. "You are…so…ridiculous, childish…" she started cursing loudly in Spanish and dragged Jack with her to the upper deck.
Once Jack reached the deck, a broad grin broke out across his face. Clearly, Norrington had not been on this little expedition to find Captain Jack Sparrow of the Black Pearl. He had very few men and not an impressive amount of firearms. Jack let out a sigh of pleasure as he raised his pistol. "Yo ho, yo ho!" he shouted drunkenly and started firing every which way. The proud men of the Royal Navy fell like snowflakes on a cold day as the pirate crew took them out. Jack stabbed on, shot another, spun about…
And came face-to-face with Commodore Norrington. His face immediately darkened as he raised his sword. "'Ello, Commodore," he said sinisterly. Norrington vaguely acknowledged him.
"Captain Sparrow," he nodded. "I did not quite expect these to be the circumstances in which we would next meet."
"Well, whose fault is it that we're in this predicament?" Jack sneered as he and Norrington began exchanging blows. Norrington easily blocked his slashes with excellent form.
"Technically, it's yours, Mr. Sparrow," he said with a superiority about him that made Jack squirm. "For being a sheer disgrace to society. I would never be after you were you not a pirate."
Jack smirked. "Well then," he said mockingly. "I suppose that's it, eh? I'm pirate, so you're allowed to turn on me whenever you see fit?"
Norrington looked confused as Jack's parries became more violent and his voice more menacing. "I'm not sure I follow you, Mister Sparrow," he said, his eyebrows furling.
"You know bloody well what I mean, Norrington," Jack said. His voice had now reached the tone of a shout, but because of all the ruckus going on around them, he was barely audible. "I trusted you, mate! We had a deal!"
"Mister Sparrow," Norrington said with a superior chuckle, "I would never deal with a pirate. If you can show me this document ensuring our treaty, I shall cease fire immediately. But I recall no such meeting, as I'm sure nor do you."
Jack's eyes flared with rage. "You bloody dog!" he roared and drew his pistol, sending two shots to the Commodore's arm. Norrington looked surprised more than anything as he grunted and staggered backwards. Jack's chest heaved with fury as he reloaded his pistol and aimed it at Norrington's head. "Now, about ceasing that fire..."
But as fate would have it Jack was cut off by a shrill scream of terror. He whirled around, thinking first it was from Anamaria. He glanced about until he saw the source of the shriek. The pirate captain's eyes narrowed and he slashed his way to the helm. When he reached it, he reached down and grabbed the screamer by his short ponytail of fair hair, pulling him up to his feet.
"Baby Fischer, what're you doing on deck?" roared Jack. The eight-year-old cabin boy whimpered a bit, tears streaming down from his bright blue eyes.
"I-I j-just wanted t-t-t-to help, Captain," he sniveled miserably. Jack cocked an eyebrow and released Baby's ponytail, scowling.
"We're under attack, boy," he said sternly, pausing to shoot an oncoming Navy man. "You can't be of any use up here."
Baby wiped his eyes, suddenly ashamed of his tears, and nodded. "Yes, Captain," he shouted obediently. "I was being foolish, sir."
"That you were," Jack said, shooting a few more of the attackers. "Off to your cabin, Baby. Quick now, before they get you."
Baby's eyes widened in fear and he gulped, nodded nervously. Jack let a grin jump to his lips and he ruffled the child's the hair playfully. A smile sprung to Baby's face and Jack chuckled in spite of the situation.
"Get out of here, Baby," he ordered with a playful shove. Baby bounded off, dodging an array of bullets and bodies as he went. Jack sighed. "Some kid," he muttered.
It was at this point that the bullet lodged itself into Jack's left thigh. The blow was unexpected, of course. Even in the heat of battle, people do not expect to be injured. Jack Sparrow was not a god, no matter how often he assured himself he was. He was one of these people who thinks that they shall never be injured in battle.
Jack made no noise at the injury but immediately returned the fire, shooting his opposition in the middle of the forehead. As Jack sunk to his knees, overwhelmed from the pain, he glanced about the deck. Statistically, they were outnumbered, but they were still fighting strong. Or…no…was that Cotton, collapsing? Couldn't be, could it?
Jack suddenly noticed the odds were in the Royal Navy's favor as his crew retreated to the helm. Norrington, who had made a tourniquet around his arm to stop the blood, followed them until they were all cornered behind the still-kneeling Jack. He had no smirk on his face of victory, and for this, Jack felt for a moment grateful towards the Commodore.
"Pirates," Norrington spat and Jack's disdain for him immediately overcame him again. "Crewmen of the Black Pearl. I give you one last chance. Surrender and you may be spared from the gallows…though I doubt it, concerning your numerous crimes. However, if you refuse to cooperate, I shall have to have my men kill you here, a dirty business I would rather not prefer." He looked about the crew expectantly. "Well?" the Commodore said impatiently, looking down at Jack. "Captain Sparrow? What say you to that?"
Jack grasped at some planking with a filthy hand and hoisted himself up with some effort, leaning heavily on his right leg. He raised his head slowly and his hand grasped the hilt of his sword. He drew it in a flash and held it up inches from Norrington's throat. With a look more serious than anyone had ever seen he spoke.
"I've a better idea, Commodore," he sneered, brushing some unclean hair away from his deep brown eyes. "You leave without a fuss, or I'll kill you." He shrugged his shoulders in his usual disconcerted manner. "What say you to that? I think it's much less painful."
"You cannot keep this ship, Sparrow," Norrington insisted. "Your men are too few and my men are too many."
"Ah, Commodore," Jack sighed, shaking his head. "My men have something yours do not and could not ever possess."
"Oh?" Norrington said with an arced eyebrow. "And what would that be? Scurvy?"
Jack sneered. "My men have heart, Commodore," he said meaningfully. "As such, they'll fight 'till they die. Ain't that right, lads?"
"Aye, Captain!" the crew shouted. Jack smirked and Norrington smirked right back.
"Ah, but Mister Sparrow, I also have something your men do not possess," he said. Jack's smirk faltered.
"Aye?" he said uncertainly. Norrington nodded and snapped with his good hand.
Kicking and screaming ensued until Anamaria was in view, restrained by two members of the Royal Navy. One was holding her back by the hair and the other had her arms pinned behind her back. The crew stepped forward a bit, but stopped as the Royal Navy raised their bayonets.
"Now that offer, gentlemen…" Norrington started.
Jack glared at him with a loathing deeper than he had ever known. "You bloody coward," he yelled. "Hiding behind a woman. That's lower than I've ever been, Commodore."
Norrington's cool demeanor faltered and rage snapped onto his face in a split second. "How dare you," he said through gritted teeth. "How dare you…"
"Jack!" Anamaria screamed, struggling against the two who had her restrained. "Keep to the code, you bastard! Stab 'im! Shoot him! Make yourself useful!"
"Shut up, Ana!" Jack roared.
"Oh, stop being such a pansy and shoot him!" Anamaria shouted back. "Don't be a fool!"
Jack glared at her. "Anamaria, you're not helping at all," he said through gritted teeth.
"Jack, don't you dare not shoot him on my account," Anamaria hissed. Norrington snapped again and a third military man turned about and pointed a pistol at her chest.
"Bastard," Jack whispered.
"Now, about my offer," Norrington repeated.
Jack's dark eyes darted from Anamaria to the Commodore. Ideas rushed through his head like bullets. He could probably take down the Commodore, but then what of Anamaria? Could he shoot her holders? Did he even have enough bloody bullets?
"We're waiting, Captain," Norrington said sinisterly and Jack hated him again.
"Never," he sneered. "We are pirates, through and through. Hate us for it if you must, but we'll never surrender ourselves to the gallows."
"Aye, aye!" the crew shouted in reply. Loudest of all was Anamaria.
The Commodore sighed and bowed his head. "Very well," he said. "It grieves me to kill a lady, Mister Sparrow. Be sure, it grieves me greater than you know. But it is my duty." He looked straight into Jack's eyes. "And we all have our duties, do we not?"
He raised his arm to give the signal to shoot Anamaria, but before he could, in a quick, violent motion, Jack thrust his sword through the Commodore's palm. This time Norrington did scream, loudly, and Jack faltered at the noise.
Chaos broke out once again and the two crews rushed at each other. Jack yanked his sword out of Norrington's useless hand and looked about. He grabbed him by the collar and whistled loudly as he flipped up his blade and started padding around the Commodore, giving him time to collect himself.
"An eye for an eye, eh, Norrington?" he said huskily. The Commodore was breathing heavily, and grimacing from the pain. The blood flowed freely from his hand, and his tourniquet could not do anything for it.
Norrington spat onto the ground and rose to his feet, pulling his sword out of its sheathe as he did. "Are these going to be the terms in which we shall die, Mister Sparrow?" he said nonchalantly in spite of his injury. "On your own ship over an act of stubbornness?"
"I've lost whatever respect for you I once had, Commodore," Jack said through gritted teeth, still pacing around the injured Norrington. His leg was beginning to lose feeling in it, so it didn't bother him as much as if had before. "You threatened to kill a lady. That is worse than any piracy that has ever been committed on land or sea. And may you be damned for such an act."
"Mister Sparrow, you hypocrite," Norrington spat, exchanging a few parries with Jack. "When you first arrived at Port Royal I do believe you tried to murder Miss Swann, er, Mrs. Turner."
Jack grinned. "Oh, but sir," he said slyly. "I had previously saved the dame's life. The two neutralize each other, you see. I am guilty for no real crime."
By this point everyone had ceased fire and was staring at the two commanding officers on the helm. Their blows to one another were growing more and more violent, and it was as if they were performing a hypnotic dance. Their fighting continued for several moments, and neither landed a blow upon the other.
For a split second Norrington let his guard down and Jack saw his chance. He slugged the Commodore in the face and Norrington staggered backwards until he collapsed against the wheel. Both commanding officers were breathing heavily. Norrington wiped blood away from his mouth as Jack pulled his pesky long hair out of his face. It stayed back this time, slicked with sweat. Jack held up his sword but made no move forward.
"Last chance, Norrington," he said. Despite his ragged appearance, the pirate's voice did not quaver at all. In fact, he seemed to be extremely composed. Norrington looked up, his wig askew on his head. He looked a tragic figure, spread across the steering wheel, seemingly defeated.
"Last chance for what, Captain Sparrow?" he asked, taking odd pauses in his speaking as he sucked in deep breaths of air.
Jack knew he was being foolish for offering Norrington another chance for peace, but it was the humanity inside him that drove him to do so. "I am giving you one last chance to get off my boat," he said, the odd seriousness in his voice seeping from every syllable. "Get off, take your men, and sail away. Tell whomever you like about our whereabouts, I care not for that. But get off of my ship, Norrington."
Norrington's labored breath slowed down a bit as he begin to regain his strength. He searched the crowd of shipmen standing about, watching the two of them. The odds were in his favor if you thought of numbers, but there was something about this ship that made Norrington sure he could not win this battle.
"Don't be a fool, James," Jack said seriously. "It's not worth your death. Not my life."
Commodore James Norrington looked into his opposition's eyes and saw the serious manner there. He let out a sigh and reached into his coat. "No, Captain Sparrow," he said tiredly. "My death is not worth your life."
"We have an accord then?" the pirate asked suspiciously. Norrington nodded reluctantly. Jack slowly lowered his sword. The second he did Norrington whipped out a pistol and Jack felt himself freeze. A tremor or anger ran through his whole body, shaking his every limb. Idiot, he yelled at himself. Bloody idiot.
"This is my accord," Norrington sneered. "That your life is not worth my death. So I myself shall refrain from dying. And since you seem to care not for the life of yourself, perhaps you shall care for the life of another."
Jack gripped the hilt of his sword, confused. Norrington smirked and turned to the crowd of crewmen standing aboard the deck of the Pearl. Jack suddenly realized who Norrington was aiming at and his eyes grew wide. "Ana!" he cried out, but by the time he had the bullet had been launched.
Anamaria did not even have time to turn before it hit her in the center of her forehead.
Her eyes went wide for a moment, and her jaw fell loose, making her mouth a tall O. Her blood splattered onto the men on deck, and not one of them did not cringe. Anamaria's body seemed to fall in slow motion and it hit the deck with a thud. Jack felt his heart fall with it as the men attacked once more, screaming their hatred as they killed one another without regret.
Jack stared at Anamaria's fallen body for a very long time until he heard the click of a pistol. He looked up and saw that Norrington had his gun pointed at the center of Jack's chest. "Again, my deepest sympathies, Mister Sparrow," the Commodore said. "I have a duty to my country."
Jack whipped out his sword and took a step towards Norrington. The Commodore shot off his gun and it went straight into Jack's chest. The pirate faltered for a bit but then looked up. The look upon Norrington's face at this cannot be described by words, because no word covers the expression he bore at the recovery of Captain Sparrow.
In a swift motion, Jack lunged forward, his blade held out in front of him. Jack plunged his sword into Norrington's gut and the Commodore collapsed onto him. He made a noise similar to that of a child after he has skinned his knee: that faint little squeal of pain, but the child does not want to show that he is truly hurt so he does not cry out. Jack pushed the blade further into his opposition until it penetrated through the entire body. Jack lifted his mouth to Norrington's ear and whispered hotly.
"I don't know what you were aiming at, mate," he hissed. "My heart is long gone by now."
With that Norrington died, surprisingly quickly. Jack did not even bother to withdraw his sword from the Commodore's body. Clutching his chest he made his way through the violent gaggle of military men and pirates until he found the body of Anamaria, strewn across the deck. He collapsed to his knees beside her, feeling tears spring to his eyes. He blinked them away and touched the side of her face.
"Oh, Anamaria," he whispered. "I didn't even get the chance to tell you that I…loved you." And with those words he felt unconsciousness take a hold of him and the dark veil of prolonged sleep fell over his brown eyes.
And miles away, on an island just south of the coastline of Madrid, a child was born.
The parents of this child were peasants, and as such had no doctor to deliver her. The baby's mother died in birth, but the moment the baby was born, she did not wail. Not a sound came from her lips, though she seemed to be as healthy as any baby ever born had been.
Her father called her Mariana, the baby who would not cry.
Closing Notes: Yeah...there is a point to Mariana's birth, duh. Read and review, constructive criticism is more than welcome, as are suggestions. Thanks!