Disclaimer: I don't own Pirates (If I did, we wouldn't have to wait this long for a sequel) so no lawsuits. Please? I have lawyer-phobia.

Chapter 1: The Open Sea

The day was beginning.

The Caribbean sun slowly rose in the east. Its rays turned the water gold for a few moments, before returning to a blue-green. The clouds in the sky, what few there were, shone a pink-like red-the color of watered down blood. It would be bad weather later today. But for now, it was beautiful. Gulls flew in the air, a sure sign of nearby land, and the smell of brine was in the air.

A ship glided through this temporary calm. Black-hulled and flying black sails, it seemed like an inkblot on the sheet of parchment that was the horizon. It was the fastest, most wanted, and most feared ship in the Caribbean, if not the entire world. All the navies in all the world had hunted her for over 15 years, never once succeeding to capture or defeat her. Assignments to hunt this ship were taken as the harshest reprimand, for few received it, and almost none ever returned.

This ship, once cursed, and damned by all who hunt her, is called the Black Pearl. And on this particular day, Will Turner was at the helm. He wore a long coat that his father had given him before they left, having just pulled it out of a trunk. It was fast becoming his favorite coat. With it being cut almost exactly along the lines of the coat of a Royal Navy officer, save for its darker blue, almost black color; he could pass for a Navy man near anywhere.

Will smiled. This venture was his first turn at running the ship. Normally, AnaMaria, Gibbs, or Jack ran the thing, but on this trip, Jack wanted Will to try being a captain. So there he stood, issuing orders occasionally.

"Swab the deck, Mr. Cotton!" The tongue-less pirate had gotten his bird to make wolf-whistles at Elizabeth, a joke that lost its humor on Will.

"Aye-aye, Cap," squawked Mr. Cotton's Parrot.

"Gibbs, how's our food supply doing?"

"Excellent, sir. We could be out here for months, and never run out." The swarthy man saluted sharply.

"Enough of that, Gibbs. Go on, then."

"Aye, sir." The old pirate walked away.

Will closed his eyes, and breathed in the salty air. God, how he loved the smell of it. He could smell the sweet brine, and the soft smell of the rain to come. This was truly home. The few ventures he took were not enough, he decided. Only five days since they'd left port in Tortuga, and already he never wanted to go home.

Then two women came on deck. One was dark-skinned, but her skin was nowhere near as dark as her eyes. Her dark hair flowed over her shoulders in the gentle breeze. She wore a floppy hat and a pistol. Her name was AnaMaria.

The other girl was the opposite of AnaMaria. Her hair was a sandy blond, dyed the color by the sun's rays. Her eyes were as brown as the other girl's, but radiated warmth rather than hostility. She more often than not wore pants, the way AnaMaria did. She also wore the red coat of a British Royal Marine. She bore no weaponry. Her name was Elizabeth Swann-Elizabeth Turner now.

The first spoke. "Where's Jack ,Will?"

"Asleep in his cabin."


"Can't you smell it?" Will asked AnaMaria. Jack had taken quite a stock of rum from Fort Charles in Port Royal, along with some uniforms, weapons, and AnaMaria and Gibbs. The two had gotten caught scouting out the fort and seeing the possibility of scaling the walls to the fort. The walls were steep in all directions, so Will considered it a foolish idea from the start. "What d'you need Jack for?"

"To know what the next plan is. We've got a bit of swag here, but after we dump it at Isla de Muerta, what next?"

"I don't know. We'll have to see." Speaking of Isla de Muerta, Will checked Jack's compass. Frowning, he twisted the wheel a bit. The needle straightened out.

"What you need, Elizabeth?" Will asked as AnaMaria went below to wake Jack.

"Just to spend some time with you."

"Nice." He allowed Gibbs to take the wheel for a moment as he stepped to the rear with Elizabeth.

"Will, what do you think about kids?"

Will blanched. He'd not just been caught off-guard by the question; he'd been totally side-swiped by it. "Um..."

"Because we never talked about it. Well?"

"Well...last I looked, I didn't carry it. Until I do, it's your decision."

"So if I said I wanted a child?"

He proceeded with caution. "Well, I'd ask you if we could wait to be on solid land first, but..."

"So if I'd prefer one sooner rather than never?"

He didn't catch the 'never'. "I'd say wait."

She twirled on her ankle, and stormed past AnaMaria and Gibbs.

"What was that about, lad?" Gibbs asked as he gave the wheel back to Will.

"Some women thing. Probably even AnaMaria wouldn't get it." Turning to AnaMaria, "Is Jack awake?"

"No. Even tried firing a pistol next to his ear. If he didn't snore, I'd think him dead."

"Hm." Will wasn't enjoying the day much anymore. A pirate had taught a bird to whistle at his girl, said girl wanted children, was angry at him for God knows what, and Jack Sparrow, the captain, was still drunk.

It could probably be worse, though Will didn't see how.