Chapter One

Wide blue eyes watched fascinated as the metal glowed red in the fire. She leaned closer, ignoring the heat of the flames as she tried to get a closer look at the fascinating sight. How could something as strong as the metal be bent and sharpened after sitting in the fire for so long, she wondered.

"Beatrice, get away from there!" Strong hands pulled her away from the fireplace and turned her around. "If you're going to stand near the fire, at least pull your hair out of your face so it doesn't catch fire."

The little girl looked up at her apologetically, twisting her hands around her long brown hair. "Sorry papa. I just wanted to learn more about making swords."

Mr. Brown sighed and ran a hand over his face. "Little girls should not be interested in making swords." He pushed her in the direction of the back door. "Now go outside and play with the other girls and let papa work."

Beatrice dug her heals into the ground. "But papa! I don't like the other girls. They're so boring! All they want to do is play dress up and other girly stuff!"

"Well that's what six year old girls like to do." Mr. Brown said. "You could learn a thing or two from those other girls."

"But papa!" She continued to argue. "I'd rather stay here and help you."

He opened the door for his daughter and shook his head. "Beatrice, I've been the blacksmith here at Port Royal since before you were born, I don't need your help."

Beatrice glanced outside but then back up at her father's chubby face and shallow eyes. They didn't have the same gleam in them that they used to have. He had lost his cheerful gleam when her mother had died over a year ago. He wasn't as dedicated to his work and was sterner then he used to be, he had also put on more weight and gained the habit of drinking a little too much after work.

Beatrice bit her lip, her fingers playing with the hem of her shirt. "B-But…what if while I'm gone something happens to you?"

Mr. Brown's eyes softened. "There's nothing to worry about Beatrice. What could happen to me?"

Beatrice shrugged and looked away. "I don't know." She said in a small voice.

Mr. Brown watched his daughter as she pouted and fiddled with her shirt and kicked the dirt. She looked so sad that Mr. Brown wasn't able to make her leave when she wanted to stay so badly. He sighed and closed the door, shading the blacksmith shop again. "Fine, you can stay and watch me, just make sure not to get in the way of my work."

Beatrice cheered and hugged him, her small arms barley making it around his large belly. "Thank you, papa! I promise I won't get in the way!" She ran over to the stool set next to his anvil and sat on it, watching him expectantly.

Mr. Brown shook his head, pulling his hammer from his belt. "I know I will regret this."

Beatrice smiled innocently. "Think of it this way papa, now you don't have to waste time finding an apprentice. Just teach me and I'll take over the shop when you retire."

Mr. Brown laughed humorlessly as he pulled the glowing sword from the fire and placing it on the anvil, hammering it down at the right angles. "We'll see Beatrice."

The front door to the shop opened, its bell chiming and notifying the Browns of someone entering their shop. They looked up and were greeted with the sight of the Captain of the Navy of Port Royal, Edward Norrington stepping into the threshold, looking around their small shop with a hint of distaste. He noticeably brushed some imaginary dust off his fancy red coat, as if just stepping to their shop meant he was somehow dirtier.

Beatrice scowled, but her father smiled politely. He placed the sword he was working on back on the fire and stepped forward to greet Norrington, holding out his hand. "Ah, Captain, welcome. To what do I owe this visit?"

Captain Norrington ignored Mr. Brown's dirty hand and continuing his observation of the shop, his gaze settling on their donkey, George, for a moment then moving to rest on the shorter, pudgier man in front of him. "I need a sword."

"Wow, good thing you're in blacksmith shop then." Beatrice muttered under her breath.

The Captain's gaze was sharp as it glanced in her direction and her back stiffened. He raised an eyebrow and she glared.

"Ah, so… What kind of sword do you want Captain?" Mr. Brown asked quickly, pulling the other man's attention from Beatrice.

"Something traditional, but lighter. It's for my son, a birthday gift of sorts. He has just turned eight and will be beginning his naval training soon."

Mr. Brown nodded. "I will need to take some measurements of your son to make sure the sword will be the right length."

"Of course." Captain Norrington nodded. "James."

Beatrice was surprised as a boy, just as well dressed as his father, stepped out from behind the Captain. She had been so focused on the rude Captain that she didn't even notice his son. He was the spitting image of his father, from his posture to his expensive looking clothes. No doubt under the white wig the Captain was wearing they'd both have the same dark brown hair.

The Captain pushed his son forward. "I assume this will not take very long, we have other things to do. I am a very busy man."

Beatrice moved off her seat and stood next to her father, scowling up at the arrogant man.

Mr. Brown nodded, a stiff smile on his face. "Of course sir. It will only take a moment. You may take a seat in you want." He said, motioning to the chair next to the door.

"No thank you. I'd rather stand." The Captain said dismissively.

Mr. Brown licked his lips nervously. "Ah, of course. Beatrice, be a dear and get the measuring tape from my office and the footstool."

Beatrice smiled up at her father. "Yes papa." She was quick to get what her father needed and when she got back she handed her father the tape and set the footstool down for James to stand on.

She stepped back and watched with interest as James's measurements were taken. She knew what would happen next. Her father would break a piece of steel at a certain length, make it into a blade, and give it a beautiful hilt, and then it would go to the boy in front of her. Beatrice felt a spike of envy.

"Papa, can I get a training sword too?" She asked hopefully.

"What would a little girl need with a sword?" Captain Norrington asked sarcastically.

Beatrice crossed her arms and raised her nose. "To fight with of course, why else?"

Mr. Brown laughed nervously. "My daughter the jokester. She's just kidding."

"I would hope so. It's improper for a woman to fight."

Beatrice pouted and opened her mouth, but a look from her father caused her to shut it. She sat back down on her stool and glared at the ground.

James watched her curiously as Mr. Brown continued his measurements. She continued to sulk, occasionally kicking the anvil and causing a dull thump to fill the room. He smirked a bit, inwardly chuckling at her behavior. He'd never met a girl you wanted to fight. All the other girls of the fort just wanted to gossip and play dress-up. He found this girl, with her muddy clothes and dirt smudged face intriguing.

"All done, my boy." Mr. Brown said cheerfully, patting James's shoulder and drawing the boy's attention to him. "I'll be able to make you a fine sword now."

James nodded and stepped off the stool. "Thank you." He glanced at Beatrice again, but she was still glaring at the ground.

"When will his sword be completed?" Captain Norrington asked, stepping forward.

Mr. Brown scratched his head. "Ah… about three days, sir."

The Captain nodded. "Fine, I would like it delivered to my house once completed." He placed a hand on James's shoulder. "Come James, we must be going."

Mr. Brown nodded. "Of course, sir. Thank you for your business."

Beatrice glanced up for a moment and her eyes met James as he left. She raised an eyebrow and he quickly looked away, heading out the shop behind his father. The door closed and she stared at the wood thoughtfully, not really seeing it.

"Beatrice, that is not how we deal with customers." Mr. Brown scolded.

"Beatrice pouted and turned her attention to him. "But papa, he was so rude."

"Yes, but with his money we can put food on our table, a roof over our head, and clothes on our back. So forgive me if I ignore the fact that Captain Norrington was rude to a lowly blacksmith and his daughter."

Beatrice's lip quivered and she looked away, her hair covering her face. "I'm sorry papa."

"Beatrice." Mr. Brown said softly. "Don't take it that way. I'm just speaking the truth."

She remained silent.

Mr. Brown rolled his eyes. "Beatrice if you stop ignoring me I'll let you help me make the Norrington boy's sword and then let you make a sword of your own."

Beatrice turned to him, her eyes bright. "Really?!"

He nodded. "Yes."

Beatrice jumped off her stool and hugged her father. "Oh, thank you papa! Thank you!"

Beatrice smiled and wiped her brow with her sleeve. She dipped the heated metal into the bucket of water next to the anvil. Steam filled the air for a moment, but thinned quickly and she pulled the finished sword from the bucket and inspected it.

"Perfection if I do say so myself, aye George?"

The donkey just stared at her blankly. Beatrice smiled and patted his head before hanging the sword up with the others she made. She poked another sword and smiled as the swords hit each other, creating a chiming noise.

Another chime sounded and Beatrice turned to see who was entering the shop.

A dark haired boy entered, clutching his hat to his chest and looking around curiously. When he spotted Beatrice he smiled. "Good morning, Beatrice."

Beatrice smiled back. "James, to what do I owe the pleasure?"

He stared at her. Beatrice raised an eyebrow. James cleared his throat and stood up straighter. "I need a repair." He unsheathed his sword and held it out to her.

Beatrice stepped forward and took it from him, examining the blade. Her eyes widened. "My God James, what did you do? It looks like you beat it against a rock."

A line of red appeared on his cheeks and he cleared his throat again. "Will your father be able to fix it?"

"Uhhh…" Beatrice glanced behind her towards her father's office, where she knew he was sleeping at his desk, drunk out of his mind. He had taken a turn for the worse a couple of years ago and had become somewhat of an alcoholic, leaving Beatrice to run to shop. "Why don't I take care of it for you James?"

"You?" James asked surprised. "You know how you fix a sword?"

She smirked and poked his shoulder. "You underestimate me James. I've learned a thing or two about swords and how to fix them. I am the blacksmiths daughter after all." She placed his sword on the anvil and pulled out a blade sharpener. She sat on her stool and began her task.

"That's hardly becoming for a young lady of thirteen." He said offhandedly as he watched her sharpen his sword.

She snorted. "And it's hardly becoming of a young man of fifteen to be so pompous."

"I am not pompous!"

She scoffed. "Of course you're not James."

He glared. "I'm not."

She smiled at him. "Alright."

"You don't believe me."

She gave him a look. "James, you've been visiting the shop every weekend for the last seven years, I think I've learned a thing or two about you and your pompousness."

James chose to remain silent, something akin to a pout on his face.

Beatrice laughed. "So, how is training going?"

As James's father was Captain of the Navy, it was inevitable that James would also be destined to join. Luckily, James seemed to enjoy his training, and he loved coming to Beatrice to brag about it. He knew that she would love nothing more than to be able to join the Navy where she could openly fight and be able to travel.

A wistful thought crossed Beatrice's mind as she thought of the idea of traveling away from Port Royal.

James wiped some imaginary dust off his red jacket. "Fine. I'm at the top of my class. All my teachers think I'm destined for high ranks in my future."

Beatrice rolled her eyes. "No need to try and impress me James."

He shrugged. "I just thought you might want to know."

She looked up at him with an eyebrow raised. "And why would your success be so important to me?"

He smirked, giving her a strange look. "You'll see."

Shaking her head, she slid the sword across the leather slab hooked to the table the anvil sat on to finish off the sharpening. "You're always so vague. Always hinting as if you know something I don't know. Are you ever going to tell me? Or do you just enjoy tormenting me?"

He crossed his arms and continued to watch her. "Not yet and yes."

She stood and held out his sword to James, giving him a sweet smile. "Done."

He took the sword and inspected it. "It's passable." He sheathed the sword and put his hat back on. He began to reach for his money pouch, but Beatrice grabbed his hand and gave him a look.

"It's okay, free of charge."

He narrowed his eyes. "Why?"

She shrugged. "We're friends, do I need another reason?"

He looked down at their hands then at her again. "Yes, you will."

She tilted her head, her smile faltering somewhat. "James…"

James stepped back abruptly, letting go of her hand, and bowed to her. "Good day Ms. Brown." He opened the door and headed out of the blacksmith shop.

Beatrice stood in the doorway, her arms crossed. "James, you're a teenager, act your age!"

He gave her another mysterious smirk and a wave. Beatrice sighed and closed the door. She rested her back against the door and smiled to herself, her hand coming up to rest over her heart.

She sighed. "James… you idiot."


Beatrice turned from her task of hanging the blacksmith sign above the door of the shop and grinned. She stepped down from the ladder and looked up at the man before her.

"Yes, Captain Norrington?"

She could see James swell with pride at his new title and suppressed the urge to laugh. She surveyed him from head to toe. He really was the spitting image of his father from what Edward Norrington looked like when he was Captain. However, Beatrice enjoyed James's company far ore than the brief encounters she had with his father.

She smirked. "Nice wig."

James adjusted his white wig. "It is standard uniform for all members of the Navy."

She laughed. "Just makes you look old. Or at least match how old you think you are. You're forty at twenty."

James's smile faded. "Are you making fun of me?"

She hit his arm playfully. "Oh lighten up James! You're too stiff. Stop worrying so much about… everything! Act your age, act like yourself."

"I am acting like myself." He said.

"The real you." She rolled her eyes. "You're twenty. Go to the bar, have a drink, gamble a little, get a hooker!"


Beatrice smirked and shrugged. "Okay, maybe not the last one. But you always work so hard; don't you think you deserve a little fun? To let your real feelings show?"

He gave her a look. "I think you're wild enough for the both of us. You're eighteen now Beatrice, a woman now. Don't you think it's about time you stopped all your foolish behavior: the bar visits, the sword making, the fighting?"

Beatrice made a face. "That just sounds so boring. I like the way I am, and I've always been a woman thank you very much. Besides," she glanced at the blacksmith shop. "If I quit making swords then I'm out of the job, 'cause there's nothing else I could do, I'm not good at anything else."

"I'm sure I could find you another job." James said. "I do have a high influence."

She made another face. "No thanks. I don't like handouts. I'd rather be a dirty blacksmith than a maid or something boring like that."

He placed a hand over the one resting was resting on his arm. "There is another way I could help you." He smiled down at her.

She could feel her face heat up slightly at the soft look he was giving her. She looked away and chuckled. "What? Are you going to give me money or something?"

"No." He smiled and brought her hand up to his lips for a kiss. "I'll just take care of you."

"What?" she asked softly, her blush increasing.

He ran his thumb over the back of her hand. "I can offer you something much more than what you would get from this life. You don't have to waste your life away here."

She furrowed her eyebrows. "James… what…?"

He placed a finger on her lips to silence her. "Since the first time I saw you when we were eight I found you interesting. I wanted to figure you out, so I came here every day with some excuse to see you. When we were fifteen I knew that I felt something for you and I promised myself that I wouldn't tell you my feelings until I knew that I could support you." He smiled charmingly. "And with this new promotion I find that I can finally ask you if you will accept my courtship."

Beatrice's eyes were wide. "Courtship? You…want to court me?"

He nodded. "Yes. I care for you deeply." He took both her hands in his. "Please, Beatrice, will you accept my offer?"

She stared at him, shocked. A wide smile grew across her face and she threw her arms around his neck, placing a kiss on his cheek. "Of course I accept."

He smiled wrapped his arms around her waist. "I'm glad, and once I get back we can begin our courtship."

Beatrice furrowed her eyebrows and leaned back. "Get back? Where are you going?"

He smiled. "Governor White is stepping down from his position and a new governor is traveling from England. It is my first duty as captain to travel with a fleet to safely bring Governor Swann and his daughter back here. And once I return we can begin our courtship."

Beatrice's eyes narrowed and she stepped away from James. "James you have the worst timing in the world. Did you really have to come all the way here, ask me to court you, and then tell me you're leaving? Couldn't you have waited until after you got back?"

"Does this mean you change your mind?" He asked quickly, reaching out to her.

She rolled her eyes. "No, you idiot." She took another step towards him and placed a light kiss his on his cheek. "But now I'll just be more anxious for you to come back." She breathed.

"Beatrice…" He sighed. He leaned closer to her, but she jumped out of his grasp.

She shook her head. "Nope, none of that. This is punishment for your bad timing. You'll have to wait for that."


"See you in a few months James!" She smiled and stepped into the blacksmith shop, closing the door behind her.

"James, this is a lot to ask."

"Please Beatrice, I have no one else to ask."

Beatrice looked down at the little boy standing behind James. His clothes were worn and torn in a couple of places, his hair was a mess, and he had yet to look up. Beatrice couldn't help but pity him, but she still had a disagreeable buzz in the back of her mind.

She looked up at James, placing a hand on her hip. "I have a blacksmith's salary, how am I supposed to take care of myself, my father, and a little boy?"

James placed his hands on her shoulders. "Beatrice, before I left I promised to take care of you. If you have any troubles or need anything you can come to me. And once the boy is old enough he can work and one day could take over the shop, leaving you free to live as you want."

Beatrice narrowed her eyes. "It seems you had more than the boy's welfare in mind when you decided to give him to me."

James smiled. "I'm just thinking of our future Beatrice, and we both know that this shop can not be in it."

"Hmm, do we now?" James gave her a look and she sighed. "You know, most men would get the woman they're courting something pretty after being away for so long, not a child."

James smiled and took a step back. "I take if you agree?"

Beatrice shrugged, bringing her hands up in defeat. "After you've planned it out so well, I can't think of any other disagreements."

"Wonderful!" James pushed the boy forward. "I'll leave and let you two get better acquainted." He leaned forward, hesitating for a moment, and placed a kiss on Beatrice's cheek. "I'll come back later to see how things are going." He told her softly.

Beatrice nodded. "Alright."

He gave her another smile and patted the boy's shoulder before turning and leaving the blacksmith shop, leaving a tense silence behind.

"So," She stated slowly, looking down at the boy. "Do you have a name?"

"William Turner." He said softly, his gaze still set on the ground.

She kicked the ground, puffs of dirt rising and the hay shifting. "I know the floor is dirty, but I don't think it's quite as interesting as you make it seem."

William looked up at her, a blush on his cheeks. Beatrice smiled and held out her hand. "Hello William, my name is Beatrice Brown, I run the town blacksmith under the façade that it's actually my father who runs it. One thing to know is that from this day forward you're going to learn how to be a blacksmith and how to fight. You're under my care now and we're going to do things my way." She looked into his sad eyes and faltered. "That is…unless you don't want to learn to how to be a blacksmith, but then I don't really know what to teach you otherwise." She finished sheepishly.

William shuffled his feet. "I'd…I'd like to learn…If it means you'll let me stay. I don't want to be a bother."

Beatrice got on one knee to be closer to his level and placed her hands on his shoulders. "I can tell already you won't be a bother. You seem too polite. I'll teach you if you want to learn, I won't force you. If you don't…" She looked around thoughtfully. "You can always just run errands and feed the donkey. Those are simple."

"I'd like to learn." William said more confidently, standing up straighter. "And I'd like to learn to fight."

Beatrice smiled and stood. "You're determined too, that's good." She clapped her hands. "Alright, I'll first teach you how to make a sword, then sharpen a sword, and then fight with a sword."

He nodded. "Yes, Ms. Brown."

Beatrice made a face. "Ugh, that doesn't sound right. Call me Beatrice; better yet, call me Bee. Alright Will, do you mind if I call you Will?"

He shook his quickly. "No."

"No what?"


She smiled and patted his shoulder. "I can see this is the beginning of a wonderful relationship."


Captain James Norrington turned and smiled, catching the brown haired girl as she launched herself at him.

Beatrice smiled back, her arms winding around his neck. She leaned forward and kissed him. The kiss lasted a few moments before they both pulled back, breathless.

She hugged him closer and leaned her head against his chest. "James, I thought you'd never get back, this place has been so boring. And there hasn't been anyone fun to hang out with since Gibbs left. Will has gotten boring since he turned sixteen last week, according to him he has to act more mature for some noble reason or another, and no one wants to fight with me!" She finished with a whine.

James frowned, disapprovingly. "Beatrice, I thought I told you to stop hanging out at the docks. Not all of those sailors are trustworthy and you know you shouldn't act that way. You're a woman, you should act like one."

Beatrice sighed. "James you know I can't do that, I'm a young woman of twenty-six. Which is far too young to act like a boring adult. Also, I wouldn't know where to start with all the strings and laces on those dresses."

James sighed. "For once, can't you just humor me? That boy seems to be learning quickly and will soon be able to take over and you can leave the life of a blacksmith behind you. I think that in the mean time you should begin thinking about our future life together."

Beatrice rubbed her forehead. "James, I do want a future with you, but I don't want to be one of those wives who just sits at home and waits on her husband all the time." James opened his mouth, but Beatrice cut him off. "I get where you're coming from, and I am more than willing to give up the bar visits and the fighting, but… I like making swords James. It gives me a purpose."

James brushed a piece of hair from her face. "You will have a far greater purpose after you become my wife. Who said life has to be boring? You'll be a lady of high status and you'll be able to boss a lot of people around." He raised both his eyebrows and gave her a look.

Beatrice smiled. "Well, I do like to boss people around."

James laughed. "Exactly. And once I become Commodore we will get married and get a home of our own and then we'll be able to have children and your life will never be boring. I know how much fun you had raising your little apprentice and I know how children are more important to you than making swords."

Beatrice laughed quietly. "You know me so well James, and you always know just what to say."

"I've know you for so long Beatrice, I think I've learned a thing or two about you. You're worried about your future and what you're going to do. You think that you can't leave this shop, that you won't know how to be a wife and a mother, but you don't have to worry…" He ran his hand through her hair. "I'm going to take care of you."

"James." She muttered, resting her head against his chest. "I love you."

He smiled down at her. "I love you too, Beatrice, always."

Beatrice stared at her reflection.

She tilted her head and smiled, feeling slightly giddy. She twirled around and giggled. "I guess dresses aren't so bad."

The dress was a pale blue. It was a corset style dress that tightened at her hips and flowed out to the floor, hiding her slipper clad feet. It was beautiful, a type of dress any woman would be proud to wear and could easily impress any man. Beatrice had saved a lot of money for the dress so she could wear it to an important party.

Beatrice sighed wistfully and her mind drifted to her fiancé, James.

She was twenty-eight and was finally going to marry her love, James, because he was finally being promoted to commodore. It wasn't official to everyone, but James had already been notified of his promotion. The former commodore, Commodore Hemmingway, was going to announcing James as his successor at his retirement party.

She had always known that James would get the job, ever since he set his sights on it two years prior; he was perfect for the job after all. Perfect record, perfect credentials, perfect skills. He was perfect for the job.

Beatrice laughed to herself. "And if Mr. Perfect knew that I thought this about him his ego would get even bigger."

She knew James better than anyone, and she knew his ego. He was already more arrogant than usual because he also knew that he would be getting the position as commodore, and if he knew that she had saved up for a dress that she could wear for him and that she was going to stop making swords and fighting then she knew his head would get even bigger.

He had been telling her for years to act more ladylike, and she would, just for him, the man she loved.

Beatrice carefully took off the dress and put it back in the box it arrived in and changed back into her normal shirt, pants, and boots. She smiled a content smile and hid the box in her closet. Knowing that Will was more than capable enough to take care of the shop she decided to take her happiness and go find James. She left her room and left the shop and hit the streets in search of her fiancé.

She found him, unsurprisingly, at the docks. He was standing with some other soldiers and a couple sailors giving orders on where to take cargo and supplies. One soldier, a man she recognized asGillette, a friend of James's, saw her and said something to James, a strange smirk on his face.

James turned to look at her and smiled, she immediately smiled back, warmth filling her. He took a step towards her, but paused as Gillette said something else. James's smile faltered and he glanced back at Gillette. After a few traded sentences James waved Gillette off and continued forward to greet Beatrice.

"James." She smiled brightly and hugged him tightly. "I've had the best day so far, I think you'd be proud of me." She leaned forward and went to kiss him, but he pulled back. Her eyebrows furrowed. "What's wrong?"

He cleared his throat and pushed her away. "I need to talk to you about something. As you know Commodore Hemingway is retiring and will soon name me as the next commodore, and afterwards there are a few things that will need to be taken care of."

She smiled and shook her head in amusement. "James if this is about our wedding plans-"

"It's not." He snapped.

Beatrice blinked and nodded. She crossed her arms. "Alright, then what is it about?"

James cleared his throat and began slowly. "New…opportunities have arisen with my new status. Governor Swann has given me an offer that I find I am unable to refuse."

Beatrice smiled. "That's great. Commodore and an offer from the governor; you're really on your way up."

James smiled at her praise, but it soon faded and he looked pained. It passed after a moment and his face became blank and business like. "Yes, and marrying the governor's daughter will do wonders for me."

Beatrice eyes widened and her smile slipped off her face. "What?"

James turned away. "I have decided to break our engagement and accept Governor Swann's offer to marry Elizabeth."

Beatrice could feel her heart breaking as she tried to reason with him. "James she's seventeen!"

James back faced her. "Eighteen actually and she has become a very beautiful woman. I can see myself having a very fulfilling life with her and… I love her."

Beatrice's eyes narrowed. ""

James turned to her and began softly. "I know you're upset, but I want you to know that the time I've spent with you-"

"You son of a bitch!"

He gasped as her hands pushed against his chest and he felt himself falling backwards. He had nothing to grab onto as he fell back into the water..

Beatrice glared done at the water. "I hope you drown you lying bastard!"

When he surfaced he gasped for breath and looked up for Beatrice, but she was gone.

Beatrice wiped her eyes furiously as she ran away. She could hear the faint sound of sailors yelling and trying to found out what had happened to the commodore, but she ignored them. The volume of her sobs and her breaking heart overpowered their cries. Soon she couldn't stay on her feet any longer. He leaned against the nearest wall and slid down it, burying her head in her hands.

"James… You bastard. I… I love you... I thought you loved me too."