A friend challenged me to write this pairing...and I did. This story is an AU version of Chapter 37 of the Rise of Libertas. There are spoilers.

O O O

"I do hope you have nightmares, Robin."

Robin smiled sadly. "I shan't sleep at all, Lizzie."

"Do you feel guilty about working for the wrong side?" When Robin said nothing, Elizabeth continued, "Silly me, obviously you don't. You have no conscience. Perhaps the bench is uncomfortable," Elizabeth said in mock concern.

Robin sighed softly. "Let's go with that," she said quietly.

Elizabeth watched Robin silently for a few moments, wondering why Robin would really be unable to sleep if it was not lack of comfort. She was about to turn to leave when a tear suddenly escaped the side of Robin's eye and ran across her face towards her ear. Robin brushed it away quickly, her eyes still closed, as Elizabeth watched in surprise.

Elizabeth turned to leave, but found herself looking back at Robin. The woman was so coldhearted and cruel…what could make her cry? "Robin…are…are you all right?"

"As if you care," Robin said coldly.

"I just…"

"Feel suddenly sorry for me? Or guilty?"

Elizabeth was obviously wasting her concern. "Sorry. I was just asking. I'll leave."

"No, wait," Robin said quietly, leaning up on the bench. "I'm sorry. I-I didn't mean to…" She reached up and wiped away another tear that had escaped her eye. "I just…I don't know."

"Are you expecting to be treated as anything other than a prisoner? You are working for the wrong side," Elizabeth said harshly.

"But, Lizzie…Elizabeth," said Robin, startling Elizabeth by using her actual name. "I'm not. I'm not working for the East India Company, I never could!"

"But you are!"

"But I'm not!" Robin insisted. "Elizabeth, could you work for the Company?"

"No! Of course not," Elizabeth exclaimed.

Robin slowly got to her feet. "Than you can understand how I feel about them."

"That would imply that you have a conscience."

Robin went to the bars of the cell. "But I do. I just hate…I hate revealing weakness. You understand. You're a woman. We have to stay together. We're in a world dominated by men who think we are weaker."

Elizabeth was rather startled by this, but she slowly nodded. "I understand that. But that does not mean that you aren't a traitor."

"Perhaps not in and of itself," Robin mused. "Though I'm not. But we're very much alike, you and I."

"Oh, really?" Elizabeth said, approaching the cell. "And whatever makes you think that?"

Robin's eyes slowly looked over Elizabeth in a manner that made Elizabeth feel quite uncomfortable, but she refused to show it. "Well, we're both women."

"That's obvious."

"Pirates."

Elizabeth took a deep breath. "Admittedly, yes."

Robin smiled softly. "So now I'm a pirate working for the Company?"

"It's possible," Elizabeth said after a moment. "Anything else?"

"We're both strong enough to survive in a business that's supposedly only for men." Robin licked her lips as she continued thinking. "We both have short tempers." Elizabeth chuckled softly at the truth of this. "We'll both do almost anything to obtain what we want—and don't deny it, you know you'll do more than you wish to admit—and we're both very attractive," she finished. When Elizabeth scoffed, Robin arched an eyebrow. "We're not?"

Elizabeth was extremely tempted to say, "You're not," but as she glanced over Robin, she realized that would be a blatant lie. Robin's dark hair was the opposite of Elizabeth's and the color of Jack's hair but much more appealing. Her blue eyes were stunning, and Robin was, quite simply, beautiful. Her form was perfect, not as thin as Elizabeth, and curved in all the right places. Wondering how she never saw it before, Elizabeth realized that Robin was extremely lovely.

Shaking her head, Elizabeth snapped herself back to reality. What was she doing? Thinking of Robin as gorgeous? This was a deadly pirate! Not to mention a woman that she hated.

"I suppose you're right."

Robin smiled. "Good to know I'm not ugly. You were worrying me for a moment, there." She suddenly reached out, her hand just barely brushing Elizabeth's cheek before Elizabeth took a startled step back. "Or were you thinking that you aren't beautiful?" Robin asked. "I can assure you, you are. I can see why so many men are attracted to you."

Elizabeth swallowed hard. "Thank you." Robin smiled and nodded. "And you do have a point. We are alike."

"Exactly," Robin replied with a small smirk.

"But you are working for Admiral Norrington."

Robin's brow furrowed. "And what makes you believe that?"

"The Blood Oath."

Robin shook her head slowly. "I died, Elizabeth. Jack and I—we both died. The Oath does not hold." Elizabeth did not have time to pull back before Robin's hand enveloped her own. "I died because I rescued you."

Elizabeth stared at the warm hand holding her own, unsure of what she should do. Contact with Robin was dangerous; she should not even be talking to her. But she could not think straight as Robin's thumb tenderly brushed over her skin and her heart raced. What was Robin doing? Why was she being like this?

But like what?

Robin was not even acting completely out of the ordinary. She was repeating some of what she had already told Elizabeth, and she was either telling the same truths or lies. Her eyes still appeared truthful, though. She seemed dangerous, as always, and yet…

She's so…attractive. God, when did that happen?

"The world is dangerous for us, Elizabeth. For all like you and me," Robin said, her breath brushing over Elizabeth's face through the bars. "You and I are both trying to make it in this world, and to get what we want, and we are going against the tide. And together we can."

Elizabeth's heart began to beat harder and faster as Robin's other hand slinked through the bars and to Elizabeth's hip, pulling her closer. For a moment, Elizabeth worried that Robin was reaching for a weapon, but Elizabeth had thankfully removed her sword before coming down into the brig.

"I understand you, Lizzie, just as you understand me. Alone we can both be dangerous, but if we were on the same side…we would be such a great force to be reckoned with."

Robin's hand had moved up the side of Elizabeth's body and was now gently caressing her neck. Her hand was strangely soft, and it felt so good as it moved to cup her cheek. Elizabeth missed physical touch more than she had realized. "Even William doesn't understand you, does he? You're always the damsel in distress," Robin whispered, gently guiding Elizabeth even closer to the bars.

William!

Elizabeth's eyes widened and she took an abrupt step back, her hand still forcefully held by Robin's. "I…he loves me," she said as she tried to pull her hand away from Robin.

Robin's eyes glinted. "Does he?"

"Of course."

Robin grinned. "But we have just established that only you and I truly know each other. How can William love a woman he does not know?"

Elizabeth stared at Robin in shock. "I…"

"And how can you, oh so loyal to William…" Robin suddenly yanked forcefully on Elizabeth's arm, forcing it into the cell and bringing Elizabeth close again. Elizabeth gulped, her eyes wide in both fear and a feeling of arousal that made her hate herself. "…be so attracted to and…" Robin chuckled as she surveyed Elizabeth again. "…aroused by me? One whom you claim is your enemy, one whom you claim to hate."

Elizabeth glared at her and again tried to free herself from Robin's grasp. "I am not attracted to you!"

Robin laughed quietly again, her eyes dark and threatening. "Liar," she said as her free hand again traveled to Elizabeth's waist.

"Stop it!" Elizabeth exclaimed as Robin's hand dropped lower. "Get away from me!" Elizabeth's eyes widened in panic when Robin did not let her go of her hand and Elizabeth felt her hand continuing to touch her. But although she was avoiding Elizabeth's groin, Elizabeth realized with horror and disgust that she was yearning for Robin to touch her.

What the hell is wrong with me?

Robin's hand finally seemed to stop whatever they had been doing (Elizabeth really was not certain what they had been doing, given how clouded her mind had become) and went to her neck, pulling her close to the bars of the cell. Elizabeth was too shocked to react when Robin pressed her lips to hers, kissing her with surprising fierceness.

It was nothing like when Will kissed her. Instead of being filled with love and passion, Robin's kiss was hot and hungry, and it completely overwhelmed Elizabeth. She could no longer think at all clearly as the sensation took over her mind. Then suddenly something hit the back of her head, and the world darkened…

When Elizabeth awoke, she was lying on the bench in the cell. Elizabeth sat up and looked around in panic, wondering what had happened, and she ran to the door of the cell and was dismayed to find it locked. Elizabeth's eyes narrowed as she saw the key, which had been hidden in her clothing, but was now lying just out of reach. Grabbing her arm as a sharp pain shot through it, Elizabeth found that she was bleeding from a wound on her arm that she could not remember receiving.

Elizabeth was about to call for help when she turned and saw a small piece of parchment on the floor. She picked it up, her eyes widening as she looked at the words written in blood—her blood.

Lizzie,

Thank you for aiding in my escape. Now that Jack is convinced of your involvement with the East India Company (I couldn't very well escape and then allow myself to be thrown in the brig again, could I?), I'm afraid you'll be in this cell for a while. But don't worry. I won't let him kill you. You can be used far more effectively than that.

After all, us women have to stick together.

Robin

Cursing, Elizabeth crumpled the paper in her fist. "I hate her!"