Note: I do not own WANTED. If I did it would be more than one volume!
They quickly left Reid's office and went back down the slippery stairs leading to the bridge. Name was jittery from either excitement or nervousness at the information he was about to receive though he was somewhat nervous as to what that might be. When they were closer he began to hear the voice of a woman. It was like nothing he had ever heard before in his life. The sound was smooth and right in tune.
Reid opened the door and Name was brought face to face with Arto who was in the middle of the crowd of feasting men. She was the source of the lovely music. For a small girl her voice was very mature and sounded like one of a Siren out of mythology. They took a spot in the back of the room so as not to disturb her and waited for her to finish. It was some minutes before her song came to a close and at that point Reid pushed through the crowd and picked her up gently. The crew protested loudly but Reid told them she would gladly sing for them some other time since they had something to talk about.
"But I wasn't done yet! It's been days since I've gotten to sing for anyone! Why do we have to leave so soon?" she asked and Reid stood rigid.
"We need to talk." he answered and she immediately knew something was wrong. When Reid had brought her to sing for the crew she thought he was trying to make her more comfortable by letting her do something she enjoyed. Something must have happened for him to take her back to her room this soon.
The crew soon got over the loss of their singer and went back to eating their food as Reid, Arto and Name walked out of the room and into the hall.
"What's the matter?" she asked when they were alone and out of earshot from the dining hall.
"You, Arto are going to tell Name exactly where you are from. I feel that he needs to know why you are on this journey with us." He told her sternly, leaving no room for discussion. Her eyes widened slightly and she swallowed.
"But why? There's no need for that…" she said uselessly. Name had been kind to her in the days he had taken care of her. She had come to think of him as a dear friend and she held no ill will towards him after he had kissed her because that was all she thought of him as: a friend. He might want to be more but she didn't and she wasn't about to lead him on into thinking it was a possibility. She was slightly embarrassed to say that she wasn't particularly fazed by being kissed anymore. Well especially for one as light as that. She didn't want to lose what they had and if she told him that she loved the man who had killed his father then he would never forgive her.
"I want to know the truth Arto," Name said, looking around Reid in order to see her. "I can keep a secret and how bad could it be?"
"Worse because it's you. I don't have to say anything!" she protested, folding her arms over her chest in defiance as she glared at Reid.
"That may be true but if you don't tell him everything then I will tell him for you and you wouldn't want that." Reid said persuasively and the girl in his arms sighed in defeat. He had once again cornered her so that she couldn't escape. She nodded in calm resignation just as the climbed back up the stairs and walked into her room, for it had indeed become hers. He lifted up the covers on the bed and set her down carefully under them before pulling them up again.
"So what's this all about Arto?" he asked, looking at her with curiosity and when she looked at his sincere eyes she quickly turned her head away. A feeling of sadness and guilt came over her and created a black pit in her stomach that churned sickeningly. This boy was so nice and kind and soon she was about to take that encouraging smile right off his face with just a few words. And she didn't see any way out of it either.
"Where do you want me to start?" she asked hesitantly, aiming the question at Reid who had moved to stand in a corner while Name stayed right in front of her, quivering with pent up energy. This was the first time she had actually felt like a prisoner with these two men, like she was being questioned in a murder.
"Start with where you were when the storm hit." He answered. "he has been questioning about who you answer to."
"I don't answer to anyone! I am my own person and do not take orders if they are not just!" she said fiercely and sighed when he gave her a cold look that clearly said to just get on with it. "Fine. Name I was on a pirate ship when the storm hit, Skull's ship. We were sailing away from you guys when the storm blew up and I fell overboard. It was stupid of me since he had told me to stay in our room. That caused the injuries I had, a lamp fell over and the wax got on my feet." She began to explain and as soon as she spoke the word pirate all the color drained from his face. He had hung onto every word and hadn't failed to notice that she said 'our room'. It made him angry. Name sat there staring at her, his expression hardening quickly and the color rising inn his face as he became more angry and his hatred boiled inside him.
"Why didn't you kill her the moment she was pulled onto this ship? Why didn't you just leave her for dead on the waves of that harsh water?" he asked the captain dangerously, his voice stone cold and his eyes like ice.
"She is to await trial at the Lanceman Estate. She is of more value alive right now than dead. She might be able to tell us about Skulls under persuasion."
"That man is cruel and steals money from poor people to further himself. One day Skulls will kill him for his crimes." Arto insisted, a note of malice on her voice that startled Name. She had always spoken kindly to him, perhaps this was how she truly was, the real Arto, the pirate.
"Even Skulls wouldn't be as foolish or unfaithful as to try and kill his uncle, who is his only family. Even he has more honor for blood ties than that."
"He doesn't care who it is. If they are unjust then he will kill them. The reason he turned into Skulls was because of his uncle. He didn't feel any remorse when he killed the Marquis of Glendor. He was financing a war that need not have been fought." she explained reproachfully and didn't notice Name flinch at the name of the man who his father had worked and died for. She was not in a mood to be sympathetic. This was something she had come to firmly believe in.
"How did a girl like you, who I thought was such a kind girl, become a pirate?" Name whispered. This talk was breaking him down quickly. All that he thought he and Arto would be able to share had diminished to nothing. Arto heard his statement quite clearly and thought about it for a moment but then decided she might as well tell him since she had already said so much.
"Skull's real name is Luce Lanceman. I was staying with him eight years ago with my troupe when the island was attacked by Skulls. Luce was kidnapped and I spent the rest of my life trying to find him. I only recently managed to, and I found out that he was now Skulls." She explained.
Name stayed silent and Arto asked Reid if there was anything else he wanted her to say and when he said no she asked if they would leave so that she could sleep. She suddenly felt extremely tired and knew she was about to pass out from exhaustion. Name then spoke something that left her with an intense feeling of dismay and fear.
"I want to kill you right now you know." Name stated, glaring at the pirate viciously. Reid walked over to the bed in case name tried to choke her or something and asked why he wanted to kill her even though all of them already knew the answer. Reid told him that she was only a pirate's accomplice and had never actually killed anyone. She hadn't been the one to kill his father even though she remembered the faces of the bodies the crew had thrown over the side of the ship.
"If I killed you maybe Skulls would feel some remorse for all the family's suffering over their loved ones right now because of what he has done."
"No… he wouldn't feel anything if I died. He is not that kind of person." She lied through her teeth. She knew very well now that when Skulls got word that she was alive he would try and get her back. He cared for her, maybe not enough to stop his pirating career but he would be sad if she died. At least she hoped he would. This was the reason she was glad that the Doc had sent someone to tell him she was alive. She didn't want him going through his life thinking she had drowned when she had actually been executed. It wasn't much better but still, she wanted to die at the hands of a person, not an element.
"Now Arto, you know that's not true. You shouldn't lie to spare yourself. When you were delirious you spoke of someone named 'Luce'. I didn't know who he was then but now I do. And just a second ago you said 'our room'. You can't say that you two don't have a relationship." Name rejected.
"Arto, he said that he wanted you to stay by his side forever. Don't you remember?" Reid said.
"He was delirious then from you shooting him!"
"I don't see why we are mothering to argue about this since you are going to die immediately when you reach the Lanceman Estate. You can brood on that till we get there. Maybe you shouldn't have sung the Devil's Score."
"It was worth it." she mumbled.
"Sir, shouldn't we send out a scout to find Skull's ship? Surely the people in the village would have gone to tell him about her." Name interjected speaking the word 'her' as if it was foul to the mouth. The pieces were starting to come together now, every little comment, and the behavior of the townspeople.
"Already done Name, we will no doubt be seeing Skulls soon though by that time she will be dead. I'm sure you would love the chance to behead him but we will have to set a trap for him first."
"Please don't plan your schemes in front of me. I feel insulted." Arto complained. She was beginning to feel very anxious over dying just a few days.
"You won't be able to do anything anyway since you'll be dead." Name said harshly and his stomach suddenly felt very nauseous. Everyone went quiet, nobody looking at another. When Name finally turned around and left the room Arto let out a sigh of relief she didn't know she'd been holding and relaxed. She ignored Reid, who was still in the room and snuggled under the covers.
"I'll let you sleep now Arto but Name's still going to nurse you until we make port. That is his punishment." He said and she grunted her assent, not that it mattered. He left and closed to door, leaving the room in complete darkness that allowed her to slip into a sweet state of a sleep.