Firstly, I would just like to thank my two good friends, Loopstagirl and Sannepan, without whom I would probably never have started this fic, let alone finished. I can't stress enough just how much I owe you, guys, thank you so much!
Well, here it is, Happy Go Lucky (at long last), named so - simply because it ties with the prequel, Devil May Care. You'll probably want to read that one first, but if you want to read something just because you're bored, then I guess you could get along without doing so.
Rated T to be safe. Contains "Merlin-Bashing".
Anyway, I hope you enjoy this fic and deem it worthy of a review or two… *wink wink*
Genre(s): hurt/comfort/angst/adventure/friendship/bromance/and a touch of fluff
Word count: 50,000-ish
Length taken to write: 80 days
Note: Some of you might remember this as preview from Devil May Care, but it has changed a little here and there - I've tweaked a few words. The real story, however, starts in chapter one: this is just a prologue.
Brun found himself jerking awake, almost screaming. His tensed shoulders relaxed as he saw his room in the inn, not the shadowy darkness and ice of the sea. Dreams. He kept having these dreams. They weren't natural, he decided while quickly lighting the candle on the bedside table. A warm orange light filled the room, casting flickering shadows across his face as he stood up and walked over to the window.
He looked out over Brinkwell. Having lived there most of his life, he knew all the streets and alleyways like the back of his hand. The seaside town was awash in moonlight, making everything seem slightly eerie.
He heard the door creak as someone opened it, and he turned around to see a man. His attire was rough; several silver earrings littered his face, as did a multitude of scars and tattoos. Brun had never liked him, but he was necessary. His reasons for disliking him were many. The first was that the man had an exceptionally ugly tattoo on the very back of his neck – an eye, bright yellow and staring. It unnerved Brun and made him never want to fall into its gaze. There were numerous other reasons, but Brun did not have time to go over them as the man suddenly spoke, his voice deep and hard.
He was always so polite around Brun, but the old fisherman knew better. He had seen him in the taverns and pubs around the town before. The man always started the fights, and it was only on rare occasion you found him sober – another of his reasons for disliking him.
"Sheridan," Brun said with the smallest nod of the head to acknowledge his presence.
"We were wondering of our orders, sir," the man went on, leaning on the doorframe and running a huge hand through his greasy hair.
"Yes, orders," Brun snapped to attention.
He moved over to the table by the end of the bed where a chest sat. Removing a key from one of his pockets, Brun pushed it in the hole and twisted it, receiving clicks from the chest.
Sheridan looked on as he took out a small, fist-sized cube. He had seen it many times before, but he was still amazed by the mere presents of the thing. It was almost as if it whispered to him, telling him things he couldn't understand. He whished more than anything that he knew what it said, but instead of running over to the cube and snatching it away from Brun, he remained by the door, silent as ever. It was in his nature to be silent. Still. Unmoved.
Brun set the cube down on the table, only pausing a moment to take in the silver swirls on it's sides. It was mesmerizing. On the beach he had been washed up on after his ship was sunk, he had found it. It had been broken – he had thought beyond repair – but then it began to speak to him. It promised him a ship, a crew, a new life. He'd had nothing, nothing to his name. When it had promised him these things he could do nothing but accept them. He needed to be on a ship, out at sea. It was in his blood.
It had told him its plan. It would get him a ship and crew in exchange for his help. When inquired as to what the help was, the cube had only specified 'to help us return' – whatever that meant. It seemed like a deal to Brun, so he complied.
He wasn't sure how, but it had rebuilt itself. Once it had been almost smashed it two, split right down the middle, only intact by precious few millimetres, but it had made itself whole again. While witnessing it, Brun was positive it was magical. He had then been afraid. The law clearly stated that anything or anyone magical would be sentenced to death. However, when the cube had told him that no one would find out, his thoughts reverted. In truth, that part of his mind was ever so hazy…
But no matter – he had more important things to do, one of which was receiving the orders Sheridan required.
"Are you there?" he asked the cube in his hands.
"We are always here," came the reply.
"Sheridan wants his orders."
"We need the rest of the crew by tomorrow. Make sure he gets every one we need."
Brun replaced the cube in the chest and turned to Sheridan who looked at him with those horrible dark eyes of his.
"You must find everyone we need. We set sail tomorrow," Brun told him.
Sheridan nodded once, and left with a sweep of his long battered coat. The door closed behind him with a resounding thud.
Brun sighed and made his way back to the window. He felt sorry for whomever Sheridan and his men would pressgang today. The cube had told him to hire Sheridan to kidnap other men for the crew. That's who he was – a hit man. He went out on Brun's orders, taking innocent men for the crew. Brun felt bad about this, ever so bad, but when his conscience had gotten the better of him, and he'd consulted the cube, everything began to get hazy again…
What wasn't foggy in his mind, however, was the ship. He wasn't sure of how the cube had got that ship, though he had some small memory of it hurting the previous owner…
Best not to think about that, he decided while gazing at the huge ship, docked up at the harbour, its name painted smartly on the side in white.