Like the summery said this is just a collection of Vampirate drabbles (plus a few songfics) in a range of genres with a range of characters. Mainly, it's just somewhere I can put some of my old ideas or the short stories I need to write after I've stopped for a while, just to get back into the swing of things. Please note that it's important to read the information at the begining of the story since it'll tell you when the stories set (that way I won't ruin the story for you if you haven't read the whole series set), If it has spoilers to Empire of Night then I will right Spoilers in bold. Aslo note, that since these are just one-shots, if you don't like one story that dosen't mean you won't like the next and visa versa; you might like one but then hate the next.
Anyways, this was a story I wrote for roserose1234 when she asked me for a Bart/Cate story back in December '09.
Title: K is for Cate
Genre: Romance, Humour, Friendship
Setting: The Diablo, post Dead Deep
Summery: Who knew a tattoo could mean so much?
Catherine Morgan, better know to her fellows as 'Cutlass Cate', surveyed the three young men with interest as they clambered out of the dingy that had been hoisted up onto The Diablo, and onto the deck.
"Oh gods," she heard Grace Tempest mutter, "What have they gone and gotten themselves into now?"
Cate put a hand on the young girl's shoulder and sighed, "I haven't a clue, but whatever it is I'm sure it's going to make a very interesting story"
By now a small crowd had gathered round to see the sailors retuning from their shore leave. Most of them were laughing with quite a number of them shouting out crude or suggestive comments. This was probably due to the fact that the three returning crew members seemed to be missing a few vital pieces of clothing from their wardrobe.
The three of course were none other than Jez Stukely, Connor Tempest and Bartholomew Pearce; and at this point, for whatever reason, they were wearing nothing but their underwear.
- Jez was laughing as the crowd shouted obscenity, he simply shouted right back. A few of his other friends grabbed him and ruffled his hair while simultaneously demanding that they tell him what had happened; they could do with a good laugh.
- Connor at least had the decency to feel somewhat embarrassed, his skin had turned bright red from blushing but he smiled as he caught site of Grace and the two siblings embraced for a moment before Grace had the sense to drag her brother inside to find some clothes.
That, of course, left Bart on his own.
With a jolt of realisation, and a mixture of different feelings; Cate realised as second in command and the Captain suffering from a particularly bad hangover, it was going to be her job to dispense the crowd and get everyone back to work. She signed and clapped her hands together, loudly, "Okay people, shows over! Back to work everyone!"
There were a few grumbles from the crew but the majority of them disappeared without being told twice, it was never a good idea to get on the Deputy's bad side, after all you never knew when a better pirate could be found to suit your job.
"Mister Pearce, can I have a word with you?" She called out to Bart. He grinned. Someone near by wolf whistled. She ignored the jape and gestured for Bart to join her on one of the quieter decks.
"What's up?" he asked, as soon as they were out of earshot, he sounded worried.
"Nothing, I just wanted to ask how the trip went"
He laughed at that, "And you couldn't wait for me to go and put some clothes on first?"
Despite herself, Cate couldn't help but blush, "No -I mean, yes! I mean…" she stumbled for a moment before giving up with a single sigh of aggravation, "Look, I don't what I mean"
But it was too late now, he was grinning, that stupid, smug, arrogant grin he had; it always made her heart flutter no matter how hard she tried to resist, not that she would ever admit that out loud.
"Don't worry, Cate, you don't need to explain yourself to me…I know how tough it was for you having to go three days without seeing me, and I suppose seeing me today in me skivvies must have been so overwhelming…actually I'm just surprised you haven't tried to jump me yet"
She punched him. Bart was a strong lad, but Cate knew she could pack a mean punch when she wanted to, after all you didn't get to be Deputy Captain and head Tactician without some use of brutal force; although strictly speaking Cate was apposed to all forms of violence on deck that didn't involve both components trying to stab each other with sharp metal sticks.
Nevertheless, a minute later a rather surprised sailor was picking himself up off the decking. He wasn't badly injured but Cate felt grim satisfaction knowing there would be a large purple bruise appearing on his arm tomorrow.
"What was that for?" Bart demanded, wincing. Cate knew that if she had been one of the 'lads' he would have hit her right back, but he didn't.
The rational part of Cate's mind told her it was because she was deputy captain; there was an invisible line stopping him from ever treating her like any of his other friends.
However, the crazy and very small, not-so-rational , part of her argued that it was because he was gallant: like the chivalrous knights of old, just like the ones in the fairytales she had read to her two little sisters so long ago, riding off too battle in their shinning armour on a majestic white horse…
Cate dismissed the idea at once. She hated the irrational part of her mind: the part that fantasised and made her stomach flutter. And for that matter she hated knights too, chivalry was just a fancy name for sexism, as far as she was concerned.
"Well, aren't you going to tell me?"
"Tell you what?" Cate asked, she had become lost in her thoughts for a moment, and now she had forgotten what he had asked her.
"Why you punched me!"
"Because you deserve it" she said matter-of-factly.
He stood there rubbing the tender arm, "Yeah well, next time don't hit so hard".
She rolled her eyes, "I didn't hit you that hard," but secretly she felt slightly guilty, after all it had been hard enough to knock him to the floor, and he had only been joking…
Her guilt one out, "Here, let me see,"
She held his arm tenderly. The skin had already turned an ugly livid purple. Maybe she had hit him too hard.
"You should go see if Connor has any of that stuff Grace put on his hands after he got rope burn"
Bart smiled, "I was kind of hoping you could just…you know… kiss it better"
"One more comment like that and you'll wind up on the floor again," Cate said sharply, but she didn't let go. Instead, noticing for the first time a black mark on his arm, asked curiously, "What's that?"
He twisted his head to see what she was referring to, "Oh, that? It's a tattoo. Jez and Connor have matching ones, except their's doesn't have the 'K'.
Cate looked closer, and saw that there was indeed the letter 'K' under the main body of the tattoo. Without knowing why, she felt a sudden wave of playfulness wash over her, "K? Was that the name of the tattoo artist or your latest girlfriend or were they one and the same?" she teased. She expected a witty retort back but, rather worryingly, Bart's expression was blank.
"I don't know"
"What do you mean you don't know?"
"I don't remember. I can't remember anything since I left here, two days ago. Calle de Marinero is a just a complete blank in my head"
Cate felt the impishness she had only just deemed slip away at once, to be replaced with concern. Never had she know Bart to look so serious. Part of her wanted to pull him closer. But then the frown broke to be replaced by the familiar grin of her dearest friend and her worries disappeared instantly, "I don't remember getting it, but I think it's pretty obvious what the K stands for: Cate."
She couldn't help but smile, just a little bit, "I know you joined the Diablo at a young age, but I would have hoped you had enough education to be able to tell the difference between the letter 'C' and 'K'."
Bart laughed good-naturedly. A few pirates looked in their direction, smirking. And, with a slight feeling of disappointment Cate realised that unless she wanted to be the subject of ridicule and gossip for the next week she probably shouldn't stand so close to Bart or keep holding onto his arm when there was no need for it; particularly since he was dressed in nothing but a pair of boxers and a thin cotton undershirt.
"You should probably go put some clothes on" she said softly.
"Probably," he took a step back and she let go of his arm as he turned to leave, "I'll see you later"
"Wait!" She said forcefully. He turned back to face her with a questioning look on his face.
Cate took a calming breathe, she hadn't meant to sound so demanding, "What does the K stand for?"
He grinned, once again, "I already told you. It stands for Cate"
She rolled her eyes, "I'm serious, I want to know what it stands for. And don't say Cate again, we both know that's not how my name is spelt"
"It doesn't matter how your names spelt" Bart said softly, "In my eyes every letter stands for you, Cate"