no, i do not own PotC 1-4 other than what there is in this world to purchase, and i have more than any sane person should have.

A Note from TurtleHeart:

i know i should not have done it because i have several stories in progress online, but i couldn't resist mate. i attended the midnight premier of PotC 4 (in full pirate regalia if i may add) and my head immediately began to tell stories. the curse of that is if i don't write it down it will continue swimming my head and nagging me until i can no longer handle myself. this is a new era of PotC so i thought i would give the new era a try. SPOILER ALERT! aye, this story takes place after PotC: OST. you may wish to see the movie first. ye be warned mate!

Entombed in a Glass Bottle

XXX Guilty Conscience XXX

As beautiful as ever, her wooden hull gleamed in the sunlight of the Caribbean Sea. The warm air cast down an ethereal glow upon her golden wood. The masts were as tall and proud as ever. Each iron nail and rod and beam shinned in the light, glowing and smiling back up at him. Below decks, the hold was as clean as could be with a crew like his. Everything was sorted to each man's place and that was as clean as it ever got. No one let it get too out of hand after the last time when he ordered them to take miniature brushes and scrub down every nook and cranny.

All the crew was bustling about with their daily life and singing chantey's to pass the time. Not one soul part of his crew had but a speck of worry on his person the size of a dust particle. There was no worry to be had. To sail under his command required no worry. He was the most trusted captain among all the seas in this world. His methods of course took time to become accustomed to and that accustoming came with trust. Once the odd methods were trusted, worry passed by. He was not only a captain of a ship, but a friend every man could trust. Those who had been with him since the beginning could call him friend, and it was rare to receive that smile in return. Only certain few were given that proud gold tooth smile and nod.

When he opened the French doors to his cabin, the room almost seemed to bustle with life at the welcoming of the return of her captain. Everything was redone to his standards, which were not demanding at all. There was a large Persian rug beneath his oak table and the colors were rich and warm with reds, golds, burgundies, oranges, and hints of brown. His chairs lining the table were oak as well with an oval back and cushions on all. The main chair was at the head of the table and cushioned on the seat, arms, and back; it was in a rectangular back style that reminded him of a throne. Separating the room into two halves was another warm colored Persian rug. A large globe of the Earth was beside that with several instruments of use to navigate the waters and a table with charts. One entire wall was lined with shelves and dedicated to maps and charts of the lands and seas of the world. Another wall was lined with shelves of books, knickknacks, and other random objects he happened to acquire. The windows at the back of the room were always kept open to allow the sea breeze to blow in and clear his head.

The sofa beneath the windows safely held two of his guitars, a black and a green one. He delighted in no more than wearing just his breeches and sitting on the sofa in the sunlight. His eyes were shut and his fingers produced music. A smile of comfort never left his face. When his doors were shut and the red curtains were pulled over, every soul on the crew knew it was his time to be on his own and to not disturb unless it was dire necessary. His ship was his freedom and his home all together. Life aboard the Black Pearl was everything to him and his life aboard his ship was perfect.

Yet, when he opened his eyes to look upon his beautiful ship, he saw nothing more than the Black Pearl fighting a storm in a bottle and the size of his forearm. Her black sails were tattered and torn. Her decks were splintered. Below her, the seas raged in an eternal, unforgiving battle which she was forced to ride out until he got her out.

Jack Sparrow raised the bottle to eye level to look upon her again. He frowned. As sorry as he was to admit it, he was beginning to feel bad for the monkey. He hated the monkey more than he hated the deficit of rum, but the poor bugger was trapped in there all by his lonesome and forced to look out into the world that should be. Not even the rising sun in the Caribbean allowed his ship to look a little less helpless than she was.

When Barbossa told him he lost the Pearl, he felt his world was shattered in that palace right there. The anger swelled up in him like the hurricane he was born in or the maelstrom years ago, however, the anger remained and the hurricane and maelstrom did not. Every time his brown orbs fell upon his beloved ship, his beating heart increased and his lips curled and a stinging pain burned in his eyes. Seeing his ship trapped in a bottle by Barbossa's doing was worse than watching that man sail away on his ship thrice. Rather than watching his ship sail from him by another man and wonder where she was, he was forced to hold—cradle his ship in his arms. So close and so far from the freedom he was.

After leaving Whitecap Bay, he and Gibbs were in no condition to travel far and, fortunately and unfortunately, they rowed through the treacherous route through Shipwreck Island and Shipwreck Cove to dock his rowboat in Shipwreck City. They arrived with nothing more than a sack of ships and the clothes on their backs. Since that day over a week ago, one Jack Sparrow spent every waking hour in the attempt to find something in the archival records to release his ship from the bottle.

That cockamamie story he told Gibbs about playing the trumpet and waving his fingers at the same time was merely what came from his head at the time as the reason to release the Pearl from her glass prison. The truth of the matter was he simply didn't know how to get it out.

Fortunately, everything that every pirate knew about the seas and their powers was written down and archived in the same room that held the Pirate's Code no doubt. First and foremost, he found himself spending over two days reading the Code for any information at hand, which he found none. Afterward, every paper stored in every shelf and behind every book and in every book and portfolio was read by his own two eyes. Some papers were of use yes, and he placed those in a pile on the table, but most were placed back where they belonged and so very useless to him.

He turned his head and looked at the three pieces of paper that were of somewhat use to him and every one of them told him of a different way: open the bottle during a storm that was near identical to the storm blowing inside the bottle, pull the ship out piece by piece, assemble it, and set it into the water, and last of all he thought was hardly amusing at all and that required anyone wishing to sail a ship in a bottle to shrink himself and enjoy the waters inside the bottle.

Groaning, Jack slammed his head on the table with a loud thump.

"Ow," he muttered after his forehead squarely came in contact with the wood.

The torrents and waves built inside the bottle and he rested his jaw on the table so his eyes were in exact line with his ship. He stared and wished and waiting and prayed to every god and goddess and deity he could think of. Apparently faith and religion was getting somewhere in recent days and so it may have been a good idea to follow. Sadness passed across his eyes and his face wholly slumped. Both hands gently grasped the bottle, one hand with four fingers resting on the neck and the other hand with just his forefinger circling the base of the bottle.

Through the bottle he saw a distorted image of bright red appear in the darkness that was the doorway. The red approached with the sound of footsteps. The bright red image became the face of his father looking through the bottle at Jack himself. He watched his father's eyes shift from one side of the bottle to the other then look into Jack's.

"One positive outlook to this interesting display concludes that you know where your ship is," Teague noted.

Jack sighed heavily and smacked his forehead on the table again. He groaned and whined. His head pounded up and down a few times and then shook back and forth then beat up and down some more.

Two hands lifted his head from the table and then moved to his shoulders to set him squarely on the back of the chair. The hands roughly massaged his shoulders.

"Jackie, rest. You have been in this room the past nine days and more hours in those nine days than in your entire life. You're going mad," said Teague.

Jack pointed at the bottle and looked at his father with a raised eyebrow. "Really? Tell me you wouldn't be going mad if your ship was in a bottle."

"Yes, well, my ship is not in a bottle," said Teague. "And Jack," he leaned down close to Jack's ear. "I never let another man steal my ship."

Suddenly a thousand times more angered, Jack slammed his fists on the table. He yelped when the bottle rolled barely a hair from where it was and cradled the glass close to his person. "You really think I let him do it?" He presented his father with the bottle and spoke sarcastically. "Here, Hector, take me ship. She's already in a bottle for safe keeping. Treat her like she's a dinghy. Pay no attention to her care and please, do sink her and jump ship yourself."

Less than amused, Teague looked at Jack and blinked one. His head was tilted to the side and his lips were pursed. He was merely looking at his son. He once believed Jack could not go any more mad than he already was. After the past nine days, he realized it was possible for Jack to further drive himself insane. With Jack Sparrow, anything was possible of course. He was Jack Sparrow's own father and he understood his son no better than a typical sailor upon the waters.

Yet, as he was watching Jack look at his ship, he felt he was beginning to know his son better. Jack's eyes were low in grief and his forehead was wrinkled. Wholly, his face seemed to sink and his shoulders were drooped. He felt Jack shrunk an inch or two in height altogether. The life Jack usually brought to a room was not there. The air was cold around Jack, cold, dead, miserable, and eerie. Something more than just his ship being trapped in a stormy bottle was eating away at Jack's very soul.

Not even Gibbs knew what occurred after the compass and the silver chalices were switched. Jack had not spoken a word of any incident that occurred after that moment. He was unusually quieter than he had been in five years. Nowadays, Jack walked around sulking and quiet. He avoided all human contact and when forced to be near human contact, he did not make eye contact. Something was truly eating away at his soul and it was guilt.

Edward Teague knew for a fact nothing ate away more of Jack than guilt. Jack Sparrow's ship was in a bottle, yet it was guilt consuming him whole.

Just when he was going to open his mouth to offer words of comfort, Joshamee Gibbs walked in the room waving a finger.

"Now, Jack I've been thinking," Gibbs began.

"Well that's miracle in itself," muttered Jack.

"This bottle issue at hand involves the Pearl," continued Gibbs.

"No, really?" Jack asked over exaggerated.

"How was it you got the Pearl back last time?" asked Gibbs.

"Squared a deal with Davy Jones. Thirteen years as captain for one hundred years aboard his ship," replied Jack. "Thank you no, I will not be squaring any more deals with the devil."

"Fortunately, we just," began Gibbs. He waved his hands in front of him searching for the appropriate word it seemed. "Happen to know the person who replaced the former captain of the Flying Dutchman who just happened to raise the Black Pearl from the depths of the ocean. So I was figuring, since the captain of the Flying Dutchman has the ability to raise a ship from the depths of the dark abyss of the ocean and put her back together board for board and coax a little speed into her, he can perhaps pull a ship out of a bottle and not give ye such harsh payment in return seeing as we just happen to know him."

Jack Sparrow sat completely rigid with huge eyes. To Teague and Gibbs, he appeared to be a figure made of wax. No pulse was beating in his neck. Neither his chest nor stomach were expanding with breath and caving in with each exhale. He sat completely still, yet his eyes were as wide as an owl's.

His lips parted with a smack. "Mr. Gibbs, I declare you a genius among the men that walk this Earth and I shall henceforth call you LeoVinci after the great Da Vinci himself."

"Well, thank you Jack," said Gibbs, not sure if that was a compliment or not.

"You're a bloody genius mate," Jack said as a huge smile widened across his face.

Bottle and all, Jack stood. He grabbed Gibbs by the cheeks and kissed the flesh with a light peck like was common in Italy when good news was brought forth. The bottle was once again brought into his arms and he skipped out the room mumbling and talking to himself.

"Well, good to know there's still some Jack Sparrow in that empty shell," noted Gibbs, heavily wiping his face in disgust.

Teague shook his head with a sigh. His fingers wrapped around his biceps as he walked out into the courtroom. Although the sighting of slight Jack Sparrow gave him relief, he knew Jack Sparrow himself was nowhere on the distant horizon. "The question remains how much of Jack Sparrow is in that shell?" he asked the figure behind him.

Gibbs shrugged his shoulder. "There are no straight answers to Jack Sparrow Cap'n."

The pirate turned his head and exchanged glances with Gibbs. Both nodded, and Teague silently admitted Gibbs was one of few pirates who had more than a single brain cell in him.

Knowing Jack and his usual habits of nature, Gibbs decided it may have been a wise decision to inquire upon Jack Sparrow's latest plan if he was considering this a plan at all. When that mischievous, devilish, gold toothed grin appeared on the lips of one Jack Sparrow, it spelled out trouble for Jack Sparrow worse than it did the bodies and souls around him. Too many a times had that smile appeared on Jack's face and it always ended in a certain ill fate for all those involved, meaning Jack Sparrow himself.

A Note from TurtleHeart:

aye, this was a short snippet to begin. more will follow within the week. characters from the original trilogy will make appearances now and then, however, this is going to be mostly about Jack and Angelica, who will arrive soon enough. it will become a romance within a race against time. so, let me know what you think of it so far!

Happy Readings!