I do not own Witch Child.
(Possible AU, Jack/Mary pairing, spoilers for the book.)
5 times they did not kiss
and two times they did
I was standing on the deck, enjoying the feel of the wind on my face. Below the deck had begun to smell worse, the seasickness quickly catching up to people once more, even after the dreadful storm that had just passed.
The wind felt lovely against my face, making me feel fresher than I had in days. Turning around, I saw Jack and smiled at him. We had become quick friends over the past few weeks spent on board, even if Martha did warn me against being too close to him.
He came towards me, his hand coming up to rest on my cheek and I smiled. He leaned forward, his breath ghosting against my lips and I thought he was going to kiss me, but he just backed away and grinned brightly, going back to his work.
We were joking again, pretending about what we would be like if we were married and living together. Things like this always came up between us, and I would sometimes think about it to myself, actually imagining what would happen if it came true.
The thought was not as bad as it could have been. Jack was my best friend, my confidante and someone I knew I could trust. He would be there for me on my journey, even if he stayed on board and I left the ship. We would find each other again one day.
"It would be nice," I admitted, smiling faintly at him. I had to go see Elias Cornwall again soon to be his scribe.
"It would." Jack agreed, nodding his head. We turned to face each other, one after the other. We just stared, until I leaned forward slightly. However, I jumped when I heard footsteps outside of out hiding place, standing up quickly and pushing myself back against the dark wall and pulling Jack with me. With held breaths we waited until they passed, the moment before it happened forgotten.
"We're going to be there soon," Jack said softly and I nodded my head sadly. It was night time and no one but us and a few sailors were about, keeping an eye on the water. The stars were shining brightly above us, the moon amplifying those shines.
"I'm going to miss you." I said just as softly, turning my head to look at him, trying to memorise his features so I would never forget them.
"Yes. I'll miss you too, Mary." He muttered, shuffling closer to me. I leaned against his arm, his hand slipping into mine and I squeezed it gently. He ran his thumb over the back of my hand in a comforting gesture and I smiled despite it all.
Jack was suddenly in front of me and I breathed out quickly. He leaned forward, his nose brushing against mine. Our breaths mingled and we were so close to kissing. We just had to lean forward slightly-
There was a bang and the door to below opened. We jumped apart and Martha came through, her eyes searching around the deck. Her eyes finally landed on me and she came forward, softly telling me to go to sleep. I nodded and bid Jack goodnight, moving below to the comfort of my make-shift bed.
We were just days away from docking. The pain in my chest had intensified, the thought of leaving Jack behind scaring me. I couldn't get rid of what I had seen in the water. It haunted me, day and night. Every time I tried to forget it just came back, pouncing on me like a tiger capturing its pray.
I walked across the deck, heading towards where I could see Jack, determined. Standing in front of him, I gripped his shirt tight. I was about to pull him down and I would finally kiss him.
"Get back to work, boy!" The captain shouted, and I almost cursed. Jack shrugged in apology and left me, my grip loosened on his shirt and my hand falling to my side.
Sitting below deck, we were in our own room once more. Jack was off duty for the time, and we finally had some time alone together. Every time we tried before, either the Captain was bellowing to get back to work or one of the Vane girls was trying to flirt with him.
I felt myself get pushed down and I looked up to see Jack, smiling at me softly. He leaned down and we were in the same position as before, our noses touching lightly and our breaths ghosting each others' lips. A bell rand, signalling a change of shifts.
It was not to be once more, and I almost cried in yearning, in want and in need.
He stood and opened the door, sliding out. It was time for him to get back to work.
It was years after I had left, leaving behind all of the people I loved. I missed my friends, they were my family but I do not regret leaving. I would rather they know I am missing than they see my death. Lynching was not the way I wanted to be killed. In fact, I did not want to be killed at all.
I looked down as I walked around Salem, the same place we had docked after the journey on the boat. I looked to the sea and smiled as I saw a boat, looking cleaner than the one I had been on all those years ago. However, what shocked me was the bright blond hair and white teeth I saw, staring directly at me.
He ran over, and I gaped.
"Jack?" I whispered, my hand rising to his cheek to stroke it softly. He nodded, and I could feel tears burning my eyes.
He leaned down and kissed me sweetly, something I had longed to do since the last time we had seen each other on the deck, a parting.
I set up a bag for him to take, trying to keep the images from many, many years ago out of my mind. Jack, the love of my life, was finally going to sea once more. He almost looked like how I had seen in the water, but without the beard and looking neater.
I walked to the door and almost ran to the dock, seeing him and walking up to him. I ignored the other sailors that would be going with him. Jack looked at me, moving away from setting the ship up and wrapped his arms around my waist.
"I love you," I said, holding the tears back for a later time. "So, so much." He smiled brightly, kissing me deeply.
"I love you too. You are my life, my love, my dearest heart." He muttered against my lips, for the final time. I handed him his bag and, after one final and loving kiss, I waved him off.
"I love you!" I yelled once more and he yelled it back. I was glad that those were the final words we would hear from each other.
Once the boat was out of sight, I turned and walked back to my home, my lip quivering as I walked. Ignoring the curious looks from my fellow villagers, I closed the door to my home and sat on my bed, head in hands. My love was gone once more, after so many years of happiness together.
"Did you hear about Jack?"
"Mary, the poor girl; she's a widow now."
"He died at sea, hunting for whales."
"It's such a shame. They were a beautiful couple."
"So kind to everyone, too."
"She's heartbroken, the poor dear. I would be the same if I were in her position."
"He's never coming back."