Ok guys, I'm soooooooooo soooooooo sorry for the extremely long wait. I give you all full permission to hate me.

Buuuut, on a happier note, THE NEXT CHAPTER HAS BEEN CREATED! I was so happy to finally get this done for you guys, so let me know what you think! I hope I got Diego's character ok, just let me know if you have any suggestions.

And once again, thank you to all my reviewers! You guys have no idea how big of a motivation it is for me to write more chapters when I read all of your positive feedback, it just makes my day, seriously. This chapter would probably have not been up for a lot longer if it wasn't for all your reviews, so thank you so much! *hands out virtual hugs.

Alright, thanks for sticking with me guys. So here's the next chapter! *wipes sweat off forehead


The Escape

Diego POV

Twelve hours.

They'd been on this giant hunk of ice for twelve hours, and Diego hadn't seen a singe living thing since he'd been tossed unceremoniously into his cell by the mysterious female. He was starving, weak, freezing, and he didn't have any idea how the others were doing. Probably not much better. And on top of everything, his "plan" wasn't going down too well.

He knew that if he could just talk to Shira, then she could help them get out of there. He just knew. But the fact that he hadn't seen anyone else the entire time he'd been in here kind of prevented him from doing that.

Diego had been planning an elaborate set of phases to go through, to get to her.

Phase One: Trick guard into letting him out by telling him/her that he "had to do his business".

Phase Two: Knock guard unconscious.

Phase Three: Sneak around ship until he found female, and/or some food along the way.

Phase Four: Lure her away from any group of animals and/or get her to a more secluded place.

Phase Five: Convince her to switch sides in this thing and help them get out of there.

Phase Six: Carry out whatever plan they could manage to come up with.

Diego had to admit, it was a pretty good plan, even if he did say so himself. He'd been totally confident and pumped, and was feeling an intense secret-agent-mode coming on until he'd remembered-

There were no guards.

This place seemed to be completely devoid of any living things besides himself, and this fact had sent his brilliant plan (and his self-esteem) packing. And he still couldn't get himself untied.

What could he do?

What could Gutt be planning to do to them right now?

He had absolutely no idea.

It was a long time before things started to go his way.

There he was, about three hours later, when suddenly-


The whole ship lurched to one side, sending Diego slamming into the wall… which happened to have a fair few jagged pieces of ice sticking out. He let out a howl of pain.

Then- get this- Diego, still slightly dazed, saw something hurtle towards the bars of his cell. And this something was apparently very heavy, because as soon as it hit the icy bars, the gate was busted open, and into pieces.

Diego stood, finding out that his bonds had been cut apart by the pointy icicles. It took all of his self-control not to jump and whoop for joy. And what was more, the heavy object which had freed him turned out to be a crate of fruit, it's contents spread out on the floor. Never in his life had Diego experienced such a change of fortune in such a small amount of time. It never even occurred to him to wonder why he hadn't thought of cutting his bonds on the ice and busting his way out a long time ago.

His stomach rumbled, and he attacked the fruit in front of him, ravaging it with his teeth. After he'd had his fill, he rose and quickly ran out of the cell, down a long corridor, until he finally came to a corner. Pressing against the wall, he peeked slowly from his hiding place, looking for any signs of life. The secret-agent-mode was coming back on.

He could hear shouting and scrambling around from the deck. Whatever had rammed into the side of the ship had apparently caused a riot.

After a few moment's careful analyzing, he decided to take a risk and run to hide behind a nearby stack of crates. This would allow him to see what was going on, but he'd be completely exposed for about 10 feet. Diego took a breath, prayed that no one happened to be looking in his direction, and ran.

He made it to the crates without being spotted, and let out a sigh of relief. Carefully, he rose his head above the stack just enough so he could see onto the deck, looking around for that flash of white. What he saw made an angry growl begin deep in his throat, which he didn't wonder about until later.

Gutt was standing over Shira, who appeared to have been shoved into the ground by the captain, brandishing a sword in one hand. He had a look of fury on his face, and was shouting something at her, but Diego couldn't make it out from his hiding place because of the crew's shouting orders to one another.

Should he run out and rescue her? He wasn't sure how well that would work out; he was all on his own against a whole crew of pirates. He wasn't sure how well Shira would take to being saved either; she seemed like that type. And he couldn't be sure if she would be on his side or not until he talked to her- what if she turned against him?

Diego saw another pile of crates even closer to the deck, and was steeling himself to run for them, when suddenly the entire ship was engulfed in shadow. Diego, and the rest of the crew, froze in their spots, staring at the obvious cause of the sudden darkness. He knew now what had lurched the ship before.

A whale, an enormous, gigantic, very real whale, was rearing slowly up out of the water over the ship, and began to fall towards the deck, with the apparent intension of throwing itself onto the hunk of ice.

It took a moment for everyone to come out of their trances, but after what seemed like an eternity, they all began screaming and running towards the other side of the ship, which unfortunately happened to be where Diego was hiding.

He didn't give this much thought though. Like everyone else, he began running for his life as the body of the creature slammed into the ship, shaking him to the bone, and thanks to the confusion, no one seemed to notice his sudden appearance amongst them. Maybe he could find Shira in this mess and get her away without anyone noticing. But then a scream pushed this thought from his mind.

He looked around frantically for the source, and to his horror, his eyes landed on the sight of Shira, hanging on to the ship for dear life as great chunks of the ice crumbled away into the sea- she hadn't been able to get away fast enough, and the ship was slowly falling apart under her.

As Shira's only hold on the ship began to break off, their eyes met briefly.

Without thinking, without even stopping to consider his actions, Diego burst forth from the crowd and ran to her, looking over the edge of the ice at her wide eyes.

Before he could do anything more he heard Gutt's scream of fury. He didn't have much time.

"Hold on to me!" he yelled to her, holding out his paw as far as it would go.

She grimaced as she tried desperately to keep her grip, but didn't move to accept the gesture.

"Why should I trust you?" she yelled back.

Diego remembered when Manny had once asked him the same question, and he called back the same response he'd given his friend so long ago.

"Because I'm your only chance!"

She seemed to be having some violent internal struggle at his words, but kept her eyes on his. Diego, his paw still outstretched, tried to push the horrible image of Shira falling to a watery death from his mind.

But before she could come to a decision, Diego heard more shouts behind him.

"Here, Precious!"

"Diego, get out of the way!"

"Get them you fools!"

He whipped his head around and saw Manny, carrying Sid and Granny on his back and running faster than Diego had ever seen him run in his direction, Gutt and the rest of the crew not far behind him. He heard Manny's voice scream the words,

"Diego, jump!"

Before he could understand what was going on, Diego was suddenly drenched in water from behind, and turned to see the whale skimming the surface of the sea, its back sticking out of the water.

Finally grasping the situation, he yelled down to Shira, "Let go!"

"Are you crazy?!" she gasped as the ice gave another tremendous crack.

"Maybe!" Diego responded. There was another crack. They were out of time. "Just trust me! Please!"

Shira seemed to be steeling herself to do the worst. She closed her eyes, and let go of the ice just as Manny plowed into Diego and they went hurtling over the edge after her.

Diego was lost in a sea of confused screaming and shouting. Vaguely, he heard Gutt's shouts of fury and then the voice of Sid's crazy Granny- "Come on, Precious! Giddy up!" The whale underneath them gave a snort from its blow hole, drenching them all once again, and shot forward through the water, slowly at first, then gaining speed. They all finally got their footing on the slick skin of the creature, and turned as they sped away from the sinking pirate ship, Gutt's screams ringing in their ears.


Wellll, what do you think? Good? Bad? Problems questions comments solutions? Let me know in a review!

I'll try to get another chapter up as soon as I can- now that dance is over I have a lot more time to write. Thanks guys!