I was watching Titanic last night and I got to thinking about how different things would have been if Rose was a guy. Then I thought, "What if it were Jack and Ennis?" So here goes.
Heart of the Ocean
Part One: Tickets
"Well, I say ye' can't," said Randall. Jack Twist had his back toward the massive vessel on which held his hopes and dreams. A ship that would return him home to his family. Jack looked over his shoulder at Titanic.
"I can do it. Just you watch." Jack had never been one for stealing but he needed a ticket. He took off running toward a third-class man acted like it was nothing, reached in a pocket and grabbed a ticket. Jack headed for the boarding door for third class passengers and was checked for lice.
"I did it," Jack said.
"Welcome to Titanic I hope you enjoy your stay Mr. Dawson."
Jack shuffled past them to the third class quarters. He glanced at his ticket. Apparently he was named Jimmy Dawson. It was written across his ticket. He found his room. He was sharing with three other men none of whom spoke enough English together to form a sentence.
But Jack wanted adventure. He ran to the deck of the ship to wave goodbye as the ship set sail. All the faces of strangers staring up at him as if they knew him. In that moment, Jack felt important. He felt more than a third class passenger.
As soon as they were well away and the ship was pulling forward towards New York Harbor, Jack sat down on deck and let out a sigh of relief.
Ennis Del Mar was what was called "Old Money" and his family's money had ran dry in the last few years. That was why he was marrying Alma Beers. At least, that was what he led himself to believe.
He and Alma had been on holiday in France and were about to head home as first class passengers aboard the illustrious RMS Titanic White Star Liner's new revolution in luxury liners. It was a grand, magnificent sight to behold. Titanic was longer than three football fields and was assembled by thousands of Irish hands. The ship showed promise and it certainly was luxurious.
"I need some air," Ennis said.
Ennis stepped out on lower deck where he stuck out like a sore thumb. He didn't belong there in his fancy tuxedo while everyone around him wore faded blazers with patches and trousers that were sewn together with different materials.
"Excuse me, sir, you won't find any of your people down here," said a member of the Crew.
Ennis didn't care. He walked along the deck and watched a little boy spin a top with his grandfather and a little girl was watching dolphins on the starboard stern with her brother. Ennis envied them. They were so young and care free.
He watched them for a while, the little girl had never seen dolphins before it was all over her face. Her brother was less impressed. But Ennis wished he could join them.
"Excuse me, Mr. Del Mar, a Miss Beers is searching for you," said a man dressed like a bellhop. Ennis nodded lit a cigarette and walked back to the upper deck as slowly as possible.
Jack was distracted by a young man watching some children play near the stern. Jack had been watching dolphins and begun to search for his cigarettes when he spotted a smartly dressed, obviously very lost, first-class passenger.
He couldn't have been more than ninety, perhaps eighteen. Jack wasn't sure. Everyone always looked older when dressed up. But he was tall and lean, and handsome.
Jack watched the young man he whole time he stood there. He never once looked away, he tried not to blink, to no avail. Finally, the young man was gone and Jack released the breath he hadn't realized he held.
Jack stayed on the deck through dinner. He wasn't hungry after the events of the day. After dark, Jack watched the crew scrub the deck with the biggest mops he had ever seen. As they mopped Jack picked his feet up and stretched them out on the bench as took a short nap.
He awoke to the sound of heavy footsteps behind him then a crash then swearing. Jack shot up immediately and looked down behind his bench. The first-class gentleman he had watched today had slipped on the deck.
"Our deepest apologies, sir."
The crew with the mops were thoroughly apologizing. They helped the young man up. His back was soapy and drenched. Jack couldn't help laughing.
"Now what is so funny," the young man asked.
"You have soap on your, well everywhere," said Jack grinning.
"Please, sir, let us you get you some warm clothes and we will fetch your mistress."
They disappeared. The first-class youth parked himself on the bench beside Jack and shook off his wet coat.
"Even my cigarettes are wet," said Ennis.
"Here," said Jack offering the youth his own jacket and a cigarette. The youth accepted both. "Jack Twist."
"Ennis Del Mar," said the youth shaking Jack's hand like a proper gentleman. It startled Jack so much he blushed.
"Nice to meet ya."
"Pleasure is mine," said Ennis.
"Ennis!" Shouted a woman. Jack rolled his eyes. The woman embraced Ennis in a hug. Several men were with her. One of them the Master-at-Arms. Jack avoided meeting the man's eyes.
"Alma," Ennis said, nonchalantly.
"Are you alright, dear? I was worried sick."
"I was running along the deck and I slipped because it had just been mopped."
Jack stifled a laugh.
"Why were you running?" The woman named Alma asked.
Come to think on it, Jack forgot to ask why Ennis was running. He seemed to be in a hurry until he slipped.
"I was racing with Jack and he noticed the wet deck and I didn't," said Ennis quickly lying. Jack sat up a little straighter. He had been thrown in without a floatation device and it was sink or swim. He chose to swim.
"Yeah. I didn't think to warn him, because after all it was a race," said Jack just as quickly.
"Why were you racing?" Alma asked.
Shit. This girl asks a lot of questions.
"He had taken my cigarettes and I wanted them back," said Ennis. Alma laughed. The Master-at-Arms rolled his eyes. He led the couple away arm in arm. Ennis stopped and smiled at Jack over his shoulder then disappeared into the warmth.
"Funny how he was wearing your jacket," said the Master-at-Arms. He left too. Jack sat down on his bench with the wind blowing through his hair.
Author's Note: Thats the end of chapter one. Let me know what you think.