A/N - Hello fellow Titanic Fanfic readers (okay that sounded slightly strange...) Anyway, I've been wanting to post this for a while now, but I've finally built up the courage to. I've worked so hard for such a long time on this story, and although it's not yet complete, I will be uploading from this point onwards. Please enjoy reading this story as much as I enjoyed writing it - and don't forget to favourite, follow & review - it would mean the world (just don't be mean, ok?) This is the first chapter, sort of setting the scene, but I promise it will set off soon. Alright? Ok thanks, and thanks for reading this! :D
'We had both just lost our best friend. We had both just lost our lovers.'
Fabrizio DeRossi desperately attempted to cut through the rope to the collapsible boat as the freezing water ate into his bones. This was his last chance. This was it. Live or die.
Tommy was dead. God only knew where Jack was. Helga wasn't allowed to go with him. She was probably dead too…
He couldn't allow himself another second to think about what could've been – he had to concentrate on what was happening at that moment. Using all his strength, he finally cut through the impossible rope as a collection of cheers filled the air. Quickly, he pulled his shivering body to rest on the side of the upturned boat, and it seemed that many others had that idea too. It speedily filled as more and more people got dragged up until there was no more space. He had a quick glance around. They were almost all men - and certainly no blonde women. Helga wasn't there.
Eventually, the men on the boat had to tell people they weren't allowed to get on, that there wasn't enough space. Indeed, it was true. On more man would surely capsize the lot, but he couldn't help wishing that Jack or Helga or La Bella Rosa would swim up.
He just had to clutch onto the icy bottom of this boat for as long as he could. He would get to America!
I was shaking violently as I was pulled half-consciously onto the wooden boat. Collapsing onto the bottom, any cover nearby was thrown upon me as I slipped in and out of consciousness. My whole body was numb. My heart was numb – Gladly. If I could feel the pain; if I had enough energy to cry, it would be fatal. My loss didn't sink in as I curled myself into the smallest possible shape, conserving as much heat as possible. It was all a nightmare. I would wake up any time soon, and Jack would be there by my side, laughing as we spat off the side of the ship…
The frail wooden boat rocked on the gentle waves as I heard an exclamation, followed by a commotion between the few men that were conscious on board. Slowly, I opened my eyes to reveal another frozen and only-just-conscious person being pulled aboard.
It continued like that until no one else could possibly still be alive in the icy water, and the bottom of the boat was littered with people barely breathing, like myself. Finally, I fell into a deep sleep.
"Miss! Miss!" One of the men asked, gently nudging me as my eyes tried to adjust to the startling brightness of the morning sun. All around our little boat glittering icebergs littered the sea, and further off, I could see more lifeboats making their way towards a huge steamer.
"There's a rescue ship!" he reminded me, "The Carpathia!" Cheers went all the way around the boat, but I struggled to hide back my tears.
This was real… I really would have to carry on living without Jack… Then a thought struck me – "Mother!" I whispered to myself. Oh God. How on earth would I be able to hide from Mother, Cal and his Man servant? Providing they had survived, which I was sure they would have done.
"Right, miss. You're going to have to climb the ladder. Will you manage, or should we carry you up?"
"I'm fine," I replied, struggling to reach my feet. I managed to stand for a good part of two seconds before I collapsed into his arms. "I'm so sorry!"
"Not to worry," Smiled the man "We'll get the sack."
It didn't sound too pleasant, but at that moment I was too exhausted to care. Did I know anyone except from Mother who had survived? Molly Brown, Madeline Astor… Was that it? There was absolutely no way I was ever returning to my old world, so that was out of the question. Did Cal survive? I prayed to God that he didn't; especially not when people like Jack died.
Wasn't there any of Jack's friends? Fabrizio? The Irish man? It was unlikely. What about the Scandinavian girl of Fabrizio's? Helga? It was possible, but probably not realistic.
It was then that I finally realised I was all alone. I had been given a fresh start, but no way of getting help, or being with my soul mate. It seemed cruelly ironic that for me to have a chance at a new life, Jack had to lose his.
"Right miss, in you get," started the man, holding out a sack tied to a rope. Too tired to care, I climbed in and let them hoist me up the side of the boat. I could see the deep ocean swirling mercilessly below me, trying to claim another victim, but I squeezed my eyes shut and wouldn't open them until I could feel the sturdy deck below my feet.
All around me people stood deadly silent in the deathly cold, losing hope as they scanned each person's face and realised it was not their loved one. I stumbled across the deck, and was met with men carrying piles and piles of thick, woollen blankets. They passed me a green one and continued on their mission.
Hobbling as fast as I could, I sat with the weeping people of third class already on board, with a good view of whoever was boarding next. I didn't know what I'd do if Cal ever found me again, but one thing was for sure – I was never going back to him.
The sky had turned a gentle shade of pink as Fabrizio examined the people balanced around him, a few men and a very small amount of women. Most of the women he saw sat on the boat during the night were no longer here, which was a sombre thought.
His feet were burning as they screamed in agony, the icy water eating into them. Panting in exhaustion, he just had to keep telling himself that they would be rescued soon. It was the only thing that made him work so hard to stay standing, and not surrender into the freezing water like he had seen so many others do that night.
He thought his eyes were playing tricks on him when he saw a small dot on the horizon coming ever closer. Could it be…? Squinting, his thoughts were confirmed.
"Ey lads," gasped one of the men that still had the energy to speak, "there's a boat!"
All attention was moved towards the blurry bright light, moving closer. Fabrizio could hear the disjointed voices of men calling, but he didn't have enough energy to process them. He was just about losing the will to keep standing, so he thanked the Lord that this boat had finally came back.
He squinted at the light as it shone into his eyes – an intruding change to the darkness they were now used to…
"We're here to save you!" shouted a male voice from the ship towering high above them. A collection of weak cheers filled the air, but Fabrizio could only manage a grin, "Right, one at a time, starting with the weakest of you, we'll pull you up."
Fabrizio turned to the man who was led next to him, barely breathing. "Everyone else… from Titanic? On this boat, y-y-yes?" he questioned
"All th-the s-s-survivors should b-b-e here. N-n-no… other boats are close e-e-enough." he stuttered. On his coat was an M that stood for Marconi. He was a wireless telegrapher.
The waves seemed to sense that this was their last chance to tip the boat, to claim a few more victims, and began to rock it violently, each occupant breathing in relief after each wave had passed, and they were still stood on board.
"We saved!" he smiled, turning to the man again. Finally, they approached the side of the huge ship, dominating over them.
"Right," commanded the leader of the lifeboat, "we've got the sack for anyone who can't climb themselves – they'll go up first."
Fabrizio sprang into action, hauling his new friend into the sack and making sure he arrived on deck for medical care as soon as possible. Watching him swing above their heads and the icy water, the thought of being helpless scared him. He needed to keep himself busy. If he wasn't doing something, he would start thinking, and if he started thinking, he would realise he had lost everything.
He worked like this for half an hour, until it was finally his turn to climb up to rope ladders. His whole body was badly frostbitten, and he was still shaking violently in his soaked shirt, but he was determined to climb the rope. Taking it one step at a time and not looking down was the method he used, and eventually he reached the top. He wasn't the strongest, but he certainly wasn't the weakest aboard
Fabrizio nodded at the Marconi man as he settled next to him onto the floor to warm up, relaxing his numb mind.
"T-t-thank you for s-s-saving… me" he heard a stutter next to him, before the man fell into an unconscious sleep.
A/N - So that's it for this chapter folks! Hopefully the next chapter will be up soon, but i'm sure reviews and positive feedback will make me want to upload faster ;)