A/N: Hey guys, I know A/Ns are boring, but this one is important, so please indulge me and read it!
First of all, this is obviously AU, and it's wildly AU. There is no magic in this fic, and it is set in a wholly fictional world because that suits my purposes. If that doesn't work for you, back out now.
I have also done practically no research on ships, sailing, pirates etc for this; I'm not intending to write something realistic. I am sure that I will make mistakes about the more technical stuff; again, if that's going to bother you this might not be for you.
I am also not sure how long it will be. I plotted quite a complicated history for my fictional world, and intended to write a short fic that was almost an extract from a larger story; now I'm tempted to write the whole story. We'll see how it goes.
Anyway, this is for JilyPirateFest over on Tumblr, and big thanks go to GloriousLilyEvans for suggesting I write something for it. Points if you can spot the Doctor Who joke that I wrote without realising, spotted in editing and left in anyway.
I'm just going to take this opportunity to let you all know that - contrary to what you might have thought - I am not JK Rowling and therefore do not own any of the characters/places etc that I am about to shamelessly use for my own ends.
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The pub was just off a small back alley, and it was loud, dirty and more than a little crowded. The thing that struck Alice the most though, was the smell, the stench of stale beer and rum not quite concealing the lingering damp mustiness of mould. It hit her as soon as she pushed open the door and stepped into the warm, dully lit interior and she almost gagged on it. It had been a long time since she'd been in a place like this, and the pub was an assault on the senses; the smell was overpowering, the noise deafening and she immediately began to regret ever agreeing to this.
But agree to it she had, so she pulled her cloak more tightly around herself, taking care to fully cover her brown curls with the hood, and glanced around the room, her eyes taking in the assembled mass of wenches, pirates and cutthroats laughing and drinking and occasionally fighting. No-one paid much attention to her; she was good at blending in, always had been. It was an excellent habit to cultivate when you were destitute and eking out a living by whatever dishonest method presented itself. She hadn't lived that life for several years now, thanks to Lady Lily, and she owed her more than she could ever repay. Enough to do this for her, even if it was against her better judgement.
Alice moved quietly through the room, avoiding contact with anybody until she found a seat in the corner furthest away from the bar and relatively close to the door; old habits die hard, and she didn't want to be caught too far from the exit if there was trouble. It was a good spot; she could see most of the room without being observed herself, and she settled down, keeping her eyes and ears alert even as she skulked behind her hood and pretended to be ignorant of everything around her.
When the sour-faced waitress came past, she ordered a cup of rum and paid for it without complaint, leaving the cup untouched on the table in front of her. She sat there for some time until someone eventually caught her interest; a tall but lean man a few tables away from her. He had a handsome face, framed with thick dark hair and an unusually bright smile. He smiled and laughed a lot, but most importantly he talked a lot about his crew.
She waited until he was alone at the table, his companions having wandered off with some wenches and the wench he was with having gone to the bar to fetch him a drink. She slid coolly into the seat directly opposite him and spoke without preamble, adjusting her hood so that it still shadowed her face from everyone but him.
'I heard you talk about your crew. Are you by chance a pirate captain?'
He looked at her appraisingly, and it suddenly struck her that she may have made a misjudgement, because he certainly wasn't as drunk as he had seemed to be from a distance. His grey eyes were shrewd, if playful, and she had the sudden uncomfortable feeling that he was able to see right through her. Abruptly he leaned back in his chair, stretching his arms up and clasping his hands idly behind his head.
'Pirate, yes. Captain, no. I'm not much of one for what you'd call…responsibility.'
He flashed her a quick, dazzling grin and she momentarily lost her train of thought; the blonde who'd been sitting with him moments before returned with his drink and scowled at Alice, though she knew that the wench couldn't possibly see her properly, certainly not well enough to realise that she was female. He gave her a friendly pat on the bum and flashed her a toned-down version of the smile he'd just given Alice.
'Why don't you give me five minutes with my young friend here sweetheart? Come back in a bit.'
She pouted for a moment, but seeing that he was unmoved by it she flounced off towards the bar, leaving the two of them alone. He turned back to Alice and cocked his head slightly as he observed her, and she forced herself not to fidget nervously. She knew that she didn't exactly fit in with her current surroundings anymore, but she'd been banking on no-one paying much attention to her, and up to this point she'd been right. He leaned forward and rested his elbows on the table edge as he looked at her.
'So you are looking for a pirate captain then are you my lovely?'
She nodded slowly, unwilling to offer him any more information than that for the moment. He pursed his lips and glanced around the room. 'Well, there's one or two in here all right. Why don't you tell me why you're looking for one, and I'll see if I can point you in the right direction? I mean, you're a pretty thing, and there are pirates and then there are pirates. Was it a specific one you were looking for, or do you just have a craving?'
She glared at him as he winked at her, but her attempt at silent admonishment fell flat as he simply continued to watch her with an encouraging expression. She looked him over suspiciously, but saw nothing more sinister than curiosity in those oddly coloured eyes. She leaned across the table so she could keep her voice low.
'I'm looking for a man who would be interested in performing an easy task for a rather large reward.' Seeing that she had his interest, she continued in hushed tones. 'I have a friend - a lady – who needs to travel to the port of Spinner's End.'
The dark-haired stranger's eyebrows rose. 'That's an extremely unsavoury port for a lady to want to travel to.'
'Which is why she needs to travel on a pirate ship to get there; no honest captain would take her.' She spoke in challenging tones, and a smile tugged at the corners of his mouth.
'True enough, but what business could a lady have in Spinner's End, one of the most notorious pirate ports to exist?'
'That would be her own business.' Alice shot back. 'I seek safe passage for my friend and nothing more should need be divulged.'
'Safe passage on a pirate ship might be hard to come by for a lady.' He spoke blandly, but his words were the crux of her problem; putting Lily on a pirate ship would be like putting a lamb in front of starving lions, but a pirate captain was the only kind of seafarer who could safely – for a given value of safely - travel into Spinner's End. While she wasn't keen on entrusting Lily to a highwayman by another name, she'd eventually agreed to try and find one nonetheless, hoping that for a high enough price she could find a captain both willing and able to control his crew.
Alice nodded her acknowledgment of his point. 'You see my problem. My friend will pay three hundred galleons for safe passage from here to the port. I just need to find a captain who will agree to our terms and guarantee her wellbeing.'
He took a swig of his drink and looked speculatively over his cup at her for a moment. 'For that kind of money, I'm fairly sure my captain will do it; I'll convince him anyway. Sirius Black - second mate on the Fawkes.' He gave her a quick grin and offered her his hand; she shook it carefully as he continued to speak. 'He's a decent sort, for a pirate. So is the first mate. Your lady will be safe enough; safer than on most ships, pirate or otherwise I'd wager.'
Alice bit her lip as she looked him over; she wasn't at all happy about Lady Lily's plan, and had said so at some length, but the woman was immovable so all she could do was reduce the risk. Sirius Black seemed unusual for a pirate, with manners and education that seemed out of keeping with his profession; she'd be lying if she claimed her curiosity hadn't been piqued by this little conversation. Still, she'd seen a lot of pirates on her expeditions to the local inns and taverns over the last few evenings, and she wouldn't have considered sending her lady off with any of them. She prided herself on her instincts, and they were telling her that this man was her best bet.
She offered her hand and he shook it on a grin. 'We'll be leaving on the morning tide; can your lady be ready?'
Alice nodded, and he stood up and drained that last of his drink. 'Then I'll see you on the docks in the morning my lovely.'
He left the tavern immediately, and Alice was left alone at the table, wondering if she'd done the right thing.
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'Three hundred galleons James! Just to take a passenger to Spinner's End.'
Sirius sounded incredibly pleased with himself, and James had to admit that if what he was saying was accurate then it was intriguing to say the least. Three hundred galleons was a lot of money, and he found himself more than a little suspicious that such a sum could be earned for doing something so apparently simple. He tied off the rope he was holding and shouted up to the men in the riggings before turning back to face his second mate; he jerked his head to one side, and the two of them moved wordlessly across the deck until they reached a spot free of other crew members.
'What's the catch Sirius?'
'Why would there be a catch?' Sirius' face was a picture of innocence, and James rested his elbows on the ships rail and gave his oldest friend an exasperated look.
'Because nothing good ever falls straight into my lap, and whenever you tell me something is simple and easy, it invariably turns out to be difficult and fraught with danger.'
'I'm hurt James.' The grin never left Sirius' face as he joined his captain in leaning against the rail, the two of them staring out across the harbour while sailors rushed around them. 'This is as simple as I'm telling you; someone wants safe passage to Spinner's End and is willing to pay for it. They need passage on a pirate ship because who else would take them there?'
'I hate Spinner's End.' James muttered sourly. 'I mean I bloody hate it Sirius, and I wouldn't even consider this if the money weren't so good.'
'But it is good.'
'It's probably stolen.'
'Like that's ever bothered us before.' Sirius turned back to face the deck and caught the eye of a tall sandy haired man standing on the opposite side of the ship, watching the activities of the crew with folded arms and a stern eye. As soon as Sirius made eye-contact with him he moved swiftly across the deck and joined the two of them at the rail.
'I assume Sirius has filled you in Remus?' James' voice sounded tired, and the tall man nodded slowly, eyes flicking between the captain and second mate. 'He did.'
Remus' eyebrows rose at the question. 'And you're the captain James. Decision is yours.'
James rolled his eyes and ran a hand through his thick dark hair in a habitual gesture of frustration as he turned around and lounged against the rail. 'I'm allowed to ask my first mate for an opinion.'
Remus thought for a moment. 'It's a lot of money, and to be honest, that makes me a little nervous. You'd be hard-pressed to find a pirate who wouldn't sail twice as far for a sum like that; why would someone pay so much for such a small thing? Unless there are greater complications at work.'
James turned his head towards Sirius. 'See? Remus agrees with me.'
'You two are far too conservative to be pirates.' Sirius scolded. 'Where's your sense of adventure?'
Remus fixed him with an icy glare. 'I left it in the last port, along with a chunk of skin from my shoulder, and a fair bit of blood thanks to your last hare-brained scheme.'
Sirius contrived to look offended. 'It wasn't that bad. And this will be different anyway, what could possibly go wrong? It's just taking a passenger on board for a few weeks. And besides, I already told her we'd do it.'
James head snapped back in his direction. 'Her? Her Sirius?'
Sirius raised his hands defensively. 'Now, don't get all stroppy James. The fact that the passenger is a woman is irrelevant to everything but the price; that's why the money's so good. How many pirate ships would guarantee a woman's safety while she was on board?'
Remus looked flabbergasted. 'You have agreed to transport a woman to Spinner's End, on board our ship? Our ship full of pirates?'
James growled low in his throat. 'Sirius, I am going to kill you! Do you have any idea how difficult it will be to maintain discipline with a woman on board?'
'We can handle this bunch of scallywags.' Sirius waved a confident hand. 'Think of the money.'
'Why does she want to go to Spinner's End Sirius?' Remus demanded.
'I've no idea, and I didn't see it was any of my business to ask.' Sirius was completely unfazed by the negative reactions of the other two. 'All she wants is to be dropped off; how could it matter to us what she's going to do once we leave her?'
James and Remus exchanged glances, and the dark-haired captain sighed. 'He has a point. Having her on board will be a pain in the arse, but if we're just dropping her off there shouldn't be any chance of us being drawn into whatever she's up to.'
He looked around the ship at his crew. They were loyal enough - as far as pirates could be - not to mention a little intimated by him which was all to the good, and he was fairly confident that between himself and his two mates they'd be able to maintain order; it would just be a bloody nuisance. On the other hand, it certainly wasn't enough of a nuisance to make him turn down three hundred galleons. A thought struck him and he turned back to the others. 'Where are we going to put her? I mean, we can't chuck her in with the crew can we?'
Sirius gave a triumphant grin, recognising that if James was considering the details of the situation, that meant he was about to cave. Remus frowned, obviously realising the same thing, but he was clearly considerably less happy about it than Sirius was.
He sighed and folded his arms. 'She can have my cabin, and I'll bunk in with Sirius.'
Sirius opened his mouth to protest, but was silenced by a withering glare from James. 'You got us into this Sirius, so don't even think about complaining. I am holding you personally responsible for this entire thing.'
'Does that mean I get a bigger cut of the money when it all goes perfectly?' he asked with a cocky grin, and James scowled at him and stomped off to take his temper out on the nearest unfortunate members of the crew.
Remus shook his head at the second mate. 'You'd better check those sails have all been properly stitched and repaired, because the mood he's in now, James will string you up from the yardarm if they're not ready when we are.'
Sirius saluted impertinently and headed off, leaving Remus to continue with his solitary supervision of the crew as they made the ship ready.
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'I'd just like to make it clear that I have serious misgivings about this.' Alice kept her hand on her cloaked companion's elbow and steered her through the dockside crowds, guiding her steps and glaring at any who got in her way.
'You've said. Many times.' The voice that came from under the hood of the cloak was light and feminine. 'Nonetheless, I'm going. This is my last chance.'
Without breaking stride, Alice changed direction and tugged her companion over to beneath the moorings of one of the larger ships, where the crowd was thinnest.
'My Lady.' She opened and closed her mouth once or twice before she could get her words out. 'I'm as sure as I can be that you'll be safe on this ship. The second mate…' She trailed off as she remembered the lean dark-haired man. Alice had always had good instincts about people, and she'd honed them in her years living on the streets; she didn't doubt his promise that her lady would be safe with him. 'There's just something about him, and I think he can be trusted; I think we have to assume that he's telling the truth about the captain and first mate being cut from similar cloth. I'm not really worried about the journey on the ship. I'm worried about Spinner's End. You don't have the faintest idea where to start, and if there's a port in the world that isn't safe for a lady like yourself, it's Spinner's End.'
'I have no other options left Alice.' Lily's voice was calm and collected, but there was a warmth to it that let Alice know her concern was truly appreciated. She reached out a hand to gently touch Alice's elbow before she spoke again. 'This is my last chance, and I have to try. I'd sooner try my luck in Spinner's End than submit to the alternative at this point.'
Alice lowered her head at the words; the hint of despair in them brought tears to her eyes, and she didn't want her lady to see them. She straightened up again and took Lily's elbow, guiding her along the dock until she saw the name she was looking for: The Fawkes.
'It's this one.'
Lily pushed her hood up just a little so she could see the ship that loomed alongside them without exposing her face to the crowd. 'It's a little larger than I expected.'
She turned to Alice and smiled. 'Thank you Alice. Above and beyond the call of duty as always.'
Alice tried to give her a smile in return, but the tears were leaking out now, and Lily reached a hand out to offer a handkerchief.
'You've been a friend to me when I've needed one Alice.' She took a step back from her. 'Remember what we discussed. Stay at the inn, pretend I'm confined with an illness. If you haven't heard from me within the month, or if someone comes looking for me, take the money I left in the room and disappear.' She reached out and touched Alice's hand gently. 'Live a good life with it Alice.'
Alice nodded, her back straight and her eyes wet as she said goodbye to the best friend she'd ever have. She caught sight of thick dark hair making its way down the gangplank and she quickly dabbed at her eyes and set her expression as neutrally as she could manage as Sirius Black approached them, accompanied by a sandy-blond man with a scar on his right cheek.
'Good morning ladies.' Sirius sounded just as cheerful as he had last night, and he smiled brightly at them both, though his eyes settled firmly on Lily. 'You'd be our passenger then?'
He held a hand out and Alice jumped into an introduction. 'Sirius Black, this is La…'
'Lilith Evans. Lily.' Lily interrupted, stepping forward and taking his hand. 'A pleasure to meet you Mr Black.'
'Sirius.' He corrected, eyes twinkling with unspoken curiosity. He indicated the tall man standing patiently at this shoulder. 'This is Remus Lupin, first mate.'
'Miss Evans.' Remus murmured politely as he shook her hand for the briefest second.
'We're about to cast off, so if you're ready Miss Lily, I'll leave you with Remus here; I need to go shout at some rather disreputable sailors.'
He headed off up the gangplank, whistling a jaunty tune as he went, leaving Remus, Lily and Alice standing on the dock. Lily turned back to Alice with a smile, and with tact neither of them expected to see in a pirate, Remus took a few steps away to allow them some privacy. Lily gave Alice one last hug, then took her leather satchel from her and stepped back towards Remus. Alice turned and slowly walked away, not looking back as she headed for the inn.
Lily allowed herself one tear as she watched her go, before she turned to face the first mate who gave her a kindly half-smile. He gestured for her to go first, and he followed her up the gangplank and gave the order to have it removed as they reached the top.
Lily heard the order to cast off shouted from the landing, and she looked up to catch the briefest glimpse of a dark-haired man she presumed to be the captain standing at the helm. Remus silently led her towards the rear of the ship and below decks, to a door which he pushed open for her; she stepped into a cramped room, and was relieved to see a proper bed. It may have been small, but it wasn't a hammock, and that was the only part of the trip she'd really been dreading. Otherwise it had a small chest, a little table with a jug and wash bowl and a small wooden chair.
'This is my cabin,' Remus spoke quietly from behind her. 'but it's yours while you're with us. I'm sharing with Sirius, and we're next door if you need anything.'
She turned to face him and pushed her hood back, revealing her face properly for the first time and suppressing a hint of relief when no flicker of recognition crossed his features; not that'd she'd particularly expected any, but it eased her worries to know that she wasn't known here. 'Thank you. It's very kind of you to give up your space for me.'
He smiled suddenly, and she was taken by surprised by how much younger and less world-weary he appeared when he smiled like that. 'You're welcome. I'll, ah, speak to the cook about having your meals brought to you in here; you don't want to witness pirate eating habits in the galley I'm sure.'
He made to step out of the door, but was stopped by a gentle hand on his forearm. 'Mr Lupin?'
'Remus.' He said quietly, and she gave him a small smile that just hinted at dimples in her cheeks before she asked her question nervously. 'Am I confined to these quarters?'
'No.' He appeared surprised by the question. 'No, not at all. You can come and go as you please, though I would recommend staying away from the galley and the men's sleeping quarters in the forecastle. If you'd like to look around, Sirius or myself can accompany you, duties allowing, if you're nervous about moving about the ship on your own.'
He studied her face for a moment then spoke again, his tone firm but kind. 'None of the crew will bother you; the Captain was very clear on that, and while the majority of the crew can't be fully trusted, believe me when I say that none of them are stupid enough to cross him. He'll see to it that his orders are obeyed.'
He stepped back through the door and pulled it gently shut behind him, leaving Lily alone with her thoughts.
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It had been half an hour since they left port, and James had relinquished the wheel to one of the crew. He stood at the stern, watching the land grow smaller and smaller on the horizon; it may have been a series of odd and unfortunate circumstances that had led to him becoming a pirate captain, but one thing he'd never regretted was choosing to spend his life on the sea.
It could be rough, it could be dangerous, and it was almost always a struggle, but it was visceral and life-affirming, and at times so very peaceful.
'Galleon for your thoughts?' Remus stepped up beside him and joined him in staring out across the waves.
James felt his lips twitch slightly. 'Feeling rich are we?' He stepped forward and let his hands sit on the bow rail, feeling the movement of his ship beneath his hands. 'I doubt I've ever had a thought that would be worth a galleon.'
Remus tucked his hands in the belt loops of his breeches and rocked on his heels. 'Want to hear mine?'
James turned his head away from the sea and eyed his friend curiously. 'If you care to share them Remus.'
'The girl – Lilith Evans apparently…'
'You don't believe her?' James interrupted, his eyes boring into Remus who shook his head.
'No, I don't.' He stepped forward and joined James at the rail, lowering his voice so there was no possibility of being overheard. 'She's nobility, I'm certain of it.'
James looked at him sharply. 'You're sure? I know the sum is a lot of money, but she could have stolen it; or she could be a merchant's daughter or something, someone wealthy but not necessarily noble.'
Remus shook his head adamantly. 'Go see for yourself. The way she carries herself, her speech, everything about her says she's a gentlewoman.'
'Oh hells. What has Sirius gotten us into?' James scowled and kicked at the rail. 'I do not need to be pursued across the ocean by bloody soldiers because they think we've kidnapped a noblewoman.'
'She's here of her own accord.' Remus reminded him.
'I know that Remus, but what do you want to bet she doesn't have permission from her husband or father or whoever to be here? Different rules apply to the nobility, you know that.'
Remus leant on the rail alongside him. 'I know it's inconvenient, but it's not like we haven't been pursued before James.'
'Being chased by a ragged bunch of pirates or having a navy ship nip at your heels is not the same as being the focus of a damned manhunt.' James turned on his heel and began to march towards the door that would take him below decks to the officers' quarters. 'Go and tell Sirius to plot another course to Spinner's End.'
'What?' Remus was taken aback by the order, and James turned to face him, arms waving as he spoke.
'Take us on a less well-travelled route, where we won't encounter so many prying eyes.'
'It'll be a more dangerous route then.' Said Remus speculatively, his eyes on his irate captain.
'I'd rather take my bloody chances with the sea than with sodding soldiers!' He tossed over his shoulder as he resumed his march across the deck. Sailors recognised his black temper and moved instinctively out of his way as he walked, shoulders set and face stern. It took only moments for him to reach the door to Remus' cabin, but once there he found himself hesitating.
After a moment's deliberation, he knocked sharply. 'Just a minute!' a soft voice called from inside and James found himself annoyed at being made to wait outside a door on his own bloody ship. He was debating whether to just barge on in when the voice spoke again. 'It's not locked.'
He pushed the door open and entered Remus' small cabin, getting his first glimpse at the girl who claimed to be called Lilith Evans as she threw a dress across the narrow bed and turned to face him. For a second he almost forgot why he was there.
She was no commoner, that was for sure; it was obvious to him at first glance and he wondered how anyone could ever mistake her for one. Pale soft skin that had obviously never spent all day out working in the sun, and hands that were smooth and showed no signs of work. Her long red hair was neatly pulled back in a braid, and her green eyes shone from a pretty face that was devoid of blemishes. And Remus was right, she carried herself with a certain elegance and grace that was trained into the upper classes from birth. Not even the britches and loose shirt she had apparently been changing into could hide that. She gave him a polite smile, obviously confused as to who he was and why he was there. Mentally shaking himself, he stepped a little further into the room and closed the door behind him. He noted that her eyes were watching him carefully, could see the urge to take a step backwards in them, but she remained rooted in place, refusing to give ground. Good. She had the sense to be wary, and the spine to stand her ground; good combination to have when you were on board a pirate ship.
He spoke quietly, more from not wanting to be overheard than for any other reason. 'James Potter. Captain James Potter. And you, I hear, are Lilith Evans.'
Her face suddenly blossomed into a wide smile. 'Captain.' She extended a hand to him, and he was so startled that he took it but didn't shake it, and she held on to his as she continued talking. 'I'd like to thank you for taking me. I hope it's not too far out of your way?'
He pulled his hand away and folded his arms as he looked at her curiously. Remus had been exactly right, as usual; she was obviously intelligent, and while that wasn't a trait limited to the nobility, the level of education she appeared to have received certainly was. Realising she was waiting for a response, he raised his eyebrows questioningly.
'You're paying me Miss Evans, I'm not doing you a favour. And it doesn't matter if the port is out of our way or not; you're paying us to take you there, so we'll take you there. What I would like to know is what you're planning on doing when you get there?'
She drew in a sharp breath and straightened up a little. It might have intimidated him more if he hadn't been almost a foot taller than her; as it was, it did little more than amuse him, as did her icy tone.
'As you said Captain Potter, I'm paying you to take me there, not to ask questions about my business.'
He inclined his head to her. 'All well and good Miss Evans, but I do believe I have a right to know if you are hiding something that will endanger my ship and my crew.'
She scoffed at him, and he was impressed by the amount of contempt she could pack into a single facial expression. 'I fail to see how my plans once I disembark your ship could possibly affect you Captain.'
He stared back at her, his expression blank. 'Fine, why don't we start with something else then. Like your real name.'
She started; it was only a small jerk of the shoulders for a fraction of a second, but he'd been looking for it and he'd seen it. Pressing the advantage he took a step towards her, and this time she did step away from him. 'You see Miss Evans, if I take you to Spinner's End, and you cause all kinds of trouble, well, then someone is bound to ask who brought you there. And then they might decide it's worth their while to chase me down. Or if you're running there to hide – and it's a good place to hide from things – then whoever you're running from might decide to take an interest in me as well. And that may or may not bother me, depending on who's doing the chasing, but I like to make informed decisions, so I'll have the truth from you now.'
She stared defiantly back at him, her face now set in hard lines that belied the soft smiles of earlier. 'Captain Potter. My name is Lily Evans, and I am paying you a handsome sum of money to take me to Spinner's End. If you wanted more information than that, then you should have asked for it beforehand, because I have no intention of discussing this any further.'
'Did you steal the money?' he asked, his hazel eyes boring into hers as he studied her. Her features morphed into an expression of genuine outrage; that theory was out then, unless she was a truly superb actress.
'How dare you?!' Her voice rose. 'I have done no such thing.'
'Running away from your husband?' His lip curled as he voiced the idea, finding it entirely appalling for some reason.
'No! I am not married, and your questions are impertinent.' She glowered at him, eyes flashing with indignation, and if he hadn't been so irate himself he might have taken a moment to appreciate the healthy glow the anger brought to her skin.
He gave her a crooked smile that didn't reach his eyes. 'I'm a pirate Miss Evans. You should be thankful that impertinent is the worst you'll get on this ship.'
Her chin rose defiantly as she stared back at him, and this time he did feel a flicker of admiration for her spirit. He stepped towards her until he was so close he could smell the scent of rosewater coming off her hair.
'You are hiding something from us Miss Lily Evans. Rest assured that if harm comes to my ship or my crew because of it, I may not feel honour bound to abide by the terms of our agreement.'
She refused to cringe under his cold glare, choosing instead to meet his steely gaze with eyes that were hard as flint. 'Then I suppose it is a good thing that I am completely confident that no harm will befall your precious ship because of me, Captain Potter.'
James stepped away from her, holding her gaze until he reached the door. He left the room, being sure to slam the door behind him and made his way back to the deck, considering all the possible ways in which he could murder Sirius.
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That's all folks. Let me know what you think, and check out JilyPirateFest over on Tumblr; I'm scared-of-clouds over there if anyone is interested.