jackxwill - pirates of the caribbean slash
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Title: Warmer Waters
Author: Jessie-chan (jemeigs@yahoo.com)
Pairing: Will / Jack; Will / Frederick
Rating: R
Warning(s): AU; Crossover with From Hell
Summary: Sequel to "To Heaven." Jack has taken Will
away from London for his own safety, and all Will can
think about is Frederick.

Disclaimer: I don't own Will, Jack, or Frederick
Abberline. They belong to their respective owners.
Feedback: Welcomed and appreciated.
Beta: none

Author's Notes: Welcome to chapter two! Nothing too
much to say in this chapter, except the story is
starting to take a coherent form, especially in
chapter three. Enjoy!


Warmer Waters

Chapter Two


Late afternoon sunlight is shining through the
porthole by the time I finally decide to leave the
cabin and head back topside. The heat of the afternoon
is fleeing with the sun, and I shiver slightly and hug
my arms around myself in a vain attempt to ward off
the coming coolness of evening. The island is almost
within swimming distance, and I can begin to make out
individual trees.

Jack is still standing at the rudder wheel, staring
stonily out towards the island with one hand resting
on the wheel and the other at his hip. He looks very
dashing and handsome, but ruggedly so, and I think the
look suits him. I approach him gingerly, but a soft
smile crosses his face as he sees me coming up the
steps. When I reach him, he throws an arm around my
shoulders.

"I'm sorry about what I said earlier," he begins,
glancing at me out of the corners of his eyes before
looking back towards the island.

As a way of accepting his apology, I change the
subject. "How much longer do we have until we get
there?" I ask, looping an arm around his waist
nonchalantly.

"Judging by our speed, I'd say about half an hour,"
Jack replies.

There is a comfortable silence between us. When he
finally speaks again, I am surprised by what he says.

"Maybe, in a month or two, we'll take a trip back to
London," he says quietly. "No guarantees, though. I
can't promise anything."

Smiling, I lightly brush my lips against his high
cheekbone. "Thank you, Jack."

He seems almost embarassed by the display of friendly
affection, especially in front of the crew, some of
who are trying to look up at the two of us without
making it obvious that they are doing so. I drop my
arm, suddenly aware that I could somehow jeopardize
the captain's leadership over the crew, and head over
to the railing to look down at the water.

The realization that I hold so much power, enough to
create a wedge between Jack and his crew, gives me a
strange, heady feeling. Using Jack's obvious crush on
me, I could conceivably cause a rift to form, and a
mutiny could occur; I may have to begin watching what
I do. It is obvious that Jack is in love with me, but
I do not feel the same type of love he thinks he
feels. But I can definitely sympathize, though; it is
likely the same situation between Frederick and me.

A heavy sense of melancholy falls over me, and I sigh
forlornly as I lean against the railing, my elbows
resting on the salt-scoured wood. Large gray fish are
swimming alongside the ship, twisting and twirling. It
looks like they're very happy and are having a lot of
fun, and I wish I felt the same, but I don't. Perhaps
there is a way I can feel so free.

I beckon to Jack, and he turns the wheel over to his
first mate, a dark-skinned, beautiful woman named
Anamaria. He joins me at the railing, a questioning
look on his face, and I point down to the gray fish.
"What are those? I've never seen them before."

"They're dolphins," Jack answers. "Large fish that
live in warmer waters. See that hole near their
heads?" I squint down and nod as I spot the opening he
is referring to. "That's their blowhole, so to speak,
a lot like what whales have. They breathe air, just
like we do, so they live near the surface, where they
can breathe in the air they need."

His explanation seems over-simplified, even to me, but
maybe that is because he doesn't know a whole lot
about them. However, I can't deny the obvious beauty
of these sea-bound creatures.

"The stories say that dolphins swimming before a ship
like that is a good omen, a symbol of a good journey,"
Jack adds, staring down at the animals, a tranquil
look on his face.

I look up past Jack. We're not too much further from
the island, and the ship is definitely within swimming
distance. With no warning, I climb up onto the railing
of the ship, which is slowly coming to a standstill as
the crew hurries about the deck, performing a
practiced, controlled stop. Jack reflexively reaches
his hand out towards me, and I grasp it, giving him a
mischevous grin. When he tries to tug me off the
railing, though, I pull my hand away and, without
warning, jump off the railing, clearing the ship
itself by almost six or seven feet as I plummet
towards the water below. I land in the water, clothes,
shoes, and all; the cool liquid envelops me, and I
find myself hanging in a beautiful world of blue. My
eyes wide open, I look around the watery landscape,
seeing the faint outlines of the dolphins I'd pointed
out to Jack.

Realizing that I am running low on air, I kick towards
the surface, my lungs burning slightly. As I break the
surface and reach up to push my soaked hair from my
face, I hear shouts, and I look up towards the ship to
see Jack standing at the rail, his coat half off,
looking frantic. I laugh at his reaction and with
sheer joy, lifting an arm to wave at him as I tread
water.

"What the hell were you thinking?" Jack yells down. I
see him pull his coat off and toss it on the railing.

"Just cooling off!" I reply, splashing the water
slightly.

A grin crosses his face, and he shakes his head, the
beads in his hair swaying with the movement. "We're
lowering the boats. I'll get one to pick you up."

I shake my own head. "No, that's all right," I reply.
"I'll swim. It's not too far." Before he can form any
sort of protest, I turn in the water and begin a slow,
leisurely swim towards shore.

*

Afternoon has fallen to evening when my feet finally
touch the pearly white sands of the Isle de Muerta.
Jack stands, arms crossed and impatient, on the shore,
waiting for me as I wade through the water towards
him. The wind ruffles his hair and his baggy shirt,
and I shiver slightly as my own shirt clings tightly
to every curve I possess.

"Hey," I say as I come within earshot.

"Have fun?"

I shrug. "I definitely needed that," I say. "My
muscles feel so stretched out." The end of my sentence
is rattled by a large shiver, and I wrap my arms
around myself and smile at Jack sheepishly.

Jack's mother-hen instincts seem to take over, and he
hurries forward to help. "Are you all right?" he asks,
searching my face.

"December is not exactly the greatest time to go
swimming," I explain as he tugs at my shirt.

"We need to get this off of you," he says, unfastening
several buttons. I allow him to remove my shirt as I
merely stand there, my eyes closed as I attempt to not
shiver. He drapes his heavy coat over my bare
shoulders, and my nose is assaulted by a mixture of
scents: rum, sea salt, and fresh air; the essence of
Jack, so to speak. I inhale deeply, still not opening
my eyes, as Jack takes my elbow. "Come on. I'll take
you to your new home."

*

The cabin is exceedingly small, but very cozy and
comfortable. There isn't much furniture in here, but
it is more than my mother and I owned in our small
cellar room in Whitechapel. This thought brings a
sharp pang with it, but I quickly suppress it, and
turn to look at the bed. It is small, just large
enough for one person, and I look at Jack in
confusion.

"Where will you sleep?" I ask him, my forehead
wrinkling.

"In my own cabin," Jack answers. "Why do you ask?"

I shrug. "I just thought...you would be staying in
here, with me...like on the ship," I explain
hesitantly.

"Oh." Jack blins, then says, "I can't, Will. You'll
monopolize my time, and I have to work with the crew
to finish getting set up here."

I swallow and nod, looking away to the tiny table and
chair beside the bed. "Are you about to leave?" Jack
nods. "Do you have any paper and something to write
with?"

"Are you thinking of writing a letter to Frederick?"

Reluctantly, worried that he will forbid me from doing
so, I nod.

Jack studies me for a moment, then digs in the bag at
his hip and removes a thick sheaf of wrinkled paper.
He peels off several sheets and hands them to me,
along with a fountain pen. Before leaving, he turns
and says, "Don't tell him where we're at."

After making sure the door is firmly shut, I sit down
at the desk, adjusting the flame in the gas lamp, then
begin writing.


"Dear Frederick,

"We've finally reached our destination: a small island
across the ocean. It has a Spanish name, one I can't
pronounce, but it is very beautiful. The trees are
really tall, and their leaves look like umbrellas;
they don't provide much shade, though, at least
according to Jack.

"Jack is being very good to me. I've been very well
fed, moreso than when I lived in Whitechapel. The
small cabin I've been put in is very clean and
comfortable; I'm by myself, though, and I'm not used
to that. I've always slept with someone else in the
room.

"Despite my relative comfort here, I really miss
London. Please tell me when things have cooled down
enough for my return..."


I send my letter with several members of the crew to
find someone to deliver it to London for me.

One month later, I receive a short reply, scribbled
furiously on a scrap of paper in a hand that is
obviously well adapted to writing formally and
gracefully. I am disappointed when I see the length of
it, but my disappointment quickly flees as I read it.


"William,

"It is no longer safe where you are. Return to London
as soon as you are able to. Be careful, and keep Jack
with you at all times.

"Frederick."


The next morning, I emerge from my cabin to find one
of Jack's crew members gutted and nailed to a tree
outside my door.



TBC


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