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Changes in Time

15th June 2007 (00:17)

Hi all, this is my posting of all four chapters of Changes in Time, enjoy!

Title: Changes in Time
Rating: PG
Disclaimer: So not mine
Characters: Elizabeth Swann; Will Turner; James Norrington; A little bit of Bootstrap and Ana Maria
Pairing: W/E but ultimately JN/E
Summary: Will gives Elizabeth the opportunity to bring someone back from the locker, but what happens when it's not who they expect it to be?

Chapter One

Elizabeth
dropped her sword in shock. She was on board the Flying Dutchman with Will, her first visit since their wedding day. It had been five long months since she had seen him. She couldn’t believe what she was hearing. They had been fencing when Will had told her what he had found that he could do.

“What?” She asked, dumbly.

“I can bring someone back,” Will paused as recognition began to stir behind her eyes, “I can bring your father back.”

Elizabeth brought her slim hand to her mouth in shock and confusion, looking away from her husband to the vast sea. Traitorous, convoluted thoughts twisted in her head – did she want her father back? She chastised herself for thinking such a thing, but she couldn’t help but feel that she wasn’t strong enough to lose him again. After a moment she felt Will’s hand on her shoulder and she leant back into him.

“When?” She asked tentatively, now that the shock had worn off she couldn’t wait to see him again – how she had missed his company, and Will’s and, she thought with a wry smile, even James Norrington’s – living without them, in Port Royal, was a lonely affair.

 

 

Three days later they were nearing their destination, near World’s End. She couldn’t believe she was here again – every breeze and sound reminded her of what had happened only months ago yet seemed like so many lifetimes. After the events of the battle with the East India Trading Company, Elizabeth had come to the conclusion that although she had enjoyed her adventures, she wanted to settle down – something she never thought she’d hear herself say. She had, after marrying her sweetheart, retired to Port Royal, living comfortably on her father’s lands and estate, waiting for Will to return to her. She had considered going back to England and rejoining London society, but her heart had won out – despite the bad memories that accompanied the good, the Caribbean would always be her home.

There was a shout from the crow’s nest from Bootstrap, “We’re here William!” Then with a sheepish note he added, “Captain Turner.”

Elizabeth started from her thoughts and looked around her. It was day this time. Will had told her that they wouldn’t need the green flash this time around. She could hear the thundering falls nearby and was reassured by the sound of the anchor being dropped. They were here.

 

 

She looked down anxiously as Will climbed into the small rowboat. Once he had settled he looked up at her, waiting expectantly for her to join him. She hesitated, not wanting to ask for help – it would make her look foolish. She was grateful to be wearing breeches instead of a dress. Gingerly she climbed down the rope ladder until she was level with the boat. Suddenly she realised she had completely forgotten how she was supposed to dismount the ladder without falling into the rowboat, or worse, the sea. Thankfully she was saved by Will who came up behind her and lifted her into the boat by her waist.

Elizabeth sat timidly at the prow of the small craft, wishing that all her sense of adventure and rebellion hadn’t left her. She watched with detachment as Will efficiently cast off the lines and begin to row them a small distance from the Dutchman – they were rowing from the side of the ship protected from the brutal water flow. When they were about 100 metres from the vessel Will stopped, extending a hand beneath the surface of the water, willing the sea to hold them in place – a perk of being the Dutchman’s captain. Elizabeth smiled sadly at his form, as he frowned in concentration. The air between them had been tense and uncomfortable in the last few days. Elizabeth realized that the two of them had never spent so long together in each other’s company. On their return from the Isla de Muerta she had only ever spent time with him on the deck, when she wasn’t reading in Norrington’s quarters, talking with her father about her ill-fated wedding or taking a turn around the ship with the Commodore himself. Elizabeth felt a sudden pang of loss as she thought of her once fiancé. She had truly wronged him, she realised now. “What has the world done to you, James Norrington?” she recalled her words, with the realization that the world had inflicted his love of her on him. Looking again at her husband she felt a rush of guilt, guilt that she had carried with her since her wedding day. When Will had kissed her fantastically, heroically on the Black Pearl she had felt disappointed. Disappointed that that fairy tale kiss had lacked the meaning and, if suppressed, passion of the one James had given her only days before.

Will withdrew his hand from the water and turned to face her, taking in her delicate form – he couldn’t help but feel that she had changed in the short time since had seen her last, she seemed more fragile and even, god forbid, more domesticated. He saw her gazing into the horizon wistfully, mourning he supposed for her father still. A small niggle of doubt raised its head – or is he mourning her separation from Jack? Regardless, she belonged to him. He still couldn’t understand how she could have changed so much in such a short amount of time.

“Will?” He was startled from his reverie by her throaty voice. He remembered himself and began to explain what they needed to do.

“You need to get into the water,” he ignored her shudder of discomfort, “and swim downwards, I’ll hold onto you with a rope, so you won’t get away, you need to call your father and he should come to you. Once I think you have him I’ll pull you back. You need to be clear when you call him otherwise there’s no knowing who will come through.”
Elizabeth was disturbed by his lack of comforting words or detail but decided to place her trust in him one more time. She looked into the depths of the water with trepidation, not liking to dwell on how cold the sea would be.

“What happens if he doesn’t come? Can we try again?” she asked, not sure she wanted to hear the answer.

“He’ll come.” Will said, evasively.

“Will?”

He sighed, and conceded, even in her new temperament she was still persistent – maybe there was still hope.

“No. If it doesn’t work that’s it. You won’t be able to try again,” at her shocked expression he elaborated, “You can’t try bridging the two worlds again, your body just won’t be able to take it.”

Elizabeth nodded, almost in defeat, she turned to the water again – she was ready. She pulled her overcoat off, a thick jacket of fur that Will had bought especially for her in the Americas. Will was shocked to see that underneath she wore non other than the Navy coat that the Commodore Norrington had given to her when she was aboard the Dauntless. She stood up, and Elizabeth made to pull the coat off, but then thought better of it, tightening the sash that closed it. Will gave her the end of the rope, carefully measured so that she would just be able to reach the other side, but not enter fully. She tied it around her sash with shaking hands and Will was again struck by her frailty. Taking one last look at Will she stepped off of the boat.

 

It was so cold. Elizabeth’s mind seemed to freeze. After a long moment she remembered what she was meant to do and began to swim down, feeling the rope around her waist become more and more taut as she went. There was a light ahead! She swam with determination now. As her hands made contact with the glowing surface she felt the rope tighten up, struggling against it, she reached her hands through – feeling warm air on the other side. She pulled against Will’s hold again but was unable to pull away, with dismay she realized that she was beginning to run out of breath, in panic she called out into the ocean, “Please? I need you! Come back to me!” large bubbles bloomed in front of her and as her eyes began to dim she felt Will pulling her back. Defeat overcame her and she watched with grief as her arms pulled back from the other side.

Just as her hands were about to re-emerge she felt something grip them tightly and her mind cleared at once. Feeling a sharp tug on the rope she squeezed the hands and pulled them towards her, with the last of her strength. She saw her hands entwined with long masculine fingers reappear from the light, and with that her world went dark.

Will pulled the rope as hard as he could, frantically leaning his weight into extracting her from the water, she was heavier now, and he could only hope that she had found her father. Suddenly the rope went slack, toppling him backwards in the boat, and he watched the water in shock and horror. What was happening? After a few moments he saw Elizabeth’s dark hair coiling to the surface and leapt forwards seizing her shoulders, dragging her desperately to the boat. He watched in anticipation a moment before he was relieved by a sharp intake of breath from her prone form. He felt the boat lurch sharply and turned to see the man she had saved. But it was not the man he had expected.

Rolling over the side of the boat with great heaving gasps and racking coughs was none other than the former Admiral Norrington.


Chapter Two

Despite the various coughs and sputtering that were coming from the two drenched passengers, Will felt that a palpable silence had descended upon them. Elizabeth turned on her side, heaving out great mouthfuls of salt water. He knew that he should be helping her, at least putting her coat back on her, but he felt paralysed. Why? Why of all people would she bring back Norrington? Norrington who she had seemed to detest? Norrington who she had left for him? Norrington who had died on the wrong side of the battle? Will watched him with a mix of contempt and uncertainty. Norrington sat up and looked up at the sky, like a man who has not seen day for a thousand nights, and Will suddenly realized, that maybe he hadn’t.

James looked down again, and saw Elizabeth attempting to sit up, drenched to the bone. Doing a sweep of the small craft he saw a large fur coat, and grabbing it, wrapped it around her thin frame. It was only then that Elizabeth really saw him.

“James?” She asked in bewilderment.

He smiled stiffly at her, pulling her close to him, trying to keep her warm. She was so thin, he thought. Looking up into the eyes of her sweetheart, Turner, he glared angrily at him – how could he let her get like this? And to let her fall into waters this treacherous was sheer folly. It dawned on James then, that he should not, by all rights, be here, in the glorious sunshine.

“James?” she asked again, interrupting any analysis of why he was here again. He looked back down into her large eyes and felt his heart would contract until it simply shrunk up into nothingness. He remembered. He remembered letting her go, going against all orders. He remembers kissing her. He remembers dying for her. He recalled, with dreamlike recollection, sitting in a rowboat, not too different from the one they sat in now, and passing many others like him. He remembers trying to cross over, but being held back by some unseeing force. Then like a nightmare, but a dream too, a woman’s hand had reached out for him from the depths, and he had been brought back.

Will cleared his throat loudly; his chest constricted tightly, sudden discomfort set in as he saw the way the two people were gazing at each other, searching for answers. They looked, he thought, like lovers who had found themselves after many lifetimes apart. The two looked up, shamed. Norrington loosened his grip on his wife and Elizabeth; somewhat reluctantly it seemed to Will, withdrew her hand from the officer’s chest. Will leant forwards and seized his wife’s wrist, feeling possessive. He turned to Elizabeth.

“Why is he here?” He asked simply, not bothering with pleasantries or courtesy towards Norrington.

Elizabeth seemed confused too, but she tried her best to explain, “I don’t know. But I couldn’t reach the other side, only my hands could get through.”

Will felt a flush of guilt, as it occurred to him that he hadn’t factored in the length of rope to tie around her waist when he had cut the length - that was why she couldn't get there. It was a bitter irony, he thought.

“Mr Turner,” James finally spoke, “I am not entirely sure why I am here, but the fact is that I am. Would you care to take us back to, what I presume is now your, ship? If not for my sake, then for Elizabeth’s.”

Will felt the words harshly, and felt like the young boy who had idolised Norrington again. Put into his place by the older man, and unable to think of a retort, he let go of Elizabeth’s wrist and picked up the oars. He was hurt to see that she shifted away from him, still gazing intently at her former fiancé. As he began to row, he couldn’t help but snipe, “She is my wife now, Norrington.”
Elizabeth’s gaze dropped and he thought he caught a flicker of pain cross the man’s features before the mask was put back up.

The trip back to the boat seemed torturously long. James was the first to climb out of the boat. Elizabeth quickly climbed onto the ladder after him, not wanting to get into the conversation with Will, she knew they would have to have, just yet. When she got to the top, James pulled her up, gently, by her forearms. The contact between them lasted the briefest of seconds though, as Will clambered onto the deck behind them, and James dropped her hands as if they had scalded him. The crew were moving around the deck busily, not caring that the man who was in their midst was none other than a former “commander”. Bootstrap Bill came rushing over once he saw his son, but froze in his tracks as he saw the man that he had slain, less than a half a year ago. James looked the man up and down, he was so very different looking now but he recognised him. He had no doubt that he would recognize him – he was still dressed in his admiralty finery, though his wig was mussed and his hat was no where to be seen. Elizabeth looked between the two men, not making the connection immediately – Will’s father was such a gentle man. When she did, she clutched onto Will’s arm, she had promised her father-in-law that she would not tell his son of the events of that night.

Bootstrap spoke at last, “Admiral. I hope you can forgive me for what I did to you.” He asked humbly, not making any excuses.

Norrington bowed his head, respecting the man for his humility, “It is forgotten – you were not were not in your right mind.” With this he extended his hand to Bootstrap, which he gladly accepted. With that Will’s father moved on, realizing that something was amiss, but that now was not the time to ask.

Will led them to his quarters. James looked around in surprise; the Dutchman truly was a reflection of its captain. The room was large but tastefully minimal, with only a large desk, a dining table and several chairs furnishing the room.
Elizabeth, why don’t you go get dressed?” Will asked, tactfully.

Elizabeth looked like she wanted to protest but seemed to think better of it, sweeping out of the room as dramatically as she could. Will collected two tumblers and filled them, much more than was appropriate, with whisky. He handed one to Norrington, leaving the bottle on the table in easy reach. The officer murmured his thanks and sat down in front of the desk. Will took a great slug of his drink before setting the drink on the desk. Instead of sitting, he excused himself and left through the door Elizabeth had used.

While Norrington was bristling with indignation at being left, stinking wet in the captain’s rooms, Will knocked on Elizabeth’s room door.

“Come in.” she called. He entered to find her pulling a relatively formal dress on, and stepped behind her to help lace her into it. “Elizabeth,” he started, feeling her tense underneath his hands, “What really happened that night?” Will wasn’t a fool, she had told him that Norrington had died on the Dutchman but that was all she had said, but he knew there was more to the story.

Elizabeth let out a sad sigh. She began haltingly at first, but she knew this story would have to be told – he was her husband and he deserved to know all her truths.

“When I was caught by Davy Jones, he threw me into the brig, with what was left of Sao Feng’s crew. I didn’t escape on my own like I told you. Norrington came that night,” Will tensed, pulling the laces tight, eliciting a gasp, “He came to let us go. We got all the men off. I tried to get him to come with me, and I finally managed to convince him, but then one of Davy Jones’ men saw us. He told me to go. I wouldn’t,” Will was aware that her speech was becoming more laboured and she was weeping softly, “He told me that our destinies were always entwined, but never joined.” She let out a full sob now, and Will wrapped his arms around her slender waist.
“You kissed him?” He asked, not sure he wanted the answer, but already knowing it. Elizabeth turned in his embrace, burying her head in his chest. He felt the almost imperceptible nod, and felt something harden within him. “What happened next?”

She tried to slow her breathing and continued, “I started climbing, and I thought he would follow, but then someone came. He could have followed. He could have run. But he shot the rope – I fell, but he saved me.”

Will closed his eyes, suppressing his own tears, tears for the life he wanted slipping away before his eyes. There was one more awful truth to be had, he feared, “The man who killed him? Was it my father?”

Elizabeth stilled. Should she tell him, or should she lie to protect the relationship between father and son? But she couldn’t help but feel that he already knew, “It was. But you mustn’t blame him, please, Will? If James can forgive him, can’t you?”

Will withdrew from her arms and took in her lovely form. Her face was blotchy from weeping but it was still the face he knew so well. She was thin he noted, far too thin and he felt a great guilt for allowing her to bear the burden of her grief alone for so long. He took her hands into his, planted a kiss on each palm, before leaning forwards and kissing her forehead. With that he turned around and left the room.


Chapter Three

James shifted uncomfortably in his seat, painfully aware of how cold he was – the sea water felt as if it were seeping into his bones. He took a careful sip of the whisky in an attempt to warm himself up. Footsteps approached, and he replaced the drink on the table, hand subconsciously moving to the scabbard that hung on his belt – but it was not there. He stood as the door swung open and William Turner strode back in. He came level with James before drawing a sword. The officer’s mind went into overdrive, looking for a weapon, some place to move or run - but it was not necessary. Will simply held the sword aloft, straight up before him.

“This is a beautiful sword,” He stated, “Recognize it?” And indeed he did – it was his.

“I made this sword for the one who wields it – it reflects upon you well.” He flipped the sword and offered the handle to Norrington.

James took it, and lifted before him, “Thank you.” was all he said – he wasn’t entirely sure what Turner meant by this.
Will smiled, “Consider it my gift to you, along with Elizabeth,” he spoke softly, James could tell it pained the young man to say, but before he could interrupt him, he carried on, “Take her back home. Look after her. Give her life she wants, the life she needs. Give her children and a legacy she will not lament,” Will stepped forwards and clasped the older man’s shoulder, “Love her enough for the both of us.” Norrington looked him in the eye and knew he meant what he said – it touched him, to see the man return the “favour” that he had given him, so long ago on the battlements of Port Royal. Unable to summon the words he simply nodded, and gripped Will’s shoulder in return.

Unknowingly to both men, Elizabeth had entered the room silently, witnessing the entire scene. Will turned, surprised to see her there.

Elizabeth,” He looked at her wistfully, regretting his choice, but knowing all the while he had to let her go, “We are at Tripoli, and here is where I’ll leave you. There will be a ship soon enough that will bear you hence, whether to Port Royal or to London. Make a life for yourself. This is my final gift to you, Elizabeth, please do not refuse it.” With a final squeeze of Norrington’s shoulder and a stiff bow to Elizabeth, William Turner left the room, and was not seen by them again.

Elizabeth walked over to James and took his arm. It pained her to leave Will after all they had been through together, but she knew this was the right course for her – piracy be damned. James smiled down at her, and she reached her free hand up to his wig, pulling it loose, revealing the dark her she knew he had beneath. James smiled again, one of his true, genuine smiles that reached those wonderful green eyes and made Elizabeth feel as if she could float. He leant down to kiss her, properly this time.

As they pulled apart, Elizabeth spoke huskily in his ear, to allay all his fears, “James Norrington, you are where my heart truly,” she turned her head, kissing his neck, standing on tip toes, “truly lies.”


Epilogue

Will looked out from the crow’s nest, searching the never-ending horizon. He wasn’t looking for anything in particular, but simply reflecting on his life. Needless to say, things had not turned out as he had hoped they would. He had lost his “wife”, if she could be called that – since they had never officially registered their marriage, his ability to walk on land and his own mortality. Although Will kept no real track of her, he knew it had been many years since he had returned Elizabeth to James Norrington. And for the first time in many years, he was consumed by the desire to find out what they had made of their lives, if Norrington had lived up to his vow. Climbing out of the crow’s nest, he nimbly scaled down the rigging, summoning someone else to keep watch. He entered his quarters and from underneath his large desk he pulled a large, porcelain bowl that had been left by the captain before. Despite the turbulent nature of the sea, the dark water that lay in the dish never spilt. He looked into the dish, searching for the bottom of the water, but it seemed bottomless. Never taking his eyes from the glasslike surface, he reached into his jacket pocket, pulling out a small trinket on a leather thong – the piece of eight Elizabeth had been given by Sao Feng. He dropped it in with a splash, and sat transfixed as he watched thirteen events in his love’s life unfold in the obsidian water.

 

He saw Elizabeth stepping off the ramp from a large boat, looking around self consciously. She looks lovely, he thinks, dressed in a royal blue gown with light blue lace and a fan. She stands there alone, a moment or two, before a tall and handsome man follows her down, holding several large bags in his hands – she is laughing at him, carrying all of her things. Norrington smiles bashfully, trying to shift the cases into one hand so that he may take her arm. He finally relents and lets her carry one case – only the hatbox though. They walk off of the wharf and disappear from view, Elizabeth clutching onto his arm, trying not to let her nervousness show.

 

She is sitting in a plush chair, positioned in a large garden, overlooking the sea. She seems to be doing a piece of needlework, or at least trying to – stabbing the cloth viciously with the needle, frustrated that she isn’t as domestic as she would like. She looks up to the ocean and sees it glittering. Will would have liked to think that she was thinking of him, and maybe she is, but it seems plain in her face that the green waters remind her of her true love’s eyes. As if on cue, he appears behind her, leaning above her to plant a kiss on the top of her head, she smiles, and she is content.

 

He sees James Norrington standing on the battlements, clad in all his navy finery. He mutters nervously to himself, hunching over the walls slightly. He turns as he hears her light footsteps, straightening his back. He reaches a hand for her and she joins him there. Norrington begins to speak but then seems to stop himself, stepping down from the edge, before getting down on one knee. Elizabeth can’t stop smiling, even if it isn’t proper, and she drops down to his level, embracing him and kissing her as if he is her lifeline. Although there is no sound, Will can tell she is saying “yes” over, and over again. The kisses she gives him and the hold she has him in would make any man blush – fortunately there seem to be no spectators nearby.

 

Elizabeth is all in white. Will realizes with a jolt that this is her wedding day. Her dark eyes seem to gaze at him a moment before they turn to her husband besides her. It is a small ceremony, Will notes; he supposes they both live in scandal, particularly now that he and the Governor are no longer there. The best man, Lieutenant Groves, hands Norrington his wedding ring for Elizabeth, and in his state of anxiety and excitement he drops it on the floor. Elizabeth looks on in fondness as he and Groves scrabble after it. Just before Norrington finally places the ring on her finger, he looks up at her, eyes filled with insecurity, and Will swears he hears the recognizable voice, “Are you sure?” She simple places a hand on the side of his face and nods.

 

He sees them at the docks again. She is holding onto him tightly, crying as he comforts her, rocking her backwards and forth. Will knows he is leaving, not because he wants to, but because Norrington’s duty to the Navy is so strong. He kisses her fiercely, as if trying to devour her tears, not caring what his men think. With no last words he gets onto a small rowboat and looks at her sadly as his men take him to the ship. Elizabeth has collected herself and simply waves goodbye to him – she will not shame him in public, she is stronger than that. Will knows she will weep in the comfort of her home.

 

Elizabeth seems thin again, skin drawn too tightly over her bones. She sits in the same seat that he saw her in before, in the garden. It is night now, and one of her maids comes and tucks a blanket around her, caringly. Elizabeth’s eyes seem dull in the dark, as she sits, waiting for her love to return. Will feels guilt as he thinks how he nearly made her wait for him for ten years.

 

There is a ship pulling into the harbour, its sails tattered in the wind. The wife of the Admiral runs to the ship pulling alongside the shipyard docks as they roll out the boarding plank. Lieutenant Groves rushes out to meet her, speaking lowly – Will wishes, desperately, that he could know what they were saying. Behind them, two officers, caked with salt and blood bear a stretcher towards them. On it is her husband, neck bound tight with white cloth stained red, eyes closed and skin whiter than the linen he lies on. Elizabeth rushes to him, checking he is still alive, before ordering the men to take him home – the spirit alive again in her eyes.

 

James Norrington lies in their marriage bed, smiling wanly at his fussing wife. It seems much time has passed; he looks well again, if thinner than he used to be. He catches her hand as she strides past, and pulls her down to him. Grinning at him, the spark returning to him, she kisses him lightly, murmuring something in his ear, before grasping a wet cloth from a bowl, and wiping his brow and neck – despite his gestures that say “I’m alright, really!”

 

It is night and in their bedroom again. Will shifts uncomfortably, wishing he could look away, afraid of what he’ll see. But they are not doing anything he cannot witness. James has his arms wrapped around his wife’s sleeping form; nose buried in her dark hair, spreading like blood across the pillows. There is something wrong. She seems peaceful, but her husband is sweating, swallowing uncomfortably whilst looking at his wife as she sleeps, afraid of waking her up – his wound has not healed.

 

 The next scene seems unimportant at first glance, a portrait, almost, of a loving wife and husband gazing out to sea from their bedroom windows. But there is something else, the spectator notes, his eyes following the possessive path that the Admiral’s arms weave across her body – jealousy flares. The older man’s hands are splayed across her stomach. She does not, just, look healthy again. She is pregnant.

 

Norrington paces up and down before two heavy cedar doors. Will notices for the first time, since his attention has always been drawn to Elizabeth, that time has begun to show itself in James Norrington. His hair, free from the wig, is still dark, but there is grey around his temples and sideburns. His face seems lined, and Will hopes for his sake that they laughter lines. He also sees, as he turns his head towards the door that he has cravat tied high up his neck, to hide his scars. The doors open, and he rushes in. Elizabeth has two babes in her arms; her husband falls to his knees, looking adoringly at his goddess and their children.

 

They are in the garden again, but many years have passed. Elizabeth too shows the signs of age, her hair a little less glorious, and her skin, though still soft, Will imagines, is lined with care and worry. They sit on a large couch together as they watch their two daughters together. Will is surprised by their appearance. They remind him deeply of Elizabeth just before they began their adventures, but there is much of their father in them, in their eyes and in the way they hold themselves. They must be in their mid-teens, he thinks. How old are they now? Are they married off yet?

 

Elizabeth is sick. Will knows, almost before he sees her. She is in her bed, her faithful husband at her side. She seems gaunt, but what lets him know that she is not going to win this battle, is the look on Norrington’s face. His face seems jovial, telling her some joke or anecdote, while she holds the white cloth to her mouth. But his eyes, his eyes seem filled with despair and desperate hope. Elizabeth draws the cloth away and the rose blooming on it does not surprise either of them. This scene lasts the longest. William feels like a voyeur as he watches, for what seems like hours, a man who was once his idol, cradle the failing body of the woman he loves in her last hours. At last they stopped talking and together they rested in the bed. The scene faded with James watching his wife in her eternal sleep – his eyes no longer sparkling like the sea. Will felt cruel, but he was pleased, in some twisted way, that she had died first – She wasn’t strong enough to lose Norrington twice.

 

As he began to pull away from the dark water, he was surprised to see one last scene unravel before him. There were figures, clad in all in black, clashing with the Caribbean sun. They moved away, wraithlike, and he saw two stones standing proud from the green:

 

Elizabeth Norrington

Devoted mother and loving wife.

Queen of the Sea.

Died of consumption.

Born on the 21st of October 1758

Died on the 31st of May 1799

 

Admiral James Norrington

Loving father and devoted husband.

Servant of the Sea and Navy to the end.

Died in grief.

Born on the 19th July 1745

Died on the 31st of May 1800

 

Will finally pulled loose from the sights and shook his head. He nudged the dish back underneath the desk with his foot. He had had no idea that so many years had passed. He felt a heaviness in his, metaphorical, heart, and it was not just grief for his once wife but for the man who had loved her so completely that he had not been able to carry on without her. A voice called out behind him and he turned to see Ana Maria standing in the doorway of his quarters. She asked, concernedly, if he was alright, and he patiently explained, as he led her out to the deck, that he wasn’t sure he was, but he would explain. The love that his friends had shared deserved to be remembered by all he could tell. Idly, he wondered, as he began the story, if he should seek out Elizabeth’s daughters, but decided not to. He had already impacted their world enough as it was.

Will looked at Ana, who watched him intently as he unfolded the story. He didn’t love her, the way James had loved Elizabeth, but he was content. She made him happy.

Comments

Posted by: N006tard4LiFe (n006tard4life)
Posted at: 15th July 2011 09:57 (UTC)

I know this story is several years old, but I just stumbled upon it. It brought a tear to my eye. It was absolutely lovely.

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