Summary: When escaping the man in your life, there's no sense in messing with the classics.
Disclaimer: Disney owns these characters and the setting in which they live.
Notes: vadalia has impugned upon me to write a story in which Jack cross-dresses . . . a story with a jig . . . a story with an Irishman . . . and without rum. And naturally, I've written so much by now that I've done all of the above. =) This is a sequel to Under the Uniform, with a cameo from the Hunter-verse.
"So . . . Captain Jack Sparrow. Haven't you already tried this trick?"
The pirate in question was laced into a bright red dress that puffed with petticoats at the bottom. He wore an immense hat with not one but three dyed ostrich plumes. His lips had even been painted an eye-scorching red.
His gold teeth were disturbing in that vivid smile. "Captain Jack Sparrow? Why, I'm the lady Esmaralda," he sniffed, whipping off the hat and gave a sweeping bow.
Norrington didn't know whether to be amused or horrorstruck. "Ladies curtsy, Esmaralda."
Jack straightened. "Do they? Damn." He shrugged affably and tossed the hat away. It hung on one of Norrington's men's bayonets, and the soldier only glanced upward, appalled. "But I couldn't resist." He began removing the dress, and the behatted soldier's pupils went to pinpricks.
"For the love of Christ, man, leave the skirt on!"
Jack Sparrow's trousers appeared under the voluminous petticoats. "What's that, lad?" he asked, muffled by a mouthful of fabric.
Two pairs of arms pinioned him in the skirt and lifted him despite his frantic kicking.
"Clap him in irons," Norrington ordered. "And once you've stowed him, give yourselves the night off."
Somewhere in the press of naval men, someone muttered, "Will that be in the brig or in your cabin, Commodore Norrington?"
The someone's mate nudged him. "He's caught Sparrow again, and now we can have proper shore leave. Let well enough alone, boy."
They sat together on the deck of Norrington's ship, staring at the stars as they leaned against the mainmast. It was a lovely dark night, and they were alone.
Jack examined the first alcohol he'd ever seen on Norrington's ship; it was a decanter of brandy, and it was nestled safe in Jack's hand. "Good lad. No one's invaded since the Pearl, then?"
Norrington raised an eyebrow. "Barring the repeat invasions of the Pearl which always seem to occur while I'm conveniently away, you mean?"
"Yes, barring those."
Norrington leafed through his ship's log. "The worst thing to happen was a stopover by an Irishman--O'Heaney, if memory serves--who tried to Christianize the savages of Port Royal."
This set Jack temporarily aback--he couldn't recall any savages in the area. He tried redirecting his mind along the course that a missionary might think, and at last hazarded, "What, the jailed pirates and the like?"
"No. The vicar."
Jack laughed, and Norrington laughed with him. You couldn't know a man for three and a half years and love him for two without getting to understand him.
"How was the wedding?" Jack asked, swigging the brandy and squeezing his eyes shut at the taste.
"Notably uneventful. Will and Elizabeth looked quite fetching at the alter, though."
On a ship anchored nearby, men began to play a wild song. Jack's decanter thumped on the deck as the pirate jumped to his feet.
"Marry me, love," he said, and it might have been a promise or a threat but it wasn't an invitation. "Marry lovely Esmaralda with the sea as our alter." He pulled the commodore to his feet and danced him into a jig.
Wild stepping feet and hands that clapped and clasped beat a rhythm against the distant song of the pennywhistle and the flute. It was a wild moment; it was impulsive, and it was beautiful.
Just a man, with the sea as his witness and the music as his marriage to the man who would be is wife.
"I take you, Esmaralda, as my wedded wife, Jack Sparrow," Norrington laughed.
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