Pairing: Will/James, slight Jack/Will
Length: 402 words
Disclaimer: Nope, Disney owns them. I get no money from it, no matter how much I might wish I did.
Warnings: Slash and broken hearts.
Note: Also at my journal and pirategasm. For the pirates500 "Barrel" challenge.
James knew that he had told Will that they couldn’t possibly continue their relationship—that his career wouldn’t allow it and Will would assuredly get bored with waiting—but it didn’t make him love the boy any less. When Groves had needed a new sword, Norrington had gone straight to Turner; the meeting had been painfully awkward. He’d left quickly after Will told him the blade would be complete in a week’s time.
Each of the seven nights brought the commodore less sleep. Will Turner’s image haunted him. James regretted his decision but knew it was for the best. No number of dreams would be allowed to convince him otherwise.
Mornings were hard with memories and half-remembered fantasies of the dream world, but nights were harder with recalled whispers and an empty bed that felt much too large.
Upon a week’s passing, Norrington returned to the smithy and was waiting for Will when he heard the clatter of something that sounded wooden—a barrel, perhaps?—from the back of the shop.
“Will!” he called, old feelings tinting his voice, shading it with the crimson and scarlet of past love, “Will, are you alright?” Quickly making his way to the back of the smithy, James pushed open the door to what used to be the apprentice’s quarters and were now usually vacant.
If James knew a more painful sight, he couldn’t have named it.
Jack Sparrow held merely bedclothes to hide his obviously nude and hastily covered body, and Will was half-naked, the buttons on his breeches incorrectly fastened. A man he loved and a man he hated were standing in the room where he and Will had first made love after Elizabeth had left them both for the sea and a dark-skinned pirate girl who didn’t blink an eye at controversy.
James knew that Will hadn’t committed adultery. This was no crime. All this was—this scene, no matter how painful it might be—was a portrait that meant Will Turner had moved on. It meant the boy no longer felt love for the Commodore. Now he had bedded a filthy pirate in the navy man’s wake, proving that he wished never again to see James as he had before.
James knew of nothing worse.
And there was absolutely nothing wrong with what had come to pass. But there was also nothing at all that James could do but walk away as his heart broke all over again.