Title: Coming and Going
Fandom: Pirates of the Caribbean/The Little Mermaid Crossover
Summary: She waits, and he wonders.
Disclaimer: I do not own Jack from Pirates of the Caribbean, nor Ariel from The Little Mermaid. No money is being made and no copyright or trademark infringement is intended.
Author's Notes: This is for Amanda. Through thick and thin.
For three long years you wait and hope and try to remember the feel of his hands (rough) and the sound of his voice (smoky). Sometimes, you receive bottles with letters in them that start, 'I hope this is how you said to write, and I'm coming for you' and 'I feel foolish, tossing things overboard, but I had to tell you that I'm coming for you'. He always says that he's coming for you, but he never does, and it's getting harder to care.
The letters haven't been coming as often as they once did.
You tried to stay away from the whorehouses when you returned, but you couldn't, and you didn't, and you only requested redheads. Handfuls of women (oh, how you ran your hands over them!), and you couldn't come close to that girl across (and under) the ocean. In dreams you go back to her, and she loves you again and you bring her with you on the Pearl; in nightmares you go back to her and she doesn't exist or she doesn't want you or she doesn't remember who you are.
You have to know which it is.
You go back.
Ariel watched from the tide pool as the ship came in to her west, anxiety rising in her chest as she attempted to appear emotionless. She knew that Jack was on that vessel; she didn't know if he would come and find her again.
After all these years there was no doubt in her mind that he had forgotten her. She had heard plenty of stories about the beautiful women who walked around on the land, and there was no way the he would want to settle for someone who was confined to the ocean. Jack would have met one of these long-legged women on one of his adventures, and they would have fallen in love, and that was that.
The sails of the ship stood black against the wilting colors of the setting sun. Once the stars started to peek out she would return underwater, just as she had done every night since he had left her. She hated nighttime, now.
"Not even going to come and say hello, love?"
Her heart jumped into her throat and she turned to find Jack Sparrow down the beach, a small rowboat at his side and a smile on his face. "You came."
"Of course I came," he said. "Where else am I going to find myself a mermaid who can hold her rum like you?" He began trudging his way through the sand towards her, dropping the rope to his small boat as he went. "I didn't think you'd come to meet me at the dock, so I went scouting around the island the long way. You certainly do make me work for it." A million things were left unsaid between them, but they all melted away as he bent to meet her at the water's edge. "Miss me?"
Their kiss was soft and deep and she didn't have to answer him for him to understand exactly how much she had missed him; the next kiss told him even more.
The sun had long since set and the stars were already burning bright down upon them when they finally separated.
"Are you going to stay, now?" She asked, already knowing the answer. He had explained to her before that 'a pirate can't be kept in one spot, and besides, there isn't enough rum around these parts', and he confirmed by shaking his head.
As she moved to turn away, Ariel felt the sudden weight of his hat on her head. "You're coming with me." A very slight pause fell, followed by, "If you want to." Jack pulled a small silver object that she recognized as her fork, from all those years ago, out of his pocket and held it to her. "You can search the sea for more treasures, some even greater than forks."
Twirling it between her fingers, she splashed her tail against the inky darkness of the water. "And what about this?"
"Swim behind us by day." He pulled a necklace from around his neck and draped it around her own. It was a heavy stone, covered in crude drawings of what appeared to be waves. She very suddenly felt a rippling in her tail, and when she looked down, it had been replaced by human legs. "And with this amulet, live with me by night. Become a pirate with me?"
Again, she needed no words to answer.