My first POTC fiction...Please let me know what you think and whether or not you would like the story to continue. (I"m already working on Chapter 2)

NO COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT INTENDED. This is a fictional work of my own. Only the "OC's" are mine.

I look forward to your thoughts.
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The Pearl was docked in beautiful St. Croix where Jack and crew would enjoy two days of relaxation while they stocked up on supplies for their next adventure. Having eaten nothing but vegetables and bread the last couple of days, the crew had been anxious to get some sustenance at a that would more adequately fill their bellies. One pub in particular was a favorite spot every time they were in the area because they also boasted some of the most beautiful waitresses on the island.

Jack would normally be partaking in the debauchery right along with his men, but this time, he wanted nothing of the loud and boisterous leave granted to his crew. Instead he opted to stay on the ship a bit longer to finish plotting their next course without interruption from anyone.

Something else was also amiss. He had felt restless and ill at ease lately. He couldn't put his finger on the cause but something was stirring and Jack was anxious to find some solitude. It was unsettling this feeling of loneliness that seemed to have taken up residence in his heart. He'd never imagined wanting anything more than life on his Pearl as they sailed the oceans. However, things had begun to change.

Perhaps it was due to everything he had seen Will and Elizabeth go through in recent years and remain true to each other and the love they shared.

Perhaps it was due to losing Angelica again. She was the one woman he had ever dared give part of his heart too, but fate did not seem to be working in their favor as he had no idea where she was living. Indeed it had been a few years since he had heard of her at all.

Whatever the cause, it was creating a feeling of emptiness in him that was unwelcome. He was a pirate first and foremost; and a Pirate Lord, at that. His love and devotion needed to be only with his ship, his crew, and the pursuit of treasure.

Or did it?

Something he had once told young Will after they had first met seemed to be on an endless loop in his mind:

"Not all treasure is silver and gold, mate."

He was hearing it over and over and it was frustrating the hell out of him. Shaking the thought from his head once again, he stood up, sheathed his sword, grabbed his hat and prepared to leave the ship and make his way to one of his favorite spots on the island. He needed some fresh air and a moment to think.

But first, he would make a stop for rum. He needed rum…..It always made him think more clearly.

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Bottle of rum in one hand and his journal in the other, Jack made his way to the Carambola tide pools. It was one of the most beautiful and serene places he had ever come across in his world travels. Finally, he found the spot he was looking for: A small cove that held the secret of a small cave hidden by a waterfall. Jack had spent hours sitting inside that cave watching the crystal clear water fall over the rock above into the azure blue pool below. He spread out the small blanket he'd brought along and sat down before allowing the sound of the waterfall to begin clearing his mind.

Jack woke with a start at the sound of something…..or someone…..splashing in the water in the pool. Realizing he must have fallen asleep, he sat up and tried to focus his eyes on who was causing the disturbance. It didn't take long for his eyes fell on a form swimming in the water just beyond the waterfall. It headed towards the alcove on the other side before emerging from the water.

Jack felt his breath catch and he sat up straighter to get a better look. It was a woman…a very naked woman with a long mane of hair cascading down her back. Jack's eyes traveled downward to the curves of her hips, her delectable backside, and long trim legs. He felt momentarily stunned as he watched her walk towards a towel she'd haphazardly thrown onto one of the rocks before wrapping it round herself, turning in his direction and sitting down on the sand.

"Bugger," he mused out loud. "If she'd only turned around a bit more before donning the bloody towel, I would have gotten a better look."

Turning her face up towards the sun, Jack was once again caught off guard. She looked suspiciously like a mermaid…..and given her beauty, Jack wouldn't have been surprised if that were the case…..but since he had yet to see a tail, he knew that probably was not the case. She reached into a bag at her side, pulled out a brush, and began to brush through her long locks. Jack felt something stir inside his chest: An ache to talk to her…..to find out more about her…..and how she had found this secret retreat where he had never encountered anyone before.

But how to approach her…..That was the question. He didn't want to startle her because she obviously wasn't aware he was hidden behind the waterfall. On the other hand, if he waited too long and she realized he had been watching her, it wouldn't fair well for him either. Before he could decide what to do, however, fate seemed to work in his favor.

Suddenly, her brush stilled and she sat up straighter looking over her shoulder as if listening to something. Then, she hastily threw things into her bag and began to make her way towards the cave he was currently hiding in. Jack had only moments to come up with a plan, so he picked up his things and moved back into the shadows where she wouldn't be able to see him and he could keep an eye on what was going on.

There had been no time for her to get dressed…..Whatever she heard must be close by…..so she made a hasty retreat behind the falls holding the towel closely to her chest with one hand and her bag with the other. Then, she crouched down silently and waited.

It wasn't long before three men emerged over the rocks and appeared to be looking for something. The woman moved back further as if trying to get as far away from them as possible. Jack watched as they continued to look about. He could see them talking to one another, but the sound of the water falling gently over the rock above was muffling what was being said. Then, they apparently decided to split up to continue their search and one of the men started in the direction of the cave. The woman' grabbed her bag and began frantically looking for something. Jack decided it was time to act. Whatever was going on, and whoever these men were, they were frightening her…and every protective instinct inside of him told him she needed help.

He moved silently…..She had no idea he was even there until he crouched down behind her and brought an arm around to cover her mouth lest she scream. His other arm went around her waist to hold her still. Her eyes went wide in horror and she started trying to get away, but Jack pulled her closer and put his lip close to her ear.

"It's okay, love. I'm not going to hurt you…..I promise. I'm here to help."

To his utter surprise and absolute relief, she seemed to believe him as he felt a small bit of the tension leave her body. He knew that could change at any moment so he kept talking.

"Promise me you'll be a good girl and won't scream….."

She shook her head affirmatively.

"Okay….So these men…..I'm assuming they are looking for you. Yes?"

Again she shook her head affirmatively.

"I'm going to remove my hand. If you scream, it's only going to alert that one of our little hideaway…..and we don't want that, do we?"

She shook her head, "No." and Jack slowly removed his hand. Still clutching her towel around her, she turned slightly, grabbed Jack's forearm, and lifted the sleeve slightly to get a better look at the tattoo peaking from underneath. Her eyes went wide in surprise as she turned completely to face him.

"Jack Sparrow?" she squeaked.

Jack's face broke into a charming smile that no doubt would melt most women into a puddle at his feet. She willed herself not to fall for it. There were more pressing matters at hand. How she was going to get out of her current predicament being at the top of the list.

"You've heard of me?" his smile widened before noticing their visitor was getting dangerously close to discovering them. Jack grabbed her arm gently but firmly and began to lead her further back into the shadows of their cave. "More on that later, darling…..Right now we need to formulate a plan to ward off this unwelcome intruder."

Jack's eyes roamed down her body before coming back up to meet hers once again. "As much as I would love to keep you just as you are…" he began as her eyes sparked with fire. "Perhaps it would better suit the moment if you would get dressed."

She motioned for Jack to turn around and he did so reluctantly…not without sneaking a quick peak, however. He was a scoundrel, after all, and the temptation was simply too strong for him to ignore.

She dressed quickly and came up behind Jack.

"What are we going to do?" she asked.

"You are going to stay here," Jack began. "While I take care of this lad and make certain he will not follow us out of here to warn the other two that you have been found."

"I will do no such thing," she declared before holding up a rope she had pulled from her bag. "We will BOTH take care of this 'lad'. I will not be put in the background like some distraught damsel in distress, Captain Sparrow. I can take care of…"

"Fine," Jack said rather impatiently….although he couldn't help but wonder why on earth a woman would have a coil of rope in her bag when she had gone out to sunbathe. "There is no time to debate. Seeing as how you have the rope, we shall use it to tie him up and insure he does not follow us out of here."

The two made their way closer and reached the backside of the waterfall just as the young man ducked behind the water to find them. The element of surprise was in their favor and Jack was able to quickly and easily grab him.

"Who are you?" he asked. "Why are you here?"

"I could say the same to you," Jack said as the young man struggled to get away.

"Let me go! We only want the girl."

"Sorry…I can't let that happen, son. Tell me what you want with her."

"It doesn't matter," the woman said a little too quickly causing Jack's curiosity to peak. "Let's just get out of here before the other two come back!" She tied the rope in a knot around the man's waist before beginning to wrap it tightly around securing his arms to his side while Jack held him fast. Once they were sure he wouldn't be able to easily escape the bonds, they sat him down on the rocks.

Jack reached out to take her hand, "Time to go, love. You can tell me this story later. Right now we need to make a hasty retreat and get back to my ship without being noticed."

She recoiled. "I will NOT be going onto your ship, Captain Sparrow! I will be going back to town."

"I'm afraid I cannot let that happen…..and you will do exactly as I say." He said it with an authority she knew came from years of captaining his own ship, but she was not about to willingly set foot onto a pirate's ship; Even one who was saving her at the moment.

"I will NOT!" she said again.

Jack looked exasperated even though there was a small twinkle of amusement…..or perhaps admiration at her feisty attitude…..in his eyes. "I am more than willing to throw you over my shoulder and carry you out of here, but it would be much easier for both of us if you would simply cooperate," he reasoned with her. "I mean you no harm," he assured her. "And the fact is, these men want something from you…and I mean to find out what that reason is."

He looked at her pointedly and she swallowed nervously "In the meantime," he continued, "the safest place for you is on my ship. Out of sight. No one will dare look for you there."

She begrudgingly knew he was right. And he'd been nothing but helpful to her so far. Going back into town was risky at best and the last thing she needed was to be discovered. If they made their way to Captain Sparrow's ship, perhaps she could come up with a plausible story for him that would not reveal the true nature of why she was being hunted.

Saying a silent prayer that that would be the case, she gave Jack a smile she hoped was innocent. "You're right…..I apologize. Lead the way, Captain Sparrow."