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Hermione stood at the railing watching the wake as the boat-er, ship-cut through the water. The sound of water crashing and the gulls overhead, sounding their call, lulled her into a sense of peace. It had been a long time since she had felt so content.

 

The war had drained that emotion from her, had made her fear everything around her, despite it all being over. Many times she had awoken, covered in sweat and trembling in fear. She had told no one of her nightmares, choosing, as always, to find strength within herself.

 

She looked back over her shoulder and studied the man standing at the ship’s wheel. There was something about him that made her want to talk to him, trust him. It wasn’t right that she should instantly trust him. She still felt barely able to trust anyone these days.

 

She sighed as she thought about her friends. It had been awhile since she had seen them and now she wondered if she ever would. Looking up at the gulls flying overhead, she regretted that Harry had not been able to forgive her before she was transported here, not that she was sure he would ever be able to.  

 

She stepped away from the rail and began to wander. She didn’t have a destination in mind exactly. She just walked about watching the crew as they carried out their daily duties.

 

As she continued walking, she thought of Ron and she felt tears sting the backs of her eyes. He was part of the reason for Harry hating her and for her nightmares. Was it really her fault? Could she have prevented the accident?

 

Her inner ruminations halted when she bumped into a solid object. The solid object turned into one of the crew.

 

“Ye all right, lass?”

 

Hermione smiled slightly and wiped at the tears that had found their way down her cheeks. She nodded, not really being able to speak. He gave her a slight smile and a pat on the shoulder as he stepped away. She continued on slowly and her ears perked up when she heard a gruff voice mention her.

 

“We’re in for nuthin but trouble with the lass aboard. There’s somthin about her that doesn’t seem right. It has to do with witchcraft, I just know it.”

 

He was talking to the crewman that she had bumped into. She recognized him as being the man who had come to the captain’s quarters that morning.

 

She chose to ignore him for now. He had suspicions, but there was nothing she could do to further them. She didn’t have her wand and she had still to learn to control her wandless magic. Hopefully, no one would anger her to the point that her magic would spontaneously manifest itself. That would not be good at all. She was known for blowing things up when she was furious.

 

She made her way to the stairs that would take her below deck and to the Captain’s quarters. She needed a moment alone to reflect on her feelings. Feelings she should not be having for a certain arrogant pirate.

 

What was it about him that drew her to him? Why did she feel as though he were the one she had been waiting for? Why did she want to tell him everything and hope he could take away the pain that haunted her every waking moment?

 

Questions chased each other around in her head, in search of answers that were not forth coming.

 

She slowly walked into the room and this time the door was closed gently. Oh, how angry she had been and it had taken very little to calm her. He was, unfortunately, arrogantly charming. Was that even possible?

 

She smiled as she thought of him smirking and backing away from her as though they were simply playing a game. It didn’t matter how angry she was with him, he seemed to find her amusing and-dare she say the word? -Cute.

 

She sat for a moment in quiet contemplation and then she shivered. Just his breath against her neck made her feel things she never thought she would feel-things that she shouldn't even be thinking of. She couldn’t allow herself to feel anything for him. She did not belong here.

 

She stood from the bed and walked back and forth, restlessly pacing as she thought of her options. Really, what was she to do? Stay on board and follow the ship’s crew and their captain to whatever ports they came too or should she ask Jack to leave her at the first port they came to?

 

Of course, she knew no one and would not know where to go for help.

 

No, she had no choice but to stay on The Black Pearl and learn to tolerate its captain. “Right,” she said aloud as she stopped her pacing and plopped back down on the bed. “You tolerate him so much that you wish he would have kissed you instead of just whispering in your ear.”

 

She groaned and fell back on the bed. What was she to do?


 


 

Jack stood at the wheel, his mind in its own turmoil. What was it he felt for the lass?  When she had looked at him with those big, whiskey colored eyes full of distress, he had nearly melted. He had wanted so desperately to erase that look from her eyes that he had given in and apologized.

 

When she had smiled at his words, he had felt as though someone had punched him in the gut and taken the very air from his lungs. He shouldn’t be feeling this way at all. It wasn’t right. He, truthfully, had never felt that way. No, once he had felt that way or thought he did. He was feeling very confused and that was something he never enjoyed. He simply had to push those feelings away, lest they overwhelm him.

 

He motioned for Mr. Cotton to take the wheel so he could walk about the ship and make sure everyone was doing their job.  It was also a means to try and forget the curly headed woman whom he had slept next to the night before.

 

He paused a moment as that thought crossed his mind. He shook his head as though that could erase the way she had felt as he had held her. She had smelled so sweet and had fit so perfectly against him. It was as though she was meant to be there always but he knew better. He was not meant to have someone like her. He knew this as fact and for the first time ever in his life he felt very alone.


 


 

As Hermione lay back on the bed, she had a flash of memory cross her mind and make her gasp at the sensations it brought to her. He had held her last night and she had fit perfectly against him as he spooned behind her, his arms wrapped possessively around her waist. Why she didn’t remember till now she did not know, but she knew it was not simply a dream.

 

She felt a shiver rush over her body at remembering how it had felt being in his arms. She had felt safe for the very first time in years and it was all because of him. It wasn’t right, though. She knew nothing about this man and, what was worse, he was a pirate. He could not and should not be trusted. So, why did she desperately want to?

 

She again climbed from the bed and paced as she thought about her problem. The first thing she had to do was find her Time Turner. That was what had brought her here. Perhaps the chain had simply broken and it had fallen somewhere on the deck.

 

She made up her mind to go above deck and search. Hopefully no one had found it, for if they did, there was no telling what would happen. Would it simply not work? Or would they be able to activate it if they spun the turner? She hoped for the former.

 

It was obvious that someone had slipped it in her pocket after they had spelled it to work at her touch. It seemed more then likely that it would only work for her. She hoped she was right in her assumptions. If she were, she hoped that they had also spelled it to work in the opposite way and could send her home.

 

She paused in her pacing as she thought of just what purpose she served in being here. Why had someone done this? Was it to simply get rid of her? Was she sent here to meet this band of pirates? Why?

 

More questions with no answers and no books to give her the answers she needed. This was a time when she missed Hogwarts and its extensive library. Wait…she was in the Caribbean in 1715. In that year the British military was stationed here.

 

She smiled as she realized what that meant. If she could get to a port, then she would be able to ask for possible passage to England. Hogwarts was in existence there and even though they would probably not have all the books she needed they would at least have something.

 

Something was better than nothing any day. And now she had a plan; she felt the tension leave her. All that was left to do was convince Jack to take her to where she needed to go.

 

 

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