Pairing/Characters: The Navyboys! Implied Gillington. Implied Norribeth.
Word Count: A little over 1,000.
Rating: G - Pg, for implied themes.
Genre: Snark, Angst
Summary: CotBP. The Navyboys' thoughts on the previous action, set just prior to finding Elizabeth and Jack on the island.
Disclaimer: The characters depicted herein do not belong to me no matter how much I might wish they did.
Spoilers: If you've not seen Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl you might get a surprise (but I think I'd get more of one^^)
Warnings: Implied themes only.
Notes: I don't use a beta, so any mistakes in this are mine and mine alone. :-)
Special Thanks: To sampaguita_blue who gave me the snark!bunny.
Lieutenants Andrew Gillette and Theodore Groves were in the wardroom of the HMS Dauntless, arguing. Or, as Andrew would rather it be described, debating.
"I still cannot believe that you actually told him Sparrow was the best you've ever seen," said Gillette. "And on his first day as Commodore, too. Sensitivity is not your strong point, is it?"
"I can't believe you let them take the Dauntless," countered Groves as he poured coffee for them both.
"I let them take the Dauntless so that none of the men under my command would suffer. She's too big for two men to handle. Capt - I mean Commodore Norrington could have left them here to rot. I made the most tactically sound judgment I could, given the circumstances. You, on the other hand, Groves…" Gillette trailed off, leaving the other man to fill in the rest of his sentence.
"You didn't hear Norrington, though. He dismissed Sparrow as an idiot and Bedlamite, when he is one of the most intelligent men I have ever seen. I couldn't let him away with that, Andrew, you must see this," said Groves, half - begging.
"Perhaps. But I am still more inclined to agree with Ja - with the Commodore, Theo, after all, speaking so thoughtlessly in front of the men is hardly appropriate behaviour, anyway."
"The men have not lost respect for their leader by his admitting of his myopic judgment of Sparrow, Andrew. And at least nobody died," Groves added.
"What? They stole a ship of the line, Groves! James could be cashiered! I could be cashiered! Or worse… And because nobody died in the hijacking of the Interceptor does not preclude a disastrous future consequence. You, my friend have too happy a nature for this line of duty," Gillette scoffed.
Groves became quiet, and more thoughtful. Clearly, he had forgotten the more serious aspect of Sparrow and Turner's heroic theft.
"Do you think … Do you think things will worsen?"
"Hopefully not, Theo, but my father always said that in life must hope for the best and prepare for the worst. I hope the Interceptor and Miss Swann are returned to us in pristine condition, but I expect not," Gillette replied, sinking into a seat and sipping his drink slowly, savouring the heat radiating from the mug in his hands.
The two friends continued to sup their coffee in silence, interrupted only when Commodore Norrington burst into the room, shut the door, leaned his whole weight against it and swore.
As his friends watched, mouths agape, Norrington spoke every vulgar word he had ever heard, and several foreign variations on vulgar themes, all uttered through clenched teeth and tightly shut eyes. His head was tucked against his chest, and he looked anxious and overdrawn. Cautiously, his First and Second Lieutenant interrupted him.
"Sir? James, you're repeating yourself," said Gillette in concern. "What is it?"
"Sir!" Groves exclaimed, impressed. "I had no idea!"
Norrington's head jerked up and his eyes snapped open, startled. He seemed not to have noticed the presence of his friends.
"It is … It is as nothing, gentlemen. Do not allow my dolorous mood to affect you adversely," he said, avoiding Gillette's gaze.
The man could be as persistent as a terrier when it came to Norrington's wellbeing (either physical or mental); whether that was simply Andrew's way, or if it was borne out of their now defunct relationship, James could not tell. Presently, such attention was something he could do without.
"Commodore … Sir … James. A well man does not lock himself away and then recite vulgarity. Is there something we can do?" Andrew asked softly.
"I … No. No, there is nothing you can do, Andrew, it is up to me to remedy the situation," said the distressed Commodore. "I just wish," he added, more to himself than to the others, "that I could do more to ease Governor Swann's worries."
"You're as worried as he is, Sir," said Groves. "You have no cause to burden your shoulders with his peace of mind, too."
"True enough. Besides, it is quite poetic, in a way," said Gillette in agreement. "After all, she prated on about pirates and her admiration of their lawlessness so often it will do her the world of good to know the reality."
"And when she is returned to us, ruined or dead, what poem could be written of that, Mister Gillette?" Norrington snapped, eyes blazing with untold anger.
Doggedly, Gillette continued, "Poetic in the way the Ancient Greeks were - her love of piracy is her fatal flaw. And she will bring those around her down with her. We should seek out the Interceptor, for the greater good, James. The good of the Caribbean as a whole. Not gallivant after a damsel in distress, who is valuable only to two men."
"You forget yourself, Lieutenant. I am your superior officer, not once, but twice over. And she is the Governor's daughter, and my-"
Groves' head swung like a pendulum - a pendulum that was watching a particularly exciting tennis match - as his two stubborn friends argued (and by this point, even Andrew would agree it was an argument).
"Your future bride? But she's not, James. She had ample opportunity to accept you before all this happened, and she didn't. She does not want you."
"If you say one more word on this subject, Gillette, you will regret it. Dismissed," said Norrington in a very final tone of voice.
Gillette left the ward - room, muttering under his breath.
"And you, Groves? Will you weigh in with your low opinion of my low opinion of Jack Sparrow?"
"Captain Jack Sparrow, sir. And no, I shan't do anything of the sort. I think that Turner and Sparrow, and the Interceptor, and Miss Swann are all connected. If we find one, we'll probably find them all."
"I hope to God that you are right, Groves. Dismissed."
A voice from aloft cried out that there was smoke on the horizon.
"Theodore?" Norrington asked as the Lieutenant opened the door, "do keep Andrew away from Governor Swann. I should hate for him to be punished for his incautious tongue."