Recovered from sunstroke, Jack leaves and Anamaria comes with him. If only it were that simple.
"Are you sure you want to do this?" he asked despite himself. She fixed him with a dirty look.
"I only, well, you'll be in an awful lot of trouble...we both will..."
"I don't plan on getting caught, Jack Sparrow."
That was always how she referred to him, both first and last name said together as if the two words were one. The thought that the reason for doing such might be from having a joint name herself briefly flitted through his mind.
"I don't either," he returned, helping to load her sparse belongings into the boat, "but we're both inviting a world of injury on ourselves."
"And what else do you propose we do, hm?" Her stare was defiant and not a little insulted. "Stay here? Do you plan raise sugar yourself? Make a fine overseer wouldn't you. Or would you rescue me and sentence me to the kitchen and the nursery instead of the fields?"
Jack winced. He hadn't meant for her to take it that way. "Ana," he had a tendency to shorten her name the same way she drew his out, "I only meant that running away isn't taken lightly."
Her eyes, beautiful and dark, still flashed angrily in the dim moonlight. "The only way to get away from this place is to get away from this place," she told him, shoving the slack coils of the mooring line into his arms. "And the sooner we do so, the better."
He gave a defeated sigh and put the rope away before seeing to the small, single sail. "I know that. I just... I can't protect you once we make port." She shot him an angry look.
"Not that you'd need it," he hurried to amend, "but if you're recognized there's nothing I can do for you. I'll be thrown into prison as well for helping you escape."
"Is that what you're so worried about?" she snapped. "Your own safety? Your name and reputation?"
It was Jack's turn to look angry. "No! Honestly Ana, you'd think I was playing at Governor or something the way you talk! I'm just a ruddy ship's navigator. I haven't got a name to worry about tarnishing."
"And what if you were thrown into prison?" Her eyebrow raised, she sat with one hand on the rudder awaiting an answer. Jack smiled, the muscles of one cheek pulling his features into a lopsided grin.
"Then I'd help you pick the lock."
She laughed. "All right then."
"All right," he nodded. "Let's get out of here, put some distance between us and the shore."
"Make for port, a larger one where we won't be noticed. You can go your way," his voice caught for some reason at this, "I'll go mine."
He would have liked her to stay with him, to perhaps come and crew on the same ship he'd sign on as navigator. It was a fool's wish and terribly selfish. She'd be safer on her own, at least as far as being recognized was concerned. After all, what was one black "boy" in a crowd of sailors? He glanced back at her briefly. Yes, in a flop-brimmed black hat, smock coat and breeches, she made a very passable boy. She'd get lost easily enough, hopefully until after the owner of the plantation got over the loss of one field hand. As for himself, well, he was supposed to be dead what with the last ship going down in flames. Bloody pirates. And yet here he was, breaking the law himself. Except this was different. Sharp* was right, people weren't property, and Anamaria had a right to freedom as much as he did. Which was why they were leaving in the dead of night under cover of darkness. Granted the plantation owner had said Jack could take what he needed for his journey back to port. Well, he'd needed Anamaria, although he rather doubted that would be accepted as a passable excuse in a civil court. He probably could have asked for Ana and been given her but the thought had only occurred to him now. And it disgusted him. This way was better, even if it was more dangerous. It wouldn't have seemed right to buy her freedom for her, especially like that. This way, she was making her escape herself.
"Bit more to port, if you please," he called back.
"Aye. We have a heading, then?"
He nodded, squinting at the light of the distant stars. An astrolabe might be considered antiquated to some, but the thing did work no matter how out-dated it might become. "Port Royal."
Jack looked back to catch her smiling, a mischievous look in her black eyes.
"Taking orders from me, are you?"
She scoffed around her grin. "A captain is only captain as long as the crew allows it."
"I'll do me best then," he returned, smiling himself. "Let's get going." With the sail secured and billowing in the night breeze, he stumbled back to sit with her. "With any luck, we won't have to run any farther than that."
Elbows resting on knees, he noticed distractedly that his hands had begun to shake. Whether it was nerves or the sunstroke showing itself, he'd no idea. Ana laid a hand on his arm and while something in his chest jumped and his stomach began to flutter, the trembling eased and then slowly ebbed to a stop.
"And if we do?"
He placed his other hand over hers, her fingers cool but steady.
"Then we keep going."
*/Granville Sharp was one of the earliest abolitionist adversaries in England. No one would take him seriously until the 1780s, but he was already making noise in favor of abandoning the slave trade as early as the 1750s./