At his hanging, one of Jack's charges was kidnapping. Whoops. One shot.
Jack looked in dismay at the young man who curled up on the deck in front of him, tucking himself in as if fearing physical violence. Who in their right mind would stowaway on a pirate ship? Barmy git. Sighing, he ran a hand down his chin, fingers catching at his goatee. "Right, then, ducky. Who are you when you're at home?"
"T-Thomas Cooper... Sir."
"And you'd be on my ship, why?"
"I... That is, I mean, well..."
"Exactly." Jack forced a bright smile and waved his hand vaguely at Thomas. Just a boy, really. Slim and pale with a tousle of golden curls. Foppish little sod. Which was saying something when Jack Sparrow thought that of you, being a bit on the seemingly light side of things himself. One brown eye opened and looked upwards. For the love of all that was holy or not so much. They were already too far from port to drop this particular annoyance off. Didn't look very useful, either. Soft hands, soft face, just plain soft. What a bother. "Up, up," he muttered breezily. "If we needed another anchor, I'd have gone for metal, you know."
As Thomas stumbled to his feet, the pirate's eyes widened. Oh, bloody hell. This one wasn't just soft. This one was one of /them/. Bloody aristocrat spawn, playing at rebels. Nimble fingers darted forward and jabbed at the boy's thin chest. "Like this bit of shiny on you, lad. Papa gave it to you, hm? Look here, mate." Another jab. "This isn't a friendly game, savvy?"
Any other words died in Jack's throat at the call from the crow's-nest. "Ship behind!"
An expressive grimace crossed the pirate's face. "Oh, hell. Papa, is it?" Roughly, he shoved the boy towards the stairs below. "Bloody lovely, really. Kidnapping again and all because of some stupid stories I told while drunk off my tits back in London."
He slammed the door behind the boy. "That's it. I'm chucking this lot in and getting a new ship and crew. I'd change my bloody name if I hadn't gotten so attached to it. Kidnapping! I swear, from now on, this ship's taking only those who can spit a tooth out. Guards at the gangplank. Yes. That's it. Big, strapping fellows and my crew needs letters of recommendation and..."
His aggravated mumbles trailed off as he made his way back to the helm. Oh, the injustice of it all. Sometimes he was almost tempted to turn... Privateer.