Title: Dead Man's Chest
Sequel to: Curse of the Black Pearl and A Tail of the Sea.
Pairings/Characters: Chloe, James Norrington, Will Turner, Lois/Jack Sparrow, Lucy/Giselle, Lana, Governor Swan, Cutler Beckett... more
Disclaimer: Don't own
Summary: A year has passed since Chloe started her life on the small, remote island, where she's managed to build a happy life for herself. But she has a debt to pay, and when old friends come a'knocking she finds out who The Voice is, and what she must do to be free.
With everything that was going on, Chloe was more than happy when the Black Pearl reached it's destination… or as close to its destination as it possibly could go. The vessel dropped anchor and a couple of the rowboats were lowered so that select crew could row towards the inland river connected to the sea. Chloe ignored James, Will and Lucy and instead kept her eyes on the trees, on the people watching them in silence from the rainforest. The deeper they went inland, the freakier it seemed. There was magic in these waters, in this rainforest.
By the time they finally did reach their destination (a house built on top of a tree sticking out of the water) she felt the tips of her fingertips burning with energy. As they docked their rowboats at the small dock under the treehouse, Jack stood and turned to face them.
"No worries, mates." He anchored his hands on his hips. "Tia Dalma and I go way back. Thick as thieves. Nigh inseparable, we are." He hesitated. "Were." Flinched. "Have been." Looked somewhat pale. "In the past."
Lucy and Chloe shared looks. That speech wasn't at all comforting.
Lucy leaned in to whisper to Will: "How much do you want to bet that she slaps him?"
Will sent her a raised eyebrow. "I do not take bets I will no doubt lose."
Jack, who'd heard them, pouted and then turned around flamboyantly as he reached the door and peeked in through the open upper-frame. He eased the door open as if scared of who was on the other side.
"Jack Sparrow," a voice purred from within.
He visibly relaxed more, but was definitely on high alert as he sauntered inside. "Tia Dalma."
Chloe's eyes widened at the sound of that voice. She knew that voice. In seconds she'd scrambled out onto the dock and was headed towards the ladder heading to the front door.
"I always knew da wind would blow ya back to me one day," the voice declared.
Chloe stumbled through the front door in time to see an Afro caribbean woman with her hair in dreads and eyes lined darkly smiling at Jack. When the woman's piercing dark eyes landed on her Chloe knew, she knew, and from the way the woman smiled at her and pushed Jack to the side (he squeaked and flailed) it was obvious that she knew Chloe knew.
"You." Tia Dalma, the voice who had been whispering in Chloe's mind, who'd saved her so many times, came closer as she caressed Chloe's cheek. "You have a touch ofdestiny about you, Chloe Sullivan."
Sullivan? Chloe's eyes widened. Had that been her name in the other world?
"Her name is Chloe Swann," a voice declared behind Chloe. It belonged to James, and right behind him were Will and Lucy.
Tia Dalma's smile grew as she eyed the three of them. "Destiny also marks you three, two more to be, then time will come, finally."
Lucy blinked. "Uh, okay?"
Tia merely smiled and wrapped an arm around Chloe's shoulder, leading the blonde towards the table. "Come." She sat Chloe down and then motioned for Lucy, Will and James to do so as well, ignoring Jack. "What service might I do you for?" She then finally acknowledged Jack's presence with a sharp: "You know I demand payment."
He grinned nervously and turned to look at Chloe pointedly and closed the door on the rest of his crew right before they tried to come into the house. Gibbs was the only one he let stay, and the man shrugged at the others as they gave him a look. Jack shooed them off with a flick of his wrist before he tiptoed around the odd objects in the room to stand by the table, Gibbs following behind him.
"We brought payment." He reached into his pocket and pulled out a doubloon, it was one of the cursed coins of cortez. "A monkey took it before the Isla de Muerta was swallowed by the sea. The last of its kind it is. Sure it has some delightful," he wriggled his fingers, "you could enjoy."
Tia Dalma yanked the doubloon from him and took a whiff of it before she shrugged and slipped the doubloon into her bosom for safe keeping. "The payment is acceptable, only barely, but acceptable." She turned to Jack once more. "What ye be wantin', Jack?"
Jack, once more, looked to Chloe.
The blonde cleared her throat. "We have need of you, Tia Dalma." You know why we are here, you told us to come.
Tia Dalma's lips twitched for a second before her expression was serious once more. "And what help do you be needin'?"
"Jack made a deal with Davy Jones," Chloe responded. "His time is up and Davy Jones is up to collect his soul."
Gibbs' eyes widened.
Lucy's eyes widened.
Will leaned across the table and stared at Chloe. "Davy Jones?" He looked horrified. "He is real?"
Will leaned back in his seat, visibly shaken by this revelation.
James, having known this already, merely exchanged a look with Chloe.
Tia Dalma eyed James thoughtfully before her gaze landed on Chloe. "Yer blood removed the black spot, did it not?"
Jack helpfully showed his palms.
"Ye had the black spot?" Gibbs choked. "No wonder we ran ta shore!"
"It was not running," Jack informed him primly. "It was a strategic retreat."
Chloe turned to Tia Dalma, playing along with the charade that the woman in front of her wasn't her master - didn't already know everything she was about to tell her. "My blood can bend curses, and while Jack no longer has the black spot, Davy Jones is master of the sea, he will find him." She rubbed her arm. "And there is also the fact that using my blood tied me to the situation."
Tia Dalma nodded. "What ye seek is da Dead Man's Chest."
Gibbs leaned closer. "What be that?"
"That be Davy Jones' only weakness," she answered before narrowing her eyes on Jack suspiciously. "You know of de legend… The compass you bartered from me, it cannot lead you to it?"
"Maybe." Jack picked up a fine black pirate's hat and eyed it. "Why?"
Tia Dalma's head tilted and she suddenly grinned as she sat down on one of the seats. "I hear you. Jack Sparrow does not know what he wants." She seemed to enjoy that greatly. "Or you do know, but are loathed to claim it as your own."
Jack would not meet her gaze, instead flung the pirate hat away from him.
"What is inside of the chest and how can it be used against Davy Jones?" Lucy wanted to know.
"What do ye know of Davy Jones?" Tia Dalma asked instead of answering.
Lucy shrugged. "Not much, actually. From what I have heard, he is a devil of the sea who sailors and pirates fear."
"Him was a man of the sea," Tia Dalma informed her, "a great sailor until he run afoul of that which vex all men."
"What vexes all men?" Will wanted to know.
Tia Dalma chuckled as she rested her hand on his. "What indeed."
"Well, the sea!" Gibbs announced enthusiastically. "There be nothing that fascinates or vexes a man more than that!"
"It is a woman," Jack corrected his first mate while examining one of Tia Dalma's many trinkets.
"No, no, it has ta be the sea," Gibbs responded quickly.
Lucy snorted. "You can tell you have never been married, Mr Gibbs." She turned to Tia Dalma. "I have a wife, I can tell you it is most definitely a woman. Nothing can annoy you more than that."
Tia Dalma grinned brightly at Lucy and brushed her shortly cut, sandy colored hair out of her face fondly. "Him fell in love."
"No, no, no no," Gibbs protested. "I heard it was the sea he fell in love with."
"Same story, different versions, and all are true," Tia Dalma assured him with a wave of her finger. "See, it was a woman as changing and harsh and untamable as the sea." She glanced between Will and James cunningly. "Him never stop loving her. But the pain it cause him was too much to live with, but not enough to cause him to die."
Will's gaze shifted onto Chloe.
So did James'.
She felt both gazes on her and couldn't look up from the table. She didn't know what she felt right now, for either of them. Everything was so confusing, so conflicting. Both had loved her, both still obviously felt something for her - both had broken her heart. She was scared, confused.
"What did he place in the chest?" Lucy wanted to know.
Tia Dalma smiled softly. "Him heart."
"Literally?" James' asked in a hoarse tone.
"He could not have literally put his heart in a chest," Will replied before he paused, obviously remembering all they had lived through due to the supernatural. He turned to Tia Dalma suspiciously. "Could he?"
"It was not worth feeling what small, fleeting joy life brings," she answered. "And so… him carve out him heart, lock it away in a chest and hide the chest from the world. Him keep da key to dat chest with him at all times."
"Good!" Jack grinned. "All that's left is to climb aboard the Flying Dutchman, grab the key, and then we all go to Tortuga for rum and wenches!" He threw his hands up in the air in celebration, and then paused. "Except for young cygnet of course, being married and all, rum will have to suffice."
Tia Dalma raised a finger for him to wait, and sauntered off into an adjoining room which was mostly hidden by hanging trinkets held together by string. "I have just the thing. Now, where did I put it?" Things clattered and rattled as she searched for something. "Such a long time in such a mess."
Jack leaned over Chloe and reached for a ring left on the table.
She slapped his hand, hard.
He cried out and yanked his hand back, cradling it, expression scandalized that she would do such a thing.
Will covered his face in shame.
James stared at Jack in disgust.
Lucy rolled her eyes.
Gibbs honestly didn't look like he found Jack trying to steal from the obeah woman all that odd.
"Davy Jones cannot make port," Tia Dalma announced as she returned with a jar in arms. "Cannot step on land but once every ten years. Land is where you are safe, Jack Sparrow…"
Jack eyed the jar in her hands curiously.
"…and so you will carry land with you."
Jack blinked and reached for the jar when she handed it to him. He observed it for a moment, peeked over at Tia Dalma, made a face and looked at the jar once more, clearly mulling how to ask the question on the tip of his tongue. "Dirt." He paused. "This is a jar of dirt."
"Yes," she responded, surprised he was questioning her gift.
Jack pursed his lips. "Is the jar of dirt going to help?"
"If you don't want it, give it back," Tia Dalma replied with an air of threat.
Jack held the jar to his chest as if it were the most precious thing in the world to him. "No."
She smirked. "Den it helps."
"What about Chloe?" Will asked as he stood. "She is tied to this as well, what is there to protect her?"
Tia Dalma eyed him thoughtfully before she reached out and tapped Chloe innocently on her hip. "She be safe."
Chloe's gaze shifted to James to find his eyes on her in understanding. He knew about the tattoo, knew that it had been given to her by the Voice, and he was obviously putting two and two together.
Will seemed to be pondering something, yet didn't speak any further.
Lucy peered around the room before she turned to Tia Dalma. "It would seem we have need to find the Flying Dutchman."
"Me thought you did not know much about Davy Jones," Tia Dalma announced with a glance in her direction.
"I do not," Lucy assured her. "But anyone who has sailed on a vessel has at least heard of him and his ship."
Tia Dalma's gaze turned to Chloe as she held her hand out to her. "Come, the boy's heart will not settle. Let me see what I can give to you to calm him heart." When Chloe placed her hand in hers, Tia Dalma pulled her up from the seat and took her to the adjoining room, which truly was a mess.
Chloe waited until they were mostly covered to lower her voice to a barely audible whisper. "It is you." She'd thought the whole while that the one she'd been hearing was the goddess Calypso, and yet it was instead the obeah priestess this whole time.
Tia Dalma smiled brightly. "Yes, it is me."
"Why did you not tell me I was coming to see you?" Chloe wanted to know.
The woman did not answer, merely curled her finger and beckoned Chloe closer. When the girl was a breath away, Tia Dalma spoke. "You must be da one to see Davy Jones, not anyone else. I will give 'em only the coordinates to halfway dere, and once dey sleep you must escape and go da rest of da way alone."
"Why?" Chloe asked. "What do I do? What do I say? What do you want?"
"Mi want dat key," Tia Dalma responded evenly. "Find Davy Jones' key, da key to da Dead Man's Chest, and bring it ta me."
"You want Davy Jones' heart?" Chloe whispered.
The woman shook her head. "Mi no want de chest, mi want da key."
Sudden realization hit. "They key doesn't just open the Dead Man's chest, it does something else as well, doesn't it?"
"What a sharp lickle mind," Tia Dalma praised as she tapped Chloe's temple with a fingertip. "Davy Jones will na give up dat key easily. Him keep it close ta where 'is 'eart should be." She leaned in closer. "It will be dangerous, and painful, ta take from him."
Chloe took in a deep breath. "I do not know how I will accomplish this."
"I would'na picked you for dis task if you did nah have da ability to do so," Tia Dalma informed her. "Bring da key to me, and you will 'ave completed da first half of what you owe me."
Chloe's eyes widened at the thought of being free. "Half completed?" When the other woman nodded she grinned. "I will bring you his key, no matter what it takes."
In response, Tia Dalma slapped a bracelet on Chloe's wrist. It was engraved with the design of crabs. "Good."
"What is this?" Chloe lifted her hand to eye the iron cuff.
"It was once given by Davy Jones to the goddess Calypso… wid some minor modifications him na know about." Tia Dalma's dark gaze rose to Chloe's greens. "You be seeing them, no? Davy Jones and him goddess?" When Chloe nodded Tia Dalma did not look surprised at all. "It's da connection you forged when you removed da Black Spot." She stepped back. "Wid dis, Davy Jones will be too tempted not ta listen ta what you have ta say."
Great, now all I have to do is figure out what to say to get him to give me the key to his chest. That would be no easy task.
"Plus, dey will be suspicious if you return wid nottin'." Tia Dalma motioned towards the other room and those who awaited them.
Chloe turned to go to them before she paused and turned to Tia Dalma. "Can I tell anyone else other than James about you? Or at least about the Voice?"
The woman did not respond, merely pointed back outside.
Taking in a deep breath, Chloe nodded and emerged from the room with Tia Dalma right behind her.