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A Story

Chapter Text

When Wendy slowly regained a sense of the world again, she found she was sitting in a chair in Captain Hook's cabin. At first she couldn't tell how she had got there, or why, but then the past hour's events trickled back into her memory. Peter. Peter was - dead? It was a truth she didn't want to acknowledge, and she shut her eyes to close it out, but to no avail. The image of Peter's lifeless body could not be banished by such means, instead it became even more clear and she opened her eyes with a shudder. The Captain was sitting at the table with a glass close to his hand, watching her intently. He didn't seem very happy over his achievement, but she thought little about that, still feeling oddly numb.

Hook, in turn, noticed that the girl had roused herself into a state that more resembled her usual self. He was not fooled; he had seen shock before and knew she had not yet fully understood what had happened and the possible implications it brought. In truth, he did not look forward to the moment when she would become aware of them. He was tempted to dose her with laudanum and thus prolong this docile state, but if what he suspected was true, he needed her mind undimmed from drugs.

No, he corrected himself, it was not mere suspicion, he knew it was the truth. He held in his hand the sole reason for his existence and she didn't know it. For some reason he understood what she didn't; that Neverland and everything in it had sprung from her words alone. That he was certain of; she had no idea of who she was to this island and to those who lived there. So, how was he going to use it? Right now he didn't know, he was tired and though he knew the world was open for him, at the moment he craved sleep above everything else.

"Could I offer you some food?" he asked Wendy. "Or perhaps a glass of water?"

Wendy started at the sound of his voice, but then she just shook her head. Hook didn't pressure her. Eventually he would make her eat, but right now he let her be. What he really needed to do was to decide what he was going to do with her during the night. He didn't really trust his men not to try to dispose her if she was locked in with the other children. The crew didn't want a woman on board and Hook wasn't altogether sure that they wouldn't be prepared to face his wrath in this case.

Besides, who knew what Wendy would do without being watched. He really couldn't risk anything; he could not give her an opportunity to harm herself. In the end the Captain called for Smee to fetch linen and blankets to the daybed at the foot of his own large four-poster. It was not ideal, a girl, even if young, should not share a bedroom with a man, but for this night it couldn't be helped.

Hook looked at the girl in the chair. She was studying her hands, sitting unnaturally still for a child. Her white night-gown was not so white anymore, and the hem had mostly fallen down. He would have to find more suitable clothes for her, or rather, Smee would have to. And a bath. He watched her dirty feet with disdain. Children were such nasty critters, after all, they had no sense in keeping themselves clean and tidy. Well, she would have to learn.

When Smee told her where she was to sleep, Wendy made no objection, curling up on her makeshift bed and hiding her head in her arms without a word. She did react, however, when Smee conjured up a chain and proceeded to chain her to one of the posts of the Captain's bed.

"Please don't."

Wendy's pleading became more insistent the more Smee tried to catch her ankle. Sitting in bed with her legs underneath her, he couldn't reach it and became more and more flustered. Smee was a kind man, despite his profession, and was ready to let it all be, but a low growl from the Captain finally made Wendy stretch out her foot. Hook was not going to have a little girl running around in his cabin and especially not one who could not be counted on to not try to kill him while he was sleeping.

As Hook found out, it proved to be more a trial to keep Wendy in the cabin than he had anticipated. He could not undress with a young female around and was forced to go to sleep in his shirt and breeches. Even after he had unscrewed the claw it was very uncomfortable to sleep in the harness. That night he did not sleep well, tossing and turning to try to find a more comfortable position. It was doubtful if Wendy slept much either. Somewhere after the witching hour she finally started to cry, and the Captain lay in the darkness and listened. For a moment he was tempted to get up and try to comfort her, but he thought better of it. He, who had no comfort for himself, how would he be able to comfort the girl he was going to separate from everything she held dear?

Wendy woke up when the Captain got up, but for a long time she pretended that she was still asleep. She wondered, not without cause, what he was going to do to her. Why hadn't he kill her yesterday; what use could he have of her? When Smee came and unlocked the chain and the Captain motioned her to follow him out of the cabin, she did so very apprehensively. There, bound together, their eyes red from crying, were her brothers and the Lost Boys. Hook waved his claw at them.

"I have in mind to be magnanimous, Wendy. I will let all the little boys go, I have no use for them. They will be returned to the island to live their sorry lives the best way they can." He watched the girl carefully as he spoke and saw that she was frowning.

"Why?" she asked and Hook smiled.

"It's so simple, my beauty. You will just promise to stay here. I'm not going to hurt you, if you do what I tell you to do. Obey me and you will have a pleasant life. But if you don't agree I will kill every one of the boys in front of your eyes."

Wendy didn't have to think about it long before she nodded, her lips white and trembling as if she is about to cry and she whispered: "I promise."

Everything happened very fast, then, as Hook was eager to get rid of the children. The dinghy was soon setting out for the shores of Neverland, filled with bewildered children who didn't really understood that those hurried embraces Wendy had given them were the last they would ever get from her.

Hook and Wendy watched it all happen; they saw how the dinghy returned empty save for the man rowing it. The Captain expected Wendy to cry, but she just stood there in silence. When he told her to come back to the cabin she followed him as docile as the day before. Once in there she finally asked him the another question.

"Why do you want me to stay with you?"

"Well, we could use a storyteller on this ship."

"I don't believe that is true." It was a statement said flatly and with conviction.

Hook met the girl’s eyes. Wendy already seemed older than she had before Pan died and he felt as if she could read his soul. All of a sudden he became afraid that she would understand what his true purpose was, and he quickly thought of another explanation, one she would believe.

"Well," he said slowly. "You are still very young, but you will soon grow up. You will be a woman in just a few years and then, then I will wed you."

As soon as he said the words he knew he was not completely untruthful. As a child she was of no interest to him, but her face was quite passable and held a promise of a woman to be who would be more than mundane. He had never considered a spouse, but to marry her would bind her even closer to him. She was, as well, of a respectable English family, not the unknown dregs one encountered in ports. In short, he concluded, it was not a bad idea at all.

Wendy did not agree with him. She sprung up, revulsion and horror mingling on her face.

"Never!" she cried. “I won't marry you, ever! It's disgusting! You are evil, and, and- old!" To Hook's relief she did not question his motives, probably because what he had told her had become the truth as he spoke the words, but it stung him nevertheless. His anger, which was so easily awakened, rose and without thought, he slapped her across the face. Still, he kept his full strength at bay, even if it there were enough power in the blow to send her sprawling on the floor. There she burst into tears, wailing sobs that grated on the pirate's ears. The whole scene was less than satisfactory in his view and he opted to leave the cabin, leaving Wendy alone with her tears.

"We will see," he told the closed door. "You created me, here I am, and I will not be rejected when the time comes."