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James Norrington
23 October 2008 @ 10:31 pm
Jack Sparrow, James decides at some point over the next month, is clearly trying to drive him mad.  Completely bloody insane.  After their date that month ago- because yes, it was a date, no point denying that- James had expected, maybe hoped for a call in a week or so, after Jack had served his three days in prison.  But nothing.  And then nothing.  But that isn't the issue, oh no.  The issue is that, during all that time he isn't calling James, he seems to be mysteriously acquiring all his friends; Theo comes out one day with a story about this bloke he'd met the night before, who bought them all drinks and told the most fantastic stories, Jack something, and then Elizabeth, of all people, the daughter of his boss, only seventeen years old.  Even Selwyn at school mentions laughingly that that Sparrow fellow he was supposed to have defended during that on case took him out for a drink one night as a thank you for a job well done.  Though at least he has the sense to realise that he had hardly done any sort of job at all.

Only Andrew has the sense not to fall for Jack's easy charm, and he and James frequently commiserate (or grouse) together about him over a pint or several.  Generally, Theo would be there with them, but as Jack seems to have commandeered him, he's absent now when he wouldn't have been before.

And infuriatingly, the stories keep coming.  This guy is hilarious ('And gorgeous, James,' Elizabeth sees fit to add), he's like no-one any of them have ever met before, and really James, you ought to meet him; you'd probably hate him, but it'd be funny, at least.  

What the hell is he playing at?  James would have thought it no big deal if he had simply never heard from Jack again; he'd have been a touch disappointed, yes, but nothing he couldn't deal with.  Then he could have assumed that he'd been forgotten, that the number had washed off Jack's arm and he'd gone on with his life.  But the fact that every other word out of almost all of his friends' mouths seems to be 'Jack Sparrow'... He's doing it on purpose, he has to be.  But why?  Just to aggravate James?  Surely he's not worth a month of playing this ridiculous game. 

Yes, James is very close indeed to utterly fucking insane.  And so it is that when, one Wednesday evening, he walks into the Lyceum for a pint and a bit of an opportunity to relax and sees none other than Jack bloody Sparrow sitting at the bar in deep conversation with Theo, his teeth actually grind.  But he swallows down on his irritation- at least for the moment, slapping down a few pound coins on the bar with perhaps slightly more force than is necessary, and takes his pint over to Jack and Theo.

It's Theo who catches him first- Jack's got his back turned- and his face lights up.  'James!'  He lifts a half empty glass in greeting and invitation. 

'Theo,' James returns calmly.  Theo seems not to notice his tenseness, and nods at Jack. 

'Finally, James; this is the Jack Sparrow I've been telling you about for so long.  Kept saying you ought to meet him.'

At that, James smiles a positively frosty smile.  'Oh, we've met before.'  A pause.  'Jack.'