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Here's a Health to the Company

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The sound of his men singing and drinking carries over from the shore. It's a well deserved rest from their hunt for the precursor box and Shay should probably join them, but for now he well prefers the solitude on deck of the Morrigan.

He feels peaceful here, leaning on the railing and humming along song after song. At least until he can't help himself any longer and the humming breaks free, turning into words sung quietly into the night: "... for the voyage is long and the winds don't blow and it's time for us to leave her ..."

There's a huff and Shay looks up to see the Grand Master standing behind him, lips curved and eyebrow raised. Shay feels caught, somehow, and tries to hide it by clearing his throat.

"Sir?" he asks, making room for Kenway to stand beside him at the railing.

"Colonel Monro told me you're a man of many talents, but he never mentioned that singing was among them."

Shay ducks his head, laughing. "I can barely hold a tune. My aunt, she was the singer in our family. She didn't have the best of voices, but that never stopped her. Come to think of it, maybe I got my 'talents' from her."

He can still see her in his mind, a smile and an off-key tune on her lips at all times, no matter how hard times would get. It feels like a lifetime ago.

"I'll keep it to myself from now on," he says sheepishly, but Kenway shakes his head.

"Don't. It's your ship and you are free to sing as much and as loudly as you please. Besides, your singing is quite alright."

The Grand Master's voice is dry and unimpressed as ever, but there's the ghost of a smile on his lips. It makes Shay catch his breath. He doesn't think he has ever seen Kenway smile before. Not like this.

"If you say so, Sir," he mutters, turning his gaze to the huge bonfire on the shore and then back to Kenway. The smile is still there, unfamiliar and friendly and so very ... intriguing. It's this, more than anything, which lets Shay start humming and then singing again.

And if he imagines Kenway's smile growing wider, warmer ... well, then he does not remark on it, but stows it away for later. A curious, precious memory he will revisit many times, but never quite understand what it means.

"... let us drink and be merry, all grief to refrain, for we may or might never all meet here again."