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Smell Of Smoke (Whisky And Wine)

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This is a story about kindness.

It is a love story; full of desperation, hope, sadness, warmth and determination that all good love stories should have.

But above everything, this is a story about a chance meeting, an act of kindness.

And it is a story about fate.

*

Ryan wakes up and knows that everything’s gone wrong.

He should be dead; they killed everyone else. He watched them surround the carriage, taking down one guard after another.

He had screamed when the masked figures tear down his defenses, none of the guards ready for a sudden assault.

In the end, he had slipped into unconsciousness with a flare of pain at the back of his head, thinking that this was the last thing he’d see: the grass dyed in a shade of dark red, littered with dismembered body parts; smoke, thick with ash and repugnant with death.

(He slipped into darkness hearing a voice yell, “I’ve got him, I’ve got the son of the king-”. It was the end; he knew it was the end.)

But then he wakes. And breathes.

Against all odds, he is alive.

*

(He had been raised a Christian- so he knows and understands the concept of the afterlife.)

(When he recalls what he had seen after he exited his carriage- the blood, the dismembered bodies, the smoke- he remembers the illustrations of ‘hell’ in the books he read.)

(And that’s when he thinks; that’s it. I was there.)

*

He wakes when he doesn’t expect to; he’s alive with the determination to keep living.

His head is still throbbing from the hit that knocked him out; so when his vision finally clears and he looks up to see his surroundings- he wonders if he was hallucinating.

His assaulters, the bandits (ten of them, he counts) all sprawled on the ground, in the midst of thick, red blood; all seemingly dead.

His wipes his face and notices the splashes of blood scattered across his shirt, across his waistcoat, across his breeches.

His hands and legs were strangely unbound, yet he’s bruised where the ropes once presumably was.

But he is alive.

So he staggers to his feet and runs.

*

"Ryan, you are to be wed to the only son of the Bennett family- Brent Bennett.”

“From today onwards, he is your fiancé.” 

“You will obey my orders, because this union will prove useful to the future of our country.”

“You don’t have a choice.”

Ryan has lived his whole life being told what to do- and he doesn’t mind it.

*

His best friend, Steven Lim had other ideas- which he expressed quite vocally.

“Ryan, you need to call off this engagement- you can’t marry someone just because your father commanded you!” He argues. “What about your feelings? You never even saw Brent that way!”

Ryan raises an eyebrow and starts. “Well, aren’t you in the same situation here with your recent engagement with Ben?”

Ugh.” Steven groaned, “Well, at least I’m trying to fight my parents about it!”

Ryan rolled his eyes and popped another piece of sliced apple into his mouth.

“You’re the son of a mayor- you’re not marrying for the sake of the country.” Ryan says, chewing carefully. “They just want you to marry Ben for his social status! Really, you have it easy.”

They stayed silent for a moment before older man starts, his voice sobering up and his playful façade gone.

“Ryan, you can’t just- you can’t let your father dictate your life like this.”

Ryan let out a small smile at the worried man.

“I’m fine, Steven. If anything- I haven’t felt better in ages. Anyways, I’ll take my leave now.”

*

(Steven had always been one to defy what has been set in stone- no matter the consequences.)

(Ryan had always thought that Steven was the braver one of the two.)

*

Contrary to popular belief- he isn’t stupid.

He understands what Steven’s getting at- marrying someone who you don’t love- purely for the sake of a country was just plain sad.

But he does not object his father.

He wouldn’t, not when he can indulge himself with whatever he wants; not when his status has everyone obeying to his every whim.

He doesn’t oppose his father, not even when he’s marrying into a loveless relationship for a stupid political benefit.

He figured that that wouldn’t be the worst thing that has ever happened to him before.

*

His father wasn’t always like this- shutting him out, ignoring him, viewing him as a property to be used only for the country’s benefit.

He’s struggling to remember the way his father would smile at him, his eyes crinkling at the sides and lips pulled back to reveal a large, handsome grin.

He’s starting to forget the way his mother’s voice sounded- her tinkling laughter and giggles on a bright Sunday afternoon.

He doesn’t remember the last time he felt the warm, fuzzy feeling of genuine happiness in his heart.  

Those days had passed by like a dream- a haze that Ryan wishes to submerge himself in.

*

Now, all he can remember is the muffled sound of a gunshot.

He remembers the way his mother’s body had collapsed in front of him- shielding him, protecting him.

Taking a bullet that was meant for him.

He remembers feeling the weakening pulse of his mother’s limp body, hearing the screams resounding in his ears and watching as his hands dyed into a shade of ruby red.

*

He had watched as a sword pierced through the assassin’s torso, the way the man collapsed on the ground with a loud ‘thump’.

He had watched as the defense guards surrounded him and his shouting father, tearing up as his mother looked up to him with such clear adoration in her eyes.

Live, my baby.” She had sighed, her voice coming out like a soft whisper.

Live… And go achieve what I never could.

*

(His father was never the same afterwards, locking himself up in his room- ignoring and emotionally neglecting his son in favor of the country’s paperwork).

(Ryan knows that his father thinks that it’s his fault that his wife was dead.)

(The assassin was clearly aiming for him; not his mother. She had jumped forward to protect him- and if it wasn’t for him she would still be alive today, his father would still be happy-)

(Ryan blames himself, too.)

*

Even when Ryan knows that he’s far away from the place that he woke up at, he still moves as fast as he can.

There’s no one chasing him- but he doesn’t believe that. He’s sure that one of them survived and would find him and kill him.

Its night- he’s lost one of his shoes on the way; his blue waistcoat in tatters- his once pristine white shirt now tainted in blotches of red.

He’s running purely on adrenaline now- so he lasts much longer than he normally could.

But he’s cold. And scared. And he’s running out of energy.

And that was when he picks up the scent of seaweed, which faintly lingered in the air.

*

He had always liked the sea.

His mother, before her untimely death- used to bring him to the docks to play.

She would teach him how to build sandcastles, how to find the perfect seashell, how to swim- but never too far into the sea.

He remembers lying underneath the night sky, his mother teaching him how to read the stars as a compass- how to survive if he was ever stranded.

He doesn’t know why he remembers it now, but he heads towards the sea all the same.

*

He doesn’t think twice when he sees a large ship docked against the harbor in a distance.  

In his defense- with the little moonlight he had- he assumed that the outer layer of the ship was in tatters; which led him to immediately think that it was an abandoned ship.

He jogs towards the ship, noticing the stairs that led onto the deck- and alright. That was weird. (But he was tired and hungry and scared-)

He looks around for any weapon- anything for him to hold just in case someone (or something- Ryan’s mind supplies helpfully- before shuddering at the thought of ghosts) attacks him amidst the darkness.

He knows it’s a bad idea, but he doesn’t have a choice.

Between staying outside (with the chance of his attackers finding him) and going inside the seemingly stranded ship- Ryan took his chances.

He boards the ship.

*

He almost collapses when he opens a door, his legs shaking beneath him as he stumbles into what he assumes is the cargo of the ship.

He shuts the door behind him, breath coming out in uneven pants as he grips the stick he picked up outside.

(He thinks that he’s finally safe- that he’s finally able to relax.)

(He thinks that he’ll rest for tonight, and prepare to find his way home tomorrow.)

He plans his next move.

*

In the dark, unknown to the tired man- a pair of brown eyes stare silently at the figure slumped in the middle of the room.

The eyes wonders why the younger male looked so familiar.

*

It was after ten minutes that his heart finally calms that he starts to take in his surroundings.

(He realizes that he should’ve did that from the beginning- but sue him, he was tired.)

So when he takes in a polished table, a dozen flickering candles lighted across the room and a comfortable looking bed- he wonders how he didn’t realize it from the start.

And when he hears the soft sound of laughter coming from behind him- he knows he fucked up.

*

“Oh, and aren’t you a cute little one?” a deep, melodic voice breathes into his ear, sending a yelp and a shiver through the smaller man’s spine.

Are you here to kill me?

*

Ryan admits that he does not react well.

He releases a high-pitched scream before attempting to swing his (pathetic) stick towards whoever it was that had managed to catch him off guard.

Admittedly, he was never trained for combat- so he only realizes what had happened after he’s pressed face first onto the ground; a pair of large hands and a heavy leg holding him down, his weapon nowhere to be found.

He was disarmed in the flick of a wrist. He groaned in pain as a hand tightened around his neck, leaving him breathless.

Ah- a feisty one, aren’t you?” Ryan swore that he could hear the voice smirk, the figure pressing down on him hard.

“You’re too careless to even be an assassin. I could’ve killed you so many times before you had even entered the ship.”

Ryan felt his heart grow cold at the implications of this man’s words, his blood seemingly turning to ice as he froze.

“Tell me- what are you doing here?”

*

He barely has enough breath to whimper out his response, his mind going fuzzy with the lack of air.

Let me go, you asshat;” he manages to spit, feeling the attacker’s hand tighten even further around his throat. He groans at the warning squeeze before answering the question.

Fuck you- I’m just looking for a shelter, ugh, stop it- My carriage was attacked by bandits and now I’m stranded-”

The voice releases its hold, and Ryan sprawled forward and coughed, glad to finally be able to breathe properly.

“Wait- you’re the guy I saved on the way here?”

*

Ryan looked up from the ground, his coughs finally subsiding. He blinked away the tears that formed in his struggle as his attacker’s words sink in.

“What-” Ryan looks up from his position and stops, because wow sweet Jesus how does someone look so good like that-

He cuts himself off when he realizes that he’s been gawking, the taller man tilting his head in confusion as his eyebrows furrowed.

He wants to hit himself for getting side tracked.

“What do you mean you saved me?” he finally asks, narrowing his eyes and looking at the mystery man- who in turn looked away with a strange look on his expression.

There was a stagnant pause before the older man starts.

“I came across the last of the kidnapping,” he finally says, refusing to look at Ryan’s eyes. “I was in the area for… business. Anyways, I took care of the bandits. End of story.”

Ryan opened his mouth to protest, but the taller man cut him off with a clap and a command.

“You guys don’t have to hide anymore. He’s clear. He doesn’t have any weapons, so stop pointing yours at him.”

Ryan watched in amazement as figures stepped out from the shadows; each of them armed with a different weapon as they glanced at him wearily before keeping it away.

*

(Pirates roam the sea, he suddenly remembers his mother whispering him a story, his dad snoring in the background. They’re big bad guys that steal money and hurt others.)

(Her expression was strange, almost sour, when the pirates in the story were killed- when the story was over and the hero wins, when the people rejoice.)

(There are good pirates too, she had added on, later, at night when the story’s over and he’s about to fall asleep. They steal from the undeserving, evil rich and give their money to the poor.)

(Ryan, my baby. She looked at him in the eyes. Remember- you must always believe in the good pirates.)

*

Ryan isn’t sure why he suddenly remembers his mother’s teachings, before he finally takes note of the people surrounding him.

Some of them wore cravats instead of collars, justacorps, white button-downs with their cuffs turned back, waistcoats and breeches.

And then it suddenly occurred to him, why he thought about what his mother said to him- the tall man’s authority and the people’s actions- the seemingly abandoned ship- the guns and swords tied around their belts-

“Oh,” Ryan says, dumbfolded. “You’re pirates.”

*

“You’re kidding- why do I have to mop the deck!? And why the hell do I need to stay in a prison cell!?”

The captain of the Grey Ghost- Shane raised an eyebrow at the whiny complaint from the younger man.

“If you’re not happy with that- I can get you to clean the toilets, too.” Shane says, his voice steely as the younger man fumed. “Anyways- who gave you permission to come in the captain’s quarters?”

“You know full well that I don’t even want to be here in the first place!” Ryan argues, his hands clenched into fists as he tried to think about hitting the haughty captain in the face.

“I’ve told you-” he spits, “I’m literally the prince of a country- How dare you treat me with such disrespect!? You’re just a mere pirate!”

Shane leaned back on his chair, his lips pursed as he glared at the younger man; his calm exterior melting away.

“What you don’t understand, Ryan Bergara- is that we’re fucking pirates.” He starts. “It may come to your royal ass as a surprise, but in the sea- you’re nothing. Status is nothing. You’re just like the rest of us puny humans.”

Shane grabs Ryan by his collar and pulls him close, their faces almost touching as he leans forward.

“Don’t forget- you’re our hostage for your dear daddy to pay up.” He growls. “Now, if you want to eat and actually sleep in a good room- I suggest you quickly shut the fuck up and go get the mops.”

Ryan slaps Shane’s hand away from his shirt and storms off, angry and upset.

*

It took a few days for Ryan’s pet bird Boogara to track him down.

Ryan was sulking while mopping the deck (as usual, after a heated argument with Shane that ended with the taller captain throwing him out of his office) when he hears the familiar cry of his pet honing pigeon.

He looks to the sky, eyes wide when he spots a bird flying in circles on top of the Grey Ghost.

His lips pull back to a large smile as he continues to mop the floor, eager to hide away from the rest of the swabs.

*

He manages to slip past the pirates on duty- Claude and Jocelyn before heading towards the edge of the boat.

The edge of the boat was a relatively secluded area- Ryan had found out about it when he was escaping his nightly mopping duties on the deck.

He remembers the day he found it as clear as if it was yesterday.

*

(Ryan’s heart was beating fast as he snuck away from his nightly duties, hoping to find a place to hide until it was curfew.)

(He glanced at a door he hadn’t explored yet- the wood polished and the handle new. He wonders what he would find there.)

(He slowly opens the door and was greeted with the marvelous view of the vast night sky, the beautiful twinkling stars, and to his horror- two figures entangled with one another on the ground.)

*

(Ryan had walked in to the master navigator Adam and the master gunner Andrew kissing; their hands groping around each other’s bodies; both panting heavily and moaning deeply.)

(He let out a choked off sound before the two males turned, their eyes widening and jaws slacking.)

(Ryan wasn’t sure if he was more mortified than Andrew over the embarrassing revelation.)

*

(And Ryan was never going to forget the way Adam had simply stared at Ryan for a moment, as if contemplating his worth- before turning back to Andrew and continuing his sexual administrations.)

(Ryan backed away, hearing Andrew’s mortified and muffled protests before turning around and shutting the door- as if nothing had happened.)

(I saw nothing, he convinced himself as he stared into the empty corridors. I saw fucking nothing.)

(He desperately willed the surprise hard-on in his breeches to please go away-)

*

Ryan let out a small whistle under his breath, the breeze brushing his black hair backwards as he stretched out his arm.

Boogara instantly came swooping down from the sky, landing on Ryan’s outstretched arm with smooth curve. Immediately, she rubbed her head onto Ryan’s with a happy chirp.

“Hey there, my princess.” he giggled as the bird squawked, its eyes wide and feathers ruffling. “I know, I know. I’ve missed you too, baby. Oh? Ahahah- Boo, that’s ticklish!”

The bird cooed happily before reaching its leg out, a roll of paper present around her ankle.

Ryan smiled.

*

Ryan, the paper read.

I hope Boo found you and you’re reading this. Are you alright? What happened?

I’ve been trying to get permission to go look for you for the past two weeks- considering you never made it home after visiting me- but my parents won’t even let me take a step out of the house.

They think whatever’s got you is going to come after me, too. They’re paranoid.

You’ve been missing for two weeks, now. Everything’s different without you here.

You need to get back to me as soon as you can. I’m worried, and please be safe.

Love, Steven.

*

Of course Steven was the one who released Boo- Boo was never one to listen to anyone else other than him or Steven.

He quickly fished out a quill and a piece of paper he snuck out of the captain’s room, his heart beating fast as he scratched out a quick reply.

Attacked by bandits on the way back. Ended up in a pirate ship called the Grey Ghost. I’m a hostage now. Just make sure father pays up when they officially demand for money.

Can tell the coordinates from the stars. Am currently around the South Pacific Ocean. Don’t look for me, I’ll be home before you know it.

Take care, Ryan.

He reads the letter once again before rolling it up and attaching it to the pigeon’s foot, ready for the letter to be sent back to his best friend.

*

Boo cooed sadly.

Princess,” Ryan starts, his voice sad as tears threatened to fall from his eyes. “Yeah, I know… I’m sorry, but you need to transport this back to Steven. Hey- I miss you too, alright?”

He stroked the pigeon’s head before kissing it on its beak.

“You’ll be a good girl and send it back to Steven, won’t you?” he whispers. “I’ll be back before you know it.”

As if understanding the finality in her master’s words, the honing pigeon ruffled its feathers before flying off into the blue sky.

Ryan wishes that he could be free, too.

*

Ryan spends the next few weeks doing several odd jobs that he would never have to do back in his palace.

He mopped the decks till his hands bled, cleaned the bathrooms (he was forced to- after a particularly nasty fight with the captain- Shane the dick), and basically worked as a servant for everyone on board.

So when the ship was attacked by bandits at midnight- he never expected that he would actually get hurt protecting the pirates.

*

Ryan wakes up to shouting outside his makeshift ‘cell’, his hard bed creaking underneath him as he jumped up.

He was disoriented as he opened his cell door and exited the cellar- to the fire on the ground, the sound of swords clanking and pistols firing.

He gapes at the chaos of different pirates fighting against one another, screaming and swearing.

He then notices Shane, the captain standing in the middle of the battlefield, his sword gleaming against the bright fire.

He watches, strangely transfixed; as the tall man swings his bloodied sword with deadly efficiency, killing one bandit after another; scarlet blood splashing onto his clothes.

He thinks then- that the man looked ethereally beautiful; the hard look in his eyes and the roguish smile formed on his lips- the way the bodies seemed to fall around him as he walks in the midst of the roaring fire.

*

He snaps himself out of his daze, looking around in panic for something to cover him from the violence all around. He scrambles to the floor when he notices a discarded gun, and cradles it in his hands.

He knows that he has to pull back the trigger or something to shoot- he figured it would be easy before cocking the gun in his hands.

Glancing to his right, he sees Andrew shouting and shooting at the bandits, his back turned towards the sea.

And that was when he notices a grinning, ugly man creeping up the boat, a gun in hand and ready to shoot at the unknowing gunner-

He doesn’t think twice before shoving Andrew away, pulling the trigger at the figure before feeling the trigger rip the skin out of his hand and as white hot pain erupted on his right leg-

He falls to the ground and hears a splash as the dead man drops into the ocean.

*

Fuck- Ryan!” Ryan could hear a terrified voice call to him as he groans. “Are you alright- oh fucking hell, you’ve been shot!”

He looks up with tear filled eyes as the master gunner crouched over him, his hands pressing against his wound.

“I’m fine,” Ryan groaned as he tried to move his leg. He gasped as pain seared up his spine. “Okay, maybe I’m not fine- but just focus on getting the bandits off the boat! I’ll just, stay here and try not to die-”

Andrew glanced upwards as cheers erupted from the bottom of the deck, voices booming over one-another. He stilled.

Then, Andrew looked back down to Ryan and grinned, and wow Ryan can understand why Adam’s all over this man because holy shit that’s fucking hot-

“We won!”

*

Ryan didn’t expect Shane to blow up like he did upon seeing Andrew carrying him- in a princess hold.

Andrew fretted over him before finally deciding that carrying Ryan in a princess hold was the most efficient way to bring him to the infirmary without further aggravating his wound.

Ryan felt as if he was going to pass out- he’s pretty sure he lost a lot of blood. And also because a really hot man who is conveniently taken is carrying him down the stairs like a princess.

As they descended the stairs to where the celebration was- he closed his eyes and prepared for the mocking laughter by the pirates at his embarrassing situation.

He thinks that if he acted as if he passed out- perhaps that way he could pretend that he didn’t know a single thing about this situation.

So when he braced himself with the mocking laughter from the pirates- he was instead greeted with empty silence.

And then, he hears a silent, but enraged voice.

“Get your hands off him, Andrew.”

*

Ryan blinked his eyes open. That was not the reaction he was expecting.

Especially when that same voice had yelled and growled at him every day for the past few weeks.

He looks down and sees the furious look on Shane’s face, the way the entire ship was suddenly pin-drop silent, the way the pirates gapped at the sudden change of atmosphere-

“Shane..?” he whispers and feels his head swim, his vision darkening and his thoughts scatter.

He then misses the look of surprised pleasure on the captain’s face as darkness overwhelms his vision.

Andrew jerks in surprise as Ryan slumps in his arms, and all hell broke loose.

*

He wakes up in an unfamiliar room, his head throbbing as he recognizes the voices in the room.

“-killed someone for me,” Andrew continues, “He saved my life- that bandit was climbing the boat and I didn’t see him at all.”

I get it.” Shane snaps, his voice grim. “But it really isn’t like you to not notice someone behind you.”

Andrew stays silent before another voice speaks up.

“It’s my fault.” Adam speaks up from across the room, his usually monotone voice now filled with guilt.  “We… we had a fight, and both of us were distracted. I'm sorry. This won’t happen again.”

Ryan hears shuffling as Shane sighs.

“Well, I can’t have my master gunner and my master navigator both getting distracted; alright?”

He hears footsteps and shuts his eyes, pretending to be asleep. He tries not to jump in surprise when the Shane's voice starts from his bedside.

“Adam, you’re off any manual duties until Sara says you’re clear to go.” Shane commands. “And Andrew- I expect you to resolve this… situation of yours with your boyfriend.”

He hears the two sigh in agreement before leaving the room, the door shutting behind them.

Ryan feels Shane watching him sleep, feels the older man’s eyes bear into him. He tries not to twitch or shuffle, not to do anything to suggest that he's awake.

And then he feels something touch his cheek. He feels a gust of wind blow across his eye as something touched his jaw, and then lips-

He thinks his heart has gone overdrive when the feeling disappeared as quickly as it came- and he feels, more than hears the older man leave as the door clicks shut.

He opens his eyes, feeling a hot blush spread across his face, feeling as if the temperature in the room was turned up by a few hundred degrees.

He doesn’t know what just happened.

*

As soon as the doctor- Sara Rubin gives him permission to be able to do manual work on the ship, Ryan internally celebrates.

As much as it was nice to see Andrew fret around him- it soon became slightly weird when he feels Shane staring at him, observing his every move.

He stops complaining about his duties, slowly getting used to staying on the ship as he finally became friends with the other pirates on board- and learns each and every one of their individual stories.

He was also moved from his makeshift ‘prison’ into a shared room- with a proper bed and a desk with an oil lamp for reading.

Ryan thinks that he doesn't mind this, at all.

*

Ryan still bursts into the captain’s room from time to time- but never to complain about work.

Now, they argue about what they believe in, they talk and they have civilized conversations without going at each other’s throats. (Most of the time.)

They debate against one another about any topics, ranging from their love for corn to whether ghosts were real. (Ryan thinks that Shane is absolutely insufferable when proving that ghosts are fake.)

Ryan thinks Shane tolerates his presence, now. (He reminds himself that he’s a hostage- that he’s expendable for Shane.)

Shane never mentions why he kissed Ryan that day. (And Ryan doesn’t have the guts to bring it up.)

He thinks that he likes the way they are, right now. (Just as it is.)

*

He was assigned to share a room with Claude and Adam- whom both seem to like his presence around the room- which Ryan takes as a win.

He looks around the room and recognizes a few of the books that the two other men read- and manages to find a common ground between them to talk about.

And upon finding out about Ryan’s skill to read the stars for their exact coordinates- Adam had asked if Ryan wanted to help him out with his navigation duties, which Ryan accepted readily.

He thinks that everything’s going well.

*

He finds himself wondering if he misses the life he had before this.

(Being assigned into a loveless marriage just for political benefit, being ignored by his own father, having others cleaning up his mess and spending the rest of his days bored-)

He decides that perhaps he doesn’t.

(He thinks that maybe this is what Steven was always talking about, what he was always working towards, all along.)

(To be able to have a taste of this freedom, to be able to decide whatever he wants for himself, to be able to be selfish- for once.)

(To be able to taste the consequences of any mistake he makes, and to know with full knowledge that there are people backing him up if he ever falls.)

(He thinks that they’re his family, now.)

*

He doesn’t want anything to break this freedom of his. (He thinks that he’s in too deep.)

He loves the way the ship rocks gently above the sea, the way the wind blows his hair out of his eyes- (The way he gets to see Shane every morning, afternoon and night.)

He loves it, here. (He loves it, with Shane.)

And he knows with full knowledge that these days won’t last, not when he’s merely an expendable hostage. (Not when the older man doesn't even see him that way.)

*

And when Adam bursts through the captain’s door, cutting off Ryan and Shane’s debate on whether apples or pineapples tasted better- he knows that the calm days are over. (He'd been dreading for this day.)

Andrew trails behind Adam, a flushed look in his face as they pull a silver haired man into the room, his familiar voice gasping and exclaiming in surprise.

Ryan stands up, because he recognizes that voice.

And he hasn’t heard it since he left his house five weeks ago- before getting himself attacked and kidnapped by bandits; and now, held hostage by pirates.

“Steven!?”

“Hey, Ry!” the Chinese man grinned, soaked from top to bottom. “Since your asshole dad refused to send out a search team for you- I came to find you myself!”

*

Ryan knows that there are good pirates and bad pirates in this world. (He never questioned what his mother told him.)

He thinks that against all odds, he has found the good ones. (And against all odds- he has fallen in love with one.)

And he intends to follow what his mother told him- up until the very end. (Even if it meant to defy his father; even if it meant to defy the entire world.)

He decides that he will not stop putting his faith into those words. (To always believe in the good pirates.)