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Usually Mary's trysts either as herself or as James have been too quick to bother much with stripping clothes off all the way. Easier to hitch up skirts or shimmy trousers down and out the way, undo enough buttons or laces on a shirt (if she's not binding her breasts down and out the way to pass as a lad) if they've got the time but it's rare that she ever really bothers much. Truth be told she actually enjoys it with clothes on, how frantic it feels although some of that's down to the fact that she's usually grabbing moments here and there, on ships or at some port, always somewhere to be all too soon, someone to meet. It's fun. Gets her blood going. It's not like she doesn't enjoy taking the time to strip slowly and to draw it out and tease, to lie back on a bed if there's a bed to be had, going at it until the sun comes up or the sun goes down depending on her schedule but usually it's a matter of not enough privacy and not enough time.

Besides, given that she's got plenty of weapons including one that's not the sort of thing many folk would ever be carrying, it's practical. Which is why she forgets when Anne and her have a moment to themselves, Rackham off with the lads in the hold, a few of the sober ones up on deck because her and Anne have been up for hours, most of them have really, sacking another ship, taking on whoever would join and watching as the remains slipped beneath the waves. Only she doesn't want to celebrate by getting drunk right now, she wants Anne and Anne wants her, tugged into the cabin and thrown against the door because if it came down to a fight, Mary would win by virtue of her assassin training but Anne's stronger than most folk would reckon, able to fight just as well as all the rest and Mary's seen her toss out deadweight drunks twice her size. Her breath goes out of her when Anne shoves her back but she laughs when Anne tries to mutter an apology, leaning forward to kiss her, nipping at her bottom lip.

Anne pushes her back, starts tugging Mary's coat off as she presses one knee between Mary's thighs and it's so damn good until suddenly she hears the horribly familiar sound of the mechanism in her hidden blade and they both freeze. For a moment she imagines Anne's quiet gasp of shock, that moment everyone has before the reality of their injury catches up with them, before they sob or scream or both. She can see it all too clearly, the heel of her hand resting against Anne's stomach, her blade buried deep before it retracts, the bloom of red red blood through Anne's shirt as Anne staggers back, pain and betrayal and hurt in her eyes as Mary tries to apologise for something she can't take back, something unforgivable, something that'd kill her just as sure as Anne-

"Jesus!" Anne yelps, lurching back and away from Mary who can't breathe.

Her coat is intact, if hanging awkwardly, but that's not her concern as she checks and thank god Anne's not hurt, not a scratch on her and no rips on her clothes so maybe she wasn't as close to Mary as she thought but she's still staring with wide eyes at Mary who mutters a curse and wonders how the hell to explain this.


"What's the point of strapping a bloody great knife to your arm?" She demands, folding hers as Mary stands there looking like a right arse, legs still spread, coat half off and shirt hanging open, her heart racing and cheeks flushed. "I mean of all the stupid-"

Mary can't help it, she laughs. She doesn't know why but once she starts she can't stop, helplessly sliding down the door to sit as she leans forward and wheezes until she's breathless and dizzy. "Annie-" She just about chokes the name out before she's laughing again, feeling that horrible knot of worry in her stomach ease away.

"I'm glad you're finding this so funny." Anne has her arms folded still and she sounds cross and well, Mary can't fault that really, but she can't see her face through her tears as she wipes her eyes and tries hard to stop before Anne gets even angrier. Because it's not funny. She could've killed Anne when they were rushing to undress and it's all gone so wrong but she's starting to hiccup, almost hysterical until there's cold water being thrown all over her head. "Mary."

"So-sorry," she coughs, shaking like a dog as she gets to her feet and hauls off her coat, removing her weapons this time. "It's...y'know how I told you what I was? Not the I'm a woman part-"

"You never told me that, I figured it out," Anne retorts, still annoyed but she's a little smug too and well, Mary remembers how Anne found out, how she played a trick on James and cut away at the clothes until it was damn obvious for all the world (but fortunately only Anne) to see.

"Aye but it was the other bit, about what else I am."

"Right, get on with it then."

"That's the weapon we use. It's been handed down since the very start, variations and all but always a blade like just like that, one we can hide easy enough."

"To make it that bit easier just to walk up and stab someone."

"Aye," Mary admits sheepishly, watching as Anne moves to sit on the bed who in turn watches Mary setting down her coat as she brings the offending weapon over to let Anne hold it. She takes it tentatively, not like when she first handled a pistol or a sword but Mary can't fault her, for one it looks odd enough compared to most everything else and well, it could've cut right through her. "See, you do this-" she activates it, making sure Anne's hands and fingers are clear of the blade but she still jumps when it's unsheathed completely.

"Look at the size of it, if you really were a lad I'd be thinking you had something to compensate for."

"Hey!" Mary nudges Anne in the side with an elbow and gets one back, catching sight of Anne's smirk as she examines it now it's all on display, running a finger along the flat of it.

She's quiet for long enough that Mary starts to jiggle her knee until a warm hand rests on it, squeezing gently. So she just bounces the other one as Anne moves the blade this way and that, testing the length of it against her own arm with a thoughtful look before she hands it back, letting Mary set it down, the blade gone, looking like nothing more than a fancy if odd accessory for her coat.

"Well?" She asks when she can't take Anne's silence any longer, leaning close to try to read the expression.

"Mad." Anne rolls her eyes and shakes her head. "Absolutely mad. I mean, does everyone have one that big?"

"Most of them'd say that the size doesn't matter, it's what you do with it that counts but when it comes to a thing like that-"

Anne laughs and Mary's heart soars because she's forgiven although she's going to take the blades off the in the future before things get interesting. "You're as bad as all of them you are," Anne teases, grabbing Mary by the hand as she flops back on the bed, Mary stretched out on top. "Almost stabbing me. Should make you make it up to me."

"It'd only be fair," Mary agrees as she starts to kiss her way down Anne's neck.

"You're going to be the death of me," she murmurs, fingers in Mary's hair to guide her down, helping with laces of her top as Mary laughs and presses a kiss above her heart.

"Never sweetheart, you and me out there forever, one adventure after the other."