Rescue of the Heart by Honiglippe aka Marianne
"Jonathan!" the captain whispered and sprang to his feet, inclining his head as if he was hearing a distant call. All chatter came to a halt from the people scattered around the living room, which had been in a relaxed pose of happiness and contentment, before the display to enfold.
"Daniel?" the call of his life soul distracted him for a second, before he squeezed her hand still in his. A quick look around the full living room, he sought but one face he could not find, not seeing the shocked looks he got in return. His stance was of a being ready to battle, whatever the cost. A distant call seemed to be heard again only by him and with a look of assurance to Carolyn and his little girl, the Captain waved a hand, the sword from the wall flew to his outstretched hand and he disappeared from the view of all who watched him fascinated.
"What the hell, just happened here?" Brad Williams shout out with a shocked voice, throwing the rest scattered around the living room from their trance. His wife Emily held a hand to her heart and after a look into her daughter's eyes; she looked at the mantle over to the painting of Captain Gregg. Thinking it was not possible, but the facts remained in her minds eyes.
"Mommy, Jonathan is not here. He said he would go to the shed to take out our present for you, we hid there, but that was fifteen minutes ago." Candy called out in a fearful voice.
A distant thunder could be heard from the direction of the beaches cliff, finally making Carolyn ran to the door and running to the cliff where thunder and bolting of great strength clapped through to them. The others ran after her to a sight no one could have imagined of men fighting with swords and fists.
One blond man was holding a squirming Jonathan near the distant cliff, with shouts they could not understand going between the man and the fighting ones.
The Captain had recognized three of the men when he reappeared at the cliff where Jonathan's distressed call for him had come from.
Two had been pirates from a distant past he had conquered, when they wanted to enter his ship. Blood had fluid but no death had occurred, and incarceration for life for the pirate crew.
The third was from a coward once one of his crew, who had the death of two other crew mates on his head. The fourth man, who held Jonathan, he did not know, but seemed the instigator for what was going down and from a time, judging by his clothes, not far from this present.
The boy squirmed in the arms a look of pure terror in his eyes, with his mouth held silent by a vicious hand over it.
"Get him," the blond-haired man shouted with hate in his voice. "That old fool, who thought to have as his own my kids and nothing for good wife."
The three others attacked the captain as one, and he was glad to have retrieved his sword from the wall, as he countered their attacks. The vicious words put storm in his eyes and thunder clapped and lightning alight the darkened sky.
From afar, he could hear Carolyn's voice calling out for him and her boy child. The attacks came from all sides, the most he countered, and some hit him and sliced through his white shirt. After a while, he could take hold of one of the man and take the sword from him. With one sword, he countered the attacks and with the other one stroke one pirate to the ground. They were no match to the captain who fought for his new family with all his might.
Fear flickered in the blond-haired man, when he saw his companions going down one by one, his hold more firm on the boy he held. From the side of his eyes he saw Carolyn near the battlefield almost reaching them with others on her heels.
Hate transfigured his handsome face in a ghoulish grimace. He moved closer to the edge of the cliff, determined to end this farce once for all.
"Unhand the boy," the captain said in a controlled voice, but thunder accompanying his words. Cautiously he neared the man he now knew was Robert Muir, when he struck the last of his attackers to the ground.
"For Heaven's Sake, Muir, he is your son," the captain shouted when he saw the man's intend to throw the boy over the cliff.
"Who said that would deter me? I hated him since before he was born. One child was already enough to suffer through. Never wanted them, but they are mine to do as I wish. Moreover, by Gosh, they will be neither yours nor anyone else's, not even that woman. She wanted to leave me. Me, Robert Muir, and would I not have had that accident she would be the one to be dead. I know the worst I could do to her was to get rid of the boy. I worked hard to get my corporeality with the help of your enemies and she will always be mine to do as I wish. How dare she to be happy and with a ghost. I will rectify that mistake once and for all." With those hateful words, he pitchforked the boy over the edge, but an instant before the captain lunged for the boy in a powerful launch seeing his intent. He got hold of one of Jonathan's pullover sleeves and followed it quickly to grip him by the hand before he could slip from the pullover. He heaved the frightened and crying boy from over the cliff into his arms, when a scared shout of "Daniel!" and "Daddy!" made him look up from his stance on the ground, holding the boy like one of the most precious gifts of his soul.
Robert Muir was about to strike the captain with one of the fallen swords, the shout of "Daddy!" momentarily halting his movement, but just to see the eyes of his daughter reverted to the man at his feet with the love which should have been for him in her eyes in her fright.
More determined than ever he began to descend the sword again, to the one below him and saw the captain turn his back to him to try to safe the boy from any harm.
Suddenly with a look of pure astonishment, he looked at his chest, where the captain's sword produced with a swish. Looking up he saw the face of Brad Williams, still holding the sword with both hands.
The young Ghost saw the captain standing up, the boy still firmly in his arms, holding a hand out to get the shocked man, Brad Williams away from him and the sword. He saw Candy fly into the captain's arms averting her eyes from him. Carolyn was soon following suite for an embrace of the four of them. Her husband held Emily in his trembling arms and Martha held her hand on the Captain's arm, tears falling down freely on her face.
The wind began to howl in a frenzied way, whispers all around. Dark creatures appeared out of the air surrounding the group at the cliff. The captain stood proud with his family in his arms, no fear could be seen in his eyes. The others saw the fallen crew member and pirates been dragged over the cliff and while falling disappear before their eyes with cries for help. The creatures neared the blond-haired man still dazed on the cliff's edge and Brad Williams saw the captain hold the face of his granddaughter more tightly to the folds of his white shirt, hiding her face to make sure she would not see what was to come, his grandson's face hidden in his neck.
The cry of pure terror filled the air, but not once the small family turned to it. The creatures neared the captain, the hold more fiercely by the ones he held and slowly slipped away from them, disappearing as they had come into the air.
The wind stilled to a sudden halt, no clouds were seen in the moon-filled sky but with a gentle light on the remaining people. The stars shone bright most of the entire the guiding one.
The captain looked down at the face of his beloved one and slowly bent his to kiss her upturned lips more gentle than a butterfly's wing. The kiss was short but tender and loved filled. He bent down to take the little girl in his other arm and looked around him then they moved towards Gull Cottage, their home.
End Part 1
The captain sat on the loveseat in the living room, both children still in his arms seated on his lap. Neither one of them would let go of him, nor Carolyn beside him who had her arms surround her children and the Captain. On the opposed side on the long couch sat Brad and his wife Emily in his arms. Martha was sitting on the single chair beside the window with Scruffy on her lap. She alone would remember and knew what Carolyn had suffered in the hands of her late husband, the children still too small then.
The silence was heavy, no one ready to begin to talk on this Mother's Day that had turned out from joy to clinging desperation and retrospection.
The Williams had come for a surprise visit on this Mother's Day to stay for a week at Gull Cottage. After their last visit for a marriage for Carolyn, that had become one of their own renewals.
"Aye, aye, Captain, that would be so groovy." Jonathan had been saying when he had come running backwards from the kitchen, giving a salute in jest, not seeing his grandparents in the living room at first.
"So, he is still here, but you said he was at sea, Carolyn. That Captain of yours." Brad Williams had said, not very happy, as he had not liked that fellow he had known some months ago.
Carolyn had been at a loss what to say for a moment and when she finally had been to say something a sight she never would have thought of to see had silenced her.
Just thinking to be confounded by that ninny-poop again of a supposed nephew, the captain had resolved to appear with his new-found corporeality. Fortunately, he had substituted his normal attire with a white shirt Carolyn had given him to his birthday that day and with his black trousers, he seemed not to be so outdated in his attire he had supposed.
He had been a remarkable sight and all eyes in the room had reverted to him. His smile had been charming when he had approached the Williams. "It's a pleasure to finally meet you, and I must say I can see where Carolyn and Candy have gotten their beauty." The captain had said while kissing the hand of Carolyn's mother.
He shook the hand firmly of the surprised Brad Williams. "Sorry, for the charade on your last visit. As I have been told, her cousins rode Carolyn to it, Hazel and Harriet, and it got out of hand. I just came back from my voyage the other day. I live at the Cottage nearby. I can assure you I am the only Daniel Gregg around here." With a smile to Carolyn, he had stepped close to her to continue the introductions. The children had been beaming up at him with joy in their adoring eyes.
Therefore, the afternoon had gone by, with the Williams getting to know the captain more. This man had pleased Brad Williams by his manner and stance. Now to know his little girl's beau was a ghost was overwhelming at least. He wanted to shout his terror by all, but on the other hand saw all the love his girl and the children bestowed on this being, no longer a real man, but better than all the ones before.
He sighed, his eyes still lingering over them on the loveseat, after all that had passed on this day.
The captain's eyes reverted to both on the couch in return, acknowledging the preoccupation he could see in those eyes. Carolyn's mother, Emily, was unnaturally silent as well, but her eyes never deriving from his.
The children were still clinging to him but had fallen asleep by exhaustion at least. His eyes went to his beloved and he said. "Let's tuck them in, it is late and they are asleep, my Dear." The endearment leaving his lips without conscious thought, as it was such as it.
Carolyn acknowledged him with a nod and stood up her hands lingering on his arm that held Candy. His strong frame seemed not to feel the weight of his two burdens, not burdens to him at all. With a nod to Brad, Emily and Martha, they ascended to the second floor to the children's room. While Carolyn changed her girl to her pajamas, the Captain made the same with Jonathan.
The captain's heart was heavy, as he knew; the Williams could take his family away from him. It was not supposed to come out that he was a ghost, merely a spirit of who he once was, although he had felt never more alive than now and finally to be able to touch them, as he wanted to since the first day.
How was he to convince that man to leave his daughter with him and his grandchildren?
Carolyn felt his distress when the children were settled not haven awaken by their tender care and moved into his arms where she felt so secure.
"Daniel, no one and anything will ever make me go away from Gull Cottage and you. Not even if you wanted me to. You are stuck with us."
Just some days ago, he had said for the first time that he loved her with words and not only in actions. She longed to be in his arms and more but his old-fashioned upbringing made him court her instead with just some kisses, although with growing fire and passion the more time passed.
In the meanwhile, Brad Williams took his head between his hands leaning forward with his elbows on his knees. What was he to do with the knowledge he had now? Let it be as it was or try to take his girl and grandchildren away? Was it possible for a ghost, a spirit of a man long dead, to care for his girl and children not his own? Rubbing his face and looking up at the mantle again, he looked with more care over the face in the painting.
He had been astounded by the resemblance between the painting and the man, he thought, he had met this afternoon.
A sigh, from the corner near the window made him look at Martha.
"You know, Mr. Williams, a ghost he may be, but never was there someone better for her than him or for the children. I have known of him only before Christmas, but had my suspicions, but Mrs. Muir and Jonathan from the first day on, and Candy a year later. I have seen his love for the children and her, he would never let harm come to them, not now or ever." She said in a solemn voice, the tone soft but determined.
Emily for the first time found her voice again. "But how is it possible? He is a ghost. How can he even exist?"
Martha chuckled. "There you are asking me too much. I would not know, but as it is, he is a super ghost I am sure. No greater love I have witnessed in my days then that of the Ghost and Mrs. Muir. Only recently has he been able even to touch to my knowledge or for an extended time I believe. Or in some way he should have been able to as Claymore more then once flew out the front door and in how other way then by touch of some kind?" Martha chuckled again when she saw that peculiar look in Brad Williams face. "Don't fret, Mr. Williams, I don't think they behaved improper until now, although that could change with time, but he is courting her in his old-fashionable way, too much a proud man from his heritage and upbringing for his lady."
Thinking to herself that Mrs. Muir would be more forward in this than the captain in a way although he was a seaman, as she was a modern woman and loved the captain with all her heart.
End part 2
The captain looked down at the loveliest face in his mind and kissed her upturned lips until shudders run down her spine. His embrace was tighter than any before, trying to devour her for whole. With inner struggle, he detached himself from her lovely frame, holding her for an instant closer, forehead to forehead just trying to compose himself again.
Her hands ran down his sliced shirt, a shudder going down again, but this time of distress and not from passion. The image of Jonathan thrown over the cliff would remain in her minds-eye for years to come, but also the captain's lounge to save her little boy, what made her embrace him around his waist and leaning her head on his large chest. They remained that way for some time until he detached himself from her and held her face between his large hands, running his thumb up and down over her wet cheeks.
"We better get down to your parents, but before that I will change the shirt. I fear it is beyond repair."
"Don't worry, Daniel, I will get you a new one in no time. You are quite dashing in it." Carolyn said with a small smile, determined not to let the happenings of this day interfere with their future life.
The captain smiled down at the woman he called his own, proud of her spunk and courage. For the first time that night, he was confident that they could conquer it all, as long as they remained together.
Brad Williams was pacing around the living room in front of the portrait over the mantle when his girl came down, one hand in those of the spirit's one.
The tall, dark figure in the turtleneck sweater and a coat like the one in the painting made it understandable for Emily, why her girl fell for him. Although she never thought a lot about bearded men in general, the Captain's well looked after one and the reddish curls made him more handsome than she would have thought of.