Still Waters - Taboo Fan Fic: Chapter 8
*Special thanks to @thihaf for all my editing
and is it it too soon for them to f*ck needs! :)
STILL WATERS - CHAPTER 8
When Lorna reached the upper deck of the ship only a few crew were present, diligently engrossed in their labours. Descending the galley stairs she made her way to the kitchen mess. As she drew closer, a familiar low grunt could be heard and her heart clenched within her chest. Entering the kitchen area, she noticed several of the crew had already gathered around the numerous tables for the breakfast meal. Atticus, French Bill, Godfrey and Cholmondeley sat at the Captain’s Table… and there at the head sat James; his eyes downcast. Her entrance caused a hush to come over the room, as each head turned from her, to where James head suddenly snapped up – as if he had felt her presence. His eyes commenced a slow perusal over her entire form, while she stood silent beneath the force of his gaze.
When their eyes met, the breath was stolen from her body and the heat from her skin; as if they would cross the space between them and melt into his own form. Her brain did not seem capable of forming a thought, other than how to erase the ground between them. James face betrayed no emotion other than his steady regard of her. Though within, the urge to touch her screamed from every atom; threatening to tear themselves apart just for the chance to be close to her. In the presence of so many it was necessary to put a stopper on the emotions swirling inside; bottling them up to be savored at a later time. Gathering herself she nodded to the gentlemen and took a seat at the opposite end of the table, before her eyes lifted to James once more; taking note of a new cut along the brow of his left eye. His gaze had never left her and a loose grin now played about the stubble on his chin. The tension seeped from their bodies, saturating the room in unspoken need, and more than a few throats were cleared amidst the heavy silence. They were saved by the arrival of the meal and all were grateful for the jovial and witty banter between Atticus and Cholmondeley to save them from the charged air that encompassed the space. It was with some relief the others finished eating and had escaped the small space err the sound of the chairs scraping upon the wood had ceased.
Their eyes held each other across the length of the wooden table. He could see something of her spirit dancing in those warm pools. It came to mind what a loss it would be should it ever be extinguished, and more to the point, should he be the one to do so. He used to think it was the crooked smile that was now flashing at him that he loved the most, but now he thought it might just be looking into her eyes that he had missed so much. A silent connection of soul’s sharing. She chewed her bottom lip before breaking the silence.
“How did your business fare?”
James set down his cup, gesturing to the chair beside him while his tone traveled towards her deep and low, “Why don’t you come sit here and I will tell you all about it?”
Smiling, she settled in the seat beside him, their knees grazing beneath the worn and scratched surface. Concern clouded her eyes as she reached up to touch his latest injury and James didn’t flinch at her touch. Instead they leaned close to one another while he recounted the events of the past days. To anyone passing by, the gentle gaze of their eyes and the relaxed nature of their features bore witness to how their communication was a comfort to one another. The power of words to draw close and open hearts – all balanced on the simple, but oft forgotten act of someone listening. When they left the ships’ mess area, it wasn’t only Lorna that felt the weight of James hand resting on her lower back as he escorted her from the room.