Ribbons // Ji Hansol
the prompt: you hoped for a new life in france, but with no money, you stowed away in the closest freighter you could find. only, it wasn’t a freighter, it was a pirate ship.
category: pirate!au, fluff
author note: ayy thanks to marissa for the idea of pirate!hansol bc this came out of it :) as always i miss ji hansol and wish him all the love. also i need to stop writing novels and just write cute romance like wow destinee half of this is just worldbuilding.
Thinking back, jumping into the first barrel you could find was likely not the best decision. How were you to know that there would be water filling up half of it? How were you to know that the water would be freezing cold and simultaneously smell like rotten fish?
When you planned to run away, you had no idea it would turn out like this. Your plan was to hide in a simple freighter, amongst the boxes of exports being sent to Europe. You planned to start a new life, far away from the constant danger surrounding your small village. The port side town was fueled by fear of pirates. No one was safe, and everyone was willing to give up everything if a pirate asked them to. It was horrible.
You didn’t want to live in fear. You were just as bad as everyone else in that town: cowering in fear if a pirate spoke to you. You worked at your family’s inn, and if a pirate asked for a free room, you gave it to him. If the pirates said jump, the villagers asked how high. There was no thought of ever defying them. There was no though of fighting back.
You weren’t sure you had the courage to fight back. Pirates were mean and brutal men who loved taking people for slaves and ransom. If you tried to fight back, and lost, it was likely you would never see freedom again. So, after many anxious nights of wondering if you should just do it, you finally did. You ran away.
It was just your luck that you accidentally stowed away in a pirate ship. The ship began to move at dawn, and that’s when you realized something was wrong. Men were shouting above you in a mixture of languages and tones. They were speaking like sailors, with tongues of fire and crude insults. As you looked around the small hold you had holed up in, it dawned on you that a freighter should have more crates in it. Where you were, there were only a few barrels. The rest of the room was set up like a pantry, with shelves of fruit, herbs, and dried meat. Not many freighters would have those in their hold. A pirate’s ship, however, would.
As the ship was already moving, you had no option but to hide and hope they docked somewhere soon, where you could sneak out and find help. That plan seemingly the only option in your head, you shoved your carpetbag (filled with simple things like a notebook and some underwear) under a shelf, behind many flasks and bottles. Then, assuming the barrel was empty, you opened the top and climbed inside.
You had not anticipated the cold water at the bottom, nor the horrid smell. If you bothered to check the barrels, you would’ve found a better barrel to hide in.
“Hansol said that we have oranges but I can’t find them.”
“Seriously, Jaemin? Did you even look hard enough?”
At the sound of voices, you ducked into the barrel with a soft splash, and replaced the lid as accurately as you could without proper lighting or any real knowledge of how to properly lid a barrel. Through a slit in the barrel, you watched as two boys surprisingly close to your age walked in.
It wasn’t long before they disappeared again, having found the oranges they had been searching for. You refused to move, afraid that you might splash too loudly, or worse, knock over the whole barrel and be attacked by swords. So, curled up in the most uncomfortable fetal position, you closed your eyes and struggled to fall asleep.
They would stop somewhere in the morning, right?
The boat rocked back and forth through the night, and Hansol had a hard time keeping his crew’s heads on straight. The storm had come out of nowhere, and of course there was a leak on deck.
Hansol tied his hair back with a bandana and grabbed a hammer. “Check the rest of the deck for more leaks!” he yelled, unable to be heard above the roar of the rain.
His crew obeyed without a word of protest, as they always did. He was lucky to have a loyal crew that didn’t cry mutiny every time something went wrong. Truthfully, they were his best friends and only family. He couldn’t say he’d know what to do without them.
Ten stood behind the ship’s wheel, holding the entire ship steady against the torrents. He watched each member of the crew from there, his dark eyes trained as if for war. In storms like these, the winds and rain could sweep you right into the sea of you weren’t steady, so it was vital that the crew looked out for each other.
Yukhei stood tall in the crow’s nest, a sextant by his feet and a looking glass in his hands. He was in charge of making sure Ten was on the right track. He was also in charge of warning the crew of any dangers such as other storms, mermaids, or other pirates.
Kun was the cook, and one of the most trusted members of the crew. Every day he kept the stock and the rations, making sure that no food went missing, and that everyone had enough to eat. He knew how to time trips, so that they would never starve before reaching their next destination. He also practiced navigation, and helped make sure Ten knew where to steer the boat.
Jungwoo manned the canons and the guns whenever a fight arose, but mostly he kept the ship clean and repaired whenever it needed it. Unfortunately, the ship was getting old, and the wood and tin wasn’t all
that they were when Hansol first stole his precious ship.
Jaemin was the youngest, but he had been on the crew almost as long as Hansol and Ten. He practiced medicine, and always took care of the other members if they got sick. For the most part, however, he was loud and playful, always skipping out on his responsibilities to play. He had a lot to learn, but Hansol could remember a time when he too had been to excited to simply pull in an anchor or man the sails. Jaemin would learn in time.
Hansol himself was the captain, though he didn’t find himself necessarily fond of the term when it first appeared out of Ten’s mouth. He didn’t want to be the one in control. He didn’t want his future crew to be afraid. After admitting his hesitation to his crew, they assured him that Hansol wasn’t like other pirates. They reminded him that while they looked for lost treasure and stole from time to time, they never took another man’s life if they could spare it. It was Kun who convinced Hansol to take the position as Captain. Soon, Hansol realized that “captain” was simply a synonym for “leader”, and he had nothing to worry about.
“Clear skies ahead! Ten, turn east!” Yukhei suddenly yelled, his deep voice somewhat startling to the focused Hansol.
“I can’t turn it!” Ten yelled back, his voice cracking against the salty air. “I need help!”
Warm rain trailing down his face, Hansol ran over to Ten and grabbed the wheel as well. Perhaps with the power of two men, it could be turned. After much groaning and toil, they succeeded in turning the ship’s course for the calmer waters, where they could perhaps anchor for the night and get some rest.
It took hours before the ship finally escaped the storm. The whole time, the entire crew had struggled to hold on against the winds. They took turns in threes, going below deck to sit at the oars and try to propel the ship further. When it was all said and done, the six boys were tired and worn. Soaked to the bone, everyone took off their clothes as quickly as they could and replaced them with warm nightshirts and wool blankets stolen from the last inn they had visited.
Everyone was tired, but no one wanted to sleep. It was like that after battle. No matter the enemy, whether man or storm, there was always that fear inside the heart of the victor. The fear that the battle might not be over, and that the second act was just shy of beginning. So, under the stars, they began to talk, as people do when they are afraid or nervous.
“Doesn’t it feel strange on the ship?” Jaemin asked, picking at a loose seam in his sleeve. He was leaning against Ten’s side for comfort. “Like, do you think we have a ghost?”
Yukhei’s eyes widened. “I did feel a presence below deck. Perhaps one of the items we took last week was cursed.”
Hansol chuckled. The younger ones always wanted to bring up curses and legends of old, but the more experienced side of the crew knew that curses just weren’t as common as the stories always said. “I highly doubt that. We spent all last week at your mother’s trade shop, remember?”
“Oh yeah,” Yukhei bit his lip, “but you know, my mom definitely could’ve cursed us.”
“Why would your mom curse her own son?” Ten asked.
Yukhei shrugged. “I don’t know. She might’ve been mad that I didn’t do my laundry, or perhaps she just wanted our trip to be unforgettable.
Hansol snorted. “I’m sure this trip will be just as forgettable as the last. It’s amazing how much of our touch we seemed to have lost when it comes to treasure hunting.”
Kun smirked, “Well you’re the captain, aren’t you? Start leading us properly and we’ll find treasure.”
Hansol shoved the younger boy playfully. At that moment, Jaemin’s stomach growled.
Jungwoo sighed. “You know, I’m pretty hungry too. We haven’t eaten since lunch, and we missed dinner because of the storm.”
Hansol looked at Kun, “What’s on the menu?”
“Well, I believe there is still some haddock left in one of those barrels. Which reminds me, we need to go fishing as soon as we can.”
“Alright. So everyone save Ten and Yukhei will be on fishing duty,” Hansol decided.
“Great,” Ten said. “Then Yukhei and I will go get the fish. Can we grab some oranges too?”
“Go ahead,” Hansol answered nonchalantly. “We brought too much anyway.”
The two disappeared below deck, and the remaining four sat in silence, each now aware of how hungry fighting the storm had made them. Hansol lay on his back, his gaze tracing the stars as they began to appear. He found the North Star easily, as all sailors had been taught. He pointed it out to Jaemin, and was about to speak when a loud shout interrupted him.
It came from below, and Hansol shot up as soon as he recognized it as Yukhei’s voice. “Stay here,” he commanded the others, afraid that someone dangerous might’ve stowed away and tried to hurt his crew members. The more he thought about it, the more it terrified him. “In fact, go hide in the captain’s quarters until I say it’s okay to come out. Jungwoo, take out your gun. Don’t be afraid to shoot if someone tries to hurt you.”
“Got it, Cap.” Jungwoo said, allowing himself to be steered away along with Jaemin. Kun had a grip on both of them, and he definitely wasn’t going to let them out of his sight.
Hansol cocked the gunning his hand, and with his finger on the trigger, he ran downstairs to find Yukhei and Ten seemingly unharmed. “What happened?”
“There’s a girl in the barrel!” Ten answered in exasperation.
Hansol peered into the barrel, unsure of what he was going to see. He definitely didn’t expect to see you, cold and shivering, staring back at him with fear evident in your eyes. “Please…” you spoke, and your voice was cracked from lack of use. “Please don’t kill me.”
Hansol felt his heart break slightly. “We don’t want to kill you,” he said in the softest voice he could muster. “Here… let me help you out.”
Perhaps his change in tone had worked, for you lifted your arms weakly and allowed him to pull you out of the barrel. “I can’t feel my leg,” you whispered.
“That’s alright,” Hansol answered, pulling you out and setting you on your feet. You leaned into his side. “The feeling will return soon enough. Right now, we need to get you warmed up. How long have you been in that barrel?”
“Since the ship set out,” you answered meekly. “I… I thought it was a freighter.”
“That’s been almost two days…” Hansol frowned. “Wait. My ship looks like a freighter? I thought it looked menacing.”
“It was dark,” you said. “I couldn’t tell which ship was which.”
This thought settled Hansol, and he faced Ten and Yukhei, who were still there, recovering from shock. “Go inform everyone that we have company. Tell Kun to heat up some water. Tell Jaemin to get his extra nightshirt, and then we can have dinner.”
Your eyebrows rose, and you scurried away from Hansol, running into one of the shelves behind you. A few oranges fell off of the shelf and you hissed in pain as the splintered wood rammed into your back. Still, you wouldn’t get any closer to Hansol. “You’re going to boil and eat me for dinner? Isn’t that too cruel? Can’t I just walk the plank or something?”
Hansol paused for a moment, unsure of where you had drawn that conclusion. Finally, he let out an amused chuckle. “Heavens no, darling. The water is for a bath, and the dinner is just for the crew. We’re hungry for fish, not people.”
You nodded, but you wouldn’t come closer to Hansol.
He held his hand out for you to accept, and offered you a friendly smile. “Come on, darling, I can’t take care of you if you refuse to come near me.”
“I’m not sure I want to be taken care of,” you said. “Can’t you just drop me off whenever you dock somewhere?”
“I’m not sure it works like that,” Hansol said, “we won’t be docking for a long time. You’re welcome to stay with us until then, though.”
You stayed in your spot, rubbing your cold arms in the hopes of circulating some warmth into them. As much as you hated to admit it, the man’s torso had been like a warm furnace, and your body was already missing the heat. “I don’t trust pirates,” you spoke surely, holding your posture.
“Me neither,” he answered. Then, perhaps for your sake, the man unstrapped his sabier, along with his gun, and handed both of the weapons to you. “But you can trust me and my crew. I’m Hansol.”
You slowly walked forward, deciding you could trust him. If any pirate was willing to give up his weapons, then he must be serious. That’s what you thought anyway.
“I’m Y/n. I was trying to get to France. I wanna start a new life far away from my hometown. Away from pirates and thieves,” you said the last part rather tentatively, in the hopes of not offending him.
Hansol didn’t seem surprised by your statement, and he only crossed his arms over his chest and pursed his lips in thought. “France, huh? I think that’s on our way. If you want, you can stay with us until we pass France. Then we’ll let you off. We have enough rations for you, I think.”
The thought of staying on a pirate ship any longer made you squeamish, but honestly what choice did you have? It wasn’t like you could just leave. You were in the middle of the ocean with no land in sight. “Okay. I’ll stay out of your way, I promise.”
Hansol shrugged, “Don’t worry about that. If anything, it might be nice to have a helping hand after the storm ruined a few of our sails. How did you do during the storm?”
You grimaced. “The barrel rocked a lot and all the shouting overhead scared me, but I managed to fall asleep. That other boy’s scream is what woke me up.” The two of you began to walk out of the pantry, you limping because of your poorly-circulated foot.
Hansol walked toward you awkwardly, and wrapped his arm around your waist again. “Is this okay? If I help you get up the steps?”
You nodded, accepting his warmth openly for someone who disliked pirates. For some reason, you couldn’t imagine Hansol being a pirate. You couldn’t imagine him ever hurting anyone.
When the two of you reached the top deck, the rest of the crew was already up and about, bustling around as quickly as they could. One of them, a boy close to your height, came running up with a nightshirt in his arms. “Hansol! Here’s my spare outfit. Kun said the bath is ready whenever you need it. I think he’s going to try and put dinner together.”
“Thanks, Jaemin,” Hansol answered, accepting the nightshirt.
Hansol led you into what you could only assume was the captain’s quarters, for it was furnished rather lavishly. The bed was huge, and half of it was covered with maps, pencils, compasses, and other navigation tools. “This is our map room. The bed is supposed to be for the captain but we only use it if someone is sick. The blankets are clean though!” he interjected himself, “We cleaned them when we stopped. You’re welcome to use the bed until we get to France.”
You eyed the piece of furniture. “Thanks.”
“Over here is the bath,” Hansol continued his tour, pulling you behind a dressing screen. There, what looked to be half of a barrel filled with water and… orange peels. “Kun says they make the water smell good. He also says that the acid will help clean us. I buy soap anyway because I don’t know how much I believe him. You can clean up and get dressed back here. When you’re done, we’ll be on the deck with dinner, if you would like to join us.”
“Okay. Thank you.”
“No problem,” Hansol smiled. Then, as if he had just remembered something, “Oh! And if you get seasickness, come get one of us. We’ll make you a remedy.”
You agreed, satisfying the captain enough for him to leave. When he did, you undressed and washed up, letting the freshly boiled water heat up your shivering bones.
When you were done, you dressed and crawled into the uncovered side of the bed. You buried yourself under the blankets until you could barely breathe. Ignoring your grumbling stomach, you fell asleep, desperately hoping that these pirates were good; desperately hoping that this wasn’t some trick; desperately hoping that you might come out alive and unharmed.
Hansol hadn’t really expected you to join his crew for dinner, but that didn’t stop him from hoping. Unfortunately, he had to accept reality when you didn’t come out of the room.
“What do we do with her?” Ten asked before taking a bite of the fish Kun had prepared.
Hansol pulled on his earlobe nervously. “Well… she wants to go to France, so I thought we could take her on our way to Finland.”
“Isn’t that out of the way?” Jaemin brought up, “Do we have enough rations to make it that far?”
Everyone looked at Kun, who calculated the numbers in his head before answering, “I mean as long as we stock up in France we’ll have enough food to get to Finland.”
Hansol nodded, “We have to take her with us anyway, so we might as well drop her off where she wants to go.”
“What do we do with her, though?” Ten repeated, his words emphasized as he struggled to get his point across. “I mean, do we give her a job? Or do we just leave her in the captain’s quarters and pretend she isn’t there?”
“I don’t know,” Hansol said.
Jaemin yawned from beside him. “Can’t we just ask her in the morning? She’s probably scared right now.”
“Right,” Hansol said, “So be considerate. Also, Jungwoo, no firing the canons as a surprise morning call like you sometimes do.”
“Seriously? You’re no fun,” Jungwoo rolled his eyes playfully.
Hansol smiled and ruffled his hair, “Alright. Off to bed. We’ve got a lot to do tomorrow. Mend the sails, fish, figure out our course to France…”
The crew groaned. Yukhei leaned against Ten dramatically, “Oh why must we work? What kind of a pirate’s life is this?”
Hansol shoved them both gently, “Stop complaining or I’ll make you two walk the plank.”
Yukhei snorted. “You wouldn’t make a fly walk that plank, let alone your favorite crew members.”
“Just get to bed.”
Just as they lulled you to sleep, the rocking of the waves woke you up. You turned on your back, eyes pointed towards the wooden ceiling. You weren’t quite sure what to do. Were you supposed to go out to the deck? Were you supposed to stay here until someone came and got you?
Your thoughts were interrupted by the door to your quarters opening slightly. A head poked through. “Oh. I didn’t know you were awake. I’m Kun,” the man said, his eyes kind. “I wasn’t going to bother you but we’re having a hard time finding our coordinates after the storm. It doesn’t help that the sky is covered in clouds. I’ll grab some maps and get out of your way.”
“I can help you,” you offered shyly. “My father was a cartographer, so I learned a lot about navigation from him.”
Kun broke into a soft smile. “Great! The other boys aren’t up yet, except Yukhei, so I’d be nice to have some help.”
“What does Yukhei do?”
“He keeps a lookout for us. We like to try and avoid other pirates as best as we can, so if we see another ship we’ll go out of our way to stay away from a fight.”
“So you guys don’t battle?” You got out from under the covers and helped Kun spread out the map. Then the two of you began to light up the lanterns so you could see.
Kun grabbed a pencil from behind his ear, “Yeah, well, we’re really only here for the adventure and the treasure. We don’t plunder every town we stop at and we certainly don’t attack other ships.”
“I didn’t know there were pirates like that,” you commented.
“We aren’t the only ones.” Kun said. “We are friends with another crew, a bigger one. They’re over near Africa right now so we haven’t seen them in awhile. But Taeyong, the captain, is a lot like Hansol. They both put their crew before treasure.”
“That’s nice,” you said, feeling a little elated to know that there were some nice pirates out here. “I’m glad I stowed away on Hansol’s ship and not someone else’s.”
Kun smiled. “Luck is on your side, it seems.”
The two of you got to work then, working to find your longitude and latitude, as well as how long it might take to get to France. Kun was a silent worker, you noticed. Something else you noticed was when he pointed to the top of the map, and his sleeves fell below his wrists. The two ribbons tied onto his wrist, one yellow and one pink, made you curious. “Have you got two girls back home, then?”
Kun’s gaze snapped to his wrist and he blushed. “Not quite. That’s my girl and our daughter’s ribbons. They live back at the village.”
“You have a daughter? You seem young.”
Kun shrugged, “Well, when you’re drunk you sort of forget your age, don’t you?”
You eyed the ribbons again. “Do you love them?”
“I’d die for them,” Kun said. “The only reason I’m not with them now is because I’m hoping to get a piece of that treasure in Finland. I want to take it back and make sure me and my family have a good life, away from judgmental eyes.”
“I hope you guys find the treasure,” you said earnestly. “I can’t think of a crew who deserves it more.”
Kun was about to answer when the door burst open, and in walked the crew member you had seen last night. Jaemin, was it?
“Hi,” he said brightly. “Do you by any chance know how to sew?”
“Me?” you asked. “Of course I do.”
Jaemin looked relieved. “Great. Can you help me? I’m supposed to be mending the sails with Hansol but I don’t want him to know that I haven’t practiced sewing like he told me to.”
You chuckled. “I’ll help you. As long as Kun is okay with me leaving him.”
“I think I’m good now,” Kun mumbled. “I’ll bring our assessments to Ten and talk to him about it.”
As you followed Jaemin out of the room, Kun called after you, “Wait, what’s your name?”
“I’m Y/n,” you answered him with a smile before being pulled onto the deck by Jaemin.
The air was windy, filled with salt, and far different than any weather you had ever felt in your village. Somehow, though, it was comforting. It cleared the senses, and tossed your hair this way and that. You felt refreshed, which was definitely something you could get used to.
Before Jaemin led you to the sails, he brought you below deck and handed you a pair of pants. “Hansol would kill me if you caught a cold. Put these on and I’ll get you a vest.”
You obeyed and pulled the pants onto your legs. By the time you tucked the nightshirt into your waistband, Jaemin returned with a vest made of hide, similar to the one he was wearing. “Here, this’ll keep you warm.”
You put it on as the two of you walked back up to the deck. One of the sails had been taken off of the mast, as it was torn down the middle. Jaemin approached it with a grimace. “I’m supposed to sew this up but I have no idea how to do it.”
He gave you the needle and thread, and the two of you sat down and got to work. You showed him the proper way of mending the sail, thankful that your village was a fisherman’s village and many of the children had been taught these things at a young age. “It’s just a simple criss-cross pattern,” you explained to the younger boy.
After a few tries, Jaemin finally got the hang out it, and you let him take over the job he was to do.
You turned around, startled to see Hansol standing behind the two of you. “Yes?”
Hansol sighed. “I need to talk with you for a moment.”
You looked at Jaemin, but he didn’t seem interested in your conversation, as he was diligently mending the sail. Hesitantly, you got up and followed Hansol towards the other end of the deck, away from listening ears. Bracing yourself for a chiding, as perhaps your weren’t supposed to help Jaemin, you clenched your fists and squared your shoulders.
Hansol didn’t seem to notice as he bit his lip nervously, averting eye contact with you. “I want to, uh, thank you for helping the others. Kun already told me that you helped him with navigation. Then you helped Jaemin… Thank you for doing that, even though you should be resting.”
“I feel fine though,” you answered him. You wished he wasn’t so shy and curt. You wished he would look at you. Perhaps it was because he was the captain, or because he was the one who took care of you last night, but you wanted him to notice you. “Do you like my outfit? Jaemin gave it to me.” You twirled in place, as if you were wearing a flow dress.
Hansol gazed at your clothes before letting a small smile slip onto his face. “You look like one of us.”
“It’s cool, isn’t it?” you opened up to the captain, feeling your heartbeat speed up whenever he smiled.
“Yes. Very cool,” Hansol answered, unable to hide his amusement. “Anyway, you’re free to roam around as you please. Just stay away from the canons. Those are dangerous.”
You heeded his words as he walked away from you. Then, deciding what you wanted to do, you ran after him. Once you were matching his strides, you looked up at Hansol. “Can I follow you around all day? I want to see what a captain does.”
Hansol eyed you for a moment before letting out a breath, “If you want.”
It was like that for the next few days, even weeks. You found yourself getting closer to the crew, but more so Hansol. The shy captain was enthralling to you, and you wished to know more about him.
So that’s what you did. Every day, you followed him around, asking him questions in an effort to get him to open up to you. Eventually, although slowly, he did open up to you. He told you about his family back home. He spoke highly of his sister, who mended clothes for a living but wished to design them instead. “I can help her start a business with the treasure we collect,” he had said.
He told you about all the places he and his crew had visited. He told you about the icebergs near Greenland, and the mountains of New Zealand. He told you about nearly dying on several occasions. He told you about getting so drunk on rum that they accidentally docked in Indonesia for a weekend. He told you that they decided to stop bringing rum aboard after that.
Every night, after the crew went to bed, Hansol would stay up. The closer you got to him, the longer you would stay up just to see what he was doing. Usually, he was just checking things and making sure everything was ready for nighttime. Whether the anchor was dropped, the fishbones were thrown overboard, and the lanterns were put out were some things he liked to check.
Most nights, you discovered, he simply liked to lean against the side of the boat and watch the water beat against the walls of the ship.
One month into the trip, you asked Hansol if you could join him. You too had things on your mind. You had no idea what you were going to do when you arrived at France. In fact, at this point, you weren’t sure you wanted to leave the small misfit crew of pirates you had come to love. Especially Hansol, who you cared a great deal about, and wished to spend more time with.
Hansol agreed to you joining him. Your shoulder brushed against his as you leaned over the side. The flyaway hairs on your head tickled your cheeks as you observed the water. “Hansol… what do I do?”
“What do you mean?”
“When I get to France. What am I to do there? How do I make a living for myself in a place where I don’t know anyone.”
Hansol shrugged. “You’ll have to talk to people. Make friends with strangers… you could even sing on the street for a few coins.”
You slouched against the captain, hugging his arm and you sighed dramatically. “What about you guys? I don’t want to lose my friends.”
Hansol stilled. “I nearly forgot that we wouldn’t see you every day like usual. You can write us can’t you?”
“How do I write to someone living in the middle of the ocean? Pigeons? Message in a bottle?”
“You could try the pigeons,” Hansol said in a soft voice. “We could get them in France.”
“Can a pigeon fly over open water?” you asked. “Maybe we should get a messenger albatross instead.”
Hansol chuckled. You felt him press his lips against your temple. “We’ll figure something out,” he said. “I don’t want to forget you.”
“Here you go,” Kun tossed you an orange.
You and the entire crew had taken a break in the middle of the day to have a snack. France was close by, and Kun estimated that everyone would be there within three days. As exciting as this could’ve been, none of you felt like celebrating. Instead, you all took to talking about ways to stay in touch, as no one really wanted to separate from you.
“What if it’s a few years before we see you again? How will we remember you?” Ten asked. Yukhei nodded from beside him.
Jaemin brightened. “Give us each a ribbon! That’s what girls do when they want a boy to remember them, right?”
“Not just any boy, Jaemin,” Jungwoo corrected him. “She has to give it to someone special. Like a lover or something.”
“Or something,” Yukhei snorted. “Can’t we be the ‘or something’?”
You giggled. “I don’t think it works like that, boys. Maybe I could get a mermaid to deliver my mail to you guys!”
Hansol cringed from beside you. He had been quietly peeling his orange the whole time. “Mermaids are evil, Y/n.”
After everyone finished their snacks, they went below deck to take an afternoon nap, as a Hansol had given them the rest of the day off.
A slice of an orange in his mouth, Hansol got up and went to drop the anchor. “I’ll probably take a nap, too, Y/n. Will you be fine alone out here?”
“I might sleep as well,” you said.
After dropping the anchor, Hansol bid you goodbye and began to walk off.
He turned around, his face as blank as it always was, so that you never really knew what he was thinking. “Yes?”
You closed your eyes and took a deep breath, wondering what on earth made you think of doing this. However, Hansol was your closest friend on the ship. Out of everyone, he would be the one you missed the most. Even thinking about it, your heart dropped a bit.
You reached for your braid and untied the ribbon that held it in place. It was faded purple, worn by the sea air and the amount of times you had tied and untied it. Still, it was the only ribbon you had. “Here,” you held it out for him to take.
Hansol stared at the ribbon for a moment, and you could almost see all of the thoughts racing in his head. He suddenly quirked a small smile. “Am I your lover now?”
You felt your cheeks heat up as he held out his wrist. As you tied the ribbon around it, you answered. “I just want you to know that you mean a lot to me. I’ll miss you the most when I leave.”
“Don’t tell Jaemin that,” Hansol said.
“I’ll miss the crew as well,” you justified. “In a different way than I’ll miss you.”
Hansol grinned. It was the first time you had ever seen him smile so carelessly, so that all his teeth were on full display. “I’m going to miss you too, Y/n. Shouldn’t I give you something in return? To remember me by?”
“Like what?” you asked, although you already knew the answer.
Hansol came closer, his hands reaching up to cup your face. The ribbon on his wrist tickled your neck. His nose bumped against yours clumsily, and you angled your head so that he had better access to your lips. He waited, perhaps unsure, right in front of them. It was agony for you: his hot breath fanning your lips but he himself never moving. Finally, you lost patience and leaned up, meeting him in the middle. He reacted immediately. His lips were plump and slightly chapped from the ocean air. You pressed your body closer to his, hoping for more contact. His hand trailed down your body slowly, as if he were memorizing every curve.
“Hansol, do you know where the — my eyes!” Jaemin suddenly shouted from behind you.
Hansol suddenly jumped away from you, his cheeks bright red as he refused to look at you.
You, out of breath, smoothed down your shirt awkwardly and cleared your throat. “What do you need Jaemin?”
Jaemin walked closer to the two of you. “Well eye cleaner for one, but I was actually going to ask for an extra blanket.” His eyes trailed down Hansol’s arms, “You gave him your ribbon? Ten! Kun! You’ll never guess what Y/n did!”
Suddenly the entire crew were running on deck, each disheveled and sleepy.
“What’s wrong?” Kun asked, his hand blindly searching for a gun even though he wasn’t wearing his holster.
“Y/n and Hansol love each other,” Jaemin clarified. “She gave him her ribbon.”
The crew groaned. Hansol hid behind you and hesitantly reached for your hand. You gave his a comforting squeeze.
“Jaemin, everyone knows that they like each other. Literally everyone,” Yukhei said. “They don’t hide their loving gazes very well. Now let’s go back to bed.”
Everyone agreed and shuffled back below deck, ignoring Jaemin’s apologies. “I still don’t have a blanket,” he complained, following the others.
“That wasn’t so bad,” you said once they were out of sight. “Right?”
Hansol bit his lip anxiously. “Can’t I just stay with you this afternoon? They’ll tease me if I go down there.”
You tugged on his hand, “Come on, Sol. Honestly for a captain you sure are afraid of your crew.”
“They’re mean to me, Y/n!”
“I’m sure they are,” you chuckled, balancing on your tiptoes to peck him on the lips.
You woke up a few mornings later to see Hansol already awake. He was sitting on the edge of the bed, so that you could only see his bare back. “Hansol? What’s wrong?”
You got out of bed and walked in front of him, tilting his face towards yours. “Why are you crying?”
Hansol sniffed and reached for your waist. He pulled you against him in a tight hug. “We’ve arrived in France. I don’t want to lose you, Y/n.”
You ran your hands through his hair comfortingly and kissed his forehead. “You won’t lose me, Hansol. We’re just going our separate ways for awhile. You’ve got to go get the treasure for your sister, and for Kun’s family. Then, if you still miss me, come back to France and find me. I’ll wait for you to come. And if you do come back for me, I’ll gladly return to this ship and live with you for the rest of my days, okay?”
Hansol nodded against your skin. “I love you.”
“I love you too,” you said. “I’m going to miss you a lot. And whenever you miss me, you can look down at the ribbon and know that you’re the one who has my heart, okay?”
Hansol left a feather-like kiss on your neck. “I’ll return quickly, then. Goodbye Y/n.”