Sector 2814

Aranel Took's DC Comics Fanfiction

Author Notes: This is a challenge with prompts based on the archetypes of the Major Arcana of the Tarot. As always, my thanks to juno_magic, my awesome Beta reader and summoner of Pirate Muses!
Prompt: The Fool
What Fates Impose
Chapter 1
What fates impose, that men must needs abide;
It boots not to resist both wind and tide.
-- William Shakespeare, Henry VI (Pt. 3), Act IV, Scene III

“Are you ready for this?” Hal asked.

“I don’t know.” Kyle looked up the drive towards the grand estate. Rayner Hall. He’d been worried about this homecoming for weeks, not sure at all how he’d feel coming back to the house he’d grown up in, the house that was left to him on his father’s death along with the title of Lord Rayner. He was probably supposed to at least feel something akin to homesickness after being at sea for over a year—or at least nostalgia—but the sight of the familiar house only left him cold. The only good memories he had of the place were to do with his mother, and she was long dead.

He’d just as soon be rid of the place, whether by sale or fire, and be left alone to return to the Emerald Dawn with the man he loved and the crew who had become a true family to him. But he was no longer the timid child who had needed Lord Scott to whisk him away from his troubles, and he would face his responsibilities.

“It’s bigger than the governor’s house,” the boy next to him said in amazement. Sodam looked up at him with wide, dark eyes. “That’s your home?”

“It’s where I used to live,” Kyle said, perhaps a bit too sharply. He took a deep breath and smiled down at the boy. “The Emerald Dawn is my home now.” And he wanted more than anything to be back on that ship, but she was currently heading back out to sea, away from the the prowling British Navy. They would meet them again in two months in the Canary Islands. They’d come from the islands on a merchant ship,  Hal taking the name of Edward Smith to hide his true identity, acting as Kyle’s servant. Captain Hal Jordan had an enormous price on his head, and any person who turned him in would gain a small fortune.

Hal grabbed their bags from the cab and paid the driver. Kyle smiled to himself, wondering what the cabbie would think if he knew that the polite servant was the most feared pirate in the Atlantic. The cab driver tipped his hat, then smacked the reins. The cab trotted away, leaving them standing on the road before the drive.

“Are we going to go in?” Sodam asked, scuffing his newly bought shoes in the gravel.

Kyle sighed. He supposed he couldn’t put it off anymore. He bent down to grab his bag, but it was snatched out of his grasp by Hal. “I’ll be getting those, Lord Rayner.” He picked up his own bag as well. “After you, sir,” Hal said, giving a deferential nod of his head.

“I am not going to get used to that,” Kyle said with a chuckle. Then he puffed out his chest and raised his nose in the air, “Very good, Smith,” he said, in an imitation of his father’s cold demeanor. He raised an eyebrow. “How was that?”

“Just be yourself,” Hal laughed. 

Kyle nodded and turned to go down the drive. Right. Be yourself. A wastrel, ungrateful son returning home with a pirate captain for a lover only to collect his inheritance. That would go over well at the society balls. 

“What about my bag? Aren’t you going to get that, too, Captain Hal?” Sodam asked behind them.

“No, I don’t think so,” Hal replied over his shoulder. “You are quite capable of managing your own baggage.”

Kyle heard the harumph behind them and exchanged smiles with Hal. They had debated whether to leave Sodam on the Emerald Dawn but decided the boy would probably just jump ship at the first opportunity and try to find his own way to England if he got left behind. He’d put up a little fuss at having to leave Mona the monkey behind, but Soranik had promised to look after his pet for him.

Kyle didn’t see any activity around the house as they walked up the path to the entrance, though the grounds looked to be well maintained. Kyle guessed that Lord Scott had made sure some servants were kept on for basic upkeep, but with no Lord in residence there would be little else to do. 

The house loomed over them and Kyle shivered. Father is not here, he had to remind himself. He reached the door and took a deep breath before opening it. 

The entry was empty, but there was no dust. Somewhere in the house he could hear a female voice singing.

He stopped in his tracks when he realized it was a song his mother had sung for him as a child. Heart pounding, his first thought was that she was haunting the place where she’d died. But then the song was interrupted by a sneeze, and he didn’t think ghosts sneezed.

Hal dropped their bags at the base of the curving staircase. “I suppose that’s one of the maids?”

Kyle nodded, still disconcerted that someone was singing one of his mother’s songs. The panic he’d first felt was giving way to anger. She must have been going through his mother’s things, through her beloved collection of music, and playing on her piano.

They followed the voice to the parlor. The singing girl was sitting near the window with her back to the door, painting on the easel that Kyle had left behind. He frowned and stormed into the room. How dare this girl laze about in his mother’s parlor, using his easel! “You!”

The girl’s song turned to a shriek, and she dropped her brush, leaving a spatter of blue on the landscape she was painting. She stood up and whirled around to face them. “Kyle!”

Kyle stopped, his anger suddenly replaced by relief, because if anyone would be allowed to use his mother’s things or his easel, it was Jenny Scott. He went to her with open arms and swept her into a tight embrace. “Hello, Jenny. I’m back.”

Work in Progress
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