PotC ficlet: Origins [Hector, general]
Title: Origins Author: celandineb Fandom: PotC Characters: Hector, Jack Rating: general Length: 323 words Summary: A young runaway grows up. Note: For cruisedirector, who asked for Barbossa with the prompt "glory".
Fifth of seven children, and the youngest of the three siblings who lived to the age of twelve, he ran away from home the following year, taking two days to travel the twenty-one miles from Nether Wallop to Southampton, where he managed to talk his way onto a ship as a cabin boy.
The snot-nosed grimy youngster gave up his birth name of Henry Benbow—he did not want word of his whereabouts to reach his father, who had a heavy hand with a switch—and adopted the alias Hector instead. On board no further name was necessary, but when his beard began to grow in, some years later, a sailor from Naples dubbed him "Barbarossa", for its redness, and in contracted form the sobriquet stuck.
Time moved on, and Hector moved on as well, from ship to ship, rank to rank. One day he found himself in Tortuga, having a conversation over a dram of rum with a man with kohl-rimmed eyes, a captain on the lookout for a first mate.
"I'm your man," said Hector flatly, signaling for another drink. He had heard of this Captain Sparrow, though he did not believe all the rumors about him. What man would promise his soul to Davy Jones in return for a ship? Ships were easily enough acquired.
"Why?" Sparrow drained his own tankard. "Motives, mate. If you're in it for the glory, I'll warn you there's none to be had."
Hector shook his head. Glory had never appealed to him. He'd left home strictly for the chance to eat more regularly than his childhood had allowed, and it was riches, nothing else, that he desired. "Piracy be my occupation. If it's treasure you're after, as I hear, that's what I yearn for meself."
Sparrow squinted at Hector, clearly sizing him up, and stuck out a hand. Hector noted the branded P on Sparrow's arm as they shook. "Welcome aboard the Pearl, then."