alobear: (Default)
alobear ([personal profile] alobear) wrote in [community profile] fandomweekly2016-06-19 04:37 pm

[#017] Observation (Black Sails)

Theme Prompt: #017 - Avarice
Title: Observation
Fandom: Black Sails
Rating/Warnings: PG / None.
Bonus: Yes
Word Count: 717
Summary: Observation is the key to survival.

John Silver observed. It’s what he’d always done, in any situation. While others leapt in, taking ill-advised action on the spur of the moment, Silver took a step back and looked around him. He did it quickly - that was a necessary skill - but he did it, all the same. He never just moved by instinct; there was always a calculated moment of introspection that informed his decisions.

That was how he had ended up with the Urca’s schedule. Realising the page from the captain’s ledger was potentially valuable, and snatching it up, had been the decision of a moment. Even knowing nothing of its contents, Silver’s mental powers had not been taxed by that observation, though he perhaps might have thought twice about it, had he known quite what was in store for him because of it.

It was also how he became Captain Flint’s cook. Silver had never before considered becoming a pirate but, faced with execution as the other option, it hadn’t taken much to persuade him that the pirate’s life was for him. The cook aspect just followed on naturally, since everyone knows that culinary experts are in very short supply on the high seas. Silver would have professed an intimate knowledge of practically anything, if it had meant his survival. At least cooking was something he thought he could muddle through without too much difficulty.

Silver would always throw himself in with whoever looked most likely to keep him alive at any given time. His partnership with Max was short-lived, and the deal they planned with Charles Vane and Jack Rackham never even got off the ground, not after Silver witnessed Vane’s lack of control over his temper. He himself was not trustworthy, purely due to his intense self-interest and cowardice; so he had no qualms about betraying a fledgling arrangement when his personal safety was brought into question.

The memorising and burning of the schedule page was a stroke of genius, even if Silver did say so himself - frequently. What better way to ensure his continued health and good fortune than to be the only possessor of the very knowledge all parties were desperately seeking to control? That made his very person a valuable commodity, a situation he observed with great satisfaction. In the nest of snakes and scorpions that was Nassau, nobody would now harm him, for fear of the schedule’s secrets being lost forever.

Silver was always looking for an angle, a way to improve his lot and allow him to continue his existence relatively unmolested. But the sands of Nassau shifted quickly and without warning, and he discovered it was remarkably difficult to keep his footing. It took some skilful dancing for him to maintain his position as indispensable ally to whoever was on top at any given moment, but fancy footwork was his speciality, always backed up with a tongue that matched his name.

The real movers and shakers in Nassau seemed to be Captain Flint and Eleanor Guthrie, Silver surmised, so he at once threw his lot in with them when the opportunity arose. That was what landed him back at sea, with a secretive and surly man at the helm, and a mutiny brewing below decks. Silver was, of course, right on hand to aid Captain Flint in the covering up of Gates’s death, and he positively enjoyed discrediting as many of the crew as possible, in order to keep the rest confused and suspicious enough of each other to prevent them from banding together against him.

And it was all this split-second observation and quick talking that eventually led Silver to the top of the hill overlooking the beach where the Urca had spilled its cargo. He looked around at his companions. Avarice shone in every single pair of eyes; the legendary gold they had sought by way of the schedule’s map laid out before them in all its glory. Silver was the only one who didn’t see riches when he gazed upon it. He would welcome financial security if it were ever presented to him, certainly, but greed was not his primary motivator. While the others saw treasure, and the answers to all their dreams, Silver saw only a means of survival. And that, after all, was what he had been seeking, all along.

badly_knitted: (Jack - Big Smile)

[personal profile] badly_knitted 2016-06-21 11:25 am (UTC)(link)
Neat! Unfamiliar fandom (as are all games, which I'm assumin this is), but an interesting character study and good use of the prompt.
badly_knitted: (Jack Laughing)

[personal profile] badly_knitted 2016-06-21 12:56 pm (UTC)(link)
Really? Wow! I learn something new every day!
inevitableentresol: a Victorian gentleman with the body of a carrot (Default)

[personal profile] inevitableentresol 2016-06-21 11:21 pm (UTC)(link)
Really nice. I liked this better than the show itself, which I tried one episode of.

I really felt the pull of treasure to the characters and the different shine it had for the different characters.

That first, short sentence was perfect at drawing me in.
sarajayechan: we'll get to the bottom of this (Default)

[personal profile] sarajayechan 2016-06-22 02:26 am (UTC)(link)
Very nice!