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In the Quiet of the Morning

Title In the Quiet of the Morning

Author Eglantine-br

Rating G

Disclaimer: More movie than books.

Not mine, either way.

In the Quiet of the Morning

“Thankee, Killick.”

Killick shuffled away. Stephen watched over his coffee cup.

“Has Killick always had that twist to his lumbar spine?” He mused aloud.

“What?” Jack rubbed his ear. The tinnitus had not subsided, Stephen observed. It seemed to trouble Jack more in the mornings. Could it be positional? He had a text somewhere that described...

“What did you say, brother?” Jack asked again.

“I must get Kilick in the nude sometime soon. I want to see his natural gait.” Stephen amplified. “Has he ever complained of--”

Here Stephen came to a stop, realizing the futility of the question. Jack was looking at him in stunned silence.

“A hero for the ages.” Jack Aubrey muttered.

Breakfast concluded, he went in search of the ear book. He had attended a lecture on the labyrinthine process of reptiles... Antonio Scarpa...

He had dislodged a stack of papers, and was on his knees on the deck, when the knock came.

“Come in.” Stephen barked.

The child was howling. His mouth a dark oval of misery. Tiny. This one was no bigger than a six year old-- though Stephen knew him to be older. Lofty. That was his name. God knows why, the poor thing was always below decks.

White faced, and worried, Midshipman Blakeney, stood behind him. Stephen stayed on his knees.

“Where are you hurt, child?” He drew the little one close.

“Said-- I –h-h-he said I had them!” The last word was an uncontrolled wail. Stephen passed his hands over the boy. Dirt, ribs. The protruding belly of the young. He raised his eyes to Blakeney.

“I tried to tell him Sir. I found him weeping in the sail locker. They've been teasing him.”

The boy was lifting up his shirt, exposing a belly, remarkable only for its need of washing.

“S-s-see them?”

Stephen let his hands speak, and his eyes, as he would do with a dog, as he did with his sloth. He let the calm come from himself, into the boy, listened as the ragged breathing eased.

“What is it that troubles you?” He asked again.

“They said they eat you to pieces. Until nothings left.” The child gulped. “I don't want to have them-- I don't. I don't, want the aphids!”


( 14 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 27th, 2012 11:56 pm (UTC)
I was looking for a M & C/HH tie-in. Carnivorous aphids fit with sea-bats, prop-wash,and West-Pac calendars... something with which to torment the "NEWBIE"
Jan. 28th, 2012 12:27 am (UTC)
We had similar nonsense for new lighting tech people in theater, and the chem lab wasn't short of them either. Some things never change.
Jan. 28th, 2012 04:48 pm (UTC)
My husband was sent for a BT punch. He found the boiler techs all to willing to punch him.

Jan. 28th, 2012 05:39 pm (UTC)
We used to try and get newly reported individuals to co an op-check on the emergency ICS (Interior Communications System) on EA-6B Prowler aircraft. If successful they'd end up trying to speak into the relief tubes.
Jan. 27th, 2012 11:57 pm (UTC)
Awwwwww poor wee soul! I feel so sorry for him but I can't help giggling :} You're brilliant!
Jan. 28th, 2012 12:28 am (UTC)
Poor little Blakeney! And this is during the sloth's tenure, is it? I want to hug this story and keep it in my pocket.
Jan. 28th, 2012 12:31 am (UTC)
I was working on an angsty Horatio story. needed a happy break.
Jan. 28th, 2012 12:39 am (UTC)
I know the feeling! Luckily my next one is practically candyfloss. (Well, maybe Crackerjack - I like to think there a few solid nuggets mixed in with the sugar and fluffy things.)

*sends love to your angsty Horatio*
Jan. 28th, 2012 02:08 am (UTC)
Waits eagerly for candyfloss Horatio!
Jan. 28th, 2012 02:11 am (UTC)
It's the 5+1, so it's all outside the boys' POV. Except for maybe the +1. And they're going to be disgruntled in that part. But for very amusing reasons.

I've got two out of the six!
Jan. 28th, 2012 05:17 am (UTC)
I needed a Jack & Stephen fic, Thankee!
Jan. 28th, 2012 06:17 am (UTC)
My pleasure, entirely.
Jan. 28th, 2012 01:50 pm (UTC)
Oh, Stephen! This is really delightful, E. I will never tire of you writing HH, but every time you put your toe into writing M&C fic, I about faint with joy.
Jan. 28th, 2012 04:53 pm (UTC)
I had great fun with this. It is a good break form the other which wants to be plotty, and I am stalled.
( 14 comments — Leave a comment )