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Mikoto looked up to meet Everett's eyes when he took hold of his hands, and let a dim blush settle in his cheeks. He nodded, giving a small smile. "Okay. I'll be back." he said as he turned away, and padded down the stairs again.
It had never really occurred to Mikoto that he needed to wear footwear on the ship. It was cleaned once a day, it was flat with no splinters in all boards, nothing was out of place, and nothing was dangerous. So, no footwear was needed. Not for him, anyway. For the others, that wasn't always so. Mikoto knew that most of the men wore their boots to protect their feet from things falling, from the cold, and from slipping in water. But Mikoto was hardly ever up on deck anyway, and if he was, it wasn't for long. So shoeless he went, everywhere on the ship. Unless it was seriously necessary, his boots stayed hidden beneath the cot in his little room.
After Mikoto had told Angelo that supper was ready, he rushed down the steps again to his little kitchen. Single-file, all the men on board gradually descended to get themselves a helping just the same as Everett's. When all had been fed, himself included, Mikoto returned back above deck to find Everett. When he did, he smiled again and went up behind him. At first, he was going to attempt covering Everett's eyes to surprise him, but he didn't think he'd be able to reach. And besides, he was steering the ship. Going back down on flat feet, Mikoto giggled. "You're to tall to surprise." he told him, stepping out from behind him so he stood beside him instead. He grinned. "Or, I guess I'm just too short."
Everett stalked up the stairs back to the wheel. The old man, who was still standing there. lifted his eyebrow. The captain sat on a box behind him and crossed his arms, obviously sulking. It made the other man laugh and turn back to the wheel. "Don't tell me that your sulking because Angelo sent for you." He looked over his shoulder and saw Everett's express stay the same. But then he glanced back and saw Michael go back to his post. He sighed and nodded. "You really can't let that lieutenant bother you, lad."
Everett rolled his eyes. He knew the old man was right but he chose not to say anything. He stood up and gently pushed the man away from the wheel. "Go back down, I'll take of things." And with that, he was left alone. The breeze picked up and the salt scented air hit his face gently. the displeasure coming off his body cooled lightly, making his shoulders slum lightly. He closed his eyes to enjoy the moment until he hear Mikoto talking. He opened his grey eyes and glanced over.
He smiled and took the bowl from him "Thank you, lad." He smelt it and smiled wider. He looked up at the prince and took a short breath. He set the bowl down on the box and took hold of Mikoto's hand. "don't be sorry for that. I was being neglectful and you were just looking out for me." He kissed the top of Mikoto's head before smiling again. "we'll talk soon. Go feed the rest of the crowd, i'll be waiting for you."
Mikoto's cheeks flushed when Everett tilted his head back and kissed him, spoke to him, then left. And once he was gone, he quickly regretted telling him to go. But he also knew that Everett shouldn't spend every moment with him, even if that's what he wanted. But Everett was captain of this ship, and couldn't afford to be missing if something happened, no matter how small. So, Mikoto let out a small sigh before getting back to cooking.
When the meal was finished cooking, Mikoto set out enough bowls for everyone on board, including himself, and set them in stacks on the cutting board he'd cleaned from the vegetables he'd been chopping earlier. He set out all different shapes of forks as well, but knew that really only about a quarter of the crew would actually use them. When he'd finished that, he stopped for a moment, then smiled. He grabbed a bowl, filled it with vegetables, two slices of roast, topped it with some of the gravy, stuck a fork in the side, and brought it above deck. He figured he might as well bring Everett his since he was going to tell him supper was ready, anyway.
When he got above deck, Mikoto found Everett at the wheel. He stopped and admired him, watching as his coat and hair caught the wind, making it look like he was flying. Mikoto let a small blush settle into his cheeks as he though, I always feel like I'm flying when I'm with him.
Stepping up onto the risen part of the deck, Mikoto waited until he caught Everett's eyes. "Supper's ready." he told him, and held out the bowl toward him. "I'm sorry for kicking you out of the kitchen." he said, lowering his head, but still watching Everett from under his bangs. "It only struck me afterwards how selfish and insensitive I was for sending you away with Michael." he paused. "Sorry." he said again.
Everett loved the sound of Mikoto calling him "dear." It made his skin tingle with joy and it made his smile widen. But then again, every time Mikoto gave him a heart-felt confession his own heart felt like jumping out. He thought about their hearts meeting, and melting against one another. At least that way they could never be separated.
He chuckled lightly at the fact that Mikoto had to go up on his toes in order to kiss him. He never thought that he was that tall, but then again Mikoto was small for a male. But he pushed against the other's lips gently, begging for more. He nearly died every time they kissed, it was so sweet and peaceful he wouldn't mind if his body really gave out on him. He rose his arms to wrap them around Mikoto and steady him, when the knock rang in his ears.
He groaned slightly before turning around, expecting Angelo. His body tensed when he saw Michael, it was worse than having his first mate. He crossed his arms, seeing Mikoto step away from him. It struck him odd that on deck he was completely fine letting everyone see them holding each other, but the second he got in front of his old friend it changed. It made the corner of his lips turn down, ready to tell Michael that Angelo should know better than to pester him so so much. But Mikoto stepped back even more and spoke for him. And the nerve of saying they should walk together! But he knew how important the ex-lieutenant was to the prince so he sighed and nodded. But he defiantly wasn't going to let Michael win, so he walked over to Mikoto, and tipped his head back. "I'll be awaiting your call, darling." He kissed him gently. He gave a playful wink before he made his way past Michael. He didn't spare a glance as he walked up the steps, but stopped once he got halfway. He turned on his heal and looked down at the blonde man.
He gave a stern look before speaking, "I still remain captain of this ship. Remember that If I toss you over board, your precious navy can't come save you." He grit his teeth before turning back around and heading up the steps.
Mikoto let a grin expand across his lips, a small giggle escaping his mouth. "'Darling'?" he said, teasing the other a tad. "Should I start calling you 'dear'?" he asked, tapping his chest playfully. When Everett spoke again, Mikoto felt his heart swell and his grin lessened to a slightly embarrassed smile, his cheeks heating. "You know I do...every time your around me my heart beats faster. Its like it's trying to get out of my chest to give itself to you in every sense of the meaning." he paused, chewing the inside of his cheek. "Because it knows its yours." he said as his cheeks burned, and he bit his bottom lip.
Mikoto went on his toes and brought his arms around behind Everett's neck as he tugged him to lean over more, pressing his lips against Everett's softly. He never got tired of kissing this man; he never got tired of being with him, to be honest. And being able to touch him gave Mikoto an electrifying feeling everywhere their skin met, and his lips tingled as he pressed his lips to Everett's a little harder. When he swayed, his toes beginning to hurt, Mikoto stumbled a bit as he dropped back down to flat feet and leaned against Everett, his face as red as it ever was. And just as he was about to speak again, there was a knock-
Michael stood in the door frame, his arms crossed over his chest as he watched the couple with displeasure. When Mikoto looked over at him, he was surprised to see the shock on his face, then the swell of embarrassment as he took a step back from the captain. The corner of his mouth quirked up slightly. "I was sent down by the first mate to find out how long until supper would be ready," he started, his eyes crawling over Mikoto slowly, then stabbing at Everett beside him. "Should I tell him it'll take a while longer due to...certain circumstances?" From the corner of his eye, he saw Mikoto move further away from Everett and turn away from him, giving Michael exactly what he'd wanted; a distance between the boy he loved and the captain he loathed. "That won't be necessary." Mikoto said, his voice slightly louder than Michael thought it would've been. "Everett was just checking the same thing. You two should walk back up together. And tell Angelo it'll be ready soon; I'll call you."
Everett matched the prince's smile before crossing his arms and leaning in a post that ran through the middle of the room. the scents of the food filled his nose and made his stomach growl in excitement. "I'm sure everyone will love it. I know I'm already excited to try it." He grew quite and watched Mikoto stir everything in the pot. He simply stared as if he were under a spell, each movement capturing a new sense of curiosity.
Only when Mikoto turned did he snap out of his trance. He reached out and gently tugged on his shirt, pulling the two of them close. "Do I need an excuse to come see you darling?" He said coyly "I just can't stay away from you." He stayed silent again as he looked into the others eyes. He didn't know how they could just make him halt in what ever he was doing. It wasn't like the color brown was exactly the prettiest color, but every time he caught the other's attention he nearly died. "I can only do it because of how happy you make me. I want you to be able to feel the happiness I feel."
Mikoto looked up, a smile automatically coming to his lips at the sound of Everett's voice. "Hi!" he said, almost too quickly. "It's going good, I think. It sure smells good." he grinned, before turning around to meet Everett fully. A light pink colour came to his cheeks at the small confession, and he stepped closer to the other. "I wasn't gone that long." he whispered, his eyes focused on their feet as the tips of their boots touched.
Turning away, he flipped all of the pieces of meat in the large, long pot, and stirred around the vegetables in the bottom of it. The gravy mixing in the bottom of the pot looked delicious, and would taste absolutely delicious when it was ready. He sure hoped the crew thought the same thing, though he kind of figured they hadn't tasted anything like it unless they had a woman waiting for them at home.
"So...why did you come to see me?" Mikoto finally asked, turning back around to face Everett. He held the wooden spoon behind his back as he looked up through his thick eyelashes and his light brown hair up at the captain as he watched him carefully. Mikoto grinned then, dancing toward Everett happily until he was hugging him. "You always make me feel so happy." he told him, looking up at him through his bangs again. "How on earth do you do it?"
Everett heard a laugh come from his right which made his head turn away from the wheel. The old man sat on a box which was fastened to the banister. He rose an eyebrow before looking back out to the sea. "That lad must be somethin' if he got you to go on your knees." He chuckled again "Haven't seen that in a long time."
Everett leaned up and sighed "I thought you didn't come out of that hole you call an infirmary, Doc." He said lightly looking away. They had known each other since Everett took over the ship, since it was Doc's to begin with. "I like to get light once in awhile" Doc scoffed "I wanted to see what the hub bub was all about." Everett leaned up and looked at him again "Can you take over? I'm going to check on him." The old man nodded and moved to the wheel before disappearing down stairs.
He tapped gently on the door frame before stepping in with a smile "How's dinner going?" He walked over looking at all the different ingredients spread out over the counter. Being next to the prince made his stomach fill with butterflies and his face flush with color. "I missed you." he whispered.
Mikoto sighed again after a fifth attempt at trying to get Angelo to speak. He hardly seemed like someone who wouldn't talk when spoken too, but apparently that also wasn't true. So he sat down on the floor as he watched Everett's first mate stride away, his long legs almost looking stiff enough to seem that he was trying not to run away from Mikoto. But that was foolish. Angelo wouldn't want to get away from him that badly, would he? Enough to want to run?
Mikoto looked down at his hands, and made his fingers look like claws. "I must be very scary. Rawr!" he said in a low voice, and smiled down at himself when there was no sound to answer him. So, instead of continuing on in the silence below deck, Mikoto stood and finally got to work on making dinner. Deciding to put together a sort of roast, Mikoto filled his longest pot with water, and set it to boil. Then, he pulled out as much beef as he thought he needed, and started slicing it over the thick plank of wood laying across an empty barrel; like a make-shift cutting board.
When he'd thrown all of the long slices of been into the pot, he hurried for onions, which came next, carrots, then turnips, and lastly, potatoes. By the time he'd added everything into the pot, the onions were clear the moisture was bubbling but not completely boiling. And it made the room smell delicious. It was all Mikoto could do not to drool. After all, he wasn't the only man on the ship who hadn't eaten since the night before. In fact, he was on of the least of worries.
Everett was enjoying himself until once again, his first mate wandered up. He could never place what it was about the cold demeanor of his companion, but sometimes it made him feel like a child being scolded by his mother. He let out a sigh before giving a fake smile to Mikoto. He wasn't in the mood to argue with his crew so he just let it be. And Angelo somehow always managed to beat him in verbal arguments. But Everett only guessed that since he was the only one on the ship who was educated besides himself. It was nice to have deeper conversations, but Angelo wasn't much of the speaking type.
He leaned on the wheel lightly, it suddenly felt so empty now that Mikoto had left. He looked down at his hand where the other's once rested and suddenly felt lonely. He looked down the steps that lead below deck. He wanted to rush after him and bring him back up regardless of their duties. But his first mate was right, the crew needed him to steer the ship. And not just that, they needed him to be captain, their leader. He was supposed to be the one they looked up to, so it would be foolish to go running after the prince every time they got separated. He didn't want to be a baby chick.
So he took a deep breath, telling himself that once he was done cooking Mikoto would be right back his side. Where he belonged.
He Mikoto smiled when Everett put his arm back around him and kissed his forehead. But before he could say anything, he was cut off by Everett's first mate, Angelo, again. He cleared his throat, bringing both Mikoto's and Everett's attention onto him. "Cap'n, the crew and I would greatly appreciate it if you could return to leading the ship on its course." He said. His face was stern but emotionless, his voice unwavering, yet still like he felt sort of small compared to Everett. But Mikoto didn't noticed, so he pushed away from Everett and nodded. "Sorry."
Angelo simply glanced down at Mikoto, then turned back to Mikoto. "Dinner should begin to be prepared. That should keep his highness busy, yes?" But before Everett could so much as open his mouth, Angelo was leading Mikoto away and back below deck, out of the spray of the salty waves splashing up against the ship. As Mikoto watched Angelo's back, he noticed his tense shoulders and the way he walked sort of stiff.
"Why don't you like me?" He asked him suddenly, unsuure of where the qquestion had come from. But after he'd said it, he realized he really wanted to know. "What are you talking about?" Angelo answered, not turning around. "Well, whenever you look at me, you like you're about to throw up. Like the sight of me makes you sick." Hhe paused, but there was no reaction from the other. "You ignore me when I talk, you treat me like I'm disgusting and below everything...I don't know what to do to make you like me."
But there was still no answer from Angelo. He was ignoring Mikoto, again.
Everett smiled at the other's innocent blush. He loved the flustered speech that escaped the pale lips in front of him. He bowed his head deeply, shadowing the smile that graced his lips. He could hear the crew whooping and hollering from the deck below. They had obviously noticed and though they couldn't tell what was being said, they all knew.
The captain stood once more, putting his arm back around Mikoto, "I am captain. I can marry anyone I please." He winked lightly before returning a kiss to the other's forehead. He never thought about marriage, and it suddenly made him anxious. He stared over the deck and relived what he had just done. He didn't feel like he needed to marry Mikoto to make their relationship official but he knew the lad would probably enjoy the whole thing. So he shrugged to himself, he;d get there eventually.
For the moment, he couldn't help but feel the cold stare of a certain lieutenant. He was probably the only crew member that wasn't excited. But then again, Angelo didn't seen so keen on his "distraction" either. But his first mate would never say anything so it didn't matter either way.
Mikoto let Everett turn him around, and his breath caught when Everett kneeled down in front of him. He stared at him, his eyes wide and his face turning a deep shade of red as Everett spoke. He nodded after he kissed his hands, unsure of what else he could do. He didn't think he could move. So he just stared at Everett, blushing furiously. It took a moment for him to feel eyes on his back, and realized that the rest of the crew must be staring at them. And then he realized something else; Everett had probably never kneeled in front of anyone before. Especially not in front of his men.
"E-Everett-" Mikoto stuttered, his breath catching again in his throat. He still couldn't believe what he was seeing. "I...I'll never leave you. Never. I don't think it's possible for me to live without you anymore...but I'm sure you've figured that out by yourself already." he gave a shy smile, dropping his eyes to his hands that were still held by Everett's.
Letting a small laugh escape his mouth, Mikoto didn't lift his eyes. "Still, if you ask me to marry you, I don't know what I'd say." his smile wavered, and he looked up at Everett. Mikoto had only seen things like this when he'd witness proposals; when a man got down on his knees to give everything he had to a woman he knew would want it all, no matter how good or how bad, and then she'd give it right back. The only thing was, Mikoto couldn't tell how willing to commit to something other than his ship Everett was. But Mikoto smiled anyway. "Don't worry, I'm not expecting you to." he leaned over, kissing the other's forehead.
Everett let his hands lift away from the wheel and wrapped them around the prince. He buried his face in the crook of the other's neck, taking in the sea soaked scent. While he could hardly register the scent of the salty water anymore, it smelt so new to him when it coated Mikoto's skin.
He lifted his head to hear the other speak, catching brown eyes for just a moment before they turned away again. While he knew that the prince meant well by his words, it still troubled him that Mikoto was so hung up on what if another ship had gotten there. It would have been awful if that was the reality they lived in, but he was happy where he was now.
He unwrapped his arms and turned the other around so they were facing each other. He went down on his knees and looked up at the Prince. "Take that we found you first as a blessing lad. Don't question it." He took Mikoto's hands into his and smiled lightly "I could never think of leaving you after your time here in my ship. I'll follow you to the ends of the earth and back." He smiled and kissed over the prince's knuckles "Just promise me that you'll never leave my side as well."
"Hm?" Mikoto glanced back at Everett, his words just barely registering in his brain. When he realized what he'd been asked, he shook his head, giving a shy smile. "I'd rather you keep me warm." he told Everett, looking back out over the deck in front of him. Catching the eyes of some of the crew down below, he felt his cheeks burn as they winked at him and teased him from down below, but couldn't keep the smile off of his face.
Leaning back against Everett, Mikoto couldn't help closing his eyes. He felt as if he were flying, and Everett was the one holding him up. But, that's how he always felt when he was around Everett. The other always seemed to lift him out of any unhappiness, wariness, or any other bad feelings, and put him right back where he belonged while standing beside him, happy. Nothing had ever made Mikoto feel so happy as this, especially now that they were so close, and not trying to hide anything from the watchful eyes of the crew below them.
"You know," Mikoto paused, glancing back at Everett to make sure he'd caught his attention. "Sometimes I wonder what would have happened if another ship had beat you to the one I was on before...what would have happened if you weren't the one to rescue me. I'm almost positive that no one else would've been that kind to me at first, though." he told him, smiling to himself. "I don't think anyone else would ever be able to make me feel the way you make me feel." he blushed, pressing his back against Everett's chest. "So you're not allowed to leave me, okay? Because if you do, I don't think I'll ever be this happy again."
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