T’would seem that someone had spotted me some moonlit night and drew my portrait. I’faith, I have no idea who it may have been, but twas a goode likeness.
At any rate, what else can I tell you about what happened while I was in Barbados with dawg_brown.
I had plead my case before Blackthorne and Captain Olin. Both men objected strenuously, although not strenuously enough for me to be disuaded from my goal. At last I had gotten a nod, coupled with warnings of pulling my share on boarde and the usual objections that crewes on board ships automatically believe women ona ship to be bad luck. What rot! I assured the Pilot Major that no ship that I had e’er set sail on had sunk whilst I was on it, and that if they had any questions as to the veracity of my claime they could ask Douglas about it. Surely he would not contradict that, for it woulde also reflect badly ‘pon him since I was, in the years that we were together, constantly at his side.
But then, my heart ached once more at the rememberance of howe Douglas and I had parted. captainbarbossa was at the centre of that heartache, and had it not been for my sheer Will alone, I woulde not have come to stand on the shores of Barbados to looke into Douglas’ eyes once more.
Though his angry words rejected me, and accused me of lies, I knewe from the look in his eyes that he knewe better of it. By the Goddess, woulde his heart soften again? Dianae knewe, as I did, that Douglas Francis O’Reily was a man of deep convictions, but his loyalties also ran deep. For him to percieve of betrayal by one whom he had loved woulde have plunged him into the depths of dispair, and anger. To have betrayed him to an enemy of the calliber and temperament of captainbarbossa was the border of unforgiveable. If he had believed that of me all of these years, how coulde his reaction have been any different? Do not make the mistake of imagining that I never entertained the idea of surrendering to Barbossa. For many were the tymes that I very nearly did – and the times before Douglas and I, well let us say that those memories are for another tyme. And I will tell of them, no doubt.
From the darkest corner of the noisy pub I watched him, clutching my dark woolen cloak to me, after softly whispering a prayer to the Goddess to render me invisible to Douglas and any who woulde expose me before I chose the time to, if I chose to do so at all.
Across the room I recognized Douglas’ neice, Morgan Adams, the kindly Captain and Mr. Glasspoole both who were mostly responsible for having brought me here after I had left Captain Myngs and The Centurian . It was hard for me to stay silent and in the shadows as a scuffle ensued, and Douglas, true to his very nature of binding family to himself stepped in.
It is those things about this man that have made me bind my heart with his – and why I waited in the shadows in case I were needed. Old habits, you see, die hard.
The ensuing argument that I witnessed was typical of Douglas, of course.
” You’ll be doin’ so such thing, Morgan, “Douglas nearly growled at his niece, “This ain’t no journey for a woman…”
Captain Morgan Adams rose to her feet, ” How dare you judge what I can and cannot do! ”
Pushing himself up from the table Douglas met Morgan face to face, ” This ain’t no journey for a woman and that’s my last word on it. Ye’ll not be sailin’ those waters Morgan. And if ye know what’s best fer ye, ye’ll mark me words! ”
” I’ve been captain of the Sea Siren since ye killed Black Harry and I’ve seen her through e’ry kind of danger imaginable. And you are not Black Harry, so ye’ll not be tellin’ me what to do! ”
T’was the commotion outside that seemed to pull Dawg’s attention for a moment. E’en now, after all these years, watching him produced a thrill in me. He was, as always, completely in his element here, among other men of the sea, knee-deep in the swash and refuse and scandal of the lyfe of a pyrate.
As I watched, most assuredly I knewe that I had been spotted by Captain Morgan Adams. She opened her hand and her eyes lifted as if to greet me and motion for me to join her and Mr. Glassepool and of course, Douglas. I conveyed through my eyes that the welcome was not at the most opportune of moments. Taking my unspoken meaning, as all goode women who have the least bit of inner knowing must, she turned back to her drink and to the men that surrounded her.
’We will see if we women will not be a part of the crewe, Douglas,’ I thought, fighting back my amusement.
At last I emerged from the shadows of the back of the bar, it was as if I had stepped from the walls as a ghost, for men who didn’a notice me moments before stopped their bellering and brawling to cast a furtive glance in my direction. One swab, a grizzled sea dog with jowls that hung nearly down to his shoulders made the sign of the cross o’er himself as I made my way across the room to where Douglas, Morgan and Mr. Glassepool sat. Douglas looked up and I swear that at that moment, at first he seemed pleased, but wanting to keep his ruse of being properly aloof and apart from me, he ground his jaw and did not speake. It was as if he thought he coulde will my disappearance, then he coulde see to the matters at hand. But the matter at hand was, I was going with him and Blackthorne and Mr. Winchester, and there was naught that even Douglas Francis O’Reily coulde do about it!
T’was Captain Morgan Adams that was the first to speake, her voice cleare and calm o’er the raucous inside the Flaming Boar, “Miss Fanny, ’tis good to see you again.”
“Aye, and you, Captain Adams” I nodded, then turned to Mr. Glassepool who had graciously given me his own quarters in consideration of my safety when I was aboard their ship, ” And I am equally glad to see you, Mr. Glassepool. I am pleased to see ye’ll be joining us on the voyage to the Japans.”
“Miss Fanny,” Glassepool nodded and raised his tankard to me slightly.
I did not glance down at Douglas, nor did I acknowlege his presence. And for my efforts, I coulde feel the heat of his anger rising, I had not only insinuated myself on the journey, as he had tried to forbid me, but I had countermanded his pronouncement that his niece, Morgan be not allowed to join the voyage as well. I daresay that such contraditions to his bluster woulde always please me – especially when I woulde be the one to win, as more oft times than not, I surely did. I knewe however, he coulde remain silent for too much longer.
Without a word, Douglas merely raised a quizical eyebrow and kicked an empty chair in my direction.
I stared at the chair for a moment then glanced back at him, keeping my voice and my expression even, “Did the chair do something to offend you, Douglas,” I ask’d “or is this your way of inviting a lady to sit?”
He of course didn’t answer my cheeky remark. I was fairly certain that my eyes were probably blazing far more brightly than I had intended. A slight smile curled upon his lips, as if I were armed with gunports open, ready to do battle with him. In truth we woulde battle over it, but it woulde be some time later. Of that there was never any doubt.
For the rest of the evening Douglas, Glassepool, the members of the crewe and I sat hashing out the details of the trip. Douglas ne’er allowing himself to get too close to me, and I ne’er letting on that I wanted it to be otherwise. My thoughts turned to the One who was Undead. How coulde I tell Douglas about something, that someone like me, as a Wytch knowes; especially when he is so uncomfortable with the thought of that realm? For all his faults, and his sheer maliciousness, at least captainbarbossa understood and coulde deal with that part of me that is a Wytch. Coulde it be during all of this, after all of this time, I had developed a bit of sympathy for Satan Himself? I dod not dare to even entertain the thought, and yet I coulde not dismiss it completely either.
Time will tell howe the winds of change wi eventually play out.
3 responses to “”
*doffs his hat and bows quite formally*
If it pleases Your Majesty, I would like to make myself known. My name is John Craven, a humble youngest son of a Viscount from the Northern reaches of Your Realm.
The grace and beauty of Your Majesty has been known to me for some time, and I humbly offer my meager services should they be required in the aid of Your Grace. It is also known to me that the Church does not consider Your Majesty an ally, and forgive my presumptions that Your Majesty may hold the Church in the same regard. As a humble highwayman, I often target the clergy for reasons that are my own. Should these raids yield anything of use to Your Grace, You may be assured that I shall be most forthcoming. I do not request any compensation beyond an enduring friendship with Your Majesty.
We appreciate your offers of friendship, Lord Craven. However, what you do in your areas of enterprise, especially in the creative redistribution of the wealth that one happens upon, does not concern Us. Do not tell me about them, for if you are caught than I cannot plead innocent to knowing anything of your endeavors. It would not due to have England’s Queen be complicit in the commandeering and reassignment of Rome’s wealth.
It is a pleasure to make your aquaintence, Sir. And if you keep your head low and your dealings above suspicion, then I am sure we shall be hearing more from you in future.
Rest assured, Your Grace, that only information vital to the Realm’s continued success shall reach your most noble ears. How I may come to possess such information is for my knowledge alone, and shall remain as such. Despite the reputation those of my profession may have received, I am a man of honour and have acted accordingly on many occasions.