The Harpooned Whale

'The Harpooned Whale' is set on the high seas and follows the adventures of Erin, a steely young woman with a violent streak, and Scarlet who is thrown into her world.

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8. Chapter Eight: Scarlet

 

      My eyelids were heavy but I knew that I couldn’t sleep. I shouldn’t. If Erin found out that I had fallen asleep... I dreaded to think what she would do to me. Clutched in my hand was her spyglass. After Erin had left I had examined it in the strange green moonlight. It was smooth and golden with odd symbols carved into the metal. There was also a sea serpent engraved into it. The sea serpent had been Grundel’s personalised symbol when he had been alive. I remembered reading about his death in the newspaper. It had been around six months ago. The article told of how the crew of the Harpooned Whale had come across an island in the middle of a storm. The island had been Grundel’s and it was where he had hidden all his treasure. Unfortunately Grundel and his crew were also on the island and a bloody conflict ensued. It ended with Erin cutting Grundel in two. I could just imagine it; the fierce determination on Erin’s face, the sound of metal on metal as their cutlasses collided. I tried not to think about the blood and guts too much. Would I feature in the next newspaper article about the crew? Maybe I would even get a nickname like Erin. My eyes drifted shut as I envisioned it; me fighting side by side with Erin. It would be a dream come true.

     

      The sound of whistling woke me up. Blinking my blurry eyes I watched as a familiar blonde head appeared.

      “Mornin’, sleeping beauty,” Callum chuckled as he climbed up into the crow’s nest. “You’re lucky it was me and not Erin. She would have had your guts for garters.”

      “Please don’t tell her.” my voice was shamefully full of fear.

      Lighting himself a cigarette Callum replied. “Don’t worry, I won’t.”

      “You seem to be one of the closest to her.” I commented rubbing my eyes.

      Callum shrugged. “Aye, we were close before.”

      “What happened? Why did she change?”

      His eyes glinted in the red glow cast by his cigarette. “Your thirst for knowledge might get you killed, boy.”

      Disappointed I looked down at my hands.

      After a while Callum said. “We don’t know what it was for sure, but the lads reckon it had to do with Arkady ‘Dragon Slaughterer’ Talon. We saw him with Erin a couple of times.”

      Arkady Talon was even more famous than Erin and the crew of the Harpooned Whale. He was an explorer and a notorious ladies man. He had earned the nickname ‘Dragon Slaughterer’ and not ‘Dragon Slayer’ because he butchered any dragons that were stupid enough to cross his path. It was rumoured that Arkady had a room in one of his many mansions full of dragon bones.

      “What do you think happened?” I asked.

      “That’s the million dollar-pound question, ain’t it?” getting to his feet Callum gestured for me to hand him Erin’s spyglass.

      I watched from where I was sat as Callum raised the spyglass to his eye and examined our surroundings.

      “This spyglass is magical.” Callum told me. “You can use it to see anythin’ you want, even the King’s nose hairs.” he tensed suddenly and it was as if the temperature had dropped by ten degrees. “Go get Erin.”

      Anxious I asked. “Why?”

      “GO!”

      Climbing down the rope ladder as fast as I dared I sprinted to Erin’s cabin. The door opened as I raised my hand to knock to reveal Erin.

      She blinked at me as if I had changed since the last time she saw me before saying. “What is it?”

      “There’s something you need to see.” I panted, trying to catch my breath.    

      Erin pushed past me without a word and I hurried after her.

 

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