Roselle’s head was throbbing with immense pressure, her eyes squeezed shut even tighter and her brows furrowed as a sharp pain was felt. Her slender fingers rubbed her temples in hopes to relieve the pain. It did not help. Despite the heaviness of her eye lids, Roselle forced her eyes open.
A sense of confusion washed over her. Why did she feel this horrendous and disoriented? Why was she here? She was certain this was not her house. But if it was not hers, whose was it then? The room had an air of familiarity to it. She knew that if she looked left of the bed she was laying on, through the curtains that surrounded the four poster bed, there would a desk with a large window behind it. She knew that on that desk there would be maps, indeed this was true. On the walls on either side of the desk were book shelves filled with old books. And all throughout the room were little trinkets and statues. Its familiarity scared her. It was if she had been here before.
Roselle stepped out of the bed to see everything in the spots where she envisioned them. It was at this realization that a nervous panic washed over her. “No!” she distraughtly whispered to herself as she gripped onto one of the four posters of the bed to stable herself. She had been here before. And this was not a house, it was ship. It was a pirate ship, to be exact, the Mournful Mistress.
“I’m going to have ask you to control your enthusiasm about being back, Roselle.” A smooth, yet gravelly, voice rose from behind her. Roselle jumped slightly, as the voice surprised her. She turned around. “I have to admit, I never thought I’d see you again.” He said with a devilishly handsome grin.
Roselle’s eyebrows furrowed and her eyes narrowed that tanned skinned blonde haired man. She gained her composure. And instead of fear she just felt anger. “Well James, I was hoping to never have to see you again. So, you can imagine my disappointment right now.” She said as she crossed her arms and just stared at him.
James could not help but laugh. He got up from the large ornate wooden chair and sauntered over to Roselle. He towered over her with his 6 foot 3 inch frame. A white shirt covered his torso but it was quite thin and his defined muscles could be seen through it. His bright blue eyes looked down at her as his rough had caressed she smooth cheek. Roselle quickly swatted his hand away. “Don’t touch me.” she said venomously to the blonde. This too warranted a laugh from James.
“You were always so beautiful when you got anger. I see that still hasn’t changed.” He said smoothly as he leaned back on the desk. “So why are you dressed up so fancily? You really do look lovely” James asked as he pointed at the lacy dress with the torn sleeve she had still been wearing. “The Roselle I knew never cared much for riches or royalty. I thought that was one of the reasons why you left us.”
She looked down at her dress in its disheveled state. She then remembered the events that transpired with Miles at the ball. And Clara would not be wanting her dress back now. Roselle straightened out the skirts before looking back at James with that smug grin on his face. “It was. And I still care nothing for riches and royalty. If you must know, I was invited to a ball because someone wanted me to be there. Jealous that I’ve moved on and people are interested in me?”
“No, not at all. However, you seemed pretty depressed when you walked into your house last night. And then, of course you looked completely shocked to see me sitting in there. I wish I could’ve captured that moment.” He said with a light laugh as he recounted that night.
“While I am enjoying our banter, I’d really like to know why the hell I am here!” she said growing increasingly impatient with James.
“Rose, calm down.” James said as he motioned for her to sit down on the bed. “Before you go blaming me for all of this, I’d like to be the first to tell you it wasn’t my idea. You see, we’re under command of someone new and he—
His explanation was cut off as a broad menacing man with black greasy shoulder length hair walked in the room. His beard was short and patchy because of scars that decorated his face. His dark hair had some matted pieces that might have been dreads or just sheer lack of cleanliness. His presence demanded attention and obedience. And his gray eyes had a look of wild ferocity to them.
“Ah! Good, the wench is awake.” He said without even looking at them as he started to pour himself a glass of alcohol, it smelt like whiskey. “I hope you are enjoying your stay on my ship” he said as he sat down in the large ornate wooden chair and reclined back placing his feet up on the desk.
“I have a name. It’s Roselle.” She snapped at him angrily. He chuckled.
“My you are feisty one. You weren’t lying James!” the man said with a laugh as he downed the rest of his drink. Putting the glass down on the dark wooden desk, the man crossed his arms over his chest. “Listen here, girl, I don’t care what your name is. You are whatever I decide to call you. In case you hadn’t noticed, I am now the captain of this ship and of her men. So you’ll be doin’ as I say.”
Roselle just stared at him, a cold expression on her face. It might have been more threatening if she did not look like a little princess. When she was a part of the crew of the Mournful Mistress, there was no cruel man like this and she did not dress like this either. Captain Grey had been a character but he was not cruel like this. She had wondered what happened here.
“I forgot to introduce myself, how rude of me. I am Lucian and my last name is of no importance to you. But you are of much importance to me. Well, your father would have been but he’s dead. So you will have to do. You, Roselle Woods, hold the key to something I desperately need. And I think you know what I mean.”
She did. And she knew this would happen eventually, that someone would come looking for her. She just hoped it would be after she was dead. “What if I refuse?!” she asked defiantly.
Lucian smirked as he stood up and motioned James to him. James obeyed. Lucian. Lucian walked over to Roselle had help her face in his rough hand squeezing tightly at her cheeks. “I wouldn’t if I were you. Now, be a good girl and stay out of trouble.” He told Roselle as his rough hand released her face. “I think you’ll find my crew less forgiving than me.” The pair left, James gave a sorrowful expression before shutting the door.
Roselle sat down on the bed and rested her head in her hands. Life was never simple for Roselle. The past had finally caught up to her. But at least she was out of Miles’s hair. She would not bother him anymore. And yet, she found herself wishing Miles was here. But what could he do? He could not save her from this band of pirates. Maybe she just wanted someone to comfort her. With a sigh, she flopped down on the bed.
She might have been alone for hours or maybe it was actually just a few minutes, Roselle could not be quite sure. It was not soon enough, she could be sure of that. James appeared with a brass plate that had a piece of fish, rice, and some fruit on it.
“This is for you.” He said handing the plate to Roselle. She took it, hiding her eagerness for food. Instead, she expressed her contempt with James. A rather displeased look was one her face.
“Don’t look at me like that.” James told Roselle as he turned away from her and looked out the window that was at the back of the ship. There was an awkward silence as Roselle ate her food and tried to pay no attention to James.
“So…how’d all this happen?” she asked bluntly, referring to the state of the ship and the crew. She tossed the silver plate onto the floor nonchalantly. She lay on her side propping her head up with her hand.
James sighed softly as he stared out the window. He turned around and saw her laying on the bed I full fancy dress. She looked like some queen who should have servants fanning her as she lay there.
“Well, your majesty, it’s no secret that things went south after your father died and you left. So in a way, I blame you for all a’ this. Anyways, some of us became awfully greedy. We lost our moral compass when you left.
“None became more greedy than Dorian. He started putting the thought in the other’s heads that we should not have split up the 3 Pieces. We should have trusted your father when he said that would our downfall. If we had never found them in the first place, we would not be in this predicament. And perhaps you never woulda left us.” James said with a soft smile at Roselle. It was true that he had missed her. However, he could not honestly be happy that she was back now because of the circumstances.
“Dorian, he planned a mutiny you see.” He continued, “In the end, Captain Grey was killed but we were able to stop it before he could over throw the ship entire ship. I was made Captain after Grey was killed. And perhaps I was too lenient with Dorian. I knew that it was the desire for the pieces that altered him, that he wasn’t himself. I just couldn’t find it in myself to kill him.
“We left him in a rundown Spanish port thinking that we’d never see him again. But at least he’d be alive even though he’d surround by people he could not understand. Our kindness would backfire on us. There’s a reason pirates need to be ruthless, never to leave loose ends.
“I don’t know exactly how, but he met Lucian. Lucian was a pirate working with the Spanish navy to loot British ships. He’s considered a privateer. And he has a lot of power. Dorian, I suppose, told him about the 3 Pieces and he would tell Lucian where he could find him. So long as he got a cut of Lucian’s treasures. Eventually they tracked us down. Lucian knew that three of us hid the pieces and sealed them in such a way that only the one who hid it could open it.
Unfortunately, Lucian already has two of the pieces. He has the sail that requires no wind, it allows him to sail where ever and whenever he pleases. And he also has the map that shows where any ship is at a given time. All that he is missing is your father’s piece: the necklace of immortality. With that final piece, he’ll be the most powerful pirate to sail all seven seas. He’ll become exactly what we were trying to prevent it the first place.” James told Roselle as his lithe crossed over his chest.
“So I’m here to find where my father hid the necklace?” Roselle scoffed. They could find it without her, she was certain.
“Don’t forget that it’s locked in a chest that only you can open.”
“Sorry, I don’t have a key or anything to open it.”
“That’s alright. All we need is your blood.”