Christina fumbled as she started pouring the glass of rum for her master. She heard him yell and almost dropped the glass, she quickly recovered from the shock. He was already on his fourth glass and she knew his temper was getting bad. She quickly carried the glass into him. “Here sir.” She answered.
His normal grey eyes looked bloodshot. His dark hair was messy. He was a big guy, not necessarily fat, just stout. He looked fearsome and had a deep booming voice most the time.
He yanked the glass out of her hand. She was startled by the gruffness in his voice as he lashed out at her. “What took you so long.” It wasn’t even a question and she knew it, it was a demand for her to be faster next time.
“I’m sorry Sir, it won’t happen next time.” She answered.
He downed the glass quicker than she thought possible. Before she had a chance to walk away he grabbed her by her arm and pulled her down to the couch. Before she had a chance to say anything he took her lips in a rough kiss. She wriggled in a panic underneath him as she fought to get herself free.
“Excuse me sir but that is inappropriate behavior.” She said when she finally got herself free. She had been warned by the other servants about this, but she wasn’t going to let herself be another one of his victims.
“You are my servant and you will do whatever I want you to.” His voice cracked down like thunder booming through house.
He started to pull up her dress, she began to panic, her heart practically jumping into her throat as the fear coursed through her veins. She was scared, frozen in terror. She snapped out of it quickly and struggled to push him off of her. She started to swing at him, hoping she could get in one good hit, but with all of his body weight on top of her it was to no avail. He grabbed her arms then and held her down, ripping her dress open with little effort. Whilst he tried to unbuckle his belt She got one arm free and reached for the nearest thing and slammed it against his head. Shit, she just broke his lamp. His body fell limp on top of her and blood started dripping down his head.
She pushed him off of her. She checked for a pulse, but couldn’t find it. She just killed a man, a noble man at that. He had breakfast plans the next morning too, he was planning on meeting with the mayor over using one of his boats, she had to leave now.
Feeling sick to her stomach, she lost all of the food she had eaten for the last few days as her guts spilled out on the floor. The horrendous sight of a dead man laying on the floor had her nauseated. Her heart started to race and she could feel her body getting ready to vomit once again. She quickly covered the body with a sheet.
Knowing she would get caught if she stayed in the same clothes because of the blood she ran up to his room and sewed the waistband of a pair of breeches to fit her. She used a fabric to flatten her chest down and tied her hair back. She added one of his smaller shirts to the outfit and found one of his beautiful tricorn hats. She put it on and dirtied her face enough to look like a young boy. She disappeared into the night, going straight to the harbor. In a panic she was willing to hop on the first boat willing to take her away.
Hearing a rowdy bunch of Pirate’s talking about needing extra people as they tripped over each other, she deepened her voice as much as possible. Scared beyond all relief, her heart trying to jump out of her chest. “I’ll be your cabin boy.” She said.
The lot of them started laughing at her. “Lad ye look to be fifteen years old.” One of them said through the booming drunken laughter.
“What’s it matter to you? You’re all pirates aren’t ye.” She returned trying not to act like a woman would in this sort of situation.
“The boy has a point, Alex take him aboard the ship and ‘ave him sign the articles of agreement.
“Yes captain.” Alex said as he stepped out from behind the captain.
Christina’s heart stopped as she saw him standing there. His body raging with muscles like she had never seen. His long dark hair was tied back, his dark brown eyes mystifying as all hell. His moustache and goatee accentuated his face just right. Bloody hell how was she supposed to act like a man with such a man aboard the ship. Her knees were already weak at the sight of his golden tan skin, let alone the features that came with it.
Alex led her up the gangway and onto the deck of the ship. Her stomach was turning like never before. He led her over to the last mast on the ship. “Read the articles before you sign, lad.” He said.
Articles Of Agreement
- Every Man Shall obey civil Command; the Captain shall have one full Share and a half of all Prizes; the Master, Carpenter, Boatswain and Gunner shall have one Share and quarter.
- If any Man shall offer to run away, or keep any Secret from the Company, he shall be marooned with one Bottle of Powder, one Bottle of Water, one small Arm, and Shot.
III. If any Man shall steal any Thing in the Company, or game, to the Value of a Piece of Eight, he shall be marooned or shot.
- If any time we shall meet another Marooner that Man shall sign his Articles without the Consent of our Company, shall suffer such Punishment as the Captain and Company shall think fit.
- That Man that shall strike another whilst these Articles are in force, shall receive Moses’ Law (that is, 40 Stripes lacking one) on the bare Back.
- That Man that shall snap his Arms, or smoke Tobacco in the Hold, without a Cap to his Pipe, or carry a Candle lighted without a Lanthorn, shall suffer the same Punishment as in the former Article.
VII. No Women aboard the ship, if a woman found stowaway she shall be marooned with one Bottle of Powder, one Bottle of Water, one small Arm, and Shot.
She hadn’t even thought of a man’s name yet. Right there at the bottom it read no women on aboard. Knowing that Alex was waiting for her to sign the Articles she quickly signed Christopher at the bottom. She let out a deep breath.
“Ah, Christopher be yer name lad, tell me how is it that ye seem so eager to board a ship that ye don’t seem to care who ye be leavin’ with?” He asked.
She looked up into his eyes, losing track of what he had asked, then remembering what happened she realized that she hadn’t even thought of an excuse. “I was a servant, and don’t want to be anymore.” She answered quickly.
“Can’t say I blame ye there lad, ‘ow old are you really?” He asked.
“Twenty one.” She answered.
“I would have taken you for a fifteen year old boy, ye have no facial hair and ye still look a little girly lad.” Alex returned.
“I get me looks from me ma.” Christina answered.
“Is this yer first time aboard a ship?” He asked.
“Umm, no, I came to Barbados on a ship when I was a lot younger, but I was just a babe, and don’t remember anything about it. I came over with my ma after my father died.” She answered.
“Alright, well I will be showin’ ye the ropes then first thing in the morn, trust me, it’s a lot more work than it looks ta be.” He stated. “You’ll bunk in the empty room with me, it’ll be empty till we get to Tortuga and with any luck it will be filled, we have to pick up some of our men that were injured last time we fought.”
“What’s Tortuga?” Christina asked.
“It be basically a island for us pirates, it has merchants that our willing to buy from our lots, and taverns that be pirate friendly, ah yes, Tortuga be a great place.” Alex answered. “Not to mention the wenches that be willing to bed with the likes of us, and the mountains of rum that we could drink till we be sick.”
“How long have ye been a sailor?” Christina asked.
“It’s been about a year, I started out as a cabin boy, like ye, but so far they have come up with a new title for me aboard this ship, Master Swordsman. It’s a fake title, but it’s better than no title.” Alex started.
“How did that happen?” Christina asked, mesmerized by his fascinating story, and sultry voice.
“Well, Captain Billy only brought me on because I was the only one still standing after they overtook the merchant ship I was on. He laughed because I was able to take down one of his men and steal his sword while I was unarmed.” He laughed at the memories as he spoke. “Ever since then I guess I became one of the best fighters that he had ever seen, especially with a sword.”
“I guess that explains the title.” Christina answered.
She followed Alex as he led her down to the bunkroom he was sleeping in. She tossed the bag she had packed onto the foot of the bed, just as his was. She got into the bed trying to move as much like a man as possible.
“Ye don’t have much now, do ye lad?” Alex asked.
“I don’t need much.” Christina returned. She was trying not to think about all the clothes and stuff she had left behind in that man’s house, however she could never go back now, it was all lost to her along with the former her, Christina. She had to leave that person behind. She was now Christopher, a man, with a secret that could never be told to anyone.
She closed her eyes, trying to forget about her former self, trying to forget about her Master’s advances on her, trying to forget about her horrible act of murder. She needed to clear her conscious but the only thing she was thinking was that He had tried to hurt her. He would have taken her even though she protested it. As she laid there she could see his life leave his body as she hit him over the head with the lamp. She could feel a tear roll down her cheek, she rolled over so there was no chance that Alex would see.
When she awoke, she was glad she had snapped out of the dream she was having before she could start screaming, she knew what had happened would haunt her she just hoped it wouldn’t affect her hiding. She walked out on deck seeing that Alex was already out of the room she figured that was where he was.
He stood up at the top of the deck, she was almost surprised to see him up there alone. “Is there something wrong?” She asked.
“You tell me?” He returned.
“What do you mean?” She asked, thinking she might have said something in her sleep to give her true gender away.
“You kept saying get him off me.” Alex stated. “I assume your master beat you.”
“Yes, since I was a little boy.” Christina answered.
“Well I have to go get my crew seeing as how they are not here. Would ye like to come with?” He asked.
“No, I’ll wait.” She answered. She knew with the light being up that someone might be able to recognize her, she also knew that her master would have been found by then.
Alex shrugged it off quickly and left the ship. Then she could hear the bells sounding around town. Shit they must of found him. Before she knew it the pirates were all running out of the tavern to the ship, barely sneaking past the town guards. She giggled at the sight of them all running, most of them were stumbling which wasn’t much of a surprise after the way she saw them all last night.
It wasn’t long until they all got to the ship. She stopped her girlish laughing and stood straight and tall, trying to seem more like a man than she did yesterday. Yes this was definitely going to be hard for her to do but she would manage. As soon as they boarded the ship, Alex started to introduce her to everyone as Christopher.
Alex walked over to her when he finished telling everyone of her. “Oliver be the quartermaster, he’s in charge of the splitting the pay among the crew, Henry over there be the Navigator, he makes the ship go wherever I tell him to, Richard is the Bosun, he will be telling ye what needs to be done. Clarence is the master gunner, he takes care of the gun and shot and has them ready for when enemy flags are raised, Isaac is the Master Carpenter, he will oversee and assist with all repairs to the ship, but he does most of them. Adam repairs the sails, and makes them when need, he’s called the sail maker but we all like to call him a seamstress. Then you have Hugh, he’s the cook, Philip is the surgeon. Then the other sailors George, John, Martin, and James, which George John and Martin are waiting in Tortuga for us to get there.” He pointed a finger at all the sailors present.
She felt she had gotten the names with the faces fairly good but knew that she would get a few mixed up. She kept saying the names over and over again in her head trying to picture who Alex pointed at.
She followed Alex as he started pushing on the capstan. She waited for him to tell her to start mopping the deck before she started. When she was done swabbing the deck as they called it, he handed her some tar, and got down to help her showing her how to do it properly.
“So ‘ow bad was he to ye?” He asked as they worked, in the blistering sun.
“He was pretty bad, He would slap me for no reason, or if I took too long getting whatever he wanted.” She said, trying not to let slip that he had tried to rape her, or that she had killed him.
“That’s horrible, I can’t blame ye for leaving mate.” Alex returned.
“Why did you leave home?” Christina asked.
“The usual, just didn’t want to be in Port Royal anymore. My life was to dull and I wanted adventure, so I joined a merchant ship, this nasty band of scallywags picked me up just off the coast of Trinidad.” She could tell he was lying.
“I would have taken you for Spanish, not English.” She didn’t mean for the words to come out so abruptly.
“That’s actually not the first time I’ve heard that.” He answered. “I know I look Spanish, I hear that more often than anything else.”
She had to look away from his charming smile before she gave herself away. He had to have the most appealing smile she had ever seen. She needed to get off this ship, before they caught on to her, and that man was going to be the first to make it obvious. He had her stomach tossing and turning every way possible. It was definitely going to be a challenge to keep her identity hidden, this man had her urges completely out of control and there was no way she could come back from it all.
She tried not looking at him as they kept tarring the wooden planks, however she kept stealing glances at his sculpted torso and gorgeous face. She was glad when the crew headed to bed for the night, she didn’t hesitate to join them. She laid in her bed and pretended to be asleep as Alex walked in the room.
She wished she could tell him, she would let him do numerous things to her, and the way she kept seeing him naked every time she closed her eyes made her get a tingling in her lower stomach. She had quite the urge for him. She could picture herself under him, and on top of him, where ever he wanted her to be.
Christina had never had urges that strong for someone, nor had she ever felt a pull that strong, it was even stronger than her need to get away from Barbados. However she fought herself to believe that nothing could ever come of those urges and that she could never act on them. She forced herself to sleep, pushing the enticing thoughts out of her mind.
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