We are in the second to last part of this story. Or at least I think it is the second to last part. I may put in an epilogue.If you want to get refreshed on what has just happened, click here to read the ninth part.
Note: Please don’t get mad at me for the sad ending. I don’t know why, but I like writing sad endings better. But I always try to make there be a silver lining on my thunderclouds. 🙂
One of the sailors came down the steps, his footsteps loud on the hollow steps. He was mumbling something under his breath.
“Oh, sure! I would just love to be the one that tells the angel that her prince charming is going to be killed tonight, and that she’s got to do some tricks for the captain. Oh, yeah! She’ll go right along with it and give me no trouble, because she’s an angel!” The sailor scoffed, and shook his fist up at the hatch. “I’d like to see him do the job. See if he laughs then.”
He had gotten to the brig by then, and was loudly jingling the keys as he searched for the right one. “I’m sure he said the big silver key, but I don’t see no silver key.”
Sure enough, there wasn’t a single silver key in his hand. Every single one of them was covered in so much rust there was no way that anyone could tell what color the keys were originally.
I offered to give him a hand, and to my surprise, he thanked me heartily and handed me the keys.
I looked back at White, and he shrugged.
Reaching my hand through the bars, I began sorting through them. Most of them were distorted so much by the rust that you couldn’t even tell what size they really were. I looked at the guard. “I’m going to need a pen knife.”
Again, to my shock, he handed me his. I found the biggest one and began prying the rust off. Sure enough, there was a glint of silver. I pried off as much rust as I could, and inserted it into the key hole, struggling to get it to turn.
“Hey, Roberto! What’s takin’ ye so long, matey?” A voice called down from the hatch
The sailor yelled back, “It won’t turn!”
Soon we heard footsteps plodding down the steps. A man with a scar across his cheek snatched the keys from my hand, scowling at Roberto as he did so. Shoving the key into the lock, he gave it a jerk and there was a clink as the bolt rolled back.
Tossing the keys to Roberto, the scarred man said, “Next time, don’t shave off the rust. It turns better with it.”
Roberto only nodded. As he turned to pull us out of the cell, I offered him his pen knife back in my open palm, but he didn’t take it. I don’t think he even saw it in my hand. When his back was turned next, I slipped it into a pocket in my skirt. They had taken my bag.
We were taken, our hands tied with wet rope, out into the night air. The faces of those around me were illuminated by a silver glow, causing grotesque shadows to form around their eyes and nose. I am not sure if all those shadows were just caused by the moonlight. Death seemed to hang around them, and I thought I caught a glimpse of other shadows besides their own. The extra shadows took on a less solid form, and yet, they were there. The pirates’ Doom Angels were gathering. I began to sense that a few of the pirates themselves were not who they seemed. Hope began to rise within me.
“I say we throw ‘em overboard.” One of the pirates said after we had been shoved into the center of this assembly.
“But the girl can’t be killed.” Harrington muttered.
One of the pirates close to him heard him. “Then tie weights around her ankles and let her sink and stay there for eternity.”
“But only bad things come o’ that.” Harrington growled.
“Yeah,” another pirate piped up, “you don’t want to anger angels. They can turn into demons.”
“Actually, that is not entirely true.” I sighed.
“Shut up, missy. We wasn’t askin’ you.” The first pirate spat at me. He missed me, thankfully.
“Quiet!” The captain yelled. “We already settled this matter. We are going through with our plan.” He turned to the scarred pirate, “Cut her bonds.”
The scarred pirate complied, but he still held my hands so that I couldn’t escape. His grip was too strong for me to break free. I winced.
Harrington noticed. “Captain! I think she can be killed!”
The captain cracked his knuckles, smiling gleefully. “Good, then it should make this all the more interesting. Release the soldier.”
Another soldier complied this time, as the scarred sailor was still holding me. White was also held, his hands pinned behind his back. His eyes sought mine, and they were panicking. I felt a piece of me begin to panic. I fought it. Again and again I told myself that Yahweh was in control, that He had foreseen this moment since the beginning of time and knew its purpose. I must trust Him. I gave White as much of a reassuring nod as I could muster. It was enough.
The captain stepped up to me, taking my chin in his pinching grip, his nails digging into my flesh, causing me to cry out.
“So you can feel pain, angel. Well, you’re about to feel more. You are going to fight…” He paused, then shot his finger out at White. He didn’t have to say anymore. I had seen men make rooster cocks fight to the death before. This time is was the cocks making the men fight to the death. Or woman and man. Either way, they meant to make us fight.
“What if I don’t do it.” I said.
“Oh, either way, he’ll die. You can give him a quick death. If you don’t kill him, we will, and we won’t do it quickly.”
“Monster!” I shouted at him. “Do you not know that I cannot kill unless Yahweh orders it?”
“Oh, I know. That is why you are going to do it. You’ll disobey Yahweh, but who cares?”
Part of me wanted to give in, to kill White and stop this never ending struggle. But I couldn’t. Every time I started thinking about it, I would see Yahweh’s face, His glory, and I would have a wash of feelings sweep over me. Love, mingled with fear. Yahweh was good, He was holy, He was love. If I turned away from Him, He would have to judge me, and it would not be with mercy. I may live for yet a little while, but what kind of a life is a life separated completely from God and His love? Who cared? I repeated to myself.
“I do.” I lifted my eyes so that they stared into the captain’s. “I care.”
“And ye are the only one that matters? Ye think that’s it? Well,” he said as he released me, “we’ll see.” He thrust me at White, shoving a large knife into my hand as he did so. “Fight.”
White was similarly released, having also been handed a knife. At first we stood facing each other, doing nothing.
“Did I mention, White, that I’ll torture the angel if you don’t fight her?” The captain said, his arms crossed in front of his chest.
White’s eyes opened as he stared at me. He began shaking his head. “Rebekah, we have to fight.”
“No, we don’t. Not each other.” I thought. I looked at all the ugly faces staring around at me. Inwardly I began to smile. Death was sitting there on the bulwarks, watching the scene unfold. When he saw me, he nodded. I nodded back. I began really smiling now. I felt fear slip from me. I knew what I had to do.
“White,” I smiled at him, “you’re right. We must fight. Now is the time to be Yahweh’s warriors. Now is the time to fight. Yahweh has given the victory into our hands.”
The light dawned in White’s eyes, and he smiled too.
Turning away from each other, we began counting out our paces from the center, as though we were in a duel. The pirates watched eagerly.
“Now!” White yelled, and we drove our blades deep into the pirate right in front of us. The scarred pirate and another one with a red woolen hat fell to the deck. Without wasting any time, we slayed the pirates next to them. Four were dead at our feet before the pirates awoke from their stupor. I guess that option had never occurred to them.
But now, we were battling longer cutlasses and pistols against our shorter knives. I began to remember the skill with the blade that Yahweh had given me, and White slashed furiously at all around him, and yet, we began to quickly tire. Like I said before, sea biscuits and lack of exercise are not conducive to long fights.
Right as we were about to fall underneath dozens of blades, we heard another cry. The sailors previously left unobserved, the one whose shadows did not seem as solid as the rest, fell on their charges. One by one, the pirates were cut down by the Doom Angels, until only one remained: Harrington.
Standing as tall as I could with my fatigue, I advanced towards him. He had hidden behind his comrades in the fight, staying out of the reach of my blade. Now, he snatched up his cutlass and retreated to the bow. I was about twelve feet away when he looked down at the water, and I paused in my advance. Looking back at me, he raised his cutlass and ran at me.
I was taken by surprise, and found myself hard put to keep my footing on the slippery deck, made more treacherous by the streams of blood now running across it.
The battle did not last long. Within minutes, he had knocked the knife out of my hand and I lay at his mercy. He took another slash at me, but I jumped away, and the blade only caught me on my left arm.
Crying out in pain, I sank to my knees, clutching my arm, trying to staunch the bleeding.
White started to come to my side, but one of the angels held him back. He looked at the horizon. His eyes opened wide, and I automatically turned to look too. The edge of the water on the horizon was beginning to take on a slight glow. The sun was beginning to rise.
My fingers went to my pockets. The pen knife was still in there. Being careful not to let my face betray me, I formulated a plan.
“All right, Harrington. You have me at your mercy, and I expect none. But you don’t know if I can really die yet.”
“I am willing to try. Ye can bleed. Ye can feel pain. I’ll take my chances on whether or not ye are going to die.”
Another shot of pain rippled through my arm and up into my whole body. I collapsed onto the deck, my face turned to the sky, which had begun to lighten almost imperceptively. Harrington leaned over and smirked down at me, and that gave me another idea.
“Kill me then,” my voice a little over a whisper, “since you might be right. But first, I need to tell you something. Something I have kept from you for quite some time now. Something that I know you want to hear deep down. ” My voice had sunk to a low whisper now, and I began to groan like I was dying, and for all I knew, I was.
I had gotten Harrington’s attention now. He leaned in, kneeling beside me. “Tell me.” He ordered me.
I gestured for him to come closer, and he put his ear up to my mouth.
“Justice has come to you at last, Demetrius Harrington. Prepare to meet your Maker.”
And with my last strength I drove the pen knife as deep as I could into his heart, twisting it as I drove it in.
A ray of the low light blinded me.
Then the darkness took me.
And yet, the story is not over. We still have to find out the fate of Henry White and Rebekah Smith. Come back for the final part of the story which I will try to get out soon.
Just as a heads up, after I am completely finished with this story, I am going to retire all the parts of it within one week of the final publishing, so if you have been meaning to go back and read or re-read some of the parts, go ahead and do it before it is too late. I might consider sending you a copy of the whole thing afterwards if you want, but I am going to say ahead of time that I will be very selective as to whom I give away my baby.
Like I promised, I am going to tell you what I thought the theme was, though several people have told me some very good themes for it that also work. My theme was supposed to be on our relationship with God, but all the other ones kind of fit too. In fact, they seem to be more of the theme more then my own theme. Maybe my purpose in writing it is to explore my relationship with my Creator. I know I chose I weird theme, and most of it is off the cuff and not carefully planned, and I don’t think I will publish it, but it was more of an exercise than anything.
Now that I’ve rambled a little, I will leave you to sort out the details.