A Motley Sisterhood of Pirates! (Part One Blog two)
“Aye, and when Barthadrow tried to put him into the evil barrel he escaped with some of the other boys. After telling us his story he talked of consent and that as he built up his crew any of the original boys who prefer the opposite sex were allowed to join other ships.”
“Tristan is a good man,” the Captain says. “We would have been captured or killed by Barthadrow’s crew a number of times without him.”
“He is,” Oli says with a smirk. “Probably because our surgeons Canneta and Areso are mated his crew thinks ours is like theirs and we prefer to partner with other females. The exception being the Ship Builder of course, the only male you let live on the Nagua. I know you and he are close, as is our Navigator is to both of you, but he doesn’t seem to fit our motley crew and I sense he would not be a fit on the Unbroken.
“You and the Pirate Queen saved me when I was ten and I would guess at least ten years have passed since then. I was so busy trying to prove myself all that time that I never bothered to ask about him before. Yours and the Navigator’s relationship to him, is hard to grasp. Not a lover, not a father figure, nor an older brother but I’ve always sensed a deep comradery between the three of you. And it’s an interesting finger he is missing.”
Oli sees an anguished look cross the Captain’s face. “You are like my sister,” the Captain says in a faraway voice, “You and the Navigator, but I think it’s best to keep that story hidden for now First Mate.”
“I don’t understand the desire to be with the same sex,” Oli continues. She realizes drinking so much brandy the other night has loosened her tongue. “So many of them are good looking and intelligent and we are not a large population yet. However, at least they have their mates with them.” Oli hears the lament in her own voice. “Yours and mine are currently captaining ships hardly larger than sloops. Not favourable odds when you consider they’re guarding the Pregnancy Ship against Barthadrow’s fleet.”
“We’ll be departing tomorrow.” The Captain reassures her. “As for your other point, I think as long as there are enough children on the Pregnancy Boat, it won’t matter. They could always begrudgingly mate for the sake of continuance. What’s important is Tristan considers children sacred while Barthadrow treats them the same as adults.” The Captain spits into the water and changes the subject. “We have quite the variety of ship crews in the cove.” The Captain points at the farthest ship to their left. “The Cannibals, vegan until they go mad during the crossover of the two moons. We want to stay far away from them.”
“From a distance we saw a few of the other crews trading for flour and other goods with the Cannibals,” Oli says. “I used the spyglass you gave me and all the Cannibals look anemic. It’s too bad we can’t get them to attack the island Barthadrow has captured and made into a home base.”
“Perhaps the crossing of the two moons tells them they are missing something in their diet.” The Captain points at the next galleon. The Sames have the complete range of human skin colours. Midnight blue to almost translucent skin, some even have patches of different colours.”
“But they all have the curly blonde hair of the poodles from Earth, or like some of us have below,” Oli adds with mischief in her voice.
They both laugh.
She sees the Captain gaze far to the right. A ship so huge it seems unreal bobs up and down there. “The Real Talls should make it to the Pregnancy Ship first. I know we and others were sucked into the whirlpool during the giant shooting star that caused Luna to turn a cobalt blue colour. I think though, the Real Talls, Sames, and Cannibals are from somewhere else. Did you get caulking along with the other supplies?” Oli follows the Captain’s gaze as it wanders to a nearby galleon, one just a bit larger than the Nagua. Captain Nathan Peg leg’s Surprise.
“I bartered some of the excess spiked orange we had in the barrels from trading with the Horse People with Captain Peg leg for caulking,” she says. “Most of our supplies we bartered with Tristan.”
“Any problems?” the Captain asks.
This is the part of the conversation Oli is dreading. “Yes,” she replies with a tremble in her voice.
“Someone has wronged one of our crew? Our Harlot, Thelma?”
They both look down at the deck where a buxom girl with her blouse partially undone sits needling battens into a spare mainsail while a lit lantern swings from an overhead rope.