A Motley Sisterhood of Pirates!  (Part Seven: Blog Forty-Seven)

A Motley Sisterhood of Pirates!  (Part Seven: Blog Forty-Seven)

By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris, co-authors of the Rita Walker series

Amelie feels a hand gently pushing her shoulder.  She grabs the wrist of the hand.  Unlike “Dizzying Blade” she isn’t inclined to stab anyone who awakes her.  “Get up Amelie,” “One Eye” is whispering in her ear.

“Dixopus is here now?” she asks groggily.  She can see light through her eyelids.

“No, but a Dolphin Tail just threw some stones up onto deck.”

“A warning?” she asks.

“It’s night now lass, and the mist is dense,” continues in a whisper.  ““Storm Caller” isn’t here to look, so Janet is, and she thinks she sees a pinnace heading our way starboard side.”

“Why would the Captain be returning that way?” she asks.

“With men aboard,” “One Eye” says with a hiss.

“Barthadrow!” Amelie exclaims.  She makes a spitting sound, as does “One Eye”.  She gets dressed as quickly as she can in the light from the lantern “One Eye” is holding.  “Are you going to wake the others?” she asks glancing at the other occupied hammocks below deck?”

“Not yet.  Too much chaos will let the enemy we know we know they are coming.  We’ll wake only those who know how to use a bow and arrow for now.  Especially Nippi, for distance she’s strongest after “Wheel Turner”.  I’ll wake Canneta and Areso.  If any girls get wounded I want them attended to immediately.”

Amelie walks with stealth past all the hammocks.  She only gently nudges awake the girls who can use a bow and arrow.  She realizes there are not many with the strength or knowledge to shoot the needed distance.

Up on deck she glances at the few gathered and let’s out a long sigh. 

Amelie notices that “One Eye” keeps the lantern hooded and at hip level with just enough light for the others to see each other.  “We want the pinnace to get as close as possible,” “One Eye says with a stern voice uncommon for her.  “All the men aboard are to be killed silently.  We want that pinnace intact.”  With a glimmer in her unpatched eye “One Eye” says with great want, “And we want to capture the ship she came from.”  She sees “One Eye” glance her way.  “Amelie.”

“Aim for the chest, and if you hit the neck all the better,” she whispers with urgency to the others.  She has killed before but most of the girls on deck have never had to fight.  “You do this to protect yourself.”  She knows the pirate code is generally about self-preservation.  “And your sisters.  Each of you shall set five arrows within hand reach.  Shoot until you have no more arrows left.  And if you shoot with a killer shot into the same man more than once—good.”  Accuracy and thoroughness wins ranged battles “Dizzying Blade” had explained to her and Arsema numerous time until it became a mantra. 

“Nippi,” she says to “Unibrow”, “you will be shooting the flaming arrows.  Janet will give you direction.”  Turning to the other girls she says, “Wait for the arrow’s light to guide you to a target.”

Amelie stands silently as she watches with racked nerves as “Unibrow” crouches low before ascending the steps to the fo’c’sle where Janet is peering over the railing.  They can’t afford to use a telescope.  The glass of the lens might reflect off the light of the stars and two moons.  All the lessons the Captain, “Dizzying Blade”, “Wheel Turner”, and “One Eye” taught her are coming to use in this one desperate moment.

Dan Watt is the author of the epic dark fantasy fiction book BARD

Taylor Norris, RMT, as First Mate ‘One Eye’ Olanis:  taynorris@gmail.com (Kitchener-Waterloo)

With thanks to Joanne Gosling (Navigator ‘Storm Caller’ Master Jo Anne): Joanne is an Interior Decorator who specializes in closets: Jgosling@calclosets.com Calclosetsjoanne or Joannegosling22@gmail.com

Leah Weir (Helmswoman ‘Wheel Turner’ Synthia): model and cover editor;

Andraya Watt as Assistant-Master-at-Arms, Amelie

With Thanks To:

Fire & Steel for the Medieval Rapier:  http://fireandsteel.ca/

Alex Watt for background pictures

Daiana Duca for background pictures

Krissy Karmaschek for background pictures

A Motley Sisterhood of Pirates!  (Part Seven: Blog Forty-Five)

A Motley Sisterhood of Pirates!  (Part Seven: Blog Forty-Five)

By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris, co-authors of the Rita Walker series

That night, with the two moons shining overhead, Amelie leans against the main mast.  The Captain sent a fire signal that the rest of the crew would be returning on the ‘morn.  The girls, who will be up throughout the night, are sitting or lying on the deck, wrapped in blankets around “One Eye”.  The First Mate is sitting on a chest full of adapted brooms and mops, singing while playing her mandolin.

“We are heading back to sea, back to sea,” she hears “One Eye” sing.

“May a strong wind fill the sails

To carry us to our destination

But not a gale, not a gale….”

As “One Eye” continues to sing Amelie sees “Dizzying Blade’s” door open.  Wrapped in a blanket, her hair disheveled, steps out Melinda.  The Cannibal’s canine teeth glint in the dual moonlight.  There is a sensuous movement to the Cannibal’s steps that reminds her of a large cat.  She sees Melinda sit with the other girls.  Amelie thought the girls would be terrified by the Cannibal but they seem drawn to her.

Amelie, along with the others gasp as Janet jumps to her feet and lets her blanket fall to the deck.  She’s only wearing a loose night gown; nearly see through in the light of the two moons.  Shaking she points a finger at the Cannibal and shouts in a shaky voice, “Eat me and no one else!”

“That’s not for me dear,” Melinda replies with a look of shock on her face.  “There are some others I think here who would be most happy to oblige, and some on my ship.”

Amelie notices “One Eye” has stopped playing and now has a mischievous grin.  “I think she means, literally,” “One Eye” says to the Cannibal.

“Oh no,” Melinda says with a shake of her head towards Janet.  “I detest that, and only do it when one moon covers the other.  That will be a long time from now dear.”

“Well,” Janet replies raising her chin and squinting at the Cannibal, “I will stay with you until you return to your own ship.”  As Janet is talking Amelie notices Janet is wearing a thin string around her waist with a hardly noticeable sheath hanging from it.  She glances closer and believes Janet has a fish skinning knife in the sheath.

Dan Watt is the author of the epic dark fantasy fiction book BARD

Taylor Norris, RMT, as First Mate ‘One Eye’ Olanis:  taynorris@gmail.com (Kitchener-Waterloo)

With thanks to Joanne Gosling (Navigator ‘Storm Caller’ Master Jo Anne): Joanne is an Interior Decorator who specializes in closets: Jgosling@calclosets.com Calclosetsjoanne or Joannegosling22@gmail.com

Leah Weir (Helmswoman ‘Wheel Turner’ Synthia): model and cover editor;

Andraya Watt as Assistant-Master-at-Arms, Amelie

With Thanks To:

Fire & Steel for the Medieval Rapier:  http://fireandsteel.ca/

Alex Watt for background pictures

Daiana Duca for background pictures

Krissy Karmaschek for background pictures

A Motley Sisterhood of Pirates!  (Part Seven: Blog Forty-Three)

A Motley Sisterhood of Pirates!  (Part Seven: Blog Forty-Three)

By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris, co-authors of the Rita Walker series

Once the throats of the kept fish are slit in kindness with a thank you for giving themselves up for sustenance Amelie takes her time in the hold to rest.  She knows the corpses of the fish will be thrown into barrels to be rolled into the gallery where ‘Unibrow’ Nippie and Janice will skin them and hang them and coat them with brine to dry out for storage.  That means the crew will be eating fried fish skin with seaweed soup for the next while.

Amelie closes her eyes with a sigh.  All of ‘Dizzying Blade’s’ weapons are now stored in the Captain’s and ‘Wheel Turner’s’ rooms.  Such an interesting assortment of fighting utensils, and of course, Arsema is away.  She already misses sparring with Arsema under ‘Dizzying Blades’ caustic tutelage.  As she falls asleep she envisions her and Arsema practicing deeks and ducks, spins, switching weapons from one hand to the other, and fighting with a weapon in each hand.  As they practice she hears girls screaming.

She opens her eyes and listens.  Starlight filters through the partially open windows that were once for the now never used cannons.  She realizes the screams are not coming from her dream, but are real, and happening. 

Dan Watt is the author of the epic dark fantasy fiction book BARD

Taylor Norris, RMT, as First Mate ‘One Eye’ Olanis:  taynorris@gmail.com (Kitchener-Waterloo)

With thanks to Joanne Gosling (Navigator ‘Storm Caller’ Master Jo Anne): Joanne is an Interior Decorator who specializes in closets: Jgosling@calclosets.com Calclosetsjoanne or Joannegosling22@gmail.com

Leah Weir (Helmswoman ‘Wheel Turner’ Synthia): model and cover editor;

Andraya Watt as Assistant-Master-at-Arms, Amelie

With Thanks To:

Fire & Steel for the Medieval Rapier:  http://fireandsteel.ca/

Alex Watt for background pictures

Daiana Duca for background pictures

Krissy Karmaschek for background pictures

A Motley Sisterhood of Pirates!  (Part Seven: Blog Forty-Two)

A Motley Sisterhood of Pirates!  (Part Seven: Blog Forty-Two)

By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris, co-authors of the Rita Walker series

While the rest of the remaining crew pull in the nets, under the instruction of Aarini, Amelie is trying to teach Mesi and Althea how to fight with wooden swords.  In between words of encouragement and curses under her breath, she glances under the fo’c’sle at ‘Dizzying Blade’s’ room; where the Cannibal women, Melinda, now resides.

“Don’t worry about flicking your hair,” Amelie tells Althea as she attempts again to demonstrate the proper combination of footwork and arm movement when using a sword. 

“But I want her to know who the better fighter is by showing my superior confidence,” Althea replies in her determined Egyptian accent. 

“She knows I’m a better fighter, and much more beautiful,” Mesi says in her soft Pilipino accent, flicking her own hair back.

Amelie bunches up her shoulders and is about go snarl at the two girls when she hears Aarini shout out, “Pakad! Hold!”  Amelie instantly draws out her two tiny throwing knives, that she keeps secreted in her bandana, as she spins around towards Aarini.

Stuck within the interlocking ropes of the net, are two Dolphin Tails, seemingly stuck together.  “Qu’est-ce que c’est?” Amelie says to herself.

“Get the First Mate,” Aarini tells one of the girls, who was pulling in the rope.  The gaped mouthed girl stares for a moment longer, before rushing off to wake up ‘One Eye’.

“Alive?” Amelie asks as she slides the knives back into her bandana, and draws her Ninjato out.

The tails of the two Dolphin Tails slap, and with a loud cry they try to separate within the ropes.  The one underneath has breasts, and well, the one on top does not try to roll over, but slides off.

“Get them out!” she hears a groggy, First Mate Oli, shout out.  She sees “One Eye” hurry towards the captured Dolphin Tails.  “Loosen the bridles!”

As Aarini loosens the bridles Amelie steps closer.  It’s up to her to protect her shipmates.  She has seen Dolphin Tails occasionally; either their heads peaking above the sea’s surface, or their flukes slapping the water as they dive, but never this close.

The upper body of both the female and male Dolphin Tails is humanish.  Only the fluked tails and thick rubbery skin that runs from the back of their head to a blowhole near the bottom of their neck, gives them a mammalian appearance.  She peers closer; and sees thick webbing between their unusually long fingers.  She leans even closer, to get a better look at why the male has rolled onto his back.

As the nets are pulled off, both the Dolphin Tails walk rapidly on their hands, hurrying towards the rail of the port gunwale.

“Help them over!” First Mate Oli shouts as she gets under the female Dolphin Tails’ one arm.  Aarini gets under the other.  Amelie sees the female try to fight them off at first, but as ‘One Eye’ talks to her in her sing-song voice, the female lets them help her onto, and over the gunwale.  The male, with his bulging arms and back muscles, refuses any help as he pulls himself over.  A number of the girls run to the port side.  ‘One Eye’ yells for the others to go starboard as the Nagua starts to list.  

Amelie shrugs, ignoring ‘One Eye’s’ warning, and looks over the port side.  She’s the current Master-at-Arms, so she can do almost anything she wants—because whatever she does is important.  The male Dolphin Tail is slapping the water with his fists.  He points a webbed finger at the rigging.  Amelie sees ‘One Eye’ pull a section of netting to the port side.  The male Dolphin Tail makes a fist again and shakes it at the net.

“I understand,” ‘One Eye’ shouts to him before turning to the rest of the crew on the deck, and telling them, “I have no idea if he understands what I’m saying, “but we’ll have to figure out another way to catch fish.  Now everyone, knock out the fish, so they don’t suffer, and throw anything we can’t eat overboard, so it can live a long and cheery life.”

“Like we did with the amorphous Dolphin Tails?” Aarini asks, with a mischievous grin.

“Just so,” ‘One Eye’ says.  “Thank you for not killing them,” she says to Amelie.

“De rien–you’re welcome,” Amelie replies adding the English translation.  With a beaming smile she sweeps down into a low, flamboyant bow.

Amelie modeled by Andraya Watt
Throwing Knives and Ninjato by Fire and Steel
Gemstone necklace by Street Colours

Dan Watt is the author of the epic dark fantasy fiction book BARD

Taylor Norris, RMT, as First Mate ‘One Eye’ Olanis:  taynorris@gmail.com (Kitchener-Waterloo)

With thanks to Joanne Gosling (Navigator ‘Storm Caller’ Master Jo Anne): Joanne is an Interior Decorator who specializes in closets: Jgosling@calclosets.com Calclosetsjoanne or Joannegosling22@gmail.com

Leah Weir (Helmswoman ‘Wheel Turner’ Synthia): model and cover editor;

Andraya Watt as Assistant-Master-at-Arms, Amelie

With Thanks To:

Fire & Steel for the Medieval Rapier:  http://fireandsteel.ca/

Alex Watt for background pictures

Daiana Duca for background pictures

Krissy Karmaschek for background pictures

A Motley Sisterhood of Pirates!  (Part Seven: Blog Forty-One)

A Motley Sisterhood of Pirates!  (Part Seven: Blog Forty-One)

By Dan Watt and Taylor Norris, co-authors of the Rita Walker series

(Part Seven) Amelie stands beside Arsema on the Fo’c’sle before the First Mate and the Navigator.  Amelie glances at an oil lamp hanging from an eyehook on the foremast.  The lamp cast shadows as it swings in the strengthening wind.  The ‘Ship Builder’ and ‘Navigator’ readapted an oil lamp that would have used whale oil or kerosene with one that now uses a plant oil.  They called the plant hairy olive balls because it tastes and looks like olives but is about the size of a teacup and has fibrous hairs growing out of the skin.  According to the ‘Navigator’ the ‘Ship Builder’ says it burns longer then whale, kerosene, and olive oil from Earth would.

“Arsema,” the First Mate says with a mischievous grin, “you will now be assistant Ship Protector.” 

Amelie sees Arsema’s eyes drop.

“You will be known as Master-at-arms of the sea, until our own ‘Dizzying Blade’ returns.”  Arsema looks up and smiles.

“Amelie, you are assistant Master-at-arms.   However, you will remain in your own hammock within the hold but moved closer to the hatch.  All the weapons must be moved out of the Master-at-arms’ room while our guest stays there.”

“Who is our guest?” Amelie asks in her uppity but enchanting French accent.

“A Cannibal named Melinda,” the ‘One Eye’ replies with a sardonic grin.

“Can we feed Mesi and Althea to her?” Arsema asks in her sarcastic but lovely Eritrea accent.  They all laugh.

“They’re still at each other?” ‘One Eye’ asks.

“Still, as always, sir,” Amelie says.

“Now that they’re bodies are more like a woman’s,” Arsema says as she looks around to make sure no one else is listening, “they compare their physiques.  Mesi presses out her big boobs as she glares up at Althea, and Althea measures her own with her hands and while glaring down at Mesi, says hers are actually much bigger.”

“Thank the two moons that they’re not men comparing something else,” ‘One Eye’ says with a grin.  “Arsema,” she continues in a more serious note.  “You and ‘Ship Protector’ are to return with ‘Storm Caller’ and help the Captain and the ‘Ship Builder’ release the Surprise from its current perch upon a jagged boulder.  That will mean diving underneath to check the damage.”  She turns to Amelie.  “Have Althea and Mesi practice sword fighting while the others pull in the nets to see what we’ve caught to eat.”

Amelie groans and nods her head.  Taking in a deep breath she says in Arsema’s direction, “Oh to be a mermaid at this moment.”

Dan Watt is the author of the epic dark fantasy fiction book BARD

Taylor Norris, RMT, as First Mate ‘One Eye’ Olanis:  taynorris@gmail.com (Kitchener-Waterloo)

With thanks to Joanne Gosling (Navigator ‘Storm Caller’ Master Jo Anne): Joanne is an Interior Decorator who specializes in closets: Jgosling@calclosets.com Calclosetsjoanne or Joannegosling22@gmail.com

Leah Weir (Helmswoman ‘Wheel Turner’ Synthia): model and cover editor;

Andraya Watt as Assistant-Master-at-Arms, Amelie

With Thanks To:

Fire & Steel for the Medieval Rapier, Ninjato with Throwing Knives:  http://fireandsteel.ca/

Street Colours for gemstone worn by Amelie: Streetcolours.com

Alex Watt for background pictures

Daiana Duca for background pictures

Krissy Karmaschek for background pictures