A Pirate’s Life
Based on the Dungeons & Dragons character created by Leslie Holloway
Dusk had fallen over the ocean about a day’s journey from the nearest port. Eevil steadied her equine legs behind the helm of her captain’s ship, Fool’s Gold, and kept her hands on the wheel.
“Captain, I don’t think this is a very good idea. This new crew…” Eevil’s voice trailed off. She would never openly defy her Captain’s orders. But that did not vanquish her love for him, and her desire to keep him safe.
“You have been given your orders,” Lord Cromwell said in a stern whisper. He was known to the crew as Captain Cut Throat and would not let his first mate tarnish the reputation that came along with the name. “I agree our last crew had become our family, may they rest in peace. This is our crew now, and we must make with what we have. This mark will set us all up for some time.” He patted her human shoulder and set off down to the deck to his assembled crew.
Night approached as Eevil came upon their mark. A royal cargo vessel transporting a king’s treasury. The ship was rumored to be minimally guarded with no passengers to make room for the vast amount of riches. It was a pirate’s ticket home, but Captain Cut Throat was no mangy, murderous pirate. He would take his share, a “tax”, and vanish. No killing, burning, raping, or any other acts of unnecessary violence. This was what drew Eevil to Cromwell and his crew as an escaped centaur slave, along with running from her capturers.
But when their loyal crew had been slaughtered during a hit gone sour, it was difficult to trust any new recruits. Finding pirates to fit Lord Cromwell’s terms were not easy, and she could feel a terrible change of the wind bringing her a message of horrible news.
“Lights out! No calls, no bells!” Captain Cut Throat called out as the lanterns of the cargo ship came into view.
She watched him and his selected mates set off in rowboats quick and quiet, like shadows on the waves. She could barely make out their figures as they climbed the side of the ship. Then a deafening silence washed over the sea. She heard Lord Cromwell start to call but his voice turned to a gurgle as a blade flashed over his throat. Her body went rigid and her hooves fought to keep her upright on the rocking deck.
It was a trap. It was a set up. Her mind whirred, trying to fit everything together. The loss of the old crew, the new recruits, the rumors of this too-good-to-be-true target. It had all been planned. They were out smarted by–
“BRUTES! MANGY, FILTHY PIRATES!” Eevil yelled and charged down the deck, jumping over the stairs to land on one particularly hideous pirate. Her scimitar shimmered in the moonlight as it slashed at anything that moved.
She felt a cool edge at her neck and a drip of warmth trickle down her skin, and she froze. “Easy girl. Ain’t none of us wanna lose a prized mare,” and she heard a moist clicking of a tongue over an incomplete set of teeth and a hand felt it’s way down her black coat on her hindquarters.
“Get away from me,” Eevil growled and kicked hard with her back hoof but caught only air.
The pirates laughed and jeered, and the echoes sounding across the waves from the other vessel reminded her of the grim events. The blade pressed harder against her smoky skin and she winced. “If you’s not gon’ play nice, than how’s ’bout a deal? We send you on your merry way,” some of the pirates attempted to gruff in protest, “and we takes da ship an every fing innit?” The pirates let out roars and cheers of conquest.
Eevil was defeated. For a moment, she thought of requesting death. After all she had nothing to live for. But if she lived, she could avenge her love, take back Fool’s Gold, and watch the lives of these thieves drip from the tip of her sword. The thought burned in her with determination. She walked slowly to a rowboat, head held high, her hooves clopping softly on the wooden deck. She folded her legs into the small boat while a pirate bound her hands. Several of the more muscular pirates struggled to lower her into the dark waters.
A cool breeze kissed the small cut on her neck. Everything was about to change.
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