Erickar Avery - Between Corks 'n Anchors (backstory)

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Re: Erickar Avery - Between Corks 'n Anchors (backstory)

Post by Admin on Wed Aug 09, 2017 4:18 pm

Meanwhile Fernandez was left behind with his own thoughts… and intentions. He had watched Ric leave with a somewhat odd and sad smile on his face. He meant every word of what he had said regarding Ric’s mindset and talents. He regarded Ric as a man who had the ability to fight his impulses when it came to business, controlling his potential strength until it was time to strike. Would it be in swordplay, Ric’s tactic would be pretending to cower away from his opponent only to catch him by surprise with a devastating counterblow the moment his incautious foe came in for the ‘kill’. The man did tend to get a trifle overexcited once it was his turn to hand out the blows, but at least he was very effectively at taking down his opponenents.

Ric also had had the patience -and- the nerve to infiltrate the Knives, and waited for years, making them all believe he was truly part of them. With a cunningness of a red fox, and one that was admirable, Ric had weaved and left behind a hopeless labyrinth of still so many unsolved puzzles to Fernandez. With his tricks, Ric had walked their ranks and even received a day of training from the their martial arts grandmaster himself. All mysteries, until Fernandez was approached by a new client years later, a contract that was now old but still in progress. And Fernandez had no choice but to respect it. Taking Erickar Avery captive was essential to the Knives, so that the man could stand trial for the disarray he had caused, and for abandoning and disappearing from their Institute right after. But the girl he currently was with... was of far greater importance.


It was to be hoped Ric would follow Fernandez’s advice, and that he would actually leave the lass behind. That way she would be an easy catch, and Fernandez wouldn’t have to feel forced to take out Ric prematurely. Perhaps that would be even unnecessary as Fernandez indeed planned on putting in a good word for Ric. Within time.
For now it was imperative Ric didn’t get hold of what was up. If he learned who those sailors he earlier killed really were… he -and- the girl would disappear without doubt. Ric had been the finest of his ‘class’ at that. It was also undesired Ric learned that Fernandez has been back on his track, and had kept a closer eye on his daily routine for quite a long time now. It was enough in order to learn Ric had never lost his ability to disable his enemies effectively, and perform his parour skills in masterful and stealthy ways, even while he was as of late under the influence of liquor and other booze. So it seemed at least...

Fernandez waited a few more moments, and then ghost-silent slipped out of the basement, the solitary shadow’s frame dissolving in the night and letting the dry, cold wind swirling between the buildings behind to play with torn, discoloured rags that barely could pass for laundry hanging overhead.


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Re: Erickar Avery - Between Corks 'n Anchors (backstory)

Post by Admin on Fri Aug 11, 2017 5:24 pm

The next morning… her eyes opened slowly, her head turning to the what she thought would be the male next to her. All there was... was an empty pillow. Shame mixed with disbelief and then anger. Hitting his nose until blood splattered the sheets. What an improvement that would be.

Often she heard others speak of after morning regrets, but until now it was not something she had ever experienced. The night before had been a potent cocktail of danger, excitement and relief, doused by an intense attraction that worked like some heady hallucinogenic dose. They both had reacted on sheer instinct and impeteous emotion. He had engulfed her senses, rocked her world, and with it, stolen away her reservations on the past and worries for the future.

The promised conversation had not taken place yet, and in the cold light of morning, she had her doubts that it ever would. She did not know why she was so surprised that he was gone now, or that he had left her to clean up this mess. He was good at escapes. But damn if it didn’t hurt that she was one of the things that he sought to escape.

And escape was on her own mind as well. The back ally where this adventure started always had eyes, her part in it all could soon be known. And as soon as her true identity was revealed, his old crew would come calling. She didn’t have the luxury of dreams or hopes for happy endings. Or even regrets.


Rosabel disengaged from the sheets and quietly rose from the bed, her clothing scattered all over the room causing her to wince once more. She got dressed quickly, her hand brushing against the amulet that never left her neck and causing her gaze to travel back to empty bed.


She remembered that moment years ago, the moment he took that chain from his own neck and placed it around her own. His grin was boyish in that moment, his eyes full of laughter and so warm. “It was given to me by my first captain, hold on to it for me, humming bird.” And she had, even knowing that she could have sold it long ago for much needed coin. She should likely have given it back to him. But then, it was the only part of him she could really keep. And in the end, she am just not that noble.

Rosabel looked around the room. Obviously, he had only wanted just one night. She supposed she had been available and willing. She was the one who wove fantasies of something more, he had his own plans. She at least deserved this much. Her eyes were stinging and she could not lie and claim it was from smoke or the candle-light. The past night revealed one thing, he had stolen her heart years ago and it was still firmly in his grasp. Pity that he didn’t really want it. And a pity that she let him back in knowing that all too soon he would be leaving with her heart once again. Well, who needs a heart anyway? Where there had been love and laughter, there was now merely a cool and aching hollowness.




Her pullover barely warmed her, her even lips shivered slightly, and it felt like she was holding up an ocean of a thousand tears. She made her way out the guest room and down the stairs. She did not have much time and the key to escape was to get a good head start. The lady of the house would want some sort of explanation… a good story to tide her over. She would have to be denied that. But at the least, she was owed a letter. Rosabel quickly found the small office and began a search for parchment and quill.

As soon as the girl was leaning over her letter, Franky’s aunt came down the stairs, stopping halfway, a woolen cloak wrapped around her shoulders and neck against the cool sea air blowing through the entrance hall. Her snow-colored eyes were piercing as she crossed her arms,” And what exactly are you doing, young lady?”

Rosabel was good, but she was not that good. Her eyes were ravaged, her expression haunted. But she did try to fake a smile. “I did not wish to wake you, but I really have to be on my way. I am afraid I do not have much time at all… I was leaving you a note though.”

Franky’s aunt was a sweet but also stern lady, and at that she straightened herself as if invisible weights had temporarily dropped from her shoulders and she shook her head in slight disapproval. As if Rosabel had just become her teenage daughter who deserved a scolding. But then her eyes softened, if only a tad, and while keeping her voice -and- tone under control as she regulated her emotions, she said,” You foolish girl. How could I possibly let you leave without a decent breakfast. Food has been served since an hour ago... and I am expecting you to join me.” Her eyes gleamed intelligently in the morning light shining through the man-heigh windows as she continued,” Besides, you wouldn’t leave before you did my hair, would you?” She glanced up the stairs and back at Rosabel, then turned around and went up, expecting the girl to follow her.

Belle’s shoulders just slumped and she followed the older woman. As usual, Ric would get away clean. She would be delayed most of the morning with pacifiying the old woman. Hopefully it would not cost her.


She wanted to scream, to rage. She wanted to weep. A conversation was the last thing she needed now. She did not want to discuss Ric, or what happened, or try and explain why he was gone. She just wanted to be on her way, salvage what few belongings that she could and lick her wounds in peace. Instead, she found herself following her once employer, forced to partake in a breakfast she really had no stomach for, and to somehow weave a believable tale that would have to include the very male who had her throat tight with unshed tears. Moments like this… she wished she had let his friends kill her…


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Re: Erickar Avery - Between Corks 'n Anchors (backstory)

Post by Admin on Mon Aug 14, 2017 8:50 am

Just as Adelaide had promised, breakfast was served. She must have taken care of everything herself as the maid was nowhere to be seen. Any other day, Rosabel would have been thanking the gods for a feast like that laid out before them. She was so used to never having enough to eat that such a repast would have been viewed with glee. Baskets of fresh baked bread and pastries sat next to crocks of fresh honey and fruit preserves. A platter of ham glistened with a honey glaze sat right next to a plate of scrambled eggs. And if that was not enough, bowls of freshly sliced fruit surrounded a crock of sweet clotted cream. And the scent of her own signature brewed tea perfumed the air, likely from the last batch she had given the old lady.


Adelaide strode forward straight for her usual place at the empty table, and before she took a seat she turned to look at Rosabel who had stopped in the doorway. “Come in, dear girl, and please close the door behind you, will you? It is still fairly cool outside.” Demonstratively she tugged at her warming cloak and motioned the girl.

In a haze of mindlessness Belle entered the room and blindly closed the door with her heel...



When the winds shift quickly, you have to make sure you were quicker with shifting the sail or it would be a useless journey for that matter and you’d be at the mercy of currents, set adrift for an unknown period of time, helplessly bobbing in the waves. Those however were not the only choices you would have. Setting another course for instance, even if it was a bitch, was also an option.

Heh, screw that. No sailor as of yet has ever claimed this or that course would be one without any effort, or without risk. Especially when it was the course of love. I have to admit my decision took me about the rest of the night, but then again I had every right doing so as my change of course would be significant to say the least. I wasn’t just doing it with resignation, but also with great conviction that this was for the best. Would I be in trouble?

Sure as hell…

The moment I watched Rosabel enter the room and by closing the door in front of me, robbed me from my cover by doing so, I stepped up behind her. And when she turned around with her eyes going wide in surprise, I kissed her hard on the lips and pushed the bundle of flowers I was holding in one hand in her arms. But I wasn’t intending on letting her catch her breath. As soon as I broke the kiss, I said it.


“Mar’ry me…”

As if it hadn’t been just a request for her hand, the former assassin didn’t await Rosabel’s answer, but instead shoved the ring he had been holding in his other hand on her finger. What once had been his mother’s golden wedding ring, the only thing he had left of his youth and which previously had served as some sort of band to hold his former rope braid together, and which featured a small pinkish-purple stone in the center... sat now at the bewildered girl’s finger...


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Re: Erickar Avery - Between Corks 'n Anchors (backstory)

Post by Admin on Sun Aug 20, 2017 1:19 pm

The gypsy’s face had registered shock from that very moment he stepped from behind the door. That look only intensified when she was snatched up and kissed, pressed with flowers and proposed to in one dizzying display. So many emotions flittered over her lovely face, disbelief warring with joy, anger fading into confusion, sadness fading away into hope, and all that layered with sheer bewilderment.

How could she hold onto her resentment when he was kissing her so passionately? How could she try to play things safe when his request answered every girlish dream she once treasured? He had kissed her breathless before even proposing, but had he not the sight of his mother’s ring now on her hand would have robbed her of speech.

To her they still had to talk, there was so much that had not been said, so much that needed to be said. Then there was Adelaide. What must she be thinking? She was told they were already wed. It was not the time for Rosabel to cause any huge scenes or they would never break out of here. So, she did the only thing she could do.


Her hand came up to stroke his cheek, a warm gesture that had the old woman smiling. Then she rested her head on his shoulder, whispering low so only he could hear. “We will talk after, rogue.” The term was her old endearment for him, spoken before even she realized. To Adelaide, it appeared that the two had reconciled and the proposal accepted, a fact only too well conveyed by the expression on their faces. Whatever had been keeping the two apart, it was obvious even with her failing eye-sight just how much the two felt for each other.


The couple took a seat at the table, their heads together as they softly whispered to one another. Adelaide watched them rather pleased with herself, but also with growing concern. She had no fear that her employee, soon former employee would be abandoned again as the man at her side sincerely seemed to love her, a love that was unconditional and which had survived for the past four or five years even though he had truly been convinced she was dead. How Adelaide all knew? Easy, cause she was an elder woman who needed less sleep... and because she and Ric had had a brief yet enlightening conversation just before daybreak when she caught him sneaking back into the house. She had alluded to the possibility of Rosabel learning about his nightly trip unless he explained himself. And when he did... she almost wished she hadn’t pushed that. She was certain he hasn’t told her everything. But she feared he told her more than what was good for her.

Erickar... was a man up to his ears in trouble, somehow he got involved with people who’ve made death their cool business. The how and why wasn’t clear to Adelaide still but she hadn’t asked. The less she knew, the better. She did however assume he had been in it himself, probably. Fact was if he didn’t leave this city, he wouldn’t be able to take care of Rosabel anymore, and when he told her what Rosabel meant to him, she had made sure his proposal was a little bit more… convincing. Adelaide glanced at the flowers which Ric hastily had fetched at the morning market, and then at the breakfast table where she had assisted him discretely in preparing. Almost Belle had escaped the scene when they were setting up the final preparations. Only thanks to their keen hearing they overheard how the girl had moved down the steps. She sighed, a soft, almost inaudible escape of breath, and watched the two for a moment longer before she started filling her own dish.



I haven’t been entirely fair with Rosabel. Yes, I wanted to have her at my side and sure, I wished her to become my wife. From the point of view of my feelings my proposal was sincere and heart-felt. It felt like we just got ourselves an amazing second chance and it felt like the best gift in my entire life. I realized from the start my Bel’ was a keeper, and that our love would only grow stronger with every moment we would be together. But the reasons why these things were happening so fast gnawed at me. Like as if the current scene had been designed, hastily constructed to show my love while it was there regardless. But the reason why it happened now was for underlying, secret reasons.

In a moment I was going to steer this conversation in the direction of a surprise trip to celebrate our reunion and our happiness. In reality, said journey would be dark, overshadowed by a threat. But to me it was important to shield Rosabel from it as it was my problem, not hers. I would never allow that she would ever experience our trip as such. Rather the opposite. It was going to be quite the feat, but in the past I’ve been confronted with things that were far worse and far more challenging… at least I hoped that this would be less complicated. Rosabel could never ever learn, cause if she ever did... how was she ever going to believe my proposal was genuine and sincere….?

...

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Re: Erickar Avery - Between Corks 'n Anchors (backstory)

Post by Admin on Fri Aug 25, 2017 3:20 pm

The breakfast was a rushed affair, the two telling the tale of Frankie’s rescue quickly while filling their stomachs. Adelaide did not ask many questions, watching the couple with both joy and worry. She almost wished she was young again, such an adventure they would embark upon. And danger just adds a hint of spice, yet the mothering side of her worried about the girl caught in the middle of all of this. As they said their goodbyes, she pressed a heavy purse into the girl’s hand, whispering “Think of it as an early wedding gift, my dear.”

And that is when their morning got very complicated.

Ric earlier at the breakfast table had proposed to leave as soon as possible to celebrate their love, but also out of consideration for possible trouble after the kills of last night. Somehow Rosabel had consented eagerly to that so from Ric’s point of view things were moving rather smoothly in the direction he intended. There would be no discussions, no fights, and most of all, they would not be wasting any precious time. However...


They were not even two doors down before Rosabel was taking charge in a way that took the former pirate completely off guard. He did not even have time to present his own plan before his girl was dragging him down the street at a brisk pace. Her words came fast and he could hear the urgency in her tone.

“We have time, I hope, but not much. I need to grab just a few things from my place and with this... “ she jingled the purse a bit. “This should be enough to get us berth on a fishing boat and I still have a few contacts among them. Question then becomes where to go? Athkatla is out, as is Murann...they found me there already.” She shook her head a bit. “I had a good run of it here...over a year with no trouble...I will miss it.”


An involuntarily sharp intake of breath before I froze on the spot. It was one of the seven or eight universal expressions of emotion, expressions I all had studied and practiced over the years, but this one kicked in rather intensely, by itself. Fuu-cking surprise. I also learned that expressions like this -if natural- usually are very brief... -unless you wished to display shock-... and immediately were followed by a reaction. I hadn’t been able to control my surprise, but at least I would have some grip on my reaction. How to respond to her words that felt like punctuated with panic?
There was my own buttload of trouble I intended to hide from Rosabel for the time being, just in the hope our journey would take place in a maximum of calmness. I most certainly didn’t want to come across as overanxious, so I concealed whatever I could and just gently took her by the arms. “Bel’… Bel’… reef yer sails…” I lifted her chin and looked into her eyes,” What be goin’ on? ‘n who be they?”



His confusion was apparent and she had to pause to watch his eyes for just a moment. She tried to be what she considered to be a good person, but she did have a temper and she did tend to lash out when hurt. But looking at him, she started to realize that perhaps some of the anger she held on to for so long was misplaced. Now, how much to tell?

“Ric, your old crew has been hunting me down for years now. They found me in Pandira after just maybe a month or two. They at first said that they were fetching me for you...but something didn’t seem right. When I overheard one of them saying that they could not wait for the captain to tire of me so they would have their turn, I ran. They caught me...I had to escape...I took one of them off a cliff with me. I survived the fall, but our…” No, she couldn’t speak of that, so she quickly changed the end of her sentence, “... well… the guy didn’t.”

“I was found by a fisherman, he took me home to his wife, they nursed me back to health...and hid me when more came looking. I traveled, but they always seem to catch up with me. I assume that the death of their mate made me a loose end. Or maybe your bloody Captain was just insane and hated that he wouldn’t get something he wanted. I just know that they always come and that the sailors seem more than eager to sell information so they must be paying well. So we have to get moving, get a head start.”

She didn’t like reliving this. Too much pain was entwined with the memories, so she kept it short. She didn’t tell him of her fears, of how she learned to not form close ties or attachments because she always had to be ready to flee. She did not speak of what she lost. Perhaps it was something he did not need to know. It would only cause more pain. Or maybe she was lying to herself, trying to spare herself the pain of speaking of what could have been...


Shj-it, she couldn’t learn I already made certain arrangements, so I had to sound as light and as improvising-on-the-spot as possible. Just before I made it back to Adelaide’s place I sent a letter along with the first ship that left the harbor to someone from my past. It’s been almost five years ago now but I remembered it like it were yesterday.

I had finally managed to escape the pirate crew I once was part of by jumping over board not that far from the coast. At least it didn’t seem far at the time, but the current had been too strong, dragging me further and further away and at some point I simply gave up, allowing myself to float on the waves with the sun on my face... until sleep would come. Yeah, I was ready to be taken to a watery grave after I had lost her.

At least we would be together in that amazing turquoise world below, gliding free of gravity and other concerns until the universe or the gods would bring us back together, ...and the salt of our tears of joy would be mixed with the ocean’s. Perhaps a trifle inauthentic, but I truly believed those would be have been my last thoughts ever...

Then, out of blue (literally), a ship came by, a two masted hulk with massive black sails named the The Hangman's Shadow, and it was this guy’s crew who picked me up out of the cold water. At the time he was the First Mate of this ship which was part of the Alliance of Freesailors, and he was the one who took charge of my recovery. I was a mess back then, pale white from the freezing water and nearly dead. Only when the color returned to my features he could see I had been beaten up like a dog, worse even. He told me the life had faded in my eyes even in the days after I was rescued, and that I had looked as if I had lost the will to live. It’s only thanks to him and our conversations I was alive now… and in a strange way it was thanks to him Rosabel and me were together again.

He did raise questions back then as well as his adoptive father Captain Thadrius Scowlfang, but even through my misery I had been evasive… just as evasive as Matthew was when I started to ask questions in return about him. To me it was clear, we were both men hiding things, and we respected not to dig in further. Maybe we could have become friends under the right circumstances, letting each other in on one or two secrets. Me and Matthew Craig, or whatever his name was, said our goodbyes a few weeks later after he had dropped me off in some unknown location in the East where I ever since had been trying to pull myself together again, as a mercenary, as a guard but always keeping low profile. At least when I didn’t get drunk...

I bet when he sees that letter he’ll be wondering. Maybe, just maybe I will tell him my tale now, or at least Rosabel’s and mine. I knew he was about to do me a favor once again but perhaps this time I also would be able to return one or two. That is if he was still around and actually would receive this letter. What had become of Matthew Craig, I had no idea of.

We were about to find out…


As all those memories swirled a moment through his mind, the former assassin listened to Rosabel, and then just silenced her with a kiss, putting a stop to the series of concerns as he said assuringly,” Ye jist leave ‘t t’ me, Bel’, tis all gun’na work out well.”

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Re: Erickar Avery - Between Corks 'n Anchors (backstory)

Post by Admin on Tue Aug 29, 2017 4:45 pm

The letter he had sent would arrive about a month later at a particular tavern in the South, and it was put in a sealed envelop with only a name on it written in a hasty yet not sloppy manner.


- Matthew Craig -



Inside, the letter was actually a small scrap of paper, as if the writer didn’t had had the time to come up with something better. The ‘letter’ featured crowded, sloped writing, the text cramped on the tiny page, the characters close and narrow, and a date was in the top right corner.


Matthew,

I be nay sure if ya remember me but I’m the one ya once fished up from the ocean, and the one ya dropped deeper into eastern territories than a beaked whale would dive into dizzying depths jist to get laid. I suppose ya didn’ expect to hear anything from me ever again, but guess what, I be still fecking alive, though maybe nay fer long. As ya can notice I nay had enough paper to expand on things, neither did I be havin time fer it, but I could use some help disappearing again, preferably somewhat more in the ‘outbacks’ in the South. Mi ship will sail out on the same day this letter was sent, yet I’ll be doing a few necessary detours and hope to arrive at the small landing beach west of the Serpent Bay over two months. Hope ye’re still alive so I git a chance to pay ya back. I already have collected enough sins, foes and years, and I nay be needing numerous debts on top!


In the last part the message featured ascending lines, the final one going straight uphill.

PS: I be bringing someone.
Ric

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Re: Erickar Avery - Between Corks 'n Anchors (backstory)

Post by Admin on Tue Sep 05, 2017 7:35 pm

A few tendays later their ship arrived at an island that couldn’t have been more than three or four miles wide and across, and for a change the endless turquoise ocean was replaced by a seemingly impenetrable scene of vegetation. The bay where the small harbor was nestling amidst soft golden sand glistening in the sunlight, was ridiculously beautiful. The greater waves were significantly cut in force and height by colorful coral reefs, and behind the small, primitive settlement, huddling into the exuberant verdure rich with colorful flowers and exotic trees, they could perceive huge and majestic waterfalls further inland, their water being broken on a massive three-step staircase of rocks into a mist of fine droplets that fell down like soft white silk. A few enormous mountains loomed behind, their heads wreathed in clouds.


With my mouth still slightly ajar I placed one foot out from the wooden boat. And when my other foot followed, my feet decided to sink deeper in the wet sand. It was as if I couldn’t blink ever since this island had come into sight. I was totally awestruck by a sight so marvellous and relaxing that even my worst thoughts disappeared in no time. Around us the shimmering blue water sparkled in the presence of the later afternoon sunlight, and my heart was immediately at peace by the sound of the tiny crashing waves down at our feet. I looked a moment at Rosabel, witnessed her eyes widening as the gentle breeze played in her hair and sent fine wisps of dark hair across her cheeks.

It was by looking at her beauty amidst of all... this beauty, a huge moment of deja-vu came crashing down on me, the sight of her in this wonderful setting and her scent reviving the moments we had spent together on a similar island so long ago. Fragments of memories showered down on me, making me feel weightless as I found true fascination by the way how my whole body was conscious of that shape of hers, and by how she slowly peered up at me, blushing. I guess she too recalled the time when the last rays of the sun illuminated our warm, naked bodies.
Then, my heart sank to the bottom of my feet as another thought came crashing down on me...


Crap… we’ll only be staying here for one fec-kin’ night…



With a slight grin on his face like he was experiencing some inside joke, the former sailor-assassin motioned her along, and instead of heading towards the small settlement he chose for a path leading away from it, albeit not too far. A small semi open hut sitting between the beach and some single trunked palm trees would be their spot for the night. A number of mats were leaning against the side and Ric went inside to lay some of them on the ground as well as hanging a few between a pair poles.



For too long, she had been alone. It was easy letting Ric take charge and he did have contacts that she did not have. But he was also keeping secrets. Had it been her anxiety driving him, he would have shown a degree of caution. But this level of planning, the circular routes, the numerous changes of boats,... no, the rogue… her rogue was keeping secrets. He has had his own reasons for running. But then how could she judge him when she was keeping a few secrets of her own.

This island that would be their refuge for the night was beautiful. The scent of the sea combining with that of the foliage and sun-warmed sand was a feast for the senses. The sun was warm against her skin, skin that had not felt the kiss of such warmth for a long time. The clothing she wore was not her own, instead it was a mixture of flamboyance and practicality. Breeches hugged her shapely legs, the boots coming up past her knees. The shirt, what there was of it, was richly colored in crimson. His smile when he had tossed those garments at her revealed how he remembered her love for bright colors. Colors that she had avoided for so long...

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Re: Erickar Avery - Between Corks 'n Anchors (backstory)

Post by Admin on Sun Sep 10, 2017 12:57 pm

She started gathering driftwood while remembering those days so long ago, when the ex-pirate next to her introduced her to romance, pleasure, and love. The days were always warm, but the nights could grow quite chilled. She knew he would create them a shelter of sorts. It would not be the luxury that she hungered for, but it would be a damn sight better than many nights she had spent… alone. The hut was therefore a more than pleasant surprise.

Her eyes kept drifting towards him, seeing the sun glinting in his hair, turning the strands burnished brown. There were worse fates than to be stuck alone for a night in a such a place with a man like her rogue. And where did that possessive “her rogue” just come from? She glanced down at the ring that was now on her finger. Could they return to where they once were? To loving and trusting each other, without doubts? And did she have to worry every little detail to death? Why couldn’t she just enjoy one night? Especially when they really did not know how many more would follow.

So, she tugged off her boots and buried her toes in the warm sand, her eyes drinking in the sight of the only man who had ever touched her soul.


Ric made sure there was food for the night, skillfully catching a few crabs between the rocks. Without haste, and as if to give her a good looking, he had stripped off his shirt in the sun and hard and flat muscles forged by swordplay and crawling the rigging were at a display. At some point he stood on one leg to pull off his boot, and even from a distance his balance seemed as steady as the giant rock he was standing on. The second boot came off and was put aside just like the other.


I knew she was watching me, but for now my pants would stay on. Otherwise I didn’t think we’d be having a meal tonight. And an ex-sailor like me was always starving. I glanced at her, cast a grin and offered her wink. But damn... I’d be starving anyways if I didn’t return soon. I raised my hand and waved at her before climbing over the rocks leading towards the rock peninsula that acted as a groyne when the seas got more rough.

Today however the ocean was nearly smooth, only very small waves gently lapping at the sandy beach behind. Meanwhile I couldn’t help my mind drifting back to that one night of love making we had had ever since we got parted so many years ago. I’m certain Franky’s aunt must have heard us and I bet the old relict had been encouraging us in her thoughts and prayers. She had been kind though, and was a good woman, and very cleary intending on putting me on the ‘right track’ again. As if I could have helped it at all what all had happened.

As if she could help me…

If she even knew all the things I have done...


I shrugged off the past and forced my mind to think on the future. What would be we doing once we reached the South, once I made contact with Matthew? Back in the days with Rosabel I had dreamt of a place like this, our little private island where we could run around butt naked and cry out during sex as much as we liked. Why couldn’t we just convert our current situation into that delightful sounding reality?

Oh right… too idyllic...


I glanced over the glass-smooth bay, sighing wishfully. For sure it would have been a most wonderful and glorious spectacle. Yet… the ocean just wasn’t always this peaceful, and just like life she tends to be restless. It can churn -sometimes in merely seconds- into a fecking windswept chaos of currents and combers. Yep… best to keep scanning those horizons and stay alert.


And so he did briefly watch that horizon...


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Re: Erickar Avery - Between Corks 'n Anchors (backstory)

Post by Admin on Sat Oct 07, 2017 8:30 am

Sitting there, waiting for him to return, her mind drifted back. This island was such a reminder of their brief time together, she assumed she should not be surprised that the past seemed to play behind her eyes. She remembered that very first day they met, the memory so intense that she could feel the terror, smell the smoke...


Her clan had booked passage on a ship, heading to some festival. She had made friends of sorts with the first mate, a good man who claimed she greatly reminded him of the daughter he lost. The fear in his eyes told her all she needed to know as the pirate ship bore down on them. He had pressed a knife into her hand, urging her to be strong, to comfort the others as he quickly ushered all the females of her clan into the hold. They were to stay down there until someone came for them. But he was not very good at masking his thoughts. Deep down, he believed he was sending them to their graves but that death would be preferred to what they would have faced on deck.

It was so dark in the hold...the only light came from small gaps in the planking. But that did not stop the sounds. They all could hear the screams, the sounds of battle, the fast snapping of the ballistas. The ship rocked violently as the other vessel crashed into theirs, making the others cry out in fear. She did not cry out. She waited, keeping her head clear as possible. The ship was listing to the side, water slowly seeping in. Somehow the pirates had blown a hole in the hull with a bomb. She could smell smoke and blood, ash and cinders slowly started to rain down from above.

Suddenly, their doors busted open, pirates rushing in to salvage what goods they could under the command of a male so handsome and compelling that she did find herself staring. Her fingers held the knife so tightly that her knuckles were white with strain. The other females were screaming, crying, showing hysteria.

The handsome male flashed a wicked smile their way and made a mocking bow. “Sorreh ta intrude, lassies, but th’ ship be goin’ down. I do believe ‘t be time t’ leave th’ hidy hole…’nless ye fancy bein’ snacks fer them sharks?” His smile was charming, but it was also strained. He snapped towards his men , some who started towards her and her clan members. “Booty first, boys, ya cin get th’ rest wet afta we be out…”

Water was wetting her skirts and she knew that it was either comply or die. But as she started directing the others to the door, a massive cracking was heard. One of the beams above was starting to show threads of orange and red, ash and smoke falling quicker. The appealing pirate featuring a sun-kissed skin yelled, “GIT GOIN’, NOW!”, even as the beam began to crack. This pirate...this amazing devil, he braced his shoulders beneath the burning beam, urging his men and the females of her clan off...and he did it still smiling. “Git yer pretty as’ses goin’...!”

His men fled, tugging what treasures they rescued. The females of her clan poured out of the hold, into the clutches of waiting pirates...all who were fleeing the sinking ship like rats. She too moved toward the doors...but she could not step through. The handsome pirate was watching her, his smile strained, pain showing on his face. Even if he could make it through the door, she feared his injuries would slow him down.

Time seemed to stand still as she made her choice. She rushed back to his side, ash and cinders raining down on both of them. She tugged his hand and they both ran as the ceiling was collapsing around them. “Lass, what th’ feck are ya…” He stumbled as they made it to the door and she looked at him and placed a finger to her lips. Then, her hand glowed as she channeled as much healing magic to him as she could. She remembered how she grew weak. Then, she was swept up in his arms, the flames and the wood of the passage rushing past. The air above deck was only slightly cooler, smoke still swirling. “Hold tight, lass...I have ya.” His arm was liked a band around her as they were flying through the air, swinging on a rope to the pirate ship.

Even once they landed to the cheers of the crew, he did not let go of her. The ship was sailing quickly away from the wreckage, the captain was looking over the loot and the females. She saw the bodies of the dead floating in the waters. She felt the captain’s eyes crawling greedily over her form. But the handsome male who held her, merely threw a few pieces of jewelry on the pile and stated boldly. “I be claimen’ tis lass.” She had an eye for jewels, and what he so casually tossed aside would have fed her entire clan for a whole winter.

His words sent a wave through the crew. She heard the whispers. “Tha coxswain jist claimed ‘n captive… fer himself?” She looked up at his soot smeared face, his dark honey eyes twinkling as he looked into her own. His fingers tucked a lock of her hair behind her ear and he flashed that “devil may care” smile again. And by all the gods,... she thought she started falling that very minute…




She recalled how they days later sat together on that island, apart from the rest of his crew at some lovely remote beach. The pirate, who didn’t exactly come across as a pirate -at least seemed so unlike all those others-, had shown his gratitude as well as his feelings. Sort of…

She mused on how he had cupped her chin in his hand, offering it a gentle squeeze and had looked with those stunning eyes in hers. He had seemed so genuine, so truly affected by her appearance and presence, and then that charming pirate had placed his lips upon hers, infecting her with the very thought he truly wanted her. Their hearts seemed to entwine as his lips caressed hers like a gentle summer breeze. He had leaned only back slightly, those attractive eyes staring in hers, like mysterious pools of warm fire and filled with desire. And below those…there had been that smile like silver, shining oh so bright.

In their secluded spot down by the beach, and later -on- that beach, she and the pirate she barely knew had made love. After, and up to deep into the night she had listened to his whispers as his hand ran up and down her at first paralyzed form. Never had she held it for possible that she’d give her body and her heart to a complete stranger. But when she finally had fallen asleep… she just seemed to tumble into yet another dream that involved him, the touch of his body against hers and his seemingly presence in her mind present till morning’s light…

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Re: Erickar Avery - Between Corks 'n Anchors (backstory)

Post by Admin on Sat Feb 03, 2018 6:05 pm

It was just so sad that that magic went away so soon. Belle looked over in the direction to where that ghost of the past had disappeared to catch them a meal.


Me and Belle have had a ball in the past and even while I didn’t see her for several years, presuming she was dead, I always have been able to see her face so vividly that it actually hurt physically. I sure as hell know that I never before had felt anything like that about anyone before. Well, except for the face of my dying mother, but that was a story completely different from this. Although…

Just like with Belle, a hatred had grown in my heart, and just like then it had created an aversion to certain groups of people. The rich and wealthy the first time, and this new… ‘generation’ of pirates the second time. And then, there was also that moment when my captain had been murdered. Each time after I had sworn things to myself, and after I thought Belle had been killed I had sworn to never get engaged into a person like this ever again. Yea sure, I visited a working lady a few times, but well… it just didn’t work... heh.

The thing is… would I be able to handle it if anything happened to Belle now? I have sworn to never get a girl again and now just look at where we are. I’m getting involved once more, even though it’s the very same lass over whom I have sworn never to do this again.

Dammit… why did sex had to feel so good?



Things had certainly changed since the last time they had been together. Back then, she had been young, frightened and easily led. Now, she was far more capable. She forraged for fruit and some edible roots, using broad leaves from a tropical plant as plates. Regardless of what her ex-pirate caught, they would be fed. She let time drift as she tested flora and fauna for medicinal uses until finally she just leaned against a crooked palm tree, watching the waterfall with a pensive expression. Soon enough she was startled by arms closing around her from behind and warm lips pressing against her neck. She knew his touch, she knew the scent of his sun drenched skin. She could smell the sea salt in his hair and the faint scent of the rum that he so enjoyed drinking. His voice was a low rumble in her ear. “Silver fer ya thoughts?”

Taken off guard, she answered without thought. “Wondering how the world could be such a cruel place when such beautiful places exist.” She found herself leaning against his chest, letting his arms surround her.

“Ya be readin’ me mind, Belle… ya be readin’ me mind...” he crouched behind her and held her for a while as they gazed at the water and the gentle waves.

After a while the pair got up and prepared dinner. Several hours later they sat in their shelter, Belle cuddling on his lap. “Me thinks divin’ be excellent ‘ere’... “ her pirate suddenly rumbled as his fingers ran through her hair.

Belle gazed up at him as he spoke, her eyes admiring the very rough stubble on his face......




Two weeks later…

Matthew Craig stood on the cliff side at Serpent Bay, his back towards the jungle behind him as he looked out over the expanse of the sea that formed the horizon with endless islands dotted all along the Crowded Sea, allowing the warm sun to soak into his dark skin. He breathed the salt air in deeply. He'd never be able to get enough of that smell. The sound of beating feathers drew his attention back towards the tent behind him as a delivery owl landed and deposited a letter before departing on it's way again. Matthew always wondered who trained those birds and how they knew where to find people no matter how many times they moved around. Perhaps Lurue Herself guided them? He shrugged at his own musings and wandered through the grass back towards his tent. Taking a final drag from a smoke he'd been enjoying, he flicked the butt over the the hillside his tent was perched on and expelled the smoke lazily from his lips as he retrieved that one odd looking note. His curiosity was peaked now and his assumptions it was some tax collector calling was happily crushed.

Inside his tent, he brushed his hand over his wife who was still dreaming away. He reached out and snatched up an apple, then snatched up his bag. Getting comfortable on a pillow, he laid out his writing tools, and pulled the note open. He raised the one eyebrow that still remained on his scarred face as he saw the jigsaw writing, turning the note as he tried to read it. He smirked a bit as he envisioned the man he hadn’t seen for years.

"Ric.. Ya wanker.. that bein’ yers?"


Matthew's wife, Eline, awakened and heard him talking to himself and called over. Matthew sunk down deeping into the pillow. This was a part of his life he didn't share much."Nothin', Love!" He finished reading before taking a big cracking bite from his apple. Apple juices sprayed onto his chest. He glanced over to his wife to make she hadn't noticed the juice bath he was giving himself inadvertently, gently wiping off his bare chest. He peered outside the tent, realizing at how his life had seriously chanced since his days in the Alliance of Freesailors when him and his crew fished Ric out of the drink. How the hell was he going to explain how a man who said he'd never marry or settle down with one woman, have a family, or ever give up that life had done exactly all those things. Well.. almost. He'd never give up the sea or fighting.

One more week.. probably a few days less now. And he's bringing another miscreant with him, hm? This should be fun.. hopefully. If Ric gets me killed he'll have to deal with Eline.

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Re: Erickar Avery - Between Corks 'n Anchors (backstory)

Post by Admin on Sat Apr 28, 2018 1:19 pm

Matthew Craig waited silently at the top of the beach, dressed in full gear. Serpent’s Bay was quiet and peaceful, and had not been far from the place where he and the rest of his crew had set up camp when the letter arrived, passed on by the owner of the inn up north in Fahhas. He had told his wife that he was to pick up an old friend from the past, but he didn’t truly knew this man. He was just someone who he picked up from the ocean and dropped off later. Sure, Ric told a bit of his story, and they had spent some months at sea, but Matthew sensed there was way more than meets the eye with this lad. Not necessarily bad, but intriging he was at the very least.

Sure, he owed him a debt for that, but most men in this world weren't to be trusted enough to actually leave your life in their hands. Matthew was still on his guard, his hand absently wandering off to the pommel of his scimitar resting at his hip. He gave Ric the benefit of the doubt but he was still going to wait in the background and see what landed on this beach. Him and the Freesailors had dredged up enough enemies over the years, so this could be anything. Still... Ric had done stupid things for a woman all those years back. Usually that was a good mark on a man in Matthew’s book, so he was there… and waited.

And eventually, in the far distance, a small dot became visible…


What I saw, the tropical islands, the golden beaches and the aquamarine sea... was real, But it was altered as if by a mind searching for a return to a former life. In a far distance all I could hear were sounds of parties, festivities but also fights from past times. My escape from the pirates had perhaps been remarkable in the eyes of some, but to me it had been hell. I wrapped my arm more tighter around the woman sitting next to me, the one who I thought I had lost returning my hug. Our sloop pushed its nose up in the sand of the beach and the first man out was I, with my large blade in one hand, and offering Rosabel my other. With the shift in my weight, my boots sank in the shifting sand as we together dragged our vessel up the shallow slope of the beach. For a moment I turned around and looked out upon the wide ocean behind the bay. -Nothing-

“Ric…”

It wasn’t Bel’s voice that had me turn over and raise my sword -ready to lash out with a deadly blow-, but the sound of a tiny stone cascading down the small cliff behind us. A sound that to me outdrowned the sound of waves lapping on the shore, the whistle of the wind against my ears, and even outdrowned the crying of the seagulls overhead. The sound was followed by the sound of quelchy sand crushed under solid, leather boots. My blade was ready to dispatch whatever would step from behind the rocky outcrop.

“You’re late…” a familiar voice sounded when a man with a long leather cloak, wearing a hat featuring an ostrich plume stepped into the bright light. I didn’t only recognize the voice, but also the eyes that were set deeper in a head than usual. His eyes locked on mine before he bowed at the waist before Rosabel, the white, starched wing collar of his shirt reached the middle of his cheek as he did. “Lady…” Matthew said with a lazy smile. “If I may, the emerald surrounding you, suits you well.”

I rolled my eyes as this was Matthew at his core. At least the Matthew I got to know during those few months at sea. But hell, he couldn’t have my Bel’. I flashed a grin, and then my eyes caught his hand, displaying a remarkable ring made of gold with a blue green stone that sat at his ring finger.

“Ya dam’ lucky bastard…” I mumbled.

Matthew saw me look and grinned. “It’s been quite a while, and I must say I’m curious about what brings you here.”

“Heh, I be rememberin’ ye said ye would settle in Zakhara once.”

“Oh, that tale about returning to a certain beauty I had met…”

“Looks like th’ lass got ‘er hooks in ya… but, were be mi manners. Tis ‘ere is my lass… Rosabel.”

I watched Matthew turn back to Rosabel and observe her curiously, and then turn back to me with an arched brow.

“Tis a long tale, but aye, tis be th’ one I talked about.” The one who I thought was dead. I lowered my blade and wrapped my arm around Rosabel. Gods it felt so great when she slid her hand over my belly. She could be really possessive, but the gods be damned… I wanted to be possessed.

“It’s a pleasure all the more even. So. In order to not waste any time, you wished to go underground from what I understand?”

“Aye… but…” I started.

“But?” Rosabel blurted, her head shifting against my shoulder as she turned to look up at me.

I sighed and turned to look at Matthew, avoiding Bel’s gaze. I unfolded a plan I had been developing on the way, taking in account any events that may havve occured on our way here. I ought this to be grounds of safety, and there was something I had to do, or at least to try, but without Rosabel’s involvement. She’d probably kill me over this, or kill me if something would happen to me. And indeed, when I explained the two about my plan how to buy my life, our lives, Rosabel nearly kicked me in the source of my genetic legacy. Matthew however was more understanding, and told me he’d do the same for his own family if he would have been standing in my boots.


“You dam’ son of a bit…” Rosabel started.

I was quicker, and blocked her foul-mouthed tirade with a kiss, ignoring the slaps (which didn’t seem too hard) on my cheek. I muttered inward, sensing how Matthew grinned at us.

The next day I found myself sailing alone to Mahabba. The place has been one of my previous stops when we came down here, and I wanted to check there if someone had checked the ‘proposal’ I had left. Rosabel I had left behind in Matthew and his wife’s care, and I prayed to all the gods she’d forgive me when I get back…



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