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  • Kyle Tabone Betts

Maiden on the High Seas

pirate flag and ship sails

There I was at the Cat & Rat, an unfortunate name for a tavern if there ever was one but it is what you get when you shorten the owners’ names, feasting on a haunch of mutton I could ill afford and washing it down with ale that smelled like piss and tasted worse, when my first mate walked in. My former first mate, that would be. He didn’t see me but I saw him, mangy cur that he was, still is, and forever shall be.


Never shall I forget the day he betrayed me, stabbed me in the back with my own cutlass for a treasure we could have shared and both lived like kings. Alas, unlike me he did live like a king with his fine clothing and shiny rings and gold earrings, an admiral commandeering his own fleet of crooks and scum from the comfort of his stately mansion in Nassau. See him in your mind as I still see him on that cursed evening in the tavern, how he slapped the bottom of one whore even as he tried to suck another’s soul out through her rosy kisser. And see me in your mind as I still see me, drooling the mutton’s paltry juices onto my own tattered shirt, a member of the dregs and degenerates of society.


I remember feeling the cutlass Eddie used to backstab me piercing my back and puncturing my stomach moments before seeing its curved point burst out of my body through my belly. He left it there, embedded. He left me there, dying.


How it came to be that he had my cutlass in the first place was ironic. We were almost at David Crawford’s treasure, could already see the cave in which it was buried, when a panther as black as night and having the eyes of the devil took a leap at me and a bite out of my hand. My precious left hand, which I lost. Eddie whistled and drew his own cutlass, and the panther made for him. Weak as I was from the loss of blood and the excruciating pain, I did the only thing I could: I threw my cutlass to Eddie. He caught it niftily, closing his calloused fingers on its hilt as the four-legged devil pounced. Eddie plunged both swords into the panther’s chest before rolling out of the hellish beast’s way.


It came to a standstill at the mouth of the cave, dead before its feline body fell onto the forest floor.


I took to my legs, refusing to give in to the darkness falling over me like a shroud with the blood loss and the pain. That was when the treacherous son of a whore did it—he stabbed me with my own cutlass and left me for dead. It was with darkening eyes and failing breaths that I saw him enter the cave and begin to dig, and it was with my last breath that I saw him come out of the cave in triumphant glory holding Crawford’s treasure box in his hands, heavy with its precious gemstones.


How it came to be that three years later I was at the tavern eating mutton and drinking either ale or piss while glowering at him as he slipped his hand inside one whore’s corset was also my treacherous first mate’s fault.


We had set sail from Kingston in search of the gemstones, following a map Eddie had pilfered from right under the nose of Sallow Ben while the captain of the Black Tulip was busy getting his prick sucked off. It was three days after we set sail, as my beloved Sea Maiden battled against a raging storm, that my crew found the stowaway: a fair maiden, blonde of hair, blue of eyes, and bountiful of bosom. A woman aboard my ship.


I was sure then, as I am still today, that the storm was no cause of nature but rather a curse delivered upon us for the crime of having set sail with a maiden on board. I ordered my men to slit her throat and throw her overboard, an offering to the gods so that they may spare us, but one spoke up and dared defy me. Eddie. It was he who had brought the maiden aboard, claiming that he was saving her life after her husband caught the two of them making a cuckold out of him. He had threatened to kill his wife.


Then, tragedy struck.


A rogue wave took us by surprise. The Sea Maiden suffered terrible damage and started to take on water; most of the crew were wounded, some mortally so. The maiden herself died after crushing her forehead against the front mast. It wasn’t much later that the Sea Maiden sank, but I survived. So did Eddie. As luck would have it, we shipwrecked close to our destination. We swam to shore and followed the map my first mate had committed to memory. That was when we were ambushed by the devil on four legs; when I lost my hand and my life.


Except that I hadn’t lost my life. Not exactly.


It was no miracle that had saved our lives but a second curse. Another curse brought about by the maiden on my ship, no doubt. Eddie and I had indeed drowned, but instead of making the seas our graveyard, we made the living world our home once again. We had become undead.


It didn’t take Eddie long to see me that evening at the Cat & Rat. The mangy cur had the guts to come to me, to greet me like a friend, unsurprised to see me alive. He came to my table with his whores, and he snapped his fingers at Catherine and Ratika so they would bring his roasted chicken and strong stout over to my table. He insisted the whores sat on either side of me.


And so we ate and drank and talked, even as the whores started working on my prick and my neck, and we laughed and laughed and laughed …


*******


How he laughed before I drove my cutlass through his unbeating heart while Isabella stroked his cock and Mary caressed his neck. He still calls himself captain, one who has neither ship nor crew. His crew died when the Sea Maiden sank, but they soon came back to life, cursed as they were with undeath. They serve under me now together with the rest of the undead under my command, ghosts and ghouls and skeletons and walking corpses. Oh how sweet it is to be able to curse an entire crew by sneaking just one maiden aboard a voyage on the high seas.


And now look at me here at the Cat & Rat, ready to jump into the uppermost room’s bed with naked Isabella and Mary, captains under my command. It is with a smile on my face that I take off my shirt and unwrap the bandages around my chest, allowing my small breasts to fall free. And it is with a throb of arousal that I take off my breeches and drawers, presenting Isabella and Mary with the honeypot they will soon be feasting on. And it is with utmost satisfaction that tomorrow I shall set sail on the Flying Dutchman’s maiden voyage.


For it is I, Vivien Crawford, daughter of David Crawford and known to all as Admiral Ed, that is the maiden on the high seas, cursed from birth by my witch aunt to bring death and undeath to any crew I sailed with.

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