1: The Albatross

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Book cover: @lolnepenadanah

With a heavy sigh and a blank expression clouding her delicate face, the girl slowly ascended the ship's shifting stairs. Surely, there would be no easier tasks on the deck of the vessel than there were beneath it, but after the long hours spent panting in the heat of the musty kitchen air, the ocean breeze would feel refreshing. If the kitchen master would have kept the girl any longer, she would have begun to fear that he never would have let her go.

As she caught the first scent of the salty ocean, she inhaled deeply. The warm Caribbean sun hit her tanned skin. However, the feeling of warmth was fleeting. By her very next breath, her mood sunk back down beneath the crushing weight of slavery.

Casting her head to the westward-leaning sun, she quickly panicked at the late hour. She knew her master too well; by the sun's telling, it was well past two in the afternoon; the time he always demanded his afternoon drink.

As Anna walked towards the Captain's cabin, she stared up him at the helm as he stood stoically keeping the ship a'course. His sharp, icy-green eyes scanned the sea line, his back as stiff as a board. Her master was not only the captain of this British vessel, but also one of the most staunt and paticular captains in the entire British navy.

His captain's coat flashed its noble red behind him in the pulling wind, and the man's stiff, white wig attempted to dance along with it. How Anna was disgusted by his every move and that stare of his. He lived for the pride that eminated from his position.

So pompous...

She thought.

The girl blankly went into her master's dark cabin and poured some of the gin into a flask.

With a nervous look at the door, she stole a few sips of the liquor to her own lips. With a grimace from the bittersweet taste, she walked back outside with the flask of gin.

As she walked, she gripped the light flask in her sweaty palm - the one that always made her wander how to poison someone. She went up the stairs towards her master at the wheel on the poop deck.

When he saw his beautiful, young slave approaching, with her long blonde hair flowing in the wind, he smirked.

Her quiet, bored voice announced,

"Your afternoon gin, sir."

"Anna, you're late."
He said coldly as he took the flask and began to unscrew the bottle.

"I was just released from making the lunch."

Believe me, believe me, believe me.

She chanted in her head. After the captain said nothing, Anna silently sighed in relief. She leaned her palms on the railing overlooking the deck of the ship. It was a perfect day for sailing. The wind whipped the British flag from high above in the cow's nest, and unruly wisps of Anna's hair whipped unchecked across her delicate features. The sky was clear of clouds, and the wind was tugging on the sails.

At least we will cover a lot of ocean in this wind and speed up the trip.

She thought.

Captain and slave stood in silence looking over the deck at the crew below. The sailors beneath them began to lift a shanty,

"Way, hey, up she rises,
way, hey, up she rises,
way, hey, up she rises, ear'y in the morn'n!"

Fonte basked silently at the command of his own vessel, the Albatross. She was a young, dangerous frigate; less that two year old, and quite smooth on her winds. She was fresh made from Port De Lanez in New Orleans, and was immediately sent to serve the glory of the Royal Navy in Jamaica under the high and mighty Captain James Harold Fonte.

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