2 - Captive

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With a hand full of Nora's hair in one hand, and her arm in a steady grip in the other, the dark voiced pirate dragged her out of the room, his friend following. Nora screamed and tried to break free, but the pirate was stronger than her and only laughed at her failed attempts. Walking down the stairs towards the now broken front doors, Nora saw the dead bodies of her friends and coworkers. Some of the maids dresses were ripped, showing signs that they had been raped before death. Some were still alive, but other pirates walked around, sticking their swords in anyone who seemed to be breathing. After witnessing three of her friends getting run through, the edge of the sword sticking out between their ribs, Nora had to look away.

"Better behave, love. Otherwise you'll share the fate of your servant." It was the small one who spoke, the pirate with the lighter voice. He was scrawny, with big, brown eyes, dirty, thin hair and a smile that sent chills down Nora's spine, and not the good kind. What Nora didn't understand however, was what the pirate, meant by servants. She was a servant herself, and the people who were killed had been her friends. Her colleagues. Not her servants. Not being in a position to argue however, Nora didn't say anything. Instead she most unwillingly followed the pirates, fearing that they would kill her if she struggled anymore.

"What do you want with me?", Nora finally managed to say, as she was roughly dragged between the small houses of the town. Everywhere people were running and screaming. Fires had broken out all over town, and houses had collapsed as a result of being hit by a canon ball. Many were trapped under or in the ruined houses, but pirates were making their way around, killing anyone they saw.

"Well there's a rich fellow who's offering us a lot of gold to take you to him", the bigger pirate said, laughing slightly. Nora paled, feeling her chest tighten as it got harder to breathe.

"I don't understand, what does he want with me? I'm a nobody." Tears were streaming down her face, despair gripping her body.

"A nobody, eh? Love, you're the Governors daughter, lots of men want to get their hands on you." The blood in Nora's body froze as the pirate spoke. They had mistaken her for Guinevere. Hiding in her room hadn't been such a good idea at all. Opening her mouth to tell them their mistake, a loud scream was heard as a woman came running in front of them. Her nightgown was ripped and her face bloody. As she ran, two other pirates followed her. And it didn't take long for one of them to catch up and throw her on the ground. Soon both of the men were on top of the screaming woman, holding her down, destroying what little clothing she had left. The woman screamed and screamed, loud and painful shrieks of fear and horror. But then the scream stopped, as one of the pirates took his knife and sliced her throat. The only sound coming from the woman, a faint gurgle as the crimson liquid poured out of the gash and on to the ground.

"Ought to be happy the Captain wants you untouched, otherwise you'd end up like her", the larger pirate holding Nora growled in her ear. Any explanation of the mistake that had been made between Nora and Guinevere disappeared from her tongue. Perhaps the only way for her to stay alive was for the pirates to believe that she was Guinevere.

Boarding the ship, Nora was met with men ogling her, giving her dirty smiles and inappropriate comments. They all looked disgusting. Dirty clothes and black and yellow teeth, unwashed hair and faces filled with scars. To Nora they all looked like rats. Greedy, filthy creatures. Vermin. A few of the men tried to grab her as she passed them, stroking her hair or her arm. A few that got too close got a growl from the big pirate that was escorting her. Even though Nora didn't like him either, she at least felt thankful for his, if only temporary, protection. Soon they found themselves below deck, and Nora was pushed into a cabin before the door slammed behind her and locked from the outside. Not having that pirates hands on her anymore felt liberating, but soon panic gripped her again as she realised that there was no way out of the cabin except for the door. A few small windows gave the quite large cabin some light, but they weren't big enough to climb out of. No other door was visible except the one that was locked, and Nora found herself at loss as to what to do. There had been many pirates up on deck, and more was to come as they finished their plundering of the town. Even if she managed to get out of this cabin, there was no way she would get off the ship. Especially not since it appeared the pirates could earn quite the sum of gold if they brought what they thought were Guinevere to whatever brute that wanted to buy her. Perhaps if she pretended to be Guinevere, they would not harm her. Of course the truth would come out when she was to be handed over to her buyer, but the nearest harbour was at least a week from her home town. A week she could use to plan her escape.

After thinking about it, it wasn't surprising that they had mistaken her for Guinevere. As a person who'd never seen the Governors daughter before, and only knew her by description, she and Nora were quite similar. Only Guinevere was slimmer, where Nora had curves and muscles from hard work. And where Guinevere has blue eyes and blonde hair, Nora's eyes were a deep green and her hair was more gold and bronze than blonde. But other than that, they were about the same height and age, had the same porcelain skin - Guinevere's coming from not having to work, and Nora's as a result of the hint of red in her hair. Maybe she could pull it off. Maybe she would walk out of this alive. Maybe she would see her precious town again.

The muffled sounds of the crew walking around on deck told Nora that the ship was getting ready to leave. Through the small windows the sun became more and more visible, a telltale sign that she'd been locked up for a few hours. Nora guessed it was early morning now. On a normal day the harbour would start to wake as the merchandise ships slowly came into view. The market would stock up on fresh foods and the kitchen maids would hurry down to get the best supplies. Nora would awake as well, getting ready before fetching the Governors breakfast and then starting her long list of chores for the day. But this wasn't a normal day. The Governor was probably dead, as well as lots of people from the town. Houses had been burnt to the ground and Nora had been taken captive. Maybe she was the lucky one though, seen as she was still alive. A lot of her friends from the mansion had been killed, their bodies on display as Nora had been dragged towards the ship. So in an unfortunate situation, she might be the one who got off easy. But then again, she didn't know what was to come.

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