The Green Knight wrote: As Mister O’Brion and his men boarded the Mantis they found the bodies of Targon and Rosa. Targon, who had been left up by the helm when the Aterop’s arrival interrupted Burtrand’s orders, they left for dead. But they hauled Rosa out of the brig and brought her over to the Aterops.
When Rosa awoke she was laying on a cot in a room that she hadn’t seen before. There was a man by her side.
“Ah I see you’re finally coming ‘round Miss. You got quite a nasty bump on the head there. Now if you don’t need anything I think I’ll be going topside. We’re in for more trouble ere long.”
“What-a What a bout the princess?” Rosa groaned, holding her head.
“Oh.” Said the Mariner. He removed his hat. “I’m afraid she’s dead.”
“Dead?” Rosa attempted to sit up, but her pounding head forced her back down, “How?”
The mariner looked at the floor.
“That Chodan-tycoed pirate Storm-Rider chained ‘imself and the princess to anchor…an’…went overboard…”
The mariner shuddered, then said, “I’ll be along shortly to bring ye some food. An’ when ye feel well enough…the Captain would like to see you.”
“Captain?” Rosa repeated.
“Aye,” nodded the mariner, “Captain Johnson. You’re on the Aterops
“The what?” Rosa asked, befuddled. But the mariner had already left.
Rosa leaned back in her bunk and tried to collect her thoughts. She didn’t know quite how she felt. Emotionally, that is. She knew exactly how she felt physically, and that was awful. But emotionally, she was confused, confused on how she felt about the demise of Anastasia. At first, she simply shrugged off the matter. So she’s dead, so what? The whiny little megablock wasn’t a loss to the world, not at all. However, that contempt seeped away, leaving a feeling of almost sadness for the spoiled Crusader princess. Rosa shoved those feels away as well. Then she fell asleep.
She awoke to the voice of the mariner who had spoken to her before.
“Miss? I have food here, if yer hungry…”
Rosa sat up and realized that the pounding in her head had subsided greatly.
The mariner placed the loaf of bread (not stale) and ale on Rosa’s lap and then said, “Might ye be feeling well enough to visit the Captain after ye eat?”
Rosa shrugged. “I s’pose.”
She had to get her bearings and figure out what to do next now that she had escaped the pirates, and this captain could help. So after Rosa had swallowed the last of the ale she rose and followed the mariner to the captain’s cabin. Captain Horatio Johnson was at his desk, apparently plotting a course. He looked up when they entered.
“Captain, sir, this be the lady who we rescued from the Mantis
Johnson nodded and gestured to a chair. “Please, milady, sit.”
Rosa stiffened. “I’ll stand.”
Johnson stiffened slightly as well. “As you wish. Mister Pitt, please leave us.”
Pitt exited and shut the door, leaving Rosa and Johnson alone.
Johnson spoke first. “I am Captain Horatio Johnson of the Aterops
, a ship of His Majesty King Robert’s fleet.”
“How did you come to be on the Mantis
“I was kidnapped.”
“I was in Port Crowne, and the coronation for the king was going on. Some brute kidnapped the princess. I followed him to the docks. I killed him. Or I thought I did. I cut his throat.”
Johnson appeared not be phased, though inwardly he was making mental notes on Rosa’s character.
“And he survived?” he asked.
“Somehow. He grabbed me by the throat and when I awoke I was on the ship with the princess.”
“Is that all?”
“You asked how I got on the Mantis
. That’s how.”
“You ‘see’ a lot.” Rosa snapped, “So, where are going? When will we reach the mainland?”
“Not for a while.” replied Johnson coolly, successfully keeping his temper in check, “I am currently chasing an accomplice ship of the Mantis
. I think it must be a slaver. Since last night it’s made a beeline toward Anka Dolour, and her course hasn’t deviated since.”
“So I’m stuck on here!?” Rosa demanded.
“Until I get my ship, yes.” replied Johnson.
“Madam,” Johnson rose, fully displaying the aura of a Crusader captain, “While on the Aterops
I will ask you not to use foul language on my ship. The Aterops
is a clean ship, I will not tolerate disturbances. And--” he continued as Rosa started to protest, “keep in mind that you are in my debt. If it was not for the Aterops, you would still be on the pirate ship Mantis
. That will be all.”
Rosa fumed inwardly, and was an inch away from bopping Johnson a good one, but deep down she knew he logic was correct. It would do her no good to blow up, save to land her in another brig. Rosa exited the captains quarters and paced along the deck. No, she wouldn’t take out her anger on the captain for being stuck on the Aterops
, but if any sailor simply looked at her the wrong way she’d beat the mega blocks out of him.