said nothing as she passed Shamus and one other man standing
outside Alex's door. The shouting could not be missed but
they moved quickly into the cabin. Nick looked at the timber
and debated as to whether to drop the lumber in its place,
denying all entry to the cabin. However, this would only serve
to enrage Kevin even more if he were the next person to venture
inside the space.
Both of them looked
dumbfounded as they listened to Kevin yell and chastise J.C.
for her stupidity. Things became quiet after a door slammed
shut and Kevin gave a very loud order to Shamus that J.C.
was to stay in Alex's cabin and that she was not to receive
anyone but him or Sir Alex.
Nick whistled low.
"He's really angry. I hope he calms down before he comes
back." A knock on the door produced a jump in Nick. He
called to the knock, "Who is it?"
the call came back in a known voice.
Ray let out a laugh
as she walked to the door. Before opening the door, she adjusted
her hat knowing that Shamus and the other guard were in the
The door swung
open, Brian rushed in and closed it. He tossed a large object
at Nick. "This will feel better than the floor."
Brian," Nick scooped the object up and headed to the
other side of the room. He hung the hammock above Kevin's
bed and smiled at his handiwork. "It's been awhile since
we slept three in here."
"You don't possibly think that he is going to let you
sleep directly above him."
"Sure he will."
Kevin's voice boomed
into the room. "You were twelve Nickolas. Ray can sleep
up above me, you will sleep in your old hammock. I know that
Ray at least doesn't make noises when he sleeps."
Nick's face pinked
and he laughed under Kevin's grin. "I don't know why
I have to stay in here tonight."
I can't trust J.C. or her crew," Kevin's eyes studied
the waif on the other side of the room.
Ray wished they
would just all go away. The Captain was staring at her again,
she was becoming irate with his boldness. Some other feeling
was happening to her but she was not sure what it was. Her
body felt warm, the more he stared at her.
Kevin was outwardly
glaring at Ray, the gaze was intent and very scrutinizing.
Brian brought out a bag from his pocket and shook it in the
air. This would be the perfect distraction. Kevin could never
to stand lose at any game or sport. Dominos would keep Kevin's
mind on the game and not Ray.
you have nothing left. I've taken all you have," Kevin
grabbed the bag and placed it on the table. Chairs were quickly
pulled around the table.
have credit," Nick smiled.
have exhausted all of your credit with me years ago."
Kevin's laugh was deep and loving.
Ray perched herself
on the hammock to watch. At least he wasn't staring at her
we'll teach you to play so that you can trounce Nick as well."
Brian grinned at her.
Ray shook her head
no; she didn't want to be near them. Something was happening
to her and she couldn't think clearly. All she wanted to do
was stare at Kevin as he laughed and continued the game with
us some brandy from the cabinet. I'm sure Nickolas has told
you where to steal it from already." Kevin eyed Nick
with a glint in his eye and he ducked his head slightly. "Someday
boy, you will understand that you have no secrets from me."
Ray jumped hearing
the words come from Kevin, she almost tripped when her foot
snagged in the hammock. Kevin's hand on her arm righted her.
"Easy boy, go slow." Kevin stared a few seconds
into the violet coloreds eyes, he yearned to pluck the hat
off her head and let the soft black curls frame her unique
and beautiful face.
Ray pulled hard to remove her arm from his grasp. Kevin's
grip tightened and the smile he gave her was like a fox that
had snared the hare.
Kevin's request for Brandy and glasses, she returned quickly
to her hammock. She lay back and listened to the conversation
the three were having. They talked about old times, battles
that they had won, and ones that they had lost. Family began
to be chatted about in a lively discussion. Ray had learned
many new things including that Brian was married and he had
a wife and child at home. Her heart saddened as she listened
to Nick. The only family that he spoke of was in reference
to Kevin and the crew. The sea swayed the hammock and the
voices comforted her as she thought about the family that
she had left behind. She missed Jocelyn with all her heart,
she had been her mother when her mother hadn't been. Her mother,
she mused. Ray doubted that she would recognize her mother
if she would see her now. It hadn't been very long, only four
years, but so many things had changed in her life. Quietly
she sniffled and then coughed loudly to cover her mistake.
The men were so
busy playing dominos that none had noticed as Ray turned in
the hammock to face the wall. At least that was the impression
not to hear the small sniffle when two sets of eyes stared
at him to see if he had heard the noise or not. He chose to
take no notice of the sound and smiled instead. In his head,
he was hoping that Ray was having some regrets, maybe by morning
the child would confess her sins, and he could extract his
punishment that he sorely needed from her. Under the table,
his hand moved to his thigh and carefully made an adjustment
that others wouldn't see. It was difficult to stare at the
backside of the young one as she lay on her side across from
Morning came as
light filled the room. Ray looked down to the bed; Kevin was
not there. Looking over at the other hammock, Nick was gone
as well. Kevin barking on the deck caused her to jump from
the hammock and reach the deck to find all the men present.
Her eyes bulged
as J.C. stood before Kevin with her hands bound in front of
her and a gag over her mouth. Ray's jaw dropped nearly to
the deck when Kevin began to speak. "Are there any objections
why these to should not be wed, besides from the bride of
course?" Kevin laughed as he watched J.C. try and pull
the gag from her mouth.
A.J. laughed as
well, pulling her hand away, "Oh no-no-no."
Ray covered her
mouth as Kevin slapped the bible closed, "So be it! Kiss
your bride Alex."
A.J. pulled the gag out of J.C.'s mouth.
"Why you rotten
no good sonofawhoremaster! I will kill you Kevin Richardson!
I'll slit your throat in your sleep
A.J. grabbed onto
J.C.'s arms and pulled her passionately and intimately into
his embrace. His manhood boldly rubbing her body, for all
J.C ceased flailing
about and leaned into him as he cut the bindings on her hands.
Her lips searching for his, just as hungry and greedy as Alex
Kevin turned to
Nick, "I'm glad he kissed her before my mother was brought
Nick doubled over
laughing as he watched A.J. swing with J.C. hanging over his
shoulder to the Lady J. Towlines had been loosened so nobody
would interfere with the newlyweds. Whether to come to J.C.'s
aid or as Kevin laughed in A.J.'s face, "Your aid my
Kevin tossed his
hands up in the air, "LET'S CELEBRATE!"
Ray stood frozen
to the deck, Kevin had married them, even though he knew that
wasn't what J.C. had wanted. A hand clamped down on her shoulder
and whirled her about. Leaning down, green eyes stared back
at her. "Nickolas has been doing double time for you,
Ray jumped and
ran down to the galley. "I hope your hips move as fast
as those little legs when I finally get you, you little wench."
Kevin growled, he was sexually aroused and he needed a woman,
but not this woman. No, it wasn't time. He still had a few
tricks up his sleeve to get her to confess. His eyes focused
on Nick, his anger towards Nick was abating as the days wore
on. The idea of playing with both of their minds and using
trickery had taken up most of his time.
deck, he made sure that each man was served a good portion
of food and ale. He wanted none of them to feel slighted and
become angry. Every man was entitled to his share. After many
hours of celebrating, a whoop came from the Lady J. Silence
passed over the crew and then loud laughter as Kevin yelled
through his cupped hands. "Careful Alex, she may well
Ray stayed with
Brian and Howard much of the evening since Nick and Kevin
seemed unable to separate. She frowned whenever she saw them
together. "Are you jealous that Kevin is spending all
his time with Nick and not you?" Brian had a twinkle
in his eye.
Ray balked at the remark but inside may be she did feel a
little twinge of jealousy. The Captain always made a point
of speaking to her except this evening, now he was staying
as far away from her as he could. She cast her eyes to floor
of the deck. "I hope J.C. sets sail without Alex."
sake you, had better hope she doesn't. The Captain has made
himself very clear on this. Her ship is now A.J.'s, as well
as everything she owns." Howie stood back and watched
Ray's reactions, which was a mere shrug and she parted their
brewing between the three of them," Howie voiced his
thoughts as he watched Nick lope across the deck to Ray. Kevin
turned and frowned as the two met up with each other.
continue much longer. Maybe we could get Ray home from New
Providence. Do you know anyone who could help us?" Brian
was as worried as Howie. Kevin couldn't get to Ray and Nick
could," Howie winked.
"No, no, no,"
Brian shook his head. "That will not work. No, that is
not a good idea. It is bad enough that he married them. A.J.
will let her do what she pleases; you know she will set sail
from New Providence with everything in tact and with Alex's
Both of them quickly
closed their mouths as their Captain approached. "Enjoy
gentlemen, enjoy!" Kevin slapped Howard on the back and
then cast him a questionable look. "What was so engrossing
in your conversation gentlemen? Do you care to share with
" Brian stuttered.
in New Providence," Howie made an adjustment. "I
need a woman," Howie growled at them and sauntered away.
"So do I,"
Kevin groaned as he watched Ray walk around the deck, with
Nick. "So do I."
you going to do with Ray?" Brian leaned back on the rail.
They were alone and this was the perfect opportunity to question
Kevin's eyes scanned
the crowd as he turned his back to the water. Leaning back
on the rail, he crossed his arms over his chest. 'Oh, I know
what I'm going to do with Ray, but it doesn't involve any
of you,' his inner voice spoke loud and clear. "I have
done some thinking, but not much. We have to dock in New Providence.
I will think more of it on our sail home."
him home with us?" Brian's surprised voice reached Kevin's
"I'm not going
to abandon the boy. Besides he still owes me," Kevin
grinned deviously at Brian.
"I would say
that the boy has paid his fare by now." Brian would try
reasoning with Kevin. There were times when he would actually
listen if he had a mind too.
and it's my ship," Kevin's head slowly turned to Brian.
"That boy has made a fool out of me more than once. He
is disrespectful to everyone."
Brian sighed and
felt like flying a white flag calling a truce. "I think
he reminds you of Nick at that age and that is why you won't
let the boy go."
up his face for moment. "Yes he does, and I think I made
a few mistakes with Nick. I think I can do better with this
boy is not your son," Brian's temper flared.
Kevin smiled and pushed his body off the rail. He blended
in with the crew on the deck. "Oh definitely not a son,"
he whispered softly as he watched Ray from a distance.
Brian stared into the sea, "There is going to be trouble."
Brian just wanted to get home; to get back to his wife, his
son, and his home. Turning back, he watched Kevin separate
Ray from the others, now he was concerned as he pulled her
up to the Quarterdeck where they would be alone. Kevin was
glancing around like a hen in a circle of roosters. Brian
had a clear view and decided to stay in his spot and just
watch for anything unusual. Kevin pulled a small pistol from
the front of his pants. Kevin spoke and Ray wrapped her hand
around the pistol. Kevin was showing her different things
and Brian finally figured out that Kevin was teaching her
how to load and fire the small pistol. The lesson went on
for more than an hour. Brian moved around the deck but kept
careful watch on the two of them. A silly thought passed through
his head as he watched Kevin stand behind Ray and grip the
pistol with her. They look like they were made for each other.
Kevin leaned over Ray's shoulder and gave her instructions.
His hands were on hers and they loaded the pistol together.
Brian had a few
conversations with J.C.'s men. So far, he had learned nothing
of an escape plan from any of them. Kevin moved suddenly and
Brian stopped where he was going to watch. Standing behind
Ray, Kevin's hand lowered to Ray's boot with a shiny silver
object in his hand. His other arm wrapped around her shoulders
holding her close. The next thing Brian saw was Nick standing
there, eyeing Kevin. He ventured closer to hear the conversation,
eventually on the Quarterdeck with Nick as well.
you doing?" Nick's voice was accusatory as well as territorial.
Brian bit his lip;
this was comical. Kevin and Nick were like two small children
fighting over a ball. Who was going to get to play with the
toy named Ray?