Crisis

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic

Chapter 17 (v.1) - Sunny Beach

Submitted: September 13, 2014

Reads: 372

Comments: 2

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Submitted: September 13, 2014

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Theme Of The Eastern Nation: The Lands Of Other Countries, by Motoi Sakuraba

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~~~The Eastern Nation Arc~~~

 

Lance—

"4-5-6

“Hey, uh, Lance?” Millicent asked.

“What-is-it?” I grunted with each pull up I completed.

“I-just-wanted-to-tell you-that—

“Why are you talking so slow?” I asked as I left myself hanging.

“You’re just so hot with your shirt off,” she sighed.

“Thank you,” I replied as I suspended my legs at 90 degrees for five seconds before lowering them slowly. “I’ll be with you in a minute; I’ve just got a few more reps left.”

“Okay,” said Millicent. “How much do you have left?”

“About 990,” I grunted.

“W-w-what?!” she exclaimed. "THAT MUCH?!"

“Now it’s 989,” I grunted.

“But we’re almost there!” said Millicent. “We can see the coast of the Eastern Nation!”

“Really?!” I asked.

“Yes, so hurry above deck, everyone’s waiting!” I dropped down and went to grab a towel to dry the sweat off of my torso. “B-but wait, can we make out really quick before going up?” Millicent asked.

“No, Millicent,” I said with a smirk as I followed her out.

I stepped above deck and looked around.

“Good day, Lance,” said Jackson from the Helm.

“Morning,” I replied.

“Millicent,” Jackson continued. “Hello there.”

“Uh, hi?” Millicent asked awkwardly.

An entire week has passed since Jackson was allowed into the gang by the skin of his teeth, but everyone was still a little skeptical, except for myself, Lucifer, and Rose…and Franklin. After a couple of hours, a few bottles of Rum, and some old stories, the two of them were hanging off of one another’s shoulders, singing old Sailor songs.

He did have a lot to make up for, but it was apparent that he was trying his hardest to prove himself a valuable member to everyone.

“How much further do we have?” I asked Jackson.

“About half a day, give or take,” he answered. "The Eastern Nation coastline makes a damn fine sight. Takes my breath away every time I see it."

“Sir, do tell me,” said Rose. “How do you maneuver this creature with such ease?”

“Creature?” asked Jackson. “You mean Alexandria? Ah, it is both quite simple, and a little tricky.”

“May I try?” asked Rose.

“I suppose it wouldn’t hurt to let you have a trick at the Helm,” said Jackson. “Best to let these winds die down a bit first, she can become a little cumbersome to control with the winds this strong.”

“Okay,” said Rose. “I look forward to it!”

“Rose, get away from him,” said Trinity as she led Rose from the Helm. “Who knows what kind of tricks he may have up his sleeve—

“Oi, I’m trying my best,” said Jackson. “If it wasn’t for me, we wouldn’t have been able to navigate from the middle of the Blue. Storm messed up our sense of direction, but hey, the stars in the sky never lie.”

“You’ve got a lot to make up,” said Trinity.

“Trinity, take it easy on him,” I said as Millicent and I joined them up at the Helm.

“No!” she snapped. “I don’t trust him! You should know the reason why, Lance!”

“Give the lad a shot,” said Franklin. “Even I couldn’t navigate us from the middle of the Blue to here; Jackson's sense of direction and navigation is virtually unmatched.”

“Lass, the winds are quite calm now, care to give her a shot?” Jackson said to Rose.

“I would love to,” said Rose as she ran over to the Helm and seized it.

“Alright,” said Jackson as he stood aside.

Rose stood in front of the Helm and gripped the large wooden wheel with both of her hands.

“This is wonderful!” Rose yelled in excitement.

“Keep her steady,” said Jackson. “Ship traffic is getting heavier as we near land; be sure to hold tact to keep your Right Of Way.”

“Okay,” Rose replied.

“Not bad, lass, you have knack for Sailing it seems,” said Jackson.

“Thank you, Mister Jackson,” said Rose.

“Please, lass, Captain Kent will suffice,” said Jackson…

***

Sunny Beach:

Beach_by_barontieri.jpg

(Sunny Beach-An area that acts as both a beach, and harbor. It is a small and simple Village that makes its living through tourism.)

“Ah,” Amberlin sighed as she stepped off Alexandria and onto the port. “Land!”

“Is this your first time coming home?” I asked her.

“First time in five years,” she said as she lay flat on the ground. “Oh I’ve missed this land.”

"It feels rather strange stepping foot onto a new Continent," Rosa said with a slight hint of awe. "Crisis truly is a beautiful Planet. Such vast lands, such wonderous adventure!"

“Old man,” said Jackson as both he and Franklin stepped off the Ship. “What do you plan to do from here on?”

“Well, since I no longer have a crew, I can’t do much but throw together a few men to help me get my shipment back across the Blue,” said Franklin.

“Listen, everyone,” said Jackson to all of us. “I’d like to help him get together a new crew if it’s alright right with you all. It's...kind of my fault the old man is in this mess.”

“No!” said Trinity. "Fix your mistakes on your own!"

“I’m game,” I replied. “Trinity, if you don’t want to help repay Franklin for his kindness to us, you can wait at the Hotel for us.”

Trinity grumbled in response.

“Lance, would you mind if I took her to get some well needed items for our Journey?” Lucifer asked.

“That’s a good idea,” I admitted. “Anyone else going with Lucifer and Trinity?”

“Um, I’ll go,” said Amberlin.

"Me too," said Millicent.

“I shall accompany them as well,” said Rose.

“And what about you, Hunter?” I asked him.

“Shit,” said Hunter. “I’ll hang with yall.”

“But Jackson, on to the pressing question, how the devil do you plan on getting a crew together?” asked Franklin.

“Follow me,” Jackson said with a smirk as he threw up his hood. “Best place to find a few decent hands is a Bar…”

***

pub_by_artificialguy-d6vdmji.jpg

(The Sunny Bar)

The Sunny Bar was hardly a sunny place. However, it was just what you’d expect of a Tropical Social Center on Crisis. Rough looking men sat around tables, drinking Rum straight from the bottle, one or two of them supporting a young, scantily dressed Courtesan on their laps.

“Here, old man,” said Jackson as he passed Franklin a wad of Credits. “Go up to the Bartender, and ask for Slim Jim, he’ll know who you’re talking about. When you meet him, just tell him what you need.”

“Lad, are you sure about this?” Franklin asked nervously. “This looks like the type of place you get shot in.”

“They won’t shoot you,” said Jackson playfully. “Unless you rob them of their money and steal their woman…which I haven’t done but it’s just stories I’ve heard.”

“Alright, I’ll trust you on this one,” said Franklin.

As Franklin went up to the Bartender, Hunter and I stood at a corner away from everyone, trying our best not to make eye contact with any of them.

“Hey baby,” a Courtesan said to me. “You’re a lot cuter than my regulars.”

"Thanks?”

“You lads take your time,” said Jackson with a smirk to me. “I’ll be right over here when you’re ready…”

***

Jackson—

I made my way over to a table that was occupied by a man passed out from drink, a half drunken bottle of Rum sitting in front of him. As I walked, I felt the eyes of an older man with a Courtesan sitting on his lap following me to the table.

“Fancy meetin’ a Diamond-Man this far East,” he said to me as I sat. “I’m Western meself, just waitin’ till the next Great War has me back in the Navy.”

“Lucky them,” I said grimly as I pried the bottle of Rum of the sleeping man’s fingers. “Having a daft-cow like you sailing their Flag must make them proud!”

I lifted the bottle to my mouth a downed a mouthful before resting it down briefly. Next thing I heard was the shriek of a woman. It was the same Courtesan who was sitting on the man’s lap who screamed, as it appeared that he shoved her off of him to get to his feet.

“Ugh,” she groaned. “No class these men, I swear!”

“Oi! Shite!” the man yelled at me suddenly. “I recognize your mug!” he said. “You’s one of them Pirates! I seens you down in Nassau with Blackbeard once!”

“You shut your fucking mouth fore I shut it for you!” I yelled at him.

The man stooped down and took a peek under my hood.

“You’s Captain Jackson aint’cha?” he asked as he wrenched my hood down.

By this point, muscle memory kicked in. Soon as I felt him pull down my hood, I rammed my forehead against his nose, bursting it instantly. I was then on my feet, running punches into his gut. He spat up blood just as I lifted him off his feet and slammed him down against a table, smashing it into pieces.

“You lob-cock!” one of his mates yelled. “Wut you do that for?”

“Hey, hey, I warned that little shit!” I said.

Next thing I knew, a man grabbed me by the shoulder, turned me around, and struck me across the face, sending me crashing down towards the ground. He and his mate then got to work on pulling me back up to my feet, and together, they threw me forward with all their might.

I recovered by tucking into a roll and springing myself to my feet, ready to fight off the dozen or so attackers that had now appeared…

***

Lance—

“What the hell is he doing?!” Hunter roared as we saw Jackson get to his feet to fight a dozen or so men.

“You bastards wanna dust up?” Jackson taunted. “Fine!”

“Oh no,” I muttered.

Jackson caught the first punch sent at him and flipped his attacker over his shoulder before instantly spinning around and running his elbow into another man’s throat.

“Come on!” Jackson taunted. “My grandmother can put up a better fight than you!”

“Hunter,” I said as I ran forward.

“Yeah, yeah,” Hunter grumbled.

Hunter charged forward, seized a man around the middle, and picked him up off of the ground to immediately slam him on his back with the force equivalent to falling down a flight of stairs.

Two men surrounded me, gave each other a look of approval, and then sent a fist in my direction. I evaded their blows with a duck, thrust my fist forward to punch one in the stomach and at the same time, extended my foot backwards to kick the other in the gut. With the two of them temporarily stunned, I grabbed the man in front of me, arched my back, and suplexed his body headfirst into his friend.

Hunter too found himself surrounded, and the two men tried to hit him simultaneously, but he caught both of their punches at the same time. With the strength that must’ve been on par with ten men, he crushed their fists with such power that they were in too much pain to even attempt break free. Now forced down to one knee, Hunter raised his hands and struck them both in the face.

Jackson kicked a man in the knee to cripple his footing, elbowed the attacker standing behind of him, punched the third man in the stomach, and to finish it all off, jumped into the air and knocked them all out by extending his right fist forward to punch the first man in the face, as well as using both of his feet to kick the other two.

More fists were exchanged, more punches were suffered from men who easily blindsided us in this crowd, but still, the three of us were more than a match for the drunken Sailors. To finish off my final opponent, I jumped into the air and spun around, extending my right leg out as I did so to strike the man across the face with my heel. The attack sent him spinning to the ground like a top, knocked out and unconscious.

The three of us exchanged looks of triumph, all of our faces dripping with our own blood, as well as the blood of our enemies.

“Fancy moves, Lance,” said Jackson as he wiped his nose.

“You’re not too shabby either,” I replied with a smirk.

“These assholes aint no match for me,” Hunter boasted.

“That’s because you’re twice their size,” I joked.

“Lads,” said Franklin as he came out from the back. “The business has been…son of Mary!” he cursed when he saw the mountain of unconscious or otherwise incapacitated Sailors. “What in the name of the Queen did you do?”

“Oh, sorry about that, old man,” said Jackson as he approached Franklin. “Them lads thought it wise to pick a fight with me, so we had to teach ‘em a lesson. How was Jim, did he give you a crew?”

“I’ll need to lay low in town for a few days,” said Franklin. “But he can scrounge them together for me by the end of this week.”

“Well that’s good,” I sighed. “At least you can get home safe now…”

An hour later found us escorting Franklin back to the harbor, where the others were waiting for us.

“What happened?!” Millicent asked.

“Bar Fight,” said Hunter.

“Oh my God, it was you wasn’t it?!” Trinity spat at Jackson. "You Pirates are always starting fights!"

“Hey, Trinity, they started it,” I said. “We were just backing him up.”

“Yeah,” Hunter agreed. “I woulda taken a few nasty blows if Jackson didn’t have my back. I think I change my mind about you homie, you aint so bad.”

“Thanks mate,” said Jackson.

“Well, as fun as this all has been, I have to get going,” said Franklin. “Alexandria needs a nice visit to the Carpenter after the hell she’s been through, and I need a nice quiet evening. Know that Alexandria is always here for you if you ever need to cross the Blue, or if you just have a pang for the open Seas, just get in contact with me. Lucifer knows how to get a hold of me.”

“I’ll be sure to do so should the need arise,” said Lucifer.

“Franklin,” I said as I shook his hand. “It’s been a pleasure. Thanks for putting up with us.”

“Nothing that a few bottles of Rum can’t fix,” Franklin joked.

And from there on, we bid Franklin goodbye, knowing that we’d see him again sometime down the road…

***

“I think we should start making our way to the Black Lake now,” said Amberlin. “It’s a six day trip on foot.”

“We’re really near the end aren’t we?” asked Millicent. “Does everyone know what they’ll do afterwards?”

“I plan to head back home to my Village,” said Rose. “Father is probably worried sick about me.”

“I need to go back home and get tender with Ariana if you catch my drift,” said Hunter.

“Too much Hunter,” said Amberlin. “Too much…”

“What about you, Amberlin?” Millicent asked her.

“Well, I need to spend some time at home,” she replied. “My parents, my sisters, I need to see how they’re doing.”

“I’m planning on joining the Navy,” said Jackson. “Use my skills as a Sailor to be more productive, and give back to Crisis.”

“That’s a good start Jackson,” I said. "Personally, I haven't had much contact with the Navy, but they can be good people. Just be prepared to fight some of your old Pirate buddies."

“Hmmm…I have not given the future much thought,” said Lucifer. “I do believe I’ll return to the shadows that spawned my wretched existence for a few centuries.”

“F-f-for a few centuries?!” Trinity exclaimed.

“The experiments done on me have rendered me unable to die,” said Lucifer. “It is a curse I deserve for the things I’ve done while serving Diamond.”

“Lucifer Justice,” I muttered. “I knew it, you’re the Lucifer aren’t you? You were one of the greatest Special Forces Agents there was, and they say you were the one responsible for the members of the Top Brass to recognize Special Forces as a Military Unit. You were the first one of us. Your fame is second only to Atreyu’s in that department.”

“Indeed,” Lucifer admitted. “As I said before, I was chosen to be the Primary Donor for Atreyu’s Engineering because of my track record with Special Forces.”

“Wow,” Trinity sighed. “I didn’t know you were a living legend, Lucifer.”

“Trinity, what about you?” Millicent asked.

“Well I,” Trinity said with a nervous glance to me. “I wanted to start spending my days with a special someone in my life. You know, start a family—

“Wait a second,” I began. “Who is this guy?! Is he bigger than me?!”

“It’s Hunter,” said Trinity as she crossed her arms and closed her eyes.

“Don’t drag me into this!” Hunter yelled.

“Funny thing is I wanted to do the same thing,” Millicent laughed. “And what about you, Lance?”

“Well I dunno…I guess I’ll head back North to my Lodge,” I admitted.

“Lodge?” asked Rose.

“Yup,” I said. “When I retired from Special Forces, before I become a Mercenary and Smuggler, I lived in my own little place in the Northern Icicle Colonies by myself. It helped take my mind off of…things.”

“Hmmm,” Millicent sighed. “You must have had it rough back then.”

“Special Forces is not kind on one’s emotions,” said Lucifer.

We soon found ourselves upon the gates, with a singular dirt path in front of us.

“Guess it’s time to hit the good old dirt road again,” said Amberlin as she led the way forward. “Hey, maybe you guys can visit my parents when we’re done with Atreyu!”

“That sounds wonderful, Amberlin,” said Trinity. “I can’t wait to kick back, relax, and just enjoy life. This trip took a beating out of me.”

“Me too,” said Millicent. “Though we did meet a lot of interesting new people along the way.”

“True,” Trinity replied.

“How’s about a song for the road?” Amberlin suggested. “Jackson, don’t you know any good Sailor songs?”

“Well,” said Jackson. “I know a few but it aint too much fun to sing alone. Oh, I think I know one. It’s not a Sailor Song, but I think you all might like it. ”

“Go for it,” Millicent said encouragingly.

“Ahem,” Jackson said as he cleared his throat. “Mind you, I haven’t had much Rum so I’ll be off a key a little—

“Just sing,” said Trinity.

 

“Near Banbridge town, in the County Down

One morning last July

Down a bóithrín green came a sweet colleen

And she smiled as she passed me by

Oh she looked so sweet from her two bare feet

To the sheen of her nut brown hair

Such a coaxing elf, that I pinched myself

For to see I was standing there

 

And from Bantry Bay up to Derry Quay

And from Galway to Dublin town

No maid I've seen like the sweet colleen

That I met in the County Down.

 

As she onward sped when I scratched my head

And I looked with a feelin’ rare

And I said, says I, to a passerby

‘Who's that maid with the nut-brown hair?’

Oh He smiled at me, and he said, says he,

‘She's the gem of Ireland's crown

She's young Rosie McCann from the banks of the Bann

She's the star of the County Down’"

 

“Alright lads,” Jackson said quickly. “All together now!”

 

"And from Bantry Bay up to Derry Quay

And from Galway to Dublin town

No maid I've seen like the sweet colleen

That I met in the County Down"

 

"Well I've travelled a bit, but I've never been hit

Since my roving career began

But fair and square I surrendered there

To the charms of young Rose McCann

With a heart to let and no tenant yet

Did I meet with in shawl or gown

But in she went and I asked no rent

From the star of the County Down"

 

“Once more,” Jackson said. “Raise your voices me drunks!”

 

"And from Bantry Bay up to Derry Quay

And from Galway to Dublin town

No maid I've seen like the sweet colleen

That I met in the County Down”

 

I think everyone truly accepted Jackson into the group that evening as all eight of us sang out to the vast road together…

 

 


© Copyright 2019 S.R.B. Gray. All rights reserved.

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