January 3rd, 1764,
The coast of Cornwall, England
A distant lighthouse was all she could focus on. The wind was a screaming enemy, taking her by the shoulders and shaking her violently until her world spun upside down. Her body was sticky and cold with seawater, her dark hair plastered to the side of her face. Everything tilted and her boat began to slide, skidding to the edge of the world. If she opened her eyes a little more, the lighthouse disappeared in flashes of light, and instead she saw her life ending while she fell off the edge of the universe.
She shouldn’t have left British India. She shouldn’t have gone to Egypt, and done those things and evaded the inevitable. If she survived, she prayed, if she survived this, she would marry and keep herself protected and safe. No more running, she vowed.
No more fear.
The world tilted again, sending her sprawling out of the boat, flying into the storm raging underneath her. She accidentally drank the ocean into her lungs, and her body burned hot with spasms to give it all back. If she survived, she thought. If she survived, she would fall in love. And she would take control of her life. And begin all over again.