The Black Sea

All Rights Reserved ©

Summary

In 1850, plague is raging through Ireland, forcing thousands of young girls to flee to America. Byron Drake is waiting. Drake is cold and ruthless, snatching the young, impoverished girls as As the girls rounded another corner, they saw a black carriage waiting under one of the dim lamps, its horses stamping impatiently in the cold. When the heavily bundled driver saw the girls, he jumped down from his seat and opened the carriage door. Apprehension filled Edith’s chest. This was foolishness. No one in Boston was going to help two Irish prostitutes. No one. A black, gloved hand emerged from the darkness of the carriage interior and offered itself to Clara. She looked up hopefully, then accepted the hand and stepped through the door. Edith strained to see into the shadow, then the same gloved hand was suddenly before her, beckoning her to enter the carriage. The driver stood patiently as Edith hesitated, holding the door open for as long as was necessary for her to make a decision. She looked behind her, surveying the foggy, empty streets. She returned her gaze to the still waiting hand, then quickly took hold of it before she could change her mind. As the gloved hand tightened on her own, fear bit through her heart. Still, she allowed herself to be pulled into the foreboding unknown of the carriage.

Genre:
Romance / Adventure
Author:
elmbryant
Status:
Complete
Chapters:
45
Rating:
4.8 48 reviews
Age Rating:
16+

Prologue

The cold fog hung thick in the Boston night, threatening to settle as icy droplets on the young girl’s shoulders. Her breath had already crystallized on the stringy, blonde hair drooping around her face. She pulled her crocheted shawl closer. It was mostly decorative, meant to call attention to her dainty shoulders rather than to keep her warm. Still, the girl could not help but tie it around her, seeking comfort in its futile threads.

Looking each direction down the street, she searched for a fine carriage that might house a gentleman who required her services. She detested most of the men who sought her companionship, but would welcome any excuse to be out of the cold. Even though it was early, the lanes were empty, except for the miserable fog and the eerie light of the gas street lamps.

She crossed her arms and rubbed her shoulders, eying the empty lane as she shivered. Worry creased her pretty brow. Things would not go well for her if she returned to Mr. Drake empty handed.

She heard the rhythmic footsteps of boots on the cobblestone street, then saw her friend round the corner, fog swirling around her long skirts and dark curls. Her friend wore an excited expression on her face, something that was entirely foreign to them lately.

The dark haired girl spied her friend and quickened her step. “Edith!” she cried, catching the girl’s hands in her own. “I have found a place for us, for both of us! We can escape this wretched place! Come with me!” Her voice rang with an Irish lilt, and the girl eagerly tugged on Edith’s hands toward the direction from which she had just come.

“Wait, Clara!” Edith pulled back from Clara’s grasp, not understanding her friend’s sudden enthusiasm. “What are you talking about? What place?” Edith’s voice betrayed the same melodic accent.

Clara was almost breathless. “A man came up to me. He said he had work for us. Real work! Not this... life.” She swept her hand across the empty street to emphasize the hopelessness of their current situation.

“No, Clara,” replied Edith, keeping her voice calm to steady Clara’s enthusiasm. “You know we cannot trust strangers. You don’t know this man!”

Clara stood motionless for a moment, and Edith could see the frost that had accumulated on her eyelashes. Clara spoke, her tone firm and decided. “I have to take the chance, Edith. I cannot do this anymore.”

Edith sighed. “At least we know that Mr. Drake will give us a warm place to sleep as soon as we make enough coin for him. We know we will not freeze, or starve. But this man? We know nothing about him.”

“I’m with child, Edith.” Clara’s statement was matter-of-fact, though Edith could see the desperation in her eyes. “If Mr. Drake finds out, then... who knows what will happen to me?” She looked hard into Edith’s face. “I have to take this chance.”

Edith took her friend’s hand sympathetically. She knew that Clara was right, that Mr. Drake had no use for a pregnant girl. Clara’s life was over. And then what would Edith do without her only friend? Clara tugged Edith’s hand once again, gently. This time Edith willingly followed after her.

They rounded another corner, and Edith saw a black carriage waiting under one of the dim lamps, its horses stamping impatiently in the cold. When the heavily bundled driver saw the girls, he jumped down from his seat and opened the carriage door. Apprehension filled Edith’s chest. This was foolishness. No one in Boston was going to help two Irish prostitutes. No one.

A black, gloved hand emerged from the darkness of the carriage interior and offered itself to Clara. She looked up hopefully, then accepted the hand and stepped through the door. Edith strained to see into the shadow, then the same gloved hand was suddenly before her, beckoning her to enter the carriage.

The driver stood patiently as Edith hesitated, holding the door open for as long as was necessary for her to make a decision. She looked behind her, surveying the foggy, empty streets. She returned her gaze to the still waiting hand, then quickly took hold of it before she could change her mind.

As the gloved hand tightened on her own, fear bit through her heart. Still, she allowed herself to be pulled into the foreboding unknown of the carriage.

Continue Reading Next Chapter
Further Recommendations

Abriana: Speechless! Already looking for part 3!

Yash: After read this story, I suggest you to split stories in minimum 6-7 chapters to make the story more interesting. Overall, best narrating of situations & emotions of the characters.I hooe this will help you to make next stories.

amg60: Love the story line. Can’t wait to see what happens when he finds out about her fox!I would recommend this to my DaughtersI gave it this rating because it deserves it

Monic Little: Its a very nice story. Very inspiring and makes us giggles every episode. A must read!

Robin: Great story! The writer needs to learn proper grammar. Saw not seen, did not done, doesn't not don't. Of course going back and correcting all the typos, misspelled words and grammar errors would be nice. It's hard to read such a good story with such bad typos and improper grammar.

Camille: The plot was amazing it wasn’t super long it was good enough the end brought tears in my eyes 😭

Gabriela Vargas: Really like the short stories.

aurorakabashi: the book was intresting to read i really liked where the author puted blake as an independet woman i enjoyed reading this i know its short but it was amazing there were a lot of feelings but there were nice i am glad i read this it was just amazing hope anyone else enjoyes it as much as me the gr...

More Recommendations

Rita Mcintyre: You are very good at helping us visualize and feel what the characters are doing! Makes me wish this was true because I would love to have a mate who loves as completely as you portrays! Great job again 🙃

Rita Mcintyre: Running out of words to say how much I love these books! I hate to stop binge reading but need to sleep sometimes 👍🏻❤️

Jeniah: Loved it! Great book

About Us

Inkitt is the world’s first reader-powered publisher, providing a platform to discover hidden talents and turn them into globally successful authors. Write captivating stories, read enchanting novels, and we’ll publish the books our readers love most on our sister app, GALATEA and other formats.