Chapter 33: Imprisoned
“Get off er ya all fools. She a high born can’t ya see. She gonna bring us a lotta bloody money. Bring er aboard Blue lady an put her in with other prisoners. Ya all understand.”
“Aye captain.” several voices said in union.
The man above me rose to his feet even though anger marked all his features. Taking his lead his companions loosened their grip on my limbs before completely letting go off me. I had hardly gotten my bearings together when my body was harshly pulled, off the solid wood of the ship I was lying on, by a set of dirty hands belonging to an equally dirty looking pirate.
With only rags, from what formerly used to be my clothes, hanging over my skin to protect my modesty, I was ushered like cattle off the Nimbus on to another ship which I assumed was the Blue lady.
As my feet landed onto the deck, my eyes began to sweep around and take in the new surroundings. Blue lady was definitely the bigger of the two ships, but not well kept. Molds covered edges and corners of the ship completely. The wood was decaying at many places all over the boat. I was yet to process the analysis of my surroundings and formulate an escape plan when a hard blow landed on my stomach. Intense pain shot through my abdomen as I gasped for air.
“Move ya arse ya little whore.”
Through the haze of pain I managed to shoot a nasty glare towards the beer belly supporting man standing in front of me, with a smirk plastered on his displeasing face. With no further word, he turned around, and walked away.
“Are ya gonna come ya high n mighty highness or do I hav ta serve ya few more blows.”
I seethed at his words, but bit my tongue hard to keep it from slipping some sarcastic remarks. I did not want to suffer through another series of hits when already my body ached everywhere, so I fixed my eyes at the back of his balding head and followed him down the set of stairs.
It was dark, damp, and suffocating where the flight of stairs came to an end. Every breath of air brought in contact with my nostrils a strong acrid smell. Scent of decaying flesh wafted all around causing my stomach to churn. For long moments absolute silence met me other than the sound of two pairs of feet hitting the ground.
Just when I was beginning to think of striking some sort of conversation with the man walking ahead of me, anything to fill the horrific silence surrounding me, a loud creaking noise arose in the air. Before my thought process could go in over drive over the possibilities of what was happening my eyes were met with gentle light which illuminated a small room housing more than two dozen people.
I was roughly pushed inside the room, an old rusty iron door closed after me with the same creaking noise that had cracked the silence just a few moments ago. Without so much as a backward glance my captor walked away into the dark. Long after he vanished from my sight, I could still hear his boots thumping against the weather-beaten wood. Once I no longer could hear any sound other than that of my breathing, I turned around and looked one by one at my fellow captives.
Every living being present in the small room was a female ranging from dying old women to a suckling infant. Each and every one was underweight; close to the point of starvation. Despair, hopelessness and resignation to their fate was evident on the faces of all save the senseless babies. I had to do something not only for myself but for all those who were staring at me with curiosity. I had to be their hope, and that is what I will be.