Warning: blood, violence, language, abrupt left turns of the universe and sudden plot twists within, along with romance (hopefully), danger (definitely), and unexplained holes in space and time (only sometimes). Damsels in distress need not apply. Side note: the OC has anxiety and sometimes behaves animalistic to cope with extremely stressful situations, and if she had a wish that could be granted, it would be to become an Animagus. No research was done for this story (historical inaccuracies abound, I'm very sorry, I just don't have the time), and a few liberties have been taken. Okay, more than a few. Disclaimer, any references to anything not mine belong to their owners respectively (please don't come after me). Also, Armando Salazar belongs to Disney (as much as I'd like to borrow him for just a little while…) as well as associated characters of Pirates of the Caribbean. OC belongs to me. (As well as just a handful of other peoples in the story)
So, before we start all this, I just wanna say this is my first fanfiction in the history of ever, but I have done some writing, nothing with characters that aren't mine, so here goes nothing... I got sucked into writing this because when I saw Salazar for the first time in the film, I instantly had a crush (seriously, it's always the fictional bad guys, every time, but can you blame me? Talk about yum...), and I was finding a serious lack of materials to feed my obsession. While I was inhaling another writer's fanfiction, I had a left a comment on their work and was told in no uncertain terms that I needed to write my idea... or else. So, here we are, I'm bravely dipping my toe in the water and hoping it's not scalding hot. If anyone happens to stumble upon this and is kind enough to write a review, please be aware that I'm working a full-time job and have a lot of things to take care of when I get home, so I'm very strained and exhausted and it takes forever for me to respond. But I do...eventually. Anyhoo, enough of the nitty gritty, time to get to the entertainment!
Before I even opened my eyes, I realized two things; one, my head felt like it was about to split open like an overripe watermelon, and two, I was gonna throw up. Now.
I rolled over and my stomach revolted, sending burning acid boiling along my throat, out my mouth, even up my nose. Gagging and wheezing, I shakily raised myself to all fours, trying to hack out all the acid in my mouth and nose. I blearily blinked my eyes open and started slightly at the sight of wood and metal and grungy straw covering the floor. What the fuck?
My stomach clenched again and I started dryheaving, but nothing else was coming up. The damage was already done though, my eyes streaming from the pain of the acid through my nose. I collapsed on my side and a shudder went through me, the headache much, much worse than when I just woke. It pulsed with a nasty tempo in waves over my skull, my stomach trying to answer with more heaves.
I shivered again, trying to take stock of where I was. Okay, so not my bedroom. Wooden walls, bars separating into cells. I'm in a cell?
The small pot on the floor was when I started to become alarmed. I slowly rose up onto an elbow and tried to breathe in, somewhat of a challenge through the burned mucus membranes, but I managed to get the whiff of brine. And the nauseating rocking motion of the room began to make sickening sense.
I was on a boat.
On the ocean.
And if the woman a few cells down wearing a Regency-age dress was anything to go by…
I was a few centuries out of time to boot.
Uhm…what just happened.
The brief hope that this was just a seriously fucked-up prank flickered and died when I managed to rasp "Where are we?" to my cellmate.
She gave me a look like I was something that had squished under her shoe. Excuse me, lady? "Refrain from speaking to me, commoner."
The lilting tones of a British accent, not to mention her seemingly ingrained holier-than-thou attitude said with finality that we were no longer in Kansas.
I huffed in dry amusement, then unable to take my pounding head anymore, I laid back down to wait to die. I recognized the pattern of pounding pulses. It was the type of headache I had the joy of experiencing when I got overheated. This one was a particularly lovely one, encompassing my entire skull and making me want to beg for the sweet, cool mercy of death. At least it cut out the pain in my mouth from the stomach acid. The cell was sweltering hot, even with the whiff of cool breeze coming in through the barred window. I could hear the distant shouts of what I guess were the sailors on the ship, but they were too muffled for me to make out any words or if it was even English. Eventually I gave in and fell into a light sleep. Maybe everything would be better when I woke.
After what seemed like forever and a day, the distance sound of boots on wood woke me. Water or death? At this point, all-encompassing misery I felt made it difficult to have any more fucks to give. The nap hadn't helped at all. My stomach was constantly queasy and my head felt like I was laying on an anvil while someone was trying to pound my head flat. What I did note with little interest was that my cell was dark with shadows, the only light flickering from dim lanterns, and it eased my discomfort slightly. I had always liked nighttime better.
I lay on the floor, the dirty straw scratching my cheek as my breath rasped through my fiery throat. I'd long since given up on trying to ease the pain, and the headache couldn't possibly get any worse. The constant churn of nausea didn't help and the dizzying feel of motion sickness was just the fucking icing on the cake. The rate I was going, if I found something sharp, I was mighty tempted to just get it over with…
The boots pounded closer and the woman in the cell down seemed to shrink in on herself, no longer the overly proud peer of the realm as the owner of the boots made their way down the stairs and came into view. I groaned silently at the ratty, unwashed appearance of the man holding a small tray with two even smaller bowls and two thimbles of water. It didn't bode well for the kind of ship that we were on.
He let out a malicious chuckle as he went over to the lady's cell first. "Yu'r furst corse, m'ladi…" He cackled again as he slid the bowl of gruel and cup of water into her cell. "Th' cook's fines' rat-trap sup. N'joy!"
Moving over to my cell, he peered at me through the bars. "Ya a strange fish, ain't ya? Dunnow if ya gonna make't long 'nuff ta turn a coin."
With a sneer, he shoved the rest of the tray through the bars on the floor, then scurried off, leaving behind the disgusting stench of unwashed body and curdled onions.
Let me guess. Pirate ship. And the rat-trap soup has… I managed to pick myself up long enough to peer over the edge of the bowl. Yup. Raw rat in it. At least they speak English, more or less.
I flicked out my tongue in disgust, glancing over to see Miss English doing the well-mannered equivalent. But the water was welcome, even if it was warm and tasted like it was used for more than drinking. I used a small amount to try and wash out my mouth, the faintly sickening feel of the continuous burn finally being relieved a little as I drank, grimacing as the oily feel of the water. My headache pulsed nastily before fading just a tad.
Not even bothering trying to choke down the soup, I moved backwards until I felt the feel of wood against my back, then laid down on my side again, trying desperately to ignore the constant up-down feel of the ship, my stomach sliding revoltingly from my throat down to my belly button to follow the waves. A shiver shook me again, even though the muggy heat hadn't died down in the slightest. Misery clung to the sticky air like a fly trapped in honey.
Closing my eyes only seemed to amplify the heavy feel of it, but I was tired, the heat, the pain, the nausea just too much for me to cope with without any form of escape. I'd sell a kidney and both my ovaries for my phone. Just something to stave away the boredom. I loathed boredom, it was the worst kind of torture for me…
I so did not want to deal with her right now. Not even bothering to respond, I tried to drift off.
"Girl. I know you can hear me. Answer me."
I snapped my eyes open, growling under my breath. "What," I barked sharply.
"Don't you speak to me like that. I have some questions for you."
Rolling my eyes, I scooted around so I could see her. Her dress, which must have cost an exorbitant amount of money, was greasy from the floor, and matched the dirt sullying her skin. She wasn't what I recalled the Regency regaled as a beauty, but she was still gorgeous, even with her mahogany hair as a rat's nest. I couldn't make out her eye color, but I could see she had clean, even features, nothing overly pronounced, but it made her quite pretty. If she'd had a different hair style, she'd look like an elf.
I suddenly started. I could see her face. Her features were sharp and defined, even from where I lay an entire cell away, yet I wore glasses for years up 'til yesterday, but I could see her as clearly as if I was wearing them. I reached up to touch my face to make sure, but no wire frame met my fingertips. My glasses were gone, but I could see perfectly fine without them.
Ooookaaaaay….I'm really happy, but at the same time, I'm really fucking freaked out.
"Why are you touching your face?"
So, whatever happened to bring me to this hellhole also fixed my vision. Uhm, thanks, but I'm not sure I'm willing to go through this to make up for it. Outload, I just said, "I thought I had a cut. What do you want to ask me?"
My companion curled her lip in a sneer. "American. I shouldn't be surprised, considering your state of dress."
"What's wrong with my clothes? Everything's covered," I retorted, glancing down at myself, even though I knew it was extremely inappropriate for the timeline. Having read many a historical romance novel (a guilty pleasure, what me being a pessimistic romantic), I knew roughly what was considered proper and not. And wearing comfy boy shorts and a black T-shirt featuring a cute little monster holding a cookie tray and a caption that read "Come to the Dark Side, we have cookies" (which also glowed in the dark), was not proper at all. However, I was much more relatively comfortable with the heat than she was. I knew she was melting under the layers of that dress.
"What's wrong- you're practically naked! How could your family let you about dressed like that? It's shameful!" she gasped, horrified.
I rolled my eyes again and propped myself against the bulkhead. "Look, you said you had some questions. Would you like to ask them, or can I try and get more sleep?" Modulating my speech so I didn't appear too out of place (although my code of dress seemed to have taken care of that), I sat upright and waited impatiently. I had a feeling that this one was going to be troublesome.
She harrumphed, but didn't go back to ignoring me. "Do you know anything that's going on? About where we're headed? Anything at all?"
Lady, if only you knew… "I remember being in my bed, which was not on a ship, fell asleep, and woke up in this cell."
She frowned, leaning back against her wall in an unladylike slouch. "So you don't know…but how…" she trailed off and stared at the floor, still frowning.
I perked up a little, my headache waning slightly as she distracted me from the miserable state I was in. "You know how I got here?"
Shaking her head, she continued to scowl, but it appeared to be more of a reflective expression than a disapproving one. "You were aboard the Bountiful, a passenger vessel bound for the East Indies. A few days into our voyage, one of the cabin boys found you asleep in an empty cabin. Nothing would wake you and the ship's doctor declared you 'sleeping dead', which I believe is called coda?"
"Comatose, or in a coma," I quietly corrected, not wanting to be rude, but not wanting her to retain the wrong information.
"Thank you," she imperiously nodded at me before continuing. "You were comatose, and no one could determine how you got aboard, or what on this earth you were dressed in, so we left you be. I believe the captain was under the impression that you were a witch, dressed as such and suddenly appearing aboard his ship, but he seemed more afraid of what you would do to them if you were indeed a witch and they imprisoned or executed you rather than leave you alone."
I shivered to think of how close I had come death whilst unconscious if what she said was true. Although, dying while asleep wasn't the worst way to go either, especially if you didn't know it was coming. I realized she was still speaking and quickly tuned back in.
"-and they were sailing colors. The captain informed me that the Bountiful could hold her own against pirates and said I needed to wait in my cabin, but next thing I knew, we were being boarded, people were being slaughtered-" she broke off and quivered, her eyes squeezing shut as horror flickered across her face.
"And we were spared and imprisoned here, most likely to be sold into unpleasant circumstances," I finished for her, the reality sinking in that we were most likely going to be sold as slaves. Or at least I was. She might be held ransom, if whoever was in charge was in any way intelligent.
"I saw that they were going to kill you, and I told them that you were a highborn lady from a faraway country, one that made its riches in precious stones. I don't think they believed me, but they haven't killed you."
I narrowed my eyes. That seemed awfully selfless for a peer, especially in this day and age.
She was looking at me with a fairly expectant air. "I figured that if you were indeed a witch, you could use one of your spells to let us escape, or turn the crew into toads or such."
I blew a soft snort. "I wish I was a witch. Then I wouldn't be in this situation."
A scoff drew my attention back to my fellow inmate. She was looking at the ceiling with a disgusted expression. "Of course you're utterly useless. After I went through the trouble of saving you. Well, don't expect anything else from me. As far as I am concerned, you are now an obstacle between me and returning to civilization. Good day."
And with that, she stood up and walked over to the far corner of her cell to plop down with an extremely unladylike air.
I twisted my mouth into an of course look, then curled up back in my own corner. I didn't feel like dealing with the rattrap soup, so I left it where it was. I hadn't yet reached the state to eat raw rat, but I had the sneaky feeling that I was close.
Days passed with a monotonous boredom that clashed terribly with my constantly pulsing headache and churning stomach. The withdrawal from my addiction to listening to music was not pleasant, especially when it would have helped block out the constant dread and misery, and I had searched on the third day for any sharp implement I could find, yet nothing, not even a rusty nail poking out of the wood. My skin was crisscrossed with patterns I had made with my nails in an effort to entertain myself, my half-bob hair hanging down in greasy strands on one side that were quick on their way to becoming dreadlocks. My prison buddy had fared no better. She shed her dress on the next day and was sweltering in her undergarments. Between the two of us, we looked and smelled downright disgusting, yet that didn't stop our warden from throwing us calculating leers every time he brought us our paltry meals once a day.
I curled my lip at him when he eyed me up and down suggestively. I might not win, but I wasn't gonna go out without a fight. And he was used to 'respectable' bar rats from this time. I doubted he had tried to do anything with someone who used her teeth, and not in a fun way.
It struck me as odd that the only person we saw was that ragged excuse for a human being, but I could still hear the voices of the other sailors above us. Guess they couldn't be bothered with us, which I took for the blessing it was.
The boredom was killer, and I did my best to entertain myself. The lady, who still hadn't told me her name, refused to talk to me. I guess being stuck in this hellhole wasn't enough to sway her to chitchat with a commoner. So I busied myself with either mentally playing videogames, as much as I could remember, or diving deep into my headworld I had been working on a story with back home. Very deep. Sometimes I would open my eyes and expect to be there instead of still stuck in this doldrums.
I had figured out a use for the rattrap soup, since the only thing that had changed in our menu was a little bit more water and a piece of moldy brick I supposed was once bread. If I took out the chunks of rat and other unmentionables in it, soaked the brick in the soupy water that was left, the chalky mold canceled out the grimy taste of rat, which had a tang of gasoline (which was strange) and vice versa. I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy, but it was better than starving to death. After watching me the first time, my cellmate began to do the same.
Five days in, our visitor decided to bless us with his charming company again, this time under the dim cover of night. I was just starting to wonder if I had enough rat tails to make a noose when I heard the familiar thump of boots on stairs. I crept into the deepest shadows of my cell with my hackles raised, snarling softly. He never came more than once a day, so this boded very ill…
He stood in front of the door of my neighbor's cell, grinning gape-toothed at her as she retreated into a corner with a wary look. "Yur gonna be high fun, aren't ya, missy? Not gonna give ol' Screed any tuble, right?"
I shuddered at the thought and snapped my teeth together a few times. "Hey! You don't want her, do you? Won't she be worth more if she's not damaged goods?"
That got his attention. He slowly turned to look at me, his blackened grin stretching wider when I became his target. I was disconnected emotionally, something that I tended to do in high-stress situations, but I knew what I wanted to do. These animals had imprisoned us, left us in inhumane conditions that I wouldn't leave a serial killer in, and I wanted my pound of flesh. I grinned at the rat as he unlocked my cell door, grappling at his breeches.
And I was gonna get it. It would hurt, but it would be oh, so satisfying.
"On yur back, bitch," he spat as I moved closer. I was scared, shaking from adrenaline like when I was about to kill a poisonous snake, except this one was far bigger than any copperhead I'd killed, and I didn't have my bush axe. But I needed to be close to do damage, and the adrenaline rush was working wonders for my panicky courage.
"Don't you want to have some fun first?" I rambled, my mind starting to short out as the panic grew. I knew I needed to disable him, but wasn't sure if I could remember enough from my self-defense class many years ago. "Anticipation makes it all the sweeter, right?"
Eyes first, then groin or slamming nose into brain. After that, fair game.
I placed my hands on the nasty coat he was wearing, covered in grime and snot and other secretions, gently gliding upwards until I had my hands on his face.
He was watching me with an uncertain look, apparently stupid only up to a point, but he went with it, grabbing my sides with a pinching grip.
I winced, then smiled at him as I smoothed my thumbs across his eyelids as I pulled him down as if for a kiss.
Then I stabbed deep, trying to force my thumbnails as deep through his eyelids as I could get, trying to not get shaken off as he screeched and danced around, scrabbling at my skin as he tried to pull me off. I tried to get a knee up but he had already skittered out of reach as he grabbed my hands and shoved me away. Bloody liquid streamed down his cheeks, but I couldn't tell if I had crushed them to a pulp. Either way, he was still mobile, and even more dangerous now that he was in pain and enraged.
I jumped out of his way as he blindly rushed towards me, screaming profanities and how he was going to slice me to ribbons.
The ship suddenly rocked underneath us, the motion accompanying by the roar of thunder and the strange, acrid stench of a smoke I hadn't smelled before.
Cannonfire, I realized. They were firing on someone. Another passenger liner like the Bountiful?
Unfortunately, the rocking had jolted me too close to the blinded rat and he managed to grab hold of me, his hands scrabbling along my torso as he tried to find my neck.
I dodged as much as I could with the grip he had on one of my arms, but wasn't quick enough as he managed to slap me hard across my face, rapidly crushing me in a bear hug as he began to squeeze. Stars flashed across my vision, then disappeared in a red haze as rage rapidly replaced panic. Fueled by that and having no other options, I snarled and lunged forward, reaching downwards to try and crush sensitive parts as I sank my teeth deep into his neck to tear flesh and arteries. I tasted blood as I bit hard, and my fingers managed to grab something soft and giving. I immediately dug in, squeezing and twisting with all my might as I withstood the blows from my victim's flailing fists as he let go of me and tried to punch me into letting go. My ribs were aching from the punishment of being repeatedly pounded, but I held on, my jaws locked deep into blood and mangled flesh.
A lucky fist managed to clock me against my temple and I almost blacked out, managing to struggle back to awareness from the sheer knowledge that if I let go, I was in bigger trouble than before.
Hot blood streamed everywhere and the beating gradually began to subside as he lost huge quantities of the fluid.
I snarled and bit deeper, sending fresh gushes of blood pulsing down my chest. All I tasted was hot metal, my entire body shaking with adrenaline. My teeth hurt from the effort of tearing through skin and muscle, but my sharp canines has done the job as my victim started going slack.
I had work to unlock my jaw as he began to drop, the tension making muscles ache that I hadn't felt since my wisdom teeth had been removed. His body collapsed to the floor, all but gone, the floor a bloody mess underneath us. I was shaking so hard I could barely stand as I stared down at the first human being I had ever killed. I felt no remorse, but no satisfaction either. Just…tired, and in pain.
Shuddering, I stumbled over to the bulkhead as the ship rocked again, harder this time, the returning cannonfire that was coming from whoever they were fighting booming louder and more frequently than the ship we were on. Serves you bastards right, picking on someone with bigger teeth. Hopefully they'll kill all you fuckers.
"You-you killed him!" I heard in a shrill screech. "I can't believe…Oh my god…"
Why does everyone insist on screeching? Seriously? It's fucking annoying. I ignored her and slumped down the wall to my knees, my muscles like limp jelly after the adrenaline faded and left shivering limbs and pain. So much pain.
I half-heartedly tried to spit out some blood and wrinkled my nose when it just dribbled down my chin.
"Get up! We don't have time for this! We need to get out of here, or we'll be sunk along with this wretched vessel. Get up!" she yelled, smacking her hands against the bars, apparently having recovered from witnessing a fairly gruesome murder.
Scoffing lightly, I closed my eyes, exhaustion sweeping through me like a wave of blackness. I was so tired…
Dehydration, pain, nausea, adrenaline rush, it was all too much and I had nothing left. I let the bone-deep weariness drag me under, the faint cries for help swimming in the distance the last thing I heard below the roar of cannons…
I drifted slightly to consciousness, not enough to fully awaken, but enough to be aware that I was being carried. I was pressed tight against a solid chest, the powerful arms holding me seemed strong enough to crush bone, but I couldn't summon any concern, not when I was being held so gently. It was a very strange feeling. I hadn't been carried since I was little, and I didn't even know where I was being carried to. Whoever it was, I felt his chest vibrate when he barked commands in a language I didn't understand, the baritone of his voice a deep and smoky sound with a raspy bite to it, a mellow music I could listen to all day. I wanted to open my eyes to see his face, but my eyelids were too heavy and it took too much effort. He started to speak again, softer this time, and I drifted off, lulled by the sound of his voice.
Soooo...here's the first chapter! Blood and gore abound, I'm sorry if I didn't do the ratings right. Let me know if I need to fix something, and please let me know of any spelling/grammatical errors! It drives me crazy when I read other people's work and I try to be a stickler for it, but sometimes things slip through. I have no idea when I'll post next, but rest assured that I will. I have more content than just this but I want to iron it out some before I put it up. Hope you got sucked in! :D