"…There are nights when the winds of the Etherium so inviting in their promise of flight and freedom made one's spirit soar...
This was when you saw her, a fiery glint of blue against the starry backdrop of galaxies in motion. The daughter of a goddess and a mere, mortal man. A spirit of strong will and boundless energy. To be brought under the dominion of no one but he, able enough to gain from her, a child. It would be to him, with which she was forever bound to serve and protect.
There was only one bold enough to take her, seducing her with his gold and wealth. With a single, poison barb to her heart, Captain Flint was able to cause her to fall into a deep sleep. Whereby, he was then able to consummate their union by planting within her a seed.
A guardian to forever watch over his name.
And along with this a curse, for any man that dared take his treasure..."
Monday. Jim always hated Mondays. Monday meant he had to leave the comfort and good food of the inn and head back to the endless lectures and studies of the Academy. Jim Hawkins rolled out of his bed, attacking his alarm that had grown legs and hurried away before he'd gotten the chance to hit the sleep button.
Barely the age of twenty, the once troubled teenager, had now become a level headed, young man. Taught in appearance and stamina, Jim possessed the prominent, angular chin and blue eyes of a typical Hawkins. Fat, locks of messy brown hair hung over a face exposed to a weekend of regrowth. The exact replica of his father as his mother would tell him.
But none of this was on the forefront of his mind this particular morning as Jim staggered about his room, heaving a loud sigh.
"Morph!" Where was the little blob? He was still ringing his little head off. "I'm awake now, ok!"
He was under the bed somewhere by now, somewhere Jim had dared not venture for a long time- and with good reason. So letting out a moan, Jim eventually gave up. He made his way to the bathroom, oblivious to the little, pink blob that had curled under Jim's pillow.
Showered, and ready for a new day, Jim hurried down the stairs to the main part of the inn - where, despite the early hour, it was already packed full with breakfast customers.
"Jim, you're going to be late!" The woman stood in the kitchen door, a rucksack packed with his washed clothes in one hand and a breakfast pastry in the other.
Sarah Hawkins heaved a sigh, watching the boy search around for his boots. Honestly, she had no idea how he managed to stay in one piece while he was away from her. She dreaded to think what sort of state his dorm room at the Academy was in. Regardless, she could look at him with the pride only a mother could possess. He'd grown up, becoming everything she knew he could be and more.
"Thanks Mom!" Donning his boots and jacket, the boy grabbed the rucksack and his breakfast from her hands and took off at full speed through the front door, only to turn back to give his mother a kiss on the cheek. "Love you Mom. Thanks for the weekend, I'll see you in a few days!"
"Call me when you get there!" Sarah waved after him, leaning on the door post and watching him go.
"Sure thing, Mom. Bye!"
Rounding the side of the inn, Jim made his way to the old shed where his pride and joy waited. His newest Solar Surfer. It had taken him all weekend to build it, and it was more beautiful than his last. Bright, orange sails glinted in the sunlight, absorbing its energy to power the fuel cells. It didn't take long for the charge light to come off, ready to fly.
Jim locked his feet into place, finishing the last of his pastry. He couldn't help the smile that spread across his face, like a boy's first ride on the rollercoaster. And with the fleeting flap of the sails, he was off.
The old tree hung, teetering on the cliff face just across from the abandoned mines. It stood out on its own and seemed a messy contrast against the pointy and jagged backdrop of the cliffs that surrounded it. Almost bigger than the Benbow Inn itself, the tree, of the Jarrah verity, was famous for its ability to harbour many things. In this case it was an old tree-house owned by two of Jim's closest companions from the Academy. Not much to look at, it was evident it had been built by the hands of kids as it seemed to sag to one side. Well weathered too as what was once a coat of red paint had now faded to an ugly brown. Still, though, the tree house did have a certain charm about it.
Jim landed lightly on the creaking floorboards, peering through its wide open doorway only to find the black haired, olive skinned girl reading at a table. Oblivious to his approach from behind, Jim soon came to realise that what he'd once thought to be deep concentration, was in actual fact a light slumber. More light coming to this fact as he spied the dimmed lantern sitting on the table just next to her. She'd been there all night again.
The boy smirked, his tread careful so as not to wake her until the last possible moment. Jim stood directly behind her covering her eyes with his hands he brought his mouth close to her ear.
"Guess who, Suzie-q?"
The girl started, sending the pen in her hand flying. "Oh, very funny," she leered, reaching up at his hands but he refused to let her from his grip. "Let me guess who this is…"
The girl spun suddenly in her chair, and much to Jim's surprise she grabbed his face, kissing him. All he could recall of that moment was that her lips were warm and tasted like strawberries. That was before her eyes opened and it suddenly dawned on her that who she was kissing, was in actual fact, not who she thought it was.
Immediately, she pulled back from him, screaming, "Jim Hawkins!"
A mix of surprise and pure amusement, Jim found himself unable to contain his laughter. He couldn't even stop her from pushing him back onto his rear.
Suzie wiped her mouth with the back of her hand, giving a distorted scowl. "Disgusting!" she protested. "Just like kissing my brother!"
"What's like kissing your brother?" Another striking young lad, no older than Jim stepped in though the tree-house window, oblivious to what had just taken place between them.
Bleach blond hair and striking dimples, he quietly assessed the situation that faced him. "Suzie, why is Jim on the floor laughing like some kind of, out of control, little kid?"
Lame in both feet, Suzie pulled back in her wheelchair making her way to this other boy. She pulled him into a protective hug. "Edmond, save me! He is trying to whisk me away from the shelter of your strong arms."
Jim wiped a bemused tear from his eye, his laughter becoming a quiet chuckle. "Aww come on, Suzie. It can't be all that bad. I haven't had any other girl complain about my kissing yet."
"You're referring to your dog and your mom I assume?" though lame in her feet, Suzie was still very quick with her tongue. She gave him a dangerous grin.
"You kissed my girlfriend?" Edmond, still in the grips of Suzie, stared at Jim with the raise of a protective eyebrow.
"Hey, she came onto me!" Jim threw his arms defensively, "Must have been my charm and incredible good looks." He finished, striking a fake pose and giving his girl companion a wink, again throwing the couple into a fit of laughter.
"In your dreams, Jimbo!" Suzie, visibly embarrassed clutched her stomach, going beet red in the face, "In your wet dreams!"
This set them off into another round of laughter as Edmond watched on, clearly unamused. He waited for them to settle again before giving a cough and changing the subject. "Are you guys ready for your final exams?"
Suzie gave a pained moan, rolling her eyes and signalling to her study books on the table. "Edmond, don't even get me started on how hard I've been cramming. I've been here all night!"
"What about you, Jim?"
Two sets of eyes fell on Jim who was in the process of making himself comfortable on a hammock. He lay back, sticking his arms behind his head and gave a careless shrug.
"I bet you haven't even studied the first chapter." Suzie placed her hands on her hips in a very motherly-like fashion.
Jim said nothing, merely giving her a sheepish grin.
"Jim! Do you have any idea at all what the term…" Suzie made talking marks with her fingers. "Final Exams' means?"
But Jim didn't seem at all bothered. "Don't worry guys." He heaved a contented sigh. "I've got it. We're all going to ace this thing. Tomorrow, we are going to pass at the top of the Academy."
"Says the guy who slept through the entire semester!"
Unfortunately, not everyone seemed to hold the same optimistic outlook as Jim. Edmond snorted and shoved the hammock which teetered and sent Jim tumbling to the floor, throwing the three into another fit of laughter.
The ship sailed silently on through the night. A mere shadow against the starry backdrop, no one would take a second glance as she flew with her sails tied.
Captain Elizabeth Flint stood to the deck, watching in silence the merchant ship with which she stalked. However, this time, it was not gold or treasures that she was after. Tall and lean, just as her father before her, she stood with a definite air of authority. Her skin was a deep indigo that seemed to glow either brighter or darker with her ever changing emotions. And whilst she was her father's daughter, the evidence of her other heritage was still very prominent.
"Prepare the boys for a swift landing, Mr. Witchpanther," her order was low toned but readily acknowledged by her second man, for no one second guessed Elizabeth Flint.
Her crew were quick to respond to orders. She didn't need to tell them else what to do for they all knew.
"Cannons ready, Captain!" came the call she'd been waiting for.
The merchant ship was approaching, and quickly. They would only have one chance at this surprise attack.
"Pell," in a quick final check, the Captain called to a figure who, more commonly kept to the shadows.
The young, red headed woman, barely the age of adulthood stepped up to her master, bowing in forced submission. "Yes, m'lady?"
Not taking her eyes off the ship, Elizabeth signalled to the empty holsters upon her hips, "Prepare me my pistols and get back into the cabin. Wait for my men to get you."
The girl disappeared back into Elizabeth's private quarters, the only member of her crew allowed to access to these parts. She was quick to reappear with her Captain's pistols, and then without a word, made her way back to the safety of her master's cabin just in time to hear her call.
"Prepare to fire cannons!"
The evening was quiet and winding down on the young Merchant ship The Wildflower. It would be a pleasant flight this evening, nothing unlike evenings before.
The night illuminated with a beautiful moon rising over a nearby planet with which many travellers were eager to see. But of most interest was the opera that was to be performed in the ballroom below the decks.
The evening warm and the atmosphere pleasant, the peoples were content, completely oblivious to what was to become of them in these coming, fateful moments.
No one saw the pirate ship, only the flash of the bright, silver letters 'The Walrus', and then a call - commanding and bloodthirsty. One that made every man, woman and child suddenly stop in their tracks.
The blasts of cannons were loud and rang throughout the night. People ran this way and that in their futile attempts to escape the fate that was to befall them all.
Elizabeth stood on, watching with glee, the fantastic fireworks display her men were able to put on. The smell of gun powder surrounded by the air of absolute bedlam…oh! It was a beautiful sight. One that could only be preceded by that of the very treasures these helpless merchants had hanging from their necks, ears and fingers.
"Prepare to board! Take what you can carry!"
The ropes came down, and with one well-rehearsed sweep, she and her men landed on the decks of this merchant ship. The looting started. Guns fired, merchants fled in fright. But none were able to escape the greedy hands of pirates.
"Line up the prisoners!"
In exceptional manner, Elizabeth's orders were followed through and stripped down to their very undergarments, men, women and children alike stood before her, quivering underneath her very stare.
"Now listen up, if it is your lives that you value." She started, slowly making her way down the lines. "I seek only one man. John Silver."
No one said a word.
"Show him to me and I give you my word you will live to see another day. If you don't by the time I count to five, I will shoot you all, one by one." She aimed her gun at the first person, a young lad of perhaps sixteen. "Four!"
The gun clicked, its cells charging. "F-"
"Wait!" only one man dared step up to her. "Please, there is no one here by this name."
Unimpressed, Elizabeth swivelled her gun from the boy to he that dared give her the wrong answer.
"That is not what I was I was looking for."
"He may speak truth, Captain," the only thing that saved that man's life right then was Elizabeth's second man. The black panther approached her side. He spoke to her with a quiet whisper. "The slave, the one with literacy, she does not find his name on the register."
Pell, Elizabeth's slave, stood silently to one side, a book in her hand. She swallowed, shaking her head slowly at her master. "I'm sorry m'lady. He is not here."
But Elizabeth was still convinced otherwise. "Impossible," she leered, eyeing the lines of prisoners. "I know you are here Silver! Show yourself or prepare to bear the blood of these peoples upon your hands!"
The figure stepped forward slowly. His partially cyborg face covered by the hood draped over his head. He stared at her, his expression still with determination. "That would be me, Elizabeth."