Slave Ship

"Get down there!" shouted one of the pirates as he shoved another woman into the vault. Her arms completely tied up behind her body. She crashed into the ground and her chest heaved, she was sobbing uncontrollably from behind her gag. The pirated walked right up to her and swung his foot into her stomach causing her eyes to widen in pain and another muffled scream to come out of her. "Next time just do as I asked and maybe I wouldn't have to be so rough." He walked picked up the girl's head, tugging on her hair to do so to make sure she looked him in the eyes and could tell he was serious. "Now be quiet!" he shouted to her, causing her muffled screams to increase slightly before drowning out to quiet, helpless sobs. The pirate smacked his hands as he looked about him and took inventory. She was the last of them…besides their new navigator. There were eight women and over 50 million in gold. He assumed taking the women into account they probably clear 60 million…maybe more if the women could get their acts together.

"Pathetic snobs," muttered the pirate as he turned and headed out the door. He quickly closed the large metal gate behind him and waited for it to click shut. His tongue flopped out of his mouth like a depraved animal and he ran it over his lips as he thought about the women. It was obvious he had taken up this job because he liked it. Money and women, no man could ask for more. And, of course, with the captain and First Mate, they also had power. Three for three, like as a pirate was paradise!"

(-With Alexander-)

Alexander collapsed once more, falling into a puddle of mud. Alexander pounded the ground and felt the soft, wet soil give way beneath his fist. Specter laughed a bit at his predicament, he was apparently going to wind up meeting Rina in a mud soiled uniform. However, he didn't laugh for too long…after the first dozen or so times it just kind of strayed away from Specter's attention. Reggie and Beth barely paid him any attention, he still refused to accept their help up and would struggle onto his own two feet using his own power. Dale bombarded him with questions like he was a medicinal form, asking him all about his body, making sure no bruises appeared on him. He was acting overly doting on him, extreme worry was painted all over his face, but Alexander just waved him off and said he'd keep going.

"You know, what Alexander?" said Specter turning away from him, "I'm going to go searching on my own. If I find her I'll let you know, but right now you're kind of slowing me down." Specter quickly turned around and gave Alexander a wave good-bye. Alexander going too slow, besides Specter felt the need to warn Rina that he was on the island coming after her. He wasn't lying about Alexander slowing him down, the man just wasn't ready for action, but nothing they said seemed to be capable of deterring that man.

"Come to think of it," said Reggie as she posed thoughtfully, "we were running a bit low on cooking supplies. We didn't get proper time to stock up on the last island due to all the commotion. Plus since I thought Rina was leaving and didn't expect either Dale or Beth to join I didn't get enough food for five people for five people. It looks like I got to stock up again, captain." Alexander nodded. He understood and let both of his two men disappear. That just left him, Dale, and Beth. Both of whom seemed less than interested in re-recruiting Rina. After a few minutes of walking, Dale and Beth both left to go pursue something else. However, Alexander wasn't alone for long.

The old man from the bar, 'Skull Crusher' Phinly, was coming out of it. He had a golden bar in his hand, he had just held that small place up and was happily walking away with it as he began to leave. "Yo ho ho ho! We're going to go deliver Bink's Sake! A bottle of rum, lots of fun! Some other lyrics I don't remember cause I'm too drunk!" The man brought up another bottle of wine up to his lips and took a healthy swig from it. "Ah! The nectar of gods!" He was only a few feet away from Alexander, but as he didn't have a bounty and Alexander wasn't really dressed like a Marine, and you couldn't see it anyways, from his mud-covered clothing, neither man paid much attention to the other. Until the two collided with each other and both of them fell down.

"What the-" began Phinly looking around at himself and quickly searching through the mud to find the gold bar and beer he just dropped. He didn't pay much attention to Alexander, who was stumbling to his feet.

"Sorry, about that," muttered Alexander, still feeling a little woozy himself, he offered a hand down to Mc Phinly who still didn't seem to bother himself with Alexander. Alexander paused and bent down to help McPhinly find his gold bar. Finally Alexander found it. "Is this what you were looking for?" asked Alexander offering it over the devious pirate captain.

"Give it here or I'll kill ye!" shouted McPhinly jumping up onto his feet and rolling his coat sleeves back and getting ready for a brawl. However, seeing Alexander's confused face. He quickly coughed and tried to replace his words with, "I mean…uh, 'achoo'? I've been coming down with a cold lately. People keep saying that my sneezes sound like death threats! Got me into trouble before! Sorry if I scared you."

"Oh…" Alexander said pausing for a second as he looked over the golden brick in his hand and thought back on the man's words, "Well, I got a doctor on my crew. Maybe he could look you over and see if he could fix your cold or something." Alexander handed over the large golden brick over to the man, who snatched it up out of his hands quickly afraid it was going to be some kind of a trap. However, he quickly realized Alexander was being sincere.

"Oh…uh, thanks for the offer, but I got a doctor of my own," laughed McPhinley, "He says the best cure for a cold is Grandma's famous chicken noodle soup! As a matter of fact that's what the gold is for!" He was the sick person and yet he was going off to buy the ingredients…that sounded wrong. "Yup, my old Grandma bakes soup with gold melted right into it!" Alexander jumped back, that didn't sound healthy at all. Was this man drunk? "Anyways, I gotta get back can't keep my grandma waiting for too long." McPhinley ruffled his beard, tightened his grip on the gold and quickly ran off for his ship. He hadn't realized it from his clothes, but was it possible that guy was a Marine. He had a crew and he didn't sound or act like a pirate? He glanced over his shoulders at Alexander who was already beginning to disappear into the horizon. No, no marine would wear such muddy clothes…he was probably just a poor delusional homeless man…if he looked a little better he would've stolen him for selling to some rich ladies as a pool boy! However, it seemed that McPhinley's luck just wasn't that good.

Alexander scratched the back of his head and checked his clothing once more. His black uniform was definitely ruined now. He would need to change soon, come to think of it…it was kind of odd that he wore a black uniform from his old days. It seemed like as a Marine now he would wear a Marine uniform or something of the sort. However, Alexander's fashion crisis needed to be put on hold for another few days while until he found Rina. He highly doubted he would just run into her, he would probably have to track her down using his superior intellect! Alexander paused for a second and turned left and right, unsure of where to go. "HEY! RINA! IF YOU ARE AROUND HERE SOMEWHERE GIVE ME A HOLLER!" Alexander paused for a moment longer and looked around, straining to see if he could find her, but he didn't seem to be having much luck that part. "It looks like I have my work cut out for me."

Alexander stretched out taking a deep breath and looking over his shoulder, maybe he should've asked Mr. Sick if he had seen her anywhere?

McPhinly smiled as he browsed his wares one last time throwing the gold brick down at the door and immediately perusing around the women. "I know a lot of our customers don't like used goods, but it just seems like such a shame, don't you agree boys?" he asked, revealing a sickening smile as he looked back to the three men he had with him. They were different men than he had with him in the bar, meaning he had a decent sized crew. "I mean a test run would be good, right? We just wanted to make sure we are providing the highest quality goods, right?" The captain bent down a little lower, grasping one of the girl's chin and running his fingers through her ebony hair. However, he sighed and dropped her, letting her fall back to the ground and into a bundle, her eyes wide with fear. The captain's interest quickly shifted. While he liked women, his love of money trumped all. "Has anybody seen my First Mate anywhere?"

"Last I checked he was still up in the crow's nest, sir!" shouted one of the pirates. The captain moaned and walked past the man who spoke up, heading for the deck. The First Mate…was actually the third person he had recruited, but in the end when the other two met their unfortunate demises…this man was the cause of them. He had killed the other two and proved himself to be a more than capable person in combat…and in money making.

"Hey, First Mate! Anything interesting?" shouted the captain, his voice booming up the mast to the crow's nest. The First Mate picked himself up and jumped down from the crow's nest. His body smashed into the ship, but neither him nor the ship were noticeably damaged. The First Mate looked over to his captain. The First Mate had slick black hair that was wild and stretched out in all direction, completely unruly. He had a thick bottom lip, but stiff upper one. He didn't seem all too worried about his appearance, wearing some of the most torn up clothing imaginable. However, nobody would ever disrespect him. The man had a deadly air about him as if challenging anyone with enough guts to do so to die. He wore a pair of shutter framed glasses and didn't seem interested in looking the captain in the eye, his head constantly swiveled to the right.

"A Marine ship is anchored on the island now," the First Mate said suddenly nodding his head in one direction before returning it to its right most position. "I'm not necessarily worried. Five people, two women and three men disembarked at precisely 4 o' clock this evening. They walked about three miles inland before splitting up into five distinct search parties. And you ran into one of them."

McPhinley's eyes popped up at that note, "I ran into a Marine." He began to search his brain for anyone standing out. "Interesting," he said turning away and moving down to the ship's board, allowing the rain to come down and coat his clothes. "It looks like I'll actually be able to get some exercise in…prepare the sails. We'll set sail first thing tomorrow morning with our new navigator."

"What are we running away?" asked the First Mate jumping forward and wrapping his hand around the captain's neck. "I didn't become a pirate to run at the first sight of Marines!"

"I know," said the topmost pirate, patting his crewmember's hand until he loosened it. "But we can't raise a fuss or else our new navigator may just leave us and we need her skills to get off of this island, money comes before women and women come before fighting. I'm sorry, but I'm a business man first, a lover second, and a pirate third." The First Mate grumbled something below his breath and clenched the sword at his waist.

"Don't worry I won't raise a fuss," he muttered, jumping off of the rails of the ship. "I'll make sure to kill them reeeaaaalllll quiet like."

"Of course, you will," said the captain turning his back on him and heading inside. "That's why I hired you." His First Mate was an expert swordsman, a man who had been in thirty-one duels to the death…and the fact that he is still alive speaks more to his strength than he ever could. Still though if he wasn't back when they set sail he would have no choice, but to leave him behind. Business man first, pirate third, and a friend last.


TWO PAPERS DOWN! What's left? Oh, another paper...and two powerpoints...and a blog...too much homework! I need to take an art class again. Or a creative writing class and just submit these stories to them. Anyways, more trouble is approaching the crew! And thus begins the official updates of Iron Hammer! It is finally its time!

I should probably point out that this arc was designed to be something quick so don't expect too much build-up. I decided I'd try my hand at a quick arc (I believe under 20 chapters, maybe even only like 10), it didn't work out too well as I still prefer bigger arcs.