Rhyse Falmarin

The Great Ocean Escape

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@Calder Muireadach, @Will Tennesen

After the escape from Ireland.....HERE

 

 

She had managed to keep up with the stranger. Making his ship before too many stirred in the town center. By some miracle the drunk Will managed to follow them as well. And thus she found herself at sea.

 

They were three days out now. Three terrifying days. Will had been her excuse to stay hidden below deck, the man had been sick at first. But truth was Will was sleeping most of the time now so she spent the time curled in a dark corner instead, careful that no one could find her on accident, hiding out and barely having eaten.

 

She didn’t dare go on deck. The simple sway of the ship on rough waters was enough to draw out absolute terror.  This much movement meant that the spray up on deck would be enough to lure her demonic nature out.  

 

They would kill her, toss her overboard, lock her up to be tortured later….. the imagination ran rampant, fueled by the horrors she had been subjected to in Ireland. No matter what Will thought, she didn’t believe the ship was "safe" for her kind despite the fact that several on board seemed to be clearly outworlders.

 

She sat under the metal stairs, arms wrapped over the bare legs, the shorts she had stolen off a clothes line in Ireland tugged down to her knees to keep warm. The oversized shirt was pulled over the same knees to try and cover the shins, hem of the neck gaping dangerously wide as she rested her forehead on the drawn up limbs, strawberry and peach waves covering her shoulders and sides like a blanket. Contacts had been lost in all the commotion leaving crimson orbs staring in the dark at the glass of water sitting beside her. For all the terror the undulations of the foreign ocean waters instilled, they also beckoned at her, taunting her psyche. The water churned in the glass sitting on the floor, spinning first to the left before slowing and then spinning to the right. The simple push against the liquid done without thought as she huddled beneath the stairs waiting for the end of this horrible journey.

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He hated cleaning his boat.  Granted, the ferrying often put people on his ship that were definitely not used to long weeks at sea, but it still was irritating to bring the drunk on board. It added a whole other mix of problems he really didn’t want to deal with.  Things seemed to have quieted for now.

 

They were making great time, the captain sitting in his perch with feet up on the bench next to him, eyes on the endless horizon.  He was leaning in the seat, one elbow on the windowsill, contemplating things that probably didn’t need to be worried about… watching the waters.  It was horrible timing to be making crossings.  Ice flow.  Seas were rough, but not so much so that he needed to slow down.  Course was adjusted slightly, then locked into place, passing it off to his first mate.

 

“Keep this course, keep the watches on the bow...” he said quietly, ducking under the door and trotting down the stairs to go below deck.  Time to check again on his charges.  They’d been awful quiet, and it was getting colder.  Neither of them were particularly well dressed when they’d gotten on the boat.  There were rooms they could stay in.  They were small, but it was better than the cargo hold.

 

Breath was visible a moment before making the turn to go below, his footsteps almost silent despite his size.

 

“Rise and shine,” voice was loud enough to be heard, but not particularly directed at anyone.  “It’s going to keep getting colder for another day or so, there are warmer clothes in the two rooms aft.  Sweaters, coats, scarves, hats… whatever you need.  Food’ll be ready soon in the galley.”

 

He closed the door to the deck and keep on his path down the stairs and straight through another door to disappear toward the galley.

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Swirl was becoming violent. First clockwise…then counter, water sloshing faintly over the side despite the fact that crimson orbs had departed from the glass of water. The push against liquid was innate, despite having spent several years avoiding it.

 

Lashes flicked upward as the ship shifted course and the slap of water against the hull elicited a flinch through her spine. Arms tightened their grip around her knees, more for comfort than any protection against the cold.

 

This was a mistake….so was staying in Ireland….what alternative did that leave?

 

"Rise and shine…"

 

She nearly jumped out of her skin having missed him coming down the stairs over her head. Glass upturned, water flooding outward into the walkway.

 

Sorry….

 

Apology was incredibly timid, barely audible over her breath.

 

"It’s going to keep getting colder for another day or so, there are warmer clothes in the two rooms aft.  Sweaters, coats, scarves, hats… whatever you need.  Food’ll be ready soon in the galley."

 

She had half tripped face first to the floor untangling herself from the shirt she had pulled over her knees.

 

He's sleeping in one of……

 

He was already gone.

 

….them.

 

Quiet word sighed from her lips. She had found one of the rooms and half drug Will into it to sleep off his liquor and then just…. sleep…it seemed. She had checked on him twice to make sure he hadn't died… he hadnt. Sleep seemed to be deep for the man as he cuddled into the small bed. She had not wanted to be presumptuous and take the other room. There were others on the ship and frankly…. sleep was elusive ever since she had been on the run. She couldn’t recall the last time she had slept.

 

A jacket wouldn’t hurt……

 

Lip was chewed as she peeked into the second room, the tight quarters were not so tight for the small frame as she hesitated opening the closet. There was an array of clothing haphazardly hanging in the gap. She wasn’t really cold natured but she was barely dressed in the oversized garments so the navy wool jacket caught her attention. The arms were slid over pale skin only to hang four inches beyond her fingertips. Grumbling under her breath she rolled them up as she stepped back into the hall, the hem nearly brushing the ground.

 

She wasn’t THAT small…. was she?

 

Buttoning the middle button she decided the coat actually belonged to someone extra tall because she was NOT that small.

 

Closing the door quietly again she padded bare feet towards the galley. There had been no talk of payment, at least not yet. Problem was she had nothing to give. She could cook…. that was about all she could offer.

 

Peach and amber waves peeked around the corner into the galley as a faint waft came of something warm. Crimson tried to avoid contact with anything… or rather…. anyone as she sought the source of the scent. Sleep eluded her… but not hunger as the stomach rumbled beneath the oversized navy wool.

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The spilled water was not lost to him, neither was the apology.  It was a boat.  Boats got wet, what he did worry about was the glass itself and whether or not it got cleaned up.  Broken things caused problems, water this close to the upper deck could freeze.

 

Stepping through the doorway, he grabbed a towel and tossed it over his shoulder, returning just in time to watch her roll out of a tangled shirt.

 

"I was referring to you," he said quietly, reaching to pull his ponytail out and pile a topknot on the back of his skull and roll up the sleeves of his blue Henley.  "I know your friend found the rooms, he snores."

 

Kneeling to swipe a towel over the water and pick up the glass, the blue script banding his forearms twinkled with their own light when he touched the water.

He didn't seem bothered by it, but the pale gaze glanced at her briefly as she retreated.  There were altered on his boat, he was an Outworlder... so were others of his small crew.  He'd seen odd reactions to each other's abilities before.  There were endless possibilities of what was yanked through the Veil, some oil and water, others like opposite magnet poles.  This one though, brought an odd glance over his shoulder as she retreated to one of the quarters seemingly to put on some damn clothes.

 

Towel was tossed into the sink, glass set in after.

 

One of his crew was finishing something on the stove, filling a tin cup with coffee and heading out to take a break while people came in and out to eat.

 

It was just him when one of his charges peeked in.

 

"I'm Calder."

 

He was stirring something, scooping it into a bowl and adding a spoon to slide onto the small table for her.  There literally had been no time for introductions until now.

 

"Best chili anywhere."

 

He scooped one for himself, taking a spoonful and chewing as he swirled a saucepan, pulling two mugs from the hook.

 

"I picked this up from a trading post in the gulf.  It's a cinnamon hot chocolate."

He poured two cups and sat one next to the bowl on the table.  Leaning on the stove, he dug into dinner.

 

"New York isn't Ireland," he said matter-of-factly.  "You hide, people will think you have something TO hide.  Huge magus presence there.  Respected, in positions of power.  You can pass, but not if you hide."

 

He took his bowl and mug, giving her a small nod before turning to leave.

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"I was referring to you.  I know your friend found the rooms, he snores."

 

His return nearly had her jumping out of her very skin. Pallor drained to nearly translucent, blue hued veins playing peek-a-boo on her cheeks as crimson blinked at him… lips murmuring nearly inaudibly…

 

Not really….a friend…

 

Lips pulled through her teeth as she shimmied to the wall on bare tiptoes to be out of his way. She had only met Will the same day she had met this stranger, didn’t really make them friends. Though even drunk he had tried to help her, so not enemies at least either. Eyes caught the "ink" again. It had a light of its own which wasn’t something she had seen on this world, at least not in Ireland. Toes slid along the wall as she crept off to the room… a quiet "sorry" repeated before slipping in to seek something more to wear.

 

Slender fingers fiddled along the sides of the coat, seeking pockets that were a hanging a bit too low on her form as she finally peeked into the mess hall.

 

"I'm Calder."

 

She nearly popped out of her skin again. Damn she needed to settle down! Waves bobbed as she nodded faintly at him, nostrils filling with whatever he was stirring in the bowl. Now closer it was becoming apparent it was chili.

 

Rhyse….

 

Response was soft as the eyes lost interest in him, focusing down instead on his bowl. It smelled like a pretty good chili actually. Definitely more the traditional end of chili which she appreciated. Hers was chocked full of pumpkin which seemed more popular in Ireland.

 

"Best chili anywhere."

 

Brow lifted a bit over the crimson orbs as she slid her lower lips through upper teeth, lowering into the seat and plucking the spoon up to swirl in the bowl.

 

"I picked this up from a trading post in the gulf.  It's a cinnamon hot chocolate."

 

Nostrils flared at the mug, thick lashes half closing as for the first time the lips turned ever so slightly upward enjoying the scent. Murmured words were not really meant for him.

 

…be even better if added some allspice and sweet ancho peppers……

 

The lashes lifted and saw him, almost startled he was there as the tone turned to something almost apologetic, as if she could be mistaken as complaining.

 

… cinnamon is very good too.

 

As if to shut herself up she pushed a large spoonful of chili between her lips and lowered her gaze back to the bowl.

 

"New York isn't Ireland.  You hide, people will think you have something TO hide.  Huge magus presence there.  Respected, in positions of power.  You can pass, but not if you hide."

 

Lashes lifted to him, his words pondered a moment as lips were licked over.

 

Didn’t used to be hiding….

 

Her English had been learned in the welsh continent…. the lilt of Irish tingeing her accent.

 

I um….. wore contacts…. lost those….. but that was it….. I mean…. I had my own shop and people didn’t seem to….….

 

Voice trailed off. It was more than she had spoken in a while and she was suddenly acutely aware of it, lips clamping shut  as she realized he had not really intended to engage in conversation, already turning to leave. To cover up the awkward moment she quickly took another scoop of the chili. It had been a long time since she had been without those damn contacts. The eyes that were so mundanely average on her world, were unheard of and demonic on this one. Truth was it was the first time in ages her eyes didn’t ache and water.

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