As some of you know, a few months back Mike started an RPG called Venus Memoria, and I was one of the few selected to play. Unfortunately, it died before the climax, and now, because of my love for the story line and my character, Bre, I have decided to convert the RPG into a story. The first half of the story will be adapted from the RPG, reusing some of the posts, the second half will be how I imagine it. To Blade, Mike, Sunstryker & Micah: I will write your characters as best I can, though we all know you all would have written them differently.
The Venus Memoria: Bre's Story
Tanwen Fire Elf
All night Bre snuck threw the surface of the city, avoiding everyone she saw. Luckily, she had made her landing from the exploding sky ship without much difficultly. As she ran through the slender, dark streets, she kept her eyes out for Mob members, or mob spies. Despite the "Government" that supposedly ran England, Bre knew the truth, the truth she had learned that night three years ago.
Her memories filled her mind. She had been out running messages back and forth from her Government Official father, Nicholas Willington, to one of his colleagues. Out of the corner of her eye she had seen a person she did not know headed toward her father's office. Silently, she followed him and stopped outside the door, ear pressed against the door. Her father spoke a name, "Elias". The name echoed through her memory, lingering like a ghost.
Noises of her destination brought her back to reality. She needed to get to the bay before the rum delivery ship made it's nightly trip the pirate port; Port Tesoro. Silently, Bre approached the sky ship, it was just about to set sail.
"Bartholemew!" Bre screamed to the Captain who was just boarding the ship.
"Well, if it ain't Bre Moon, now wasn't it just last year when you said you'd never sail with the likes o' me again? That you'd find yer own ship and be Cap'n?" he chuckled.
"Wasn't it just last year I threatened to kill you instantly next time we met, and yet, here we are."
He starred at her blankly. Bre sighed.
"Like usual Bart, it is none of your concern. Now, if you still have an interest in gold, I'll ask the questions. Savvy?" Retorted Bre. Bart shrugged his shoulder and boarded his ship with Bre following close behind. Once aboard, Bre flicked a gold coin to Bart and sat on an old box, then pulled her thick red hair into a messy braid while she listened.
"So, what have you heard? Is there any crew looking for a Captain in Tesoro?" asked Bre.
"Not a Captain, but rumor has it the son of Captain Atticus Derringer is looking fer a crew " answered Bart mysteriously.
"Captain Derringer? Interesting..."
They landed in Port Tesoro, and Bre threw another few coins to Bart before slipping into the city. Dark clouds grew over Port Tesoro, adding to the already chaotic streets and sending everyone running for cover. Bre pushed her way through the crowd, anxious to get to the Glass Eye tavern. She had spent the whole day gathering information about Captain Nemo and the Venus Memoria, and had heard that the Glass Eye was where he was planning on hiring a crew. She rolled her eyes, drunk men will give out all kinds of information, if you know how to talk to them. Pushing through the streets, Bre suddenly bumped into an someone she rather wouldn't have met again.
"Moon? Is that you?" hissed the a gruff voice of a tall, muscular man.
"Oh....Captain Guildford...how,er,nice to see you again..." Bre stuttered.
"Ye sunk me ship!" accused Guildford.
"Well...if it's any consolation, my ship is sunk too." Bre replied.
"That ain't consolation enough!" Said Guildford matter-of-factly, drawing a pistol.
"Listen, how about I buy you a piece of pie and we talk this over like civilized folk, aye?" asked Bre with a nervous smile.
"You be awful light hearted, this close ta death." Guildford said, casually loading his pistol.
"Ah, well I can't let the situation distract me, can I? If I was so distracted I couldn't have come up with this!" Bre exclaimed as she turned around, grabbed the sword of a passer-by, brought it down hard on Captain Guildfords hand, resulting in him dropping his pistol. By the time he had picked it up, Bre was long gone, racing through the town as fast as her legs would carry her. "Glass Eye?" she asked someone, barely slowing down. The man pointed down the street. Not stopping to look back, Bre spotted the sign and pushed herself through the crowd to get to it. Throwing herself through the door, Bre slammed right into a young teenaged boy.
"Hey! Watch it Lady!" he exclaimed.
"Well! My apologies!" Snapped Bre sarcastically back at him. "I was just running for my life, but I'm sure what ever you were doing was much more important." She rolled her eyes and walked quietly back to the door. Captain Guildford was no where in sight. She went back to the teen boy she has bumped into. "Do you know if the Venus Memoria has docked here yet?" She asked him.
"I just got here, but..." he scanned the room. "Doesn't look like it. I hope they get here soon. I can't wait to blow this town! So, you planning on signing up too?"
"Perhaps..." replied Bre thoughtfully. She moved to a small table in the corner and watched the door for any newcomers.
Bre sat at the table, her green eyes carefully observing everyone who entered. Her thoughts returned to that fateful night at her father's office.
Elias, even at her young age and almost insignificant job, she had heard the name before. It belonged to a member of their enemies, the mob. She had seen his name on a couple of messages before, messages she was not permitted to read, but since when did rules stop a curious teen? Unfortunately, they had been in complex code, and she hadn't been able to figure them out. The easiest part of messages was decoding names.
Bre pushed aside the memories again and regained her focus on the door. Finally, she noticed someone in a brown suit come in with the crowd. She studied his looks carefully, it matched the descriptions she had heard, black hair, 6 feet tall, grey eyes, or at least assumable both grey, his hair covered his right eye. It was Vash Nelands. Cautiously, she watched him for a few moments. He was quiet intimidating compared to the sort of men she usually talked with, namely the kind that were too stupid or drunk to tie a shoelace. He was also heavily armed. Finally, Bre stood up and began pushing her way through the crowd, this was it, time to make a good first impression. "Vash! Vash Nelands!" She yelled when she was in hearing distance, hoping to catch his attention. He slowly turned around, clearly unimpressed.
Bre cleared her throat and began the introduction she had been rehearsing while waiting.
"I am Bre Moon, former Captain of the Emerald Cobra, experienced sky sailor, brilliant strategist and perfect pirate. I hear you and your companion Captain Derringer are looking for crew members and I would like to join said crew."
He looked her over more carefully before replying, his expression unconvinced.
"Former captain?" he inquired.
"....Yes...my ship was destroyed in a terrible explosion...only I survived." She answered sorrowfully.
"A terrible tragedy, I'm sure. But if you were the experienced sailor, brilliant strategist, and perfect pirate that you profess to be, how did this come about?"
Bre bit her lip and her eyes wandered momentarily as she thought of a response.
"Well...because it was my doing. Mutinous crews aren't very useful." she said matter-a-factly, watching his expression and hiding her own nervous one. He nodded slowly.
"Ah. I think you forgot something when you listed your accomplishments" he said.
"I think that fits under the 'perfect pirate' part." Bre answered. Vash laughed.
"Not quite, for you see, it left you without a ship and crew. The perfect pirate wouldn't have let it happen in the first place. No, it gives you the status of a cold blooded killer."
"Could I be a pirate if I wasn't?"
Smirking, he turned and began to walk away.
"Stick around," he called over his shoulder. "there may be a place for you aboard the Venus."
"Alright!" Bre shouted back. He was lying. So much for good first impressions.
Again, Bre sat in the corner, fiddling with her half empty chalice. She went over her conversation with Vash in her mind.
"Why would he hire a cold-blooded killer?" she muttered to herself. Cautiously, she pushed her cobra bracelet down slightly to reveal her Royal Empire tattoo. Her father had demanded she get one back when she was a messenger. Before she found out what was really going on. With a sigh she pushed the bracelet back into place and looked around the room. If she didn't want to be left behind she'd have to keep her eye on Vash and any of the crew he hired. Right now he was talking to the boy she had bumped into. "Refill!" she called to a passing waiter, this was going to be a long night. Bre watched as Vash left the building. It didn't seem that he was leaving the port for good, so she made her way to the table he had been sitting at. Sitting there were the boy she had talked to earlier, as well as another lady about Bre's age with raven black hair.
"Hello, I am Bre Moon. I saw you talking to Vash Nelands, are you planning on working on his ship?" she asked the lady.
"What's it to you?" she asked. "Vash looking for crew. He happened to grace my table. Merely coincidence."
"Coincidence?" Bre raised an eyebrow, unconvinced. "Some how I doubt that, seeing as this boy sitting with you happened to mention he was looking to join the crew. That would be quite the coincidence now, wouldn't it?"
"It would be more of the same," Karen replied. "The lad here needed a place to rest, I'm here for my dinner, and Vash happened to chat with us for a while. Everyone knows he's looking for crew, but not everyone is jumping up and down like she had a bee in her bonnet. Now, unless you'd like to talk of more plesant things over supper, you may join us, but I have no information about Vash's choices for workers." Karen stared at Bre over her glass as she took a drink. "Take it or leave it." The boy chuckled
"'jumping up and down like she had a bee in her bonnet', oh, that's a good one lassie!"
Bre shrugged and sat down at the table; it's not like she had anything better to do. The lady smiled as she called the waiter over.
"I'm Karen, and this is Thomas. Care for a drink, Miss Bre?" Bre nodded.
"So, what kind of pleasant things does one talk about while sitting in a tavern at a pirate port?" She asked, leaning back in her chair. Karen smiled.
"The weather. Days gone by. Loves past and present. Dreams of the future. So I'm told. I rarely have company."
"Clearly, you're no pirate. The only time a pirate cares about the weather is when in the middle of a storm. As for the others, pirates don't talk about the past because that is why they became pirates in the first place, their only love is treasure, and their dreams of the future is to be a captain. Unless they already are one, in which case they want to be captain of a bigger ship." Bre said with a smile.
"Perhaps I wanted a change of talk. Like I said, I usually dont' have dinner guests," sighed Karen.
The conversation continued, though mostly between Karen and Thomas. Bre had watched the door carefully all night, then finally, the Captain Nemo entered with Vash. It was obvious who he was, the bartender shuffled quickly towards him as soon as they came in and directed them to a back room where desperate sailors started to line up. Unfortunately, she was pushed to the middle of the line despite her efforts to be at the front, and she wasn't pleased about it. She went over her plan for getting the job. Obviously Vash hadn't been impressed with much of what she said earlier, so she'd have to invent a new introduction. Maybe being a bit more humble would help. Despite her thoughts, she still kept her eye on the door, there was a certain pirate that she didn't want to see again, Captain Guildford. Bre watched as Karen was walked out the door of the room. "Liar" she muttered under her breath as she watched her leave. The people who were at the front of the line were arguing about who was next, the perfect opportunity for her to slip in front of them and into the room. She took a few seconds to examine the room, it was a small, simple office with one large window behind the desk. Sitting there was Vash and the Captain; who had an especially notable appearance. His features were incredibly pale, which was contrasted by 12 inches or black dreadlocks tangled with various pieces of machinery, feathers and beads. The look was completed by a black leather tricorn hat, and various other leather pieces.
"A pleasure to finally meet you, Captain Derringer." she said, forcing herself to curtsey and flashing a smile. She needed to make a good first impression this time.
"Of coarse it is. But we're talking about you right now. What's your name and why do we want it on the crew?" he asked.
"My name is Bre Moon, and I am an experienced sky sailor. More experienced and much more refined than most." she answered with a sweet smile.
"What ships have you served on, and where are they now?"
"Well I've been a part of the crew on too many ships to name, and I was also the captain of the Emerald Cobra for a little while...it was destroyed. "
"I believe the correct way of putting it is that you blew it up after a mutiny, or isn't that right?" interjected Vash. Bre closed her eyes and sighed, she'd almost forgotten he was sitting there.
"Yes, I supposed one could put it that way."
"And what misguided notion makes you believe we would possibly be interested in you?" asked the Captain. Bre's eyes widened in anger at the remark.
"I naturally assumed you wanted experienced sailors on the crew, insead of clueless lowlifes!" she snapped.
"If experienced sailor equates mutinous runaway, then I think I'd rather have some of your scum," retorted the Captain.
"Ooo, that's a bit harsh. I happen to know there are some fine fellows out there, just waiting to get back into the air," Corrected Vash. Bre was almost ready to give up, there was no way they would hire her unless...she had something....or knew something... that no one else did. She glanced at the bracelet on her arm.
"Do you...by any chance..have an interest in the Government?" she asked hesitantly. It was her second last resort, her last being her handgun, but she doubted that would do any good.
"I suppose that depends on what that interest is costing us. If we're dealing for your spot on our ship with information, it would have to be something very very... interesting." Bre smiled and slid her bracelet off her arm, revealing the her Royal Empire tattoo.
"I worked with the Government as a messenger for 3 years, I know my way around their buildings as good as any. I know of hidden entrances and exits, I know where they keep things of value, including weapons. You will not find any pirate that knows more about the Government than I do. I'll tell you all I know, and in return I only ask for a spot in the crew. " smiled Bre. Vash nodded slightly.
"Three years, eh? Tell me, how long have you been a pirate?"
Nemo's expression remained impassive. Vash took a drink.
"Well, Bre, I think you may have a place about the Venus, although, in this case, I believe the final decision rests with Captain Nemo."
"It just so happens that we aboard The Venus Memoria are very interested in what you have to offer us. Consider it done. Vash, we have the papers yes? Good."
Nemo took the peices of script-covered paper and handed them to Bre. There was an inkwell on the table, but Nemo took it and gave the girl a small cup and a knife, setting the quill from the inkwell beside them in front of her. "Due to the binding nature of the contract, we think that this is more suiting then just your name. Pardon the theatrics, we just want to stress the serious nature of our business here. You understand, yes?" Bre picked up the knife and paused. A million thoughts rushed through her head at the moment, and she had a lurking feeling that she would regret what she was about to do, and for a moment she was going to back out, until she heard the angry voice of a certain pirate on the other side of the door. Cringing, she cut the palm of her hand and signed her name in blood.
"There you are, gents! If you don't mind, I'll leave through the window behind you and meet you at the dock, savvy?"
"Of coarse. Here." Nemo handed her a large skeleton key. "This will get you onto the ship, and you'll be safe from whatever's out to get you. Pleasure doing business with you." Bre grabbed the key, slipped out the window and took off down the street.
Captain Guildford had caused quite an uproar in the tavern, once the word got out who he was looking for, a few more disgruntled pirates joined the cause, tearing the place apart looking for Bre. After a prolonged search, Guildford decided she must be in the back room, signing up for the crew. His pirates sat at the table and waited for Bre too come back out. They would have gone storming in but the bartender warned them against it, and he had weapon wielding men of his own to make sure that all the business wouldn't be lost on account of a few angry pirates scarring Captain Nemo away. After a few minutes, Guildford got suspicious and sent a few men to look for her outside, little did they know she was already safe aboard the Venus Memoria.
Bre snuck into the room the key had opened and looked around. It seemed to be a main meeting room, with a long table stretching the length of the room. Along the sides were sturdy benches. Antique pictures lined the walls and in one corner by itself was a large cushioned chair. Exhausted, Bre slipped the key into her dress pocket and drifted off to sleep in the large chair.
Bre was in a deep sleep when she was awakened by the movements of the ship pushing her to the ground. Yawning, she stood up and went to look for the Captain.
"Ah, Nelands. Where is the Captain?" she asked Vash when she was on the deck. He turned slowly to face her.
"You've heard the words, chain of command, have you not, Moon?" Bre shrugged,
"not recently, why?"
"Because here you're on the bottom, and I'm on the top. I suggest you show some respect, because it's a long way down now" he answered solemnly.
"Oh", she muttered nervously, "Would you prefer being called Mr. Nelands then?" he nodded.
"If you need specification then yes, otherwise sir will suffice."
"Alright then. Sir, could you please notify me as to the location of the Captain, if it's not too much trouble?" she asked, her tone wavering between sarcasm and sincerity.
"He will be joining us later. I am in command in his absence. You will take your orders from Mister Ashdown. Is that all very clear?"
"Of course, sir."
"Good." He turned and walked over to where Karen had been waiting. Bre watched for a moment as they shared a friendly conversation. She sighed and watched as Vash returned to the wheel, then went to find this Ashdown fellow.
Ashdown didn't have any issue putting Bre to work as hard as the men, and in a way it felt pleasant to just work hard physically with no thinking involved. For the next few hours Bre worked tying, cleaning and lifting. After a while she was handed a small feather duster and asked to go dust the shelves in the kitchen. Begrudgingly, Bre shuffled downstairs where she was startled to find the boy, Thomas, from Tesoro working hard on preparing a meal. He didn't see her till she was quiet close.
"Oh! Miss Moon. Don't mind me, just finishing up dinner." Bre nodded her hello and started dusting. "So what's your story, Thomas?" she asked, vaguely interested.
"Well, I..." without warning, the sound of a gatling echoed into the room. Bre drew her pistol, and ran upstairs.
"ALL HANDS ON DECK! ORDERS ARE TO TAKE THEIR SHIP!! ALL HANDS!!" ordered Ashdown from the wheel. Bre's gaze shifted to the ship beside them, a mere cargo ship, though the fire in that crew's eyes was alarming. Vash was planning with Karen, and beside them was a small pile of hand-held weapons. Bre grabbed a small pistol and sword. It was easier to dodge with light weapons. All of a sudden, the Venus was right beside the other ship, and orders were being yelled to board. Bre was half tempted to disappear until the it was all over, but of course some one would notice eventually. Hesitantly, she followed Ashdown onto the ship. Dozens of crew were flocking to defend their vessel on the deck, and they didn't look like they were in the surrendering mood...yet. Bre whipped out her pistol and fired shots at three enemy crewmen, missing all three of them.
"Hopefully nobody saw that", she muttered as she dodged a swinging cutlass. Luckily, it was all over in a matter of minutes, with the Venus firing shots from the gatling before each advance by her crew. Bre limped across the deck of the Venus and sat on an old box. She slid off her boot and felt her foot, twisted, but not broken. With a sigh, she picked up a torn piece of cloth from the deck and began wrapping her foot. As she did this, she mentally counted how many enemy crewmen she had taken out, 4 was her grand total. When she was captain, she usually got the crew to do the fighting, she would just come up with a strategy, but now that she was one of the crew, she'd have to learn how to fight if she were to survive. She leaned over the side of the deck, breathing deeply. It was getting dark now, and many of the crew had gone below deck for some much needed rest. For a moment, Bre closed her eyes and listened to the sounds of the ship, the creaking, the humming, and for a moment she was back on her old ship, at the wheel, going wherever the wind took her. Then, for a split second, she was back in an old English office, pushing the door to her father's office open just in time to see... Her eyes flew open. She had suppressed the memories of her former life for so long, there was no need to be thinking about them...yet.
A grey fog lingered around the ship as they hovered beside a dock. In the distance, a tall, ghostly figure strode towards them from the fog. Bre strained her eyes to identify it. Finally, he stepped out from the reach of the fog. The black dreadlocks and leather hat made his identity unmistakable, it was Captain Nemo. Not stopping his rhythmic movement, he strode up the steel ramp and onto his ship. The rest of the crew were just arriving on deck while the Captain and Vash stood on the edge of the ship, taking grimly in hushed tones. Bre slowly edged closer to them, hoping to over-hear a few words from them before the rest of the crew showed up. Not even turning his head, Vash pulled out a pistol and casually pointed it at Moon.
"Unless you have a death wish, and I'm not entirely certain that you don't, you'll stay back with the rest of the crew, Moon." Bre rolled her eyes and turned on her heels to stand with the rest of the crew. She hated taking threats from others, but she knew this was one time where challenging her superiors wouldn't end with her survival. Captain Nemo cast an eye over the crew, making icy contact with each of their eyes in turn. Bre turned away when her eyes met with his deep brown ones. His eyes seemed to search for signs of betrayal. Finally, The Captain and Vash started to move towards the crew.
Bre followed the Captain with the rest of the sailors, hoping that he would finally reveal what their next mission was, and what information she'd have to give them to earn her keep. Instead, Bre found herself shooting a resentful glance at Vash and Nemo as they passed by the crew to discuss their plans in private. She looked over her shoulder at the rest of the crew, wondering if any of them knew any more than she did. "The only way to find out is to ask", she muttered to herself. Rolling her eyes, she approached Karen. "So, Mitchels, any idea where we're headed?" Karen looked up from the cannon she was inspecting.
"'fraid not, Ma'am."
"You're sure about that? You and Vash seem to be talking more, and be on friendlier terms, than him and I. He hasn't told you..anything?" She asked, sitting right on top of the cannon Karen was inspecting. Karen stood up as she wiped her hands on a handkerchief.
"He only speaks to me of what he expects of me as a member of the crew. No more. No less. and could you please not use such weaponry for seating arrangments? It's very demeaning."
"Of course Mitchels. See you around!" she said, casually walking away.
Bre looked over her shoulder to see First-Mate Ashdown glaring at her from behind the wheel.
"Get to the kitchen! The men are hungry and Thomas can't hand the soup out fast enough!" Ashdown smiled like a schoolboy. He knew about Bre's contempt of kitchen work. In a huff, Bre stomped down to the kitchen. Half the sailors were crowded into the dinning room. It was a quite large room, wooden tables in a variety of lengths were scattered randomly about it. In one corner was Thomas, desperately trying to keep three pots boiling in a small fireplace, while serving and handing out the food to grubby, impatient hands. Bre had been down here during meals before, but usually the men were pleasant, polite and patient, at least compared to most pirates. Bre guessed with the return of the Captain and the purpose of their mission being revealed in the near future, everyone was a bit more anxious than usual. Annoyed, she pushed her way through the crowd to Thomas.
"Ah, finally", Thomas smiled as she handed five wooden bowls of soup to Bre. Rolling her eyes she took them and started handing them out to the crew.
The rest of the crew fed and happy, Bre and Thomas sat alone in the middle of the dinning room, eating their dinner. "So, Thomas, what's your story?" Bre asked, not really caring but getting sick of the silence.
"Well, ma'am, I was born and raised in".... Bre zoned out, inserting the occasional nod or "uh-huh" in-between spoonfuls. There was something familiar about this lad, but not in the context he was putting himself in. She had a vague recollection of meeting him somewhere else entirely except... Absentmindedly, Thomas pushed a long lock of white hair back into his hat. Without warning, Bre shot up from where she was sitting, knocking over the table in the process. Her heart pounded in her ears, she was furious. She drew her gun, temper blazing. "I know you!!" she hissed. "You're Elizabeth Bērns, aren't you?!"
He stared at her blankly. Bre continued. "From Edmontson Academy! You were the girl who always hung out with the rebels, the one who's mother married my Mother's cousin!" After half a second of silence, "Thomas" finally spoke.
"Your Mother's cousin...? Willington! Breanna Willington?!" she gasped, letting her long hair out of her sailors hat and changing her voice to that of the teen girl she was. Bre stumbled backwards, her real name hit her harder than a bullet. For a minute she considered pointing her gun the other way, she had just given away her secret. Both girls stared at each other in shocked silence, until Bre heard the sound of footsteps coming towards the dinning room. Ashdown's voice echoed through the halls. Panicking, Bre rushed to grab Elizabeth. Bending the girl's arm behind her back, Bre pressed her pistol up to Elizabeth's neck and shoved her into a side room. Locking the door behind them, Bre shoved Elizabeth to the floor and stood over her, pistol aimed. "Don't you dare make a sound", she hissed. Elizabeth scrambled to her feet and pushed her back against the wall. "Listen girl, and listen close. I can not have anyone else know who I am, got it?! You better promise me you'll keep your mouth shut or I'll end this right now." she threatened.
"I'll keep my mouth shut, but only if you keep yours shut as well " the girl smiled. "I won't tell if you won't tell."
Bre glared at her.
"Fine." As if on cue, Ashdown started pounding on the door. "Moon?! Are you in there?!" Elizabeth struggled to fix her hair back into her hat in time as Bre opened the door. "Yes, sir?" she asked innocently.
"What the... " he stared at Elizabeth, now "Thomas", bruised and limping. "What did you do, Moon?"
"Hm? Oh... Thomas here was just showing me a few sword tricks." Bre smiled. Elizabeth nodded.
"Alright then. The Captain needs to meet with you... Now."
Bre sat, hands folded neatly on the table in front of her, staring hard at the Captain. She had been summoned to his office, just her, the Captain and Vash. The room was small yet organised, the furnishings obviously the nicest on the ship. No one had spoken yet, they Bre had only just sat down, though the silence felt like years long. Finally, the Captain spoke in his slow, controlled tone.
"So. Are you ready to show us your worth?"
Bre smiled mischievously in return. "Are you saying my other skills weren't worth my keep?"
Vash shot her her a glance. Obviously neither of them were in a joking mood. This was serious. Either Bre give the information they needed, or there would be a fatality.
"Of course, Sir. Anything you like." Bre corrected herself.
Without hesitation, Vash turned and pulled a map, hand-drawn by some one with no skill. Bre leaned over it, eyes tracing the lines, the handwriting. She read the map's title: Willington Estate.
"Well, first of all, it's not called Willington Estate." Bre reached over to grab Captain Nemo's pen, only to be given a hard slap on the wrist by Mr. Nelands. With a stern look, he handed her a different pen from the shelf behind the table. Bre opened her mouth to ask the significance of that pen, but decided otherwise. She shut her mouth and scribbled out the map's original title, replacing it with "London Office V7K". As she took to editing the rest of the map, adding in servant staircases and scratching out nonexistent doorways, her mind once again drifted back to her memories of the place.
In her mind, she was in the doorway of her father's office, slowly opening the door. She remembered the horror of the moment, the moment she saw Elias, a high-ranking member of the Mob, handing a bag of gold and jewels to her father, supposedly his enemy. Even in her memories, what happened next was a blur. She remembered Elias drawing a small pistol from his sleeve, aiming to fire. She recalled her father's expression, his beg for mercy on his little girl. And finally, she remembered Elias leaning over the desk to hiss something in Willington's ear, clearly a threat.
"Moon!" Vash's voice brought her back to the present. "You seem to know this building better than I thought you would. Care to explain yourself?"
"Not really" she didn't even bother to look up as she answered. Vash drew his pistol.
"Care to explain yourself?" he repeated.
Bre looked up at the pistol pointed down at her. Unconcerned, she moved her gaze to Nemo, searching his eyes for signs of their intentions. She smiled at Vash and pushed the pistol aside, knowing she could just barely get away with it. Vash looked at the Captain, and he nodded slowly, reading his companion's expression. Bre's hand twitched uneasily, leaving a black blotch on the side of the page.
"Thank you very much, Moon. Clearly the scum we got this map from is not to be trusted. Would you mind telling Ashdown to send the remaining crew members to the main meeting room?"
The room was dead silent, it was finally time for the purpose of their mission to be revealed, and the whole crew was on pins and needles. The Captain Nemo skulked into the room, accompanied by Vash. Vash took a seat at the head of the table as the Nemo turned his back the company, looking through the rows of shelves on the far wall. The shelves were filled with leather bound volumes, maps, and instruments. He searched for a moment before taking out a large map, and what looked like a small gobe. He threw the map out across the table, and set the device down to the side. He spun it, and the device started to move. It spun faster and faster, its shiny iron parts whirring softly. Eventually, the parts became a blur, ‘till it looked like a perfect iron globe sitting on its mount.
Vash spoke. "We are going to kidnap Joel Willington." Bre's face went pale. This can't be happening.
"The Joel Willington?!" Elizabeth almost completely lost character at this point. Recovering as best she could, she cleared her throat, hoping Vash would just assume that her suddenly high tone was simply a voice crack brought on by the shock. Vash raised an eyebrow at the sudden squeak from the boy.
"Yes, the Joel Willington." Vash let his gaze slide over to Bre. "I assume there's no problem?"
"Oh! Of course not, sir." Bre said, trying desperately not to stumble over her words. Karen's eyes went wide in shock.
"And how are we to do this?" Karen asked as she cleaned the musket in her hands.
"We have inside information that will allow us to penetrate his security." Vash responded with a smile. He glanced at Bre. Nemo carefully picked up the spinning device, and set it down in the middle of the table. He then removed a lighted lantern from the wall, and concentrated its beam on the device. Immediately, a huge three dimensional hologram of a large Gothic building appeared in the middle of the table.
"This is the schematic for the building that we'll be removing Mr. Willington from. We'll all need to have a good understanding of it if we're going to execute this properly. Now. Here's the plan..." Nemo went over every intricacy of the plan to kidnap Joel Willington. The crew watched as Nemo's words painted a picture around them of every event, every backup, every element. At last he finished. "Questions? The whole crew sat in shocked silence.
After a minute of silence Vash shrugged. "If there are no questions, then you are dismissed."
Bre moved out of the room with the rest of the crew, still trying to process what she had just heard. The plan the captain had introduced, if executed properly, would not fail. Every strategy, every move, every murder of the planned mission played perfectly in her mind. There was only one problem- Joel Willington was her father. Like a bullet piercing through her heart, the reality of the choice she had to make sent her stumbling slightly until she leaned against the wall opposite the door. No! She halted her panic with one word, a word she had been using for years to block out any sense of feeling or a conscience. For years she had controlled her emotions through that one word- deeming it ineffective would be tragic. No.
Rolling her eyes at the thought of her near breakdown seconds earlier, Bre straightened herself up to her full height, adjusted her posture, pulled her hair back and knocked on the door she had exited seconds earlier. The Captain's voice spoke from the other side. “Come in.” Taking one more second to collect her thoughts, Bre pushed open the door. The Captain, still sitting at the head of the table, was pouring over the map of the Estate, seemingly trying to memorize every detail. His companion sat to his right polishing a copper pistol. Neither looked up as she entered, the only response to her entrance was a slight hand gesture from Nemo to sit down. With a determined stride, Bre crossed the room and sat down across from Vash. Bre cleared her throat and sat with refined posture, waiting for the gentlemen to give her full attention. Barely acknowledging her existence, they continued with their work. After a few minutes of frustrating silence for Bre, she finally spoke up. “Gentlemen, I came on as a crew member to give you information, correct?” Silence. “Well, considering this was really all I am good for, is there any more information you need?” Silence. “No? Well then, I would like to request being relieved of my duties on the crew and returning to civilian life.” Vash looked up from his work and at Nemo, waiting for him to respond. Nemo slid his eyes to meet Vash's, and gave a slight nod before returning to his study of the worn parchment. Vash smirked as he stood.
“Ms. Moon, I'm sure you'll understand that your request is simply impossible to accept.” He started to pace around the table. “You see, we can't let just anyone with the knowledge you now possess simply walk the streets. However...” He paused for a moment at the far end of the table, looking Bre straight in the eye. “If you would like to be relived of your duties I'm sure something could be arranged.” He removed his pistol from its holster and continued to clean it, every second getting closer and closer to the tense Bre. By the time her gaze had drifted to the Captain and back to his companion, Vash was only a few feet away from her. Turning to face Vash directly, her hand involuntarily drifted to her own holster.
“I wouldn't do that, if I were you..” scolded Vash, smirking slightly, “You have two options. Continue on this mission and as one of our crew until the contract expires -which I believe is in the area of ten years from the date you signed- or be relieved of your position and, essentially, this world by the courtesy of one simple bullet. Your choice, my dear.” At this statement the Captain finally looked up from the map and joined Vash in watching and waiting for a decision. No.
“If it's all the same to you, sirs, I would prefer to continue to serve my contract- at least for a few more days.” She answered casually. Vash raised his eyebrow.
“Of course, if that's what you wish. Now that you brought it up, however, there is a little bit of information on your background that we still lack. Bearing in mind the option second option is still available, is there anything you'd like to share about your.. personal life?”
Bre stared at him coldly. “I used to be a messenger for the Government. That is all I care to disclose.”
Nelands and Derringer exchanged glances. Captain Nemo spoke.
“You are dismissed.”
no one word posts please.
Wait me? Why not?
and yes, i want more please.
Chapter 7 is up!
Don't forget- it's still the first draft.
Let me know your HONEST opinions!
I love the intense atmosphere you created!