The next weeks and months I was constant companion of Captain Rin, just as I had it been to Captain Lessnya before.
In the Drunken Mermaid I served the guests, made for them the jobs that Captain Rin had done herself before, or I danced. Never on stage, which existed in the Drunken Mermaid, but was not used here the same way just as it had been not used in the Crazy Seahorse; instead I was dancing at the tables, on the dance floor with the guests, or even on a table, depending what was desired.
A few times still there was a meeting between Captain Rin and Captain Lessnya, but Captain Rin knew very well to conceal from Captain Lessnya, that I was now her slave. Often she sent me away with orders, and after completing I heard at my return by others, that Captain Lessnya was "just gone".
But as a matter of fact I did not care about that. Captain Rin had long conversations with me, we were talking about God and the world, about her disease, about our future, about her relationships with Captain Kim and Ben Maat, where Captain Rin swore that she loved me as well, she loves each in her own way; and of course we talked about me. In these discussions, we became very close; I only did not like that Captain Rin still insisted that I was not a real slave, but she could not or wanted not to explain who or what else I was then.
But even that was initially indifferent to me. I enjoyed every word of Captain Rin, she was, as said before, a fascinating personality, she could tell wonderful stories about her life; I really was addicted to Captain Rin.
We often met Captain Kim and Mate Ben, and I made friends with the both. Mate Ben was affable though not very talkative, but Captain Kim made a very hard and unapproachable impression; she indicated to me clearly that she had more rights to Captain Rin than me, and she was only a trace more friendlily when I swore to her that I, as Captain Rin's slave, never had any claims on Captain Rin. I never had the feeling that Captain Kim would accept me entirely. That is why every minute, every second, I had Captain Rin for me alone, was infinitely priceless for me.
One day when I was alone in the Drunken Mermaid, Captain Lessnya passed in the company of a battered young girl, who had, as far as I could see, multiple scars in the face and on the arms. Captain Lessnya introduced her as Lara. She was a new crew member, and Captain Lessnya asked me to help Lara with some problems where Captain Lessnya could do nothing or even very little. After Captain Rin's reports about Captain Lessnya I was skeptical, but Lara should not suffer because of this, and I chatted with her. Incidentally, it was the only time that Captain Lessnya had come accompanied by somebody else, though I noticed that only later. But this way I got to know Lara.
The next weeks Lara several times came to the Drunken Mermaid to see me, and these visits quickly became more often. Clearly, Lara also met Captain Rin and was very impressed by her, which was not surprising to me.
I could see from Captain Rin's stories how the friendship between her and Captain Lessnya broke piece by piece. I felt sorry about Captain Lessnya, but meanwhile Captain Rin had become much more important to me.
I asked Captain Rin about a collar; she promised to get one for me with her name on it and told me to wait.
And several times she was a great lover. It was invaluable to me as her slave, that it was me, whom she had chosen as bed-playmate, and I always did my best to satisfy Captain Rin.
Unfortunately then the period started when Captain Rin went out to sea and left me alone in the Drunken Mermaid. Firstly, there were only short trips, I always was happy when she came home again, but soon the rides became longer. Finally, it lasted several days, often more than a week. Captain Rin returned for a day and again went out to the sea the next day, staying away a week or longer. I waited day by day for her unpredictable return, I daily looked out for hours after her ship, and I hoped that she would come back again at least someday.
When someone called "ship in sight," I suspended every work in the Drunken Mermaid and ran out to see if it was the Estafadora, Captain Rin's ship.
Because it seemed to take more time than usual that Captain Rin would have a collar for me, I bought a necklace of Bloodstone, which I always wore instead.
Regardless, the few days Captain Rin spent with me this way were incomparable. I remember a conversation we once led: She said she'll braise well in hell after her death. I responded that I would follow her everywhere, even into hell, if her way lead there; we were going to meet there, and I will lead her out from hell. And I was convinced that if I would enter hell voluntarily only because of love, I could leave it again and additionally take somebody with me. I was willing to do anything, to do really everything for her.
One evening there was a dispute between Captain Rin and a soldier which loomed to escalate. When the soldier reached for his sword and Captain Rin for hers, I was between the both, faster than I could comprehend it by myself. It probably was not necessary; Captain Rin could defend herself very well. Also it was totally unconcerned to me, what the soldier could do to me, it only was important for me that nothing should happen to Captain Rin. When the soldier had departed, Captain Rin said to me "You would give your life for me. Huh?" I only could nod; tears ran down my face. Captain Rin hugged me and said softly: "Good Marie".
However, nothing changed on the long absences of Captain Rin. I also never knew what she was doing on these trips. Maybe she met with Captain Kim and Mate Ben, if they also were on their own ship, the Unfavorable. It did not concern me. My job was to wait in the Drunken Mermaid for the return of Captain Rin and to satisfy the guests. Often there were complaints that I had run out to see whether an incoming ship was the Estafadora.
In the meantime Lara had become a good friend to me and was several times in a week to be found in the Drunken Mermaid. She kept me company and often we waited together for the arrival of the Estafadora. Meanwhile Lara liked Captain Rin very much. But there also were guests that told me scare stories about Captain Rin; probably they were amused about my devotion to her. One day a female guest named Mouse told me, that Captain Rin once had been her slave. I was aware that Captain Rin had had an affair with Mouse, which had been just at the time when I had submitted to Captain Rin, but the affair was short-lived. Captain Rin also had told me that she had an adventurous life, this also could include that she really once had been a slave, and it affected me that Captain Rin, which meant so much to me, should have been a slave of this boastful Mouse. When I inquired Captain Rin about this narration, Captain Rin punished me because I had believed this story: I had to fulfill my daily duties, but was for one day not allowed to speak to Captain Rin or contact her in any other way, even not to leave a message for her. I must not follow her when she went somewhere; I not even was allowed to come near her. Just this one day when she was on land! It was the hardest punishment I could ever get. And the next day when I was allowed to talk to her again, she was back to the sea.
But mostly Captain Rin was kind and understanding and still we had long conversations at the rare evenings when she was present, at the time when we were alone. She told me about her illness, and that it was particularly bad when she was at sea, but she refused my offer that I could accompany her to the sea and nurse her.
She told me about her broken friendship with Captain Lessnya and that Captain Lessnya had betrayed her, only with luck she had escaped a capture.
This break of loyalty and friendship Captain Lessnya had committed, hurt me in the heart. I was glad that Captain Rin had escaped and dared not to imagine anything what could have happened, if she would not have succeeded.
And she told me a lot about her career as a pirate, about her injuries she had suffered in earlier battles, about her other friends, about her former slaves or her love for me.
But very often also Captain Kim and Mate Ben were present, and then any familiarity between Captain Rin and me disappeared. But as much as I tried to get along with Captain Kim - I respected Captain Kim, who was described by Captain Rin as her wife, as well as Captain Rin herself - it was in vain. Captain Kim often treated me as if I was air, and that, although she of course always enjoyed the main attention of Captain Rin.
Captain Kim and Mate Ben never visited me in the Drunken Mermaid when I was alone. They only came there when Captain Rin was present, or Captain Rin visited the somewhat run-down, very headstrong furnished tavern of Captain Kim, that had the name Voodoo, and I was allowed to come there too, when all the guests in the Drunken Mermaid were gone.
Conversely, I never visited Captain Kim or Mate Ben, when I was alone and they were not gone with the Unfavorable. Although I always accompanied Captain Rin for both, when she visited them, as I accompanied Captain Rin everywhere when she was on land, but I was constantly only an appendix, an entourage for Captain Rin. For more, I had no right, and I also had too much respect towards them, to meet them without the presence of Captain Rin.
Captain Rin called Captain Kim "Sweetheart", Mate Ben "Darling" and me usually "Marie", rarely "sweetie". It was not me to judge or complain about. Who was Captain Rin and who I was? She was my sun, without it, the day was gray and dreary; her words were law for me. Whatever Captain Rin said it was for me wholly owned validity and truth. And I was her loyal slave. Even though I still had no collar of Captain Rin, it was obvious to everyone that I was.
I often cried at the days when Captain Rin was absent, because I knew that she was ill, and I could do nothing, even was not allowed to do anything. She declined still allowing me to accompany her on her journeys and nurse her. When unexpectedly she was back after several days, when I asked how she was, and she most replied "not so special", my heart hurt and I tried to treat her special attention; indeed she enjoyed this very much, but she never changed her mind to assume more from me than just my mere presence, during this comparatively short period, when she was on land with me.
One evening, when Captain Rin already as usually was away some days, the door opened and Captain Lessnya entered. She saw at first glance, that I not only just worked for Captain Rin, but that, even if I was not wearing a collar, Captain Rin was my mistress now. Meanwhile I had learned enough from Captain Rin's stories about the falsity of Captain Lessnya and greeted her with the mocking words "Good evening, my ex-Captain" –
"Don't call me this" Captain Lessnya just said.
We exchanged some words, and then she surprisingly said "Please tell Rin that she still means a lot to me."
I was outraged. Captain Lessnya had betrayed Captain Rin, and now she apparently tried to ingratiate with Captain Rin again over me. This lie was the greatest impudence that I had ever heard from Captain Lessnya. I glared at her, "After all, what Captain Rin told me about you, I can believe you nothing ever more".
Captain Lessnya looked at me a long time, and then she left without another word. I still wonder why she did not simply pull her sword and felled me. However, it would also not have minded me. I was still willing to die for Captain Rin, even if the only purpose to die had existed in telling openly the truth what Captain Lessnya had done to Captain Rin.
I even would have been willing to let my throat cut by Captain Rin, and so to die for her, if she would have liked it, and if she only had hold me in her arms during the time I would have bled to death. Of course, Captain Rin never wanted to do so, but even this I had done for her, if it had been her wish.
When I told Captain Rin after her return about the visit of Captain Lessnya, she just asked me not to appeal Captain Lessnya on this story of the betrayal, if she should come again. "I don't want poking into old wounds and I want to grow grass over the matter," she said.
Somehow time passed. It was leveled to the effect that Captain Rin was only one day a week there, mostly at the weekends, between Friday and Monday, but it was never sure which of these days, as well the hour was a gamble. I cried a lot, almost every day, because I missed Captain Rin and because I could do nothing for her, even though I knew that she felt bad from her illness when she was not here. Lara tried, when she was present, as well as possible to comfort me, but usually without success.
Actually there still were a few meetings between Captain Lessnya and me, but we never exchanged many words, and if so, Captain Lessnya just said, I would not believe her anyway what she said, I even would not believe her what the weather is, as long as Captain Rin would not confirm it. Even if that was a bit exaggerated, somehow she was right.
I now also noticed that Captain Lessnya never was accompanied. She was always alone. These meetings with Captain Lessnya rapidly became rare, and soon they ceased.
There were no significant events any more. Eagerly, almost greedily, I daily waited for the return of the Estafadora and Captain Rin, who sometimes after a few days, but usually after a week or longer, came back and then always told me fantastic stories about the countries, where she had been, the people she had met and the mythical creatures she had seen. And my chest was warm, my heart was delightful when she was with me, I was happy during those hours. But in the long run that all could not hide from me that Captain Rin actually was almost never present. It was a tearful time.
Finally, Lara told me that Captain Lessnya had her crew lost in part or had dismissed them, and that she had retired to a small cottage; her ship was on dry land, she would never go to sea anymore, she lived alone and lonely. Lara had come to the Pearl shortly after I had left Captain Lessnya, she had remained there only briefly, but then she kept in touch with Captain Lessnya, despite her frequent visits to the Drunken Mermaid. Lara wanted now to pay a visit to Captain Lessnya and asked me if I wanted to come with her.
At the thought of a lonely Captain Lessnya without the Pearl and without her crew, I became sad. I felt sorry about her, though she had lied and deceived my beloved Mistress, Captain Rin. But I could not dare to visit Captain Lessnya, just as I was.
I dressed and rouged myself beyond recognition, and then we went to the cottage where Captain Lessnya lived now. As we were standing before Captain Lessnya's door, Lara said she had to do something else and walked away without any explanation. I stood alone in front of Captain Lessnya's door. I knocked, the door was opened, and I was hoping Captain Lessnya would not recognize me. She asked me to come in.
I still do not know why I have done the following, but without thinking much I told Captain Lessnya, my name was Bettina and I had heard she was a good captain, she was going out onto sea, and I wanted to join her. For some inner madness I was convinced I could be as Marie with Captain Rin and in disguise at the same time as Bettina with Captain Lessnya. I cannot explain why my love for Captain Rin did not prevent me from deceiving her. But simultaneously I also wanted Captain Lessnya to be happy again and for this I would do everything.
I tried hard, not to speak like Marie and not to behave so.
But Captain Lessnya told me that she had retired, and that she no longer wanted to put to sea. I tried to persuade her to try it again, she could not give up the sea so easily, and she should think about the good times, she certainly had had. It seemed to me somehow, as I would talk about my life.
After some seesaw Captain Lessnya said, "Well, I've decided, we'll let the Pearl back in the water and I'm going back to sea again."
We went to a pub that had the name Copper Club, to hire the other crew. I was asked by Captain Lessnya to go behind the bar and serve the guests. I learned that this inn was owned by another pirate, her name was Kaleyani; she had been without captain for a long time and also wanted to go to sea again. The same evening she hired as Captain Lessnya's coxswain.
(Several months later Captain Lessnya told me that she had met Kaleyani some days before, and had already played with the idea, eventually to go back to sea. Yet it had been Bettina's question that made her definitively decide to visit Kaleyani's Copper Club together with Bettina to establish a crew again.)
During the later evening, Lara showed up and also asked Captain Lessnya to be allowed to return to her. It was a joy to see, how Captain Lessnya flourished more and more almost by the minute; it was obvious that she was happy. She even did not notice that Lara one times inadvertently called me "Marie", and I answered her completely for granted, before I noticed it; I whispered to Lara who was filled with consternation that she should watch better what she said.
After a very nice evening Captain Lessnya had her crew signed on, we all said goodbye and I went back to the Drunken Mermaid happily.
The next day Captain Rin returned home. She asked me as every time, how I had spent the time without her. Firstly I concealed my visit to Captain Lessnya, but my conscience troubled me too much; as her slave, it was not possible for me to lie to her or to withhold anything from her. But now after I had deceived her, so I wanted at least to be honest. I told her about my visit to Captain Lessnya. She asked me gently what I've had to do with Captain Lessnya. Only now I realized how sorely I had injured Captain Rin. I realized how much it must have hurt her that I had gone to her enemy. I was speechless with horror and only guiltily looked to the floor. Captain Rin asked me in a low voice for an explanation for my behavior, but I had none; I was paralyzed. Captain Rin was silent and I was silent. After several minutes of mutual keeping quiet, she went to my chest, took out all my stuff and laced them together into a bundle, which she pressed into my arms. Then she pushed me out the door, said "Farewell," closed the door behind me and locked it.
I still didn't utter a word. The tears ran down. I spent the night in a barn, and the next morning I took off my necklace of Bloodstone for the first time for months, and then still crying I went to Captain Lessnya; she was the only person to whom I could go now.
Captain Lessnya was surprised to see me, but she invited me in and was willing to talk with me. I told her through tears that Captain Rin had always been rare in the Drunken Mermaid the last time, that I did not stand it anymore, I had only cried when she was not there and so I had two days ago turned-crept at "someone" in disguise; as it seems, this person means a lot more to me than I had been aware myself, and that I had been dismissed for this breach of faith yesterday by Captain Rin. Captain Lessnya only nodded and said: "Now I know why Bettina was so sympathetic to me."
Then we had a long conversation in which I asked Captain Lessnya exactly especially about her betrayal of Captain Rin. Captain Lessnya gave me after some hesitation information and told me a story that was a few details different than the one that Captain Rin had told me. She also told me that Mate Ben had prevented that she could meet with Captain Rin to talk things out, and that especially Captain Kim very hates her and had threatened to kill her at their next meeting, which also was a part of the motive of the separation between Captain Rin and her.
Ultimately, I found that the version of Captain Lessnya was more credible than the version of Captain Rin. Captain Rin had laid something on with a trowel and shown her significance too much as important and powerful; she always was the good, whereas what Captain Lessnya told, was realistic and sounded honest, even Captain Lessnya herself did not came off well.
All this I told to Captain Lessnya. I said that I believe her, and that I was sorry to have accused her without listening to her. I had been blind in my feelings about Captain Rin. And I felt that my apology sealed our new bond.
Only much later I realized that also Captain Lessnya had loved Captain Rin.
The next day I received a letter from Captain Kim. It was full of insults; she wrote, that I should be ashamed that I had not managed to maintain a bit of loyalty to Captain Rin, I had abused Captain Rin, I had not only exceeded the border of Captain Rin's goodness and kindness, but had overrun it for miles; and now it was clear to Captain Kim that I was just as dishonest and hypocritical as Captain Lessnya was. We both would fit well in our falseness. However she will not kill me if it happens that we meet, but she wants me to live with my guilt, and that as long as possible.
In particular, the accusation that I had abused Captain Rin, hit me heavily. I showed this letter to Captain Lessnya, but she said that the only purpose of this letter just was to hurt me and her too; the best thing was to burn it and forget it.
The next days we refloated the Pearl, and I tried to gain back the trust of Captain Lessnya, that I had once had with her. Though it seemed as a miracle that Captain Lessnya took me back despite all the insults and injuries that I had thrown after her head. In her place I would have chased me to hell.
I cried for days because of my dismissal of Captain Rin. Also this ignored Captain Lessnya understandingly. I was sad and happy at the same time. Happy because I had found again my home at Captain Lessnya. I got a new necklace that I'm still wearing today, although I am not Captain Lessnya's slave but her First Mate now. I'm wearing it to show that my heart belongs to her.
Lara later told me, when I asked her why she had persuaded me to visit with Captain Lessnya, that she had seen that Captain Rin was "not doing good" to me as she called it. She had noticed that I had just only cried at the end, when Captain Rin was not there, and that had been almost constantly. And then Lara said something that touched me deeply: "... and I knew that Captain Lessnya was the only one who could withdraw you from Captain Rin."
Nevertheless, in my opinion, after a very short time Captain Lessnya was ready to give me her full confidence again. But I have not disappointed her again since then. I will not repeat my mistake to follow a mirage.
Even when Captain Lessnya met Lady Surya, which now also plays a special role in my life, Lady Surya and I were aware from the beginning that I'll keep my loyalty to Captain Lessnya, despite all the misgivings Captain Lessnya had. had noticed how Lady Surya and I were getting along very well, and Captain Lessnya even would release me to let me follow Lady Surya, just only to make me happy. But my attachment to Lady Surya is on another level; my heart belongs, as I said, to Captain Lessnya.
But that's another story. My loyalty is now and in the future completely with Captain Lessnya, and I'll follow her until we will be separated by force.
From Captain Rin back to Captain Lessnya
(von Käpt'n Rin zurück zu Käpt'n Lessnya)
(Translated into English 2016-09-15)