The Little Mermaid (SH22-Style)

Chapter 2

by Casey (Jedi at aemail4u.com)
1/26/04

Ok, I wasn't gonna post the next chapter for another week, but since no one reviewed my last one, I figured it might be because of the lack of Holmes in it... Sheesh, guys, did you think I'd forget him? *rolls eyes*

Disclaimer: Same disclaimer as before applies to this chapter.

Chapter Two

The salty wind was blowing, ruffling his hair as the ship reached yet another crest before plummeting down its watery slide.

"If it wasn’t for all this wind, the seas would fine today, eh, Captain?" mentioned a slightly green man, who looked rather overdressed on the ship sailing towards the east. Trying to hold his breath through another plummet, the man grabbed the railing and looked up to his captain for the reason he had been summoned.

Shifting his crystalline blue eyes towards the man, he replied, "Watson. Tell me. What did you think of Paragon?"

At first, almost unsure how to answer, Watson took a deep breath as the ship entered the trough and hurriedly, in anticipation of another plummet, stated, "Well, it appeared as the perfect sea town. Model citizens; even with a motley array of ships and boats, it still appeared welcoming. Did you find otherwise, Captain?"

Allowing the corners of his lips to slightly curve in a smile, he waved his hand, dismissing his seasick crewmember to return to his original spot in the lower stern of the ship. Then staring out to the horizon, the captain thought, 'Watson, you are too trusting sometimes. I fear it will one day cause your downfall.'

Spinning to face starboard, he shouted, "Gripes, Taylor, check that all lines are secure and then have the cabin boy retrieve the next shift."

Receiving a tired "Aye, aye, captain," and a single grunt from the other, he turned back to port, staring at the rolling water.

‘The pirates have been frequenting its shores; that is for certain. Too many new graves on that knoll unless there were a plague, and I would most certainly know of that the moment that happens. The only advantage to being prince of this kingdom is the access to knowledge one gains. The ships were indeed motley, and badly worn. Watson did not notice the fine patches here and there and the newly applied tar to many hulls. I must say, he is getting rusty, or his naïve personality is showing.’

The wind through his hair suddenly stopped as the ship plummeted once more.

"A freak occurrence this is, aye?" a short sailor behind him said, fearfully eyeing the ocean.

"Superstitions are just that. Superstitions. The wind will momentarily pick up again," Holmes sharply admonished as he turned towards approaching footsteps. "Trim the sails, crew!"

A young teen, about 15 years old, built, black and with a gold ring through his left ear, did a half bow and short nod. "Captain?"

"Ah, Wiggins. How was your shore leave? Did you find anything you liked? Perhaps a girl to remember the town by?"

"Funny, Mr. Holmes. I found nothing of the sort. However, the word on the streets is there are plenty of new orphans. Many were told to act as if nothing was wrong, but it seems that the town was attacked a few weeks ago. A messenger ship was sent, but they never received word back from it. The citizens believe the kingdom has forgotten them and they wer...."

"That is all, Wiggins. You have confirmed my suspicions. They were not going to ally with their enemies, but they also want to break off." Holmes sighed.

"Who do you think did this, Mr. Holmes?" Wiggins asked

"I know who, just not where that person is. That is why we have been sailing for so long, Wiggins. In the absence of my -- brother -- there are many who would try to disrupt the kingdom and take over, and it is my responsibility to keep that from happening."

Sensing darker thoughts ahead, the young teen excused himself by effectively stating, "I’ll return to inform you when dinner is ready, sir."

"Back to your chores, Wiggins."

As the young teen scampered off towards the galley, Holmes began comparing ages and backgrounds of all those aboard his ship. Some of his sailors were truly seasoned, wise beyond their years in the ways of the water, and still willing to brave its storms and rocky waves. Some, just married or happy with new families springing up, were still learning the sea but experienced enough to handle themselves in most every situation. Watson seemed to land between the two and yet further than his own bed after a tiring day: married and happy, yet not wise in the sea at all, or laden with any experience. Wiggins was still the youngest, fifteen years old and a cabin boy. ‘Everyone must start somewhere,’ he thought. Besides, it was much better than running the streets with the other orphans. Looking around him, he saw the remaining percentage of his crew appeared to be between seventeen and twenty-two, lost amongst youthful dreams and a growing sense of responsibility.

He himself landed within that bracket. Eighteen, a prince, and a captain. Youthful wishes were gone when his brother had left, and now all that remained was responsibility and the gaping hole of stature to fill. Refusing to feel pity for himself, he turned back to his thoughts again. Responsibility beckoned him too, but he mainly did it for the thrill of outwitting a clever opponent in this massive game of chess. Each piece was moved, but he couldn’t see where his opponent placed had placed his pieces. Only his own were in view, and that is what made the hunt for his lair all the more thrilling. Simple deductions from aftereffects of the attacks and from tales he had heard, not all of which he deemed ‘close to the truth’ -- but still, it was all he had, and he enjoyed parting the mists with brilliant deductions from simple overlooked details.

The wind kicked in again and the crew, without need of orders, scrambled to adjust the sails to its strong push. The sun began to set behind them as they steered closer and closer to their home of Sierra Bay, the capitol of Lunule.

A/N: If you like it please review. If you don't like it, review anyways. I can't figure out what you think if you don't tell me. Also, I'll post some definitions after this chapter. I read over it myself again and noticed how many words might be in question....

On to Part 3!

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