Pirates of Hardwood

Chapter 21

Flint ran to the deck of the ship with many of his crewmen rushing alongside him. His men were shouting orders frantically. Some were manning the cannons and others grabbed their pistols preparing for a battle. When he got on deck, he could see why his men were in such a panic.

A ship, larger than his own, had approached from behind and was drifting up beside it. Smoke was bellowing from one of the massive black cannons on the enemy ship and Flint saw dozens of other pirates scrambling to board his ship. They began swinging on ropes, lowering tall ladders, not caring at all while Flint’s men shot at them. A few souls were lost to the sea but his ship had been boarded and a battle was starting to take shape.

The screaming voices were unbearable and the gunshots grew louder. Another cannon exploded and sent a ball of fire soaring through the air. Flint’s ship rocked back and forth and he held onto the railing to keep his balance.

He glanced to his left just in time to see a mangy beast of a man running at him with a sword raised above his head. Flint didn’t hesitate or even think as he pulled the pistol from his belt and aimed at the man’s gut. The pirate fell dead to the wooden deck with murky blood forming a puddle around him.

“Horse!” Flint shouted, scanning the faces of his men for his first mate.

He spotted the tall man fighting bravely under the mast of the ship. Flint rushed away from the stairs, knocked two men out of his way as he ran. He needed to get to Horse so they could take down the enemy together. They were stronger as a team and always had each other’s backs.

Flint managed to make it about halfway to his friend before he felt a painful jab to his lower back. He grunted from the pain and quickly spun around to face his attacker. He raised his gun, taking aim at the air, and instantly froze when he saw her face.

“I was really hoping to avoid a fight but you made this happen, Flint.”

He recognized her voice and adored the calming way she spoke. He stared at her lips and the dark make-up around her eyes and his arm lowered the gun. The longer he stared at her face, the angrier he became with how she left him.

“Alissa,” he spoke, trying to hide the anger and passion in his voice, “I thought I’d never see you again.”

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