See this first Book 1: part 12
Hana sat on the deck of the ship called The Barracuda trying to meditate. Bartley dropped down across from her with a half empty bottle of rum in hand, "What you doing, girl?"
She opened one eye with a sigh, "I'm trying to hear my blade's voice."
He took a swig from the bottle, "How's that going?"
Her eye narrowed into a glare. A booming voice came from behind, "You're trying to hard, kid."
She turned to see Kearn standing above her, "What do you mean?"
He stepped in front of her as he snatched the bottle from Bartley, "You still got work to do."
He then sat down wiping the top of the bottle before finishing it off, "Hearing the voice, doesn't have to be a chore. You just need to figure out what about you made it choose you."
She looked confused so he continued, "Look at Vargas, see the Wolf and Coyote want to fight and love a good challenge. Vargas is natural born fighter, who's always getting in over his head."
He then mentioned Angus, "That fella is a strange man, who seems up for anything. Because of that he has a strange weapon that can adapt to a variety of situations."
She then looked down to the Starburst, "So why did it choose me?"
He shrugged, "Hell if I know, we all have to learn to talk to them in our own way."
Angus stood in the Galley of the ship helping the cook, Luca, wash pots. He noticed a meat cleaver bigger than most battle axes, "What do you cut with that?"
Luca lifted it, "Mostly pirates. This is the Bone Chopper."
"What's it do?"
Luca grinned, "I'm sure you'll see."
Vargas was helping Dory swab the deck. He looked over to Hana talking to Kearn, "He letting her off easy, cause she's a girl?"
Bartley walked past, "Nope, she finished up her chores an hour ago. Maybe life on land has just made you lazy."
An old man with one eye named Abasi stood at the helm as a younger man named Akida, with a hook like blade where his left hand should be, spoke to him, "I don't like this."
Abasi turned, "What's that?"
"Hauling a couple sell swords and that girl. We ain't a cruise ship."
Abasi shrugged, "One of those sell swords is the Admiral's nephew on a mission from the High General of the Marshals and the former cabin boy of the ship you're standing on. The other two are earning their keep which is more than I can say for you at the moment."
He glared at Abasi who gave a bored look as he ordered, "Why don't you go find something to do. I have no ear for nagging today."
Hana looked to Kearn, "Why did your sword choose you?"
He chuckled, "Its complicated."
She gave him a blank stare. He sighed as he pulled out his blade, "This is the Leviathan, one of the seven great Serpents. She's a stubborn old hag who can hold a grudge forever. Maybe she just picked me because I was mad as hell when I found her."
"What do you mean, seven great Serpents?"
His eyes narrowed, "Don't they teach you kids anything? There are orders of blades, the great serpents are blades said to wield the power of the seas. The Leviathan has the crushing power of a Tsunami."
As he waved it the water around the ship rose. Hana's eyes went wide at this.
Many miles away a pirate captain named Barrick stands on the deck of a burning Navy ship. A sailor is brought before him. He smiles a bit as he pulls a cutlass. He aims it toward the man as the blade sprouts eight more, "Do you know what this is?"
The sailor gives a hateful look, "Its the Hydra."
Barrick nodded, "Very good, boy. I want you to watch this and then go tell your comrades what happens when the Navy comes to my island."
He hopped up on the edge of the ship and looked out on several other Navy ships as his crew retreated from them. He raised the hydra and with it nine massive waves rose in the form of knife blades. He then swung down causing the waves to obliterate the other ships.
He then tossed the young sailor in a dinghy with and oar, "I'd hurry along boy, my men aren't as kind as me."
Barrick then jumped over toward his ship as a large man covered in tattoos reached out to catch his hand. He heaved him up and as the captain arrived on the deck he looked to the man who caught him, "Thank you, Amos. Was there any loot to be had?"
Amos nodded, "Aye, sir. One was a supply ship. Had about ten gallons of rum."
Barrick smiled, "As good a reason as any to celebrate."
Navy flagship God's Head.
A small old man sat at a desk as an aide delivered a stack of papers. His name was Fleet Admiral Rikke. He glanced at the reports before tossing them in a basket, "Any word on when the rum's coming in. We're running a bit low."
The aide, a tall blonde woman named Lieutenant Casandra sighed, "I'll check on it, sir."
Before she left he asked, "Any word on how Kearn did at the Capitol?"
"The report is on your desk, sir."
He gave the stack of papers a hateful look, "I'm sure he did fine."
Casandra rolled her eyes as she walked away.
The men all sat down for dinner but before Vargas could start eating Akida sat across from him and dragged his plate away with his hook, "I don't think the sell swords should be eating with men. They can go eat with the dogs."
Vargas grinned a bit, "I'm sure the dogs would make for better conversation, but I'm comfortable right where I am."
He then yanked the plate back. Akida started to stand but Vargas glared up, "If you'd like to keep the hand you have, I suggest you stay down."
Akida continued but Abasi pushed him back down, "He'd kill you before you crossed the table. Now shut up and eat."
Akida grabbed a fork and took some food off his own plate as he stared hatefully at Vargas. Bartley looked to Kearn, "I got three days."
Kearn gave a wary look, "I got tomorrow."
The ships doctor Oliver looked over, "For what?"
Bartley sipped his rum before replying, "Until one of them starts a fight."
Luca sat down, "I'd have won the pool already if Abasi had stayed back."
Hana sat on the deck with a half eaten plate of food as she stared at the Starburst laying on the palm of of her hand, "Okay, why did you choose me?"
She paused as if waiting for an answer before sighing, "Oh, come on."
She then took it up in her fingers, "You're going to talk, because I will not be hidden away like a child while others defend me. I will be strong."
She then slumped her shoulders as she tossed it in front of her. It stopped mid air and floated as a smile came across Hana's face, "About damn time."
(To be continued)