She swirled the green liquid lazily in her glass. It coated the sides before gravity insisted it belonged at the bottom with the rest of the drink. It didn’t stop her, though. She was defiant enough to fight with gravity, and thus did it again. That was part of the reason he loved her.
There were so many. Reasons to love her, that is. They began with her brilliant mind and physical prowess, and flowed into her beauty. He’d never met a woman, nay – revise, he’d never met any captain more in control of her crew, more capable at the helm, more sure at sea, than Anita Rye. Actually, in all his time riding the ocean waves, he’d never known a better pirate, hands down.
They – they world – called her the Blue Fox. It was a bit of a double entendre, of course. She was smart as a whip, crafty and clever. Bu she was also a saucy beauty with deep blue eyes and a penchant for flying blue sails. Though that latter might have started post-nickname. Her ship was The Heart of Paradise, and her crew were loyal unto death. He’d actually seen them give their lives for her.
He, Santiago Alfredo, had not been a part of them long. He’d jumped ship for Captain Rye once he’d seen her in action. Swift, strong, but fair. She didn’t kill anyone who didn’t need to die. She wasn’t unnecessarily cruel, not to her crew, nor her captives. When The Heart of Paradise had come up alongside his previous ship, The Devil’s Grin, their crew had laughed. They caught sight of the pretty captain standing proudly on the wheel and mutually decided that not much harm could come of such a fancy lass. But Rye had wanted what they carried, and it was hers with an ungodly swiftness. Her crew was aboard and had taken over before many of the men could even come up from below deck. She dispatched the Grin’s captain and second without a thought, knowing it would make her point. The rest were given the choice: crew for her or try to make it home on the paltry stores she would leave. The decision halved the men. Santiago picking his place amid the others on the Heart of Paradise without hesitation. How could he not work for the woman after what he’d seen?
He’d gotten the captain’s attention fairly quickly. She pulled him from regular duties and set him to tasks that might have felt like punishment if they had been assigned to him by another. He was cleaning her quarters and tending to her meals, fetching her rum in he middle of the night when she couldn’t sleep. The rest of the crew taunted him and called him names he did not like to think about. They assumed that she was making an example of him, as did he. A way to show the newcomers that they had to earn their place among the rest of the crew, that they were nothing but toys until they proved themselves.
Her true intent had become clear behind her closed cabin doors after he had shown her a week of abject servitude with no complaints. Captain Rye had offered him no verbal explanation, nor had she played coy. His clothes had peeled away from his skin under her deft hands, her lips trailing gentle kisses in their wake. He had felt the heat of her breath on secret sweet spots, and it had made him shudder with joy. Santiago was taken to new heights of pleasure by her hands, her mouth, and her body. Again and again she made him stand at attention until she was thoroughly spent and done with him. Toward the dawn, his body had protested in delighted agony that it could not take any more, but she rose him up and rode him down one last time, as if to prove that she were his master and he would do her will when she willed it.
Every night from then, Santiago had known his captain intimately, had discovered every inch of her as she allowed him to. Some nights, she restrained his hands and did not allow him to touch at all. Others, she lay back and gave him the freedom to roam her curves as he wished.
There were no secrets aboard The Heart of Paradise, Santiago’s trysts with Captain Rye were known immediately. But there was no further teasing, either. The men respected Rye too much to humiliate her chosen beau – and thus her – even when she was nowhere near. Santiago continued his duties as normal, treated no different other than when night fell and her doors were locked against intruders. She knew how to use the waves and the gentle rolling of the ship to her advantage, as she moved, it seemed the sea sang inside of her.
Six months The Heart of Paradise sailed with no breaks. Captain Rye led them to victory in many battles and filled the store rooms with more treasure than any of them had ever seen. For this the others failed to complain about the long journey, trusting the great reward that would be theirs at the end. For another reason entirely, Santiago stayed his own complaints. Six months he knew the most secret pleasures his captain awarded him. There were gentle hands, stern fingers, and even bruising teeth. He could never know her mood when their night began. He could only make sure that she was satisfied wholly by the time the sun began to rise.
It was the captain who grew antsy with cabin fever, thus changing the ship’s course to land suddenly one day. They all decided on an island port for their destination, and were walking on earth before her restlessness could spread to her crew. Santiago had helped his captain do all that needed to be done to secure their spot in the dock, and assure that the ship would be safe and well cared for. He’d moved all of her things to a room that overlooked the sea – so she would not be too far from that which she loved most.
The salty breeze rushed in through the open balcony doors, brushing back the gauze curtains that barely afforded them any privacy. He sat on the floor, watching her contemplate her drink and gravity. Her legs were propped up on his shoulder while he massaged her calves. The pale pink satin sheet from the bed tangled lazily around her body, not really covering the more intimate parts of her. Santiago was sure she wore it for the feeling against her flesh, not from modesty. Her skin was still slick with the sweat they’d worked up together, just as his was. Captain Rye appeared content to his eyes, he was sure if she’d been a cat, she’d be purring now.
He smelled of her scent, tasted her mouth still. He could feel the brush of her fingertips along his spine, the dig of her nails in his shoulder. They had spoken no words since they’d woken that morning, and this was the first they’d retreated from the bed at all. His own contentment was mixed with exhaustion. Santiago did his best to keep up with his captain, but she was hungry and seemingly insatiable, not prone to granting rest periods. If he had been a cat, he’d be napping now.
“Santiago.” She said his name softly, but it still felt like a rudeness to his ears after the lack of voices. “The Heart of Paradise sails again tomorrow.”
“Yes, Captain.” he sighed out. He’d known that it would happen, but it seemed so soon.
“You have a choice to make.” She looked over the rim of her glass at him.
“I will go, too.” There was no choice in that, he thought.
“Even if you are no longer welcome in my bed?”
Surprised, his hands faltered at their task. “What? What do you mean?”
“I am done with you, Santiago. I want something new. If you cannot handle that, you may stay here.”
“No, you cannot handle it?”
It was clear to him that he would have no say in their relations continuing or not. He would not argue, he would not beg and humiliate himself, despite what his heart wanted. He would also not be able to part ways with her, because of what his heart wanted. It would have to be enough to serve in her crew and be on her ship. “No, I will not stay.” He clarified.
“Good.” Captain Rye took her legs back from him and put her glass of Chartreuse on the floor beside her chair. She leaned forward and gave him her mouth. Santiago did not protest. Nor did he question it when she pushed him back onto the plush rug to run her tongue along every length of him, and he still said nothing against the moment when she halted her actions to focus on his most tender of spots, and soon replaced her mouth with another wetness.
She had her way with him again and again, until the stars rose. He relished the bittersweet ending to their time together. When the moon peered over the edge of the balcony, Captain Rye left Santiago in the room alone, spent and lonely and wanting more, with orders to replace her things in her cabin on the ship at sunrise.