We arrived in Nassau later than expected and made port sometime in the early morning. I awoke to the pleasant sound of birds singing and muffled voices from the city people. I slipped on my blue velvet robe and opened the curtains to the large windows at the stern of the ship. Once light filled the room I noticed that Phineas was not present, he would be instructing the crew on their duties while in Nassau.
I poured myself some tea and quickly ate some porridge before getting dressed for the day. Last night I had finished altering my new wardrobe and I was itching to finally wear it. I decided to go with the light blue colored satin garment, hoping the light color would convince the sun to not scorch my skin today.
I just finished tying the laces on my boots when Phineas walked into our quarters. My right leg was lifted on the chair in front of me, accentuating the largest alterations I had made to my dresses. Phineas stopped suddenly and let his mouth hang open in astonishment.
“Oh, hello my love, do you like my new pirate attire? Just look at how easily I can move around now!”, I said and did a slow twirl in front of him to show the rest of my new clothes.
The top part of my dress was pretty much as it had originally come, though I cut the blue satin sleeves to my elbow and added white lace to its hem. The bodice was cut lower, heavily exposing my breasts and the white lace trim of my corset. My skirts were no longer a big poofy mess, not anymore. Now the skirts started on each side of my hips and met in the back coming to the back of my knee. My legs were completely exposed, so I made tight fitted white trousers to cover my skin. The fabric hugged my feminine curves and accentuated my large hips. I wore dark brown leather boots that laced to just below my knee.
I felt tough, like I could move well enough to put up a good fight if it came to it. The lack of skirts was the most important part, I could move my legs freely without getting my skirts caught in every little thing. Another accomplishment my new wardrobe had was the response I was getting from Phineas. He was clearly liking what he saw, my womanly curves would no longer be constantly hidden under yards of useless fabric.
I finished spinning around and said, “So, what do you think?”
Phineas took my hand and pulled me up against his body. He started tracing his hands over my hips and down over my buttocks, then gave it a squeeze that pulled me into him more causing his muscular leg to make firm contact with my groin. I let out a small moan.
“Now how am I going to get any work done with you dressed like this all the time? Seeing this arse,” he squeezed it again, “all day…is going to be very distracting love.”
I chuckled and pulled away to add the last item in my attire, a black leather harness that tied around my trousers and held my twin daggers.
“Aye, your laughing now lass…just wait until the crew sees you. You thought they were infatuated with you before, just wait until they see you now. You are every mans fantasy.”, he said as he continued to eye my curves.
I turned towards him and said, “Please, it is just flesh Phineas.”
“Aye, and you just happen to have the blood of a Goddess running through your veins. Trust me Cora, you are the perfect woman, both physically and intellectually.” He took my hand in his and traced the ring on my finger and it started to glow, “I fall more and more in love with you every day.”
His emerald eyes were burning with love, seeping into my soul and making me feel weak. The feeling of being a tough pirate queen was suddenly gone and replaced with the feeling of molten lava consuming my emotions. It suddenly felt very real to me that this man was all that I had in life, he was everything I ever was and would be. I was suddenly very afraid, afraid of losing Captain Phineas Tucker. This life of mine meant nothing if it wasn’t for him.
Phineas interrupted my thoughts by pulling me in for a kiss, leaving my lips scolded with desire. I felt whole again, no longer depressed with the thoughts of what could be.
I was startled when I heard a throat clearing from the doorway, Lekan was smirking at us, “Excuse me Krajilica, Captain, all is set for departure.”
Phineas let out a loud sigh of disappointment and straightened up his full height and gave me his elbow, “Well my love, shall we embark on our next adventure?”
I took his elbow and together we headed towards the door, “As long as I am next to you, I am ready for anything.”
Lekan took in my attire, eyes slightly bulging, he nearly forgot his typical bow towards me and the Captain but was able to bring himself back to normal with a small shake of his head. As we walked out on the balcony above the main deck, the crew who were still on board all slowly brought their eyes to us, to me I assumed.
“I told you so.”, Phineas snickered in my ear.
I chuckled but kept my head up and acted as though the stares didn’t bother me. I was used to being stared at due to my already unique appearance, I could put up with this. I was meant to be a queen after all and would need to be used to attention.
Phineas led me off the Esmerelda and onto the port of Nassau. The port was busy, and I could see the town crowded with people just up the hills to our left. As we made our way into the town, it became very clear to me that Captain Phineas Tucker had made himself quite the reputation in the Caribbean. Everywhere we went men, and even some women, would greet him with happy spirits and give their well wishes. I felt this was an unusual response for the people to give a pirate captain.
We went into a small shop that sold clothing and accessories. There was a little old woman in the front dressing a mannequin in a red silk ball gown. Once the door clicked closed she called out, “Welcome to Lucile’s, all new fashions are in the front, all older fashions are on sale and located in the back.”
“And what about custom orders for your colleague and old friend?”, Phineas said with a smile.
The woman turned sharply, and a small squeal left her mouth, “Oh Phineas, you’re here! I have been expecting you, your men brought the new shipment in just this morning. Quite an exquisite collection if I may say.”
He smirked, “Aye, that it is. Though nothing compares to your original designs Madam Pearson.”
Her eyes closed to slits and a sly smile came over her lips, “True, true. You want something custom you say? And just what are you looking for exactly?”, she noticed me on Phineas’ arm and looked me up and down, taking in my trousers and tight clothing, “If you are looking for something different, I dare say you have it right next to you.”
Madam Pearson came closer to me and studied my clothing more closely, “My dear, whoever did you hire to create this for you? The stitching is nearly prefect. I have never seen such fashion for women.”
I smirked, “It is an original, and I did the stitching myself.”
She was shocked, and looked towards Phineas, “What would you do that for? Why would a woman need to wear trousers? Phineas who is this woman?”
He couldn’t contain his laughter, “Madam Pearson, may I present Miss Coraline Ashton, my fiancé and the woman who forever holds my heart.”, he shook his head slightly, “As for her attire, I myself can condone it’s usefulness and high function while in combat. Cora here needed suitable clothing to live our pirate lifestyle.”
Madam Pearson’s lips went into an “oh” shape, she was momentarily speechless. But then her motherly instincts took over and she started to scold Captain Tucker, “Phineas, how dare you bring a lady into such a life! It would be more proper if you bought her a home on the island and gave her a comfortable lifestyle like all the other sea wives. Battles and raids are not suitable for a lady!”
Phineas let out a slow breath and looked into Madam Pearson’s eyes with the sincerest look on his face, “Madam, Cora belongs on the sea. She grew up on the sea, and in the sea is where I found her. She chose this life all on her own, I just love her all the more for it.” His emerald eyes were slightly glowing and put Madam Pearson under his spell, she was entranced and bashfully agreed with him by nodding her head.
She came to me and took one of my hands, the one with my engagement ring. As she pulled my hand closer to her face she said, “Well my dear, I dare say you do look like you could hold your own, I just pray that your extraordinary beauty does not diminish from the life of piracy.”
I replied lightly, “That, I believe, is the very least of my problems.”
She nodded, “I dare say that is correct.”, she motioned towards Phineas, “Especially for you to be marrying this lot. I congratulate you, Miss Ashton, you have achieved what so many others have tried to snag up in these parts for quite some time.”, then she winked at me.
My eyebrows shot up, I was stunned. Of course, every woman who had ever been in Captain Tucker’s presence had been infatuated with him. He was literally a God. But a God needed only a Goddess, and that was me. I truly felt I had nothing to worry about, he would never stray away from me. But, how many hearts did he leave broken before me? Phineas just stood in the corner with a smirk on his face, slowly shaking his head.
Madam Pearson giggled and said, “So I suppose you have come to see me for a wedding dress then?”, she turned towards Phineas, “When will the ceremony take place?”
Phineas cleared his throat and spoke in his low voice, “Aye, we will be wed in precisely 22 days. But we will need to leave in precisely 12 days from now to reach the destination of our ceremony in time.”
“Our what? Phineas where are we going?”, I asked curiously.
“Nonsense, you two will wed here. You know over half the town would be present for your nuptials, you have been a godsend to them.”, Madam Pearson said while starting to pull out bolts of fabric from a closet.
Phineas replied, “I am sorry Madam, but the location of our ceremony is not up for discussion.”, he turned towards me and said in a softer voice, “It is imperative that we are in the precise location for our nuptials.”, Then he turned back to Madam Pearson’s and said, “When we return we can have a ceremony for the entire town, but I have something truly special planned for our true union.
Madam Pearson let out a heavy sigh and slumped her shoulders in defeat, “Alright Captain Tucker, but you know the townspeople will not be happy about this. Though I do think it is very sweet of you to steal your bride away to elope. I just wish you so much happiness.”
“Thank you, Madam.”, Phineas leaned down and gave her a small kiss on the cheek.
She turned back towards me and took my hand to pull me towards a fitting room in the back of the store, “Come we must take your measurements and chose fabric. I think we should go with a blue, no maybe silver and white would go best.”
Phineas called towards us, “You ladies have fun. I will return shortly for Miss Ashton, I have some business around town that I must attend to.”
I turned and blew him a kiss, ready to start the design for my wedding dress with Madam Pearson.