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~Ship of Dreams~
Published Jun 14, 2008


Written By

drewsoltesz

Storyteller
20091Views4.7Rating

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When dashing privateer Captain Alexander Kent plundered a Spanish ship in the early 1700's Caribbean Sea, he did not count he would find such a formidable young lady on board, a lady who would steal his heart...

"Ships are the nearest thing to dreams that hands have ever made."
-Robert N. Rose

When dashing privateer Captain Alexander Kent plundered a Spanish ship in the early 1700's Caribbean Sea, he did not count he would find such a formidable young lady on board, a lady who would steal his heart...

"Ships are the nearest thing to dreams that hands have ever made."
-Robert N. Rose
It is 1720, not far from the coast of Jamaica, and a British privateer ship trolls the Caribbean waters to exact all the booty, food, treasure it can collect, not only for its crew, but also for the crown.
The 'Charlotte Rose' was a fast frigate, other ships trembled at the sight of her, but they also trembled at the sight of the relentless, coldly efficient Captain standing on her decks.
Captain Alexander Kent, corsair; stood with his legs spread in a commanding stance. The fine cut of his burgundy jacket accentuated his broad chest and shoulders. He wore no wig and his long golden hair was untied, framing his handsome sculpted face.
He was a man who demanded and received respect, obedience...and fear.
He looked out over the horizon, the sea breeze flapping the sails, the tropical blue water shone like a blue topaz.
Sunlight glittered off the crest of every wave that broke against the bow.
Finally the bosun's whistle pierced the air, "Captain! Sail spotted off the port bow! A Spanish ship!" Hedley, his first mate called out.
Kent did not move a muscle. "Take her!" he yelled.
The crew roared with approval.
"All hands to battle stations!" The bosun's mate cried.
After some hours, the battle won, Kent's first mate approached him. "Captain, there was one woman on board the 'San Baulista' that we could find. I put the Captain and crew below in the brig, the cargo is secured." Hedley said, with great satisfaction.

Teresa De La Montagio was dragged across the deck and pushed roughly in front of the pirate who mercilessly plundered the vessel she was travelling on. She was trembling; she knew what happened to women taken prisoner on a pirate ship.
She defiantly looked up into his face and gasped aloud. She expected some greasy, toothless, ugly snarling pirate. This man was utterly stunning, she felt herself begin to tremble slightly.
Teresa could hear the wolf whistles and leering calls from the men on deck.
"Belay that!" The captain thundered. It got quiet immediately. "Well my little Spanish flower, I would advice you to speak English if you can, what is your name?"
"How DARE you? I demand you let me go! Where is the captain of my ship? You vicious brute, you English dog! Fiend! You deserved to be hanged! Or worse!" Teresa screeched in heavily accented English.

"You would be wise to bridge that tongue of yours, senorita, you are in no position to threaten me. It would serve you better to show me some gratitude for saving your life, perhaps I should have let you go down with the ship." Kent hissed.
Teresa began to sputter, but before she could start another tirade, Kent motioned to his first mate. "Take her below, clamp her in irons."
Kent climbed to the forecastle, turning his back on the screeching woman.
"I have no doubt how you would like that gratitude shown, you English pig!" Teresa screamed.
Kent ignored her.
The first mate grabbed her arm and began to pull her away.
Later, Alexander went to his cabin below decks. It had it outfitted to fit his personal needs, it was over large, but he did not care. If he was going to sail the seven seas for years on end, he was going to be comfortable.

He thought of the woman chained below decks, it had been quite sometime since he had female company.
She had a fiery spirit, a refreshing change from the usual female captives that wailed and whimpered, begging for mercy.
Hedley knocked and entered. "You sent for me Captain?"
"Yes, bring that Spanish harpy up here and lock her in my quarters, I will deal with her later. Have the Captain and his crew been fed, looked after?"
"Yes Captain." Hedley answered.
"How many did we lose?"
Hedley pursed his lips. "Not too bad, 4 dead, 7 injured, not bad for a haul like we got."
Alexander frowned. His ship, his men, his responsibility. Each fallen seaman was scorched in his brain, it never failed to cut him to the quick.
"Good, good." Alexander was deep in thought. "Are you sure that senorita was not travelling with a maid, or a companion? Seems strange."
Hedley shrugged. "Unless the woman drowned, we searched everywhere."
"Later, after I speak to the Spanish lady, I want her belongings sent here so I may go through them, you did bring her trunk?" Kent questioned.
"Consider it done, Captain." Hedley bowed and left.
"I am going to the sickbay to visit the injured, carry on Hedley." Kent stated.
After many uncomfortable hours below decks in irons, the first mate had come to get her. She was frightened, what would happen? He shoved her in the Captain's quarters and locked the door.
Teresa was surprised at the order and cleanliness she found there, a large, comfortable room. The captain obviously had money.
There were many books, they all looked like they were well read. Teresa was puzzled, the captain was obvious intelligent, well bred...how did he become a pirate?

Teresa thought of Maria, her maid, the poor girl, she could not swim. To watch helplessly as the girl drowned was horrible. Also the fight on deck for possession of her ship was vicious, but mercifully quick, with little loss of life. She could still smell the gunpowder in her nostrils.
Teresa heard the key turn in the lock, she did not have to turn around, she knew the Captain had entered. His virility and masculine presence filled the cabin; it was almost oppressive. The heat from his glare was scorching her back.
Alexander smiled. She was a breathtaking looking woman, how best to approach this Spanish maid?
Alexander quickly gathered her hand in his and began to kiss it passionately, lingering over each knuckle.
Dear God, this was beyond anything she had felt before. Her whole body began to throb.
"Such a sweet beauty..." he murmured. "Such pleasure I can give you..."
Teresa tore her hand away from his inviting lips, the arrogant cur!
"You are a trial senorita, but I prefer you this way, I do not like those who whimper and cower." He said huskily.

Teresa could feel the warmth radiating from him, his shirt and jacket strained across his shoulders, gaping open at his chest to show the muscled planes of his torso.
She found herself staring at the fullness of his lips and how they felt on her hand.
"Now, you will tell me your name, and what you were doing on that ship." He said firmly.
Teresa tried to think fast. She was on her way to Jamaica to be wed to the French ambassador. She had only met the man once, and he did not really appeal, but her family was in dire financial straits and looked to her to improve matters.
"I am but a humble school teacher on my way to Jamaica. My name is Teresa Valdez."
Kent raised an eyebrow, looking at her fine dress. "A humble school teacher...I see."
Now, what about the Captain and his crew?" Teresa demanded, her arms flaying in anger.
"What about them? What are they to you? What are you willing to offer me in return for their safety? I have a suggestion, come to me, freely." Alexander smiled, nodding toward the bed.
"If I agree to your foul terms, you will treat them well, feed them, allow them exercise on deck an hour every day?" Teresa hissed. "Your word as a gentleman?"
"And If I refuse, what will you do, hurl yourself over the rail?" Kent laughed sharply.
"I will suffer whatever torments you have planned. Do know this, you are the foulest, lewdest wretch on this ship."

There is plenty I could do, then you would know what a foul, lewd wretch is!!" Kent thundered, a cold darkness in his eyes.
"As you wish Captain, but please do me the honour of knocking me senseless first!" Teresa snarled.
"You miserable hell-cat!" Alexander roared. He clenched his fists; all he wanted to do was throttle her.
"You call me a hell-cat? Well, beware my claws, Captain. I will fight you to the death. Will you accept my terms as the gentleman you claim to be?" Teresa's eyes narrowed angrily.

Kent began to laugh cruelly. "Gentleman!? Very well, I will see to the Captain of your ship and his crew as you suggest. You wish me to behave as a gentleman..."
Kent grabbed her and kissed her deeply, a slow hungry smile curved his full lips. His mouth claimed hers with such a passion she felt her bones would melt.
It was such a soul-stirring kiss, awakening feelings in her she did not know existed.
He backed away suddenly, leaving her gasping.
Oh what had she agreed to? She was foolish to think she could out maneuver and outwit this man, try to keep her virtue. It was obvious he meant to have it, and there was nothing she could do to stop him.
At last the tears began to flow, the stress and anxiety of the day, she was exhausted, and a little frightened.
"Take her to the guest quarters, Chandler...I grow weary of her. See she is locked up until I have further need for her." Kent said coldly.
Teresa felt her stomach retch, what she had just eaten was trying to claw its way back up her throat. Oh, this was wretched, horrid! She was a helpless prisoner of a ruthless, cold man! A lecherous, cruel pirate!
This room at least was better than the brig, but not by much. At least she had a bed and a chair of sorts.
The man spoke with a heavy Jamaican accent. "Senorita, if you had any sense at all you would do what the captain says."
"Why should I?" Teresa huffed.
"The captain is not a happy man, if you could bring him any comfort, any cheer, he would go easier on us, and you." The man shrugged.
Teresa was stunned. Play up to him? Actually encourage the attentions of a vicious pirate?
"And how shall I go about doing so, Chandler, do you have any suggestions?" Teresa said sarcastically.
"The captain is not a cruel man, amuse him and he will show his appreciation. Let him be for you the gallant he prefers to be. That is my advice."
Teresa suddenly felt weary. "I will consider what you said."
Back up in his cabin, Alexander was fuming. God's Blood, but the woman was annoying! She was far too haughty a Miss to be a 'humble school teacher'. No, there was more here than met the eye. Alexander exhaled. She was far more beautiful than he could have hoped, if he were to be honest. A woman, who could match him in many ways, he never thought he would ever meet such a lady. She was vastly appealing, in more ways than one... Hedley had brought in her trunk, there was not much in it, perhaps she was just a poor, destitute school teacher. He reached in and found a letter. It was addressed to her from the French Ambassador of Jamaica. He tore it open and read it. So, her name was Teresa De La Montagio, she was betrothed to the Ambassador, on route to wed him. He snorted aloud, an arranged marriage, no doubt money involved as it often was in these cases.
He curled his lip at the flowery words and condescending tone of the letter. An idea struck him...he could hold her for ransom...
The next day, Teresa was brought to the Captain's cabin again, and locked in. She found a door leading outside onto a small deck. She breathed deeply, letting the fresh sea air revive her. The air was damp, the clouds heavy and grey. Canvas flapped and ropes creaked as the wind moved to catch the sails.

Teresa gasped aloud, there were the dolphins she had heard so much about, such gentle, sweet creatures! They were following the ship riding in the bow wave just as she had heard.
The animals were smiling, playing, making delightful noises as they splashed about.
Watching them calmed her nerves, and a feeling of serenity settled over her.
Kent came out on deck to join her. "Enjoying the slight sea breeze, Senorita?"
Teresa remained silent. She was not sure how to respond to this man. She should not try to anger him this day if she could help it.
"How old are you? You must be scarcely more than twenty." Kent questioned.
Teresa sighed. "I am 18 Captain, and you, you are so much older then?"
"Four and twenty as of last November, if that matters." Kent answered.
Teresa snorted. "You are rather young to have such a grim reputation!"
"I started earlier than most." Kent laughed shortly.
Teresa turned to face him. "Really? Then you have always been a pirate? Is it the family trade, then?"
Kent stared at her coldly. "I was always meant to slay all enemies of England."
"So, you have become a law onto yourself? But only at sea, once ashore you are subject to the same laws as the rest of us." Teresa stated.
"That, Senorita, is why I seldom go ashore. Come, my man has laid us out a meal. You must be hungry." Kent held out his arm.
She refused his arm and walked in ahead of him. She was extremely puzzled over this ruthless pirate captain. He more or less had treated well, better than she heard most prisoners on pirate ships are treated.
She pulled out her chair. Trays of meats, cheeses, fresh fruit and bread were on the table; she was hungry.
The timber groaned and creaked as the ship rolled through the surf, a familiar sound to Teresa after all those months on the San Baulista.
"Please eat. Do not worry for the lives of your Captain and crew. If I killed every Spanish sailor who came across my path, there would be no ships to plunder." Alexander said quietly.
Teresa reached for her fork; she was famished. "Is this what you do everyday, plunder ships, capture crew and passengers? You are a ruthless pirate, Sir."
"I am not a pirate, I am a privateer, a corsair. I am under direct order from King George himself, completely legal. I have the letter of marques, do you wish to see it?" Kent snapped.

Teresa sighed. "Convince yourself what you will, Captain, but you are still a pirate. You attack and rob enemy vessels, all for glory and prize money. Are you holding me for ransom? You will get nothing, I am worth nothing!"
"Is that so?" Kent cocked one eyebrow. "Let there be peace between us, if only for this evening, can we not just sit and talk?"
"Talk??" Teresa scoffed. "I will not converse with a man such as you."
"I have tried to play the gentleman, showing you kindness, offering polite conversation, why do you insist on playing the shy school teacher? We both know you are far more than that!" Kent said, in a smooth voice.
Teresa got up from the table. "What exactly do you think I am?" She asked, trying to hide her tremblings.
Kent observed her closely. "There must be a man, but he will not suit you, nor you to him. But he will have you anyway. Forget him, he does not deserve you. You need a man of passion...adventure!"
Teresa could not help but chuckle. "A man like you?"
"Why not! I want you more than I have ever wanted any woman, you chain yourself to honour, do you not owe yourself some kindness, pleasure?"
His words sent a wave of desire through her. He wanted her!? He no doubt spoke these words to every woman he came across, heartless rogue!
Alexander took off his jacket and shirt. "Come Teresa, shall be have a gentle beginning?" he cooed.
Madre de diablo! Never had Teresa seen such a man, so commanding, so fierce, so male. He stirred in her such untried and unknown feelings, unleashing longings.
"You are very beautiful." He purred.
The wonder in his voice, Liar that he was, sounded so sincere, Teresa thought. Think of all the other women that no doubt felt this way in his presence, the rake!
"I am but a spinster school teacher, hardly beautiful." She said quietly.
"Stop the lies, you are not a school teacher, I have read the letter, Teresa..."
Teresa gasped. Her flimsy cover had been discovered, what would become of her now?
His strong arms closed around her, she collided with the hard muscle of his chest. His skin was so warm, so soft. She returned his kiss, because she found she did not have the will to refuse him. He was not rough or brutal, but gentle and considerate. A stark contrast to the man she had seen above decks.
"Have you ever been kissed Teresa?" He questioned, still stroking her cheek gently.
"Only...only by you." She whispered.
There was a sudden blaze of desire in his eyes. Such a hard, cruel man, yet his skin, his hair was like silk.
"No plain school teacher could set my blood afire, you are more than that...I aim to find out. It is time for you to fulfill your agreement..." Kent said gently.
He led her over to his beckoning bed. he quickly and deftly removed her dress. "I am a prisoner, at your mercy, Captain...you will have mercy on me?" Teresa said, her voice quivering.
He stroked her hair. "Poor little Spanish girl...lost at sea..."
A slow, hungry smile curved about his full lips. He began to explore every inch of her skin.
"Please...Captain...I did not mean..." She gasped.
"Hush...I taste passion in your kisses, you were made for this, do not deny me." his smile was sweet, gentle. "Do not deny yourself."
His mouth closed on hers kissing her so deeply she was gasping for breath. Teresa tried to stir up her hatred, her anger, but it was to no avail. Too much pleasure was drowning her senses.
"I want to hear you call out my name to the heavens, Teresa, I am going to take you to paradise..." he whispered.
"I...I don't know your name!" she whispered under his lips.
"Alexander, my Spanish flower...and you will cry out my name, I promise you..."
All at once there was a pounding on the door. It was Hedley, damn his eyes! "Captain! French sail off the starboard bow!" He yelled.
A curse hissed out between Alexander's teeth. He tore himself away from Teresa.
Alexander ran up on deck. Hedley pointed out beyond the lighthouse. "There, a French galleon, they are still a ways back."
Alexander cursed aloud. Sure enough, a French diplomatic flag fluttered from the mainmast. It had to be that ambassador she was promised to.
"We have the advantage as long as the wind stays with us, set a course South by Southwest, Hedley. Keep a close watch, and let me know if he starts to gain on us."
Hedley saluted. "Aye, aye Captain."
Aboard the French ship was Francois Rene Bouvier, French Ambassador to Jamaica. Months he had been waiting for the arrival of his betrothed, a Spanish beauty from a prestigious but destitute family. He had met her once, when she was a mere child. He was told she grew into a beauty. His marriage would see her family clear of poverty, as he was settling a huge cash amount on her.
It was time he was wed, and started a family.
When word reached him of the sinking of the 'San Baulista', he feared the worst. But word also reached him that the sinking was caused by none other than Captain Alexander Kent of the Charlotte Rose.
He knew his Spanish bride-to-be was on board that pirate's ship, and he meant to have her back before that English pig laid his hands on her.
Alexander went back down to his cabin. He looked at Teresa, sitting on the bed; she looked so fragile. He felt feelings wash over him he had never felt before with other women, he was beginning to care. In a short period of time, Teresa had grown to mean very much to him.
"Forget this man, he is a bloodless beast, who counts you among his possessions as if you were a pocket watch." Alexander said passionately.
"It is he who pursues your ship? I must help support my family. This man who wants to marry me, whom you mock, is the answer to my family's distress. I must marry him...my wants and needs mean nothing." Teresa said softly.
"Listen to me, forget the agreement between us, you do not have to do this. Just say the word and I will leave you alone in peace. But will you not allow me to be the first man to feel you tremble, do you want me, even as I burn for you?" Kent whispered huskily.
Teresa was lost. Looking into those beautiful eyes of his...she was lost. Her mouth went dry. She did want him, more than she ever wanted anything in her life.
"Love me then...if I must beg I will. But I do want you...Alexander." Teresa whispered huskily.
The sound of his name on her lips inflamed his desire. He began to kiss her quite deeply and thoroughly.
This was far more than either had hoped, in all his travels, in all the different women he had bedded from all corners of the globe, nothing felt like this...ever. He did not know how long they had, with the French galleon hard on their heels, but he would take advantage of every moment.

Teresa felt as if she were drowning...it was all too intense...
Shipwreck Cove, a hiding place for pirates, past and present. The wind did not stay with Kent; he ordered his ship into the protection of the cove, where it would be hidden from view from the sea. He took Teresa ashore in a rowboat, hoping the French galleon would pass them by.
The beach was littered with wreckage from a couple of pirate ships. Alexander knew this was futile at best, but he had to try.
"We can hide here in this cove, the French ship will hopefully pass us by, then my dearest love, we can be together...forever." Alexander caressed her cheek with the back of his fingers. He was totally besotted with Teresa, and completely in love.
Teresa for her part had forgotten about her betrothal and her promise of duty to her family. She wanted Alexander Kent, no other man would do. She prayed they would not be found. She had fallen deeply in love with him.
But it was not to be; soon Bouvier and a few of his men approached the couple from the north shore of the cove.
Before they could act or speak, Teresa stepped forward. "Monsieur, may we have a private word?"

Bouvier motioned for his men to watch Kent; he then led Teresa to a nearby cave. "Do not be alarmed my dear, merely skeletons of the past." He pointed to the cage.
"Teresa...you are as beautiful as I remember..." Bouvier said softly. "Tell me, did he lay a hand on you? Did he take your virtue?"
"I...I will tell you, but first I must have your word, I do not wish him punished, I want you to let him go free, and I will come with you and marry you. That is the only wedding gift I wish." Teresa whispered.
"You care for him that much?" Francois hissed through his clenched teeth.
"No it isn't that," She lied. "He treated me fairly, as a gentleman, and to answer your question he did not take my virtue. So let him go, I implore you..."
"What!?! You are asking the impossible! Do you know how long my country has waited to get our hands on Captain Kent?" He thundered.
"This is the only thing I will ever ask of you, Please Monsieur Bouvier, I beseech you, show mercy, as he showed me mercy!"
She lied about her virtue, if she told the truth Bouvier would never let Alexander go. She gave herself willingly to Alexander...it was a stupid lie, Bouvier would know the truth soon enough, but she would worry about that later.
"He is free to go...Kent, leave these waters and do not return. For if you do, I will blow you out of the sea." Bouvier said curtly. "You may thank the senorita for your release, she begged for your clemency. Her soft words melted my heart. Go, before I change my mind."
Teresa felt wretched. It took all her self-control to not run into Alexander's arms. She tried a brave smile, but all she felt like was weeping.

All of the sudden Alexander felt sick; he knew...she was not going to come with him. She was going to stay with the French fop!
"I wish to speak to Miss De La Montagio alone for a few minutes before I go..." Alexander said quietly.
Francois began to sputter, but Teresa laid her hand on his arm. "It is alright, only for a minute..."
"God speed...Captain Kent." she whispered.
"Teresa, do not do this to us, do not make us miserable forever. We cannot be parted; you know this. We love each other, we will never love anyone the same." Alexander said with a quiet passion.
"Go...for the love of God, go now." She cried quietly. "And do not come back."
Alexander turned and walked toward the rowboat, got in and began to row out to his ship.
Teresa stood and watched the Charlotte Rose disappear over the horizon; her eyes were stinging with hot tears. Go, my love...be safe. She said sadly to herself. She could see him; standing on the deck...she would never see him again. He was gone forever, the only man she would ever love.

"Come Teresa..." Francois said roughly. "Let me take you to safety."
She looked wistfully out to sea.
The Charlotte Rose pulled further away from Shipwreck Cove. Alexander's heart felt as if it had been shredded with a dull implement. He could no longer see her on the beach; dark, heavy clouds were gathering overhead, it matched the storm brewing in his soul. He stood on the quarterdeck until the raindrops began to fall, splashing on his already wet face.
They only had a few days together...it would have to last a lifetime.
~~~MANY YEARS LATER~~~

Close to 15 years have passed by. Alexander Kent, now a Post-Captain of the HMS Devonshire in his Majesty's Navy, finds himself back in the Jamaica area once again. He and his men have put into Port Royal for a short leave.
Glad to be free of the confines of his uniform, Alexander went to the local Tavern for a meal.
He briefly thought of Teresa, the woman he loved so deeply, so long ago, he wondered if she was still in the area. He shook his head, best to forget. Old ghosts...
Alexander stepped outside to get a breath of fresh air, as he was walking across the common, he saw some foreign sailor shoving and yelling at a young lad. The shoving match soon degenerated into a full-blown case of fisticuffs. A small crowd began to gather, but no one stepped in to help the boy, who could be no more than 14. The lad was giving as good as he got, but he was out-muscled, an unfair fight. Alexander strode over and inserted himself into the melee. "What kind of man fights a boy? I demand you fight me instead!"
The man cursed at him in what Alexander guessed was Portuguese, he swung some punches at Alexander, but it was fruitless, as Alexander had honed his brawling skills over the years first as a privateer, then a Captain in his Majesty's Navy. A few roundhouse punches, and the man was soon subdued.
Alexander soon had the bully on the dirt, and down for the count.
"Bravo monsieur! Tres bien!" The boy cried clapping his hands happily.
"You better speak English if you can lad, my French is not very good. Come, this rogue is not worth any further bruised knuckles from either of us!" Alexander laughed. The fight felt good, he had not done that for sometime. Already his shore leave was proving entertaining.
"My name is Rene Bouvier. I am indebted to you, Sir. Please accept my thanks. This rogue meant to rob me!" The boy exclaimed.
"Please, it was nothing, but come lad, I will escort to your home safely, you still seem a bit shaky. Is it nearby?"
They walked slowly toward the other end of town, to a rather fancy brick home. Alexander introduced himself and the boy was excited to learn he was a British Naval captain, asking him all sorts of questions.
Rene led Alexander into the front foyer; a young girl stepped into the room. Alexander was thunder struck. "Teresa!?!?" he rasped.
Rene's eyebrows knotted in confusion. "No Mon Capitaine, this is my twin sister, Monique, Monique, this is Captain Alexander Kent, of His English Majesty's Navy!"
Alexander could not look away from the young girl. Dear God she looked like Teresa, with lighter hair...he shook his head. This was insane, his brain was still full of her, he was seeing her everywhere...
A soft voice called to him from the door. "Good Afternoon, Captain Kent."
Alexander turned, he knew it was her. The lad said his name was Bouvier...he never made the connection. By God, she was breathtaking. Time had not marred her beauty. After the shock of seeing Teresa standing in front of him wore off, he turned and looked at her two children, then back at her. "Children, leave us please. Captain Kent and I have much to discuss."
Monique turned and left quickly; Rene however, did not.
"Maman, Captain Kent stepped in and saved me from a robbery and thrashing. You...you know him?" Alexander looked at the lad, then back to Teresa. The boy was his, it was obvious to anyone with eyes, and the young girl too...My God...his children!!!
"Rene, I will be fine, yes, we know each other, I will explain later, leave us please." Teresa said quietly.
Rene was very confused, looking from one to the other, but he did as his mother asked.
As soon as the lad was gone, Alexander lost his temper. "My God!! Why did you not let me know I had children? How cruel are you? Do you think me so cold and ruthless I would not embrace them, love them?"
Teresa's temper flared, matching his own. "And how would I contact you, pirate? What would you do? Take them from me? Steal them away in the night? They have a home here; Francois is their father in all ways! They do not need another!"
"Your heart has frozen toward me Teresa, why? You told me to leave and never come back. I am no longer a privateer, for the last 8 years I have been a post-captain in his Majesty's navy, serving in the North Atlantic."

"If you loved me as much as you said, you would have moved heaven and earth to reclaim me! I waited, 2 months, praying you would return! When I discovered I was with child, I had no choice but to marry Francois! Not a word, in all these years!" Teresa roared, her hands on her hips.
That fiery temper, that passion, how it stoked his blood...Alexander grabbed Teresa and kissed her deeply. Her lips were as glorious as he remembered. Desire roared through his veins. In all these years, no other woman elicited such a reaction out of him. The deep love and passion he felt for her came roaring back, not that it ever left him. He just had it buried to protect his own heart. Teresa tore herself away. "Yes, that is your answer to everything, is it not, Alexander? Your seductive arts will no longer work on me, I am not the trembling, young girl you took captive, robbing me of my virtue, callously leaving me with child, to fend for myself."
Alexander curled his lip, looking at her jewels and fine gown. "You have obviously landed on your feet Madame Bouvier. You no doubt have your fop husband wrapped around your finger, he probably even believes the children are his, he is so under your thumb!"
Alexander turned to leave. "I will return tomorrow. I will be recognizing the children as mine, I will become part of their lives, and you or your wretched husband have nothing to say about it."
His Hessian boots clicked angrily across the marble tile as he exited the house.
Teresa's tears began to spill at last.
She had finally calmed down and went into the parlour. She would have to tell Francois that Alexander Kent was back...and the children. They were barely 15! To tell them their father is not who they think...damn Alexander for forcing her hand!
Her mind, however, went back to his devastating kiss. She behaved as a spoiled child who did not get her way. She cursed him for not returning all those years ago...but how could he? Especially if he were in the Navy as he stated. He could not swan off to the Caribbean to fetch her.
And she had no way to contact him. She began to think of those few precious days they spent together on the Charlotte Rose, was it all a dream?
Francois Bouvier walked into the parlour. "You look pale my dear...are you well?" He asked indifferently.
"Alexander Kent was here this afternoon." she said bluntly.
Francois did not move. He continued to look into the hearth. "I see...your lover at last returns. And the children?"
"He saw them...he...he guessed." Teresa said quietly.
Francois snorted cruelly. "No doubt...it is plainly obvious they are not mine. I suppose you ran to his arms? A tearful reunion? How touching."
"No...there was no touching reunion. He has threatened to return tomorrow..."
"I will not have that pirate in my house...what has he threatened? To carry you off over his shoulder? English swine!" Francois spat.
"He is no longer a pirate, Francois, he is a Captain in his Majesty's Navy, a respectable man. He wants to get to know the children...his children." Teresa said softly.
"I suppose you will wish to go with him, I suppose you will leave me now your lover has returned. Go Teresa. End our misery." Francois hissed.
"Why would I leave you Francois, you are my husband. You forget we are both Catholic." Teresa said quietly.
Francois snorted. "So you have stayed with me all these years out of some devotion to our religion? Thank you for that, quite heartwarming and a boost to my masculine ego."
"You sound so bitter Francois, so unhappy, and I know I am to blame. I wish you could find it in your heart to try and forgive me." Teresa said.
"If only Francois, you had let me into your heart, just a little, my fondness for you could have grown into much more, but you would not." Teresa whispered.

Francois was silent for several moments.
"I could not, it hurt too much. I was so happy when we first married, then when you told me you were expecting a child...my joy knew no bounds. But it was soon apparent they were not mine; try as you might to pass them off as such. Why did not tell me the truth? I would have forgiven you Teresa. But you lied. Telling me you did not bed with him, when it was quite obvious on our wedding night that you had, I chose to overlook it, I was so in love with you. Then to say the children were mine...you allowed me to love them, to love you...you broke my heart."
Tears spilled from Teresa's eyes. "You are right, I was horrible. But I was barely a child myself Francois. I did not know what to do. You left our marriage bed, treated me with kind indifference all these years. I do not deserve your regard, your...love."
Francois reached up and stroked her cheek. "God help me I still love you. Now it may be too late."
Teresa gave Francois a puzzling look. "Too late? Whatever do you mean, Francois?"
"It is of no consequence. I will not ask the impossible Teresa, let us be friends at least. We were once, do you remember? I believe we enjoyed each other's company. Can we not start from there?" Francois said softly.

Teresa was deeply moved. She did care for him, very much. She always did. He was a dear man. She just did not love him the way he deserved. Even though he was darkly handsome, he did not stir any deep passion or love in her...not like...Alexander.
Francois leaned in and kissed her cheek tenderly, it was the first physical affection he had shown her in years.
"Yes, Francois, we will start from here..." Teresa smiled warmly.
Alexander walked for hours all over Port Royal. He could not process the revelations; he was a father, of twins. All these years he hid his broken, bitter heart from view. Why didn't he go back and fetch her? He could have done it, at some time, surely! He knew why, his male pride could not take the fact she chose to stay behind with Bouvier. He was devastated. He threw himself into his career, then when the King offered him a captaincy in the Navy, he jumped at the chance. Staying at sea made the loss more bearable.

He tried to find solace in other woman's arms, he had many dalliances over the years in many different ports, he even toyed with the idea of marrying one of them, but he never did. Teresa was always there, with a firm grip on his heart.
The next day, Alexander returned. He immediately apologized for his behaviour the previous day. He smiled warmly. Teresa felt the frost around her heart melt away. That smile of his!
"Alexander, Francois and I told the children last night. I am sorry, but they are still in shock, and cannot see you today. Rene took it especially hard, he is quite angry at all of us. Can you give them a few days before you come again?"
Alexander thought a moment. He understood, he was still in shock himself. "Of course. I will not press them."
Teresa looked into his handsome face. He had a few scars that were not there before; the lines were more deeply etched in his chiseled perfection, a cluster of lines fanned out from his eyes. He was now 38, but still a magnificent looking man, perhaps more so now. She still loved him. She never stopped.
"Alexander..." she whispered. "Forgive my behaviour as well. I behaved as a petulant child. I...I did try to contact you. No one knew what happened to the Charlotte Rose. I did not know where in England you were from..." A single tear rolled down her cheek.
"My love..." Alexander said huskily. "There has been no other woman to compare with you, believe me, I have looked. We belong together. Come with me, you and the children, back to England. We can be a family, and try to make up for all the years that were lost to us. I can look after you all, I am very rich, I have properties...I never told you; I am the youngest son of the Duke of Suffolk. I will resign from the Navy, and devote all my love and attention to you and our children."
Teresa's head was spinning. "I...I cannot think. Please Alexander..."
He took her hand and kissed it tenderly. Francois walked in the room just as he laid his lips on Teresa's hand. "I will leave you my love...to think."
They were both oblivious to Francois' presence.
Alexander turned and left.
Francois led Teresa over to the leather settee. "I saw your tender farewell, you still have deep feeling for Kent?"
"It does not matter Francois, I am devoted to making our marriage work, I will not leave with him. You are my husband." Teresa said softly.
"You may want to reconsider that decision moi cherie, I was not going to tell you this until I had to, but I am dying. Some rare, wasting fatal tropical disease, the name is not important. I have a matter of months, a year or two at most." Francois said sadly.
Teresa gasped in horror. "No! This cannot be true! You are just saying this to be noble, so I will leave with Alexander! I will not!"
"No cherie, I am not noble. I truly am dying. The doctor informed me a few weeks ago. You should go, take the children, I would not have you watch my decline." Francois said quietly.
Teresa felt the tears roll down her cheeks. "No Francois. I am your wife, sickness and health. I will not abandon you in your time of need. Please let me be the loving, caring wife you deserve. Let me devote my affection and love on you...let us be man and wife. Let us be happy in the time you have left. I do adore you, Francois."
"All the years we wasted, we could have been quite content, even happy Teresa. What a tragic waste. I blame myself. I loved you so deeply, it hurt so much that you loved another man. I could not bear it, it was easier to turn you away, to close you out of my affections. But I have been miserable, how I longed to hold you in my arms...all these years." Francois said, his voice laced with regret.
Teresa began to cry softly. "Francois..." she choked. "My dear husband, please, no more regrets from either of us. Let us just love each other..."
Francois reached down and brought Teresa to her feet, he leaned in and kissed her tenderly and thoroughly. He could taste her tears. He was so grateful; she was going to stay with him until the end. "I love you Teresa, and will until I take my last ragged breath..."
Teresa began to sob. "Francois...my love."
She took his hand and let him upstairs to her bedroom.
It was the end of Alexander's shore leave. In that few week period, he managed a fragile truce with Francois Bouvier. The man generously let Alexander come over as often as he wanted to get to know the children. Monique soon thawed, but Rene was still standoffish and distant.
Alexander took Teresa's hand to kiss it. Rene turned away in disgust. "I am going home to resign, and take care of some business, then I will be returning. I will be living here, near the children. I want to be part of their lives, I want to be part of your life. Is there any hope for us Teresa?" He whispered only for her ears.

Teresa did not know. Could they ever recapture that glorious time on their ship of dreams? She did not tell Alexander or the children of Francois' fate. Perhaps someday there would be a future for her and Alexander, but for now, there was only Francois. "We will talk when you return." She whispered.
Alexander's heart leapt with joy...dare he hope?
Monique ran to Alexander's strong embrace. "Ah...my dear sweet girl." Alexander crooned, soothing her hair. "Such a sweet affectionate girl, thank you."
"Take care Father." She said softly.
Alexander felt his heart soar. Monique had called him 'Father'.
Alexander held out his hand to Rene. "Will you not say good-bye to me Rene, as one gentleman to another?"
Rene looked down at the hand, then back at Alexander. Rene's face was a hard, cold mask. He turned away.
Alexander felt pain stab at his heart. "Very well...Good-bye son. I will return, perhaps you will soften a little toward me in the time I am gone."
Alexander began to walk down the pier. Rene heard his boots reverberating on the planks. He turned around and watched Alexander Kent walk away.
Tears began to form in his eyes, waves of anguish rolled over Rene. This man was his father. He held out his hand and he had refused it. He loved his Papa, but this man was his father. He deserved a chance. Rene could not deny it, in the couple of weeks, as hard as he tried to stay angry, he could not. He had feelings for this man. What if he never saw him again? What if something happened... "FATHER!!!" Rene cried. He ran down the dock to face Alexander. "Take care father, be safe."
Alexander felt the tears fill his eyes, he gathered the boy close to him. "My son..." he whispered with great emotion. "Look after your mother, your sister. Listen to your Papa. I will return. I promise you."
Perhaps, Alexander thought to himself as he held his son close to his heart, perhaps those dreams he dreamed on his ship will at last come true...

~~THE END~~
Thanks to all the great creators here at TSR, most of these items can be found under 'Themes'--Nautical/Marine, Summer Beach Party, and Swashbuckler's Revenge.

The ship download is at MTS2, called 'The Venture.' by V1nd1care.

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#84md198Aug 2, 2008

Stunning! Use of cc was great (the ships are amazing\:rah\: ) and the plot was very even. I liked Francois being a kind man and a couple of good twists.
A very sexy story\:o

#85wewe78Aug 18, 2008

Wow! That was beautiful it was like J.K. Rowling wrote it 500/5!!!!!!!!\:rah\:

#86Xanthia_loveAug 21, 2008

WOWW !! SOOOOOOOOOOOOO AMAZING !! So eye catching screenshots and Characters..!! The emotion , drama , romance and twists .. OMG they are BRILLIANT.. A full 5.0 to you !!!! \:rah\: \:rah\:

#87lisa9999Sep 16, 2008

Well done!\:rah\: \:rah\:

#88tracysimerDec 23, 2008

Your stories are so unique!(wow, havent used that word in awhile) Excellent, excellent. I can tell a lot of time and thought went into it. Thumbs up!\:rah\: \:rah\: \:rah\:

#89agapi rFeb 25, 2009

Great story\:rah\:

#90Little SeerFeb 26, 2009

\:\) Excellent as always!  Cheers!

#91KvetoslavaMar 16, 2009

\:rah\:

#92fabrizioammolloMay 16, 2009

This is an enthralling story! \:rah\:

#93joka93Jun 18, 2010

Oh my..... \:\) I simply \:wub\: it...The caracters, the story, everything...
For those hopelessly romantic ones like me...It's good to know that somewhere in this non-feeling world there are some people who care, think, and most importantly feel...
All the stories I read from you, are wonderfull...I guess we can all hope that some day we could buy books, or maybe collected stories by drew soltesz...Who knows what tomorrow brings \:\)

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