Turk seemed relaxed as he leaned against the railing and coolly returned the looks of the strangers before him, feeling not a twinge of guilt that he had been the one to take Leigha from them.
“So,” his deep, gravelly voice broke the tension as he stood erect and towered over the pair, “You are Simon and you must be Lord Dagon, Leigha’s father-in-law.”
Both were startled by the man’s knowledge of who they were as well as by the near-perfect English spoken by the enemy that they had assumed to be a savage barbarian.
“Well? Are you not who I have said you are?” he asked with a bellow when they failed to answer him. “For if you are not… I have no use for you! I shall have my men return you unceremoniously to the wharf below!”
“We are who you say,” Simon spoke evenly, his guard up all the more due to the contradictions in the man’s speech and appearance. “And you are the captain of the Tiree, the one who stole Leigha from the Pepperwind! I demand to know where she is!”
“You demand?” Turk snarled and then laughed as he waved his great arms around in a gesture about his ship and men. Looking them in the eyes, he bellowed, “I am Turk, and you are now on my ship! You have no rights here save what I grant to you!”
Looking at the pair, Turk smiled and slowly shook his head. He was pleased to see that his words had not even crumpled an eyelash on the men that still stood tall and wary before him.
“There was a time when had you even dared to come close to my ship, I would have slit your throats before you could utter such insolent tones to me,” he growled then his stern voice strangely softened as he smiled, “But that time has passed for I find myself a slave to a tigress, and it is her command that I must now meet. By her fancy, you have all rights aboard my ship, and I must bid you welcome. You are both as brave and true as she has said of you. Come now, she waits.”
“Are you speaking of Leigha? You have her here and she is safe?” Simon asked incredulously, wondering what had transpired between the two, knowing that Leigha’s fire could possibly be the tigress he spoke of. “She is not a slave to you then and has not been sold?”
“She is here and she is safe.” Turk smiled then gestured towards his cabin. “She is preparing herself even now for you. It was she that spotted you in the crowd and had me order my men to fetch you. It is I that am the slave here you see. With her spirit, Leigha could never be anyone’s slave, but we will speak of that later. Come now.”
Turk led the anxious and curious pair to the cabin, only to stop short as the door swung open before them, and there, illuminated by the light from within, stood Leigha smiling beautifully at them all.
Virginia Lee ~ Dagon’s Blood excerpt