Dark Water

Dark Water

By:  Mandi Martin  Ongoing
Language: English
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Nathaniel Hemlock was once one of the most feared pirates to ever sail the seas. His endless quest for gold and power claimed many lives but never concerned him since his heart had long hardened. That is until one day that desire took a dark turn. For power and gold he traded not only his own soul but that of his crew. Now he is cursed to sail the seas until the end of time, unless 1000 more souls are given, one a year...all must be children which was one of the only things he would never do. Present day. Lloyd has always scoffed at the legends that bring visitors to his town near the sea, and with the arrival of a movie crew it's gotten worse. Returning home one evening he sees a strange, old fashioned boat docked and curiously decides to board it. A decision he soon regrets. Once onboard he cannot leave. Nathaniel is not best pleased but there is little he can do and decides to use Lloyd as a cabin boy to make himself useful while he continues to search for another way of breaking his curse and freeing his crew. Their lives will soon become more entwined and perhaps Lloyd is the one who can warm the frozen heart.

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Okonkwo_Queen1
Very good book
2023-07-17 14:10:26
0
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Omowunmi Kemisola
Good novel
2022-08-07 17:18:17
0
user avatar
Lucy Simons
Intriguing. I’m curious!
2022-05-12 03:22:41
0
55 Chapters
Chapter One
The moon was full, clouds trailing over the silver orb like ivy about a tree, and a soft rain was in the air, made salty by the sea breeze over the docks.The docks had been abandoned long ago, but as the moonlight seeped through the cloudy curtain, the sheen illuminated the shape of a ship mast and the dark figure standing at its prow.Nathaniel Hemlock gazed emotionlessly over what seemed to be an endless sea, endless like his voyage clasping the rail with gloved fingers.He despised having to come ashore for no purpose, but it was the least he could do for his crew; unlike himself, they enjoyed the feeling of humanity about them even though they encountered no one. He owed them that, at least.He did, however, wander the lonely shores sometimes, brooding over things and wallowing in his own bitterness.Once he had owned these seas, his very name caused the bravest to pale, for he had shown no mercy when challenged. A skilled navigator of all waters and a competent tactician. He had
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Chapter Two
Lloyd fell the sudden pull from his collar, he stumbled backwards until he was roughly pushed against the wall. It all was too fast to let him react, and now he was cornered with a knife pressing on his neck. In a normal situation Lloyd would have been terrified, mixed with the desperation to free himself, but he still believed it was all an act for the tourists.He laughed a little, somewhat nervously, and raised his hands "alright captain, no need to be so harsh, good acting though!" He said with a wink and looked around before stopping his gaze on the other's face. "Aren't you too attractive to be playing an old legend?" he asked arching a brow still having a smile on his face, he would be lying if he wasn't flirting a little, he seldom got the chance with the clientele they had in the restaurant.Lloy
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Chapter Three
Lloyd accepted the help and wrapped his arm around the man for support and slowly got up resting most of his weight on the other  "Thomas... right?" he confirmed, he was unsure if he heard the name right or not. He could feel his stomach groan quietly, demanding food, it must had been dinner time back in his house, he felt terrible about his friends.  "That's right," Thomas nodded, clearing away the coagulating blood, relieved the flow was finally quelling. "I don't know my second name though. I forgot ages ago." "Uh huh." Lloyd muttered without really hearing as he took out his cell phone, feeling like an idiot for forgetting he had it with him. The screen offered a comforting light as he punched his password in, but as he tried to make the call to his colleague, the line was dead; he again, but with the same result, a sharp hiss like the waves surrounding them. Dead energy. "Why aren't you working?" he asked his phone in a whisper,
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Chapter Four
The skies above the ship began to lighten and flushed clouds reflected their rosy hue down onto the sea below.The sun fought its way through, golden and brilliant as it seemed to rise out of the black depths with phoenix like glory.The beauty of the day, and the fresh, fragrant breeze, was lost on Nathaniel. Day in, day out, it all seemed the same now, even though the ocean still gave him the childish shudder and thrill of the mysteries it held. Sometimes he thought if he could not see that, his heart and soul would have been lost long ago.As much as Lloyd loved the sunrise, in images anyway, he'd never rise early enough to see them intentionally, it was also lost on him. His mind was awash with possible solutions, some crazy, some logical, of how to end his plight."Tell me," he said at last ""if you find the way to break the curse, will I be free as well? And how long would it take? I mean it has been centuries since pirates existed, at least the kind
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Chapter Five
Lloyd was happily surprised by the quality of the produce, and soon the room filled with the deliciously scented steam of beef stew. It was basic recipe he had seen his mother use, and even though he knew he hadn't added the stocks and spices she had on hand, he could tell by the aroma that it wouldn't be unpleasant.It had been a challenge to figure out the stove. The fire for cooking was contained in the hearth beneath and the smoke filtered away up the chimney through a funnel to the weather deck. The stove held a hot water tank and three ovens with hefty cast iron doors, heating the surfaces for the pans and kettles hanging near the surrounding pipe railings. To prevent heat penetrating the deck below, it rested atop a layer of sand and crumbling brick. Even Nathaniel had once admitted it was one of the most cumbersome and complicated pieces on the ship, which made him wonder why a man such as Higgins was able to operate it. Yet once it was maste
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Chapter Six
The day was long. The ship sailed smoothly and passing vessels made no sign of seeing it but deftly avoided a collision as though a field radiated from it, making sure no harm came to those who didn't owe the ocean a payment.Lloyd watched sadly as the waves rose and fell, no sign of land in sight, just empty blueness, home to the whale and not of the human.Now and again a fish would approach the surface, barely more than a shadow in the sapphire, taking what it needed before sinking beneath again.Thomas offered small talk, the odd jape to try and ease his tension but little worked. Depression and resignment had settled and nothing would lift it unless he found the answers he needed. "How long are we going to be sailing?" Lloyd asked eventually, tiring of gazing at the nothingness. Thomas shrugged. "It depends. We move faster than others at sea, we're in-between times and worlds. But we're still reliant on weather and suc
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Chapter Seven
By studying the images accompanying the text, Lloyd found it easier to work out some of the old languages. His head throbbed in concentration and he took in each minute curve, each dot and kick of the letters, all glorious art in themselves.  He became lost in a world of fantastical beasts that lurked unseen beneath the waves, visible only at the very last second when the life was extinguished from the viewer. Tales of beauty, of horror and combined. Told only from sketches and symbols. In the poor light, his eyes began to burn and he pushed the papers aside, rubbing his temples with a low groan. "My head's killing me." Nathaniel didn't look up. "Get some air," he suggested pragmatically. "The salt in the breeze clears it." He took up the bottle near him, allowing the strong scent of alcohol to permeate his own senses as he opened it before taking a long swig. "Just don't whine about it, it ain't befitting around here." "I don't know
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Chapter Eight
The island that peered through the humid haze seemed abandoned. From beyond the shore, more rocks than sand, grit and mud strewn paths led into the womb of the forest. Roots of trees, knotted together like despairing lovers, covered any safe footing.  Islands like these had been a godsend in Nathaniel's golden years. A bounty of fresh fruit and vegetation that gave the much-needed nourishment that dried and cured produce couldn't. Not that it was all manna from heaven, falling foul of poison was a high risk, some of the most succulent looking plants being the most deadly. Lloyd stared in wonder. He'd read about places like this in books, seen images in museums of long-lost islands that apparently never existed. Or islands so remote that no one ever discovered them, or just avoided them out of fear of the supernatural.  His imagination grew, suppressed for so long, it crafted mystical and magical scenario's, ones he knew were poppycock but thrilling
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Chapter Nine
"Oh, come on!" Lloyd rolled his eyes as a loud hiss covered the words and the smell of frying fish and steam filled his vicinity."You can't say you're not a bit interested! I mean, Adam Grant is starring! You know you like him, and it's being filmed in our town! He'll be walking the same streets as us!""Yeah," Lloyd wafted the humidity away and reached under the counter for his water, unpleasantly warm from being sat there. "Surrounded by bulky heavies. Remember to change the oil? Rick forgot last week and it reeked.""I'm not Rick." The blonde peeked through the hatch, her wispy hair fighting to free itself from the messy plait. "And don't change the subject. Sophie Lawson is the other lead and I'm dying to see if I can catch a glimpse. God! She has cheekbones to die for!"Lloyd tuned out as the ramble continued, voice growing higher and more annoying in her excitement.
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Chapter Ten
Despite what he had said to Thomas, Lloyd was not about to allow the chance to find out more to slip through his fingers.Nerves roiled in his stomach, undulating and nauseating as he closed Nathaniel's door behind him, confident he would hear any approach. The hard boards echoed with any tread and even walking barefoot one could be detected. His fears were only partly for about the repercussions of being caught. His greatest consternation was finding out something that was better left unknown.It was a risk he needed to take, he could lie in the shadows and allow the waters to wash over him, suffocating him in ignorance.He was wary of Nathaniel. Their first meeting gave him reason to be. The man had strength, had power that he was not afraid to use. But unlike the crew, people he could not yet see as companions, he hadn't the experience to fear or be in awe. Nathaniel's desk was in good order, albeit slightly random in the manner in whi
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