Siren Island: Shipwrecked (An Erotic Adventure Series)

BOOK: Siren Island: Shipwrecked (An Erotic Adventure Series)
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Siren Island

Shipwrecked

 

 

By Virginia Wade

 

 

Copyright © 2012 Virginia Wade

All Rights Reserved.

Published by I Love Stacy

Kindle Edition

 

 

Virginia Wade

http://virginia-wade-erotica.com

 

http://twitter.com/VirginiaErotica

 

Email:

[email protected]

 

 

All characters appearing in this work are fictitious. Any resemblance to real persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

 

This book contains material protected under International and Federal Copyright Laws and Treaties.
 
Any unauthorized reprint or use of this book is prohibited.
 
No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system without express written permission from the author.

 

Chapter One

 

 

As I clung to the crate, my dress sodden with seawater, lightning streaked across the sky, illuminating a ceiling of ominous clouds. The roiling waves forced me to grip the edges of the wooden crate, the ocean pitching me back and forth, wind and rain lashing my face. I’d kicked off my shoes and my underthings; pantaloons, petticoats, and the crinoline now floated somewhere in the darkness, no longer weighing me down.

“Lucy!” It was a woman’s voice, my chaperone, Pricilla Mayfair.

“I’m here!” A wave smacked me in the face.

I had seen her last on deck, wet and screaming, as the ship had begun to sink, enormous waves crashing into the hull, breaking the mast in two, killing scores of people. Those final moments would live in my nightmares until the day I died. Debris surrounded me along with floating bodies of women, children, and crewmembers. It was heartening to know that my chaperone had survived, but what about my fiancé, Samuel? What about his brother, Jack? I hadn’t seen either of them in those last, horrifying moments. He’d promised to stay with me, but an enormous wave had thrown him overboard.

I prayed to God the crate remained sound. “Samuel?”

We were going to be married in Australia where his parents had fled after the war, having lost their plantation and way of life. They escaped the turmoil of reconstruction to take their chances on a continent founded by convicts. None of it mattered now, because we were doomed entirely.

“Lucy!”

“Here! I’m here. Follow my voice!” Something dark moved towards me, lifting and falling in the waves. “Pricilla?” My hand encountered a soft object, and I screamed. It was the body of a crewmember, his face eerily white. He sank and drifted away.

“Where are you?”

“I’m here!” She was getting closer. “I’m here!” I paddled towards the voice, the water lapping against me, forcing my head under. When I surfaced, I glimpsed my chaperone, clinging to a barrel, horror etched into her face. “Pricilla!”

“Dear Lord in heaven, child!”

I grabbed for her, but had to let go for fear of losing my lifeline. “Have you seen Samuel? Jack?”

“No!”

“Take my dress. We mustn’t separate.” She clutched the material.

“Dear Jesus! The saints preserve us. Watch over us in our time of need…save us from the ocean. Please, dear God.”

“Hang on, Pricilla. Don’t give up!”

We floated for hours during that dark and stormy night. Splintered pieces of wood and bodies drifted around us. I was terrified of sharks. I had survived the sinking ship, but would I now be eaten alive, plucked out of the ocean by ferocious teeth?

As Pricilla and I clung together, alternating between weeping and praying, the sky began to lighten and an enormous shape appeared in the distance, rising out of the water. We seemed to be heading towards it, the swells less volatile now, because the storm had passed. My fingers were numb from clinging to the crate, trying to hold on. Pricilla rested her head against her barrel with her eyes closed, her face pale and drained.

It would be another hour before my feet encountered the sharp ends of a reef, scratching me painfully, rousing me out of a semiconscious state. “Pricilla!”

“Um? Leave me alone. No don’t…” she mumbled.

“There’s a beach! I see land!” Excitement renewed me with energy. Sharks wouldn’t eat me after all! The stark light of morning revealed a gray ocean, the storm having churned the contents into a sooty soup. The object I had seen at dawn was now revealed, and mountains covered in vibrant green greeted my grateful eyes. The squawking of seagulls was a welcome sound.

“Are we dead?”

“No! Paddle, Pricilla. There’s the shore!”

I kicked my tired legs, propelling me forward. It was a relief to feel sand beneath my toes. I let go of the crate, walking for the first time in hours, wading through waist deep water. I reached the beach, my waterlogged dress weighing me down. I collapsed onto the sand and closed my eyes. The sound of screams awoke me.

“No! Dear Lord, no!” It was Pricilla.

“What is it?” I sat up, squinting under the sun. I licked my parched lips, wishing I had water. My chaperone stood over a nearby corpse. “Don’t look at it. Get away from it, Pricilla. There’s nothing you can do for him.”

The crazy woman had managed to stay afloat with her shoes, petticoats, and crinoline on. My toes peaked out from beneath the darkly colored material of my garment. It was scandalous to not be properly dressed, but I could have cared less. Long brown hair was tangled around me, my hairpins having loosened and fallen out in the water. A movement on the beach caught my eye. Someone was coming!

“Look, Pricilla!”

“Why has the Lord forsaken us? How could he do this?” She knelt and wept, bowing her head. “So many people are dead,” she wailed.

“Someone comes!”

It was a man. He plodded barefoot towards us, a slight swagger in his walk. It wasn’t until I saw his face that I recognized him. My fiancé’s older brother, Jack, had survived the shipwreck. He wore a waistcoat, shirt, and trousers. It was far too hot for a sack coat. I met him for the first time aboard
The Lady Jane,
and I had loathed him on sight. There was something about him that made me feel as if he knew what I looked like naked. His reputation as a gambler and blackguard were well known. The name Jack Carlyle was not mentioned in polite society.

“That horrible man,” blurted Pricilla. “They kill the innocent, yet the devil lives.”

I rolled my eyes. My chaperone was frequently dramatic and prone to fainting spells, which I had learned to accept over the years.

“Cover your legs, my dear!”

What did it matter now? I’d lost half my clothing to the ocean. Who would care if my legs were exposed in this isolated place? I could feel sand under my corset, rubbing painfully into my skin. I would remove the contraption at the first opportunity.

“Good morning!” he shouted. “Fancy finding you here.” His grin was huge, white teeth flashing. “Miss Wordsworth. Miss Mayfair.”

“Good morning, Mr. Carlyle,” said Pricilla primly.

“It’s just Jack. The formalities hardly matter now, eh?” He took a lengthy drink from a wine bottle. “Thirsty?” There was a pleasing southern drawl to his voice.

I eyed him with disdain. “Have you seen Samuel?”

He shook his head. “There are survivors down the beach. Come on. I’ll take you to them.” He reached for me, helping me to my feet.

“Thank you.”

His presence always set me on edge. There was something about his look, a certain gleam in his eye, that made me feel like I was parading around in front of him naked. He took in my appearance, the bedraggled hair laced with sand, the crumpled dress still damp with seawater, and my shoeless feet, which I quickly hid under my hem. I could only imagine what he was thinking. I never left the house without my bonnet and gloves.

“What survivors, Mr. Carlyle? Who are they?”

He squinted at my chaperone. “You’ll be relieved to hear that the Reverend Jeremiah Hancock is alive and well, prayer book and all. He’s in the middle of a sermon as we speak.” Sarcasm laced his voice.

“Oh, thank God.”

“There are women, men, and a few crew members.”

“What about Samuel?”

His dark eyes rested on me. “Yes, what about that plucky little brother of mine? Where could he be?”

It was no secret that the Carlyle siblings were frequently at war. Samuel, light haired and sweet, was the apple of his mother’s eye, while Jack, dark, brooding and sinful, was barred from the family home. They’d gotten into fisticuffs at the onset of the voyage and had avoided each other ever since.

I tingled from his look, appraising me, missing nothing. He seemed to enjoy my distress and the fact that my fiancé was missing and more than likely dead. I was now trapped on an island with the one man no woman should be alone with. He was the last person on earth I could trust with my money, my bible, or my virtue…and he knew it, the smug bastard.

He grinned as if he’d read my mind. “Please. I’m not all
that
bad. Let me escort you to the others.” I glanced at the wine bottle, feeling hopelessly parched. “Have some. It’s not a bad Bordeaux.”

I was utterly tempted, eyeing the bottle. “No. I shouldn’t.”

“Take it.”

It was before me, the maroon color glinting, the colors deepening to rich red from the light of the sun. “Um…well…” Throwing caution to the wind, I grasped the bottle, and, while Pricilla hissed for me to stop, I had a long, unladylike pull.

“My dear, no!”

Being dehydrated and nearly dizzy with thirst, the wine felt marvelous pouring down my throat, warming my belly. “Won’t you have some, Miss Mayfair?”

“I shall not, nor shall you. Put it down!” She glared at Jack. “How dare you offer a lady wine straight from the bottle, Mr. Carlyle.”

“Didn’t see any glasses, Miss Mayfair. We’re not exactly in the drawing room at Oaks Plantation, now are we?”

“A woman must never forget her manners, Mr. Carlyle, no matter where she is.” Having regained her strength and senses, she threw back her shoulders and marched ahead of me, her feet sinking in the sand. “Let’s find the others. Come now, Miss Wordsworth. The Reverend Hancock will know what to do. He’s a man of God. He will save us.”

Jack drawled, “I wouldn’t put my money on it.”

BOOK: Siren Island: Shipwrecked (An Erotic Adventure Series)
7.56Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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