Friday, December 17, 2010

A Kraken Holiday story

by Maureen O. Betita

**Congratulations to CheekyGirl for winning the fun giveaways from Maureen O. Betita!**

I climbed from the hammock as satisfied as a cat sprawled in the sunshine. With a mouse between its paws. And a saucer of milk nearby, the dog tied to a tree just far enough away to be frustrated… Yes, Archer did that to me.
Glancing back at him, I very nearly giggled. But I stifled myself. I do not giggle. Tink, the Quartermaster of the Cursed Quill, pirate adventurer, master of the knife and extraordinary thief, does not giggle. I might chortle, but mostly I sneer.
True, that one winter ball, I did smile. Three years before Emily Pawes dropped into the Kraken’s Caribbean, all of us on the Cursed Quill were enjoying a winter of few storms and months of successful pirating. Captain Jezebel had used her spies to uncover a stash of the best fabrics we’d seen in decades. Some monarch in Italy had lost the shipment in the Mediterranean to Spanish pirates, who lost it to the Dutch. who brought it to the West Indies thinking to cash in for the Winter Balls in the Caribbean. But we took it from them and liberated the best pieces for ourselves.
I’d pulled a blue so dark it appeared black, in a heavy silk. The tailor, Mr. Belvedere, was new to the Caribbean and on a dare I left the design of my gown to him. I’d heard good things about the man, he’d actually been banned from England. (That wasn’t saying much, the English approved of very little. Fortunate for him, he hadn’t tried his hand at making clothing in Spain, they’d have probably burnt him at the stake.) He’d examined me, taken detailed measurements and ignored my sniping. Janey giggled in the background.
Back on the ship, Janey told me that she’d be picking up the gown for me and I wouldn’t see until the night of the ball. I’d shrugged as I didn’t care. It worried me slightly, but it was important not to show any weakness. If she thought I cared, she’d never shut up about it and attempt to tease and taunt me endlessly.
The night of the ball, I caught my current lover screwing the tiny brunette whore from Blessing’s House of Pleasure. Bastard. I wouldn’t have minded if he’d included me but he had to be all selfish about it.
After kicking Kurt’s ass, I marched back to the ship, determined to see him regret losing me. Janey had hidden my gown, but nothing stayed hidden from me unless I allowed it. I snuck into her cabin and searched. Bitch had done well. It wasn’t there. It took me the better part of an hour to deduce the location and haul the wooden case out of the galley.
I locked the door of the spare cabin behind me and pulled the dress free of the paper Belvedere had wrapped it in.
“What the fuck?”
It was full length, how the hell would I show off my legs! And the sleeves, I could tell they’d run all the way to the knuckles on my hand! And no cleavage at all! In fact, how the hell would I fit my head through that opening? I was going to kill that idiot tailor!
Then I noticed the slit up the back…all the way up the back. And down. Ah! Interesting! Putting the dress up to me, I realized…this was tight. The midnight blue silk was really tight all the way to the hips, where it flared. I grinned.
I wouldn’t be able to wear a thing under it, wonderful. I stripped before sliding it on. Damn, too long! I wondered if the heels on my boots would be tall enough, then I kicked the crate and realized it still held something I hadn’t unpacked.
And there I found the tallest pair of heels I’d ever seen. The best whores of my world had shoes like these. Probably another gift of the portals to other worlds. I really didn’t care; it was fruitless to speculate on the vagaries of the portals. The shoes were black, and fit perfectly. I wound my long blond hair into a tight braid and pinned it to the top of my head.
I remember waiting until the rest of the crew had left for the Tortuga Grotto. I wanted to make an entrance. Striding into the ball, the crowds parted before me. I’d stolen a sparkly mask from Janey’s cabin and with my hair up, I wasn’t immediately recognized.
Yup, the crowd parted for me right up until a man with his back to me. I didn’t particularly mind, he had a fine ass. Ah. Yes. Wonderful ass, narrow waist and superb shoulders. I hoped his face didn’t disappoint. Then he turned and saw me. And I saw him.
Shit. Absolute divine. Sure, he wouldn’t be everyone’s cup of tea, but I felt my pussy clench and my tits literally throb. He had a dangerous face, with hooded eyes, a nose that had been broken at least once and a faint bit of scruff along his chin. A scar stood out above his left eye, a white line against lovely dark ebony skin. Eyes the color of emeralds locked on mine.
He took two steps toward me and with a raised eyebrow, I turned and walked away. And yes, I knew I smiled. I couldn’t help it. He followed me out of the grotto, his boot heels music to my ears. And body. We spent the Solstice locked together, wandered into the Barmy Cock three days later and stole away Kurt’s new flame.
Archer joined the Quill and we’ve been sailing as lovers ever since. He’s good with the cannon and doesn’t talk much. Suits me.
The dress? Well, it didn’t survive the night.

Leave a message for Maureen - one LUCKY commenter will win a Starbucks gift card, some chocolate if she's feeling particularly generous (make sure your comments are chocolate-worthy!) and this gorgeous Kraken pendant!


  1. Your final sentence made me smile. Great job on this. Happy Christmas!

  2. Oh hell, my first comment lacked chocolate worthiness. lol. Have mercy on a girl who went to buy a hot cocoa yesterday and had the machine leak chocolaty goodness everywhere, but in the cup. So she was denied her one winter craving.

  3. Ohhh, I see how you are, R.M.! Hard to resist the chocolate plea! I can see the puppy dog eyes from here! :D

  4. I think making you smile is a worthy of chocolate goodness! Thank you!

  5. You know, my Tortuga has both chocolate and coffee...

  6. Love the story, Maureen, truly in the Kraken spirit!

  7. Lovely story! I can't wait for everyone to get to read The Kraken's Mirror. That Kraken pendant is awesome.

  8. That pendent actually opens and is a locket! ;-)

    Thanks, Nikki, Kate, and Cheek!

  9. That was a very cheeky story and I loved it! Now I'll have to look up your book and put it on my buy list :-)

  10. This story never gets old. I don't need the chocolate, but that pendent is gorgeous. Can't wait to add the book to my eReader!

  11. Neither can I! LOL! Thanks, Terri!

  12. Man! You're the second one to nail me on that! I swear, that wasn't what I was thinking...consciously! LOL! It's a pirate ship, he's good with the cannons!

  13. I like a pirate who's good with the cannon. LOL That seems like a skill that could come in real handy!

  14. Maureen! Pussy? Tits! Ahoy matey! ;) heh. I'm here supporting you! Love the dirty excerpt!

  15. AllAbout - Yup, very important on a ship!

    Riley - I be a blunt spoken writer, what can I say!?



  16. What a wonderful insight into a woman's fantasy world. It seems to be all about the dress.

    Is there more?

  17. Hugh, Eventualy the book will be out and Tink is a side character of The Kraken's Mirror. And of course,'s about the dress!

    Or the cannon.

    Thanks for stopping by!

  18. Cool read, thank for it.
    All the best

  19. Thanks, Leanne! Hey, you ever make a sweater with tentacles? ;-)