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Scarblade's Past


by gamegirllupelover

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Author's Note: I started this story when, can you guess, the Maraqua plot had just started. By the time I got finished that plot was over along with the desert plot. Although the Maraqua plot is long gone I would really appreciate it if you took the time to read this.

The water sprayed the young Lupe with mist. His green fur whipped around in the wind. He sniffed the salty breeze of the ocean, and a smile appeared on his face. He loved the sea, he always had. It was his home, his shelter. He had lived on the sea as long as he could remember, landing for a few days to restock on supplies. He was about fourteen, turning fifteen in a few weeks. He hopped off the mast, and landed on all fours. His name, Blade.

     "Good 'D, Captain!" a crew member called.

     "Captain, I think a storm's comin' in," his first mate, Ranrik, shouted from his post at the steering wheel.

     He was a yellow Ixi, with a red bandana and a sharp cutlass attached to his belt. Ranrik and Blade had been friends since the age of three. When they were older they bought a ship, hired a crew, and sailed the waters together. They weren't pirates; they vowed they never would be. They hated how those neopets could be as greedy to take from others like that.

     Blade looked up at the sky; Ranrik was right, the clouds were darker than usual. A storm was indeed approaching, and fast.

     "Put down the sails, there's a storm approaching!" he yelled, climbing up to where his first mate was perched.

     "Storms, hate them. We always have to go back into port for supplies," Ranrik said, keeping his eyes on their path.

     The rain came in buckets, splashing against the wild waters. Blade looked out his porthole, at the grey sky and blue waters. He sighed, hoping against hope that nothing would suffer that much damage.

      Morning came, and the crew went out to inspect the damage caused.

     "Nothing bad, nothings broken. She should sail just fine," they reported. Good, he thought. They wouldn't have to go into town, which meant they wouldn't need to spend the last few coins they had on repairs.

     Summer turned to fall, and it was hard to stay warm on the little ship. Meals were cold and small, for their money was all but a memory. Blade hadn't told the crew and he didn't plan to. They had enough to worry about, with winter approaching and all.

     The nights were harsh, and more and more of the crew died, due to sickness.

     The captain sat on the mast, looking over the clear waters. His chin resting in his paw, as he often did when something troubled him. This time he pondered a way to keep himself and the crew warm, well fed, and in good health.

     "What's up?" a voice called behind him. Turning he saw Ranrik climbing towards him.

     "We got a problem," he replied.

     "What else is new?" he heard Ranrik mutter under his breath. Blade waited until his friend sat facing him on the mast to continue,

     "We are cold, sick, and weak. We die from hunger as we have to eat less and less each day. We are a bunch of flies merely killed off by the cold. And," he paused, not wanting to continue. If he said it he would admit it was real. If he said it he couldn't pretend anymore. "And, we are out of money, completely." He looked down at his dirty paws.

     "Oy, that's a problem. How long have you known?"

     "About a month," Ranrik whistled, then looked at Blade seriously.

     "You've got to tell the crew. You owe it to them with your life." With that the first mate jumped down, and made his way towards his post.

     Blade was awakened from his sleep with a scream. Springing from his bed, he made his way towards the noise. He stumbled through the dark, and into Ranrik's bedroom. The rest of the crew was already gathered around his bed.

     "Ranrik!?" he yelled, seeing his friend shivering in the covers.

     "He's caught it. T-the sickness, I'm afraid," Bavoen, a red Usul, said.

     "Ranrik!" Blade cried pushing his way towards his friend's bedside. His heart pounded.

     "Blade, you old chum, pull yourself together." The Lupe grabbed the Ixi's hand and held it like he would never let him go.

     "Ranrik," he said with tears in his eyes.

     "Blade, promise me something. Promise me you'll take care of yourself and the crew. And, don't ever forget me." His eyes closed and his arm went limp, but Blade wouldn't let go. He lowered his head and cried for his friend, his very best friend.

     The next day was a sad day for the crew. Blade hardly ever knew what he did. He had bags under his eyes from lack of sleep, and his thoughts were elsewhere. They hovered over his friend's last words. He would never forget his friend, he would never forget Ranrik.

     "Captain!" a voice called outside Blade's quarters.

     "What?!" he called back, and returned to his work. The door opened, reveling Bavoen.

     "Captain, there's a ship visible on the horizon. We can't see the flag." Blade quickly followed Bavoen to where the rest of the crew sat, watching to see what the mysterious ship would do when it caught sight of them. Were they pirates? Had they come to take their gold and rob them clean? Blade smirked. If they had, they were out of luck. Blade and his crew were completely broke.

     "Load the cannons; we don't know if they are friends or foes!" the Lupe shouted, posting himself at the rail where he would see everything that happened.

     As the ship approached, Blade could feel the tension between the crew. They had about five cannonballs, and out of those, who knew how many worked. When the ship was only a few yards away it looked gigantic next to the tiny boat Blade called home.

     The flag was visible now; they weren't pirates, but a merchant ship that carried gold and riches to all the kings and queens of Neopia.

     "Lower your cannons, men." He looked at the crew and was enraged to see they hadn't and weren't lowering their cannons. "I said, lower your-" He was cut short by an explosion not too far away.

     Turning he saw what the crew had been gaping at. The opposite ship had fired at them. They had attacked, but Blade and his crews weren't pirates. They sailed the seas for pleasure. Why hadn't the merchants just looked at the flag, the flag? Suddenly Blade saw his mistake. They didn't have a flag. This meant they could be pirates, and the rich merchants wouldn't believe him if he said he wasn't. They would keep attacking.

     "Load! Load your cannons at once! They have attached us!" he shouted, running back and forth across the deck. The sound of cannons was all that could be heard for the next few minutes as both ships fired fiercely.

     "Fire!" Blade shouted for the fifth time.

     "We can't sir. That was the last cannonball," someone behind him replied. Blade spun around bewildered.

     "W-what, no!" Turning to look back at the enemy ship, he whispered, "We're done for, unless... ." He ran across the deck shouting orders as the crew ran off. They returned, each carrying their own cutlass.

     Blade pulled out his own; as the steel blades reflected the sunlight, the crew waited for the next order.

     "Listen up! We are going to fight, but not with cannons. We will attack with swords. The ships are close enough that we can swing over. Now let's go, men!" Blade watched as one by one the crew positioned themselves, swords in mouth, ready for battle. He gave the cue and two crew members raised a white flag, the surrendering signal. The young captain watched as the opposite ship lowered their cannons. Perfect, he thought. That was just what he wanted. The other crew thought they were giving up.

     "Now!" he shouted, and the crew swung over. "Give them a taste of our steel! Give them a taste of defeat!" he yelled, spitting out the last word with bitterness.

     Blade and his crew had the advantage of surprise. The merchants had no weapons, no way of defense, and many of them jumped overboard in order to save their own skins. The captain pulled a sword from his belt.

     "Filthy scoundrel! You have come to rob us!" he yelled fiercely.

     "Ah, yes," Blade replied. "But truly you are the scandal, attacking when we mean you no harm."

     The two circled each other for awhile, awaiting the other's strike. Blade was patient, waiting for the first attack. He was finally paid off when the merchant captain threw his sword at Blade through frustration.

     Blade was quick and quickly blocked the attack, leaving his opponent quivering at his feet.

     "You should have been smart and sailed on. My crew knows that anyone that sails the sea should never mess with me, Blade!" Blade shouted triumphantly. The merchant, seeing his chance, turned and jumped off the side of the ship. The crew, seeing their captain leave them to die, followed him off the boat in a quick pursuit.

     "And think once about stealing my boat and you're dead men!" Blade shouted after them, so loud he was sure the merchant captain could hear him.

     Blade turned to board his ship, and then paused. The ship he now stood on was no one's; it would sail the water until someone took or destroyed it.

     "Men," he shouted. "This is our new home! It has food, medicine, and water aboard. Those," he paused, lost for words, "pirates weren't doing any good with it." He looked around hoping they didn't see the flag, hoping they didn't see through his lie. No one moved, good.

     A chorus of shouts and merry singing came from the gallery. The crew was seated at a long table with Blade at the head.

     "'Tis to Blade, he be the best captain on the sea!" one shouted.

     "The other captain runs in fear of him!" another added.

     "We are lucky he stands on our side!" Bavoen piped up. Blade just smiled.

     Blade sat counting his gold. He had shared with the crew too. He had split a fourth with them. The lamp beside him cast an eerie glow on the room and its contents.

     "Captain!" The shout rose Blade from his doze.

     "What?" Blade called back, his voice raspy and sharp. A blue Techo stuck his head through the door.

     "'Nother ship," he said simply. A green blur shot past the Techo as Blade ran to see the ship.

     It was cloudy and foggy. The Lupe couldn't make anything out of the flag. He didn't know who they were up against.

     Minutes seemed like hours as the clock ticked by. Finally the flag was visible. Pirates! They were up against pirates! After thinking about it Blade smiled another greedy smile. Just like when he had acquired his new ship. Pirates had gold and jewels, lots of them.

     "Pirates!" he shouted. "Grab your swords; we fight with our lives!" He began yelling orders, and the crew followed every word. Indeed they were pirates, but Blade was ready to fight.

     The pirate ship got closer, and Blade hoped the pirates didn't see them yet. That would give him a longer time to think.

     "Do we have cannonballs?" he asked.

     "Don't know, we've never checked. I'll go now," a crew member called out as he hurried off. Great, he thought as he watched the Yurble run off.

     He turned to look back at the pirate ship. They were dead men if they had no cannonballs. "Captain! This here ship's loaded!" the yellow Yurble called back, carrying as many cannonballs as his arms would carry. As the crew hurried off to get more cannonballs, Blade smirked.

     They waited for the moment of battle. The pause before battle is taunting.

     The sun set, darkening everything. There were shadows on the water and shadows in the boat. As Blade watched the ship, he knew he had changed. As the wind whipped through Blade's fur, he thought about what had become of him.

     Sailing wasn't what it had been; instead of pleasure it brought him misery and loneliness. Blade cursed himself aloud, angry and miserable. He then thought of the night his best friend, Ranrik, had said, "Never forget me." Blade had forgotten Ranrik. With that Blade took his sword and slashed his own face, leaving a nasty scar over his eye. The scar would forever remind him that he had become those he hated. That he was cursed, blackened by his own greed, and...

      ... he was Scarblade.

The End

Author's Note: This is my very first story. Thank you for reading it, that is if it got in.

 
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