Adventuring through twisted time.
The cheers from the crowd on shore were unbearable, infuriating and incredibly irritating as she rode the gentle waves of the English Channel. The humans, who were no more than prey these days to siren fledgling cheered as the ever growing, rather plump King stood in front of the great ship which was the Mary Rose. Her black eyes narrowed at the scene before her, how did so many people love him, when in reality? He did nothing good for them, and completely ruined the image of the church - she surely couldn’t forget that. Yet, she assumed not many of those standing in the crowd had ever been so personally attacked by him; the look he gave her those few years ago before the waves took her would remain imprinted within her traumatised mind. He was a monster, who created a monster himself through his selfish and egotistical actions of believing he could have any woman he wanted.
The mere memory caused Rainore to growl, her elongated fangs ached for his flesh, her taste buds begged to be coated with his blood and the sea around her dropped in temperature; so much so, the wildlife that waded around her, disappeared into the depths. For months, Rainore had dreamt of this moment, the moment she would take the life of the King yet she had never truly planned on how she was going to do it; of course, the murder, the feeding had to be slow but how she was going to lure him to her, would be spontaneous in some degree. There were rumours among the siren colonies of a darkened patch of sea in the North Atlantic, an area which seemed to swallow travellers whole; it was, even to her people, strictly out of bounds unless one had a death wish.
Now, Rainore was considered a young siren, reckless even and her thirst for revenge was far greater than the fear of whatever was going wrong in that triangular area of sea. And so, as she cruised the waves, the decision was made - that was where she would take him and watch his life slowly depart his emotionless gaze; the other life forms on that ship… well, they were collateral damage and surely wouldn’t be missed. Finally, the show was over and the ship began its grand voyage; the waves consumed Rain and she swam beside the ship for many miles. The anticipation of his death triggered her hunger, and her song itched at the back of her throat; she knew they still had quite a while before they entered the sworn off sea - but one meal wouldn’t go amiss.
A sweet lullaby dripped from the tip of her tongue, enticing and seductive as it danced through the air to the mortals upon deck. The harmony wrapped itself around one fragile mind and she watched him stand at the bow of the Mary Rose; she could hear the frantic cries of the other sailors, trying with all their might to pull him back - but it was simply not enough as he threw himself into the crashing waves to join her. Rainore dragged him down, twisting and ripping him apart, all the while being satisfied that fear would be poisoning the men upon deck; this was only the beginning of the King’s hellish journey, the start of what was to come in The Bermuda Triangle.
Dante stood behind the king of England as he relished in the sounds of the enormous crowds. The sea of faces seemed endless as the people clapped and cheered all at the appropriate moments when Henry would speak. Unlike his other countrymen, Dante's mind was far off as he recalled why they were even here in the first place. Only some few days ago, King Henry had called on him to make an appearance in the great hall for what would prove to be a ridiculous spectacle of his ever growing need to traverse the world for more riches than he could afford to spend. The New World across the ocean was the wealthy dream every man in power was determined to realize as countless ships began to prepare their voyages in hopes of finding new land and gold. Dante had hundreds of years to practice holding back the true emotions that he wanted to share once Henry had demanded he have a ship ready to sail in three days and instead attempted to persuade the overly ambitious king to give him more time to prepare for the journey, but it was no use. Henry only answered to himself, no matter the precautions others had tried to bring forth and it was Dante and his skeleton crew who would suffer for it.
So here he was, being brought back to the present as the cannons on deck boomed loudly to bring a close to the nonsensical revelry. The one and only good thing about this impromptu trip would be to get away from the charade surrounding the palace grounds. Dante had served many rulers throughout his long life, but King Henry was certainly proving to be the most dramatic of them all should he continue on the path he was headed. The knight bowed along with the small amount of sailors flanking him as the king passed by. The monarch gave him a clap on the back in farewell with some fleeting words about how this would bring glory to England making Dante bite back the true words on his tongue he wished he could speak. "I'm sure of it, your Majesty." 'As sure as I am that you will have another mistress by the time of my return.'
The sun was high in the sky and the wind was on their backs as it carried the ship out into the open water and away from his country. Dante stood at the helm and watched as the shore slowly faded into nothing while the Mary Rose stretched her legs for the long journey ahead. He wasn't keen on playing captain of a ship as he preferred being captain on the fields of war with his other knights, but one did not say no to Henry. It was his own fault for catching the eye of his Highness in the first place and helping to light that spark which interested the king so much in creating his navy fleet, the magnificent Mary Rose being a crowning achievement all on her own. Dante did love sailing her and didn't mind it being his home out on the water, despite the choice not being of his own making.
The sailors were all running about on deck as they continued setting the ship for course. Though she could hold hundreds of men, equipment, and goods, there would only be twenty of them this crossing, including the young cabin boy and dog, so when Dante's hues fell to the one sailor who was not moving at a proper pace, he immediately took notice. The man seemed to be in a trance as he walked closer to the end of the bow. "Captain, we've readied the..." but his first mate's words faded with the wind as Dante's attention was solely on the sailor who he realized far too late was not going to halt as the man's boot took its first step on the railing.
"Stop him!" Dante pushed passed John and raced across the deck. By now the other sailors had seen what was about to transpire, but it was pointless as the man stepped off the Mary Rose without a single bit of hesitation. Dante leaned far over the railing as the waves crashed against the ship and could see the blood that rose to the surface of the water. The shouts of the concerned men soon became the hushed whispers of superstition as they all gathered around. "This voyage is cursed."
Dante turned to face the sailors after hearing those words and immediately put an end to their squabbling with a single look. "He was clearly troubled and that's all. Offer your prayers and then get back to work." Dante's gaze moved back to the water below as he heard the others begin to do as was told when the murmurs of their words to God were through. He was not one to believe in the usual tall tales of men, but it was far easier for him to recognize when there might be some truth in their fears, and this one he couldn't help but feel that they may be right.
Rainore pulled the body into the darkness the depths offered, her teeth biting into his flesh with such ease; yet as she fed, she remained alert - any predator would be able to smell the scent of her victim. The currents would whisper the tales of blood and death and the last thing she wanted was unwanted company trying to steal her food. So in that moment of realisation, Rain soon pushed what remained of his body as far as possible, hoping the currents and less threatening predators would feast upon him quickly. She began to get possessive of the ship that rode the waves above her, her talons remained out and her fangs too; she would do just about anything to claim the ship as hers as well as the men which resided on board, despite only ever truly wanting one of them. And if, by chance other siren’s found this out, then she could only imagine what would happen, however, she supposed she just had to hope that not many would follow this course in particular; the threatening, cursed sea was close and many didn’t even dare to get this close.
The hours turned into days, and even Rainore was getting bored of this voyage; if she wasn’t so hell bent on ruining this man’s life, she would have turned back miles ago. Yet, just as she was getting used to swimming with her eyes closed, a chilling, haunting shiver ran down the curve of her spine; it felt like deathly fingers had decided to stroke her moonlit, porcelain skin. As she opened her eyes, ready to fight off whatever had touched her, she caught the very noticeable shift in the water, the sea around her and turned darker; it was as if the light of the moon couldn’t penetrate the crashing waves above. With furrowed brows, she glanced upward to the ship which continued to cruise happily yet the feeling she got, she completely understood why her kind stayed far away from these waters.
Rain pushed herself upward, and allowed her head to resurface a few metres away from the Mary Rose; she could see the men buzzing around upon deck; and given they were mortal, she would be concerned if they couldn’t feel the sudden shift in the air. Soon enough, her concerns began as a thick fog began to approach them from behind and despite this being exactly what she wanted, she wasn’t entirely sure she too wanted to die in the process. Yet she would be damned if she was going to turn back now; even if she wanted to, the ship that was advancing on the Mary Rose was enough to keep her in place.
Her eyes narrowed, the fog seemed to follow it, it’s sails had been ripped and torn at the seams; the actual build of the ship also looked terrible - she was no craftsman, not by any means but even she knew the ship shouldn’t be afloat given the damage. She growled slightly under her breath, if this was going to go down how it looked just by how the other ship was stalking the King, it seemed her possessiveness would lead to her protecting him instead.
The days stretched on without a hitch. They were making excellent time across the ocean and towards the new worlds despite the horrific event that had happened on their departure. Dante had remained as impassive as he could about the man who had jumped from the Mary Rose, refusing to give any weight to the idea that this passing would be cursed; It didn't mean that he wasn't wary. Something about the haunted look in the sailor's eyes was a frozen moment Dante couldn't shake and from what he'd seen in his long cursed life, there was more to what they'd all witnessed than that man wanting to end his life of his own accord.
His thoughts were suddenly interrupted by the cabin boy and dog as they ran across the deck. The sea seemed incredibly calm and the ship glided across the water as if in a pond. Dante's eyes moved to the charts before him as he studied their path in reference to the stars above which blanketed the clear skies. He preferred the old methods of guidance than that of a compass when he sailed and it had yet to fail him, despite the advancements in sailing over the centuries. Sailing through the uncharted waters wasn't something he was very fond of when there weren't as many men to react in case something were to go wrong and so he had lost sleep in order to ensure nothing could by staying at the helm and only taking a few hours of rest.
"Captain!" Dante's eyes moved to the boy as he pointed behind them. He turned to the stern and saw a thick, rolling fog begin to roil over the top of the sea. Soon the helmsman and John were beside him as the three men stood in silence and watched the unearthly movement. Dante tried to make sense of it. Strange weather events were completely possible when one was out in the middle of the ocean, but something about the way the fog moved... He quickly turned and took hold of the wheel, spinning her abruptly before looking back to the haze. By now the entire crew stood in silence as they watched with held breaths, to only see the mist turn with the Mary Rose as if in pursuit.
Dante immediately began shouting commands as the sailors ran to their stations. No matter the course he took, the fog was only catching up and he couldn't help but think that this force was ushering the Mary Rose exactly where it wanted. The rolling haze intensified and soon the silhouette of a broken vessel could be seen inside as it finally showed herself under the brightened moon. Dante tried to make sense of what he was seeing as he stood in awe until their ship listed sideways, groaning under the strain of the helmsman trying to keep her straight. "Let go!" The wheel spun in response as the man released the wheel and Dante watched as it was quickly made apparent that these sailors no longer were in control of Henry's most prized ship.
The ocean seemed to swell as the Mary Rose was on a path of her own. "To arms, men!" Dante climbed the rail and peered through the spyglass towards the oncoming vessel. She was broken through the hull and he could see no colors being flown in recognition of its country. Her sails were tattered, though she moved with great speed. The damage to her frame was beyond repair and littered with cannon fire; she should be at the bottom of the ocean. Dante lowered the spyglass and turned to their heading which seemed to be growing darker by the moment. Looking up, the stars and moonlight only grew dimmer and it was ominously quiet as they were finally engulfed in the stalking fog and the creaking of the nearby ship approached unseen.
For a long moment, Rainore was frozen in place, to the point where it was the current which was keeping her moving; her dark eyes watched the ghost ship appear and glide almost effortlessly across the still waves. The atmosphere around them was still, cold and almost dead and even the shouting of the men on the ship she was following didn’t compute for sometime. The ship was hauntingly beautiful and she was fascinated, hypnotised even although the chill which ran down her spine reminded her that no matter how beautiful it was, there certainly was something wrong with it; and something completely wrong with what was in these waters. Eventually, her attention shifted to see the men upon the Mary Rose were ready to fight, and it was no surprise; the ghost ship was advancing swiftly and it looked like it had no intention to steer out of the way.
All Rainore could do, truly, was watch from afar and hope for the life of her that her prey was protected at all costs until he fell into the sea; which was when she would have no other option than to devour him. From the rumours of this sea, she very much doubted that her powers had any influence on the beings on the other ship; if they were true, the men were likely dead and if Sanguine’s were anything to go by, well. Rain exhaled rather dramatically and moved back to keep her distance as shots were fired, cannonballs evacuating their homes in hopes to take down the advancing ship to no avail. If anything, she would get some free meals without having to use her voice.
The fighting began, and the screams were overwhelming; the water eventually picked up life as it crashed against the ships. But what now concerned her more - was when the other beings managed to embark the other ship; curiosity took over and she swam closer to get a better look at them. Some were more skeletal, some looked fish like and some simply looked dead. “The fuck is this” She shuddered and watched the human bodies fall into the black water which continued to darken the more the blood oozed outward. Rain didn’t know how long the fight was before when she let the water submerge her, she watched other siren’s approaching; they looked different, more vicious and violent.
“Forget this” Just as Rainore went to swim away, she heard The Mary Rose creak and moan as the water began to suck her down; and with all the men upon it. Perhaps this was the perfect time to find Henry, as it was clear this battle would not leave any survivors. With a steady breath, she swam closer to the chaos, and through the dead bodies to find someone who she recognised. It was useless, Henry was nowhere to be seen but there was one man; the one she heard lead the crew throughout the journey; his body was floating upon some wood and to her surprise he was still alive. She peeked her head out of the water to look at him.
The Siren wanted to leave him, but for once her humane side one. “Come with me” She extended her arm to grasp hold of the plank of wood which kept him afloat. “Better you die on land than by what else is in these waters”
Deep in his gut Dante knew the likelihood of escaping whatever magical force was upon them seemed unlikely. Over his long life he'd seen and fought back against evilness such as this, but out on the ocean and without the means to the Templar's wealth of imbued artifacts, they were just oblivious and helpless humans. Most of them anyway. He would not be much better even if he was immortal and wondered what would be his fate out here on the vast ocean should.. no when the ship sank.
The cannon fire broke the stillness of the night as the ghostly ship was upon them. The attacks soared through the oncoming vessel and tore into its already broken exterior, but still it did nothing to stop her approach. The waters seemed to carry the ship faster towards the Mary Rose until it finally crashed along her port side, knocking everyone from their feet and sending some into the ocean with its massive wave. Dante tumbled across the deck and slammed against the staircase. Spots danced along his vision as he reached for the railing and shakily pulled himself to his feet, feeling the warmth of blood trickling down the side of his head. "Captain!" John's call forced his attention as the ringing in his head dulled and the shouts of fighting brought him round. Others were now boarding the ship and it was nothing Dante was prepared for.
Their enemies were that of nightmares, told by the mad sailors who'd been out to sea far too long and were laughed at by others. Dante had always taken these stories with a grain of salt, but was also aware that there were plenty of monsters in the world that most only believed to be in tall tales. He reached for his sword as one of the creatures approached. It was a skeletal figure with its skin barely attached to its frame. Where the eyes should've been were nothing but empty sockets, though somehow seemed to be looking at him now as it held a sword which looked rusted and covered in dried blood. Dante had no idea how he was supposed to stop something which already appeared to be dead, but he wouldn't allow the thing to just attack him either. It swung for him and the immortal parried the blow, punching the creature. It's head snapped impossibly to the side at an angle in which any man would have died and made a cracking sound as if the bones of its neck had broken. Dante only hesitated for a moment at this strangeness before cleanly removing the thing's head and watched it tumble to the deck.
The Mary Rose listed badly, taking on another large wave. Dante grabbed onto one of the loose lines that was currently whipping around in the chaos to stay aboard. He stared across the scene and could see the bodies of his dead crew rolling with the movement of the ship. The ones left alive were no match for their enemy. A scream tore into the night and he saw the cabin boy being cornered by another of the monsters while he tried to protect the dog. Dante raced to get there, but a rebellious moan from the ship was a dooming call to them all. She was to sink and they were all going to go down with her.
Dante tried to get to the boy still. He stumbled and slid across the deck as the footing beneath him splintered and continued to give way. Try as he did, there was no use. The captain went plunging into the dark ocean, getting pulled down by the ship. He tried to find the boy in the depths, but instead saw the shadows of other creatures appear. Sirens. They ravaged at the few crew who survived the sinking and dragged them down into the blackness. Dante was no help to them now. He swam for the surface with the little strength he had left though his muscles ached against the fight. What would happen should he lose consciousness? Drowning wasn't something that could really kill him. Would he just sink to the bottom of the sea in some endless sleep as the creatures tore into him while his body inevitably repaired itself? It didn't matter. At least not just then. Right now all he wanted was air.
He broke the surface and gasped, coughing weakly. His chest burned with the sea water that had gotten in and he quickly grabbed onto a piece of driftwood that held him afloat. The exhaustion of it all was threatening to claim consciousness and Dante wasn't capable of fighting it. He rolled over onto his back and stared up at the now starless sky as the unearthly quiet blanketed the once chaotic atmosphere. The fog was still thick and slowly seemed to be closing in to claim him, yet Dante was resigned to the fact that there was no escaping it. He heard some movement behind him and then the sound of a woman's voice. A siren. The one that would drag him to the depths like the rest of his crew. His fingers moved to his sword as he tilted his head back to look at her, but he halted at her words. She planned on bringing him to land? His too exhausted brain couldn't make sense of it and his body finally gave out.
The chaotic air had suddenly taken a turn into something far more haunting and dreadful than that of the screams and cries of men; all of which were saying their prayers or simply crying out for their Mothers. Rainore had heard those utterances too many times since transitioning into a Siren and they no longer phased her like they once did; but the deafening silence which was looming over and through the fog gave her goosebumps. She watched silently as her distant, very distant family members devoured the sailors; her eyes couldn’t drag themselves away from the decaying Siren’s; they were both fascinating and frightful. Rainore felt the chilling gaze of one of the sirens, and for a moment feared for her life but once upon a time, she was informed that it was an unwritten rule to not attack or kill a fellow Siren no matter their colony. So when that particular siren swam away, she gained an unnerving sense of confidence in the dark sea.
Yet the waves began to calm, and both ships were no longer in sight, she was lucky to have found one survivor of the battle; it had amazed her that such a thing could happen in a situation like that. Whatever that situation was. Although hungry, she didn’t like food that would simply give itself up to her - she liked the play, the hunt and the fear in her prey’s eyes; so feeding off the human was not even a consideration. Therefore, it felt only right to bring him to the nearest shore. When he reached for his sword, she knew it would be of no use; he wasn’t even able to keep his head up, let alone such a marvelous weapon. Rain grabbed a hold of the board he had managed to pull himself on, and began to swim; for how long, she had no idea. There was a part of her that wished to return to safer waters, but that would take days, weeks… Months even; she likely had more chance of land in the direction they were heading.
After what felt like a lifetime, Rainore couldn’t have been happier to find land and feel the sand brush up against her stomach as she pushed the human to shore. The land itself was just as barren as the sea and her senses were telling her that it was just as unsafe but both of them needed food or some form of substance. And for Rainore, he was her substance should they want to get back quickly. With a painful transformation, Rain stood wobbling on two legs for a moment and whilst the man was still unconscious; she wrapped herself in a rather big leaf - although she was never body shy if it came to it, not these days anyway.
Rainore hummed to herself before she began pestering the sailor by poking him, nudging him and flicking sand over his face. “Wakey Wakey Sunshine, sleep is clearly for the weak” Although her own body was crying out for some rest. When the man arose and once again reached for his sword, Rain rose her hands up defensively. “Woah, I’m not going to kill you and if I were, I would’ve done it back in the water” Although it possibly wasn’t the best response to give, she hoped it would reassure him. “Names Rainore, and you’re welcome” She smiled sarcastically. “I found some berries whilst you were out cold, they taste awful and before you ask, yes, you are the only survivor from what I can tell”
Sleep. He just wanted to sleep, but something was egging him back to the waking world. Dante groaned shortly which caused an extreme discomfort in his chest that in turn made him cough. That also hurt. It burned his lungs as he finally was forced to focus on just trying to gain control of his breaths. The sand that came flying towards his face made him flinch, until he recognized the dark haired woman who had been with him before passing out. He fumbled backwards for a moment and pulled his sword, stumbling to his feet which was another agonizing task. His legs felt like iron and wobbled from the effort of just standing firm in order to face her. Once he'd finally gathered himself a bit, he tried to process her words.
"What?" His gaze moved over her covered body that was wrapped in the leaf and then to look at their surroundings. They were on a stretch of beach that was deserted. The sun had risen and beamed harshly over them, making him squint his dry and irritated eyes. The sword he held was suddenly becoming rather heavy then as pieces of the wreckage became recognizable along the shoreline. Wooden planks, cargo, mast lines, and sails were torn and destroyed, bobbing in the waves as the ocean pushed them ashore.
Dante took a deep breath before turning back to the woman who he had to presume brought him here. Despite what he knew she was, he had to assume she was telling the truth. There was no reason for her to not kill him in the ocean when given the chance, only to bring him here on the beach. She didn't appear like the others he'd seen devouring his crew in the darkened and haunted depths, but that didn't mean he was trusting of her just yet. Those sirens looked like they were decaying and much like the creatures he'd seen boarding the ship as she went down. This one was as beautiful as her kind always seemed to be. "Dante. My name is Dante," he replied, his throat scratchy and dry. He turned back towards the ocean and wished drinking from it would help, but instead he knelt and cupped some of the cool water in his hands to splash it over his face in some attempt to find clarity as well as wash away the sand that had stuck to his skin.
Looking towards the debris across the shore, he couldn't help but hear the screams of the sailors. The frightened look of the boy as that monster came for him. Dante shut his eyes tightly for a moment before standing again and facing the woman. He sheathed the sword and walked back, eyeing her again. "Thank you, Rainore." It was an odd thing to say seeing as he'd heard and seen what sirens were capable of in his extended life before what had transpired the previous night. He shrugged his still damp long coat off and offered it to her, seeing as that leaf which was barely covering her was probably not going to do her any favors as a permanent garment in their current predicament. It was a small gesture he could give in some repayment at least, though it was just in his nature to do so anyway.
He reached out for a handful of the berries and turned his back to offer privacy. She was right. They tasted awful, but Dante was glad of the juice they provided to at least give some relief to the burning in his throat. "You saw what happened, I presume." He turned his head slightly over his shoulder as he spoke. "Do you know what that was? That ship? Those.. things.. You are not like your sisters it seems either."
Rainore watched him curiously as he glanced out to sea to where his men met their fatal end, to where his ship had sunk; she could only imagine that as a Captain, there was a level of guilt enshrouded him. A Captain always went down with his ship, but not this one. A brow pushed upward, she supposed it was the least that he could do considering she saved his life, with the sun now beaming down on them, the coat would soon dry. However, in this heat, Rain needed the sea close and what could be closer than a damp coat. “Wonderful” She grinned, and waited for him to turn his back before ripping the leaf from her and slipping into the coat. “I saw it, heard it, felt it.” She shuddered, although she couldn’t be judgemental to her distant relatives - after all, they lived similar lives, required the same diet; they simply looked different, that was all.
“I have no idea.” Rainore responded honestly and joined him at the shoreline, the waves just brushing up against her bare toes. “I had been told that this particular area of sea was off limits to my closer relatives' She exhaled and stuffed her hands in the pockets the jacket provided. “It was all rumours, old wives tales to scare us. It was just an area of sea which was off limits if we wanted to live. We were told of horrible monsters and those who enter it’s waters… Sirens, Humans the like, there was no chance of return.” Rain glanced at him through the corner of her eyes. “I guess I now know why my colony have warned me of such a place, although, it’s in my kind’s nature to never kill a fellow siren” She shrugged her shoulders, but she supposed if her colony knew the monsters in the water were old, ancient siren’s then perhaps the stories would be different. “But for the other creatures which got on board your ship. I don’t know.”
“We just look different, they have the same diet.” Rainore laughed. “They could be cursed, banished from normal colony civilisation or they had simply upset the Gods yet again. I’d love to get to know one of them, and ask them questions” It was true, did others know of this other branch of Siren? If so, what happened and why did these look malnourished and corpse-like?
The images of the cursed creatures flashed in her mind and she was thankful those particular things did not see her. “Don’t you humans have rumours, or myths about this part of the ocean? If so, why the fuck did you guys sail this way?” She persisted, until she realised the true reason why she was in this predicament in the first place. “The King probably just wanted you all dead, it’s clearly a trait he hasn’t shaken off” Rain rolled her eyes and turned her back to the sea to face the island they had found themselves on. “What was so important on this side of the ocean?”