"Captain." The sailor stepped inside, but didn't quite close the door
behind him. "Might I have a word with ya, Captain?"
"Sure, Graston. What's on your mind?" Lerra said.
"It's about all these raids, Captain." Graston closed the door behind
him and stepped across the small room to draw closer to Lerra. "I
believe I know who's the informant."
"And who might that be?" The raids, the inspections, all those close
calls. She'd known someone aboard had to be involved, but she hadn't
found any proof. If Graston knew who it was, they would finally be
able to put a stop to it.
"A few months ago, I overheard our cook." Grastron nodded his head
toward the door. "She said something about telling others about the
ship. I didn't think anything at the time because she was in a fight
with the First Mate." The man leaned forward and lowered his voice
more. "But I been seein' her go off on her own, glancin' about as if
she were afraid t'be followed. And I seen her talkin' with some men
at the docs on more than one occasion. And have ya ever noticed how
she's never here when the raids happen?"
"I've noticed a few times." And there had been other times she hadn't
noticed. Still, Edele had come to mind more than once when Lerra
wondered who was snitching on the crew. "That's all rumor and
coincidence. Do you have any proof?"
The man's face was set into a hard grimace. He pulled out a bit of
parchment that was folded and held it out for Lerra to take. "She
dropped this and didn't notice."
When Lerra opened it, inscribed in Edele's neat handwriting was a
letter detailing the next time the Silver Sails would land and what
port. "Where was she headed when she dropped this?" Lerra scanned the
letter again, her eyes hard and cold.
"Ashore." Graston rubbed the back of his neck. "I was hopin' I was
wrong but..." He gestured vaguely at the note. "I had to bring it to
"Thank you, Graston. When Edele returns to the ship, tell her I need
to speak with her." Lerra put the letter into her drawer. If Edele
didn't have some very, very good answers to her questions, they were
going to need to find a new cook.
"Yes Captain." Graston nodded, then turned to head back through the door.
True to his word, Graston let Edele know the Captain wanted to see her
right away. She rapped upon the door, then entered when called to do
so. "Graston said you wanted me, Captain Lerra." She stated softly
as she closed the door behind her.
Lerra pulled out the letter and held it up. "Care to explain this?"
Edele's eyes lit up in recognition. "Where did you find that? I've
been looking all over for it!"
"You dropped it, on your way ashore. Who were you going to give it too?"
"I was going to give it to Larsham to have his firelizard deliver it
to my son." Edele's lips turned down into a frown. "He was going to
visit me at our next port."
"Your son." Lerra set the letter down. "You never mentioned him before."
"I have to Jerroll." In truth, it hadn't mattered. She was with the
crew with her son's blessing. Edele didn't mention him because she
didn't see the point. "We've exchanged letters ever since I left
"And it's just a coincidence that you're writing letters to a son you
haven't mentioned to me, letters that detail where the ship will be,
and we keep getting searched in port after port?" Lerra kept her voice
As Lerra made it clear as to why she had called Edele in, the cook
couldn't hide the shock from her face She drew closer to the Captain,
her head shaking. "I've told Jerroll, you can ask him, I didn't see
the need to tell you, it didn't seem important. All I did was tell
him where our next port would be so he could meet us, so we could see
one another again. I just wanted to visit with my son. Neither he
nor I have had anything to do with these searches!"
"And yet you're conveniently gone when they happen."
"Now that I have no control over!" Edele threw her arms into the air,
then let them fall limply at her side. "What can I do to convince you
of my loyalty, Lerra? To Jerroll if not to you. I would die before I
ever did anything to intentionally hurt him."
Lerra studied her. "Those are serious words." Could she be telling the
truth? Or could she be fooling them all, even Jerroll. He'd been
blinded by his heart before.
"Then I don't know what to do Lerra." Edele sighed and rubbed her
temples with her hands. "I'm telling you the truth, but you don't
seem to want to believe that."
"I don't want to believe. I want to _know_," Lerra said. "Let's go
talk to Jerroll."
"All right." Maybe Jerroll could convince her where she could not.
Edele couldn't believe it. She had pledged her loyalty and yet they
suspected her of something she had nothing to do with.
With Lerra right behind her, the two made their way on deck. It was
there Graston appeared, a man beside him, shorter than he, but well
built, a square jaw and slanted brown eyes that flicked between Lerra
and Edele. "Captain." Graston called before they could walk past.
"I think you should hear this."
"Who is this?" Lerra didn't like the look of the man.
"This is Sirrus." Graston nodded to the shorter man who in turn
bobbed his head sharply at Lerra. "He's got some information for
The Captain set her hands on her hips. "And what information would that be?"
Sirrus jerked his head toward Edele. "Her. Yeah, that's the one."
He spoked to Graston before looking back at Lerra. "I saw her in
"And?" Lerra arched an eyebrow.
"That one there, she came and told me to tell my Captain that there
would be a pirate ship here. Told me what it looked like, the name,
everything." Sirrus nodded back to Graston. "Course, we're friends,
so I wasn't about to get him into trouble."
Lerra turned to Edele, even though she spoke to Sirrus. "How lucky
that she talked to you, and not someone else."
Last updated on the February 28th 2010