The Angry Whore - Book 1
Chapter 18: A Change of plan

Copyright┬ę 2006 by POL

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8 August, 1686 Morning

Isabel had just returned from Tortuga after purchasing some fresh fruit. While putting the fruit away her mind once again turned to the issue which had been deeply troubling her for some time now, which was telling her friends she must leave them in order to help her younger sister Teresa. She had not said anything to anyone yet, dreading the moment and only nursed it in her own mind, where it lay so great it had gotten so she could think of little else. Each time she started to bring up the subject she would always think better of it and held her tongue, delaying once again. But now, there was no putting it off.

She felt at odds with the conflict between wanting to remain with her companions where for the very first time in her life she felt wanted, needed, loved, and true friendship, and what she knew she must do; find her sister before she turned thirteen.

"Isabel? Isabel, wake up! I asked if you needed help carrying the fruit. Are you all right? Isabel?" Claire's concerned voice finally snapped Isabel out of her thoughtful trance.

"Claire... Oh, I'm sorry, I didn't hear you my mind was someplace else," she lowered her head, vainly trying to hide the blush that colored her features.

Claire watched the girl's dark eyes until she hung her head and shrugged. Then she brushed a strand of errant hair from the fruit laden girls face before saying, "And just where was this someplace else? From the look on your face it seemed as if you didn't like being there."

Taking a deep breath Isabel looked up into Claire's eyes then she offered a timid smile, "You're right Claire. Given how my life has changed so much for the better and how good I feel ever since I meet you and Constance, you're right, I'd always prefer to stay right here... with you and the others. But... what if I had to go someplace else?"

Claire saw the concern on Isabel's face, squeezing her hand she gave a small smile. "I have no idea what you're talking about, but we all love you Isabel and there isn't a thing you need be afraid to discuss with any one of us," Claire pulled the other woman into a slight hug before taking some of the fresh fruit from her arms, "Come on let's get this fruit to the cabin and you can you tell me what has you so concerned."

As they walked toward the cabin Isabel presented Claire with a short account of her younger sister and why she was concerned for her and of her plans of leaving.

After placing the fruit on the table Claire said, "Listen. If Teresa were Constance I should have to do something as well," then embracing the younger girl in her arms she added to reassure her, "We will all work this out together. Come on let's go find Constance and Carmen one of them will know what is best."

They found Carmen with Cog inspecting the bowsprint and Constance with Scarlet and Aba looking over one of the swivels.

Once all four women had gathered in the Captains cabin Isabel presented them with a detailed account of her home life in Portobello, and of her deep concerns regarding both her sisters. She concluded by telling them, "So you see. I simply must go to Teresa right away, before what happened to Maria and then to me happens to her. I must. Ah, I... I was thinking if I could just have enough money that I might book passage for myself to Portobello..."

Isabel looked hopefully at Carmen.

"No," Carmen said shaking her head.

Isabel sagged.

Constance and Claire feeling they knew what was coming just smiled.

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