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Posted: Mar 19 2018, 02:08 PM
Louis felt pain and dizziness, amplified by his own fear, which escalated when hearing the confirmation that it was a poisonous snake. Hurrying seemed a good idea, as Jan had proposed, just that he didn't feel able to do it.
"At least I have been avenged by Thierry," he mumbled, trying to sound braver than he actually was.
He was terrified of death, especially after he had seen so many people falling in battles around him, the most recent one, two days ago, still vivid in his mind. If not ashamed of all the others next to him, especially the pirates, he would have shown more of his fear. But he was a French Navy petty officer… and he should show the bravery he didn't possess…
The won't die immediately wasn't much of a comfort, but the hope of a leaf doctor in the village, knowing what to do about it, was. He drank thirstily the offered coconut drink, giving back the shell to those who wanted to keep the flesh to be scrapped later.
"I don't know yet how I am feeling… Not good… but I think I am able to walk," he said, leaning on Jean for support and trying to keep walking.
The pains grew, as the leg muscles started contracting close to the bite. He was dizzy and it was difficult for him, but as long as he didn't walk quickly, he was able to do it. Another man's reassuring presence next to him, be him a pirate, mattered too. He would be taken care of. And maybe they would reach that damn village in time.
The pirate tried to talk to him, and Louis made an effort to concentrate to the small conversation in order to forget the pain and the fear. At least some of them.
Posted: Mar 19 2018, 05:25 PM
Thierry and Barthemy had got quicker ahead of the others, hoping to arrive sooner and to learn already if the village had a leaf doctor or people who knew what to do about snake bites, while Santino remained next to Jan and Jean helped Louis. All of them were worried, even if they tried to not show it. With two wounded men, one of them condemned to die if nobody could do anything about the poison, the situation didn't look promising at all.
Soon, a black man and a native man, both with bows directed to them, asked them, in that French Creole Thierry had heard so much in Port de Paix, and that he understood only from time to time, where they were going. This was not difficult to understand.
"We saw the village lights last night. We need to get to someone who knows about medicine, because we have a man bitten by a fer-de-lance and another one who is feverish from a past wound," he replied quickly. "Also, we need food and drink, as our ship sank into the sea and we have nothing," he added. "We mean no harm."
The black man asked, looking first at Thierry, then at Barthemy and the other two coloured men he saw behind:
"Are they your slaves?"
Barthemy reassured him promptly:
"All of us are free sailors. Some of us had parents or grandparents who were slaves, though. My grandfather was a slave."
The men looked around and what they noticed in the others' appearance made them believe their statements. The Native shrilled and other men having obvious Native and Black origin, but some having also mixed blood, came in a hurry.
"We are taking you to our chief," the Black told Barthemy and Thierry.
Thierry said for the others behind, who were ready to direct their weapons to the perceived enemies.
"Stay calm. We mean no harm to the villagers. We will be led to their chief. Hopefully, where it's a chief, it's a medicine man or woman as well."
He knew about the maroon settlement he had seen in Saint Domingue. This, most likely, wasn't much different, just that the marrons had found shelter with the remains of a Native tribe, who needed new warriors.
Posted: Apr 16 2018, 06:57 PM
It was the first time that Jan had full contact with this type of Caribbean inhabitants. He had heard rumours and some of the sailors had a background dating back to one of this villages. But to see them was something different.
They were guided into a small village, not more than 30 huts.
From the first look, it was clear that they were not improvised but built up in a fashion that reminded more of savages. Even the poorest villages in Prussia had been more stable.
The group stopped in front of the largest hut, modestly decorated and paintings at the walls.
They only seemed to wait for a second before an elderly man stepped out of the hut. Even for Jan, it was clear that he was some sort of commander or ruler.
The Prussian pirate had only learned a few words of Creole but the first words of the chief didn't need any explanation.
" What are they doing here ?"
It was followed by more words, mostly from the two villagers that had found them.
In the end, the Chief motioned for Louis to follow him and called a last command to the two villagers.
Without hesitation, they led the group to a hut at the end of the village, one of them remained in front of the entrance making it very clear how unwelcome they were here....
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