Bryan & Bella

Chapter One

Newlyweds Bryan & Bella were excitedly driving to Florida to set off on their Carnival Cruise for their Honeymoon. The car ride was taking forever even though they were only driving from Georgia. Bella just wanted to get there. She had never been on a cruise before. Bryan was a bit worried about something happening. He wasn’t a very brave man but Bella really wanted a cruise for the Honeymoon. He couldn’t say no to her. Bella was wild and free. She loved doing exciting things. He was trying to be braver for her.

“Don’t look so down, it’ll be fun.” She nudged him with her elbow and smiled, her storm cloud grey eyes glowed with excitement.

“Sorry, I’ve only been on one of these things and the whole time all I could think of was the Titanic.” He truly loved her free spirit, her need for adventure. He had lived a very sheltered life compared to her.

“There aren’t even any icebergs where we’re going?”

“I know which makes it even weirder that I would think about it. I had a nightmare once that I was on a sinking ship and there were frogs playing instruments instead of men. It was terrifying.”

She laughed and held his hand, putting him at ease. She wasn’t scared of anything. Her father was an avid hunter and her mother was an anthropologist. She had been all over the world, been bit by snakes and once gored by an elephant and she still wanted to travel and explore. He hoped some of her would rub off on him. She pointed excitedly as they came around a corner and the big ship could be seen.

They got out and went through all the hassle it takes to get on board. Bella was dragging him down the halls and up stairs to get to their room. It was small but she was excited. Bryan asked “When will we get our bags?”

“They’ll bring them around in a few hours. Lets explore the ship! Please Bryan!”

“Ok” She grabbed his hand and the map they had received when they got on the cruise ship. She ran all around checking out the library, the buffet, the pool & everything else she saw on that map. Bryan got worn out. “Want to see if our bags are in the room yet? I want to change.”

“Sure lets go my love.” They went back to the room at a slow pace. She could tell he was worn out. The bags were sitting on their bed and they changed for dinner. Her parents had payed for the honeymoon and payed for them to eat fine dining every night. They’d only be eating at the buffet for breakfast and lunch. Her parents figured Bella wouldn’t want to slow down during the day for meals. They got to the dining room and it was beautiful. Bella looked around admiring it and taking it all in as Bryan just stared at her.

He was so happy they were finally married. When he asked her to marry him he thought she’d say no. He didn’t feel he deserved someone as amazing as she was. They were lead to a table where they ate lobster and veggies. When they were done Bella said “Lets go look at the water!” She got up and Bryan followed. When they got on the outside of the ship. Bella leaned against the rails looking down. Bryan wanted to ask her not to do that out of fear she may fall overboard but he held back. He didn’t want to upset her on their honeymoon.

“Come and look.” She grabbed his hand and pulled him over to the railing, his blue eyes widening a fraction. He looked so nervous and she wrapped her arm around his waist. The water was so beautiful, the moonlight hitting it just right. She couldn’t believe she’d never been on one of these. She’d done everything else, sky diving, bungee jumping, trekking through the jungle with her parents and studying tribes. She wanted Bryan to experience all of that. His parents had given him nothing but nightmares. The only time he ever left home was to go to school. She would never tell him, but she hated his parents.

“It’s beautiful, peaceful.” He said and smiled down at her. His fingers gripped the railing tightly. She looked so happy and he was standing here scared. He felt so inadequate when he was in her presence. She was a little tiger, his tiger. “Can we go back inside now.”

“Of course we can, but you have to let go of the railing first.” She helped him loosen his death grip on the steel bar. She knew he felt like a chicken, but she didn’t for a second believe he was. It would take awhile before he was more open to the concept of adventure.

They walked to their room. It had been a long drive and day. He took off his shirt and pants and so did she.They decided to cuddle on the bed and watch the TV in their room until they fell asleep. HIs wife smelt so sweet. He hadn’t noticed until just then “Did you buy a new perfume?”

“Yep, I thought it would be nice for the Honeymoon.”

“It is, I really like it.”

“Good I was starting to think you weren’t going to notice.”

He held her close as she layed with her head on his chest watching the movie with him.  The boat swayed on the water and it made him squeeze her. She laughed “You should know that cruise ships sway a little bit”

“Doesn’t make me any less scared. These things can flip over if they aren’t packed correctly.” She kissed him to give her husband a little comfort. She then settled down to get some sleep. “There will be so much to do tomorrow Bryan. Get some rest.” When morning came Bella jumped out of bed to get a shower. She got out, dryed off then woke up her husband. It was a pleasant good morning for him seeing his wife standing there naked. She teased him “I see you’re glad to see me” She giggled and he laughed. “I can’t help you always look so sexy.”

“Get your shower hunny. There will be time for sex tonight. There’s too much to do today!”

Bella pulled him to the art gallery. She’d start slow and work up to something a little more extreme. He seemed calmer in the gallery, away from the water. There was a beautiful piece of a woman playing a violin while a white tiger lay sleeping at her feet. She really loved that one and just spent forever admiring it. “I love when you get that dreamy look.” Bryan said.

“I love that you love it.” She laughed and pulled him on. They went to the buffet and grabbed some sandwiches. She was on the move, her eyes taking in everything. They admired the atrium. It was so large and beautifully crafted.

Bryan almost put the brakes on when she took him outside to the sport square. She wanted to play him in mini golf. The ship rocked and he had to force himself to keep going. She was just so excited, jumping up and down every time she made a shot. He was too nervous to get the ball in the hole. He would go to the gym later and run off some of this stress if he had to.

“Lets do the sky course.” She said.

“I don’t know if that’s a good idea.” He replied nervously.

“They hook you into a safety harness and I’ll be right up there with you. I won’t let you go.” He had to agree. She was so beautiful, her smile lighting up her face.

They went up. He was terrified the whole time but he’d do anything for Bella. The only comfort he had was seeing her smile and laugh. She could see him starting to turn white “I’m bored with this and am tired. Want to relax for a bit my love?” He was so glad to hear her say that even though he knew she was only saying it for his benefit. They got down and went to their room. He couldn’t get in and on the bed fast enough. He just layed there, still very pale.

She layed down on top of him, supporting her face with one hand and rubbing his face with the other. “I’m sorry I asked you to do that.”

“I’m sorry I’m such a baby. I don’t know why you married me. I drag you down so much.”

“If you say somthing like that again I’ll slap you! You were a wonderful boyfriend and are a amazing husband. I wouldn’t trade you for anybody else.” He couldn’t help but smile. He sat up and she sat straddling him in his lap. He took off his glasses and kissed her. “I love you so much Bella.”

“I love you so much more.” She smiled and tugged his shirt off and tossed it. He was lean with well defined muscles. He had some scars on his stomach and ribs where his father had hit with a switch. It had not been discipline, but extreme abuse. She remembered how self conscious he had been the first time she’d seen them. He had more on his back, a lot worse. She had told his father what she would do to him if he even called Bryan. She lifted her own shirt off, her bra following.

Bryan rolled her beneath him, his lips moving over hers tenderly. She was the most amazing thing he had ever had. After so many years of abuse and heart ache he had found her. He remembered that day. She had been ice skating on a frozen lake about a mile from his house. She had fallen through the ice and he had pulled her out. Even then she joked about it. He kissed his way down, over her chest and lower to her abdomen, his teeth nibbling playfully at her ribs so she squirmed. He hooked his fingers in her shorts, pulling them off along with her panties and sandals. Her fingers tangled in his hair as his tongue slid over her, her back arching as she moaned. He loved that sound.

“I need you right now.” Her demanding tone made him chuckle and she pulled him back up by his hair.

“Yes ma’am.”

He put his hands in hers after he thrust himself inside of her. She tried to be quite since they were on a cruise but she didn’t do that well. Especially because he’d slow down and go faster repeatedly to amplify her pleasure. When they were done she was embarrassed hoping the people in the rooms at each side of them hadn’t heard the two of them. She said breathy “How are you so good at that?”

“Well I have to be good at somthing” he winked.

He layed down beside her and pulled her lovingly into his arms and kissed her cheek. “Do you feel better now? You have your color back I see.” She smiled. “After we lay here catching our breath what would you like to do? Don’t worry about me. I really want you to have fun. I’m sure your parents payed a lot for this.”

“I want to lay here with you until dinner if that’s ok.”

“Are you sure that’s what you really want?”

“Yes” she kissed him again. Before they knew it, it was dinner time. They ate happily then went to their room for bed.  They were teaching how to make towel animals at 9am the next morning and she wanted to be rested for it. When morning came they awoke to the captain warning everybody to be careful because a storm was coming. She grunted annoyed. That was not the way to start off the morning for her new husband. She could already see the fear on his face.

“It ‘s okay, we’ll go make towel animals then hang out inside.” She cupped his chin and his eyes jumped to her face.

“Inside, yes inside sounds fun.” He replied. They dressed quickly and walked hand in hand to the large room where the class was being held. Bryan sat cross legged on the floor next to Bella as they made animals. He made a crocodile while she made a swan. She pointed out how amazing he was at forming the towels into something that looked so real. They thanked the woman teaching the class and found their way to the buffet where breakfast had been served. They sat down in a window seat and watched the rain. He could already feel the ship pitching a little harder. The water had become rough. Bella held his hand, her thumb brushing his knuckles. “How are you not afraid of anything?” He asked.

“I watch a lot of TV.” She joked. “When you go trekking through the Amazon and live with a few tribes you learn not to be afraid. I learned how to chase down a boar and kill it with a knife.”

“All on your own?”

“Assuncao came with me, but let me kill it on my own. He was only there to make sure the beast wouldn’t kill me.”

The ship gave a huge lurch and he squeezed his eyes shut. His heart was beating so fast he thought it might explode from his chest.

She felt so bad for him. “Lets go back to the room ok?” He nodded and they almost ran back.She held him and stroked his hair as the seas got more and more turbulent. Even she was starting to worry. He was holding her tightly. He was ashamed that he was so scared. All the sudden the boat started to tilt. It almost rolled over compleatly but it managed to get back straight. He was hurting her he held on so tight but she didn’t say anything.

“Let me get up and grab the life vests out of the closet” he let her go reluctantly. “Can we put them on?”

“Yes” she smiled at Bryan trying to comfort him. They slid them on and buckled them. It was perfect timing because just then the boat flipped over They hit the roof of their room hard. Bellas head was pounding and she could hear the ship flooding with water and panic outside the room. They got out their room. Some people hit the roof too hard and were laying there dead. They soon saw water rushing down the hall. They ran trying to get out of the boat.

Chapter Two

If Bella had not been there and been so level headed, Bryan was sure he would have frozen and panicked. She pulled him down the hall, running through water that was rising quickly. He followed her to an emergency exit. People were screaming, some carrying children. Bella let them go first. The water was up to their waists when they made it to an area where they could climb up. Employees were directing people out to where many life rafts had been lowered. Water rose up into the hall they were in, lights were flickering on and off. The ship pitched, throwing them back and causing the exit door to slam closed. They were alone in the hall, cold ocean water closing in around them.

Bella was on her feet and tugging on the door. It was jammed. Bryan was just sitting there holding his head and hyperventilating. She gripped his shoulders and shook him. He looked up at her and she smiled. “You have calm down, we’re going to get out of here I promise.” She took the fire extinguisher off the wall and slammed it against the door handle over and over. It finally gave and she threw open the door. She pulled him to his feet and they stepped out into the storm. Waves crashed over them and they held tightly to the guard rail. A large waved slammed into them, the water going over their heads. Her fingers slipped off the rail and the water pulled her off the boat. Bryan wouldn’t let go of her so he was pulled off too and into the dark ocean.

The waves tossed them around as they held tight to eachother. It was an agony they thought would never end. When the waves quit throwing them they couldn’t see the boat or the life rafts. The waves had taken them far out into the ocean. They both were breathing deeply. The waves had allowed them very little oxygen. Bryan looked at Bella “What do we do?”

“Swim as long as we can in hopes of finding land.” They swam for over an hour and Bryan was exhausted. Bella was used to expelling a lot of energy so she wasn’t very drained. “Get on my back Bryan”

“but”

“No buts get on!” He grabbed on to her shoulders. If they lived through this he was determined to get tougher. He couldn’t be a baby anymore. He had to be a man for her. After what seemed like an eternity. Bella got excited. She could make out an island in the distance and she started swimming as fast as she could until even she was worn out. “Get off me please Bryan. Lay on your back for a second.”

“Why”

“I can’t swim any longer. I need to lay on the water for a minute.”

“What if a shark thinks we’re dead and tries to eat us? Let me carry you for awhile.”

“You can?” The question hurt his feelings a bit but he responded “Yes come on, I’ve had my rest.” She grabbed on to him. He managed to make it the rest of the way. He laid on the sands of the beach breathing heavy. “That was impressive” She said with a smile to make him feel better. “I’m not as much of a wimp as you think.” She noticed that her doubting he could do it had hurt his feelings so she hugged him “I’m sorry sweetheart. I won’t underestimate you again.”

“Where are we?” He asked as they go to their feet.

“It doesn’t matter. We have to find a place out of this rain and get a fire started.” She walked across the beach to the edge of the dense forest. “Stay close and keep your eyes and ears open.” She took his hand and they pushed their way through the foliage.

Bella was used to this, the exertion, the weather. She wasn’t even cold, at least not yet. It was dryer inside the jungle. The canopy was thick enough that little rain made it through. She could feel Bryan shaking and his teeth were chattering. She pushed some branches aside, coming out in front of a large cave. “Stay here while I check out the interior.” She said, but he didn’t let her go.

“I’ll go, you’ve done enough. You need to rest.” He said.

“You don’t have to convince me you’re brave, I know you are.”

“Please, just let me do this.”

She nodded, relenting and sitting down next to a tree. Bryan moved into the cave slowly. He listened for any indication that something dangerous might be inside. He made it to the back and turned around. It was completely dry inside. “Come on, it’s safe.” He called out and Bella ran inside. She pulled her life vest off and tossed it on the ground. He followed suit and tugged her into his arms. Her skin was ice cold, but she wasn’t shivering. He wasn’t sure if that was a good thing or a bad thing.

“We have to make a fire or we’ll freeze to death.” She said.

“Tell me what we need and I’ll get it.”

“Small and medium pieces of wood, some dry grass is you can find it, and piece of bark, and a stick about a foot long. Don’t go to far. If you get hurt I have to be able to find you.”

“ok, I love you”

“I love you too” She thought it was sweet how hard he was trying to be tough. She must’ve really hurt his feelings earlier. She waited patiently until he came back with everything she had asked. She wanted to stroke his ego. When he set the stuff down she quickly ran up to him and hugged him “I’m impressed you found everything. I doubt I could’ve being as tired as I am. Thank you for going so I could rest!”

He smiled proud he had found everything. She got the fire going and she sat between his legs near the fire. He held her tightly. He was freezing still but he just rubbed her arms to try and get her warm. She was touched by him doing that for her. “You’re so sweet Bryan.”

“I’m lucky to have you Bella. I’ve got to take care of you.” She held his hands and leaned back against him. He kissed her forehead. “As soon as you’re warm tell me and we’ll get some sleep ok.”

“Ok.” When they had warmed up they put out the fire and tangled themselves in one another to sleep. Bella had slept outside many times and wasn’t nervous but Bryan was. He contained it though. He was determined to be tough for her. He doubted she’d stay with him forever if she had to always put up with him being a baby.

When Bella woke it was sunny outside. The storm had finally passed. Bryan looked so tired. She knew the sounds of creaking trees and snapping twigs had put him on edge. She promised herself that if they made it home alive she would take him out camping and hiking. They would have fun. “We have to find food and water babe so we don’t waste away.” She smiled. “Judging by the terrain, there should be boar.”

“You want to go boar hunting?” He stood and helped her to feet.

“It’s easy as pie, come on I’ll show you.”

She moved quickly through the jungle, her eyes drifting over the ground. He wasn’t sure what she was doing, but soon she stopped and picked up a flat stone that fit perfectly in her hand. She found a round stone and sat on the ground, sharpening the edge. She was on the move again, pointing out tracks in the mud. “Those are fresh so we have to keep quiet.” She whispered. They followed the tracks, him sticking close. She held up her hand and he froze in his tracks.mshe pointed ahead and he could see something moving in the tall grass. She pressed her finger to her lips and crept closer. He held his breath. She was so close she could have touched the thing. The boar turned its back and she jumped on it, wrapping one arm around its throat. She screamed for him to help her and he rushed to her side, helping her pin the struggling animal to the ground. She whacked it in the head, the sound of stone crushing bone sending a shiver up his spine.

“See, easy as pie.” She smiled and winked, lighting up his whole world.

“Now what?” He asked.

“We take it back, gut it, skin it and hang it. After that we find some water then we check the beach to see if anything useful washed up. There were a lot of people so maybe we’ll find some stuff that’ll make our stay here a little easier.”

Gutting it and skinning it almost made him throw up. She could tell but knew he was trying to be tougher so she didn’t say a word and just did it as fast as she could so it would be over with. They found a little pond in the woods. It probably didn’t taste good but it was water. “Lets go to the beach hunny and see what we find. They walked holding hands until they arrived at the beach. They walked down it and soon stumbled on a suitcase and some pans. “The pans must be from the kicthen on the ship! Perfect! Hopefully there will be decent stuff in the suitcase too.” They opened it up. It had really ugly man clothes in it.

Bella sighed “I guess atleast there is clothing atall.’ She digged around some more and found a razor and a porn magazine. She teased Bryan saying “Well here’s somthing for you if somthing happens to me” She lauged but he didn’t think it was funny. He didn’t even want to think about somthing happening to her. “Lets not waste energy. We’ll take this stuff back and browse the beach another day. Maybe more will turn up.”

He put the pots in the suitcase with everything else and carried it back to their cave. When he set it down she said “Now we need to go back to that water. One of those pots will hold some for us.” He grabbed the biggest one and they set off. Bryan said “I’m so lucky you’ve done stuff like this before. I wouldn’t know what to do atall without you guiding me.”

“We should go camping somtime.” She smiled

“After this? Really?”

“Yes! It’ll be fun when it’s by choice! Besides after this camping will be nothing.”

When they got back she made another fire and sliced bits of meat off the animal carcass. She skewered them on sticks propped them up next to the fire. “We have to cook as much as possible before the meat rots.” She opened the suitcase and pulled out some clothes, laying them closed to the fire since they were kind of damp. She sat close to Bryan, exhausted. She didn’t even know she had dozed off until he shook her.

“I think the meat is done.” Bryan said and brushed her hair out of her face.

“Lets eat.” She picked up a stick and handed it to him. “Sorry, no seasonings.”

They ate a few pieces then added wood to the fire. Bryan took the sharpened stone and cut a few more strips off the boar. He wrapped them a shirt and dug a hole in the mud then covered them. When he looked up Bella was smiling at him. “I learned that watching your nature shows. The mud is like a refrigerator.” He said and sat down. He wrapped her in his arms, her head on his shoulder and his head on top of hers. They fell asleep like that. A loud, rapid popping sound woke him early the next morning. He shook Bella awake and she looked around drowsily. “Listen.” He whispered. They heard the sound again.

“That’s gun fire.” She said.

She went to get up but he pulled her back down. “You shouldn’t move what if you get shot?”

“It could be somone who could tell us where we are and help us get home.” He didn’t want to go out there but she convinced him to get up and look out. They couldn’t see anyone and she shooting stopped. She grabbed Bryans hand “Come on, lets look for whoever was shooting.” They started walking through the woods twords where it sounded like the shots were firing from earlier.

Bella was excited. She just knew whoever it was would help them and get the two of them home. They heard a loud boisterous laugh. Bella ran twords it and a huge man caught her eye. She waved at him “Hey! We don;’t know where we are! Our cruise ship wrecked!” She yelled at the man. He then started walking twords her. He gave Bryan a really bad feeling.

The man said something in what sounded like Spanish. Bella said something back and the man pointed his gun at her. He gave a sharp whistle and four other men came out of the forest. Bryan put his hands up and stepped between Bella and the men. The man said something angrily. “He wants you to move.” Bella said. He shook his head and the man slammed the butt of his gun into his abdomen. He bowed over, but straightened back up. He glared at the man. He heard a scream behind him and turned to see another man had grabbed Bella by her hair. Something slammed into the back of his head and he hit the ground. Someone was on his back, tying his wrists together. He was yanked back up onto his feet and forced to walk.

Bella should have known better. In her ecpxcitement she had not bothered to think of pirates. They probably knew about the ship, had more than likely come here to collect whatever debris washed up. She was pulled by her hair, the muzzle of a handgun jabbed in her side. She spit and cursed at them in Spanish. She was enraged at how they had hurt Bryan. The made them walk to the other side of the island where they tied them to a tree.

“Are you okay babe?” She asked.

“I’m fine, I’ve had worse. How about you?” He sounded angry, something she wasn’t used to.

“I’m okay, probably have a bruised rib from that asshole in the bandana, but other than that I’m fine.”

“I’m sorry they hurt you Bella”

“It’s my fault Bryan, I should’ve known better. I was just excited and didn’t think.” She felt like crying but knew it would upset Bryan more. She was still shocked to hear him angry. They had been together a few years now and never once did he sound angry no matter what happened. “I love you and we’ll make it through this.”

“I love you too Bella” His voice a little more agitated. She wasn’t sure if he was mad at her or the pirates so she asked “Are you mad at me? You sound upset.”

“Of course I’m not angry at you. I’m upset that they hurt you. How could I ever be mad at you. I should’ve been able to protect you from them.”

“Bryan they had guns. You did wonderfully. I was so proud of you.”

The pirates started walking back twords them. They stood in front of Bella. “We decided we are taking you two with us on the open seas.” He touched Bellas face. “We could use somthing pretty to look at and some help around the ship.” He untied them while two other pirates held their guns straight at each one of them so they wouldn’t run as soon as they were free.

Chapter Three

“Stay away from her.” Bryan snapped.

Bandana man punched him, busting his lip. Bryan spit blood onto the ground and continued to glare at their leader. For the first time in his life he wasn’t intimidated. This man reminded him of his father. “You would do well to keep your mouth shut. My men have been away from home for a long time. Would you like me to give her to them?” The man grinned at him with yellow teeth. The pirates forced them to where their boat was tied off. It was an ugly, dingy looking thing. He guessed there was maybe one room below decks where the captain slept. The captain took Bella below while Bryan was forced to stay above and help them push off.

Bella was thrown onto the one and only bed. She crab walked backwards, pressing her back against the wall. She glared at the captain, daring him to come closer. He disgusted her. His t-shirt was covered in dirt and sweat stains, his teeth were yellow and his eye jaundice. She prayed his liver failed and it was the most agonizing death. “I love wild women,” he said, “but all wild things must be broken.”

“Don’t you dare touch me you sick bastard unless you want to be wearing an eyepatch for the rest of your life and calling your friends matey.” He reached out to touch her and she kicked at him.

“I guess I can take my frustration out on your husband. Maybe it will change your mind when you see him bleeding.” He closed and locked the bedroom door, leaving her alone. She started crying, silently so they wouldn’t know. She got up, searching the room. She looked under the bed, finding a steak knife. The handle was loose so she pulled it off and hid the blade in the back of her panties. She was glad she watched so much TV.

She stood there hating herself for convincing Bryan to go on a cruise with her. He would’ve loved something more tame. She didn’t force him to go but she may as well have when she asked him to. All he ever did was try and make her happy. She couldn’t stand the thought of the pirate hurting him. She had never killed a person before but she wasn’t going to have trouble with him. Especially if he really did hurt Bryan.

The pirate came back bloodied. It looked like Bryan had managed to defened himself a little bit. With all her heart she hoped he wasn’t hurt too badly. He started walking twords her. Her heart felt like it may pound right out of her chest. “Are you ready to be a good girl or should I go back out there? I’m sure your husband could take some more.”

“Yes, come here.” When he was leaning in to kiss her she grabbed the knife out she stabbed him in the stomach as fast and as many times as she could. Her own hands being gashed because of the lack of handle. The pirate fell to his knees on the floor and yelled in agony. She heard the other pirates running and she took off herself. She had to get to Bryan. She saw Bryan with a pirate standing there guarding him. He was probably only conscious because he had been through whatever the pirate did and more before at the hands of his father.

Bryan saw Bella coming. She was headed off by the other two pirates who were trying to get a hold of her. He kicked the pirate guarding him in the back of one knee while he hooked his foot in front of his other one. The man fell forward, hitting his head on a tool box. Bryan got to his feet and threw the pirate in the water. He raced across the boats slick deck and grabbed bandana man, punching him repeatedly in the face and throwing him overboard. Bella was slashing at the other man, screaming at him to stay back. The brute had the audacity to laugh and it sent him into a blind rage. He picked up a wrench and hit him in the back of the head.

Bella had never seen her husband acting so aggressive. He was such a teddy bear that she froze in shock when she saw him beating the last pirate down with a wrench then throw him off the boat. He tossed the wrench and the sound of it hitting the deck snapped her back to reality. He was covered in blood, one side of his face was swollen. She was in his arms in an instant, crying harder than she ever had. She could feel him shaking as he held tightly to her. “I’m so sorry, this is all my fault.” She pulled back and ran her fingers lightly over his bruised face.

“It’s okay, love. You couldn’t have predicted any of this. All that matters is they didn’t hurt you.” He kissed her forehead. “You have blood on you.”

“It’s the captains mostly. I think he’s dead. I cut myself on accident.” She dropped the knife blade and held up her hand.

“The bastard should have the keys on him. I’ll go check, you stay here.”

She nodded and he went below. He found the captain lying a pool of blood. He dug around in his pockets until he found the keys. He had to get this body off the boat. He pulled him upstairs and tossed him overboard. He hoped the sharks had him for dinner. Bella looked so lost and afraid. He wondered when they had switched places. He pulled her close and kissed her. He had to know she was alive.

“Lets get going.” He said softly. “There has to someone searching for survivors.”

They sailed looking for anybody that could help them. Bella really couldn’t pull herself out of the shock. Her hands were stinging and she could only imagine what Bryan was feeling. It amazed Bella that all he seemed to care about was her. He acted like what happend to him was nothing. If anybody had told her he had this side of him she would have never believed it. “You’re amazing, I hope you know that.” He smiled “I love you”

“I love you too Bryan.”

It was getting late when they finally saw another ship. It looked like a navy ship though so Bella wasn’t afraid of it.  When they got up to it they explained all that had gone on. They let them board and the ship kept going. “We still need to search for more people ok?We’re to stay out today and tomorrow.” They nodded and a man showed them to a room that had bunk beds and pointed out one they could share. “Before you rest let me take you two to our doctor on board to check you out.”

They cleaned and stitched Bella’s hand and told her to watch for any signs of infection. They wrapped gauze around her palm and gave her some Vicodin to take before she went to sleep. She stayed while they cleaned Bryan’s face and check the inside of his mouth for cuts. He didn’t need stitches, but they gave him some pain killers too in case he needed them. They gave them each a set of scrubs, apologizing because it’s all they had. When they were back in their room she locked the door. It didn’t matter that they were on a navy vessel, she wasn’t taking any chances. They changed out of their dirty clothes, feeling a little cleaner.

“I can’t wait till we’re home.” She said as she grabbed a bottle of water and took her pain pill. She crawled into bed and held out her hand to him.

Bryan as down next to her and ran his fingers through his hair. “I didn’t scare you back there did I?” He asked, taking her hand in his.

“No, it was just a shock. You’re usually so timid.”

He lay down facing her and brushed her hair back. “I couldn’t stand what they were talking about doing to you, that they might hurt or kill you. I was terrified and angry. I’ve never felt that way, it reminded me of him.” He felt a knot forming in his throat.

“You are nothing like him my love, nothing. Even though I hate saying it, he made you tough where it counts.” She didn’t want him thinking like that.

“I love you so much. I couldn’t have done this without you.”

“I love you too, with all my heart.”

They kissed and then wrapped themselves around each other. They had grown closer and stronger together and tomorrow promised calm seas and blue skies.

~ The End ~

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