In honor of Valentine's Day and Black History month, I've written a historical short erotic story called A Slave's Heart. Click on the picture for link to free download. Only free for the month of Ferbruary so catch it while you can!
Captain William James is a private slave trader from Britain. He has transported many Africans from the West African coastline to work in the sugar plantations of Barbados and Jamaica. That is until he meets Sirene, a West African priestess of Oshun whose drum walk (dance) calls to him one cool summer night. He is enchanted by her beauty and strength as he watches her dance. Can she capture his heart and free his mind of ignorance and prejudice?
The captain was filled with anticipation as he set anchor off the coast of West Africa, near Senegal. The sounds of the waves below crashing eagerly against the ship always thrilled him. The night wind cool upon his face as he began to shout orders to the crew. This was not his first trip to Africa and he liked the feel of this particular coastline. During the day, the blue of the water would be like crystal against the white hot sand of the beach. At first light, he and the crew would descend upon the island, piercing its dense tropical foliage in search of cargo to bring back to the Americas. Some would be taken to St. Kitts, (St. Christopher), Barbados where a British colony had been established by British settlers. It was also the home of the captain, William James. Ever since parliament gave permission to private traders in 1698, Captain James had been one of the first to seek his fortune as such. He acquired a lot of money and built a fine house in the British colony on Barbados. He owned several slaves as well as a sugar plantation. He hired overseers to run the place while he was away collecting more slaves. He wasn’t married and though a few women had caught his eye, he thought them to be too weak. Many of the settler’s wives wilted under the island’s heat. Their fancy attire was ill suited to this area and many suffered from heat stroke. Only the heavier, older wives seem to be strong enough to withstand the island itself.
A perfect setting for hunting, He thought to himself of the beautiful island around him. He boasted himself to be the greatest of hunters, only his prey were human, but not in his eyes. The last couple of trips had been easy. He’d met with the chief of a tribe he encountered who’d sold him a quarter of his tribe and led him and his men to a neighboring rival tribe where the captain secured even more slaves, mostly women and older children from an unprotected village; the babies were of no use to him and unfortunately, the men had all gone to hunt.
As the captain leaned against the side of the ship on the upper deck, he stared out into the darkness of the shoreline. He began to see flickering lights and hear sounds of drumming and something else he couldn’t quite make out in the distance. A curious look spread over him.
“What is it Cap’n?” a crew member spoke loudly breaking the captain’s concentration.
“Well don’t you hear it, the music?” William replied.
“No sir, just the sounds of yer crew below.”
“But surely you hear it man? It grows louder by the second!”
The confused crew member shook his head and wondered what has gotten into Captain James. The captain gave orders for a search party to accompany him to the island to investigate this “music” he heard, though no one seemed to hear it but the captain.
“An ancestor has returned to us! A woman-child is born!” An elderly woman proclaims to the villagers who have gathered around the hut of a woman who has just given birth. Everyone shouts in praise of the new mother and father, thanking the ancestors for the safe delivery of this child. While the mother and child rest, the villagers begin preparations for the feasting and celebration of such an event.
Sirene, a young unmarried woman, stands topless wearing a skirt among the crowd ecstatic with the news. When she marries, then her breasts will be covered. A young green mamba snake is wrapped around her wrist and forearm like a bracelet. Tonight, she will do her drum walk as part of the dancing that will take place in honor of the child born today. A yellow gele is wrapped around her head, a head cloth tied with precision; signifying her status as an honorable member of her age-grade group. Her family included her mother, younger sister and grandmother. The only male member being her mother’s brother, as her father had been captured by the white men who came on ships, stealing away those who lingered alone too long near the shore.
It had been two years since her rite of passage. During this rite, she joined a group of girls her age taken aside by the older women, into a hut built for this purpose. It was isolated to ensure privacy. There the older women washed her in river water and leaves of a certain herb.
She received lectures on reproduction and the ways of women. She passed her tests, learning to balance a jug on her head, weaving a sacred cloth, using a knife and creating a song. She also faced her fears of the dark and being alone. She learned to defend herself. A beaded string was tied around her waist to ensure her fertility, which she still wore even now. Her black long curly hair was braided around her head as “secrets” of the Goddess Oshun were placed in tufts of her hair. She also remembered the pain in her pelvis as the “red rains” came for the first time. Her family would handle her marriage, observing formalities and haggling over bride price. But to this day, none of the warriors had come forward as a would-be groom.
Her mother and grandmother had been proud of how well Sirene had passed her tests and how beautifully she danced her drum walk, her gestures with her honey colored eyes and her hands gracefully moving to attract the attention of the young warriors. Many were attracted, but none gathered at her uncle’s hut to discuss marriage. Neither her mother nor grandmother understood why. Her grandmother believed that perhaps Sirene had a larger purpose and was gifted by Oshun herself in the ways of magic. When her uncle suggested Sirene become a second wife, her grandmother absolutely refused saying that Sirene was special and didn’t need to share her husband with anyone.
Everyone in the village had begun to treat her as a “virgin priestess” and she was honored as such. She was invited to dance at every event, be it marriage, birth, or death. She continued to live with her mother and grandmother. She was the last of her age group of girls, one had been married a few moons ago and one had just given birth. Her happiness for them was tinged with a bit of sadness for own lack of a husband or child.
That night, she prepared herself. She bathed in flowers and scented herbs. She made a skirt with strips of yellow cloth and sewed cowrie shells on them to move and sound when she danced. She placed a long string of yellow beads around her neck that hung between her pert breasts with its dark full nipples. Lots of bracelets hung on her wrists. Her snake, Nambe, a green mamba, slithered in a basket near her. She usually carried Nambe on her like jewelry on either her arm or neck and though poisonous, it was not as dangerous as the black mamba. She was the envy of her girls group as she was the only one who dared to befriend and keep the snake, but little did they know that the snake had come to her helping her overcome her fear of them and the darkness. She took off her gele and unbraided her hair which hung past her shoulders. She placed yellow flowers in her hair and rubbed coconut oil on her skin. She was finally ready and left her hut to join in the feasting and celebration.
The light of the bond fire burned bright and Sirene’s skin was luminous as she danced barefoot around it. A string of cowrie shells hung around her ankle, matching the sound that came from the beads and cowrie shells around her waist. Her eyes took on an eerie glow as she moved rhythmically to the drums. Her grandmother knew instinctively that her grandchild was calling her mate this very night; it was no longer the dance of just honoring the woman-child. Her grandmother stood and along with Sirene’s mother began to dance along with her to ensure this man, whoever he was, would answer the call.