Short Story: The Red Beard
Every romance story is told the same way. A prince rescues the princess, and they live happily ever after. This story is much different from the others. This is a story of a man who finds the light to his dark heart after kidnapping the woman who guides that light.
Henry Richards was taken in by Captain Blackbeard as a baby. Blackbeard raised Henry to become the most feared pirate that has ever sailed the seas.
In a castle, far away from open sea, a beautiful girl was born. The girl grew up to become the most loving Princess Miranda. Her servant, Gretchen, carried a dark feeling of resentment toward Miranda. Gretchen had her own secret underground cave where she practiced dark sorcery and planned to take over the kingdom.
As years passed, Henry grew up to be a ruthless, blood-thirsty pirate. After realizing that he carried the black spot on his left hand, Blackbeard chopped off the affected limb and sent Henry to the dungeons. During his years as a prisoner, Henry grew thick, red facial hair. During this time, he planned his revenge against Blackbeard while creating a steel hook to replace his lost hand.
Once he escaped, Henry stole a captain’s uniform and hat from the corpse of a past prisoner. Henry then stole a pirate ship from the Chinese, the Silver Dragon. After seeing the horrors done to his fellow prisoners, he returned to the dungeons to free and add them to his crew. Henry was later recognized as Captain Red Beard.
The crew members planned to kidnap Princess Miranda because they were in need of treasure. Red Beard sailed to the kingdom and committed his evil deed. As a powerful storm hit the sea, the ship struggled to stay on its course. Miranda fell off the ship and was dragged away by the cold and heavy waves, and Red Beard jumped in after her. The two were cast away on the Lost Island. As weeks passed, Red Beard and Miranda remain trapped on the island. A relationship slowly formed between the two, as they built a raft together.
Meanwhile, Gretchen took command of England, spreading her darkness and bringing horror to the good people. Upon hearing about the dark doings of Gretchen, Miranda was determined to return home. Red Beard refused to do anything, breaking the bond they once shared. Miranda took the raft and returned to the kingdom, but she was tricked and poisoned by Gretchen; Miranda was cursed with the disability to age and feel any sort of emotion. She was eventually locked in a tower.
Red Beard was finally rescued by the Silver Dragon, but after hearing Miranda’s predicament, he had to choose between her or sailing after Blackbeard to gain his revenge and become the greatest pirate. The choice was clear to him. Red Beard jumped off the ship and swam his way to the kingdom, where he
faced Gretchen in a duel. He managed to defeat Gretchen and save the kingdom. He then found Miranda. Out of true love, he took her curse away by transferring it to himself. Miranda awakened, learning of his noble sacrifice. No curse was able to stop the great love they shared, so they got married.
As centuries passed, Red Beard remained cursed, watching everyone he once knew age and die. By the year 2007, Red Beard became the richest man in the United States. Today, he lives among the new world, with all the wealth any man could ever want, yet he is still missing the one thing that made him whole: Princess Miranda.