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Four Names

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She’s known as The Ghost by some, not for her fair colouring and pale dresses, but for her ability to take ships unawares and leave them devastated; she’s swift and cruel and very few actually see her coming.

To others she’s The Silence, for the way she need not speak for you to quiver before her and her beseeching gaze, and for the storm that always inevitably follows; she’s fierce and violent and will raze everything in her path to the ground - or to the ocean, as it were - to get what she wants.

In secret places, she’s heralded as The Queen, for the spoils she brings and the protection her presence - and the necessary absences - offers; she’s sometimes seen gliding through the streets of her domain, whispering protective charms into the night and weaving joy into the day, spreading beauty and prosperity with every step.

To Antoinette she is all of those things and more, but what nobody else knows is that Anastasia is just that: Anastasia, a hard woman wrapped in a soft shell, violence dressed in silk and cotton - a dainty flower covering up the strategic mind that has succeeded in uniting two peoples under one woman. And the reverse: a warm heart hidden under a cool face, delicate fingers so strong they leave bruises on Antoinette’s dark skin, a quiet laugh shaping a firm mouth into something far lovelier than Antoinette could possibly find words for.