Becoming Josah Evermore
Michael John Mayweather watched his brother brutally murdered, only to be captured and sold as an indentured servant by the very same people. His new life began on the Molly Red, a tall ship owned and operated by Captain Munro Evermore. After eight years of living with another family, he learns that his father passed away. Now, he is to return to Rylie Glen, but as Josiah Evermore, no longer Michael John Mayweather.
The youngest son of Lord Rando Braedon Mayweather, Michael John has always lived in Bon Abbi. His mother, Lady Silvi Willa Mayweather, died giving birth. Lord Rando tried to nurture his youngest son. But managing the city of Bon Abbi took more time than he realized.
Michael John and his brother, Nolan Baye, were close despite being six years apart. He watched his brother grow in stature and confidence. The people of Bon Abbi drew to depend on Nolan Baye when his father wasn’t available.
Soon, Nolan Baye had little time to spend with Michael John. What was he to do? Never realizing he had an unspoken need to bond, Michael John found it easy to be with Evelyn Miller. Her father was a trusted advisor, and they were always at the manor.
Evelyn played harder than most boys in Bon Abbi. There were plenty of times when they argued about something, but Evelyn was always quick to resolve the problem. Michael John never acknowledged that one day his nobility would separate him from Evelyn.
To Michael’s surprise, Nolan Baye decided to go abroad to study for a year. Mercil, the largest city on West Mainland was known for its schools. He was to take his father’s mantel as ruler of Bon Abbi when the time came. Lord Rando, encouraged by the decision, made all the preparation for his eldest son.
During his studies in Mercil, Nolan Baye met Ayla May Garran, from a financier family. He wrote his father announcing his intention to marry Ayla. He would bring Ayla May and her father to Bon Abbi by planting season.
Lord Rando announced the wedding plans to the townspeople. In a few weeks, planting season would begin and a wedding to occur. There was a festive mood throughout Bon Abbi, anticipating Nolan Baye’s arrival. Buildings were freshly painted, roofs rethatched, and the main square decorated.
Spring came early, where the yellow cups bloomed with the promise of new life. A carriage made its way to Southport, waiting for the arrival. It would be several days by the time Nolan, Ayla and Her father arrived in Bon Abbi. Finally, the city celebrated the return of its most cherished son.
The city square filled with shouting villagers, rejoicing with Nolan’s return. Then, following the carriage to the manor, the crowds cheered as Nolan and his guests stepped out of the carriage. The Mayweather lad offered his gratitude before continuing to a quiet celebration in their home.
After an early meal, the two fathers made their way to the library, working out the necessary marriage details. The wedding would happen in early summer, providing enough time for Ayla’s family to arrive on the island. A few of Nolan’s friends stopped by to invite him to an early hunt.
The next day, Nolan Baye went out with a hunting group. As the morning sun burst into the new day, Ayla May stepped out to the city square. But she was not alone. Three young men were there, two holding tightly to the reins of their horses. One, dressed in fine clothes and a regal attitude, drew a bow, pointing an arrow at the young girl.
To this day, no one knows their entire conversation. Ayla May acknowledged that she was to marry Nolan Baye. Without warning, Luka Dey Robion, from the Casselberry ruling family, shot his arrow, striking Ayla in the heart. Without any remorse, Luka Dey led his companions away, leaving the young girl to die in the square.
As people made their way into the marketplace, they found Ayla had passed due to her injury. The distinctive black and white feathered arrow removed any doubt to the one responsible. As the story is told, several villagers ran to the manor and told Lord Rondo what they found. The two fathers ran to the square, demanding that the crowd make room. Sickened by the sight of his daughter death, Lord Garran demanded justice as he carried Ayla back to the manor.
When Nolan Baye returned with his hunting group, Lord Rando told him the news. Michael John wept for his brother as he heard the loss in Nolan Baye’s despair and anguish. The young man demanded revenge, while his father tried to reason with his son. ‘There wasn’t a way to know who murdered Ayla,’ he would say.
Nolan Baye refused to hear his father. The colors of the arrow feather were those of Luka Dey. He would confront the Casselberry heir, even if his father could not. Luka Dey would make his way to Cornor, and then into Southport to catch any vessel sailing to the Mainlands.
The young man prepped his horse and rode away toward Southport, a two day’s journey. Lord Rando shouted, pleaded but his son would not listen to reason. He gazed at his youngest, as if something else stayed his hand. The ruler of Bob Abbi would not confront Casselberry.
Michael John couldn’t believe his father wouldn’t defend his brother. So, he ran toward the manor’s courtyard, grabbed a knife from the kitchen, then out to the garden. He would follow his brother Nolan Baye. However, the young boy wasn’t expecting Evelyn.
She had waited for Michael John, urging him to stay. ‘You’re too young to ride out and Southport was too far away to walk,’ she reasoned. But Michael John had another idea, as he took one long look south, beyond the Palouse and the Plains of Vandeer. He would take the short route to Southport, then cut through the woodlands.
If the boy made it through Filgore Valley before dark, he would be fine. But Michael John couldn’t outrun the day. Shadows appeared as he made his way through the forest and into the valley of the Dragoons. They were big cats with gray and black fur, bobbed tails, and known to be fierce hunters.
Making his way cautiously through the valley, Michael John heard some muffled cries. It was a young Dragoon kit caught in a trap with a wire around his front leg. Approaching the small creature caused it to snarl and huff, a defensive posturing that included a ponding the ground.
But the boy was deliberate in his moments, rolling the kit to its side. Loosening the wire, the boy slipped it off, then released the cat. But rather than running away, the Dragoon drew closer to Michael John. Noticing that the wire had rubbed fur and skin around the paw, the boy tore his shirt to bind the wound. By now, darkness made it impossible for Michael John to continue. He had to spend the night in Filgore Valley with the young kit by his side.
Morning came, and so did the Dragoon pack. They watched as Michael John urged the young cat to return to his kind, but the kit had other ideas. The largest animal and leader made his way to Michael John. The boy dropped his face to the ground and cried, pleading not to kill him. But nothing happened.
When he looked up, the Dragoons were gone. Michael John didn’t hesitate as he made his way through Filgore Valley safe and sound. It didn’t take him long to exit the forest and reach the open fields near Connor. It wasn’t long before the boy made it t Pub’s Row, where he witnessed his brother stood with a drawn sword and calling Luka Dey to answer for Ayla May’s death.
It didn’t take long for Luka’s two companions overpower Nolan Baye, making him drop his sword. If there were any exchanges between them, Michael couldn’t hear them. He held his breath, watching as Luka Dey ran his sword through his brother as Luka’s two companions held his arms. Releasing their grip, Nolan fell to the ground.
Michael John screamed and ran towards the three young men, brandishing his knife. Luka struck Michael John in the chest with one swift kick, knocking him backward. The boy pulled himself up to his knees when Luka Dey swung his sword down hard, striking Michael with the hilt of his sword. He tried to stay conscious, but overwhelmed by grief, the boy slumped to the ground.
When he came to, Michael John was in a dark room. His upper right arm was stinging, and he could smell flesh burning. A tall man, wearing some type of uniform, announced the boy was now an indentured servant in service to the Evermore ships. Several crew members led Michael John through the Southport docks and onto a ship. Even in the dark, the boy could see a red whale painted on its main sails.
The captain shouted to get the Molly Red ready for departure as several crew lead the boy into the bowels of the vessel. Michael John wonder about his father, and the death of his brother. Where was he going, and how would he ever return to Bon Abbi or see Evelyn Miller again?