The Legend of the Four Thieves - A Mermaid's Tale

Unlock the secret of Amélie and her brother Jean-Luc meeting sword fighting pirates and a handsome Captain Roland Thunder while they take you on their adventure in 1700's France. 

By Janet Anderson

Fictional Novelette

Legend of the Four Thieves A Mermaid's Tale by Janet Anderson - book cover

 Marseilles, France

The Second Plague
In the year of our Lord 1721

 “There’s going to be a hanging”, the old woman heard over and over in her mind as she rode her stallion closer to get to the gallows. She couldn’t get to the square fast enough to see if the condemned were her friends.
The hangman's noose was exhibited in the square for all to see under the summer sun, as four young men awaited their demise; the magistrate handling the execution of the thieves had waited several days for them to reveal their secret, to no avail. The hot tears steaming out of their eyes made streaks through the grime on their faces. They had begged for their lives but found no mercy. Those who condemned them thought they were concealing a deeper secret, one that would interest the crown of France itself. Yet those poor bastards were about to die because of foolish deeds done. These thieves had stolen herbal oils and tinctures from a pirate ship without ever knowing the truth of the secret recipe or the persons responsible for creating it. These men about to hang were the wrong thieves.
The old woman arrived on horseback and hobbled to the scene just as the magistrate kicked the stools out from under their feet with the noose of death around their necks. One after the other, the sickening thud and the crack of their necks, almost made her fall to her knees.

The Plague epidemic had come back to France and was wreaking havoc for what felt like an eternity. They called it the ‘pestilence’ because the bubonic plague caused one to rot from the inside out. The giant sores called buboes would burst and the smell was ungodly. Those who tried to help would become ill and pass it on. The plague attacked suddenly and could kill in a matter of a few days, sometimes a few hours. One could wake up feeling fine and be dead at sundown. The plague had ravaged the city of Marseilles for months on end. It was getting worse now with bodies piling up in the streets; 50,000 were dead and the pandemic was swiftly moving throughout the city. The citizens that had survived thus far were praying day and night for a cure. Everyone was afraid of this invisible predator and no one knew where to turn. Those who could afford it were leaving the cities for the countryside. The Regent of France, Philippe II, Duke of Orleans, acting on behalf of the young 11-year-old King, was desperate to save the citizens of France. He had issued a command to find the thieves that had been robbing the homes of the plague-stricken; to find out why they were immune to the Black Death and find whatever cure was attached to their story.

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