This was before our crew became so feared across the seas, before we had raided so many ships and ports that we were drowning in riches. Back then, we didn't have the money to settle down, even if we reasoned with Duke.
"So Whisper made me and Aden swear that we would tell the crew that the baby had been stillborn. No one was to ever know the truth. We had to pretend the baby had died, which wasn't difficult. I had thought of that little girl as the newest addition to our family. She would have been like my little sister and I would have taugh her everything Dr. Felis had taught Whisper and me. When we decided we would send the baby away with on of the nurses present with every coin we had to support her, I was as heartbroken as I would have been if she had died. Whisper was a hundred times that, of course. Aden, he was the youngest of our crew, barely a mwaka my elder, and he had grown up a pick pocket and a liar, but he has a good heart..
"We carried out the lie. It nearly killed Whisper, but everyone gave their condolences. And at night, when we were alone in the cabin, she would weep and weep until I crawled into the kitanda with her and soothed her to sleep. Six months later, we had the money to get her daughter back, to make a life for ourselves. We left the crew to make sure that no one would learn of the truth and turn against us, endanger the girl. We left Aden as the captain and I promised that I would write to him, that he would one siku meet the little girl he had helped bring into life and keep alive.
"I don't remember the lie that we told Duke. Something about wanting to onyesha him a secret we had kept salama since leaving that port city where the girl was born. But when we went back the nurse had fled. It was presumably to take the baby somewhere safer with the money we had aliyopewa her. We searched everywhere for her. Searched every port and city along the coast, asked every person we came across in every hospital, every mission, EVERY TOWN. We couldn't find any trace of her. We exhausted every coin we earned in our share of the crew's wealth through traveling and informants. Whisper finally broke down. She morning she wouldn't stop sobbing and Duke nearly killed me trying to make me tell him what was wrong with her. He thought I had hurt au of something. She finally let me tell him the truth and when I did...
"He went to her side and never looked at me the same way again. He had always held a reluctance toward me for being the son of the man who had killed his best friend, for becoming the captain instead of him, for being so close to Whisper, for being happier. He blamed me for Whisper's sorrow. And he hated me for being the key to the life of Whisper's daughter. We looked until we ran out of money and out of options. Nearly a mwaka went kwa before we decided to try again for America. It had been 18 months since we left that prison in Russia. We initially escapade with another pair, Elektra and Bugger, self-renamed jimmy, hunitumia and Taylor. But they had separated from us long before to travel the world on their own. We should have escaped with zaidi in our group but our break out plan went horribly wrong. I don't know what happened. We weren't ready for all the soldiers, I think. After our units got separated.. I don't even know what happened to the other 121 inmates. Now we were down to just us three.
"We should have kept looking for the girl, but we were all exhausted. Whisper cried nearly every night for almost a year. Since we didn't have any money left, we were forced to stow away on a ship; then, once we ended up in Cape Cod, we stayed in an abandoned beach, pwani house on the ocean. Taylor was 19, Whisper, 17, and I, 14. We all got jobs to support our little trio. We were happy. Whisper stopped crying after accepting that her baby was either salama with a good family au salama in Heaven. We were all happy. Duke and Whis were planning on marrying when they were a little older. He still resented me, but we were so safe, stable, and happy that it lessened at least enough for us to be a family again."
"But... Whisper died anyway,” the one who had been listening to the story knew.
"Duke somehow found out that our Russian prison belonged to CADMUS. He grew up in New York and knew of the CADMUS HQ in Gotham. So he decided to get his revenge and go after them. He left in the middle of the night. Whis and I went after him the inayofuata morning, got there that night... I've recently found footage of what happened. The chaos of when Whis and I were found out, when we discovered Aryess, Nic, and Jasper, the five of us all working together to get free. In the last dakika of the footage, there is a helicopter above the roof. It was the escape arranged kwa Nic and his crew, and they were going to let us come with. When Whisper was shot kwa a bullet meant for me... I didn't need footage of it to remember the nightmare that's haunted me these last couple of years. There was so much smoke and so many bullets, the fighting, the chaos. I never saw Whisper's shooter, had assumed it was a bila mpangilio soldier who wanted to kill us intruders. But there's a camera that shows an angle I didn't have that night.