The Hostage

 Leave it to this scurvy bunch of barnacle-brains; methinks they've forgotten all about me.
 Oh, it were all piratey when the fools first kidnapped me in Bridgetown: deck swabbing, barrels of rum, and even some lusty ho-ho-ho's. They disembarked, though, and methinks they're back on their street corner.
 By the by, that dithering captain sent a ransom demand to my father, the Governor, demanding fifty gold sovereigns for my safe return. Negotiations went on for a fortnight before they finally settled on three hundred. For the pirates to keep me. I always suspected Father loathed me.
 Now I'm bound to this scow, where the crew is so stupid they think the poop deck is a latrine. And they keep referring to the mizzenmast, although it's right where it's supposed to be and I can see it plain as day. Isn't mizzen at all.
   I am anyway resolved to make the best of my predicament and shall maintain a journal of brief vignettes of life among these crustacean cretins. Mayhap I shall write a book some day.

September 6, Day One: My gaoler, Willem Locke - who has the largest ears I've ever encountered on a human - seems a kindly moron. I tried to teach him to play cards. Go Fish, I said on the first hand. He left, and came back with a mackerel.
September 7: Locke asked me if the choppy seas were causing me undue discomfort. I replied that they were not. "And you?" I asked. He grabbed at the sides of his bobbing head and complained about his bucking ears. I rather like the sound of that. I might use it.
September 9: The ship lost a crew member today. Apparently, some pirate wanted to outdo Cy 'Clops' Smythe by wearing not one but two eye patches. An hour later, he walked right off the ship and into the Caribbean. Silly twit.
October 3:  As if the ship doesn't have enough trouble with bad weather, the naughty scullery maid with the treasure chest, and a parrot shortage, I suspect that some pirates are listing to port, if you gather my meaning. Last night, I saw two pirates holding hooks as they gutted fresh rats under a full moon. Unless my ears deceive me, I think I even heard one whispering about being blown ashore.
October 7: The call came from the crow's nest today: "Ship Ahoy!" But when Captain Bottoms called for Attack, the helmsman began zigging and zagging with the wind instead. I despair of my ill luck. Of all the pirates on the high seas, I get kidnapped by  the Folly Rogers.

In the year 1862. R.L Stevenson.


The End

201 comments about this story Feed