It gets really tiring cleaning up after pirates.
Your name is Johnny Hamilton, though your "employers" call you a lot of other names. You have been sailing with these men for three weeks, ever since you were captured by their captain "Red Hook".
You and your family were sailing to the colony at Point Royal, in the Caribbean in the New World, when your ship was beset by the pirates. At one point during the climax of the battle, you were thrown overboard after a particular violent broadside. Grasping a piece of the ship's hull that had been blown off, you floated for hours. The ships, not concerned about one boy amongst the dead, continued on fighting and sailing away.
After nightfall, you had fallen asleep with the wood tucked under your arms, when a bright light of a lantern filled your vision. Blinking rapidly, you looked up to see the shadow of a very large man reaching down with a hook, which you eagerly grabbed a hold of Only after you are in the row-boat do you realize that the hook was his hand!
Since you were brought on board, you've been pressed into service as a "ship's boy" and forced to clean and do menial chores as the pirates yelled them out at you. You tried to approach Red Hook once to express your gratitude for saving your life, but he didn't acknowledge you were there at all. Instead, the first mate smacked you across the face so hard it loosened a couple teeth, and told you to get back to work.
One day, while swabbing the decks for the 40th time since you've been on board, you glance up at the horizon. With a start, you see a ship, way off in the distance. Glancing nervously up at the crow's nest, it looks like the lookout is sleep in the hot tropical sun. This might be your chance to escape!