No one knew who the solo sailor in the small, two masted ketch was.
No one knew why the solo sailor in the small, two masted ketch was sailing into their private bay.
The large white flag flying high at the top of the main mast indicated that the sailor meant them no harm.
The pirate crew would of course be on alert and ready should the sailor suddenly become a threat but with no visible weapons on his person and little room on his ship for cannons of any kind, the chances of a successful attack were unlikely.
The two captains had been summoned and were on their way down to the jetty where the Privateer and the Revenge were moored when the solo sailor approached the landing area. When he was within ear shot he was told to halt his ship and remain stationary until the two captains arrived.
“Wha’ be yer business in this here port, Sailor?” The Good Captain called to the sailor standing with his arms in the air as a further sign he meant them no harm.
“I arrive here in this sea port with the sole intention of making a delivery.” the sailor’s clear speaking voice further proof he was not a pirate.
“Delivery?” The Good Captain said. “Wha’ be this delivery ‘n who shall it be fer me seafarin’ stranger?”
“The delivery shall be for you, sir.” The sailor said pointing at the Good Captain.
There was no addition of names, information relating to what was in the delivery, or where the delivery originated. Nor was there any explanation about how the sailor knew the Good Captain was the correct recipient of the delivery. In fact there was little conversation other than the good sailor assuring that his delivery was correct.
Despite the sailor appearing to be no threat the two captains still took some convincing that the delivery was not some kind of trick. It actually took until the moment the Good Captain saw the large chest stored safely in the hull of the ketch that he realised the sailor was in fact telling the truth, or at least the truth as he knew it. The Good Captain immediately ordered the chest be removed from the ketch, taken to the ‘castle in the air’ and placed in the large dinning room.
When the chest was off the ketch the sailor bid the two captains farewell and sailed off towards the ocean. On the dock there was no mention of the ship sailing across the water with no wind in her sails and no tide propelling her forward. Likewise there was no mention of the nameless sailor and his small, two masted ketch as it seemingly disappeared out of sight immediately after passing through the heads.
The Good Captain stood in the large dinning room of the ‘castle in the air’, he was alone and standing in front of the large chest that was sitting on floor. The chest was as large as any treasure chest his crew of pirates had ever pillaged, it was made from the darkest of ebony timbers and framed in a golden bracing as shiny as the sun itself. There was no sign of weathering on the chest, in fact it looked as if it had been constructed only days before, but he knew that was not possible.
It was the moment he’d seen the coat of arms burnt into the chest underneath the locking clasp that he realised to whom the chest had once belonged and that he could trust the unnamed sailor delivering it. The coat of arms was not one any other crew member of his would ever recognise but one that the Good Captain recognised instantly. He had not seen it since he was but a wee teenager but he remembered it clearly because it came with the warning from his mother that if he ever saw it again he was to destroy whatever it was attached to.
The Good Captain’s long gone mother’s thoughts towards his father were rarely pleasant, rarely positive and never flattering, had it been up to her he would never have known anything of his father. However things weren’t to be that way, his thoughts may have been tainted somewhat by his mother and he might not have been able to track his father’s every move but that coat of arms was burnt into his mind. Whatever was in the chest he did not know, but he knew it was from his father and it was not something he could not ignore.
Although he had not told either Captain Bildgepoole or the Fair Maiden where the chest had come from, because he honestly did not know, he had told them who the chest was from and how he recognised it. Knowing the Good Captain nearly as well as she did the Fair Maiden saw the emotional waves he was riding and immediately excused herself and Captain Bildgepoole from the room. The two of them left with the promise that they were only a single room away but they would give the Good Captain the time he needed to do what was needed with the chest.
When the Good Captain stepped up to the chest he was wondering how he was going to unlatch the large chest, he had no key and there was no way he was going to break into it, even with a pick axe. Grasping the locking clasp in his right hand he heard a rattling noise and almost instantly it disintegrated in his hand. Not bothering to look for an explanation or reason for what had happened the Good Captain simply opened his hand, let the remnants of the locking clasp fall to the floor, then he opened the chest.
The chest was empty except for a single large leather bound ledger. He reached in and picked it up, it felt heavy in his hands and he could tell there was many pages within its covers.
He placed the large ledger on the table, the leather bound cover revealed nothing of the ledger’s contents, while on the spine there was nothing more than the letters “Vol” and a number that had long ago worn off. Curiously the Good Captain opened the cover to the first page, a mix of surprise, sentiment and loss flooded his mind as he read the words printed there.
On the first line in wonderfully cursive script were the words “Family History” and while the second line, even with it’s larger print, was illegible to most, the Good Captain knew it was in fact his own surname, the name he’d inherited from his father and long, long ago stopped using.
The Good Captain flipped to the next page, a page that contained a single word.
Previous Pirate story here.