Chapter Two

Chapter Two

A Chapter by Chantel

          Why am I doing this? Sarafina thought. This is crazy!
          But the same force that had caused her to jump off the docks in the first place now pulled her to the ship. She didn’t want to board, but she was now discovering that treading water required more energy than normal swimming, and she was getting tired. She knew she was too far away from the docks to turn back now. She needed to board the ship, at least until she regained enough energy to swim back to shore.
          She swam around the pirate ship, looking for some way to climb aboard.
          Oh, of course. The anchor line.
          The line reached the capstan through a small porthole, called the hawse hole, which was near the middle of the deck just below the main deck. Sarafina wondered if any pirates would see her climbing or would be near the capstan when she came in, but she didn’t have time to lose. She started climbing anyway; it turned out to be pretty hard. She wasn’t very strong, she decided as she kept climbing and slipping. The rope burned her hands when she slipped, and she almost let go a couple of times. But so far, no pirates seemed to have spotted her…although she could just imagine them laughing at her sad attempt to get on the ship.
          She had climbed about halfway up the anchor line when the line started moving. The pirates were weighing anchor.
          Just wonderful.
          Panicked, Sarafina searched for some way to get off the anchor line before the pirates pulled her to hawse hole. The only option she could see was to fall back into the water, which would only get her back where she’d started. No, she had to wait until she got inside the ship before she could take action.
          Alright, she thought. They’re going to keep pulling, I’ll get inside, and then I’ll drop off silently and crawl into a barrel or something. I hope the hawse hole actually fits me through!
          A short wait and she was up to the hawse hole.
Here goes. When she was close enough, she swung to the hole, feet first, trying to squeeze in but also trying to be quiet…and she lost her balance. Quickly, she grabbed the hole with her right hand, before she could fall into the water, and pulled herself in. She tumbled onto the floor and, for a second, lay there in a very undignified manner with her wet dress all around her. Then she looked up and saw pirates standing around, staring at her. Right. So much for not being noticed. She quickly stood up, shivering and shaking. She was exhausted. Her legs shook, her hair dripped water on the deck, and she felt like she would collapse any second.
          One pirate jumped to action at that moment, grabbing Sarafina by the arm and pointing a pistol at her head. “Whatever y’ were plannin’, crazy girl, it’s time to see the cap’n.”
          Sarafina shook, terrified.
Oh, please, no...
          “The captain is here.” A man walked toward Sarafina, through the crowd of pirates. His long, scraggly, black hair was wet and dirty from sweat, seawater, and months of being unwashed. His eyes were a kind of maroon-brown color, and they flashed angrily. Mud, blood, and ashes were smeared onto his clothes: a long, gray coat, brown pants, black boots, and a shirt Sarafina assumed used to be white. A cutlass, two daggers, and two pistols hung from his belt. The way the pirates moved out of the way to let him through, and the fear in their eyes as he passed them, told Sarafina who he was. This was Captain Brutus Larkurr. And he wasn’t happy.
          “What did you think you were doing, trying to get on my ship, little girl?!”

          Sarafina wanted to shrink back as the captain glared at her with his frightening reddish eyes, but she forced herself not to. “I…um…I didn’t know this was your ship,” she lied feebly. “Sorry.”
          Captain Larkurr’s eyes narrowed. “Oh? Did the flag not tell you enough?”
          “I…I didn’t look at the flag.”
          The captain glared at her. “Either you’re lying to me or you’re just plain stupid. Or both.”
          Sarafina found it strange that, despite being a pirate captain, Captain Larkurr didn’t talk like most pirates or common sailors. His voice was deep and rough, but his way of talking didn’t sound like how Sarafina expected a pirate to talk at all. He had good grammar. In a way, that made him seem more intimidating to Sarafina.

          “What’s your name, girl?” The captain didn’t say it like a question; he said it as an order.
          “Sarafina Smith.” Her voice was so quiet, she was almost whispering.
          “And how old are you?”
          The captain nodded to himself, apparently assured that Sarafina could do little harm if she was only thirteen. “Glad to be introduced,” Captain Larkurr said. He turned to one of his men. “Lock her up in the brig. I’ll be seeing her later.” He turned and began walking away. “Now back to work, you worthless mutts!”
          A pirate seized Sarafina by the arms and took her down to the brig. He shoved her inside an empty cell--actually, all the cells were empty, because the
Bloody Mary's crew usually just killed people instead of taking them prisoner. The pirate slammed the cell door shut and left.
          Sarafina shivered in the cold of the brig and her wet dress. The brig was dark"so dark that she could hardly see anything at all. The only feeble source of light came from somewhere farther on in the ship, not in the brig. The brig smelled horrible, too, and the floor was wet--with what, Sarafina didn’t want to think. She decided she’d assume it was bilge water.
          As she sat there in the filthy, cold brig, the reality of what had happened began to sink in: she had been sent on an ordinary errand, but things definitely hadn’t ended up as ordinary--she had run to the docks, almost gotten trampled by a horse-drawn cart, jumped off a dock, swam, boarded the
Bloody Mary, met Captain Brutus Larkurr, and finally, been sent to the brig. And Captain Larkurr was going to see her again later.
          She was aboard the Bloody Mary. What was she doing here? This surpassed her wildest nightmares!
          Sarafina grew slightly dizzy with the thought, but in the maelstrom of thoughts that swirled around in her mind, one rang out above all the rest:
          What am I going to do?

© 2010 Chantel

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I do like this story, although some of the dialogue doesn't seem to fit the time period. But dialogue is hard, especially when dealing with the past. Nice work.

Posted 14 Years Ago

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Added on April 12, 2010
Last Updated on November 28, 2010
Tags: sarafina, captain, captain larkurr, pirates




I like to write stories, especially about pirates, and I also like to write poetry and write and play songs. I am a college student living in the Pacific Northwest. more..

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A Poem by Chantel