The captain reviewed
the articles of his ship as he recorded them in the ships
log. This would be his first entry for this journey. The
vessel creaked and groaned as it gently rode the waves in
the harbor as his quill was set to the pages of the log.
Article One- Every man shall obey civil command; the captain
shall have one full share and a half in all prizes. The Quartermaster,
First Mate, shall have one share and a quarter. In addition,
the Surgeon shall be included in the above mentioned.
Article Two- If any man
shall offer to run away, or keep any secret from the Company,
he shall be marooned with one bottle of powder, one flask
of water, one small arm, and shot.
Article Three- If any
man shall steal any thing in the Company, or game, to the
value of a gold piece, he shall be marooned or shot.
Article Four- If at any
time we should meet another marooner, that man shall sign
his Article without consent of our Company, and shall suffer
such punishment as the Captain and Company shall think fit.
Article Five- Any man that shall strike another, whilst
these article are in force, shall receive Moses’s Law. Forty
stripes lacking one on the bare back.
Article Six- Any man that
shall snap his Arms, or smoke tobacco in the hold, without
a cap to his pipe, or carry a candle lighted without lanthorn,
shall suffer the same punishment as in the previous article.
Article Seven- Any man
that shall not keep his weapons clean, fit for an engagement,
or neglect his business shall be cut off from his share, an
suffer such other punishments as the Captain and Company think
Article Eight- If any
man shall lose a joint in time of engagement, he shall have
400 pieces of gold: if a limb 800.
Article Nine- If at any
time you meet with a prudent woman, the man that offers to
meddle with her, without her consent, shall suffer Death.
“Cap’n!” had been
called down into the ship. “The crew is comin’ aboard’!”
The Captain reviewed
each article and began to go over the roster and duties of
each. His crew was hand selected by himself. He would be
sailing with a Letter Marque, giving him written permission
to engage any ship that would offer a profitable booty. The
Letter Of Marque from the United States gave him free reign
to attack English ships during this voyage. This was his
first sail as a privateer in an attempt to regain his family
name and restore their fortune.
As he reviewed
the articles that his crewmates had signed, he began to record
their positions and names in the logbook. He began his entries
and deliberated with much thought on each assignment.
Duties to entail the following- Distribution of all items;
rations, powder, work, prize, and punishment. Leads all boarding
parties and keeps custody of all prize and booty.
Determines what is worth taking and what is worth taking
in conjunction with the Captain. Shall dole out all punishments
on the Captain’s order after a vote of the company. He and
only he will administer all punishments with the consent of
Duty assigned to: Alexander McLean
Second in command to the Captain. If I can not perform my
duties or meet my obligations to my country or crew-
Duty assigned to: Howard
Surgeon- The one man that I have pressed into service
by value of family ties. Service all the ill and injured.
Duty assigned to: Brian
The next entry
made the Captain smile, “It is about time my young friend.
We have come a long way together and I have much more to teach
you. You will come of age on this voyage. This is the last
assignment that you, as an apprentice, should have to serve.
May it serve you well.” It was a rare entry but the Captain
made it known to record so that the young man would get a
share and a quarter instead of his standard share.
Cook- To serve better food than old George. Since you
eat twice as much as any man and you do like to cook.
Duty assigned to: Nickolas
“Cap’n,” a blonde
head poked into his cabin.
The captain leaned
back in the old desk chair. His arms stretched in the air.
“Yes Nick?” he answered with a hint of amusement in his voice.
ya give me?” the tall younger man entered the room.
The captain grinned
even wider, “Come see for yourself. This is your last obligated
voyage with me.”
The man/boy skidded
over the desk and rapidly read down the list. “COOK! COOK!
I don’t want the cook, I want first mate or Quartermaster!”
The captain’s apprentice
was as red as a lobster heading for the boiling pot. “You’re
not ready for that yet.” The captain closed the logbook;
it was his final decision once the book was closed.
“That’s not fair,
I worked hard to earn that appointment.” He wanted the duty
that he felt he could handle.
“Don’t whine Nick,”
The captain headed out the door with his upset junior behind
him. Shaking his head as he took the stairs two at a time.
Hitting the deck, he took his place up at the wheel as he
waited for the last of his seaman to board.
“But Cap’n,” the
young one was if anything persistent. He had been with the
captain for six years now. If he could rattle his cage long
enough, the captain would usually give in just so he could
be left alone.
The Captain ignored
him as he posted the Duty roster to the mast. Turning he
addressed all the onlookers who were eager to get a glimpse.
“Gentlemen, I am your Captain. Captain Kevin Richardson.
We set sail tonight, prepare this lovely lady to leave safe
real captain names his ship,” Nick looked up at the crow’s
“If you are bucking
to go back to Cabin Boy, you are almost there. Get to your
duties son. Old George died last week, there is something
to be said for that.”
Nick didn’t speak
as he heard the Captains boots thud into the well worn boards
of the ship’s deck. Looking to the sky, a gull flew by.
“George you did me an injustice old man. But you couldn’t
cook anyway. You almost killed us twice with bad meat.”
made his way to the galley and grumbled all the way down to
the bowels of the boat.
Thanks to Em for the Banner!