Part the One Hundred Twenty Third: Getting Underway Again
Charity grunted as she pulled Hope closer to her.
“And I thought…” said Hope as she hung on for dear life, “that this would… not be so hard… the next time…”
“Harder!” said Charity. “Faster now, faster!”
Both of them grunted as they pulled, the line they shared taut as they kept the Raging Gale from capsizing as she floated back into the water. Both women pulled together as they stepped as one to their right, avoiding the logs placed under the hull that popped out from under the ship as it slid into the surf.
They steadied their line, as did the rest of the crew on their ropes, keeping the ship from floating away. The compliment then moved bow ward to the Gale, pulling her hull to the temporary dock set up to refit her.
Abigail was still in the surf, allowing the water to get higher on her as she tugged the guideline to lead the ship fore. As the hull reached the dock, Hope caught sight of her red hair disappearing under the water before she emerged, climbing the line and rappelling up the bow, then lowering herself on the dock to use her line to halt the ship.
With the rest of the crew, she brought the hull to a standstill. Together they secured the Gale’s lines and placed the gangplank to load her up again.
Hope bent over and took a deep breath before she tried to straighten out her back. The effort nearly split her torso right over her pelvis.
“At least ye didn’ hang this time,” Collins noted with a smile.
Hope groaned as she arched her back. “The next time the ship turns on its side so,” she said to no one, “it may well be the death of me.”
“’Ere up now,” announced Campbell, “let’s get some hands on the pieces. Can’t go to sea with the guns ashore, now.”
Hope responded to that call by heading to the encampment, where Charity was assisting Mesnil and Kelley in striking the encampment’s tents.
“Thank God we didn’t get any real rain,” said Kelley as he examined the canvas while folding it. “We’re close to exposed on the beach with these.”
“At least we had these,” said Hope. “Where I’d have ended up this week without them I don’t know.”
“Never met a pirate yet whose booty didn’t end up in the hands of the sutlers before long. Every one, tempting you after weeks at sea, with their trinkets, fineries and luxuries for sale.”
“Especially here, I’ve noticed.”
“With me, it was the drink and food,” said Kelley. “I can never turn down fresh meat on a spit. How’d they seize yours from you?”
Hope said nothing; she looked over at Charity and sighed…
All content Copyright © 2009 James Ryan