CHAPTER FOUR

The Pirate Ship Vengeful Revenge

Training Officer Stuart's log - Entry 1

It's our first day at sea. I've been the training officer for fifteen minutes and things are going really well.

Or, at least, I think they're going well. Actually, I'm not sure. I've never done this before.

The crew doesn't know much about being pirates, but they're trying hard. No, actually, they have no idea what to do.

The ship is great! Well, no, actually, it's a floating junk heap. We've already sprung a leak.

But everybody is real nice now that I've had the chance to get to know them. Actually, that's the best part of this whole mess. Teaching a bunch of farmers to be pirates can be a lot of fun! It's definitely more fun than being a gardener.

On the other hand, they're not very good pirates.

I think we might be doomed.

Signed: Stuart, Training Officer at Large

* * *

Stuart stood on the deck beside Captain Brannigan as the crew of the pirate ship Vengeful Revenge moved into a straggly line in front of them.

Captain Brannigan shouted, “Training Officer Stuart, I've assembled the crew just like you asked. We're ready to start our pirate training!” He stepped into the line with his crew.

Stuart nodded. “Very good. Perhaps you should start by explaining the situation to the crew.”

“Good idea!” Captain Brannigan turned to face the crew again. “All right,” he said. “This is the situation. Young Stuart is here to teach us to be pirates. He's full of advice and good ideas. Besides, he's the only one on board who knows what he's doing. So listen up, maties!”

“Thank you, Captain.” Stuart stood up straighter. He felt proud to be a teacher. He'd never been a teacher before. This was fun, he decided.

Stuart looked at all his students. “First rule of being a pirate, besides having a fierce reputation, is to act like a pirate. I want you to repeat after me, and sound really fierce. Now say Ooog-Argh. Let me hear it!”

“Ooog,” said Captain Brannigan, concentrating hard. “Argh,” he said, still concentrating. He was thinking too hard to sound very fierce.

Shmee screwed up his face and squeaked, “Ooogie. Arghie.”

Felix opened his mouth and belted, “ARGH!” He looked around at the others. They looked back at him in surprise. “Just plain argh,” he said and explained, “I'm a one-word pirate.”

“Squawk!” the toucan stated.

Stuart slapped a hand to his forehead. “Oh brother."

Go on to Chapter 5.


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