IF ONLY I HAD A PARROT:
Diary, December 11th.
We were drinking as usual, killing time on the local tavern, when this completely drunk sailor told us how 15 years ago, while serving as a cook on the Spanish Galleon "Hispaniola", they encountered off the coast of Dominicana a ship named "The Devil" sailing under Spanish Flag. The Hispaniola was sailing together with 3 other Spanish galleons, loaded with troops and cannons set to reinforce the Spanish settlement.
On board "The Hispaniola" there was a sailor who had survived a Pirate attack and remembered "The Devil" as the insignia ship of the deadly Pirate "Barba Negra".
He told us how in a matter of minutes, the 4 Spanish ships damaged so bad "The Devil" that the Pirates seeing themselves lost drove the ship towards the reefs of a small island north of the battle, where it sunk nearly one hour after the first cannonball was fired.
Many years later he was assigned as a cook in a small Spanish Camp settled on that island, and while roaming the shores looking for crabs for a dinner a couple of months ago, he came across this crazy pirate, who yelled nonsense in English.
Unfortunately he didn't understand English enough to comprehend what the man was saying, but he was sure he said something about treasure. When he went back with some Spanish soldiers to get him, the pirate was long gone.
He tried in vain to find him but no trail of the man was ever found.
Our Captain Barba Roja listened to the story and asked him details on the location of the island and all the information he could give, then he asked how many people had he told this story to. The man said only a few, but the only interested in the story had been a sailor named Bournet, just 2 days ago.
The Captain laughed and said he loved good stories, and as a sign of his generosity, he told the sailor to follow him to the back of the tavern where he had a special brandy to offer him.
We followed without understanding what he meant, and as the poor fellow crossed the door, Barba Roja stabbed him in the heart.
"Just making sure he doesn't tell the story to anyone else…" he said, "Be ready to set sail as soon as the sun comes up". And he went away.
We left Bermuda at 5 in the morning and as soon as we where out of the harbor the Captain formed us on the deck and said:
"As you can see from my beard, it's red. Red as blood, and a blood that comes from a lineage of great Pirates".
"Barba Negra was my brother, mighty Pirate. I saw him last, one month before that sailor's story begun, and he was setting sail to where the Spanish merchant ships used to sail to Spain, loaded with gold. There was a Spanish galleon named "El Cano" sailing to Spain with its belly full of gold that was reported lost on that time.
My brother's ship was fast enough to outrun any Spanish Galleon, and he was a mighty salty Captain. But it's hard to outrun a ship when your cargo is heavy as…enough gold to cover our expenses for life, if not more…"
"We might have some trouble finding a treasure without any kind of map, yes…
But if that pirate is still on that island alive, we may have a chance…
Anyway, it's worth trying. Any complaints?"
We stood in silence. Our eyes shining bright. After all, who better than a Pirate to dream of lost treasures…and retrieving them?
Diary, December 20th.
We didn't expect a storm of this proportions…
25 feet waves and insane winds ravaged the ship for 2 consecutive days. And all we could do was hope the planks would resist.
On the second day, the ship begun to make water, and as we were getting closer to the island of the treasure, the rudder broke and the current washed us on the reefs.
In a few hours the waves torn our ship apart and it went down.
We managed to get a few bottles of rum and some barrels of dynamite, for the captain and his second guns in two rowing boats, but that was all we could save.
Barba Roja didn't get discouraged at all, He even said that it was a sign of good luck, that as almost the same story happened twice, the first time a treasure was hidden, the second it was to be retrieved.
He sent some men to scout the island and as they didn't come back he told us to stay that he personally was going to go after them.
It's been two hours now since he's gone.
We hope for the best he's fine...if the Sailor's story was correct, there is a Spanish camp somewhere, and Bournet…well, that's the French synonym for Pirate…we might have competition after all…