The Second Polarian War (Part 5) by Honest Patrick Hawkins
A talk with Catbeard
We arrived at Catbeard’s lair after shaking off all of our pursuers as planned. The captain and I had no idea what we had dragged ourselves into and frankly I think that even if the captain knew he would not have refused the offer anyway. We were thieves, pirates, and sometimes guns for hire we cannot be picky about who we work for or what we do. But even so, convincing Rodger of that little inconvenience has always been difficult. The captain however was not a foolish man, Barkley had often joked that he would have made a fine strategist and could have become an admiral if he were a citizen of Marleybone and well… a dog. John had made preparations if the mission had gone awry and even now he had taken precautions for every possible scenario that we might face. As we were approaching Catbeard’s ship I kept thinking about what the captain had said and what needed to be done if things went south here. As we started going aboard the ship I felt that there was something wrong and we were in way over our heads but I remained silent as before us now stood the mastermind of the mission and our employer, Catbeard.
“Ah, captain I knew I could count on you to execute my plan the way I envisioned it. You have truly done some magnificent work for me today.” Catbeard sounded as if he was the one who had done all the work.
“Your plan?” said Napoleguin enraged.
“Ah emperor Napoleguin how good to see you free and healthy again.” Said Catbeard as if he had not heard the remark.
“Don’t try to change the subject with me you overgrown hairball, that herring you were eating must have been quite rotten if you are having delusions of who the mastermind of this operation was.”
“At any rate everything went according to plan and now we can move on to the next step but first allow me to reward your liberators. Captain I’m so happy you’re alright, I knew that you were different from the other crews I’ve hired,” Catbeard seemed glad it was over too.
“Other crews?” I said slightly surprised.
“Yes it is very tragic but you are not the only crew that I’ve hired, Mustang Sally and her group got captured and another prominent pirate group got killed trying to free Napoleguin. But let us not dwell in the past, you came here to get your reward and thus you shall.”
Catbeard gave a wave to his men and a few minutes later they brought a large, heavy chest. When they opened it we could not believe what was inside, Golden relics filled with jewels, large and small. We could probably get a hefty price selling this to pirate lords, Marleybonian archeologists and Monquistan nobles all over Skull Island.
Before we could start to inspect the loot the captain kicked the lid of the chest so that it closed with a heavy bang. “Right seems the payment is not a problem now we just have one more matter to settle. It’s about time you told us why in the world you would want to free someone like Napoleguin. It’s time that you told us your entire plan.”
Catbeard looked like he had just heard a pauper speak to a king. “I have no obligation to tell you.”
“You do and you better believe it. If your plans are going to mess up the Spiral you can be sure it’s going to affect us as well. Roger and I already figured out that this will mean a war between Marleybone and the Armada but if you think we are startled by that you are wrong. It’s what comes afterwards that’s frightening and the fact that I can’t seem to understand what Napoleguin’s part in all this is.”
“And if I refuse to tell you?” Asked Catbeard curiously.
John smiled, “then there are plenty of reasons for us to stop you and just take the loot as a bonus.”
Immediately everyone in the crew was on high alert and ready to strike at any time. I myself was ready to strike down Napoleguin like the captain had told me to. An order I admit I would follow not entirely without pleasure. Catbeard seemed at a slight loss of words.
“Captain! Captain! A message from him,” suddenly one of Catbeard’s men barged onto the deck with an envelope in his hands.
Catbeard looked a bit at the envelope and then at the captain. “Depending on what’s in that envelope we may be able to settle this peacefully.”
The captain nodded. “Go ahead and read it quickly then.”
Catbeard read the letter carefully and seemed nervous while doing so.
“So he has been watching me after all, my my how naughty of him,” muttered Catbeard. “It seems that it is in my interest as well to tell you the whole story. Fine then I will tell you who is really pulling the strings. And believe it or not but this man plans to not only make Napoleguin emperor of Polaris as you might have guessed but he wants to make Napoleguin emperor of the Spiral!”
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