AUTHOR'S NOTE: Been working on this idea for a collection of kids' books about a Captain Drake character. The idea is simple... I have a wee lad, as most of you know, who is almost one and a half years old and I got to thinking it would be cool to tell some stories and have my brother draw up some illustrations for it. Thought it might be a cool thing for the kid to have. His middle name is Drake, thus the name Captain Drake. This is the start of my first attempt at one of these stories. Let me know what you think.
They were all staring at the wall, the place where the sword had once hung left a faded shape of its blade and hilt on the wall. Drake was standing next to his father, who was a blacksmith. He watched Marcus, the curator of the museum, who was sitting next to the empty wall—he was talking and crying and screaming and very, very emotional in general.
“It was right there last night.” He sobbed, “It was right there on that wall, right where it always is and this morning it was gone. I didn’t hear a thing, not a sound! Won’t someone do something? Won’t someone do anything? Don’t just stand there—Commodore?”
“Yes, Marcus,” the Commodore responded, “I hear you, we all hear you.” The Commodore was the local officer of the law and his age determined his ability and speed to get things done. He turned and looked at Drake’s father, “Well, Gabriel, I would be much obliged.”
Gabriel sighed and rubbed the scruff on his face with one hand, “Yeah, yeah… I know.”
“Is anybody listening?” Marcus jumped in with more whining and moaning, “I think it was that stranger who came through town yesterday, he came in and looked at the sword and stared at it for a long, long time. I thought he was an odd duck; but he must have been planning to steal it all along. And he must’ve waited until I went to bed to do it.”
“Probably.” Gabriel sighed.
“Well, what are you going to do about it, then?”
“I reckon I’ll find the thief.”
“And the sword?”
“And the sword.”
Back home, Drake couldn’t take the suspense any longer and just had to ask, “Why would anybody steal that stupid, old sword?” He was hoping to get some wild and crazy story out of it, something fantastic. His father didn’t disappoint,
“That sword isn’t just any old sword, son. It’s the sword of Pergamos. It’s a double-edged blade that can slice no matter which way you swing it, and it was forged by Pergamos. Pergamos, back in the day, was an immortal. But then he ticked off the wrong immortals and Nicolaitane, the god of the rains, cast a great flood on Pergamos’ domain. Pergamos was swallowed up by the flood of Nicolaitane, and when the rains ceased and the waters subsided all that was left of Pergamos was his sword.”
“That doesn’t make any sense,” Drake complained, “If he was immortal, how did he die?”
“Even immortals have their breaking points, son.” Gabriel wrapped his belt, sheath and sword around his waist and fastened the weapon at his side. “Now mind your mother while I’m gone.”
“Dad, I wanna come.”
“I’m old enough, I’m 14.”
Gabriel sighed and looked to his wife for aid, but she just smiled at him and remarked, “He is 14.”
Gabriel had once been a captain for her majesty’s navy, but when he refused to assassinate Captain Blackwater the Queen’s ego was bruised and she quickly discharged him. Blackwater was an Admiral turned pirate and was greatly plundering her majesty’s exports and imports, thus making trade very expensive business. Her resolve to have Blackwater murdered for his crimes did not change after Gabriel was discharged, she found a young and eager captain to replace Drake’s father and fulfill the duty he wasn’t willing to submit to.
With Gabriel’s naval experience, it made him a perfect candidate for the Commodore to ask for help from. Whenever the Commodore knew he couldn’t accomplish a deed for the good of the village, he turned to Gabriel and leaned on his expertise. Not only was Gabriel good with a ship, he was good with a sword. And he was raising Drake by the sword as well, but Drake had much to learn about combat. As their small vessel sailed across the White Sea, Gabriel took the time to teach his son a few things about combat.
“The one thing you have yet to master, my son, is your anger.” Gabriel stood on the deck of the ship, unsheathed his sword and stood tall. He pulled his legs together and took a bow towards Drake. As he came upright again, he continued his lesson. “Respect yourself, by minding yourself. Respect your opponent, by not letting him deter your master of control. And always attack when calm. The calm is your serenity and allows you the sight you will need to focus in on the end result. The cunning swordsman does not win by brutality and force, but by precision, accuracy and discipline.”