Samson, the Pirate Lupe: Lost Memories - Part Two
The rain cleared up shortly before the break of dawn and the pirates began looting as soon as they had gagged and locked the normal crew in one of the holds.
A trove of treasure was emptied from the ship’s hold. Jewellery, dubloons and a king’s ransom of neopoints was taken back to the S.M. along with some extra food, cannons and weapons.
Samson ran up to the wheel to congratulate Lt. Darius for his victory, but the Lieutenant was nowhere to be seen. After a moment’s search, Samson found him sitting on a crate in a darker, less busy corner of the ship. Hs eye was clenched shut in pain and his left hoof was slowly pushing a stained cloth up against his wounded right side. His and his enemy’s sword lay side by side on the ground.
“Lieutenant!” shouted Samson in shock. Darius opened his hazed eye.
“You fought well today, Swiftpaw,” he said slowly.
“Sir? Are you hurt badly?”
“It's only a flesh wound. The... The enemy was not that fast.” He smiled, coughing slightly. “I think it's time I got back onto the ship and introduced you to the... the Captain. Lend me a paw.”
Samson was quick to react, bending first to pick up the swords and then moving on all fours to Lt. Darius’s side. The Uni sucked in a breath before closing his jacket to keep the cloth close to the wound and rising from the crate. He gasped and stumbled, but Samson kept him supported, being careful not to nudge the wound.
“Maybe it’s a bit more serious than I thought,” Darius rasped as Samson helped him limp back across the bridge set between the ships. They met with a panicked Lt. Draco standing by, ready to help.
“Lieutenant? Why do you look so frightened? I’m not dead,” chuckled Darius.
“No, no. It's my Granddaughter,” he huffed, jogging to his friend’s side.
“Hailey!” Samson shouted in dismay. He had completely forgotten about her. “Where is she? What happened?”
“She’s over there!” snapped Draco, pointing at the large blasting hole in the ship’s side. It looked like a monster with a fiery maw had bitten into it. Above the hole stood a striped Kyrii with a bag of tools and medicine watching a red Lutari and Minnie, the Mynci from before, carry the electric Draik out on a stretcher.
Hailey looked worse for wear. Her body was blackened by soot and she seemed to giggle slightly, trying to force herself back up insisting that she was just fine in a sort of slurred voice. One arm was wrapped and in a sling while one wing was battered and wrapped in another bandage with a wooden splint holding it up. Her scales were scuffed and ruffled
Hailey laughed as the Kyrii pushed her back onto the stretcher and stuck up her thumb as she saw Samson approach. She was taken away before the Lupe could reach her.
“She’ll be alright, Sir,” said the Kyrii, seeing Samson’s concerned expression. “It looks much worse than it is.”
“What happened?” rasped Lt. Darius as he limped over with Lt. Draco.
“Cannon ball, Sir. She’s lucky to be alive. It must have blown her to the other end of the ship.”
“I heard a scream... and an explosion,” whispered Samson. “I had no idea... I’m sorry...”
“Don’t blame yourself, Swiftpaw. No one could have assume- Aaah!” Lt. Darius cried out and collapsed on the ground, clutching his wound.
“Lt. Darius!” shouted the Kyrii. “You should have said something! Let me see that!”
She brought forward her medicine bag and pulled back the Uni’s jacket, removing the darkened cloth. She cringed.
“It’s a nasty one.” She sighed. “And it will become infected if I don’t get him down to the infirmary. Minnie! Fox! Slider! Help Lt. Darius to the sick bay!”
The Maraquan Mynci, the red Lutari and a Mutant Krawk came and took Lt. Darius, who let out a hiss of pain.
Lt. Draco grunted. “Samson Swiftpaw, may I introduce Matron Cardinal. She’s the one who nursed you back to health.”
“Please!” Cardinal scoffed. “It was only a fever. Easily cured. But it’s a miracle that you survived such a long swim. You were in the middle of the ocean when we found you.”
“It’s a pleasure to meet you, Matron Cardinal,” said Samson, bowing.
“Likewise, Sir,” she replied, bowing. She followed the shipmates down into the ship.
Lt. Draco slapped his hand on Samson’s back. “Well, Swiftpaw. Lt. Darius was going to introduce you to the Captain, but, as he’s indisposed, I’m going to have to do it myself.”
Samson’s heart pounded in his chest. He never knew he could be so nervous. They went through a black painted door into a very short hallway that had two doors either side. Draco pointed to the various ones.
“To your left are my quarters and Darius’s. Then, on the right are Commander Darkwing’s and the Captain’s chambers.”
“And I... I’m guessing straight ahead is the... the... the-?”
“Captain's meeting room? Aye, it is. Don’t be so nervous, Swiftpaw. Captain Silverfang doesn’t bite... normally,” he added slyly.
‘Great,’ Samson thought. ‘Now I feel much better.’
Draco rapped his paw on the door.
“Come in,” growled a voice.
“Its Lt. Draco, Sir. I’ve come to introduce our new shipmate.”
They entered a room that was painted silver and had many ornamental weapons hung upon the walls. A large table sat in the center in front of a row of tall windows viewing the sun rising over the sea.
Inside, Commander Medallion Darkwing stood proudly in the corner. He was a large Eyrie with a dark black main and grey fur. His large wings were folded and he stared at Samson with keen yellow eyes.
At the back of the table sat a distinguished Kougra with his paws folded and placed under his chin. His fur was a mist grey with coal black stripes and was flecked with streaks of silver. He wore a night black Captain’s hat that was rimmed with silver thread and his navy blue blazer was lined with gold like Darius’s, but wasn’t torn or battered. His long tail flipped side to side in interest as he stared at the newcomer with cool, sapphire eyes, the right with a single, distinctive scar running from his forehead to his cheek. The Lieutenants were right. They were indescribable. Each was like a glowing planet and carried all the knowledge of the oceans and beyond. They seemed to peer into Samson’s soul and drift through the corners of his mind. They pierced like spears into his eyes creating an unbreakable bond. Samson felt as if he was caught in a trap. He flinched slightly and Captain Tactrick Silverfang half-smiled.
“Thank you, Lieutenant. You may go. Be with your Granddaughter and friend.” The Kougra waved the neopet away with a flick of his paw.
The Draik bowed. “Yes, Captain and thank you, Captain.” Lt. Draco patted Samson on the shoulder for good luck and left. He slammed the door, making the Lupe jump.
“You too may leave us, Commander,” said Silverfang.
“Are you sure that’s wise, Sir?”
“You may leave.” The air in the room seemed to get significantly cooler as he said it. The Eyrie nodded reluctantly and left, slamming the door. Samson jumped again.
“Welcome to my ship, Samson Swiftpaw,” said the Captain.
“Th... Th... Thank you, Captain,” stammered Samson. “Thank you for bringing me aboard.” The Kougra waved his paw and shook his head.
“We had no choice, boy. You would have surely died if young Miss Hailey hadn’t spotted you when she did. Besides, we needed another ship hand. A storm was coming in and you certainly proved yourself. Are you now well?”
“Yes, Sir. I am.”
Silverfang nodded. He rose stiffly and padded on two legs to a large cabinet of books. First, Samson noticed how tall and ferocious he looked and then he noticed a deep and painful looking scar that ripped across his right knee.
“A battle wound from long ago,” said the Captain. Samson jumped. The Kougra wasn’t even looking at him and yet he could tell that the Lupe was staring at his wound. “Don’t worry. It rarely bothers me.”
He sat back down and flipped through the pages of a large, leather bound book.
“Now, Samson Swiftpaw. How much experience do you have aboard a ship?”
The Lupe thought for a moment and stalled.
“Do you have any experience at all?”
“I... I think I do, but I can’t seem to remember anything beyond my name and swimming in the ocean.”
Captain Silverfang raised an eyebrow and took out a feather pen.
“Well then, Mr. Swiftpaw. You will have to be on the ship's average crew list until you can remember. You did seem good at sword fighting. Are you sure you're not a soldier?”
Samson stood there with his mouth open, trying to remember. Why couldn’t he remember? “I... I don’t know, Sir.”
Silverfang sighed. “I guess that fever hit you harder than we thought. You have some sort of selective amnesia. You’re going to have to be working with the shipmates. Don’t worry. They will teach you all you need to know.” He flipped the book to face him and handed him the pen. “Sign here.”
Samson looked at the book and then at the pen. He knew he had to do something with it, but... He pondered for a moment.
The Lupe looked up.
“Can you write?” Samson looked at the pen and frowned.
“I think I do... I just...” Tears began to well up in his eyes. “I don’t know...” Silverfang nodded in sympathy.
“Look here. How about I write your name and you make an ‘X’ next to it?”
Samson nodded and quickly collected himself. “Thank you, Sir.”
To be continued...