The Quest of the 'Golden Hope'

The Quest of the 'Golden Hope'

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Excerpt: ...we lay under a heavy fire from all the vessels. Evidently the buccaneers did not wish to sink us, for they directed their fire principally at our spars and cordage. Once we were captured they would remove our stores and other valuable gear, and scuttle the ships, so as to leave no trace of their fiendish handiwork. Such has been the fate of many unfortunate merchantmen in West Indian waters, with hardly a fragment left afloat to tell the tale. "Stand to it, my lads," shouted Captain Jeremy encouragingly. "Spars can be replaced and cordage refitted. They'll get tired of that game ere long. Lie down, all of you." It was indeed a trying ordeal. We had already lost our foreyard, which had tumbled down across the fo'c'sle, bringing with it a litter of ropes, blocks, and torn canvas. Our spritsail yard, broken in two places, dangled from the bowsprit; while our mainmast was splintered from the futtock-shrouds to within ten feet of the deck. Several shots had torn gaping holes in our sides, and as a result four more dead men lay on our decks, while nearly a dozen badly wounded were carried below. Nor was our consort in a better plight. Her fore topmast had been shot away early in the cannonade, her poop lanterns and part of the taffrail had disappeared, and several ominous dark holes were visible in her bulging yellow sides. "How much longer are we to stand this?" asked Touchstone, as he bound his wrist with a kerchief. "Patience, man, patience!" was Captain Jeremy's only reply, as he calmly surveyed the scene of destruction--the blood-stained deck littered with the prone figures of seamen, whether they were dead, or wounded, or unhurt; and the tangle of shattered spars and cordage--and the smoke-enshrouded outlines of our ferocious attackers. Ever and anon a shrill cry of pain or an exclamation of rage would be heard, as a mass of timber dislodged from aloft came hurtling through the air and struck some unfortunate man crouching near the guns; and...
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Product details

  • Paperback
  • 189 x 246 x 3mm | 122g
  • United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 1236714636
  • 9781236714633