Translator: EndlessFantasy Translation Editor: EndlessFantasy Translation
Zhang Heng could hear the thunderous boom of cannons after he left the Queen Anne’s Revenge. Charleston was bathed in bright flames.
When he saw that, Zhang Heng knew that Orff’s and Teach’s plan for revenge had begun. Everything that happened after that had nothing to do with him. His life on the Queen Anne’s Revenge was finally over. After tonight, Teach, and the Queen Anne’s Revenge would disappear for some time. Zhang Heng would only meet them again four years later, but that’s a story for another time.
All 16 people on the ship made use of what little time that they had and picked a helmsman.
“I just took scanned our surroundings just now. Around twenty boats are docked by the harbor right now. Between them, there are twelve small boats, eight medium boats, and two big boats. They are basically empty right now. It should be an easy task for us to snatch them.”
Charleston and Nassau were at least hundreds of kilometers apart. It would be impossible for them to sail all the way to Nassau with the tiny vessels that they were on right now. Besides, a golden opportunity had presented itself right before them. While the Queen Anne’s Revenge was drawing the attention of the enemies, it would be the best time for them to hijack those boats.
“You guys should have made your choices by now, right?”
Zhang Heng took a look around and knew that the group of people with him would become his crew later on. Owen was right. It was a fact that these were the most experienced group of pirates the Queen Anne’s Revenge had seen.
They were extremely skillful and had years of experience between them. Most importantly, they had a squeaky clean background. They neither belonged to Orff nor Frazer. If Zhang Heng did not step in, they would have indeed met a horrible ending since the powerful people on the ship were trying to fight for the throne.
Billy and the rest of the old pirates took a look around. There was excitement in the air.
“The Royal Navy has a corvette here. It’s a medium-sized vessel equipped with around 30 cannons. Although this corvette is similar to the Sea Lion, it’s definitely more powerful. She should sail a lot faster, as well. Right now, we are powerful enough to take her and sail back to Nassau. We just need to recruit more people from Nassau, and we should be good to set sail,” said Billy.
“Actually the Queen Anne’s Revenge is not suitable for raiding other boats. She’s too big, and will surely be slower than the others. Besides, she would need a huge crew of pirates to manage her. Of course, if they only targeted merchant ships, they would not need all that crazy firepower. Everyone would eventually receive a minimal amount of loot each time since there are so many pirates on board. And it’s not exactly easy to hide this massive battleship as well,” lamented an old pirate.
“Let’s not wait anymore. Let’s do it,” said Zhang Heng.
Fifteen minutes later, 17 of them climbed up the corvette using a rope. Since the ship wasn’t assigned anywhere, only a total of 10 navy officers guarded the ship. Zhang Heng ambushed them, tied them up, and stowed them into one of the tiny boats that they were in before.
After that, all started to work in unison to release the mainsail and to cast-off the anchor. Suddenly, they saw two boats filled with navy personnel rowing towards them as fast they could.
However, it was all too late.
As the wind began catching the sails, the corvette started to budge slowly. Zhang Heng stood on the bow of the vessel, leading his people. He had no intention to interfere with the Queen Anne’s Revenge’s battle. Soon, Zhang Heng was already leading the corvette far away from the enemies. The moment the corvette left the harbor, everyone on board erupted into a mighty cheer.
“I just did a quick check. The food and water on board are more than enough for us. At this speed, I think we should be able to reach Nassau sooner than expected. Captain, the only thing you need to do right now is to name the ship,” said Billy.
Without him realizing it, it had been a year since Zhang Heng entered this world. Throughout this period, Zhang Heng had tried his best to blend into his surroundings. He ate, slept, and fought alongside pirates the entire time and even invested a lot of effort to learn different skills from them. Still, he did not forget his origins.
“I shall christen her the Jackdaw!”
None of them understood the meaning behind the name, thinking that Zhang Heng must have chosen it because it sounded catchy. Hence, no one was against it.
Zhang Heng gazed to the stars glittering in the sky above him, and said, “Now, let’s go home.”
Anne was now in a dormant state. When Zhang Heng was in the house, she could at least talk to him about her life. Once he was gone, she had no one to talk to. Before she met him, she would go around the island, roughing up those who offended her. Ever since he promised her that he would let her join his crew, Anne pledged that she would learn how to control her anger. Undeniably, she had plenty of flaws, but breaking promises was not one of them. When Zhang Heng was not home, she tried to stay indoors as much as possible. Still, trouble came looking for her.
One day, while Anne lay on the bench enjoying the morning sunlight, someone she loathed came looking for her.
“So, have you thought about it? We can go to Massachusetts. I have an uncle over there, and he is in the tobacco farming business. He can help us to settle down. He promised me that he would grant me a stable job. The money I earn should be enough for us to live a comfortable life in the New World. We do not have to worry about food and shelter anymore.”
Anne merely stared at him with no response.
“You need to accept reality, Anne. You have been here for more than a year, and no ships would take you in. Being a pirate is no joke. You should be grateful that I wasn’t mad at you for what happened last time. My promise is still valid. Just marry me, and I will forget everything that you’ve done to me.”
“James, just save it. From Ireland to Nassau, whose money did you use, huh? We sold all our silverware just to fund our journey. I didn’t expect that you would kick me away like a ball the moment we arrived in Nassau. Since you want to settle the score, let’s count from the beginning then!”
Seeing that Anne started responding to him, James was elated.
“We did agree that we would settle the score once we got off the ship. Don’t forget that you’ve agreed to it as well. I even let you stay and eat at no cost for half a year. You promised me that you would return me the money once you become a pirate. It seems like that won’t come to pass now.”
Anne became extremely agitated. It wasn’t the first time they had this conversation. If not for Anne being stronger than James, he would have sexually assaulted her a long time ago. Just when Anne was considering breaking the rules and beating him up, a kid shouted at her from afar.
“Boss Anne! Boss Anne! There is a new pirate ship approaching Nassau. It’s a navy battleship! Our fortress defender and the cannoneer, Honig was shocked when he saw it. Luckily, the battleship raised their black flag right before we attacked them!”
“Huh? Another battleship? These new pirates are getting bolder and bolder!”
Anne recognized the kid. After defeating him a few times, he was determined to address her as his boss. He was running barefooted with a forehead dripping with sweat, and appeared to be in a great rush.
“Their captain asks me to inform the crew to gather at the dock.”
“Go ahead then. Why are you here?”
“I was freaked out by it too, but there’s only one Anne with red hair on this island.”