“I suppose you
want a bedtime story tonight?” Mac glanced at Ian, who sat scratching his
“Only if you want
to, Mac.” Ian’s bottom lip pouted.
“Don’t give me
that face, Ian. I’m rather fond of telling you stories each night now.
I’ve got a good one for tonight. Get yourself comfy and I’ll begin.” Mac
found a comfortable place and leaned his back against the tree. “My sixth
great grandfather was a pirate. I’m not sure if I ever told you about him
“His name was
Patches. He sailed the seven seas with a gang of cutthroat pirates, the
meanest, ugliest bunch of pirates the world ever knew. The captain of the
ship, The Forest Zephyr, was known as Captain Whiskers. Captain Whiskers
didn’t take much of a liking to Patches. Not very often were raccoons
allowed on ships, but because Patches was so ugly and so mean and cussed
so much, Captain Whiskers allowed him to work in the crow’s nest. Each
morning he’d climb the mast to the top and watch out for other pirate
ships. One day Patches saw another ship coming their direction. He called
down to Captain Whiskers. The skull and crossbones flag was raised and the
pirates got ready for battle.
Being up in the
crow’s nest isn’t very safe. If a cannonball hits the mast and it falls,
whoever is in the crow’s nest goes tumbling into the sea. That’s just what
happened. It was a Scottish war ship on its way to battle. The last thing
it needed was a pirate ship in their way; so they shot their cannon and
vroom, whap, shoosh; cannonballs went flying everywhere, whizzing past
Patches. He crouched, keeping low. Suddenly a cannonball hit the mast.
Crackle, crunch, break! There went the mast. It broke in half and the top
part fell sideways. Patches clung to the crow’s nest as it sailed over the
deck. He landed in the sea. The waves pounded over him. He held onto the
mast and the current carried him to an island.
With only two
masts, the pirate ship had no choice but to try to escape. The wind blew
the sails and soon the ship anchored off shore of an island; the same
island Patches was on. When Patches saw the ship, he ran down to the
beach. Captain Whiskers was furious. They couldn’t leave this deserted
island until they’d fixed a new mast. He ordered his crew to cut down a
tree and make a mast. While the crew worked, Captain Whiskers made Patches
dig a deep hole in the sand so he could bury his treasure.”
You never mentioned treasure before,” Ian said.
another ship earlier, a few days before and were on their way to bury it
somewhere when they were attacked by the Scottish Navy.”
“Oh. That explains
it. Go on.” Ian yawned.
“Patches dug in
the sand until his back ached. His fur was coated with granules and he
could hardly lift the shovel. Captain Whiskers walked over to the hole,
grabbed Patches by the back of his neck and flung him across the sand. He
dropped his chest of gold and jewels into the hole and then told Patches
to bury it. Patches was so tired. He shoveled sand on top of the chest
until it was covered. He was so tired that he lay down and snoozed. When
he woke up, the ship was gone. They’d abandoned him. Patches found a
coconut palm and filled up on coconut milk and meat and then he felt
better. Since Captain Whiskered had taken the shovel when he sailed away,
Patches dug up the treasure with his hands and pulled out the chest of
jewels onto the sand. He opened it and his eyes bulged when he saw how
much there was. He dragged the chest behind a tree and then wandered off
to see how big the island was. Well, it turns out it wasn’t an island
after all. There was a village not far off on the other side. Patches ran
down to the chest and took out a few jewels and gold coins. He ran to the
village and found the bakery. He bought every kind of pastry and pie he
could and then sat behind the shop and ate it all. Each day he took some
of the jewels and gold and bought food. One day he bought meat pies and
sausage rolls. Another day he bought gammon steak and steak and kidney
later Captain Whiskers came back to dig up his treasure. He saw the hole
and no chest. He was in a rage. He stomped back to his ship and sailed
off. As for Patches, he bought himself a nice home and never went without
“Is that a true
“Argh, matey, ye
land lubber. How dare ye doubt me.” Mac snarled at his friend.
Ian shrugged his
shoulders and then closed his eyes.
Mac snickered and
then reached into a hole in the tree and pulled out a ruby. “Aye, Ian,