Her uncle would not darken Kate’s bright hopes, ill-founded though he thought them. To look into those sparkling eyes again was a joy of which he would not deprive himself, if he could help it.
“Suppose he should capture our vessel,” she exclaimed; “what a grand thing it would be for him, all unknowing, to spring upon our deck and instantly be captured by me. After that, there would be no more pirate’s life for him!”
When Dame Charter heard what had happened at the Governor’s house and had listened to the recital of Kate’s glowing schemes, her eyes did not immediately glisten with joy.
“If you go, Mistress Kate,” said she, “in search of your father or that wicked Captain Vince, I go with you, but I cannot go without my Dickory. It is full time to expect his return, although, as he was to depend upon so many chances before he could come back, his absence may, with good reason, continue longer, and I could not have him come back and find his mother gone, no man knows where. For in such a quest, what man could know?”
“Oh, Dickory will be here soon!” cried Kate; “any ship which comes sailing towards the harbour may bring him.”
The Governor of Jamaica was a man of great experience, and with a fairly clear insight into the ways of the wicked. When Kate and her uncle had left him and he paced the floor, with the memory of the beautiful eyes of the pirate’s daughter as they had been uplifted to his own, he felt assured that he could see rightly into the designs of the unscrupulous Captain Vince. Of what avail would it be for him to kill the father of the girl who had rejected him? It would be an atrocious but temporary triumph scarcely to be considered. But to capture that father; to disregard the laws of the service and the orders of his superiors, which he had already proposed to do; to communicate with Kate and to hold up before her terror-stricken eyes the life of her father, to be ended in horror or enjoyed in peace as she might decide—that would be Vince, as the Governor knew him.
The Governor knew well his man, and those were the designs and intentions of Captain Christopher Vince of his Majesty’s corvette the Badger.
A QUESTION OF ETIQUETTE
Proudly sailed the Revenge and her attendant bark into the waters of Honduras Gulf, and proudly stood Captain Stede Bonnet upon his quarter-deck, dressed in a handsome uniform which might have been that of a captain or admiral in the royal navy; one hand caressed his ornate sword-hilt, while the other was thrust into the bosom of his gilt-embroidered coat. A newly fashioned Jolly Roger, in which the background was very black and the skull and cross-bones ghastly white, flew from his masthead.