• Jack Aubrey is seated in the Governor's House listening to Italian musicians.
• He greatly enjoys the music and even attempts to tap out the beat of the songs.
• Next to him is Dr. Stephen Maturin, who is also enjoying the music greatly, but not the way Jack taps out the beat.
• Jack is offended by Maturin and the comments he makes to him about his enjoyment of the music.
• After the music, Jack catches the harpist's eye, who is Molly Harte, the Commandant's wife.
• Jack then turns to Maturin and tells him he is staying at the Crown, while Maturin tells Jack he can find him most any morning at Joselito's coffeehouse.
• Jack returns to the Crown hotel where he is delivered a sealed letter telling him of his first command as Captain of the Sophie.
• The Sophie's previous captain had recently died.
• The next day, Jack...
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