The King and Us ~ Chapter 1

Okay! To cover my heiny I’d like to say that I borrowed some characters from Haim Saban’s “Power Rangers” series. Other than that this is an original story which I wrote primarily for my own personal enjoyment. I would like to thank Falconfyre for putting the idea in my head, and Gilbert & Sullivan for writing the wonderful operetta “Pirates of Penzance” which served as inspiration, among other things. I also want to thank the rest of the Oliverettes (and Oliverettos) for their contributions, whether they are aware of them or not.

Tommy quietly made his way up the steps from below deck. He couldn’t believe he had managed to wriggle himself free from between his friends, Kimberly and Katherine, without waking either of them. He straightened his disheveled clothing and looked toward the sunrise. Wow, he thought, always amazed at the beauty of Mother Nature’s work. The eastern horizon was alit with coral and lilac, as the sun peeked up to check its reflection on the sea. He closed his eyes to savor its warmth, and smiled as the wind’s fingers gently ran across his face and through his hair.

“Good morning to you, Thomas.”

“Jules! Good morning!”Tommy blurted out, feeling somewhat embarrassed for having been caught enjoying such a peaceful moment. “I wasn’t aware that there were others awake.” Tommy nodded towards the rest of their shipmates, who were scattered about the ship’s deck, still sleeping off last night’s festivities as well as several barrels of rum and ale.

“Well someone has to pilot this ship,” Jules chuckled. “Besides, I was so excited about you being out of your indentures today I could hardly sleep.”

“I guess it’s a good thing, then, that you made me your apprentice,” he smiled, smartly. Jules returned the smug smile. It had been eleven years since she took him under her wing. She had found him floating in a dinghy at sea, along with his two friends. According to Thomas, their families had been traveling across the Atlantic to Boston, when the ship was attacked by another, far more ruthless, band of pirates. The three of them had been playfully hiding from the adults at the time of the pillaging, not realizing what was really going on… until Thomas suggested they hide in one of the life boats. That’s when the trio discovered their parents being brutally murdered along with the other passengers. Somehow they managed to slip into the small boat and cast off without the heathens ever knowing they were on board. None of the distraught children could remember exactly how long they had been alone at sea before the Pirate Queen and her court happened upon them. Jules took pity on them, having been horrifically orphaned herself, and offered them a life aboard the ship as her apprentices. Thomas quickly proved to be piratical material, but the girls were a big disappointment. They wanted to be foo-foo frilly, taking their cues from the occasional well-to-do female hostage. It disgusted Jules. Yet, as out of place as they seemed, Katherine and Kimberly refused to leave the band.

“Happy birthday, Thomas!” cried Katherine as she popped up from below, followed closely behind by Kimberly. She threw herself onto Tommy and squeezed him tight. Kimberly roughly nudged Katherine so that she, too, could hug him.

“Happy Birthday from me, too!” added Kimberly. “Here Thomas, I got this from the countess we held for ransom while we were anchored near Spain. I thought you might like it.” Kimberly handed Tommy a black velvet ribbon. “You’re always complaining about your hair being in your face.” She glanced wickedly over at Katherine.

“Thanks, Kimberly,” Tommy replied as he tied his hair back with the ribbon.

“Well I have a vest for you, it’s just not finished,” Katherine responded sharply, waiting for Tommy’s approval.

“You do not!” mouthed Kimberly from behind Tommy, where she was adjusting his gift.

Jules rolled her eyes. As much as they annoyed her, she could plainly see that Thomas was content to have them around. Very content.


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