I was throbbing. Absolutely throbbing as a billion points of grain pressed into the exposed skin of my arm and face. Slowly the blinding light receded. It was replaced by a voice.
A gruff reeking voice. “Git up…eh…you git!”
“Halstead! retch’d derelict…up wit ya!”
I stirred. The sound of surf met my ears.
I raised myself up on an elbow as my eyes adjusted to the dimmer light of the sun.
“Dis right… up with ye, noaw..”
I stumbled up and immediately started to laugh.
“Who…who…who the hell are you?”
“Poor layd wuts that damned merchants sold to ya….”
“What…” I really couldn’t contain my laughter…”What the fuck are you wearing…”
“Ewd tink the crown ken clad us better…” Now the stranger was laughing with me.
I examined him. This had to be some kind of joke. Buckled shoes, some kinda capris, and an oversized tunic covered in thick cascades of unkempt ginger beard.
“Who the fuck are you man…seriously..jokes is good and all but where’s Danny?”
“Yir wits gon! Is no danny mong us nor in town. Ir! Trink dis…”
He shoved a dirty bottle of clear liquid in my hand. I smelled it. Seemed like water. I was painfully thirsty and my body hurt something fierce.
Who the hell was this guy. ‘Oh shit.’ I looked down and realized I wasn’t shirtless…and where the hell were my trunks. I had some kind of coarse tunic and bedraggled leggings that itched and oppressed with coarseness. The thought of being disrobed by the likes of this guy didn’t sit well with me.
All right I yelled standing fully upright. “That’s a great prank and all but really who the hell are you where’s Danny…why did ya leave me here at night…I coulda drown…”
Danny’s bearded cohort shook his head. “Mi lord but wut were in diz ween! Names Yost…remember..I pulled ew from the waves diz how thenk me ken no remember me…Yost..Van Yost ye trink addled boi. Rememver you your own name o?!”
Something about all those vowels. Van Yost…
“Gadverdamme…woke now r ya? Guid…Harris iz profound buzzi wit dayt geitenneuker Timurhan!”
“Powder iz secure…Kapeetan Deaf vaunted to teech lesson to you.”
“I may well have drowned! And the powder!”
“Iz safe you fool boy…dat Castillian dogs run off when we a fired…why you let em drunk ya?”
“I had to enter into a confidence…I did…get the key to Harris…I MAY WELL HAVE DROWNED! LEAVE ME PON THE SHORE!”
I launched with fists. But the old salt was strong and large. I hadn’t realized how tall he was till his long arm held me at bay like a tantrauming child.
“Noaw I say to forgit me title iz pardonable but what gratitude iz this ye soaked rat…shoulda left you to the sharks…” He spit on me.
More and more I recollected things. I apologized profusely.
“Well…allz well noaw but do no take evrey chance for poison..ye liar…INTO A CONFIDENCE…INTO A CONFIDENCE…klerelijer!
“You say the Turk has loosed his tongue?”
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