Invisible Paint Brushes rock Circulation: 117,249,079 Issue: 235 | 14th day of Eating, Y8
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Walk the Plank: Part Six

by puppy200010


"Hey! He's back!" A chorus of greetings rang out as Darkwing stepped into the Golden Dubloon. The waitress, who recognized him immediately, winked and brought him over to his own special table in the corner that he always sat at. A group of his pirate friends were already gathered there, having a round of grog. Darkwing ordered a mug for himself, then settled down and joined the conversation.

      "Arr, so where ye been? Haven't seen the likes o' ye fer months!"

      Darkwing quickly tried to come up with something to say. "Arr, well, I was... on th' ocean. Yes, arr... and then I took a side trip t' Mystery Island..."

      "To do pillaging?" asked one of his friends.

      "Yarr," Darkwing agreed, not wanting to go into more detail.

      "That be a great place t' do some pillaging, Darkwin'. All the huts are weakly guarded, and they never expect anything like us to come their way!" The whole table broke out in laughter.

      "Then what?"

      "Arr, well, I caught a ferry back here..."

      "Ferry?" one of the pirates asked. "Why not take yer own ship!" Inside, Darkwing grimaced. He hadn't meant to give away that detail.

      "Well, arr, I...I..."

      "Ah, I know! Ye didn't want t' bother controlling the ship!"

      "Yes, that's exactly it!"

      "Makes perfect sense," went a murmur around the table. The group finished their first round of grog and went onto their second. By now, the conversation focus had moved from Darkwing's recent whereabouts to pirating stories from the others. Darkwing tried to join in and not look suspicious.

      Once they had all had their fill of grog, the pirates began to leave. One pirate stopped Darkwing as he was heading towards the door. "I know the true story," he said smugly, crossing his arms across his chest.

      Darkwing gulped. "Arr... do?"

      "Yes. I did 'appen to see yer ship bein' sailed by some Pteri a few days ago." The pirate noticed the obvious panic on Darkwing's face. "Arr, don't worry. I won't be tellin' no one 'bout it. Just thought I'd let ye know."

      "Tell me where ye last saw me ship," demanded Darkwing.

      "Arr, I last saw it over by the island's north coast. But that be days ago. I've got no idea where it might be now."

      "Thank ye!" shouted Darkwing as he ran out the door, headed towards the coast.

      Across the island he ran as fast as his legs would carry him. Many pirates stopped to stare at him in suspicion, wondering where a pirate such as him could be going at such a speed. Darkwing was moving too quickly to even notice that they were looking at him. He just kept going. After at least a half hour of his fastest running, Darkwing arrived, panting, at the opposite end of the island. Not to his complete shock, he didn't see his ship anywhere. He did, however, see many pets wandering around the dock. An old Eyrie with a bandana and eye patch over one eye was sitting on one of the docking posts, whittling a small piece of wood into a Blumaroo.

      "Arr," said the pirate, pausing slightly from his whittling to look up at the Pirate Scorchio, who was still gasping from running. "Ye be lookin' fer somethin' on this fine spring afternoon?"

      Because he was still out of breath from running, he nodded. Between gasps of air, he said, "My...ship is...missing and I'm to find it."

      "Aye. Which ship would ye be lookin' for?"

      "The S.S. Golden Dubloon." Darkwing described the ship in full and precise detail.

      The other pirate slowly nodded and looked out to sea. "Arr. That ship left this dock just the other day. Ye might be able to catch it if ye got another ship and sailed quickly."

      "Any idea where it mighta been headed?"

      "Aye." The other pirate lowered his voice and moved his head closer to Darkwing's ear. "I overheard a li'l conversation among them pirates... They be headed out to a little island off the coast..."

      Darkwing's eyes widened. He knew exactly where they were going! He gave a nod of thanks to the pirate perched on the post and ran down the dock. There was a friend's rowboat docked there. It wasn't the best vessel to take out on the open sea, but it'd have to do. It was all he had. He quickly untied the boat, thinking nothing about bringing supplies with him. Using all his strength, he pushed off from the dock and started rowing out to sea.

      The water was surprisingly calm that day. Due to this fact, Darkwing made great progress on his rowing. After two long hours of rowing, his arms felt sore enough to fall off, so he took a break. This wind was blowing gently, so it gave him a very slight push over the water. As the sun started to set, Darkwing's stomach rumbled. In his rush off the dock, he hadn't even grabbed a sharp stick to use to fish for food. As the day crept into evening, Darkwing carefully slid onto his back to try to sleep. He hoped large waves wouldn't come along during the night to turn the small boat over. In the back of his mind, he couldn't help but expect that it would happen. So much bad luck had already plagued him.

      The next day dragged by sluggishly. Darkwing felt too weak to row for most of the day, and there was nothing to do out on the ocean. To attempt to end his boredom, he decided to start counting the number of nails in the bottom of the boat. Needless to say, it didn't entertain him much or for very long. At his most bored points he'd start rowing again, tired as he was. A second night started to fall, and Darkwing was still making feeble and useless strokes with the boat paddles. He was so weary that he wanted to quit paddling for the night to sleep, but he knew that he had to keep going. If he kept going at this slow pace, he'd never make it to the island! He'd starve on the open ocean, alone. So, he kept paddling...and paddling...and padd-Zzzzzz....


      Darkwing jolted awake as he felt the boat strike something. What was it? Was it land? He stared in awe at the object he had bumped into. It was his very own ship. He pulled himself into an upright position. His nap of several hours hadn't helped to replenish him very much. It took all his strength to quietly pull himself up the side of the ship. After what felt hours of strenuous climbing, he loudly collapsed onto the deck of the ship. It was lucky that the rest of the ship was asleep, because Darkwing couldn't move another muscle. Unfortunately for him, it appeared that he would indeed need to move, because the Pteri was climbing up to the deck of the ship at that very moment.

      "Decided to come back, did ye?" The Pteri leaned over and spit in Darkwing's face. "I could throw ye back t' the sharks, but I got a better use for ye." Two of Darkwing's old crew members carelessly and roughly picked him up and carried him down to the brig in the very bottom of the boat. Even though Darkwing's boat had always had the brig in the bottom, he prided himself in the fact that he had never used it before, not even once. He would be the first one to use his own brig.

      Normally Darkwing would have tried to fight off his own crew members if they were carrying him somewhere against his will. In normal situations, he also would have kicked against anyone who attempted to chain him to the walls of his ship. However, in his dire state, he was nearly unable to move. He could barely think or feel anything at this point.

      Lazily he glanced around the room. He quickly realized that he had never even seen the inside of the brig before. What a way to see it now, when he was being imprisoned! It was completely dark in the room, the only light coming from the dim candles held by the Pteri and Darkwing's old crew. There was an old, rotting bench chained and nailed to the nearby wall. The floors were nearly the same, and they smelled like exactly like the rotting driftwood Darkwing had found floating on dank swamps in the past. Several sets of rusting chains were bolted to the walls. Upon being chained with one of these sets, the other pets stood and stared silently at him for a moment before leaving.

      "That oughta teach ye not t' try t' steal this ship back," cackled the Pteri as he started waddling back out of the brig. That was the last thing Darkwing saw before he drifted off into a much needed sleep and sunk into the blackness of a dream.

To be continued...

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Other Episodes

» Walk the Plank: Part One
» Walk the Plank: Part Two
» Walk the Plank: Part Three
» Walk the Plank: Part Four
» Walk the Plank: Part Five
» Walk the Plank: Part Seven

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