Catching up on these! Day 6.
First day aboard ship, and Jack was only twelve. “A right Jack tar,” the bosun said with a leering grin. He seemed so pleased with his own joke that Jack felt he had to laugh along, but he there was something about the bosun’s eyes that made him nervous.
They put to sea with so much commotion that Jack didn’t know where to put himself half the time. He rushed about, pulling ropes and making knots as he was instructed. He remembered what his father said. “Don’t get in anyone’s way. Keep your head down. Do as you’re told.”
After the first two hours, things calmed down. They shoved a mop and bucket at him, and he scrubbed, even though the decks seemed clean to him. He felt sick, but he wouldn’t let them see that. It had been something his father had warned him about too.
The night fell, and a wind whipped up, seemingly out of nowhere. And then the music started. An old sea-dog with fingers bent and calloused from years of work. He drew one long note and the bottles snuck out, while the captain slept.
He never forgot that first night at sea. The music, the rocking, the wind, the waves- and the sickening noise of the wood when the storm cracked the ship down the middle.