Chapter Two

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Clara stood very still

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Clara stood very still. Wondering at whom this new person could be and what control he had over the giant who now stood panting and striving desperately to reign in his temper.

Commander Redgrave couldn't help but laugh as he took in the sight before him.

"Well you must be either the bravest boy I've ever encountered, or are suffering from a bout of insanity to take on Angus here."

The boy said nothing in response only looked at both of them warily but Redgrave could see the intelligence behind those eyes.

"Even now the boy is assessing. Trying to find the advantage...Hmmm," he wondered.

"Where are my manners? Commander Phineas Redgrave, Captain of the Whispering Wind at your service," Redgrave removed his hat and bowed deeply.

Clara knew she was expected to speak but was afraid to do so.

"That there is Mr. Angus McCree, First Mate and ship's Quarter Master, whom you've had the unfortunate blunder of making angry," Redgrave said with a low throaty chuckle, causing Angus to glare at him ominously.

"Stand down, Mr. McCree. Your wounds are superficial at best. Still such bravery or insanity should be rewarded don't you think? We are down one cabin boy."

Angus and Clara's eyes widened in surprise but for completely different reasons. For Clara this could mean the end of her problems of finding employment and her escape to a new life, and for Angus it was the surprise of what his Captain was actually considering."

"This scrawny little mouse? He won't last a week at sea," Angus laughed at the idea. "Better he finds some Lord to attend to and dress. My vote is nay."

"Well, as Lord Fitton will be traveling with us to the East Indies, I say it is a win-win."

Angus groaned, "The professor? He is traveling with us again?"

"Quit you're belly aching, Mr. McCree. He pays well and we are heading in his direction anyway. So, where is the imposition?"

"Man, doesn't have an ounce of common sense," Angus grumbled. "Several times we had to keep him from falling overboard. His nose forever in his books."

Redgrave chuckled and he turned those smiling eyes on Clara once more. "So, what do you say?"

Clara knew she had to take the leap, and nodded her head yes.

Redgrave looked concerned. "You can hear me but you do not speak? Are you mute?"

Clara took this out, and nodded again.

"Hmmm, that may be a problem," Redgrave wished he did not need to reconsider as they sail with the tide and him finding this boy really did solve both his problems of a cabin boy and valet for the Professor.

Clara pulled out a paper from her journal and her pencil; quickly she jotted a note, tore the page out and handed it to the Captain.

Redgrave was impressed. "Asking about wages... smart lad. Shows your head is in the right place. We divide our take at the end of the voyage. We don't get paid until the delivery is done."

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