Now there’s a pirate hanging from a rope, carving and chipping away at a brand new rudder made of iced rum and never before have a pirate and a ship enjoyed each other’s company with such delight, with such intimacy.

The rudder has taken shape, it is angular, sharp and of the richest and glistening amber colour.  All that remains to complete it is the polishing.  It is a work of care, love and passion as the Captain licks the golden rudder that tastes of frozen rum.  The Princess and the Pirate are united.  In the whole history of the Universe, never before has a Princess been baptised and crowned a Queen on the very same day.

Amidst all these smells, sights and sounds, Labaguette is overwhelmed by invisible alcohol vapours that reach him to the very chore of his being, to the chore of his untamed parrot’s soul.  He is able to untie the string around his beak:

“Capitaine!” he interrupts, “how can this work?  De rudder is merely a static block of ice zat will not move right or left and zis ship will only be directed in a straight, forward line.”

“You don’t know the ways of the Princess,” the Captain answers, trusting as can be, “she’s right, we’ll get there and she’ll turn eventually.”

But the vapours of hope, lust and unimaginable pleasures, until now that is, reach Labaguette with their full force and he falls into a deep, impenetrable slumber.

To be continued…


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