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 Chronicles 'o Henk the Owl... *Udated*

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PostSubject: Chronicles 'o Henk the Owl... *Udated*   Wed Dec 26, 2007 7:17 pm

This story begins on a warm, damp yet somewhat chilly night somewhere in the West Indies:

The year 1720:


It was late but then again wasn't it always, for after dark the towns as well as the cities 'o many islands were alive with the scoundrels of society: Ladies of ill repute, drunks, lords and paupers all were present after the curtains were drawn!

As was Henk that faithfull night. After a warm and sweathy afternoon on yet another windless day he could not really put his mind at ease and therefore a drink was well needed in times like these.

The ovious choice for many lost 'n desperate soul was the local watering hole better known as the tavern. In all honest truth it was nothing more than a pigstack filled with drunkards as well as harlots, again not all that uncommon in those days 'o old.

He entered through something that should pass as a door and the first thing that was overly present was the smell that almost immediately reminded him of long sea voyages, the smell of sweat, stout ale as well as a numerous other odours that are simply not proper to discuss!

In truth Henk was not a broad shouldered man yet there was something that made him be noticed the moment he would enter an establishment as this one. Mayhaps it were the eyes that seemed to demand respect or the way he could and at times would look at another, who's to say.

He sat down in a corner that seemed the farthest 'n darkest from the drunken rable that seemed to have gathered that night. But before he could take a sip of the dark substance that had to pass for ale someone interupted his ponderings quite unexpectedly. He looked up and noticed a young woman that appeared to be one of the tavern wenches that "served" the regulars in more ways Henk could stomach to think about!

A little anoyed by her interuption he gently rose and offered her to sit awhile with him. No matter what circumstance always tryin' to be the gentleman that others had always told him he was...

He looked at her with a sence of sorrow and noticed that underneath all the grime and dirt there seemed hidden a creature 'o beauty. Something that seemed quite rare since Henk was mostly preoccupied with his thoughts most of the time to even notice these things, undoubtedly insecurity and a certain shyness were to blame as well!

She seemed eager to learn more and eventhough Henk was a bit reluctant he did feel a sence of trust and the need to tell a tale or two. There was something in her eyes that brought back memories of days long forgotten in the mist 'o time, and so Miladies and Gents the story unfolds:


The year 1681:


It was the year of our Lord 1681 when a child was born in the lowlands of Holland in a city called Utrecht. Born from a rather poor family the first years of the young boys life were fairly difficult. Too small as well as fragile he seemed to not be very healthy as he had to overcome many an illness. There was not much more his parents could do but pray for the infant, as they were thaught by their own father and mother.

It was a time of hardship as well as prosperity, as long years of war with the Spanish crown and countless other nations had left theair marks on many. In 1648 the Republic was regognized by the Spanish as well as more internationally as independant. As a direct result Holland was no longer part 'o The Holy Roman Empire. And as strange as it may seem kings and queens no longer were the rulers, this "title" now seemed bestowed upon rich merchants who each seemed to rule one of many city states.

Eventhough the Republic was said to be a most tolerant state truth of the matter was much darker, as in fact many a Catholic faced prosecution in those days and as a whole they were not at all looked favorably upon!

As years passed in obscurity the young boy slowly but surely grew into a young man with his very own idears, plans as well as problems. Idears were beginning to form in his mind after hearin' wonderous tales of distant travels, strange peoples and the many stories of dangers that faced seafearers in those days! One particulair account, (in fact there were many more) haunted his dreams. And i am not only talking about the surfacing "romantic" feelings that concerned the opposite sex, no what nested in his mind were the adventures of sailors claiming the seas their own territory: pirates!

A longin' for travel and exploration was indeed formed in those fragile young years as he grew up into a man...


-Now follows a short pause as Henk's ale had become even more warm than it already had, and that last sip almost made him choke and spit it back out in the face 'o that angel that actually was still listening to his rather large and dreary tale evolving!-


So let us continue shall we?


The year 1699:


Henk made his very first trip to the British Isles in search of adventure as well as a means to find himself a better life. The passage was uneventful yet it left a lasting mark upon him as he had always dreamed about sailing the seas!

England itself seemed in many ways the same as the mainland except there appeared to be even more paupers wandering the streets unable to scrape the filth to gather enough to eat! And there was always the presence of certain Royal sanctioned "gangs" that would pray on the manfolk, drunks or those unfortunate to not being so drunk at that time were beaten or otherwise lured and "pressed" into Royal Naval service. Many of these man were nothing more then mere boys, children actually needed as an endless supply 'o wood to keep the fires of the oppressive nature of the Brits going!

After a few weeks he deceided to travel even further north untill one day he came accross a small hamlet. The kindness with which these oviously very poor people welcomed him in still moves him to tears form time to time. They were a proud and noble people in their own right but were not looked upon as such by the many Brittish monarchs that had invaded this strange yet incredibly wild and unspoiled Land 'o Scots!

As he looked out over the loch, lit only by the light of the moon and stars he knew that the history of these people was written in blood.

And from that moment it became his as well...


Last edited by on Sat Jan 12, 2008 7:45 pm; edited 6 times in total
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PostSubject: Re: Chronicles 'o Henk the Owl... *Udated*   Mon Dec 31, 2007 7:48 pm

Flight from Scotland:

The year 1702:


After leaving the small hamlet Henk travelled westward for the grand city 'o D¨n ╚ideann, or better known as Edinburgh. He was not alone on his travels as the old man he had befriended and had helped out that past winter had urgent bussiness there. He seemed sincere as always but had not yet revealed his actual intensions for the long yourney ahead, however later these events would prove most significant!

The city itself was large and housed many people from all classes, rich 'n poor. And it left a great impression on all that had or would visit it. The old man told Henk to find some lodgings near the port and would meet him later that evening in a small but apparantly well known tavern. From there you had a most wonderous view 'o ships arriving and departing if the winds proved willing!

The stranger:


It was shortly after dark when Henk met up with the old man and they deceided to share some ale and talk for a while. The conversation was mostly about trivial things like the weather, however the weather in 'ol bonny Scotland was never to be seen as such! It was ovious that he was somewhat restless and his eyes went from the corners to the door many a time. Henk asked if there was trouble afoot but the old man gently shook his head in order to reassure the young lad.

Suddenly a gust of wind as the door opened in a rather rough manner!
The old man slowly looked up and nodded to the stranger that still remained in the doorway as if he waited for someone to give 'im permission. The man took the chair next to the old man and looked Henk deep in the eyes for a few minutes, fiery blue eyes that seemed to glow with a certain fire or passion even!

Suddenly the man spoke in a gentler way than would be expected and extended his hand to Henk who introduced himself as well. I am Rochefort, captain of a merchant ship currently in port here in Edinburgh, he spoke with a strange accent. The old man saw the look in Henk's eyes and explained:

Mr. Rochefort is a longtime friend 'o mine and a true follower of our cause, the Jacobite cause that is! Now it became somewhat clear to Henk what they were doing there that night, it appeared that this captain was to assist the old man in fleeing Scotland and the oppressive rule of England!

The man was indeed a foreigner and not just that, he was 'o all people French! Now to Henk who had always wanted to travel this was not much of a problem were it not that history dictated otherwise as the French had always been bitter enemies of the English as well as the Dutch.

St. Malo:


The yourney did indeed take them to France and Henk was most exited, he was on a ship as well as sailing in unknown waters! The ship was a Brigantine and was quite well armed for a "merchant". The trip was uneventfull and no encounters with British warships were reported in the following days.

One night Henk was looking at the stars and listening to the waves gently pushin' the ship when the captain slowly walked by, Mr. Rochefort explained to him that they were heading to a Breton city called: Sant-Malo¨, the city that was supposedly founded my the legendary traveller 'n navigator saint Brendan...

Having never been to France before Henk had heard about this "pirates nest" as many called the old city. It had been the home 'o many a privateer or corsair how they called it themselves, in the service of the French kings for very long and apparantly Mr. Rochefort was no exception to that rule! Later that night they talked about the past, present and times still to come in the warmth of the captain's cabin untill the early mornin' hours. It was already ovious that the two men, eventhough very different in many ways were to become close friends if not already!

The city was a welcome break compared to the rainy voyage aboard the ship and the people were quite friendly eventhough they were somewhat carefull when around strangers at first. The next two weeks were quietly passing untill someday the old Scott asked Henk to follow him to travel further along the coast of Brittany, and so they did. Visited many places and it wasn't before long that Henk noticed that life in France wasn't as bad as he thought it was, remarkable how tales can almost always seem different from reality!

The only thing getting used to was what seemed to be the attitude 'o the French but as the old man always said: we all have our faults, and then he would laugh to tears!

The coming months nothing noteworthy happenend besides the fact that they travelled a ways north through Normandy, and visited even more places.


Last edited by on Wed Jan 09, 2008 7:29 pm; edited 2 times in total
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PostSubject: Re: Chronicles 'o Henk the Owl... *Udated*   Wed Jan 09, 2008 8:16 pm

The long voyage westbound:

The year 1707:



Holland:


That summer in France much seemed to be distant, forgotten even untill one day Henk was called back to Holland!
It would seem that there were still many unresolved issues that had to be taken care off. One most urgent matter was the discovery 'o various documents that been hidden for a long time, and had now resurfaced. In these letters there was mention of an extensive family tree someone most likely wanted to hide for the present rulers! The following months Henk settled in the lowlands in the old city of Gouda for a while investigating the matter with the aid 'o a relative he had not seen or spoken to in years.

The apparantly secret writings spoke indeed of some lineage but were in itself not very clear and Henk left said matter in his nephew's capable hands. While making plans to return to France, after havin received a letter that wore the signet 'o his friend captain Rochefort.

The Mont St. Michel:


This was a place of wonder indeed that i will not discuss here unless ye have visited her and was struck by her beaty as i was! They met in a tavern, then again wasn't that always Henk wondered. The look on the Frenchman's face was different eventhough he was thrilled to meet his Dutch friend, his eyes seemed worried and far away!

He received a letter bearin' the seal of the King himself in which he was charged to take care of certain matters in the West Indies. Henk's heart seemed to stop for a moment, he heard many a tale about the Caribbean while growing up so he was as they say, all ears! Rochefort wanted Henk to accompany him on this yourney and promised a time well spend as well as much rewards, eventhough he could or would not go into the specifics at that time! It was agreed that night that they would depart within two weeks, since any delay would not be wise or advisable...

Curašao:


The prospect of finally seeing the West Indies with his very own eyes caused him restless nights, wandering the deck after dark from bow to stern! He was exited but there was something that made his stomach upset he just could not place it at that time. Perhaps it was the promise of certain danger as well as adventure or the fact that they were heading toward the worlds largest slave port as Curašao was known to be in those days! He wasn't too keen on stepping on "Dutch" ground either since he simply was not the patriotic kind and held no love for his country!

The ship made steady progress and one night his friend captain Rochefort revealed his true intentions. He had a letter from his Majesty the King of France in which he was charged to wage war upon France's enemies in the Indies, and in order to do just that he was to report to the Dutch island were a FrÚgate was waiting.

The gift:


This was not the only news the captain revealed, and what followed would change the life 'o the young man forever! He was presented a gift, the ship a schooner on which they sailed to that most distant destination was to be his upon arrival in the Caribbean!

Pirate, Gentleman or both?!


The years 1708 - 1720:


Not much is known about the years that followed after the two men parted ways and Henk became a captain himself. Some say that he was forced to take on odd jobs in order not to fall pray to Bankruptcy or starvation. Others claim that
he 'n his ship named The Adventure were spotted in the Bahama's, a most notorious pirate's nest in those days!
There are even others that are certain they saw him in the "lowlands" of Holland busy gathering what personal effects he may have possesed, as if fleeing.

What is certain though is the fact that around 1720 Henk had become somewhat desperate as well as impoverished
and was now frequently visiting the island 'o Martinique, and a certain tavern in particular...


-Thus ends this tale, or should i say begins?!-
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PostSubject: Re: Chronicles 'o Henk the Owl... *Udated*   Tue Jan 22, 2008 9:24 am

Story is finished, however it continues to this day in the West Indies (in game as it were)
so feel free to comment if ye please...
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PostSubject: Re: Chronicles 'o Henk the Owl... *Udated*   

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