Voyages of the Sea Fury:
The Tale of the Jeweled Cross

	I don't know much about the Great Magicks, other than that some furrs
still practice, even today.  The only Great Magick I know is the love in
my mate's eyes, whenever I gaze on him.  But, he's in Port Royale right
now, gathering provisions and recruits.  I'm cruising the waters off
Hispaniola, looking for prey.  Actually, I'm really in the bath, missing
my Faranus, and dreaming about how we'll spend our first night together
in a month.
	You see, one thing I do know about is piracy, since I'm in the Sweet
Trade right up to my muzzle.  I was my
imagination...and my rein, dreaming about Far, when I
heard the cry go up, "Sail Ho!"  I leaped out of the tub and onto the
deck without thinking about it, grabbing a telescope on the way out. 
The instant I emerged, I heard the sound of dropping jaws.  I looked
down, and saw the reason.  Geez, it always the excitement
of taking a prize, I often forget my state of undress.  The crew,
however, were always very quick to notice.  Far says I have a latent
exhibitionist tendency.
	Ignoring my nudity for the moment, I called to the lookout, "Where
away?".  I trained my glass on the location she indicated, and saw a
nice fat Spanish merchantman, making along slowly and thinking no harm. 
I ordered a slow pursuit, and ducked back into the Great Cabin to get
	I cast a FurBeeDrie spell on my dripping self.  It's on of those common 
spells, everyfur uses them, that was devised sometime in the Middle Ages 
to make life for us furs that much easier.  After all, have you ever
tried to slip on satins and silks over wet fur?  Yeegh!  I selected blue
satin breeches and a white silk blouse, the one with the deep v-neck. 
Hmm, maybe Far's right about my exhibitionist tendencies.  I pulled on
knee-boots and plopped a tri-corn on my head, grabbed my favorite
cutlass, and dashed back out on deck.
	Taking another look at our target, I issued orders.  "Double charge all 
guns!  Lay on full sail and hoist the Spanish flag.  After her!"
	The crew set to work with a will, and, we having the wind of her, made
good time on the Spaniard.  I sized up the prey...ship of that size
normally carries crew of 60, tops, and taking Spanish peso-pinching into
account, I figured it more than likely held no more than 40.  Easy prey.
	We grew nigh to it.  Our Spanish ensign was hauled down, and our true
colors hoisted, to show them what and who they were up against.
	"Heave to and surrender!", I commanded the other ship.  In response,
they opened with a ragged and poorly aimed broadside.  Only one ball out
of the six they fired did us any harm, and that was to just punch a hole
in one of our sails.
	Geez!  There's always one, isn't there?  Stupid captain and crew wanted 
to make a fight of it.  If you're a captain of some merchant ship and
you're reading this, lemme give you some advice, friendly like.  Never
fight a pirate.  It just pisses us off.  If you co-operate with us, we
just empty out your ship, no one gets hurt, all very business-like, and
you can always fill out the insurance claims later.  But if you try to
make a fight of it, someone's likely to get hurt, and we have to rough
you up a bit.
	I took over at the wheel.  I tacked about till we were broadside to
their stern, sort of crossing their T, as't were.  My favorite
position...for battle, anyway.  I gave the order to fire, and the weight
of metal from 12 big guns smashed through their stern and ran their
deadly course tween decks of the Spaniard.  It was enough for them, and
they struck their colors.

	We came up alongside their vessel, made fast to it, and, wary of any
Spanish tricks, sent over some of my best fighters, led by Mange, to
secure the prize.  That done, Mange signaled the all, clear, and I and
the rest of the boarding party came over.
	I found myself face-to-face with the Spanish captain.  An Ursine. 
Wouldn't you just figure.  Brave, certainly, but not, shall we say,
quite fully packed in the brain department.
	Now, normally when I take a prize, I wine and dine the captain in my
cabin, but this one, by his foolish resistance, had really got my back
up, and I wasn't in the mood to be polite.  In fact, I was playing
around with the idea of keeping the ship and setting him and his crew
adrift, but I already had five prizes to take care of, along with the
Sea Fury.  Any more would have just been ostentatious.
	I introduced myself to the captain.  "I am Trel'la, of the Sea Fury,
and your ship, and all it contains, is mine!"  Yeah, yeah...I know, its
terribly cliched, but then, when you're a pirate, you do have a
reputation to uphold.
	He sputtered and spat, doing a fairly credible imitation of an angry 
cat, for that he was a bear.  He pulled himself up to his full height
and announced, "I am Don Rodriguez, and I care not for what you say,
this is my ship and my cargo.  You are nothing but a base-born
sea-thief, a deck-trollop, and how dare you plunder from those so far
above you, I shall write to the Times about it, and I shall report it to
the Governor, and..."
	He suddenly fell silent.  It wasn't that he ran out of breath (I
thought, given the chance, he'd go on forever!), it was because I
motioned to Fuzz to bop him on the head with a belaying pin.  Good thing
it wasn't the time of the full moon and Fuzz wasn't in his Fem cycle, or
it might have proved embarrassing.
	Meanwhile, the rest of the boarding party had been busy transferring
the goodies from the Spaniard to our ship.  I went into Don Rodriguez's
cabin to snatch up his manifest, charts, and a really neat set of
navigational instruments.  Mine were getting a little worn.  There was
also a small, cunningly crafted chest in a niche by his sea-bed.  I
snatched that, too, without bothering to look within.
	I stepped back on deck, and took a quick look at the manifest of the
cargo.  Ho-hum, nothing exciting:  some cloth, tobacco from Trinidad,
sugar from Martinique, lots of dry goods.  All very prosaic, and all
very good sales among the merchants of Port Royale.
	The cargo itself was already transferred to the Sea Fury.  Hey,
whatever else you might say, my crew is efficient!  Most of the boarding
party was also back over, when Nuttall, a red squirrel came up to me,
with three of the Spanish in tow.
	"Beggin' yer pardon, Cap'n, but t'ese t'ree, t'ey say as t'ey wants to
jine up, t'ey do", the squirrel explained.
	I looked the trio over.  One was a male rabbit, who scuffed the decks
nervously and wouldn't meet my eyes.  The other two were twin cats,
sisters.  However, they seemed like they knew the business of the sea,
even the bunny.  I nodded.
	"Nutt, take 'em over and get their marks on Articles.  Explain the
Articles and our Rules to them."  Nuttall knuckled his forelock and
bundled the three over.  I followed, cutting the Spaniard loose.
	"Gentlefurs, farewell!  I thank you for allowing us this most pleasant
time together, and I look forward to meeting you again soon!", I mocked
he enemy as we slowly drifted apart.  Their captain, Don
Whateverhisnamewas, just coming around, saw that I was carrying his
little chest, and started shouting Spanish obscenities I was rather glad
I didn't understand.
	But now I had but one thought.  Our holds were full, we had taken a
fair number of prizes, so forth to home.  Home to sell off the goodies
and the prizes, and to share out the loot.  Home to drink and carouse
and dance.  Most importantly, home to see my mate again.  Thus we set
our course for port Royale.


	We sailed into port right under the guns of Fort Charles.  Or, rather,
right under where the guns would be, if the fort were ever properly
manned and armed.  But ever since the old earthquake, we pirates had
become the business mainstay of Port Royale.  If that quake had been
just a bit stronger, most of the town might well have slid right into
the sea!
	We tied up at dock, and the merchants and merchants' factors came
swarming to our little fleet.  Normally, I prefer to handle the disposal
of our acquired goods myself, but I was all impatience to see Faranus. 
I collared the quartermaster (literally) and assigned him the task of
dealing with the negotiations and the dismissal of the crew.  I popped
into my cabin to check my hair, then I was out and down the gangplank. 
Oh, on the way, I grabbed that little chest.  Don't know why...
	I knew where Far would be waiting for me, of course.  The Ruptured
Seagull was our favorite dockside haunt, and it was only a few streets
down from where we docked.  Nonetheless, I ran all the way.  There it
was...a large tavern with a sign of a bird in a truss.  I stepped in. 
It was quite crowded for the time of day.  I looked around, but because
of the press, I couldn't see my mate anywhere.
	The band on stage was really rocking.  They were groovin' to the latest 
big hit from Germany, Altenburg's Concerto for 7 Trumpets and Timpani. 
One of the band must have caught sight of me, because they then struck
up a rendition of "Entrance of the Queen of Sheba".  Oh Gawd,
embarrassed again! 
	I saw a dashing blue-furred form rise up in the middle of the mob.  My
breath quickened and my heart began to pound.  I shouldered and muscled
and slinked my way through the tavern patrons.  There he was-resplendent
and handsome in his dark Navy blues, setting off the lighter blue of his
fur-the world's most wonderful ferret, and my heart's desire.
	I screamed out, "Far!", and I barely heard his response of
"Trel'la!!!", shouted at the top of his lungs, over the roar of the mob. 
He took me in those strong arms of his, and I whimpered once in sheer
joy before our lips pressed together.  The kiss was deep, passionate,
and seemed to last all too briefly.  I felt so safe and secure in his
arms, and I once again blessed the day we met, and whichever gods
brought us together.
	We broke our kiss, and Far led me into one of the back rooms the
Seagull keeps for special events, business lunches, and Rotary meetings. 
The management didn't object to our going in there, however; at least,
not since word of what happened at Ratty's when they tried to keep us
out got around.
	We couldn't help ourselves.  The instant we were in, we were back in
each other's arms, cooing sweet words to each other.
	"Oh, Gods, Love-a month!  I've had to wait a whole month for this!  How 
did I manage to last so long without you?", my sweet ferret said while
gazing deep into my eyes.
	I agreed with him, of course.  3 days is too long to go without him, a
week without him is very hard on me, and a month?  Unbearable!
	I whimpered, "Gods, Far, I've missed you so much!  Robbing and
plundering without you is such a lonely business!"
	He chuckled at that, and we got each other caught up, with occasional
pauses for hugs, cuddles, kisses, and fond gazes.  Then he pointed to
the small chest I had.  "Whatcha got there, Love?"
	"What?  Oh, this silly thing.  I dunno, just something I picked up from 
that last ship I took.  I haven't evened opened it up yet."
	Impelled by my curiosity and Far's encouragement, I at last opened the
chest.  Great Leaping Mother of Trotsky!
	A large cross gleamed and glinted up at us, made of solid gold.  At
least I think it was solid gold...most of the surface was encrusted with
gems of vasty price, revealing only the occasional glistenings of soft
yellow metal.  Ruddy thing must be worth a bomb!  My eyes widened in
greed-I had visions of selling the thing off someplace and retiring to a
country estate on the proceeds.
	There was a note in the chest with the cross, which Far read while I
gloated.  The basic upshot was that it was a gift for the King of Spain
from the Governor of Macao, being transshipped through the Caribees.
	My mate was the first to speak.  "You know what we have to do with
this, don't you?"  There was something in his voice, usually so merry,
that caught my attention.
	"We have to return it.  To the Governor of San Juan, perhaps..."
	"WHAT?!", I shrieked.  "Far, Love, are you off your nut?  Why, once we
fence this thing off, we'll be set for life!  We could go anyplace, do
anything, have whatever our hearts may desire!", I argued.  Was my mate
bonkers?  Return THIS?  Not likely!
	He persisted.  "Yes, once we sell it off.  And where might we do that,
Love?  You know the merchants don't mind buying up most goods we bring
in, but this is very particular, and not at all a very safe sale for
them.  As for shipping it abroad, well, where?  We can't possibly get
even a third of its value in the American colonies, and as for Europe,
the King of Spain'll have notices out faster than you can say 'Jimmy
crack corn'!"
	I opened my mouth, but since nothing much came out of it, I shut it
back up again.  I thought briefly, trying to find a flaw somewhere in my
mate's logic, but I couldn't find any.  Oh, poo!  And there were certain
other urges making demands on me that clouded my thinking.
	"You know, Love, I really hate it when you make sense.  Oh, all right,
I'll return it!  Can't be too much trouble, I suppose (Gawd, how wrong
can you get?)
	My voice took on a "little kitten" tone, as I took off my hardware
(cutlass and pistol belts...).  "Far?  I...I have a vacancy I need
filling.  Can you help me?"  I was squirming in my growing need.  My
eyes went all wide and innocent as I spoke.
	Far broke out laughing.  He always has a hard time taking my "innocent" 
act seriously.  I don't know why...I work hard at it!
	The fact that I was in his arms again, trying to claw his shirt off
while licking at his muzzle, lips, and ears left him in no doubt of what
I was "wanton".
	He gasped in mock shock.  "Trel'la!  Right here?  What if someone
should hear?!  His grin, and the fact that he was helping me with his
buttons, told me his objections were just to tease I needed it
just then!
	I growled deep in my throat.  "Let 'em listen!  Besides, with the noise 
out in the common room, no one'll ever be able to hear us, unless
Ruddigore's turned on that damn PA thing of his again.  It's been a
month, Love...I need you!!!"
	I'm trying to keep this clean, so you'll just have to use your
imagination to fill the rest of this scene.  We did eventually go up to
our room, neither bothering to dress, just carrying our clothes up with
us.  And that jeweled cross, too.  Once we got into bed, we found
ourselves again making up for lost time, in a more comfortable place
than a hard wooden table with the chance of splinters.  Eventually,
exhausted, we slept in each others arms.

Interlude-A Dream

	I dreamt of he first time I met my mate.  Faranus was a very handsome
officer, a lieutenant in the Royal Navy.  I was just a young thing, but
with several pirate cruises already experienced, I was fitting out to go
on the account for the first time as captain.
	In Jamestown, it was.  I was sitting in a tavern, working on some
charts, when I saw, just out of the corner of my eye, a flash of Navy
blue approaching.  It spoke, "May I sit?"
	I glared up, preparing a hot retort for Navy boy, when I got a proper
look at him.  My heart did a double-take, then flew up to my throat and
just hung around there, fluttering.  My Gawd, I thought, he's better
looking than a glass of iced tea, and that's saying something!
	My hot retort turned into silly schoolkitten stammers and giggles.  He
sat, and we looked into each other's eyes, and our gazes locked for a
few minutes.  I was finally able to look away, blushing (and have you
any idea just *how* hard it is for an ocelot to blush?), while it was
his turn to stammer out an apology.
	"You're Captain Trel'la?", he asked.
	I looked at him blankly for a minute.  I wasn't yet used to hearing my
name and "captain" together, and anyway, the pounding of my heart in my
throat made it difficult to hear.  I finally realized he was talking to
me, and I acknowledged his query.
	He gazed at me earnestly.  "Why does someone as young and beautiful as
you follow such a nefarious trade as piracy?  You know its a brutal
business, followed by ruffians and those at war with the entire world! 
Surely, there are better occupations for you to pursue.
	I'd heard so many times that I'm so beautiful that the statement had
become almost meaningless to me.  But hearing this young lieutenant say
so made me quiver and tremble inside.  Many had also asked me what the
divil I was doing being a pirate, and I usually chased off those
questioners with a contrived display of bad feline temper.  But to this
fur, I wanted to answer, to defend the honor, what little there was, of
my profession.
	"Well, love, what would you have me do?  Waiting tables isn't to my
taste, never was; the crew pays me not to sing; and as for the other
choice...making a living working on my back would get boring real quick
(he had the good grace to blush).  Besides, in sea-roving, an ambitious
fur can get ahead in the world and make a profit for hirself.  Why, my
first voyage, alongside Cap'n Silver, I cleared 75 gold Spanish
dollars...and that was just as a cabin-kitten.  How much do you make in
a full year as naval officer?  Anyway, its a lot of times the rich and
the powerful that rail against us, but are we more dishonest than the
rest of the fur-kindred?  After all, they rob the poor under the cover
of law, while we plunder the rich under the protection of our own
courage.  What we win is our own, by the law of arms and the right of
conquest.  And I've as much right to war on the rest of the world as any
civil prince with fleets and armies."
	I gave Navy a bold glance, and added "In honest service, there's low
wages and hard labor; in our life there's ease and plenty, liberty and
power; and who would not choose such a life when all the risk there is
to run for it is but a sour look or two at choking.  You'd do most well
for yourself if you were to sign on, and make one with us."  I was
trying, you see, to win him over to me.  I didn't think I had a
snowball's chance, but it was worth the try.
	After my speechifying, I was quite thirsty, and guzzled my tea.  I'm
rare among the Brethren in that I don't drink much alcohol.  Don't
smoke, either, although I'm fond of tobacco for the profit it brings in. 
I could see the uniformed ferret was thinking hard on what I told him
about the Sweet Trade, but I'd had a long day, and I had to be up
frightfully early the next morning, so I excused myself, and went off to
	I didn't sleep well at all.  Tensions of starting a new voyage, of
being in command, and too much tea all conspired to keep me awake.  What
little sleep I did get was haunted by overly vivid dreams of ferrets in
naval uniforms.
	Early next morn, after settling my account with the tavern, I made my
way to the barque Sea Fury.   My ship!  Standing next to the boarding
plank was a splendid blue-furred ferret in uniform, the very officer
with whom I chatted last night.  I wondered what he wanted.
	When I approached, he drew himself to full military attention.  Captain 
Trel'la of the Sea Fury?  I am 1st Lieutenant Faranus of the Royal
	Oh, that's just peachy, I thought.  He's gonna try to arrest me in full 
view of my crew!  Indeed, those of the crew within ear-shot had stopped
their work and were paying very close attention, some fingering their
fatal hardware.
	"I have listened and thought about what you told me last night", the
ferret continued, "and have made up my mind.  Where do I sign to join up
with you?"
	I brightened, and breathed a very deep sigh of relief, that made some
of my crew gasp and swear, "Cor Blimey!"  No dockside violence today! 
And I was glad to get him to come over to us.  For one thing, he was
incredibly gorgeous...still is, too.  And he still makes my heart thump
wildly.  For another thing, having been a naval officer, what knew what
the sharp end of a ship was, and how to get it to point in the way you
wanted it to go.  Always helps, that.
	Many adventures later, we were still together, and had, in fact, joined 
ourselves together, body, heart, mind and soul.  We were mate...and

To San Juan!

	We were making our way west along the coast of Hispaniola, sailing for
San Juan to return the Jeweled Cross.  For a change, we weren't picking
up any stray ships we chanced upon.  We had to remain unseen and
unknown.  After all, we have rather a reputation here in the Caribees,
and I couldn't just trot on up to the Governor and say "Here you are,
ol' Fuzzball, here's your cross back.  Sorry, it just happened to fall
into my paws accidental-like..."  Not good enough, bound to raise some
awkward questions.  So we had to sail in sneaky-like, and avoid any
vessels that might inform of our presence.
	I wasn't happy about this cruise.  It wasn't so much the idea of
actually returning such a rich prize, quite...Far was right, where would
we sell it?  It was more that I was worried how we would go about
returning it...I had a growing concern that something was going to go
wrong, and I was beginning to fear for the safety of my crew, and
especially for that of my mate.  I was getting seriously worried that
something terrible was going to happen to him, and I'd do anything to
prevent that, even at the risk of my own life.  Far had been hinting
that he should be the one to slip the cross into the city-sneaking
around places comes natural to a ferret, he said.  I hadn't told him
yet, but I wasn't going to allow him off the ship.  I took the cross,
and I'd return the ruddy thing, and take the risks myself.
	And so we sailed on, the crew confident in me, and I increasingly
fearful.  I would not let my precious mate walk into a potential trap,
never!  We sheltered in a cove close to San Juan, and there we finalized
our plans.  Far masterminded the operation, and I agreed with every
detail but one.
	"No, Love.  I'll take this wretched thing into the city.  After all, it 
was I who snatched it in the first place.  I want you here with the
ship, in case of trouble"
	There was...well, quite a discussion about which one of us should go
into the city, with my mate insisting his ferret form gave him the best
chance of success, and with me doing all I could to convince him
otherwise.  I finally succeeded, but Far was none too happy about it.  I
was able to soothe him with lots of snuggling and purrs, but I was glad
he'd be staying where it was safe.  After all, risking your fur in the
heat of battle is one thing, and we've done that often enough, but
walking wide-eyed into your enemy's stronghold is quite different.
	So, there I was, alone, in the dark, trying to find a way into the fair 
city of San Juan.  I managed to find a gap in the town wall, barely
enough for me to squeeze through.  Good thing I watch my shape! 
Luckily, my entrance was as close to San Juan Cathedral as possible-but
the church was still some way off in the city.  I had selected the
cathedral as the best place to return the cross, and besides, if I were
caught, I could always claim religious sanctuary.
	I stalked, crept, and, where I had to, crawled along the streets and
narrow alleys of San Juan, striving always to keep myself in the
shadows.  There, finally, looming dark above me, stood San Juan
Cathedral.  Now to slip in, put the cross someplace obvious with a note
explaining how to make a profit on the insurance claims, then out again
and into the arms of my mate.
	But, of course, it wasn't so easy.  I got into the church readily
enough, but it was so dark inside that even my feline eyes had trouble
coping.  It certainly smelled wrong, almost as if...
	Off to my left, a voice shouted, "Lights", and I was briefly dazzled as 
torches flared to life.  A crowd of soldiers were in the church with me, 
in breastplate and morion, armed and ready for fun.  "Rumbled!", I
thought, and quickly tallied up the odds.  Too many to fight, so I
started in on Plan B, and opened my mouth to claim the right of holy
shelter.  Yeah, like I got real far, because the troopers rushed me
before I could say a word.  They bore me to the floor, and I thrashed
around and caught one or two of the soldiers with my claws before they
subdued me.
	"So, the great Pyrate Captain Trel'la!  I have caught you at last!  You 
thought you could sneak around here, but I knew you'd try to slip in,
cuz I'm clever, me!  I've got it here!"  The gloating voice came from a
rather stocky human, dressed (in the worst possible taste) in black
velvet from head to toe.  The Governor of San Juan.  He stepped close to
me to gloat some more as I struggled in my captors' grasp.
	Although I had seen it before, I was amazed how these villains somehow
manage to talk using exclamation points.  I was also puzzled and
troubled about how he knew I'd be in town.  Had a ship seen us, despite
all our care; or, even worse, was there a traitor amongst the crew?
	"Now", he continued, "what shall we do with you?  Ahhhh, I know!  A
nice, fancy show trial, that all may see the perils of defying the power
of Spain.  After that, a most pleasant execution...we'll invite
everyone, make a party of it!  Won't that be fun?  But first..."
	He gestured to some fur behind me, and I felt a sickening crash against 
my head, and darkness engulfed me.


"The charge is prepared; the lawyers are met The judges all ranged (a terrible show!) I go, undismayed. For death is a debt, A debt on demand. So, take what I owe" (Beggar's Opera, John Gay)

	And so I was led into court, constrained by chains.  I don't mind a
little bondage now and then, but this was a bit much!  And my quarters
for my stay in San Juan were hardly attractive.  Don't these Spanish
have any sense of hospitality?  I mean, considering the legal show they
were planning to feature me in, you'd think they'd have the courtesy to
give me decent accommodations!
	For some reason, that song from The Beggar's Opera kept going through
my head all during my trial.  They certainly weren't taking any chances! 
The courtroom was guarded by a platoon of bears...not very
bright...slow, too; but Trotsky's Mother, they're strong!  This was no
jury trial, either...three judges sat in tribunal over me, the ranking
judge being the Governor himself.
	The charges read against me involved a long list of ships taken, towns
raided, affronts to morality, disrespect for high church officials,
dealing in stolen goods, and cheating at cribbage (I never!)  I pointed
out to the court that they left out a few ships, and how could they
possibly have forgot my raid on Maracaibo?  I thought it was
particularly daring, considering the Silver Train was in town at the
time.  All I got for my efforts to correct the record was an additional
charge...mockery of this august court and it's judicial proceedings.
	And of course, my trial just had to drag on for several days.  It
didn't help matters any that just about every fur in the courtroom
insisted on using 10 words where one would have done nicely.  These
lawyers have no sense of economy of language!  And I don't know why they
even bothered with the trappings of legality, anyway.  I knew what the
outcome would be as well as anyfur else.
	Came the sentencing...The judges gave me a long and grave speech on the 
utter and unrepentant wickedness of my life, the hatefullness of my
piratical career, the sinfulness of my soul, and they concluded with the
traditional, "You, the said Trel'la, shall go from hence to the place
from when you came, and from thence to the place of execution, where you
shall be hanged by the neck till you are dead."  Well, there it
was...that sour look at choking was nigh to me.


	One thing I've never understood about executions...why is it that they
are always held so early?  After all, it's bad enough getting strung up,
but do they really have to get you up at such an ungodly hour for it?  I
mean, sheesh, can't they let you sleep for just a little bit longer?  I
guess not...
	They came for me early like, and led me out into the early dawn's rosy
light.  They bundled me into a cart, and we rode from the prison to the
gallows at El Morro.  Quite a crowd had turned out for my big day, but I
can't say I felt especially flattered.  Well, at least I got a nice tour
of San Juan...I made a particular point to note the location of the
Governor's Palace, so I would know where to go to haunt the place.
	The fortress of El Morro loomed closer and closer, and sooner than I
would have wished, we were there.  My guards lugged me out of the cart,
and escorted me up to the gallows.  There was a priest there, and he was
making much over me, trying to "save my imperiled soul" (didn't that fox
have anything better to do?).  I ignored him, and, turning my back on
the assembled audience, gazed outward to sea.  I gazed longingly at a
ship I saw in the distance, so resembling my own Sea fact, if
I didn't know better...But even if it was, it was too far away, and too
out of range, to be of any help to me.
	I tried to resign myself to my fate.  Execution and death is something
every pirate has to come to terms with.  The only thing that troubled
me, and brought a tear to my eye, was that I would never see my precious
mate again.  Well, maybe there is an afterlife, and we can again be
together.  I comforted myself with the thought that at least it wasn't
Faranus that was up here instead of me, but how he'd cope when he heard
of my execution, I don't know.  At least there'd be a lot of furs
shipboard to help him through his grief.  But heaven help the Spanish
when he would learn of my passing, since I knew there'd be no earthly
power that would stop his course of vengeance.
	I took another look at the ship...I frowned...Why, by Bastet, it sure
nuff did look like the Sea Fury.  I didn't have a chance to contemplate
that any longer, for the guards around me turned me, rather roughly, to
face the crowd.  I hissed and spat at them, wishing I could do more.  I
gazed at the crowd for a last time, as the executioner slipped the noose
about my neck.  Hey!  Was that Fuzz...and Mange, out there?  Nah...not
	I stood, as proudly as I could, as the officials made their speeches
about the iniquity of the piratical life.  They weren't going to allow
me the traditional last words, so I could only stand and wait for my
execution.  I looked puzzled...the gallows seemed to be...vibrating. 
Well, that's not a normal thing for oak to do!  The vibrations grew in
intensity, and the gallows started to hum.  Well, that seemed to get
everyfurs' attention!  The structure of the gallows took as much
vibrating as it could, then surrendering to the power of physics, burst
asunder, shattering into tiny shreds of wood and spilling me down onto
the deck.  At the same time, some of the crowd drew weapons and started
in on carving up the guards, while the others in the crowd ran away for
safety from this unexpected turn-up.  
	I could hardly believe it!  I was actually being rescued from a certain 
fate!  That really was Fuzz and Mange, and others of the crew.  I didn't 
see Far, though...where was he?.  All I could do about my situation,
other than wonder where my mate was, was to kick and thrash, and try to
trip up anyone I could that had a Spanish accent.  After all, my arms
were tied behind me, so I couldn't pull that trick with flailing around
with chains, like they do in the books.  After all, this wasn't a story,
this was Real Life!
	The surprise of this rescue attack was total, and the Spanish were
hindered as well by the panicked attempts of the civilians to flee the
sudden outbreak of fighting, and getting in the way of their own
soldiers.  My crew were not so hindered.  Mange came up and stood guard
over me, and I heard the distinctive sound of a long 24 pounder firing. 
Gods and Goddesses, it was the Sea Fury.  It must have just got into
range, for I heard the roar of solid shot tearing through the air.  The
Dons, demoralized, with their morning's entertainment completely ruined,
ran off for a nice place to hide, the Governor leading them all the way.
	My bonds were cut, and I struggled to my feet.  I was half led, half
carried to the beach, where there were boats waiting, and we rowed out
to the ship.  I was exalting in my freedom and escape from death when I
boarded the Sea Fury...never had it seemed so beautiful.
	The first thing I noticed was that my mate was nowhere to be seen. 
Strange, I'd have thought that he'd be bounding into my arms...Emil, our
ship's doctor, came out of the Great Cabin.  "Where Far?  Where's my
mate?", I demanded.  Had something happened to him?
	Emil took me back into the cabin.  Laying unconscious on our bed was
Faranus...he was hardly breathing, and he seemed so cold.  "What's
happened to him?", I asked Emil.
	"We all found out something about your mate, Trel'la.  He has the Great 
Magicks...he cast forth the spell that burst your gallows, but the
distance was so great for a spell like that, that he collapsed just
afterwards.  I think he put everything he had into that spell...I really
can't tell you if he'll live or not.  I've done what I could, but..."
	I glared at Emil.  Was I to be rescued, only to lose my mate, the
greatest treasure I've ever known?  "Get out!", I snarled at the doctor,
and he slipped quietly out, leaving Far and I together alone.
	"Oh, Gods, Far, can't leave me, you just can't!"  Was it to 
come to this?  Would I have gone through all I have, only to lose my
mate, more important than my life, at the end?!  No, I won't
allow it!
	"Far?  Can you hear me?  I hope so, Mate, and you'd better listen!  I'm 
not going to let you go!  Do you understand me?  If you leave me, I'll
come hunting for you, and I'll drag you back to me, even from the Other
Side.  I refuse to let you go!"
	I went on like that for some time, laying next to my Love and
whispering my words and threats in his ear.  At length, I feel
asleep...well, it had been a long day for me...taken out for execution
early in the morning, rescued where I expected only death, then finding
my mate preparing for the Beyond.  Any wonder I flaked out?
	I woke to a ferret sneeze.  I started, and looked at Far...he was
looking back at me, and smiling...weakly, true, but he was smiling.  And
he was awake!  "I'm afraid I rather overdid it getting you out of
trouble that time, Love, but I couldn't let anything happen to you...",
he explained.
	"Hush, rest for now."  I bellowed for Emil..."Doc!  You get
your mangy, flea-bitten hide in here this instant!"  I didn't know if he
was in earshot or not, but if he wasn't, I know someone was, and would
get the word to him.
	A couple minutes passed, which I spent in grooming Far, then Emil came
rushing in.  He saw that his patient was awake, and gave him as good a
going over as he could, with me clinging to my mate.
	The doctor gave his prognosis.  "Well, I don't really understand it,
since I was sure you were at death's door, Far, but so far as I can see,
all you need now is some rest, the right should be fine
	Far tried to explain.  ""Guess I was just drifting around...I remember
feeling so tired, and I just wanted to find someplace to rest.  I heard
a voice...don't really know whose it was...making some dire
threats...saying it would come after me and drag me back...things like
that.  It got my attention, that it did."
	I laughed and sobbed in my relief...good thing I was in bed with my
mate, because I could feel I was near collapse.  "Far?  You never
said...never told me you could do Magick like that."
	"I'm sorry, Love...old family secret.  I couldn't tell you because of
injunctions placed on me...however much I wanted to.  In fact, I wasn't
able to cast any spells until an incident of crisis proportions
occurred.  I'd say today qualified..."
	We were both yawning, and close to sleep.  We both needed a good rest,
but I had one last thing to say to my mate.  "Far?  Next time we find a
treasure like that cross...we keep it, okay?!"  And with that, we were
both asleep.


Notes From Trel'La

Well, I enjoyed writing that, and at least some furs enjoyed
reading it!  There will be more Voyages of the Sea Fury to come, as I
think them up.  Some of them will be...well, yiffy, but the yiffy ones
might not show on my site...Geocities kinda has restrictions on material,
so I'll let you know where that type of story appears.  Oh, and I'm
thinking about submitting this story to Silverfox and see if he'd print
	Well, some historical notes.  The grand stage is Earth, and the
political boundaries are about the same.  But this is an Earth where
magick exists, although the Great magicks are being practiced less and
less as the Age of Reason progresses.  Minor, functional magicks are,
however, commonly practiced.  It was magick, in the Middle Ages, that
brought us Furries into being in the first place.  Then something
happened, I dunno what yet, that sharply decreased the human population
(perhaps the Plague was worse than history tells us), and Furries have
become the dominant intelligence on Earth.  There's still some humans
around, some in positions of power, but generally, humans aren't a major
player any more.  Religion is no longer a source of conflict and
contention, but nationalism still is.  So, the forces that drove
colonization in RL, still exists in this Furry version.  Oh, and I know
Port Royale was destroyed by earthquake in RL, but its such a prime
place for romance and derring-do, well, I just had to keep it around!


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