Jack and the Pirate School Part 3

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Jack and the Pirate SchoolJack is being held prisoner by Captain Blackheart and he can't even tell his parents where he is. In this episode, Jack is introduced to Pirate Cuisine on the High Seas, and things go from bad to worse.

The series is collected here.

Duration 10. 14 - read by Natasha.

Just in case, you can't quite remember what happened so far, Jack was a boy of seven who went off to sailing school one summer. But there was a bit of a mix-up…and Jack found himself at pirate school instead.

He'd been dressed in old rags by the cabin boy Ben.

But when he asked to tell his mum and dad where he was…it turned out he'd been taken prisoner.

"We don't tell parents that anyone is at pirate school," said Captain Blackheart, in a voice so menacing it sent a shiver down Jack's spine.

And then he roared with laughter.

And all the pirates laughed with him.

Even Ben was laughing.

"Because you’re a prisoner!" roared Captain Blackheart.

"A prisoner," said Jack. "Oh…."

"Your not scared are you, Jack," said Captain Blackheart.

"Me, scared," said Jack, just a little nervously. "Naaaahhhhh…."

"Well, that's good then, me hearty….because there's no room for scaredy-cats on this pirate ship.

And saying that, Captain Blackheart waved his rusty hook through the air.

"All the men on his ship have left their families behind many years ago, and they all joined us as boys," the Captain continued.

He pointed to the rogues and ruffians lined up on the deck.

"How many years since you saw your family, Black Spot?"

An ugly looking ruffian with a giant black spot on his face stepped forward. "I reckon it be twenty years, captain."

"And how about you, One Leg?"

A vicious looking rascal with a stump where his leg should be stepped forward. "At least fifty years, captain," he said.

"And you, Razor, what about you?"

And a Pirate with the biggest nose that Jack had ever seen stepped forwards. "At least a hundred years, captain."

"So you see lad, when you sign up with Captain's Blackheart's Pirate Ship you leave your family behind. Forever…."

"But we'd all rather sail the seven seas with Captain Blackheart," cried the pirates with one voice.

"And so would I," said Jack.

Except really he wasn't so sure. Because a hundred years at sea seemed an awfully long time.

Still, never mind he thought.

It looks like great fun.

More fun than playing with his silly and soppy six sisters back at home anyway.

"So how do I start being a pirate, sir?" asked Jack.

Captain Blackheart scratched his chin with his rusty metal hook and thought for a moment.

"You could start with the climbing of the rigging," he said."Or we could put you on crow's nest duty. Or maybe even a small lesson in how to set up a plank so that any dastardly villains we come across can be made to walk it."

"Cripes, that sounds like fun."

"Indeed it does, my lad," said Captain Blackheart. "Then again, we could teach you how to fire a broadside, or practice sharpening your cutlass."

"Or raising the Jolly Rodger," said Jack.

"Aye, that and all, lad," said the Captain. "But first you'll help Ben here make some lunch."

And so Jack followed Ben down into the galley of the ship.

It had been a long, long morning so far, and Jack was feeling a bit peckish.

I wonder what pirates have for lunch, though Jack.

At school, they usually had chicken and chips, or spag bol, or else fish fingers and beans. And there was often ice cream and apple crumble for pudding. And Jack usually polished it all off -- and his sisters' lunch as well, if there was any left.

I bet pirate grub is fantastic, he decided.

"Okay," said Ben. "You get the jellied sheep's eyes, and I'll slice up the snake."

Jack felt a bit queasy all of a sudden. And a lot less hungry.

"You do like sheep's eyes, don't you," said Ben. "And snake?"

"Well, er…"

"Or if you prefer, we can moved straight onto the stewed worms? Or the bug burger?"

"Right, er…"

Jack felt his skin go a little green.

"I hope your not one of those landlubbers who just likes bacon, and sausages, and fish fingers, and all that type of grub," said Ben. "Because here on the pirate ship we eat sheep's eyes and worms and bugs ….and everything."

"Right," said Jack. "Sounds great."

And so they started on lunch. They tossed the sliced worms, the chopped bug burgers, the sheep's eyes and the snake into a big pot, and they stirred and stirred until a big stew was ready.

And then carried it up onto the deck.

Captain Blackheart's ship was a long way out to sea now, and Jack couldn't see any land at all.

Which ever way you looked, there was just sea, sea and more sea.

And a fierce wind was starting to blow.

Making the ship rock form side to side.

And there were big waves starting to splash across everyone.

Ben put the bowl of stew down on the centre of the deck.

And all the pirates lined up with their tin plates. Ben scooped out a big spoonful of stew into each one, and they gobbled it all up.

"Here's yours," said Ben, putting a big pile of stew on Jack's plate.

It smelled horrible.

Like a pile of old socks, and football jerseys.

And as the wind blew, the ship rocked from side to side.

And Jack began to feel a bit sick.

"Don't waste it, lad," said Captain Blackheart.

Jack took one small bite.

And it was the most horrible thing he'd ever tasted - even worse than granny's beef stew, and that was so bad all his sisters had had to lie down after eating it.

"I said don't waste it, lad," said Captain Blackheart, waving his hook at Jack.

Jack tried another bite - but spat it out.

"Is it the sheep's eyes or the sliced worm you don't like, lad," said Captain Blackheart.

"I put in some shark tongue," said Ben. "Maybe he doesn't like that…"

And at that moment, Jack felt so queasy, he ran to the side of the ship, and was a violently sick.

When he walked back, the Captain was looking very serious indeed.

"I don't think this lad's up for a life on the ocean," he said. "I reckon we'll put him up for ransom."

"For ransom…" cried Jack.

"Aye, lad," said Captain Blackheart. "I reckon your parents will pay a pretty penny to get you back. Better that than see you walk the plank…"

Duration 10.14 Read by Natasha