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    Mark Arbour
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Odyssey - 15. Chapter 15

June 1, 1797

           

Granger scanned the young man who looked quite well-turned out, nothing like the midshipman he’d brought with him from Plymouth. The first impression Granger got was that the boy was sparkling clean, largely a result of the bath Granger had made him take last night. He wore a new uniform made of the finest broadcloth, with gold leaf on the shoulder boards. The breeches fit him perfectly, while the silk stockings seemed to glimmer, and if they did not, the gold buckles on his shoes most assuredly did. His new dirk hung from his waist, while a new hat sat atop his dark hair, which was coiffed back to more fully reveal his bold green eyes. “You look very good,” Granger said, smiling.

“Thank you, sir,” Kingsdale said, only he didn’t look down shyly as he had before. Clearly the time with the Earl of Bridgemont had helped the lad out.

“Let’s be off then,” Granger said, leading him out to the carriage. “So did you enjoy your time with my father?”

“He’s an incredible man, sir,” the boy said, with wide-eyed hero worship. “He taught me things…I don’t know how I would have learned without him as a guide.”

“With your own father gone when you were so young, it is good to have someone like him to explain how things work, and how to conduct yourself.”

“I only had other relatives, and they aren’t like your father, sir,” Kingsdale said.

“When we return, you will have to spend some time with my wife. She can teach you how to manage an estate,” Granger said with a smile, thinking of his redoubtable wife.

“That would be fantastic, sir.”

The carriage pulled up to the Palace, and Granger led Kingsdale up the steps to the entry. He was about to whisper the young man’s name to the chamberlain, but Kingsdale had evidently been coached on that, and handled it himself.

“The Right Honorable Viscount Granger, the Right Honorable Baron of Kingsdale,” boomed the chamberlain. He led the young man through the sea of courtiers, pausing to exchange a pleasantry or two, until they were in front of their sovereign. Granger bowed low, using his peripheral vision to see that Kingsdale perfectly aped his moves, and then strode forward, bowing again.

“We are pleased to see you here, Granger,” the King said affably.

“Thank you, Your Majesty,” Granger responded. “It is good to be here. May I present one of my officers?” The King nodded his assent. “This is The Baron of Kingsdale.”

“We are pleased to see you here as well,” the King said to him. “Your grandfather was a good man.”

“Thank you, Your Majesty,” Kingsdale said, miraculously doing so without stammering.

“It would please us if you would attend us tomorrow at 10:00am,” the King said to Granger.

“As Your Majesty wishes,” Granger said, and then recognizing they’d been dismissed, he bowed as he backed away from the throne, with Kingsdale dutifully following him.

Granger made the rounds, and since he knew everyone there, it took a while. Kingsdale took station on him, following him as they went, only speaking when someone spoke to him, or he was introduced. Granger smiled as he saw a familiar figure, and moved quickly to talk to Lord Hood.

“Sir, I have your protégé with me,” Granger said. “Lord Kingsdale.”

Hood eyed the boy. “Good to see you Kingsdale. You look nicely turned out.”

“But he is surely not as handsome as I am, sir,” Granger joked.

“I hope you’re not teaching him to be as impertinent as you,” Hood growled good-naturedly.

“I am endeavoring to instill the same level of charm in him, sir,” Granger said. Hood shook his head.

“When are you off?”

“I leave for Plymouth on Monday, sir,” Granger said. “I expect we’ll sail on Wednesday morning.”

“Good thing you left when you did.”

“Sir?”

“Those rogues at the Nore have issued a blockade order for London. They’re stopping all traffic on the river.”

“Surely not, sir,” Granger said, stunned that they’d do that. London was one of the busiest ports in the world. The merchants would be incensed.

“Indeed they have. And Spencer has cut off supplies to them from the shore. The batteries at Sheerness have been reconstituted and manned, and no one from the fleet is being allowed contact with the shore.” So Spencer was going to starve them out. Granger was certain that public opinion would turn against the mutineers now that they’d launched their blockade. They’d eventually run out of food, and possibly even potable water.

“This group is a rum lot, sir,” Granger noted. “The men I met at Spithead, those delegates would never have done something like this.”

“There is worse news,” Hood said. “Duncan’s fleet has joined the mutiny. His ships actually left the Texel and sailed to the Nore to join the mutineers.”

“So there is no one watching the Dutch?” Granger asked. Hood shook his head. This could well be a disaster, if the Dutch fleet sortied.

“And there is worse news, still,” Hood said. “They’ve said that if their demands aren’t met, they’ll sail the fleet to Holland or France.”

Granger stared at him, truly stunned. “Then they are not mutineers, sir, they are traitors.” Granger paused for a moment to consider the situation. “If the Dutch seize control of the North Sea, what will happen?”

“I suppose the fleet from Brest could rendezvous with them and attempt to control the Channel, thus paving the way for an invasion. I would suspect that the Channel Fleet would have to try and deal with both threats at once.”

“That would seem to be an almost impossible task, even for such a skilled admiral as Lord Bridport, sir,” Granger said. He remembered to praise Bridport since he was Hood’s brother. “In any event, this should keep the First Lord busy so he doesn’t worry about us tossing grape shot at them.”

“Your encounter with them is a forgotten footnote, eclipsed by these other events,” Hood noted.

“I suspect I will be long gone, sir, even if the Admiralty agrees to their demand to serve me up,” Granger joked.

“I think it unlikely that any of their demands will be met, but perhaps we can work that one in, just for fun,” Hood teased. Granger laughed at that.

“I have spent too much time in London. I have done nothing but accumulate enemies.”

“Ah, Granger,” Spencer said from behind Granger. “How nice that you have time to socialize.”

“I am indeed enjoying myself, sir,” Granger said, smiling as he turned. “I brought one of my midshipmen here to present him to His Majesty. This is Lord Kingsdale.”

Granger smiled as the young man, who had been so confident when meeting the King, and had even been relatively calm when meeting with Hood, seemed terrified now that he was confronted with the First Lord. “Nice to meet you, Kingsdale,” Spencer said affably.

“The pleasure is mine, sir,” Kingsdale managed to say.

“I need you to call on me tomorrow morning,” Spencer said, turning back to Granger.

“Sir, I am afraid I have an engagement tomorrow,” Granger said nervously.

“Let me guess,” Spencer said. “Your tailor?”

Granger grinned. “I have already spent time there, both for myself, and for Lord Kingsdale,” Granger said, using that as a way to remind Spencer of his presence, so they did not discuss confidential matters.

“So who is pre-empting me?” Spencer demanded.

“His Majesty has asked me to be here at 10:00am tomorrow, sir.”

“He does outrank you, Spencer,” Hood said with a grin.

“Indeed he does,” Spencer noted. “Call on me after you have finished at the Palace.”

“Yes, sir,” Granger said.

They left the Palace, then Granger managed to extricate himself from Kingsdale and went to call on the Duke of Clarence, as he had promised. The Duke was expecting him, and led him to his study for a quick but satisfying coupling.

After they had recovered, the Duke walked toward his window and looked out, then turned back to Granger. “I am unsure as to how Maidstone managed to secure the position of Governor. I have spoken with my father about it, and he was unaware of it as well.”

“His Majesty was not consulted on the appointment of a governor, Your Royal Highness?” Granger asked, amazed.

“Evidently John Company views Amboyna as a corporate fiefdom, and has forgotten that they operate under a charter granted by their Sovereign.”

“This whole thing seems highly unorthodox, Your Royal Highness. I wonder what my trip to Amboyna will be like, and I wonder what I will find when I get there.”

“And I am wondering what and who is behind this whole thing,” he said. “I am glad you have told me what is happening. The Prince of Wales tends to overlook Maidstone’s boorishness because the man is wealthy, and my father generally overlooks it because he has other things to worry about. This move will no doubt irritate both of them.”

“I am sorry to be the bearer of troublesome issues, Your Royal Highness,” Granger said sincerely.

“Yes, but it is important to know, and besides, seeing you is always such a pleasure.”

“I feel the same way, Your Royal Highness,” Granger said, and then took his leave from this powerful man.

 

June 2, 1797

 

Granger arrived at the Palace some 15 minutes early, just to make sure he was on time to see his sovereign. The chamberlain greeted him in a familiar way; so often had Granger been here in the past few months, they all knew him.

The chamberlain led him down a hallway to a door. He scratched, and then entered. Granger had been in this room before, a long room with a desk. He bowed with the chamberlain. “The Right Honorable Viscount Granger,” the chamberlain said, and then vanished.

Granger approached the King and bowed again. He was surprised that he was the only one here; he expected that there would be someone else with the King.

“We understand you are seeking a pardon for your doctor,” the King said.

“Yes, Your Majesty. Doctor Jackson is the best ship’s surgeon I have yet encountered, and has saved the lives of several of my officers and crewmen in the course of his service with me. In addition, he has also provided medical services to my brother.”

“Yet he is also accused of some heinous crimes, of murder, and of frequenting a molly house.”

“Your Majesty, I have asked him about these allegations. I am satisfied that he has not been involved in these crimes.” The King merely stared at him, suggesting that his assurances were not enough. “The heinous murder was in fact the result of failed medical treatments. Dr. Jackson’s fiancée, the daughter of Sir Tobias Maidstone, developed tumors in her breasts. She asked Dr. Jackson to remove them. Sadly, he was unable to stop the growths.”

“Hmph,” the King said, a most un-kingly utterance.

“As for the molly house, Your Majesty, Dr. Jackson was asked to go there to assist a man with a medical problem. He does not otherwise go to such establishments. I am further convinced that he was set up, that he was asked to go there so he could be swept up in a raid, and discredited.”

The King seemed to ponder his words for a few moments. “We have issued a conditional pardon for him,” the King said, and handed Granger a document. “It is hoped that you are right, and that he will conduct himself in an honorable manner in the future.”

“I must thank Your Majesty, on behalf of myself and Dr. Jackson, for Your Majesty’s mercy,” Granger said, even though he didn’t know what the provisions of the pardon were. No matter what it was, it was the best they were going to do for Jackson, and it was better than no pardon at all.

“We understand you are sailing soon?”

“Yes, Your Majesty. I expect to sail on Wednesday.”

“We have enjoyed having you here. We will hope that after this, your voyages do not take you so far away.”

“Thank you, Your Majesty,” Granger said, smiling broadly at such a nice compliment. The King nodded, so Granger bowed and backed out of the room, taking his leave of the King.

He waited until he was in his carriage and on the way to the Admiralty until he reviewed the pardon. It was an unconditional pardon for acts committed prior to the date of the pardon, which was yesterday, but was provisional on Dr. Jackson remaining in the service of the Crown, or of personal service to Granger or his heirs, for the next fifteen years, at which time the pardon was no longer conditional. In other words, Jackson was tied to him or the Navy (or some other branch of the King’s service) for the next 15 years. Granger thought it annoying that such a bright and compassionate man would be forced into what was nothing more than indentured servitude, but it was better than the alternative, which was death.

He arrived at the Admiralty and signed in. He was led back to see Spencer so quickly, he didn’t even have time to seek out Cavendish. That turned out to be a non-event, since he was in Spencer’s office, with the First Lord.

“Ah, Granger. I see you didn’t take too long with His Majesty,” Spencer said.

“Do you think it is because I am not charming enough, sir?” Granger asked, teasing him.

Spencer laughed. “I am sure that is not what it was. What did he have to say to you?”

“He gave me a conditional pardon for Dr. Jackson, sir,” Granger said. “His prior sins are absolved as long as he spends the next 15 years in the service of His Majesty, or me or my heirs.”

“Damned to spend 15 years with you,” Spencer mused. “I’m not sure the gallows wouldn’t be preferable.”

Granger laughed. “I tend to share your view on that, sir.” Even as he was bantering with the First Lord, Granger was girding himself for an argument with Spencer to retain Jackson on board.

“Well, we have an interesting development,” Spencer said, getting down to business. “I asked Cavendish to be here to discuss this issue, and then he will be off to the Palace.”

“It is good to see you,” Granger said to Cavendish.

“I will endeavor to call on you before you depart, sir,” Cavendish said.

“It seems that Maidstone won’t be travelling to the Indies with you after all.”

“Sir?” Granger asked, confused.

“It seems that as soon as Sir Tobias secured his warrant as governor, he boarded a company ship and set sail for the Indies.”

“That is highly unusual, is it not, sir? I would have at least expected, if he was travelling by company ship, that he would have wanted an escort.”

“The ship Sir Tobias sailed on is a sloop that is well-armed, sir,” Cavendish said, injecting himself into the conversation. “It would be worth noting that such a vessel would serve well as a privateer.”

“Cavendish is right,” Spencer said. “The Vulture is armed with 18 guns, 9-pounders, and has been issued a Letter of Marque.”

“What would Maidstone gain by travelling to Amboyna without Bacchante, sir?” Granger asked. “I can’t believe the presence of Dr. Jackson would have been that much of a deterrent.”

“Neither can I, especially since Sir Tobias left London on the same day that Dr. Jackson was arrested.”

Granger stared at Spencer, amazed. “Then his mission was to delay me, sir?”

“I think it was to create a firestorm, such that no one would evaluate the way in which he was appointed and dispatched, sir,” Cavendish said.

“I am wondering if my encounter at the Nore was entirely coincidental,” Granger mused.

“What do you mean, Granger?” Spencer asked. He seemed irritated, which probably happened whenever the mutiny came up.

“They seemed most anxious to stop me, sir,” Granger noted. “I am wondering if they were encouraged do to so.”

“That is quite possible, but it is hard to say, as Parker and the other traitors would have had that as a motive anyway.”

“I am confused by this, and worried that I am sailing into a hornet’s nest. If he has already gone, he is likely to get to Amboyna before I do. I thought the objective, sir, was for me to facilitate the transition of power from Bertie to the new governor.”

Spencer sat back and pondered the situation. “I have spoken with the Privy Council, and your orders are going to be quite broad in nature.”

“Sir?”

“None of us is sure about what Maidstone is up to. Whatever it is, it has repercussions here in London, and it is important that we know what the plan is. It seems that the only way to do that is to let him get to Amboyna and see how this plays out.”

Granger looked to Cavendish for some sort of clarification. “That means that you must arrive after Sir Tobias, and see what has become of the colonial government upon your arrival.”

“You will be given the authority to appoint the next governor,” Spencer added. “That may mean that you retain your brother, which is what everyone expects, or it may mean that you select someone else.”

Granger stared at Spencer and Cavendish, totally shocked, and speechless. “Sir, I would submit that it is a high compliment the government is paying you, relying on your judgment and objectivity to resolve this issue,” Cavendish said, prompting him.

“I am mindful of that honor, and the responsibility that goes with it,” Granger said. “So I am to arrive after Sir Tobias? That should not be too difficult, since he has already departed.”

“Actually, you will be detoured on your voyage to Amboyna,” Spencer said. “We have another problem that you must solve on your way.”

“It appears I am to be busy, sir,” Granger said, smiling, trying to wrap his mind around things.

“Indeed. French privateers have been working in the South Pacific, raiding our whaling fleets. They send the ships into the South American ports of their Spanish allies, which they’re using as their bases of operations. So there are a number of British and American prisoners languishing there, and the merchants are screaming that our whalers must be protected.”

Spencer got up and walked over to the wall of maps, while Cavendish unfurled one of the world. “So I am to sail around Cape Horn, sir?” Granger asked.

“Yes. The Spaniards are known to have two frigates and various smaller vessels in the area. Nothing you can’t handle.” Granger agreed with him, assuming they weren’t massed into one fleet. Even then, Bacchante would thrash them. “Your orders will be to sail to the Spanish South American coast and create havoc and mayhem. Your objectives will be threefold,” Spencer said. “First, you will try to sink or capture any French privateers you encounter. We will try to provide you with some intelligence on the vessels we expect are operating in the area.”

“Thank you, sir,” Granger said.

“Second, you are to create chaos along that coast, such that Spain is compelled to divert forces from home to chase you away. Of course, you will be long gone before they arrive, but the panic should be enough to convince them to carve away some naval assets.”

Granger tried not to smile. This was an incredible opportunity, an incredible mission, and one that could very well yield a fortune in prize money. “That should make me less popular with His Most Catholic Majesty,” Granger said.

“I should think so,” Spencer said, smiling. “Your third objective will be to secure the release of any British and American prisoners. How you do that will be up to you.”

“You said Americans, sir?” Granger thought the Americans were at peace with France.

“It seems there are some conflicts between the Americans and their former French allies. The crux of the disagreement appears to be the unwillingness of the American government to repay to the French the debts they ran up in the war against us.”

“They won’t honor their debts, sir?” Granger asked, surprised. He knew the Americans were a mercenary people when it came to money, but stiffing those who made loans to them would appear out of character.

“They claim that those debts were owed to the French Kings, and not to the new Republican government,” Spencer said, smiling wryly. “It appears that fellow republics are not so principled when a good excuse arises to avoid the repayment of a huge amount of money.”

“So are the Americans allied with us against the French, sir?” Granger found the whole thing to be quite confusing.

“No. But we have agreed to offer protection to their ships seeking convoy with our forces, more as a goodwill gesture than anything. It may help coax them into this on our side, or at least perhaps they will be less likely to strike out at us.”

“One can only hope, sir,” Granger said.

“I needed to resolve this issue, so it gives me a chance to kill two birds with one stone. Besides, I’m sending you to one of the richest regions in the world, and you have been quite lucky with prizes. Let us pray that continues.”

“I can only hope, sir.”

“Perhaps you will do me the honor of dining with me on Sunday evening. I can give you your final orders then, and update you if there have been any changes,” Spencer said.

“It would be my pleasure, sir,” Granger said.

“I will expect you to leave for Plymouth on Monday morning, in hopes that you can sail on Wednesday.”

“Aye aye, sir,” Granger said. He left, followed by Cavendish.

“I will stop by this evening so we can talk more,” he said quietly. Granger went home to anxiously await his arrival.

 

June 4, 1797

 

“Captain the Right Honorable Viscount Granger,” boomed the chamberlain as Granger strode confidently into Carlton House. He’d ridden out to Brentwood yesterday to say his goodbyes to Caroline and his children. It had been a wonderful day, and he’d gotten to truly enjoy his family. William was now referred to by the staff as Lord Ryde, since as the eldest son of a viscount, he’d picked up Granger’s lesser title as a courtesy. He was quite precocious for a four-year-old, and Granger had truly enjoyed digging up the gardens with him and his little sister, Charlotte. The nannies had been less than pleased about what a mess they’d made, but Granger didn’t worry about that.

Then there had been the truly heart-wrenching goodbyes that he’d said to them this morning. Caroline had been almost inconsolable, but he’d promised her that he’d come back to her. He was stunned that even though it was an idiotic thing to say, she seemed reassured. As if he had control over the tropical diseases that would seek to lay him low, or the French and Spanish cannon balls that would seek to deprive him of his life.

After that, he’d been cheered by a wonderful dinner with Spencer and his wife, and had drunk a bit too much. Fortunately a bath had helped sober him up enough to make a final appearance here, to take his leave of the Prince of Wales.

It was a smaller crowd this evening, on a Sunday, but that was all the better. Granger made his way over to the Prince, bowing low as he approached him. “Granger! You’re not gone yet!”

“I fear that I leave for Plymouth tomorrow morning, Your Royal Highness. I just came to take my leave of you.”

The Prince escorted Granger off to the side where they could converse, just the two of them, a singular honor. “I wish you luck on this voyage, Granger. I know they saddled you with Maidstone, and that’s bound to end up badly, but you’ll make the best out of the hash they’ve given you.”

“I must thank Your Royal Highness for your kind words and confidence. I will follow your example. That should be enough.” The Prince liked flattery.

“I haven’t forgotten my promise to you, nor will I. I will see after your family while you are gone.”

“And for that, Your Royal Highness, I am forever in your debt,” Granger said. The Prince returned to the side of Lady Jersey, whom Granger greeted warmly, then he took his leave and wandered about, briefly greeting those he knew. He was quite astonished to find himself face to face with Jervis, or Lord St. Vincent as he was now known.

“Sir, I had no idea you were in London,” Granger said cheerfully. “I am glad I have the chance to congratulate you on your advancement to the peerage.”

“It seems yours came before mine, Granger,” St. Vincent said with a growl.

“Yes, sir, but yours is bigger,” Granger teased, getting a smile from St. Vincent.

“I’m not very happy about losing you to the tropics,” he snarled again.

“I am sure you know this was not of my doing, sir. I was most fervent in my requests to be returned to the Mediterranean.”

“I know. And I bear you no ill will, even though you did smash up one of my frigates on your way home.”

“Yes, sir, but I also fattened your purse, so surely that must count for something.”

“You do know how to cheer one up,” St. Vincent said, and chuckled. “Good luck on this voyage. When you come back, I’ll expect to see you back in the Mediterranean. Perhaps by then I can do more than just lurk outside of Lisbon.”

“Thank you, sir. And thank you for everything you’ve done for me,” Granger said earnestly.

“Bah. I just gave you opportunities. You made them into successes.” Granger shook his hand, and was about to leave Carlton House when he ran into Arthur.

“George! I’m so glad I ran into you,” Arthur said.

“Not as glad as I am,” Granger said. “It is so good to see you looking like your old self.”

“I owe that all to you,” he said. “Were you leaving?”

“I was,” Granger said. “Would you care to join me for a ride?”

Arthur grinned and followed Granger out to his carriage, and they both embarked. “I fear that this is not a ride like we used to take,” he said.

“Indeed? Well Arthur, I will have to be satisfied with just your charming company. I’m sure that will be more than enough.”

Arthur grinned at him. “I am sorry for how I treated you. Ever since Major Jardines went away, I have been all aback.”

“I did not realize that you and he were so close.”

“I have learned of my weakness, and it is for men with large cocks who like to take charge. If I have a man like that behind me, literally,” he said, giggling, “then I can face the world in complete sanity.”

“I am glad that you have found someone to fulfill you,” Granger said with a similar giggle.

“Actually, I think that you did that,” Arthur said. “Holmquist is a wonderful man. He is strong and dominant, and makes me know he is in charge, but he is also sweet and loving, letting me know that he genuinely cares about me.”

The carriage pulled up in front of Portland Place. “When I next come home, ask him if I can have permission to sample your wares again.”

Arthur giggled. “I will do that.” Granger hopped out, then told the coachman to take Arthur back to Carlton House.

Copyright © 2014 Mark Arbour; All Rights Reserved.
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Another outstanding chapter! It looks like George is almost ready to leave for the big adventure. Only God and Mark knows what will happen. I think George has a good crew and a great ship The mission soon will be set. In a few years maybe his son, William, will go with him. This will be a long journey. I hope it will be safe. Only time will tell. I, like George, long for the open sea. Great work Mark!

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On 07/29/2012 05:29 AM, rjo said:
Another outstanding chapter! It looks like George is almost ready to leave for the big adventure. Only God and Mark knows what will happen. I think George has a good crew and a great ship The mission soon will be set. In a few years maybe his son, William, will go with him. This will be a long journey. I hope it will be safe. Only time will tell. I, like George, long for the open sea. Great work Mark!
Yep. Next Saturday (I hope) we sail
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Wow, Granger being given a free hand to reek havoc on some easy and profitable targets. I hope he has enough crew and officers for all the prize crews.

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As always. More questions than answers. Gotta love how complex your mind is. More in the forum. But it was a fantastic chapter.

Thanks!

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Wow! Granger has a new ship ready to sail and orders to go create havoc. Let the games begin. chris.gifaxeman.gifchris.gifaxeman.gif

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Interesting twist of the plot with Maidstone's departure. Poor Bertie, to be left to the clutches of a conniving replacement for some time before George gets there. And knowing the vagaries such a voyage with an interim mission could entail, it could be a fairly long time until George arrives to make his decision as to what to do about the governorship.

As Ricky already said, on this crazy Olympic weekend: "Let the games begin!"

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On 07/29/2012 06:35 AM, JimCarter said:
Wow, Granger being given a free hand to reek havoc on some easy and profitable targets. I hope he has enough crew and officers for all the prize crews.
That would seem to be a prime area. I'm not sure he has to worry so much about the ships. It's the cargo that should be valuable.
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On 07/29/2012 08:16 AM, ricky said:
As always. More questions than answers. Gotta love how complex your mind is. More in the forum. But it was a fantastic chapter.

Thanks!

Why thank you. I think. ;-)
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On 07/29/2012 09:25 AM, davewri said:
Wow! Granger has a new ship ready to sail and orders to go create havoc. Let the games begin. chris.gifaxeman.gifchris.gifaxeman.gif
It's a writer's wet dream. :-)
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On 07/29/2012 09:53 AM, Daddydavek said:
Interesting twist of the plot with Maidstone's departure. Poor Bertie, to be left to the clutches of a conniving replacement for some time before George gets there. And knowing the vagaries such a voyage with an interim mission could entail, it could be a fairly long time until George arrives to make his decision as to what to do about the governorship.

As Ricky already said, on this crazy Olympic weekend: "Let the games begin!"

I wouldn't guess that Bertie is helpless. ;-)

 

Besides, remember that Chartley ran off to warn him about what was going to happen, so unless Chartley ran into problems, Bertie should be ready for it.

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It seams that Kingsdale is to remain with us even after the voyage. Any pardon is better than no pardon, but 15 years service, ouch. Talk about taking the long way around, this trip is getting longer and longer and he hasn't even left yet.Authority to remove or replace a governor, rescue whalers, destroy privateers, cause mayhem on both coasts of South America. Sounds more like a life time career, than a (simple) Odyssey. Great chapter, thank you.

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Well, glad to see that Kingsdale handled himself well when he was presented to the King. The time with the Earl was well spent.

 

I find Maidstone evil and annoying and we really haven't even met up with him yet. I hope he is the one that doesn't survive the tropics and their fevers...

 

It seems like Granger is going to have his hands full even before he gets to the East Indies...

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Did I misread something? I thought Maidstone had shipped off to the East Indies on a John Company ship that had already departed? While, under usual circumstances, that would put him into the East Indies before Granger arrives, it would make the trip much more relaxed. Though the trip t the East Indies by way of the southern tip of South America is shorter than to go via the Cape of Good Hope, the prevailing Westerlies make  rounding the southern tip of South America from east to west very difficult, so Granger is forced to sail nearly across the Atlantic toward Brazil before turning Easterly to get around Africa. It makes for a very long sea voyage. However, the West coast of South and Central America may be quite rich in Spanish Golden Galleons, and to get North of the Pacific Equatorial Doldrums, might make the westward journey, while longer in distance, at least under more favorable wind conditions. If memory serves me, both Africa and South America have northward flowing currents lying close to their coastlines and the Northern Hemisphere sub-tropical currents are Westerly, with the wind patterns paralleling the ocean currents.

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George has a very interesting new assignment with potential to become even wealthier.  I am sure he will make the most of this opportunity.  Unfortunately that means I will have to wait for many chapters to find out what is happening in the East Indies.  I do hope he survives the trip around Cape Horn.  It is a very difficult passage.

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