"And so while the stupid one-eyed Cyclops cried and wept like a baby; the brave and noble Odysseus and his surviving crew sailed on to try and find a way back home to his wife and child once more!"
Jack smiled as he finished the story, his arms doing their usual flailing about with each word spoken.
"I couldn't have told the story better meself, captain." Gibbs lied, raising his flask of rum in salute before promptly downing it.
"Thank you." Jack said with a smile and a bow. "Now if you'll excuse me…"
"I fink et's a 'orrible story!"
"Who said that?" Jack snapped, turning around and placing his hands on his hips in annoyance.
Ragetti stood up then, placing his own thin arms on his hips in defiance.
"I fink tha' et were a 'orrible story an' I don' fink tha's wot really 'appened!" he said. "Jus' because a person 'as 'un eye et don' mean tha' they aint smar' or kind ta people in need!"
"Rags, jus' be quiet…" Pintel muttered softly, shaking his head and rolling his eyes.
"No! I wan' ta tell 'ow I fink et wen'!" Ragetti insisted. "Et's only fair!"
"No, let the one-eyed git tell his version." Jack laughed, sitting down and leaning back a bit with a small smile on his face. "In fact…I think a wager is in order."
"Wot kind o' wager?" Ragetti asked as Pintel simply gave up and sat back down.
"If your version is better than mine; I'll eat my hat and let you sleep in me own cabin for a week." Jack said. "If it's not…you have to give me that wooden eye of yours."
Ragetti hesitated, rubbing his eye as he chewed on his lower lip.
"Master Ragetti accepts." Barbossa called out, walking over and then clapping him on the back. "The wooden eye against yer hat being eaten and a nice week's sleep in yer little cabin!"
Jack frowned slightly, thinking that Barbossa was up to something.
"What are you up to, Hector?" he demanded.
"Up to? Nothing, Jack! I just want to make sure that this is done fairly! So instead of ye judging the story; Elizabeth, Will, Cotton, Gibbs, and meself will be the judges!"
Jack huffed but was forced to nod in agreement.
"Fine!" he sighed, watching as the appointed judges sat down together to discuss the story afterwards.
Ragetti chewed on his cuticles for a moment, his nerve starting to leave him as all eyes turned on him now.
"Come on, Ragetti." Elizabeth urged gently. "Tell us how you think the story should go."
Smiling, he nodded and lowered his hand.
"Well I fink et wen' loik this…"
The Cyclops in the story was named Arvin, and he lived on an island with his flock of sheep and his best friend; a homunculus by the name of Achava.
He was not a huge hulking giant, but was really just a human who was rather tall and skinny when compared to others, especially his small friend Achava who was only the size of…
"Watch et, Rags!" Pintel growled in faint annoyance.
Blinking, Ragetti turned to him and shook his head.
"I'm no' talkin' abou' yer, Pinters! I'm talkin' abou' 'is liddle tiny…"
"Stop talkin' abou' 'is 'eight an' move on!"
Ragetti huffed but nodded.
The only fault that Arvin had was that he liked to be friends with everyone; which is exactly what his name means, "friend to all". But the only one who ever told Arvin that this was a fault was Achava, who was always warning him that not everyone was as kind as he was and that he could end up getting hurt by trusting the wrong person.
Arvin did not believe that being friends with everyone was as dangerous as his best friend claimed, but he always humored him by nodding and promising to be careful when it came to strangers.
It came to pass one day that Achava needed to do business away from their island for a few days and that Arvin would be left alone.
Before he left, Achava gave Arvin one last warning about trusting strangers and then he sailed off on their large and beautiful black ship and Arvin went on with tending his flock.
The next day a horrible rain storm suddenly raged outside and as the fates would have it; a ship with humans crashed up onto the island and left the crew and their captain stranded.
The captain's name was Odysseus and he was not a very good man at all. He was quick with his tongue and just as quick to sell out people who had put their trust in him to save his own skin…
"I would choose my words carefully, Ragetti." Jack warned with narrowed eyes. "I don't think I'm going to like this!"
"Be quiet, Jack!" Barbossa shot back before turning to Ragetti with a wink. "Ye were saying?"
Well all in all, Odysseus was just a human and all humans are flawed in some way.
After Odysseus and his surviving crew washed up on the island; instead of seeing the beautiful trees and green fields around him, he turned on his crew and yelled at them for making the ship crash.
His crew was used to such behavior and they merely salvaged what they could before going to see if anyone could help them.
They found Arvin's home easily enough and even though the laws of hospitality forbade it, Odysseus led them inside and helped himself to the food. The crew warned against this but he dismissed them and soon they too ate of the food that Arvin worked hard to grow and harvest.
When Arvin returned later in the day with his flock, he was not angered but happy at the surprise guests. He offered them his best watered wine and killed his best lamb to cook for them.
He was very kind to them as the laws demanded and after they were made comfortable, he asked them their names.
But Odysseus knew that he would later betray the kind Cyclops and so he told him that his name was Noman.
"No-man?" Arvin asked, clearly saying it wrong.
For two days, Arvin treated his guests like family and he even helped them to begin building a raft for when they left the island. When they did leave, he promised to give them three of his fattest sheep and as much of his harvest as they could take with them to help avoid hunger.
Odysseus was not satisfied with this however and on the second night he gave Arvin his own flask of strong wine.
Arvin did not have the head for such a strong drink and he promptly fell asleep…
"Light weight…" Jack muttered.
"Oy! I can' 'elp et!" Ragetti protested. "Rum makes me sleepy!"
"Finish the story, Ragetti." Elizabeth urged.
And so the kind Cyclops slept throughout the night and half the morning while Odysseus had his crew take the entire flock and as much food as they could carry back to their raft.
Before they left however, Odysseus felt justified in punishing Arvin for not giving up his entire flock to him and so while his crew waited outside; he took a sharp stick and pierced it into Arvin's single eye.
"I told you it was an accident!" Jack snapped.
Ragetti looked at him with a narrowed and knowing eye.
"'ow could ye miss such an easy sho' loik tha'? The soldier was standin' ta me lef'."
"What's going on?" Will asked softly.
"Before we was cursed; Jack punished Ragetti by 'accidentally' shooting out his right eye."
"What was he being punished for?"
"Refusing to hand over my Piece of Eight."
As the crew and the wicked Odysseus fled; they were stopped by Achava, who had just returned from his trip.
Ignoring the humans, Achava ran to the cave and found a blinded Arvin sobbing on the ground.
"Arvin?! Arvin, who did this to you?"
"No-man did this to me!" Arvin wailed. "No-man betrayed me and hurt me when all I did was show him kindness and followed the laws passed down by the Gods themselves!"
"No-man!" Arvin nodded.
Achava did not understand what had happened. He was ready to punish the humans but because his dear friend said that "no man" had blinded him, he could do nothing but tend to his wound and whisper words of comfort in his ear.
Odysseus was not done being cruel to the pair however; for when he saw the beautiful black ship, he took it for his own and sailed off.
Arvin lived in darkness from then on; but with Achava as his eyes, he did not suffer as much and learned a very hard lesson about trusting people.
"Stop it, Jack!" Elizabeth snapped as Jack made snoring noises.
"Huh? You mean it's finally over? I must have fallen asleep!" he laughed. "I've heard dirges that were better!"
Ragetti shrugged and sat back down, resting his head on Pintel's shoulder, giving his matelot a warm smile and a light kiss on the cheek.
"I still loik mine betta." He said.
"What say the judges then?" Jack asked. "Should he be handing over the eye now?"
"I vote Ragetti." Elizabeth said with a smile.
"Master Ragetti." Barbossa nodded.
"I think Captain Jack's was better." Gibbs said, wanting to save his own skin when dealing with Jack.
"I have to agree. Jack." Will said.
"Will!" Elizabeth cried out.
All eyes were on Cotton and the mute man sighed and crossed his arms over his chest before turning to his parrot.
"Achava! Achava!" his parrot cried.
"Master Ragetti wins!" Barbossa laughed.
"WHAT?! I demand a recount!" Jack cried out.
"Sorry, Jack. Ye know the rules!"
With a growl, Jack swept off his hat and took a bite out of it.
"Bloody story telling Cyclops!" he muttered as Ragetti merely smiled proudly.