DISCLAIMER: -insert legal gibberish of your choice-

Within a few hours, a familiar outline appeared on the horizon. The Pirate Who Liked Sunsets And Kittens saw it and silently signaled to the Pirate With A Scarf, who knocked on the cabin door. It creaked open a bit, and the Pirate Captain poked his head out.

"It's time sir," the first mate whispered.

The captain shut the door again. "Sorry about this, Nappy. Got some things to take care of. I'll be awhile!" He then opened the door and came outside. A large notepad black with writing was tucked under his arm, and a mischievous smirk was on his face. "Did you get the boat ready?"

The Pirate With A Scarf gestured to the side of the boat, where the others had attached the Pirate Ship's lifeboat to a pulley and had lowered it into the ocean.

"We got the plank ready and waitin', too," said the Surprisingly Curvaceous Pirate as they all approached the captain. "Ya know, just in case ya change yer mind."

"I don't think that'll be necessary. But if it is, then we'll certainly have at him."

The Pirate With Gout couldn't take it anymore. "Captain, this is madness! He'll never believe he's really in - "

"Not so loud!" The Pirate Captain stole a cautious glance at the cabin door. It stood ajar, and Napoleon was watching him through the crack. "We can't speak of it as long as he's here," he muttered as he gave their guest a friendly wave.

Once Napoleon had shut the door, the captain quickly got into the lifeboat. "Remember, just sail around and don't come near. I'll fetch you when everything's ready. Oh, and if he asks for me, make up something exciting." He then stuffed the notepad into his coat. "Well, best be off!"

"Captain," Charles asked, "you'll be back soon, right?"

"I'm not sure. There's an awful lot of redecorating to be done."

"...And you're sure it's possible."

With a smile and a tip of his hat, the Pirate Captain jumped over the side of the ship, grabbed one of the pulley ropes and slid down into the lifeboat. "It's only impossible if you stop to think about it!" he called back as he unhooked the ropes, picked up the oars and quickly rowed away from the ship.

"I suppose we mustn't think about it, then," the Albino Pirate said, managing to completely miss the expressions of exasperation on all his companions' faces. All except one.

The Pirate With A Scarf simply rolled his eyes and shook his head. He never can pass up a chance to show off.

A smirk crossed Black Bellamy's face as he saw the Pirate Captain step through the doorway of the Barnacle's Face. "Well, well," he said, "look who's - "

"Bellamy! Just the man I wanted to see!" the captain exclaimed. Taking no notice of the odd stares he was receiving, he walked right up to Black Bellamy, grabbed his arm and proceeded to drag him outside onto the empty wharf. "Thought I'd have to go looking for you!"

For several moments, Black Bellamy was too flabbergasted to protest. "What are you doing?" he finally shouted.

The Pirate Captain simply tightened his grip and took him towards the set of tall wooden doors which led to the rest of the island. "There's something we need to discuss." Pushing open the doors, he motioned to the dirt walkway on the other side. "Care to take a walk?"

After a few minutes, the jungle lining the path gave way to a collection of wooden buildings in various shapes and sizes. They looked as though they had been haphazardly shoved together, and they were swarming with pirates. Laughs, shouts, the singing of shanties and a myriad of other noises filled the air. So when Black Bellamy's outburst attracted several stares, even he was a bit surprised.

"Are you INSANE?"

"Possibly. But so's he! That's why I think there's a chance!"

"There's about as much chance as there is of us getting eaten by a sea monster."

"Then it just might work!"

Bellamy sighed. "Dude, you're not exactly the most popular guy around here. Even if it could work - and it couldn't - no one's gonna listen to it."

"They will if the Pirate King tells them. He still owes me a favor!"

"Yeah, but not something like this! He'll never agree to it!"

"Which is why I'm going to need someone who'll second the idea," the Pirate Captain said, patting his companion's shoulder.

"...You've got to be kidding."

"But he'll listen to you! And besides, it wouldn't be for very long. You could flee the island or something!"

"Forget it!"

"I'll...I'll do something for you in return!"

Bellamy eyed him disdainfully. "Like what?"

A familiar high-pitched laughter got their attention. Staggering down the street towards them was Peg-leg Hastings, stinking drunk and brandishing a yellowed old scroll. "Stand aside, you cove!" he shouted when he bumped into the Pirate Captain. "You're looking at the next Pirate of the Year! For many years to come!"

"Really? And why is that?"

He waved the scroll in the captain's face. "I've got a map to the biggest mines in Africa, that's why!" he giggled madly. "Diamonds and gold, mountains of it! And all for me to take! Won't Black Bellamy be getting a nasty surprise...!"

"But of course. Say, you mind holding my hat for a moment?" In a single swift motion, the Pirate Captain removed his hat and placed it into Peg-leg's hand while relieving him of his scroll and handing it to Black Bellamy. "Thank you, now be off!" he said as he quickly snatched back the hat.

Oblivious to what had just occurred, Peg-leg turned and ambled away, still giggling to himself.

"Now what do you say?" the captain asked triumphantly.

Bellamy looked at the scroll, then at the activities surrounding him. Two pirates had captured a third and were mercilessly dunking him in a well. A group of men were spying on some tavern wenches, and another one was chasing an unfortunate fellow down an alleyway with a large rolling pin in hand. Peg-leg was offering a cup of grog and a night on the town to an alley cat. There wasn't a scrap of refinement, intelligence or dignity to be seen anywhere.

"I say we can pull this off."

The Pirate King had a very different view of the matter.

"WHAT IS THIS IMPUDENCE?" he thundered, the sound making the walls of his study shake. "How dare you come before me with such a proposition!"

The Pirate Captain tried not to look sheepish. "I know it's a terrible idea - "

"TERRIBLE? It would be a disgrace to my kingdom and all its subjects! I shall not allow it!"

Now it was Bellamy's turn. "Your Majesty," he said as he came forward, "can't you be a little more...open to suggestion?"

"Honestly, Bellamy, I thought you had more sense than this. You would have finished off the little demon straightaway!"

"Well, duh, but that's beside the point." He took a flask out of his coat pocket and offered it to the king. "I think you're looking at this all wrong."

"How so?"

"Don't you remember all the trouble this Napoleon dude stirred up? It was the end of the world as we knew it! Total chaos! I learned French because I figured we'd all be speaking it soon! And the ships! The ships were too busy fighting to carry any treasure! Stealing booty? You nearly cancelled Pirate of the Year because there wasn't any booty to steal!"

The Pirate King rolled his eyes and took a large swig from the flask. "My patience with both of you is waning!"

"Okay, okay. You've got two choices; you can go along with Captain's plan and be done with this in a couple weeks...or you can go back to those days. What's it gonna be?"

"If you two were real pirates, there would be no need for a plan!"

"That's what I thought," Bellamy said cheerfully. "By the way, how do you like that drink?"

"...What about it?"

"Pretty strong stuff."

The Pirate King stared into the flask suspiciously, blinked twice and suddenly fell forward onto the desk, snoring loudly.

"I told you we weren't going to do that!"

Bellamy poked the king's form. "He should be out for a day or three. We'll lock him in his room and feed him more when he wakes up. Come on, we were both thinking it!" he added upon seeing the captain's expression. "You take care of the plans, and I'll get everyone organized." Still chuckling to himself, he left the room.

Gingerly pushing the Pirate King back into a sitting position, the Pirate Captain leaned against the desk and began to flip through his notepad. The roads will need to be fixed up, he thought, and we can put that arch thing near the front. But what are we going to do about the Eiffel Tower?

And so it begins. The hilarity will officially ensue next chapter, so stick around!

~ A. Kingsleigh