Written by Morse
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Tuesday, 3 March 2009

image for "Below Decks" - Chapter One: Prelude to Battle The

Brief Introduction by the Admiralty: 3 March, 1815 0640 hours Colony Time

This rollicking tale is completely unscripted by the ribald , more than slightly demented, crew of the Spoof. It will be a compilation of a series of chapters, the number of which has yet to be determined, as the entire crew has yet to muster aboard, most likely still ashore awash in rum, and partaking of the fleshly pleasures soon to be denied during the long voyage ahead.

Each crew member will write an outrageous chapter in the epic, and recount the adventures of the 48 gun Frigate "Buggerall", homeport, Bristol, as seen from their eyes. A profane narrative is almost guaranteed, considering the saltiness of the crew, and their independent nature which ensures that a mutiny could break out at any time.

To you, dear readers, be patient during this first Chapter, as a proper introduction must be made in order to set the tone for the rest of the tale. Be thou not impatient, nor offer up churlish remarks, as soon, all will become clear, and you will be entertained.

The END, AND the start of the BEGINNING:

Morse stood silently on the Poop deck, the morning mist of the the ever sullen Bristol Harour waterfront seemed to cling to him. His all encompassing eyes surveyed the final preparations to set sail and do battle against the King's Enemies, which were numerous. He was restless, but none would know it, even though his bowels were restless and begged release, anxious to begin this next chapter in his naval career. "Shit," he said silently, and released a big, silent one, the odour of which mingled easily with the sour smell of the
already polluted and turgid water in the harbour.

The last of the crew was already aboard and settled in. There had been the usual knife fights and skull bashing as they settled the pecking order, picking out their hammocks, sizing up their mates, and checking out the fine turn of their legs in their white stockings, and the smooth curve of their buttocks.

This then, was part of the New Navy, and subject to the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" mandate from the Admiralty. Already the crew wondered who would have the honor of being voted "Home Coming Queen", a time worn ritual as the "Buggerall" crossed the Equator, and the "newbies" had to undergo the elaborate initiation. Morse idly noticed that the ship's proctologist, had still not piped aboard, probably still up to his armpits in a project ashore.

Morse reviewed the mission he was charged with, slowly turning over the demands set forth by the Admiralty, obtuse as usual, couched in terms only the Kings's Barrister, Queen Mudder could fathom; guaranteed to cover the arses of the Admirals in charge, while leaving the ship's Captain's balls to dangle freely in the wind, a thought, though mildly pleasant during the briefly erotic moment, did not lend itself to a promising outcome.

Item 1: You will seek out the Enemy of the Realm, and of His Majesty, whomever they may be, engage and destroy them, no matter where they may roam, or where they take refuge on the High Seas.

Item 2: You must be humane with the Prisoners you capture, and you will be held to the strictest compliance of the Manchester Manifesto: No Keel Hauling, No Lashing, No physical abuse, no incarceration in The Brig.
At all times you must be polite and civil, no matter the provocation.
No intimate relationship with any of the prisoners, even if they are French, is to be condoned. Fraternization with Greeks is most expressly forbidden.

Item 3: You are charged with gathering such evidence as deemed appropriate by the King's Botanist, Earl "Friggin" Grey, for him to gather facts, measurements, botanical plants, unique examples of native wildlife and some such, in order to complete a study of most import; Global Warming.

Item 4: Under the rules of War, any spoils gathered by any means, fair or foul, remain in the control of the King, for him to do with as he wishes. For those on the ship that are deemed to be worthy, a 1/160 share will be awarded, after the Crown takes 60% under the new Redistribution of Wealth Act, passed by Parliament without opposition. All shares will be subject to further taxation and may be retroactive, depending on the needs of the King and his Court.

The King's Accountant and CPA/HR Block, Hal A. Peno, will be the sole arbitrator, and final authority determining the allocation of spoils.

Item 5: Should your command, due to the fortunes of war, force of nature, insurrection or mutiny, be lost at sea, you, the Captain, will take full responsibility for restitution to the Crown, who you now, in the future, and forever more, hold safe and hold harmless.

s/s Very Rear Admiral Markus P. Lowton, Earl of Prestwick

Morse contemplated the overwhelming odds. But then he had already risen above his humble beginnings, even defeating the odds of Primogeniture where he had been disowned from his rightful inheritance, turned out as a Bastard, a bold faced lie on the part of his evil stepfather, who then installed his idiot son Henman, as the next Earl of Glastonbury, with all rights of inheritance.

Morse had gone on, 20 years working his way up the Naval chain, surmounting one impossible challenge after another, meanwhile amassing a modest fortune from daring raids and suicide missions on behalf of his King, who probably didn't appreciate it anyway. "The way of Most Kings these days" Morse Mused Morosely.

He had a good crew now, mostly loyal, fiercely independent, most scarred from long ago battles on the Pitch, now too young for games, but bloodied enough to go to war. A group of Has Beens, Have Nots, and Have At Its, the latter their propensity to take on any foe, at any time, no matter the odds, and to fight to the death, or at least till they were too tired, or too drunk.

The time was at hand, the tide almost at full, the channel right for passing the shoals, a half moon lighting the way, easy to be away and skip past the blockading French Men of War on station a mile outside the Harbour, riding softly at anchor.

Clasping his hands behind his back, Morse called for his most trusted crew, men who had been with him for the last 3 action packed adventures.
Skoob, Buck and Monkey approached the command deck, and knuckled their forehead in greeting and respect.

"Men,and you Monkey, " Morse said quietly, "We're off again to do the King's business. I'm going below to check the stores, and make an entry in the Captain's Log. Which of you wants to take 'er out?"

Skoob jumped to the front, " Fer Christ's sake Captain, it's me, you arse. We've been dawdling around till fuck all trying to get this fuckin' ship movin'. Beggin' your lordships pardon, but it's time to haul ass and cut to the quick...
the crew is anxious to git on wit it."

"Agreed," said Morse, "The Helm is Yours Master Skoob", and he turned and headed toward his cabin, wondering where the Buggerall was headed, but not really worried, The Journey's the thing, don't ya know, not the final Destination!

END CHAPTER ONE- THE PRELUDE.

Continue to chapter 2 ...

The story above is a satire or parody. It is entirely fictitious.

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