The ship's cook, that mangy scurvy seadog Skoob, slumped over the table, head in hands, looking terribly disturbed, which in truth was not an unfamiliar situation for him.
Having battled with the French, navigated the red mist, turned out the most excellent leg of man (with Leeds United tattoos on the skin) Skoob was feeling rather like a man defeated.
Upon entering the galley, Bosun McCarthy, sensing the cook's distress instinctively, asked:
"What's up with you ya miserable gobshite?"
"Alright, Ferg, Bosun?" said the cook in a most unusually restrained manner.
"Sure I'm fine ya bollix," the Bosun quipped.
At which juncture, Monkey Woods, the ship lunatic, darted around the galley bouncing from table to chair, chair to table, wall to floor and wall to ceiling, all the while making those annoying monkey noises that monkeys make.
Bosun McCarthy studied the situation in a psychologistically psychological way before saying:
"Are you okay?"
The cannibalistically inclined cook replied:
"I'm not sure Bosun..."
"Whoah there ya freak!" spluttered the bosun. "I was only enquiring about your mood. I don't recall requesting your life story!"
"Yeah, okay," said the dejected cook. "Sorry..."
"What's up with him?" Earl Grey asked as he popped in for a drop of grog, indicating the slumped over cook.
"Don't worry about him," the Bosun said. "He's just on a downer because his soccerball team got flogged again. Two nil away at Fulham, and two soccerball players sent off. One for doing goalie impressions and one for doing Michael Jordan impressions."
"Where'd the monkey go?" Earl Grey asked of the bosun.
"No idea," said the bosun. "Probably gone ashore, what with his seasickness and that. Makes me wonder if he was ever on board in the first place. Anyway, I'm off to raise the tricolour in honour of the mother country's grand slam. We haven't had days like this since Wor Jackie ran the soccerball team in Italia 90 reason enough to celebrate with a brecky roll and a gallon or two of the Liffey water. Even if the ball is the wrong shape. Catch ya later..."
Earl Grey looked down at the despondent cook.
"Fancy a cup of tea?" he gently asked, sensing the cook's emotional turmoil instinctively.
"Earl Grey?" the despondent cook enquired.
"Yes, it's me," said Earl Grey.
"I know who you are," said the cook. "I was referring to the tea. Earl Grey. The Queen Mudder, Gawd bless her, used to drink Earl Grey, between G and T's. Granted, a lot more G and T's than Earl Grey, but if you're going to do something you might as well do it right."
"I'll put the kettle on," said Earl Grey.
Which was when able seaman Roy Turse burst into the galley.
"Everything okay here?" he asked no one in particular.
"I'm making tea," said Earl Grey. "Take a pew if you fancy a cup."
"What's up with that miserable cannibalistic bastard?" said Roy, as he took a seat at the table.
"Oh just ignore him," said Earl Grey. "Everybody else does."
"Righto," said Roy.
They became seated at the table drinking tea contaminated with piss from the poop deck, but nobody appeared to mind.
Enter ship's accountant, Hal A Peno, a hard nosed bastard if ever there was one.
"You do realise," Peno addressed the table sitters, "That the Earl Grey shit you're drinking takes up forty five percent of the ship's budgetary allowance?"
"So what's the problem?" Turse challenged the merchant banker.
"Are you kidding?" Peno gasped. "With the money you limey assholes spend on that crap, we could screw every whore in the Pacific rim! But I guess if you'd rather spend it on tea..."
"I'll have some of that!" Jesus Budda ranted as he wanked furiously into an unsuspecting wok. "The whores I mean, not the tea...ugh ugh ugh aaaah! Lovely wok..."
"That's fucking disgusting," said the cook. "Who does he think he is wanking into my wok like that? The dirty bastard!"
"Fuck this," Peno muttered. "I'm outta here."
"That was a bit odd. To say the least," said Turse.
"You're telling me," snarled the cook. "And to think, I used to like stir fries..."
Enter the Captain of the ship, the glorious HMS Buggerall.
"Stand to men!" announced Captain Morse. "But not you Jesus Budda! Wanking into unattended woks constitutes a serious breach of maritime discipline. Dismissed Budda - I'll have you disciplined later..."
As the Captain faced the crew, they cringed at the prospect of a full on verbal assault. Which was a wise move as it turned out.
"Gentlemen," the Captain said. "Since we left Bristol..."
"Bollocks!" screeched the ship's parrot.
"Who let that parrot in here?" the Captain mused.
"Bollocks!" quoth the parrot, tap tap tapping on the door.
"Will somebody get rid of that effing parrot..." the Captain pleaded, although he he despised expletives and refused to use them in normal circumstances. "It's getting right on my fucking tits..."
"Bollocks!" quoth the parrot.
"Oh do fuck off!" snarled Morse. At which point the parrot did indeed fuck off. So Morse, Captain of The Buggerall and fearless adventurer, did point a nicotine stained finger at the ship's cook:
"You there. That man. I need to be appraised of the situation as it stands, and I need it NOW! Spill your guts you scurvy seadog!"
"Bollocks," squawked the ship's parrot from ouside. "It's all bollocks!"
The ship's cook cleared his throat:
"Captain, with the greatest respect. We have traversed many rich and varied waters. We have been sunk, like the Titanic with Leonardo Di Caprio and Kate Winslett. We have had to deal with the conjoined brothers BuckwheatsButt and Percival Pissgums, before they became unconjoined and reincarnated as Laurel and Hardy.
"No longer prompting Edgar Allen Poe Raven related tomfoolery.
"We have done battle with the Frenchies. We found King Kong on Skull Island, although nothing came of it. Mind you, the giant gorilla was less scary than those exposed French arses.
We have risked our very lives to serve you Captain...."
"So what's your problem, you abominiation of a cook?" Morse said in that imperious way he has of posing difficult questions to dumb assed motherfuckers.
"Why don't people appreciate my cooking? Legs of lamb with Leeds United tattoos are a delicacy where I come from. You can call it cannibalism if you like, but I prefer to call it 'Feeding an empty belly with protein.'
After some consideration, Morse told his men:
"He walks the plank. Take him."