Jeoffrey and Kaito are getting bored, so Jeoffrey suggests playing cards (he still has the cards he found on the Zephyr). At first they play a game that Jeoffrey knows, and he always wins. Kaito gets frustrated and suggests another game, but Jeoffrey wins as well. So finally Kaito suggests they play memory, which he is very good at. As Kaito is pretty sure that he will win, Jeoffrey suggests a bet: The loser must do what the winner wants. Kaito hesitates as he seems to be uncomfortable with what he expects Jeoffrey to ask from him, but Jeoffrey presses him to agree. So they start playing, and Kaito is quite good at the start, but then Jeoffrey starts talking to him (probably in order to distract him) and asks him about the prophecy for Elizabeth. This makes Kaito’s mind wander back to that scene…
…He had a pretty deep conversation with Elizabeth about her life and her role as female leader of a country and what marriage etc. would have meant for her. She also confesses that she was always in love with Thomas Seymour, the husband of her stepmother. Kaito notices that Elizabeth probably favoured Robert Dudley later on because he resembled Thomas to a certain extent.
I have updated my Royal Diagram with the newest information and added in all the major players we’ve seen so far, mainly Mary Queen of Scots and Mary I. You can find it in the OP.
At some point Kaito’s thoughts return back to the present, only to realize that he lost to Jeoffrey because he did not focus on the game while daydreaming. So Jeoffrey starts kissing him, somewhat against Kaito’s will…
It feels a bit strange to me that Kaito seems to change his mind so frequently - at first he was so head over heels, and at Drake’s house he even agreed to have sex with Jeoffrey, but now we’re kind of back to square one? Hmmm…
… but before things can get serious, the crew notices a ship approaching fast. It seems to be a French ship, but with no country flag, which can only mean - pirates! And their ship is not well-equipped for battle…
I just wanted to read a few more pages, and all of a sudden Chapter 7 was finished!
So first they run away from the enemy ship in order to lure them into thinking that they are afraid, then they turn around and throw self-made hand grenades and shoot their cannons!
Fun fact though: While Jeoffrey mentions that they must be careful when building the grenade because gunpowder cannot get wet, the guys are like no problem, we just empty a small beer cask and use it. And to our big surprise, the grenade doesn’t explode - who would’ve thought that…
Anyways, of course they manage to take out a mast with their cannons (I really wonder how much luck one needs to achieve that…) and they climb onto the enemy ship to finish them off. But the enemy does not think of surrendering, and so they start swordfights…
Jeoffrey and the others went over to the enemy ship and started a fight. Kaito (who had sneaked out of the captain’s cabin together with the French messenger) wants to watch although everybody had asked him to stay in the cabin’s safety. When he watches the fight, he immediately understands why: The fight is extremely cruel, and people get maimed and killed left and right. Kaito suddenly feels sick and throws up. Then he has another moment of growth when he realizes that the others risk their lives for his safety, and yet he tries to sneak out whenever they tell him to stay put.
Eventually the fight is over, and the enemy ship becomes silent when everybody goes below deck to search for treasures. Suddenly Kaito sees a young boy on the other ship who has picked up their grenade and puts fire to it, about to throw it over to their own ship! Kaito yells for help, but nobody hears him - except for the French messenger who quickly throws his sword and kills the boy before he can throw the grenade. It explodes on the enemy ship.
Shortly after the crew rushes back to their own ship - it turns out that the enemy ship has caught fire! … dundundun
At first I got the impression that 松岡先生 had become a bit boring in the description of this fight - everything just went super smooth and of course there are no setbacks - pretty boring imo
But this chapter made up for it! Also, such a chain of cliffhanger-chapters, incredible! Let’s quickly proceed to the last one…
And the inevitable happened: I finished Chapter 9 and consequently the book!
First it looks like everything is over, but then the enemy ship explodes and sends a burning piece of wood to their ship! It promptly sets a rope on fire. Everybody is busy so Nigel and Jeoffrey order Kaito to cut the rope - from the lookout
Kaito fights a heroic fight against his own weakness and wins after a long struggle. He cuts the rope and saves the ship from going up in flames. But then he cannot descend any more So Jeoffrey rescues him.
After that they drop the messenger off at Calais and continue their trip home.
This was the shortest book in the series so far, with 201 pages. Still, reading it in one week at a speed of almost 12 pages per hour is a novelty for me
I think I will now take a short break from F&B (for real this time!!! ) because I need to catch up on Kafka for real (the book club ends this Friday and there is no way I can make it, but I want to go over the deadline as little as possible) and then there are a few new book clubs starting which might take a bit to settle into.
And also, I’d like you all to catch up to me so that we can read more “together” - it was a bit lonely at the top tbh…
F&B as usual, of course. 吸血鬼ハンター“D” was supposed to be my October book I was gonna read, but that’s looking like it’s going to be a November book instead. IBC’s おばちゃん I was gonna join (just picked up the ebook today), and Natively’s 体育館の殺人 as well (gonna do ebook + audiobook for that one).
I was considering the ABC book as well; that’ll come down to how busy I am/how many book clubs I can juggle at once.
I’m really tempted to join 人間椅子, but I doubt my ability to finish it in one day, and I don’t want to pick up something else that’ll just get added to the currently reading backlog.
(I’m going to try one of the Saikawa & Moe books one of these days; I keep seeing the threads for those popping up, and I like mystery.)
Chapter 4 finished up. I’m glad we got to see Will one last time before setting sail. Is it just me, or is it weird we seemingly skipped over Queen Elizabeth’s second request for Kaito’s prophetic abilities as well as that other dude? Robert, was that his name? I guess their requests are going to be more important than the one-offs they were initially presented as?
No real thoughts for this one in general, I guess. It was a nice in between before (I assume) the sailing really starts. A question for @NicoleRauch, though, since you’re ahead: I can’t remember, are they planning on sailing to Plymouth, then France? Or are they just going straight to France?
I wonder if the person in charge of the English Catholic dissidents is important? Like, are they someone we already know? Or someone we’ve yet to meet? Same thing for Will’s hint that there’s some port Vicente’s using to get into and out of England. I wonder what implications that has for future volumes…
Thanks for this recap, by the way. Seeing it spelled out like this helped solidify things in my head.
Uh, so I’m not sure whether they discussed this in detail, but their goal is to go to Plymouth and to stay there for a while, so what they end up doing (and I assume that was their plan all the time) is to drop off the messenger in France and then to go to Plymouth.
I’m not replying to your speculations to avoid spoilering you with what I know and what I don’t. Let me just say that some of your questions will be addressed in the remainder of the volume, but not all of them.
Ah, no worries! I probably formatted that post above poorly; the only question I meant to ask you was what they had discussed already for Plymouth vs. France. No need to give me all the juicy details on the other stuff, haha.
Ah, no worries about the formatting! I was just thinking, usually we would speculate together on each other’s hypotheses, which I can’t do right now, sadly.
Just keep them coming though, please! It’s always interesting to read what you are suspecting and wondering about
Hehehe, you can’t stop me! My only problem is that my speculation comes in fits and starts, so I’ll finish a chapter, jot down a few thoughts, move on to something else, and suddenly think “whoa, what about that thing I was totally thinking about in passing”? So I end up not getting all the contents of head my head out at one time.
I am curious if our French ambassador is going to end up being a more important person that initially thought or not. France isn’t all that far away from England in terms of sailing, so they wouldn’t necessarily be spending a lot of time with him, but I guess it depends on where they need to drop him off. I’m kind of leaning no right now, but I’m expecting shenanigans to occur in France somehow. No way they get back to Plymouth that easily, haha.
Now that makes me wonder what system of communication people would use to get the word out that “Captain Rockford is back in town and recruiting.” Just word of mouth, I suppose, but I can’t imagine the seamen know his plans; for all they know, he left for London (does it matter if I censor this?) and didn’t contact anyone for like a month. Presumably they would look for work in the meantime, and then that introduces the problem of “I’m a town/several towns over working for people who don’t know Captain Rockford, and I’m waiting to hear news on what undefined time he’s back in port and looking for sailors.”
The time tables of how quickly this all happens also interest me. How much time would Jeoffrey/Drake build into their departure plans to a) re-recruit everyone, b) recruit for missing positions, and c) stock the ship with supplies? A month? A week or two? Questions, questions.
Do you think he laid them off in the meantime? I wouldn’t expect that. I mean, they just returned home from some battles and adventures (as this is the first time they return home after they hurriedly left Plymouth at the end of vol. 1 iirc), and I’m sure there’s lots of necessary repairs, maintenance work and cleaning to be done. Also, Kaito mentions a few times that he wants to return to “Gloria” and makes clear that he mainly refers to the crew, whom he calls his family. And lastly, I guess it’s hard to find good people no matter the circumstances, and so once Jeoffrey has gathered a crew who is doing okay and who has started to bond, I think he wouldn’t want to lose them. (He actually thought about having drills with them to improve their performance and stuff, I guess you already came across that bit.)
But of course I might be totally wrong on the subject as it’s only my speculations
Finished chapter 5!Gotta say, it was nice to have a chapter from Jeoffrey’s perspective. Had some good introspective stuff on his relationship with Kaito and Nigel; seems like he’s trying to improve himself, but time will tell how things work out, I suppose. I was thinking about it, and we don’t really know what “normal” Nigel acts like; not one who doesn’t know Kaito, at least. Jeoffrey mentioned that Nigel’s been moping around, but if he hadn’t said anything I probably wouldn’tve known the difference.
I really enjoyed that final bit where Artovich (I’m 100% sure that’s spelled wrong) passed out and Kaito was about to give him mouth-to-mouth. Poor Jeoffrey, lol. And poor Nigel. That whole exchange was gold.
“You do it.”
“Why me?! You’re the one 's usually making out with men!”
“Not ones who’ve just finished vomiting.”
Also enjoyed Jeoffrey and Nigel’s pettiness.
“The Queen keeps demanding Calais as payment! We’ve vowed to never let an Englishman set foot there again!!”
“Nigel, I know what port we’re going to land at.”
I think I will re-read this section; I don’t think I remember reading this exactly, but I might’ve been distracted while I was reading.
So after a quick re-read, I don’t think Jeoffrey was concerned about Kaito liking Nigel more initially. He does reflect that Nigel might’ve realized his feelings for Kaito first before Jeoffrey, but didn’t act on them, partially due to not knowing how to handle the situation and partially because he didn’t want Kaito to reject him.
For some reason I had to sit and think with this chapter a bit, though, so if @ekg comes back with something else I wouldn’t be surprised.