What Happened to Oldroyd
by Jamie

It was a glorious ride on the mast. Captain Pellew had said that
after the debacle in Muzzilac, his men deserved something special.
Oldroyd was on the mast with his mates, Styles and Matthews and
before them were Hornblower and Kennedy.

Olroyd felt the wind in his hair and heard the wind in the rigging.
He never felt so alive in his life. He knew this feeling could not
last forever. But he would enjoy and savor his moment in the sun.

Captain Pellew had all his men line up on the quarterdeck. He stood
with his officers and made an announcement.

"I have received orders from the admiralty. It seems that they are
breaking up the ship. Some of the men are going to be transferred to
the Renown, while others are going with me to the Impetueux. I won't
be able to take any of my officers with me, which is something I
regret, but I assure you that all of you will be taken care of. I
thank all of you for your loyal support. Now, may I have all my
officers report to my cabin for their duties."

Oldroyd looked up at his Captain in awe. He had not realized to that
moment what a wonderful man Sir Edward Pellew really was. He cared
for his men. He only hoped that he could find that kind of
compassion on his next ship. He was overjoyed that he would be able
to stay with Captain Pellew on the Impetueux, but saddened that he
would have to leave his friends, who were going to the Renown.

That night, Oldroyd took some time to go to a local pub and say good
bye to his friends, Matthews and Styles.

"I wish you were coming with us Oldroyd, but you will have a grand
time with the Captain." Matthews told his friend.

"I am sure he is taking you, so as to keep an eye on you." Styles
said with a wink.

"Congratulations on both of your promotions. Being Bosun and Bosun's
Mate on the HMS Renown with the legendary James Sawyer. I bet you
are happy about that." Oldroyd observed.

"Not as much as Hornblower and Kennedy. I heard Hornblower remark
that they were going to drink Portsmouth dry in celebration."
Matthews remarked.

"I am sure they will be feeling it tomorrow. I have a month furlough
until we meet up with the Impetueux in Spithead. I hear the Renown
is due in dock in Plymouth any day now."

"Yes, we won't have that much time off until it is back to business.
Lucky sod, you are, Oldroyd, are you going to go home to your Ma and
your sister?" Styles asked.

"I hope so." Oldroyd said as he finished his ale.

The friends patted each other on the back and said their good byes.

Oldroyd was on his own for the first time since he joined the Navy.
Part of him felt alone, but not really lonely. He was not expecting
two thugs to attack him from behind. Before he knew it, they had
overtaken him and knocked him unconscious.

The next thing he knew, he was on a ship. What ship or where he was,
he didn't know. A crusty man told him, "Be quiet and no harm will
come to ye."

"Where am I?" Oldroyd asked.

"You are on the Ring Lord. They need crew men to run the ship, it
seems to be that you were chosen to be a crew member."

"But I am all ready in the Navy. I am a member of the Impetueux. I
was on leave with permission from my Captain Edward Pellew."

"Not any more you aren't. Now just sit there and wait for your
orders."

Oldroyd now felt alone and lonely. Pellew had confidence in him and
now it would be blown. He most likely would be considered a
deserter, which could not be farther from the truth. If he escaped
and went back to his ship, would he be considered a deserter from
this ship? He was so confused. Matthews would understand this
situation. Where was he now? He wished he were with him now. He
wished he were anywhere but here.

Oldroyd was given his chance to speak and plea his case. He met with
Captain Aragorn of the Ring Lord in his cabin.

"Sir, I implore you, I should not be here. I am a loyal member of
his Majesty's Navy. I was on the HMS Indefatigable and was just
transferred to the HMS Impetueux. I had a month furlough, when I was
attacked by your men and brought here. Please, I have to get back to
my ship."

Aragorn stood up from behind his desk. He calmly stated, "Normally I
would research your claim and then possibly let you go. But, we are
far from Plymouth now. We are on our way to Mordor and need as many
men as possible to fight the enemy. I am sorry my men took you away
from your Navy. But, I find myself fortunate to have a member of the
Royal Navy for this quest. You are what I am looking for and right
now, I need you. When we are done our journey, I will make certain
that you return to your ship and are not charged with desertion.
Will you help me, help the fellowship?"

Oldroyd nodded. He joined the fight - good vs. evil. He found out
that Captain Aragorn was not British. He was not even fighting the
French, but dark forces trying to take over the Earth. He, Oldroyd,
had become a spy on a secret mission.

As he learned the skills needed for his mission, he became more
confident. He was no longer stupid old Oldroyd, yet a trusted member
of the Ring Lord. He was given command of the Hobbit Legion. While
he missed his old friends, he hoped they were as fortunate as he. In
a small way, that unfortunate innocent on the alleyways of Plymouth
changed his life not for the worse, yet for the better.