A Trip to the Indies
by Michele

My first fic for HH, and only my third week of writing fan fiction under Don the bunny's tutelage, so any helpful criticism appreciated. Sorta answers the challenge (I hope) -- Oldroyd gets his trip to the Indies, but not what he expected.

 

 

Ahh, summer. Sun. Sand.

Ouch!

Bugs. Big, mean, bugs that bit.

Bigger than a ship of the line, that one was, Oldroyd thought. Then sighed happily he was finally in the Indies. Mid-morning, and a whole day by himself to explore.

First up, fresh food and some of that really good rum he'd heard the other men talk about. He headed to the nearest tavern, where he got the largest measure of rum he,d ever seen and something called jerk chicken with seasoned rice and pickled peppers. When it arrived, he began eating as fast as he could.

Two hours later, Oldroyd,s head was spinning and his stomach was hotter than a cannon after a battle. What did they put in that stuff? Give him stale biscuits anyday. He'd ordered a lot more rum trying to put out the fire, and now was drunker than he'd ever been.

Mid-afternoon and clothes steaming from the heat. It was hotter than hell. Funny Styles never mentioned that. Hauling himself to his feet, he staggered off in search of pleasant company. Reeling into another tavern, he found himself at the edge of a crowd listening to an argument over how to divide six giggling women among thirty men. A giant of a man from some ship (Oldroyd was too drunk to get the name) stood on a table, yelling that the little brunette was his.

Oldroyd looked at the little brunette, who smiled and inched closer. Grinning, Oldroyd reached out a hand, then began maneuvering back out the door. Now, with a little luck.

He'd forgotten how drunk he was. He stumbled sideways into a table stacked with tankards, which fell over on the floor. Everyone turned toward the noise. The giant spotted Oldroyd with his little brunette, yelled something about a thieving son-of-a- and dove off the table in their direction.

Oldroyd might be drunk, but not stupid. He dropped the woman's arm, bolted out the door and lurched, sweating heavily, down side streets until he ended up in a field. Nowhere to hide but the gully at the far edge. Hearing voices, he dropped into the gully.

Crack!

Lightening. Thunder. And a gully full of freezing rainwater.

Now shivering, sopping wet, with a pounding headache from too much rum and a stomach burning from that horrible food, Oldroyd heard the giant,s roar as the man spotted him. Rising, he flung himself into the jungle and straight into a huge cloud of those stinging bugs . . .

"Hey, Oldroyd, stop yelling!" Styles roared.

Oldroyd sat up at the table and stared around him. Matthews and Styles stared back.

Dark. Quiet. Blessedly cool.

Cause it was New Year's Night in harbor. On the bloody Indy.

"Thank God, Oldroyd said out loud.

Matthews looked at him oddly and then turned to Styles, continuing their conversation, "So, where do ya think they'll send us now?"

Styles glanced over at Oldroyd and said slyly, "Maybe the Indies?"

Oldroyd gulped. "Maybe Russia instead?" he said hopefully.