Вадим Иванович Кучеренко - Sailors’ Shelter
На сайте КнигаГо можно читать онлайн выбранную книгу: Вадим Иванович Кучеренко - Sailors’ Shelter - бесплатно (полную версию книги). Жанр книги: Морские приключения, Любовная фантастика, год издания - 2023. На странице можно прочесть аннотацию, краткое содержание и ознакомиться с комментариями и впечатлениями о выбранном произведении. Приятного чтения, и не забывайте писать отзывы о прочитанных книгах.
|Вадим Иванович Кучеренко|
|Морские приключения, Любовная фантастика|
Изадано в серии:
Поделись книгой с друзьями!
Краткое содержание книги "Sailors’ Shelter"
He was called “Captain Luck”. Anton Platov was invariably a winner fighting with the most severe storms at sea. But nobody knew the captain’s mystery, which never allowed him to be happy…
Читаем онлайн "Sailors’ Shelter". Главная страница.
Вадим Кучеренко Sailors’ Shelter
During that voyage, the ship was pretty battered. The hurricane overtook her halfway out at sea, and during a few days it had bitterly exhausted the whole crew. At times the ship was either almost laying on board, piercing the foamy rolling waves with the flag-pole peak, or was suddenly ascending to the very crest of a giant wave, like Antaeus, torn off by Hercules from the power of the earth that fed him. The shipboards with their holes had been leaking, and the pumps had hardly been pumping out salty water from the hold. Actually, it was just right time to get ready for death putting on clean white shirts, when the hurricane suddenly and absolutely inexplicably had lost interest in them and left somewhere to the East, towards the ocean, twisting its funnels. Instantly, the sea calmed down, the sky cleared of clouds, the sun shone, and after an hour it would hardly be possible to find at least one person out of the whole crew who wanted to receive absolution before his meeting with the God. Until the next storm, everyone again had turned into ardent atheists and blasphemers.
When the lookout man on the foremast saw the land, he announced it with a loud cry, such a cry, which any muezzin calling the faithful Muslims to prayer would envy. So, the sailors had finally lost their faith in providence and once again were imbued with unshakable faith in their captain.
— Long live Captain Platov! — they shouted loudly in unison, throwing up their nor' westers. — Glory to our Captain Luck!
The ship had a proud name "Luck". The man, who for many years had been standing on her command bridge, was called "Captain Luck". But it was not just a word-play, which the sailors were really fond of. In fact, Anton Platov justified this nickname with honor. He invariably came out a winner fighting with the most severe storms, while the other ships that had not taken shelter in the port on time, were helplessly asking for help, having lost control, or were just sinking to the bottom. Some people explained this quality by his rare instinct and unique ability to foresee, others — by mere luck, superstitious people explained it by his collaboration with the sea evil spirits. However, everyone agreed that going out to sea with Captain Luck was as safe as walking along a city boulevard on a clear day. Therefore, his ship never lacked crew members. Being recruited in the ship "Luck" crew was considered among the sailors on the whole coast to be more profitable than buying a lucky lottery ticket.
Meanwhile the sailors were rejoicing, the captain Anton Platov, as usual, remained indifferent to common joy and delight. Tall, thin, in his smart marine uniform, fastened with all buttons, being a living embodiment of order and discipline, he was carefully examining the shore through a telescope. He could see some port buildings, piers and ships, on decks of which the sailors were sunbathing, bashfully exposing their pale winter bodies. But, apparently, the captain could not find what he was looking for, and therefore he frowned.
— What are you sad about, captain? — asked the chief mate approaching him. Artem Sinitsyn was older than his captain, he was a heavy steady man in his fifties. However, now the chief mate was smiling broadly like a boy, sharing common joy of the crew.
The captain shrugged — he did not want to talk to anyone. Neither he wanted to offend the chief mate with his silence, which he could take as a reproach, so he briefly dropped, changing the topic:
— It’s a nice city, isn’t it?
— And what taverns are here! — the boatswine standing nearby expecting some possible captain’s command, noted cheerfully.
Being a broad-chested and short man with his slightly flabby cheeks, he looked very much like a French bulldog. Everyone called him just Misha, sometimes, Dragon depending on his mood — nice and kind or strict and picky. Now, like all the crew members who had just escaped from inevitable death, he was a little crazy with joy and therefore was very talkative.
— I swear that the best port taverns in the world are right here in this city! What Madeira they serve! I bet any lubber will have his mouth water after a sip of local Madeira.
— Misha, you'd better tell us about local girls, — asked one of the sailors who gathered around the galley in the vain hope to elicit from the ship’s cook what dessert he would serve for lunch to celebrate the successful completion of the voyage. — What are the girls like here?
Everyone smiled, because they knew that the boatswain would willingly tell in earnest on that topic. Everyone knew that women along with Madeira, were his inevitable temptation, but, perhaps, just talking about them, considering the amount of Madeira consumed. An inexperienced and gullible listener might think that Misha was familiar with all women without exception from sixteen to fifty years old, living in all the ports of the world.
— Girls! — Misha exclaimed, smiling dreamily and repeated, as if tasting the word: — Girls!
Suddenly, he got furious and growled angrily, as if justifying his dragon nature:
"No, I won’t tell you any word about the girls here! Otherwise, you, shallow-water mollusks, will choke with your saliva, but I am not your enemy. No, you can be sure that boatswain Misha is not your enemy, and will never be!
— By the way, Misha, is that true that our cook told us about some girl who doesn’t care about you? The owner of some small tavern in the port… She keeps spitting on you, although you have been hovering around her for three years, like a seagull over a herring? — some sailor kept inexorably asking the boatswain to everyone’s subdued laughter. He was sure that there was nothing to worry about, as long as the captain was present on deck — he never allowed quarrels and fights on the ship, severely punishing the guilty, So, this time he took a chance to amuse his fellows with impunity.
“Your cook is lying like a rotten mermaid,” Misha answered, looking sideways at the captain and carefully choosing the words. — Do I look like a brainless poop? No, Misha has got a smart head on his shoulders and knows his worth. And be sure, I'm not my own enemy, no way! Well, if I really wanted to be dried up, like a flounder in the sun, from unrequited love, then, of course, I would hang around for that beauty from the “Sailor's Shelter”. But I know my own worth, as well as hers. So, she's not for me, definitely!
— That's right, — the cook agreed, looking out of the galley viewport, attracted either by sailors’ laughter or by mentioning his name. He was a steady man in his sixties, Every time when he left his cramped galley for a walk on deck of the ship, he always had a pipe in his teeth, puffing in the fresh air to his pleasure. For some reason, he used only Spanish tobacco, strong, but fragrant, scenting with aroma of exotic plants. Many older sailors, using their privilege of long-term friendship with him, asked him to puff on his pipe at least once to enjoy the unknown sensation, but they always received a decisive refusal. — Yes, even if you put all gold in the world at her feet, she won’t even look at you, Misha.
— Why is that, Alexander Petrovich? Misha was really hurt and even clenched his fists from undeserved resentment.
Unlike Misha, the ship’s cook has not yet forgotten that he had compared him to a rotten mermaid, and therefore decided to take a revenge in their conversation. However, in order to do that he had to leave the galley and smoke his favorable pipe. After taking a puff, he suddenly calmed down and said peacefully.— Well, Misha, you know… that beauty would go with the poorest beggar in the