Captain Blood HTML version

12. Don Pedro Sangre
The Cinco Llagas and the Encarnacion, after a proper exchange of signals, lay hove to
within a quarter of a mile of each other, and across the intervening space of gently
heaving, sunlit waters sped a boat from the former, manned by six Spanish seamen and
bearing in her stern sheets Don Esteban de Espinosa and Captain Peter Blood.
She also bore two treasure-chests containing fifty thousand pieces of eight. Gold has at
all times been considered the best of testimonies of good faith, and Blood was
determined that in all respects appearances should be entirely on his side. His followers
had accounted this a supererogation of pretence. But Blood's will in the matter had
prevailed. He carried further a bulky package addressed to a grande of Spain, heavily
sealed with the arms of Espinosa - another piece of evidence hastily manufactured in
the cabin of the Cinco Llagas - and he was spending these last moments in completing
his instructions to his young companion.
Don Esteban expressed his last lingering uneasiness:
"But if you should betray yourself?" he cried.
"It will be unfortunate for everybody. I advised your father to say a prayer for our
success. I depend upon you to help me more materially."
"1 will do my best. God knows I will do my best," the boy protested.
Blood nodded thoughtfully, and no more was said until they bumped alongside the
towering mass of the Encarnadon. Up the ladder went Don Esteban closely followed by
Captain Blood. ln the waist stood the Admiral himself to receive them, a handsome, self-
sufficient man, very tall and stiff, a little older and greyer than Don Diego, whom he
closely resembled. He was supported by four officers and a friar in the black and white
habit of St. Dominic.
Don Miguel opened his arms to his nephew, whose lingering panic he mistook for
pleasurable excitement, and having enfolded him to his bosom turned to greet Don
Esteban's companion.
Peter Blood bowed gracefully, entirely at his ease, so far as might be judged from
"I am," he announced, making a literal translation of his name, "Don Pedro Sangre, an
unfortunate gentleman of Leon, lately delivered from captivity by Don Esteban's most
gallant father." And in a few words he sketched the imagined conditions of his capture
by, and deliverance from, those accursed heretics who held the island of Barbados.
"Benedicamus Domino," said the friar to his tale.