Kindle Edition- 0.99 From 8/2-8/9
by Paul Boone
Kindle Edition- 0.99 From 8/2-8/9
As the Golden Age of high seas piracy came to a close, one man refused to let it die quietly. Edward Teach, otherwise known as Blackbeard, would become one of the most recognizable pirate names in history as he wrought terror down upon the colonized Americas during his short, yet brutally successful reign.
From the eyes of ship captains and brothel owners to pirate commanders and the mind of Blackbeard, relive this tantalizing tale based on true events as author Paul Boone immerses his readers in a world forgotten so long ago.
June 2, 1718
Shards of splintered wood rained down upon his face as the sea smashed his ship to pieces. A booming echo rippled the watery world around him as cannons belched out their last dying breaths of smoke and fire. For Blackbeard, an era had come to an end.
For the men onboard the Queen Anne’s Revenge, the lucky ones were flung free from her cracked decks. Some landed softly on the sandy beaches while others flopped into the water with a hard smack. The unfortunate ones lay skewered atop massive javelins of timber that stuck out into the sky like crossed fingers of a wooden monster.
Screams of terror and pain, confusion and anger raged all around as men struggled to survive this nightmare that had befallen them. But Blackbeard stood calm at the wheel of his ship, grinning madly as men, wood and steel disappeared into the ravenous depths of the ocean.
“Jump ye god damned fools! Jump if it is yer lives you wish to keep!” he shouted with one hand on the wheel, the other brandishing a pistol high the air.
The crackle of fire began to whisper in the air as the smell of smoke drifted into Blackbeard’s nose. The powder kegs were beginning to burn. It was time to leave.
The Queen Anne, now listing heavily to the left, let out one, last, solitary cannon burst before she groaned and began imploding under her own weight. Blackbeard snuck hastily over her stern side and plunged into the warm water twenty feet below; a small wooden box clutched tightly in his hands.
As he reached the shores of this tiny river inlet in the colony of North Carolina, he had about him a melancholy and somber mood. Though his face smiled, his heart cried. “How had it come to this?” he wondered as he strolled up the shallow beach to the tree line.
Seconds later, as if a meteor had struck the earth, his ship exploded in a massive bubble of flame. The shockwave pulsed into the world, his world, and sent man and tree alike tumbling to the ground. He was no exception as his face smacked hard into the hot sand.
“Cap’n! Cap’n! Be you okay, sir??” he heard his commander shout. “You’re fuckin’ lucky, that be for damn sure! More than a hundred men dead’s my count so far.”
Blackbeard stood up and wiped the sand from his face and beard. He watched as it sprinkled down to the world in a golden brown shower. Still clutching the wooden box, he rubbed its smooth surface with one hand, “Not else matters now, Israel. See to it yer count reaches double that.”
“Ay, sir,” Israel replied with a demonic fire in his voice.
“Let me know when it’s done. Bring the survivors to that hill,” he said pointing in the direction of the sun to a lonely hill sprinkled with grass and a few sparse palm trees. Then he turned to watch the smoking shell of his ship fade away into the black water. A tear streaked from his eye and dripped off his smiling lips.
Over thirty guns had been lost and hundreds of men lay dead or dying this day. In addition, there was the small fortune that had been blown miles into the sky with only the wooden box to give him comfort. In it resided something more important than any amount of gold, silver or jewels. Inside, his freedom was contained; a freedom he would now desperately need after this disastrous year. How had it all come to this? Where could it have all possibly gone wrong…?
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Paul Boone was born in Roanoke, VA in 1985. Nestled in the mountains of the Blue Ridge Valley, he found his inspiration for writing and a love of history. Attending Salem State University, he wrote several historical papers and completed his senior thesis on the Fall of the Roman Empire which won recognition from the University. After obtaining a dual degree in History and Elementary Education, Paul went on to publish "Blackbeard: To Live by the Drink; To Die by the Sword" in May of 2013 which has sold copies worldwide. He continues to work on further projects in the hopes of making history come alive for his readers. He currently resides in Charlottesville, VA where he loves to spend his time walking through the peaceful mountain woods.