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  1. Captain Genaro

    [OL FB] An Offer

    Previously: Lavalette Inn As always, comments and criticisms are welcome. An Offer by Capt. Genaro, on Flickr After a hearty dinner, one of the best Captain Anthony Genaro had in quite some time, the two men retired Paul Laforge’s lounge. After easing into one of the fine, plush chairs, Anthony took a moment to take in the room. Massive ceilings, wall paper, a fine Varcoast, or perhaps Mokolei (not that Anthony could tell the difference) rug, and gold plating adorning every available surface. Anthony complimented Paul on his fortune and luxury, and the men chatted a while about the spice trade, sailing, and old times. “Tell me, Gen, do you still speak Corrish?” Paul asked during a lull in the conversation. “Just enough to put a sour taste in my mouth,” Anthony replied with a chuckle. “But surely you didn’t have me over for dinner just to insult me?” “No, no I’m afraid it’s something far more serious. You see, I’m at a bit of a loss. This isn’t even supposed to be my problem, but with Hollande gone the problem has fallen on me.” “Not his replacement, that Hock-something fellow?” “Hochstetter?” Paul said, looking uncomfortable. “Well, I suppose it is his problem, but he wants me to fix it.” “And you can’t say no.” “Anthony,” Paul replied stairing straight at the captain. “One does not simply tell Hochstetter ‘no’.” After a brief pause, Anthony spoke. “But you still haven’t told me what all the trouble is about." “Ah, well, that is the key isn’t it. There’s a certain, ah, project and we’ve run into some difficulty.” “Project?” “Yes, project. Let’s leave it at that,” said Paul, overly eager to move past this subject. “Well, there is a certain Corrie who should have the solution.” “And you can’t simply hire him because?” “That’s precisely what we’re trying to do, but he's not the type of man you hire with a notice in the paper. But you needn't worry with the details. Look, your part really wouldn't be difficult. I just need someone with authority and decent manners to sail a company official down there and back." “I may be down on my luck, but I’m not some lieutenant who just runs errands,” Anthony responded, indignant at the mere thought. Paul took a deep breath before continuing. “Look, Gen, I see your situation. Speaking as your friend, you’re dead broke, probably spent your last doubloon, you have no hope of a ship, and you’re out of lodging. No, let me finish” Paul demanded before Anthony could interrupt. “I don’t mean to insult you, but you and I both know this is the truth. Look, I don’t need you. A simple run down and back? There are dozens of Company captains who could handle that. But you're my friend, Gen. You're in a tight spot, and I'd like to help. I won't force you, but I also won't make this offer again." The men sat in silence for a while, the only noise coming from the crackling fire. Then Anthony rubbed his temple and swore before continuing. “But what if you’re wrong? What if orders come in?” asked Anthony. He knew it wouldn’t happen, but there was still that small sliver of hope in him that simply wouldn’t die. “I’ll have La Royale hire the vessel. You keep your place on the Captains List and you’ll be at full pay for a bit, that’s in addition to the Company’s salary and bonus, mind you. If orders come in, they’ll wait.” “You can do that?” Anthony asked with surprise. “Oh, come now. It’s no harder than adding a friend’s child to the ship’s roll, something you should be familiar with” Paul joked. “Why you must have had twenty years of experience before even setting foot on a ship.” “Oh, yes,” Anthony replied with a chuckle, "it's amazing what you can get away with if you know the right people. And I suppose you know the right people for this, ah, temporary hiring." "Me personally? No, but I know someone who must know someone" Paul said with a shrug. Anthony took a deep breath and stared into the abyss for a minute before Paul continued. “Cheer up, Gen. It’s not all bad. Besides, how often do you get the chance to order about a ship full of Company men?” “Not often enough.”