The Old pirate at the «Admiral Benbow»
My name is Jim Hawkins and I’m going to tell you the story of Treasure Island. It began when I was a boy. My father had an inn by the sea called the «Admiral Benbow». One day an old seaman arrived with a big sea-chest. He was tall and strong.
‘Bring me a glass of rum!’ he said to my father. ‘Are there many people here?’
My father said no.
‘Good! I’ll stay here. You can call me captain. Take my chest up to my room.’
Every day he went to the cliffs and looked at the sea with his telescope. And every day he asked us: ‘Do you sometimes notice any seamen here?’ We began to understand that he didn’t want to meet any seamen. One day he said to me, ‘Tell me when you see a seaman with one leg, and I’ll give you some money.’
Sometimes the old captain drank a lot of rum. Then he sang and he told us some horrible stories. He didn’t pay us any money, so my poor father was unhappy and he became ill. One afternoon Dr Livesey came to see him. In the evening the doctor smoked his pipe with some friends. The old captain was there.
‘Silence!’ he said. ‘I’m going to tell you a story.’
‘Are you talking to me, sir?’ said Dr Livesey angrily.
‘You drink too much rum, sir,’ said the doctor. ‘One day you will die.’
The angry captain took a knife from his pocket.
‘Put that knife back in your pocket,’ the doctor said calmly, ‘or you will be arrested. I am also a magistrate.’
The captain put the knife in his pocket and sat down. He was very quiet that evening.
That winter was cold and my father became worse. One morning in January a seaman arrived.
‘Is there a man called Bill here?’ he asked.
I said there was only the captain and he was on the beach. Then the man waited behind the door, so when the captain came in, he didn’t see him.
The captain looked round quickly. His face was white.
‘You know me, Bill,’ the man said. ‘We’re old friends.’
‘Yes! I’ve come to see you.’
‘What do you want?’
They sat at the table with some rum. The door was open and Black Dog sat near it. I couldn’t hear their conversation. Then there was a lot of noise and the table and chairs fell over. I saw Black Dog with blood on his shoulder. Then he ran out of the door. The captain’s cutlass had blood on it.
‘Bring me some rum, Jim!’ he said.
When I came back with the rum, the captain was on the floor. His eyes were closed and his face was very white.
Then Dr Livesey arrived to see my father. He looked at the captain and said, ‘He drinks too much rum and so he’s ill.’ Then he showed me a tattoo on the captain’s arm.
‘Look, his name is written here,’ he said. ‘Billy Bones.’
After a few moments the captain opened his eyes.
‘Now, Mr Bones, don’t drink rum again or you’ll die,’ the doctor told him.
We took him upstairs to his room and put him in his bed. At twelve o’clock I went into his room with some medicine. But he said that he wanted a glass of rum.
‘But the doctor I began.
‘Oh, the doctor! What does he know about me? Bring me one glass of rum, Jim, and I’ll give you some money.’
‘I don’t want your money,’ I said. But I brought the rum.
‘How long must I stay in bed, Jim?’
‘The doctor says a week.’
‘But they know where I am now and they’ll come, they’ll come! They want to kill me and take my sea-chest. Jim, did you see that Black Dog today? He’s a bad man, but the others are very bad! And they want my sea-chest. You see, they are old Cap’n Flint’s men and they want to know where his treasure is. They’re going to give me the black spot!’
‘What’s the black spot?’ I asked.
‘They always give you the black spot before they kill you!’
That evening my poor father died. For a few days my mother I and were very busy and we didn’t think much about the captain. The day after my father’s funeral a blind man with a stick stopped outside the inn and asked me if it was called the «Admiral Benbow».
I said yes.
‘Will you give me your hand, my young friend, and take me into the inn?’
When I gave him my hand he pulled me to him quickly.
‘Now, boy! Take me to the captain!’
‘I can’t, sir,’ I said.
‘Oh? Take me or I’ll break your arm!’
His voice was cold and cruel. I was very afraid of him and I took him to the captain. The poor old pirate was very afraid too.
‘Now give me your left hand, Bill,’ the blind man said.
And he put something in the captain’s hand. Then he went out of the inn very fast. The captain looked at his left hand. There was a piece of paper with a black spot on it.
‘Ten o’clock! They’re coming at ten and they’ll kill me. We’ve got six hours, Jim! We’ve still got time!’
The captain tried to stand up but just then he put his hand to his heart and fell on the floor. I ran to help him, but he was dead.