The Fiction of Wolf Moisan

Zuangeng Kidnapped

They entered the tavern. They spied Captain Garaad. Zuangeng hesitated. Captain Garaad saw them. He sat up. Donato took Zuangeng to the nearest vacant table. They sat. They ordered their food and drink. Donato ordered tea. Zuangeng ordered mango juice. They ate amd drank under the eye of Captain Garaad. Captain Garaad sat there watching. Muse and Bilal sat at his table. They looked at Donato and Zuangeng. They remained with Captain Garaad.

Donato and Zuangeng finished eating and drinking. Donato paid for the meal. He left a tip. They got up and exited the tavern. They remained in town for Donato had more business in town.

Late that afternoon, Donato and Zuangeng left town for home. They came home. They entered the house. They were greeted by Julyana. She said, “Captain Garaad came to the house looking for Zuangeng.”

Donato said, “We saw him at the tavern. I had to fight off Bilal and Muse at the clothing store.”

Zuangeng said, “When I get home, I’m going to learn how to fight like that!”

Donato said, “You’ll need to! This may not be the last time you’ll run into them.”

Julyana said, “I see you bought him some clothes. I have his other clothes drying.”

Donato said, “Good. However, we cannot stay here! Captain Garaad is bound to come for Zuangeng. He won’t be alone. We’ll leave the door unlocked. I don’t want it damaged.”

Julyana said, “I’ll gather some food to take.”

Donato said, “Hurry! We need to leave soon.”

Julyana went into the kitchen. She gathered the food into a basket. She rejoined Donato and Zuangeng. They exited the front door. Donato said, “We’ll go into the forest. I have a place we can hole up at.”

Zuangeng said, “I have a boat at the wharf. It maybe big enough for the three of us.”

Donato said, “Let me see it. It might help us. Also, I can start your lessons.”

They walked down to the wharf. Donato studied the boat. He said, “Looks like it’ll handle the three of us.”

Zuangeng pointed to the beach on the other side of the wharf. He said, “There’s their boats. Anyway we can disable them? Make them useless?”

Donato walked over to the boats. Zuangeng followed. Donato studied the boats. He said, “The sails look next to useless. We can take the sails with us and dispose of them. We can take some of the ropes with us. They could come in handy.”

Donato and Zuangeng worked on the boats. They took all the sails down. They untied the stays and sheets. They carried them to Zuangeng’s boat. They stowed the ropes under the deck. They laid the sails on the deck.

They climbed on board the boat. Zuangeng and Donato untied the painters from the wharf. Zuangeng went to the stern. Donato was on the bow. He pushed the boat along the wharf. He reached the end of the wharf. He gave a hard push.

Zuangeng turned the tiller to turn the boat to port. He walked to the mast. He said, “Julyana, watch the boom.”

Julyana got down to avoid it. Zuangeng pulled the reef. The boom fell and swung starboard over Julyana. She sat up.

Zuangeng walked to the stern. He grabbed the sheet. He pulled it. The boom swung closer to the hull. Donato walked astern. He held the tiller while Zuangeng kept pulling the sheet with both hands. The sail caught the breeze and tightened. Zuangeng and Donato stood. Julyana sat facing the bow. The boat was picking up speed. Donato said, “We need to go into open ocean to dump the sails.”

Zuangeng stopped pulling the sheet. He took over the tiller. He held it in his left hand. He held the sheet with his right hand. Donato walked to the sails.

Zuangeng steered the boat starboard toward the ocean. He held the boat in that direction. When they were far enough from the shore, Donato threw the sails overboard. They floated away starboard and stern. The last one was gone. Donato said, “Steer toward shore.”

Zuangeng steered the boat to port. Close to the  shore, Zuangeng steered the boat to parallel with the shore. Donato sat down with Julyana. Zuangeng still stood, holding the sheet and tiller. Donato watched Zuangeng. He commented, “You seem to handle the boat very well.”

Zuangeng said, “I used to live on a sailing ship. When I came to live with my aunt and uncle, I took lessons on sailing. I was trained on an outrigger like this one.”

They sailed on. They came to a river. Donato said, “Steer into the river. We’ll sail upriver as far as we can.”Zuangeng said, “I hope that river is wide enough to accommodate the outrigger.”

Donato said, “Believe me, it is.”


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