The Ruddy Jack
When Captain Charles W. Black was wrongfully outlawed by ol' England and declared a Pirate, he turned his back on the throne what turned It's back on 'im.
Captain Black drew down the battle-scarred flag under which he sailed those many years, and laid it out upon the deck. What he needed was a new flag. A flag to represent his crew and to strike fear into all they encountered.
He began with the King's Jack. Stained with blood and powder, it was more a symbol of Captain Black than any king. Upon this field, he set to work with a pot of whitewash. The ship was now called 'Valhalla' and Captain Black now called 'Pirate'. These were names he would have the entire English court remember. So he wrote it large in his fanciest hand, that the King 'imself could read it!
Next, Captain Black sent a message to all they would meet at sea. He emblazoned his flag with the Death's Head! This was a message that Death 'erself awaited those refusing to surrender. He painted twin cutlasses crossed beneath it, to show that the might of both the Valhalla and Captain Black 'imself would bring violent death to any throats that opposed them.
Finally, Captain Black painted an hourglass. This signified that time had run out for all who challenged the Valhalla and 'er crew. Since a rope's "Short Drop and Sudden Stop" await all pirates, the Valhalla and 'er crew could neither give nor ask for any quarter.
The Valhalla's ensign became known as the 'Ruddy Jack'. With each ship taken and each treasure captured, 'er reputation grew. Now, 'er name is only spoken in whispers, unless it is seen approaching over the horizon.
So if ye see it approaching, pray for mercy and raise a mug to the Valhalla!
For it may be your last!
Valhalla's Pirates - Plundering the Eastern Shores of the American Colonies
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