The late evening lay darkness on the empty streets of a small town that was set just beside the shore. It was small, but it had its own harbor. Several ships were gently rocking on the small waves, which reflected moonlight and made the harbor and the small town look asleep and tranquil.
Two people were walking in one of the streets, two natives. One was a tall Peacock native, and he had his arm around the shoulders of the other one, who was just a boy, a macaw.
They quietly spoke, sounding relaxed.
Mr Pavo, the peacock pirate, and his assistant Auna were just returning to their crew's ship, after placing an order at a local store. The crew needed food, alcohol and gun powder, but ordering these things in broad daylight was too suspicious, therefore Pavo suggested that they place the order in the evening instead, picking up the supplies next morning, just before they sail away.
"…now you are small, but you'll grow," went the conversation between the two. Mr Pavo spoke very quietly, but in the silence of the night, his words still seemed to echo.
"I'll never be as tall as you, Mr Pavo!" smiled the boy, gazing up at his mentor with admiration. The tall peacock was his greatest idol, he was a genius and succeeded in everything he did. That's at least how Auna saw him. It wasn't far from the truth though, Chris Pavo was notorious for being extremely clever in tricky situations, finding solutions to just about any problem, and not to mention that he was an excellent swordsman. Auna swore he saw him fight three men at once – and win.
Pavo's carefully thought out plans were what kept the Red Vulture Buccaneers going so smoothly. Their captain, Red Geier by the name, was an amazing man himself, but he admitted that Pavo was, in fact, far more intelligent.
Pavo had a little office on the ship. It had a bed on one side, table on the other, and books, plans and quills everywhere else. It was his job to plan what the pirates will be up to for the next few months, and to decode possible treasure maps. He was the translator, knowing not only English, but also native and Spanish, he was the organizer, and it was his job to write the journals on what has been going on. And the greatest thing about him was, that he enjoyed doing all that.
"I was tiny when I was younger. Really short. In school, I was sat in the very last row, because the racist teacher wouldn't let me sit in front, so I had to stretch my arm really high for him to notice that I knew the answer on a certain question. I knew too many answers though, so he soon started ignoring my hand,"
The peacock didn't speak of his childhood much with anyone, except Auna. Auna got to hear and see plenty of things that others never will. It was probably because he was a native, like Pavo, and the man was able to relate to him and trust him more than others.
Plenty of times, they got a rather nasty look from certain pirates, when they spoke in the language they didn't understand. No one really liked Auna much. Not many men liked Pavo either, but they at least tried to pretend to, because they had to – he was the ship's first mate after all, their superior, captain's second in command.
Auna was extremely happy about every single thing that he alone, with the possible exception of the captain, knew about Pavo. Even the little things, like seeing the man eat, made him happy. After all, who else can see Mr Pavo eat? He always eats in his office, away from everyone – except Auna.
"But you are so tall, all peacocks are, how were you ever short, even for a child?" asked the boy, smile on his face.
The tall man shrugged.
"I'm pretty sure I was shorter than peacock kids usually are. I wouldn't know though, there were no other people like me where I grew up. I was about that tall—"
He just motioned the height, as an extremely frightening and unfitting sound disturbed the night.
A shot – a shot in the dark. Where did it come from? Who was it aimed at?
Auna surely knew, as Pavo's hand accidentally hit him in the back of his neck, as the peacock quickly slid it off the boy's shoulder to reach for the dark red stain that formed somewhere just below the man's left lung.
Auna's frightened yelp was much louder as his mentor's groan of pain. Scared out of his mind, more for Mr Pavo's life than his own, he reached for the man's sword he wore by his belt, and picked it up in a defensive position.
He wasn't nearly as good as Mr Pavo, still only learning, but if someone will show up to hurt his idol, by thunder, Auna was ready to kill.
As no one showed up in the next few seconds, Auna put the sword under his own belt, turning to the other native, who was still standing, but was bent, leaning on his knee with his hand, blood turning his green clothes red.
"M-Mr Pavo, a-are you okay—"
"Do I look okay?" the man snapped, heavily breathing and sweating.
The boy shut his mouth and looked down guiltily.
"Don't just—What the hell, Auna, help me to the ship!" the man hissed through his teeth.
The boy flinched a bit, realizing how silly he was just now, and quickly went to support Pavo, helping him to walk to the harbor.
All the way, Pavo was rather quiet for someone who was obviously in pain and has probably never felt anything like this before in his life.
The harbor was, as expected, empty, and Auna was glad to see the captain on the ship, looking right at them. He probably noticed they were gone for a bit too long.
Seeing them like that, he instantly ordered something to the men who were still awake, Auna couldn't hear what, but he certainly saw him ordering the men around. In the end, two pirates and the captain hurried off the ship.
"Take him up to his office," ordered Red Geier, the captain, and then turned to Auna, who just powerlessly watched Pavo argue with the men. He hated if people touched him and found his current situation absolutely degrading.
Auna felt absolutely awful and just noticed how warm his cheeks are, warm and wet. He didn't even notice he was crying, this is so embarrassing! Pirates don't cry!
The captain shook the boy's shoulder a bit to snap him out of shock.
"Auna, run to the town, find a doctor, fast." Ordered Red Geier and then swiftly turned on his heels going after the men to check on his second in command.
Auna took a second or two to collect what he has just been told, and then faced the town, rushing back into the empty streets.
He had no idea where to find a doctor.
However, he had a clear idea of where to find someone who knows where to find a doctor.
He turned into the first tavern on his way, procrastinating a bit before entering. These places are full of unkind people. Racists, bad pirates, Armada members, whores.
He carefully looked around and then walked up to the bartender, visibly terrified.
"E-excuse me, sir?"
The fat man behind the bar looked at him haughty.
"What do you want?"
"J-just information… like, where to find a doctor in this town…" said Auna quietly, looking down at the wooden bar.
"You'd wanna know that, eh?" said the bartender, frowning.
"Well I ain't telling you, the more of you parrots dies, the better, now screw off," said he, turning his back on the native boy.
Auna scratched into the wooden bar a bit, biting back more tears. He then sniffed a bit and looked around. Everyone just seemed so… mean. He had a feeling he will get the same answer from everyone that's in here.
Still, this was for Mr Pavo, he needed medical help, and Auna was ready to take risks and ask more people, he didn't care if he will have racial slurs or punches thrown at him.
He walked up to several people, luckily none of them was in the mood to punch him, but everyone treated him nastily, telling him off.
He was ready to give up, when he noticed a man dressed in rather fine clothes watch him with… compassion?
Auna walked over without a second thought.
"Sir, c-can you please direct me to a doctor?" he asked, his voice shivering because of all the bad replies he received in the last five minutes.
The man with red eyes and slicked back black hair nodded as he spoke.
"Of course. Never mind those pirates, they are trash, no wonder they speak trash as well," he said. Auna kept quiet about the fact that he himself was also, more or less, a pirate.
The man gave him directions and Auna left, thanking him politely.
What a strange man. Auna could swear that he had very swan-like features, but why was his hair black?
He shrugged it off, the man might have been a mixed race.
Then the little native boy headed towards the doctor's house.
Mr Pavo woke up two days after the quick operation. He pulled through with a lot of luck. He lost some blood, but the vital organs were unharmed.
He blinked several times at the light that came through the round window on his office door, and he was suffering from a pretty bad headache and not to mention hunger.
As his eyes finally adjusted to the light, he smiled at the sight of his little assistant, tired out and sleeping on the floor beside his bed, with a book on medicine in his hand.