In Gallant Company (Richard Bolitho Novels, No. 3) (The Bolitho Novels) (Volume 3)

In Gallant Company (Richard Bolitho Novels, No. 3) (The Bolitho Novels) (Volume 3)

Alexander Kent

Language: English

Pages: 312

ISBN: 0935526439

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

As the American Revolution rages on the mainland, the British Navy prepares for action at sea. Against a growing fleet of American and French privateers, the navy must maintain its blockade of Washington's vital military supplies. Caught up in the turmoil, junior officer Richard Bolitho finds himself having to make momentous decisions in the heat of battle—decisions that could affect the lives of many men and, perhaps, even the fate of nations.

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Moffitt had been away from home at the time and had been seized, then forced into a ship of the Revolutionary Navy, one of the first American privateers which had sailed from Newburyport. Their activities had not lasted for long, and the privateer had been chased and taken by a British frigate. For her company it had meant prison, but for Moffitt it had been a chance to change sides once more, to gain his revenge in his own way against those who had ruined his father. Now he was beside the

succeed, and for that he would give up a lot more than brandy. During the night and through the following day, Spite tacked back and forth, biding her time while she continued a slow approach towards the land. Fort Exeter stood on a sandy four-mile-long island which was shaped rather like an axe-head. At low water it was connected to the mainland by an unreliable causeway of sand and shingle, and the entrance to a lagoon-like anchorage was easily protected by the fort’s carefully sited

murderous grape found a target. A marine was yelling in his ear, ‘The devils are on the island, sir!’ He was almost screaming. ‘Cavalry!’ Lieutenant FitzHerbert ran through the smoke. ‘Silence, that man!’ He fired his pistol along the causeway and added savagely, ‘You’ll start a panic!’ Quinn gasped, ‘Cavalry, he said!’ FitzHerbert glared at him, his eyes shining above the handkerchief like stones. ‘We’d all be corpses if there was, man! A few riders, no doubt!’ Rowhurst shouted hoarsely,

looked at him. ‘Sir?’ Bolitho nodded wearily, and the marine banged his musket on the deck and called, ‘Second lieutenant, sir!’ The door opened and Teakle, the clerk, ushered Bolitho inside. He had a bandage on his wrist and looked very shaken. Bolitho wondered why he had never thought of a clerk being in as much danger as any of them. Quinn came from the cabin, his face as white as a sheet. He saw Bolitho and looked as if he were about to speak. Then with a gasp he blundered past him into

quarterdeck rail and felt something like affection for the big, ungainly man in checkered shirt and flapping white trousers. One more link with the little Destiny. Stockdale, the muscular prize-fighter he had rescued from a barker outside an inn when he and a dispirited recruiting party had been trying to drum up volunteers for the ship. Stockdale had taken to the sea in a manner born. As strong as five men, he never abused his power, and was more gentle than many. The angry barker had been

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