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How to Be a Pirate (The Heroic Misadventures of Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III #2)

Cressida Cowell

A note from the translator

In the summer of 2002, a boy digging an a beach found a box that contained the following papers.

They are the lost second volume of memoirs of Hiccup Horrendous Haddock the Third the famous Viking Here, Dragon-Whisperer and Top Swordfighter.

They tell the story of how he acquired his famous sword, his first meeting with his archenemy The Most High and Murderous Thief of the Outcasts, and the terrible secret of the Treasure of Grimbeard the Ghastly....

REVIEWS FOR HOW TO Be A PIRATE:

"Hiccup's scariest, funniest adventure so far."

The Pirate Post

"Just who does this Horrendous Haddock think he is?

Us dragons could have him for breakfast."

The Scaly Mail

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CONTENTS

Treasure Map of Grimbeard the Ghastly.........................viii

1. Swordfighting at Sea (Beginners Only)..........................1

2. The Fight with Dogsbreath the Duhbrain..................... 11

3. A Chance in a Million...................................................24

4. Whose Coffin Is This Anyway?....................................27

5. DO NOT OPEN A COFFIN........................................37

6. The Tale of Alvin.................................................... 49

7. Practicing Swordfighting..............................................58

8. Meanwhile, in a Cavern................................................74

9. The Advanced Rudery Lesson......................................77

10. The Worst Day of Hiccup's Life So Far......................85

11. The Treasure of Grimbeard the Ghastly..................103

12. Escape from the Isle of the Skullions.........................l08

13. The Treasure...............................................126

14. The Day Takes a Turn for the Worse........................133

15. The Battle on Board the Lucky Thirteen ..................144

16. At the Bottom of the Ocean......................................153

17. How Bad Could This Day Get?................................157

18. Grimbeard the Ghastly's Final Surprise...................180

19. The Heir to Grimbeard the Ghastly..........................193

Epilogue.........................................................209

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[Map: Treasure map of Grimbeard the Ghastly.]

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[Blank Page]

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1. SWORDFIGHTING AT SEA (BEGINNERS ONLY)

Thor was SERIOUSLY annoyed.

He had sent a mighty summer storm to claw up the seas around the bleak little Isle of Berk. A black wind was shrieking across the wild and angry ocean. Furious thunder boomed overhead. Lightning speared into the water.

Only a madman would think it was the kind of weather for a pleasant sail.

But, amazingly, there was one ship being hurled violently from wave to wave, the hungry ocean chewing at her sides, hoping to tip her over and swallow the souls aboard and grind their bones into sand.

The madman in charge of this

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ship was Gobber the Belch. Gobber ran the Pirate Training Program on the Isle of Berk and this crazy voyage was, in fact, one of Gobber's lessons, Swordfighting at Sea (Beginners Only).

"OKAY, YOU DRIPPY LOT!" yelled Gobber, a six-and-a-half-foot hairy muscle-bound lunatic, with a beard like a ferret having a fit and biceps the size of your head. "PUT YOUR BACKS INTO IT, FOR THOR'S SAKE, YOU ARE NOT AN ICKLE PRETTY JELLYFISH.... HICCUP, YOU ARE ROWING LIKE AN EIGHT-YEAR-OLD..... THE FAT BIT OF THE OAR GOES IN THE WATER.... WE HAVEN'T GOT ALL YEAR TO GET THERE ...." etc. etc.

Hiccup Horrendous Haddock the Third gritted his teeth as a big wave came screaming over the side and hit him full in the face.

Hiccup is, in fact, the Hero of this story, although you would never have guessed this to look at him. He was on the small side and had the sort of face that was almost entirely unmemorable.

There were twelve other boys struggling with the oars of that ship, and practically all of them looked more like Viking Heroes than Hiccup did.

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Wartihog, for instance, was only eleven, but he already had a fine crop of bubbling adolescent pimples and a personal odor problem. Dogsbreath could row as hard as anybody else with one hand, while picking his nose with the other. Snotlout was a natural leader. Clueless had ear hair.

Hiccup was just absolutely average, the kind of unremarkable, skinny, freckled boy who was easy to overlook in a crowd.

Beneath the rowing benches, thirteen dragons were huddled, one for each boy.

[Image: Men.]

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The dragon belonging to Hiccup was much, much smaller than the others. His name was Toothless, an emerald green Common or Garden dragon with enormous eyes and a sulky expression.

He was whining to Hiccup in Dragonese.*

"These Vikings c-c-crazy. Toothless g-g-got salt in his wings. Toothless sitting in a big cold puddle. Toothless h-h-hungry.... F-F-FEED ME." He tugged at Hiccup's pants. "Toothless need f-f-food NOW."

[Image: a dragon's wings make a great umbrella.]

* Dragonese was the native tongue of the dragons. I have translated it into English for the benefit of those readers whose Dragonese is a bit rusty. Only Hiccup could understand this fascinating language.

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"I'm sorry, Toothless." Hiccup winced as the boat plunged maniacally downwards on the back of another monstrous wave. "But this is not a g ood. moment...."

"THOR ONLY KNOWS," yelled Gobber, "how you USELESS LOT got initiated into the tribe of the Hairy Hooligans ... but you now face four tough years on the Pirate Training Program before you can truly call yourselves VIKINGS."

"Oh great," thought Hiccup gloomily.

"We will begin with the most important

Viking Skill of all... SWORDFIGHTING AT SEA."

Gobber grinned.

"The rules of Pirate Swordfighting are ... THERE ARE NO RULES. In this lesson, biting, gouging, scratching and anything else particularly nasty all get you extra points. The first boy to call out 'I submit' shall be the loser."

"Or we all drown," muttered Hiccup, "whichever is the sooner."

"NOW," shouted Gobber. "I NOMINATE

THE FIRST BOY AS DOGSBREATH THE DUHBRAIN. WHO'S GOING TO FIGHT HIM?"

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[Image: Hiccup.]

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Dogsbreath the Duhbrain grunted happily at the thought of spilling blood. Dogsbreath was a mindless thug of a boy with hairy knuckles that practically grazed the ground as he walked, and mean little eyes and a big ring in his flared nostrils made him look like a bristly boar with a bad character.

"Who shall fight Dogsbreath?" repeated Gobber the Belch.

Ten of the boys stuck their hands up with cries of "Oooosirmesirpleasechoosemesir," wildly excited at the thought of being smooshed into a pulp by Dogsbreath the Duhbrain. This was predictable. That's what most Hooligans were like.

But what was more surprising was that HICCUP also leapt to his feet, shouting, "I nominate myself, Hiccup Horrendous Haddock the Third!"

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This was unusual because while Hiccup was the only son of Chief Stoick the Vast, he was not what you might call "naturally sporty." He was nearly as bad at Bashyball, Thugger and all the other violent Viking games as his best friend Fishlegs.

And Fishlegs had a squint, a limp, numerous allergies and no coordination whatsoever.

"What has got into you?" whispered Fishlegs. "Sit down, you lunatic.... He'll murder you. ..."

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