"The Piratical Voyages of Captain Roderick Reef!"

                                                               by Richard Nathan


Before the lights come up, a voice introduces the story:

                                    Avast, me hearties!  Climb aboard the
                                    good ship Roving Finn, and raise the Jolly
                                    Roger!  'Tis time to set sail with bravest
                                    pirate ever to cruise the Spanish Main!  'Tis 
                                    time to join The Piratical Voyages of
                                    Captain Roderick Reef!!!

Lights come up on the Captain's Cabin on the good ship Roving Finn!  But the Captain in not in.  Lying on the floor, dying is CAPTAIN LOPEZ and his daughter JUANITA.  Juanita is disguised as a cabin boy.  They both speak with heavy Spanish accents.

                                                            CAPTAIN LOPEZ
                                    Daughter, you must be brave.  My eyes grow
                                    dim as my bones grow cold.  I must repay my
                                    debt to God!  I fear...  I fear the end is near!                                   

                                    The end is near?  You mean you're going to die?

                                                            CAPTAIN LOPEZ
                                    You always were a bright girl!  Summon the
                                    pirate Captain.  We must trust he will be

                                    But, Father... he is a pirate English dog!

                                                            CAPTAIN LOPEZ
                                    True.  But I feel there is something noble about

                                    It is true he is perhaps the handsomest man I
                                    have ever seen, with eyes like a storm at sea,
                                    and teeth as white as the foaming surf, but can
                                    we trust a pirate? 

                                                            CAPTAIN LOPEZ
                                    We are his prisoners!  We have no choice.

                                    If you say so.  I will call the Captain.

She goes to the door of the cabin and shouts to the deck:

                                    Captain!  We need to speak to you!

A moment later the dashing CAPTAIN RODERICK REEF arrives.

                                    Good morning, Captain Lopez.  I hope you've
                                    been enjoying my cabin.  It's not often I lend it to
                                    a Spanish prisoner and his cabin boy, but given
                                    the state of your wounds... 

                                                            CAPTAIN LOPEZ
                                    Captain, I have a confession to make.  This is not
                                    my cabin boy!

                                    He is not?  Then who is the lad?

                                                            CAPTAIN LOPEZ
                                    She is my daughter, Juanita Lopez!  When you
                                    attacked my ship, and I saw that all was lost, I
                                    disguised her as a cabin boy.

Juanita takes off her cap and lets her hair down.  She doesn't look very different than she did at the start of the scene, but it's enough to convince Reef that she is a woman.

                                    Very clever!   Just the sort of thing I would have
                                    done, had I a daughter!  But why tell me now?

                                                            CAPTAIN LOPEZ
                                    Because I am dying!  And I must trust you to
                                    protect her from your pirate crew.

                                    That may take some doing.  But I will protect her! 
                                    You have my word!

                                    The word of a pirate!

                                    The word of Captain Roderick Reef.

                                                            CAPTAIN LOPEZ
                                    You are Roderick Reef!  I should have known it was  
                                    you.  Only Roderick Reef would have attacked with 
                                    such cunning and bravery!  Juanita, you are safe.  Even 
                                    his enemies say Captain Reef is a man of his word!  
                                    And now... I die!

He dies.  Juanita wails her heart out.  Captain Reef takes her in his arms to comfort her.  She breaks away from him.

                                    Take your hands off me, you English pig!  You
                                    and your pirate crew...  you killed my father, and
                                    his entire crew!

                                    True, my lady.   But you must confess, some of
                                    the fault was his!  If he had surrendered when we
                                    first raised the Jolly Roger, no one would have
                                    been hurt!

                                    Would you not fight to protect what is yours?

                                    Yes, but I would win!

                                    No wonder you are a pirate!  With morals like
                                    that, what else could you be?

                                    I could have been a nobleman, if I'd had the right parents. 
                                    But my father was a farmer.  I knew the only way I
                                    could live my life as I chose, and not be ruled by
                                    others, was to become a pirate.  And that is what I did. 

                                    And you steal gold from the Spanish.

                                    Who stole it from the natives.  It's a grim world we
                                    live in, my fair Spanish lady.


                                                            MAD JOE
                                    Harrr, Cap'n!  Me thinks I've seen another
                                    Spanish ship.  Laden with gold, if we be lucky! 

Mad Joe notices Juanita with her hair down!

                                                            MAD JOE
                                    Cap'n!  Be this not a poxy woman?  Harrr!  She
                                    be a poxy woman, or my name be not Mad Joe
                                    The Pirate!

Mad Joe leers at Juanita!  She grabs hold of Captain Reef in fear!

                                    She is a woman, Mad Joe, and she's under my

                                                            MAD JOE
                                    Harr, Cap'n!   That be against the rules, that be! 
                                    Every pirate knows, no woman comes
                                    aboard a pirate ship and lives, unless she be a
                                    pirate herself!  That woman be no pirate, you
                                    can lay to that!  So she must die!

                                    This woman will live.  I have given my word as

                                                            MAD JOE
                                    Harrr!  Then maybe it be time for a new Cap'n!

Mad Joe and Reef draw their swords and a duel is on!  As the sword fight continues, Mad Joe and Captain Reef trade verbal barbs.

                                                            MAD JOE
                                    Harr!  I always thought you was too courtly
                                    to be a pirate!

                                    I always thought you too crude to be a man!

                                                            MAD JOE
                                    Your fancy talk won't save you now!

                                    Then I'll rely on my fancy blade!

                                                            MAD JOE
                                    When I be done with you, you'll be finished!

                                    I'm finished now!

Reef runs his blade through Mad Joe!  Mad Joe dies! 

                                    That beast would have killed me!

She runs to his arms and kisses him!  Reef gently pushes her away.

                                    I don't know what you've heard about
                                    other pirates, but Captain Reef doesn't
                                    kiss cabin boys! 

                                    Cabin boys?

    `                               That's right, Juanita, - or should I say Juan. 
                                    Better put up your hair and put that hat back 
                                    on and tuck your hair in before I introduce you
                                    to the crew as my new cabin boy!  Hurry up,
                                    Juan!  It's time to set sail for adventure! 




Click here to go to more

2005 by Richard Nathan.  All rights reserved

The author grants all internet uses to print these scripts for their own, personal, non-commercial use.  No other use may be made without the author's permission.  Without limiting the foregoing, the plays may not be staged without the author's express  permission.

Send e-mail to the author at