Jesamiah - in Italian!

Bring It Close - the third Sea Witch Voyage is set during October 1718 - the month when ghosts walk and the dead return... 

Jesamiah Acorne, Captain of the Sea Witch, has accepted a government-granted amnesty against his misdeeds of piracy, but old enemies do not forget the past. In particular Edward Teach - better known as Blackbeard - has a bone to pick with Acorne. Following an indiscretion with an old flame, Jesamiah finds his fiancée, the midwife and white witch Tiola Oldstagh, has gone to North Carolina to help with an imminent and difficult birth. The problem; that is where Blackbeard now resides.

He must not discover that Tiola is Jesamiah's woman, she will have to hide her identity and her gift of Craft from the black-hearted pirate who has sold his soul to the devil. With Sea Witch damaged and himself wounded by Blackbeard, Jesamiah has to take stock of his situation at his old home in Virginia - but trouble follows him like a ship's wake and he is arrested for acts of piracy on the High Seas.

Too much trouble has come too close! How is Jesamiah Acorne to clear his name, overturn a sentence of hanging, keep Tiola safe, put an end to Blackbeard and deal with being haunted by the ghost of his father? Bring It Close moves from the Bahamas to North Carolina and Colonial Williamsburg in Virginia at a swashbuckling pace. There is intrigue, misunderstanding, romance and adventure all wrapped up in a delightful blend of mystical fantasy set during the period of Samhain - Halloween.



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(Scroll down for the English translation)

“Ti stavamo cercando, Acorne,” disse l’uomo con l’orecchino.
“E mi avete pure beccato, o no?” strascicò Jesamiah. Aveva abbandonato il suo usuale accento colto, e si abbandonò alla parlata chiusa di un comune mozzo. Era un ottimo imitatore, aveva un talento naturale nell’imparare accenti e cadenze tonali. Sapeva anche quando comportarsi da gentiluomo e quando da sempliciotto.
Vuotò il suo boccale, sollevandolo poi per fischiare all’indirizzo di Nan-Non-Dice-No, una sgualdrina piena come un galeone spagnolo, i cui fascini la tenevano tanto occupata quanto la sedia di un barbiere.
Ancheggiò verso Jesamiah, la parte superiore del suo corpo era parzialmente esposta e i suoi abbondanti seni dondolarono accanto al volto di lui mentre la donna si chinava a versargli dell’altro rum.
“E per i tuoi amici?” chiese, con un cenno del volto nella loro direzione.
“Non sono amici miei,” rispose Jesamiah, sollevando il boccale per assaggiare il liquore appena versatogli.
L’uomo con l’orecchino mosse il capo in uno scatto, indicando a Nan di andarsene. Lei sospirò sprezzante, allontanandosi, lasciandosi indietro la sua risata profonda e rimbombante, non appena un altro uomo attirò la sua attenzione pizzicandole l’ampio didietro.
“Ma per dire meglio, Acorne, è che è Teach quello che ti sta cercando.”
Con una mezza alzata di spalle, Jesamiah finse noncuranza; “Non è che mi sto nascondendo, Gibbens. Sono qui ancorato al porto di Nassau da diverse settimane.” Da agosto, in effetti, se si escludeva la sua breve gita a Hispaniola – un’esperienza che Jesamiah stava cercando di lasciarsi alle spalle e dimenticare. E da lì, il rum.
Aye, abbiamo sentito che hai firmato l’amnistia e ci hai lasciato le palle in mano a Governatore Rogers.” Gibbens ringhiò, accompagnando le parole a un gesto crudo ed esplicito sulle sue parti basse.
“Mollato la pirateria?” Barba Rossa – Rufus – sbuffò mentre raggruppava un grumo di saliva e tabacco nella sua bocca per poi lanciarlo sul pavimento. “Ti sei rammollito, eh? Hai il barile a secco, eh? Hai perso le palle, eh?” Aggiunse poi, con malizia, “A Edward Teach non ce ne fregava niente delle favole di pace del governo, né di uno stramaledetto perdono.” Conficcò il pugnale nel piano del tavolo di legno, dove vibrò, tanto minaccioso quanto l’uomo che lo brandiva.
Non è ciò che ho sentito, pensò Jesamiah, senza però dire nulla. Non aveva alcuna intenzione di avvicinarsi a Edward Teach, meglio noto come Barbanera – sebbene Cuore Nero sarebbe stato altrettanto appropriato. Persino la feccia e i miscredenti che giravano nei Caraibi in cerca di bottino facile evitavano quel feroce pirata che era Barbanera.
Oltretutto, Jesamiah non era più un pirata. Proprio come aveva detto Gibbens, aveva firmato con il suo nome nel libro rilegato in pelle di Governatore Rogers e aveva accettato il perdono reale di Sua Maestà Re Giorgio. Ed era precisamente quello il motivo per cui non aveva niente di meglio da fare che starsene seduto in quella taverna a bere rum: la pirateria, saccheggiare, razziare, niente di tutto questo faceva più parte di lui, non più. Ora, Jesamiah Acorne, capitano della Sea Witch, aveva una donna che stava per sposare, una fortuna sostanziosa che avrebbe finalmente potuto cominciare a godersi, se solo avesse saputo come spenderla, e la dubbiosa reputazione di chi stava diventando un uomo ozioso.
Era anche annoiato.
“Ci devi qualcosa, Acorne,” disse Rufus. “E Teach vuole che paghi il debito.”


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Or in English...

Tuesday, 1st October 1718
Jesamiah Acorne, four and twenty years old, Captain f the Sea Witch, sat with his hands cradled around an almost empty tankard of rum, staring blankly at the drips of candle-wax that had hardened into intricate patterns down the sides of a green glass bottle. The candle itself was smoking and leaning to one side as if drunk. As drunk as Jesamiah.
For maybe ten seconds he did not notice the two grim-faced, shabby ruffians sit down on the bench opposite him. One of them reached forward and snuffed out the guttering flame, pushed the bottle aside. Jesamiah looked up, stared at them as vacantly as he had been staring at the congealed rivers of wax.
One of the men, the one wearing a battered three-corner felt hat and a gold hoop earring that dangled from his left earlobe, leant his arms on the table, linking his tar and gunpowder-grimed fingers together. The other, a red-haired man with a beard like a weather-worn, abandoned bird’s nest, eased a dagger from the sheath on his belt and began cleaning his split and broken nails with its tip.
“We’ve been lookin’ fer you, Acorne,” the man with the earring said.
“Found me then, ain’t yer,” Jesamiah drawled. He dropped his usual educated accent and spoke in the clipped speech of a common foremast jack. He was a good mimic, had a natural talent to pick up languages and tonal cadences. Also knew when to play the simpleton or a gentleman.
He drained his tankard, held it high and whistled for Never-Say-No Nan, a wench built like a Spanish galleon and whose charms kept her as busy as a barber’s chair.
She ambled over to Jesamiah, the top half of her partially exposed and extremely ample bosoms wobbling close to his face as she poured more rum.
“What about your friends?” she asked, nodding in their direction.
“Ain’t no friends of mine,” Jesamiah answered lifting his tankard to sample the replenished liquor.
The man with the earring jerked his head, indicating Nan was to be gone. She sniffed haughtily and swept away, her deep-rumbled laughter drifting behind as another man gained her attention by pinching her broad backside.
“Or to be more accurate, Acorne, Teach ‘as been lookin’ for yer.”
Half shrugging, Jesamiah made a fair pretence at nonchalance; “I ain’t exactly been ‘iding, Gibbens. I’ve been openly anchored ‘ere in Nassau ‘arbour for several weeks.” Since August in fact, apart from a brief excursion to Hispaniola – which Jesamiah was attempting to set behind him and forget about. Hence the rum.
“Aye, we ‘eard as ‘ow thee’ve signed for amnesty and put yer piece into Governor Rogers’ ‘and,” Gibbens sneered, making an accompanying crude and explicit gesture near his crotch.
“Given up piracy?” Red Beard – Rufus – scoffed as he hoiked tobacco spittle into his mouth and gobbed it to the floor, “Gone soft ‘ave thee? Barrel run dry, ‘as it? Lost yer balls, eh?” Added with malice, “Edward Teach weren’t interested in fairy-tale government amnesties, nor ‘ollow pardons.” He drove his dagger into the wooden table where it quivered as menacing as the man who owned it.
That’s not what I’ve heard, Jesamiah thought but said nothing. He had no intention of going anywhere near Edward Teach, better known as Blackbeard, though Black Heart would be as appropriate. Even the scum and miscreants who roamed the seas of the Caribbean in search of easy loot and plunder avoided the brute of a pirate who was Blackbeard.
Aside, Jesamiah was no longer a pirate. As Gibbens had said, he had signed his name in Governor Rogers’ leather-bound book and accepted His Majesty King George’s royal pardon. Which was why he had nothing better to do than sit here in this tavern drinking rum. Piracy, plundering, pillaging, none of that was for him, not now. Now, Jesamiah Acorne, Captain of the Sea Witch, had a woman he was about to marry, a substantial fortune that he could start using if only he knew what to spend it on, and the dubious reputation of becoming a respectable man of leisure.
He was also bored.

“You owe him, Acorne,” Rufus said. “Teach wants the debt paid.”



4 comments:

  1. Congrats, Helen! I read and speak Italian, but not as strongly as English. It's so cool to see the sentences and dialogue in Italian. How wonderful. I would love to see my book in Italian one day. Enjoy!

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    1. Thank you Cynthia - of course I have no idea how accurate a translation this is! Italians seem happy with it though!

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  2. Congratulations, Helen! This is fantastic. I'd love to see my books translated like this. You are such a great role model!

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    1. Thank you Elaine - I'm really pleased with this particular series, it's lovely working with the Italian publisher.

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