The captain and crew had abandoned ship, leaving Murray and his band of retirees in complete control of the MV Huron.

John One and John Two had been in the Navy during the Korean War, so they knew enough to get the boat underway. John Three and Edgar had been in the Marines, so they knew how to bust open the arms locker. Not that a motor ferry on the Great Lakes had any great quantity of small arms, mind. But a line gun, an assortment of Orion flare guns, and a Marlin Mariner with half a dozen signal rounds and another half-dozen of no. 8 birdshot were enough to make anyone at least think twice about boarding.

Murray called a meeting on the bridge. “The way I see it,” he said, “we’ve got two options. Option one, we go ashore right now and turn ourselves in. Face the music. We kind of got caught up in something that got out of hand, and they might go easy on us since we’re old as hell and likely to die in jail before we learn our lesson.”

“What’s option two?” said John Three.

“Option two is we fuel up this tub before anyone realizes what’s up and set out for open water. Take what we need from the assholes in boats and stay ahead of a Coast Guard that hasn’t dealt with anything bigger than meth heads in rowboats for a hundred years.”

Looking at the faces of his friends, Murray saw that he scarcely needed to call a vote of any kind. The pirate career of the MV Huron had begun, the first such pirate to sail the Great Lakes in living memory.

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