"When my ship leaves for the Mediterranean next week, you shall be on it. Perhaps there you will learn some discipline."
Ever since his arrival in Boston, Ezra has striven to do an honorable job, but trouble seems to follow him and his fellow apprentice, George. Even tying a cravat is fraught with peril. Now they are being sent to sea. But the sea has its own perils for American sailors in 1804. Besides the ever present dangers of shipwreck, scurvy, and storm, foreign adversaries are afloat. Even should one slip by the quarreling English and French, the Mediterranean is home to the Barbary corsairs.
George, aware of the dangers, persuades Ezra to enter into a vow with him to come to each other's aid should any calamity befall. And so Ezra boards the Opulence, a promise on his tongue and a determination in his heart to look to God through it all.