Beat to Quarters Author:C. S. Forester CAPTAIN HORATIO HORNBLOWER — Months out of England, short of food, of water, threatened with scurvy and perhaps with mutiny, he opened his sealed orders. They were incredible. He was to join hands with an unknown rebel, to help him to destroy the power of Spain in the New World and, quite incidentally, to capture a fifty-gun Spanish ship of the... more » line. His whole force consisted of one thirty-six gun frigate. He dared not fail. He was thousands of miles from a friendly port. Moreover, his orders told him that he must not fail.
This was the situation that faced Captain Hornblower of H.M.S. Lydia at the beginning of this story, a situation which grew worse as he proceeded to carry out his orders.« less