Study Guide

Treasure Island Chapter 25

By Robert Louis Stevenson

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Chapter 25

I Strike the Jolly Roger

  • Jim nearly gets thrown off into the sea when the pole that is supposed to keep the sails open – the jib – flies out and almost hits him.
  • Jim crawls up the bowsprit to the deck.
  • There he sees the two pirate watchmen. One of them, the red-capped man (who we find out is named O'Brien), is lying stiff on his back. The other, Israel Hands, is hunched against the side of the boat. They are both surrounded by dark puddles of blood.
  • In a still moment, Israel Hands straightens up a little bit and groans.
  • Jim approaches him slowly.
  • Israel asks for one thing: brandy.
  • Jim goes quickly below deck. He sees that the captain's cabin is a total wreck, filled with empty bottles.
  • Jim realizes that, since the mutiny began, not one of the sailors has been sober.
  • He finds a bottle half full of brandy for Israel Hands and a bit of food for himself.
  • Israel drinks a lot of brandy before he's ready to talk.
  • He says that if Doctor Livesey were on board, he'd soon be healed of his wounds, but he doesn't have that kind of luck.
  • Jim announces that he's now the captain of the Hispaniola.
  • As the ship's new captain, he pulls down the Jolly Roger flag and throws it overboard.
  • Israel Hands offers to help Jim sail the ship if Jim will bring him food, alcohol, and something to bandage his wound.
  • Jim plans to sail to the North Inlet to beach the boat quietly; he doesn't want to go to Captain Kidd's anchorage, where the pirates are waiting. (A reminder – check out this map if you want to see where all these places are.)
  • Israel Hands agrees. He knows he has no choice but to help Jim.
  • Jim sets the boat sailing towards the north end of the island.
  • Then he helps Israel Hands wrap up the stab wound on his thigh. After some more brandy, Israel Hands perks right up.
  • Jim is happy to have captured the ship so easily. He is sure that his friends will forgive him for leaving the fort without permission.
  • Still, Jim is a little unsettled: Israel Hands keeps watching him with a knowing, crafty smile.

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