Study Guide

The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle Chapter 14

By Avi

Chapter 14

  • The captain confronts Charlotte about her clothing and about climbing in the rigging. She admits to him that she has joined the crew. He orders her back to her cabin, but she resists. The captain tells Charlotte that he will drive her as hard as any other member of the crew.
  • The captain orders Charlotte to take up residence in the forecastle with the rest of the crew. She is also entered into the books as "Mister Doyle" rather than "Miss Doyle."
  • As soon as the captain leaves, the crew cheers. Hooray, Mister Doyle!
  • Charlotte takes up her duties on the ship and works daily alongside the crew. The captain drives her just as hard as the men, if not harder.
  • Charlotte keeps up with the pace but is always physically exhausted. Her skin changes colors, turning into a rough hide.
  • Charlotte sleeps in the quarters with the men, and they swear a solemn oath to treat her as a brother. She's given a hammock in the corner around which a sail is drawn for privacy.
  • Charlotte loves her new life and even begins to curse like the men. She feels she has been liberated.
  • One afternoon the flying jib becomes entangled by some twisted line and Charlotte is forced by Captain Jaggery to climb out to the end of the bowsprit (that's the pointy thing on the end of the ship) to cut the line.
  • During the task, Charlotte falls, but is able to grab onto the bowsprit, her feet hanging above the sea. She hauls herself up and climbs back onto the deck.
  • Captain Jaggery reprimands Charlotte since the men changed the course of the ship during her climb out on the bowsprit so that she'd have calmer waters.
  • Charlotte calls the captain a coward and threatens to take him to the courts when they arrive in Providence. She spits by his boots. (Brave!) The captain turns on his heel and leaves the deck.
  • Grimes gives Charlotte lessons in handling a knife. She clearly needs no lessons in talking back, though.
  • One day, Charlotte and Barlow see a blue bird from the Caribbean on a branch floating in the water. She thinks it means land, but Barlow tells her it means that there's a hurricane coming.
  • Charlotte learns that the captain is driving the ship straight for the hurricane in the hopes that they can use the wind as momentum for the last of the journey. Gulp.