June 21st, 1683
Aboard the proud Galleon Sol de los Mares:
Blessed god we have sighted land! Sato was so excited he left me to steer the ship and jumped into the rigging to get a better vantage. Ferdinand joined him and confirmed for the rest of us, it is land.
And now we must decide many things. Four days ago we were five lost men with little chance of survival. Now we are four men with a ship under us, about to sail into a port and drop anchor. Shall we keep the ship and build new fortunes? Could we turn our near deaths into a healthy pension for all of us? If we do this, how would we accomplish the details, and where would we get the money?
Ferdinand must have had similar thoughts, because he approached me just before sunset, with the island now large in front of us, awaiting our arrival. We discussed the finer details and his plan seems sound. He proposes we use the gold found in the Captain’s quarters to fund a refit of the ship. Once this is complete, we hire a new Captain and crew, and take on cargo, running between Europe and the New World, or anywhere in between.
I came forward on the ship to think, about many things. The sunset this evening is blinding. The reflection off the water makes everything else seem so very small. Fitting somehow that the island we have found be framed just so.
After some thought, I sought Ferdinand out and agreed to his proposal. My past life is over. It ended the day I made my way beyond stone walls and iron bars, and it began anew when I was spared a watery grave aboard this wonderful vessel. I know nothing of ships beyond what I have learned as needed during our trials, but I know numbers and accounting and have agreed to serve as our treasurer if Ferdinand will function as our agent. Sato and Giuseppe will be included as well, as silent partners and paid equally.
Tonight we stood on the forecastle by moonlight and took an oath to stand together. Sato proffered his blade and we swore the oath in blood. We are connected now, for better or worse. We are partners.
I find myself at peace now, for the first time in many months. Juan Carlos Devila is gone, perhaps forever. I will need a new name now, marking my rebirth and this new life I have stumbled upon. For now my Father’s name, Roberto will suffice. I will honor his name in this life as I never did in my last. II am now Roberto Argento Devila. I am a free man, adrift no longer.