The story starts by vaguely introducing a fourteen-year-old nameless boy, who at the beginning has no parents and is a mute. He is apparently running away from his life as an abused orphan, and accidentally slips on the Flying Dutchman as a stowaway. He is found, and made to work with the cook, Petros, an antagonistic character who abuses him. Petros names the boy Neb, which is short for Nebuchadnezzar. One day, while the crew is off drinking in the port town of Esbjerg, a dog wanders onto the ship and is befriended by Neb. He names the dog Denmark, after the country he found the dog in. They strike up an immediate friendship. Den hides under sacks until it is safe to come out. The cruel, wild, and fearsome Captain Vanderdecken steers his ship on a long voyage to get emeralds from a dealer across the ocean, supposedly in Asia. The ship sails to the tip of South America, the treacherous Cape Horn, and unsuccessfully attempts to pass three times. After the third attempt, Captain Vanderdecken curses the Lord for smiting him, and an angel descends from heaven and curses the ship to sail the seas for eternity.
The angel, however, realizes Nebuchadnezzar and Denmark are not part of the motley, now undead crew, and throws them overboard. He blesses them, telling them to walk the earth forever, wise and forever young, to give kindness and guidance wherever they go. They later wash up on shore and find that they are able to communicate by thought.
I know it sounds a little freaky but the books are in one word AWESOME!!! I know I say that a lot. lol Well I've started the Voyage of Slaves now *Rubs hands with anticipation* Goody!