The story begins on a rocky seashore where the pirates are celebrating
young Frederic's coming of age. He has completed his apprenticeship
and is now about to become a full-fledged member of the crew.
Frederic however shocks the pirate King and his men by announcing
that he is leaving their band.
We find out that Frederic was mistakenly indentured to become a
pirate when he was a child. Although he never approved of the pirates'
plundering profession, he stayed with them because he was bound by
his sense of duty. This same sense of duty, he tells them, now compels
him to forsake them.
Frederic is about to marry his elder nanny Ruth, who has constantly
accompanied him since he joined the ship, but he wants her to remain
with the pirates. He has not seen another woman since he was eight
years old, and he wants to compare Ruth with other women. He
comes upon a group of beautiful maidens, all of them daughters of
Major-General Stanley, and falls in love with the youngest, Mabel.
The pirates try to abduct the Major-General's daughters and marry
them. But the Major-General begs for their release, claiming that he is
an orphan, and that he would be all alone without them. The pirates,
who are all orphans themselves, are sympathetic to him, and they give
up their plans for marriage.
We find out that the Major-General lied to the pirates: He is not an
orphan, and he now fears the consequences of his story. Frederic
meanwhile has arranged for a Sergeant and his police force to help
defeat his former buccaneering comrades.
Ruth and the Pirate King inform Frederic that through an unusual
circumstance, he is still bound to remain a pirate. He reluctantly
surrenders to his sense of duty and agrees to join them again. Mabel
begs him to stay with her, but he sadly tells her that he cannot.
Meanwhile the pirates have planned their revenge on the
Major-General and are now coming to rob his estate. The Sergeant
and his police force await them. They meet. All is resolved after the