The Sons of Mutineers


© Google 2017

Daniel McCoy stood on the rocks and cast his line again into the Pacific. No matter how chaotic other parts of his life became, fishing was his refuge of peace. He knew they would be waiting for him when he got back home. He would go peacefully. After all, he deserved this. But he needed to spend one more hour in heavenly solitude before facing the consequences of his acts.

Daniel McCoy, like the other inhabitants of Pitcairn Island, was the descendant of the nine Bounty mutineers. Their reputation had been romanticized over the centuries, but not so the crimes nearly a third of the modern male population of the island would be found guilty of. From mutineers to sexual predators. Their ancestors would be ashamed.

I wrote this for the What Pegman Saw photo writing challenge. The idea is to craft a piece of flash fiction no more than 150 words long using the photo prompt above. My word count is 126. Today, thanks to Google maps, we are taken to the Pitcairn Islands which have a rather colorful history, both ancient and modern.

I took the name “Daniel McCoy” from one of the Second Generation of the Bounty mutineers living on Pitcairn. As for the rest, it’s all true. You can read about how the current population of Pitcairn was founded, and then the sexual assault trials of 2004.

To read other stories based on the prompt, go to

12 thoughts on “The Sons of Mutineers

  1. Apparently, the descendants of this island are still suffering a spiritual malaise inherited from the original mutineer population, despite the infusion of religion from Seventh-Day Adventism a century later. Given the exceptionally small population, from its 27-member inception just over two centuries ago, to a maximum of 250 in 1936, to its present 56 members, one must suspect part of the cause of their problems to be mental deficiencies due to close inbreeding. Nonetheless, it is now illegal for children under age 16 to visit the island, even in the company of their parents, without special authorization. What must one infer about the cultural climate there, relative to human sexuality, even before the recent child molestation trials that publicized the matter? Such things do not arise out of nothing, nor are they likely a sudden development only in the present generation. Yet the men convicted in 2004 were imprisoned for only about four years, and in 2010 the then mayor was facing 25 charges of possessing images and videos of child pornography on his computer. If any human population may be deemed to need wholesale mental reprogramming, this one seems a likely candidate.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That the island’s population has always been small leads me to believe that they may always have practiced illegal and forbidden sexual acts. As I ponder the island’s history further, I wonder if my final line in the story about their ancestors being ashamed of them is accurate?


    • Yes, I saw that. I think your tale was far more colorful than mine and probably better captured the historical basis for the modern dysfunctional behavior.


  2. Nicely done. The situation on the Bounty is steeped in Hollywood, so it’s impossible for us to really know what kinds of men these were and what drove them to mutiny. Was Robinson Crusoe a morality tale? Hard to say though our modern eyes.

    Liked by 1 person

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