After a brief hiatus, MOB and Rob return to find the CSS Shenandoah in the Pacific at the equator, still half the world away from Liverpool, their final destination. However there are none of the jolly japes of their previous crossing of the line: all of the crew are feeling ‘very blue’ as they contemplate their fate being branded pirates. To suit the sombre mood, there is a long discussion drawn from the journal of Midshipman Mason about the best way to be hung by the neck until dead. The conclusion is reached that, if it has to happen, a knot behind the neck is best. This further brings up the unfortunate case of the Lincoln conspirators, who did not have Mason’s up to the minute information.
With Mason’s diary retired hurt and depressed, some excerpts are given from the diary of Ship’s Surgeon Lining, including his account of reading “The Deerslayer” by James Fenimore Cooper, reviewed by Mark Twain as one of the worst books ever written. When Surgeon Lining has finished being transported by Cooper back to the wilds of upstate New York, he finds that Assistant Surgeon McNulty is once again giving trouble. Does this trouble involve alcohol? Find out in episode 42 of Shenandoah Down Under, the one with the drunk Assistant Surgeon!