|It is a pleasant September morning in the year of our Lord 1622. A Spanish galleon sits in the port of Havana, along with 27 other ships of the combined fleet, their crews awaiting departure orders.|
The Nuestra Señora de Atocha ("Our Lady of Atocha") sits low in the water, weighed down by 964 silver bars, 161 gold bars or disks, 255,000 silver coins, and chests filled with emeralds.
The Atocha is a 20-cannon, 500-ton colossus. It is the rear guard of the fleet and includes a company of soldiers. It's job is to protect the smaller and slower moving vessels from pirates.