Slater is still a boy in temperament and interests. He maintains an optimistic view of the world and has a difficult time believing in evil or evil-minded men. He is serious and earnest, and has a growing confidence in his abilities, although he still second-guesses himself. He has a budding sense of confidence with a sharp interest in his studies. Doing well is important to him and he strives to perform his best, as much to please his captain as his fellow midshipmen. Young Slater was fortunate to be the eldest son, thus learning how to act as might one "in charge". Holding to that same habit within the midshipmen's berth - and the ship itself - where he is no longer the eldest is a challenge.