Tuesday, 2 October 2012

"Winner's Choice"

We're in the last three chapters of "Red Shores and Pirate Anchors"! In this chapter you'll finally get to find out what happens with the treasure that everyone has been hunting for! Not only that but Meryl and Nokomis are going to make a return too...so keep reading!

Also, in the next few week's my ABC Life Literacy readers will be introduced into the Adult Serial story "From Away"!

Chapter Eight

"Winners Choice"

While pirates ransacked Province House for treasure, Sir John, Lillian and Jude stood in the House’s Library studying their pirate map. "I still can’t tell where the treasure is…" Jude complained as the maze of lines, dots and an x were too complex for him. "The floor plan doesn’t make any sense." Sir John pointed out. "That’s not where any of the rooms are." He looked around the Library as if its walls might give him their needed answer. It was an answer they needed very quickly too as the pirates had made it to the second floor in search of gold and jewels. Lillian didn’t speak; she was trying to figure out the rooms drawn on the map. They certainly didn’t make sense like this, but if she were to fold the map in three ways then maybe the floor plan would work. "Maybe like this…" Lilly said, folding the map together and observing what she had done. It was as if the nearly transparent paper the map was drawn on had made a three floored image of Province House. "This is it!" She cried triumphantly, holding out the map for them to see. "Yes, that does make sense!" Sir John exclaimed. "And if that’s right…then we’re right where x marks the spot." Jude pointed out with a smile.

With that said the three went to work trying to find the treasure, moving books and looking under tables. But all their effort went without even a hint at where the treasure was. While Jude and Sir John searched, Lillian checked the map again. She hadn’t noticed before but after folding it, lines she had thought to be decorations overlapped one another to create words that bordered the floor plan. Reading them in a whisper, Lilly puzzled. "Not in the earth below or above you in the sky, along the books that line the walls is where the treasure lie. Find a shelf with red and black, the pirate color code. Move the books and slip inside to find a treasure trove." It was amazing how the pirate who hid the treasure had left behind this rhyme to remember where it was and Lillian quickly started to scan the many bookshelves to find a set of black and red books. There were so many of them it seemed impossible at first, but with her determination to help Jude as motivation Lilly quickly spied a group of tiny volumes that were crimson and black. "That’s them!" She shouted, catching Jude and Sir John’s attention. They went to Lilly’s side as she started pulling out the books and stacking them on the floor. Behind them was a very tiny door, so small that it could never, ever fit a person. "What’s that?" Jude asked, poking the door with a finger. It slowly sunk into the wall from his gentle touch; the remaining shelves collapsed which made the trio scramble to catch books as they fell. Once all the books were safe, an amazing scene was revealed. Behind the wall in a secret compartment was a treasure chest, it sat with its lid open and a lifetime worth of treasure revealed in it. Diamonds, rubies, pieces of eight and money that could last ten times ten families.

They couldn’t gawk at the treasure for long though as Captain Dimitri’s crew was banging against the locked door in order to smash it down. "What do we do?" Jude asked, there was no escapes route from the Library. "You two guard the chest, close it and start hauling it out!" Lillian directed them as she ran to the door. "I’ll distract the pirates." Lilly said bravely just in time for a rush of experienced seamen to flood through the door. They didn’t pay much attention to Lillian, but the last man to cross through the door did, it was Captain Dimitri with his sword raised. "You want a rematch my slippery little eel?" He asked through clenched teeth. Lilly didn’t say anything but lifted her sword to match the Captain’s. Another sword fight took place between them; it was difficult in the small area that the Library provided. Lilly did well though, she used the furniture to her advantage ducking under the table and squeezing into spots that Dimitri couldn’t catch her. The most important part of all was that he didn’t see the treasure as Jude and Sir John slipped it out of the Library and went downstairs with it. "It was a great fight Captain but now I have to go!" Lillian told Dimitri just before she dashed for the exit. But he caught her sword with his, it would have been sent to the ground if it wasn’t for the weapon’s talent of sticking to Lillian’s hand. Instead it was sent straight into the floorboards where Lilly was stuck holding onto the sword. "Haha! You can’t do anything with treasure now, little girl!" The Captain mocked, watching as Lillian struggled to get away from him. She couldn’t, not on her own, but as the sword dug deeper into the wood of the floor something that Nokomis had told her rang in Lillian’s mind. The half-way woman had said that this sword could use the powers of the sea. One word stuck in Lilly’s mind as if the sword was speaking to her.

"Water." She whispered so softly that no one could hear her. That moment was when something very strange happened, the wood of the floorboards started to spout tiny copper colored fish that flopped out of water. Dimitri DeNoir was surprised to see this but even more shocking was the water that started to pour from the hilt of Lilly’s sword. It smelt like salt and sea weed. This was ocean water and it was coming out in rushes! More fish popped out of the floor, jumping in the magical water that was filling the room like a pool and yet not hurting anything within it. As if the sword knew she were safe, Lilly was able to remove it from the floor and run just as she saw fish jumping on the pirates and confusing them. One very smart fish, the smallest of them all leapt so high that it was able to eat the feather right from Captain DeNoir’s hat. With the pirates preoccupied by fish, Lilly was able to run out of the room, following Jude and Sir John. The girl was breathless by the time she reached them, Jude grabbed Lillian in a big hug and she wrapped her arms around him too. "You’re safe!" He cried. "I wouldn’t get hurt, I couldn’t leave you Jude!" She said with a huge smile. "You two have done very well…" Cut in Sir John who looked down at the children with pride. He wouldn’t take the treasure, it was theirs after all, but he did have to go and get the soldiers before those pirates escaped. "Thank you for helping us catch those pirates, you had better go now. Don’t worry; this treasure will be our little secret." He said with a smile and a wink. "Thank you so much Sir John A.!" Beamed Lilly, she grabbed him into a hug and then went back to Jude where the two each lifted one side of the chest and ran for the harbor.

They weren’t sure how they would get home but with any luck their mermaid friends could help them. As night fell and the two friends sat at the Charlottetown harbor with their treasure between them, Jude was looking through his spyglass at a great distance; he could see the stars in the sky so close that they looked like little balls of fire and the whales so deep in the ocean it felt like he could touch them. Even more brilliant in the far distance was the flaming Ghost Ship of Captain Harlington Webbe. That was when Lilly surprised him. "Our mermaids!!!" She yelled, hopping to her feet. Nokomis and Meryl were splashing at the dock. "We have a choice for you!" Meryl said excitedly. "It is very important little ones." Nokomis explained. They both seemed to be in a great hurry. Lilly looked excited and ready to listen but Nokomis shushed her. "We have a question to ask of Jude McLean." Nokomis explained, her eyes trailing on Jude. "You need to make a decision Jude. You may keep the treasure that you have found or use it as payment to buy a place as First Mate the Ghost Ship for Lilly. She could stay with her Father…but the treasure would be lost to the sea forever." Jude didn’t get a chance to say anything before Lilly started protesting. "No!" She shouted. "You can’t Jude, you can’t! Your family needs that treasure, we got it so you could help them!" No matter how much she said though, Jude just wouldn’t reply. He stared out at the horizon thinking of Lillian’s wish to see her Father and before Lilly could say more the boy had tossed his treasure into the sea. "I want your happiness more than treasure Lilly." Jude whispered.

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