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Thu, 03 Jan 2008
The old Pirate Ship

The Beginning Jack Sparrow aka Johnny Depp hmmmmm.
This very strange story was given me by a friend from Thailand and although it doesn't say where the harbour is, I think it must surely be from his part of the world so here is a little yarn about an old Pirate Ship, who knows, it might even have been the "Black Pearl" before the escape of Jack Sparrow. :)


Old Pirate ShipThe Old Pirate Ship.

It is almost two weeks now since the old wreck of the pirate ship was washed up on the nearby shore of our sleepy little town.
Initialy, as the first returning fishermen had spied its crenellated outline listing between the palm fronds, it was feared a gang of cut-throat marauders had decided to pillage our homes - but it soon became apparent that the hulk was lifeless and uninhabited save for the pale white barnacles.
By mid-morning it was swarming with children, young and old who had sneaked out of school to investigate this promising novelty. But the next day the town school was half empty and Ms Cecily Charcoal -Brazier had to send a message to the local constable demanding that he do something about rounding up and delivering the truants back to her as they appeared to have vanished.
As the days progressed however it soon became apparent that all was not quite what it seemed with the old, salt-encrusted vessel.
        A number of men, seeking to salvage what little remained of usable wood from her, met with strange and inexplicable accidents.
Rory McTavish, for example, as skilled and as conscientious a boatsman you might find between here and Oakwood Harbour to the north, caught his foot in some rotten rigging and fell to the deck beneath him, breaking an arm and cracking three ribs.
James Colway, sure-footed even after consuming a dozen pints of Old Martha's Invigorating Treacle Balm and Elixer, slipped on a hank of seaweed he swore wasn't there a moment before and, grabbing onto a nearby handrail for support, found a six-inch sliver of cruel ironwood embedded in his upper thigh.
He and the other men with him swore they heard the sound of laughter coming from the holds below but when they investigated, white-faced but determined, all they found was a chest alreadytreasure chest plundered of whatever treasure it might once have held and the skeletons of two somewhat oversize rats.
When Colway took a fever and died three days later men took to avoiding the wreck altogether and mothers beat their children to convince them to likewise shy away from it -  though not with a hundred percent success.
A group of young braves led by Peter Mendolsohn elected to spend a night on the old ship but long before the village clock struck midnight  they were back in their homes, terrified and half-delirious, telling incomprehensible tales of wild revels and phantom rituals. Peter's sister, Sally, was hysterical, alternatively weeping and shrieking as she gazed about her in horror, purple bruises evident on her arms and thighs were, she said, ghost pirates had tried to
molest her and drag her down an open hatchway into the depths of the ship.

The next morning a party of men investigated the wreck, inch by
inch, but could find no evidence of anything extraordinary: the wreck was nothing more than what it seemed.
Even Sally Mendolsohn's bruises of the night before had vanished completely and all the men and women could do was cross themselves and make sure their children were home early in the evening, safely protected behind closed doors and snuggled up between warm sheets.
spectral lights all over the wreckWhen, the following night, spectral lights were seen trembling in the rigging of the cast-up ship and strange coarse cries came drifting down along the shore towards the town, good people turned their gaze away and made sure their doors and windows were bolted and shuttered tightly.
To no avail did they prevail upon the Mayor and priest to exorcise the terrible ship.
Though the holyman performed the prescribed ritual and sprinkled the decks of the offending vessel with sacred water, that very same evening the cries of revelry sounded yet louder and weird red fires joined the emerald and sapphire ones already burning in the rigging
at night.

The next day a deputation of men led by the retired Colonel Armistice sought to set the hulk alight but in a ghastly accident
the Colonel slipped upon the oil they had doused the rotten planks with and the tinderbox  his assistant was carrying somehow ignited and the pair of them were engulfed in livid yellow flames, living torches of screaming flesh. Yet the ship itself was undamaged -
 the fire guttering out once it had done its evil work.
The rest of the party fled as swiftly as their boots might carry them.

Then every night for the past week the sound of drunken revelry and worse kept coming from the beached pirate ship grew worse. What is more,  a strange illness seemed to afflict a great many of the women of the town.
Curiously, it was only the youngest and the prettiest that appear to be affected.
They looked with scorn upon their husbands, sweethearts and
brothers, speaking derisively to  the good men of the town with devilish laughter lurking in their eyes and increasingly lascivious gestures.

Their ring-leader seems to be a certain Molly Hopkins, a woman of loose reputation who until recently worked as a bar-maid in the Green Mermaid, a less than salubrious drinking house in the poorer part of town where the old harbour used to be.
Quite openly she and her friends parade the streets at twilight, making bold suggestions to respectable folk and laughing immodestly.
Two nights ago, I'm told, Ms Hopkins even bared a breast at the
outraged priest, inviting him to a communion altogether of the flesh.
Respectable young girls ignore the curfews set by worried parents and stalked the streets  beneath the waxing moon, strange suggestive songs upon their lips. Questioned the following  day about their nocturnal excusions they denied all knowledge of them or looked scornfully at their interrogator, keeping a knowledgeable and haughty silence, lips turned up in barely disguised sneers.
Just last night I went to inspect my own daughters bedroom before my wife and I retired for the evening only to find her bed quite empty and the window open. A strangely warm and tropical breeze blew through the September streets and on it came the sounds of
drunkenness and revelry. Between the swaying silhouettes of unfamiliar trees, red, green and weird blue lights twinkled like the eyes of demons.they were doomed
As the swollen Moon rose from out of the sea a wild and terrible noise filled the skies and I knew then beyond all reason or doubt that our little town was utterly and irrevocably  doomed...

A strange tale of the open waters that surround our World of Islands MW. The End
Posted 18:09

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