The hurricane lamp Sarah had stolen from her father’s shed sputtered into life illuminatingthe musty interior of the wheelhouse. Even by torchlight its denudation had already been madeapparent. Only the wooden helm remained, overlaid by the same thick matting of dust andcobwebs that were prevalent throughout. Long since disconnected from the rudder, it spun freely beneath Tommy’s eager hands and whatever thoughts of exploration they had entertained werequickly overtaken by the free range of their imaginations.Their self-appointed leader took to his role as the infamous pirate, Blackbeard, with gustoand he
was snarling orders to his motley crew of cutthroats when a distant, mournful drone brought their seafaring adventure to an untimely end. They listened, pricking up their ears at theslightest sound.“What was that, Tommy?” whispered Sarah.“A foghorn!” Jamie replied.Tommy laughed. “Don’t be daft. There aren’t any around here.”“Well it does smell like the seaside in here!” the youngster then announced, picking up thegrowing
scent of ozone-enriched air.
Sarah sniffed the dank atmosphere.
“He’s right, Tommy!”
was spooked and clung tohim as though her very life depended on it. “I wanna go home. Let’s go home.” she whimpered.“It’s too late for that.” warned Jamie.
Both followed his wide eyed gaze and, horror stricken, they watched as the sudden appearance of a spectral-like image of the wheelhouse began phasing in and out with its physical surroundings. Timeworn
timbers, seeminglytransformed to new, groaned in sympathy as it began to pitch back and forth, the forceful illusion