Yo ho! Yo ho!


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Scene Title Yo ho! Yo ho!
Synopsis Lost in an endless sea, the pirate's life for me.
Date February 20, 2019

In Dreams

It’s the world they left behind.

On a dark and stormy night the seas seem endless and the waves swell and ebb, bigger than anything she’s seen before. Aurora clings for her life to a piece of flotsam, crying out for her mother. A mother, who just isn’t there. She’s been tossed and turned for as long as she can remember, her screams drowned out by the howling of the wind. Nobody is coming. No one she calls. Kain, Felix, Mateo, Lynette, Elaine, Kaylee… they’re all gone. They left her behind.

Over the next swell, an inverted umbrella rocks and tumbles. It’s clear plastic for the most part, except the bright pink strip around (what should be) the bottom edge and it’s bright pink curved handle. A triangle flag, stuck to the top of it flitters and jumps in the wind. And there’s a distinct voice rising over the storm. It’s singing.

“Yo ho! Yo ho! A pirate’s life for me!”

Exhausted from the water, half-drowned and scared out of her mind, it's not the first time Aurora has dreamed of drowning. The icy water makes her curl up into a tight ball in her sleep — but the dream doesn't break. "Help!" she screams as loud as she can. The flash of pink in the water does draw her eyes, but it's the barely heard song — incongruously beautiful yellow, like sunlight mixed in with the dull gray roar of the wind and water — that makes her hope that there's someone who will help. Sobbing, she keeps holding tight to the piece of wood, "Please! Help!"

It's not Mummy — Mummy is peacock blue-green when she sings — she doesn't recognize this color. "Please!" It's a little softer. She's been here a long time. Forever.

“We pillage, we plunder, we rifle, and loot~ Drink up me hearties YO HOOOOOOOOO!!!!”

The little pink umbrella/ship steers a little closer to the drowning girl and Aurora can see another girl, about her age, in a little white sundress with springy, wild red hair. The little sword she carries is made of green foam, the kind you find in a toy store. On the top of her head, a newspaper has been folded into a pirate hat that’s a bit too large for her head.

By the time the umbrella reaches Aurora’s side, the rain has stopped, though the waves keep crashing around them. “HARR!!” is the greeting the drowning girl receives. In a neighborly gesture, she’s pulled into the umbrella, which for some reason doesn’t sink deeper into the ocean from the weight. “What’s yer business!! Be quick or you’ll walk the plank!!” The little sword is pointed toward the new arrival to the ship and waved around in a fashion that’s more comical than threatening.

One moment she's floating on a piece of wood soaking wet, the next she's sitting in a pink umbrella, dry as a bone in her favorite feet-pajamas with the puppies gamboling on it and eying a foam sword. The only thing still wet is her face, and she sniffles and wipes her nose on the back of her hand. "Can you take me to mummy?" she asks, her little face tear-streaked. "She got losted." Then she brightens. "We can play pirates on the way!" Because why not? "Unca Kain says pirates say 'Matey' and have parrots. Do you have a parrot?"

Does she… Large blue eyes shift back and forth, looking this way and that before the little girl says “Of course I have a parrot! I’m a real pirate!!” Then, a green and yellow bird lands precariously on her thin shoulder. Quickly scrambling to the front of the little umbrella, the springy haired girl shields her eyes and squints, looking far far off in the distance. “Your mommy’s too far away right now. She’s not lost, she’s just not here.”

Then she swings around to the back where Aurora sits and points her sword in the direction she was previously looking. “Loot is this way!!! Angels to the bow!! Off we go!!” And through some strange force, the waves carry the makeshift little boat in that very same direction.

“Yo ho! Yo ho!”

Thoroughly distracted from near-drowning, Aurora bounds to her feet. "Oooh!" she breathes. "He's pretty!" Suddenly she has her own hat, never questioning where it comes from. A paper towel tube appears in her hand and she peers around industriously. "Those dolphins are leadin' the way, Cap'n! Do you gots the map? We gotta avoid bobby traps. And the skellies guardin' the loot!!" She sage-nods toward the captain. "Skellies are creepy."

Carefully, the cane end is pulled off the end of the umbrella ‘mast’ and after dipping a single finger inside, a rough looking piece of leather is pulled out. “A map!” She doesn’t forget to put the top back on, though, what’s a pirate ship without a jolly roger flying in the wind?

“Skellies don’t scare us, me hearty!” The squeak of the pirate captain’s voice is rambunctious, the kind that belongs to a little girl that’s nothing but trouble. “We’re the fiercest pirates this side of Kalamazoo!! Onward! Onward! Angels and skellies beware! The dread pirates Lia and … uh…” She turns to Aurora with a quizzical expression on her face. “Yer name, matey?”

"Aura!" The petite girl jumps up and down with her telescope. Her feet-pajamas with their puppies slap against the wood. "Arrrr!" Aurora leans over the side of the boat and peers downward. "The dolphins say the island is second star to the right, Cap'n, an' we'll see it any minute!" Excitedly she whips the telescope up to her eye. "There it is! Land ho!"

Land ho indeed.

Off in the distance a solitary island with pearly white sand can be seen, at its apex a coconut tree stands tall. Not proud. It’s stooped at the shoulder and its large fronds sway in the breeze. At its base, a few of the nuts have dropped and rolled along its base.

“Land ho!!” And the little umbrella weebles and wobbles toward the bright warm sand, just as the layers of pre-dawn light peek up over the horizon. “We better hurry! We gotta get the treasure before the sun breaks out!!”

Aura scrambled to Lia's side and says, "The dolphins said if we hurry, the mermaids will meet us on the way back and take us to their king." She looks excited. "I always wanted to see a mermaid king!"

She peers through her paper towel telescope again. "Arrr, cap'n, there's angels on that beach!" She lifts her telescope and it becomes a bright purple sword. "We're gonna hafta fight!"

Aurora earns a look of horror. “We can’t fight angels!!” But all is lost if they can’t get to the treasure in time. Regardless, the umbrella surges forward and when it finally hits the beach, the springy haired girl vaults out, landing adeptly on her two feet. “I claim this island in the name of Dread Pirate Lia! Fire in the hole! Dead men tell no tales!!”

Sword in one hand, map in the other, she races through the sand to the first of their foes… a rainbow, tie-dyed, stuffed elephant that’s likely seen more bad days than good. “Give no quarter Aura! No prey, no pay!”

And they are so close….

Bounding off their little boat behind her captain, Aurora is busily thinking of ways to win a treasure from angels. "Maybe if we give them cookies, they'll let us have the treasure and nobody fights? That's a much nicer way to be a pirate."

She gamely brandishes her sword and calls out as she races up the sand, "give up, ya scurvy dogs! We gotcha surrounded!"

By the time Aurora reaches Lia, the green sword has already downed their biggest foe, the hephelump. Tossed carelessly on the beach, the springy haired little girl is already throwing sand in dusty showers in an attempt to dig where X marks the spot. Crouched on the beach, she screams when another stuffed animal flies at her out of nowhere, causing her to fall on her back feigning a mortal wound.

Hand over heart, she coughs weakly. “Help… help…”

Aurora gasps! "No!" Dropping her sword, she races toward her captain. "You bilge rat!" She has no idea what that is, but Unca Kain called someone a bilge rat and it sounded good. Swiping up Lia's sword, she plants both feet and swings mightily at the offending stuffed animal that has killed her brave captain, sending it flying into the waves.

Dropping to her knees next to Captain Lia, she says, "I know what to do! Hold on!"

Then she scrambles to her feet and races for the water. She reaches under a wave and comes out with a juice box. She brings it back and solemnly tells Lia, "The mermaids send this magic drink to make you all better" as he pokes the straw in and offers it.

The gurgling sound of the juicebox being drained without a breath in between is a sound that all children know well. “Oh that’s good,” Lia breathes at last, sitting up in a sudden jerk. Scrambling to her knees, she points at the spot where she was digging and the remnants of a black X on the ground. “We need to dig right there! Hurry! The sun is coming up!!”

The danger of the sun is something that can only puzzle Aurora if she thinks too hard about it. Right now, her captain is keeping her busy shovelling handfuls of sand. With both of them digging, it’s not long before one f them hits something quite hard.

“It’s here! It’s here!”

If nothing else, the excitement is contagious. Aurora looks pleased with the cure of her captain, and then the digging commences. On her knees in the sand, she crows, "We gots the treasure! Primal!" She digs faster around the sides to extricate their treasure, looking over her shoulder with worried eyes. "hurry, hurry! It's coming!"

Treasure isn't any fun with a treasure chest, and so they uncover one — a light one that the little girls can lift alone because it'd be awful if they couldn't carry it away! As they haul it up, Aura shoves her hat back on her head. "Is it rubies and diamonds and pearls?" The not-knowing is killing her! "What's the rich stuff?"

It’s none of that.

“The richest of the rich stuff!” Lia squeals. As she opens the box, the sun starts to peek over the horizon. Inside, Aurora can see a scene as though she’s looking into a television or through a peephole. There she is, curled in a fetal position on her side, in her own bed. In her arms is a stuffed animal that’s seen too much that a little girl should not see. But that’s not all.

“There’s the angel…” Lia says with a whisper as she points.

Aurora’s mother, Liz, is curled around the restless sleeper, hugging away the bad dreams.

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