I led Remington down the stairs and towards the weird village looking place. The strange letters were everywhere along with pictures of food, of people with expressions of fear on their faces.
“This be Hell,” Remy whispered to me. I glanced at him. “Look, those people are terrified and only Hell would advertise fear.” We passed a market stall that had what looked like giant teddy bears. They were rotten and falling apart, many a critter had used them for nesting it seemed.
“Hell has teddy bears?” I asked Remy and he shrugged. He had no explanation for that. We continued on, the pressure was still upon me, and each breath was harder to take than usual but I wasn’t too labored. I turned again to look at the statue and still didn’t see the Sky Kraken. I still couldn’t figure out how it had disappeared so completely.
“You have the feeling of being watched?” I asked Remington as I stopped and looked around. We’d gone nearly out of view of the statue building and- “Paul?” I asked turning fully to look at the figure standing in front of the dirty glass. The figure turned and disappeared into the darkness of the building.
“Who? I don’t see anyone,” Remington stated turning to look in the direction I had turned. I took a step towards the statue building when I stopped. “Unless you mean him.”
“Orford?” I asked surprised. I had expected him to be Sky Kraken turds by now. He looked worse for wear, his hair was mussed and dirty. He was still wearing the clothes that he’d walked the plank in. He was paler than I remembered. “How did you survive?” I asked moving towards him. I had been moderately kind to Orford when he’d been Cabin Boy, but I had done nothing to save him from the plank and the Sky Kraken. ‘What happened to you?”
He opened his mouth and this bone chilling screech erupted from his throat. I shuddered and involuntarily placed my hands over my ears. It was unnatural.
“Orford? You okay?” I asked and he just turned, and walked between two buildings. I tried to chase him, but like the Sky Kraken he had seemed to vanish once he’d been out of sight. “Please tell me you saw him.” I begged Remington who had said nothing but followed me in pursuit of Orford.
“The skinny screaming guy?” Remington asked and I sighed with relief.
“I think we’re seeing ghosts,” I whispered. “Orford was the last Cabin Boy.”
“What happened to him?” Remy was also whispering.
“The Captain made him walk the plank,” I whispered back. Remington audibly gulped and his eyes were wide. I gave him a look. “He’d have made you walk the plank if we hadn’t had an opening for Cabin Boy when you stowed on board.”
“Hey, I didn’t stow away, I was trying to escape a Sky Kraken attack,” he said what seemed with sincerity, “Where do you think it went?” He asked after a slight pause.
“I’ve no idea, maybe its hunting us,” I whispered and he paled even more. I doubted it was hunting us, I was certain it was going after the Deceit. I couldn’t tell if the ship was even still up there, was it sailing in circles looking for us? More is less it was waiting on the arrival of Draco Island. The Deceit had gone to the coordinates that Sam had given to the Captain. Damn him, damn him to hell, how dare he abandon us! We turned to keep looking through the weird village and I noticed a person standing in the door way of one of what looked like an old run down dry goods store. This man I didn’t recognize. He was my height, blue eyed, dressed in rags that were once clothing that looked strange to me. He gazed intently at me in the same say my husband would, as if I was the most interesting thing he’d ever seen. He carried a spear in his hand, but he obviously didn’t look native. As pirates we’d come across some natives on the far reaching islands, savages who still sacrificed virgins to volcanos. They were usually dark haired, dark skinned, wearing loin cloths, this man though tanned was still lighter than the natives. His hair was short for most men, most men wore their hair long in a pony tail.
“Is he a ghost too?” Remington whispered to me and I realized I had been staring back at him. There was something captivating about him. He was not the large burly man that was my husband.
“I’ve never seen him before,” I replied, still struck. I slowly realized that I found the man incredibly attractive. He was slender, but muscular, and carried himself confidently. He spoke and I didn’t understand a single word he said. He took a step forward, spear in hand, and pointed to the statue. His tone indicated a question. “Uh, we come from the clouds?” I stated, even though I suspected he didn’t understand anything I was saying. I pointed up to the clouds over the weird village. Only, as I looked up, I saw stars, and the moon. The sky was clear, there weren’t any clouds. I turned to look back at the statue, to see if the Deceit was still trapped on the finger. The Deceit was gone, but the finger was still sheared off.
He said something else, and I didn’t understand. Most people above the clouds, even the natives spoke Common. The natives didn’t speak it very well, but still they could communicate. I looked around and knelt, I picked up a small rock and began to draw in the dirt. I drew the Deceit the best I could. I had no real skill with drawing and tried to draw the clouds that the ship sailed on.
“Do you speak Common?” Remington asked and the man tilted his head and replied softly, almost sounded like a soft cat meow.
“I would take that as a no,” I stated, “See we come from up there, sailing on the clouds.” I pointed to the sky and then to the ship I’d drawn. He gave no indication that he’d understood me. So I wondered what would happen if I drew the Sky Kraken. Suddenly the man was scattering the dirt, clearing away my drawing. He was making a chopping motion with one hand and barking a word at me, shaking his head. Well that still seemed universal. So no drawing the Sky Kraken.