Part Six: The desperate journey
The old seaman blew a bubble out of his pipe, smiled and said. ‘Arrr. Long before compasses was made, sailors used Star Fish. A Star Fish always knows what way is North, and what way is South, and what way is all the other points in between. Arrr.’ At which a convalescing Star Fish stood up and gave a bow in agreement. ‘And,’ continued the old sailor, ‘There’s none stronger and swifter than them there porpoises and dolphins. Arrr.’ Two of those very creatures whistled in agreement and flapped their flippers.
The thief decided that he would attempt to bring back the Queens coat, even though it meant braving the awful dangers of the greatest storm that ever broke apon the Atlantic. The starfish agreed to come along to guide him, and the porpoise and the dolphin would each take turns carrying him. The old bearded sailor was too filled with emotion to say anything, just gave them all a grave manly nod and a heartfelt ‘Arrr. Arrr. Arrr’
The little rescue party swam up and up until they broke the surface of the sea. It was hard to tell where the sea stopped and the air began, so violent were the waves and so wild the blasts of icy rain. Imagine an ant trapped in a bottle filled with fizzy pop, and a bad tempered child shaking the bottle in a fit of anger. So the thief, the starfish, the dolphin and the porpoise were tossed and thrown, whilst all around dazzling spears of lightning hurled down around them.
At first the thief clung to the porpoise’s dorsal fin, whilst the starfish used its suckers to stick on to the dolphin’s belly. Soon the porpoise was exhausted from carrying the Thief and battling forward through the massive squalls. The little party tried to take a rest whilst the starfish and thief swapped places. But when they stopped the storm seemed even more dangerous and certainly more malevolent. One of the starfish’s arms was broken in two by a massive angry wave, whilst the thief’s hair was burnt off by a stroke of lightning. They took no more rests. It was safer to keep moving forward, even when the porpoise and dolphin swapped riders.