A Thing of Legend

A Thing Of Legend

The child’s eyes followed the steady flicker of the candle at his bedside, losing himself in its warmth. The glow of the fire and the murmur of his mother’s familiar story were soothing, and he felt his eyelids growing heavy. He nestled deeper into his bedcovers with a contented sigh.

Just before he fell asleep, he heard his mother’s hushed voice finishing the story, “And that is how the Pirate King of the Brethren Court and the Immortal Captain of the Flying Dutchman were wed.”

The mother gazed down at her sleeping son’s face- remarkable, really, how at five years old he already looked so much like his father- and gently pressed a kiss to his forehead before blowing out the candle, casting a velvety darkness over the bedroom. She rose, but instead of leaving, she found herself crossing the room to the window and pulling back the curtain. In the distance, she could make out the dim sheen of starlight on the ocean’s surface. She could feel the thrum of blood rise in her veins as it had a way of doing at moments like this.

How irrational would it be for her to drop everything and just go, to waltz away from this bustling port town and be able to lose herself out on the vast expanse of the sea? She breathed deeply, imagining the tang of salt on the air and the spray against her face. Every nerve in her body was urging her onward towards that horizon- the sea was calling to her.

Pirate King of the Brethren Court... oh, the memories that name carried with it. She was an iconic figure, a heroine of bedtime fables, a living legend. What on earth was she doing rooted down to a place like this?

In her heart, she knew the answer. With one final look of longing, she let the curtain fall closed, and returned to the bed to softly stroke her son’s hair.

This was the life she had chosen. How could she have known at the time, how much she would miss what she had parted with?

Soon, she reminded herself. Soon he’ll be old enough that you’ll be able to tell him everything, and he’ll understand it all, because you’ll have raised him to believe in the clash of swords and the toss of waves. And besides- he won’t be a boy forever... there’ll be other times, other adventures waiting to sweep you up just past the horizon.

Elizabeth Turner, the Pirate King of the Brethren Court and wife of the Captain of the Flying Dutchman, shut the door quietly and firmly behind her as she left, and lingered for only a moment before making her way down the hall.