“Where are we?  Why is it so quiet?” the Captain asks, “Why are we forbidden to see?”

“We’re in a cavern,” Birdseye maintains, “the deepest cavern of them all.”

“Reckon this is the Syck Monkey’s den?” Labaguette asks.

“The ropes have come to life.  They have an intent of their own,” the Captain remarks, “they followed the Monkeys who followed their father.  They’ve an agenda.”

“This is the last frontier,” Birdseye remarks.

“Wasn’t that where the King-of-all-Things was already?”

“All things end here.  All things begin here.”

“Can you talk in a practical way Birdseye?” Labaguette asks, “which comes first?  The—”

“—it dep—”

“—Birdseye!” the Captain interrupts.  “Are you scanning?”

“It’s half full.”


But their conversation is interrupted by a barely perceptible draught.

“Who’s here?” the Captain urges.  And then:

“Give it back to me now!” as his hat disappears and a strident shrill forces its way through their permeable skulls

“Shhhhhhh” a voice utters, undoing each blindfold swiftly as an egg shaped spot of light appears in the darkness: the clear shadow of four monkeys hanging upside down,  holding each other conveniently by the tail, the Syck Monkey at the top.  Quietly, they are squeezing some fruit and eating its inside before discarding its shell.

“OI!” the Captain yells as the shadows, undisturbed, keep their chomping and munching.

“It’s a trick!” Labaguette says.

Another egg shaped spot of light appears on the opposite side of the Monkeys.  The shadow of a flag is being waved inside it by an invisible hand.

To be continued…


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