This is part 2 of a short story.
The four children walk after Mr. Lee. They cannot see very well but they have a lantern to help them navigate through the darkness. When they go out of the house into the garden they realize that the rest of the neighborhood is also dark. Right in the middle of the garden, their parents have started a small fire and everyone is seated around it while chatting: Mr. and Mrs. Ramirez, Mr. and Mrs. Armstrong, Mr. and Mrs. Manssini and Mrs. Lee. The children sit next to their parents and listen to the adults telling their stories. But they do not keep playing. Despite being close to their parents, they are afraid of the dark. When you are a child, darkness can be something truly terrifying for you. Usually, the fear can be made to vanish by turning on the light but in the middle of the great blackout, the lights were always off.
After a while, everybody goes to their homes, and Jimmy is left at home with his parents. All three are sitting in front of the garden fire. “Do not be afraid, boy,” says his dad, Mr. Lee, “You should not be afraid of the dark. I told you we could have a lot of fun!”
“Yes, but it scares me because everything is so creepy.”
“Did you know that when pirates ruled the seas, there was no electricity?”
“No?” The child asks, curious, “and how did they see?”
“That’s simple. Look up above you.” Jimmy looks up and sees the sky. When you are in a place where there are no artificial lights around, the sky appears to be full of stars, with a very bright moon. This surprises Jimmy, who keeps his mouth open.
“The buccaneers,” his dad continues, “were guided by the stars when they travelled at night. There are those who say that they talked to the sea and that it was the water that whispered to them the way to reach their destination. Others say they talked to whales, dolphins, and sirens. But in any case, at the time when the pirates ruled the seas there was no electric light. That means they did not have telephones, computers, or television. They had fun with games instead of gadgets. And at night, if they could not sleep, they would read a book by the light of a candle. That was the life of the pirates.” Jimmy is very curious. When he listens to those things about other times he wants to learn more and more about how life was when the pirates lived. So he asks his dad more and more questions because he is a person who reads a lot and also likes adventure stories.
As they are sitting around a fire, it starts to get warm. Jimmy’s parents hug him while they tell him stories. Suddenly, the child stops feeling afraid: not because the darkness no longer seems frightening, but because he feels very brave when he is with his parents. In addition, his father has taught him that it is important to have a lot of courage to be a buccaneer. A pirate travels the seven seas and does not fear the darkness just because the only lights are the moon and the stars. At night, the full moon shines at the top like a great point in the middle of the darkness. That’s how Jimmy falls asleep in his parents’ arms. Thinking of pirates, he dreams of going to the island where the X is marked on the map. On that island, what a great surprise! In his dream, he finds what is a treasure for him, lots and lots of chocolate!
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