Authors: otis duane
Tags: #adventure action, #adventure both on the land and on the sea, #adventure 1600s, #adventure action teen and children story, #adventure and magic, #adventure and suspense, #adventure and fantasy, #adventure fantasy story, #adventure and comedy
Legend of the Gypsy Queen
Copyright © 2015 by Mystery, Legends and Lore
Publishing. All rights reserved.
This is a work of fiction. Any resemblance to
actual persons living or dead, events, businesses, or locales is
Reproduction in whole or part of this
publication without express written consent is strictly
Present Day ~ Late July ~ Bermuda Triangle ~
22 Miles North of Nassau, Bahamas
Shortly after midnight, under the watchful
eye of a full moon, the three Bismarck siblings motored along in
their 20-foot wooden motorboat.
Manny, sitting in the rear of the leaky
skiff, kept a steady hand on the outboard engine’s rudder handle.
The 14-year-old was careful to throttle up and down as needed, over
the long and rolling wave swells. His long dark hair blew in the
wind behind him as he readjusted his backwards fitting baseball
Up front, his 13-year-old brother, Heinz,
used a GPS phone app to keep him on course to the last known
vicinity of the legendary Raven pirate ship.
According to the Legend of the Gypsy Queen
Skull, over 300 years ago the fearsome pirate ship had mysteriously
vanished into thin air. No trace of her, or her crew, had ever been
found. Tonight, Heinz was convinced the ghost ship would return to
haunt this part of the Devil’s Triangle.
While the boys worked in tandem, their older
sister, Tinnie, sat on the middle bench rubbing her thinly sleeved
arms as she blew warm air into her cupped hands. Though only 15
herself, she was the boy’s self-appointed mother, and a worrywart
Turning around with a troubled look on her
face, she asked Manny, “What’s up with this fog, anyway?” Her
breath quickly turning to steam, in the glow of the lantern’s
“Don’t know,” he replied, shrugging his
Looking around in the soupy fog, he strained
his eyes to see more than a few feet beyond the confines of their
boat. The ever-growing waves around them were making it difficult
for him to keep their craft on a steady course.
For Heinz though, a delighted smile broke
across his face when he switched over to a Doppler radar app.
Checking it, he didn’t see one single storm blip for at least a
hundred miles. Cross-checking it with his compass, he watched as
its needle repeatedly showed True North, only to veer off and
“Come on... That’s it … Keep going,” he
coaxed it along, when suddenly a loud gunshot-like sound startled
them up out of their seats.
It was the sound of their engine backfiring
and echoing across the seascape.
Tinnie and Heinz both jerked their heads
around to see Manny frantically adjusting the engine’s choke as he
throttled down on its rudder arm. The outboard motor backfired
again, then gasped and sputtered its last breath before it finally
died. Over the next few minutes, they watched as he spiritedly
yanked on the starter cord over and over again until he stopped and
shook his head.
Aimlessly adrift in the current now, there
was nothing they could do.
Tapping Manny on the shoulder with her
sparkly, pink-covered phone, Tinnie handed it to him and said,
“Check the gas tank.”
Clicking on the phone’s flashlight, Manny
looked at the gas gauge. The red arrow indicated there was
three-quarters of a tank left.
“No, it’s cool. We have plenty of–”
“Check inside the tank,” Heinz said
abruptly, cutting him off.
Wrestling with the stubborn gas cap, Manny
eventually unscrewed it and peeked inside. Below, he saw the
gasoline-oil mixture sloshing back and forth in perfect time with
the tempo of the rocking boat.
“No, we’re good,” he said.
“Crap-a-hole!” Heinz blurted out. He’d
completely forgotten about the engine’s sparkplugs needing
electricity to work.
“Watch it,” Tinnie chirped, snapping and
pointing her finger at him. Turning back around, Manny handed her
phone back to her.
“I’m calling the Coast Guard,” she said.
“Give ’em our GPS location. They’ll need it
to locate us,” Manny reminded her.
“Whoa, whoa. Hold on there,” Heinz
interjected as he held up his hands, beckoning her to stop.
We’re too close to throw in the towel
he thought to himself
I gotta stall
“We’re all gonna get busted if you call the
Coast Guard. Just give it a minute… The carburetor’s probably
flooded,” he said.
Tinnie narrowing her eyes on him snipped
back, “We’re in this mess because of you. So shut it. I’m calling
“End of story!”
Heinz averted his eyes to avoid Tinnie’s icy
stare. Instead, he pushed up his glasses and turned his attention
back to the scribbled notes on his nautical map.
“Where exactly are we?” she tersely asked
him. When he didn’t respond, she poked him in the back.
“Now,” she said more forcefully.
“About 22 miles due north of Nassau,” Heinz
“After your call, turn on your strobe light
app,” Manny added.
Tinnie was looking up their GPS coordinates
when her phone’s screen began to flicker and distort. “No, no, no.
Not now,” she groaned as the screen turned black.
“Crap a hole… No!” she said aloud.
Heinz couldn’t resist, and snapped and
pointed his finger at her and chidingly said, “Watch your
Biting her lower lip, she placed her foot on
his lower back and shoved him off his bench seat.
“You suck,” he said as his butt splashed
down on the boat’s watery floor.
Ignoring him, Tinnie tried to reboot her
phone but the battery was completely dead. She then snatched his
flashlight off his bench and clicked on its high beam while Heinz
struggled to get back up to his seat. Shining it inside her orange
backpack, she looked for a replacement battery when her black cat
popped his head up and grumpily meowed at her. She’d forgotten
Muenster was catnapping in there.
Shifting him around a few times, she finally
located her spare battery as the flashlight slowly dimmed and went
dark. Smacking it hard against her hand a couple of times, she
managed to get it to briefly flicker back to life before it finally
died for good.
“Here,” she said abruptly to Heinz, rudely
pressing the flashlight into his back and dropping it before he
could turn around.
“Thanks,” he said sarcastically, fishing it
out of a puddle on the floor. Under the lantern’s light she
installed the phone’s new battery, but it didn’t work either.
“What’s going on?” she said to herself and
turned to Heinz.
“Mine’s dead too,” he said, anticipating her
question, showing his phone’s darkened screen to her.
“Heinz’s got my phone,” and pointed his head
to their little brother. It was true. Recently, Tinnie had thrown
Heinz’s phone into the toilet as retribution for hacking into
Checking his compass again, Heinz noticed
its arrow was pinging back and forth, even more erratic than
before. Curious at what he was looking at, Tinnie leaned over his
shoulder when a booming thunderbolt ripped across the sky -
“Ahhhh!” she shrieked, falling over
backwards, plopping down on the wet floor.
Behind her, Manny’s jaw dropped wide open as
he watched a dramatic series of lightning bolts spider-webbing
overhead. Seconds later, a roaring symphony of thunderclaps
deafeningly rumbled across the seascape.
“Holy cow, that’s awesome!” Manny excitedly
“Heinz!” Tinnie called out, using her
authoritative mom voice.
“What’s going on?” she demanded, ducking
down behind her bench seat.
He was sporting a huge grin when he extended
his hand toward her, showing her his compass.
“That can’t be good,” she said, seeing its
magnetized arrow wildly spinning around in circles.
“What does that mean?” she anxiously
“It means Heinz was right,” Manny
interjected. “We’re in the time anomaly, aren’t we?” he added,
looking over at his little brother.
When Heinz didn’t respond, he pressed him.
“Come on man, tell her.”
“Nothing electrical is going to work,” Heinz
“Why?” Tinnie asked.
“Because we’re outside of space and time,”
Manny answered for him. Looking over to Heinz for confirmation, his
little brother closed his eyes and slowly nodded his head.
“What did you get us into?” Tinnie said in a
But before he could reply, she quickly drew
her finger up to her lips and shushed him. Pausing for a few
seconds, she turned her attention to the darkness in front of
“Did you hear that?”
In the near distance, they could hear the
distinct sound of waves crashing up against something.
Listening for a few more moments, the sound
only grew louder and appeared to be heading straight toward them.
Reaching down into her backpack, she began to nervously stroke
Muenster’s fur coat.
Meanwhile, all around them, the lightning
flashes continued to crackle as the ever-increasing wave swells
rocked their skiff side to side. Surprisingly, though, still no
rain had fallen.
“Manny,” Tinnie said, pointing to their bow.
“Can you grab the light and head to the front of the boat?”
Grabbing the kerosene lantern, he stepped
over her middle bench and made his way up to Heinz, who headed back
to take his bench seat next to the motor.
Looking apprehensively over his shoulder at
his two siblings, Manny then turned and hoisted the lantern out
over the front of their skiff.
Waiting, the three of them sat with their
eyes glued to the darkness, as the mysterious sound of the crashing
waves grew ever louder.
A few more tense moments passed when, all of
a sudden, an ominous-looking bird with a broad wingspan broke
through the fog bank in front of them. Gasping aloud, Manny’s eyes
grew wide as the bird towered high above him and a lightning bolt
frighteningly flashed behind it. In the brief moment of
illumination, he saw it was a large wooden sculpture, attached to
the front of a ship’s bow. The enormous vessel looked like it was
from another place and time—a 17th century Spanish warship, to be
“The Raven,” Heinz whispered to himself.
“Oh no…” Tinnie mumbled in a sinking voice,
panning her eyes up at the menacing ship.
They were square in its path, and there was
nothing they could do.
“Overboard! Now!” she screamed out as the
Raven’s enormous bow ebbed high into the air.
“Move it!” she barked.
Heinz didn’t need any coaxing, hastily
stuffing his map into his jacket, he dove headlong over the side.
Tinnie, grabbing her backpack, was right behind him when she
suddenly noticed Manny still hadn’t moved.
He’s in shock
, she thought.
With the Raven’s hull bearing down on them,
she horse-collared him and jumped over the railing, yanking him
over with her.
It was none too soon, when a split second
later the Raven came crashing down on top of their skiff, smashing
it to pieces.
Treading water with one hand, Tinnie held
her backpack afloat in the other. Inside, a none-too-happy Muenster
Cheese was yowling and making a fuss. A few feet away, the boys
were pushing hand-over-hand off of the ship’s barnacled hull as it
passed beside them.
Looking over his left shoulder, Manny
watched in horror as the last remnants of their skiff sank below
This can’t be happening
, he thought when Heinz
smacked him upside his head.
“Grab a hold!” his little brother yelled. He
was clinging onto a moss-covered cargo net that was hanging down
the side of the ship. Reaching over, Manny grabbed ahold of it too,
and began climbing up it when he heard Tinnie frantically cry