Joining Papa

Charlotte crept silently from her bed to the open window and gazed at the ocean glowing in the pale moonlight. When she’d said a ghost pirate would take her to Papa, her mother had scolded her; five-year-olds should not speak of their dearly departed fathers. Pulling her nightgown up around her knees, she climbed out the window and started running when her feet touched the sand. As she flew toward the dock, she whispered, “I’m coming, Papa.” As the ghost pirate helped her board the shimmering ship, a woman's horrifying wail rose in the distance. Charlotte did not look back.

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