The Treasure of Squeaky Toy Island
There on deck, beside the previous day's plunder, was the ship's longbow. Beside it was a long, coiled heaving line. Ernie looked up, and said, “Bowman Easy!”
With his blue fur barley visible in the gloom, Easy crept up on deck, and said, “You called, Skipper?”
“Of course I'm called 'Skipper', I'm the Captain! See that heaving line?”
“Secure it to that arrow, and aim the longbow for the stern of the rawhide!”
By now, Captain Snoopy had been untied from the mainmast, and was keeping a steady hand on the wheel. Beside him, Captain Speedy was keeping an eye on his launch, and the towline. Just over the horizon, they could make out the faint loom of a light.
Captain Speedy pointed with his paw, and Captain Snoopy nodded, and said, “Aye, she be Squeaky Toy Light.” In a few more seconds, the faint sound of the diaphone fog horn confirmed it.
“Port your helm one point”, Speedy said.
“Port helm one point, aye”, answered Captain Snoopy. “What be that noise?”
“Sounds like a whistle.............”
Then came a dull thud. They looked aft, but saw nothing. With a shrug, they turned and looked back at the sea. The loom of the light grew ever stronger, and the diaphone ever louder.
Captain Snoopy scanned the sea, and said, “Smooth sailing from here on out!”
About a cable's length aft, Easy gave a tug on the line, and said, “We've hooked 'em, Skipper. Shall I pull us in!”
“Avast there, Matey! If we pull in now, they'll know we're coming and they'll be ready. Stand fast and enjoy the ride.”
“Aye aye, sir. This is just like water skiing.”
The lantern gallery of Squeaky Toy Light loomed up over the horizon. Speedy checked his paw watch, and said, “It's been more than a minute since we last heard the fog horn. Must be clearing.”
“Have your crew put the engines half ahead!”
He leaned over the bulwark, and yelled, “Engines ahead half!”
From the pilothouse, Coccolino yelled back, “Half ahead, aye!”
They heard the engines start to throb, and the water began to churn. Speedy watched the towline grow taut, ans said, “Port your helm, two points!”
“Port helm, two points, aye.”
Ernie and Easy felt the longship suddenly lurch forward. Ernie peered through the darkness, and said, “Oh my dog! Right fifteen degrees, now!”
Easy Grabbed the sweep oar, gave it a good push, and said, “I got her, Skipper. What's going on?”
“Now that the fog's lifting, he probably wants to bring them in faster. Keep an eye on that sweep oar! If we don't meet her with each swing, they'll swamp us!”
Easy held tightly on the sweep oar, and said, “I got her, Skipper.”
Back aboard the Rawhide, Frankie was walking the decks, when he thought he saw something dangling from the stern. He stuck his head over the bulwark, confirmed his suspicions, and ran back to the helm.
He drew in close to Captain Snoopy, and whispered his findings. Captain Snoopy grinned, and said, “Get below and get that wooden thingy that makes the noise.”
“What's up?” asked Speedy.
Snoopy whispered his plan. Speedy smiled, and said, “You can count on me, Captain.”
Ernie was still in control of his craft, but it was taking all of Easy's strength to keep them on a safe course. He looked down at Ernie, and said, “How much longer, Skipper?”
“Not long. Look!”
Easy turned his head forward, and he saw it too. They watched and waited. Little did they know what Snoopy had in mind.