Once the initial shock of seeing his family once again had subsided. Japooli at once put aside the fool and became the Lord he always was. His wife made some tea and they all sat and talked. Not about anything significant just about the island and memories from years before.
The one thing they needed to talk about wasn’t discussed while little Gracie was around. The Queen took Elizabeth (Lord Viscums wife) to one side. “I will watch Gracie if you and your husband want to go for a walk and talk.” The Queen smiled. Elizabeth quickly took her up on the offer.
First, she prepared food for them. While eating she explained to Gracie that she and her father would be going for a walk. Gracie understood, “Please don’t be too long, I miss father too.” They all smiled at her. “We won’t be too long my child,” said her father. “We have all the time in the world to catch up now.” He gave her a reassuring hug. The Queen then said. “Come on Gracie, these dishes won’t wash themselves.” with that, she was distracted and he and his wife went for a walk.
While walking, Lord Viscum said to his wife “Sweetheart is there anywhere on this Island we can go that can’t be seen by those on the main island? “Yes of course just over this hill there’s a small cove it has a beautiful beach and there’s a lovely cave.” Holding her hand he said, “Elizabeth you have done very well for yourself and Gracie.” She looked up at him. “I can’t help but wonder; what you had to do for this man? That he left you this Island in his will.” Looking into his eyes, she could see he needed some answers. She could see the pain in his eyes! “Well, my dear husband,” she said as they walk into the cave. “The day the raid happened on our Island, the raiders came from nowhere. They were all camouflaged. Our lookouts never even saw them coming and you know how good they were!”
Putting her head down. “We never stood a chance. Their numbers vastly outnumbered our guards. We did put up a fight! There were many of our men lost.” Gripping at her clothes, she went on to say. “They took all the women and children to be sold as slaves.” – “Saying we’d bring a great price being of noble stature. We were all shackled together in iron chains. They took our children to another part of the ship and we were made to;” she then fell silent, looking down for a while… Then looked at him with shame in her tear-filled eyes. “I’m sorry my love,” she said, “We were forced to have sex with these men. I hate myself for it! but it’s what saved our daughter. Those of us, who didn’t, were made to watch our children being raped and murdered. In the end, we who had survived then sold. I have been raped too many times to even recall.” Looking away from him she broke her heart! He gently wiped her face.
She then went on to say “The man we were sold to, was a kind man, a gentleman. He had plenty of money and kept us well. When he fell sick we cared for him like he was family. Then when he passed we expected to be sold on. We never thought he would leave us this Island.” – “For a while, we were pestered by some of the fishermen wanting to muzzle in on our good fortune. This time I defended what was now rightfully mine.. since then they have left us alone.”
He held her in his arms. “My love, I’m sorry I wasn’t there for you. You have nothing to be ashamed of. You acted as the great mother. Not only did you save yourself you protected our daughter from harm the best way you could.” She turned to look at him. Looking into her eyes ” I’m so very proud of you, my brave wife. If you hadn’t done what you did. We wouldn’t be here today. together again.”
They held each other for a long time…
His wife then asked, “What of you my love, what happen with you and why does the Queen call you Japooli?” “My story isn’t one of bravery and courage as yours. Mine is one of hiding away and not being able to face what had happened.” – “Why do you say that?” she asked looking confused. “Well my love, after I returned home from battle to our home finding out all that we had was gone. Then seeing you and Gracie hanging from the rafters with all your insides hanging out I was too distraught to stay. I couldn’t face life anymore. So I became Japooli the fooly and hid away from my thoughts of you and our daughter.” Pausing he said, ” please forgive me!”
“I worked for the King and Queen as their Jester. It was only when the Shalapoon was shipwrecked. That I ended up on this Island. I was inside a barrel that washed up at the docks.”
It was a captain of one of the fishing boats who took me in. He and his wife have cared for me. They took my jester clothes to be washed. His wife then wouldn’t allow me to put my mask back on. She said, “the Doctor must not know you are from the Shalapoon.” – “Now, I understand why having spoken to the Queen about all he’s done to her! But I’m ashamed to say. That’s the first time my love, I became me again.” She looked at him and held him close. “Then God brought me over here to you.”
He went on to explain. He’d allowed himself to remember his family while walking and how he’d heard in the breeze the song. He’d sang to Gracie when she was small. He then asked the captains wife about the Island and when she told me I felt so much excitement and fear.
I wanted to race over here. Yet was scared to find that I may have been wrong.” He kissed her then said, ” I’m so glad I’ve put away my mask and had the courage!” God has brought you back to me.”
They knew that there was lots more to talk about but for now just held each other and was grateful for this moment.