It was a normal evening like any other day in Jack’s pirate ship of goodies. He sold lots of product and made plenty of Shellings and Abalone as product. The pirate merchant couldn’t be any happier. It was approximately an hour or so to close when a young, yellow-octopus Pearling entered through the entrance. He looked young and curious, so Jack decided to speak up. “Ahoy, young one. Wha' brin's ye t' me shop?” He annunciated.
The young blue-ringed octopus Pearling shuddered slightly from not expecting the shopkeeper to be in – for some reason. “Hey, Jack,” he started in a young, shy voice, “how did your day go? Sell a lot of ‘booty’?”
“Aye, I did. Sold quite a bit. Yer name be 'Blue,' ain't it?”
“It is, my name is Blue.”
Jack showed an extraordinary amount of joy from such a small task, “Har har! I knew I knew yer name, son. Now, fer real, wha' brin's ye out this late in th' evenin' t', o' all places, me shop?”
“Well, Mr. Jack, sir. My friends told me that you told good stories,” he had a stutter in his voice as he approached the trunk-counter the Jack sat behind, “like, a ghost story.”
“Har har har har! A ghost tale! Oh, I've got a really good'un fer ye! Pull up a chair, sprog, ye might ink yourself from this one.” At this point, Jack was now leaning on the trunk with one arm and a smile appeared upon his now dastardly face.
Blue did as he was told, grabbing a nearby tampered-with chair and moving it to the front of the trunk before popping a squat in it. His tentacles grabbed onto the seat tightly from the tension in his system.
“Ye ever hear th' one about th' Siren Class? It happened rather recently, believe it or nah.” Jack said with a toothy grin.
The young octopus’ face went from a monotone look to now a look of fear.
“That's th' spirit,” Jack mocked before starting, “recently, th' Siren Class had a pandemic. Like, an actual pandemic. Nah a single Siren Class lives right now.”
“So, what does that have to do with ghosts?” Blue questioned, thinking he was getting bamboozled by the pirate - again.
“Nah so fast, give me a minute. Th' pandemic was started by a virus. Rumor has it that th' virus scuttled all th' Sirens off so handsomely that a merchant had left th' town tellin' another one he met halfway in between th' next town within a 30 minutes walkin' distance that everythin' was great 'n he would make great sales, but wha' he found was only a heart attack,” Jack mentioned, “everyone in th' town was jus' corpses.”
Even at this point, Blue was a little freaked out, “R-really…? W-what makes it a g-ghost story th-then?”
“I’m gettin' thar, I’m gettin' thar. Ye haven’t even let me explain how th' plague supposedly spread. Supposedly, within th' hour that th' merchants were away, th' plague spread like wildfire - nah from even touch. Jus' if two or more o' th' Sirens were within a certain distance o' each other it jumped like a grizo.” Jack explained.
Blue shuddered at the thought, those damn parasitic leeches the cling onto pets and other Pearlings for blood.
“Exactly. Now, within th' time it took fer th' merchant t' report th' incident 'n make it back, th' corpses had released a new Class o' Pear-,“ Jack started.
“A NEW CLASS OF PEARLING!?” Blue screamed in fright. “What do you mean a new CLASS?!”
“Give me a second! Th' new class were ghosts,” Jack mentioned with a bit of irritation from the childish scream, “th’ scientist referred t’ them as an ‘Ethereal Class.’”
“Y-you mean… g-ghosts are real…?”
“Aye. Aye, they be,” Jack started, “'n some o' them are downright terrifyin'. I used t' know a… uh… ‘beauty o' th' evenin'’ in that town. Apparently, her ‘job’ didn’t do her a mighty good purpose in th' afterlife 'cause she seemed t' possess all th' stereotypical nastiness that someone o' her ‘profession’ would be associated wit'.”
“Like what, Jack?” Blue asked, not quite grasping what he was trying to avoid discussing.
“Well, I cannot tell ye, Blue. It’s adult stuff.” Jack said as he twiddled his hooves.
“Oh, come on! I’m 17! I know about that stuff.” Blue argued ambitiously.
“If ye insist…” The pirate mumbled, cleared his throat, and then continued. “Well, Primrose was quite drastically different from when she was alive. When she was alive, she was th' most beautiful beauty I had ever known. Beautiful red hair, glowin' yellow eyes. Mmm. She was a beauty. But… when she passed, her body seemed t' 'ave melt 'n tore a wee. Parts o' her body were separated from one another, such as her hooves floatin' in relationship t' her front legs. She was stark white all o'er 'n transparent - I could see right through her. 'n th' worst was th' wounded eyes she had. She looked like she went t’ Davy Jones' locker 'n back. Nah t’ mention they were blank – no pupils or irises.”
Blue’s grip on the chair tightened.
“But, she wasn’t th' only one, obviously. They were all different colors. Purple, green, blue, th' whole spectrum. But they were all naturally floatin', they couldn’t touch th' ground. All transparent. 'n they all looked distraught. Every single one. Yeah, 'twas terrifyin'.” Jack ended as he got off his “throne” to start closing shop.
Blue realized what Jack was doing and started to assist. “So, how do you think they’ll fit into society?”
“I 'ave no idea, but they’ll 'ave t' eventually somehow.” Jack scooted Blue out of the store and locked up the shop. “Run along now, Blue. 'ave a good night. Don’t get too scared that an Ethereal might visit ye in yer sleep! Har har har!”
Blue gulped and slowly swam home whilst Jack went into town in the opposite direction.