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Fiction-  Stories, Myths and Legends.


Dusk, at the last Outpost.MacDonald and Jones were finishing up their own inspection of the interior of the Tower.  Moore was left outside, by order of the Second Mate.  MacDonald wanted the investigation of the interior free of any influence from the Keeper, outside of what he had already told them.

"Well, things are as you reported," MacDonald said, addressing Moore as he and Jones exited the Tower.

"Yeah," MacDonald continued, "Two sets of Oilskins and Boots gone, and the Log relating events just as you said.  I'm beginning to think the answer to this puzzle is located at the west-side landing.  Moore you visited it earlier, what did you see besides the absence of Ducat and Marshall?"

Moore looked perplexed for a moment, then replied in a soft tone, " Aye, I was there, but not for long.  Just enough to make sure that my mates were nowhere to be found."

"Alright," said MacDonald, "I guess there would be nothing wrong if the three of us 
investigated it together.  Lead on Moore."

Moore nodded, and began to walk towards the western part of the island.  He was closely followed by MacDonald and Jones.

Within ten minutes, the western edge of Eilean Mor came into view.  Soon all three were looking at the west-side landing area, or at least what was left of it.

"My God, " MacDonald said to himself.  He realized that not finding his friends would weigh on Moore greatly, but how could he have missed this? 

The only way anyone would have known that a Dock once existed in this place, was the twisted and misshapen metal railings that jutted out of the rocks located near the shore, which probably lead the way down to the now missing Dock.
End of PT 11.

Fiction-  Stories, Myths and Legends.


Costa Rica, Sunset, Sky, Nature, Costa
It was January 5th, and the testimony was almost at an end. The Northern Lighthouse Board had convened a Board of Inquiry, after the investigation into the disappearance of the three Keepers on Eilean Mor was finished.  Heading up the Board was Robert Muirhead, Superintendent.  He was questioning Captain Harvie, the final witness ordered to appear before the assembly.

"When Second Mate MacDonald returned to the ship, did his report given to you at the time, essentially match his testimony given to this Board."

"Yes Sir," was the prompt reply from Harvie, "I heard no change in the facts he relayed to me at the time."

Supt. Muirhead nodded, and went on.  "Would you also agree that Keeper Moore and Seaman Jones testimony was also accurate, in that it does not contradict what they reported to you upon returning to the Hesperus."

Again Harvie replied in the affirmative, and Muirhead turned to the other two board members, on either side of him, and whispered something.  After a moment, he turned back to address Harvie.

"What is the situation on the island now?", asked the Superintendent.

The Captain sat up as straight as he could, and replied in a voice denoting a man use to giving orders.

"Keeper Moore has the light up and running again.  Seaman Jones and two other crew members, Giblin and Hurley, volunteered to stay behind until replacements could be sent to man the Light with Moore."

The Superintendent smiled slightly, and in a solemn tone asked;  "One final question Captain.  Moore, MacDonald and Jones all gave testimony that the west-side landing was literally gone, like it had been scooped up and removed from the Island, leaving only twisted metal to mark its former existence.  Since you did not see this yourself, could the men be exaggerating?"

Captain Harvie stood straight up from his chair, and looking Muirhead straight in the eye replied, "Not in the least.  They spoke of the scene at the west-side landing with a mixture of astonishment and awe. Boulders that seemed to be moved from their places like mere pebbles.  A Pier and Walkway, that just days before had weathered everything the North Atlantic could serve up, gone like they had never existed.  No sir, I believe them completely."
End of PT 12. 

Look for PT 13, the FINAL CHAPTER.

Date-  6/20/2014.

Fiction-  Stories, Myths and Legends.


Hill, Mountain, Lighthouse, Landscape

There were only the three of them left in the conference room, after all the Witnesses and Testifiers had been excused. Superintendent Muirhead, along with fellow Board members Ross and Mulhearn, were still sitting at the large oak table set up opposite the door leading into the hallway.

Ross took a sip of water from his glass and spoke, breaking the silence.  "Tis a Mystery for sure, no evidence, no witnesses."

"Aye," replied Mulhearn, sitting back in his chair.  "It'll go down as another chapter in Sea Lore.  Won't be the first, and won't be the last.  The Wags in the press are gonna love this.  No Bodies, no Trace. I can see the stories of Spirits, Ghost Pirates and Sea Monsters being published in every Newspaper on the Isles and Mainland."

Muirhead stood up suddenly, and turned to each man, who were seated on either side of him.  The glare he gave off startled them both, and they sat in stunned silence as he began to speak.

"That is enough," he said angrily. "This is the Twentieth Century. I will not allow the loss of three good men to be explained by Fortune- Tellers, Seers, Spiritualists or any other Opportunist who can find a writer to listen to whatever Hogwash they think the Public may want to hear.  These men had Families, and I will not cast their grief aside.  There are answers to be found, and it is our job to find them.  If this is beyond your abilities, or you have no wish to continue the Investigation beyond Todays Testimony, leave now.  You are of no use to me, or the NLB."

Fiction-  Stories, Myths and Legends.


Sylt, North Sea, Island, Landscape

Ross and Mulhearn, sufficiently embarrassed by their initial attitude to the disappearance, were studying the Transcript from the hearing.  Muirhead was busy writing out notes on a separate pad, outlining the case as he saw it.

As the clock on the wall struck Two in the afternoon, Muirhead suddenly raised his head.  He then stood up and addressed his fellow Board members.

"Gentlemen," he said with confidence,"I believe the answer lies in establishing what we know to be true, and going on from there."

His two companions nodded in agreement.  Muirhead cleared his throat and said, "Alright, lets make a list."

Ross jumped in, "The Time Line is pretty straight forward.  From the Log we know that there were no real problems, at least up until the last entry made on the Afternoon of the 14th." 

"And", Mulhearn added, "We know the Light was out on the 15th, as reported by the Archtor."

Muirhead nodded, and glanced down at his notes. "Ducat recorded in the Log that he and Marshall were going out for an inspection of the Island, when the weather broke on the afternoon of the 14th.  Since their Oilskins and Boots are missing, we can reasonably assume that they indeed left the Tower to check on both landing sites."

Mulhearn broke in, "This would have left Macarthur alone in the Tower, and the Light was operating normally. Yet, he is missing too. Obviously something happened to him, for the Light was out by the 15th.  Since his Oilskins and Boots were found inside, he left the Tower without them. Why?"

"Only a Fool would leave the Tower," Ross replied,"at this time of year in the North Atlantic, without wearing Foul Weather Gear.  Unless, he had no choice."

Muirhead nodded gravely, and in a solemn voice said, "That is the key to the mystery.  Was Macarthur forced out of the Tower, or did he leave voluntarily? The Shore Party found no evidence of violence, and there appeared to be sufficient supplies remaining to indicate that no theft had taken place.  Further, there was nothing of real value on the Island, such as Money, Riches or Treasure.  I doubt this was a case of Piracy or Murder.  Lighthouse Keepers are known to be armed, and the chance of coming ashore unnoticed is highly unlikely. Great risk for very little reward."

Fiction-  Stories, Myths and Legends.


Architecture, Building, Infrastructure

It had been a long day.  Going over the evidence, the three men had considered every scenario they thought could possibly fit the facts.  In the end, the solution they arrived at was a tribute to Rational Thought, and a rejection of the Supernatural.

Superintendent Muirhead was meeting with Captain Harvie for the last time, regarding the events on Eilean Mor. They sat in Harvies Cabin, drinking Cognac and smoking Cigars.

"We could only release a finding that squared with the facts," said Muirhead, looking at Harvie through the haze of smoke.

"How do you mean?" asked Harvie.

Looking up at the ceiling, Muirhead sighed, and began to speak.

"We know that the light was out on the 15TH, and the Log was kept up through the afternoon of the 14th.  Since the flagpole was bare, with no signal for distress, whatever occurred probably did not allow them time to raise the signal for alarm. The Logbook hinted at no problems, except mentioning the spell of bad weather. Also, from the Log, we know that Ducat and Marshall were planning to take advantage of the break in the weather, to check the condition of both landing sites. This was the last entry.  Since we did not find their foul weather gear, it is safe to assume that they left the Tower to complete this task."

Harvie broke in. "I understand all of that, my landing party was very thorough.  But what about Macarthur? Why would he leave the Light? No evidence of violence or confrontation could be found, and his Oilskins and Boots were found undisturbed beside the entrance to the living quarters." 

Muirhead smiled slightly, and continued. "The answer lies in the condition of each landing site. Tell me Captain, you have sailed these waters for years, which landing site is the most Treacherous?"


Fiction-  Stories, Myths and Legends.


Westerhever, Lighthouse, Nordfriesland

Captain Harvie looked at Muirhead with a look of incredulity.  "Come on now," he said, "you know the west-side landing is open to the North Atlantic.  It is not sheltered in any way from storms or wave action, and during the winter season is battered mercilessly.  You saw the report from the landing party.  The west-side landing had literally been wiped off the face of the earth."

Muirhead stood up and walked to the center of the cabin, and looked up at the ceiling, sighing deeply.

"Consider this," Muirhead began, "Ducat and Marshall leave he Tower in foul weather gear.  The east-side landing is in good shape, so they spend most of their time at the west-side, given its' condition.  We know the weather had cleared somewhat, but storms far out at sea can create freak waves and abnormal tides that can catch the unlucky without warning, even if the sky is clear."

Harvie broke in, "Any sailor worth his salt knows that. What is the point?"

Muirhead turned and looked Harvie straight in the eye, "Don't you see, even now?  Ducat and Marshall are at the west-side landing.  Either one, or maybe both, got into trouble.  The landing itself was destroyed at an earlier time, creating a perilous situation for anyone visiting the site.  Further, it would be virtually impossible for someone falling into the sea, to pull themselves out.  The Dock was gone, and all the gear washed away.  Even if one still remained on shore, rescuing his companion would be very difficult, if done alone."

Harvie nodded in agreement.  "I see where you are going with this.  Macarthur might have seen the accident, or was made aware of it by one of his mates calling out for help.  He naturally rushed out immediately, not bothering to put on his oilskins or boots, for there was no time to lose."

"Now you understand."  Muirhead said, with a slight smile.  "It could have been a single wave initially, or maybe a series of waves arriving minutes apart.  However, once all three were in the water, there was virtually no hope.  It has happened before, but this time all the witnesses were lost."

"Such a waste, losing three good men in this way," Harvie said in a weary voice. "What are you going to say to the families?"

Muirhead straightened up, and with a determined look on his face said, "All three men died while properly attending to their duties.  They were a credit to the Lighthouse Service, and their loss is a tragedy to the profession they honorably represented for so many years."

                                             THE END.

Postscript-  While this was a work of fiction, it is based on an actual event.  I tried to remain true to the facts as they are known, as many of the Names, Dates and Events were true to life.  The Dialogue was meant to dramatize the event, but does not misrepresent the pertinent facts in any way. If you wish to learn more, research the following on the Internet:

- Eilean Mor.
- Flannan Isles.
- Northern Lighthouse Board.

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