Claim Your Plunder ...The tropical palms tremble in the breeze of an oncoming storm as you make your way down the jungle trail. Ahead you see it, a dark gap in the slick rocks, the mouth of a cave. This is it. The end of your search.
You light your torch and descend into the darkness. The tunnel slopes downward, into the roots of the mountain, but you fear not. You studied the clues that drew you to this secluded island, and you know where this path leads. The deeper you travel, the cooler the air grows, leaving the sultry jungle behind until your skin prickles with goosebumps in the chill air. Ahead the glow of your torch illuminates an ancient wooden door. It has no handle, but symbols are carved upon it.
You remove your pack from your shoulders and fish out the ancient parchment. The symbols match. Heart in your throat, you push them in the correct sequence. You hear the creak and groan of rusty metal then the door slowly swings open.
You are momentarily dazzled as the light from your torch reflects upon the treasure within. Piles of gold, precious stones, and chests overflowing with riches await you.
Your breath quickens, and you begin to rush forward only to have some misgiving hold you back. Among the wealth, half-buried in coins, a skeleton rests, a tricorn hat still perched upon its skull. Instead of running to claim your wealth, you cautiously approach it. Its bony arm lies outstretched, its skeletal fingers an inch away from a rusted cutlass. It seems to yearn for this weapon, to draw blade one more time, to face adventure upon the high seas.
With reverence, you pick up the sword and lay it across the empty ribs of the deceased pirate. A cold breeze whips around the cavern, and your torch puffs out, leaving you in sudden and complete darkness.
Before you can panic, a faint blue glow rises from the back of the cave. A man in full regalia, a long coat and plumed hat, glides out of the gloom. His craggy features are set with keen, sharp eyes with which he considers you. You hold your breath as he takes you in then turns his attention to the remains on the floor. He reaches down and reclaims the sword. At his touch, the rust melts away, leaving the blade bright and sharp as the day it was forged. He nods to you and holds out his other hand. A candle flickers there, a flame you somehow know will never die.
As the candlelight fills the room, the apparition fades away, taking the sword with it. You stand in the darkness, in awe of what has occurred but feeling a sense of approval and belonging. You have been judged worthy. The treasure is yours.