The Lost Leprechaun Ring

Prologue


In 1847, during the first years of the Irish Potato Famine, many were desperate to buy a place on ships going to Canada. The journey was long, and many died before reaching their destination. Just before the British Empire severely limited immigration to Canada, many would seek out smaller ships from unregulated docks in a frantic attempt to escape the miserable situation in Ireland.

At the very same time, many leprechauns were also in a panic about how they were to survive with sickness and fever spreading across that land. Many were forced to pack up as much gold as they could and leave the end of the rainbow behind. The story of one particular Leprechaun has become famous over the years. This is that story...



Chapter 1



O’Murchadh pushed his way through the crowd, careful not to drop the small pouch clutched in his hands. He hadn’t managed to grab a lot of gold when he had left the rainbow, and as he reached the docks, he cursed himself for not being faster. The docks were crowded with humans who all hoped, as he did, that they would have better chances of survival in Canada.

His size came in handy for once, as he was able to weave through the mob of people without anyone noticing. He was careful not to show any sign of the gold he carried until he was at the plank leading onto one of the ships. The ship wasn’t too large and would typically take close to three hundred, though he knew that the number of passengers would be closer to five hundred. The vessel was in excellent condition, and the crew was preparing for departure within the next hour.


O’Murchadh drew a gold and ruby necklace out of his cloak that made the people around him perk up. He drew himself up attempting to look taller and more important, "Will this be sufficient for a private bed aboard the ship?" he asked the captain, who was standing on the plank and regulating the number of people who came aboard. He already knew the answer, the jewellery was one of his more elaborate pieces and was probably enough to buy his ship, but he was hoping to draw more attention to the gold than to himself.

"Yes, sir," the man respectfully replied as he led O'Murchadh onto the ship, "but can I ask why you want a ride from me when you have money to throw away?" he questioned twisting the necklace in his fingers.

"It's all I have left." O'Murchadh lied, hoping that the man would drop the subject. The man didn't seem to listen to O'Murchadh's silent prayer as he laughed.

"I think you may have forgotten about your diamond ring." The man prodded, stopping in front of a small door in the corridor of the ship.

O'Murchadh quickly hid the hand wearing the ring in question into his cloak, "I've already paid my fare, haven't I?" he snapped, causing the man’s smile to falter.

"I'll leave you to your room." the man said flatly, as he opened the door to the smallest room O'Murchadh had ever seen.

"At least it has a door." he thought as he let out a sigh. He sat on the bed, which was tiny for humans but a perfect for a leprechaun. He glanced around and was surprised to find that his room had a small window from which he could see a tiny sliver of the dock.

At once he wished that he hadn't looked, there were dozens of people all of whom had no way to buy their way onto the ships or who knew they wouldn't make it through the trip. Many had tried to sneak themselves or their loved ones onto one of the vessels, knowing that soon there wouldn't be enough supplies for the journey. He didn't want to think about how many wouldn't survive, just because they had waited too long to leave.

He had been trying to convince himself that conditions were improving and had continued to do so as many of the other leprechauns had left Ireland. He settled back on his bed, wishing that he could sleep this journey away. He didn't trust leaving any of his belongings in his room, for fear that they would be stolen, but he emptied his small pouch. Several gold coins and other pieces of jewellery spilt onto the bed. He hated that he would have to give most of his treasure up, even in life or death situations, he was still a leprechaun, and it was in his nature.

He refilled his pouch and lay down on the bed. He wouldn't leave his room until the ship had left the port, less chance of him being found out that way. The bed was hard, with a thin padding that could barely be described as a mattress, but if he had merely turned invisible and snuck onto the ship, then he wouldn't be guaranteed a place to sleep or any food. In any case, the trip could end up lasting over a month or longer, and he was sure that no leprechaun could stay invisible for that long. It only took twenty minutes of being invisible before he got a monster of a headache. Invisibility or not, he knew he had a better chance of surviving than the humans, but he still wasn't going to risk spending any more time with them then he needed to.

He didn't hate humans, not as much as some of the other leprechauns. Some of them had celebrated the famine and pestilence up until it had started to affect them. He felt bad for the humans; they were so weak, and yet they thought themselves invincible. Leprechauns couldn't die of starvation, he could suffer the pain and fatigue, but he would not die. The sickness and fever, however, could kill him, so he was determined to stay away from the humans even if he had to starve.

"I can make it," he told himself, "It should only be for a couple of weeks."


Chapter 2



Despite his very best efforts, it was only a few days before O'Murchadh found himself standing at the small door to his room, debating whether or not he was going to give up his solitude in exchange for his rations. He had watched the docks slip away behind him until he no longer knew from what direction the boat had come. He let out a sigh as he tugged his cloak over his mouth and opened the door, regretting it almost immediately. The smell of disease hung heavily in the air, and his cloak did little to cover it. It seemed that the captain had organised the passengers so that the sickest were on the lowest deck. He ascended the stairs to the main deck and tried to ignore the sounds of the sickly.

Even though the people on the on the main deck looked tired, there was something about them that separated them from the people below.

"They're still hopeful," O'Murchadh realised, "they truly believe that they are on their way to a better life."

O'Murchadh had been around for a few centuries, and he had had his fair share of tricking humans. The people that wanted his wealth so much that they made fools of themselves to get it. Take all of that away, however, and they weren't much different from leprechauns. They cared about their families and would give their old lives, however dreary, to save them.

"Are you the one with his own private room with a view?"

O'Murchadh tensed, there was no doubt that the question was directed towards him. Turning slowly, he saw the man who had asked the question. He was taller than O'Murchadh, though most humans were, and he looked about ready to throw someone off the ship. O'Murchadh decided that he wouldn't be the one thrown off.

"I wouldn't call it a room," O'Murchadh laughed nervously, "more like a broom cupboard."

"If it's big enough for you then it's big enough for my kid." The man said his voice quieter as he gestured towards a small boy that had been hiding in his cloak.

O'Murchadh saw why the boy had been hiding immediately. The boy was sick, too sick for a bed to help him. His skin was covered in purple and yellow splotches, and his feet were swollen.

"He shouldn't be up here," O'Murchadh said keeping his voice calm, "He might get the other families sick."

"He won't get anyone sick if he's in a private room and it will stop him from getting worse if he can get some sleep off the cold floor!" The man was pleading now, and his voice broke as he continued, "I gave all I had to get us on this ship, you gave up one necklace."

O'Murchadh did not look at the man's son. He should report this, tell the captain about the breach in quarantine, save those who were unaffected. The man would be found soon though and escorted back below deck, no need for him to get involved.

"I should leave," O'Murchadh told himself, even as he was reaching into his cloak. He pulled out a single diamond stud and held it out to the man.

"I don't have a lot left, but you should have something when we get to shore."

The man threw the stone onto the ground and spat at O’Murchadh’s face, "You'd rather give up a diamond than help us. Where is your humanity."

O'Murchadh fought the urge to go after the stone; he knew that doing so would only serve to make him look worse than before and the man seemed as though he were ready to snap. The only thing more dangerous than staying on a boat with diseased humans is being on a ship with angry, diseased humans. To his relief, the man had turned and left with his son held in his arms. He was probably wary of the attention his outburst had gathered. A few people, having witnessed the scene, scrambled around the deck around where the man had thrown the diamond stud. O'Murchadh turned, suddenly very tired, making his way back to his room.

"Where was his humanity?" the question was stuck in his mind. How many human lives would he ignore to save his own? O'Murchadh didn't want to kill humans, but desperate times bring out the best and the worst in him. He was able to relate to the humans and yet was not willing to give up his bed. That was the one thing he was sure of; he was keeping this room. He pulled the buckles off his shoes, using his magic to shape the metal into a makeshift latch and chain. When satisfied with his work, he attached the new lock to the door. He would sleep for as long as he could, but promised himself that the next time he left his room, he would do it invisibly. Only w week in and this was going to be a long journey.


Chapter 3



O'Murchadh had left his room six times in the past two weeks, each time his trip lasted no more than ten minutes. He had been on this boat for three weeks and had not gone out during the day after that first week. He would gather his belongings, make himself invisible to the humans and slip out of his room. He wouldn't talk to anyone or make any noise, just go to the storeroom and take a small amount of food. Not enough food to be noticed but enough to keep from starving. It wasn't as if he was stealing the food; he had paid for his room and provisions.


He told himself this as he crept out into the hall. He made it out of his room, and carefully made his way towards the storeroom. This excursion was growing increasingly more difficult as many of the humans were asleep, spread out on the floors. It was cold, and many times O'Murchadh would pause to listen anxiously to a sound that would turn out to be a human shivering violently. At last, he arrived at the kitchens the one place that had no humans inside because it was locked up during the night.

He glanced around before turning to the door. He masterfully manoeuvred the mechanisms within the lock. There wasn't even a click. He congratulated himself silently as he closed the door behind him and dropped his invisibility. The first time he had tried to unlock the door it had taken around five minutes, the tumblers clinked loudly, and by the time he was able to abandon his invisibility he had a horrible headache.


He went straight for the perishable foods; he was doing them a favour by eating the food before it went rotten. He grabbed a couple of stale biscuits, a handful of oats which he stuffed in an empty pouch around his waist and a few tea bags. Before he left, he took the opportunity to steal a tin cup from a cupboard. He could use the metal in an emergency.


He took a final look at the kitchen, making sure there was no evidence of his visit and when he was satisfied he left, locking the door behind him.


He was almost back to his room when he heard someone else moving around the corner. He froze. Humans walking around wasn't uncommon, but most were asleep at this time. Keeping close to the wall and slowly moving so as not to make any noise, he peaked around the corner where he had heard the sound.

 

The offender was standing in front of O'Murchadh's door, leaving no way for him to sneak back into the room and hide. He cursed himself, shouldn't have gone, now he would have to wait for the man to leave before he could get back to safety.

He wondered what was the person even doing there. The man was just standing and staring at the door. Perhaps he was sick and wasn't all there O'Murchadh reasoned.

Minutes crept by, and final O'Murchadh couldn't take it anymore, a dull pain was building in his skull from the effort of staying invisible and completely still. He was starting to think that the man had fallen asleep standing up. He took a step forward, hoping to see the man's face. A board creaked under his foot, and the man whipped around.

The blood drained from O'Murchadh's face, and he had to stop himself from taking a step back. In the dim moonlight, O'Murchadh saw that the man's face was contorted in rage. He recognised the man as the one who had confronted him on the deck. O'Murchadh thought he saw the glimmer of tears on the man's face, but before he could be sure, the man turned and moved silently down the hall.

It took O'Murchadh another minute before he worked up the nerve to move back to his door. He flicked his finger, and from inside he heard the lock click. Without the ability of metal manipulation, no human could open his door, so why had the figure been standing there. It was unnerving, and O'Murchadh decided to talk to the captain about switching rooms.

Before he went to bed, he took the tin cup out of his pocket he was suddenly happy that the thought to borrow it had struck him.  He fashioned another lock from it, this one a little bit bigger. "Just to be safe," he whispered to himself.

It took him a long time to fall asleep that night, the image of the man's face would appear every time he shut his eyes. It was silly, he told himself, he might be small, but he did have magic on his side. In a fight, he wouldn't come out unscathed, but there was no doubt he would be able to win. Even so, it was something in the man's eyes, a sort of wild look that made O'Murchadh uneasy.



Chapter 4



O'Murchadh was hypervigilant the next morning, making sure to leave his room early and lock it before he went to speak to the captain. The bell for breakfast had not rung yet, and so he had assumed that most of the humans were still asleep. The halls, however, were noticeably empty.


O'Murchadh wasn't sure whether he wanted to know what was going on and he debated whether it would be better to lock himself back in his room. He almost did so, but the face of the man from the previous night came to mind. He sighed and climbed the stairs.


As he reached his destination he was discouraged to find where all the humans had gone, a mob of them surrounded the captain's quarters. They seemed to be rioting, and O'Murchadh quickly decided that he wanted no part in it.


Ducking behind a corner before turning invisible, he weaved through to the front of the crowd. The humans were yelling about food, and for a second he wondered if this had something to do with him. It soon became clear what the problem was though; the captain had reduced the rations, and the humans weren't happy.


The captain, it seemed, was ignoring them. O'Murchadh decided that this excursion had been a waste and went back to his room.


Two days passed before the humans wore themselves out. Then the riot was over, and it was finally safe for O'Murchadh to come out of his room. He left during dinner; no human would miss meal time if they were able to make it there. He hoped that this would include the man who seemed to hate O'Murchadh.


Standing outside the door to the captain's room, O'Murchadh slowly picked the lock, something he was getting better and better at, and then opened the door.


The captain stood quickly, looking nervous until he saw that it was only O'Murchadh. Leprechauns were unthreatening looking, and O'Murchadh planned to use this to his advantage.


"How the hell did you get in here?" the captain demanded, moving swiftly to close the door.


"The door was unlocked," O'Murchadh innocently replied, "I didn't mean to disturb you."


"You didn't disturb me, just surprised me," he said slowly.


"If you want I can come back another time," O'Murchadh offered, ever the gracious guest.


"No, no. What can I do for you?" the captain asked as he settled back into his chair, "This better not be about the rations, as I tried to tell the others-"


"No," O'Murchadh interrupted, "I don't mind the ration reductions, I'm rather small, and I don't need much."


The captain laughed jovially, "That might explain why I haven't seen you onboard. To be honest, I thought you might've died in your room."


O'Murchadh gritted his teeth; he didn't like being laughed at, especially when it was about his height, but the captain seemed to be more agreeable, and it did explain his invisibility, so he let it slide.


"The room is why I'm here to talk to you," O'Murchadh said, "Is there any way that I could be moved to a different room?"


This statement only seemed to cause the captain to laugh harder though, and it was all O'Murchadh could do to stand still and wait it out.


When the captain finally focused on O'Murchadh, his answer was not what O'Murchadh wanted to hear.


"Do you think this is an inn? You're lucky that we had a broom cupboard with a mattress in it, but if you don't want that room, I could give it to someone else."


"No!" O'Murchadh quickly answered, "It's fine, thank you for your time."


"And thank you for the laugh," the captain called as O'Murchadh left the room and headed towards his own.


Dinner wasn't over, and he had no trouble going back to his room, but before he opened the door, he walked to the end of the hall where a series of bunk beds lined a larger room. With a bit of effort, he summoned the nails out of a nearby bunk. O'Murchadh worked quickly while the cabin was empty. He left enough nails so that the bed wouldn't fall apart and took the rest. By the time he was back in his room, he had almost enough metal for what he wanted to do.


Melding the little bits of iron together an hour of work and concentration left him with a metal sheet a few millimetres think and quite sturdy. This layer he used to reinforce the door of his room. A blow to the door would splinter the wood, but not the metal. He felt a little bit safer that night.


Over the next few nights, he snuck out under cover of darkness and his invisibility and collected more and more metal. He was slowly building up a safe room that would keep humans out.


The relief he felt from these improvements was offset by the horror of finding that the same man he was trying to protect himself from had made a habit of standing outside his door. More than once he was forced to levitate a small piece of metal and drop it down the corridor so that the man would leave.


As he lay in bed staring at what now looked more like a vault door and wondering whether or not the man was outside at that moment, O'Murchadh decided that he had to end this. Tomorrow. He would confront the man tomorrow.



Chapter 5



"What's going on? Another riot?" O'Murchadh asked a woman who was standing on the deck away from the crowd.


"The captain ordered that the dead should be thrown over." The woman replied. She didn't look at O'Murchadh her eyes were unfocused as she watched the scene unfold before her.


O'Murchadh had gathered all his courage and left his fortified bedroom. He was going to find the man who asked for his room. He was going to let the man have the bed so his son could sleep. O'Murchadh figured he could just stay away from the sick humans, but if that man wanted him dead, he was in more danger.


Now his only problem was that he couldn't find the man. He pushed past the people in the crowd, but after fifteen minutes he was forced to give up. He thought that perhaps the man was below deck.


His hunch proved correct, and it only took a few minutes for O'Murchadh to find the man. He was, to O'Murchadh's surprise, huddled on the floor.


O'Murchadh cleared his throat, and the man looked up, his face immediately twisting in rage. O'Murchadh quickly went on the defensive.


O'Murchadh cleared his throat, and the man looked up, his face immediately twisting into a rage that O'Murchadh had never seen before. He quickly went on the defensive, stammering, "R-right, before you get mad, I'm not here to argue. I'll give your kid my room, alright."


O'Murchadh hadn't expected the man to offer a great thank you, but he also didn't expect what actually happened. The man lunged at him with a scream that sounded like a wounded animal. O'Murchadh let out an unceremonious squeak and dove to the side, turning invisible as he did. This wasn't good, he came here trying to get the man to not want to kill him, and he only managed to aggravate him further. Why did humans have to be so unpredictable he asked himself as he scrambled to his feet and moved towards the door.


"Where are you, you bastard!?" the man was raving and looking around wildly, "You came here to rub it in my face so come out and face me!"


The man had moved to the door and look like he was ready to slam it. O'Murchadh had to get him to move he thought fast, shouting, "What are you talking about?"


The response only confused him more, "Did you watch me throw him over? Is that why you came down now?"


"Watch you throw him o-"


It finally hit him, "Your son is dead," he said, his voice flat as he understood what was going on.


"No shit," the man growled, "you killed him."


"He was sick, he would have died either way," O'Murchadh said defensively.


"It doesn't matter now, he's dead and soon you will be too."


As the human spoke, O'Murchadh took the opportunity to inch his way to the door. The man had fallen silent, and in a moment O'Murchadh knew why. He was listening, and it seemed that he knew O'Murchadh was nearing the door because in an instant it was closed and he was standing in front of it. He was trapped, and leprechauns didn't like being trapped by humans. This had gone far enough, he had decided, he had tried to be sympathetic, but humans were human. He summoned a mail from a nearby crate, the sound caused the man to turn wildly. The nail was dull and rusted, but with only a small amount of manipulation, O'Murchadh had himself a small, sharp dagger.


His new blade whipped through the air, the glint caught the man's eye, but not before the point was pressed lightly against his neck. The man's body didn't move, but his eyes flitted widely from side to side.


"Where are you? How-"


O'Murchadh cut the man off, "Careful, you move too much, and you're dead." He dropped his invisibility, he was standing on a box a couple feet away. He would've liked to be levitating in front of the man, but he never really practised it enough, and he didn't want a headache. To his annoyance, the man kept talking.


"W-what are you?" He stammered.


O'Murchadh ignored his question, "It truly is amazing how you can go from angry to terrified so quickly, though I guess I went from scared to annoyed pretty fast. I guess we're not so different," he mused as the knife sliced through the man's throat.


O'Murchadh wrapped the body in a sheet and left the room. He felt numb. Death wasn't uncommon aboard the ship and no doubt the body would be thrown over with those who died from disease. He wouldn't leave his room for the rest of the journey, that he knew. Lives were lost when humans and leprechauns fought.



Chapter 6


Three weeks had passed since O’Murchadh had left the humans body in the bottom of the boat. No one had come for him, no one had tried to take his room from him, no one so much as knocked on his door. He sat up in bed, he had only gotten few hours of sleep. He had been dreaming of times before the famine. Familiar faces were foggy and frozen in time, but now when he tried to remember them, they faded away. In the past weeks, he hadn't so much as peeked outside his door and it seemed that the world outside had forgotten about him.


For the first day, he had tried hard to suppress the memories of the man he had been forced to kill, he turned his attention to other memories he had forgotten long ago and passed the time by trying to remember his past. It was more difficult than it sounded, he was young compared to other leprechauns but he was still hundreds of years old and anything more than ninety years ago had been lost to him long ago.


Every time he grasped onto a memory of his first days on earth, or the first creature he met, it melted away. He soon got tired of trying to remember and decided that as soon as he could, he would procure a notebook so that he could write as he remembered. For now, however, if he was going to get a headache, he might as well get it by practising something useful.


He was exceptionally good at manipulating metals, it was easy to do, but he was able to craft intricate designs from years of practice. He opted for laying on his bed and trying to remain invisible for as long as he could. In a week of nothing but training his endurance for invisibility, he was able to add six minutes to his time. He had been satisfied with this number, when would he need to be invisible for more than twenty minutes?


After that, he had gone through a mental list of things that he wasn't good at, he really should have practised things like, levitation and basic illusion work in his first hundred years, but he had been lazy as much as he could recall. His exact reasons were lost on him, but he didn't have an excuse now.


He tried and failed to levitate himself for days. He would sit on his bed and will himself to float, his face turning bright red to match his coat until he would give up and collapse back in defeat.


Apart from training and sleeping O'Murchadh spent most of his time, staring out the small window in his room. He would do anything to distract from the hunger that was threatening to eat his own stomach. It was, however, because of this habit that he was one of the first to see the land that had come into view far across the water.


His stomach felt as though it were flipping inside of him. Canada, his new home. He twisted the ring on his finger, a habit that he couldn't shake though he couldn't remember when he had started doing it.


It seemed that the humans had also seen the land and the shouts and cries were loud as the boat drew closer to the port. O'Murchadh was quiet, he had noticed what he assumed the humans had yet to see, stretching far away from the port were a line of ships that weren't moving. It seemed that the ship was headed for the back of this line, as per regulation.


He summoned the precious metals that he had used to fortify his door and moulded them into different chunks until his pouch was filled with gold and silver. He took one final look around his room, carefully making sure that he had not left anything behind. He sighed, he had survived the trip if he had been human he wasn't sure that he would be able to make the same claim.


He turned invisible, something that had become far easier as of late, and made his way to the top deck. As he had guessed, the captain was getting ready to address the crowd that had gathered on the deck.


He took a second to look at the crowd of people and was taken aback by the number of people that were left. If he had to guess, it looked like a third of the passengers had not made it to Canada.


O'Murchadh turned his attention to the captain who was saying, "-only be another week or so. They say that the doctors are falling ill themselves and can't see too many people."


It seemed like this information was too much for some of the humans, some cried, and others shouted. O'Murchadh felt his own heart sink, he wasn't sick and yet because all the humans were, he had to stay on the ship for another week or longer.


He was pulled out of his self-pity by the sounds of splashing. A few of the humans it seemed had jumped ship and were attempting to swim to the port. He wasn't going to bet on their chances and hopefully they would be picked up by another ship.


He looked off to the other ships, they were in a sort of line, if he could only levitate, maybe he could move from ship to ship by half jumping and half levitating.


It looked like he was going to be stuck on the ship for a while, but if he could learn to levitate in less than a week, it would still save him some time and get him off the ship.


"Sure," he muttered to himself as he headed back to the room he thought that he would never have to see again, "how hard can it be?

 

Chapter 7

 

Levitating turned out to be harder than O'Murchadh thought and he had given up. Two days of nothing but trying to levitate and he had gotten nowhere. The ship had also not moved, and the humans were getting restless. Salvation seemed so close, and some couldn't take it. Many had tried to swim to shore but were too weak get even as far as the next ship.

O'Murchadh was staring out the small window in his bedroom. He saw a few ships and a bit of land. He would have given all the gold he had to get off the ship. He lay down, he was physically tired, but he felt drained none the less. He took the diamond ring off of his finger and tossed it into the air it floated above him and moved in a lazy circle as he flicked his finger back and forth. Why couldn't it be this easy for him to fly? But levitating metal was different from his own body, metal was much simpler.

He stared up at the ring, the sunlight from the window was hitting the diamond at the perfect angle to make it sparkle. He gazed at the shimmering stone and then it hit him. The diamond wasn't metal, and yet it floated above him set in the gold ring.

O'Murchadh rose from his bed, a plan starting to take shape. He navigated the familiar ship quickly, invisible the whole time. He was scavaging for metal anything he could use old nails, buckets and pans were promptly stowed away under his cloak. When he returned to his room, he dumped his loot onto the bed and immediately set to work. Sturdy metals became the base to his makeshift craft. A small flat square of metal took shape in front of him. Multicoloured metals formed a marbled look as he shaped raised edges. When he was done he admired his work and took a hesitant step onto the metal plate. Now that he was standing on the board he wasn't sure that his plan could work, it seemed ridiculous.

Taking a deep breath O'Murchadh focused on the metal under his feet, willing it to rise into the air. The metal lifted off the ground with a jerking motion and, partially out of surprise and partially because of the board shaking, O'Muchadh promptly fell on his face. When he rose, however, he was grinning. Who needed flying when they could just do this?

O'Murchadh felt better than he had in weeks, but his happiness was short lived. Again and again, he stepped onto his board, and every time he ended up on the ground with a new bruise. He was glaring at the ring that had given him this stupid idea when he had his second epiphany of the day. Feeling like a demonstrable fool, he stepped sheepishly back onto the board and fashioned metal straps over his feet that mimicked the prongs that kept the diamond from falling out of the ring.

No longer able to fall off the plate, O'Muchadh turned his attention to how high he could raise the metal and how fast he could move on it. It didn't take long for him to realise he couldn't do much in his tiny room. When night fell, he snuck out to the main deck of the ship and made sure no one was awake. It was a dark night, and the moon was shrouded in dark clouds.

O'Murchadh stepped onto the board and lifted himself into the air. Keeping the board as steady as he could he crouched low to the metal and moved slowly to the edge of the ship. This would be the real test, floating a few feet up was useful but to get to shore, he would need to fly higher and longer than he was at the moment. He squeezed his eyes shut as he passed over the ship's railing, when nothing happened he opened his eyes. He wasn't sure what he had been expecting, but he was emboldened when he didn't drop into the water below.

Next, he focused his mind on speed and immediately shot forward until he was about thirty feet from where he had been moments before. He let out a whoop of excitement as he made a lap of the ship but the feeling quickly faded and was replaced by a pounding in his head that left him reeling as he dropped back onto the deck of the ship. He returned to his room, glad that he didn't see anyone on his way back because he wasn't sure if he could have held his invisibility for long. He half wished that he had flown at least to the next ship over so that he could say he had gotten somewhere, but at the same time, he was glad for his bed. He would pack his things and leave the next night, he was so close to safety, he was so close to Canada.