Mary Ann vowed not to tremble as the man led her to the other side of the island. She had to stay in perfect control… look for a way out as soon as she had the chance… warn the others.
"Nearly there now," the man said, causing the farmgirl to jump a foot into the air. "Oh, dear, we are nervous, aren't we?"
"Let's just say I'm not used to being taken hostage!" Mary Ann quipped, once she regained her composure.
"Hostage? Oh, no, no; you are under a great misapprehension. You are free to go; you can turn around right now and go back to your little camp. However, it would probably be that there would be no one left to return to."
"So… they're the hostages?"
"In a manner of speaking," the man said. "Ah, here we are…"
Mary Ann stopped in her tracks at the sight of the other men under this commander's orders. Her eyes widened as she recognized one of them.
"You…!" she said, pointing at the mustachioed one. "I know you! You were the guy who ran around here, acting like a ghost and scaring us half to death!"
"It was a nasty trick to play on you, I must admit," the commander said, as the mustachioed ghost just shrugged. "But we really did need to convince you and your friends to leave this island."
The farmgirl now turned back to him.
"We've been trying to leave this island for four years! Do you think we want to stay here!?"
"As I recall, we provided you with a boat the last time," the commander said, amused at her suddenly braver tone.
"He blew it up!" Mary Ann exclaimed, pointing an accusing finger at the mustachioed man.
"Really?" The Commander looked to the mustachioed man. "Now, why did you do that?"
"You told me to, Sir."
The commander now snarled at the mustachioed man in a language that Mary Ann didn't know before turning back to her.
"My apologies. I can give you my personal assurance that no harm will come to you while you are here."
"And how long will I be here?" she asked.
"Ah, well… That's going to be dependent on your comrades, and how well they take our directions," the commander said. "Or… shall we say… your directions."
"I don't understand."
"You're going to convince your comrades that they must leave this island, and that the boat we will provide will be perfectly safe this time."
"Will it?" she asked.
"Well, let me put it this way… It's going to be a lot more dangerous for your friends if they stay here. I'll give them a fifty-fifty chance on the boat. Here… one in a hundred. Are we clear?"
"Like crystal," Mary Ann said. "And I'm guessing their chances will also be one in a hundred if I don't cooperate and tell them?"
"You catch on very quickly."
The farmgirl sighed, hoping that the others would help her figure a way out of this once she saw them again.
"Okay," she said. "What do I have to tell them?"
"Oh, we'll tell you what to say, don't worry," the commander said. "Right now, we need to focus on how you're going to say it."
He smirked at Mary Ann's baffled look and snapped his fingers. The mustachioed man handed him a tin of some sort, which he opened, revealing a glowing liquid.
"You want me to write a message with that?"
"Not quite. As I said, it's all in the delivery."
Mary Ann looked at the tin, a dubious expression growing on her face.
"You're not making any sense."
"You'll understand soon enough."
The farmgirl continued to stare at the glowing substance, still not understanding, but realizing that this was going to be far more complicated than she first thought.
Ginger was humming to herself as she gathered the outfits she would need for the little performance she was planning. She skipped a note as she realized that one of the blouses she needed was missing.
"Now where did I leave that…?" she murmured. "It's not with the laundry…"
She snapped her fingers as she remembered that she had let Mary Ann borrow it. Unsure if Mary Ann had added it to the latest laundry load, Ginger sauntered out of the hut and over to their makeshift kitchen area.
"Mary Ann?" she called, not seeing her. "Mary Ann?"
Her gaze fell upon the abandoned ingredients, and the actress's intuition told her something was wrong.
Going to either the Skipper or the Professor right now would only add fuel to their fire, she realized. Her mind made up, Ginger now hurried through the hut area, calling for Gilligan, who was still trying to cheer up the Skipper. The first mate took his leave of the captain and headed outside.
"Something wrong?" he asked, noticing her worried expression.
"I can't find Mary Ann."
"She was making the pie, wasn't she? I saw her like… fifteen minutes ago," the sailor said, baffled.
"Well, she's not there now!" Ginger stated. "It's as though she vanished without a trace!"
She flinched as she realized what she had just said, and Gillian looked to her with a pained expression.
"You don't think…?" Ginger began.
"…Well, let me put it this way; I'm not familiar with those legends like you and the Skipper are, but I don't walk under ladders, and if I spill salt, I throw it over my shoulder," Ginger admitted.
Gilligan gulped, and now looked back towards the hut he shared with the Skipper, and then to the Professor's hut.
"We shouldn't tell them, should we?" Ginger asked, voicing what Gilligan was thinking. "Not until we're sure."
"Yeah, better not set the Old Grizzly Bear off, at least."
"…What?" Ginger asked.
"That's what me and the other sailors used to called the Skipper back in the Navy days," he said. "Old Grizzly Bear Grumby."
"…What did he think of that?"
"You kidding? When you name a guy after a grizzly bear, you don't go telling him that you did!"
"Fair enough," Ginger agreed. "But, anyway, we still have to make sure that Mary Ann is okay."
"Well, if she's not in the hut area or the kitchen… and the Skipper said that we weren't supposed to leave…" Gilligan said, with a sigh. "I hate to go against his orders, but we gotta look for her."
"Yeah," Ginger said, also feeling bad about it. "We'll go together, though; that's taking some precaution, at least."
Gilligan nodded, and the two of them headed into the jungle, calling for Mary Ann. Time ticked by, but they received no answer.
Disheartened, the search party found themselves near the caves they had visited that morning.
"No sign of her," Ginger said. "Oh, now I'm really getting worried. We have to tell the Skipper and the Professor!"
"Yeah… yeah, maybe they'll finally work together, now that Mary Ann is missing," Gilligan said. He leaned against the wall of the small cave for a moment before suddenly leapfrogging away from it.
"What's the matter?"
"That's the Kona Cave!" the first mate yelped.
"Oh, right…" Ginger realized, and then she froze for a moment. "Gilligan… You don't suppose there's a connection between Mary Ann disappearing and us finding this cave this morning?"
"Well… we could go inside and say we're sorry to Kona; maybe he'll help Mary Ann get un-lost?"
"You know what I mean," the first mate said, shaking slightly.
"Yeah," Ginger said, following Gilligan as he knelt by the small opening.
"I'll go in first, and then you follow me, Ginger."
They entered the cave, calling softly for Mary Ann.
"She's not here," Ginger realized. "She'd have answered us."
"Yeah," Gilligan said, grabbing a match from his pocket. "But let's just look around anyway…"
He struck the match, and the tiny flame didn't reveal much. The first mate sighed in disappointment, but then nearly jumped out of his skin as Ginger let out a shrill gasp.
"Gilligan! Oh, Gilligan, look!"
"On the wall!" the actress cried, horrified.
The match had burned out, and Gilligan had to light another one; he looked to the wall and stared at the painted image of Kona. It was entirely the same, expect for one added detail—a drawing of a female figure with pigtails was in Kona's painted hand.
"Oh no…" Gilligan murmured. "Oh no, oh no, oh no…"
"Gilligan. Gilligan, snap out of it!" Ginger exclaimed. "We have to go back and tell the others!"
"And do what?" Gilligan asked.
"Um… Well… Maybe the Skipper will know something—some sort of ritual that'll convince Kona to give Mary Ann back?" Ginger asked, trying to reassure herself as well as Gilligan.
"Yeah… yeah, he might…"
"Exactly! But he can't do anything unless we let him and the others know," Ginger said.
"Right… right…" the first mate said, taking a deep breath. "They'll know what to do. They always know what to do. Skipper always looks out for us…"
He exhaled and led the way out of the cave, crawling through the small tunnel and out into the fresh air.
The sailor sighed again, fanning his face with his hat as he stood up. He then casually glanced out in front of him… and promptly froze up again, the hat falling from his now-shaking hand.
A figure, glowing so brightly that she was illuminating the nearby foliage, was standing several feet away. Even though she was too far away for Gilligan to see her face, there was no mistaking who it was—not with those pigtails.
"M-Mary Ann…?" he squeaked.