Carolyn glared at the roaring Atlantic below before closing the windows of the Master Cabin. "You won. Not that it was ever a competition – for me, anyway. Or that you're particularly green. You can keep him."
She spun the binnacle, as an afterthought. It didn't help that Tim Seagirt's song was all over the radio now, broadcast up and down the East Coast. Candy made a point of finding the song on the tinny little transistor radio Blair left behind. On the long trip to and from Philadelphia that summer, Jonathan patiently twisted the knob on the car radio, ears straining vainly for the tune. "He really did write it for you, Mom. And the chair song, too."
Now Carolyn was the one rising each morning to face days without him. There'd been no sign of the Captain when they returned in late July. He'd simply disappeared after the hippy musician's departure, hours after an argument that wasn't even really a fight but a shrugging of cold shoulders on her part and a clearing of throats on his.
She leant her head on the headboard of the bed they'd never shared. Why had she let him slither so elegantly out of all culpability for June's so-called little ditty? The lyrics meant something once to someone, drafted no doubt with a quill while Daniel Gregg was still alive, back when love and loss actually meant something to him. Emerald seas. Flotsam and jetsam. Vanessa. Hypothetical hypocrite. He gave nothing away, certainly not his heart. The Captain, she thought, was way past having to forego anything, save his vaunted privacy. That sacrifice was largely for Jonathan, she suspected, the son he'd never had. The ghost obviously didn't want to hold her hand – or, explain why he couldn't, even though he could touch every inanimate object in Gull Cottage, including poor Claymore.
"You come back here, Captain Gregg," she whispered.