2009-05-28 : My favorite moment in Treasure Island

I read the book a while ago but this moment has stuck with me.

The pirate crew is on the trail to Flint's buried treasure. Ben Gunn is around, hiding, making like a ghost. He's scaring the crap out of the pirates - they are terrified of Flint, alive and dead.

"Waah!" say the pirates. (I'm paraphrasing.)

"Hold on," says one pirate. "I think I recognize that spectral disembodied voice. Is that ... Ben Gunn?"

"I think it is," says another.

"Oh, WELL," say the pirates. "Weren't none of us scared of Ben Gunn in his life, I don't see why we'd be scared of his ghost."

So they aren't.

I love that. It's such a practical superstition. Just being a ghost doesn't make Ben Gunn any more fearsome than he was, just the same as how being dead doesn't make Captain Flint any less fearsome.

1. On 2009-05-29, Arturo G. said:

In Poison'd, a guardian ghost is as powerful as her Soul was when living. And a curse ghost is as difficult to be exorcised as her Devil was. There could be correlation enough to exploit that practical-superstition idea in actual play.


2. On 2009-06-04, myrthe said:


A friend told me about his time in a spiritualist movement. Contact those passed beyond, consult them, get their guidance and all.

When he left he was still fully convinced of its reality and effectiveness. What changed for him was he realised that just cos folk were dead, that didn't give them any special insight. And doesn't give them any reason to tell *you* what you need to know for your own good like some spectral 1-800 number, instead of play jokes on you, mess you 'round to be mean, make up for what they should've done or just generally follow their own agendas. Just like asking live people for advice, but probably harder to read too.


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