Ship Adventure Story for Kids
This summer, the five children had a different surprise awaiting them. Both the set of parents had decided to go on a cruise. The children got to know
“Oh, mom! Why didn’t you let us know before? How on earth are we going to complete our packing?” asked Moira. “Well, dear, it wouldn’t have been a surprise then, would it?” smiled Susan, picking up a handful of clothes off the bed. “Are uncle and aunt coming too?” questioned Darla. “Of course, dearie, they are coming,” replied Susan, leaving the room.
“Do help me find my new shoes, Moira,” said Gerald, rushing into the room. “Oh, alright Gerald, “I’ll find them for you. Go and finish the rest of your packing.
The whole day was spent putting finishing touches to the various bags and boxes filled with all the necessary items. Next morning, Bert and Valerie arrived at ‘Snow-White Cottage’ with their kids Violet and Justin.
“Hi there, everyone, all set for the cruise!” called uncle Bert cheerfully. “Oh yes, uncle, we can’t wait to leave,” chorused the three children. “Come with me Val, I want to show you my new hat,” spoke Susan, pulling her sister inside the house.
At last, everything was ready and waiting. The two families got inside the bus which would take them to the dockyard where The Paradise was docked. It was a beautiful cruise liner, painted in red and white.
The two families were shown to their cabins with adjoining ones for the kids. Moira, Violet, and Darla unpacked their belongings and stacked them neatly. They freshened up and knocked on Justin and Gerald’s door. “Wow, what a mess!” shrieked Darla. “We will tidy up things later. Let’s go up on the deck,” said Justin, heading for the stairs.
“You had better straighten up kiddo before mom gets here,” admonished his sister. The children joined their parents on the deck and had tea, lemonade, tiny chicken sandwiches, creamy tea-cakes, and cookies. After some time, the children decided to inspect the ship. There was a big hall on the upper deck where there was space for dining and dancing.
A live band would be performing in the evenings. “My God! Dazzle Williams is on the ship. Look, look, her photograph is here,” shouted Moira. “Wow, I love her voice,” joined in Violet. “Alastair Higgins is going to sing too,” smiled Gerald. “I am lucky, I love his songs,” said Justin, jumping up and down.
“Dazzle is so pretty and Alistair is too handsome,” added Darla. “I can’t wait for dinner time,” said Violet super excited. “I wish I could meet them before dinner,” said Darla hopefully. “Well, maybe you will dear,” said Moira, patting her on the back.
The kids inspected the rest of the ship and then returned to a small cosy area set up for buffet lunch. Their parents were sitting, talking to some of the co-passengers. After some time, everyone moved towards the buffet table and filled their plates with whatever they liked.
There was seating arrangement all around this area and everyone sat down to relish their food.
“This fish is delicious,” said Gerald, eating it with enjoyment. “My
“Mom, I don’t want to eat these green veggies, they are yuck!” said Darla, making a face. “Oh, well, eat up or you get no ice-cream,” laughed her mom. “Oh, alright! I’ll swallow some, ’cause the ice-cream and chocolate pudding look delicious.” Everyone laughed and teased Darla.
The afternoon saw all of them resting in their cabins. Evening tea was again in the lunch area. The children filled themselves with pancakes, ham and cheese sandwiches, lemonade and apple juice, while the elders had coffee and tea.
As dinner time approached, all five kids got ready in their best clothes, ready to hear Dazzle and Alistair sing their favourite songs.
The two families arrived early and sat at one of the tables near the band. As Dazzle took her place, the five kids cheered loudly and she gave them a special smile.
“Oh, here comes Alistair. He looks gorgeous,” said Violet, clapping her hands in welcome. The applause died down as the band started. Moira sent a request for Dazzle to sing her favourite song and she smiled and started, “The stars are so bright, I feel I could fly—–.”
Dinner was delicious with waiters and waitresses serving food on trolleys. There was creme of asparagus soup, lamb chops, chicken-a-la-Kiev and fish cake. All this was served with baked potatoes, green beans and peas and salad. For dessert, there was creme brûlée, pineapple pudding and a choice of ice-creams.
After dinner, the two families sat at their table and listened to the performers for some more time. “Okay, kids! Time for bed,” said Bert, getting up. “No dad, please let us stay for this last song,” said Violet with a beseeching look on her face. “Well, we are retiring. You can stay for some more time,” said Susan, smiling at their eager faces. “Thank you!” chorused the kids.
Next morning, the five children decided to find out what their co-passengers were like. They met a couple coming out of their cabin and Darla greeted them. “Hi! I’m Darla, this is my sister Moira and brother Gerald. These are our cousins, Violet and Justin. “Hello kids, nice to meet you,” smiled the couple.
Just then, two girls rushed out of their cabin door. “These are my twins Hyacinth and Rose,” added the lady. “Hey!” said the two, coming forward to shake hands. They were about Darla’s age and wore light pink outfits with dark pink hair bands and hair clips. “Let’s go to the upper deck,” said Rose, running forward.
In the afternoon, the five kids and their parents met the other passengers who had all gathered in the hall to play their favourite indoor games. Mr. and Mrs. Smith were there with their twins, Rose and Hyacinth. An aged lady was
“Hello, I’m Margaret and this is my companion Harriet.” Everyone shook hands with her. “We are playing cards. Will you join us, ma’am?” asked David. “Yes, why not,” replied Margaret.
Just then, Mr. and Mrs. Pringle entered the hall announcing their names loudly. The man sported a beard and the lady had too much make-up on. “She looks artificial,” whispered Violet. The couple went and sat at the end talking loudly. Then there was a sweet plump lady with her daughter and son-in-law and their baby with an ayah.
Last to enter
Darla had something to say about everyone gathered and she whispered to the others, “I’m sure Mr. and Mrs. Crown
The next few days passed smoothly. The children enjoyed playing games and snooping around.
“I wish we had a mystery to solve on this trip,” said Darla woefully. “I’m afraid your wish will not come true this time,” said Justin. “Yes, everyone and everything seems perfect on this liner,” added Gerald.
Next morning, Gerald had to take back his words. Passengers awoke to loud shouts and cries coming from the cabin of Mrs. Robinson. The old lady came out with her daughter and son-in-law accompanied by their baby’s ayah.
“My sweet Lydia is missing,” cried the old lady. “She was in her crib next to me. I checked on her a few times and she was fast asleep. This morning, her crib is empty. We can’t find her,” sobbed the old woman.
Her daughter was too distraught with worry and her husband looked shocked. “I gave Lydia some milk at 2 am because she was crying and she went to sleep after that,” added Molly, the Ayah. “Oh, where can she be my poor darling!” cried Scarlet, Lydia’s mom.
Till then, the ship’s captain arrived on the scene. “The baby has to be somewhere on the ship, ladies. The ship has not docked anywhere since last night,” said the captain. “Don’t worry, Mrs. Robinson, all of us will look for dear Lydia,” said David. “Yes, I’m sure she will be found soon,” added Bert.
All the passengers had gathered by then and everyone agreed to help find the missing baby. Every nook and corner of The Paradise was searched thoroughly, but baby Lydia could not be found.
“It’s amazing, I must say,” said Margaret. “Yes, how on earth can a baby disappear from a moving ship,” added Harriet.
The twins, Hyacinth and Rose were of the opinion that Lydia had disappeared due to some magical spell. “I have heard weird stories about crazy people who cast spells on innocent children,” said Rose. “Really, will you tell me all about it?” asked Darla excitedly.
By late evening, everyone decided that it was high time the police were informed. The captain sent a message to the nearest port. “I’m afraid, we will be able to dock not before early morning tomorrow,” informed the captain. “I will die if I can’t find Lydia,” said Scarlet. “Now, now sweetheart, don’t say such things. We will find Lyddie soon,” said Jeremy, her husband.
The whole day passed discussing the baby’s disappearance. At the dinner table, no one ate much except for Mr. and Mrs. Pringle and Mr. and Mrs. crown.
“Did you notice Val, the Crowns ate a hearty meal without a word,” said Susan. “Yes, they seem most odd. Imagine being so unaffected by poor Lydia’s disappearance,” added Valerie.
The Pringles were their loud selves too, asking for a second helping of the dessert. The children decided to do their best to try and find some clues about Lydia’s disappearance.
“We might be able to help the police in some way,” said Moira. “What should be our plan?” asked Justin. “I think the best thing to do is to try to get some information from the passengers,” said Gerald. “Well, let us go,” said Violet getting up. They found Mr. and Mrs. Smith relaxing on the deck.
“Hi auntie, did you notice any suspicious sounds or movements last night?” asked Voilet. “I slept like a log, children. I didn’t hear a sound,” said Mrs. Smith.
Her husband got up and lighting his pipe spoke, “Well let me see. I did hear a funny sound last night, but thought nothing of it.” “What sort of sound was it?” questioned the ever curious Darla.
“What time was it uncle?” went on Gerald. “Well, it seemed as if something had fallen down into the waters. I thought it must be the wind making weird sounds. Since my sleep was disturbed, I looked towards the clock. It was a quarter to three,” said Mr. Smith.
Rose and Hyacinth had joined them just then after changing into their night clothes.
“Who could have thrown something into the waters so late at night?” said Rose with a serious expression. “Shouldn’t you all be in bed children?” asked Mrs. Smith. “May we stay up a bit more mom? Darla is up too,” asked the twins. “Oh, alright, but not for long,” replied their mom. “Night night auntie,” chorused the five cousins.
“Come on, let’s go and see whom we can talk to,” said Violet. They saw Margaret and her companion Harriet taking a stroll on deck. They approached them and Justin asked, “May we ask you a few questions?” “Come to my cabin, kids,” said the old lady, pulling Darla and the twins to the cabin door. The rest of the gang trooped in.
“Sit down children and tell me what you want to know,” smiled Margaret sitting at one end of her bunk bed.
“Did you notice anything mysterious last night?” asked Moira. “No children I’m afraid I didn’t, but I wish I had. I’m sure I could have saved little Lydia,” replied Margaret, with a regretful expression. “I did wake up once but nothing seemed to be amiss, so I went back to sleep,” added Harriet.
The children left the old lady’s cabin after bidding her good night.
Next, they encountered the Pringles who sat sipping their
“What about the Crowns, should we try to question them?” asked Justin. “I don’t want to enter their cabin,” said Darla. “You don’t have to, here they come,” exclaimed Rose. Sure enough, the sour couple came towards them with an unapproachable expression.
They were just about to walk past the kids looking straight ahead when Moira stopped them. “Hi uncle, Hi auntie, we wanted to ask you a few questions about last night’s happening.” “Did you hear any suspicious sounds or movement last night?” asked Hyacinth.
“Who are you, the police!” reprimanded Mr. Crown with a severe expression. “Get going, you kids. We have nothing to say to you,” added his wife. The couple walked away quickly and shut the door of their cabin with a bang.
“I’m sure these two have a hand in the baby’s disappearance,” said Violet, getting angry. “They sure seemed suspicious,” added Gerald.
Just then, they heard muffled sounds coming from the rear of the liner.
“Shoo, don’t make a sound,” whispered Justin. “Gerald and Moira, come with me to investigate. Violet stay here with the others.” The four girls stood back quietly. As the other three neared the end of the ship, they heard Harriet talking to Molly, Lydia’s Ayah. Molly was sobbing quietly.
“I’m scared, sis. Tomorrow the police will question me as well as the others and I’m afraid I’ll say something I shouldn’t.” “Don’t be silly, Molly. Get your self sorted out. You know what will happen to us if the boss and his lady find out we have messed up,” spoke Harriet, sharply. Moira whispered, “So these two are sisters and they have helped in the disappearance of the baby.”
“Wait here you two and hold them if they try to leave. I’ll go and get Jeremy, dad, and uncle,” said Justin, leaving quietly. Going back, he motioned to the girls to stay quiet and wait.
Gerald and Moira stood guard while Justin ran back to his parents’ cabin without making a sound. He told his dad about what he had heard and then went to his uncle’s cabin and knocked softly. They informed Jeremy too.
In the meantime, Harriet and Molly came out from the back and seeing Gerald and Moira, Molly whispered in her sister’s ear, “What if they heard us talking?” Harriet pinched her arm, saying smilingly, “We were just enjoying the night air.” “Let’s go, I’m very sleepy,” said the frightened Molly, clutching Harriet’s hand.
She yawned and tried to move forward but Moira held her while Gerald stood in front of Harriet. Just then, Jeremy arrived with Bert and David. All of them stood in a circle so that the two sisters couldn’t move.
“Why are you standing in my way? Let me go. I have to check on my mistress. She might be needing me,” said Harriet. “Not till you two have answered a few questions,” said David. “What do you mean? We were just taking a breath of fresh air,” said Harriet.
Molly started sobbing, “I told you, Harriet, we will be caught. What will happen to us? The police will lock us up in prison,” she screamed.
Jeremy had woken up the ship’s captain and the rest of the passengers had gathered by then. The only people who were not there were the Crowns. “What have you done to my baby, Molly?” asked Scarlet, shaking Lydia’s Ayah roughly.
“I didn’t do anything. It was my sister Harriet who made me help in the disappearance. Please forgive me. I don’t want to go to prison,” sobbed Molly. “Come on Harriet, out with your story,” said her employer Margaret strictly. “I don’t know what this girl is talking about. I don’t know her. How can I tell you anything? I am just your companion ma’am.”
“Wait till the police come and question you. I’m sure you will remember everything then,” said Jeremy angrily. “If something happens to my baby, I’ll send you to prison Molly,” shouted Scarlet, hysterically.
“They won’t tell us anything. Let the police handle them,” said her husband. “The police will be here in the morning. Till then let me take care of these two,” said the captain holding, each one of the culprits in a strong grip. “I’ll lock them up. All of you go and get some sleep.”
The captain took them with him and the passengers retired to their cabins.
In the morning, the police arrived. Their thorough and rough questioning broke the sisters’ silence. It was learnt that they belonged to a gang of kidnappers who supplied babies to childless couples for large sums of money. Their leader was Mr. Crown who had masterminded Lydia’s kidnapping with the help of Molly and Harriet.
Molly had quietly passed the sleeping baby to her sister who in turn helped Mr. Crown throw the baby down to a waiting boat. Another two gang members took the baby away to the shore and waited for further orders from Mr. Crown. The police arrested Mr. and Mrs. Crown and the two sisters.
Baby Lydia was returned to her parents unharmed and gurgling loudly due to hunger pangs.
“Thank you so much, children. If it was not for your vigilance, we would have lost our daughter forever. We are so very thankful and grateful to you. You all deserve gifts which we will love to buy for you at the local bazaar,” said Scarlet, beaming happily.
The whole day was spent choosing gifts for all the seven children. At night, the captain had arranged a celebration party for his guests. Dazzle and Alistair once again sang for the children and there was a lot of dancing too.
Thus, another mystery was solved by the five cousins and their new friends, Hyacinth and Rose.
NOTE: This story is purely a work of fiction.
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