By O. Tyrone Shulaise
LOS ANGELES, 15 DECEMBER 2009 .
Editor's Note: In his series of comic essays, The Imagined
Dénouement, Mr. Shulaise selects a book he has not read and
based solely on the appearance of its cover presupposes what
the final page would (or more accurately, should) be.
seeing the disbelief in her eyes, came from around his desk to sit
beside her. Placing his hand on hers, he said, "My child, I understand
this must come as a shock."
Millicents eyes met his. "But why me?"
"If youll forgive the familiarity," Baylocke began, "Ive been your
great aunts solicitor for nearly 50 years, but Ive known Evangeline
personally since she was a very young gell. Younger even than you are
now. She was shy, not the sort of young woman one might imagine would lead
the life she eventually did. It was an act of great courage for her to
make the trip to Tap-Tap Island. And it was that decision that set her
destinys course toward something greater than if she had stayed on to
live a society life in Bournemouth."
After a pause, he continued. "Upon her return, she was greatly changed.
One could see the spirit, the vim
some vital part of her brought to the
fore, no doubt, as a result of her years among the savages. I believe she
saw the same potential in you."
Looking past him and out the window at the cerulean horizon the same
horizon that, many years before, had beckoned her great aunt Millicent
asked, "But what will the others say?"
Rising from his chair, Baylocke offered, "You leave them to me. No
doubt they are all sitting out there wondering why you alone were invited
to hear the reading of the will. There is not the slightest question that
Evangeline was of sound mind when she requested the changes making you her
sole heir. I shall defend rigorously against any claim to the contrary
from amongst that lot," he sniffed. "Now, the only thing that remains is
for you to open that envelope, the final part of your great aunts
bequest. And for that, as per her instructions, I shall leave you alone,
When Baylocke had left the room, Millicent finally turned her attention
to the large envelope, upon which only the words "Miss Millicent Hemsby"
were written. Breaking the wax seal, she found a small folio inside a
folio from the Fair Horizons Trans-Atlantic Steamship Company.
And within, the ticket. Attached to it was a small note - four words
only, written in Evangelines remarkable hand:
"Return To Tap-Tap Island."
Tap - Tap Island
By J. M.
With cover design and illustrations by Percy
192 pages followed by publisher's catalogue, b&w
illustrations, spine taped
N.S.W. Bookstall, Sydney,
At the time of this article's publication, a
copy is available for AUD 60.00 = appr. US$ 47.82 from
Camberwell Books in Australia
O. Tyrone Shulaise is a writer and phrenologist based in
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