‘The Squashbuckler Diaries’ are the daily tales of Joy Shelley’s Life in the Dream. The ‘Lost in Dreams’ books will tell the story of what happens to her at ages 6, 9, 12, 15, and so on. The diaries tell us what happens before, after, and between the books.

#80: Missing

Dragon Father appeared on the Bonny’s Revenge as he did every day. Every day I had known him, since Dragon Little was two years old, he appeared on the same spot exactly on the deck. 

As always, he looked around and walked towards Dragon Little’s cabin. 

“Jo-o-o-y!” he called her as he went in. 

But then he went silent. 

He came out of the cabin. “Joy!” he called. “Joy!”

He looked around as he waited, but no answer came. 

He looked up the mast, at the wheel, behind her cabin to see if she was hiding. 

“Joy!” his voice grew more and more worried. “This isn’t funny! Where are you?”

He ran down the stairs into the Infinite Corridor. “Joy!” I heard him call out. “Are you here? Joy!”

His voice echoed back, but she didn’t answer. None of the prisoners answered as well. 

“Joy!” he emerged back on the deck, running, breathing hard. 

He looked around. They were floating on the ocean, without a landmass anywhere within view. 

“Goddammit, Joy! Where are you? JOOOOOOY!”

It is taxing for me to imagine how hard it must have been for him to lose his daughter. I will gather my strength and tell you the rest tomorrow.

—Told by The Red Dragon

#81: Missing, Part 2

#79: Sleeping Father