With more light in the cavern they were able to look around other shiny objects were scatted on the sand and they used their hands to pick them up.
They were gold doubloons; hundreds of them. The rest of the crew’s eyes widened as the stuffed the coins into the fine mesh bags until they were too heavy to lift. They set the gold down as a dark shape caught Jim’s eye further back in the cave. They followed Jim further along the inside of the tunnel and it led to a hollow in the rock they swam up and they ended up in a pool at the surface inside the cavern. Looking around Jims eyes looked astonished as he saw chest after chest stacked on top of each other. He climbed out with Rob and they opened one of the chests which sprang open easily. It was full of gold coins. “How did it get here?’
“Well simple really, this must have been part of the coastline at one time or another and our Spanish friends Francisco De Cuellor and his co conspirator Alvaros De Bazan brought to gold ashore and hid it here before the sea began to swamp it. They came back after the war with England was over in the hope to recover the gold for themselves when the San Mariona sank off the coast. After nearly five hundred years land movement etcetera it ended up here.’
“Well we need to get this lot out of here before anyone else discovers it. We will use the hose to scoop the coins on board once we move the boat and the barge later. We have to try and keep the chests intact so handle them with care. They may be fragile now. Right then let’s get back and move the boat and the barge up then we can get this operation under way.
Rob and Jim put their tanks and fins back on then got back into the water they made their way back to the barge and Foxy started the engine whilst Jim, Selene, and Rob headed towards the boat.
“Look it looks like the barge is moving said Aaron Michael to Bentley Gibson.’
Quickly looks like they have found something said Henderson as Ricardo Alvarez started the engines. He waited until the barge and the catamaran were moving before cruising at five knots towards the boat. Once they had stopped they waited again at a safe distance, ready to pounce once the treasure was safely on board.
It was nearly eight o’clock that evening when the hose was in position and they were able to start salvaging all of the gold coins. First as they were pumped to the surface through the hose they were collected and stored away for safe keeping. They managed to empty eight chests full of gold coins. There was another chest with gold necklaces, pendants with pearls and others with jewels those were placed onto an airbag and floated to the surface. The men wanted to work on through the night but it was now ten o’clock; the men had been working since eight that morning he told them that the gold would still be here in the morning. They all went back to the Sandpiper and ate a hearty meal and drank a bottle of wine to celebrate.’
It took them another two days to bring the hoard on board and when it was all put together Jim told them that fifty million pounds was nothing; this find could be worth more than 200 million pounds. There were small chests full of Rubies, pearls, Sapphires, and green emeralds. When they had recovered everything from above the cave they use the hose to scoop up the coins from below. They also found gold drinking vessels some rings and other Jewels. More of those funeral urns showed up but they had human remains in them. Jim and Selene went ashore that night.
Jim rang a friend from the ex-Royal Air force; squadron leader Jimmy Stephenson and asked him if he could ferry him and his treasure back to England by air. Jackie agreed straight away. He then sent photographs and a write up to the Times newspaper to report that they had found the largest hoard of gold and jewels ever