The yacht slips in across the reef under a light breeze, all hands readied, tense. Silence aboard is not mirrored ashore – over the soft beat of the surf on the white sand is the sound of inhuman screaming.
A turtle swims past with what the imagination might call a knowing look on its age-old face.
The sea is alive now, shimmering with fish, and diving to meet them the birds of the isle. A bright, white pair of boobies jostles for a squid. The yacht stands off – the tide is dragging it to the razor-sharp coral.
This is Danger Island, in the British Indian Ocean Territory; a hazard and a beauty. It is a preserve of wildlife which few will ever see, and one of the many wonders those islands afford. There is no walking here, no wind-scoured moorland, no remote vistas over forbidding fell-country – it is in everything the opposite of all the Further Wild should be to a Wildþing, and indeed man may not set foot here by law, but it is a paradise of nature, preserved for all mankind.