Cut enough parchment paper to fit the pans with a little leftover to help you lift the cake out of the pan(s). Liberally grease or oil the pan, put in the parchment paper, flattening it to remove any air bubbles, then grease the parchment paper as well.
Mix all the other ingredients together with a spoon, then use a mixer to mix the batter for another two minutes.
Pour into the pan(s) and bake 30 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. You really have to check this cake carefully, as the color will not be an indicator - the cake is black, after all.
Melt the chocolate in a double boiler. Slowly add the corn syrup, stirring constantly. Add the food coloring, and stir completely. Your ganache will seize up at the point - but that's okay, you want it to.
Let the ganache cool slightly, then put it in the bowl of a mixer, add the butter and almond extract and beat it until it gets a frosting kind of texture. It will probably still be grainy, but that's okay, too.
Have ready a piece of parchment paper about the size of a sheet of printing paper. Fold the sheet in four. You will be using the top layer to make the Jolly Roger.
Trace the Jolly Roger image on to the parchment paper using the dark highlighter.
Cut out the quarter of the paper leaving only the Jolly Roger.
Put the marzipan between two large pieces of plastic wrap. Roll the marzipan out using a heavy rolling pin, keeping the marzipan between the wrap. That will make rolling out easier. Roll it out to about 1/4 inch thickness.
Place the template on top of the marzipan. Using a very sharp knife, cut out the marzipan using the template.
Cut four strips of wax paper and put them on the plate or sheet you are going to serve the cake on.
Let the cake cool completely, then use the edges of the parchment paper to gently lift the cake out of the pan and place it on the wax paper strips, making sure that the wax paper sneaks out from the bottom of the cake. You will be removing the wax paper strips when you are finished frosting.
Frost the top and sides of the cake. Use the side of a spatula to make the frosting flat, but you can use it to make wave impressions so it looks like a flag.
Carefully place the Jolly Roger on the top center of the cake. Pat it gently in place.
Remove the wax paper strips. Place rock candy, candied sunflower seeds, and chocolate money for decoration around the sides of the cake.
The cake needs to settle for a while. Put toothpicks about a quarter-inch into the cake so they are sticking out of the cake. Cover with plastic wrap, using the toothpicks to be sure the plastic wrap does not actually touch the cake.
If you are making this cake in the summer, or your kitchen is very hot, put the cake in the refrigerator overnight. If your kitchen is cool, just leave the cake out overnight covered.
This is an intensely dark and rich cake. Be sure an use the Dark Hershey's Cocoa instead of the regular cocoa. The cake keeps very well without drying out. Variations You could use a dark chocolate buttercream, but the results would not be quite the same.