The Voyage

The Voyage

Image Credit – Casia Charlie on Pexels.com

The dark clouds connived with the raging tempest, scaring every living soul floating on the tumultuous waters of the vast ocean.  The large ship, big enough to house at least two football fields, felt the warning of the seas. 

‘We need to reach the shore quickly,’ was the thought in everyone’s mind.

The unrestrained tumbling continued unabated as the choppy waters now played with the hapless ship like a small toy, pushing it around, while enjoying the fear reflecting in the trembling hands of the captain.

‘We should have heeded the old man’s advice,’ regretted the captain, his eyes staring at the vast expanse of water all around, with no sight of the land.

‘Is there anything we can do,’ a young man, entered his cabin, followed by two who stood behind, outside the creaky door? 

The noisy wind made it difficult to hear what he said, forcing the captain to jerk his head and move his stretched eyes, gesturing him to repeat.

‘Can we help,’ he shouted this time, the two men still waited outside, clutching their shirts as the storm blew furiously?

Most of the words the man spoke flew away with the storm, adamant about emptying the ship of all its possessions, including the conversations, forcing everyone to use gestures to communicate.

The captain stared at him, followed by a glance at the two men on the door, precariously holding onto their positions. 

These three men were the last to board from the port, where the wise old man suggested the captain stay for the night.  However, he looked at the calm blue sky, streaks of white powdery clouds, enveloping it like a snowy river, smiled, and signalled to move while waving at the old man whose weary eyes continued staring the large vessel for a long time after it left.

‘Pray,’ the captain answered wryly; the image of the old man, spinning in his mind before his eyes gazed at another windstorm, raging towards the ship, from a distance.

‘Pray now,’ he shouted while signalling his operator to swerve the ship quickly, but his feet somehow remained stuck, as if jammed in snow, while the eyes continued moving. 

The operator used all his energy to move the ship, but it refused to budge, continuing to float against the operator’s wishes, while the rampant storm dictated its position.

The captain closed his eyes.

The two men now rushed inside, the young man, suddenly took command, while the captain haplessly watched as the three men started manoeuvring the control gears, the third, and probably the youngest though sat on the floor, praying, exactly as the captain asked them for.

Suddenly, the operator’s eyes flipped open, it felt like as if his trance was suddenly broken, unwilling to believe, however, what they witnessed in front. 

The two men now took complete control, trying to guide the ship as the captain wanted, and asked for from the operator.  The captain, who by now had given up, limped on his chair, his hands clinging to the steel rod which though shook angrily just like the rebellious ship.

The two men, however, managed to restore some normalcy, the levers till now jammed, moved slowly now, even as the massive gust of wind slapped against the ship heavily. 

The new crew, managed to swerve it a little, enough to give themselves some more time, before another flurry started gathering up strength at a distance, ready to hit the ship any moment now.

The third man was still on the floor, praying, unperturbed with what was happening around; eyes closed, hands and body swaying voluntarily with the ship.

The ship slowly and steadily followed the command, the fierce winds now helping to steer it in the right direction.  And as it turned around 90 degrees, they suddenly experienced the ship moving at an excessively high speed.

‘What’s happening,’ thought the operator and the captain quietly, their eyes staring at each other, while the young man, along with his associate, continued following what the captain ordered.

Suddenly, the captain who seemed resigned to his fate opened his eyes, unable to believe what his they witnessed; light at a distance.  Unwilling to trust what he saw, he pinched himself multiple times, before realizing it’s not a mirage, as they finally began approaching the lighthouse.

He looked around, the two men were still at work, trying to push the ship closer towards the light, while the operator, still seemed puzzled with captain’s psychotic expressions.

‘We made it,’ the captain suddenly shouted, his feet running towards the door.  However, even before they could exit the cabin, the menacing winds swept him off the floor, the half-risen hands still not even straightened up in the air. 

The youngest of the men, who was praying maniacally, too collapsed with a thud, as the ship came to a halt with a loud noise.

‘The old man was right,’ murmured the young man now in charge of the ship, staring at the lifeless body of his brother fallen on the floor now.  The tears on the cheeks turned invisible, mixing themselves with the sweat and water he had been wrestling with for so long.

The old man warned them against boarding this vessel, but they too didn’t listen, just like the captain. His brother, the only one asking to heed his advice, now lay in front of him. 

He looked at his closed eyes before turning his stare at the operator and his associate.

The three men, including the operator, picked him up to slowly lower down and offer to the waters of the sea. 

And, just as the sea got what it wanted; the sun suddenly broke open on a clear sky as they stared at the land in front.

The two moist eyes, continued reflecting the regret of his actions.

A sunny weather unable to hide the gloom of what the night had taken away.

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