Whoosh! The seventy-sixth wave body checks against
my sturdy, easily stolen man-of-war boat. Its five hundred cannons
rattle against the sides of the rotting deck. It was meant for over two
thousand crew-members, not including the captain (me) and my officers.
My small crew of twenty manages to keep it afloat, though, every last
one of them loyal to me and the Greek gods of Olympus. We are on a quest
to find the lost city of Atlantis, Poseidon’s domain and lost city.
Apparently, he isn't being very helpful, though. We are trying to help
him save his city, but apparently, in return, he is lending us quality
time with his fifty-foot waves.
“Why, great Poseidon? Why do you torture us while we try to help you?” I
scream out at the dark blue sea. As an answer, I get a face-full of
salty seaweed-speckled water. I hastily wipe it off of my dark-skinned
“Captain! Captain! We have another leak below deck!” my
second-in-command officer yells at me over the roar of seawater and
waves. I scamper down the water-covered slippery stairs and dash as fast
as I can towards the hull.
“How bad is it?” I ask him, hoping for the best.
“Better go see for yourself,” he replies in his gravelly voice. I jog
towards the spouting water to see. Lucky me: a metre-long gash stretches
across the hull. Water is leaking in through the giant slash, and four
of my hard-working crew members are trying, and failing, to patch up the
leak. Suddenly, the gap cracks, and the hole grows bigger. More water
leaks in, and somehow one of my officers gets sucked out into the depths
of the ocean.
“All hands above deck!” I yell, dashing up the stairs. The emergency
bell rings as I enter onto the deck. One of my crew is pulling on the
rope that shakes it. I look behind me to see how my hard-working crew
members have fared in escaping the leak. Only Gredbald, my
second-in-command officer, remains. Only sixteen of my loyal crew remain
now. We have to get off this wreck.
“Lower the lifeboats!” I call out. “And that’s an order!” Six men
unlatch the life raft and it splashes into the rushing waves. I jump off
the railing and into the ocean. I paddle my arms toward the bobbing raft
and grab hold of the side. Gredbald follows my lead. Soon every one of
my crew is hopping off the slowly sinking ship. I pull myself onto the
raft and lie flat on my back. My breathing is heavy. Gredbald pulls
himself into the raft and looks over his bulging muscular shoulder. He
then lifts one of the crew aboard. He reaches to pull another over the
side, but there isn't anyone left to pull up.
“Uh, captain?” he asks in a confused voice. “We have a problem.” I sit
up and peek into the ocean. Where the rest of the crew used to be is now
a ten-foot snake-like creature treading water with its clear fins.
“Buuuuurp!” the creature lets out a loud retch that probably echoes all
the way to Japan.
“Um…” I stare blankly at the monster that just ate my crew and burped
like it had just had a leisurely dinner. Suddenly the creature dives
into the depths of the deep blue sea. Gredbald’s confused face stares
blankly at the ripples the creature made in the water.
“So...um...that was...not very good…” I said, stating the obvious.
“Well, it’s just us now,” Gredbald said, glancing at me and the other
crew member, Jhorgan Pricklepants. Jhorgan was a shy, skinny, wimpy
pirate who actually was just a deck-mopper, so he was not a very
valuable person to have on this trip.
“Might as well continue,” I say. “No use going back to land, cause it’s
back two hundred and fifty miles”.
“Then let’s go!” Gredbald says as he grabs an oar and starts paddling
through the water. I grab the second paddle and start rowing with
Gredbald. Soon we have probably traveled ten miles. I collapse on the
mini deck, panting. It’s tiring work. Gredbald keeps rowing though.
Jhorgan Pricklepants grabs the oar from me and starts to row with his
stringy arms. Within five minutes, he is dying of exhaustion. Speaking
of exhaustion…my eyes start to droop. Soon, I am fast asleep.
I am woken up by the slish slosh of waves. Oh…and Gredbald screaming his
head off at Jhorgan Pricklepants. “WHY DID YOU DROP THE PADDLE IN THE
WATER?!” he yells.
“What?!” I jump up onto my legs, ready for action. I look over at the
horizon as if to see another ship trying to run us down, but instead I
see a brownish stick bobbing on the surface...the paddle.
I turn on my heel to stare at Jhorgan’s cowering face. “And just WHY did
you drop the paddle?” I ask with my most intimidating look.
“I-I-I-I d-d-don't k-n-n-ow,” he stuttered.
“Ah...whatever...we’ll just continue on with one paddle,” I
sarcastically say. Jhorgan backs up into a corner and cowers.
“Continue,” I direct Gredbald. He continues to paddle. Suddenly a wave
of salty water washes over the deck, then another. Soon more come. Then
“Hmm…” I think to myself. “Something’s fishy.”
I hear a swish in the water behind me. I turn around. Nothing. There’s
the swish again, this time closer and louder. I turn on my heel, but
One more time. Hmmm. I peek over my shoulder and there stands the dark
blue serpent, water dripping off its slippery body. “Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!”
The scream comes out of my mouth before I can stop it. Gredbald looks at
me, confused. Zoom! A long neck zips past Jhorgan and latches its mouth
on Gredbald’s arm. It pulls away almost as fast as it came. The next
thing I know, my trusty second in command is flying through the air
getting dragged by a serpent's twenty-foot long neck. It chucks his
bleeding body up into the air and Gredbald lands in the creature’s mouth
in one sickening gulp. Then it comes back for more. But this time, I'm
ready. I grab the remaining paddle with my dark-skinned hands and swing
it at the creature’s head, which has lunged at me, most likely to eat
me. Crack! The wood connects with its head. It lets out a screech and
dives back down into the ocean. I turn back to Jhorgan, but he isn't
there. Then the realization hits me: I’m alone.
I sink back into my little dingy and sigh. “You can’t give up now!” I
think to myself. I sit up and grab a paddle, then start paddling. Swish,
swish, swish. The paddle slices through the water at a surprising speed.
Suddenly, I am moving at a speed of ten kilometres per hour. My proposed
destination is smack dab in the middle of the Bermuda Triangle, and I am
just four kilometres north of that. I continue heading south toward
Atlantis, or where I think it is. I do some quick math. If I keep
paddling at my speed, I will reach Atlantis before an hour passes. I
look down at the rippling water. “What the?!” Is it just me, or did I
just see a shark? I take a second glance, and see a scaly fish tail. Not
a shark. I look closer. Suddenly a human-like head pops up out of the
rippling water. It reaches out a hand and grabs onto my confused face.
The creature pulls me under the water and holds me there. Now I know
where all the ships and planes that crashed in the Bermuda triangle
disappeared to. The creature which I identified as one of the mermen
from Atlantis sticks a clear tube of coral in my mouth and somehow I
manage to breathe....wait! He’s from Atlantis! That means I'm close to
my destination!! I open my mouth to speak, but realise that I have a
piece of breathing coral in my mouth. I look back in his direction, but
all I see is a blue fist flying at my face. Then all is black.
My eyes flutter open. Bright “hallelujah rays” shine through the now
clear blue water. A few human-like figures with scaly fish tails and
tridents in hand loom over me and they seem to be in a deep conversation
in their own language. When they realise that I'm awake, they stop and
start to talk to me in English.
“Welcome to Atlantis!” they say. I sit up and look around at the coral
monuments. They are shiny and rough at the same time. It’s magnificent
and ugly. I can’t believe it; did I say it’s magnificent already?
“Welcome, former owner of great ship man-of-war! Follow!” they say.
“Thank you,” I reply. They lead me toward a great coral building with
glass windows, which I guess is the town hall or palace. The seaweed
doors swish open and I walk/swim into the building. Inside it looks over
twice the size of the outside, and the windows are bigger too. A throne
is positioned at the far wall, two guards with tridents on each
side...and in the actual throne is an old man with a bright white beard
and a brown loincloth, kind of like a homeless Santa Claus.
“Come forwards,” Poseidon booms. I walk towards the throne, my hands
tingling and twitching all the way. I bite my lip.
“H-hail, g-g-great P-P-P-Poseidon,” I shudder in a shaky voice.
“Why have you come?” he questions in a tone that echoes through the
“I-I-I have come to s-s-s-save you,” I reply. “And anyway...w-w-why did
you s-s-send me on t-that q-q-quest in the first place?”
“To prove your worth,” he chuckles.
“Well, t-t-then why did you let your sea kill all of those innocent
“Oh did I?” he gestures his hands toward another curtain of seaweed, and
it swishes open. I don't believe my eyes. Standing right in front of me
is the serpent. And beside it stand the rest of my crew, or what looks
like my crew. Even Gredbald and Jhorgan are there! Except, well, they
aren’t exactly the same as when I last saw them. Where their legs used
to be, shiny, scaly fish tails stretch down from their hips to their
toes - well, where their toes used to be.
“See?” Poseidon says. “I have spared them for you. They were all mermen
in the first place.” Suddenly, a wave of nausea hits me. The past week
flashes into my mind: my crew risking their lives on the ocean to help
me on this quest; Gredbald getting eaten; Poseidon’s voice booming, “To
prove your worth.” Then the realization hits me: It was all a test.