Tales From the Sea

Hi, Hey, Hello!

Halfway through the week somehow (my days pass in this weird manner of both moving extremely fast AND slow) and that means something creative, and I drew a blank this week. So I trawled through some drafts and half finished things and found this. Which is the beginning to something that I can’t figure out the plot to yet (and also comprised my aborted attempt at Camp Nano in July). It is also what sparked off this piece early last month. Done talking now.

There were stories about this part of the sea. Nothing ever proven. No evidence. All hear say. But stories about it. Tales that had slipped from the drunk mouths of sailors. Talk about how there was something off about it. There were different noises, a different wave pattern. A different energy. All told based on the recollection of hazy memories and poorly articulated. Stories that could hold no truth or be proved because the people that slipped onto the ‘wrong’ side of the invisible line that separated what was known and what was not never came back to retell their story.

Until now.


The cruise ship rocked to the left harshly. That’s what woke Nick up from his dead to the world sleep at 3am.  Then he heard the gentle song floating over the waves that were crashing into the ship as it forced its way through the water. As the song went some way to calming a mildly panicked Nick he was hit with an overwhelming desire to leave the confines of his room and source its location rather than let it lull him back to sleep.

He swung his cabin door open and immediately collided with another, male, body that was shuffling down the hallway with a glazed look in his eyes. Nick looked left and right as he closed the door of this room and noted several other people moving in uniformity in one direction. He saw a gap in the bodies and slotted in, joining them on their journey to the deck.

As they made their way closer to being outside the song became louder and Nick registered distantly that there was a harmony of several female voices, singing not in words but in sounds. Sounds that Nick found himself almost falling into, his feet tripping over air more than once in his journey to the deck. When they got to glass doors that led to the deck the crowd slowed down, the ship rocked harshly again and the door were thrown open.

The scene on the deck worked in stark contrast to the lullaby that was floating through the air and the serenity that had come over most of the passengers. There were deck chairs thrown over and left in discarded heaps surrounded by shattered shards of glass. Parts of the railings were broken off in sharp points or gone altogether, lost to the aggressive waves attacking the hull. Low screams could be heard as a bassline to the siren song and people were rapidly disappearing.

Some went straight into the water, finding themselves walking over the edges where the railing no longer provided reassuring protection from a watery grave. Others were being snatched by hands that didn’t seem to be attached to bodies. Even more were left in large heaps on the stained red decking of the ship.

There was another sharp jolt, to the right this time, and Nick and the others around him fell down heavily. Nick registered a large pair of fish tails fluttering around towards the front of the ship and a quick glance upwards provided a hazy source of the noise that lured them out into the carnage. There was a final jolt and Nick felt salty sea water lap onto his face and sting his eyes before they slipped shut and his world faded to black.

I might have a slight obsession with mermaids…Parentheses count: 2. See you tomorrow!

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Sophie, twenty-something, avid reader, writer, really good at watching whole seasons of TV shows in one weekend and using 10 words where 5 will do, overzealous user of the ellipsis and parentheses, starts too many sentences with ‘and’ and ‘so’, living in a continual state of Wanderlust.

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