Hunkering Down For The Perpetual War
Lightning cracks the dark skies as yet another tempest falls. The raging sea perpetually in motion as stomachs roll with the constant pitching of the vessel we are all on board. Battered and bruised, battle-worn but not battle-hardy. Barely any light in the sky for guidance as the salty waters gnaw away at our hope. This sea of bitterness consumes all. Dead men pull most under and those who survive are corrupted by the stench of death that hangs heavy in the air. A pungent enchanted smell that permeates not only the lungs but finds a way into the heart. Each breathe laboured mimicking the many battles that rage on all around us. One vessel, perhaps a captain yet many skirmishes even aboard the very vessel we are on. Longing for the crack of dawn yet moments of respite are few and far in between. Canons blaze in the fog momentarily illuminating the death and decadence around us. Is it really friendly fire if attempts to sink partner vessels are deliberate? In the chaos and anarchy some men see opportunity. Some seek to sow division and rule over the spoils. Yet, all vessels are taking in copious amounts of these dark waters and each attempt to sail ahead has a slightly downward trajectory. Water sloshes around our feet not only from the storm but is seeping up the floorboards from the decks below. Mysteriously, we still sail on. Never sinking yet ever in peril. As hope rations dwindle so does our strength. Without a fresh infusion all that will be left will be husks. Mere shells of what we once were. Ghouls in place of men. Embittered and embattled our very presence an infectious disease to any unfortunate enough to be in our vicinity.
Occasionally, the haunting melody rises to a crescendo leading the men to scream out in agony. A cacophonous choir. In harmony humming for greater disharmony amongst us.Keli.
Danger lurks not only from those who want to destroy us but from beneath the surface. Brutal merciless monsters cling to our tail. Every now and again peeking out from the dark waters to remind us of our ever present state of peril. Waiting for an opportune moment to capsize our vessel and pull us under. What was once a beautiful song and call of the sea has turned into a perpetual wailing that grates against our souls. Occasionally, the haunting melody rises to a crescendo leading the men to scream out in agony. A cacophonous choir. In harmony humming for greater disharmony amongst us. Yet, we still sail on. Finally, a break in the fight as the long night gives way to some light. Not fully lit yet enough to see a few hundred feet around us. We have sailed straight to the world’s edge. Capricious rocks cast long shadows across the deck as an ever present reminder of the danger we are in. Men groan from broken bodies. The ship groans from the stress exerted on its boards. An unsettling quiet greets us as we are beckoned forward towards death’s door. What stories will they tell about us? Will there be any about heroism? Sadly, discordant tales of our plight will reign supreme. Disloyalty from some, loyalty from others, chaos from all. As the walls close in so do the monsters in pursuit. Only then do we realise that the ship we have been sailing on is no longer whole. Naught more than pieces of drift wood held together by hope.
What stories will they tell about us? Will there be any about heroism? Sadly, discordant tales of our plight will reign supreme. Disloyalty from some, loyalty from others, chaos from all.Keli.
Legs kicking, chest heaving as our lungs push out the black water that has forced its way in. Disorientation sets in as sensory deprivation takes a toll. Darkness all around. The water vibrates with a dark energy as it transmits the movement of the tentacled monstrosities about to devour us. Yet, we seem to ever be just out of reach. Always within hope’s grasp but never fully able to embrace it or it us. As our hearts throb with exhaustion and our muscles burn suddenly we are on solid ground. Deposited onto a sandy shore out of reach from the horrors we’ve just endured. Evidently, not in the afterlife as bodies of other escapees are strewn across the shore. Eventually, we huddle together to find comfort and warmth. For the first time in what feels like a lifetime respite’s kiss sends us all to sleep. Hours pass by, days even. As our eyes flutter open we are back on board. En route once more sailing across the very treacherous seas we thought we had just escaped.