Chapter 1: Amed
As I woke up this morning, little did I know the next time I would see this room would be a while from now.
I kissed my fish tank, drones, iPads, laptops and my TV and my personal shower goodbye and walked out of my room with my suitcase and did not look back. I felt a sense of dread.
I did not like going on boats. Water scared me, the unknown beneath me scared me, and the vast Pacific Ocean scared me. Thalassophobia has affected me since I was 4. I was constantly anxious.
Did we have enough fuel? What if the engine breaks down? What if the radio gets damaged and we cannot call for help? What if I never see my room again? What if the boat capsizes?
I could feel my heart beating faster and faster in my chest. It was as if it wanted to burst out of my chest and melt into the ground before my own eyes.
As I headed downstairs, I could feel my heart drop to my feet and for every step I took I was one step closer to my own demise.
I greeted my dog, brushed my teeth, and headed to the dining table to gulp down my breakfast. I finished the 2 eggs, French toast, parfait, and 3 pancakes in no more than 20 minutes.
I could see the disappointment and regret on my parents' faces. I was about to go on a boat trip.
A boat trip that would probably scar me for the rest of my life or be the most fun I have had in an exceedingly long time. My parents are extraordinarily rich.
They are both stockbrokers who make a living from buying and selling the stock from other companies. They never told me exactly who they work for. It's always been a mystery to me.
When me and my father were purchasing the tickets for the boat ride with my friends,
the second he clicked the purchase button I could tell he was making the what-have-I-done-I-am-probably-gonna-regret-this-for-the-rest-of-my-life look.
I was going on a boat trip with my best friends. Ralph, Stanley, Seon, and Ara meant the world to me. We have been friends since pre-school and for good reason. All 5 of us fit together.
We pretty much did everything together.
About six months ago, Ralph had the revolutionary idea of going on a boat trip across the Pacific Ocean in celebration of all of us turning 18 in the same month.
And during that month we would be partying every day. And partying way more on our birthdays. So, all our families pitched in a lot of money for the five of us to sail across the Ring of Fire.
Which is the name of the trip. It sounds cheesy if you ask me. We were to depart from the LA dock and arrive at New Zealand. From there we will be taking a plane back home to LAX airport.
We would be going south west and stopping at Hawaii along the way to refuel.
It sounded immensely frightening to me at first because seafaring across the largest region of water with no land for 2,
000 miles in any direction but then I realized we would have one of the best pilots we could possibly have. He was Ralph's dad's and Seon's dad's mutual friend.
He passed at the boating academy top of his class and is now only up for hire if you have an exorbitant amount of money in your bank.
"Be careful Amed", my overprotective dad said
"Don't talk to strangers", my also overprotective mom said
"Wear your life jacket when you are out of your room on the boat"
"Remember to radio us every day. We have another receiver here. All of the parents do"
"Be careful of jellyfish"
"Do you have enough underwear?"
"Did you pack your toothbrush?"
"Okay, okay, okay okay, okay, yes, and yes", I answered. I could tell my parents were going to constantly be at the phone waiting for a call that they would be in trouble.
Better yet my dad would most likely be waiting at the dock for the whole trip and once he got a call that we were in trouble he would swim across the Pacific Ocean and find our boat.
I reassured them that I would be fine once more.
"Your taxi is here Mr. Amed" my butler said. He was an exceptionally helpful one and I never took his help for granted. He was like another friend of mine.
My parents and I entered the taxi and headed to the docks