Ships in the Night
Ships in the Night shortstorybash17 stories

green217 Just your local History enthusiast
Autoplay OFF   •   3 years ago
Sea travel can be dangerous at night, but you're an experienced captain.
What happens though, when you have to question everything you thought you knew?

Ships in the Night

by green217

You are the captain of a ship sailing in the dark.

The waters are choppy, but a light guides you to the coast.

This is how it works, and how it always shall be.

After many rounds, you begin to memorize the passage, but ultimately it is that light in the darkness that keeps you alive.

Captains who don't trust the light wind up beached or worse- depending on the location.

You're not one of them though- you know the passage, you trust the light, and you live to sail another day.

But answer me this, if you will, what exactly happens when your instincts and knowledge don't match up with what you see?

What happens if the light has moved?

You sail on as normal, you know the route by heart, but if the light is half a kilck from where you estimated it should have been, What do you do?

Mistakes on the sea can cost not only you, but also your crew's life.

Before you can decide, another light appears.

This one is exactly where the other should have been, but it is more blue than the yellow light you've always followed.

Suddenly, you are faced with a choice in the darkness; you can either follow the yellow light that's not where it should be, or the odd blue light exactly on the course you set originally.

So what do you do? What do you do when you know that your choice could make or break not only your ship but also endanger your crew?

The first choice is easy. Adjust your course, follow the first light. It's all too easy to be blown off course by the wind or the riptides. It is best to avoid unknown things found in the sea.

Had you chosen this path, then perhaps you would have wound up safely at the docks- the light having guided you reliably.

But you don't adjust your course.

You've sailed the passage a hundred times, you know where the currents are. You know that you couldn't have been caught.

So you sail forword, towards the light shining blue.

But many ships along your route have been beached or worse in the past.

You continue on anyways. You know these waters. You check your watch. It's midnight.

As you trek forward, something odd happens. The light flickers, and you feel your stomach drop.

Members of your crew give you uncomfortable looks, they felt it too. The seas are quiet.

You tense on the bridge. The seas are too calm. They've never been this calm.

You eye the light. It's bluer now. The seas still.

Your boat doesn't rock anymore. You've made a mistake.

You rush to the wheel and redirect your ship to the yellow light, but you can't find it. It's gone. Everything is gone except for the blue glow. Even the stars have disappeared.

You're suddenly reminded of all of those other captains whose boats sunk.

What do you do? What can you do?

You can't anchor, your boat doesn't have one long enough for a docking off the coast.

You can't move your boat, there's too high a chance of beaching or crashing.

So what do you do? What can you do?

Only one choice still seems feasible. Dawn. It can't be too far off.

If you and your crew can brave the night, you can make it to the harbor the old fashioned way. By spotting the coast and then making your way there.

So you wait it out. Your crew is uneasy. The light is unwavering.

You listen for the wind and the seas but everything is eerily quiet.

You continue to wait, but dawn doesn't come.

Surely enough time had passed? You check your watch. It's midnight.

But... how can that be possible?

You checked your watch before following the blue light. It was midnight then, How can it be midnight now?

It can't be possible, none of this can be possible!

Before you can ponder it more, a loud ringing slashes through the silence of the night. You look up at the light. It's pulsating.

The blue light spins in place and grows brighter with every rotation. Noises you can't describe follow in its wake and you feel yourself back up.

Someone screams as the light becomes so bright that you have to shield your eyes. It rises into the sky, cutting through the web of darkness.

You feel your stomach drop once again as the blue light flashes several times above your ship. You hear a loud humming followed by a bang.

You and your crew stand frozen as the light expands and then retracts, shooting across the night sky like a meteor in reverse.

As it blinks out of existence, you feel your boat rock. The waves are back.

Looking to your west, you see the telltale glow of the yellow light. It's close, only about a hundred meters off your port bow.

Through some miracle, you haven't hit any rocks or cliff faces.

You order that your ship is turned around, and you head off towards the comforting yellow light. You check your watch. It's 12:01.

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