The Final Act
“What were you thinking?” Drew demanded the next day, during their next meeting. “You could have been killed!”
“We were trying to solve the case, unlike you!” Rebecca argued.
“I would've come up with a plan!”
“That's enough.” Joseph added. “Stop arguing, you two.”
“All right,” Drew grumbled.
“Moving on, Drew, did you get any new updates from the captain?” Joseph asked, changing the subject.
“No, though he did say that the ship will reach Venice by 3 o'clock.”
Rebecca checked her phone. It was a little over nine.
“Once the cruise is docked, will the police take over the case for us?”
“I assume so,” Drew replied.
“So we don't need to work on this case anymore?” Edward asked, a gleam of joy in his eyes.
“I thought you liked doing this.”
“Not really,” he admitted, shrugging his shoulders.
“So I guess this is goodbye,” Edward said, addressing the group.
“I guess so..”
Awkward silence filled the room until Joseph broke it.
“Well, nice to work with you,” he said, shaking Drew’s hand. “And you, too,” he added, looking at Rebecca and Edward.
“Well, bye,” Rebecca replied.
Then Rebecca and Edward left the Britannia lounge.
“So we have a couple of hours before we reach dock, what should we do?” Edward asked as they walked onto the pool deck.
“We should pack.”
“Other than that.”
“Do you notice that?”
“No one’s on the deck.”
The pool deck was indeed empty, even though it was a nice, sunny day.
Towels and personal items such as books, wallets and bags lay scattered on pool chairs as though their owners had left in a great hurry.
Edward and Rebecca proceeded to walk across the pool deck, though more cautiously. The ship was eerily silent as though all the occupants besides them had vanished into thin air.
They exited the deck and walked through the large, wooden doors of the main hall, which was also empty.
“Maybe we should go back to our room like everyone else apparently did,” Rebecca suggested.
“Yes, I'm getting a creepy vibe here.” Edward agreed, slightly shivering.
They headed for the set of elevators at the opposite end of the room. Rebecca pushed the silver button to call up an elevator. Silence. She pushed it again. Silence.
“Perhaps they've deactivated them?”
“Certainly. Considering the level of busyness in this ghost ship.”
“Ugh, now we have to take the stairs.” Rebecca complained.
When Edward and Rebecca were approaching the second floor, they started to hear footsteps on the stairs behind them. The pair ran faster, but so did the person behind them.
“It's probably nothing,” Edward assured Rebecca.
She didn't look convinced. Edward moved ahead of her as they reached the second floor. Suddenly, Edward collapsed right in front of her.
“Edward!” Rebecca shouted before someone grabbed her from behind.
Drew was heading back to his room when he noticed the note stuck to his door.
Meet me in room 6946.
I wonder why Joseph wants to see me, he thought. Still, Drew walked to room 6946, which was just down the hallway. Knocking on the door twice, Drew waited, his hands in his pockets.
He looked over shoulder, noticing how the hall was absolutely silent.
The door to room 6946 opened suddenly. A hand shot out and hit Drew in the face. Hard. As Drew raised up his hands to defend himself, he was pulled forward inside the room.
Rebecca regained consciousness only to find that she bound to a chair. She fought against the ropes, but they didn't come loose.
Rebecca spun around. Behind her, Drew and Edward were in similar positions.
“Who did this?” She asked.
“Definitely the same people who were behind all the murders here”, Drew answered, his face bruised and bloody.
“Second question,” Edward said. “Where are we?”` `
“Probably in one of the meeting rooms on the deck. I've been in here before.”
They sat in silence before Rebecca spoke up.
“Well, Joseph must not have caught because he's not here.”
“They must have found out that the four of us were trying to figure out the killer.”
“So what do we do now? Wait for help to come?”
Captain Orman made an announcement.
“Attention passengers, we will be arriving at our destination in fifteen minutes.”
“Does anyone have their phone on them?”
“No, it's in the room.” Rebecca said.
“I have mine but I can't reach it.” Drew and Edward said.
“I think I can hear people leaving the ship,” Edward said, pressing his ear against the wall.
“How long will it take for them to find us?” Rebecca asked, looking worried.
“Well, they have to come in here sometime,” Drew answered, though he didn't feel certain.
Time passed. The trio began to lose hope.
“Do you hear that?” Rebecca said, breaking the silence.
“Hear what?” Edward asked.
“Voices, maybe help has arrived!”
Just then, Joseph burst through the door.
“I've found them!” He shouted out to someone out of sight before turning to them. “I'm so glad you're okay. We've been searching for you three for over half a hour.”
“Long story. I'll explain later,” Joseph replied, pulling out a pocket knife and cutting them free.
Fifteen minutes later, while standing on the dock of the Saga Ruby, Joseph told them what they had missed.
As soon as the ship docked, police came on and arrested the killers, Isaac Vesper and Naomi Choi, then searched for Rebecca, Drew and Edward.
“So, what should we do now?” Edward asked.
“Who feels up for another cruise?” Drew joked.