Grampís Journal Ė Chapter 7 Excerpt

 

For days we drifted in the strange fog with no wind, no sound, and no sight of the man standing aside you. Twice I sent out longboats and twice bloodstained longboats returned. Yet it was not that which sent the shivers down the backs of bloodthirsty pirates. The longboats returned with half the men they left with. Only it was to be the bottom half. Now the crew begins to blame me for the curse we have upon us.

We have freed ourselves of the fog but still it follows and awaits our return. It looms in the distance and reminds us of our losses. The crew wants to head north now and scuttle the weakly armed settlement ships. I wonít be able to hold them off for long. They get suspicious of my reason and Scar stirs trouble in secret. Yet I am sure her ship must be in port by now.

I am sure other eyes have seen my words this night. Its resting place was disturbed while I was topside during the storm. I have never seen a storm like that in all my days at sea. The crew says it is a bad omen. Never before have we seen quiet lightning or heard the unseen strike of it. I am sure it is the strange fog. It seems to hold all that legends speak of.

The men now become angered and I fear they follow Scar in secret. Jim has heard talk of mutiny in light of the full moons rising. I have turned the Sea Hawk back towards the fog. I have talked of settlements along the coast where it meets. It might hold them off long enough and the fog may be our only sanctuary.

A bit of time has passed since leaving the Sea Hawk. By a beards stubble we drifted in the fog with no sense of direction. We did not row for fear of what took the others. It was a cold, lifeless fog that let no sound pass our lips or sight reach our eyes. We sat perfectly still with arms aside to feel the man beside you. We prayed we didnít end up like the others but if it were to happen we all wished it to be quick. With no fresh water we had all but given up hope.

Finally the fog cleared and we saw the first sight of land. It was a swamp on the other side of the fog. Quickly rowing to it we went ashore to look about. We drank of the clear water scattered about in small puddles. Another day without it and we might have gone mad from unbearable thirst. Finding nuts and berries we calmed our hunger as well. Jim found an odd plant that fills our stomachs in less time than is believable. He has named it a Fullberry plant.

At first the swamp looked as safe as any other I had seen but choosing to go deeper in was almost a grave mistake. It wasnít long before we saw them and even then I cannot believe what my eyes had seen. These were the monsters spoken of in whispers and bedtime stories. Yet neither late night whisper nor bedtime story could have described the gruesome sight we saw. Half man, half beast is what they took to being. They were wild and savage and hunted us through the strangest swamp I had ever seen.

Luckily the path we fled on led us to this empty cabin. It seems they fear light of any kind. With a fire in the pit and torches ablaze outside we are sure to be safe this night. I write while the others sleep. I think it best to keep my words unseen if possible.

Weeks have passed now since leaving the ship. The four of us have made it out alive. We ran into the wall of fog as it crossed the swamp before us and seemed to move away from our very presence. Taking to the longboat again we followed the shoreline keeping safe distance from the fog. Yet that was to last until the first sea monster attacked. It came with unbelievable speed and easily leapt from the water. Had not Jim hit it with an oar we might have went topside. As it came again and leapt up another took to swallow it whole. We knew we had to make land quickly but the wake of the sea monster drifted us into the fog.

Luckily we drifted back out minutes later. We saw the shoreline again but it was different now. With the fog to our backside we knew we were outside of it and looking left we saw the mainland straight ahead. Rowing closer we spotted a cabin along the waterís edge. We decided it best to make camp there. I was sure we were somewhere south of the colonies.