• sinjanb93 19w

    @miraquill @mirakeeworld @writersnetwork @darkmoon696 #pod #horror #shortstory #Mermaid

    The Birchwood sailed the Atlantic in the year of 1876, with a crew of 56 men commissioned by the Royal Navy for seeking US ships carrying illegal slaves. Their return voyage resulted in a waylaid sloop, missing all the party members who are still not found.

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    The Birchwood Part 2

    Next Morning

    The bell tolled marking the arrival of a forever peace, around the men and also more the lost soul.

    "We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life- Romans 6:4",marked Captain Bainbridge reading a verse from the Bible as the sailors inclined the stretcher, and Stephen's body embraced a vast surging water.

    A pall silence soon scattered the accumulation of people. While Bainbridge called on Briggs for a word. They were also followed by Hamish and Dick.

    "A word in private",referred the captain to his bosun and first mate respectively. While they went on their own way, and Briggs mowed on his disheveled figure behind the captain.

    "I heard that you discovered the body, and I am deeply shattered by the proceedings. You have my sympathies man",said the captain.

    Briggs stood pale, cold, and still shocked from what transpired the previous night. He seldom even squeaked, except giving the stern eye to the captain.

    "Inspite of your position, I hope our little arrangement is still in your thoughts",alluded the captain with hands folded behind his back.

    Briggs simply ogled at his broken figure. It was not known to the crew, but still the captain knew that he was not feeling like himself lately. He was hardly sleeping, eating, and even exchanging views. Instead he had been on a drinking spree. That only helped the nerves so long.

    "I remember",replied Briggs coldly but less with confidence.

    "Good, now let's be on our way."

    The captain left for his cabin, and the rest of the rattled men going about their usual business. Their only solace being they were almost home.

    Night time

    The ship creaked under the random lurches, almost as if the vessel with life aboard was suffering from a unspeakable lesion pain.

    Briggs was on his shift, and decided to do an overtime. Despite the happenings of the previous night. This time he was not alone, and found his company in the most unexpected officer.

    Lieutenant Philips preferred his coffee hot on a long night. Ageing just under 50, he had kept his pressure in order. Still was an early riser, and preferred an early tuck in.

    "Nasty business this, won't you say Briggs?",recalled Phillips slurping.

    "Sure is sir! Why are you up at this time?",asked Briggs.

    "Mostly to take the fresh air, cooped up inside that cul de sac makes you feel more sea sick".

    "Say man, did you really saw what happened to Stephen?",asked Philips

    "Not really sir! When I came I found......", and that is when Briggs felt a deep longing but continued,"That....that he was dead and not few minutes ago he shared a word with me".

    "Such a fine young lad he was",remarked Philips.

    "Anyways there is life, and then there is death", said Philips pouring the rest of the coffee into the ocean, with Briggs staring.

    He ambled back, while Brigg's thought loomed towards Wayland prison, his dead wife, and their home back in the mainland.

    When suddenly, he caught glimpse of a girl floating briskly and cheerfully in the cold water. That was bound to be rigged with painful ice shards.

    He stood speechless in the dark, and felt like jumping in the water. However having the acute awareness of the repercussions from conducting the same.

    This girl was very beautiful, and despite little clarity on her features. Briggs could make out the facial structure of the wench.

    She smiled at him with the radiant moon shining on her. Then she disappeared, but reappeared on the other side of the ship.

    Briggs heard her sing an alien song, not of the common tongue.

    The girl kept on giving him the eye, and Brigg's mouth was open at her sight.

    She went below again. Slowly counting the minutes before coming up, almost as if stooping Brigg's heart for a wee few minutes out of playfulness.

    She came up like a stunted tree from a storm, that sheds its last bit of drops from a lasting rain. She splashed her long hair back that almost touched her hips, and her slender hands kept on stroking in the water.

    It was the next thing that broke Brigg's trance. That was what appeared behind her, a tail as long as a Dolphin's. Before he realised it, her face revealed itself to be Jennifer.

    When Philips called out,"Briggs come over here a minute, man".

    Briggs realised that he did not know how the minutes dragged on. However there was no girl in the vast nothingness of the ocean.

    Philips asked him to hurry up over, and he cantered ahead to know the pressing matter.

    When he reached the spot where Philips stood, the old lieutenant got hold of his arm out of fear.

    He whispered to his ear gently,"whatever you do, don't look up! Avert your eyes and settle your heart".

    Briggs could not understand, what this old haggard looking old man was so scared about.

    He plucked up all the courage to look up, and that is when his bravery shrunk like a man turning abnormally midget.

    Five men including first mate Dick Wood and Bosun Hamish Clifford, hung like a rag doll from the mast ropes dangling in the low breeze.
    ©sinjanb93