Day Four Hundred Eighty Two #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

The light of the sun now shines into the depths of the ship’s hold. All to reveal a hollow space in the midst of the other containers. Was there ever a container there at all?

Tomas surmises that someone or “someones” on the crew arranged it in order to have a private spot for illicit activity. I’m not so sure. There are no signs that the space was ever occupied. And if ever there was a container to go with the paper work it must have been removed long ago. All that remains is the mystery.

I left Tomas to supervise the reloading and sought Elijah.

I found him only to learn we will not be allowed to stay ashore.

Day Four Hundred Sixty Nine #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

The last of the boatloads was winched up and stowed aboard this afternoon. I’ve lost track of the amount of trips they’ve made, but I have an exacting account of the amounts of tin and bauxite.

Elijah made a trip ashore to look around and meet the people. He brought back news about the Purser. Some people from the village had heard about his passage northward, and being followers of Hamashiach went out and joined his group.

The shipper has paid half of the shipping costs, and we are to collect our other half from the consignees. (The metals are in trade for items that they have received already).

An eleven hour trip across the mouth of the gulf awaits.

Day Four Hundred Sixty One #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

Questions abound. Should we go after Emil? And his people? Should we destroy the three cargo containers? Many think we should reload them and drop them in the sea.

I guess, to state it simply, the question is what do we do next?

The Captain had made his decision to depart when word passed up from below deck that Elijah and Tomas had slipped ashore earlier.  The Captain was furious. And he proceeded to take it out on me.

I had come to a decision myself.

While we awaited their return I thought we should reload the containers. I argued that they just might prove useful, and we could always jettison them if necessary.

So we did, and then waited.

Day Four Hundred Fifty Nine #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

Elijah convinced me to accompany him ashore in search of Emil. This despite the Captain’s first inclination to leave post haste. Elijah persuaded him that it should prove fruitful to see to the provisioning of the ship.

In this he acquiesced, but unstated I knew his overarching concern was the potential return of the robotic warship.

Elijah led us to Emil’s residence. Along the way, I noticed an unfamiliar phenomenon – the shadows of people etched into the hard surface of the pavement. Unnerving.

The entrance to Emil’s home was on the ground floor of a building. We descended several levels from there. Elijah explained that the entire population though small, lived underground.

Emil and all his belongings were gone.

Day Four Hundred Fifty Eight #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

We held our station until the robotic warship was out of sight. It was obvious to us that it was patrolling the route between the port cities. Perhaps on the lookout for us.

Then we immediately entered into the island’s port city. No other vessel was currently tied up at the docks. We had our pick of ¬†berths and chose the one closest to Emil’s office. He wasn’t in, so we settled in for the night.

Elijah and the Captain went ashore this morning only to return almost immediately. Not only could they not find Emil, the dock was deserted.

There was a short debate as to what to do.

We decided to unload the three containers ourselves and wait.

Day Three Hundred Forty Nine #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

Permission was granted us to go ashore. The Captain stayed behind to supervise loading. I believe he would have come himself, if he had any notion of what to do next about his problem.

We found some Hamashiachites in the poor quarter of the city near a small fish market. Elijah took the morning to instruct their gathering in deeper things of the Spirit. Afterwards we set out to chase down rumors of another group meeting elsewhere in the city.

The whole metropolis crowds the shoreline, being pressed to it by the surrounding high hills. It is more intact than any city we have thus far visited, yet for all that, emptier.

We shall return to search these hills tomorrow.

Day Three Hundred Forty Five #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

We have been brought into harbor. But instead of the empty berth next to the grain ship, we were escorted to the other side of the harbor.

It may well be because we are a container ship, and this side of the harbor is given over to them. Still the Captain is highly displeased with the assignment for he won’t rest until he confronts his First Mate.

Elijah let it be known that he and I want to go ashore as soon as possible, and asked how long the ship would be in port.

The Captain put off the question of our stay, until we know more about local conditions, but did promise we could go ashore when he did.

Day Three Hundred Sixteen #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

We went ashore again at the rise of the sun. Elijah desired to call on the people of the fish one last time before we leave to encourage and advise them.

Upon our return to the ship the Captain informed us that two officials of the world government had paid a call on the ship. And consequently the Purser wanted to talk with us.

We did. And he explained that it was the duty of these officials to check on world government shipments to insure that they are sealed and undisturbed. What the Purser thought was odd, was their asking after any passengers. Definitely outside their purview, given their low rank.

The Purser told them nothing, on the Captain’s orders.