Day Five Hundred Seventy Seven #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

I was reluctant to rejoin life outside the special cabin.  Not because of a foreseen consequence to my person, but because of what the day held for our people and for one in particular.

And it was not out of a sense of duty that I went to the Raj twin P, but out of true concern and love to prepare him for coming events.

First I sought out the Captain on the bridge to tell him about the imminent arrival of a manned warship. Elijah was also on the bridge conversing with P. So I called them over.

And as predicted a warship entered the harbor before nightfall, carrying personnel to man the ships and with demands on us.

Day Five Hundred Seventy Six #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

Container after container have been lifted out of the hold. They were transported away as soon as they hit the dock.

By day’s end only the cargo meant for the port we skipped, remained below.

The Captain spent the day ashore chasing down leads for possible buyers for his ship. In so doing he learned that all the other ships at this port had been purchased by the transport service of the global authority, and are awaiting the arrival of their new owners.

This fact laid to rest everyone’s fear of an attack on the port.

Elijah kept out of sight in our special cabin in the daylight hours.

I entered after he emerged, in response to a growing dread.

Day Five Hundred Sixty Nine #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

Elijah agreed with the Captain’s decision to avoid the next port of call.

We were surprised that these were the first words out of his mouth upon emerging from the special cabin. For he had held up in there for the past two days.

He then added cryptically that this port will be the end of the voyage. For everyone.

The Captain began to protest. And stated that the end was always supposed to be on the tropical islands at the center of this immense ocean.

To this Elijah answered that the people awaiting the shipments were no longer there. All the inhabitants had been removed forcibly on Stan’s orders. He now holds the islands as his personal possession and retreat.

Day Five Hundred Sixty #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

Another day drenched in darkness. But I sought the remedy early on. At least earlier than on that past occasion.

However, the troubling of my soul continued. Visions of wholesale disaster claimed my attention at every turn. I would recoil from one scene of slaughter only to run headlong onto ground heaving under the force of a mighty earthquake.

I cried out and was immediately lifted up out of the chaos and tumult.

And there I spent the remainder of my time in an enveloping peace. I could see our ship sailing along unimpeded though challenged on every side.

Upon emerging from the special cabin I sought Elijah and shared with him my vision.

He had the same experience yesterday.

Day Five Hundred Fifty Nine #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

I cannot help thinking about our recent guests and their enchantment with those green clad islands, as we pass by visions of surpassing beauty found only in the islands of these climes. They would have asked to move in for a closer look, maybe even have begged to land.

I know I have had such longings. But I realize that we have a schedule to keep and more pressing matters to see to.

Elijah remained in the special cabin all day. I alternated between the bridge and the Purser’s office, lending a hand to Tomas or P as the need arose.

Again a whole day has passed and no ship sightings. It would be disconcerting if we didn’t know why.

Day Five Hundred Fifty Seven #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

The Captain should have known better. Only if Elijah were to change ships would I even consider taking the first mate position on the other ship. Besides its course is counter to ours.

Elijah chided the Captain and suggested that the Raj twin P be offered the position instead. P was called for, but upon hearing the proposal, turned it down.

Another assistant to Tomas was proposed and he accepted.

We dropped him off before our departure this afternoon.

We are a day late leaving port. So both the Captain and I are concerned with what that might mean for us. The Captain sent down orders to crack on with all speed.

Elijah and I repaired to the special cabin.

Day Five Hundred Fifty One #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

Strangely uneasy all day.  But no one else aboard shares my apprehension.

It started this morning over breakfast. The dawn was slow arriving. The darkness clung everywhere, refusing to lift and give place to the light.

I mentioned this to Elijah. He only shrugged his shoulders and kept eating.

I planned to take some exercise on the deck, stopping first to check in on the bridge. Both the Captain and Tomas were present. But each was irritated about something, so I took the cue and launched into my walk down below.

It seemed to me that the storm of a couple of days ago had returned, only this time it was internal instead of external.

Time for the special cabin.

Day Five Hundred Forty Nine #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

The crew was busier than usual putting to rights problems left in the aftermath of yesterday’s storm. I joined G’s team as they investigated a higher than usual level of water in the bilges. It wouldn’t do to have a leak.

All the hatches topside proved to be functioning properly. So we moved below. We soon discovered the problem.

A sliver of daylight was showing between two hull plates high up in the forward section. With a calm sea no water was coming in.

The Captain put a welding crew on it. And we completed our search. G wanted to be thorough.

Elijah came out of the special cabin and passed the remainder of the day building up our guests.

Day Five Hundred Forty Eight #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

A storm lashed the ship all day. Our guests remained in their quarters except the five of their number who are joining the crew. G oversaw their baptism as it were into this lot of a sailor’s life.

Elijah remained in the special cabin for the duration of the storm.  I could sense him wrestling for our safe passage.

I kept to the bridge and to the company of Tomas and P. Between the times of intense activity we talked about our lives, our past, and what it was that led us to this point in our life journeys.

Come my turn, their jaws dropped at the revelation of my great age. And marveled at my memories of my youth.

Day Five Hundred Thirty Nine #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

The Captain has ordered the ship to full speed, day and night. The engineer has been up a couple of times to express his concern about the impact on the engines. Only the most crucial repairs had been undertaken at the time the ship was in the dry dock. There were some minor issues that were glossed over due to their haste back then. The engineer is fearful that pressing them to the limits of their endurance may eventuate in more serious problems.

The Captain listened politely, asked if there was any more speed to be had, and when the engineer replied in the negative, dismissed him back to the engine room.

Elijah keeps himself occupied in the special cabin.