It was a dark and stormy night and the wind was howling through the rigging. I had closed my eyes as a jumping nerve on my lid had long since warned of the strain of glimpsing and charting the small navigation figures in the tea stained log.
The cabin darkened slightly and I turned to see the ghostly silhouette of a man in uniform. Though his features were unclear, his eyes shone like a man possessed by something primal, feral.
When he turned and left, I cautiously followed him out onto the deck that reflected spatterings of cloud diffused moonlight. There was a chill in the air and the wind was bracing but he didn’t stop so neither did I.
This earthly spectre moved to the echoing brow and leaned toward the hungry sea his hands clenched, knuckle white behind him on the cold steel railings.
“Stop. Wait!” the wind whisked my pleas away into the tunnelling squall. Casting his eyes to the heavens, he jumped. He didn’t hear me.
I ran to when he fell but there was no sign of anything living or dead.
When I opened my eyes amber light bathed the cluttered quarters. The night was gone, so was the man and so was my log.
The tannoy fizzled to life, “All hands to starboard, we’ve got a drifter.”
The ship was alive with action and waiting to be berthed at the foggy harbour that should be visible by now through the morning hues but we were still tumbling on the open waves. I swore I had finished logging our course last night. How did we get so turned around?
Shouts emanated from animated sailors as a limp, bedraggled form was hoisted on board. Smearing back long tendrils of tangled hair revealed a woman clad in white and clutching a golden locket in her protective palm. Death had not yet completely stolen her beauty and I felt my heart break slightly in the mirror of her glazed, hazel eyes.
“Who is she?” I whispered reverently.
“No name but this locket’s engraved and has a photo inside. Man in sailor’s uniform, ‘To my angel of the seas'”.
“Let me see that!”
The pendant was passed to the Captain who had appeared silently at my side.
I glanced over his shoulder and with a sudden, terrible knowledge, I recognised that man. That man was me.
My angel, my guiding star to my wandering bark! I’m sorry. I’m so sorry. I thought death was the only way to keep us together.