The Commodore


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The quiet that came with being on land was what annoyed the commodore most. A vessel underway had music to it, men and machine moving in time as if playing a symphony with him as the conductor. At the time he had been a true virtuoso of the art and known all the notes. He had been second in command to one of the greatest admirals to ever sail. Now he was shipwrecked and alone. Even now he still blamed the crosswind off Trafalgar and that cursed knave that had been his navigator. It was, in his considered opinion, a great injustice of fate. He had been destined for so much more.

He shook as if he had slapped himself and refocused. He no longer knew how long he had been trapped on this forsaken rock. Time had lost all relevance to him after washing up on shore after the loss of the crew, and his ship.

His ship...

It had been named "Tempest" and it had been his vessel as long as he could remember. In fact, he couldn’t remember sailing aboard another. Its destruction grieved him the same as the loss of a loved one would. Thinking about it now the feeling of loss that overcame him was still as fresh as the day it happened. It was as horrific as if he had lost all his limbs. His lost crew similarly plagued him, but he could only see them in his dreams. The dreams happened over and over again like he was supposed to memorize them. Every time he begged them, told them it wasn’t his fault and he had done his best. Most understood, a few didn’t, and they took their revenge on their failed leader in the void of his nightmares.

His only redemption was washing ashore with enough splintered wood and rope from "Tempest" to fashion a makeshift raft, the now lost vessel’s final offering of kindness to him. Since then every waking hour had been spent building something, anything for the voyage home. The fruit of his labor was more a function of desperation than a proper expression of shipbuilding, but it was still a source of pride for him. It was his now and regardless of its humble origins, it needed a name. As the commodore looked over his creation "Lost Leviathan" was all that came to mind. The vessel was as the commodore found himself, confined and yet unlimited, alone in unknown waters. It seemed somehow fitting for both of them. This last crucial task accomplished everything was ready.

The commodore pushed the raft into the surf and climbed aboard as it was caught by the tide heading out to sea. Gentle waves rocked the small craft, but it seemed seaworthy enough. To his right, the sky slowly illuminated as if on fire as the sun began its morning journey. He gazed at the horizon as if he was looking into the origin of creation itself. It was calm, like the first night after the world was made. Slowly a tune of the wind and waves began. It was muted and discordant at first as if there were not enough orchestra members to build to a final deafening crescendo as the maestro intended. Undaunted the band played on and the commodore, at last, heard the music again.
102

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Image of Sandy Warner
Sandy Warner · ago
Engaging, use of effective metaphors, and communicates a great sense of the character’s state of mind, having seemingly failed at the mission he set out to accomplish. Clean and clear. Thoroughly enjoyed.
Image of Angela Miller
Angela Miller · ago
Wonderful job! Woot woot!
Image of Charlie Foster
Charlie Foster · ago
J'adore "The Commodore!"
Image of Dave Aldridge
Dave Aldridge · ago
Superb story! In a few short words the setting was described, the misery and desperation of the Commodore was established and suddenly we are emotionally invested in his plight as we cheer him on to : what? His destiny? His demise? His rescue? His salvation? We can only guess. Great job, Mr. Williamson.
Image of Nathan Nunnelly
Nathan Nunnelly · ago
Yehaw.
Image of Johnathon Arseneaux
Johnathon Arseneaux · ago
The greatest short story i have ever read. The author has such a way with words that really brings the story together.
Image of Erin Catob
Erin Catob · ago
Masterpiece!
Image of Mike Fiorelli
Mike Fiorelli · ago
Looking good buddy
Image of Joe Edwards
Joe Edwards · ago
Well done!
Image of Jeremy Catob
Jeremy Catob · ago
Great work!