PLASTIC ISLAND 20 S, 1600 E - Chapter 36
FLUKES - Grace and beauty, these giant fins propel the whale at considerable speed over thousands of miles from feeding to breeding grounds.
The crew of the Jonah were exhausted from a night of chase,
monitoring their radar and fish finders constantly, the
anxiety of almost catching up to the giant whale taking its
toll, until Shui finally ordered the night shift below for a
few hours well deserved rest. The day watch took over with
instructions to maintain course and not lose a bearing on Kulo
While the 2nd mate was intent on chasing Kulo Luna, he was not keeping a watchful eye out to the west, though there was a blip now on his radar screen that should have aroused his curiosity somewhat more, he dismissed it as just another vessel in the vast ocean, especially as it was most obviously not after the same quarry as it was heading east.
The blip was Captain Frank Paine aboard the 'Ocean Shepherd'. Captain Paine is a veteran activist trained by Greenpeace, then Sea Shepherd, well versed in ocean chases and the occasional skirmish. Along with many other sailors who were following this story, he had been listening to Steve Green's broadcasts and had decided to board the Jonah with his crew and leave a message for the pirates.
"Oi Jack," said Captain Paine to his co-pilot, you ready with those paint cans?"
"Ready and eager Captain," said Jack motioning to a canvas bag with a big smile on his face. Captain Paine eyed the Jonah as the whaler came into sight. He throttled down to contain the noise as much as he could without losing momentum. They were still gaining on the pirate ship and came alongside. The crew of the Ocean Shepherd rallied on deck holding ropes with grappling hooks at their ends.
Captain Paine signaled to his crew softly to throw their hooks. "Now." Four men swing their hooks expertly catching hold of Jonah's safety rails. They heaved the two ships together, easing off as the hulls came into contact with a thud and a metallic graunch as the hulls rubbed against each other's paintwork. The men tied off their ropes.
Over went the Captain followed by Jack and two other shipmates. A fifth crew member threw the canvas bag with the paints in it to Jack, who caught it beautifully and gave his shipmate the thumbs up in appreciation of a good throw.
Captain Paine headed to the wheelhouse, softly padding up the steps, followed by another crew member. He slowly eased the door handle open and rushed the 2nd mate before he had a chance to shout any warning. The Captain clamped his hand over the 2nd mate's mouth as he knocked him to the the deck with a solid blow to the back of his neck.
"That's him out for a bit, said Captain Paine. You take the wheel, I'll tell Jack to get going." The Captain nimbly passed through the door and climbed down the steps to where Jack and the other crew members were waiting.
"Okay Jack, get painting." Jack pulled out a can of white paint and began scrawling a message on the side of the deckhouse. It read:
"WE ARE WHALE KILLERS"
Then Jack pulled out a can of blue paint and drew a whale, then a can of red paint to draw a blood-red sea. His shipmates began laughing. "Schhhhh," whispered Jack. The hulls of the two ships graunched again, louder than before.
Down below Shui Razor awoke, listening intently. He knew something was wrong. He checked the cabin clock and realised he'd only been asleep for 55 minutes. A bit bewildered Shui stumbled to his feet, when he heard a grinding noise coming from the side of the whaling ship. Now wide awake, Shui rustled up his shipmates.
"Quickly, get up and follow me, shouted Shui with a note of urgency in his voice." The Japanese crew were alive again instantly. They knew that tone and they knew it meant trouble. They rushed up onto the deck and almost ran straight into Jack still with a paint can in his hand. They could smell the cellulose paint and then spotted the graffiti.
"Get the bastards," shouted Shui, and a fight broke out. Although Captain Paine was more than capable of handling himself from years of bare knuckle fights while in dock, he was no match for Shui. Shui dealt the Captain a series of hard fist pumps to the body in quick succession, followed by a kick to the chest that sent the old sea dog sprawling. Shui rushed to pick up the Captain and lifted him to his feet, then with a rush of anger and adrenaline hoisted the Captain above his head holding him there for a second to enjoy the moment, then throwing him overboard.
Several of the fighting sailors from both teams could not help themselves, but looked over the side and noticed that the Captain appeared to be floating high in the water. Shui charged in again to help out his side, picking up Jack this time and throwing him overboard. Once again the fighting sailors stopped for a moment to look over the side and this time noticed that Jack was sitting upright in the water. This was impossible of course.
Puzzled, the Japanese team overpowered the last two Ocean Shepherd crew, and chucked them over the side into the water. They wanted to see if they'd float high, and indeed they did. But they could not imagine how this could be possible. Shui fetched a lantern and shone it into the water, blinding the sailors who were half in and half out of the water. Shui wondered if this was some kind of miracle, when Jack got up and started walking on the seawater.
Shui and his crew were stunned. Were they being punished from above. Not one of them had a religious bone in their body, but sometimes things happen that make you wonder if there is a spiritual world peeking into this world. Rather than investigate further, the whaling captain thought better to 'get the heck out of here.' He rushed up and into the deck house, re-started the stalled engines and powered south-east.
All was well for a few hundred meters, then the fishing vessel slowed as the engine strained and finally stalled. Something big was holding them back. Was it the Kraken? Having witnessed the walking on water miracle, the possibility of such a mythical creature surfacing from the depths to drag them under seemed more real. That was until one of the crew noticed a net in the water heading back to the Ocean Shepherd.
Shui rushed to the stern. The pirate crew threw a rope ladder over the side, that Shui scrambled down with a flashlight. The net led to ropes that went under the hull. He could just see that the propeller tangled up in netting and rope. Shui dived into the water, swimming under the hull, past the rudder to the propeller, where he took out his knife and began cutting the ropes. He soon ran out of breath and swam to the surface for a huge intake of air.
KULO LUNA - Is the story of a giant humpback whale and her friend Kana, who is killed by pirate whalers in the south pacific ocean. Enraged by the death of the young whale, Kulo attacks the pirate ship, finally sinking it, but getting herself wounded in the process.
A Japanese cartel put a $multi-million dollar bounty on her head, when another whaling ship gives chase. Before not too long the media hear of the hunt and betting begins all around the world. At this point our hero, Johnny Storm, abandons a solar boat race to try and help the whale where his boat, the Elizabeth Swan, is not far away from the last sighting.
John rescues Kulo from being eaten by sharks, but that is just the beginning of their adventure, as the pirates whalers close in for the kill ........
LINKS & REFERENCE
MARINE LIFE - This humpback whale is one example of a magnificent animal that is at the mercy of human activity. Humans are for the most part unaware of the harm their fast-lane lifestyles are causing. We aim to change that by doing all we can to promote ocean literacy.
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