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(_12) Chapter Twelve

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that same day had turned to night..

Dark wet hands probed the darkness and found a plastic cap.  A sharp silent twist and then an almost inaudible gurgling plop. The cap was screwed back on and a faint shadow eased back from an aluminum gunwale.  then only small bubbles remained on the water’s surface, just behind the outboard motor of a fishing skiff.  Moments later a dark slow moving blur eased over the stern of the trawler MaryDale. It slowly melted away onto the deck and nothing more was seen, though the engine room door gave a low tired creak with the movement of the water moments later.

Kyle Sehorn blinked his eyes. What had that been? Movement near the stern of the trawler, like someone had poured oil or slipped a big fish over the back without a splash. Something was going on. He drifted with light sculling motions right into the cove.. closer and closer to the wooden fishing boat.

Growing ruffles darted and blew away off the top of the swells in the strengthening wind.. it was the moment where dusk became darkness.. when the eyes had no focus.. a blank spot.. you saw but did not see.

The slim surfboard finally slid even closer to where the cable floated just outside the trawler, with no moon and a very low overhead scudding by. Neoprone hands were silent, sculling the last few feet and then softly touching the hull. There was no sign of whales.. and no sign of what had moved here.

He saw no whales breathing on the surface but knew they would be keeping low.. only surfacing when they had to. It seemed to him that for 12 years he had known these inspiring creatures that had finally come to him and surfed the great waves beside or ahead of him.. but he knew in his heart that he hadn’t started surfing till he was 4 or 5…

“Doesn’t matter.. I’m theirs forever.. they rule !! and no stinkin dog, rude dude loserville mad dog disses them like this”

Outside the net, Thunderhead drifted closer and closer.. sniffing and thinking.. hearing and seeing.. measuring deep inside himself. This one he knew well.. the “young one” the “rider” “tumbler” “cool child” Yes.. the pod had many names for this one.. fond and true..  a landwalker that seemed a whaleswimmer.. but not quite yet.

Slight and varient thoughts flashed thru the huge whale.. eons of instinct.. the memory of all.. especially his mere.. coursed through his thoughts.. speaking to him. A distant story fell into place.. softly.. poetic.. with a harsh aspect.. legendary.. mystical.. lorelike.. comforting.. and yet extremely challenging to the bull..

He suddenly saw his place clearly.. as he hovered there. And the place of the young one.. it too was good… There was extreme danger above.. but.. there were happenings to come that seemed foretold..

He veered away, only feet below the dark surface. with the lightest twitch of fins… comforted now.. and waiting for the other special worldwalker, the swimmer.. to return to the water from his visit upon the trawler.

Kyle knew the whale was there.. only losers wouldn’t.. like those dicks in the trawler.. messing with trouble. How could you dream of messing with such powerful nature he thought..

His thoughts cleared suddenly as he felt the quick pulse of the huge whale turning away from the net. He’d seen the great whale crash across the net the previous night.. and he’d seen Jimmy’s moves. It had all happened so fast that he’d been frozen in space watching from the shadows.. then the careening and buzzing  outboard skiff.. and the mad chase by the those stinkin freaks.. the trawler crew. 

He’d also caught a glimpse of the young whale. He had many cool names for it but his fave was “babe” It had been the first of the whales to actually ride the surf with him. It had been outright shocking that moment when a six foot killer whale had surged from within the wave that he rode.. and slid down the crest and ridden there just ahead of him the whole ride..  and now he rode with him every year unless the seas were flat.

And that one year when the bull flanked a steamin ride to the other side, deep in the curl.. shocking him even more with its power and size.. he had shrieked with being so stoked.. and pumped huge props to both whales and pulled ten over the end and pumped more fists and yelled full tilt.. at the sky. The defining, radical moment in his young life..  his greatest ride ever.. 

He rode with nature.. and he’d never let them down..

Silently, Kyle slipped into the water and slid his board over the cables just under the bow of the trawler. He thought back.. yes.. he’d missed it … “babe” had been outside the net since the trawler dudes had closed off the inlet.. he hadn’t seen it.. but now that he thought of it.. he’d felt it.. now how was that..? inside then outside..? Could it come and go..? radical..!! there was a game going on here..!

He almost shouted as a strong hand closed on his leg but another unerring hand suddenly dunked his head under the surface. He easily went with the flow and set about exploring the grip that was pulling him deeper and purposely by one leg now. There was no panic. He was quite prepared to spend 2 or 3 minutes under the surface.. but he felt the direction to the invisible grasp and decided to wait and see just what this takedown was all about.. after all.. there was no rush down here.. he was quite at home.. in fact.

Jimmy felt bad taking the kid down and under like that but there were real guns above.. and as long as they stayed down they really had no power..  and no power meant.. well.. he really didn’t know what is was to have no power.. so he could only guess.. but he figured it was pretty empty.. sad or false to have no power..

He cleared his thoughts, released the grip on the kid and kicked deep to the fringe of the net .. wondering if he overestimated this young surfer and should reconsider involving him.. but there was no mistaking that the kid had been out there in the dark.. silent and curious.  There was a sudden pulse in the water then a very smooth cheek caressed him. He smiled and blew a mouthful of air back at the young whale Donnybrook.. it turned away quickly and darted in behind the following swimmer and nudged the kid in the butt.

The kid was absolutely floored.. this was wicked.. and kicken..! Big wave action..  that was “babe” laying a nudge on him and unless he was mistaken, Jimmy Walker was in the water just ahead of him and kickin strong for the bottom. There was no-one else he’d ever heard of who swam with the whales except the legendary surfer and kayaker from way up the coast! He kicked hard with a huge smile and followed..

“rockin.. !”

At the small gap that Donnybrook had discovered,  the young whale did his thing.. squeeze, wiggle kick hard.. more kick ass hard.. maybe lose a little skin.. but.. out to the other side.. Jimmy immediately followed suit.. and the kid didn’t need an invitation to just do it too.. They popped their heads above the surface well to the west of the trawler.. bobbing low in the water.. the young whale had popped up with them for a moment, then mysteriously disappeared..

“got the picture kid”

“Think so.. You’re Jimmy..  they aint got “babe” like they think.. but.. they think they do..  and you’re here.. s’over right..?”

“No kid.. not over by a long shot..  there’s six whales inside of these nets..  not counting that young one.. they’re confused.. and scared.. afraid they’ll get caught between the two nets or drown if they try to squeeze through and get stuck. And those are serious dudes over there… with serious guns. The whales are just money to them..  more than just money..! they think its freedom.. even power..”

That’s messed up..!”

“Messed up.. or whatever.. it’s their strange scene.. and they’re for real.. with guns that kill.. and there’s someone who’s going to pay them off. Someone who’s moving on the whales. I think its someone who can move them quick.. take them overseas. I want to see who that is.. and who’s buying them.. and why. And this is an opportunity to identify them all.. I think the whales dig it too..   but.. there’s some doing to this.. and I could use your help to run this scam.. up for it..?”

Talk to me dude..!”

“I want to throw them a curve.. you dig? But I need some help from you and your dudes.. and I don’t want anybody getting hurt. No-one will unless they earn it..  but I’m warning you.. there’s big energy happening here.. real big.. don’t really know why but I feel it.. Its like a big wave.. and we need to meet it just right or some of us get tossed and rolled and get hurt bad. You read me kid?”

“I’m with you Jimmy…  whacha need from me..?”

“I need your eyes, your ears, your nose right now. I need to know who’s on that trawler. I need to know who Anoneemoose is.. heard that name before?”

“On the internet.. for sure.. big time whale watcher.. radical style and plugged in, I email him all the time, he’s friends of my mom too.. she’s a pilot“

Jimmy looked closely at the young surfer, and considered this interesting news.

“OK.  there’s a girl that was here..”

“Seen her when you pulled her out.. and I know who she is.. another whale watcher.. she emails me all the time.. Kathy .. Katherine whatever.”

Again Jimmy considered but now with his eyes lightly closed..  then they snapped open.

“Thought that was you the other night.. never had time to say hi.. things happen pretty fast when Thunderhead gets aggro’d..”

“You call him that.. the bull..?”

“He has many names kid..  so do you..  they speak of you .. often with different names..”

“Who ? what do you mean.. who’s talkin about me?

“The whales … they know you well.. and they speak to me of you.. and they wonder who you are.. they wonder about a lot of things..”

“You talk to them..? how do you do that?”

“By listening to them…  I’ve heard them say you  shout at them.. and laugh upon the water.. that some of them have ridden with you. Is it true what they say?”

“Ya.. I guess..  I never told anyone though.. they wouldn’t believe me anyway..”

“I believe.. and  I need a Messenger.  The girl.. I need you to send her a message from me. I need her to find this Anoneemoose.. and make contact.. quickly. We need to be in motion when the wave comes.. ride it with power or get rolled under.. tell your dudes out there to stay clear.. stay invisible.. watch.. wait.. listen, smell…  gather your energy.. “

He looked back into the cove.. letting several swells pass under him before turning back to the young surfer who bobbed there with him.

“This trap was built carefully.. I’d like to know more about who built it and why.. that’s the help I need from you.. and I need you to be the “Messenger” There’s others might enter the picture besides us.. my father for one.. they call him Hunter..  you may never see him.. but if he comes here.. ..

“You have a dad Jimmy..? what’s that like..?”

“That I will tell you some day.. but not tonight.. perhaps you will meet my father.. and then you will know what a dad is like.. as I do.”

“Cool!”

“Your board will be on the shoreline of the cove in the morning.. DonnyBrook is moving it there right now. You must be there at first light to reclaim it..  pretend you know nothing.. be visible but casual..  just a kid who doesn’t care about anything but surfing..  I have waterproof binoculars in my truck for you.. and I need you to remember a phone number.. you must call it if things go bad in some way.. and tell the person who answers all you know…  or leave a clear message. Its time to leave now.. but tomorrow I need you to remember all that happens here.. who leaves the trawler, who boards it.. any equipment they carry.. exactly how many are on the trawler.. and what each of them does. The whales do this better than anyone.. but you can too Kyle.

Tomorrow the trawler will develop engine trouble on board..  and the outboards will not run very well either.. so the whales will not be moved on easily. I have a baseball game in Vancouver in the afternoon. I’ll be here tomorrow morning then I won’t be back here till later.. after the game”

“They have hydrophones Jimmy.. I’ve heard them play whale sounds.. sent samples to Anoneemoose.. I think that’s how they got the pod in this stinkin cove.. and they have some kind of sonar too..”

“Sonar? you’ve heard this?”

“Had to be sonar.. ya I’ve heard it.. but not for a while.. I heard it for sure”

Jimmy turned and stroked away to the outer edge of the cove.. and climbed ashore up the steep rocks.. the young kid followed silently.. wondering what it was about the sonar that had pissed Jimmy off so..

“I have a friend up ahead.. don’t be frightened.. he won’t hurt you..”

The fifteen year old wondered what kind of friend this was.. but could see nothing except the occasional flash of Jimmy’s feet. That wetsuit was so radical.. just like a killer whale. That’s what he wanted.. a suit like Jimmy’s. He was still thinking about that when he felt a strange sensation at his heels.. he looked behind but saw nothing.. but as he turned to keep up with Jimmy he thought he saw a slight flash of white..  As they padded into the tree line and onto the surfer path he saw it again off to the side.. then a moment later he saw the flash again but to the other side of them and slightly ahead.. what was this? a little white ghost? He stayed close to Jimmy and whispered..

“There’s something out there..!”

“Quinn..”

The white flash appeared again and grew bigger and seemed to approach until the kid realized it was a huge set of teeth.. what the..!

“He just wants to smell you.. “

“Ya right..!”

Unable to get a clear glimpse of the mystery beast.. Kyle had a sense of something very large that seemed able to sniff his toes and face and anywhere in between with liquid agility.. The very large white teeth, though.. had disappeared thankfully.. replaced by light wuffs that seemed to come from a large wet nose.

They moved on, reached the truck finally and Jimmy opened the rear window of the cab and slipped inside.. hissing at the kid to follow.. there was a thud in the back and the truck began to roll silently downhill toward the roadway..

“Under the seat.. the binoculars..  listen carefully to this number.. remember it and never write it down.. anywhere”

The kid tore his eyes away from the huge dog that was awfully visible now with his head stuck in thru the window and sniffing him.. and listened carefully to the unusual number he heard. There was a click from the steering column and the truck rolled downhill, lurching slightly as Jimmy let the clutch out in 4th gear. A low rumbling growl was heard, as the engine fired without the noise of a starting motor..  and they glided down the road a ways before Jimmy snapped on the headlights.

“This is just too radical..!”

Written by diamondwalker

November 26, 2008 at 2:41 pm

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