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Salvation on the Vast and Empty Sea

Updated on December 31, 2020
Dean Traylor profile image

Dean Traylor is a freelance writer and teacher who writes about various subjects, including education and creative writing.

"...and the hopeless isolation inflicted by a vast and empty sea."
"...and the hopeless isolation inflicted by a vast and empty sea." | Source

I closed my eyes and tilted my head back. Death was encircling me and was mercifully close. And I was ready to face it.

Waiting for rescue was worse than watching the ship you were on plunge deep into the Pacific. There was agony of the piercing sunlight, the insidious cold of night, and the hopeless isolation inflicted by a vast and empty sea.

And then there were the sharks. It had been hours since the first fin broke the surface. It was quickly followed two more. Soon, I counted six.

In the beginning, I was scared to death. I can't lie about that. The first one made me want to swim as fast I could, if I had the strength to do so.

I found religion by the time the second one arrived. The third one arrived, and I asked for forgiveness for all the sins I had committed. By the fourth I stopped praying. And by the fifth and sixth, I lost my religion and started taunting those fishes to finish their intended deeds.

Through it all, my hope for rescue had evaporated into the salty air. I accepted my fate. My time was up, and those sharks were going to deliver me from this world. The more I thought about it, the more comfortable I became.

What happened? I thought, for it happened so fast. Was I dead like I hoped?

"And then there were the sharks."
"And then there were the sharks." | Source
"Anytime," I said aloud, smiling.
"Anytime," I said aloud, smiling.

Soon my struggle will be over. Soon I will be in a better place. I was ready.

"Anytime," I said aloud, smiling.

My pleas, however, were interrupted. I heard a distant thump that grew louder by the minute. I opened my eyes to see that the once empty skies now had an occupant.

A diver from rescue copter jumped into action, literally, despite the sharks. As soon as he reached me he attached a lifeline to me and himself. And before the shark knew any better, we were hoisted high above them and into the belly of the hovering metal beast.

What happened? I thought, for it happened so fast. Was I dead like I hoped?

"You're a lucky man!" my rescuer said above the roar of the copter.

"I was ready," I mumbled. "I was so ready."

I closed my eyes realizing how disappointing it was to be alive.

Originally posted on
Originally posted on

© 2014 Dean Traylor


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