The Old Man Who Sails On Blood

The sun was sinking down the violet sky, slowly beckoning me towards it. That’s when I gave myself a hard slap on my face. “Geez, you think too much, nasty ol’ scholar coot!” Truth is, I was lost. The wooden boat’s edges creaked as the puny piece of plank did his all to get across the ocean. How did I come here? How do I get out of here? I had no answer. Waking up yesterday inside this boat shrouded with thick fog was when I was gained my conscious after a nightmare. Thinking of the past made me flinch as I searched the sole cabin for anything to eat. My stomach growled in the midst of nowhere, and I managed to grasp a loaf of bread, half with fungus breeding on it.

Igniting a candle, I sat by the edge, nibbling down the loaf as the boat made it’s way through the fog in the night. Suddenly, I started hearing a rowing noise. My blood froze. Why would another boat be rowing along in this vast sea that wasn’t even mapped nor heard of? Squinting my eyes, I made out a flat wooden platform with a candle on each of it’s four edges. As it approached me, there was an old man perched on a worn out throne, surrounded by the candles. Weird, I thought to myself as the cold breezes chilled my bones. Here I was fighting for survival on a battered old wooden boat and I see an old man chuckling at me, who obviously looked much undernourished than me.

“Come here, boy. Let me tell you a story” smiling, the white haired human beckoned me.

“Story? Right.. Now? I mean, in this mist and the time of the hour?” Surely, this man had gone mad! Out of nowhere, somehow, he pulled out another throne-like-chair from behind his own seat. He said no more, but his stare convinced me to sit beside him for awhile.

“Atta boy.. Now what kind of story do you want to listen to?” This wasn’t simply a question. That one sentence was enough to haunt me, to make me curious. As ordered, I sat on the seat, feeling comfortable as I sank into it’s leather skin that smelled of cow hides. There was one disturbing thing though.. The seat had blood stained on it.

“If you do not answer, let me begin!” Smiling, he took a sip from the mug with what seemed like tea, as he began his preparations for ‘Story Telling’. “There was once a couple, they loved eachother so deeply, they decided to go out to the sea for a week to enjoy some private time. During that journey, they stumbled across a man, and then the man was stained in blood as he licked their blood!” The old man started laughing heavily. Madman!! What was going on in his head? Trying not to be rude, I stayed on my seat, clutching the hard supports and digging deeper in the leather. Sweating deeply, I told him to continue

“Okay. Another story. There was a big ship everyone used to respect, one night in a storm, the ship was cut in half and everyone on board murdered, by one man!” The man laughed again, maniacally. My heart froze. This was exactly like yesterday on the ship I was in. My hands started shaking as his stare pierced through me, reading everything going on in my mind.

I had to run.

“This is the last one, and I’ll make sure that it really is the last story you shall hear! I would not want to make it sound as scary though. There is a rumor.. About an old man. This old man who sails on blood. Etching fear in everyone and carving paranoia among who ever he passes by. It is said he likes to sail on a wooden platform, sitting on a chair. He comes across many people, and none live through him to see another morning. Sitting on his throne, he tells stories to people, who loose their composure, and the cold blooded man.. Kills them” With pure innocence in his eyes, the old man held out a knife, rusting in blood and cackled as he approached me.

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