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datatime: 2022-12-03 23:06:17 Author:gYVWuDPK

Worley stared at him.So what?

Don't you see, she must have been struck by a giant, rogue wave.

Before we have coffee, would you be so kind, Lieutenant, as to escort me to the baggage cargo hold?

You talk like a crazy man. Go to your cabin, mister. I don't want to see your face until we reach port.

As he was walking down a passageway toward the wardroom for a cup of coffee a cabin door opened and the American consul general to Brazil, Alfred Gottschalk, hesitated on the threshold, talking to someone inside. Church peered over Gottschalk's shoulder and saw the ship's doctor bent over a man lying in a bunk. The patient's face looked tired and yellow-skinned, a youngish face that belied the thick forest of white hair above. The eyes were open and reflected fear mingled with suffering and hardship, eyes that had seen too much. The scene was only one more strange element to be added to the voyage of the Cyclops.

Gottschalk turned and noticed Church standing in the passageway. He stepped from the cabin and closed the door behind him, his eyes narrowed with suspicion.Something I can help you with, Lieutenant. . .

You talk like a crazy man. Go to your cabin, mister. I don't want to see your face until we reach port.

No, I sent her on ahead to our home in Maryland. I terminated my assignment in Brazil. I hope to spend the rest of my State Department service in Washington.

He gazed anxiously as a large oblong crate was hoisted in the air by one of the ship's loading booms and swung into the forward cargo compartment. As if on cue, Worley appeared and personally supervised the battening down of the hatch. Then he greeted Gottschalk and escorted him to his quarters. Almost immediately, the mooring lines were cast off and the ship got under way and was heading out to sea through the harbor entrance.

Suddenly, before Worley could reply, the Cyclops lurched downward into a deep trough between the swells. From instinct, honed by years at sea, everyone in the wheelhouse automatically grabbed at the nearest secure object to keep his footing. The hull plates groaned under the stress and they could hear several cracking noises.

Still, he felt uneasy, and he was tired. It took all his willpower to keep from heading to the snug confines of his bunk and gratefully closing his eyes to the grim set of problems surrounding the ship. One more inspection tour down to the engine room to see if any water was reported rising in the bilges. A trip that proved negative, seeming to confirm Worley's faith in the Cyclops.

As he was walking down a passageway toward the wardroom for a cup of coffee a cabin door opened and the American consul general to Brazil, Alfred Gottschalk, hesitated on the threshold, talking to someone inside. Church peered over Gottschalk's shoulder and saw the ship's doctor bent over a man lying in a bunk. The patient's face looked tired and yellow-skinned, a youngish face that belied the thick forest of white hair above. The eyes were open and reflected fear mingled with suffering and hardship, eyes that had seen too much. The scene was only one more strange element to be added to the voyage of the Cyclops.

A faint expression of relief passed over the consul general's face and he smiled.Might as well. I can never sleep more than a few hours at a stretch. Drives my wife crazy.

Don't you see, she must have been struck by a giant, rogue wave.

As officer of the deck before the ship departed Rio de Janeiro, Church had observed a motor caravan arrive on the dock. The consul general had stepped out of a chauffeur-driven town car and directed the loading of his steamer trunks and suitcases. Then he looked up, taking in every detail of the Cyclops from her ungainly straight-up-and-down bow to the graceful curve of her champagne-glass stern. Despite his short, rotund, and almost comical frame, he radiated that indefinable air of someone accustomed to the upper rungs of authority. He wore his silver-yellow hair cropped excessively short, Prussian style. His narrow eyebrows very nearly matched his clipped moustache.

Mother of God, muttered the helmsman, his voice edged with panic.

Mother of God, muttered the helmsman, his voice edged with panic.

Suddenly, before Worley could reply, the Cyclops lurched downward into a deep trough between the swells. From instinct, honed by years at sea, everyone in the wheelhouse automatically grabbed at the nearest secure object to keep his footing. The hull plates groaned under the stress and they could hear several cracking noises.

Gottschalk turned and noticed Church standing in the passageway. He stepped from the cabin and closed the door behind him, his eyes narrowed with suspicion.Something I can help you with, Lieutenant. . .

Thank you, said Gottschalk.I need something from one of my trunks.

Church, sir. I was just finishing an inspection of the ship and heading for the wardroom for a cup of coffee. Would you care to join me?

Before we have coffee, would you be so kind, Lieutenant, as to escort me to the baggage cargo hold?

Church, sir. I was just finishing an inspection of the ship and heading for the wardroom for a cup of coffee. Would you care to join me?

Worley stared at him.So what?

You talk like a crazy man. Go to your cabin, mister. I don't want to see your face until we reach port.

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