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His Harbinger of Death

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He wrapped his arms around her and softly kissed her lips, "Don't worry Marie I will return, it is dangerous but I promise not to do anything stupid."


She looked up, tears streaming down her light skinned face, "Don't do it, there are other jobs Dan. What if you get attacked by Somalis while on the cargo ship?"


He smiled and wiped a tear off her face, looking into her green eyes, "This timber shipment is dangerous, it will go through a pirate zone, but trust me, nothing can kill me as long as you love me."


Marie closed her eyes and rested her head against Dan's chest, he closed his arms as tightly as he could around her, "It will only take about three months, after that I get to fly back to Seattle and rejoin with you. I mean $50,000 after taxes for just a shipment like this..."


"It's so high because it will kill you damn it. You don't need to pay the dead... They will make you unload cargo right on the Somalian coast, you will be a sitting duck!"


"The media only gives sensationalism and other things to get ratings if we are unloading in a good city or something I'll try to see if I could go on shore to get you a souvenir."


Marie lightened her sobs a bit, "That's my boyfriend, always thinking of others, going onto a pirate infested country's shores to bring me back a souvenir."


The foghorn of the ship sounded, "Well that's my job waiting for me." Dan raised Marie's face, looked at her eyes softly and lightly kissed her, "You are the best thing in my life I mean with college loans, a dead end job, a crap family... You don't need to worry, I promise not to die."


Crewman Daniel Gestorben awoke as the Captain announced over the intercom, "We are nearing our port, keep a close watch everyone." Dan awoke groggily, took a shower, and got dressed so he could stand watch after just standing watch three hours ago, 'Ah the joys of being in Somali waters...' It was almost like the Somalis were waiting for him several speedboats began approaching at three and nine o'clock. He yelled out, "Somalis incoming port and starboard." The Captain came up next to him and looked around and mumbled, "Damn it we are just about to enter port... We can't turn back now we need to push forward into-" The ship rocked as multiple rockets hit its hull. The Captain took a revolver out of his pocket and cocked it, "Let's see them take out a US Marine."


As the first wave came on the ship they were dispatched easily as the revolver put down a few while the brave crew fighting against gun armed pirates was enough. But the second wave was mightier, with assault rifles instead of handguns. Eventually the Captain ran out of bullets and crew members couldn't physically take on the wave of pirates coming aboard. The Captain began running to the bridge of the ship but a Somali gunned him down before being tackled off the ship by a crew member. Dan ran to the side of the dying Captain as the Captain croaked out, "Crewman Gestorben go to the bridge and activate alert Omega 13, the ship is lost and we cannot lose it to pirates... It will set a detonation timer, you must escape damn it, the explosion will be big enough to hopefully put some of those speedboats underwater."


"But Captain innocent crew members will die!"


"Damn it Dan they're dead already, we might as well take some pirates with us and be remembered as the crew that went down with a bang."


Dan hesitated for a moment but as the pirates began to gain more dominance on the ship he ran to the bridge as bullets whizzed past him He got through the door and locked it as he ran up to the Bridge, woke up the main computer and activated the Omega 13 alert. On the screen flashed a detonation timer starting at 3 minutes. He looked behind him at the window and figured he could make the jump to the ocean. He put on a life jacket from the bridge, smashed the window, and jumped, barely landing in the water and luckily undetected from any Somalis. He began to swim away from the ship so he could avoid the impending blast then once the area was immersed in chaos, go back to shore. As expected with an impressive explosion the ship was no more and a good chunk of the pirate ships were destroyed. The rest capsized due to the massive waves, sending the pirates temporarily under water. He began to swim to shore thinking, 'I promised Marie I'd live... This next year will be hard but I will get back for her...'


Almost miraculously Dan made it to shore, when he arrived he just laid there for a countless number of minutes and rested. But knowing that no one ever achieved anything by lying around he got up and began to work through official channels to get transport back to the United States. The local US presence gave him temporary housing until it was resolved but when it was he needed money to buy the ticket back to Seattle. So he worked, reminding himself of the quote, 'The seven years passed quickly for Jacob because he was so in love with Rachel.' from the book of Genesis. After a year had passed from the horrible incident everyone assumed the crew was dead, Dan thought how great it would be to see his love and surprise her. As he boarded the plane and took in the wonderfulness of living in Western comforts again he played a modern version of The Princess Bride in his head, thinking if he should call himself the Dread Pirate Daniel. When he arrived in Seattle he went to the old apartment the two held and was excited when someone who looked similar to Marie answered the door. "Marie?"


The smell of pot emanated from her, her face was corrupted with crusted, old eyeliner and her once beautiful brown hair was now a disgusting shade of blonde only possible from changing the color every week with poor quality dyes. "Yeah that's my name, now are you going to hold me up hobo or can I help you somehow?"


Daniel looked into her eyes sympathetically, "Marie? It's me, Daniel. What happened to you?" Marie scoffed, "Ah it's you. After the ship was taken down and you sent no word I was heartbroken you bastard but now I have a better life."


Daniel shook his head, "Marie you were so sweet and nice before, you would never even think of smoking, what happened?"


"You happened stupid. I never want to see you again, now go away loser, your killing my buzz."


With that she slammed the door and the sound of several locks engaging clicked. He got what money he could get from his bank accounts and rented an apartment and sat there all day, sobbing, he lost his love not only to another man but she lost her own soul. The once shy, nonassertive sweet girl was now a prostitute drug addict. The wind blew in through the open window and the Reaper appeared, he knew what he needed to do. He bought a revolver much like the Captain's and decided to play Russian Roulette with six out of six bullets.


He lined the cold revolver up with his temple, pressed it against his head. He let out a shiver as the metal was cold. He cocked the gun with a satisfying click of the hammer going back. He knew that pulling the trigger meant the end but that was the only option for him. He mused to himself, 'The man who survived a Somali pirate attack cannot survive the rest...' He let a tear escape as he murmured, 'Father, why have you forsaken me? Father into your hands I commend my spirit.' With a resignation and heartbreak that would make any man do the same he pulled the trigger and with the release of the hammer his harbinger of death was released.





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