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Unsinkable, Unthinkable, Undrinkable
When the girl woke up her mind was blank, but she was very comfortable. She felt a heavy, silky quilt over her body, which was sprawled across the bed. When she looked up she saw fancy old-fashioned wallpaper and a gilded sconce on the wall above her head. The pale blue walls had an elaborate floral pattern that blossomed across the room in an eternal spring. The flowers seemed rock softly back and forth in a lullaby. Oh that’s nice she thought, and started to fall back asleep, if in fact she was ever asleep in the first place. Then it struck her that the scene she had just observed was not at all her room.
Upon trying to recall the image, the girl realized that she had no idea what her room looked like, or what color her eyes were, or even what her name was. She might not remember what her room looked like, but it was not this. Who in their right minds would pick such gloomy and stuffy décor, she thought. Thinking she must be delirious, she quickly sat up and hoped to see her own room, which she was sure she would recognize if she saw it.
Instead, she saw the dark room with the blue flowery walls. She began to sob. She might as well be dead, the girl thought. She was a useless being who nobody cared about. If they did, they would be here with her right now in this room in the middle of nowhere. Her mind remained murky, her eyes rendered useless by their incessant weeping. Eventually, the girl stopped crying. Instead of tears, she felt cold fear creeping up from her stomach, clutching her in its iron grip.
She took her hands away from her eyes. There was a mahogany table with two cushioned chairs beside it, and a small window. On the table was a china teacup that had been upturned, the liquid dripping off the table, glistening in the moonlight. There were lipstick marks on the side of the upside down teacup, as though someone had just been here. Perhaps they could explain the situation. The girl screamed out for someone but was met with an eerie silence. In the background she heard faint strains of music starting up. The notes sounded ridiculous to her ears, like singing Happy Birthday at a funeral. She attempted to shout again, but her voice came out as a scratchy whisper. She tried frantically to wish the furniture away, and bring back her normal life. Whatever normal meant, she was quite sure this was not it. She wished with all her heart and her uncertain mind, but the room remained constant.
Balancing on shaky legs, she staggered over to the circular window, which was placed high up on the wall. She noticed the twilight sky, but could not see what was on the ground. She pulled over one of the chairs from the middle of the room, and climbed onto it. The spilled tea on the chair soaked through the brown silk slippers she was wearing. The girl saw a moonless sky filled with brilliant stars and a dark ocean studded with icebergs in the distance. Though the night was rainless, she saw a bolt of lightning illuminate the sky.
In this strange room, she began to lower herself off of the chair. Then she spotted a small piece of paper that she had been too anguished to see before. She retrieved it and turned it over. Written at the top was RMS Titanic: Itinerary for April 14th, 1912. Titanic must be the name of a cruise ship of some sort, for the room, though not to her liking, was indeed very ornate. Now she was alone in the middle of the ocean with no memory. Great, she thought, just perfect.
She could be dreaming, but this felt all too real to be a dream. She must get up, get out, and find the answers. The girl managed to pull herself to her feet. Walking, then running, she hurried through the suite and into the hallway. Hung in between two doors was a painting of this ship called Titanic. It was enormous and sturdy looking, with rows and rows of portholes. Continuing on her way, she ran towards the end of the hall and ran up the stairs two at a time.
Pushing open a metal door at the top, she wound up on the deck. The cold wind hit her forcefully. Passengers were wandering about in suits and modest evening dresses. In the darkness, she could barely make out a band playing a lively waltz at the back of the ship. “Finally”, one older woman exclaimed “lets begin!” The woman sounded relatively normal to her. Perhaps she could tell the girl something that would make the scene before her seem more logical, or at least what her name was. Suddenly, there was a man in front of her, holding his drink and a deck of playing cards. He put a heavy hand on her shoulder and steered her towards the rail. Before she could protest, the man’s attention was drawn elsewhere. One of the cards had flown out of his hand and landed in the smooth black water. The man drunkenly cursed the wind and stumbled away. Well he wasn’t the one who would give her answers, the girl thought.
As she looked out to sea, she an iceberg looming less than 300 yards in front of the boat. It was close enough to scrape the boat’s side. Her mouth wide in a yell for help, she clutched the side of the iron railing. She realized they would be upon the block of ice in less then ten seconds if the boat continued at its current speed. Squeezing her eyes shut, she prepared for the worst. She heard the collision and could see it in her minds eye it as it happened. The boat jolted to the left, away from the iceberg. There was a dull thud, and then a high-pitched crash. She could feel the metal bending as it screeched.
The girl then opened her eyes and saw that there were no lifeboats visible. The others on deck were looking around, chattering amongst themselves. Why did they look so relieved if the ship was sinking, she asked herself. Wrenching her head to the left, she looked for the iceberg, which would probably be broken up by the force of impact. However, it was behind the boat, seemingly unscathed. In the moonlight, she thought it looked very shiny, perhaps a little fake, but this was probably just her overactive imagination. Looking over the rail, she looked for a gash in the boat’s sleek black paint. She leaned over as far as she could, so that her feet came off the ground. Still, she saw that the boat was perfectly intact. She did not understand. It had looked like the iceberg was inevitably going to rip the ship apart.
When she fell back onto the deck, she felt a sharp pain in her left foot. Looking down, she saw that the ground was covered in pieces of glass and spilled liquor. Cursing and hobbling away, she sat down on a ledge. As she nursed her slipper-clad foot, she realized what the noises of destruction were, since they were clearly not from the boat itself. The drunkard had fallen when the ship had jerked to the side and broken his glass. In fact, he was now lying in the shadows a few yards from where she had been standing, mumbling incoherently. How the ship had escaped the iceberg, she had no idea, but it had, it just had. Well that was a close call, she thought.
The girl picked up a piece of the glass and flung it out to sea. The mindless occupied her as she picked up another, and another. Somewhere along the way, her fingers got cut up, but she didn’t care. She continued this way until her arm grew weary and the glass was gone. The sounds of the splashes were lost amid the waves. She felt tears rolling down her cheeks, falling to mingle with the glass, the alcohol, and her own blood. She sat against the railing of the boat, the metal icy against her spine.
“End scene!” said a deep voice from somewhere off to the side.