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Enter Ahab; To Him, Catrina

by on May 24, 2014

The old man paced moodily back and forth on the bridge of his zeppelin. “Ay,” he declaimed, “ay, that cursed whale evades me even here. Oh what terrible fate is mine, lost amidst time’s swirling seas, sundered forever from my old true ship and wandering alone in this looming monster. Ay, ’tis a terrible-”

He might have gone on for hours in this melodramatic vein, but just then Catrina came smashing in through the window, shovel in hand. “Hello,” she said. “I’m Catrina. Who are you, and what do you mean by flying over my kingdom in a, er, whatever this is?”

“Catrina,” mused the man. “Ay, I remember you. I sought your aid in the search for the White Whale.”

“And which whale was that, exactly?”

The man let out a cry like a heart-stricken moose. As Catrina had never before heard a moose in any emotional state, much less a heart-stricken one, the effect was somewhat lost on her. “Ay, the whale, the White Whale, ’tis he that dismasted me and shivered the Pequod and her crew to atoms!”

“The what did the what to the who now?” Catrina asked. Then she engaged in a rapid bit of deductive reasoning, noting the man’s metal-work leg. “The whale bit off your leg, didn’t he?”

“He did indeed,” groaned the man, in fine dramatic form. “And then he smashed me ship and sent it spiraling beneath the waves. I hurled my spear at him at the last, but he dragged me under.”

“Oh my,” said Catrina. “However did you survive?”

“I know not. I thought I was drowned for sure, but suddenly there was darkness, and then I found myself standing in a city square, surrounded by people of strange appearance and gifted with clever arts. They changed my wooden leg to this sturdy metal one, gave me a new spear and this mighty flying vessel. And better still, from them I learned how to navigate the very currents of Time itself!”

“And so,” Catrina summarized, “you decided to go back to my time and hunt down your whale’s grandmother, thus preventing it from being born and smashing up your ship.”

“Ay,” growled the man, “That I did.”

She decided not to point out the obvious paradox, that if he erased the White Whale from history, he would never have gone through the time portal and gone back in time to do the erasing. Time travel gave Catrina such a headache. “So how bad is this whale exactly? Can’t you just leave it alone to go about its whale-y business while you set up a florist’s shop or something?”

The old man’s face twisted with emotion. “Mark me,” he said, “’tis no ordinary whale. That whale is the embodiment of evil, it is the terror that haunts my dreams, it-”

Catrina rolled her eyes. “Oh, stuff it,” she said. “As I understand it, you want revenge on the whale because it bit off your leg. What’s the point of that? It’s just a whale, for heaven’s sake.”

“You sound a very Starbuck,” said the man. “Death and devils, do none of you see? That whale must be pursued! I will pursue it to the gates of hell itself!”

“I’ve been to hell, twice actually,” Catrina said. “No whales. I’m afraid I’m not in the business of hunting whales, embodiments of evil or otherwise. So,” and here she hefted the mighty Shovel of Thor, “why don’t you go off on those Time currents and I’ll stay here with my kingdom, and everything will work out swimmingly.”

The man laid a hand to his metal-work harpoon. Catrina sighed. Why did people always have to be so difficult? She swung Mlrning at him, and a blinding ice ray shot from the Shovel’s blade, aimed right for the harpoon. To Catrina’s very great surprise, the ice ray ricocheted off something in the air before it even touched the harpoon and bounced straight back. “What?” Catrina exclaimed, which was all she had time for before her own ice ray froze her solid to the deck of the zeppelin.

The old man laughed grimly. The harpoon beeped and whirred. “Ay, I know not what a proton shield may be, nor how this thing of metal and lightning can produce it,” declaimed the man, “but indeed it is a mighty spear. Now I shall pursue that blasted whale, beyond this primitive land, to the very gates of hell itself!”

He went on like this for several more hours, in an extended soliloquy ranging on all sorts of philosophical topics, with the frozen Catrina his only listener. Meanwhile, the zeppelin loomed ominously away into the stormy night.

This has been another exciting episode of the Catrina Chronicles. For previous episodes, go here. For my Amazon page where you can find several more stories involving Catrina (and her wacky friends), go here. Thanks for reading!

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4 Comments
  1. This one made me laugh out loud a couple times- I love Catrina’s ‘blahblahblah heard your sob stories before, enough is enough and you’re boring me’ attitude is my favorite 🙂

    • Well, let’s just say Catrina reflects my feelings towards Moby Dick. That was such a boring book. 😛

  2. Funny stuff, nice one. 🙂

  3. Frozen solid. That’s not good… can’t wait to see how she thaws her way out of that one 🙂

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