Ivan tried to keep his sanity, while the chemical that circulated in his veins made him lose contact with reality. The Land Lover continued to sail towards the blue metal ship, while the pirates seemed confident in their captain’s ability to emerge victorious.
Reality kept slipping out of Ivan’s grasp. Eventually, the enemy ship took the form of a giant serpent; in the captain’s mind, sea creatures began to leap aboard the Land Lover.
“Grab the helm,” Ivan said before jumping to slide off a railing.
Jostas saw the captain reach the lower deck and began to fight…there was no one in front of him.
Ivan believed that the ship was being invaded by sea creatures—humanoids with green skin and scales. The effects of the chemical on his mind limited his ability to see reality; his imagination filled in the empty spaces left by his impaired senses.
The other pirates were surprised to see their captain fight the air with his sword, while Ivan looked at the sea creatures as if they were real.
After sailing for a few minutes, Jostas led the Land Lover to the blue metal ship. The pirates prepared to board it… when they saw the cannons.
The explosion almost simultaneously generated a blast. The pirates froze, expecting the worst. Ivan continued to fight the beings of his imagination, while the ethereal sphere in his bag began to act strangely.
They missed…the cannonballs stopped a few feet from the Land Lover. An inexplicable energy stopped them as if the ship was protected by a force field.
Ivan did not realize what had happened and grabbed a rope before jumping from the upper deck. The pirates looked at him in surprise as he swung on top of them and barely reached the edge of the blue metal ship. The rest of the crew began to throw ropes to board the enemy.
The captain managed to grab onto the snake he had created with his imagination, and as he climbed he encountered more sea creatures. Ivan pulled the sword from his belt and charged.
The blue-blooded beings couldn’t believe what was happening. Some looked at Ivan curiously, raising their weapons to fire. Surely the human’s actions were irrational.
Ivan believed that blue-blooded beings were humanoid sea snakes. It was impossible for him to understand their technology—the almost silent shot whirled in the captain’s direction. There was nothing he could do to avoid it. Ivan couldn’t even imagine what was about to happen. A life wasted by the effects of a narcotic. The last punishment of a witch.
The ammunition didn’t reach its target…the ethereal sphere vibrated again in Ivan’s bag. This time it stopped the bullet a few steps away from the captain.
The blue-blooded beings continued firing, while the captain leaped at them with his sword. The bullets seemed useless while the ethereal sphere vibrated. Little by little the other pirates arrived and proved to be better fighters—slaying the enemy.
Ivan continued fighting the sea creatures. Eventually, he found a door and entered the serpent to find a way to destroy it from inside. His imagination kept changing his surroundings; the corridors of the ship seemed to the captain like the entrails of an animal.
The pirates looted the metal ship and eliminated all the blue-blooded beings; one of them agreed to surrender. Meanwhile, Ivan had been walking through the internal corridors of the first metal ship that he had seen. He was sure that the inside of the snake was different from what he had expected.
Shortly after walking down the long corridors, Ivan heard a voice. The beautiful melody must have come from a mermaid, there was no other explanation for his growing desire to search for it. The captain followed the sound.
Finally, Ivan found a blue metal door. He was sure the sound was coming from within. The voice of a trapped woman. After struggling for a while, he found a way to open the door.
Inside he found the siren of his imagination. A woman with long wavy hair, flapping her fin on the ground. She seemed to glow. Ivan never thought of finding a mermaid and offered a hand to help her.
The woman looked at the pirate curiously. What is a human doing here?
“Take my hand,” Ivan said, “I’ll help you out.”
Ivan felt the siren’s hand and a flash of lights blinded him for an instant. When he regained his sight, the woman had human legs.
“What are you waiting for?” Shelly said. “Are you going to get me out of here?”