An Adventure and action-packed Novel by Faith Mortimer.
Richard: The Atlantic 2005
It was now or never. Richard pushed off with his legs and dived for the net. He hit the water, his lower torso disappearing into the black froth that fiercely clawed at him. Somehow, he managed to grab the harsh net with one arm as he felt it tangle around him. The ship lurched and this time he was fully immersed in deep water. What seemed like minutes later, he broke the surface, coughing and choking, the salt stinging his eyes. He clamped his other hand to the netting and clung to it like a limpet. The water roared and hissed around his ears, terrifyingly black. He knew he must climb the net fast as his energy was rapidly ebbing away and conditions were not going to get any better.
Moving one arm higher, he found a rung and hauled himself slowly up, grunting with exertion as he did so. His hands were bleeding from fresh cuts where he had smashed against the rough barnacles on the ship’s hull. Fatigue was fast overcoming him. The past few days of stress and lack of sleep were taking their toll. Gritting his teeth, he managed to move up another foot of netting and then slowly by sheer willpower pulled himself up, rung by rung. Dimly, he heard the encouraging cries of the crew above him. He paused and looked up, seeing a line of faces his adrenalin surged and with renewed vigour he at last found himself collapsing thankfully on the ship’s deck.
Utterly exhausted by his ordeal Richard lay there not quite believing where he was. Water streamed from his body, and he knew that soon, he would begin to feel the cold as it seeped through to his bones. Coughing and retching seawater, Richard sat up, aware of the ring of sturdy looking sea-boots clustered around him. He attempted to stand and felt strong arms supporting him. He braced his legs against the motion of the deck and looked round. A circle of anxious faces stared back; a stocky bearded fellow who he assumed to be the captain, four or five crew-members and an ashen-faced Toby.
The captain cleared his throat, getting ready to address Richard. Again, Richard looked around his surroundings and forestalled him by hoarsely saying, ‘Where’s Connie? Where’s my wife?’
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I love cliff-hangers, don't you? Find out more of Richard's and Connie's story in next week's excerpt.
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