The boat is five metres below water, so close yet so far from the world above. Light shimmers through the barnacled windows, casting a turquoise glow against the muddy grey. It was a long time since the boat had seen light- anyone could see that. Muted was the word that first came to my mind when I see it. Everything is murky green, apart from the divers a little distance away, who looked too new, too clean, too out of place to be in the scene showed.
I glance at Mum who was sitting beside me on the (slightly wet) bench, and the owner of the glass boat… Yes, that’s it! Bosko. I knew he was talking before, but I wasn’t listening. All he seemed to talk about was what flavour ice-cream he likes with my brother, but I wish he would just talk about the boat. The Croatian man stops the engine and the water around us stills. The eerie silence grows more intense than before, and I looked through the glass bottom. I keep on thinking the owner of the sunken ship is going to grab me with his rotting hand, and pull me down into the depths below. I know that’s impossible, but a tiny part of my mind, the black, self-conscious part, is thinking that something very bad has happened, and something very bad is going to happen now.
“It is called The Old Timer,” Bosko whispered, leaning closer to my brother, who squirmed in delight, “and it has been here on the sea-bed for almost two weeks. I was the first one to find The Old Timer a week ago. It was after the storm had died down, the storm that ended all storms, they are now calling it.” We all nod knowingly. The wind was so strong we couldn’t open our apartment door.
“I came out to see if any boats had sunk, and if anyone needed help. I sure wasn’t expecting this.” Bosko started wildly gesturing to the boat below us with his hands, but when he saw our confused faces he stopped. “Well, the man in this boat was… a runaway from the police. No one knows why, but I do know that this person was on this boat two weeks ago. Any questions?”
I had so many questions to ask it was unbearable. Where did the man come from? Was there anyone else with him? Is what Bosko saying really true? What really happened?
On the journey back, I was thinking so deeply that I didn’t notice the sail smashed to bits on the rocks beside the boat, or the person watching us on an island thirty metres away.
Two days later
I watched the police go away on my favourite ‘watch tower’, towing the boat behind them. Little did they know that I had found a rucksack on a small island with very curious things inside. And little did anyone know that the man is still here.