OCEANUS ADVENTURE #24

A Fictional Series by J Quisumbing

Chapter 9 continued

Tess could not help being a little pleased inside as she worked her way up to the bow. Reaching the prow, her face was sprayed with cold salt water as the bow easily sliced through twenty-foot swells. She was reminded on absolutely how much she loved to sail. Then her radio squacked into life.

“Chrystal blue… Chrystal blue, come in, Chrystal blue! How do you read? Over.”

She recognized Robby’s voice. “Rapper, this is Chrystal blue, you’re coming in loud and clear.”

“Hey blue, is that you on the prow doing that ‘Titanic’ scene again?” he snickered.

She glanced back at Oceanus and asked, “Where are you Rob… I mean Rapper, over?”

“Look for my blue strobe.”

Amidst all the other lights of the tall superstructure, a sharp blue light was blinking away about halfway up the tall structure. Tess knew that Robby was radioing her from the observation platform where there were several telescopes mounted on the railing.

“Hi mommy!” shouted a kid’s voice in the radio.

“Guess who’s looking at you right now?”, said Robby.

“What is Larissa doing up so early?”

“She woke up looking for you and didn’t want to go back to bed. How are things out there? …especially with you know who?”

“She’s back there puking away,” she said laughing. He was laughing too.

“I hope she can do her job.”

“Well, that’s why I’m here.” Tess then spots Alicia struggling to make her way up forward. “Oh, she’s coming forward.”

“Okay, enjoy yourself out there. We’ll see you tonight, Rapper out.”

“Chrystal blue, out.” Tess waved her arm back and forth imagining her daughter on her tip toes peeking through the telescope waving back.

“… this boat was actually built by our Badjau captain,” said the admiral to Alicia. Behind her was a cameraman shooting away and a soundman was crouched down holding a boom & microphone. “He actually googled the design of a Malibu Outrigger after seeing some of my old Hawaiian vacation photos and built it in just 2 months.”

“Did the US government fund his building project?”

“Oh, we wanted to, but Ito Ito had it in his mind to build it on his own. So, he took the wood framings of two of his own 30 footer bancas and reframed it into this baby. He had intended that his boat should slice through 30 foot waves like a knife. So, he needed a material that was sleek. Jona… that is, Director Quimby offered him ‘Plasteen’.”

“Plasteen? What is Plasteen?” asked Alicia.

The admiral got down on his knees and slapped the side of the hull. “Plastic skin… produced only in Oceanus.”

To be continued…

PREV


Note from the author:
Oceanus Adventure is a fun effort on my part to enter the wonderful world of creative writing. It’s a story of a group of people who launched themselves into the Pacific Ocean on an artificial island to solve the Great Pacific garbage patch. My hopes is that this will end up into a TV series.

Comments and idea suggestions will be most welcomed. I hope you enjoy.

OCEANUS ADVENTURE #23

A Fictional Series by J Quisumbing

Chapter 9

Tess had been knocking on Alicia’s door for the past 10 minutes. She was not surprised. This was why she got up much earlier than scheduled in anticipation. After another 5 minutes of consisting knocking, she finally can hear movement inside. The door then swung open to reveal Alicia, half-asleep, disheveled and scathingly clad.

“Rise and shine!”

Alicia yawned. “Shine!? It’s still dark outside,” she whined. “Why don’t you wake me in an hour?” She started to walk back into the bedroom.

“Oh, no you don’t, ” Tess jumped to block her way and shoved a thermos mug in her hands. “Here’s some coffee. You get dressed. Your team is already having breakfast down below. And you better dress a little warmly, it’ll be a little chilly out there.”

Half an hour later, with the early morning sun just peeking on the horizon, three Badjau outrigger boats exited Oceanus’ stern gate. As soon as the boats cleared the gateway, electric motors shut down and then colorful sails billowed out. Two of the outriggers were small; about 20 feet in length and were manned by three men. The design of which were that of ‘Paraw bancas’ commonly used in most of Philippine waters except that these boats were built not with wood but with a sleek glossy material. The bigger boat looked much different from it’s two escorts. Where the two smaller ones had single masts with triangular sails and double outrigs, this 55 footer had two masts with squared sails and a single outrig on its port side. And Ito Ito was it’s captain.

“Ito… she is a real beaute!” Tess heard the admiral saying. He was standing or… more or less… swaying at the stern just behind Ito Ito who had the till.

“I think I’m going to be sick,” Alicia said as she leaned over the side.

Tess could not help being a little pleased inside as she worked her way up to the bow. Reaching the prow, her face was sprayed with cold salt water as the bow easily sliced through twenty-foot swells. She was reminded on absolutely how much she loved to sail. Then her radio squacked into life.

To be continued…

PREV


Note from the author:
Oceanus Adventure is a fun effort on my part to enter the wonderful world of creative writing. It’s a story of a group of people who launched themselves into the Pacific Ocean on an artificial island to solve the Great Pacific garbage patch. My hopes is that this will end up into a TV series.

Comments and idea suggestions will be most welcomed. I hope you enjoy.

OCEANUS ADVENTURE #22

A Fictional Series by J Quisumbing

Chapter 8 continued

They all sat on a long table, many of whom had fake smiles. Their first service was an appetizer of sauteed mushrooms in oil and garlic after which came the salad. They had no complaints because it was not prepared by Laura Kostas. Just as they were finishing off their salads, Laura and the kitchen staff brought in the main meal.

Now, because Jona was the director, he had the honor to take the first bite. As Laura stood behind him, he looked at the numerous faces waiting; some had sympathetic looks, a few had mischevious smiles. He looked down at his plate of braised chicken breasts thinly sliced on a bed of rice pilaf and a siding of vegetables. It looked good and it does smell wonderful. Bracing himself, he gingerly took a bite. To his surprise, the chicken was quite moist, tender and had just the right tinge of lemon; not too tart. His delight must have shown so much, that he heard a cacophony of silverware digging into their own plates. At the end of the main meal, Laura topped it off with a lemon tart dessert of which everyone gave her high praise.

“I told ya all that my babe can cook as good as any Frenchie chef,” boasted her husband. “Come on Bear. Pay up. $20 please.” He laughed out loud.

“Laura, you did a good job,” Robby said. “Are you sure you want to want to work in the main kitchen? Wouldn’t you prefer to cook here at the residence kitchen?”

“I’d love to cook here, but I think I would prefer to work near Diego,” Laura said. “Besides, I like the challenge of cooking for a hundred people.”

“Well, Jona gave the A-OK. Can you go to the burser’s office and fill out a form?”

“Sure thing.”

“How dinner, sir Admiral?” Merlie asked as the admiral came on board his houseboat.

He still found it amusing how every Bajau Laut adds on a ‘sir’ before his old navy rank. He gave up trying to correct them.

“Surprisingly good, Merlie. Laura really cooked up a fine meal. Merlie, what are you doing here so late?”

“I fix shirt you ripped this morning, sir Admiral,” Merlie said handing him his shirt as well as other clothing that needed repair. “Sir Admiral, Ito Ito want know you join him with boats tomorrow?”

“Oh, yes yes… Tell Ito, I will also be bringing Ms. Buenaventura and a camera crew with us.”

Merlie made a sour face then left the boathouse mumbling about how Ito was not going to like it. The admiral could not help but chuckle as he got a beer and sat on a deck recliner. A few minutes later, there was a knock and Kina stuck her head through the open door.

“Permission to come aboard, Admiral?” she asked.

“Ah Kina, come on in. Help yourself to a beer.”

“Thank you, sir.”

“So, Kina. How’s your investigation?”

“Well, admiral, I pulled out almost 55 fingerprints in the machine room but I fear this will all lead no where. Just way too many people went in and out of that room since the sabotage. As to where the tow rope was burnt by acid, I retrieved a discarded cannister among the tall reeds about ten feet from the H-bit. I suspect that the saboteur hoped to cast it into the sea and missed. I managed to pull out a partial print. I sent it to NCIS HQ Pearl Harbor. I hope they can identify it. Either way, it’ll be a week or so.”

“I spoke to the chief engineer,” the admiral said. “There were seven other breakdowns this past week.”

“I would think that machinery do breakdown from time to time, sir.”

“Yes, but he said that the cause of how these particular breakdowns were unusual. More things for you to look into.”

“Definately, I will. However, sir, I must consider possible motives behind these sabotages to guide this investigation. So far, all the acts point to hindering the proper operations of this facility. Since the launching, every mishap had been focused on sabotaging the propulsion system. Now, that Oceanus is drifting with the ocean’s current and the three engine rooms are tightly secured, I’m thinking that the next target of opportunity will be on the production capability.”

“Kina, I believe you have it right. What’s your next step?”

“I have asked Chief O’hare to help me install a number of hidden cameras around the two processing plants.”

“Just you two? Why don’t you consult with Mr. Ramiscal? He is second in charge, after all.”

“Well, sir, I’m still checking into his background.”

“I see. Well, I’m too old to climb rafters to help you guys out. Oh, how about Jer Roque?”

To be continued…

PREV


Note from the author:
Oceanus Adventure is a fun effort on my part to enter the wonderful world of creative writing. It’s a story of a group of people who launched themselves into the Pacific Ocean on an artificial island to solve the Great Pacific garbage patch. My hopes is that this will end up into a TV series.

Comments and idea suggestions will be most welcomed. I hope you enjoy.

OCEANUS ADVENTURE #21

A Fictional Series by J Quisumbing

Chapter 8

“Tie off the bow hawser, you #%@$ arse,” shouted Diego Kostas from his pilot house to a crewman.

Laura watched her husband expertly dock the Belinda unto its enclosed berth on the leftside of the stern superstructure. She watched him come in from an observation platform one deck above. The Belinda crew of four were jumping here and there securing the tug. Diego emerged from the wheelhouse and he barked out the order to close the berth’s gate.

Laura appreciated the enginuity of these enclosures. There were six of them; half on this side, the other in the portside. Only two were occupied right now; by the Belinda and Mathilda. But she had heard through the grapevine that one of those pens will soon be occupied by a naval boat.

“Hello Babe… we missed you out there,” Diego said climbing the stairs to the platform.

She kissed him. “Oh, I don’t think you missed my cooking, honey.”

“Are you kidding? I will take your food over the slop served for the past week by all four blockheads of our lot.”

“Honey, you always gave me way too much credit. So, are we landlocked on Oceanus for awhile?”

“Well, I won’t be taking Belinda out for sometime.”

“Why?”

“According to Jona, it’ll be about a week before the processing plants can put out eighty tons of recycled plastic. Then, we get to haul it, maybe Guam. Who knows? Anyway, what’s to eat tonight, Babe?”

“I’m cooking for the officers this evening. I got a whole basket of lemons from Bryce. So, I’m preparing Chicken Piccata with rice pilaf and for dessert lemon tarts.”

“Sounds good, Babe.”

————————

“Well, admiral, GPS puts us about five hundred miles east of Luzon. We should be riding the Kuroshio Current in another week from now when we get closer to Guam,” said Jona. The admiral, Hallbright and him were crossing the lagoon on a skiff.

Hallbright googled the Kuroshio Current on his phone. The Kuroshio, also known as the Black or Japan Current or the Black Stream, is a north-flowing ocean current on the west side of the North Pacific Ocean.

“What had Ito Ito found out there?” asked the admiral.

“He didn’t have to go too far out. His boats pulled in about 400 pounds of trash. Oh, get this, he also pulled in a seventy foot sequoia driftwood. By the look of it, it may have been drifting for years. It probably started out of Oregon, drifting on the California current, then it pushed west on the Equatorial current. Lord knows how many times that trunk circled the Pacific. Ito Ito wanted to build a canoe and furnitures from it, but Robby got a Japanese buyer for stuff like that already.”

“Poor Ito. Was he disappointed?”

“Nope. They’re paying him a substantial salvage fee. He’s already counting the money in his head.”

As the skiff neared the pier, Mae was waiting for them. As they were disembarking, Mae approached them looking a little concerned.

“Hey guys, Laura cooked the dinner tonight!” she said.

All three men paused and then turned around to get back on the boat.

“Hold on! Get back up here,” she scolded. “You guys be nice. Laura worked hard on a difficult recipe.”

“Isn’t there some kind of maritime law against this kind of cruel treatment to our taste buds?” asked Jona.

“At that matter, I’m a visiting dignatory. I should be exempt from any kind of culinary experimentation. Don’t you think?” asked the admiral almost beggingly.

“Knock it off, guys,” she said scoldingly.

To be continued…

PREV


Note from the author:
Oceanus Adventure is a fun effort on my part to enter the wonderful world of creative writing. It’s a story of a group of people who launched themselves into the Pacific Ocean on an artificial island to solve the Great Pacific garbage patch. My hopes is that this will end up into a TV series.

Comments and idea suggestions will be most welcomed. I hope you enjoy.