Mr. Forbes 2. The Voyage

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Flash Fiction  |  House: The Imaginarium

Featured Review on this writing by Jeff Bezaire

This is the second of four stories featuring a certain Mr Grimonomous Forbes.
Thanks so much to Markie Bee for his cover magic. https://www.booksie.com/users/markie-bee-223538

Mr Forbes 2. The Voyage.

There was a simple reason that Grimonomous Forbes would never bind more than fifteen souls at a time. The boat, quite simply, would not carry any more. Souls, one would imagine, would be weightless but not so these ones, not on this boat at least.

The bound souls would be lead, prompted, prodded, otherwise encouraged to get themselves aboard that boat. Too much struggling would set it to tip and tilt dangerously in the water and one thing these wicked souls did not like to do was to get wet.

Grimonomous would wander around making sure that there were no trailings in the water – for who knew what that might attract. He had found his boat being up-ended far too many times by beasts from the deep, hungry to feed on those corrupt souls themselves. He had not minded the drenching so much before; it hardly mattered if his cloak became that bit more tatty, dried up all crumpled and stained. His suit though, he wanted that to stay looking as immaculate as possible.

Of course it was not all about the looks. If one of his souls was logged in then....lost....there would be so much extra paper-work, and Mr Forbes found it so hard to grip that quill. Better to take that extra bit of endless time and ensure all were properly aboard.

The boat itself had seen far better days. It was in need of far more maintenance than a lick of paint, at least to untrained eyes. Grimonomous himself knew that should it fall apart in to the planks it was built from, they would still stay afloat. But it’s apparent fragility did tend to keep the guests that bit more settled.

Only once he took up position at the prow of the boat did the captured and bound souls get to see him. Then there would be the begging, the pleading, the constant wails of, ‘I didn’t do it’. It all fell on deaf ears of course, due to the fact that Mr Forbes did not have any. He stood tall, proud and impassive as the boat steadily skimmed across the water.

Did the soul’s notice the barrels? It would be hard for them to be missed, piled either side of the man in charge. So presuming that they saw them, did they wonder what they contained? They would find out soon enough.

The boat headed on, no one steering, no sail to catch the wind. It was as though it was making a voyage that it had made so many times before, which of course was true, that the boat knew exactly where it was going and how to get there itself.

The sky got ever darker, not from the approach of night but from the fact that they were now heading directly towards what looked to be one Hell of a storm. Reaching his gloved skeletal left hand inside his jacket, Mr Forbes extracted his large black umbrella, flicked at the little catch and took shelter just as those first rain-drops fell. He at least would remain dry, while those souls sizzled with every polluted rain-drop.

On and on they went, under a bruised purple sky, split by forks of pure electric power. The sea tossed and moaned around the boat but the it stayed steady in the water. The wind howled and whipped everything but the boat, and Mr Forbes himself. His umbrella remained resolutely in place.

Further in to the storm they went until a fork of lightning struck one of the barrels and the ensuing explosion, for it was gunpowder that they contained. With a great big boom, that the rest of the world did not hear but maybe felt, the boat lifted then plunged with a force that would take it straight to Hell.


Submitted: October 08, 2018

© Copyright 2022 hullabaloo22. All rights reserved.

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Add Your Comments:

Comments

Mike S.

Another fine 'Forbeser, Hull!

Mon, October 8th, 2018 5:06pm

Author
Reply

Thanks, Mike. Two more to go!

Mon, October 8th, 2018 10:09am

Sue Harris

Great atmosphere and characterisation,Hully! You're not giving much away yet... an appetiser, 'logged in and then lost', caught my attention. I'm ready for the next course!

Mon, October 8th, 2018 6:26pm

Author
Reply

Two more to come. Thanks so much for your support with this, Sue!

Mon, October 8th, 2018 11:32am

Vance Currie

Aha, I get it. Our friend the, gentlemanly Grimonomous, is only after wicked souls, so I am safe - or maybe not. A wonderfully descriptive story, Hully. ~ Joe

Mon, October 8th, 2018 9:17pm

Author
Reply

Thanks, Joe. Number three in the series will be posted tomorrow.

Mon, October 8th, 2018 2:20pm

jaylisbeth

An entertaining read :)

Mon, October 8th, 2018 9:26pm

Author
Reply

Thanks, jaylisbeth. Glad you enjoyed it.

Tue, October 9th, 2018 12:54am

Jeff Bezaire

This story felt a lot like a contemporary Dante Alghieri tale: the sail-less boat, the souls bound and dragged to the boat, traveling into the water to reach their destination, the use of the elements and Death's immaculate appearance - it all felt very Renaissance to me.
A fun read, Hully! I liked the dark humour in this piece.

Mon, October 8th, 2018 10:33pm

Author
Reply

Well, I had that boat in mind, but I very much played off the picture for the elements. I'm glad you appreciate my sense of humor -- a lot of people say I do not have one at all! Doesn't stop me from trying though. I hope you enjoy the other two as much, Jeff.

Tue, October 9th, 2018 1:08am

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