Sunday, November 22

#47 - sea rescue


You wake up alone in a sailboat somewhere in the ocean. You had taken the boat out with a couple of friends, one of them relatively skilled at sailing, but they are now nowhere to be seen. You have no idea how much time has elapsed since you began to sleep (or otherwise went unconscious), and no memory of how you came to find yourself stranded.

As you take in your surroundings, you see a larger ship nearby. Then you noticed a uniformed man hailing you. The two of you are close enough to communicate vocally.

He asks who you are and you respond with your name. You tell him all that you can remember about the sailing trip with your friends, finally asking if he can help you. The man takes a moment to assess the condition of you and your craft, and sighs.

This man identifies himself as a crew member on a very unique vessel. The ship is transporting a number of compromised secret agents to a secret island. The island contains a peaceful, self-sustaining society, but the agents on the boat (and those already in the island community) are considered by those in charge to be too dangerous to leave unattended. They have accrued too much information.

The uniformed man indicates that to his eyes, your craft looks to be in pretty bad shape. His vessel is not going to change course (taking you back is not an option), but he offers you a choice. You can go aboard his ship and proceed to this mysterious island, or take one of the ship's rescue boats and try to make it back home on your own. If you choose the island, you would never be able to leave or communicate with the world at large. Otherwise, existence would be made as pleasant as possible for you. You would have an occupation, but it would not be cumbersome, and the island is stocked with most of the creature comforts you are used to. The spies there are not being punished so much as kept from communicating sensitive knowledge or data.

As for going it alone, your new boat would be equipped with both a sail and motor. You would be provided with supplies and rudimentary navigational tools, but the crew would not be able to show you a map or your exact location (and risk indicating the island's location). You would merely be given a heading to follow (as best you could).

Your choice is between a comfortable but secluded life amongst strangers and a longshot attempt at finding your way home across an unknown amount of ocean. Which option do you choose?

4 comments:

Paul said...

Noway man. I'm not going alone on the sea - thats suicide. But they can't take me to the island either. I'm going to get on the boat peacefully, but then hijack it and make them take me and all the prisoner-spies home. Its sick to lock people away like that.

I'll use my wits, my cunning, and main force to win the battle. When I get back to home port, there'll be a party - and all my friends are invited!

Cheers!

paulskoch said...

...but to do honor to the question, if these villains overpowered me (slim chance) and offered me the chance to make the decision again, I'd take the island. I think the chances of survival on the boat for me are slim since I'm not a skilled sailor or navigator. The island sounds sort of pleasant in a slightly creepy way... but my first instinct is definitely to try and find a third way to wiggle out! Both eventualities are difficult!

Matt said...

I would love to say that I would take the reins of the lifeboat and, with an intrepid air, make my way back to the world I knew. Most castaways would kill to be outfitted so well.

I suspect though, that I would be unable to make the choice to do that, having no real sailing or navigational skills.

I would probably let them take me to this island and see how things are there. Whether it would be realistic or not, I would keep in the back of my mind the possibility of escape should things go south while on the island. In that case, I would probably have the support and participation of some of the spies, which would make getting back more likely.

In short, the lifestyle sounds nice, if I could get used to being "deserted". I think I would eventually try to escape.

Holly said...

I'd take my chances and go for the lilfeboat option. I'd probably die out at sea, but I would rather that than be tortured by the thought of not seeing those I love again. In a fit of passion I would probably quote Patrick Henry's cry for either liberty or death (at least I imagine it going this way...)