“Cap'n, look!” The crew of the Lady Bay turned port side, peering into the foaming sea. Atop a wave, between land and the ship, a creature’s eyes surveyed the bobbing ship with her fifteen men on board.
Lil' Jim, the deck hand, crept farther from the ships rails, jumping when he backed into the mast. “Cap'n, what're we goin' to do?”
The Captain didn’t need to remind his crew they were out of ammunition for the small cannons they kept on board. A cutlass would do them no good with a monster like that, unless his tentacles were close enough to grab you, but by then it would be too late.
“Bring up the cargo.”
“Cap'n, there's nuttin' down there to help.”
“Who’s the Captain here? I said bring it up. Now. Line up the cannons. Portside, aimed toward that beast.”
Men jumped to. Forming a line, they passed casket after casket from the ship’s underbelly onto the deck. The cannons rolled into place, fuses readied.
“But Cap'n, we're out of ammo.”
Captain picked up one of the small casks, dropped it into the mouth of the cannon & yelled “Fire.” The cask launched from the ship’s side, bursting into a powdery fine substance that rained into the see.
“Again! Again and again.” He ordered.
His crew launched cask after cask after cask. At first the casks burst scattering their film into the sea, but as the pile grew smaller the furious waves mellowed into a slow moving sea. The monster too slowed, as if the water was turning to swamp, and he could not longer move as freely.
“Give her everything we’ve got.” The men loaded the cannons until their backs ached and their ears rang. They could no longer hear the captain’s orders, but they saw their Captain was onto something and continued until Lady Bay’s stores were empty. With the last cannon blast, Lil' Jim looked to the sea. It no longer lapped at the boat. It jiggled and wiggled, almost as if you could walk on it.
The beast was frozen half above the surface, the other have slurping through the water below.
“Cap'n, what'd you do?”
“I used what we had. Sometimes that’s all you can do.”
Jim looked down at the letters on a shattered cask at his feet. He couldn’t yet read, but he knew his letters. G-E-L-A-T-I-N