The Sailor's Stories

1021 Chapter twentyone – The Sailor’s Awakening.

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It had gotten dark, by the time we pulled into the drive. I knew this…, because the lights on the front porch were on, emitting a soft, warm, and welcoming glow. The throaty roar, that I so loved…, of my jeeps four litre engine, wound down as I turned the key. I looked at my hands for a moment, seeing the ever so slight, yet ever present, tremble there. Twice today, I had been prepared to risk, everything I held dear. And the weight of that sudden realisation, was bogging me down…., I could almost feel the arms…, of what I thought was depression…, slide around me, in a gentle loving embrace.

“Cam…, are you coming?”

At some point, in my reverie, Carl had slipped from the jeep’s passenger seat. He was standing at the door, hand poised to turn the knob, allowing us entry into the house we called home. Looking back at me, as I still sat behind the wheel, he offered a small loving…, and encouraging smile. It was quickly shaken though as he cocked his head slightly to the side, with an eyebrow raised, in a questioning manner. The look on his face, would have been funny, had this been any other moment. He was concerned, that much was evident…, and not a little too confused, at my apparent inaction. What ever it was, I had been thinking at the time, he had broken my spell. I looked back, and with all the strength, I could muster, I broke a weak smile of my own…

“Sure Squirt…, I’m coming…”

I was drained…, the day had finally taken it’s toll. To be honest…, I couldn’t bare the thought, of spending any more time, in the company of others that evening. Even the ones I held most dear to my heart, could not break this funk I was in right now. So pointing Carl towards the kitchen…, where I knew a fine meal awaited, I slipped quietly up the stairs. He watched me go, a sad look on his face. I almost changed my mind…, but I knew they would be better off, without me right now, and continued my sad and lonely journey.

First things first, upon reaching the safety of my room, I replaced my heady cargo, back where it belonged. That done, I slipped out of my clothing and padded softly into my bathroom. I must have stood there for an age, the warm water cascading down my muscled back. The warmth even soothed the slight tightness, of my many scars. I wasn’t ashamed of them…, yet I wasn’t overly proud of them either. They were just, an ever present reminder of what could have been. Though…, if I was to be honest…, at least with myself anyway…, those weren’t the scars that needed easing.

Having toweled myself off, I slipped on a pair of white boxers, and laid down on my bed. All I wanted right then was sleep…, though that was proving an elusive prey. I was in that state, the one that no matter how exhausted you are, your mind is just too active, to allow you rest. That feeling was no stranger, in fact…, in the field, it was a common concern. I knew all to well the dangers this presented, though right then, I was powerless to do anything about it. At certain points, throughout the evening…, one, both, or all three, of the boys had poked their heads into my room. They were only trying to make sure I was ok, but I couldn’t stand to look in their eyes, and so feigned what I couldn’t find.

It wasn’t until much later, that I got more of an insight into what I was dealing with. I had finally, and against all odds…, or so it felt anyway, drifted off to sleep. Fate, was a cruel mistress, however, and had had other plans for me, it seemed. I was awoken, by a sharp noise, that sounded like a yelp, but deeper. I was almost out of bed…, thinking one of my boys was in trouble. But, to be fair, I knew what that noise was…, having made it myself…, several times…, and I was forced to check my action. I just didn’t want to admit to the knowledge. However, fate again took hold of the situation, forcing me to acknowledge it…, as then came the heavy breathing…, from the room next door. I could ignore it no longer…, someone was post coital…

“Goddamn! I love you so much Dale…”

“I love you too, dude…, you make me feel so good…, you always make me feel so good…”

“As much as I would love to have you on top of me forever, you really have to get off.., so I can…, ah…, clean up.”

“Aww…, do I have too?”

“Unless you want the wet spot…, yeah you do…”

I heard some shifting noises, and then a stray bed spring…., followed by light feet making their way into the bathroom. Well that answers that question then…, I thought. Now I knew, that my nighttime rule, was well and truly broken, I had to admit, that I was surprised it had taken this long. I heard the head flush, then Carl must have headed back towards the bed again. Although I was listening intently, I had to wait for the head to finish filling, before I could get any more of the conversation…

“… Yeah but I’m really worried.”

“And you think I’m not?”

“No I don’t think that…, of course you are…, but you didn’t see him this afternoon! I know he lied to me…, there was no way he was going to the range…., until I came along, that is…, I’ve got no idea what he was planning, but I could tell it wasn’t good…, you should have seen the amount of gear he had…, I tell ya.., even Rambo would have creamed himself!”

“Look Lover…, Uncle Cam’s not stupid…., he wouldn’t do anything to hurt us…, and defo wouldn’t abandon us…”

“I know he isn’t stupid…, but dude…, you didn’t see his eyes…, they were dead man…., whoever it was, it wasn’t Cam…, he wasn’t home dude…, if you know what I mean?”

There was a long pause, and I heard the bed move…, as if one of the boys had shifted position….

“Then at the range…, dude, he was like a demon…, I have never seen anyone shoot or move like that…, not even in the movies…, not a single shot wasted man…, what ever he aimed at, he hit…, I was scared shitless!”

“Aww baby.., don’t be scared…, he would never hurt us…”

“It’s not us I’m worried about.., honestly Dale…, if he snaps, he’ll fuck’up anything that’s in his way…”

“Come here lover…, just go to sleep.., it’ll all be cool in the morning…, I’ll have a talk to him…, trust me dude…, it’ll be alright.”

I heard no more…, I didn’t want to hear anymore… What have I done…, my own boys are scared of me! What the fuck has gone so wrong… What the fuck am I going to do? I thought as the tears began to flow…, I was still crying as I fell asleep several minutes later.

I must have drifted in and out of sleep all night…, I just couldn’t seem to get into a rhythm. It’s not that I wasn’t tired…, I was exhausted, both physically and mentally. Those words just wouldn’t leave me alone…, I just couldn’t get “I was scared shitless!” out of my head. Finally at about 0530, having just woken up again, I decided to forego any further attempts at sleep. Instead I got out of bed, slipped on a pair of shorts and a t-shirt, and made to quietly leave the house. As I passed Dale’s door, I poked my head in…, the boys were still there, almost brazenly defying my decree, on sleeping arrangements.

Shaking my head, knowing I could say nothing at this point, I slipped down the stairs. I was a little upset, to tell you the truth, but it was obvious that they loved each other. I think I would’ve been a lot angrier, if it was just some passing fling. I had to wonder what would happen, if I laid down the law, with these two…, knowing Dale as I did, I think he would just do it anyway. And lets face it…, I had no intentions, of pushing him further away…, I needed them all…, more than ever now.  I resolved to have a talk with them later on…, when I was more capable of proper reasoning.

Stepping through the front door, closing it quietly behind me, I was shocked to see Corey stretching on the front lawn. He smiled at me, in greeting…, but as I had said nothing, he chose not to either. I simply just pointed in the direction, I had had planned…, and started running, with him following at a steady pace. I don’t remember much after that…, we didn’t stop in the park this time…, I can remember that…, I can remember that breakfast was awkward…, even though we all talked. Can’t have been anything of real substance though, as I am sure that that, I would have remembered…., all I do know is that the day passed, in kind of a daze. Shame really…, I have always liked Sundays…

“So…, what do you think Doc?”

Monday morning saw me keeping my second appointment, with the headshrinker. I had slept slightly better the night before, though I still woke not overly well rested. As I sat there, eyeing the guy closely, I soon realised that I couldn’t read him. Most people I could read easily, it was a trait taught, and honed, by several years in a command situation. You needed to be able to read your men, to gain an understanding, of their strengths and weaknesses. This Doctor, however, I just couldn’t get a handle on him.

“Well…, you are still under a great deal of stress…, though we are making progress…”

When I had first come in, I had told him everything I could remember about the past week. I had gone into a reasonable amount of detail, concerning what I had done at the cemetery…, even to the point of telling him about the rainbow…, and what I had thought that that had meant. He never really batted an eyelid, until that moment, though he didn’t discourage my line of reasoning. I then went on to tell him of the events at the ball field, and then onto what came later, including the overheard conversation.

What he thought of it was, however, as always a complete mystery. As I sat there waiting, for him to continue, he put his pencil down, and looked me over. Once again, he was employing the headmaster routine, of looking at me over his glasses. I had never been comfortable, with that kind of stare. After a few moments, I could see he was waiting for me to say something…, docs were like that…, they would through things out there, almost like fishing for prize trout…, just to see what they could catch. I took the bait, before I had even realised it, and he reeled me in…

“I think I might be losing my grip on reality Doc…, I can barely even look my boys in the eye anymore…, Jesus Christ…, he said he was scared of me!”

“Actually no…, he said that he was scared of what you were doing…, and how you were doing it. If your retelling was accurate, which I can only assume that it was, he didn’t actually say anything about being scared of you specifically…”

“Semantics Doc…, I can read between the lines.”

“Can you? I think then, that you need to get your eyes checked…, yes he was scared, and probably Dale too now…, but I doubt greatly that they are scared of you…, more what they think you are capable of…, and to be honest I would be too…, knowing what you used to do.”

“That’s not very comforting…”

“It wasn’t supposed to be…, I was merely pointing out a flaw in your logic…, it’s not that I think you are wrong, just that…, I think, you haven’t considered all the angles. They are worried, that much is certain…, but, they are worried for you…, not because of you.”

He paused for a moment, to let that sink in. As he continued to observe, he once again picked up his pencil, and absentmindedly began to chew on it. He must do that a lot, I realised, as the coffee mug on his desk, was brimming with half eaten pencils….

“From what I can see, your boys, are beginning to form extended parts of your psyche…, Corey is your rock…, your lynchpin, if you will, he is your strength and your determination…, Carl it seems is your conscience…, and Dale…,  well he seems to be your younger self…, the one that needs protecting from the big bad world…”

“Come on Doc, that’s a little extreme, don’t you think…, I mean…, I can’t be that bad surely?”

“Bad?… No I don’t think you are, but…, you are certainly relying on them more and more. You need to take a step back, and just let them be the kids that they are. I’m not suggesting that you withdraw completely..,. that would just confuse them more…, you just need to take back the leadership role, regain your self confidence…, so to speak.”

“So what now?”

“First off…, I am going to proscribe you some mild sleeping pills…, lets try and get one thing at a time under control…, then I think you need to take a break from work…, a week should do the trick. I want you to spend that time with the boys…, reconnect, and retake your place with them. At the moment, it appears that they feel responsible for you, I know, that you know, that that should be the other way around. Take them somewhere, camping, fishing, something outdoorsy…, just you them and nature…, how does that sound?”

“Sounds good, but I have just taken leave…, how do I get another week off?”

“We could make it sick leave…, I could write you a note?”

“Sure, ok…, that might work, but I’ll see what I can arrange first…, my boss loves the boys…, if I explain the situation to him, he should cut me some slack. But if I take them into the woods, or whatever…, are you sure I won’t be a danger to them…, what if I really crack up?”

“Do you think that you could hurt them?”

“Well…, no…, never intentionally…”

“Well then…, there’s your answer…, we still have another scheduled appointment, I want you to keep that…, afterwards, we will see how far you will have come, and reassess.”

“Sure Doc…, see you next week.


Written by bigct/Octavius

December 25, 2009 at 15:06

5 Responses

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  1. Brilliant! Well worth the wait. Keep going.


    December 25, 2009 at 22:54

  2. Wow! This chapter had me on the edge of my seat! Very emotional stuff there, and completely perfect. With every chapter we are digging deeper and deeper into Cam’s mind, and I am throughly enjoying the trip.

    So, Cam finally caught the little love birds…. I hope he doesn’t come down on them to hard. They are really good for each other, and are good to each other.


    December 27, 2009 at 04:23

  3. Wow..great chapter.


    December 27, 2009 at 22:57

  4. thats it for day one, I need some of those sleep pills I think. Very good story so far CT, I’ll try to get thru the rest tomorrow.

    Take care


    June 3, 2010 at 00:14

  5. Octo! Wow i really love this story so much and you write amazing. Thank you for sharing this.


    February 23, 2011 at 06:12

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