Eternal Summer: Chapter 7: Rio Grande

After the initial excitement of finding the Rio Grande River, the crew of the Determined settled back into their routine tasks.  The difference was that there was now land on each side of the river once again.  The water way formed the natural border between the former human lands of Texas in the United States, and the country of Mexico.  The river snaked in and out, cutting through the land in a weaving pattern.  However, due to the rise of the oceans, the former shallow sections that once existed were now quite deep.  The relentless rise of the oceans resulted in the surface area spreading out vast distances.  Where there had been dry prairie lands that once burned at a drop of a hat, now stood large reservoirs of brackish water deep within each of the former human countries.

The two river otters on board the ship: Private Pawl and Sergeant Miller were both excited at the arrival of fresh water.  After travelling a distance, and tasting the water carefully, they soon departed the ship to explore the new river.  At the current rate of travel, they could easily make it back to the ship, so there was no worry of being left behind.  The otters had ulterior motives as well, due to the fact that they were hungry for fish.  The diet thus far of ship rations was not sufficient for their needs, thus an immediate hunt ensued for fish and other more suitable food.  The supplies packed were wonderful, and served well up until this poijnt, but they were starting to feel off.  Argente giggled as she stood up carefully to stretch, and peek out over the ship railings to watch the otters swim away.  The female fox would have liked to go out and swim too, but she didn’t know if she could get back into the ship afterwards.  Calling out, “PAWL … MILLER … GET ME A FISH TOO, PLEASE?!?!” 

As the fox stood up, the ship started to rock a bit from side to side, which resulted in her trying to position herself steadily while not causing too much movement to the rest of the ship.  The female fox did not have to wait long, and soon saw a silver river fish tossed into her storage area of the deck over the side of the ship.  “Thank you,” she said excitedly, and turned around to face forward.  With her back to the rest of the ship, the fox quickly began to devour the fish.  As with the otters, she needed meat as well, but realized that many of the crew did not eat that sort of a diet.  There were considerations to be made, regarding the sensibilities of the smaller animals.  She could feel their looks on her back, but Argente did not hold it against any of them.  Once the offered meal was finished, she cleaned up and discreetly tossed the bones and nonedible remains over the side of the ship to sink into the water below.    

The other critters of the ship were not meat-eating animals, so while it unnerved them, they were aware of the larger animals’ nature.  All aboard the ship were friends, and there was no worry of the otters or fox eating the crew.  Pudgy joked if anyone ate him, he would stick his quills out and choke them.  That usually drew a laugh, especially when he made his determined face, and wiggled his nose for effect.  The little hedgehog during the day worked the ship’s wheel, and told stories of his various adventures.  It helped keep the crew occupied, and stave off any feelings of homesickness.  However hard he might try, that uneasy feeling was starting to happen as the weeks dragged on.  Relentlessly, the ship continued to sail, past the ruins of the human city of Laredo.  Heading north and west, following the river as it weaved through the land. 

As the sun began to set, the otters returned to the ship.  They had eaten their fill of fish, and were tired from playing in the water.  They headed to the starboard side of the ship, and Private Pawl was first to reach up to try to hoist himself onto the ship’s deck.  The entirety of the Determined started to tilt dangerously towards the water surface.  “Wait a minute Pawl, let go!”  Sergeant Miller called out, and the subordinate otter complied.  As the ship righted itself, the animals on board the ship peeked out and shook their heads to not do that again.  Miller nodded, “Pawl, I will head to the port side.  You stay here on the starboard side, and when I signal, we will hoist ourselves at the same time onto the deck.  That should keep the ship from tipping over.”  Pawl nodded, and waited for his counterpart to swim into position.  Once readied, and after a small confirmation discussion, the two otters climbed back on board on each side of the ship in unison.  Their orchestrated maneuver worked, as their weight kept the ship more balanced, and there was minimal rocking. 

Once the two river otters had reached the deck, they positioned themselves to run length wise with the ship.  Due to the fact that both were dripping wet with warm river water, they stayed on the deck to dry off.  That would not take long, due to the fact that it was so warm out, even at night.  Texas was sweltering hot back in the days the humans were around, but now it was much worse.  The planet had tilted so much, that the lands were now tropical, thick with humidity.  Dense foliage was growing at an accelerated pace on each side of the river.  Trees of all manner which once had been sparsely placed along each side, were now becoming numerous and spreading in all directions.  The otters told the various crew members of the plentiful fish in the river, as well as many other aquatic animals they met during their excursion.  Tales were told of the ever-rising waters, and how the former prairie land was now becoming a haven for life of all kinds. 

Pawl and Miller watched as the crew changed shifts, and the night time crew was led by Mr. Field Mouse onto the deck.  As the male rodent took the wheel, he watched the sun disappear over the western horizon.  Soon, the moon rose in the distant sky, casting a soft pale light across the water and surrounding lands.  At night, the ship was different due to the crew make up, as well as being much quieter.  The hustle and bustle of the main crew was fun, but this quitter pace was something he very much preferred.  The river continued its weaving in and out, and the ship sailed on slowly but surely up river.  As the two otters slowly walked up to the big compartment where Argente laid sleeping, they slipped into each side, and fell asleep as well.    

The night captain was well versed in the instructions left by Pudgy were consistent, and eventually the big river would turn into a huge lake.  That lake in turn would branch out in two directions.  The original northward course of the river’s original path, and one which would lead to the west into the desert lands.  What many wondered about, but did not know if would come to pass, was if they would see those crazy talking cactus plants Pudgy had met?  The way their hedgehog friend described them, they were very colorful in both actual appearance and personalities. 

As the moon illuminated the river, the field mouse twitched his nose.  Watching as the mountains on each side of the river start to ascend even higher, he yawned and turned his attention to watch the squirrels climbing the masts to check on the sails.  They also were starting to set up to tack the wind again, and adjust the angle to the guide sails to redirect wind to the main sail.  As the ship slowed a bit, the redirected sails funneled the wind into the main sail.  The ship’s forward progression began once more, albeit a bit slower.  They were heading up river, which meant the current was heading the opposite direction.  It required more work by the crew, which they were up to the task.  Orders were called out, and followed, in a synchronized dance of activities.  Most of them could see easier at night, so that also helped as well. 

By the time morning arrived, the night crew was ready for slumber, and the ship had travelled a fair distance.  Mrs. Field Mouse emerged from the hatch in the center of the deck, and started to scurry across and towards the wheel platform at the stern of the ship.  She quickly arrived at the wheel with a cup of water and a piece of hardtack with a heart on it for her husband’s meal.  The male field mouse smiled warmly, and hugged her, before accepting his dinner and munching away.  She sighed happily, “this is such a long trip, thank goodness you are here with me.”  The husband nodded, “I could not imagine going this far without seeing you.  I wonder how Pudgy can do this so often, to leave all his friends and family.”  His wife nodded, “Cobalt is the closest thing to family Pudgy has … but that is talk for the next shift change.  Off with you, head to the sleeping bunks.”  The husband kissed his wife on her nose, and then scurried off back towards the hatch which led to the interior sleeping compartments of the ship below deck.  

Shortly afterwards, Pudgy climbed up out of the hatch from below deck, and then scampered around checking the various places on the ship’s deck.  The day crew were sleepily taking their spots, with the exception of the fox and otter area at the bow side center of the ship.  They had not yet agreed to who was the night otter and the day otter, so both otters were awake at the same time.  The otters skipped their morning rations, opting to go out to explore and find their own meals for the day in the river.  This helped the ship in the long run, as it further extended their supplies.  Pudgy watched as the ship rocked from side to side as they leapt from the deck, and dove headfirst into the water on each side of the ship to explore the river.  It was not long until another yummy fish soon was lifted over the railing for Argente.  The silver fox wiggled her ears and called out, “thank you!”  She began to hungrily eat, while watching as her hedgehog friend scampered past not looking at her.  The fox sighed, and ate as quickly as she could, to avoid any other further unpleasantness amongst the crew. 

As the ship turned a bend in the river, it began to straighten out into a huge lake.  The critters on deck and on the masts pointed, and looked out with awe at the wonders of nature unfolding before them. What they did not know was that the ship had just passed the outskirts of the human city that was once called El Paso.  Where the shallow river once stood, a huge inland lake had formed due to the rising of the oceans.  This was also further exacerbated by the vile actions of the wolves, resulting in the vast prairie lands being covered in water. The destruction of the ley line node and the various world chains, had wrought widespread devastation throughout the south western lands.  The once fertile fields withered away, as all life died and turned into dust.  The land cracked in all directions, and suddenly were violently sucked deep within the earth.  Animals had to flee in all directions, to higher more stable ground on bedrock.  The former desert lands of the state of New Mexico had fallen completely.

When the planet warmed, and shifted its axis, the ice melted and raised the seas.  The void that the fallen earth had created, was a suitable place to absorb not only the water that flowed from the Rio Grande, but several other smaller tributaries.  While the oceans rose, the brackish water began to overflow from the banks of the rivers down into the newly formed chasms.  At the same time, artesian springs that had remained out of reach by the humans, were breached and burst forth sources of fresh water from deep within Gaia.  Over the course of the year that had passed, the waters covered most of the state of New Mexico.  The waters also spread into the desert lands of Arizona as well, all the way to the gulf of California. 

However, as the water moved to places never seen, it aggravated the fault lines in the earth’s crust.  Violent earth tremors were occurring, causing further destruction as the land further split in twain.  The net result of all of these events was that it was now possible to sail from the former Gulf of Mexico, all the way to the Pacific Ocean.  Baja California was mountainous terrain, but had split apart from the rest of the continent due to the combination of floods, earthquakes, and wicked weather changes.  Areas never visited by the wolves, were having direct after effects of their actions.  The weather changes resulted in deluges of rain, flooding the desert lands, and gouging the surface.  Chasms had formed, and long covered native American structures were revealed.  The works of the humans, no matter how ancient, soon crumbled into dust once exposed to the light of day.      

Due to the arrival at the inland sea, and with Pudgy at the wheel of the ship, the little hedgehog needed to stay awake for much longer than he had been up until this point.  The visions had been burned deep within his brain, and were stored in his long-term memory.  This meant it was critical for him to give directions, and steer the ship to be able to safely cross the inland sea.  The Determined sailed through the deep waters, and with the daily measurements being reported back when the otters returned, it was determined that the actual depth of the water was perhaps twenty to thirty feet.  However, some areas were much deeper, with evidence of human ruins in them.  The findings of the aquatic crew members were documented, within the ship’s log, as well as their findings for posterity. 

As the days turned into weeks once again, the little ship sailed through the former lands of New Mexico, and into Arizona.  Due to the quickly elevating terrain, the lake started to pull back on each side, and the shorelines could be seen once again.  Once, long ago, the area had been known as the Gila River.  It had stretched from the Phoenix mountains, all the way to the Colorado river.  Like the Rio Grande, it was a shallow river, and provided a source of life saving water in the desert lands.  Now due to the arrival of so much more water, it too had spread out and deepened in places.  As in Texas, green foliage bloomed on each side of the river.  Animals of all sorts were curiously watching as the Determined passed by.   Through towering mountains of ancient windswept rock, they sailed ever westwards.  The pale-yellow rock, soon began to have more striped variations, with red and oranges indicating the presence of iron.   

The sailing ship reached the Colorado River a few days later, and the ship turned left to begin to follow its course to the west and southwest.  By this point, the little hedgehog was sleeping maybe four hours a day at best.  He was needed to guide the ship, but the crew watched him literally dragging himself up to the ship’s wheel to weakly stand.  All could see, Pudgy had reached his breaking point.  At first, the crew let him sleep on the deck nearby the ship’s wheel, which seemed to help.  But Mrs. Field Mouse was tapping her paw one morning and twitched her nose as she angrily spoke to her husband.  “Pudgy can’t keep doing this!  He needs sleep, even Argente agrees with me that this has to stop!”  The female mouse told her hedgehog friend to rest on the deck once again, which he readily complied with the order.    

An argument ensued between the married couple in hushed whispers.  Her husband was not ready for the hedgehog to sleep yet, as he needed more information about their upcoming course changes to follow the river.  He was also working on a witty retort to his wife’s anger.  However, thoughts of retorts were cast aside, when he saw a row of six cacti shoot up out of the ground beside the river bank along the port side of the ship.  The plants towered, standing at least ten feet in the air, silently watching the ship.  The two mice pointed, as well as the crew of the ship, calling out what they saw at the same time excitedly.  It was just as their hedgehog friend had told them, suddenly the tall plants would emerge from the desert sands.  The desert plants did not seem to respond to their calls, or when they waved at them.  It was night, so only their silhouettes could be seen.  Mrs. Field Mouse drew close to her husband, and hugged him while nervously watching the looming watchers along the shore.    

As the light of dawn crested over the eastern horizon, and between the ancient mountains of stone, the hedgehog stirred from his slumber.  Standing weakly up, he took the wheel, and wiggled his nose.  Mr. Field Mouse scurried over to the hedgehog from midships, “Pudgy!  I know you just woke up, but we have an issue.  Look to the port side,” the worried rodent said.  As the hedgehog looked to the left, he saw the cacti standing silently along the riverbank.  He also looked to the starboard/right side of the ship and noticed more cacti standing there as well.  They were keeping pace with the ship as it progressed, silently moving somehow.  The little hedgehog wiggled his nose, “Mr. Field Mouse … take the wheel.”  As the mouse did, the hedgehog scampered over to the port deck rail and cupped his paws around his mouth. 

“HELLO MR. CACTUS!  IS KEKTI OR CACTIKAKOS WITH YOU?”    As the crew watched the plants, soon two cacti began twisting and waving their appendages.  Kekti’s voice was loud as he wiggled, “PUDGY!  You came back to the desert?”  Cactikakos nodded and waved, “it’s good to see you Pudgy!  What is this you are on?”  The various animals on the ship started to wave, and the various cacti began to wave back friendly.  Pudgy called out, “Kekti … Cactikakos … this is a sailing ship.  Pudgy and friends are heading to a faraway island called Mt. Apo in the Philippines!”  The crew noticed in the light that the desert plants did not have faces, so it was hard to tell what their expressions were.  Argente’s ears were perked up, as she nervously watched on either side of the ship as the cacti became closer.  It was not due to the movements:  the river banks were pulling closer together on each side of the Determined.  The river which had been once a hundred feet across, narrowed to roughly twenty feet or so.  The little hedgehog started to introduce everyone, and when their name was called, the crew members would wave at the plants.

Cactikakos nodded, “hello everyone!  We are pleased to meet you all. Pudgy, why are you sailing so far away?”  The little hedgehog nodded, “the ocean is rising, and the lands are being flooded.  Something is calling Pudgy to the big island far … far … far away across the ocean.  Pudgy think will have answers as to what is going on with the world.”  Kekti nodded, “I have a well-informed guess … Pudgy the wolves attacked us in New Mexico.  They destroyed our ley line, and made us go dormant for a time.  When we woke up, we were in Arizona and standing near a lake.  That lake had never been there before …so what you are saying makes a bit of sense.  How much have the land sunk below the water?”  The little hedgehog wiggled his nose and looked sad.  “Most of the central United States is now under the water.  The ocean stretched from the middle of Texas, all the way to West Virginia.  We were able to sail the whole way here, and in front of the ship, is the path to the Pacific Ocean.”     

The desert plants stood silently for a time, as they processed the information provided.  The revelation that the water had risen so high and so far, inland, meant that much of their territory had been destroyed.  It also explained why the animals were migrating, and why the desert lands seemed to be getting more rainfall than usual.   They had noticed the night sky looked wrong, and could not tell why?  Then one day, a sailing ship crewed by woodland animals sails by, could only mean one thing: Pudgy.  Cactikakos the saguaro cactus wiggled his left appendage, “Pudgy do you think the island will have the answer why all of this is happening?  We suspected the wolves had caused the destruction, but did not know it stretched so far?”  As the words were spoken, the other cacti began to pull away from the shorelines, and head further out into the desert lands.  Only Cactikakos and Kekti remained, who slowed their forward lateral progression. 

The ship began to outpace the desert plants, who waved as the ship progressed down river.  Cactikakos called out, “we can’t go any farther Pudgy!  The sand ends, and the mud begins, which means we will get stuck.  Safe travels, please return to us with stories!”  Kekti waved along with his counterpart, and called out, “please be safe Pudgy and Pudgy’s friends!”  As the little hedgehog returned to the ship’s wheel, he turned to wave at the two tall cacti.  And in moments the ship reached a bend in the river, which meant that as Pudgy turned the wheel to alter the rudder’s direction, the cacti disappeared behind a hill.  The little captain wiggled his nose, and was glad to see the desert plants were all right.  He was sad though, since they could not stay long with him. 

The excitement eventually died down, and the night crew went back to sleep.  The daytime crew worked the rest of their shift, and a little bit extra, before the shift change occurred once again.  The river wound back and forth, weaving in and out, across the desert lands.  Occasionally they would see waving cacti in the distant sand dunes, but it was not possible for them to get closer to the river.  The shores had turned rocky, and the waters flowed much faster.  This was due to gravity and elevation, and the ship began to make much better time as it gained speed.  After almost a week had passed, the finally reached the Gulf of California.  As it was in the former lands of Texas, the waters of the ocean had covered much of the land in the area.  Vast swaths of both the United States and Mexico had been wiped away by the ocean.  Replaced with water, and dolphins playing in the distance.  

The maps being created by two chipmunks, were being furiously transcribed.  Notes were being added in the margins, as well as copies being made in case of emergency.  Little did they know, the humans had done the same thing long ago during their expeditions.  The hedgehog captain patted his friends on their heads, and smiled warmly as he took a look at their efforts.  Upon returning to the ocean, the waves started once again.  First small ones, then progressively larger ones as they proceeded further out into the bay.  Pudgy instructed everyone to look for a narrow water way, along the coastline ahead of the ship.  The ship’s compass, mounted in front of the ship’s wheel pointed due west, with only the occasional flicker to the north.  What the crew thought would take hours, turned into days, of sailing along the coast line.  Their only hope was to force Pudgy to go to bed for a full night’s rest.  Perhaps the visions would return to him, and they would have a better clue.  They could sail around the entire Baja California Coast line, but that would add weeks to their trip. 

The hedgehog was escorted to Argente’s sleeping area, and the female silver fox made her little friend go to sleep.  She kept a watchful eye on him, as well as the two otters who also decided that they wanted to sleep as well.  There still had been no agreement which would be the daytime otter versus the nighttime otter.  As the otters peeked at Pudgy from the deck of the ship, they saw their critter friend immediately fall asleep.  As the sounds of the ocean, and the ship faded away, Pudgy’s dream world was dark and black.  There were no sights, sounds, nor physical feelings to be had.  There was only an uneasiness, that seemed to fill the void.  The darkness stretched in all directions, endless, limitless … of pure void. 

After what seemed to be an eternity, there was a diffused light coming from above him.  As the little hedgehog looked up, he could see large fish swimming above him.  The details came into focus the higher he seemed to float, until he could just barely see a channel between the rocks.  Swimming as hard as he could, he surfaced to see a huge flat rock covered with large brown seals and walrus.    Around the rocks covered by the large animals, a narrow passageway could be seen that stretched the whole distance through the former peninsula of California.  The rocks were jagged, but with careful maneuvering, the ship could get through.  His heart leapt in his chest, and Pudgy was relieved that the visions once again would show him the way to the Pacific Ocean. 

Without warning, he felt his body being sucked back into the water.  Something had quickly wrapped around his body, and was restraining him.  Looking down, it was a long arm of some sort, with a pale brown slimy skin, and covered in huge white circles that seemed to stick onto his body.  No matter how hard he tried to break free, he could not escape.  Crying out, there was no sound, only the feeling as burning salt water poured down his throat.  Struggling as hard as he could, the little hedgehog furiously tried to swim back to the surface.  Terror filled his mind, as he realized he was drowning.  But suddenly and without warning, the light of dawn appeared.  Argente’s brown eyes were staring down at him, “PUDGY!  Wake up …it is just a dream … wake up … your safe.” 

The silver fox hugged her trembling friend tight, while the otters looked on with concern.  It had been only an hour of sleep, but Pudgy started to scream with howls of terror.  It so unnerved the crew, that everyone had woken up to stare with concern at the large cargo hold where Argente was sitting.  Pudgy found himself clinging onto her, and burying his face into her dark fur just at the base of her neck and at the top of her chest.  Tense minutes passed, until he started to pull back, and look up at his silver fox friend.  “Pudgy found the path, we have to look for a large rock covered with big brown animals.  Some have long teeth that stick out of their mouths, and others do not.  They are all brown, and make a terrific noise.  Beside their rock, is a narrow passageway where we can sail to the Pacific Ocean.” 

Private Pawl looked at Pudgy, “Pudgy …why were you screaming?”  The little critter started to hug Argente’s leg again, “This strange brown slimy thing reached up out of the water with white sticky circles all over it.  It wrapped around Pudgy body, and pulled Pudgy underneath water.  Pudgy could feel salt water pouring down throat, and Pudgy felt like drowning.  Pudgy also felt a presence, far below the water surface.  Pudgy scared, something very dark is down there.”  The hedgehog released the hug, and climbed up out of the storage compartment.  He scampered up to the ship’s wheel, and immediately turned the wheel hard to port, to make the ship turn to Starboard.  As the ship turned, the compass started to point due North.  All animals of the crew were awake, and furiously watching the coast line of Baja California.  As the hours passed, the night time crew headed back underneath the deck to return to sleep. 

As the light of the sun just started to touch the distant western skies, the sounds of barking could be heard loud and distinct.  The chipmunks spotted the large flat rock first, and called out from above in unison. “Pudgy, there’s the rock and it’s covered with huge brown animals just as you said!”  It was a colony of seals, that had decided to gather there for the day.  Curious looks from the large animals were replaced with happy calls, as the ship began to turn towards their direction.  Several dove into the ocean water to quickly swim up to the ship.  One stuck its head up out of the water, and waved a large dark brown fin at the ship.  He had a short face, with a pointed nose, and whiskers on each side of his mouth.  Dark brown eyes peered out to study the ship.  The seal opened its mouth, “my … my …what do we have here?”

Pudgy waved from the ship’s wheel, “HELLO Mr. Seal!  My name is Pudgy, and we are sailing to the Philippines.  Is there a passage way from this part of the ocean, through the mountains beside your rock?”  The seal blinked, and laughed with a strange sound coming from its mouth.  Rows of sharp teeth were exposed, before the animal’s poke again.  “Hello Pudgy, my name is Hammernose.  Yes, there is, and it keeps widening every day.  I think your strange object here should fit quiet nicely.  I will lead you there!”  The seal quickly dipped below the water surface, and swam quickly underneath the ship.  The deck animals watched as it took off like a rocket under the water, and soon was quickly in front of the Determined.  It was clear that the animals of the ocean were well adapted to life in the water.  The fact was not lost upon them, that without their ship, they would not last long at all. 

Following the seal, they could hear Hammer nose telling the others what had been found out.  The remaining members of the colony nodded and waved.  They were a friendly sort, and wanted a better look at the ship as it passed by.  In time, they got their wish, as the ship turned to enter the channel beside their rock.  As the ship began to pass with its large sails, the river otters waved at the seals from on board the deck.  The seals waved back, and wondered why those otters looked so strange.  Hammernose peeked up out of the water, “my brothers are wondering why those sea otters are so lean?”  Pawl looked down over the deck railing, “we’re river otters.”  The male seal nodded, “ahh… that is why.  Stay out of the ocean my friends, it is much deeper than your river.”

As the two river otters nodded, they watched as Angeliki the raven flew down along with Pastor Blue Jay to land on the deck.  The raven called out, “Pudgy the channel does indeed go all the way to the Pacific, just be careful, it is tight in a few places!”  The hedgehog captain nodded from the wheel house and called out, “EVERYONE INTO POSITIONS!  CALL OUT ANYTHING YOU SEE!”  The various deck members scampered around, and soon everyone was stationed around the ship to peek over the deck rails.  The seals barked as they laughed, and a couple swam along with the ship out of curiosity.  All looked up as near vertical rock cliffs were on each side of the channel.  It was as if Baja California had been cut with a surgical knife, with a near straight line passage through to the Pacific. 

Slowly they sailed, until the wind died down and the shop slowed to a halt.  However, it was not long until the seals helped, and gently pushed the ship forward with their noses.  The rock walls drew in closer and closer, with the deck animals calling out adjustments necessary.  Pudgy steered the ship accordingly, weaving very slowly through the channel to port and then to starboard.  The deck animals called out many thanks to the seals for helping, which drew happy calls from the large brown aquatic animals.  It was a nerve-wracking series of maneuvers, as they proceeded, until finally a strong breeze blew through the cave against the ship.  The critter crew leapt into action, setting up the sails to tack once again.  With the wind being redirected once more, the ship began to move on its own, though the seals kept helping. 

Pudgy called out over the deck railing, “THANK YOU HAMMERNOSE!  THANK YOU ALL FOR HELPING US!”  As the ship began to emerge from the narrow passageway, the seals broke off and waved from the water at the stern of the ship.  Hammernose wiggled his nose, “safe travels Pudgy, and you are very welcome.”  As the Determined sailed forth, the winds shifted once more.  As the crew shifted the sail positions to take advantage of the much stronger breeze, the crew of the Determined realized that finally after almost two months, they had reached the Pacific Ocean.  The water was deep blue, and the waves were much taller.  The wind was strong, and the ship’s sails were taking full advantage.  The course was due west, and with a whole lot of luck, they would make it safely to their destination.  Next stop: Mt Apo in the Philippines!

By Cobalt

Cobalt is a normal guy that goes to work. Pudgy is his hedgehog friend who lives in a hobbit style home nearby, and goes on epic adventures. All Pudgy stories are copyrighted to Cobalt. Doomcock, Harvey Cthulhu, and Xanadoom is copyrighted to Overlord DVD.

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