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By Tim Stevens
For Randolph Stein—Found this while doing research for your "Atlantis" trip. I think this may be the same creature the crew has been talking about. I hope you are right about this one being a myth…he sounds like a very dangerous character.
Entry Date: 16 December
Entry Time: 03:20
I fear this way be the final entry of Neptune's Blade. Our vessel has been destroyed and only myself and Robbigs remain in the rescue skiff.
Our tragedy began at 01:40 when Robbigs and I, on night watch, noticed a figure four miles off starboard. Robbigs saw it first and began to pray that the Flying Dutchman would show us mercy. I, knowing that the Dutchman was nothing more than a children's story for deficient sailors to blame for their incompetence, demanded the glasses from him. While there was indeed a figure visible through them, it was no ship. In fact, it appeared to be a man.
I dismissed this out of hand. It was dark and the moon was but a sliver in the sky. We could barely see it, never mind aptly judge what it was. Assuring Robbigs that it was nothing more than our eyes playing tricks in the dark, we left it be.
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Alas, it was no illusion and it shortly did move.
I do not believe in the Kraken and I know that mermaids are nothing more than the mind's way of telling a shipman he's been too long without a woman's touch. There is no such thing as vengeful ghosts of ships past looking to drag you into their eternal damnation. Redheads, women, and flat-feet are not a danger to sailors; complacency and stupidity is. I am a skeptic by nature and nothing I have seen in my years on the water has changed that. But know this: what Robbigs and I saw this night was real. The Sub-Mariner is real.
The creature, looking almost like a man and yet very different, hovered inches above the water, staring at us; he was slick with water and brine and his eyes and hair were as dark as coal. He said nothing, only cocked his head and watched. I was frozen with fear, glasses to my eyes. Robbigs, however, was not and he fetched the Captain straightaway. Captain only needed a moment to look before ordering all hands on deck and to open fire.
The barrage lasted minutes and the smell of fire and war hung thick in the air. As the smoke dissipated, there was no sign of the creature. We celebrated or told ourselves that it was just a trick all our eyes played. For a moment, perhaps we believed that.
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Then, with a terrible groan, the Blade lifted out of the water. The deck splintered in half as it came screaming through it. In his arms, he already held Jones and Tyler who flopped about, dead-eyed, like the night's catch. The Sub-Mariner cast them aside and began to, one by one, grab the rest of our brothers and destroy them. He screamed in an unholy tongue that I have never heard, but there was no other sound.
In the chaos, our shattered ship began to sink and I was cast overboard. There are several moments that I can remember nothing but the sounds of terror from the shattered remains of the Blade. Seconds or perhaps minutes later, Robbigs found me and pulled me into the rescue craft.
And here we remain. Our ship has long since sunk and there is no sign of survivors. So, too, has the Sub-Mariner disappeared. But it seemed gone once before and we seemed saved. It was not true then. Could it be true now?
SUB-MARINER: THE DEPTHS #4 by Peter Milligan and Esad Ribic ships January 7—see if Dr. Stein and his crew can escape the fate suffered by the men of Neptune's Blade. For more on the legend of Namor, visit Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited.