The Grim Bastard, our noble ship, seemed bound for a sad landing. We saw the murderous water from way off, but like a grotesque and many breasted tramp it was unavoidable. We stared, gape-wise at the mouth until The Grim Bastard ground into the vicious lumps of ice that littered the sea like buboes on a whore-master’s buttocks. Reluctantly we debarked from the wreckage of our vessel, and shambled onto the shifting sheets of ice that made up our makeshift landfall.
Me eye was captivated once again, for across the grimy whiteness appeared a man. He strode across the ice towards us in slight sliding hops. As he slid down the nearest ‘berg I noted that his feet were… oddly shaped. Twas as he picked himself up that I realised his feet were shod in a pair of baby harp seals. They blinked at me. I felt I ought to offer a wink in return. The man, girt in the slippery mammal slippers grinned of a sudden and let loose with a flurry o’ Frenchish hooting. I’ve a smattering of Grenouille and I discerned from his barbarous exposition that he hailed from the Canadish lands, though sadly from the wrong colony.
The fellow had apparently been enagin’ in the habitual slaughter of innocent and cute creatures to which his people are predisposed and had grown stranded when he mistook a pygmy walrus for a baby seal. The beast had reared and shown its frightful tusks, then with speed and alcacrity, plunged ‘em into the surprised Canadian’s thigh. He kicked the brute to a still silence and bled his way across the packed ice and weed to our stranded ship.
His tale of woe twanged an harmonious chord in me black heart – many’s the time I’ve been bested by a seemingly vulnerable creature. I strive to overcome me innate sensitivity and bludgeon the thing without thinking. I hauled him aboard our forlorn ship. Gunther slathered some offensive unguent on his stab wounds and deposited him in me cabin.
Vincent de Vache-Gauche was the fellow’s name and we caroused into the night, our drinking punctuated by the curses of a thousand tongues and cries of “huzzah”. We attained five bells in the morning through continuous imbation of rum and the coffee brewed (in an increasingly incompetent manner) by Monty McBuboe. Twas fortuitous that we’d intoxicated ourselves in such a manner, for it meant that we were awake to hear the watch be slaughtered at their posts. That in itself was not the luckish part – twas in truth an upset to witness their bubbled shrieks and gasps of horror, never mind the thumps and dragging of their bodies about the deck.
Twas only when we burst from the cabin, swords bared and leanin’ on one another for balance, that we discovered the cause of the awful sounds (which troubled me for some days and ruined quite a number of naps) – the corpses of me men were being raced back and forth across the deck by a pair of bull walruses like a pair of tug-along toy ships, their tusks firmly stuck in the ribs of those poor men.
At our approach the beasts attempted still further exertions to free their penetrative teeth, but to no avail. For though they raised themselves onto their muscular hindquarters and shook their heads to cast off their burdens, it seemed more some morbid puppet show, to which their roaring chorus added but an element of greater grotesquerie. We spared little time, beyond that of considering the artistic merit of their marionetted massacre. Vache-Gauche and I plunged our sabres into their thick neck fat and gently persuaded the swimmish man-beasts to release me mates.
Normally I’d have laid the blame at our visitor’s feet but we’d spent the night a-frenzied in caffeinated liquor. Instead I railed at the stars, who were most certainly culpable of being there and failing to intervene. Damn them pointy pricks o’ light what puncture that veil of night with their promise o’ foreign dawn that never comes to brighten our fates. By that disingenous starlight I spotted a lumbering presence without the vessel. We rushed to the rail and saw, in the astral gloom a thousand shapes, humping their graceless way across the ice. When the walruses realised they were spotted they let loose with a deep hoon of rage, reminiscent of one o’ Hamish McMuffin’s intestinal exploits.
Twas to be a hideous battle of blades and blubber. I lost count of the tubby legless manimals I ran through, the tusks I turned away and rammed into the wood of me deck, before decapitating the beast with me shiny blade. Wave after wave they came at us, their flesh rippling with the effort. If it were not for their numbers their very ineptitude at attack would have doomed them all. They ran as if humping jelly, truly they are better in the water. Twas almost cruel to run ‘em through. Vincent and I pierced, poked and prodded back to back with a fury born o’ inebriation. And yet they mobbed us. In truth, twas in fact the violence o’ their onslaught that ensured our victory. For the constant pounding of their flubber against The Grim Bastard’s waist eventually shunted her from the frosty clutches of the iceberg.
The few monstrous mercows that remained on board we slew; the rest flounced at us in their watery way, too far below the rail to threaten us. We left a wake of obese corpses behind us into which killer whales plunged like babes drowning for apple bobbing. The action ceased and we found ourselves giggling hysterically. Twas clearly time for another coffee, and perhaps a dance with these curiously lady-like sea beasts, well, if ye squint and drink a great deal they’re not at unappealing. Twas an unusual voyage and one I must confess is a haze of regret and hangover. Vincent de Vache-Gauche seemed a promising crew member and we allocated him the task of identifying prospective wenchery. He’s proven partially successful.