During the production of the Sinking City, Frogwares commissioned six art pieces from Astor Alexander in which the illustrator should mix Edward Hopper’s style art but with a Lovecraftian twist. Sailboat is a short story inspired by this artwork.

Sailboat — Astor Alexander

It came from starboard with a noise so precise, so distinct, you’d think it was the Midwest howling wind. Lying in a sitting position, in the tiny boat, Jonas saw it first, thought it was a fin and pointed at it.

- Shark! Shark! He barked in his small five-years-old voice.

Lauren, tired and half asleep, threw a dubious glance, opened wide her mouth. She had put on the sunbathing suit Howard liked so much, she disliked so much. Tilting her sunglasses downward she forgot about it all.

- Shark, yelped her child for a somethingth time.

Howard, Howard screamed from the top of his lungs and started to run all through the sailboat as if he’d be able to do anything. Running around, doing nothing. The noise of water falling slowly invading the whole world. The fin had grown, at this point, until it was big enough to be owned by a megalodon but after that it’d raised again. The fish which surely was attached to such a thing grew bigger. Unimaginable.

- Gojira! suddenly growled the five years old, his chubby arms raised at both sides of his head.

The scale, because it could be nothing else, there were other pointy things following the slow rise of the creature, was now as high as the Eiffel Tower, a cold black tooth piercing the water, accompanied by the noise the sea makes right before a tsunami while it disappears. Lauren, Lauren she’d know. Howard had taken her to Paris for their honeymoon and, still, ten years later, she cherished every breathe she took in the French capital. She could have loved him just for this trip…

The ship seemed small to Howard while he began to cry, and he’d hope and he’d pray. His attention divided between the vision of his son, finally upright, roaring as a lunatic, and the cold stillness of Lauren. Behind them, the sea, the sky were disappearing oh-so-slowly, turning dark and gritty and black as rock as the creature emerged.

- Couldn’t you feel something at least, bitch? Growled Howard towards his other half.

This snapped Lauren out of the mesmerizing effect of their rising death. She’d already understood the creature, whatever this was, wanted nothing to do with them. They were just too small. For it to notice. Turning towards her husband, she grinned and freed her blonde hair from under her swim bonnet, with a calmness Howard used to love; she responded:

- I stopped loving you three years ago, Howard. And now we’re both dead.

Her sight came back to the lack of sea, to the volcanic surface which would soon crush the three of them. She knelt right next to her child while Howard tried to close the distance which separated him from them. That’s when she heard the cries.

- What’s that noise, Mom? asked Jonas, seeming finally scared.

- Hush, hush, don’t look, boy, she answered, gently, pressing her hands onto his head, blinding him.

Behind her, she heard Howard going: What the he, never finishing his sentence and then falling limp. She listened intently as the voices of whatever made up the creature called to her, so terribly, so sincerely that she felt a warmth right under her belly, and she felt ashamed and she squeezed her boy a little bit more.

That’s when the boat finally tipped and the water drowned them, and in panic she opened her eyes.

It was too big, completely made of human remains but she thought she saw… alien remains before her mind broke as a tough diamond crashing onto a marble tile.

She felt the bubbles leaving the mouth of her child, slowly rising past her neck, onto her right chick.

It was too big to even exist.

This is the second short story I wrote with Astor Alexander’s art as an inspiration for Frogwares’ videogame the Sinking City. At this time, making a series appeared to be a good idea. Anyway, if you liked or disliked the story, please like, clap (’cause that’s what we do here).

You can find the first one Docks HERE.

If you want to learn more on how this whole series came to be, you can check it out in this article.

Releasing a paper every Friday.

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