Story A Day May #18: “A Night to Remember”

She was a behemoth, sitting in the cold of the day and the freeze of the night, with Earth’s life-blood lapping at her waist. Deep-sea leviathans occasionally rose to tickle her toes. They kept her company in the darkest hours. That night however they had gone far below, leaving her to her desires. This new leviathan, all surface-gliding and smoke-puffing, came toward her, its many eyes brightly lit. She was joyous at the thought of a new mate and reached out to gently caress its flank. The new creature however did not return the gesture and instead seemed to crumble at her touch; she too was injured, its flesh was sharp. It began to fall, the light of its eyes fading, its smoke gone out. She was saddened by the thought that it desired the company of those creatures down below more than it wished to dance with her. She watched its slow and inexorable descent, its final words foreign to her understanding.

1:45 a.m.:  Last signals heard from Titanic by Carpathia, “Come as quickly as possible old man: the engine-room is filling up to the boilers.” Mount Temple hears Frankfurt calling Titanic. No reply.

 1:47 a.m : Caronia hears Titanic though signals unreadable still. Virginia hears Titanic calling very faintly, his power being greatly reduced.

 (At 2-05 a.m. the Captain visits the wireless room for the last time and says, “Men, you have done your full duty. You can do no more. Abandon your cabin. Now it’s every man for himself.” Phillips looks up for a second, and then bends over the equipment once more. Captain Smith tries again “You look out for yourselves. I release you.” A pause, then he adds softly “That’s the way of it at this kind of time….every man for himself” He then leaves the wireless room. Phillips continues sending)

 1-48 a.m.: Asian heard Titanic call SOS Asian answers Titanic but receives no answer.DFT (Frankfurt) calls Titanic and says, “What is the matter with u ?”

 1-50 a.m.:  Titanic says to Frankfurt “You fool, stdbi and keep out.” Caronia hears Frankfurt working to Titanic.  Frankfurt according to position 172 miles from MGY (Titanic) at time first SOS sent out.

I deviated somewhat from today’s Story A Day prompt, which asked us to copy cat a favorite story. If you click over to the prompt you can see what I mean. Instead of reworking one of my favorite tales of old, I decided to take a look at the somewhat well-known story of the Titanic, except I told the story from the perspective of the iceberg. The dialogue that follows the perspective piece comes from the pieced-together radio communications of the disaster, about which more can be read here. There is quite a bit of background information at the site; scroll down for the transmission stuff.

As far as the name of the post is concerned, I borrowed it (and put it in quotes, plus here comes the attribute) from a book and film by the same name.

(4) Comments

  1. Interesting read from the iceberg perspective. “A Night to Remember” is one of my favorite books. I bought it after watching the big blockbuster movie, wanting to get the real story, not the DiCaprio version.

    1. Thank you! The 1920s movies is my absolute favorite. The Leonardo one still makes me cry, but for the reasons the old one did…the band playing, so many second and third class passengers dying, etc.

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