The 4th Strike
Published by Thom Tate on Smashwords. Copyright 2012 Thom Tate. Edited by Alex Stoddard. Cover by S.A. Hunt
Sea of Okhotsk
22:30 Local Time
Erik Drevnerussky brewed a fresh pot of coffee and poured a cup. He added his special ingredient, a shot of vodka, and walked up to the bridge to monitor his ships progress. At fifty-nine years old, Erik had over forty years’ experience at sea. He still had a full head of hair. It was thick and curly but had turned mostly grey-- with brief glances of his younger times here and there-- years ago. With his beard and thick greyish white sweater he was wearing, he looked like the spokesperson for the Gorton’s Fisherman brand of products. He was the captain of a 190 foot trawler that delivered supplies from Nikolayevsk-on-Amur to the small village of Tilichiki, in the Kamchatka Krai region of western Russia. It was a run that he’d traveled every other week for the past seventeen years and so far, it had been a typical and uneventful trip. Little did he know what was unfolding just 300 yards off of his stern.