There is hope now. HMS Salvation anchored beside us and was taking people onboard. We rushed to see if we could gain passage on this vessel, far superior to our own. The Captain himself was there, offering his helping hand and delivering direction to the effort. Such was the fervour and passion with which he lent himself to the task that we found ourselves reaching out to him. We saw many with arms extended: reaching out to grasp those hands pulling repentant refugees away.
To our amazement we saw a crowd standing back, arms held stiffly to their sides and inside of their heavy coats. They stood there static, snarling at the happy hope of those who called out for help. We cried to the Captain also and raised our hands to be grasped by his. “Let us on,” we cried, for we had considered the terror of imminent death beyond the water’s edge. The deep was calling for our lives, but we stretched out to escape the consequences we so richly deserved. We found ourselves reaching for the upward calling of this ship, HMS Salvation.
The Captain stretched out to us, but stopped and pulled away before we could grasp him. He spoke to us across the distance. “You cannot come here,” he shouted. Our hearts withered within us, to be found unworthy of the only means of escape. “Unless…” Our hearts leaped again to hear that blessed word. Unless. There was still a chance.