The Beast of Cretacea

By Todd Strasser

Master storyteller Todd Strasser reimagines the vintage story of Moby Dick as set within the future—and takes readers on an epic sci-fi adventure.

When seventeen-year-old Ishmael wakes up from stasis aboard the Pequod, he is surprised via how various this planet is from the soiled, death, Shroud-covered Earth he left at the back of. yet Ishmael isn’t on Cretacea to wonder on the clean air, sunshine, and never-ending blue ocean. He’s the following to paintings, risking his existence to seek down nice ocean-dwelling beasts to reap and ship again to the resource-depleted Earth. even supposing effortless prey abounds, many times the chase boat crews are ordered to disregard it so as to pursue the elusive nice Terrafin. It’s rumored that the ship’s captain, Ahab, misplaced his leg to the beast years in the past, and that he’s now fed on through revenge. yet there is extra to Captain Ahab’s obsession. darkish secrets and techniques and unsafe exploits swirl round the pursuit of the beast, and Ishmael needs to do his top to survive—if he can.

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And their mom and dad. is going means, as far back as the send that ran aground at the reef. ” “And you’ve by no means attempted to depart? ” Gwen asks. Gabriel smiles softly. “’Tis no cause to. ” Later that evening the chase-boat staff lie in hammocks, hearing the far-off crash of waves and the calls of animals. “Think they’re searching for us? ” Queequeg asks confidently. “Not likely,” Gwen says. “The Pequod’s at the flow, attempting to make up weight. And the longer we remain the following, the farther away she’ll move. ” “What do you think that we should always do? ” Queequeg asks. “Leave,” Gwen says. “As quickly as Billy’s good adequate. ” within the morning, Ishmael and the others watch a scrawny guy inch his means up a tall, limbless tree. on the best is a burst of lengthy, thin eco-friendly leaves and a number of other clusters of what appear like huge around eco-friendly and yellow plant meals. while he’s climbed excessive sufficient, he pulls a stick from his waist and swats on the clusters till they holiday free and thump to the floor under. “Hungry? ” Thistle asks the chase-boat group. The scrawny guy climbs go into reverse and hacks at one of many around issues with a hatchet. pack up, he’s older than he regarded. His brief, curly hair is grey, his wrinkled dermis sags from his bony body, and he doesn’t have many tooth left. “Mikal, those artwork my friends,” Thistle says. “’Twill test a treestone. ” The outdated guy cuts a gap into one finish, then deals it to Gwen, who hesitates. “What am I alleged to do? ” “Drink,” Thistle says. while Gwen declines, Mikal deals the treestone to Ishmael, who presses the opening to his lips. The liquid inside of is clean and candy, however the flavor is overseas, and he’s uncertain he likes it. He arms the treestone to Queequeg, who sips, makes a face, and palms it again. The previous guy shrugs, presses the treestone to his lips, and beverages what continues to be. yet he’s now not comprehensive. With the hatchet he splits the treestone in . inside of is a troublesome brown nut the scale of a big man’s fist, and inside of that's a nearly pure-white substance. Mikal scoops a few out and provides it round. Ishmael attempts a small chunk and is stunned to discover it scrumptious and chewy. whilst he quick takes a bigger chunk, Gwen and Queequeg choose to pattern theirs. Cheeks bulging, either nod approvingly. With a toothless smile, Mikal begins to hack open extra. From that day ahead, the group commence with a breakfast of treestone meat, then stopover at Billy. He’s nonetheless asleep, the maggots nonetheless infesting the wound, however the foul smell is much less and not more obvious. in a while the chase-boat staff are unfastened to do no matter what they decide on — which typically potential exploring the island. With Thistle as their advisor, they alternate their footwear for animal-hide boots and climb the hill at the back of the village, the place she indicates them the row of huge catapults that introduced the stones that drove the pirate boat away. once more, she leads them to a spot the place transparent, cool water really burbles out of the floor and is amassed for ingesting and cooking. From there she issues out the cave the place the 1st population of the island — the survivors of the shipwreck — took defend centuries earlier than.

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