Friday, February 02, 2024

Another Echoes from the Deep excerpt

Phineas found the waters to be warmer than he would have expected, but there was nothing strange below the boat, and there was no sign of the probe. He dove as far as he dared, but found nothing, not even a behemoth. Nothing. He began to re-surface when he heard the identity echo of Long Fins from above. He paused in his swim for a few seconds. Long Fins was his favorite female in the pod, and he couldn’t help but feel a slight arousal when he realized how proud she’d be of him if he could learn something. He decided to stay under a little longer.

He suddenly felt a strange sensation in his tail. It was the same sensation he felt when there was a behemoth nearby, or the same feeling he used to feel on Earth when there had been sharks nearby. He spun around, but sensed nothing. The feeling was still there however, so he sent off more intense echoes, but nothing came back to him.

Nothing came back to him! From the south, there were no echoes returning, but there was a reef not more than half a mile from him, but nothing returned. He swam in a quick circle and sent off another series of echoes. Nothing!

“Phineas, what is it?” The call was from Long Fins, but he didn’t respond. There was something to the south. He couldn’t see it or sense it, but he knew it was there. He couldn’t detect anything, and he knew that meant there had to be something there.

The water suddenly cooled to a temperature that he would have expected, so he sent off another series of echoes. This time, the echoes of the reef to the south came back to him. It was then that he realized that his lungs were burning from lack of oxygen. He shot to the surface, shaking his head violently once he was above the water, and gasping for air.

“Phineas, what did you see?” It was Eric’s voice being translated into Delphin that he was hearing.


“Did you detect anything?” Eric asked.

“No.” He had no idea why he was lying. He just knew he had to. Of course, it wasn’t really a lie. He hadn’t detected anything, not one damn thing.

Just then, Shark Lover swam up to the boat. Without thinking, Phineas lunged at him, dragging rows of teeth along the smaller dolphin’s dorsal fin. It made Phineas feel better.

“Phineas, stop!” It was Long Fins’ echoes.

Phineas just swam away from Shark Lover, away from the boat, away from the shore, away from the impossible lack of echoes he’d experienced. Phineas just swam.

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