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Bullying and cajoling

Mouritzen, by now, was alternately bullying and cajoling the men. He reflected when, under each smashing onslaught of the sea, he had time to think, on his own inadequacy in coping with this kind of...

The dark green crest

‘Hold on! She’s caught …’ Herning was on the bridge between the two hatches. He was half kneeling, and he turned his head towards Mouritzen, as though to make out more clearly what he was...

The end of things …

Clinging to the steps as a wave washed over the Kreya, Mouritzen thought the wind was even higher. He made his way across a deck running with water towards the cluster of lights above the...

A man without insight

‘You think I do not know myself, Niels? I am a man without insight, ruled by his prejudices and obsessions. That is how I appear to you, is it not?’ ‘Not quite like that.’ ‘The...

The anti-Oedipus

‘She was incredible,’ Mouritzen added. ‘A magnificent woman.’

‘Yes,’ Olsen said. ‘But I haven’t much liking for masterful women. When, in school history, I read of Joan of Arc, I detested her. I thought it fitting that she was executed, although I did not approve of the method.’

‘The beast walks free!’

Mouritzen heard a shout behind him, and turned to see another of the hands coming up from the direction of the forward hatch. Whatever he was saying was carried away by the wind.

Mouritzen shouted: ‘What was that?’

He came up to them. ‘The bear?’

‘What about the bear?’

‘The bear’s loose!’

‘Are you sure?’ Mouritzen demanded.

‘She’s down there, on the deck.’

Carling spoke then, his voice trumpeting over the massed violins of the storm.

‘The first sign!’

An excellent woman

Nadya said: ‘You look tired, Niels. You have been on duty?’ ‘Yes. Soon I am going to bed.’ ‘Poor Niels. You have a hard time. So much duty, so little sleep.’ She looked at him,...

The advantages of marriage

‘You find passengers too much of a distraction.’ ‘Not too much, I think.’ ‘You don’t think straight; that’s the trouble. Once we’ve cleared Amsterdam, I suppose it will be the Simanyi girl again?’ ‘No, no.’...

No man knows another’s mind

‘Where?’ ‘In the barn – the little barn.’ ‘And how, then?’ ‘With his belt.’ ‘And with what reason?’ ‘It’s not known. Her, maybe.’ ‘In Hell – for her?’ ‘No man knows another’s mind.’ ‘But in...

No one can fine a captain

‘What are you doing, do you think?’ Josef glanced over his shoulder. ‘Fishing.’ ‘Forbidden,’ Olsen said. ‘Three thousand francs’ fine for any who fish within the harbour.’ ‘Truly?’ ‘Truly. Give me the rod. If anyone...