Captain Gilroy's Study
...Once they got out of the city traffic Gilroy handed the wheel over to his first mate and went down to the deck for a smoke break (though that is very much illegal these days). He stood on the deck looking starboard into the river, chain-smoking and drinking from his flask-which he noted had a funny taste and some grit to it- but decided to drink it anyway. Staring off into the river and ruminating over his most recent failing marriage, he noticed an anomaly in the distance. He saw something large slowly breach the surface and then slowly dive again. Having spent most of his life on the river, Gilroy knew all the visual forms driftwood and flotsam can take, as they can cause some serious damage to a vessel. This was no driftwood. It was more the size and girth of a small submarine but moved too organically to be a machine-- or at least one that he was aware of. Maybe it was some secret military vessel. It breached the surface again. It seemed to be getting closer to the boat. He was about to sound the alarm that there was a large vessel in the path, but as he turned, it breached again but it was right beside the boat. This was no vessel--it appeared to be a fish but not like any he had seen before. Though the fish was only breaching enough to show its back, Gilroy could see it had three rows of dorsal fins, and if he had to guess he would say the fish had to be over 12 ft long, and over 3ft in diameter. It was also covered in scales unlike anything he had ever seen on a fish- their simplified diamond shape, pattern, and matte finish almost looked almost synthetic and more like cookie-cutter forms rather than organic matter. It reminded him of something he had seen recently but he couldn’t put his finger on it. The fish was circling the boat now, coming up to the surface just enough for its back to be seen in the pitch-black river water. Just then he realized that this creature reminded him of some other strange things that happened to him a couple of weeks back.