The Last Drawing
I sat in a dimly lit cell, musty, with stone walls. I did not have much time left, just enough for one more drawing. Charcoal sketches of sail boats like the one that had brought me here covered the stone wall of my cell. I longed to be out there again, to taste the fresh air and feel the sea breeze on my face.
Just weeks ago I had been captain of my own ship, The Santa Christa. She was a fine ship with a good crew, but we were low on supplies and that crew turned savage. I tried my best to ration what little food we had justly. I decided that it made the most sense to give more food to those with the most important roles on the ship, that would allow us to be able to sail for the largest amount of time and give us a better chance of reaching land. But the lower workers disagreed, they became jealous and suspected me of corruption. By the time we had reached
, the crew had mutinied and I was in shackles. San Juan
The Santa Christa would be my last drawing, I had only hours left but I would try my best to portray it respectfully with what little I had. I had been adding red textures to my ship drawings with my own blood for a while now and the tips of my fingers were scabby and crusted. The guard had called me mad when he saw me doing it, but I did not have much left besides these drawings and not much mattered anymore. There was a younger guard, he could not have been more than eighteen, who would sometimes come by my cell and talk to me. I saw him admiring my drawings one day while he thought I was asleep. When he saw I was awake he turned to me and said;
" Being a good artist does not save one from death, Felipe".
It was almost time now, I could see the light of dawn flickering from the entrance of the dungeon. It was so far from my cell and yet the dim light was a signal to how close I was to being out in the sunlight again, how close I was to death. Living mattered little to me now, I just wanted to view the sea again, one last time. It had always called to me since I was a young boy living in
. So unexplored, so mysterious, so many possibilities. It was my true home. I just wanted to go home. Barcelona
The Santa Christa was almost finished now, I could almost see the boat as I had seen it when we first boarded, its majestic hull rocking in the sea green waves. I cried, not because of fear of death, or the condition I was in, but because I knew I would never see such a magnificent boat again. I knew that even though I had tried my best to draw my beloved ship, it was not the real thing, and I would die before I ever got the chance to look upon another boat. The drawing disgusted me now, it was not worthy of my glorious ship. I raised my bloody hand to smear it when my young guard walked in.
"You would not deprive other prisoners of such art would you?" he said.
I turned towards him, my watery eyes looking into his from across my cell. His expression changed, he had not seen me cry before, I had never cried my entire time I was in the cell, until now. I opened my mouth to ask him if it was time, but I closed it, only letting out a croak, because I knew it was. Finally I spoke in a raspy voice.
"Where will they bury me?"
The young guard paused and then responded.
"They will dump your body in the sea. Now come Felipe it is time to go home".