The sun was still high in the sky and the day was young. Ryan and Henry ran down to the docks edge and stared out into the bay.
“I wish I had a boat we could go ride on” said Ryan.
“My daddy has three boats down over by Best Boat Works” replied Henry.
Ryan though about that for a moment. He then looked down at his feet and in a quiet voice said, “I bet you don’t know how to drive a boat though.”
“I do too. In fact, we could out on the Blueberry right now. My daddy is out fishing on the Wizard and mama is cooking. I could sneak in the house and steal the keys to the boat and we could drive around the bay all afternoon if we want.”
Ryan became excited. He had never been on a boat before.
“Let’s go riding around the bay in your daddy’s small boat.”
Henry felt nervous, but he wasn’t about to seem scared to his friend. Never mind even telling him he had never driven a boat in his life.
“Fine. But you better not get sea sick.”
“We will just be in the bay, nothing will happen.”
The boys crept through the back door of Henry’s house. It was a one story summer bungalow on eastern Long Island. Simple house, simple days.
The door made no noise as they stepped in. Henry motioned with his hand for Ryan to stay put in the doorway while Henry went to retrieve the keys. Ryan lost sight of Henry. A few minutes passed by, no sound. What if his mom caught him, thought Ryan. All of a sudden he heard a loud bang from somewhere in the house.
“Henry, honey, is that you?” a voice shouted ominously near.
The sound of quick footsteps approaching. Henry came running over, grabbed Ryan by the arm and pulled him back outside.
“We have to run now” Henry panted.
“Did your Mom…”
After they ran a few blocks, Henry finally slowed down.
“Did you find the keys?” asked Ryan.
Henry smiled and pulled from his pocket a rusty old key, attached to a Budweiser key chain.
“She almost caught me, but I am very quick. The wharf is around the block let’s hurry up.”
The wharf was really just a tiny, beat up shack with a small dock shooting out into the bay. Ryan and Henry walked through the parking lot and down onto the dock and over to the Blueberry.
“Okay, I am going to turn on the engine and you can untie all of the ropes from the dock,” said Henry as he climbed onto the small boat. The boat was 10 feet long and painted an ugly cerulean. It had one 15 horse power engine and a steering wheel, the rest of the boat was bare except for the word Blueberry crudely painted in a light yellow on the starboard.
Ryan bent down to untie the ropes. The ropes were knotted in a double figure of an eight style and he struggled for a few minutes to untie them. Just as he finished the last rope the boat was already pulling away.
“Wait up” growled Ryan as he jumped aboard.
The boat was going a smooth 5 mph through the water, much too slow. Henry gave the boat some gas and the Blueberry shot through the Old Fort Pond into the Shinnecock.
“I think I saw a sign that said 5 mph speed limit” said Ryan.
Henry did not bother to respond, he was in pure joy. Within a few minutes Ryan and Henry were in the dead center of the bay. Henry turned off the engine and looked at his friend.
“How cool is this?”
“Can I try driving?” asked Ryan.
“No this is my boat.”
“Come on Henry that’s no fair.”
“When you have a boat you can…wait why are my feet wet?”
Henry looked down and saw 6 inches of water in the boat.
“Henry I think we are sinking.”
They both noticed the large crack in the hull at the same time. Water was quickly rushing into the boat.
“Henry what do we do?”