by Melissa Carmean
July 22 2045 2:54PM- Bottom of Mariana Trench-Just Landed
I have made it. The first human to ever reach the bottom of the Mariana Trench. It was said to be 36,070 feet deep.
Others have claimed to reach the bottom, but these claims were falsehoods.
The pressure in the cabin of my submersible is immense. My ears pop intermittently, and I’ve been resting here for hours. I am far beyond crush depth. In fact, I surpassed it hours ago. The walls moan and creak, but I refuse to leave this previously uncharted stretch of ocean.
Outside lights are on, but they don’t provide much visibility. The darkness here is thick. The ‘bubble’ of my cabin allows me to see three hundred and sixty degrees, so long as I’m willing and able to turn my head in any direction. I must admit, the pressure is getting to me.
My submersible rests at 49,012 feet.
July 22, 2045 3:30PM- Bottom of Mariana Trench- No Bloop Yet.
Lights on. So far, so good, considering I am beyond crush depth. This does not terrify me. I’ve waited my entire life for this. I became a marine biologist for this. I will die in order to find what creature makes such a sound. It is here. It was last heard 30,000 feet above the spot where I’ve rested my submersible.
The mass distortion field projected from my submersible is not enough. It lightens the mass, the weight of the water- still, crush depth has long been exceeded. The walls still creak and moan. Cameras recording. Hydrophones on.
I first heard of the Bloop twenty years ago. A lone, rumbling, unanswered cry. It was hypothesized for years that the Bloop was the result of tectonic plate shifts, or perhaps even bombs. Neither of those turned out to be the case. The Bloop was indeed animalistic in nature and tone. Its cries became consistent enough that we determined it could be a creature seeking a mate. A mating call. But this call has never been returned by a similar being.
The Bloop was first detected in 1997 by the NOAA. After that, several organizations have attempted (and failed) to identify the source of the Bloop. Most biologists theorize that the Bloop is the production of a large sea creature. I agree. Personally, I am of the belief that this is an ancient creature. The last of its line.
Two years ago, the cries became more frequent. More desperate. More lonesome. I built my own submersible. I received funding under the guise that my goal was to explore the Trench. I lied. I don’t give a damn about what’s under here, other than what is making that godawful sound.
I felt as though the creature were calling to me, personally. I’ve felt that it has been my personal mission to discover the creature. I will. Of this I am certain. I was destined to be here, at this moment in time.
I have yet to hear the Bloop.
July 22, 2045- 4:32PM- Bottom of the Mariana Trench- No Bloop Yet
Since I’m here, I may as well describe what my cameras are picking up, though I don’t care so much about the cameras as I do about the hydrophones and what they hear. So far, no sounds other than standard oceanic noises.
But the cameras…
I have a live feed streaming back to my colleagues at the lab. They are likely watching and listening to everything. The lights are weak, but they pick up many creatures. Most are eel-like, eyeless beings. Some are similar to angler fish, but much more skeletal. These fish appear to have meatless bones, and their organs are bioluminescent. Even the plant life glows here. There is enough natural light that the lights of my sub are near-worthless.
The juxtaposition of the horrifying eels and fish with the beautiful blue, orange, red, purple, and green glow of the plants- is jarring. Sometimes I jump. Several large, disgusting eels have crashed into my submersible. They don’t make much of an impact. The mass distortion field may be altering their appearances, however. In the distance, outside of the field, the creatures more resemble ocean-dwellers.
I feel I could turn off the lights and still have a clear vision of the ocean floor, which itself is not exciting. It’s grey, murky sand. I’m planted amidst tall, long and thick rocks. All dark, which dot the ocean floor like the tombstones of a graveyard. There are odd shapes, like letters, or drawings that I can hardly make out.
The markings on the rocks glow bright green or red, much like Christmas lights. It’s hard to see through the mass of stones, although fish still swim by. I’ve seen large, distorted, shark-like creatures devour the smaller eels. These sharks don’t have gills, or eyes, or snouts. Nothing. Just a smooth, featureless plane for a face. And their gaping maws that open only to engulf the smaller fish.
That’s what I see. I don’t know what I was expecting. If I was expecting anything. As mentioned, I do not care for what lives down here other than the creature who cries the Bloop. But, had I any natural expectations of the bottom of the Mariana Trench, I would be sourly disappointed, as I am certain my colleagues are at this very moment as they view my footage.
When a thing is a mystery- it can be anything. Your mind will twist it into either something beautiful and magical, or horrifying and deadly. Here, both environments exist in small doses. But mostly, there is just… nothing.
July 22, 2045 5:02PM- Bottom of the Mariana Trench- First Encounter with the Bloop
The hydrophones have picked up the sound. It is about five miles southeast of where I sit. My hands tremble as I write these words. I’m trembling not because of what I heard through the hydrophones. I’m trembling because I didn’t even need the hydrophones to hear the Bloop. Even through the mass distortion field, and the highly-pressurized cabin of my submersible, I clearly heard the low, long call of the creature.
Hearing the Bloop with the naked ear is much different. A connection exists now. Someone has actually heard the cry. Before, it was only picked up by machines.
My eardrums popped many times, but the sound was unlike anything I’ve heard in life, and I have heard and studied the calls of marine life for two decades now.
The dolphin has a high-pitched squeal. Everyone knows that sound. Even the uneducated could describe it well enough. Seals have similar noises, though they bark. Manatees chirp or grunt. The Great White Whale clicks and makes pulse calls that sound eerily similar to human screams.
The Bloop makes none of those calls. The call of the Bloop is very lonesome, indeed. It has become deeper throughout the years. It makes a call at least once per hour, but when it was first observed, for many years, it had only that lone call. The past five years it has picked up in frequency, and many have heard it through the hydrophones. Through such equipment, the sound is mutilated. It sounds nothing like it does with the naked ear.
My submersible trembled as did my hands the moment I heard the call. Or perhaps this is a feature of my imagination. Perhaps the conditions I am in are causing me to suffer. I do not know, but I believe I’ve truly heard the call of the creature, through no filters, and I did not hallucinate it.
It was a deep rumble. But hearing it wasn’t terrifying. The feeling it produced- that is what has me trembling. It was lonely, desperate, and sad.
July 22, 2045 6:03PM- Two More Bloops
Lights have gone out. The pressure, I believe, has become too much for them to remain operational. The hydrophones are on the fritz as well.
I’ve heard two more Bloops. The creature is now, perhaps, three and a half miles away. It is getting closer. The floor of the ocean shakes when the Bloop sounds. The tombstone-like rocks about me becomes jittery and rumble with more urgency, as though they, too, can hear the Bloop.
I no longer think this creature is calling for a mate.
I believe that, for centuries, the creature has known it is the last of its kind.
I believe the Bloop is a death knell.
July 22, 2045- 7:00PM- Tens of Bloops
Constant now. The Bloop. So loud I cannot think properly. My cabin will not withstand the pressure much longer. A single crack in the wall and I will die. I have a large bag next to me into which I will place this journal. Perhaps someday, someone will read it, and they will know what has happened here.
It’s less than a mile away.
July 22, 2045- ??
All of my electronics have failed me. It doesn’t stop. The sound. Excuse the blood on the pages. My ears are dripping with it.
It’s here. So large it encompasses the whole of my window. I see its body in all directions. Scales. So many scales. It has arms. Human-like appendages. Great, gaping gills, each one as large as my submersible.
Can’t think. The sound has taken over my mind. Creature is circling my submersible. Bioluminescence is the only light source, and I see the cracks in the ocean floor. They form during the calls, and continue to expand. My submersible floats as the creature yells. Lands when the call is through. The walls are curving inward. A drop of water has escaped a crack somewhere. It’s dripping onto me. I haven’t long now.
The engines have failed.
I watch it circle. My sub floats through the trench and the being follows.
It is here.
Something has pierced the top of my sub.
A fang. A large fang. It extends downward through the bottom. There is no space between the tooth and my sub. No space for water to get through. Head hurts so much.
I stopped hearing anything moments ago.
It’s opening its mouth.
I’m afraid I must put the journal in the bag now.
The Bloop comes from a timeless, ancient creature of the sea.
And it does not wish to be disturbed.