Journey Into the Deep (Chapter Seven, page 2 of 5)

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Tenderly after dipping some kind of ointment out of a can he began to massage it into her bruised skin as he pushed the fluid away from the swollen area in order to promote healing and prevent the formation of blood clots.

He glanced up briefly at the Bible in her hands and surprisingly commented out loud, "You should read that."

Christina didn't say anything for a moment, but then asked off topic, "You loved her?"

Jim looked up and nodded before letting his head drop back down.

"Can I talk? I need to talk! I have no one to talk to now." Christina said, as the ever present tears came back up to the surface.

Jim glanced back up and gazing deeply into her eyes he said, "I will listen."

It was like the opening of a set of floodgates as Christina spoke all that was on her mind of the insecurities that she had as a teenage girl with nowhere to go in the world and no place to call home.

Jim listened to all of it attentively. He massaged her other foot just to have something to do in order to give her the time to unburden herself. Finally she came to an end as her pent up burden of words emptied her of anything else needing to be said.

Sorrowfully she commented, "I don't think we're ever getting out of this place. It wouldn't matter anyway, as I don't have anyone back there waiting for me now." Christina hugged herself tightly the Bible laying forgotten on her lap.

Jim looked up from putting both of her shoes back on and said, "I will take care of you. I will protect you and care for you as if you were my own daughter."

Jim moved to sit back against the bulkhead beside Christina. He then looped an arm around Christina and pulled her to lean against him. Christina relaxed against the strength of the man beside her in complete trust as she gave the man holding her the part of her heart a girl gives her father, until the day comes when the right man asks to have what the father has safeguarded.

Jim reached out with his free hand and opened the Bible up. He leafed through until he found the book of Psalms, "I always liked this one." He said before he began to read out loud.

Matt stepped up beside me as I stood in the wheelhouse manning the wheel. He glanced out the broken window and smiled a little at the sight of Christina fast asleep against Jim's side further up the ship.

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