An errant torpedo ran athwartship beneath the boat, barreling by so close it sounded like a freight train. The sea was lit up with active pings and depth charges pounded against the hull with the sound of a hundred timpani, but we were below the layer. They knew we were there but they couldn’t pinpoint us.
Slowly, silently we settled gently to the sea bed and disappeared, nothing more than another mound. Rigged for ultra-quiet we remained silent for an entire day while the searched in vain above us until the sounds of the search receded, faded away to silence.
Still we sat, waiting. Within the hour we heard him. Three screws are noisy and the sound is distinctive. Ironically, he thought himself quiet but we easily heard him making slow turns as he crept within range. He was sweeping, searching – searching for us. We knew he was listening. We sat, inert, silent, listening to him as he listened for us and we tracked him as he passed several miles to the east.
Another day passed and the only activity we detected were biologics so we slowly rose off the ocean floor and hovered below the layer, listening, careful. Above the layer we swept the baffles and eased up to PD. A quick look through the attack scope confirmed that we were alone so we went deep and set a course for home.
“I thought we’d never come back from that one.”