twenty thousand leagues under the sea chapter 8


The Giant Squid

We travelled through the Atlantic Ocean down to the South Pole. We went under the ice and came out on the other side. Imagine what we saw — penguins, whales, polar bears, dolphins, icebergs! It was like a dream and we saw it from the inside of the Nautilus.

We continued up the coast of South America. Finally, we came to the warm waters near the Bahamas. Who could be unhappy? Only one person — Ned Land.

Conseil, Ned and I were in the museum, looking out at old stone walls, 5,000 feet under the sea.

«There are giant squid in the holes of those walls.»

«Come Professor, you don’t believe that, do you?»

«What giant squid, sir?»

«Well, the giant squid is really just a story. Many people like to tell stories about giant squid, but no one knows if they are true. But I know one man who said he saw one.»

«How long was it?»

«Twenty feet.»

«Did it have eight tentacles like snakes coming out of a big round head?»


«And did it have a mouth and nose like a bird’s?»

«Yes, why, Conseil?»

«Because I think I see it right there.»

I looked out of the window, and there was a 25-foot giant squid! It moved close to the Nautilus and it hit the window with its long tentacles. The Nautilus was too strong for it, but it was a very frightening creature!

Soon, other smaller squid came near the window. They all wanted to attack the ship. They did not know what it was. Suddenly, the Nautilus stopped. Captain Nemo came into the museum.

«Is something wrong, Captain?»

«Yes. One of those ugly creatures is caught in our propeller.»

«What can we do?»

«We can take the ship up, then try to free the monster.»

Captain Nemo never thought of danger. He thought nothing could stop him, his men or his ship.

We all went upstairs. Captain Nemo gave us all axes to cut the squid’s tentacles if they attacked.

One man went to open the door to the platform. As he opened it, a long thick tentacle of the giant squid came inside like a snake and pulled the man outside. We all ran up the stairs.

Outside, six or seven small squid moved along the top of the Nautilus, throwing all their tentacles at the ship and its men. We fought them with our axes, but the large one, the one with Captain Nemo’s man in his tentacle, stood holding the man in the air. The man cried for help.

«Help! Help!»

I was surprised he spoke English. Captain Nemo attacked the giant squid with his axe. He cut off some of its tentacles. I thought Captain Nemo would save his man. Then I saw Ned Land with his harpoon in his hand. I thought he was going to kill the Captain.

«Ned, don’t!»

But I didn’t need to stop him. One of the smaller squid knocked the harpoon out of his hand and threw Ned down. The squid was about to pull him into the sea. Captain Nemo saw this, cut off the squid’s tentacle and saved Ned Land.

«You saved my life!»

«Didn’t you do the same for me?»

«Yes, but…»

Captain Nemo did not wait for the answer. He turned to help his own man, but it was too late. The giant squid shot black ink out of its body, and none of us could see anything. When we cleaned our faces and our eyes, the squid was gone, taking the man with it.


next page