The excerpt represents the core issue or deciding factor on which you must meditate, and is drawn from The Secret Sharer by Joseph Conrad:|
"Are you alone on deck?"
I had somehow the impression that he was on the point of letting go the ladder
to swim away beyond my ken--mysterious as he came. But, for the moment,
this being appearing as if he had risen from the bottom of the sea
(it was certainly the nearest land to the ship) wanted only to know the time.
I told him. And he, down there, tentatively:
"I suppose your captain's turned in?"
"I am sure he isn't," I said.
He seemed to struggle with himself, for I heard something
like the low, bitter murmur of doubt. "What's the good?"
The Secret Sharer