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The Darkness


Thanks to the Twiglet saga / ordeal, vampires have never been more popular amongst 12 year-old girls and people who think like 12 year-old girls. Likewise, werewolfishness and general lycanthropy is rife amongst teenage boys, but this is mainly due to the accidental release of a governmental plague virus in an inner city school. Nevertheless, the occult and paranormal is all very well when it affects your kids, but what about when it threatens something important? Your diving, for example? Well, guess what. Problem solved. By Rob. Read on:


Research (X-files, episode 94) shows that 62% of equipment malfunctions are caused by ghosts. Unless you want to spend eternity making alternate air-sources freeflow and fogging up masks, the medical advice is: don't die. Ghosts are often disgruntled spirits who have never been able to come to terms with missing a hammerhead sighting on Jackson reef, and the only way to avoid being plagued by their prankish and tiresome nature is to have the Catholic Church perform a full exorcism of each and every boat you dive from, or to have your equipment serviced regularly by a reputable dealer.
London School Of Diving


Back in the day, vampires were a fearsome species, hellbent on making eyes at folk and then ripping their throats out in an orgy of bloodshed and fractured corsets. These days, however, they tend to be a wan and moralistic sort, hellbent on dispensing sage advice to lovesick teenagers and occasionally flying about a bit. When encountered underwater, the devout Christian diver is advised to remove their fins and make the sign of the cross with them whilst reciting whatever incantations come to mind. A-religious divers, on the other hand, are advised to remove the vampire's weightbelt and watch them ping to the surface.


Avoid moonlit night dives, particularly if you're a werewolf yourself.


The dead don't swim, luckily, but unfortunately they don't breathe either, which means that strolling along the seabed is just a walk in the park for them. A very watery park. Subaquatic encounters have the advantage that the modern day, high-tempo, running around type zombies are reduced to a similar pace as their more philosophical but more boring pre-2002 counterparts. On the downside, they do have a tendency to trample coral and they can provide an irritation if you're taking a photograph and not paying attention to your surroundings, when they bite through the back of your head.


The general consensus used to be that the aggressive nature of triggerfish is merely a defensive reaction to a perceived threat to habitat on behalf of the fish. Recent evidence (rumour), however, indicates that these normally placid creatures are merely extremely susceptible to demonic possession. Generally speaking, the diver when attacked is advised to try and kick the faces off of the little blighters, but I'm all in favour of the development of underwater handguns. As well as being indispensible accessories for underwater gang members, handguns would also come in useful when you see other divers touching coral, getting in the way of a photo, doing something you don't like, or looking in some way disagreeable.


Goblins and mischievous elves are the ones to blame when you're in the middle of a giant stride and realise your air has been switched all the way off with a quarter turn back on, although sometimes it's down to overenthusiastic yet incompetent boat crew. Likewise, any accusatory remarks directed towards a buddy upon discovery of an unzipped drysuit as you hit the water, are liable, once the giggling has stopped, to be deflected in the direction of wayward pixies. Magical citizenry of this sort tend to be invisible, so the only way to effectively deal with them is to run around the boat doing karate kicks in midair and by making sure you pay your buddy back the £10 you owe them.


Generally more prevalent in the Red Sea area than Scapa Flow, mummies tend to pose the biggest threat to people who are scared of bandages and as a result should probably avoid hospital-based employment. Mummies are famous for their curses and this is the only plausible explanation as to why I haven't seen a whale shark yet.


Witches float, so usually the best way to avoid them is by deflating your BCD. Beware, though, because they do have a wide range of spells at their disposal. Wetsuits shrunken around the waist, air in the boots of drysuits, and being buddied with someone who makes a full tank last 15 minutes are all due to the adverse action of witches. Suspects should be burned.

That's the paranormal dealt with, but until next time please remember: if in doubt, panic.
Denney Diving

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