Meanwhile two life-boats moved towards the man. I stood close to the captain. In his anxiety, he gripped my shoulder tightly and I winced.
     “You’re hurting me Sir,” I protested.
     “I am sorry, my dear. The sea is very rough today. I hope my men can reach him in time. My ship has never lost a passenger before,” he said crossing himself. He was watching the rescue operations through a pair of binoculars that hung round his neck.
The instructions given by the captain were carried out by the crew immediately. The discussion between the ship members continued on the upper deck of the ship. Meanwhile, two life-boats were dropped towards that man. Vasantha stood close to the captain. The captain was anxious. While being tensed, he had held the shoulder of Vasantha tightly, and her facial expression changed due to the pain. As a child, she might have felt his hold to be paining. She immediately told him the same as he was hurting her.
The captain immediately regretted his mistake and apologised for holding her shoulder tightly. He then explained her sea's situation. He pointed out to her that the sea was rough due to the heavy storm.
He guaranteed Vasantha that his crew would be successful in reaching and getting the man. He also explained to her that his ship had never lost a passenger in his ship before. While having said this, he was crossing himself, which shows his belief in God. Through his binocular, he observed the crew's rescue works.
Meaning of difficult words:
To hold someone or something tightly
Refers to a sudden expression on the face stating your embarrassment or pain
To say or do something to show your disapproval
To save someone from a dangerous situation
To feel sorry for what you have done or what you have not been able to do
State Council of Educational Research and Training (2018). Term-3 English Standard-7. Man Overboard - Vasantha Murthi (pp. 125-130). Published by the Tamil Nadu Textbook and Educational Services Corporation.