It was almost possible to believe that the ship would somehow survive.

The lights still shone brightly; in fact, it seemed as if every light on board the ship was brilliantly aglow. In the gymnasium, instructors helped passengers use the equipment. In the first class smoking room, drinks were "on the house." On an upper deck, the orchestra continued to play, featuring a selection of cheerful tunes.

Only the creak of the remaining lifeboats being lowered in their davits and the relentless advance of the black waters up the sloping decks predicted the horror that was about to ensue.