Orithia- Skull & Shackles
Man's Promise Log
The Magnificent Bastard
The first third of this hefty Captain’s Log has been torn roughly from the spine, leaving a large gap between the cover and the first page. On the inside cover the words ‘Captain: Melissa Khan’ and ‘Captain: Damien Plugg’ have been crossed out and replaced with ‘Captain
at Sea Mameha Eikou’ and ‘Captain at Arms: Edward Van Helgen’
Left the Wormwood at 0930, sailed north. Heading: Port Blacksand via Mgange Cove and Senchu Bay. Skeleton crew selected from amongst less desirable scum from Wormwood. Scourge kept on as Boatswain. Harrigan’s orders: obtain scrap price for this vessel, liquidate superfluous crew members then proceed to Harrigan’s fortress for re-admission into the fleet.
Weather: Rain (1st verse)
Finally the Wormwood is past the horizon. After convening with the only trustworthy members of this insubordinate crew, we have agreed to change course. We are now making our way to Bloodcove where we can ‘liquidate’ the useless swabs (especially that upstart Kepician and her rabble) and get a fair price for each of them at Rafael’s skin bazaars. We will be stopping by Rickety’s Squibs along the way- a secret little cove where we can get the Man’s Promise squibbed and outfitted with more appropriate features for her new life as a pirate ship. I think I will name her ‘Severe’ and my first act as Free Captain Plugg of the Shackles will be to press-gang all the workers from Rickety’s into my new crew.
Weather: Building Storm (2nd verse)
I have a mistake to correct. My first act as Free Captain Plugg may have to come a bit sooner than anticipated. Those insufferable scum have been making more trouble amongst the crew, actively working against their disciplinarian, Scourge to get almost half the crew on their side! I will have to step up myself and oversee the disciplinary actions. I thought by throwing the rum overboard and curfewing the sailors below decks at night was enough to keep them in line, apparently not. My new decree: all crimes are punishable with the cat. That should stop the meddlers from causing more trouble. Just a few more days then we’ll be at Bloodcove and I can be rid of them…
Weather: Storm (4th verse)
Only a short entry as I am needed on deck. This storm is getting worse and worse and all hands are in the rigging. I’ve caught them looking at each other- those ingrates! I can see what’s in their eyes, what’s passing between them unsaid. DO THEY THINK I’M STUPID!? I will NOT have a mutiny on my ship! MY SHIP! I don’t think I can wait until Bloodcove any more. As soon as this storm is over- as soon as I don’t need them any more, they’re getting keelhauled. All of them! Starting with the Geisha!
And so Damien Plugg met his deserved death…
The ensuing text is quite cearly in the Mameha’s hand with delicate calligraphy swirling across each page as a new story unfolds…
Weather: Dying Storm (Verse 1)
“That Geisha and that rabble” are now in control of the Man’s Promise. Edward has naturally slotted into the role of Captain at Arms, taking complete control over all aspects of the ship when at war or during boarding actions, I on the other hand have taken the mantle of Captain at Sea. My role is to find the ships heading (with the help of the other officers of course). After the ‘unfortunate’ demise of Plugg we made sure to place our closest allies in positions of power who also appear to be the most skilled for the jobs anyway. Scourge’s nearest and dearest scum are all swabs now and will be until they die if I have my way.
The storm appears to have cleared and the ship has been repaired as much as is possible given our limited supplies, skills and energy. Since running aground our water stores have been severely depleted, as such an island on the horizon looks like our best bet for fresh water… As Edward rests Titus, Jasper, Gian, Kaheed, shivikah and I have volunteered to explore the island. We will leave first thing in the morrow and return with supplies and with any luck the missing crew of the Man’s Promise, Sandara and Giffer. Edward and Cog will be more than enough of a match for the other s back on the boat should they try anything.
Something tells me Sandara still breathes and if I am honest she is my primary concern …
Having replenished the ships water supplies and salvaged what we could from the island we have set course for Rickety’s Squibs once again. Once there we will see if we are able to squib the ship as Id rather not have Captain Harrigan on our tails, and attempt to encourage some fresh crew aboard… and potentially “lose” a few of the old less savoury scum we are currently feeding.
We may have to visit the Mgange Cove whilst we are in the area, as I have heard some fascinating tales regarding a stunning silver toucan that speaks of its masters plight; an extraordinary gnomish engineer captive as we once were. If we can find and free him I can’t even begin to imagine the improvements he could make to our ship, especially given the correct technology… Alas I am getting ahead of myself. The very first purchase will be booze!!!! Spirits know the crew has earned it…
On our way to Rickety Squibbs we lucked upon our first plunder; 2 colossal turtles and their young. They’d fetch a few thousand gold at least at a large market. We hurried on to Rickety’s cove. I could see the crew were eager to have some shore leave. Once we had landed we negotiated a good price with Rickety – easily paid for with our plunder from the Hags cave, the Grindylows and Mr. Plugg’s unfortunate demise. Everyone appears to be fulfilling their roles well thus far. Edward was good enough to put Titus in his place for slacking off and losing control of his mate Moussa, a fair warning I feel.
Perhaps the most important event over these last few days was our meeting with the free captain of the Shackles; Captain Pegsworthy He has also brought a few new options to light including his potential allegiance and future loyalty to our crew thanks to Edwards particularly well timed brags. The second thought it brings to light is a dawning realisation that should Harrigan return there are as they say more than one way to skin a cat. Perhaps this pirating can be won on politics as well as brute force. If Harrigan has crossed get more people on the seas then the enemies of our enemy could be our army.
For now we have set our sights lower… Captain Pegsworthy has given us a new challenge with the promise of his share of the plunder, given that is tied up with the current squibbing of his ship. The plan seems simple enough and hopefully it will reward us with a third share and his friendship.
Heading: Black Reef
Our new heading is Black Reef Point. The Ship has undergone its naming ceremony and is now the Magnificent Bastard. We also have 2 new crew members on board; a fast talking local Titus managed to pick up, in my opinion untrustworthy and likely to go overboard sooner rather than later . And secondly (and far more to our advantage) Red Ben; a colossal man of great strength, easily twice my size who seems more intelligent than the other swabs! His strength is unrivalled and hopefully he will easily earn his negotiated keep of 2 shares and 3 food portions. Hopefully he will also be loyal and deter the other crew members from any talk of mutiny.
Heading: Black Reef
The morning seemed tense even before events unfolded… Given that the crewmen had received shore leave at Rickety Squibs Titus felt it necessary to reprimand all weapons once again of course he had his eyes on a few specific members of the crew. Edward and I agreed with the notion. As it happens it got quite out of control. Gian and I attempted to calm the crew with entertainment and games whilst Jasper and Titus searched each person and their lockers. They later reported that Minty had traces of preserving salts in his pockets but no sufficient evidence was found to take further action. Giffer was found to have another crew members Locket and Syl was particularly stubborn and had to be forced to open her locker which apparently held nothing whatsoever. All 3 will be kept under my watchful eye over the time being… Things on deck were highly disruptive and the officers were for the first time challenged by some of the crew, it appears that our little enforcement of the rules has led to a split in the crew one side looking to the other for a scapegoat. With morale at an all time low I was left praying for a big haul from Black Reef Point.
By that afternoon we were approaching the rendezvous point with the Arcadia. Its sails welcomed us on the horizon, unfortunately the captain was less honest, attempting to con us out of the share promised to Merill Pegsworthy. Only with the help of Edward and the threat of leaving did we achieve the same share. The plan was simple. The Arcadia was to attack the main shore while we arrived at the rear of the fortress with Baruccos inside guys ready to load our ship… We would leave first thing in the morrow. As insurance the Arcadia took 2 members of the crew. The choice was obvious. People who would not be missed or would become and more of an asset on their ship than on own. Syl and Minty were called for (much to her disgust and his pleasure).
Heading: The Drakeclaw Coast
The plan went perfectly, Chakka Eagleseye and I sailed the ship out of the rising sun and Edward landed us perfectly below the crane. Pirates scaled the walls as Jasper and I loaded the ship and manned the wheel. We got very little plunder as our assault on the walls and the speed of the crane greatly hindered us. What we had loaded we began to stash the new smuggling holes would do us very well indeed. As we began to pull off another ship followed the coast at great speed after us. As we gained speed a small tropical bird perched upon my shoulder and Barucco’s urgent voice cracked from its beak warning that the ship on our tails was in fact the Kobe No Maru an Urnst warship. At first Edward ordered a speedy get away but on inspection the full sails of the enemy would clearly outstrip us and they were preparing a full broadside in the process. We began to turn and readied ourselves to ram and board. The manoeuvre was difficult but carried out with precision. At the moment of impact Titus rolled a barrel onto their deck with a chuckle, and a shot each from Edward and Moussa Al-Abbas saw their access to our ship barred with a column of flame. We quickly overpowered their crew and immediately began looting the ship of anything with value. Within a few moments it became apparent with a loud bang that the Urnst wanted to go down with their ship rather than die defending it! We were happy to oblige and managed to conceal most of our winnings before the Arcadia pulled up, including a particularly well known Halfling cooks mate by the name of Lucky Prigg at the cost of quite possibly his weight in gold! Still a fine deal given the Arcadia’s reaction when we informed them he had been lost at black reef point, along with the additions of half the plunder and an extra Minty chest of gold! Our next destination is the Drakeclaw coast, to relieve the Urnst of a little more of their treasure.
Heading: The Golden City
The turnaround in the crew of the morale has been substantial… Apparently loot in the hold means happiness on our decks. I am very pleased with the new addition to our team in Lucky Prigg who has already provided me with an excellent information regarding an Lizard City within the vicinity who recently lost its guardian. Before we had chance to set course sahaugin attacked the ship in the dead of night. While Garret was killed there were no other losses that night although a particularly brutish creature made an attempt on my unarmoured hide. I subdued the monster and took what clues I could find on his body.
We announced our destination to the rest of the team the following morning to great cheers and smile all round from the crew, even after the loss of a member. We set course and soon found the monsters had installed a contingency; the rudder had been disabled. I sent Shivika with our newly appointed carpenter Kaheed who corrected the problem without having to dry dock.
The following evening we decided to anchor in a small river near the city. Unluckily for us the Dominator had had a similar idea. A vast Capitavirate well known to prowl common shipping lanes in the hunt for pirates. We were truly plugged in and on closer inspection it looked as though they were sticking around for repairs and to inspect the local area. We quickly drew up a plan of escape, disregarding any merit of attacking. Luckily our Sahaugin friends from the evening before had taught us a trick or two. Jasper, Kaheed, Gian and Titus crept aboard in the night disabling the rudder as the Magnificent Bastard shot past a bewildered crew using magic to shield its flank and using our limit resources to fire upon the colossal vessel. We flew past the infamous ship and its enraged crew and found a new home for the night further along the coast. Yet another ship to add to our growing list of narrow escapes and heroic pirate triumph.
We will find this City of Gold… Of that I am sure.
Heading: The Golden City (Part 2)
Weather: Dry and Bright
After our lucky escape from the Dominator the previous night we headed back up the coast from our hiding place in the hopes of spotting the small town. With Chakka’s help we navigated the Bastard into a small and private bay surrounded by thick woods. As we turned the corner the whole town was out in force… They were obviously aware of our approach. We pulled into the bay and Titus began issuing orders, these fell upon deaf ears and the crew immediately threw themselves thoughtlessly into battle. The other officers did nothing to help, instead of maintaining the plan and stopping the rabble others were pulled into the fray, the bloodlust was unprecedented. From there the situation got worse. Acting like savage animals fighting yet more savage animals meant that what should have been a challenging fight became a careful balance, an exercise in mitigating our own death toll.
Jasper attempting to show off flew straight into the path of a vicious water elemental from which he required my personal assistance to get out of, he then proceeded to charge into battle. Kaheed followed finding a small army of Lizardfolk as Titus and Gian flanked enemies on the shore. I know little of what happened next other than searing pain and the slow sting of water filling my lungs. The torrent pinned me to the sandy sea bed rushing, bludgeoning and smothering. I felt a bone break the skin in my shin after a particularly menacing wave of attacks. All I could do is struggle. I came to the realisation that playing dead was my only option but still the water churned about me.
Eventually Gian came running to my aid throwing herself full bodily into the unidentifiable mass. This of course had no effect but the greed of the beast won out and his form loosened into a whirlpool to consume us both. Luckily Gian threw herself back onto the shore and I managed to safely pull myself onto the deck. The comfort of my ship was short lived as I watched my crew injured and desperate on the shore. I threw myself off the ship, landing gracefully on my one good leg on the jetty and rushed to Kaheeds side. We repelled the Lizardfolk left and saw them off into the trees. Sandara and I immediately set to work channelling energy and healing the few wounded. Ratline was the only reported casualty, which Titus made clear was the crews fault for not following orders. The crew were told not to loot as punishment for their failures, a punishment thoroughly loathed._
_Within the head hut I discovered a small cellar holding the new captives and a chest full of plunder. As we transported the last of these goods to the ship Titus and Edward decided it appropriate to burn the huts to the ground. An action I initially refused until the Captain at War gave the go ahead. Within minutes of the smoke rising to great heights there was a tremendous roar from further down the coast and the silhouette of a large dragon could be seen hurtling towards the Golden City…
The fight was upon us swiftly. The great scaled beast was near the size of our ship and with a thunderous roar trembled the ruins on the beach. Edward stood fast deceiving the slow beast as to our intent as the rest of us prepared for combat. As Edward brought us some time I smuggled the two new captives into the cover of the ruined jetty. Gian took up hiding here too with a long dagger gripped in her right hand she looked out readying for the perfect time to pounce. I prepared to see to the wounded, Sandara waiting to do the same, both of us positioned ready in the centre of the battlefield._
A roar bellowed out. A call to arms. A shot fired, followed closely by Gian pouncing from her hiding place sinking the dagger deep into the beast. A second shot was quickly fired as Sandara and I leapt out ready to heal any injured. There was a third shot from Edwards gun and the beast took flight back over the jungle canopy and then once again out to sea. The crew cheered but we knew she’d be back. Sandara and I set to work healing Edwards wounds and preparing everyone else for the second round. We hastily put the plunder and captives aboard and began to wait.
The dragon returned swooping at an angle so its rider could assess the beach. A Lizard Shaman rode its back magical energies crackling in its hands. As the dragon approached it began to breathe lighting. Some of the officers threw themselves behind the hut out of the line of fire. I calmly stood its magical electricity grounded by my protective magic. Unfortunately the Shaman had indeed this as a fireball hit the full hut reducing it to flaming splinters. This repeated to the point that few were left in the fight. Edward continued to shot both mount and rider, Kaheed taking point by jumping upon the dragons back and wrestling with the great demon until its life force ebbed away with the help of the other officers.
I quickly set to work interrogating the captured shaman securing the location of the dragon’s lair along with knowledge of other local treasures buried beneath the temple upstream with the Gold Dragon’s remnants. The officers decided to head to the lair with little resistance while Sandara cared for the injured and the healthy would hoist the gold and plunder aboard. Then we would take a jolly boat up to the temple and plunder the crypts.
Heading: Oratlan Temple
Weather: Overcast with Occasional Showers
We quickly cleared the Lizardfolk Crypts as the undead defeated previously were all that stood between us and the loot at its depths. Our prize was a huge flawless red ruby, gold dragon skins and teeth and a mysterious and ancient treasure. An incorporeal stone chest embellished with gold resting on a great hexagonal plinth of Gorgon Blood Obsidian. As we couldn’t open it there we decided to take it back aboard for further inspection. Once we had hoisted it aboard Giffer Tibbs declared she knew of its purpose and how we might open it.
Giffer took us on a planes journey using her Juju magic and we arrived at some kind of dreamscape. Reality itself could be bent and warped to some extent, reflecting the thoughts of the team. We came across a great obsidian temple, much like the one on our own plane. Only with a maze, and more traps… The team was split from the get go after an undead sorcerer attacked from the maze. We gave chase splitting up and becoming disoriented in the maze of echoes and darkness and eventually the decaying freak show came for Gian and I. We dispatched of the enemies soon enough making it to the centre of the maze and finding the same chest as was on the ship when we left. Upon opening it light pierced through the darkness leaving us in a large meadow having unlocked this planes secrets.
We returned to the ship in time to take command of our 3rd ship battle. A criminal syndicate ship had been spotted while we were out and pursued in our absence. I took the wheel gaining on it in moments. I stuck the ram deep into its flank and watched the sea of readying pirates and criminal scum spill over onto each others decks. The fighting was brutal and the Magnificent Bastard was in control of her second ship in what seemed like moments. The crew had improved exceptionally and for once I felt pride and not greed at this moment. We took aboard their plunder and remaining crew. (4 sailors, a wizard and the captain were spared) and began to set a course for Rickety Squibbs.
Day 17 to Day 19
Heading: Rickety Squibbs
Weather: Sunny with a south eastern breeze.
I put Sandara at the helm of our new ship, she seems trustworthy and resourceful enough to control her skeleton crew. Jasper and Titus admittedly had their defining features but with limit lack of sailing and their hastiness for battle Sandara was chosen instead. She took naturally to the role and speared to enjoy taking charge. We arrived at Rickety Squibbs.
Curiosity crept over the ship as no look out flag was raised on our arrival. We continued into the bay to find the smouldering ruins of the hamlet. It was clear from the damage that this was the work of an enemy ship. My mind jumped first to the Dominator, perhaps waging a smarter war of the pirates of the shackles. This did not hold true when Titus reported finding Sahaguin tracks and that of a single human attacker. We took what could be salvaged and hastily returned to the open waters. The confusion was now replaced by fear. The crew began babbling of potential curses, or pirate hunters or even someone following the Magnificent Bastard. Kaheed, Edward and I set out logical arguments against each of these theories, swearing to avenge our former friend and quieting the crew.
Heading: Drakeclaw (South-South East)
Weather: Westerly winds carrying a verse 2 storm.
The following day saw a western wind bring a menacing storm. Usually I would have happily tackled the oncoming weather front but with my crew split between two ships and a hold full on plunder I thought it best to weigh anchor. We pulled into a small bay along the Draconic Coast and spent the evening drinking and entertaining.
Heading: Drakeclaw (South-South East)
Weather: Clear skies with a brisk north westerly wind.
Once the storm had passed we set sail for our next shore leave destination, eager to rid the hold of plunder the decks or worthless crew and line our pockets with gold and our gullet with booze. Besmara had other plans for one of our number, for death and heartbreak lay waiting over the horizon. Just before noon we came across the sinking ruins of Rickety Hake’s yacht. I quickly dispatched Hannah Coralhide to survey the underwater damage and to look for survivors. The quickest of the Bastard’s swimmers glided through the water reporting back that the hull had been breached below the waterline before clambering upon the ships deck. I began to position our ship close to the wreck. Hannah was reported to have been seen going below deck but did not resurface. Kaheed, Edward and Gian swam over as I continued to position the boats. The crew were attacked by a Sahaguin ambush and found nothing but Hannah’s lifeless body below deck.
Heading: Drakeclaw (South-South East)
Weather: Sunny, western winds.
We arrived at Drakeclaw in early afternoon. I gave temporary command of the ship to Mbintu who disguised and prepared each of us and the ship ready to deceitfully trade our ill gotten goods to the town.
Shore leave was given to all members of the crew, with only four failing to retake their contracts aboard the Magnificent Bastard; Jaundice Jape, Vivian Scourge, Narwahl Tate, and Fipps Chumlet choosing instead to remain dockside no doubt awaiting the return of their brain-dead master (Harrigan) with their tails between their legs.
The very first night, we found a new addition to the crew. Lady Mokislav was a borderlands fortune teller and whilst I remained sceptical her services would be beneficial aboard the Bastard; she can calm the talk of curses aboard the ship and keep the superstitious in line. She also read our own future promising something of great value on the horizon for the MB along with a warning of a raid in the near future before packing her tent and returning to the ship for the evening.
I have no doubt now that her predictions were correct, as that evening amid various celebrations and secret rendezvous the menacing Sahaguin returned, indiscriminately torching buildings and setting upon the townsfolk. Kaheed, Edward and I quickly dispatched the first wave of normal sahaguin. Jasper and Sandara appeared in time to thwart the Brinebood Queen’s minions whilst Gian arrived to help us take down the gargantuan four-armed Sahaguin. A water element and an Owlbear later, with the help of Titus’ bow, the party began to close in on the once again fleeing Brinebrood Queen. We gave chase through the cobbled streets before trapping her in an alleyway. We dragged her body back to the tavern where a local councillor praised us for our efforts and enquired as to why such a thing had happened. We shrugged off his questions and returned to our drinks before sleeping aboard the Bastard. I began to ponder whether they really were giving chase.
Heading: Mgange Cove
Weather: Clear with a south westerly wind
We have had a restructure aboard the Bastard. The hold is fairly empty but for the plunder reserved for a better price or the Hurricane King. The crew have followed suit with the majority of those unsavoury crew having left, and several positions in the rigging becoming apparent. We took on new crew at Drakeclaw. Mostly those with a need to sail, my recruiting process follows a pattern.; first they need relevant skills (not necessarily sailing), next they need to appear peaceable towards my current crew, and finally they need this ship. Each of the rag tag sailors we’ve picked up have lost their way or have no other means to amuse themselves or get by. My hopes are that in selecting them they will be motivated and gain benefit from our travels and in turn they will be far more loyal that the sweaty stinking cretins one usually finds at sea.
I feel our visit to Drakeclaw has somehow changed a lot of the crew. Molly decided to stay on despite her reluctance to first join, Syl has exchanged amicable words and also decided to remain even though she’s a competent enough sailor to find other work, and Sandara and Samms seem more confident and independent than ever before. This pleases me somewhat as I can see my crew becoming even more of a team and stronger for our troubles.
Our next heading in Mgange Cove. An place rife with rumour and treasures. I have several objectives there; visit the Juju Wednifas in the hopes of discovering more about their primal culture and unravel the mysteries of Gian’s visions. There’s also the tale of the clockwork toucan which promises fame and a new ship mascot. Lastly and most importantly in is the last known location of the Ikazuchi, whose reign of the skies fell there a decade past. Recovering my Kami’s ward is paramount but will have to be put off until we converse with the locals, who may be able to provide further details regarding the other objectives.
Alas I get ahead of myself. For now there’s just days of ocean… and potentially more Sahaguin scum or whatever else the ocean can drag up from it’s murky depths for us to slaughter.
Heading: Mgange Cove
Weather: Clear with a westerly breeze.
The sailing has returned to its previous pleasures taking our way through the gentle breeze. The last few days have felt more like a holiday than work. However this evening a great storm can be seen mustering on the horizon and Chakka warns me it’s likely to be a full hurricane by the night. We have plot an alternate course taking us far out of its path so hopefully come morn it will have passed us completely.
Heading: Mgange Cove
Weather: Stormy – Verse 1.
The hurricane has spread far further than we first anticipated and so we have been caught in a tropical depression. As the waves batter the ship, I plead to the sea spirits not to swallow any of my crew.
The ship has been lurching back and forth for the main of the day and yet my crew are in one piece and as hard working as ever, cogs in the machine that is our ship.
Heading: Mgange Cove
Weather: Clear with westerly wind.
Today was to bring us new riches and a somewhat dramatic encounter with an unlikely future ally. We spotted smoke on the horizon around midday and I gave the order to prepare for combat. The fire was obviously on a ship of some sort as the plumes of smoke drifted above the ocean waves. As we approached the coral reefs surrounding a small island, a burning shackles vessel drifted across to reveal a Capitavirate Man’O’War: The Famished Mane. The vast ship was covered in carved iconography of devils and slavery, its deck filled with readying marines. I navigated the reef with ease before ramming full force into its starboard side taking a full broadside for our troubles. In the meantime the pirate ship began to advance firing indiscriminately into the fray clearly hoping its booty had just doubled. The teams of fighters split their force as the Vorsfang grappled our own starboard side. Gian and I defended against several weresharks while the ships defence and support kept the majority of the pirates busy. Jasper, Kaheed and Titus, with the help of Cog and Rosie’s teams assaulted the Capitavarites eventually leading to the surrender of the remaining crew. The pirate captain claimed parlay and we retired to talk plunder whilst our crew ransacked their ship.
Having only just shifted a ship and eager to pursue our objectives in the neighbouring cove I suggested we take all supplies and loot aboard the Fmaished Mane and allowed the Vorsfang crew to take control of its remains. In return I wanted our good name passed to his allies and an indebted favour. Given my current standing as a future free shackles captain I wanted all the allies I could get, we had already crossed Harrigan and the Consortium and at present I doubted that Pegsworthy or the Arcadia would confirm themselves as allies. I also negotiated the price of the captured crew. I couldn’t have cared what happened to them and didn’t want their sort on my own ship. I has particularly pleased when my negotiations resulted in a pair of Boots of Speed, which to my knowledge was far beyond the worth of a dozen marines.
Heading: Mgange Cove
Weather: Clear with westerly wind.
Today we landed in Mgange Cove. Giffer has tried in vain to teach us as to the labyrinth and seemingly endless rules and etiquette regarding visitors but still we seemed to tread on people’s toes all over town. Gian, Kaheed and I headed through town seeking an audience with the Head Wendifa. After exploring the town Kaheed returned to the tavern to find Jasper, Ed and Titus. Giffer took us on to the temple which was beautifully carved on every wall with the spirits and seasons of their religion. The floor was open to the earth and lush grass grew up towards the open ceiling. Gian spent some time explaining her visions to the Wendifa who was obviously holding back Gian appeared to be extracting further information with a single stare before waiting outside. The Wendifa confirmed to me that she had indeed hesitated to inform Gian what she knew of these seers as she was prone to violence and evil. She refused to impart further information but turned her intention instead to myself. I explained that Taisho and I were looking for the Ikazuchi to reunite him with his ward. We came to an agreement that she would disclose this location should I rid a small town of the dark wendifa assaulting it. I agreed unconditionally.
Day 33 and 34
Weather: North Easterly Winds
We spent the following morning travelling up into the jungle in the hopes of saving the neighbouring village and earning ourselves some plunder from the Ikazuchi. We left the Bastard to be repaired after our battle of the sand bars and brought Lankunle along with us, Titus eager to corrupt the young mans views on this intriguing culture. The village was abandoned save for a handful of souls who were weak and weary from their constant vigil. After we had spoken we headed out into the woods to find this dark Wendo who had taken to enchanting the towns people.
Taisho Sei directed us to the crossing of several laylines, a likely sacred location for the troublesome Faun. We found him entertaining villagers to their demise so entranced by his panpipes that they were forced to dance unto death. We bargained with him until he agreed to release his prisoners if we saw off the Dark Wendifa who had taken residence close to his old haunt. He agreed to release Edward and Jasper of his wicked tune to complete the task, having both fallen under his compulsive tune.
We returned to the abandoned village that night, locking the survivors in the tavern as Titus and I looted what little remained in the town. The Wendifa’s servants attacked as warned, juju zombies and Red caps burst into the town. I was overcome by a ferverant need to dance, shuffling to the beat of a dark spell. When the fight was over we slept and in the morning headed out to find the cause of these abominations. There was little here to appreciate. The people were rude and without years of study it would be unlikely that I’d ever understand their culture, the climate was humid and muggy and the spirits charged with protecting the woods were capricious and merciless to the civilisation upon the island who worshipped and respected them.
Eventually we found our way to an unnaturally dark graveyard where the Wendifa and his minions were conducting dark rituals to raise the dead. The dancing shoes set off once more and I was left helpless until Titus tore them from my feet. The resulting explosion knocked us down but some hasty healing put us both back in the fight at the centre of a swarm of Juju zombies. Somewhat of a channeling war took place, the Wendifa healing his ranks as my bright light scalded and burned them. Edward shot down an enemy wizard with the help of Taisho and a spiritual weapon and Gian and Kaheed took on the remaining zombies until the numbers thinned enough to see to the Wendifa. Both barely escaped with their lives and we returned to the Faun prepared to fight if he didn’t budge. With quite the intimidation from Titus and myself brandishing cold iron weapons to add weight to our words he left, stating that if the Wendifa lived he would detroy Ngozu. We informed the villagers and headed back to town for our reward. The Wendifa informed us as to the Ikazuchi’s location and we took our leave. The town would have to fend for itself for now as that baron mother wanted her rock back and the magnificent bastard could do with some allies. I have disgracefully been demoted to a ropey hammock but this wont last. The old crone’s son has a room of his own I’m sure I can relieve him of, he seems to despise pirates as much as I did and I sure as hell don’t look like I fit in with the rest of his new in laws.
Tomorrow I will draft a note for Guffy, telling him to keep running and never look back…. I bay for his blood, and intend to take it along with my ship.
Day 35 and 36
Heading: The Town of Piren’s Bluff
Our small group of officers came into town in order to lay low and form a plan to dispose of the Baron. Lady Smythee seems to have ommitted a fair bit of information.
We have been here as little as 14 hours and already Titus has joined the guard and failed to report in, Jasper has almost certainly clashed with the Preacher of this town chasing a “pact book” I am unaware of his intended use for, and again has not returned and Edward has not been seen since leaving for the mass. I sit with my loyal crewmates; Gian and Kaheed, picking through the equipment taken from an imposter. When we came to town the surroundings were unlike our usual targets. Small but refined and botanically beautiful. The town was small but well established. Unfortunately the guard were numerous, the walls high and the Baron incredibly well protected. A few hours into our sneaking into the town posing as farm hands the town was locked down and a curfew enforced as a defence measure after seeing the blockade on the sea. I had made contact with an nervous hound breeder who had displayed interest in the cause.
We met him after mass, with Gian and Taisho discovering he was in fact an imposter and the brother of the towns cleric and a loyal Baron bodyguard. We dispatched of him quickly leaving his body hidden among barrels in the alley. The good news is that he carried a lot of magical equipment which could be of use to us, the bad news; we had already been made and it wouldn’t be long before we were found.
Some of us barely survived the night in Pirens Bluff. As it transpired later that night Jasper and Edward were arrested for publicly assaulting the Cleric and Titus jailed them to keep them from being killed. I’m not sure how but Titus also ended up in jail and they all later broke loose allowing them to attack the Baron directly. Meanwhile Gian, Kaheed and I were attacked later that night a fight ensued on the streets of the town and we eventually overcame a handful of towns guard and the Captain of the guard: Blacklock. Quite the collection for the armoury for a single evening, including an exquistely forged blade from the dusty temple which requires further study.
For now our futures continue to merge with those of the islanders as the weddings draw closer, hopefully gaining us more renown as able pirates and respected fighters on the wide of the Shackles!
Day 39 – The Wedding
After a well earned rest it was time to make good our promises and allege ourselves with the Lady of the Rock. Jasper and Edward were to be married and there was much preparation. The wedding was brief with minimal crew members trusted at the service, instead finding their first shore leave penned in on a field across the island with a tower of booze and a blazing fire to keep them entertained and distracted.
Whilst the service itself went off without a hitch Smoke billowed up onto the cliff top and the celebrations were cut short by the emergence of Grindylows, a Harpy and the Whispering Dwarf, led by Captain of the Thresher; Isabella Inkskin.
Kaheed and I made short work of the hypnotising feather brain and we’d barely laid a finger on Isabella when her vessel was destroyed leaving her no choice but to surrender. The Whispering Dwarf escaped yet again flying back to the seas.
I have taken Isabella on for now and spared her life. I will get all the information I can before I kill her. Unless we find some use for her or she proves herself trustworthy.
The key questions in my mind are, the nature of this debt owed to Harrigan, and their previous relationship, and if she was responsible for the destruction of Rickety Squibbs.
I sent messages this morning to Mgange Cove pledging our help, and to Captain Shanks pledging my ships vendetta with his own. I watched the whispering winds and messenger bird fly swiflty to their recipients wondering why my Quartermaster was still missing. He was certainly at the wedding, and was jovial as ever, but the cliff and castle grounds were searched before morning and still no sign of him. The Grindylows fought to the end this time and seeing one make off with a half orc wouldn’t have gone unreported.
The Magnificent Bastard claims it’s second of Harrigans ships with relative ease, the Red Jackal being little more than a plunder carrier at present. We also avenged Isabella’s father and unearthed the long lost remains of Cyrus Wolfe’s horde. His figurehead ram and resplendant crown taking pride of place on our ship.
The Bastard crew seem to be gaining great power and experience and I sense a power, much like a Kami dwell aboard the ship, promising fame and achievement for all those aboard. Kaheed’s blows are mere blurs these days and Gian can bleed a man in seconds. Titus has become a telented sniper and my healing powers grow stronger each day. Some say this is Besmara’s work, but to me it feels beyond her blessing even, as if the world itself has decreed it. Our next heading the Airship crash site in Mgange Cove before we present ourselves as free captains to the Hurrican King.