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Author Topic: Chapter Three - Stranger Things Happen At Sea  (Read 31235 times)
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Yurie Yileen
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« on: April 14, 2009, 03:03:59 AM »

"The wolf-man and the psyrpent went to sea,
In a beautiful pea green boat!"

Introducing: Rajard Gaej'fan and Jarrox Serpentfang!
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Rajard
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« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2009, 06:59:29 AM »

The ship rocked slowly with the sea, upsetting only the few passengers that it held, both willingly and unwillingly. By this time the sailors had learned to stay clear of the cages that were situated on the deck and to ignore the angry howls and glares of the occupants when they stepped too close. Those poor creatures were the hunter's job.

The hunters were close to the cages as always, one sitting on the deck of the ship, back against the railing with his large brimmed hat pulled down over his eyes. The other stood closer to one of the cages, throwing bits of a hard biscuit onto the metal floor, hoping to see the two wolves that were cramped within fight over it. In the second cage, the man within snarled and snapped at the hunter, pushing his massive arms between the bars in an attempt to grab on to anything that would bring the man closer, but the hunter just beat him back.

This time the wolf-man received a long, shallow cut to the back of his forearm, which made him crawl back to the corner of the cage, snarling between whimpers as he clutched his wounded arm. With a shakes of his head the hunter moved back, walking slowly over to the railing, where he nudged his companion. The second one stood and the pair started talking quietly to each other as they looked over the railing.

At every point throughout the ship the sailors looked on the pair with clear disdain. They'd picked up the Sanguian hunters in a small port that they had stopped at for repairs. Both the hunters seemed of the well liked variety, but when they'd first boarded the ship and were asked their professions, they'd just claimed to be 'hunters'. The pair of them just happened to be carrying enough knives to supply an army of thieves and cutthroats that could bleed the land dry in a matter of years.

The man in the cage was another issue. Any person who'd set foot in a Sanguian town had most likely heard of the wolf-man who stole children in the middle of the night, slaughtered innocents for his own pleasure, and ran with a pack of rogue wolves that lived for the taste of human blood, but looking upon the poor creatures in the cages, none could picture that being the case. True, the man was massive by any standards, but now, cowering in the back of the cage, nursing a bleeding hand and letting loose weak snarls every so often, he was somewhat pathetic. It was easy to feel sorry for him.

As for the wolves, true, they traveled with him, but calling them a pack was an understatement and on the whole they seemed more curious of the humans around them rather than blood-thirsty. With the exception of the hunters, each sailor was sure that given the chance, they'd rip their throats out, if the wolf-man didn't beat them to it.

However, the creatures on deck weren't the only thing interesting on the ship. They'd also picked up another strange passenger along the way. This being was massive as well, standing taller than most on the ship and possibly even taller than the caged man. Hidden beneath a long purple robe with long sleeves and a hood mostly kept up, the creature was only seen on deck from time to time during the day and only slightly more at night when the sun had fallen from the sky. The tail that trailed behind the creature provoked many questions, but none spoken aloud.

"Ship!" came the cry from above.

The pattern in which the days activities worked smoothly fell apart with that single word and all hands scuttled across the deck, trying to get a few of the ship as well as attend to certain procedures they'd learned. Soon everyone was on deck, including the Captain of the ship and the strange tailed creature in the purple robes. The hunters moved closer to their catch, but remained out of arms reach of the man, who'd rushed to the front of the cage once more.

The faces of the sailors went white as the ship moved even closer and all jumped into activity again. Before the call of 'pirates' could be made, the ship lurched as it was rammed. Chaos reigned as the second ship came alongside the first and men climbed aboard. The shuddering of the ship had caused one of the hunters to fall back slightly, right into the grasp of the wolf-man.

Pinned against the cage with one massive forearm around his throat, the hunter flailed, clawing at the arm in attempts to pull it away. By the time the second hunter noticed that his companion had been captured it was too late. Taking out a long knife, he slammed the hilt against the wolf-man's hand, which grasped one of the bars, paying no mind to the sickening crack and low whimpering howl that he creature let out. However, with his attention elsewhere, the hunter hadn't noticed the approach of the pirate. With a heavy thud he fell to the ground, joining his companion in death.

The pirate ship swept by the merchant ship, coming around again to fire the catapult mounted on the deck. The fist hit the middle of the mast, which came crashing down, cloaking the ship in canvas and pinning people, both living and dead beneath the heavy wood. One of the heavy beams landed on the cage holding the wolves, twisting the metal enough for a few attempts at freedom to be successful.

Sailors rushed to one of two smaller boats on deck as a second boulder slammed into the side of the ship. The creature in the purple robes returned to the deck of the ship with its belongings and it made a beeline toward the second boat, causing those heading in that direction to move away and attempt to squeeze onto the first one. One young, brave (or stupid) sailor returned to the deck. He searched the bodies of the dead hunters for the keys and upon finding them, opened the man's cage.

The wolf-man, or Rajard as he was once known, burst through the door, landing on three limbs before standing to his full height, walking on two legs as he was once shown. The rocking of the sea caused the ship to shudder more than usually and it started to tilt to one side. One last shot from the catapult caused the ship to lurch a finally time, tossing wolves, wolf-man, and sailor overboard.

The purple robed figure was met with a surprise with two soaking wet wolves and one equally wet savage man climbed into the boat. A mighty shake from the three was most likely unwelcome as salt water sprayed in all directions. Once free of a good deal of water, the wolf-man huddled in one corner of the boat, holding his right arm and hand close to his chest. He eyed the stranger in the boat with him warily, pulling his lips back to show his teeth when it moved at all. The two grey wolves sat between the two, facing the stranger.

The rowboat drifted through the water, carrying two massive creatures, one not human at all, while the other was so far removed from his brethren to be called human at all. To make things even stranger, two Mithral wolves were thrown into the mix of stranded misfits.
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Serpentfang
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Psyrpent


« Reply #2 on: April 17, 2009, 01:52:15 AM »

The pirates attacked with such speed and ferocity that the defenders of the ship weren't able to react effectively. Jarrox knows that when the side he is on is losing, it's time to abandon them. That would give him enough time to escape and will also provide distraction against his enemies. So when the opportunity showed itself, the snake man wasted no time and grabbed it willingly. He took his belongings with him quickly and forced his way into an empty lifeboat, causing the others to cramp in another one. That is good too, since the psyrpent would push others into the sea; he's not about to share his boat with anyone. Anyone, except the wolf man.

The lizard did not know how he got here with him, and he has no intention of knowing. He was busy trying to think about how he would shove the man and his mutts overboard, without risking himself. The dogs with him looked very protective. Unfortunately, thinking is not something jarrox would enjoy doing right now, after the commotion earlier.

Jarrox squirmed in the small boat, a thing barely big enough to hold both the large human, his wolves, and the psyrpent. On one corner sat the man, his eyes wild with fright or excitement, one hand kept near his chest, with blood as a telltale sign of what happened. The wolf man snarled at the lizard, and the latter hissed in return. He grabbed his belongings and placed it near him, for fear of it being stolen by the savage brute. He doesn't look like the thieving sort, but it is in his nature to be wary and vigilant.

The lizard fixed his gaze towards the open sea, searching for any signs of life. It's a good thing that he packed his share of ration while aboard the ship, but he knew very well that these will dwindle in time. He then looked at his companions in the boat, all of them huddled together at the other end. The man has no food, water, nor any possessions, but he's not about to share his last meal with them. There won't be enough food for him as it is, and he's pretty sure that the savage won't let him butcher any of his pets.

He sighed. Catching fish would be next to impossible with a crossbow or a hatchet, and he can't drink salt water. The only thing to do is to wait for someone to appear.
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Yurie Yileen
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« Reply #3 on: June 25, 2009, 05:44:01 PM »

   The small detatchment of marines had pulled up alongside the stranded lifeboat and its unusual occupants.

   "Ahoy, there!" one of the men called, addressing Rajard; but there was no response.  The unusually large man merely crouched slightly, and barred his teeth.

   "Wonder 'ow long the poor fella's bin driftin' for?" another marine whispered to his friend.  "'e don't look right in the 'ed, 'e don't.  Look at the way 'e's sniffing; like some kind o' a wild beast, or sumert!"

   His friend agreed, and mentioned something about old Roachy having some company in the sick bay.

   "Are you injured?  Do you need medical attention?" the first marine said, trying to ignore the low growling noise that Rajard was making.  Again, there was no reply.  The marine cleared his throat, and cautiously stood up in the unsteady boat.  Once standing, he peered into the lifeboat, and almost fell back down again!

   "Wolves!" he cried.  "The queer cove's got a pair of wolves in there with 'im!"

   Then, as if it had been rehearsed beforehand, the two mithral wolves jumped up and started barking.  It was certainly an unusual situation, but it had to be dealt with, regardless.  The marine sat back down, and caught Rajard's eyes.  He then spoke in as pacifying a voice as he could, spreading his hands out before him as he did so.

   "Sir, you are welcome aboard our ship, but you must control those animals!"

   Rajard listened to the strange sounds that the man was making, and sensed a lack of threat in them.  At first, he had thought there would be another fight, like before, but these men seemed to have a different purpose in approaching him.

   In the depths of his primitive mind, a basic calculation of survival was being processed.  To stay aboard this tiny thing would surely lead to a long, lingering death.  At first, the wolf man had thought survival would't be a problem, afterall, there was plenty of water nearby, and a rather large meal sitting opposite him.  Then he'd scooped some of the water into his massive hands, and taken a sip.  Ugh!  Rajard had promptly spat it back out, this water wasn't fit for drinking at all!  Just to be sure, he'd taken another handful from the other side of the boat, but it, too, was salty.

   Now this big thing had arrived, similar to the other one.  At least there would be food and good water onboard.  And these men didn't seem to be as aggressive as the others, maybe he wouldn't have to sit in a cage this time?

   Deciding that the chances of survival were higher on the big thing, Rajard suddenly jumped out of the lifeboat, squashing a couple of marines as he landed in their boat.  His two wolves quickly followed, and before the Southern Arrow's marines knew what was happening, they had three new arrivals.  The wolves had stopped barking now, and Rajard wasn't growling, but he still had his guard up, and wasn't about to relax just yet.

   "Erm, welcome aboard," one of the marines said, not sure if he should be annoyed or grateful.  "But what of your friend?"

   The marine turned his attention to the now sole occupant of the lifeboat, and called over to him.

   "Jump aboard, mate; unless you want to be left out here to die!"
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Yurie Yileen
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« Reply #4 on: June 30, 2009, 06:26:12 PM »

   Captain Fjorwek gazed with utter amazemet at the spectacle that had just landed aboard his ship.  Was somebody, somewhere, toying with him?

   "Wolves!" he snapped, stating the all too obvious as he looked at the two, slavering beasts before him.  They were fiercely defensive of the gigantic man that stood behind them.

   "Aye, wolves, sir," one of the marines said somewhat redundantly.

   "And what makes you think that we have need of wolves aboard this vessel?"

   The marine seemed stuck for an answer.  He began to form a sentence, but then stopped, and finally admitted that there was, indeed, no sane purpose in having two dangerous animals on board a ship.

   "Of course the man and, the, the..."

   "Psyrpent, sir."  Doctor Jorek whispered.

   "...the sly serpent can stay.  But I'm afraid the wolves shall have to be thrown overboard!"

   "Aye, sir," the marine said more confidently.  Now that he had a task to perform, and didn't have to answer difficult questions, he felt much better.

   But the task wasn't an easy one.  A group of marines cautiously approached the two beasts, telling them to be good doggies and the like, but wolves are intelligent animals, and they could tell that the words were insincere.  The rope and cruel daggers in the marines' hands probably didn't help reassure the nervous canines much, either.

   Suddenly, Rajard let out a horrific roar, and jumped in front of the two wolves, barring the marines' way.

   "Now, sir, step aside, please."  One of the marines said calmly.  "We don't want you..." His sentence was cut short as the massive man leapt forwards and slammed his fist into the marine's mouth.  Soon, the rest of the marines had jumped on him, and in turn, the two wolves had jumped on the marines!  A vicious scuffle broke out, with much snarling, punching, flailing, biting and general violence.

   By the end of it, six marines lay wounded, and Rajard had been restrained, his hands tied securely behind his back.  The wolves had also been "pacified", and lay on the deck, their legs tied and their mouths bound shut.

   "Dear, oh dear," the doctor said as he started examining the injuries.  "I do hope these don't go bad; wolves have terribly dirty teeth, you know."

   "Indeed, doctor," the captain replied.  "Take the injured to the sick bay, and get them treated; him as well."  Captain Fjorwek indicated Rajard, who was also slightly injured.

   "And the wolves, sir?" one of the marines asked.

   Captain Fjorwek looked down at the helpless beasts, trussed up and completely at his mercy.  The huge man had fought hard to protect them, almost as though they were his children.  Flicking his gaze over to Rajard, the captain thought that he saw a tinge of sadness in the man's wild eyes.  Did he really need to drown these creatures?  Was there any purpose in such a heartless act?  Maybe he could just tether them up somewhere out of the way?

   "Find somewhere to keep them," he said at last.  "Secure them well, but keep them fed and watered.  Make sure that they have shade.  They've committed no offence, and are to be treated humanely.  Any man who molests, or harms them in any way, shall answer to me."

   "Aye, aye, sir!" the marine replied, before setting about his task.

   Now that the drama was over, Captain Fjorwek looked about to see what else needed to be done.

   "Ah, yes!  The sly serpent!  I trust you're in need of food and water, too, sir!"

   Then, as if in response to the captain's words, the ship's bell began to ring.

   "My goodness!  It's eight bells already!" the captain exclaimed.  "I believe we should have lunch!"

   "Sir!" the cry came clearly to the captain's ears.  "What about the prisoner?"

   Captain Fjorwek turned, and saw that Hadgrun was still standing next to Mallorix; whip in hand.  Rhia was there, too.

   "Damn, I'd almost forgotten about him!" the captain thought to himself, before walking over to the trio.

   "Rhia," he said first of all, "I must say again how awfully sorry I am that your arm was hurt; I trust that the doctor has treated it?  Please, join the others in my quarters for lunch, and I'll be along presently."
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Rhia
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« Reply #5 on: July 01, 2009, 12:33:23 PM »

"Wolves!"

Rhia swiveled around at Fjorwek's disbelieving, angry word. To her wide-eyed surprise, in front of the captain stood -just as he had said- two grey slobbering beasts sporting a fine array of drooly teeth. Behind them was a large man covered in grime and dirt, his hair thick and matted. Then her gaze fell on the... how could one describe it? In any case... it was frightening... He had the reptilian head of a lizard, and a whiplash tail adorned with spikes at the end. Baveras, he was tall! Without quite realizing that she was doing it, Rhia edged around until she was behind the tall prisoner.

The next few moments were a blur of action. The huge man leaped to the front of the wolves, effectively blocking them from the approcahing marines. A brawl erupted between the sailors and the wolves and the big man in a flurry of knives, rope, fur, and glistening teeth. At last the wolves and the defensive man were bound with rope and subdued, everyone's chests heaving with exertion. Rhia turned away. Oh, the blood on everyone in the scuffle, especially the sailors! Six of them, there were, being hustled away anxiously by Doctor Jorek. Rhia's face tilted up into the air, as if there was something to look at, as the bell tolled its clangor.

Surprise was evident in the captain's face as he addressed everyone on deck. "My goodness, it's eight bells already! I believe we should have lunch."

Hadgrun spoke out beside Rhia with his harsh voice. "Sir!" He gestured to the whip in his hand. "What about the prisoner?"

She was not expecting Fjorwek to cross the deck over to the three as he did, his handsome features becoming weighted with a slight disappointment of some kind. But whatever expression there was to be found in the sunny blue eyes quickly became indiscernible as he spoke to Rhia. "Rhia, I must say again how awfully sorry I am that your arm was hurt- I trust that the doctor has treated it? Please, join the others in my quarters for lunch, and I'll be along presently."

Rhia glanced at the prisoner, doubt in her eyes. She wanted to make sure that he would be alright. When everyone on deck had left and only the other sailors were there to witness, would Fjorwek order his lashing to be continued? There... there wasn't much she could do in any case, surely, short of sitting down on the deck floor right then and there and refusing to budge a nailsbreadth. And even if she did that, she was quite sure that the sailors could physically remove her, thank you! Well, no reason she couldn't carry on punishing the captain. She brushed past him, staring ahead, and joined the other passengers.
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Ylva Rasmussan
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« Reply #6 on: July 02, 2009, 12:43:58 AM »

Ylva’s brain tried to keep up with Mr Luft, his sentence structure was unusual, much more complicated than the woman was used to,

”By Grothar,” –Santharian weather god- “I tell ye, Ylva Rassmussan. There be more books have wearied these eyes of mine than there be taenish” -some sort of bird…- “in Manthria. And what a fat lot of good all that reading be to me on this here ship! If a warrior I was, I would have never ended up here and never got into this whole blackhog sty” –hmm…a pig?- “of a mess. Master Mallorix here be whipped all bloody and I be too blame. And that brave young lady!”

Ylva listened carefully to the man’s words, her mind a bit calmer now that someone had explained why Rhia was hurt, so the girl’s made of strong stuff…

”I only be hoping we be getting to a harbour soon. Do ye know, Ylva Rassmussan, when this shall be? Tonight, mayhap?”

Ylva sighed, reluctant to disappoint the man.

“Where are ye bound, anyways, if I not be rude for the asking?”

Ylva stared at her feet as if she was carefully examining the floorboards on the deck, not sure how best to tell the poor scholar of his new predicament,

“I’m sorry Mister Luft, we head for Queen’s Harbour….I’m not sure of details, but….I don’t think it will be easy for you to get back to your home-”


"Wolves!"
The word seemed to echo across the deck, stopping Ylva in mid sentence. Wolves on a ship? Her head whipped round to see what was happening, spotting the new arrivals. Now that really is unusual…. The wolves looked ordinary compared to the two extraordinary beings that the captain was in negotiations with.

One was almost a wolf himself, while the other serpentine one seemed familiar to Ylva, though the woman couldn’t recall where from.

Ylva smiled slyly, “It seems you, and your friend Mallorix, are not the Captain’s biggest worry anymore, Mister Luft.”

The marines closed in on the wolves, but then the wolf man roared, launching himself at one of the sailors, defending the two beasts. A fight broke out, and Ylva’s smile fell from her face. Her hand grabbed the blade-axe that lay at her side, her feet taking a few steps closer towards the scuffle before they halted and faltered. What had the skinny woman actually expected to do? Jump in? Hah. Much good I’d be…

   Ylva let her weapon rest by her side once again, her brow creased slightly as she watched the wolves and wolf-man being restrained. The woman turned back towards Fu Luft, “Hm. What a day!” The healer smiled, but the warm expression only stayed on her lips for a few seconds.

The sound of the ship's bell rang across the ship, the others seemed to be going back inside the ship, “I guess we should follow them, Mister Luft.”

The woman took one last glance around the deck filled with whipped men and restrained wolves. Something was bothering her, but the doctor couldn’t pinpoint what it was. Yet it churned inside her mind.

Ylva turned to leave. The thought finally popped into her head. What is the difference between people like the wolf-man and Mallorix, and one of your group? The answer was complicated, yet it could be boiled down to one thing, the only real difference was Mr Ranskjun’s orders. Just a man’s word…

Ylva shook her head, as if trying to shake the silly little thought from her mind; her feet scuttled back downstairs with the others, away from the clear sky and sun that now felt harsh and unforgiving.

« Last Edit: July 02, 2009, 05:41:59 AM by Ylva Rasmussan » Logged
Fu Luft
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« Reply #7 on: July 05, 2009, 01:10:03 AM »

“I’m sorry Mister Luft, we head for Queen’s Harbour….I’m not sure of details, but….I don’t think it will be easy for you to get back to your home …”, said Ylva.

Queen’s Harbour. That’s what Mallorix had told Fu earlier. He had thought that it must be somewhere close to Ciosa. But he was now awake enough to read between the lines of Ylva’s words as well as between those above her eye-brows. Big ships like this, with storerooms as large as the one Fu had seen, may go on long journeys. Whenever Fu thought that his situation had improved even by a nailsbreadth, more disastrous news awaited him. Where would this ship take him? Where was Queen’s Harbour?

”Home! I wish I had …”, Fu began his reply, but was interrupted by the cry of ”Wolves” sweeping over the deck.

There appeared to be new arrivals on the ship. A large group of sailors warily surrounded a tall, savage-looking man and two wolves – wolves, indeed! – and a scaled creature with a tail. It stood on two legs, and was a head or more taller than everyone else. The sun reflected in its red eyes and its shiny fangs. Fu had read about beings like this. He had thought that they had died out long ago. They were abominations of a god’s fancy, companions of dragons, befuddlers of human minds. This was one of them. It was a psyrpent. Ylva’s remark shook Fu out of his astonishment:

“It seems you, and your friend Mallorix, are not the Captain’s biggest worry anymore, Mister Luft.”

”That be so, Ylva Rassmussan! And mayhap that captain won’t be my biggest worry anymore, either. Be ye seeing that Great Lizard?”

Ylva didn’t respond to Fu. She was watching a fight that had broken out between the sailors on the one side, and the wolves and the savage man on the other. The man appeared to consider the animals his pets – or oddly, his friends. Fu saw that Ylva reached for her axe and took a few steps toward the fight. Mayhap she be a guard?  But she didn’t join in the fight.

The fight was ferocious. But Fu hardly understood it. He couldn’t take his eyes off the psyrpent, who appeared to stand motionless despite the mayhem. They can be causing madness in a man’s mind. They can be killing one by only thinking about him. Without realizing it, Fu took two steps back.

Eventually, the sailors managed to restrain the wolves and the savage. Ylva turned around, smiled at Fu, and said:

“Hm. What a day!”

”Ye be right to be saying that!” he replied. ”This day be much too interesting for Fu’s taste.”

Bells rang. Ylva pointed out several people who went through a door into the ship’s superstructure. “I guess we should follow them, Mister Luft.”

”I shall be with ye presently”, Fu said. ”There be a small matter I must be settling.”

Fu had observed that the brave lady – Mallorix’s lover, as Fu thought – had talked to the captain and had stormed through the door out of sight. The captain now stood with the whipmaster and poor Mallorix. Fu couldn't bring it over him to desert his companion. He walked over to the group and addressed the captain:

”Please ye, captain, don’t be punishing Mallorix Volinkov anymore! It all be my fault! If ye be needing to be whipping someone, please ye be whipping me instead.”

Where the little wizard had taken this courage from, he himself did not know. Out of the corner of his eye, Fu peeked at the whipmaster’s muscular arm. He could imagine all too well what it would feel like if that arm swung the whip onto his back. Fu’s stomach felt as if two wolves and six sailors were having a fight inside. He looked at the captain with pleading eyes.
« Last Edit: July 05, 2009, 01:25:30 AM by Fu Luft » Logged

Mallorix Volinkov
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« Reply #8 on: July 06, 2009, 08:35:23 PM »

Just after he was saved from a whipping, the captain and his lieutenant, as well as the doctor, turned to look at a small boat that was next to the ship. Out of it clambered out first a tall serpent, then a man who looked as if he had not washed in years. Behind the man were two wolves, clearly visible due to the angle at which Mallorix was looking from. When the captain espied the two beasts, he immediatley cried out for marines to come and restrain them.

The young man was overwhelmed by a wave of marines charging from around him to the wolves. Mallorix took this time to loosen his bonds in a way that was not visible: he used his knife to untie the knots a little, which would only be seen if someone was looking at exacly the right knot in the mess of cord binding him to the whipping post. He sighed as he massaged his aching wrists.

Mallorix was tired, sweaty, hungry, thirsty, and he did not care about the newcomes upon the ship at all. The captain did, however, so the wolves were provided with shelter.

*What an unfair captain! I was whipped and chained to a post, and he gives those beasts food and shelter!*

At that time, eight bells rang. It was time for lunch! Mallorix wanted more than ever to be free of his bonds.

Just then, Fu went before the captain with a plea.


”Please ye, captain, don’t be punishing Mallorix Volinkov anymore! It all be my fault! If ye be needing to be whipping someone, please ye be whipping me instead.”


Malloix hoped that the Captain would listen and this inprisonment would end.
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Yurie Yileen
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« Reply #9 on: July 07, 2009, 06:19:29 PM »

   "I wonder what's wrong with her?"  Captain Fjorwek thought to himself as he watched Rhia stride away from him without saying a word.  "Was it something that I said?  Or maybe something I didn't say?"

   The truth be told, even though the captan was a fine judge of men, and generally thought of as handsome, he had very little experience of dealing with women.  It was one of the disadvantages of having spent his entire life at sea, you might say.  Still, his confusion didn't last long; Fu Luft saw to that.

   "Ah, Mr Luft," the captain said in response to the wind wizard's words.  "Your bravery does you proud!  But please, think no more of it, it seems as though you have been the victim of unfortunate circumstances.  Would you care to join us for lunch in my quarters?  It's the very least that I can do to make up for your ill treatment earlier.

   "And as for this man..." the captain turned his attention to Mallorix, and briefly considered what to do with him.  He leant in close to the bound prisoner, and whispered into his ear.

   "One lash will be enough for today, lad, but mark my words, I'll be keeping an eye on you.  And if you want to thank anyone for your good fortune, you'd do well to remember the young lady who took a whipping for you.

   "Now, get cleaned up, and then report immediately to my quarters; there's a meal to be served."

   Having said this, Captain Fjorwek ordered Hadgrun to release Mallorix.

   "Aye, aye, sir," the marine said without hesitation.  If he was disappointed at not being able to finish the punishment, his face showed no sign of it.

   "Now, Mr Luft, I believe it's time to eat.  This morning's activities have given me an appetite!  Shall we?"

 

   Once back inside his quarters, the captain nodded in approval.  A large spread of different dishes had been laid out on the dining table, and everything appeared to be in order.

   "Please, have a seat."  he said to the guests who were already present.   "I hope you like fruit, we have a wide variety of it today.  Jorn Ranskjun told me that Fionn is adverse to meat.  You'd better make the most of it whilst it lasts, though; fruit doesn't keep too well on board ship.  Later we'll most likely only have lymmons left!"

   Taking his own place at the head of the table, the captain quickly scanned the faces present.

   "Now, where's the lieutenant?  Hylphan and Malavon seem to be missing, too.  Perhaps they're still sparring?  I hope that they don't take much longer, it'd be a shame for them to miss out on this!"  The captain used his hands to indicate the array of food spread before him.

   Then, he lifted the glass that had been set next to his plate.  It was filled with a clear, lymmon scented liquid.  Everyone at the table had the same drink before them.

   "To a most eventful morning!  Let us hope that the rest of our journey is more, how to say?, routine."

   After making his brief toast, the captain took a sip of the Stingo, taking comfort from its familiar bite.  Then he helped himself to a few pieces of steamed fish, and a knobbly looking creature with large pincers.

   "So tell me," he said as he cracked open the boiled sea creature's shell, "How do you find life at sea, so far?"

   His question wasn't directed at anybody in particular, it was more an open invitation for anyone to speak.
Logged

Fu Luft
Befuddled Spellblower
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« Reply #10 on: July 10, 2009, 01:40:51 AM »

"Ah, Mr Luft," the captain said. "Your bravery does you proud!  But please, think no more of it, it seems as though you have been the victim of unfortunate circumstances.  Would you care to join us for lunch in my quarters?  It's the very least that I can do to make up for your ill treatment earlier.”

By Grothar! As far as Fu could remember, this was the first time in his life that someone had praised his courage. And this from a sea captain, no less! Fu was well aware that he was a wizard of timid disposition, and that valour was one the many virtues that were sadly underdeveloped in his character. Yet little Fu couldn’t help being flattered.

And now the captain even invited him to lunch! This speedy promotion from disdained stowaway to respected dinner guest should probably have made Fu suspicious. But since shrewness was another of his underdeveloped virtues, it didn’t. Instead, Fu began to feel a little giddy. His self-sacrifice had actually worked! Mallorix was spared another blow of the whip! The captain ordered for the young sailor to be released. Then he dragged Fu along and into the inside of the ship.

Up to that point, Fu had only seen the storeroom and the deck. But what did we have here: a table covered with a profusion of delicacies! It was a rare occasion indeed when Fu could afford to eat anything but the simplest meal. Under normal circumstances, his mouth would have watered uncontrollably at the prospect of this meal. But these weren’t normal circumstances: the assembled presence of the other lunch guests was even more surprising than the profusion of food and drink! There was – by Grothar! – the psyrpent, sitting on a chair as if he hadn’t a fang in his maw and if his eyes weren’t red. Then the imp who wasn’t an imp and who was called Fionn.  Finally, Fu spied some of the other people he had noticed on deck.

The little wind wizard was abashed to join this illustrious and peculiar round in the dirty and unkempt state that his adventures of the last 12 hours had left him in. To reassure himself, he chose a seat next to a familiar person: Ylva Rassmussan, who had talked so politely to him.

”Well, so here I be,” he whispered, hoping that Ylva hadn't minded his rather abrupt departure from her when she had gone inside.

”Blessed appetite be thine! Please ye, who be this Jurn Ranchkoon the captain be speaking about?”

Fu inclined his head to Ylva to listen for her answer. For the moment, he was too excited to take any drink or food. Who were all these people? The captain addressed them as if they were his personal guests. When the captain asked, "So tell me, how do you find life at sea, so far", Fu couldn’t contain his curiosity any longer.

”I be enjoying life at sea very much,” he lied.

”But please ye be telling me: when shall we be arriving at Queen’s Harbour?”
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Koka Bentarm
Bearded Lady
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Dwarf, Mitharim


« Reply #11 on: July 10, 2009, 02:39:42 AM »

Her eyes firmly fixed on anything solid, Koka made her way into the inside of the ship. She was weak from her recent ordeal, and when she reached out her left hand to steady herself from a lurch of the ship, she noticed that she was trembling. She took a few deep breaths, trying to steady her still hammering heart, then turned to find that Fionn had indeed followed her inside. The dwarfess smiled in acknowledgement.

"I would just like to ask what it was that you did, just now? I do not recover quite so easily from these bouts, normally. If you don't mind sharing trade secrets, of course."

As she talked, she noticed people streaming in and into the captain's cabin, next to which they were standing. Taking a peek inside, she noticed the food spread out on the bolted-down table. While Fionn answered, Koka motioned for them to follow the others and grab a seat, though maintaining a listening ear. If the mullog had done something that could be replicated, she wanted to know it, and hopefully be ready if a next attack came.

She was surprised, once she was seated next to the small girl (woman?) that one of the prisoners was there too, apparently now a guessed. The last she had seen of him, he had still been chained to the deck. But then, first she'd been watching how the human girl had received the lash, and after that her mind had been on entirely different matters. Still, it seemed like a very sudden transformation, and she couldn't help but wonder what some of these sailors thought of that - for herself, she couldn't really care less, as this was not her boat or her discipline to maintain. The captain could do what he wanted, she wasn't going to interfere. Anyway, she was in the middle of a conversation, so she turned her full attention back to Fionn.
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fionn
Prosaic Waif
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Mullog


« Reply #12 on: July 10, 2009, 04:10:07 AM »

"I would just like to ask what it was that you did, just now? I do not recover quite so easily from these bouts, normally. If you don't mind sharing trade secrets, of course."

Fionn grinned self-effacingly when Koka asked this question. Shoving her hands into pockets, she rummaged absent-mindedly as she spoke:

“Trade Secrets?” her grin broadened, displaying small sharp teeth. “I dunno about that, sir – ahh! Found it- nope….” This last as she triumphantly retrieved a small vial which held what looked like snot, and then returned it to the pocket.

“Really it’s simple, or at least, I think it is…” an unlikely length of string was extracted, with some difficulty, and relocated to her satchel, trailing several unidentifiable things which had become inextricably tangled. “I’m not entirely sure what causes it – I’d put it down to an eru making trouble in the mind – ouch…” a book of needles was removed and put somewhere safe by deft hands. “Dunno how that got in there.”

The dwarf was heading back out, and Fionn saw that they were following the others to what looked like lunch. Oh, thank the ancestors. On that thought, her fingers finally closed over the little bottle she was looking for, and she produced it as triumphantly as a great warrior might the severed head of a powerful adversary. “Here we go! ‘fraid there’s not much left, but show it to any herbalist worth their smelling salts and they’ll find you some more. S’nothing special, like I said; just extract of yahrle. Normally it’s used to numb pain, stop bleeding, but it seems to relax bad breathing a little, just ‘cos it numbs the throat when you breathe it in. I think.”

Another grin, but more because she’d spotted the fruit than anything else. She reached eagerly for a melderapple and smiled her thanks to the captain. Koka was looking across the table towards – Fu Luft, the mysterious stowaway. It was certainly good to see him no longer chained up, and she hoped the other man had been released. What is an imp? Maybe Koka knows… probably more important things to think about right now… she realised that the dwarf was looking at her, and swallowed a mouthful of fruit.

“Usually it’s a specific thing that causes that kinda attack. D’you mind my asking if you know what that might be?”
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"If it's teeth are longer than your fingers, for the Ancestors' sake, assume it doesn't want it's belly tickled..."
Fionn's CD
Rhia
Songbird of the Sea
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« Reply #13 on: July 11, 2009, 12:50:37 PM »

Rhia trailed the small stream of passengers into the captain's quarters, in which a large rectangular table was set out with plenty of chairs to go around. The surface of the table displayed a fine array of food, especially fruit, of which there seemed to be more than abundance. Captain Fjorwek smiled welcomingly at those of the "special" passengers who were present and received them in a very cheerful manner. That kind, official-looking woman, Ylva... The prisoner, Luft... But why was he out here? He was a prisoner, she had thought. Why had the captain consented to let him eat with the passengers, in his own quarters, no less? If he, a supposed prisoner, why was the tall one not allowed to eat here as well? A flash of indignation flared briefly in Rhia. Her stare became even flintier as her eyes penetrated the table as if to burn straight through the wood. Fionn, the short creature, the one Luft had thought was an imp, was here too. And then there was the bearded dwarf... Pity, she hadn't had a chance to meet him. Still, in her present state, she doubted that he would find a conversation with her pleasant. So, resolving to keep to herself in stony silence, she helped herself to the food.

Her slender arm reached for the pitcher of water. Wine was undoubtedly pleasant, but if she drank a bit too much of it today, she probably wouldn't be able to keep up her stony front to the captain. Rhia admired the thin crystalline column cascading into her glass. Bloody men. She paused in setting the water pitcher back in its place, ruminating on changing her mind and pouring herself some wine for single fleeting moment, but decided not to with an inward sigh. Sipping on her glass of water, she scrutinized the company at the table. Ylva and Luft, conversing amiably. The dwarf -she still didn't know his name!- and Fionn -now her name she did know, thank Murlar- were talking together as well... Where was everyone else? If her memory served right, there was that one man who showed concern for his animals... The two, the pointy-eared, rugged-looking man and the sinister Malavon Despana, where were they? Idly Rhia jerked her drink around in a tiny circle, causing the water to slosh around the contours of the glass. Not really thinking anything particular, she gazed into the very miniature whirlpool, although soon enough her thoughts firmed up into something clear.

Already, she ruminated with a quick up-and-down of her dramatic eyebrows, already, on the first day, so much had happened. Was this something normal for those who went on sea adventures? First day, and already noteworthy events had happened. Oh, aye! That reminded her! With the arrival of the ship's strange -and frightening- new occupants, she had better start formulating a sketch-out for the song recording their adventure, else she forget later.
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Yurie Yileen
Walker of Dreams
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« Reply #14 on: July 14, 2009, 06:24:41 PM »

   "Somehow, I doubt that," the captain said in response to Fu's assertion that he was enjoying life on board the Southern Arrow.  "Your reception here hasn't been all that welcoming so far; I hope that this makes up for it somewhat."  Captain Fjorwek indicated the spread of food as he said this.  "It's not everyday that one meets a real magician!"

   Pausing briefly, the captain took another bite of his food, and glanced around the table.  Koka was chatting to Fionn about something, and Ylva was sitting quietly next to Fu.  The large, intimidating psyrpent was busy devouring its lunch, and the captain wondered how long it had been adrift.

   "Hmm," he continued, "It all depends on the wind, Mr Luft.  With good weather, we can be at Queen's Harbour soon enough.  I don't like to say exactly how long, for fear that by doing so I'd curse our voyage!  But I wonder, what exactly will you do once we've arrived there?  I'm sure that it's a long way from your family and home."

   Rhia was staring coldly at the space in front of her, seemingly deep in thought.  The captain wanted to say something to engage her interest, but wasn't sure how to begin.  Instead, he turned his attention to Fionn, who was rummaging around in her pockets.

   "I trust the doctor hasn't worked you too hard this morning?  I understand things can get fairly busy down in the cockpit; erm, the sick bay, I mean.

   "To be honest, it's been quite an eventful start to our journey!  Perhaps you should all relax a little during the afternoon.  Though the lieutenant might have something planned for Koka and Royce; she might want to let you have a go with the catapults!"

   Rhia was still in her own world, but the captain finally thought of something to say.

   "I'd also very much like to play for you after lunch; maybe Rhia would be so kind as to join me?  I keep a selection of instruments over there," the captain pointed to a large, wooden chest."  And I'd love to hear them played properly for a change!"
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