Board :Tales of the People
Author :Archon Iyagi
Subject :"Traveling with precious cargo" By Koner
Date :1/2
Peering over the bow of our weary ship, I scan the cloudy horizon. Our journey had been a smooth one to this point but to have sailed this far without major issue was a disconcerting fact in my mind. Sailing home towards the safety of Hausson's port without a hitch was seldom heard of for a merchant vessel like ours. My worries amplified by the value of our haul.

In one sudden flash, all my fears were manifested. A thunderous crash followed by the stern's top deck being torn to splinters. My head whipped around as I was confronted with the devil himself. The infamous pirate Captain Bluestone was hot on our heels.

"Captain, if we surrender without a fight, I'm sure they will let us live," my men cried out.

"Not today boys," our cargo was too precious. There's no telling what those scum sucking barnacles would do if they got a hold of it. The pirate vessel fired another shot from the bow of their ship. The shrill whistle of the cannonball skimming our railing echoed against the crashing waves.

"Sir!" my men pleaded.

"No!" I scolded, "Stay upwind and head for that fog bank. This is our only chance! We need more speed! Anything not nailed down goes overboard."

By the luck of the gods, we edged our way into the rolling mist. Our ship swiftly speeding away under its opaque cloak. I hurried below deck to assess the damage.

"My love, I'm scared!" my wife cooed, holding her pregnant belly.

"Have no fear my love. I won't let anything happen to you or our child. Not while there is a breath left in my body," I assured her.

With a sudden slam, the door to the top deck flew open. "Sir, we're going to-"

CRASH! The boat slammed to a sudden stop throwing everyone to the ground. I quickly pulled myself to my feet and rushed into the light to see what had happened.

As I breached the deck, I stared forth in amazement. We had broadsided a different ship from Bluestone's fleet. The head of our ship was intact, but our bowsprit had impaled their poop deck.

"Pull her loose quickly lads!" I bellowed.

My men and I sprang into action trying to hack our ship free. It wasn't long before pirates began pouring out of every crevasse of their ship. I drew my cutlass skully and swung wildly to keep them at bay. Their scowling faces mad with rage. Foaming at the mouth the scallywags attempted to board our ship. I fought and fought with all my might. "Get us free! NOW!"

There were too many pirates, it was no use. I slashed and slashed defending our meager ship from assured violation. Finally, just when all seemed lost, a divine, karmic gust lurched our ship forward, blasting us out of their ship's wound. My elation was short lived, however, as the rumbling had caused me to lose my balance. After being thrown into the railing, momentum carried my legs straight up over my head, sending me tumbling off the side of the ship.

Splash. The cold salty water rushed into my mouth and nose. In the shadow of the ships, I couldn't tell which way was up or down. My mind was rushing but I quickly focused. I can't die here. My wife and unborn child need me. Though there was no breath left in my body, I quickly scrambled upwards.

Despite being able to surface, I was greeted only by the last bit of my ship passing by my cheek. At least she would be safe. My men could surely pilot the ship to shore from here. Consigned to my fate, I treaded water watching my ship pass.

But what's this? A long rope was draped out of our punctured stern. Wasting no time, I grabbed ahold, fighting the waves crashing against me as our ship fled deeper into the mist.

Although I don't remember what happened next, my men say I pulled myself back onto the ship and flopped myself down in front of a nigh bewildered crew.

The next thing I know, I'm opening my eyes on the bow of our ship. My wife glances down on me smiling. Slowly but surely, I rise up, once again scanning the now clear horizon. We had made it to Hausson. This was a voyage my bloodline would never forget.

Koner