The Children's Campaign

An Unsteady Voyage

The boyos make the boat shipshape new mast installed they leave Dragoon Lagoon to the Peddler and El Lay. Upon exiting the straits their is a longboat paddling at an aggressive angle towards them as they attempt for the first time to tack the boat around. As they sails luff it passes their stern and all hear a deep “thomp” as a grapple catches tight to the tiller. the longboat then backs forcing the wheel from the hands of the young sailors trying to keep it true to course. Turning them further past their point and soon a sickly grind is heard from the hull as they come aground upon a hidden sandbar.

Boarded by a wretched group of scurvy dogs who’s arms are filled with tattoos burned off in the ritual dishonor of the pirate way.

They fight and for mere boys fighting full grown men make a good showing for themselves. Downing two of the brigands in dark red pools of their own life’s blood. But at last they are undone.

All but one jumps to safety. The last, Skynner, is hurled near dead or dying over the rail and into the dark waters. He is rescued and against age an any real know how saved by his fellows. But the ship, she is lost. For while the boys managed to lay ill to two of the dogs, one, well bloodied and maddened by it races the rails of the ship doing his seasoned best to rig the craft and get it released from the sandbar before the tide fully ebbed.

The boyos, all tattered and wounded into the longboat climb and begin to stroke across the shallows. Away from Hagyn and the ship they’d taken and refitted. Back they stroked. Back toward El Lay, back toward the Peddler and the only real home they’ve ever known.

Dread, Judge, Fred, and Tim, no longer mostly dead, but still quite peaked character have been paddling in the somewhat rotting longboat for hours, always hugging the shoreline until finally just as the coming sun has painted the faintest of pink the deep waters of the sea off to their port, they see in the distance, El Lay. Approaching in the ebb tide of the pre dawn, they notice a very yar ship moored out from the quay, it’s blac sails tied and furled, their color keeping it all but invisible until now.

“Put yer backs into it lads!” said Dread, “I am” said another. “I’ll be the judge of that!” said a third with a laughing grunt, bending an oar of his own.

And so, in the stillness of the pre dawn morning, toward the vacant docks of El Lay, the bleak black sailed vessel looming larger and larger in their sight, they rowed on.

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