Skull & Shackles

Day One: The Wormwood

Written from the perspective of Glan-Var Ov-Thur, The Dwarven Sea Druid:

I awoke at sea, in the bilges of a ship. There were two elves (one looked as if it had human qualities) and three humans laying about me as well. None of us were restrained, however, there was a human who was shackled up, muttering loud coercions as he attempted to acquire our help, though little could we do at the moment.

It wasn’t long until a group of men came down to the bilges and escorted us up to the deck, one rather menacing man with a whip named Scourge prompted us along at a fervent pace. As we proceeded to top deck, I noticed a rather strong taste of taggit root oil. I can only assume that was what kept me unconscious for so long. They must have administered it to us all down in the bilges to keep us subdued. It was a rather large dose too, the taste is quite palpable.

Once we reached the deck, we were introduced to Captain Harrigan as well as several of his inferiors. After pleasantries were exchanged, the Captain decided they would lead us in a little competition. They had us race to the top of the crow’s nest, to which, I realize I am not very skilled at, I decided to be lethargic in my pursuit of winning the competition. I received a few “gifts” from Scourge’s whip for my apathy. The female half elf came out victorious as she reached the crow’s nest first, to much praise from the Captain and Master Scourge.

For my insolence, Master Scourge sent me on a “Rat Catching” mission. He was lax in saying what he expected me to do with the rats, so I spoke with all the rats I found and brought them top deck…to which they were promptly blasted with water overboard. The others, I noticed, had been given other jobs as well on this first day on the Wyrmwood.

That night, after a hearty meal of fish stew, I went directly to sleep…unsure of what my new life on the Wyrmwood would bring.

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Day Two: The Wormwood

Written from the perspective of Glan-Var Ov-Thur, the Dwarven Sea Druid:

Awakening the next day after a hearty sleep, the day appeared to begin normally. Breakfast was simple, biscuits and a bit of salt beef. Once finished with breakfast, we were released for our daily chores. A group of us were confronted by Narthal, a fellow dwarf, and a band of his mates.

Apparently the human known as “Mander” was involved in a fight the first day on board the ship and Narthal has come seeking revenge. I have been lumped in as one of Mander’s “friends” therefore, I am to be attacked as well. I acted quickly, filling the air mist, and stealing away from the fight. I began to mop, hoping not to draw attention to myself as Scourge came down to see what all the commotion was about. My attempt was in vain, as I still received lashes for the misconduct on deck. Scourge attempted to discover who had the ability to cast magic, interrogating each of us, the humans, Mander, Odnal, and Juna, as well as the elves, Glindal, and Nadiya. None of them spoke, so each were punished with lashes.

Luckily, Narthal and his crew were given lashes as well, so favorites weren’t played. It appears Gozreh did not wish for death this day. Many of these crewmen seem susceptible to influence…maybe their trust should be gained. I do not particularly enjoy being beaten, nor having to look over my shoulder every minute of the day. A pirate ship they call this…more like a slave ship for the likes of this crew. I’d hope to change that if ever I were able to lead a ship such as this…wishful thinking I suppose for now.

I have begun to gather my bearings on this ship…one crew member spoke with me…it has been a long time since I have even engaged in such a simple activity with anyone…I felt it best to not respond, instead I slept, and reflected upon yet another day aboard the Wyrmwood.

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Day Three: The Wormwood

Told from the perspective of Glan-Var Ov-Thur, the Dwarven Sea Druid:

That morning we were delegated our daily duties and I was sent on another mission of rat slaying. While down in the bilges, speaking with the rats, I was heckled mercilessly by the human in shackles. I chose not to speak with him, but instead chose the company of the rats, as I attempted to persuade them to come above deck with me but failing in my attempts to sway them. I was forced to bash a few in the skull to accomplish my daily chores.

That evening, rumors of my silence began to spread, as I begun to overhear comments describing me as “weird, odd,” and “quiet.” Rumors of mutiny had begun to spread amidst a few of the crew members, including those that I came aboard the Wyrmwood with. Communication and planning is in the beginning stages at the moment and it will be interesting to see how this all begins to play out…

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Day Four: The Wormwood

Told from the perspective of Glan-Var Ov-Thur, the Dwarven Sea Druid:

That morning, daily duties were assigned. I was set about squabbing the deck, when a group of us were alerted of trouble in the bilges…Giant Rats. Scourge sent myself, Gildan, Mander, Nadiya, and Odnal down to the Bilges to investigate and deal with the threat.

Once in the bilges, the rumors were correct, giant Dire Rats attacked us immediately upon arrival. The human I have deemed “shackles” was still tied up and luckily still alive. Once the rats were dispatched of, Mander took it upon himself to speak with “Shackles.”

Mander discovers that the captive wishes for a mutiny to take place on the ship, but realizes time must be bided in order for support of the idea to come to fruition.

That evening a fight between Cobblesworth and Xhang Down took place. Xhang Dow had enlisted the help of Gildan, but Gildan ignored Xhang Dow’s cries for help as he was savagely beaten. Gildan appears to have turned a friend in to an enemy.

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Day Five: The Wormwood

Written from the perspective of Glan-Var Ov-Thur, the Dwarven Sea Druid:

The day began again with a normal work routine for everyone. I was set about swabbing the decks, to which I was able to dutifully complete the work without complication. At the end of the work day, Master Scourge came out to make a special announcement. For our hard work, we were going to have some festivities and entertainment. Scourge has arranged a brawl and selected the human known as Mander to fight against “The Owl-Bear.” The conditions of the fight were bare knuckled brawling and no magic was to be used. A sorceress dispelled the magic that was cast on Mander to aid him in the battle by the human Odnal.

To Scourge’s disdain, Mander came out victorious against the large “gimp” known as The Owl-Bear. He began encouraging Mander to kill The Owl-Bear as per condition of his victory. Mander refused to kill The Owl-Bear, defying Scourge, and further enraging him. This act of kindness Mander showed towards The Owl-Bear appeared to gain him a potential ally. For his loss, Scourge punished The Owl-Bear with his whip mercilessly, driving him back down below deck into solitary. The fight ended the celebration for the end of the work day and the crew returned below deck to their quarters.

That evening, the crew’s quarters were abuzz with discussion over the fight between Owl Bear and Mander. It appears Mander has gained influence with the crew for his victory. I wonder how well he will use this new found prominence to his advantage…

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Day Six: The Wormwood

Written from the perspective of Glan-Var Ov-Thur, the Dwarven Sea Druid:

A storm has set in. We were awoken early in the morning and informed that every crew member is going to be a rigger today. For most of the day, the storm is managed, and met with little problems. However, we have been informed we will be rigging into the night and will have to miss dinner.

The night progressed as shifts were taken in order to keep the crew fresh and able to perform their duties successfully, to which the strategy worked. The only loss we suffered was one of the little halflings was blown overboard and lost at sea…with no hope of saving.

Once dawn came, a rather rough patch of weather afflicted the ship again and another one of the crew, Tilly Bracket, was overthrown in to the water. Unlike the halfling that was blown overboard late last night, this time, Tilly would able to be saved!

Disobeying orders to let her go, I acted quickly, tying a rope around my waist (but not to anything on the ship), casted a spell on myself allowing me to grow gills and fins so I would be more adept at swimming in the storm, and dove over the side into the ocean! Luckily, one of my fellow crewmates tied the rope I had around my waist to the side of the ship! I found Tilly, swam to her, and aided her in swimming back to the ship. She clung to me as we were pulled aboard, thanking and kissing me frantically. It appears I have made a new friend.

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Day Seven: The Wormwood

Written from the perspective of Glan-Var Ov-Thur, the Dwarven Sea Druid:

The storm has not yet let up. The crew has not slept for the past thirty six hours. Many of them are struggling from fatigue. Luckily, my fortitude has been strong and I have been able to maintain my strength for the day, continuing to perform my duties effectively.

Once night was upon us, everyone who wasn’t fatigued (including myself), was now exhausted from lack of sleep and the harsh work the endless storm provided us. Luckily, the storm ends! Before we were dismissed to our beds…lashes had to be given. The half-elf, Nadiya and the elf, Glindal were both given lashes…for deeds I can’t recall. Elves, it doesn’t surprise me that they are unruly and disobedient, especially in this environment.

Finally, once punishments were given out, we were allowed to retire to our beds. I don’t believe the entire crew has ever slept more soundly.

Gozreh kept a watchful eye on us this time. Next time, we might not be so lucky.

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Day Eight: The Wormwood

Written from the perspective of Glan-Var Ov-Thur, the Dwarven Sea Druid:

That morning, most of the crew went off to their respective duties. Djoona returned to her work with Kroop in the kitchen, shirking their work and deciding to get drunk instead. Djoona discovered that Kroop has a history of gambling and is disheartened with Captain Harrigan. After her discovery, they both got to work fixing the captain’s meal for the day.

I had to spend the day coiling rope. To which Scourge decided to harass me during, spitting directly in my face after I decided it best not to even respond to his berating. He was met with a crazy grin as I carried on with my duties.

Odnal, after overhearing and seeing all of this interaction take place between Scourge and I, laughed heartily at the scene, flaring Scourge’s temper. He received a lash for his insolence.

Nadiya was sent with Plug and a small halfling known as Ratline Ratsberger to hoist the sails, but mainly to be ogled by the slimy first mate. Nadiya is able to complete her duties masterfully, as well as correct the mistakes that Ratsberger commits. For this, she ends up gaining his trust.

Odnal is sent to bilges after his insolence. He converses with the bound cocky man I have simply deemed as “Shackles.” Odnal finds out that Shackles wishes to be released, but realizes that at the moment, he is unable to be helped. Odnal completes his work in the bilges with the help of magic, but as he is about to leave he hears people descending. Hiding, he sees Narthal and Scourge take Shackles and lead him top deck for a little “show.”

At the end of the work day, we were all brought top deck for a “show.” Wanting a better view of what was to happen, I moved away from the crowd and went towards the back of the ship, allowing me to see what all the commotion was about. For my act, Scourge is sent to me with a Cat O’ Nine Tails, lashing me several times for my insolence, but ultimately, staying up there with me to watch the “show.”

Captain Harrigan begins speaking to Shackles, who he has uncovered him to the rest of us as “Young Nate.” Harrigan proceeds to take out a knife and shaves Nate’s face. However, after the shave is finished, the Captain retrieves another blade, this time this blade is searing red hot, and sends the point straight in to Nate’s eye, taking it out! Nate passed out from the pain and was carried back down to the bilges. Whatever point Captain Harrigan was trying to make, he certainly established his authority with this demonstration of power.

Sandara Quinn, after the “show,” met with several of the crew, inviting them to a secret meeting at the forward mast at midnight.

That night at the meeting, Sandara Quinn welcomes everyone who decided to come. She leads the conversation, telling everyone that something must be done about the way we’re being treated on this ship, whether it be a mutiny or whether or not we find another way off this ship.

Kroop leaves the meeting, letting everyone know that he cannot risk his life for the sake of others. His leaving prompts others to run off, too scared to even speak of mutiny. Sandara lets out to those of us remaining that she wishes to sink the ship…but for the time being we should concentrate on making more friends.

That night, after the meeting, Nadiya went off and stole some money(60sp), a wooden flute, a silver ring, and a flask of what she believes is water but is unsure.

Odnal, taking Sandara’s advice, decides to entertain the crew by telling a story to the entire crew’s quarters. In the end, it was met with lackluster approval, but still had garnered some interest and intrigue.

Djoona, also heeding Sandara’s advice, decided to go drink with Kroop and Grok, however, she was unable to win over Grok to any extent.

Before I retired for the night, I thought it may be a good idea to go down to the bilges to check on Nate. However, my stealth skills were not as good as I’d hoped as Scourge discovered my attempt to sneak down in to the bilges. I let it known to him that I left ten gold pieces down below and was going to retrieve them. He didn’t allow me to and told me to return to my bed. Shortly after, I noticed that he sent a couple of his lackeys in search of the gold that I “misplaced.”

I had the last laugh this eve.

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Day Nine: The Wormwood

Written from the perspective of Glan-Var Ov-Thur, the Dwarven Sea Druid:

That morning, after a delicious breakfast cooked by Djoona, we began our daily jobs once again aboard the Wormwood.

Nadiya was sent back to rigging where she excels. During her job, the other dwarf on board, Narthal, attempted to thwart her efforts to complete her job by not completing his own. However, to Plug’s disdain, Nadiya was able to not only complete her work, but also complete the work that Narthal was suppose to finish as well.

Odnal is sent to pump the bilges for the day. He chose to spend most of his time healing and taking care of Nate who was still in rough condition after the punishment he received the day before from Captain Harrigan. However, when he attempted to complete his duties pumping the bilges, he failed to do so. This displeased Scourge, and for his failure, Odnal is to receive lashes at bloody hour.

I was sent to repair the ship with Hobbley Karn, who, as I found out rather quickly, is an asshole. Though I didn’t really repair much, my duties involved wielding a sledgehammer and breaking a lot of stuff.

During bloody hour, Odnal is set to receive his lashes as well as the young Halfling Rosie Caswell, and to my disdain, I will receive some lashes for my attempts to sneak about the ship the night before.

I was unable to endure the lashes that were given to me, passing out from the merciless strikes Scourge decided to take out on me.

That night, Nadiya attempted to sneak about the ship but was discovered. Scourge, having been the one to catch Nadiya, threatens Nadiya with three lashes the following day at bloody hour…or she can get out of the punishment through other means of compensation. She refused him and he spat at her, telling her she will be thoroughly punished on the morrow.

Djoona went to sleep right away.

Odnal had a rather exciting evening down with the rest of the crew. When they were all issued their rum rations, he invigorated the crew with a rousing and jaunty drinking song to which he even had Scourge amused.

The lively tune capped the night off pleasantly, as Odnal gained influence among the crew to use to his advantage. Time will tell how well he utilizes that influence.

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Day Ten: The Wormwood

Written from the perspective of Glan-Var Ov-Thur, the Dwarven Sea Druid:

That morning, I awoke, delirious still from the lashings I was given at bloody hour. My back, still raw, ached as I clambered my way up to breakfast. I wouldn’t give Scourge the satisfaction of being unable to perform my duties today.

After breakfast, the crew all set about our daily chores. Nadiya was sent to coil rope today with Narthal. After completing her work, she was confronted by Plug. He accused her of moving coiled rope over other unfinished work to make it appear that all the work was finished. He proceeded to threaten her with the cat o’ nine tails for her failure, even though Nadiya defended herself, claiming it was Narthal who was attempting to sabotage her. Plug was not swayed.

Djoona was sent on a special mission today. Instead of her usual preparations in the kitchen, she was sent out on a boat to hunt for a turtle for tonight’s dinner. With most of the day passing her by and little to no luck with the turtle hunting, fear began to creep in that she might not be able to catch tonight’s dinner and be able to appease the Captain. Luckily, just as the sun was setting, she spotted a turtle and with one fell swoop of her net, she was able to sweep a turtle up in to her net. Hurriedly, she rushed the turtle back to the kitchen, allowing Kroop to perform the killing blow. That night, a dinner of turtle stew was served, which was a superb change from the normal cod stew the crew had been getting used to.

Odnal was sent to coil and tie rope for the day, to which he completed in expert fashion. He even finished his work early and was praised, surprisingly, by Plug. Odnal, not really caring for much of Plug’s impressions, turned his back on Plug while he was being praised. This act of impudence was met with a quick lash to which Odnal gladly bore.

I decided to shirk my work for the day and sneak down in to the bilges to check on Nate to see how well he was faring after the brutal punishment he received a couple days prior. Still in very poor condition, I did the best I could to change his rags and purify the water he was drinking and festering in. Though the healing I provided was only temporary, it still may have bought him the time he needs to recuperate.

At bloody hour, Plug took the pleasure in lashing Nadiya with the Cat.

That night, after we all went below deck for the evening, Sandara Quinn was kind enough to patch up the scathing wounds that Nadiya suffered during bloody hour.

Odnal speaks with Sandara after she heals Nadiya, discovering that mutiny appears to be farther out of reach than expected.

I attempted to sneak off the ship to go for a swim and commune with the aquatic life surrounding the ship, but was foiled in my attempt when Odnal decided to channel divine magic to help aid me breathe under water, which Scourge was quick to discover and put a stop to promptly. I took a lash for pretending not to be able to breathe and acting as if I did not know what magic was being cast on me. Scourge was not amused or convinced.

Djoona went sneaking about the kitchen that night. She was discovered by a cleaver wielding Grock shortly after she entered the kitchen. Djoona played it off that she came to speak with Grock herself instead of snooping about, however, in her conversations with Grock, not much was learned or accomplished. Their relationship at this point is still a bit awkward.

After being healed and before retiring to sleep, Nadiya decided to take a visit down to the bilges to check on Nate once more. She was able to give him something he had been craving since we all first met him the first day on board…rum.

That may have been just what he needed for him to turn the corner in his recovery.

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