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The Lost Treasure of Arimathea

The Lost Treasure of Arimathea

A treasure of untold riches. A clue to its whereabouts. A dangerous journey. Countless men have lost their lives in search of the treasure, but will the crew of the Stardust be the first to hold its riches?

2765 readers have visited this universe since xXxCryptic-AngelxXx created it.
Topics: , action, adventure, mythology, original, pirate, and travel (Add Tags »)
Requires Approval: Yes

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Introduction

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"Hold tight t' yer hope fer all be lost,
t' find th' booty yields a high cost.

T' open th' door one needs a key,
fer this quest ye will needs three.

A key o' red found in a grave,
t' find th' thin' ye must be Brave.

A key o' gold in th' land o' th' queen,
be prepared t' run if ye hear her sing.

A key o' black where time's reversed,
ye must be smart or ye'll be cursed.

these three keys must join as one,
beneath th' light o' hidden sun.

Once th' loot be in yer grasp,
do wha' ye must, but do it fast. "






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There hasn’t been a man to sail the seven seas that didn’t know the tail of Captain Corso the Grim. A pirate unlike any others, he was a fearsome man. Just the sound of his name would make most men shiver in their boots. His reputation proceeded him. Merciless and bloodthirsty, it was said that he was able to end an armada, tearing it from the earth root and stem with a single ship. The Reaper.

Every bard in the taverns that sprinkled the Caribbean sang his songs and spoke the legends. Although each tale was different, they were equally impressive and intimidating. One legend claimed that his ship was a gift from none other than death itself. A menacing vessel for Grim to fairy souls to death’s gates and satiate its hunger. While others claimed that Corso was death, risen up from the bowls of the earth to ravage the earth and drench his hands in the blood of the innocent. Whether they be truth or fable, no one knows, for whoever sets eyes on Corso the Grim never lives to tell the tale.

Through his many years of pillaging, ravaging and decimating whatever crossed his path, Corso amassed a treasure said to rival that of Cortez himself. And seemed as though all at once, the captain, his treasure, and the Reaper disappeared off the face of the earth. Rumors spread of the location of his sacred treasure, but no maps were made. The crew that worked Corso’s ship disappeared along with it.

Whispers. Whispers and hearsay was all anyone ever heard. The most prominent of these tales being that the island the treasure is buried on--known as Arimathea or "The Garden of Eden"-- can only be found by charting the stars. Enemy to man but a friend to creatures, it is said the location of the treasure is guarded by many animals. They protect the valuable hoard along with the three keys needed to gain access to the endless trove.

Centuries have passed since the disappearance of Corso and his treasure. No more clues have been uncovered aside from the riddle that surfaced shortly after his vanishing. Many men have tried to find Corso’s treasure over the years, but none have succeeded. An immeasurable prize out in the open waiting for the daring soul to solve the puzzle and discover the truth.[Scar.-]



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When the infamous crew of The Stardust-- known for being not only the youngest but the trickiest bunch of pirates to sail the seas-- obtained a lead on Corso's treasure, the entire crew wanted to make sail for the hidden shores of Arimathea. It the treasure of treasures, the mystery of mysteries, and the ultimate quest for none had succeeded before. However, the captain of The Stardust, a young man by the name of Captain James Porter, decided it was too risky for his men and refused to sail. After a night of partying at Port Winchester, his Quartermaster seized the ship after raising a mutiny among the crew. She had convinced them the treasure would be worth the risk. To be the first crew to ever find the treasure... Plus they'd be rich til the end of their days.

But not all that glitters is what it's cracked up to be. As the crew sets sail on what is perhaps the most dangerous mission of their lives, all sorts of dangers rear their ugly and beautiful heads. Crackens, mermaids, ghost crews, and more... join the crew and set sail for Arimethea.





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C a p t a i nX J a m e s X P o r t e r
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A ship captain is the leader of an entire vessel,
They must be proficient in every aspect of
running a ship.


Hex:#B00000
Played by: xXxCryptic-AngelxXx
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H e l m s m a n
X o fX S p a d e s

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The helmsman holds the helm and
steers the ship. Often works with
the navigator and captain.



Hex:
Played by: unicorns.are.real
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Q u a r t e r m a s t e r
M e g h a nX C u n n i n g h a m

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The Quartermaster, the second in command.
Their main purpose was to distribute things.
They were also meant to balance power.


Hex: #e6b800
Played by: xXxCryptic-AngelxXx
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B o a t s w a i n
W i l l i a mXM o r g a n X I I I

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Boatswain was in charge of a ship's
anchors, cordage, colors, deck
crew and the ship's boats.


Hex: #64844c
Played by: SadHatter
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S u r g e o n
P y o n X S u n - a h

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The Surgen is the only healthcare
professional aboard the ship and has
the duty of caring for the health
of the crew.


Hex: #fa8072
Played by: icat
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N a v i g a t o r
V a l e n t i n a XD eXl aX T o r r e

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The navigator is an expert at
reading and correcting charts
and using navigational tools.


Hex:
Played by: ☿Urania☿
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M a s t e rX G u n n e r
J u l i a n X B a i l e y

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Master Gunner gives orders to
other gunners on how to set
their guns during an attack.


Hex: #B02E04
Played by: Electric
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M a s t e rXR i g g e r
T e s s aX L o c k e

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Master Rigger are in charge of
fixing the ships rigging.


Hex: #54002a
Played by:SatatyaUno
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C o o k
C a l l i eXA v i s

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Cooks ensure the entire crew is well fed
and given a healthy diet. When they are not
cooking they occasionally will take part in small
jobs around the ship.


Hex: #dd5308
Played by: AbsoluteWhisperx
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M a t e
R o s i aXH i e n r i k

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The Mate is the Jack of all traits on a ship.
The mate is often found all over the ship doing odd
tasks here and there to ensure the ship is in working
condition.


Hex: #d2b48c
Played by:Maci-Care
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P o w d e rX M o n k e y
T i m o t h y X R u n d e l l
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Part of the gun crew.
Usually given to the newest member on board.


Hex: #4c988c
Played by: Klockwork0reo
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S t o w a w a y
E v a n g e l i n eXC a s p e r

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They wanted nothing more than to
become a pirate and sail the seas.
Now they can.


Hex: #F54747
Played by:thenotsoinnocent
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1. No Godmodding or Metagaming. Just because you know something out of character, doesn't mean you know something in character unless you've worked out with their player that your character knows. Savvy?

2. Keep the OOC separate of IC and vice versa. If you have problems with other players, come to me about it or take it up with them via PM and don't let it interfere with the story. We're writers. We're better than that.

3. If you would like to reserve a character, put the first password in the OOC which is your introduction and your character's face claim. You may add a photo if you so choose. Your FC doesn't have to be a pirate, but at least have enough pirate...ness to make it work. Let me know if there is a specific image you'd like to use for the front page. Otherwise, I'll go and find one.

4. You have a week to post. I will message you at that point and you have a week to get back to me. If I don't hear from you in those two weeks, I will remove your character and look for a replacement. I really want to keep this thing alive and to do that, I need active and interested players. If you can't post for whatever reason, if you're waiting for someone, or whatever the situation is, let me know so I don't kick you. Do we have an accord? Aiming for posts about once a week.

5. Drama and Romance are accepted and encouraged. The characters will spend a good amount of time on the seas and will need the... distractions. Your characters can have secrets they don't want others to know about as well.

6. This RP may contain some adult themes like sex, alcohol, drugs, violence, etc. so if these things bother you, you will find the plank to the port side. [[Or we can work it out. No need for hasty plank-walking.]]

7. The next password for your reservation will be your favorite piratey character. It can be a book character, movie character, tv show, etc. For example, mine is either Jack Sparrow or Alosa from Daughter of the Pirate King by Tricia Levenseller. She's badass. I also like Elizabeth Swan, but she's sometimes a bit too annoying for me.

8. The oldest character I am allowing is 26 and they will be the oldest on crew. I realize I hadn't specified the age but I was thinking late teens to mid-twenties. This crew is known as the youngest on the seas so they need to be on the young side... please.

9. Have fun! Please PM me if you have any questions.





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[center][size=120]Nickname || [for this it would say Pirate Alias]
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[[ ^ the 500 x 450s can be any height as long as they're 500 long. They can even be gifs as needed. They're the character pictures while the others are accents]]

[center][color=#000000][b] L I K E S || [/b][/color] ✓ multiple likes! all of the likes!

[color=#000000][b]D I S L I K E S || [/b][/color] ✗ dislikes! so much dislikes!

[color=#000000][b]Q U I R K S || [/b][/color]
-- three or four quirks

[color=#000000][b]F E A R S || [/b][/color]
-- two or three fears

[color=#000000][b]S T R E N G T H S || [/b][/color]
-- [color=#000000][b]three to four character strengths[/b][/color]:

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-- [color=#000000][b]Three or Four weaknesses[/b][/color]:  [/center]


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[center]| Four - Character - Traits - Here|[/center]
Photo can be whatever size. Explain the character traits and expand on their personality.

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Character Portrait: Meghan Cunningham "I'm more than I appear. Best not underestimate me, Mate."
Character Portrait: Tessa Locke "You must have a death wish, ay? I hope you get the black spot."
Character Portrait: Rosia Hienrik "Come on, what's the worse that could happen? Just do it."
Character Portrait: William Morgan III "Shiver me timbers, it's Bosun Bill!"
Character Portrait: Pyon Sun-Ah
Pyon Sun-Ah played by iCat
"Nevertheless, she persisted."
Character Portrait: Timothy Rundell "Because when given the option between explosives and academy, I chose the explosives."
Character Portrait: James Porter "We are tied to the ocean. When we return to the sea, to sail or to watch - we are going back from whence we came."
Character Portrait: Callie Avis "I will not become your slave. Never again."
Character Portrait: Evangeline Casper The Stowaway
Character Portrait: Philip Walker "I think I'm in love."
Character Portrait: Julian Bailey "Freedom is a feeling that I can't quite get over yet."

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Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Meghan Cunningham Character Portrait: Rosia Hienrik Character Portrait: Timothy Rundell Character Portrait: Valentina De la Torre Character Portrait: Callie Avis Character Portrait: Evangeline Casper Character Portrait: Philip Walker
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M e g X| | XE v a

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H e l l f i r e | | T. B. A

C a p t a i n | | S t o w a w a y

#e6b800 | | #F54747






XXXXEvangeline stayed close to Vera as they walked. Eva crossed her arms and kept her eyes on Vera’s legs. The last thing she wanted to do was see Vale and or Tessa. She’d likely make it obvious she knew them and get them in trouble. When Vera began to speak, she listened carefully. When gestured to do so, she stepped forward to stand next to Vera. Eva only glanced at Meg’s face for a second before her eyes wandered down the woman’s dress and stayed at her feet. She noted how lovely the dress was. Eva wondered if the Captain always dressed so nice. Surprisingly, Eva wasn’t nervous. What was meant to happen would happen, and she had faith the outcome would be positive.

“Greetings Captain,” she paused to press her crossed arms closer to her chest, “My name is Evangeline, but I do go by Eva.” Eva kept her eyes on Meg’s feet. She wondered if Vale or Tessa was nearby. She knew others were near her and around the ship. Eva had to fight the urge to look around as the curious cat in her awoke. The last thing she wanted to do was seem distracted and offend Meg. Her expression stayed blank as she waited for a reply.

Meg’s gaze was on their brand new map, her mind working its way through the maze that was their journey. Talking with Vale helped, of course. She was an expert at what she did. Make no mistake. Rosia joined not soon after her own arrival, giving her own advice on their voyage. It was always appreciated and it helped to work out their options.

The three were huddled around the map when Meg heard Vera’s voice come from behind her. Judging by her cook’s tone, something was amiss on her ship. A… guest? Meg turned around, sure Vera was simply joking when she came face to face with… an unfamiliar face. Or, at least, she would have, had the girl not been a whole head shorter than her. The heeled shoes on Meg’s feet weren't helping either. Though, the girl didn’t look frightened. No… she looked curious.

Meg’s eyes narrowed a bit. Obviously, this dress was taking some of the seriousness of her position. The thing had to go. But first… She propped a leg up on the nearest railing to her, pulled the knife she borrowed from Vale from the garter strapped to her leg, and leaned against the table, cleaning the dirt from her fingernails with the tip. ”What brings you aboard my vessel, Evangeline?” She asked, purposely using her full name. Eva looked up through her eyelashes to make eye contact as she spoke.

“I would say fate has brought me aboard your lovely vessel. I saw my dearest friend for the first time in years tonight. Since they were needed here...I decided to come along. T-they are my only family left...”

Meg’s eyes narrowed a little more at the idea that someone had brought her aboard. Obviously, it was for a reason Meg… couldn’t exactly sympathize with since her family was dead or she had never known them to begin with, but… if her parents were still alive… she knew she’d want them with her, too. Still, that didn’t change the fact that they hadn’t asked permission of their captain before bringing aboard another mouth to feed. ”How did you get aboard my vessel?”

“Well, I came in a barrel. Sacks of mangos and apples are in the barrel...a gift from my prior home.”

Well… at least she didn’t come empty-handed. She thought, finishing with the cleaning of her left hand, she shifted the knife to her right hand. ”And who brought you aboard?” She didn’t really think it mattered much, but she would have to have a talk with them regardless. Otherwise, the others might start bringing on strangers willy-nilly.

“Captain, I can only tell you if you promise not to hurt them or have someone else hurt them. I won’t have them come into harm’s way because of me.”

Wrong answer, lass, she thought, her eyes turning to narrow slits. ”I don’t make promises to stowaways who tell me how to run my ship!” In a split second, she had the knife flipped, blade facing out towards Eva. ”Tell me who brought you aboard!”

“I am sorry if I offended you. I didn't mean to make it seem as if I was telling you how to run your ship. I would have never done that intentionally...Also, I apologize that I came on your ship in secret. It seemed like the only way of not being separated from my friend,” she took a solid deep breath as she prepared for the worst, “But I refuse to tell you if it means harm to anyone, but me.”

Eva’s tone was serious at the end and her lips were set in a stubborn pout. She apologized, and Eva would rather die than have Vale and her friend hurt. She glanced at the blade and finally looked around as the curious cat won. If she were to die, then she may as well see what the ship looked like. Eva saw Vale and some other woman nearby. She forced herself to keep her gaze on the other woman. She didn’t want to give Vale away. She noticed the woman had her hand behind her back, but she couldn’t give it much thought. Finally, she returned her gaze to the Captain with sad eyes. At least she saw Vale once more before she died.

If it had been a member of her crew, Meg would have strung them up and left them to hang by their wrists for a few hours. Which was a tempting punishment for Philip...but Eva was not a member of her crew. The way she spoke was eloquent enough for her to know she was no slum wench. At least that wasn’t how she had begun her life. Meg sighed, the fire remaining in her eyes, but she leaned against the table once more. She’d figure it out eventually anyway. ”What are your skill sets?” She flipped the knife back around so it was no longer pointed at Eva, but it was also no longer set to cleaning her nails.

Eva let out a breath she didn’t know she had been holding. She forced herself to keep her gaze on Meg. Evangeline really wanted to look at Vale, but she knew that was a bad idea. Now filled with relief and with a question she would willingly answer, she smiled at the Captain. She heard her heart pounding in her ears, but she was happy. It looked like everything would be okay. James may have said Meg was like hellfire, but fire kept people warm and safe. It could burn and cause pain, but everything could have a bad side.

“Thank you, Captain,” she paused to loosen her crossed arms; she had been tense, “I am best at sewing, and I have worked with a blacksmith for some time. I had taken a break when traveling, but I can make good weapons...I have always done odd jobs as well. The odd jobs most recently involved cleaning, running errands, and or just fixing things. Though, I am a quick learner and am always willing to learn. If you need me to do something, I’ll happily do it and do my best to do it well. Although, I don’t do well with things that involve...heights...”

Meg tried her best not to smirk at the idea of putting the lass in the ropes with Tessa.

“I can defend myself though. I don’t own any knives at the moment, but I do know my way around them. I have upgraded to boarding axes for my weapons of choice...” she added. Eva smiled to herself as she remembered why she upgraded. She pulled herself from her little memory to look at the Captain. Evangeline smiled at her with warmth in her expression. She was grateful to Meg now.

“Although, the question I should ask is, what kind of person do you need most on your ship Captain?” she asked. She knew she likely just rambled, but at least she answered the Captain.

Meg smiled smugly, taking to flipping the knife in her hand now. ”That’s the thing… we don’t really need anyone else on this ship.” Not entirely true. They could always use the hands if there was room and right now there technically was. However, those they added would need to have a place. ” However, I could find a place for you if you’re willing to work. There is no room for useless individuals on my vessel. If you have no use, I’ve no use for you. Savvy?”

“I am always willing to work Captain.”

Meg thought for a moment. Her skill sets were wide and largely… only useful as an assistant. She had one already in Rosia. Vera could probably use the help and Rosia could probably use an underling as well. Right now, they needed the ship underway which was more or less a success considering there was wind in their sails and the land was shrinking in the distance. They would soon have their heading as well.

”If you’re to stay on my ship, you will work under Rosia,” She nodded to her first mate who currently had one hand on her pistol. Meg tried not to roll her eyes. ”And Vera, whom you’ve already met. I’m sure they could use your help. If you’re going to be aboard my vessel you’re going to work. Hard. I want no complaints and you will obey my orders or you’ll be keelhauled. Savvy?”

“I’ll be happy to help in any way I can,” she replied. She glanced at the woman who she assumed was Rosia. Meg had nodded at her. Evangeline wondered if the woman had her hand on a weapon. I guess a stranger on a ship could be seen as a danger. After the thought, she glanced at Vera and flashed her a smile before her eyes went back to Meg.

“Anything else Captain?”

Meg watched the newcomer a moment. And then another. Hoping the girl would squirm even a little. Then she flashed a smile, spun the dagger around, and said, ”Welcome aboard neophyte.” Then she stabbed it into the wood of the table beside the map and began to walk towards her quarters. ”Vale! Set a course! If Philip is still drunk, take the helm!” She waved her hand in the air. ”Rosia! With me!”

She walked by Rudy and Philip just as they were walking by. ”Our new crew member. Treat her nice now, lad.” She said as she ruffled the powder monkey’s hair. Then she continued to her quarters.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Meghan Cunningham Character Portrait: Pyon Sun-Ah Character Portrait: Valentina De la Torre Character Portrait: Callie Avis Character Portrait: Evangeline Casper
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xxxxxPYON SUN-AH
dialogue colour; #fa8072
plague || the surgeon


Meg had a way of telling stories, one that made Sunni smile, no matter how else she was feeling. Meg had a talent for making Sunni smile anyway, for making her feel wanted, important. She knew she was important on the ship. And, well, for now, Sunni had to ignore the butterflies that she felt every time Meg looked at her with that smirk, with those dangerous eyes. What she wanted was not important. She wasn't about to ruin the ship's dynamic. She wasn't about to ruin their friendship. She had Meg in her life, and that was what was important. She had somewhere where she was valued as a doctor and a person, and that was important.

But when Meg held out her hand, Sunni took it, lacing her fingers through Meg's, and followed her through the decks of the ship. In those moments, Sunni's imagination got the better of her. The thought of running anywhere with Meg like this, anywhere people could see. Of a soft kiss, a shared joke, and of more. So much more. But then they reached the deck and Meg stepped away once they reached the deck. Sunni swallowed and raised her chin a little, folding her arms as she watched the activity on the ship. Captain Hellfire was needed. Not Meg.

The ship was full of activity. It brought back a little of her smile as she watched the activity, and watched as their ship started to pull out of the bay. Meg said she was going to talk to Vale, and Sunni followed. Most of the terms would probably go above her head, but anything for a few more minutes around their captain.

Vera's voice made Sunni raise an eyebrow, partially because of her presence, but more so because of her words. A stowaway. She folded her arms and made the decision to watch, not interfere. She sincerely hoped her skills as a doctor wouldn't be needed. She doubted it would. But still, she watched.

At one point, Sunni started questioning her duties on the ship. Not her loyalties. But as a doctor, she was expected to aid all, no matter who. Would that include someone her captain had declared an enemy? If Meg injured this girl, how would she react at Sunni helping her? She internally gritted her teeth. She'd just have to do her best to stop that from happening. She didn't want to cross Meg under any circumstances. But sometimes it needed to be done.

Thankfully, something about the girl seemed to impress Meg. Sunni did her best to suppress the burning jealousy in her stomach. She watched her captain head back towards her quarters, and simply looked at their newcomer. "Welcome on board. Sun-Ah, the surgeon on this ship. People call me Sunni. Or Plague. Don't annoy me and we'll be fine," Sunni said, barely managing to keep the edge out of her voice. "You need a hand in the kitchens, Vera?" She asked genuinely, turning to her friend.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Meghan Cunningham Character Portrait: Rosia Hienrik Character Portrait: Pyon Sun-Ah Character Portrait: Valentina De la Torre Character Portrait: Callie Avis Character Portrait: Evangeline Casper Character Portrait: Philip Walker
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Footnotes

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xRosia “Jack" Hienrik


Everybody in the world knows

Everybody in the world knows
Everybody in the world knows
Everybody in the world knows


I'm a little twisted, twisted

I'm a little twisted, twisted
I'm a little twisted, twisted
I'm a little twisted, twisted
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Rosia stood and watched the conversation between Meg and this stowaway happen, she thought about commenting something at first, but could tell Meg wouldn’t have wanted to be interrupted right now. So Rosia just stood aside and waiting and took mental notes, waiting to see what the situation would turn into. Though if it was Rosia’s choice, they might bust out the plank for a little bit of fun.

During most of the conversation, there wasn’t much going on. Rosia heard what the Stowaway called herself, Evangeline/Eva, but Rosia quickly dismissed that. She wasn’t one for actual names, as seen around the ship when she calls everyone by their alias and not really caring about what their name was, like with Nameless. But Rosia did need to know everyone’s names since some people still used them when talking about others.

One thing did catch Rosia’s attention and get her a little excited. Meg had asked a question about who brought Eva onboard, and giving an answer that Meg didn’t exactly like. When Meg turned the blade to Eva and raised her voice, Rosia’s heart skipped a beat with excitement, her grip on her pistol tightening. Rosia didn’t exactly want Meg to stab this girl, or be forced to draw her pistol, but it would be a little bit excitement, though she was also a little disappointed when Meg leaned back and the situation didn’t escalate.

Towards the end of the conversation the hostility died down, and Rosia realized there wouldn’t be a need for much violence. She was surprised when Meg said the stowaway would work under Rosia and Vera, depending on what was needed. Rosia subconsciously bit her bottom lip when Meg said the stowaway would work with Vera, maybe a little jealousy, or maybe just upset there wouldn’t be a walking of the plank.

Rosia was snapped back to reality when Meg called her name and told her to follow. Rosia let go of her pistol for a second and turned towards Vale. “If ye need me, I’ll be ‘round, especially if Nameless needs me on t’e wheel. Just yell.” She said towards Vale and skipped along to catch up with Meg as she walked towards her quarters. As she walked past the stowaway, her pistol would be revealed to be behind her back, but she wasn’t too worried. Also, when Rosia walked past Vera, she put her hand on Rosia’s arm and told her to be careful, Rosia replied with a nod and a smile, getting a warm feeling inside before she followed the captain into her quarters.

When Rosia entered the captain quarters behind Meg, she closed the door behind her and quickly grabbed a small crate stood upon it. it would help her be at an easier height to assist Meg in taking her dress, since she is taller than her. “Stowaway huh? Wonderin’ who brought her aboard…” Rosia said towards Meg.

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Character Portrait: Meghan Cunningham Character Portrait: Tessa Locke Character Portrait: Rosia Hienrik Character Portrait: William Morgan III Character Portrait: Pyon Sun-Ah Character Portrait: Timothy Rundell Character Portrait: Valentina De la Torre Character Portrait: James Porter Character Portrait: Callie Avis Character Portrait: Evangeline Casper Character Portrait: Philip Walker Character Portrait: Julian Bailey
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>Four Days Later<
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XXXXOnce they left the island of Hartford, Meg had requested that Vale set a course for the smaller islands off the coast of Snitinlos. These small islands were really part of the Guicona territory, but they were so far from the mainland that they remained empty. Well... empty of people. The islands were used as storage for the Land king's men as they sailed from island to island. They were also used by pirates. James's crew had been multiple times to stock up when they expected to be on a long journey across the sea. Or, like in this specific instance, they were being chased and they needed supplies fast.

The island typically contained alcohols, nonperishables, and barrels upon barrels of fresh water. Meg knew water would be the most important. You can go for days without food but not very long without water. And while they'd be surrounded by water on their journey, Meg knew that the ocean wasn't a water source. So, they were there for the water, some of the nonperishables, and whatever fruit, veggies, and meat they could find. Sometimes they found a few barrels of goods that were fruit and vegetables based, but they were only there when the king's men had dropped them off to be back for them shortly.

As she stood on forecastle, salty sea breezes blowing through her hair, Meg took a deep, relaxing breath. She so badly wanted to dive into the sea and swim for an hour instead of lug supplies to and from the ship. They had reached the island now and Meg decided she'd split the crew into two groups. Half would stay on the ship and keep a lookout for enemies and the other half would go on land to haul off goods. She wanted Rosia with her on land. As the first mate, she was technically Meg's second in command due to lack of a quartermaster. She wanted Tessa on the ship to keep an eye on the ship for her. While Bill was the boatswain, she wasn't sure she could trust him just yet. He was the one opposed to the mutiny. Vale would be good to have on land in case they came across any trouble. Bill and Philip she wanted on land with her. Both so she could keep an eye on them and so they could do some heavy lifting. She had a difficult time deciding whether or not to bring Jules. Primarily because he was excellent for heavy lifting, but if trouble arrived on the seas he would need to ready the crew that remained there. So Jules would have to stay. Rudy will be staying too. Meg wanted him up in the crow's nest to keep watch. They really needed someone devoted to lookout so Rudy could help Jules more easily. Vera and Eva will need to stay as well.

Meg felt guilty about having to leave Vera behind, but she wasn't sure Eva was trusted enough on land and they needed people watching the ship. She had enough people joining her on land. She'd have to look for something special to bring back for Vera. Maybe a sack of sugar if they had it.

As Eva came to mind, Meg realized she still hadn't figured out who had brought the girl on board. However... she was spending a good amount of time with Tessa. Meg's stomach squeezed a little at the possibility of her friend doing such a thing without even telling her after the fact. She would have to talk to her before they left.

Which reminded her... she needed to inform James of their leaving. Not to request permission or even because she was in the habit of informing her prisoners of her whereabouts. James was different. James had been a friend. And... maybe she could convince him that things were going to be worth it. As she made her way down to the bring, she decided that she'd give orders when she returned to the deck.

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Character Portrait: Meghan Cunningham Character Portrait: Tessa Locke Character Portrait: Rosia Hienrik Character Portrait: William Morgan III Character Portrait: Pyon Sun-Ah Character Portrait: Timothy Rundell Character Portrait: Valentina De la Torre Character Portrait: James Porter Character Portrait: Callie Avis Character Portrait: Evangeline Casper Character Portrait: Philip Walker Character Portrait: Julian Bailey
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XXXXEva smiled as she saw Tessa. She had unintentionally been hanging around Tessa more than she should have. She had been avoiding Vale like the plague. Evangeline didn’t want to get her dearest friend hurt by Meg. Since Tessa was with Vale when they met, she decided to stick to her. Eva felt like she could trust the blue eyed woman. It hadn’t clicked for her that if she hung around Tessa, people would think she brought her on the ship. Tessa’s back was to Eva, so it was easy for Eva to walk right up behind her. She went on tippy toes and stroked Mango’s, the bird they had found, head with a finger. He was sitting comfortably on Tessa’s hat. The little fella, who they assumed was a fella, seemed to be doing better.

“Hello Mango, is Tessa being nice to you?” she asked. Tessa jumped hearing the voice behind her. She was getting ready to punch whoever it was but stopped short seeing it was Eva and scolded her.

“Fuck do you want now?” Tessa said, the scold on her face not easing up. Evangeline flashed Tessa a smile.The woman did amused her.

“I just want to spend time with Mango. You seem to be hoarding him,” she said playfully. Tessa turned to start walking away, looking at some nearby ropes.

“It isn’t my fault little birdie won’t get off my damn hat,” Tessa said as she walked.

“Well...can I have your hat then? I’ll give it back to you once I get him on my shoulder or something,” she replied. Eva walked alongside Tessa to keep the conversation going.

“Fuck no. You cannot touch me hat. Fuck off,” Tessa said, not sounding as angry as she would when speaking to others. Eva placed a hand on Tessa’s shoulder to try to get her to stop walking. “Please?” she asked.

“Hmmm,” Tessa stopped for a moment and looked at her. “Fuck your please.”

“If you said please when we met at the tavern, you wouldn’t owe me a drink,” she replied, only risking the words as no one was nearby. Eva got on her tippy toes again. Carefully, but quickly, she lifted Tessa’s hat off her head. “I am going to check on James. I don’t think he has seen Mango since I got here,” she added before she headed down to the brig. As she walked, she placed Mango on her shoulder.

Rosia had just woken up from a small nap upon the crowsnest when she heard some talk below her. As she rolled over and peaked her head over the edge she watched as Tessa and the stowaway interacted. Tessa seemed to have taking a liking to the girl. She giggled to herself when she heard Tessa curse at the lady for asking to touch her hat. But when she heard the stowaway talk about a tavern, Rosia stopped giggling and was confused, The ship hadn’t docked for days, how would they gone to a tavern toge- Rosia interrupted her own thoughts with a gasp, realizing it was Tessa who had brought the stowaway onboard.

Tessa followed after Eva, trying her damndest to get her hat back. As she followed, she muttered curses under her breath. Though they were directed at Eva, she wasn’t expecting the girl to actually listen to a word she was saying. “Ya don’t need to grab someone’s hat like that. Just take the fuckin’ birdie, don’t need my whole fuckin’ hat.” Eva stopped in front of bars that kept James a prisoner. She looked away from him to look at Tessa.

“I said I would give it back once I got him off the hat, but you refused to give me the hat,” she replied, matter of factly. Her gaze returned to James. Tessa’s hat was held between her hands. She smiled at James. “How are you are you today James? I brought Mango down to see you.”

“Ahoy there, James,” Tessa said with a small wave as she tried to grab her hat. Eva turned slightly, so Tessa couldn’t grab her hat. Mango was on her shoulder, but she didn’t want to give the hat back yet..

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James had been in the brig for four days. Well five if you count the day before they actually left port. He had been visited a couple times by the crew and by Eva. Apparently Meg hadn’t chewed her up and spit her out. In fact, it seems she had made her a member of the crew. It surprised him, but he couldn’t deny that he was glad. He rubbed at the stubble forming on his chin and continued his song, ”Nobody knows the trouble I’ve seen. Nobody knows… me sorrow.”

He heard voices and footsteps coming down the stairs and into the brig. The first person to make their appearance was Eva, a familiar hat in her hands and an orange and green bird on her shoulder who was looking much better than when he last saw him. A smile formed on his face, but it quickly turned to one of distress when he saw the scowling woman stalking up behind Eva. Oh Tessa was angry.

Eva greeted him first. He was about to respond when Tessa interrupted with a greeting of her own. He gave a strained smile, feeling the tension in the air. James had known Tessa long enough to know two things: Don’t make her angry and never, ever touch the hat. Unless you were Vale. ”’Ello Eva. Tessa. What brings you to me quarters on this fine…” He glanced to the side of the ship where a small bit of light was peaking through. ”Day?”

By the time Rosia roped her way down from the crowsnest, Tessa had already followed Eva downstairs, Rosia quickly followed after them below deck towards the brig. As she caught up to them, she overheard Tessa and Eva talking with James. Rosia had only come down here when she followed and helped Vera bring James food. “Oi! Riggknot ye turncoat! It was you that brought the stowaway onto the ship.” Rosia said, announcing her presence to the others as she came down the stairs. “Captain Hellfire won’t be like’n this!” Hearing the familiar voice, Tessa knew exactly who it was. She rolled her eyes and turned towards the voice.

“Oi now! Does it really fuckin’ matter anymore?” As she spoke, Tessa made her way over. At the back of her mind she got the thought that she was lucky to always carry a spare rope around with her. “Look at ‘er! She’s a fuckin’ kitten, for christ sake!” She kept moving forward until she was a foot or so in front of her. “Does it really look like the girlie’s any harm?”

Rosia took a quick glance at Eva, who smiled and gave a small wave to Rosia, before looking back up at Tessa right in front of her. “Nay, but ye went behind the Cap’n’s back.” Tessa nodded at this.

“Alright, if that’s how ya’r thinkin’,” Tessa said then cracked her knuckles. What proceeded was something that you’d have to see to believe it. Tessa seemed to pull what seemed to be an endless rope out of nowhere. “Ey, whatcha doin’ with th-” The rope went through the air it what seemed like endless directions. There was cursing. There was kicking. There was a near escape then back into the rope hurricane that was Tessa, a mere rope, and her hands. “Tessa! Stop that right now!” Eva scolded, crossing her arms under her chest. Tessa actually listened to this, but is was more because she was done. She stood up and Rosia seemed to fall a few centimeters onto the ground, now tied up completely with her arms bound behind her back, her legs bound, and a gag that seems to be a spare handkerchief. “Aye, I think that may be good enough,” Tessa said showing that she may be a bit proud of herself.

James sat and stared wide eyed at the events unfolding before him. He raised an eyebrow at Rosia’s accusation. So they didn’t know that it wasn’t only Tessa, but Vale as well. The fact that they had to guess meant Eva hadn’t told Meg. Interesting. When Tessa pulled out the rope, he honestly thought it was for Eva. I mean… she had touched the hat. He was thrown for a loop when instead she began to tie up Rosia. ”What are ye doin?” He asked them, more surprise in his voice than concern. It was the most bizzare thing to James.

That’s when Meg made her way down into the brig. She stopped short at what she saw. Her first mate tied up. Tessa, the only one who could’ve tied up Rosia, standing beside her. Eva standing off to the side, Tessa’s hat in her hand an… is that a bird on her shoulder? She thought she had heard chirping while visiting Sunni the past couple of days… It appears Eva wasn’t the only stowaway.

And James just sat there and watched. Watched her rigger tie her first mate… shit. ”What the bloody hell is going on!?” She demanded, eyes simmering. ”Me first mate is tied up. Me rigger the culprit and…” Then she remembered why she wanted to talk to Tessa earlier. ”Tessa Locke. Were you the one to bring aboard the stowaway?” Her eyes narrowed. Her plan had been to pull her aside and speak to her privately but the scene before her… and with James watching… She’d have to punish her friend or risk the crew questioning her leadership.

Hearing her name - her full name - Tessa knew then that she had fucked up. She let out a long low sigh and turned to face her captain. “Aye that’s the question, isn’t it?” She sighed again, and looked over at Eva then rolled her eyes. “Aye, this is a fuckin mess,” She mumbled, putting a hand to her forehead and sighing again. “I guess there be no more reason to keep it a secret nor lie.The short answer to that, Captain, is yes. Yes, I did bring the girlie aboard,” Tessa admitted. Then added under her breath, “Even though I didn’t want to.” Eva very slowly, silently, walked towards Tessa as she spoke. Once she finished speaking, she took a step to the side to stand in front of Tessa. Evangeline moved the hand with the hat behind her back to give it to Tessa. Her expression was blank as she stared at Meg.

James whistled in the cell beside them. ”Ye fucked up.” Meg’s glare turned on him and he stepped away from the bars. She turned her attention back to the women before her. ”I’m listening.” She took note of the fact that Eva now stood between them. The girl was going to get herself killed one day doin’ that. Tessa sighed once again. She took her hat, placed it on her head, and walked around Eva until she came face to face with Meg.

“The long answer,” Tessa started. “I was at a whorehouse and met this lass. The lass told me she had.. No family left. As you know.. I don’t have any family. But I found one here on this ship. I figured ’oi, this young lass could use some help.’ So.. I helped. Stuffed her in a barrel and here we are now.” She paused a moment for it to sink in as she hoped nothing about her gave away this this was only half the truth. “I’m sorry I hadn’t told you from the start, Captain. But I knew where we were going and that we didn’t need anyone new,” She added, then stood and waited for a reply. Eva just smiled as Tessa spoke. She gave the woman a quick and tight hug from behind once she finished speaking. Evangeline was grateful and now in debt to Tessa.Though, Tessa still owed her that drink.

Meg sighed and pinched the bridge of her nose, the skin tight around her eyes. ”If you had told me sooner, it would’ve been fine.” She looked up at Tessa, their blue eyes meeting. ”But you went behind me back and you hid her.” She motioned down at Rosia, still tied up. ”Now you go and do this?” She sighed, her shoulders rising with command, but slowly as if they were pushing up against an invisible weight. ”One hour from the mast.” She said simply. Tessa had been the one to string ‘em up so many a time. She knew what the punishment was without Meg needing to explain.

She kneeled beside her first mate, pulled the knife from her boot Meg knew she kept there, and cut her loose from the ropes. There was no untying a rope Riggknot had tied. ”I was planning on leaving you in charge of the ship. I’ll have to leave Vera to that.” She returned the knife to her first mate, handle out with one hand and helped her up with the next.

Rosia wiggled out of the ropes and stood up with the help of Meg, and putting her knife back in her boot, nodding her head and thanking her captain. Rosia looked over at Tessa. “Ye still a turncoat...” Rosia said with a slight smirk, she wasn’t one to hold grudges, plus it would entertain her to see Tessa hanging from the mast. Meg shot her a warning look before walking back towards the steps and up to the deck to give orders.

”All hands to the deck!” She yelled as loudly as she could, her voice edged with anger. They would know she meant business. Once her crew assembled, she began. ”We’re going onto the island for supplies. I will be going ashore with Rosia, Vale, Sunni, Bill, and Philip. Jules, Rudy, and Eva will stay on the ship. Vera will be left in charge. And Tessa.” Meg paused. Upset at the words that were about to leave her mouth. ”Tessa is to hang by her ankles from the mast while we are gone.” While she didn’t normally explain her orders, she felt this one needed an explanation. ”While I don’t punish me crew for small indiscretions such as bringing aboard a new crew member, Tessa did so behind me back and was found tying up the first mate below deck. Because of her actions, she must undergo this punishment. Alone.”

She pointed to the horizon. ”We meet back here when the sun is three hands high off the horizon. Dismissed.”

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Character Portrait: Meghan Cunningham Character Portrait: Tessa Locke Character Portrait: Rosia Hienrik Character Portrait: William Morgan III Character Portrait: Pyon Sun-Ah Character Portrait: Timothy Rundell Character Portrait: Valentina De la Torre Character Portrait: James Porter Character Portrait: Callie Avis Character Portrait: Evangeline Casper Character Portrait: Philip Walker Character Portrait: Julian Bailey
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J U L I A NX| | XD R A G O N

| Master Gunner |
| #B02E04 |
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It had been a long four days. There was tension among the crew members, not violent tension, but tension nonetheless. Jules tried to stay out of it as much as possible, and instead woke up early every morning, did the usual morning gun rounds with the gunners, and stayed on deck, usually with a cigar, until midday. Then they did the rounds again, and Jules supervised his crew, especially little Rudy, to ensure everything was done professionally and quickly.

On the second day, Jules finally noticed the new young woman on the ship, somehow not noticing her at dinner the night before. He asked her questions about herself, and she called him Mama Bear teasingly. She was a polite girl, vaguely secretive, but weren’t they all. Jules hadn’t seen James all that much. He’d delivered food once or twice, and the two had made some effort to talk to one another, but it was odd. Jules supported both Meg and James, each for different reasons, and he wasn’t quite sure how to express that to either person.

On the fourth day, he heard the call of land ho! from the deck, and looked out at the approaching island. He adjusted the black band around his arm. Two months, five days, and thirteen hours. He had no idea how long he would keep count for, but the guilt still ate at the back of his mind and he took a drag from the cigar in his hand. It was, at least, a sunny day, that made the guilt feel a little less intrusive. Steps sounded coming up from the brig, and Hellfire made her way purposefully on deck.

”Cap’n on deck,” Jules muttered under his breath, and put out his cigar between his calloused fingers and sticking it in his chest pocket.

”All hands to the deck! We’re going onto the island for supplies. I will be going ashore with Rosia, Vale, Sunni, Bill, and Philip. Jules, Rudy, and Eva will stay on the ship. Vera will be left in charge. And Tessa.” Meg paused. ”Tessa is to hang by her ankles from the mast while we are gone. While I don’t punish me crew for small indiscretions such as bringing aboard a new crew member, Tessa did so behind me back and was found tying up the first mate below deck. Because of her actions, she must undergo this punishment. Alone. We meet back here when the sun is three hands high off the horizon. Dismissed.”

Julian raised an eyebrow and turned to Riggknot, eyeing her hatless form. That story was a bit unlike her, but Jules brushed it off and made eye contact with Eva, who was holding the little bird that the crew had taken a liking to, and Riggknot’s hat. Interesting. He gestured his head towards the usual place of punishment.

”Been awhile since we’ve had to string anyone up, ey?” he moved up behind Riggknot after Meg was off and nudged her with his elbow. ”Shame its gotta be you. But don’t worry, I’ll do the tyin’ and I won’t do it as tight as you do, I’m not as skilled as you anyhow, none o' us are.”

As much as Jules wanted to stretch his land legs, he understood that it was important for the Master Gunner to stay on deck in case something were to happen or an attack were to occur. He’d much rather a quiet day anyway, not sure that he could handle the business of trade and crew's rambunctious nature at the moment. He made his way over to the mast to start preparing the usual tie-up.

Passing Bill on his way, he turned to his friend and flipped him three silver. ”Oy, pick me up some tobacco and leaves, I’m runnin’ low.” Bill knew what he liked. He’d tobacco habit a few years ago, after the militia, where most of the other men smoked. He had never invested in a pipe, instead using leaves to wrap makeshift cigars, something odd for someone who worked around gunpowder so often. Of course, he never lit one below deck , and only ever smoked on a clear day, over the gunwale above the water, to avoid any danger.

When he reach the yardarm, he reached up and began the tie, and then turned back the Hellfire, now prepping her little departure crew.

” ’ow long is this t' be for, cap?” Hopefully not too long, Jules wasn’t a punishment sort of mood. Sometimes, especially when Riggknot wasn’t the one being strung up, this whole process could be rather fun. But if most of the crew would be off-ship, and he had to do the tying, it wasn’t as nice of a process. He could only hope this wouldn’t be too long a punishment, Eva was a nice girl anyway, not that this mattered to Riggknot's participation in bringing her aboard, but Hellfire seemed to like her enough to keep her. He looked around at the rest of the faces of the crew, wondering which of the other members could have been an accomplice in the endeavor. Perhaps there was more to do today than Jules had originally planned. That was good, he supposed, despite his reluctance for punishment. It would keep his mind off Armand. An interesting day had begun.

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Character Portrait: Meghan Cunningham Character Portrait: Tessa Locke Character Portrait: Pyon Sun-Ah
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xxxxxPYON SUN-AH
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plague || the surgeon


Things on board the ship had been... interesting. The presence of a new crew member had changed things, and not necessarily for the better. It had at least been quiet for Sunni. The usual minor injuries, cuts and bruises. It was getting to the point where she was almost bored. She hadn't even seen that much of Meg. But adventure has finally appeared. Meg was bringing her on a supply run. Sunni had been fully prepared to try and convince the captain she needed to pick up some fresh bandages, but the captain had needed hardly any convincing. And Sunni was excited.

As she climbed onto the deck, she appeared to be walking into a situation. Meg sounded angry, which was never a good thing. Captain Hellfire had a reputation, and no matter who you were on the crew, you respected that. She stood back, her hand on the hilt of the knife on her belt. She only got some indication of what had happened when Meg paused after saying Tessa's name. She had always been fond of their master rigger, and it was clear that this declaration wasn't coming easy. But Sunni wasn't expecting the announcement. She raised an eyebrow. She'd clearly missed something. Something-

The realisation hit her and furrowed her brow. Could... could Tessa have been responsible for bringing Eva on board? It didn't seem the type of thing she'd do. Even if Sunni wasn't exactly friends with their master rigger, she respected her. But she sure as hell wasn't going to question it. Meg had her reasons. She took a few steps towards the captain as they prepared to leave. "All set, Captain?" She asked.

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XXXXMeg walked away from the mast and over to the row boats the crew had readied at the side of the ship for them. She tried to ignore the voices around her. She didn't want to hear the criticism from her crew, her family, for the decision she made. But there were rules, codes, that they followed and if they didn't respect them, there had to be consequences. Otherwise, there would be chaos on her ship. And Chaos... is not what she wanted. She walked up to Eva, wanted to make sure she knew what she was getting into, and said, "I don't know if Tessa informed you, but the ship you're on... Is headed for death. We're after a treasure no one has ever found and many have died trying. Those on the ship right now chose this. You haven't. You have the hour to decide if you'd like to stay or leave." Right before she stepped onto the boats, she heard a deep, rumbling voice behind her. She sighed, knowing the voice of her master gunner and turned. Most of the fight leaving her. "One hour," she said to him, "An hour and a half at the most."

Right after, Sunni walked up beside them. She smiled softly at her and said, "Lets go." She turned, climbed into the boat, and waited for the others to join them. Once everyone had climbed into the rowboats, she ordered them to lower, and just like that, she was off the ship. The water beneath her was as smooth and clear as a plane of glass. The ripples the rowboats caused were like dancing wraiths beneath the waves. She wanted to reach down and touch the water, to feel its cool touch kiss her fingers, but they were here for a reason.

As the boats reached the shore, she leads the others through the trees and towards where she knew the storage bunker was located. "We're here for water mostly. If there are things we are in need of, make sure to take it, but don't take everything. We can't have them suspecting they're being robbed from. A few things go missing, could be chopped up to error. We take it all, and they'll move their stores." She pulled a folded piece of parchment from her corset and handed it to Vale. "This is a list of things Vera has requested from us." Her eyes softened, apology written in her blue eyes. "Please gather them for her."

As they continued through the trees, she looked behind her at Sunni, watching her reactions to the world around her. "Figured you'd want to stretch your legs after being cooped up on the ship so long. We weren't able to take you with us at port." All the fire was gone from her eyes. All the fight. Her friend went behind her back to bring on another mouth to feed. "It'll be a bit of heavy lifting, but if we can find medical supplies for you, think it would be worth it?"

She resisted the urge to reach for her hand. "Is there anything you'd want to see?"

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Character Portrait: Meghan Cunningham Character Portrait: Tessa Locke Character Portrait: Rosia Hienrik Character Portrait: Timothy Rundell Character Portrait: Evangeline Casper Character Portrait: Julian Bailey
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Four long days. The stranger aboard the ship, or Eva as she was called, spent her days with Tessa, or talking with James in the brig. Each and every time Rudy saw her, he made a point to huff and look away. He'd spent his hours either helping Vera in the kitchen, or talking to Jules, Bill, or Rosia when things were calm. Mostly though, Rudy had played his games whenever his cleaning duties were resolved. Well, mostly resolved. Cleaning a ship from top to bottom was hard, especially with naught but a scrub-brush. Phillip hadn't even let Rudy steer the ship since that first launching from the ports. Something or other about the importance of keepin track of the waves and the stars. Mostly, he was met with drunken banter and excuses that seemed as shakey as a landowner's sea legs. On the good nights, he slept above deck, but on the rougher ones, it was within the battery. The bitter, smell of gunpowder and cannon polish, mixed with the latent brass, wood, and sea of the world around him became his comfort smells. The most eventful thing to happen, from Rudy's perspective at least, was his attempt to swindle some of the more potent drinks from the ship's stores.

It was only when they had approached thier next destination did the monotony change. Jules, the rest of the gunner crew, and the whole ship seemed to come to life in and of itself. Hustle and bustle, commands being barked from the top to the bottom, each and every available hand bringing the crew to come to rest just beyond thier target. Again, Rudy was left with the very important task of lookout. What exactly he was to lookout for had been left unclear, as there hadn't been any sign of King's men for quite some time. At first he was thinking to lookout for strangers, but the last time they found one, they'd recruited her. And so, Rudy sat in the crow's nest, a beautiful brass and copper spyglass resting in his hands. He'd been scanning the island shores and culverts for any sign of... anything but pretty much found what he'd expected to see. Dusty sandbanks, tropical trees and half-marshes of submerged jungle. It was a beautiful untamed locale. If only those bastard teachers could see him now. Who needs to read books when you got views like this?

Finally he turned his attention down towards the ship. Vera was down there somewhere. He knew Meg had wanted her aboard, keeping an eye on the new girl. Rudy wasn't sure why it mattered someone kept an eye on her or not, the girl had that air of lightness, dreaminess, of far-fetched dreams. The kind of girl who could be thrown anywhere, crack a smile and reach towards her skybound dreams. Rudy knew her kind well. Back on the mainland, amid the endless readings from scripture and the time spent cleaning the nooks and crannies of the church, a single other girl always seemed to drift in and out. The nuns had said she was homeless, and that it was only her faith in the Almighty that kept a smile on her face, food in her stomach, and coin in her hand. Rudy had always suspected thievery or even that her dumb smiles got pity from seabound men, and in their infinite shortsightedness, gave chunks of their wages to help keep her aloft. At least, that's what the other owl-faced acolyte kept saying. So in the end, it didn't matter who kept on eye on her, she’d manage to find trouble one way or the other. Almost as if on cue, Meg burst out from the lower decks of the ship. She seemed angry. If Rudy knew anything from living on this ship, it was that Hellfire earned her name. She was steaming. Announcements were made, but only the most prominent was heard.

“Tessa is to hang by her ankles from the mast while we are gone.”

Rudy was surprised. He'd been waiting for the upstart, but not for Tessa to be involved. She was strong, firm, quiet, and grouchy for sure, but also didn't seem like the kind who would take the bait often left by those like Eva’s kind. He sighed. He needed to let them cool down first, before he stepped down to figure out what was going on. He pulled out his grubby, misshapen cards. The 8th of spades’ corner was completely torn now, but Rudy shuffled them as good as he could anyway, and set up a game of Patience. Halfway through, the Captain disembarked. Rudy didn't bother looking up. The sound of ropes and knots being toyed with pinged a long discordant tune, as if the strings of a massive instrument had been plucked. It was only when Rudy reached again for that 8 of Spades did a sharp, throaty Kaw interrupt his train of thought.

Rudy snapped to attention. A large, black-beaked, bird sat at the edge of the nest, watching Rudy with a single glossy, midnight eye and the remaining crew with the other. It was a Raven. A bird of vile connotations sent from the pits of the underworld to plague the world of the living with terror and misfortune. It was a creature of infinite bad luck, and a premonition of terrible things to come. A living bad omen. Still, Rudy watched the creature. There's no way it was here for them, right? No nobody else could see the bird, But that would mean… This bird is for me..

A chill ran down Rudy's spine. He looked for something to toss at the bird, and dug through his pockets when he didn't find anything. Finally his fingers grabbed something hard and smooth. In one fluid motion he pulled out a dark brassy something and threw it straight at the fiendish bird. The brass rivet scrap sailed off the edge of the nest, and the raven took to the sky with another menacing Kaw. Rudy couldn't bring himself to move for a few seconds. He needed a minute to calm and collect himself. Finally, looking around the edge of the nest for any sign of Meg, he swung his legs over onto the ladder and began his descent. He needed to be near people now, damned if he was disobeying the Captain's orders, everyone else was doing it, why shouldn't he?

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Character Portrait: Meghan Cunningham Character Portrait: William Morgan III Character Portrait: Philip Walker Character Portrait: Julian Bailey
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T H EXxN A M E L E S SXxH E L M S M A NXXX||XXXB O S U NXxB I L LXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX
XXX.XPHILIP WALKERXXX||XXXWILLIAM MORGAN III
[i]#1d906fXXX||XXX#64844c


"I swear an oath to ye. I saw more than three, over near the horizon." Philip frowned and stared out at the open waters. He was convinced he'd seen a whole swarm of mermaids, even if Bill refused to believe him. He'd just been checking the roughness of the seas when he saw them, well, their tails. Well, what he thought was their tails. All he'd really seen was a few sparkly dots that looked like the mermaids the legends told of.

"Ye liar! Mermaids don' come up. They stay many fathoms below th' surface, Nameless."

The rowboats had finally reached the land. Bill's arms were aching and his sore muscles were bugging him the whole day, but he tried to ignore it. A pirate's sore muscles were a pirate's least worrisome problems. Bill dragged himself out of the rowing boat, adjusting to the hard surface beneath his boots. "Nameless?"

Philip slowly stretched himself out of the rowboat, already feeling the gloom of being on land. He was a child of the sea and would be for the rest of his days. "Aye Bosun Bill?"

"Hellfire wants us to carry the heavy things. We better get goin', lad." Bill frowned.

"Me and ye?" Philip asked eyeing Bill's lanky build, knowing that his own was no better. "The Cap'n would'a been better bringin the little lad along."

"Exactly, Nameless."

As they continued, they went through some trees and reached storage bunker.

"We're here for water mostly. If there are things we are in need of, make sure to take it, but don't take everything. We can't have them suspecting they're being robbed from. A few things go missing, could be chopped up to error. We take it all, and they'll move their stores."

"Aye Cap'n." Philip said without a hint of his earlier disdain, ever since that night the girls went to retrieve the map, Philip had been on his best behaviour around Meg. And he'd rather not question how he escaped any real punishment for his drunken behaviour.

"Arright, Nameless, let's carry som' very light barrels of water."

"Aye, maybe just'a tankard of water." Philip said once he was out of Meg's earshot.

"If ye do that, you'll end up with a rusted piece o' metal in yer arse." Bill joked, making his way into the storage bunker.

"Oof. Ye'd be knowin' how that feels then?" Philip asked as he found the barrels of water at the back. The lot of them looked big and heavy, Philip's back and arms ached already at the thought of it. "We be takin' back one between us then? Cap'n did say not to be takin' everything."

"What, Nameless, too weak to hold a barrel fo' yourself?" Bill chuckled as he tried lifting a barrel of water. It was slightly moist at the bottom and 'Water' was carved into its top. He strained, quickly putting it back down. "Ye, one barrel fo' both of us." He panted. The humid air around him and the heaviness of the barrel caused him to shortly sweat profusely. "WE NEED JULES HERE!"

Philip couldn't help a booming laugh at Bill's display of 'strength', and even slapped the barrel. "Jules be busy runnin' the ship. Notice the Cap'n didn't be leavin' ye in charge." Then Philip grabbed one side of the barrel, preparing for the tough walk back to the rowboats.

"Sweet little Hellfire migh' as well demote me to swabbie. She hung Tessa up, promot'd Rosie to her second and THREW JAMES INTO TH' BRIG, but that's a discussion fo' another time, Philip." Bill grabbed the other side of the barrel, waiting for Philip to walk back as his back was facing the exit.

Philip started walking backwards, with his head turned to make sure he didn't run into anything. Bill would rather steer him into trouble than direct him away from it. "Ye know I 'aint got much love for mutiny." He sighed, Bill and him had this conversation a lot, even though Philip had never been the most vocal pirate on James' side, he had a lot of allegiance to his old friend.

"Me neither, la-" As Philip started walking, Bill was interrupted and the barrel tipped to his side as his friend had turned his head. The heaviness of the object caused a great strain on his arms as he muttered quiet curses, barely managing to hold up the barrel. "Fook, fook, fook..."

Philip swung his head back to look Bill with a confused, yet slightly worried frown.

"Ya tipped the god dam' barrel to me side!" Bill winced as he painfully tipped the barrel back, maintaining the balance.

"Mother of sea beasts!" Philip cursed and almost dropped the barrel. "I thought death himself was coming for ye." Of course, Philip didn't care much that he caused his friend harm, he was more angry that Bill had made his heart race for a minute there.

They would eventually get the barrel onto the rowboat. It creaked slightly as it gained more weight.
Bill blinked. His eyes were burning as sweat dripped into them and he panted: "Two more..."

"Two?" Philip cursed under his breath. "What manner of water guzzling beasts has Hellfire got us carting across the seas?" Nevertheless he wiped away his sweat, tied his hair back and headed back to the storage bunker.

"I don' fucken know, Nameless." Bill shook his head, spraying gushes of his sweat everywhere as he also made his way back to the bunker.

By the time they had all three barrels of water on the rowboats, ready to be carted back to the Stardust, Philip's muscles were aching and his clothes were drenched in sweat. "I may as well 'ave taken a dip in the seas," he said as he collapsed onto the sand.

Bill collapsed next to him, pure sweat covering his body. "Aaff....aaa..." He could barely push out words as the hot sand stung into his sweat-covered skin. "Aff..."

"Now I be rememberin' why I was wantin' to be a helmsman." Philip said, wishing he was at the helm of the ship not lying in a pool of sweat and sand next to Bill. He could almost feel the cool air rushing off the waves and ruffling his hair.

"Now I be rememberin' why I was Boatswain!" Bill wiped sweat off his forehead. "I order the lads to do the work." He coughed.

Philip hoped the other's were almost done collecting the rest of the supplies. He sighed and looked out to the Stardust, bobbing up and down on the seas. "We needed Jules."

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Character Portrait: Meghan Cunningham Character Portrait: Pyon Sun-Ah
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xxxxxPYON SUN-AH
dialogue colour; #fa8072
plague || the surgeon


Sunni had never wanted to be a pirate. Hell, she'd never really wanted to leave her home country. Some people had a lifelong desire to travel the world. Not Sunni. But once she started travelling with the crew, she found herself falling in love with it. Seeing all the new places, the different cultures, the different people... it wasn't the life she had imagined, but that didn't mean she wasn't enjoying it.

She watched with eager eyes as they rowed in to land, the water clear around them. Her curiosity didn't change as they stepped onto land and made their way through the trees. It was calm and quiet, so different to the towns she'd previously seen, and a welcome change to the ship. Some plants caught her attention, but she resisted the temptation to stop and examine them. She didn't want to hold up the group because she saw something that might possibly be a medicinal plant.

She smiled at Meg as she explained why she'd brought Sunni along. Hellfire was gone, and now it was Meg, almost looking tired. They'd had a hard few days, and especially Meg. "It'll be worth it. I could just do with some bandages, and maybe some medicines if they have some. But there's plants here that might suffice, that I can probably work with..." She trailed off, again resisting the temptation to stop and examine what looked like a type of poppy.

"I'm just glad to be seeing something other than the medbay," she admitted as Meg asked her if there was anything to see. "It's nice to see new places, new things." She stopped briefly and swiped a handful of the poppies, shoving most of them into the small bag she'd brought with her. She handed one to Meg. "Especially if those things are pretty," she said. She'd been talking about the flowers, but as she looked up at Meg, another thought crossed her mind, about pretty people. She shoved the thought back. "I love how every new place has different flowers. Some are useful, some are pretty. Some are both. Those are my favourite," she mused. She hadn't had really fresh flowers in her room for so long. It was something she missed dearly about life on land, the ability to pick new ones whenever she wanted, to be able to examine a new type every day if she wanted to. But life on the sea had its charms too. Listening to the quiet sounds of the crew around them, she was reminded that they were the big part of why she loved it.

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Character Portrait: Meghan Cunningham Character Portrait: Tessa Locke Character Portrait: Rosia Hienrik Character Portrait: Callie Avis Character Portrait: Evangeline Casper Character Portrait: Julian Bailey
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V e r a X| | T e s s a | | XJ u l e s
#dd5308 | | #54002a | | #B02E04
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XXXX

Tessa followed Meg up to the dock. Though she knew the punishment and she was more than willing to take it, she wasn’t at all happy about it. And she wasn’t happy about what she had to do right now. Eva, she started under her breath and leaned closer to the girl as she took her hat off her head. “Take me hat to Vale,” she paused a moment and said even more softly, please, Then handed the hat to the smaller girl then walked out on deck.

Vera had spent the majority of the sailing day cooking; she used the meat scraps from the past few days to make some sausages. It was a grueling, slow, and messy task, so once she had set the completed meat-links to the side, she decided to take some time to herself. On the deck, she took in the sun, only to fall asleep under its warmth. As much as she needed it, the sleep was a fitful, uncomfortable one. Vera would have thanked Meg personally from rousing her if she hadn’t been too busy beginning to bark orders at her crew. She couldn’t help but scowl as she heard of Tessa’s wrongdoing. Weren’t Tessa and Rosia friends? At least, that’s what Vera thought. Ah, well. Sometimes scraps happen...

As Meg spoke, Tessa listened. Her usual scowl was on her face and she wasn’t looking nowhere in particular. As the final orders were given and Jules came up to get this over with. She stopped herself from saying something along the lines of ’I coulda tied meself up, ya’know’ thinking it’d sound too much like a joke. She followed Jules, ready to be hanged by her souls.

“Aye love,” Jules grinned, knowing Tessa didn’t particularly enjoy his nickname for just about everyone on board. “Here we go then.” He grabbed the ropes and began to complete the complicated knot that would tie Tessa up just high enough so he could get her down again, which was relatively high because of his size. It took him a moment, much longer than it would have the famed Riggknot herself, but he tied it nonetheless, then took a step back and bowed her towards the knot. “After you, madam.”

Tessa nodded as she mentally prepared herself to be upside down for an extended period of time. She stepped forward to the knot, taking a quick once over look at it to ensure she won’t just fall. Then into the knot she stepped, one foot at a time.

Julian shook his head with laughter, as if he couldn’t believe he was actually doing this, then pulled down on the opposite rope, making sure Tessa’s head didn’t hit the deck. The rope pulled her up into the air over Jules head, and he watched her sway back and forth with the movement of the ship. “Doin’ alright up there?” He asked, as her face was now level with his, though turned upside down.

Tessa watched the world - or more like the ship - go from being right side up to upside down. She was a bit disoriented at first, but didn’t pay it much mind as everything slowly came to a gentle stray. “As alright as I’d ever be in this position,” she started then stared at Jules for a moment. “Ya know, you look a bit like a bearded wench from this angle.”

“You git,” he nudged her gently, and she swayed more. “Ah, ya look pretty much tha’ same from this angle.” He turned away to find if Vera was standing anywhere near them to see her reaction to the whole endeavor.

The whole situation made Vera uncomfortable. She didn’t enjoy the barbaric nature of these punishments. Of course, Meg had her reasons clearly. It often works, but it just as often doesn’t. Seeing Tessa hanging there caused her stomach to twist into knots. She approached Jules, unable to understand the almost gleeful look on his face. “Aye, leave her be, Jules,” She scolded him, albeit half-heartedly. The absolute beast of a man would likely do as he pleases, but she hoped the title of “in charge” would help persuade him. “She’s already hanging. Don’t need to double the punishment by having you bat at her like a kitten.”

Jules jumped to attention, hand to his head in a salute. “Aye aye Madam captain in charge.” He then went at ease, smiling down at Vera, who had a concerned look on her face. He patted her on the shoulder good-naturedly. “Seriously love, though she may deserve it sometimes, I don’t like it as much as you do, jus’ haven’ some fun.” He turned back to the woman hanging at his height. “Now you jus’ let me know if ya start feelin’ queasy, ya hear? Rudy won’t wanna have to swab th’ deck all over again.” He turned back to Vera to see if she needed anything from him other than the usual arms checks.

Even though she knew he was teasing her, Vera couldn’t help but pout. She wasn’t put in charge very often, and it was something she quite enjoyed. “Quit that!” She huffed, landing a light slap on his arm. “It’s no fun being punished, even with your charm and wit sprinkled about.” Vera flashed her own grin, standing up a bit straighter. Unfortunately, as much as she can try, she would never be at eye level with Jules and his immense stature. “Don’t you have something you should be doing? Make yourself useful,” She continued with her chiding tone, almost like a mother speaking to her son.

Jules huffed and pouted childishly down at her, crossing his arms. “Yes mum, I mean ma’am.” he replied to her chastising tone, then waved a hearty goodbye at both Tessa and Vera and made his way over to join the gunner crew, currently playing cards on the starboard side of the deck. He sat down among them, making a few of them jump, and waved at Rum to deal him a hand, simultaneously pulling out his cigar and lighting it with a match that he promptly threw overboard so as not to catch the entire damn ship on fire. He would play until it was time to order the crew to get off their lazy arses and get to work, all the while keeping an eye on Tessa to make sure she was still alive and kicking.

Vera had to bite her tongue to stop another sharp remark directed at Jules. She couldn’t help but let out a sigh, one of both relief and stress, as he wandered off the rally his own little crew. Vera was now able to return all of her attention to Tessa, who was hanging several inches higher than the top of her head. She paused, unsure of what to say. Eventually, a soft, “Sorry…” slipped out, buying her time to think of what she actually wanted to say. “I’ll be around. So will Jules. If you need anything, just shout, alright?”

When Tessa heard the soft word of sorry come from Vera, she tilted her head up - well more like downwards to look at her face. When she finished speaking, Tessa blinked at her a few times. “Oi now,” she started. “No need to be sorry. To be perfectly honest, this is quite...” she paused trying to think of the right word. Relaxing, she tried to shrug.

Vera couldn’t help but chuckle at that. “It must be, not having to run around and work.” She agreed, allowing a small but genuine smile to show. “Like what I’ve got to do now.” The smile faded as quickly as it appeared. As much as Vera was grateful to be on the ship, nobody enjoyed the manual labor. Ah, well, it could be worse. “I’ve got to clean the storeroom. I’ll be back to check on you in a bit.” With that, Vera turned and walked to the stairs leading to the storage.

In the blink of an eye, thirty minutes had passed. Vera’s pale orange dress was dusted with dirt and grime now. She had spent all of that time gathering together any rotten perishable foods. It was a grueling, gross task that had to be done often to keep their supplies free of additional germs and vermin. The crew on land would be back soon to refill their stocks, and Vera wasn’t even half done. With a groan, she hoisted up a bucket of grime and carried it up on deck. She promptly tossed its contents overboard where they belonged. Before diving back into her task, Vera cast a glance at Tessa, who, shockingly, hadn’t moved from her hanged position. She approached, both wanting to check on the woman and a break from her task.

While tied upside down from the mast, Tessa had a lot to think about. Mainly how she got into this situation and placing all blame on one in particular person who shall not be named. And as the minutes continued on and blood continued rushing to her head, this made Tessa a bit more that talkative. Oi, it’ll be fine! Oi, she won’t get caught! Fuckin’ knew this was gonna happen, hadn’t I! Oh, but was me own fault, weren’t it? Fuckin’ barrel. A barrel! Lass don’t know how to take a joke, ay?” She let out a long sound that was somewhere between a sigh and a growl. “I fuckin’ hate everythin’ now, don’t I,” she added in a dead paned tone then closed her eyes to just hang there and breathe.

Vera could hear Tessa cursing to herself before she even approached. Upon hearing about the barrel, she realized the woman was talking about sneaking Eva onto the ship. Curious. She hadn’t pegged Tessa as the one. Regardless, she walked over, mucky bucket still in hand. “Tessa.” She spoke her name, hoping to catch her attention. Vera then hesitated. An idea popped into her head. It was a stupid one, but she hated seeing her friend suffer like this. It would upset Meg, but it would also get the storeroom cleaned faster. “I know Me-... I know Captain isn’t back yet, but I need your help. I’m not going to get this mess cleaned up in time. I need to cut you down.”

Tessa looked in the direction her name came from and watched Vera as best she could. Her eyes widened however at Vera’s statement. “Are ya sure you wanna be doin that, Vera?” Tessa paused a moment and looked to the deck below her then back to Vera. “Actually.. I’d mighty appreciate it.”

Vera hesitated. “I’m not entirely sure, but I’m going to do it anyways,” She then nodded, as if the reassure herself, while moving towards the knot that Jules had tied. It was slightly over her eye level, which isn’t surprising considering who had tied it. Vera wasn’t great with knots or ropes, so it took a few moments of observing to figure out what she needed to pull. Upon working it, it came undone. Now, Vera isn’t as frail as she seemed, but Tessa also wasn’t as light as she seemed, so once the knot was undone the rope jerked upward. If it wasn’t for her quick instincts, she would have missed grabbing the rope. The momentum pulled her a few inches off her feet, but she slid back down slowly. After letting out a stressed breath, she slowly lowered Tessa from the mast. “That could have gone terribly,” Vera commented, unable to keep the smile from growing on her face.

“Right, I could’ve fell on my head,” Tessa said as she was lowered. Once she was on the ground, she sat up and looped the ropes off of her fairly easily. It wasn’t until she stood up however that she felt the effects of being vertically inverted.

Jules noticed the interaction between the two women from across the deck, and made no move to stop Vera from taking down the tied up rigger, who, after being untied, looked a bit unstable on her feet. No, he didn’t mind at all, in fact, he agreed with Vera’s decision. He turned back to the card game at hand, smiling to himself at the mercy embedded in Vera’s bones. He agreed, allies were made to help, not hang.

Vera let out a nervous laugh before speaking, “Yeah, that wouldn’t ‘ave been good.” But as Tessa stood up, Vera prepared herself, knowing what would come next. She lowered her stance, increasing her balance, and held her arms out to help steady Tess. “Easy, careful.” She spoke softly.

At that, Tessa lost balance and went to wrap her arms around the closest thing. Which was Vera. She ended up more or less hugging Vera. “Tis’ like bein’ drunk without the good taste an’ feelin,” Tessa complained.

Tessa’s loss of balance was expected, so once she fell upon Vera, Vera held fast. One hand rested on the taller woman’s waist, while the other gripped under her arm to keep her from collapsing. “Easy now,” She repeated, though the kindness in her voice didn’t change, “Give it a minute. You’ll get your bearings soon. Just breathe.”

After a few minutes and some steady breathing later, Tessa slowly stood on her own trying to make sure she was steady enough. After a few more moments, she gave a quick nod and looked to Vera. “Thank you,” She started then took a quick look around deck before she looked back to Vera. “So, boss, what’ll you have me doing again?”

The pout from earlier returned. “Oi, I’m put in charge for the mere hour and you all decide to tease me about it. Perhaps I should have left you tied up there,” Vera crossed her arms and glared at Tess, though the glare was more akin to the fierceness of a kitty. It wasn’t long before her gaze softened. “... I didn’t mean that.” She mumbled, glaring down at the ground. It was then that she saw her bucket and was reminded of her job. “Oh yes! The storage room! It’s a mess. I swear, I send Rudy down there to get one thing and it’s a disaster soon after.” She picked up her bucket again and started her way towards the stairs. “Fruits and vegetables fall to the ground and rot, mold starts to spread, you get the idea. Just need to make sure our food is stored in a clean place. I wanted to get it done before the others return with the new stock but I knew I couldn’t do it alone. Hence…” She then gestured to Tessa. “That and…” Vera bit into her plump bottom lip: a nervous habit. “I couldn’t stand to see you like that.” She looked away from Tessa, hoping she wouldn’t notice her pained expression accompanied by a certain tightness in her chest.

A small amused smile made its way onto Tessa’s face at the last bit Vera had said. “Oi now, don’t feel bad,” Tessa started as she made her way over. “I am immensely grateful to you lettin me down,” she gave a small bow with that amused look on her face growing slightly before standing and heading to the stairs. “Alright, let’s get to cleaning, Honorary Captain Vera,” she said as she walked.

“You’re welcome,” The comment was rather sharp, implying that Vera didn’t want to speak on the subject matter much more. Once they wandered their way down to the storage room, it was obvious which side of the space was clean and what was dirty. In the middle of the room was a broom, mop, another bucket of fresh water to clean with, and some rags. “Now, instead of hanging, your punishment will be to clean this retched place with me before the others get back. A truly equal punishment, no?” She smirked, placing her trash bucket down. “Now get to work, you lazy sack of bones.” The tease was made in jest, apparent by the light laugh that followed.

At the ’orders’, Tessa did what she was told and began cleaning. Vera worked alongside her, scrubbing mold and tossing the dirty remain in the bucket. The only solace she had was in knowing that she could take a nice bath after this. But until then, she was stuck here, cleaning with Tessa, anticipating what punishment may throw at her. “Hey, Tessa…” Vera finally broke the silence. Her words were cautious; she didn’t want to upset Tess or make an enemy of anyone else. “When Meg… When the Captain announced your punishment, she said you tied up Rosie. What was that about?”

With a sigh, Tessa dreaded needing to try to explain without revealing that she twisted the truth. Though she wondered if Vera could be trusted. Then a thought came to her. Of course Vera can be trusted, you dolt! She let out another sigh, this one a bit more relieved than the previous one, and paused her cleaning to turn to Vera. “It was because I know how she is, Vera.. though, yes, it may have made things worse. For me,” She paused a moment, unsure of how to go about this and decided to present a question of her own. She took a step forward, leaned on her broom, and locked eyes with Vera. “Vera, do ya know how Eva got aboard?”

Vera couldn’t stop her curt chuckle as soon a Tessa spoke of Rosia. She as well very much did know how the young woman could be. However, upon being asked about Eva, Vera grew much more curious. “I have no idea, genuinely. I just happened to be giving James his dinner when she stumbled out from behind a barrel.” Vera was being truthful; she really had no idea where Eva came from.

At hearing about how Vera found Eva, Tessa put her hand to her face in disappointment. Fuckin’ idoit, she mumbled then let out a sigh and looked back to Vera. “I want ya to hear me out on this and know that I was pulled into this mess. And the barrel was a fuckin joke that someone thought I was being serious about,” She started. “You’ll need’ta ask Vale about that but they’re like family. And, in short, Vale wasn’t allowed to stay so the kit-fuck! So Eva had to come. An’ we put ‘er in a barrel.. An’ carried ‘er on,” Tessa more or less mumbled the last bit as fast as she could. “An’ now listen, don’t tell Meg about Vale.. I may have twisted the story a tad to where she wasn’t there,” She added then stopped and waited for a reaction.

Eager for details, Vera leaned forward. Her eyes widened over time, but once Tessa stopped speaking, she forced her face to return to a normal expression. “My. That’s… quite the tale.” She hesitated, not quite sure of what to say. “Well.” She sighed, “I trust Vale. If she brought Eva aboard, she must really care about her. And the lass must have been in a shit place. It takes a lot for someone to board a ship, not knowing if they’ll ever return.” For a moment, her gaze seemed to unfocus as she looked off, somewhere past Tessa. She blinked once, snapping out of it only to stare back down at the rag in her hand. “I’m guess Rosie found out? Not sure why you’d try to truss her up. It wouldn’t have lasted very long.” She continued to work while speaking, not once looking up now.

“Hadn’t thought about that,” Tessa said softly as she looked out over the room. It just occurred to her that Eva had dropped everything to board a ship just because Vale was on it. Then when Vera spoke about Rosia, she scoffed as she resumed cleaning. “More like accused me. She may have been partly right, but she only figured me. And I knew it wouldn’t last long,” she paused a moment as she thought about saying something else then decided to stop herself. She hoped that wasn’t too obvious.

Vera stopped her scrubbing to tilt her head up, allowing her to make eye contact with Tessa from where she was crouched on the ground. “That it?” She let out a short laugh, “That was your plan?” She cast her a playful smile before going back to cleaning. “Not a very good one, love.”

Tessa rolled her eyes at this and continued cleaning. She did her best to avoid looking at Vera as she spoke. “No, that wasn’t the plan at’all. The plan was that if I was going to get caught, seeing Rosia I surly was, then I’d make the punishment as hard as possible to take any suspicion off Vale,” she paused but only for a second. “Or anyone else that might have some suspicion. If I could take full blame, I would. Just so we don’t need to worry about this shit plan anymore,” When she finished speaking she just continued cleaning as if nothing happened.

Hearing the words coming out of Tessa’s mouth made Vera pause. Having her explain this true act of kindness… Vera’s chest swelled with warmth. A faint but natural and subconscious smile had spread her lips. It laced her tone with a much more happy, upbeat sound, “I’ll be damned, Tess. Didn’t know you were so soft on Vale.” Vera teased, glancing up from her work to see how the woman would react. “It’s over and done with now. And likely for the best. We’ve got Eva and board and as long as she provides useful, Captain won’t have an issue.” Speaking of this made her think about the time she had just joined. She was weaker then, more fragile, both physically and mentally. Although now she wasn’t exactly the picture of health, she does feel stronger. It may just be that she now has a real place where she can call home, or maybe it was the people who empowered her.

If there's one thing Tessa isn't used to it's being teased. Heat rushed to her face and she turned to Vera with a soft scowl. “I ain’ soft!” she yelled.

Tessa gave Vera the exact reaction she had been looking for. She giggled before responding, “Sure you aren’t, love. Whatever you saaay…” She trailed off before busying herself with her cleaning.

Conversation between the two lulled to a silence. It wasn’t tense or uncomfortable. The two just worked quietly, almost comforted by each other’s presence. It wasn’t too long before Vera stood up and did a once over of the entire room. It wasn’t spotless, but it was considerably cleaner than it had been before. More clean meant less having to throw out ruined food. She wiped the sweat from her brow with her wrist because her hands were covered in grime. “Alright, Tess. I think that’s enough. Let’s dump this waste out and call it. The others should be back soon.” She picked up one of the buckets full of nasty water and made her way to the stairs.

“Aye,” Tessa nodded at what Vera said. She found herself feeling a bit proud at their work. Cleaning wasn’t much in Tessa’s eyes, but it sure was a hell of a lot easier than taking care of all of the rigging. Then again, she did like and take pride in her ropes and knots as well. With Vera leading the way, Tessa grabbed another of the dirty water buckets and followed.

Even though the two had been below deck for less than an hour, Vera welcomed the warm sun’s rays as she stepped on deck. With a pleased hum, she shut her eyes and tilted her head back, absorbing that lovely warmth. However, it was a short lived pleasure as she had to open her eyes and finish up her job. With a sigh, she tossed the murky water off the edge of the ship. Only after looking up from the clear ocean water did she see the crew’s boats approaching the ship once more.

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Character Portrait: Meghan Cunningham Character Portrait: Tessa Locke Character Portrait: Rosia Hienrik Character Portrait: William Morgan III Character Portrait: Pyon Sun-Ah Character Portrait: Timothy Rundell Character Portrait: Valentina De la Torre Character Portrait: Callie Avis Character Portrait: Evangeline Casper Character Portrait: Philip Walker Character Portrait: Julian Bailey
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xRosia “Jack" Hienrik


Everybody in the world knows

Everybody in the world knows
Everybody in the world knows
Everybody in the world knows


I'm a little twisted, twisted

I'm a little twisted, twisted
I'm a little twisted, twisted
I'm a little twisted, twisted
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xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxThe Mate//#7C674A
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Rosia followed her captain upstairs and stood off to her captain’s side as she gave out everyone’s orders. Rosia gave Vera a slight smile when Meg said she would be in charge, a little surprised but still happy for her. It also made sense to have Jules back on the ship in case another set of sails came into view and wasn’t exactly friendly, and little Rudy could be a help to Jules or Vera around the ship to prep for the rest of the journey to the lost treasure. Rosia gave one last look and nod to her crew mates staying on the ship before climbing down the side and into the stiffs to get to shore.

When they arrived on shore, Meg gave some follow-up instructions and warning them to take too much or next time they come here there might not be anything at all. Their first trip here, James made Rosia put back a couple of barrels of supplies because he knew they would’ve noticed if they took too much, and Rosia not really getting at first that they can’t just take everything. Rosia watched as every split up into groups. Meg walked off with Sunni following her, Bill and Nameless went in one direction rambling to each other as they got a couple barrels, so Rosia decided to go with Vale to get some of Vera’s supplies. It made sense why Meg didn’t give the list to Rosia, it wasn’t exactly a secret that Rosia couldn’t read so giving her a grocery list of items wouldn’t be beneficial.

“Oi Tempest, what the list say for Vera? What we need to scavengin’?” Rosia asked as the two women walked a little ways looking for some food supplies and whatever else the list would say that Vera needed. Rosia skipped ahead of Vale a couple times, stopping and waiting for her to catch up with her walking speed. “Aye, can you believin’ it though? Riggknot beddin’ the stowaway before being seduce to sneak her on? Wonder if ye won’t be the only one allowed to hold ‘er hat.” Rosia said spinning around and giving Vale a light smirk with her last comment. She knew Vale and Tessa were close and wouldn’t pass up a chance to tease either one, plus Vale was less likely to throw something at Rosia than Tessa.

As the two women talked they finally found some barrels that seemed to be marked with letters and symbols, Rosia finding an empty barrel and started loading supplies from other barrels into it for them to take. After finding some of the items Vale had listed off to find, Rosia started being nosy and looking through a couple crates before finding a bottle of a golden color. She held it up out of the crate to get some light on it and attempt to read it, but the only word she was able to decipher was one of the first words Rosia had requested Vera to teach her, rum. “Ey! Found some sort of golden rum!” Rosia said as she ran over to Vale, handing the bottle over to her. A couple seconds passed by as she read what Rosia couldn’t, revealing not only was it rum, but some quality Spanish rum. Both girls were a more than happy about their discovery and pinched the bottle away for later before finishing up and started heading back towards the ship, Rosia carefully rolling a barrel.

The hike back to the ship seemed a lot longer than the walk to the supplies, though that was probably because now they were coming back with more than they arrived with. Rosia rolled the barrel the row boat she had arrived on and heaved it into it, almost tumbling herself over. As she got in the boat with Vale, they floated behind their Captain’s boat and looked towards the Stardust, Rosia quickly noticing something was. “Why isn’t Riggknot hangin’?” Rosia asked out loud, confused but also worried. Looking towards Meg, and seeing she wasn’t happy. As the group reached the ship, Rosia quickly climbed out of the boat up and behind Hellfire to see what was going on and what Hellfire was about to do. Whatever was about to happen, Rosia guessed it wouldn’t be too good…

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Character Portrait: Meghan Cunningham Character Portrait: Tessa Locke Character Portrait: Rosia Hienrik Character Portrait: Timothy Rundell Character Portrait: Valentina De la Torre Character Portrait: James Porter Character Portrait: Callie Avis Character Portrait: Evangeline Casper Character Portrait: Julian Bailey
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Evangeline X
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T.B.A.
Stowaway
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Once Tessa had taken her hat, Eva laced her fingers behind her back. She stayed still when Tessa went face to face with Meg. Her heart sped up as she grew nervous for Tessa. As she listened to Tessa’s “long answer”, she was grateful the woman didn’t give Vale away. The story was simple, and Eva reran it in her head. She knew the details of the short story could become important later. When Meg replied, Eva wondered if they should just tell her the truth. Would Vale get in more trouble if Meg found out later? Maybe it wouldn’t matter later when, if, Meg found out. She pushed her thoughts away. Evangeline just watched as Meg helped Rosia from her predicament. She was glad to see that Rosia was okay after her tussle with Tessa.

Evangeline listened to Tessa as they followed Meg up to the dock. She couldn’t help the huge grin that graced her lips when Tessa said please. She wondered for a second if she could teach Tessa manners. Before she gave the idea anymore thought, she simply nodded in reply to Tessa. Once they were on the deck, Eva found Vale and gave her the hat. She quickly left Vale’s side once she gave her the hat. Eva knew she couldn’t explain what happened to Vale at that moment. Vale questioning her would likely have caused suspicion from Rosia and or Meg as well. She didn’t need Vale to get in trouble. Evangeline stroked Mango’s little head as she listened to Meg speak. She had wanted to go on the island, but knew she’d be more of a help on the ship. Eva didn’t plan on going against Meg’s orders either.

All the blood seemed to have left Eva’s face, hands, and feet when Meg described Tessa’s punishment. Eva felt herself go cold. She couldn’t help, but fear for Tessa’s safety. Her own fear of heights made the fear worst. Evangeline pushed away the memory of what happened to Victoria when they were little girls. It was easy to do so as Meg came up to her then. Evangeline listened and knew she would be staying. James had mentioned Meg was on a suicide mission. I’ll be heading for death with Vale and Tessa. If I can save one of their lives on this journey, then staying will be worth it.

As she thought, she watched Mama Jules deal out Tessa’s punishment. A chill ran down her back and her stomach tightened into a hard knot. She couldn’t watch Tessa just hang there. She’d be too tempted to take her down, and she knew that’d piss Meg off. She stroked Mango’s head once more as she went off to find Sharktooth. The woman had mentioned she wanted to catch some fish once they were docked. When Sharktooth decided they caught enough fish, they stopped working. Eva wiped the sweat from her face. She took in a deep breath as she took in the salty scent of the ocean. The scent was pleasant to her. As she looked around the ship, she spotted Tessa. Evangeline smiled. She was glad her punishment was over. Her gaze then went to blue ocean as she saw the crew’s boats approaching.

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Character Portrait: Meghan Cunningham Character Portrait: Tessa Locke Character Portrait: Rosia Hienrik Character Portrait: William Morgan III Character Portrait: Pyon Sun-Ah Character Portrait: Valentina De la Torre Character Portrait: Evangeline Casper Character Portrait: Philip Walker
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V a l e | | Navigator
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XXXXThe past four days have gone rather smooth, too smooth if you asked Vale. After discovering Eva onboard Meg let the lass stay which surprised Valentina but also gave her a sense of relief and a slightly different outlook towards Hellfire. There was no telling what would have happened if her captain actually tried something that day and Vale wouldn’t want to kill her other family. When Meg took her knife out the navigator's hand was already set on the hilt of her blade. She even almost got up when Rosia placed her hand on her pistol, they wouldn’t have known what hit em since Vale was behind all of them but she was glad she waited and let things play out.

Now she was sitting in her usual spot by the helm plotting a course, though she was basically done, looking over a copy of the map she made just in case. It wasn’t as colorful and was still in its rough stages, if you ask Vale. Then there was Eva who Vale felt was avoiding her. Smart on Eva’s part but Vale’s noticed her bothering Tessa a good bit which made her feel left out, especially since they took mango, her only source of company. At the same time Vale is still just glad to have her alive and well.

Valentina snapped out of her thoughts once the captain called out to her crew. She stood and grabbed her jacket, tucking the papers inside it and slipping it over her shoulders, leaving the front open. Vale made her way over, hand resting idly on the hilt of her blade. She was already becoming attached, especially since it was given to her by Evangeline. Upon hearing her name be announced along with the people who were going on land, Valentina felt relieved that she could go do something rather than stare at her maps and charts all day wondering when Hellfire was going to catch her off guard with the whole sneaking the stowaway onto the ship thing.

That relief didn’t last long as the next things to leave her mouth were "Tessa is to hang by her ankles from the mast while we are gone.” It made Vale's stomach sink, did the captain find out about what they did? And If so why was Tess the only one being punished? She listened as Hellfire explained the charges. Guilt filled her as well as exaspiration for Tessa. It was stupid of her to not only take full responsibility for Vale's decision... but also for tying the first mate up. Vale made a mental note to apologize to Rosia when she saw her next. Hellfire went on to explain the reason for their stopping: a supply run on the island. Vale turned to return to her mapmaking, but stopped short when Meg requested she join her on land.

Before they boarded the long boats, Vale looked towards where Tessa stood stoicly in preparation for her punishment. She nearly jumped out of her skin when Eva came up with Mango and Tessa's hat. Vale smiled, gave the bird a pet, and thanked Eva before her friend, her sister, wandered off through the crouded deck. She waved the hat towards Tessa signalling she hat recieved it and would take care of it, but Tessa's attention was diverted. Vale ignored her feelings of guilt for now. It would distract from the task at hand and... she'd have to remember to talk to Tess later.

Once they arrived to the island, they set off towards the bunkers. Meg pressed a list of goods into her hand, apology written in her eyes. Vale simply nodded in response. Nameless and Bill went to work moving the larger things while Vale filled a sack with the things Vera had requested of them. Rosia was helping as well. She had brought over a bottle filled with golden rum, and Vale rubbed the dirt from the label so she could see properly. Grinning she replied, "Aye, but not just any rum. The finest Spanish Rum gold can buy." She smiled at her. "Good find. Lets keep it away from Bill. He'd drink the whole thing before anyone else."

As the sun began to make a descent, they began to finish up their supply run. Meg and Sunni appeared not to long after. Vale smirked. If she didn't know any better she would've thought they had gone off on a little shore fun. But Meg and Sunni were too insecure for that. Meaning, they didn't want to damage their friendship. The thought brought Tessa to mind and she gazed towards the ship. I'm coming, Tess. She thought. As they headed towards the boats, Vale felt the sand give a little beneath her feet and a creak rang through the air.

Curious, she dusted off some of the sand and found there to be another bunker. This one appeared untouched. Grinning, she lifted the lid, from a first glance, she noticed medical supplies. Herbs, bandages, pale alcohols for cleaning. Her grin faded, and she dropped the lid with a thud, as something pierced into her side. After a short search she found the culprit to be... a dart? Thing must've been booby trapped. She thought. She called out to Meg and Sunni about the medical supplies and then made her way to the boat.

As she walked, her steps started feeling heavier. Vale chalked it up to being exhausted from helping Bill and Nameless move goods. Once they were on the boat, however, her head started swimming. She couldn't possibly be seasick. She spent her whole life on a boat. Then she heard Rosia say, “Why isn’t Riggknot hangin’?” Vale looked up. There was, in fact, not Tessa hanging from the mast. Vera must've let her drop early. She smiled weakly at the thought. Worry had dulled the joy. Hellfire might turn her blazing gaze on Vera next. Vale loved her captain, but the woman was terrifying when she was angry.

She had just barely made it to the deck, her head was spinning and her arms felt no more rigid than the rope they used. "Capt'n..." She slurred, "Somethings--" And then Vale collapsed on the deck.

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Character Portrait: Meghan Cunningham Character Portrait: Tessa Locke Character Portrait: Rosia Hienrik Character Portrait: William Morgan III Character Portrait: Pyon Sun-Ah Character Portrait: Timothy Rundell Character Portrait: Valentina De la Torre Character Portrait: Callie Avis Character Portrait: Evangeline Casper Character Portrait: Philip Walker Character Portrait: Julian Bailey
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XXXXMeg's smile was soft a first. Guilt at Sunni's having to stay in medbay so often while they were on land dulled the edges. She claimed their find would be worth it which made Meg feel just a little bit better. A flush crawled up her face as Sunni mentioned liking to look at beautiful things, with her gaze trained on Meg. She handed her one of the flowers she had picked and Meg brought it up to her nose to sniff it. It didn't have much of a smell, but it was beautiful. Meg's first instinct was to tuck it behind her own ear, but the red would probably get lost in the red of her hair. So instead, she reached out, brushing Sunni's hair back from her ear and sliding the stem of the poppy behind it. Her pulse raced, her heart beating so loudly that even with the birds singing, she was sure Sunni could hear it. Being here, surrounded by life and sounds, the sunlight streaming through the treetops like a spotlight on her friend. On the girl who undoubtedly held her heart. If only Meg had the guts to tell her. Her fingers paused on Sunni's cheek, her hand cupping her face. It took everything in her not to close the space between them and kiss her.

She forced herself to pull her hand away and made her way out towards the others. "We should check on the others. Have to make sure Bill isn't drinking all the rum and Rosia isn't stuffing her pockets." It was largely a joke. She knew that Rosia would never go against her orders, but the thought of the woman with pockets full of different things she found only because they were things to take... made her smile a little. "How's the find?" She asked no one in particular. When she saw they had pretty much finished, guilt hit Meg between her shoulder blades. She hadn't been there to help them like a captain should. Like a quartermaster would have. Instead, she was picking flowers with her surgeon in the middle of an island jungle. She had responsibilities to her crew. She had to remind herself not to stray from them again.

As they made their way towards the boats, Vale had called out to them about a medical supply bunker. Despite her warnings to herself, she turned and grinned at Sunni. "Lets see what they have." The bunker was full of different medical supplies. Enough that they could take a quarter and it would probably still go unnoticed. However, Meg instructed Sunni to take what she needed. If something was too big or there was too much, Meg carried it for her. Once on the boats, Meg was full of pride. They had a good amount of supplies. Enough water to last them a good while. Medical supplies. Food. Each other... she thought, glancing at Sunni again. Meg warred internally with herself, debating whether or not she should finally tell her. Maybe it would help Meg stay in the right mindset when Sunni rejected her. The thought hurt. And the if Sunni rejected her, filled her with a buzz of nerves.

She was pulled from her thoughts as Rosia commented on Tessa no longer hanging. Meg looked up with a start. She was right. There was no Tessa hanging from the mast. Anger coursed through Meg as she wondered if Vera had even honored the punishment, to begin with. Meg was the first one on board, her fiery gaze searching for Vera. Once they landed on Tess, hatless and working hard in the sunlight and Vera working beside her. All the of the anger left her. Instead, she was left with a feeling of... emptiness. What good was a captain without respect from her crew? What good was a friend if she couldn't trust them? Instead of confronting them, she turned to make her way towards her quarters. She needed to be alone for a moment.

That's when she heard the thud. She turned, thinking Bill or Philip had dropped something. Panic and worry filled her at the sight of the unconscious Valentina on her deck. "Vale..." She whispered at first as the panic set in. "Vale!" She yelled, running to her navigator's side. The woman was pale, her breathing slow, and her skin was clammy. "Sunni! Tell me something! Anything." She touched Vale's face. Softly at first and then decided to see if one good smack would rouse her. She groaned but remained unresponsive. "Don't you die on me." She whispered so quietly that only Sunni would hear her. She thought back to the island. What could have happened? Was Vale sick before and just hadn't mentioned it? No... no she had been fine... right?

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Character Portrait: Meghan Cunningham Character Portrait: Tessa Locke Character Portrait: Rosia Hienrik Character Portrait: William Morgan III Character Portrait: Pyon Sun-Ah Character Portrait: Valentina De la Torre Character Portrait: Callie Avis Character Portrait: Evangeline Casper Character Portrait: Philip Walker Character Portrait: Julian Bailey
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PYON SUN-AH
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plague || the surgeon


Their moment alone, among the trees and the flowers and the sunlight, with Meg's hand on her cheek, made Sunni feel light-headed and breathless. It felt surreal, like a dream. There was a moment when Sunni was nearly leaning in to kiss Meg- and then reality returned as Meg moved her hand away and said they should check on the others. She stayed quiet as Meg checked on the others- but seeing the medical bunker they found made her break into a grin and made her good mood return. Taking as much as she deemed they could get away with, she carried it back to the boat with Meg's help.

Their discovery that Tess was no longer hanging changed the atmosphere. It suddenly felt like the hours before a storm, where everybody knows it's coming and nothing can be done. Meg would surely be furious, and a force to contend with. Juggling what she could, she started making her way down to the medbay, anxious to get away from the confrontation. But a thud, a sickening sound that Sunni instinctively knew wasn't just their precious stolen goods, made her turn, already running. Vale had collapsed, and Sunni's gut was telling her this wasn't good. She reached their navigator at the same time as Meg. "No-" she tried before Meg slapped her, before shaking her head. "Did she eat or drink anything on the island?" She asked, almost ordered, at those who had been around her. Meg's comment did nothing to settle Sunni's feeling of unease.

"Somebody, help me get her down to the medbay!" She yelled, already thinking. Vale had been apparently fine a few minutes ago, so this had to be fast onset. A weak pulse and weak breathing wasn't good. Then she remembered a conversation she'd overhead what felt like a long time ago, when she'd still been serving ale to rowdy sailors. The land king's men had made a rare stop off at the tavern, and had been boasting about all the ways they were going to catch and kill pirates. Traps. Nets and tripwires and...

Poison. She swore to herself in her native language, trying her best not to alert Meg. Trusting somebody would carry Vale down after her, Sunni all but sprinted down the steps down to the medbay, where she started opening books and searching through pages and passages. If she knew exactly what the poison was, she could cure it. But the symptoms were so generic, and so dangerous. Even Sunni felt unsure, and that wasn't good.

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The manifest is set, release the mooring lines
From the top, from the nest, looks the perfect night

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So I’ve gone out to sea
But this time it’s gonna be a burial for me!

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Bill was already back on the Stardust with Nameless. He took deep breaths as he was finally relieved from the task of carrying various heavy supplies and had washed most of his sweat off as he accidentally dipped into the water as him and Philip rowed the boat back to the ship. He was about to order the Gunner Crew to ready the ship before he heard the thud, rapidly turning to Vale, who had collapsed. He was already near her as it occurred and started to notice the worrisome expressions among the crew and Meg and Sunni coming to the aid of Vale.
Bill froze. His crewmate and good friend had collapsed. This was nothing good.
He heard rumbling, deep and ominous, followed by screams of fear and agony as objects collided into the ship, filling the air with splinters and shrapnel. The sky was dull and overcast, looming over the chaos. Crewmates were sent overboard or collapsed and Bill was paralyzed. Nothing he could do.
"Somebody, help me get her down to the medbay!"
Only as Sunni yelled did Bill realize that he was hallucinating again. He shook his head before he stepped in. Bill rolled Vale over, making her lay on her stomach. He then proceeded by kneeling by her head and hooked his elbows under her shoulders, therefore sticking his arms under her back and armpits. With difficulty, he strained and raised her to her feet as he stood up, placing his right leg between her legs before slowly kneeling back down and gripping the back of her right knee and grabbing her right hand, rising back up. He had learned this technique when he was young and had carried many wounded sailors into the ships with it.
He reacted quickly, walking down the stairs while pushing crewmen out of the way. He was following Sunni and hoping that she would be able to heal Vale.

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Character Portrait: Meghan Cunningham Character Portrait: Tessa Locke Character Portrait: Rosia Hienrik Character Portrait: William Morgan III Character Portrait: Pyon Sun-Ah Character Portrait: Valentina De la Torre Character Portrait: Callie Avis Character Portrait: Evangeline Casper Character Portrait: Philip Walker Character Portrait: Julian Bailey
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RiggknotX| | XMaster Rigger
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With the dirty water poured overboard and sight of the boats coming back to the crew, Tessa was preparing herself for a word. She knew perfectly well that Meg - The Captain - would not be happy seeing her down from hanging already. That and she really hoped that Meg wouldn't need to punish Vera now too. Maybe I can convince her that I had talked Vera into letting me down? No no, somethin' tells me Vera wouldn't like that. Maybe we should just be honest..? Tessa tried working out how the confrontation will go in her head. She felt that either way, whether she honest or not, it's going to be trouble.

With Meg and all coming back aboard, she was surprised when she saw Meg turn the other way. Was she not going to confront them? Part of Tessa felt guilty about that. But that left her when she saw Vale come aboard. Tessa's eyes narrowed as she watched her. Something wasn't right. And not a full moment later, Vale dropped. Without a second thought, Tessa made her way across the deck hurriedly. She got there just in time to see Meg give her a good smack across the face. If it had been at any other time, if it had been anyone else, and if it hadn't been a clearly unconscious Vale, Tessa would have slapped back, maybe even go as far to beat said abuser unconscious with the words of "No one's allowed to touch her." But this was different.

With wide eyes and everyone gathering around like they were, Tessa just watched unsure of what to do, hoping Sunni would bring some ease. But hearing her yell for someone to help her take down to med bay however, Tessa got even more scared. Then Bill stepped up to carry Vale without a word and, though Tessa was grateful, she let out a soft mutter of "Please don't drop her," then she followed closely behind them as they made their way down. She hoped - no, she prayed that Sunni would be able to do something, anything to help Vale. But she couldn't help but think the worse. What'll happen if I lose her? She thought. No, no, I can't. I won't. This kept going back and forth in her mind as she walked, or ran, behind Bill with Vale in his arms. "You need to be okay," She said quietly looking at Vale just as they made it to med bay.

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Character Portrait: Meghan Cunningham Character Portrait: Tessa Locke Character Portrait: Rosia Hienrik Character Portrait: William Morgan III Character Portrait: Pyon Sun-Ah Character Portrait: Timothy Rundell Character Portrait: Valentina De la Torre Character Portrait: James Porter Character Portrait: Callie Avis Character Portrait: Evangeline Casper Character Portrait: Philip Walker Character Portrait: Julian Bailey
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A few Days Later
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XXXX"Just. Fucking. Brilliant," Meg muttered under her breath as another wave bashed into the side of the ship. Her hands were already cramping from holding on to the helm so tightly. The salt water and force of the waves weren't helping. She gritted her teeth as she locked her stance in an attempt to be immovable. She had relieved Philip not too long ago. Can't have one man at the helm at a time like this. Too long and he could weaken and lose control. It was best to take shifts. It would've been better to have her navigator on deck but since the island... Meg shook her head and thoughts flew into the sea of her mind. She couldn't think about Vale now. She couldn't allow the guilt to gnaw at her bones.

Her crew needed her.

The storm had been raging only a short while, but it was one of the strongest--if not the strongest-- storms Meg had ever sailed in. "Bill! Make sure every man has a lifeline!" She called out to her Boatswain. "I don't want to lose a single crew member to the sea!" She grunted under the weight of the wheel and suddenly regretted her decision to take over. "Philip!" She called out to her crew, hoping he wasn't far and that the wind wouldn't cover her shout. "Either take the wheel back or find someone who can!" She wasn't about to voice her regret. "Julian! Stow the guns!" She tried to make a tally of her crew based on what she could see, but a wave slapping into the side of the ship sent salt water stinging into her eyes and she resisted the urge to rub them with her hands. After all, they were a little preoccupied.

She knew that Sunni was in the med bay working on a way to fix Vale. She hoped her rigger was out--already tied to the ship-- and finishing up on the masts before the winds tore 'em in two. Bill was on deck, she could hear him giving orders to the [NPC] crew. Philip had been relieved of his position temporarily, though Meg did wish he'd take it back. She wasn't sure where Vera was but prayed she was safe. Same went for her first mate, wherever she was hiding. She hoped little Rudy had been the first to be tied to the ship since he was so small. Her heart suddenly ached for her crew. If only she could lock 'em up like James so she knew where they were and that they were safe instead of this chaos.

James... the poor sod was still down in the brig. Meg ignored her wonderings--not for the first time, mind you--if their bad luck the past few days had been due to the fact that Midas was below decks as a prisoner and not above them and free. Which also brought to mind little Eva who had taken to following Vera around the ship. Meg still couldn't believe that Tessa hadn't told her about the stowaway and she also couldn't believe that Vera would disobey her orders like that. A bit of her hellish flame went out. No one was taking her seriously. Maybe she wasn't going to be the captain she thought she could be.

Without respect, how could she keep a ship in order and a crew from falling apart?

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Meghan Cunningham Character Portrait: Tessa Locke Character Portrait: William Morgan III Character Portrait: Pyon Sun-Ah Character Portrait: Timothy Rundell Character Portrait: Valentina De la Torre Character Portrait: James Porter Character Portrait: Philip Walker Character Portrait: Julian Bailey
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J U L I A NX| | XD R A G O N

| Master Gunner |
| #B02E04 |
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Julian was ready to step forward to defend Riggknot at little Jack’s announcement. As much as he mothered the girl, she was quite loyal to Hellfire, something he wasn’t sure he was comfortable with just yet. He looked over to the non hanging woman and nodded his support after flicking the last of his cigar overboard. Then Vale fell, and fell hard.

He dashed forward with the captain and reached out as Bill grabbed the woman, and Jules placed a heavy hand on Hellfire’s shoulder. How much could go wrong in one day.

***

Jules leaned back and watched the pensive captain as she gripped the helm so hard her knuckles turned blue. She was angry and tired, and nothing had worked out as well as the rest of them thought it would. Jules had taken to calling her captain now, it seemed appropriate after the time had passed, and though he had visited James down in the brig, there had been no efforts that he knew of to overthrow Hellfire. Which he had resigned himself to willingly. Rebellion was too time-consuming. The angry water slammed against the ship, throwing several of the unaided crewmen towards Julian. He caught Mead in between his hands and steadied the boy. ”I’d wait for cap’n, but she oughta tell us to tie ourselves off soon, storm’s comin’ in strong.”

As he left the boy to his duties, Hellfire’s voice rang out above the winds, and Jules heard her orders. The gunners maneuvered their way towards him, and he gestured at the remaining guns on deck, only eight. ”Lifelines first ya scoundrels!” He winked at Bill and they tied themselves off to begin heaving the guns down to the stores so they wouldn’t cause problems on deck. Each gun, especially the eight-pounders, took to crew members to roll and carry, but the process didn’t take too long with the whole gunner crew working together.

Julian made his way back into the wind on deck after the second to last gun was carried down and saw two of his crew, he couldn’t tell who at this distance, were already securing the wheels and dragging it towards the steps. The captain had a wistful look on her face and he figured she could use some guidance, or a hand, or a break, really. He glanced around, making sure everyone who he could see was secured to the ship, and then made his way toward the helm, shouting out as he went.

”Who needs aid? Riggknot, where are ya?! Cap’n, need me to handle the helm? I’m not sure where Nameless ‘as gone!” He climbed the steps to the helm, and stood next to Hellfire, looking down at the deck below them. Everyone was carrying out her orders without fail, though he supposed that with a storm coming they didn't particularly want to be thrown overboard in the spray. He put a hand on Meg's shoulder and grabbed the helm with the other. "I've got this until Nameless appears, you go, deal wit' your crew now li'l lady. This is a good chance to show 'em yer strengths." He waved her off and looked down again, feeling a bit like a mother hen. He hoped Plague was handling Vale like she had been for the past few days, and wondered how James was feeling down in the brig. He looked out for Rudy, making sure the boy was safe before nodding him over. He supposed now would be a good time to learn about emergency ship mechanics. For a moment, when lightning flashed, he was certain he could see Armand's face flash on Rudy's body, but in a split second, the memory was gone, and all was as it was before, slick with rain and thunder. The ship tossed upon the waves, and the Dragon stood strong.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Meghan Cunningham Character Portrait: Tessa Locke Character Portrait: Rosia Hienrik Character Portrait: Pyon Sun-Ah Character Portrait: Valentina De la Torre Character Portrait: Callie Avis
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C a l l i e X| | XR o s i a

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V e r a || J a c k

C o o k || M a t e

#DD5308 | | #D2B48C


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Before anyone could say anything about the supplies, Tessa not hanging off the mass, or when they would set sail, a heavy thud was heard back behind Rosia and Meg. When Rosia turned around Vale was on the ground and out, and people were quickly around her asking questions about what had happened while they were on the island and if she was okay. “Oi? Nay, she ain’t drink or eat anything on the island, nor did she seem uncomfortable durin’ the time.” Rosia spoke up, but people were already scrambling to get her below deck. Thought Tessa wasn’t one to show any emotion besides annoyance or anger, Rosia could tell she was a little distraught about what just happened with Vale, but Rosia knew there wasn’t anything else to really do.

“Ey, while they are taking care of Tempest below deck, I sayin’ we gettin’ ready to sail. Not wanna be here when the owners return.” Rosia said out loud, then walking over to her Captain. “If ye need to head below deck makin’ sure Tempest will be okay, I can get Nameless started sailin’ Captain and I can get the sails.” Rosia whispered to Meg before scurrying off, taking a light glance at Vera before quickly climbing the mast to check the sails and get the rigging ready.

Everything happened so quickly. First, she saw her fellow crewmates boarding the ship. Vera decided to approach her captain before anything else. She knew she was going to be in big trouble for what she did with Tessa’s punishment. However, before she even opened her mouth to defend her position, Valentina hit the deck quite literally. Vera felt a pit form in her stomach. Illness terrifies her, for she knows there’s nothing she can do to help. With this amount of stress built up, Vera instinctually sought out someone to cling to. However, everyone was too busy with the hustle and bustle of getting ready to set sail. It seemed as if everyone was attempting to scatter away from her. Out of the corner of her eye, she spotted Rosia doing just as the others were. With a frown, Vera turned and made her way toward her kitchen. She might as well make herself busy as well. People need to eat.


--------------------------------------------


The following days were tense to say the least. Vera did her best to busy herself even more, but it seemed the more she busied herself, the more people drifted away from her. Tessa was busy worrying over Vale which was understandable to say the least. Vera wanted to visit her and did a few times, but they were short lived. Not only did she not want to get in Sunni’s way, but she still can’t get over the way that her skin crawled as she saw her good friend lying there limply. But, no matter how she felt, people would still grow hungry. So Vera did her best to keep her head down and cook, cook, cook. Even if she didn’t need to, she kept cooking.

“Water.” Vera mumbled to herself, entirely monotone. She didn’t even look up from the vegetables she was dicing. “I need more water.” She repeated. After a tense sigh, she put the knife down and wiped her hands off on her apron. Vera exited the kitchen, her gaze following the floor. Before reaching the stairs, someone else’s feet came into view. Her head jerked up to see Rosia. It was the first time she was within 10 feet of the younger woman in the past few days. It was as if she was avoiding Vera entirely, and she couldn’t help but ache for her presence. “You!” She must have sounded crazy, practically shouting that so suddenly. “Come with me.” This time, her voice was a touch quieter, but it still carried this firm, ordering tone. Without waiting for a response from Rosia, she grabbed her wrist and physically dragged her back to the kitchen where they wouldn’t be interrupted. Once they were inside, Vera shut the door and turned to the younger woman. “Have you been avoiding me?” Vera was never one to dance around the subject.

Rosia was below deck looking through numerous rooms for some more rope to take up on deck but wasn’t finding much. As she was walking back towards the stairs she was startled when someone raised their voice towards her. Rosia looked up and saw Vera, but before she could say anything she basically told her to follow her and then dragged her into the kitchen, closing the door and standing in front of it.

“Been avoiding ye? I mean I’m not hanging around with people who disobey the cap’n.” Rosia said as she tried to walk around Vera to leave the kitchen. Truth was Rosia was sort of avoiding her, she was purposely not hanging around Vera because she was a little upset and such with Vera taking down Tessa. Though Rosia did miss being around her and the help learning to read.

Vera, a bit too fast, pressed her palm into the door to keep Rosia from opening it. She thanked to gods momentarily for the extra inches she had on the shorter woman. “Rosia,” She started, almost sternly, before a mixture of guilt and sadness landed on her shoulders. “I’m sorry, Rosia, please…” It was almost a plea for forgiveness as she looked down at Rosia, her soft eyes locking with hers. “I didn’t… I didn’t want to disobey M-... the captain. I just couldn’t sit there and watch Tessa hanging.”

“Ey!” Rosia stepped back and huffed after Vera denied her to leave, crossing her arms as Vera said her name, and continued talking and explaining her case. “Then go below deck if ye don’t want to watch. A captain needs a crew that would trust. First Tessa ties me up, then you take Tessa down.” Rosia sighed for a second before continuing, “I trust you, I like you. But Hellfire is our captain. She’s leadin’ us to that treasure, we do as she says…” Rosia trailed off, her facial expression getting a little sorrow, turning around and her back to Vera.

Vera felt her heart throb a bit when Rosia told her she could trust her. She, for just a moment, felt as if taking Tessa down had betrayed that trust. But then she remembered seeing her friend hang there, and it reminded her of the archaic punishments she was all too familiar with. Punishments that didn’t work. If they had, she wouldn’t be standing there today. “I trust Captain as well, and I trust you too. Just because I trust the two of you doesn’t mean we won’t disagree on some things.” She did her best to explain her point of view. “I didn’t agree with Tessa tying you up, but I also didn’t agree with tying her up. Just tying up in general… it's not something I agree with. So sitting there and watching Tessa hang… It hurts me.”

Even though Rosia wasn’t facing Vera, she listened very closely. Vera’s last comment caught her attention more so the rest of what she said, turning around and taking a closer step to Vera. “You did what you thinkin’ was right... But what you mean hurts?” Rosia asked sincerely. Rosia wasn’t one to dig into people’s life’s, but this caught her attention, and she did care for and about Vera.

As Rosia spoke and took a step toward Vera, she felt her throat tighten. She needed to swallow hard and took a small, subtle step back. Her gaze drifted back to the floor, and her now free hands interlocked together tightly. “I…” Vera hesitated. Her voice seemed somehow smaller than it had been before. “I just… I know what it’s like to be punished…” The words came out as a hushed whisper, but not before she tucked her hands under her armpits, as if she was hugging herself.

Rosia raised her eyebrow inquisitively, a little confused with Vera’s words. Rosia tried to think about a time her former captain, Midas, had punished her but couldn't recall that ever happening. Then it finally clicked in Rosia’s head, she gasped and covered her mouth. “Before the Stardust?” Rosia asked, but pretty sure she knew the answer was yes. She had never asked anyone their past, even though she was pretty sure some of the ship knew that she grew up on side alleys and streets.

Vera still refused to look at the younger woman, this time turning her glare to the wall. Her throat felt just as tight and dry, causing her to swallow hard several times. “Yes, before the Stardust…” She muttered, not once moving her line of sight. She tensed her arms, squeezing her upper body.

Rosia looked down at the ground, she knew right now Vera was feeling down, but wasn’t sure what to do. She wasn’t one to really deal with many emotions, the only ones shes ever dealt with were mostly anger and whatever sarcasm and scoff she learned. “I… uh…” Rosia stuttered for a second before going silent. She looked back up at Vera and grabbed one of her hands and squeezed it lightly.

The grabbing of her hand certainly wasn’t something Vera had expected. In fact, it made her jump just a touch at the sudden contact, even though it had been done out of kindness and not anger. It took a few seconds, but Vera allowed herself to relax a little, squeezing Rosia’s hand. By the time she spoke again, she still hadn’t let go, “I’m sorry I disobeyed the Captain, but I think you understand why I had to. And I would do the same thing a thousand times over. But it doesn’t change how I feel about the Captain, or this journey, or the treasure, or the mutiny.” She had regained some of her composure, so she wasn’t quite whispering anymore. There was a resolve in her tone. Although she was in this vulnerable state, she still held fast to her morals. However, her voice softened once more, this time not with sadness or fear, but with something else. “And it doesn’t change how I feel about you, Rosia. You’re… you’re something special to me, and it hurts me, perhaps more, to know that you were trying to avoid me.” Then she sighed once more, lifting Rosia’s hand and touching the back of it to her cheek. “If you’re ever upset with me, I want you to talk to me. Avoiding me won’t fix or change anything, ok?”

A smile appeared across Rosia’s face when Vera spoke back, hearing that she was no longer saddened, and that she was sorry for disobeying the captain. But as Vera continued to talk, especially about how she felt about Rosia, Rosia’s face began to turn red a little, blushing from Vera’s comments. “Aye, sorry for that…” She spoke up finally, looking up at Vera.

Vera smiled much wider than before. “Thank you, Rosebud.” She teased the younger woman, her smile shifting somewhat to a playful smirk. “Come here, you.” Without waiting for a response from Rosia, Vera used her grip on the brunette’s hand to pull her into a firm hug. She wrapped her free arm around her shoulders, letting her cheek rest on the side of Rosia’s head.

Rosia smiled as Vera pulled her in, but before she could say anything they were both knocked aside and lost their balance as a rough wave hit the side of the ship, Rosia had forgotten about the raging storm they were in the middle of. After regaining her balance Rosia spoke up again, “Aye, should be gettin’ back up top to help with the storm, Cap’n probably wondering where I at.” Rosia said as she quickly stood up and rushed out the room, she poked her head back in for a second after walking out. “Ey. After storm goes away, I’ll be back down for more learnin’.” Rosia said with a smile before darting back towards the upper deck.

As Rosia reached the deck, a wave a water washed across the deck and water hitting her in the face. Rosia was one of the few on the ship that enjoyed storms. She would agree they are dangerous and could end in damage and possibly end their voyage, but she loved the cool air, the rough waters, and the rush. “Ey! Not findin’ anymore rope, where ye need me?” Rosia exclaimed, trying to be heard across the ship.”

Although their little embrace was cut short, Vera didn’t have long to be upset. Hearing that Rosia would return later gave her something to look forward to. Even though she was holding onto the counter to keep from being thrown around with the impactful waves, Vera was happy. “I’ll be holding you to that. Now go do your job, lazybones. Carefully!” She shouted the last word as Rosia disappeared down the hall. Vera quickly got to work making sure everything was tied down and secured below deck. Once her kitchen was safe, Vera suddenly remembered that Sunni was still dealing with an ill Vale. Since she knew she wouldn’t be much help on the deck, she shuffled through the halls until she reached the medbay. Without bothering to knock, she, rather uneloquently, tossed the door open. If she hadn’t been use to stormy seas by now, Vera might have been tossed off her feet. But she learned how to move with the ship, keeping herself in a lower, more balanced stance. “Hey doc, need any help?”

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Meghan Cunningham Character Portrait: Tessa Locke Character Portrait: Rosia Hienrik Character Portrait: William Morgan III Character Portrait: Pyon Sun-Ah Character Portrait: Valentina De la Torre Character Portrait: Julian Bailey
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RiggknotX| | XMaster Rigger
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#54002a

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It seemed as if nothing was going right the past few days. First there was Vale. Tessa had been spending almost all her time by Vale's side and doing her best not to get in Sunni's way. She'd hardly even be up on deck, leaving the duties of the rigging to Rosia or Bill or whoever else would be able to help out with it. But now with the storm raging, Tessa had to go up and do her job. Before she went up, she looked over Vale once last time. ”Well I'll be, don't ya look like shit,” Tessa said in a soft voice and a small smile on her face. She then took her hand and moved a stray strand of hair away from Vale's face. Tessa's small smile left with a sigh. ”I'll be back once the storm calms,” she said this a little louder so Sunni could hear it as well. Then she pulled her hand away, looked over Vale one last time, then made her way up.

Looking over the ship in its chaos, she could just see Meg take over the helm through the mist and water. And she could see the sails being blown about. ”Fuck,“ Tessa muttered under her breath. She made her way past crew to the main sail. Making her way up quickly, she beat herself up a bit forgetting about lifelines in the chaos as she could just hear Meg ordering Bill to make sure everyone had one. Grabbed a rope that was tied to the mast and tied it around herself quickly and tightly then braced herself as the ship rocked and a wave rushed over the deck from below. She could see some of the newer crew having trouble staying on their feet. And though she wanted to warn some of them she had a job she had to focus on first. Now more than ever did she feel she had to be 100-and-ten-percent. The sails where getting tied up quickly.

A bit later she was caught a bit off guard however hearing Jules call her, she looked over to Meg at the helm seeing Julian step up. ”Oy! Cap'n! Jules!“ She called to them from up on the sails. She was more or less just letting them know where she was and that she was on it. But now wasn't the time to go about talking.

As the ship rocked again, she went about hurriedly pulling up the last sail and tying them tight. The last thing they needed was for any of the sails to be torn. Once all the sails were tied she made her way back down to the deck, tying herself to a long life line as she looked over the ship quickly. She began making her way about making sure everyone's lines were tight. When she heard Rosia over the storm, she made her way over as water came over the deck yet again. ”Oy, why not get tied first?!“ Tessa said loudly enough to be heard and tied a rope around Rosia, making sure it was secure and tight. "Sorry if that be a bit too tight or uncomfortable, but we can't have ya fallin' overboard, now can we?" Then Tessa was back to making sure the rigging was tight and making sure everyone was securely tied to the ship as well as making sure anything loose was tied down.

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The manifest is set, release the mooring lines
From the top, from the nest, looks the perfect night

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So I’ve gone out to sea
But this time it’s gonna be a burial for me!

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"MEN!" Dozens upon dozens of droplets rained down on the gunners and Bill as the enormous waves bashed against the sides of the ship. He squinted.
"Ye heard Hellfire. The cannons be safe now. Tie yeselves." He threw the Gunner Crew ropes to secure themselves with. They were just done carrying the cannons and were ready to take orders, but Bill prioritized their lives over the supply of materials that was still above deck.
"Dead men tell no tale, lads. The Gunners nodded, either going below deck or tying themselves to masts above deck.
Bill paced around, shaking off saltwater and rubbing sand out of his eyes. He had been soundless these past days. Bill was afraid of losing his crew. Whether it would be mutiny or the poisoning of a crew member and friend, the Bosun was wary and withdrawn from the others for the first time in his time as a crewmember on the Stardust.
He shook his head once again, thrilling off another dozen droplets of water along with his thoughts, before he noticed a missing crew member.
"Where's Mead?"
Searle, who was tied to a mast next to Bill, shrugged. The last time Bill saw Mead was while he was giving orders to the crew. Or rather when the young fellow was talking to Jules.
"Well fook Davy Jones in th' arse!" Bill expressed before he started trotting around. He walked around aimlessly for a few moments before spotting Mead at the stairs, heaving a crate of gunpowder down below deck.
"No time, Leland, secure yeself." Mead nodded, dropping the crate and hurrying down the stairs.
Bill sighed in relief. Most of the crew was now safe. He took a moment to breathe in the fresh air of the stormy afternoon before he turned around.
A wave was heading for the side of the ship. Bill was paralyzed, briefly muttering to the Gunner Crew: "WAVE! BRACE Y-"
Interrupted by the wave, Bill was hit by the crushing weight of the water as it washed over him. He had spent time making sure everybody on deck was safe rather than securing himself, and he was helpless against the force of the wave.
Bill was pushed down, hitting his head on the moist wood of the deck with a thud. His head started ringing endlessly. A blinding pain pulsed throughout his brain and limbs as he started feeling achy and incredibly nauseous. His eyes were burning and his sight was incredibly blurry, only being able to make out a silhouette quickly coming to his aid. His arm twitched as he tried lifting it and went limp after a matter of seconds.
The Bosun's throat was stinging and every second he coughed up a mixture of saliva and masses of saltwater.
Eventually, everything went black and silenced.
Except that ringing.

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Character Portrait: Meghan Cunningham Character Portrait: Pyon Sun-Ah Character Portrait: Valentina De la Torre Character Portrait: Callie Avis
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PYON SUN-AH
dialogue; #FA8072
plague | the surgeon


The few days since Vale's collapse had felt much longer than that. Sunni was more exhausted than she cared to admit, and felt like she was powered by sheer stubbornness alone at this point. She was sleeping for an hour, maybe two if she was lucky, at a time, getting four, five hours a day. She didn't want to stay asleep any longer than that for fear something would happen. She was constantly on edge, coming to that point of tiredness when she wasn't even sure what language she was speaking any more. She was trying everything she knew, and she didn't know if that fact that Vale was holding on was because something was working or if the poison was slower working than she'd thought. She was praying to every god she knew that it was the former.

The storm was only making her more restless and more anxious. Below deck, she was safe, but she didn't know about anyone else. And that was worrying her. Was Meg safe? She had no doubt that Meg would go down with her ship- she just hoped that she wouldn't be foolish about it either. Her knuckles white around her pestle, she jumped at the sound of someone entering the room. If it had been anyone else, her temper might just have gotten the better of her and she would have snapped, but Vera could get away with it.

"I don't think so." She paused as she poured her concoction into a bottle. "Some company might be nice. Goddamn storm has me on my nerves. I don't need more work," she forced herself to joke with a forced laugh, but a sudden jolt of the ship made her nearly shatter the bottle she was holding. She swore and put it down. The ship was too unsteady to try giving it to Vale anyway. "How are things above deck?" She asked quietly.

The Lost Treasure of Arimathea: Out Of Character (OOC)

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