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Now there's a pair of eyes I could never forget. If the tales are true, those peepers of yours have seen all the wonders of Wraeclast by now... and a few things they likely wish they hadn't.

Oh, and no need for us to speak of Oriath. My ears are brim full with the sorrows these wretched companions of yours have been spilling.


Now there's a sorry tale, more miserable than any dirge I've ever heard. Nessa's gone... Wandered off into the night muttering to herself about 'dancing to his ditty'.

No, I didn't go after her. In truth, she was gone when I woke up the next morn. I only imagined she'd be muttering, you see, on account of the murmurings she's been making these past few weeks.

Always the same, about 'him' and 'his song', whoever in damnation 'he' is.
You do know it's cruel to make jests of an addled mind, don't you? Nessa alive, and turned into a bloody cod? Hah! That said, you've never been wrong before so seems like I'm going to have to stare this fanciful tale in its fishy face.

She talked of the Brine King, did she? Now there's a name what can trouble the breeches off even the most jaded of poets. Though Merveil might be dead, the sea still has its seductive songs, and this time it's a big, briny baritone doing the wailing.


Lilly Roth? Granddaughter of the legendary Rot-tooth Roth? Oh, apologies if I seem a little... giddy. It's not any old day you get to meet marine royalty. I mean, you know how I feel about pirates and all, but the Roths have as much in common with those scurvy sea rats as a... as a shark does with a goldfish.

Lilly has her granddaddy's blood in her veins; it's plain for all to see. Look at the lustre in her eyes, the ruddy blush of her skin. That there's a pirate princess, and no mistake.

The Old Gods

Yes, we live in curious times indeed. A time when old stories are being birthed, mewling and puking, into our world of dirt and blood.

It's all a bit inspiring really, hence I've written a little something.

Ancient anecdotes
Now wake from their beds
Looming in our fears
Towering above our heads
Age-old lusts
And bygone greeds
Walking and wreaking
As humanity bleeds
Rivers of history
Lakes of blood
The gods stand upon us
As we cower in the mud


With Kitava now stomping around Oriath, it seems mythology is fast turning into reality.

Then again, the gods didn't just spring out of some poet's head. I certainly couldn't pen an ode to the God of Eternally Flowing Ale and then just stick me mug out to catch the free brew.

No, I imagine the gods once dined, danced and defecated just like you or I. Now they seem ready to take another stab at it... at life, I mean.

Take the Karui Father of War, for instance. Old Tukohama. All comfily tucked up in Kaom's holdfast and playing war like a few thousand years was only a quiet weekend for him.

Come to think of it... perhaps it was!

The Brine King

You won't find a sailor that doesn't whisper a quiet prayer to the Brine King before casting off. In fact, under the maddening radiance of a full moon, the more superstitious captains would drown some poor slave or failed mutineer... just to keep old Tsoagoth happy.

No, that wasn't a sneeze. That's the fish god's old Azmerian name. It's considered foul luck to speak it on board a ship. A keel-hauling offense.
Clearly the old Brine King wasn't worth his salt! A fish out of water if ever there was. But I suppose, as someone wise once said, 'you can't teach a crab to walk straight'.

Too much? Yeah, be honest with you, all this fishy mirth is me just swimming around a tricky topic.


She's not coming back to us, is she? Can't say I'm surprised, what with everything she's been through... what she's become.

I wish her all the happiness she can find out there in the sea. More than she could muster on this gods-awful land of ours.

The Black Crest

You've the deck of the mighty Black Crest under your feet and old Weylam hisself to man the helm? Well I'll be a pirate's monkey-mate. You sure do know how to travel in style, exile!

Shavronne of Umbra

Screams. Howls and booms of unholy intonation. The shriek and clank of some unfathomable apparatus and the pervading stench of scorched flesh and boiling blood. That's Axiom Prison now that our lady of Umbra has come home to roost.

As a poet, I have nothing against a little creativity. Yet while I might mould word and wonder, Shavronne's art tends towards the visceral. Flesh, bone and soul.

Artistic pursuit is the loftiest of callings, but in this instance, I believe some rigorous criticism is in order.


Who'd have thought those bleating bastards would go and find religion, eh? Now, there's nothing quite so sure to spoil a man's appetite than an ecclesiastical debate come suppertime.

Yet this goatmen god, this Abberath, seems fair determined to mix his morsels with his spiritual enlightenments.

To put no finer point on it, when the goatmen find him a soft, pink human or two as divine sacrifice... he eats them. Meat, soul and all.

Well, that's what the legends say.
The old goat's turned up his tootsies, has he? Oh wait... I feel a poem coming on.

Through the bleating flock
Our exile did wade
Over hoof and horn and goat blood sprayed
Until at last an audience with Old King Billy
Or The Cloven One
Or Abberath
And other names, just as silly
"Dine with me, friend."
Old Billy did growl.
"Feed me your soul."
"Feed me it, now!"
Our exile just smiled and gutted that goat.
So that not one more soul
Would get stuffed down his old throat.

Honestly, you wouldn't believe how hard it is to find a good rhyme for 'goat', exile.

The Ship Graveyard

Poor Nessa. If the Ship Graveyard is sealed off with some brine-born barrier then the king clearly knows that you're coming to relieve him of his queen-to-be.

Ah well, you should be used to long and arduous journeys now. If nothing else, it's good fodder for an epic. I'd best get composing!

Weylam Roth

You'll not find a more renowned pirate as Weylam 'Rot Tooth' Roth. In times when Fairgraves was still a whelp earning his sea legs, Rot-tooth was prowling the Strait of Oriath in his ship, the 'Black Crest'.

It's said he build it hisself, lining its hull with the bones of some great sea beast he slew with nothing but a harpoon and a bottle o' rum. Never was there a more nimble, more ferocious vessel. Like that leviathan's spirit still lived and breathed in its timbers.

No one's sighted Rot Tooth for twenty years or more, but I know where the Black Crest is. The Ship Graveyard, no less. Seems that Weylam Roth might have had his last meal with Lady Merveil.

Bestel's Epic

Now, I'm sure you've noticed that Lioneye's Watch has seen better days. Our once bubbling township has, alas, become a brooding quagmire of gloom and despair. I blame the unrelenting weather.

As you know, I am both a humanitarian and a strong believer in the soul-sustaining power of story. Back when I was still Captain of the Merry Gull, many days at sea afforded me time to work on my thespian aspirations. I wrote a theatrical epic, a one man show entitled "Cedric and the Buxom Stranger".

I sealed the manuscript inside a roll of oiled leather and stashed it in the hold for safekeeping. Perhaps you could salvage it for me from that Tidal Island upon which my poor ship came to rest? Who knows, maybe we can bring some joy back to Lioneye's Watch with a bit of live entertainment?
Marvelous! Ah yes, yes, it's all here. Ahem, Act One, Scene One:

"Along the shoreline, the beach grass sways, A blazing sun sinks neath sparkling bays. O' strange be the night when the drowned dead rise, And a pale moon ascends upon cold skies. The Stranger still is lost to me, those silken pillows upon which I lay at sea..."

Moody, atmospheric... not as funny as I remember, but I'm sure it gets better in Act Two. Regardless, you have my thanks. Please, take something for your efforts.

And next time you're in town, do come and see the show. I'll leave your name at the door... if I can salvage a door from somewhere, that is.


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