The Nature of the Serpent

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by Ochalla, Jun 7, 2012.

  1. Sounds atop of sounds rang in what should have been the open sea. The storm that descended upon the Golden Crier was both rapid and cruel. The old sea dogs with the injuries that could foretell a storm had been going about their duties like normal before one and all felt the great pain of an unprecedented storm. More then one even said it was unnatural.

    Natural or not the crew of the pirate ship had their work already cut out for them to bring down the sails and watch the bilge water. That they came upon some sort of unexpected reef was all the luck. With the great gash in the haul and the mast inflame after lightning struck it there was little choice up to call for the ship to be abandoned.

    Her crew was still alive though. Captain Aquitainia reminder herself of this as she watched the last of her men get to the long boats. They would survive and they would sail the seas again. She started crossing the deck. Even if her steps were steady, the wood no longer was. She heard the sound of wood cracking, the boom of surf hitting her ship, the wind howling as it tried to rip into every crack, but she still barker her orders. "Lower the long boat!"

    She raced to the edge, getting up on the railing. It was theatrical, but it was the encouragement her men needed right now. And then she saw it! Not clearly, but out were the other longboats were, the dark mass could only be the accursed sea serpent. Now, when they were most defenseless they finally found it. She shook her fist into the sky, cursing the storm and the reef.

    Then the railing broke apart and she tumbled into the sea. This was not the control dive she had planned. She was too close to all the debris. As she tried to orientate herself, lungs without enough oxygen because of the surprise, she found herself fighting with planks and ropes. Her body gave in, the over abundance of 'bad air' too much and she opened her mouth, of course there was no air, just water. As she gulped in the water, sure she was at her final moments she saw someone moving in the water. No one should have been there, but he was, and he was also no man born of land under the sky.
  2. He watched from under the water as the boats left, he watched her run to the rail and watch them go. Her men would be safe, the serpent would see to that but her...

    He hadn't brought the storm, but her hadn't prevented the serpent from doing so. They had a strange and wordless relationship, and had had it since risen to the surface and felt his home. Humans, had always been a curiosity... and now there was one in front of him, tangled and sinking. He tilted his head at the bubbles coming out of her mouth, then swam forwards his hands curling around the ropes tangled around her. He had seen humans drown before, she was no threat.. he gripped the handle of her sword and pulled it from her belt and used it to cut the rope. Her eyes were almost closed as he pulled her towards the surface, letting go of her sword and letting it sink to the bottom. It would be better if she didn't have this when she woke up.
  3. Her chest hurt. Those were the first conscious thoughts she had. It was almost like her whole existence was wrapped around the pain, dull and inclusive instead of sharp and localized. Yet with the pain brought other realizations, the warmth she felt, she was in the sun, even without opening her eyes she knew the feeling of sun. And as she moved her arm she felt the sand between her fingers.

    It was that which caused her to open her eyes. The last thing she recalled was drowning, and now here she was safe and warm. No, she might not be safe, but she was alive. Alive and under a large palm tree. Grunting she hoisted herself into a sitting position. Out in the distance was the sea, the water was innocently washing onto the beach and then retreating like a coy young maiden.

    The pirate captain frowned. She still knew not where she was or how she found herself on this too idealistic of a beach. Still feeling heavy in the chest she stood up anyways. She would get no information lying around. There were things to do, like shelter, food, drinkable water. Then she heard a footstep and she quickly turned, grabbing for the sword that was no longer there. "Who's there!" she demanded before she even got a good look at him.
  4. He had been watching from the water for her to move, water, there he felt safest, where he could escape if he needed. The footstep had been in the water, a soft splash. He looked human now with long hair just touching his shoulders. He would pose as one and help her survive, learn about her kind and find out when she was here, and kill her if he needed to.

    "Hello?" he called back. "Hello?" He stepped towards where he had left her as he tried to think of something to say. "Are you alright?"

    He was nervous but it was too late to turn back now, and there she was, awake and.. human... What did humans say to eachother when not on a ship?
  5. The pirate captain's eyes went a little wide when she saw the man approach her from out of the water. It wasn't that he seemed to pose a threat, even if she was without her main weapon, it was the fact that he was completely nude! Having spent her life aboard one ship or another seeing a naked man was not completely unusual, though it was rare, but this was very unexpected. Why was he naked, too?

    Clearing her throat she put her hands on her hips. She judged as he took a step in her direction that he was at least a good head taller then her, but while she hada good bit of height, she rarely towered over any men. She had to use her body language to get the unconscious responses of respect. That was with strangers. With her crew she didn't have to be as formal or as intimidating, usually.

    "Yes, I'm alright," she decided the man was perhaps been on the island for some time. After all there was little reason for him to be nervous around her yet. Despite wanting to demand information out of him she posed her questions in a more kind tone then she felt. She might have been alive, but she would be grateful of that once she wasn't feeling so jumpy. "How did I get here? And where is here for that matter?"
  6. He walked up he her and sat in the sand, he didn't seem to notice her reaction to his lack of clothes. They were after all a human thing. He kept a small distance from her though, a good few paces, enough for him to turn and run back towards the water if she started anything. "Here?" he asked "I don't know any more than you do." he said resting his hands in his lap. It was time for lying though. "I found you floating in the sea after the storm and brought you ashore. You're the first person I've seen in years."

    That last part was actually true.
  7. His answer was not what she wanted to hear, but I wasn't unexpected. She looked down at him sitting, but was not quite ready to sit herself, even if she felt like she was a week old kitten. Nearly drowning to death takes a lot out of the body. Yet pacing wasn't going to do any good and possibly make this hermit more neverous.

    Unhappy, she dropped down on the sand in front of him. "Thank you," she finally said. She looked up at the sky, trying to get her emotional bearings mostly. "If I seem ungrateful I don't mean to be. I'm just, frustrated. It's a lot that's happen." She finally looked back at the man, and not wanting to stare looked him full in the face. "My name is Musetta. What's yours?" It was a last minute decision to use her given name. She was much more use to giving her maiden name, but no everyone liked those that were involved in reacquisition of merchant goods designed to make the crown richer. The friendly smile was a complete accident.
  8. Now things were getting awkward. She was being human, why hadn't he expected that. "A.. Ai... Aias." he said trying to get as close to his name as he could out of the water. "I'm sorry if I seem strange. I've been here alone for a long time... my ship was wrecked and only I lived." he was looking to her left as he spoke and paused every other word to practice a sound or two before continuing like someone who hadn't used words in years or was just learning the language. "Are you injured? Hungry?"

    He looked back at the sea. "I can get fish."
  9. "Aias? Hm." It was an odd name for an odd fellow, but that he might have been marooned for several years might explain some of his peculiarities. Once he got use to the idea of another person being around he would hopefully settle down.

    "No, I don't seem to be injured, other then my pride." The captain sighed and looked out at the sea. It was so easy to be deceived by it. She frowned thinking about her crew. Had any survived? Was she all that was left of the Golden Crier? She might well be and she couldn't allow herself to be defeated!

    "Food would be good, and maybe you can find the cloths you've abandoned up til now." A bit blunt, but she wasn't even looking at him, she was looking at the sea, which held so much of her misfortune.
  10. He was watching her his head tilted to the side. Her face was full of expression but didn't reveal much of her thoughts.. One this however was clear, then she looked at the sea she envisioned what was on it and over it, not what was on and under it. "Clothes...?" He looked at her, then down at himself. She wanted him to cover himself like she was. He didn't have anything to do that with... but the wreck was not far off shore...

    Still it would take time for her to adjust to being trapped, even if she wasn't really. But she hadn't tried to kill him yet so that was good. Still he had only said one word and was still looking at her with his head tilted. "I will have to find." he stood and although he didn't smile, he didn't think to gave her a slight not and turned back towards the sea and started walking towards it. He knew she'd be watching and that made walking awkward. Why couldn't walking be more like swimming?
  11. With his back turned, Musetta did indeed watch him walk away. After all she could stare without being impolite. One thing was sure, having him clothed would be less distracting once the shock wore off. The pirate lady was well aware she was still suffering from that, shock. Having your ship wrecked in a freak storm. Being stranded on some uncharted island. Doubting any of her crew survived the twin terrors of the swelling sea and the serpent. No, she was still finding it hard to believe this wasn't all some sort of twisted night terror brought on by some spoiled meat and too much whiskey.

    Standing once mre, she hoped this Aias fellow had his fishing gear nearby, or he was going to have difficulty catching any fish. She looked down at the sand and her boots. If she was going to be her for a while it might be good to walk around barefooted. At least on the beach. She found once her feet were bare the sand felt nice between her toes. How long had it been since she enjoyed the simple pleasure. Too long for sure. It was ashame she couldn't really enjoy it right now either.

    Tucking her boots into her belt she went inland, though making sure to be within sight of the beach for when Aias returned. It was time to do some initial investigation.
  12. He had no equipment, he simply waded out until the water was to his waist and looked around at the water. The fish were everywhere, if you know how to feel them in the water. Then with a splash he leaped forwards and dove under the waves. Sixteen lines opened up on his neck, eight per side and began filtering oxygen out of the water and he called to them.

    The sun shone down in shafts the dances over the corral and sand. They came towards him, multitudes of fish on bright colors and all shaped and sizes. He loved them. Loved the way they ticked his skin as they passed over it and how they moved though the water. So different from the fish, and giants, of the deep waters where most of his kind made their home. They claimed they were there to hide from humanity and that staying close to the surface lead to madness...

    He was getting distracted and sitting on the bottom with a stingray in his lap like a pet wasn't going to get food. The fish of the surface were nice to look at but also nice to eat, much better than squid and angler fish. Underwater, raw and juicy as he caught them. But he doubted and air breathing human would eat under water...

    He spotted on that would do.. two.. placing both hands under the ray he lifted it off his lap and let it swim away before tucking his arms close to his body he darted after a barracuda, not the prettiest fish but big and tasty. But what if humans didn't like them? Well there was and eel... He wrapped that around himself once he had killed it and then barracuda in hand grabbed one more. A flatfish, before breaking the surface and heading back to shore with his prizes. Three large morsels... in the span of 20 minutes. Maybe he had spent too long petting the stingray.
  13. The palm trees, unlike any she'd seen before, were tall with thick lush branches. It appeared to Musetta that there was fruit high above. She would have to ask Aias if he'd relied them before. It might be a good source of food, or liquid, or fats to make lanter fire. She didn't see any on the ground or she would have tried to open one on a rock or something. There shrubbery was thin o the edge of the beach and it didn't appear that it got much thicker inland. Though she figured that was only because of the occasional high tide. The island was big enough that further then she could easily see things could be different. It definitely looked like there was a large hill or small mountain that she could reach in an afternoon.

    Island breed strange new species so the things she saw and did not recognize she ony found curious and she allowed herself to just take it all in. She had not been wandering very long when she heard the splashing sound of someone walking out of the water. She wondered of Aias was heading to a different portion of the beach for his fishing foray. However when she turned to look it seemed there was little need for him to do that.

    Surprised, the pirate walked back onto the sandy beach. "That didn't take you much time at all, did it? Where do you have your cookfires usually? I can help fillet those." She might have lost her sword to the sea, but she still was armed and it was easy enough to multi purpose a knife.
  14. She looked surprised at his catch, maybe she didn't like eel... "No usual place, just anywhere." he said wondering why she would want fire. But he picked a broad leaf from a shrub and put the fish on it. Sand in food was never fun. "I'm good with fish?" he said in an uncertain voice before looking down at what he had caught and starting to feel hungry himself. But maybe it would be polite to let her take first.. and.. why did she have a weapon?

    He backed away slightly at the sight of it. He thought he had gotten rid of her sword but apparently she had smaller ones too. Seeing her with it scared him. He had seen what humans did to eachother with with them and.. he glanced at the sea and through about running. "I should get clothes.." yes while she was placated and distracted with food!

    He turned and started jogging down the beach. Yes, further away from her, clamber up a group of rocks at the edge of the bay, then turn back and look at her. make sure she wasn't following. Then turn back to look at the wreck. It was barely visibly under the waves not that far from shore, then scrambles down and dove onto the water. The only place he'd find clothes on the entire island, would be that ship.
  15. "It would appear you are very good with fish," a little praise to a new recruit was always smart. Except he wasn't a new recruit he was here first and in that sense it was his island, but he wasn't exactly asserting himself. That worked for the pirate, she was happier to be in control after all. When he said he cooked where ever she frowned and looked for a good crop of small rocks to put together and debris.

    When he brought up clothing, having made an assessment of what was around she grinned. Even he just wanted to get out gutting fish after who knew how long cooking alone, having him no longer stark naked would be, well maybe not nice, but good. He had very nice muscle tone and.... those were the thoughts she really didn't want distracting her.

    Shrugging as he ran off she rathered up rocks, wood, even some dry seaweed that would make good tinder. It took a few tries to get the spark she needed, but soon she had a happy fire. Next was tackling these fish. It had been many years since gutting fish was her job. She recalled helping her father's cook on the fine ship the crown had given him. She had been very small, but everyone had to have a job on the ship. Some of her first "jobs" were just to keep her out of trouble, but gutting fish was more practical then she realized at such a young are. As Musetta cleaned and chopped she whistled for her own entertainment.
  16. Underwater ships, even ones in bad shape like this one had a serene beauty. But it was the debris strewn across the sand that he was searching, he already had a shirt on it was just pants pants that he liked.. All of there were baggy and terrible to swim on, but eventually he pulled on a canvas pair and headed back to find that his guest had seated fire and was cutting into the fish. He didn't know which fascinated him more. He watched the flames dance and the glittering blade cut into flesh.

    "I don't like fire..." he said flicking water from his hair at the and hearing it hiss. The way he said it made one wonder if he had been burned even if there were no scars on his body. All sailors feared fire but to just say it like that, a savy person might wonder if he escaped unscathed just to watch his ship burn and thats how he became stranded.
  17. "If you prefer I can do the cooking if you keep doing the fishing," she suggested without skipping a beat. Musetta didn't fancy herself a great chef by any imagination, but she knew her cooking was edible, which was more then she could say about some of her men. If Aias was uncomfortable around flames, then she would keep to a cook fire for now. Unless she ever caught sight of another ship of course.

    She was using a broken plank as a chopping board and serving plate. Economy of both resources and time. Tomorrow she would do more about the living situation with the resources she could salvage from her ship. Right now just getting a warm meal was enough for her. "After dinner you'll have to show me around a little." She moved one of the sticks that she had the fish on cooking and a small wave of exhaustion hit her. It had been a long day, too long, and even if she wanted to keep going with almost drowning her body was not in agreement. "Well, at least you'll have to show me where your shelter is. I hope it's not too small." Persumptous as it may have been, she wasn't planning on going off on her own so double bunking made sense.
  18. "I'll go an make it presentable.. and change the leaves." he said getting up again and walking into the trees. It seemed his experiment in watching a human was more him covering one base after another. Back to the ship and picking up her sword to cut a boat free and let it float to the surface, then pull it to the beach and up the sands. It was the best roof he could thin of in a finch and the shattered plank near the stern means she couldn't use it to escape. So dragging the boat into the trees out of the range of storm surges and lashing it as best he could to a tree. Then making a bed of leaves as best he could. It took him a good two hours in total but at the end of it he had a shelter that look like it might have been there a while. It wasn't roomy but it didn't need to be. And now HE was hungy to he wondered back to the fire and sat down, worn out and wondering what had happened to the fish.
  19. Musetta was content to continue to cook and when finally the fish was to her satisfaction she waited, and waited. Finally her patients was spent, quickly due to her hunger and she finally started to eat. Camp fire cooking had a different taste then in a proper ship's kitchen. She would never claim to like one more then another, but a beach fire was a fairly uncommon activity for her.

    Having not rushed eating she was disappointed when Aias still had not returned. She wondered if he had had second thoughts of rescuing her, perhaps too use to his isolation. Or perhaps his head was soft and he had forgotten her existence. It was hard to tell, he was a peculiar sort. She shared to walk along the beach and upon looking out she could see the wreckage on the distant reef. Her home for so many years looking like nothing but sea junk was disheartening.

    Sad nostalgia wasn't doing her any good. She was about ready to write off her rescuer when she turned around to find him sitting at the fire. "Did you get lost?" The sarcasm was there but not dripping. "I saved you a share." it was in fact well over half the food. It wasn't generosity so much as nerves keeping her from eating any more then she did.
  20. He looked at her. "Not lost.." he actually had an excellent sense of direction, much better than his sense of sarcasm. Getting lost was not something he did even in the blackness of the deep ocean, he had the same kind of biological compass that many marine mammals and migratory birds had. The fish however were something new, hard in the outside, golden instead of pink or white and black in places. He lifted one off the leaf and broke the piece open furrowing his brow. It was the right color inside...

    He was still dubious but he took a bite anyway and wasn't convinced. But if this was how humans ate their fish he wouldn't complain. He was back to staring at the fire, the flames dancing as they streamed upwards. It was warm in the air but it seemed to dry out his skin she didn't fell good so he moved further away from it. "We should mode the fire further away fro the beach." he said finally. "I could show you my home."