Two weeks had passed already since the captain of the Burnt Hands
had sent the few remaining members of his crew to hang up the recruitment posters. None of the recruited privateers were aware of how
they had been hired, as there had not been any interviews or even a test of their skills. Yet, they'd received sealed letters, addressed to them personally, letting them know they were allowed on board. Should they attempt to bring anyone with them, the First Mate on the docks would block their access to the ship. Presentation of their letter was required to prove their identity, as one was never too cautious in a place such as Oshanlenor.
Near the docks, a crass tavern roared with laughter and song, the music shamelessly bleeding through the walls loud enough to keep half the neighbourhood awake. Ale flowed and the current members of the Burnt Hands drank like it was their last night in port - which it was. The barkeep had a sour look on his face as the tabs of the pirates accumulated to a ridiculous amount, but before he could wrap his thick fingers around one of their throats, Captain Draynor Wynmaris caught his eye.
"Ey ey now, friend! You know we always pay our dues."
The dark elf's striking blue eyes glinted in the dim light, and a chuckle bubbled in his throat when he noticed the barkeep grit his teeth. "We brought you this crowd, didn't we?"
He gestured towards the full tavern and the three different musicians battling the spotlight on the little stage in the corner of the room.
"Half, tonight." The words came through a tight jaw and very reluctantly, but it was clear the man knew it was a lost battle to try and force the pirates to pay their entire tab now. The Burnt Hands always brought him a rowdy and thirsty crowd whenever they were celebrating their last night in port, and both he and Captain Draynor knew it was a large part of the tavern's profits throughout the year.
"Excellent, my dear."
Without asking how much they owed, Draynor dropped a bag with coins on the counter and nodded with a wink at the barkeep. A high-pitched whistle broke through the music and hubbub, and a handful of patrons took the last swig of their drink and headed out without even a last look at those around them. Draynor smirked and finished his own drink in one swallow before melting into the crowd as he followed those who were leaving.
It was going to be a most interesting night aboard the Wretched Siren
The low hum broke the silence on the docks, quiet waves whispering against the used wood in a peaceful melody. Elanso Zagi fiddled with an owl pendant, fingers stroking the golden feathers, as she waited patiently. One quick look at the clear sky and the corners of her lips twitched into a small smile. It's almost time.
The Wretched Siren
waited a hundred feet away from her position, rocking in the night with the moon shining a favourable light on the intricate details of the siren's scales. Captain Draynor had grinned confidently when she'd left the ship, assuring the crew-mates that it was a sure sign that Zainth's holy light had been cast upon them and was thus blessing their journey. Elanso had never held much faith in the gods, but seeing the others relax at the Captain's statement certainly was a good omen. Now, it was mostly a question of whether their new crew members would behave and fall in line with the current crew-mates.
It was finally nearing midnight and the month of Likun was coming to an end. The First Mate wasn't sure if it was her imagination, but the air almost felt like it smelled sweeter, and the breeze picked up to carry over an earthy smell they'd be missing for the next few months. As she breathed in the scent of Mirgho's Harbor, Elanso caught some movement in the distance. "Ahh, here we go."
Her smile widened and her hand quickly went to hover on the handle of the dagger at her waist. One was never too cautious, especially in the middle of the night on the docks most commonly frequented by ruthless pirates and slavers.