Our heroes spent a day trying to direct their new ship toward Wytchport under the command of Luix, with minimal success. While the big northerner was best equipped to deal with strength-draining power of the helm, his lack of sailing knowledge slowed their progress.
Their experiments with connecting the helm with the notes found in Menso’s belongings made little progress as well. So they stayed in sight of the shore, kept a watch on the horizon, and made as much progress as they could.
Luix was still at the helm, refreshed by Celeste’s divine powers, in the deepest part of the night that is sacred to the lady of the Veil. A strange mist rose up around the vessel, not following the trade winds. Out of the mists four outrigger canoes splashed up, rowed by dark humanoid figures. There were archers as well, and black-fletched arrows began raining down on the deck.
Boomah and Celeste cried out to wake their comrades in the cabins, and prepared to defend themselves. The goblin took flight and launched fiery bombs at an oncoming canoe, revealing cadaverous orcs bloated with sea-water rushing toward their ship.
More arrows clattered down as the canoes got closer, and others came out on the deck to defend the ship. Out of nowhere, a huge wave lifted one of the canoes above the swell and crash it into the rigging, leaving its passengers to drop on our heroes.
Their sodden claws tore at their enemies, and the wounds seem to fill with black water and disorient their victims. Kallius appeared on deck and launched fireballs at oncoming boats while Boomah continued his fiery barrage.
The wave-soaked deck was soon crowded with orcs, who seem to have been drowned and dragged back out of the waves for this attack. Both Dremahl and Celeste called on the power of their patrons to strike down the undead, and their advance faltered.
Meanwhile, the warriors grabbed their weapons and started hacking away at the monsters. After nearly a full day at the helm, it was a test of will for Luix to release the enchanted wheel. But he succeeded and soon the comforting feel of his flail was at hand.
As quickly as the danger appeared, the swords and spells of the defenders removed the threat from the vessel. They dumped the bodies overboard, and continued on.
Concerned that perhaps Mephitas was not going to just let them keep her sacred ship, they decided to focus efforts on reaching Wytchport as quickly as possible. Giving the helm over the trained sailor Kallius, and using a fan token that Boomah had collected, the Longshadow leaped forward and made hast around the northwestern reaches of Malabar and up the coast to the city.
As dawn approached, the came in sight of the isle of Drakona, home to multitudes of small flying lizards. Seeing them swarming in the trees along the shore, our heroes took to the main island coast and gave the creatures a wide berth.
By late afternoon they were seeing small fishing boats beached in small coves, and makeshift buildings put up on what was once desolate coast.
Deciding that they did not want to be seen in a ship dedicated to the goddess of lies, they found an abandoned stretch of short and beached. They decided to completely dismember the helm and destroy any remnant of the rune circle Menso had scribed. They also thoroughly minimized any chance of the wizard returning, too. They believe that the secret to the extra-dimensional capability of the ship’s cabins is in the door-frame, so they took diligent effort to removed it intact, and dragged it up the shore.
While they were stripping the ship, a trio of beachcombers were spotted on the edge of the clearing. They welcomed them over, and learned that many fisher folk and other poor Wytchport residents had been pushed out of the city due to overcrowding from Aerinorn nobility and their retinues. It seems as if the Crown Prince has not begun his march to Cyr Regus, and the delay has swollen the population beyond its resources.
It is said there is a ‘dragon’ loose in the Erarohn forest, and it is not yet safe to travel. A few groups of knights, including the seraschal Telline, have been dispatched to either slay or disprove the creature, but neither of these goals have been achieved as yet. Many of the smallfolk believe this is one more trick of the Otter’s, to delay the prince and his old world parasites while he can concentrate his power and reinforce the capitol.
The beachcombers agreed to give the group passage on a fishing boat close to the city in exchange for the fittings and fixtures of the Longshadow. It was agreed, and the end of a long journey was nearly in sight.