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Print at Jun 6, 2020 4:42:06 AM
|Posted by Hempline at Jul 25, 2005 1:19:43 PM|
[Story] The Legend of the Detestable Pollack
The Legend of the Detestable Pollack
There once was a happy crew that sailed the Midnight Ocean without a care in the world. They pillaged to their heart?s content, their hold was always full of lucre and goods, Imperials quaked at the sight of them? they lived charmed lives. This was a small crew of only five pirates, but they manned their cutter the Merry Pollack as if a full crew of 12 pirates sailed it. The cutter itself seemed to happily answer to the touch of its loving crew, needing barely any guidance at all to be turned to the right direction.
The mates were named Jean, Karen, Grey, Muffy and Hans. Jean, the captain and best battle navigator the ocean had known at that time, always manned the wheel. She seemed able to distinguish the concealed stars on the cloudiest of nights, and was thought to have telepathic powers against brigands. The crew knew they could always depend on their captain for anything, and she was willing to give anything they asked of her. The other three females were kin to each other, Karen being the matriarch and Muffy and Grey both her prodigy and daughters. The eldest of the three was the toughest sword fighter anyone had seen, her flashing cutlass a terror to behold. Grey and Muffy was an inseparable pair, and they always worked as one. Their twin falchions parried for one another while their doppelganging attacks pinned their opponents from either side. The three relatives worked the sails so quickly that their ship hardly deported before they were going full speed. And Hans, the youngest of the five, was a rising star in the ocean. He cheerfully fixed the hull with his gleaming golden hammer while, at the same time, he bilged -all- excess water out, and all with a merry tune issuing from the belly of the ship.
All the pirates of Midnight cheered their joyous coming, while brigands cowered; this crew was the perfect example of the wonderful time everyone had upon the ocean. This crew was the poster child of their magnificent society! Yet, as is wont to happen to a crew at the height of their game, it was not meant to last.
There was a strange trader that came to Alpha Port. This trader wore a masque, akin to those worn by pirates at All Hallows Eve, while his ragged long white beard covered those features that the masque did not. His posture was stooped and bent, his features worn as a piece of driftwood and. But many soon shrugged off his strange appearance when they glimpsed at what he had brought? his merchant frigate was filled with strange fruit, bizarre artifacts, strange swords that had a balance like nobody else had seen? and he came with a small fleet of ships for sale. It was later said that there were patches of ice on the hulls of these ships, and that steam rose from them in the tropical Midnight sun. He was only there for a single day, but much of his wares were distributed. They seemed to be highly sought after, but after the strange trader had left, those that had purchased merchandise strangely found that they had no need or want for these items. There were whispers among the dock tarts that the ships were haunted or cursed, and so nobody bought any of the ships for sale.
Well? one ship was sold.
The crew was bringing the Merry Pollack into port when they saw all the commotion. Never had they seen such a fleet! Such goods! They were all as excited as their friends at the strange newcomer bringing exotic goods. They pulled next to the trader?s ship as they sailed into port, and quickly hopped aboard, anxious to see what they might find. The oddly featured trader took one look at the merry crew that had hopped aboard his vessel and immediately hobbled over to them, dropping any deals he had been in the midst of.
He brought the awed crew to each of his most precious wares, explaining their power and their long glorious history, while giving prices that were mere pittances compared to these treasures. Yet the crew was quite happy as they were, and while they greatly enjoyed taking in the sights of the foreign commodities, they did not wish to purchase anything. The trader was perplexed by this, and attempted to make a deal with more and more urgency and anger, his prices dropping quickly and his cracked voice getting higher.
It wasn?t until they had marched the entire length of the merchant frigate with the irate merchant that a lust awakened in them and focused on something they inexplicably desired; a massive Grand Frigate made of the finest materials lay before their sights. They ignored the hushed whispers about the ships being haunted; obviously it was the superstitious dock tarts seeing the wisps of steam and thinking them malicious spirits.
When asked what price the magnificent grand frigate would fetch, the merchant replied quietly that that ship was the pride of his armada, and it would be a steep price indeed. The crew was already entranced by it?s glamour, however, and replied that money was no object. The trader replied breathlessly that he was in the market for a good cutter, and that their old beat up one would do. He was willing to trade that magnificent grand frigate for their lovely Merry Pollack (all treasure in the hold would be his, of course). All thoughts of the happy times they had had together aboard the Merry Pollack was instantly washed away by the complete need for this ship; they were an unstoppable crew, they thought! This should be theirs by right, a true titan directed by the best crew in all of Midnight! With nary a thought, they handed over the well-worn deed to the Merry Pollack and were given the ornate, brand new deed to the Detestable Pollack (for what is in a name? A ship is a ship, especially one as glorious at this!). The trader?s one wish was that they wait until tomorrow before they sail the giant, and they agreed, greedily grasping for the document. The trader, his goods and the rest of his fleet (now holding the Merry Pollack as well) left in the dead of the night, but those few pirates out that late swore that, as they saw the ships fade in the distance, they heard a chilling laugh issuing from the merchant frigate.
They each found a long sleepless night ahead of them, their minds a flurry of illusions of grandeur and thoughts of what they?d do first with their treasure. As day broke, all five immediately hopped aboard and were delighted to find a hold full of cannonballs and the finest rum. Out they set, meaning to pillage all sorts of riches aboard their newfound beauty. But things started to go immensely wrong?
Now I expect you?d say, ?Well of course things go wrong! These are but five foolhardy swabbies, expecting they could move a massive grand frigate all on their lonesome!? Well, you?d be right. There is not much that even the best pirates can do under these circumstances, but the fact remains that it gets worse.
At the first few navigation points, things actually went swimmingly. Jean navigated the ship as though it were a mere sloop, Karen, Grey and Muffy were climbing the sails as dexterously as monkeys, and the bright young Hans was plugging along while bilging to his heart?s content, singing up a storm on the way. But as land grew farther and farther away in the distance, Hans? song became sour. He started realizing that the bilge water, though he was bilging as well as he?d ever done, was steadily rising. He attempted to quicken the pace (making his once-merry song more and more frantic), but before long, the floor was slick with water, and bilge crabs impeded his work by nipping at his toes. Before long after, the boards of the ship started creaking and even more leaks appeared. It was at this time that a fully embarrassed Hans ceased his song and tentatively called for help above deck.
Muffy and Grey laughed at this, as they thought he was making a joke. Never had their young Hans asked for aid doing what he did best! Surely this was a jest. At this instant, caught up in the joke and not paying attention to what she was doing, Muffy tied a knot too quickly and jammed her elbow in Grey?s eye. This immediately started a massive row, and the two of them took to dueling each other in the crow?s nest, shirking their tasks and letting the sails go slack. Karen attempted to take up her daughters work while trying to calm them both down at the same time, but she found the work impossible! Lines were tied in massive salt-crusted knots, sails were tangling upon themselves, and her kin?s work was the worst she?d ever seen! She started to join in the brawl, screaming at them for forgetting all she?d taught them over those long years.
And Jean, seeing her crew starting to tear itself apart, attempted to make order? but the trio in the sails were giving her a headache, and Hans? tentative questions of aid were now replaced by full screams of pain from the massive amount of bilge crabs attacking him, and the navigation wheel jerked the opposite way she wanted the ship to go. In desperation, for her magnificent crew had never needed to stoop so low, she placed a call for jobbers and swabbies to aid in her ship?s plight. She was shocked and appalled by the fact that nobody, not even swabbies, came to their aid!
Through the course of this first long night, Muffy had lost a hand in the feuding fight, Hans was so swollen and sore he could hardly move, Karen refused to talk to her two daughters and sunk into a deep silence, and the ship had blown far off course which no amount of tugging at the wheel could help. Of the five crew members, only Hans was not angry at everything that had happened? he only felt as though he had let everyone down by not being able to do his jobs properly. The other four seemed to latch onto this, a buoy of driftwood amid their sea of troubles, as they suddenly remembered things started to go wrong after he asked for aid. They immediately made him the scapegoat, blaming him for all their misfortunes. Throughout the journey, they were more and more harsh and degrading upon their whipping boy, and more and more silent he became, until there was no song left upon the boat.
Muffy and Grey refused to talk to each other, work with each other or even look at each other ever since the fight. They were helpless in the sails, however, as they had lost half of themselves; when once they had worked so well together and depended upon each other, they now had nobody to lean on. And Karen was even worse; their swordfights with brigands was steadily declining as she started to think of all the wasted years she spent upon her ungrateful daughters. She was an aging pirate and she wouldn?t be around forever? who would continue her legacy? And their captain, the pinion of the crew for the longest time, became a tyrant. She stalked across the deck, ordering any who got in her way; mainly flustering them and making them create more mistakes for the crippled ship.
Months past, and they never returned to any inhabited island. Brigands became more daring and ruthless as they started flooding the ocean. The pirates of Midnight soon wondered what became of their beloved darling crew, and mourned them as lost at sea. But there have been sightings of a strange brigand?a massive ship floundering on amid shouts of anger and screams of rage. Passing crews named those aboard a bad bunch, and the name stuck. Cursed this crew is, cursed to a never-ending odyssey. Rather than the cheerful songs and laughter of their past travels aboard the Merry Pollack, they sail a doomed voyage aboard the Detestable Pollack.
A sighting of the Detestable Pollack.
Forever a Nameless Corsair
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