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TheDoomsayer
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Destroyer of (his own) worlds
Moments before this, Jack was doing his job. Clouds. Clouds. Sea. Sun. Don't look too long at the heaven ball, Jack. "Blind-y blind-y light!" Sky. Sea. Clouds. Bird. Bird? Jack squinted a little in the sunlight, although the black speckles in front of his eyes prevented from seeing the winged thing as clearly as he'd like to. Everything was in place on the crossbow resting on the side of the crow's nest. Well, mostly everything. First sign of trouble, all he had to do was pull the string back and slip a bolt in there. Jack looked around some more. Clouds. Bird. Not the Sun. Slightly left of the Sun. Sea. Bird. Bird was getting closer. A smile quickly flashed across Jack's face, revealing the gap in his teeth.

"Albatross!" he called. "Maybe it'll start following us! Good luck for the Seahorse, good luck indeedy!" Resisting temptation to shoot it. Cap'n gets mad when Jester curses the ship! "Alby-tross incoming! Prepare the cannons!" The crew beneath worked as they always did, very much used to ignoring Jack's ramblings. The fact that he was up in the crow's nest helped as well. There were barely any crew on deck, as most were below rummaging through their newly-gained cargo. Looking for things to wear, estimating worth, that kind of thing. Counting past ten wasn't Jack's strong point.

Ignoring the bird for a bit (Jack had to admit, some birds looked good while flying, but albatrosses were just...there), he looked down at those on deck. It was a small ship -- a simple gunboat -- so there wasn't much to look at in either direction. Tiny was on deck. Hiskr cabin boy. Kabin kitten. Kabin kitten. Wasn't allowed to touch the booty in the hull. Didn't seem to mind. One of the cannoneers was up as well. Barrett wasn't quite into jewellery. Wore a pair of breeches and nothing else, except for a layer of soot, ash, gunpowder, whatever it was that followed him around. Some of it, much like Jack's tattoos, was under the skin. Struck an imposing figure. The Seahorse used small cannonballs, barely four pounds each, but where Barrett's weight came into play was with moving the cannons themselves around.

Cap'n Bloom was up as well, obviously. He got first pick out of all the booty. Regal but in a dirty sort of way, he wore fancy pants-y (and a fancy shirt) but they were dirty and he didn't replace them. Bunch of shiny rings though, slightly less shiny ones on his ears. And yet he took great pride in his chops. Skilfully cut mutton chops went down his jaw, then up and over his lip. Good with a razor, the Cap'n was. Anyone who disobeyed him knew that too. And then there was the helmsman. Draconian. Light gold-y scales. Said he worked on another pirate ship before coming here. Some troll took over. Sira'ke, his name was. Pleasant enough.

Jack looked up at the sky again and saw that the bird had disappeared completely. "No! There goes our luck. Wait a minute. Tiny!" Jack slung his arms over the edge of the crow's nest and whistled at the hiskr. Tiny looked up. "If a bird-y bird starts followin' us, an' 'at's good luck, but then it stops an' goes somewhere else, what does that mean, exactly?" Tiny was about to respond when Bloom spoke up.

"Don't mean nothin', Jack old boy. What 'ave I said about luck and Cap'n Bloom?"

"Well, I believe your exact words were..." Jack glanced at Tiny, winking.

"Cap'n Bloom don't need no luck!"

"I got me ship, me cannons --"

"-- meself an' me crew!"

Then they spoke in unison. "Y'arrrrr!"

"That's exactly right, boys. Now --"

"Oooooh, look-y here! Ship on the horizon! South-y south east! East-y south-y. Somethin' around there." Jack didn't look up at the Sun to try and gauge where this new ship was. Jack was smart. Wasn't going to get fooled twice. "Turnin' towards us too."

"Either it's a navy ship with a navigator who doesn't know a sextant from his wife, or people like us with coin on their mind. Just keep goin' straight, Sira'ke. Usual tactic. Barrett, load and hide the cannons! If they turn their side to us, you know what to do. Tiny, get everyone who looks decent up 'ere and everyone who doesn't down there gettin' their weapons ready. An' Jack!"

"Aye?"

"Look respectable." Jack pulled off his hat, revealing his mostly tidy hair. He quickly ruffled it.

"Aye aye, sir!" He put on his serious face and began shielding his eyes with a hand. Pirates. Coming towards us. Maybe he could shoot something. Been a while since he's done that. At least it wasn't a fleet like last time. Now that -- that was a terrible experience for Tiny. Everyone too. But mostly Tiny.
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The Black Ocean · Sea Travel and the Islands


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