As I returned to the group, they were rowing desperately, if cautiously, through the thick fog of the coast. Of course, they couldn’t know what lay in wait for a ship just such as theirs.
As dawn breaks over the shoreline, they begin to exit the rolling fog, only to be set upon by two of the damned vessels.
Ragged sails, charred hulls, broken and battered decks, silently they pull to each side of courageous Tarek’s legendary ship.
A full score of the phantom warriors rose out of the ships, sickly green like solid fog. Their leader, a ferocious Troll berserkr, stepped from the mast of his ship shouting the name I’d wished he hadn’t…Denfrigg.
Their deaths must have been a horrifying betrayal, for them to see Denfrigg’s face on Tarek’s vessel. I cannot help myself from wondering how many other ships fell prey to these ghost warriors?
Birger, the runecaster, called upon the protection of Thor, raising a shield of lightning about the ship.
Valkari challenges the berserkr to leave them in peace. If the red eyes are any sign, I believe the giant to be beyond peace.
I am right. I am also disturbed by what follows. There is a black blur in my vision, something lands on the deck of Tareks vessel, a man-shaped winged creature. I cannot see it clearly at all, save for the blade in its hand. The sword is a common design among the people of Murgyshurg and the Dark Sea.
This is fascinating. But time enough to ponder the ramifications of that later.
Birger’s shield holds off the weakest of the ghosts, but does not deter the berserkr one bit.
As the fight ensues, the little one attempts to geld the warrior…a ballsy move that would have dropped any living fighter, but mostly futile against the enraged spirit.
Valkari slams into the berserkr Troll, doing a great deal of damage, but is unable to move the ghost, sliding through him instead.
The shaded one swings his blade, just out of reach of the enemy’s neck.
The phantom’s axes swing, eerily silent, out wide, his reach more than enough to kill both Valkari and the shade. While her armor is enough to stand against the blow, the Shade’s is not. It is staggered back.
I turn my attention now back to the runecaster, he has let his shield go on its own, and it will quickly fail. Calling upon the Allfather’s aid, he cripples his off hand with a devastating dagger strike.
The vision goes black. I am not sure what happened then, only that when I regained the sight, Tarek Oddenstrike had beached his broken vessel and the four actors, including the Shade, were heading into Gotesborg.
Something damaged the ship further, and so I look closely. Her ribs are cracked and split, as if slammed upon Gofannon’s anvil. It will be a long time before Tarek Oddenstrike raids or trades again.
I turn my attention back to the group, they seem to have made a companion of this shaded creature, though none of the people in Gotesborg like it at all.
It is a morbid curiousity that I continue this vigil, as the group splits and attends bathhouse and tavern, learning of Vergan, the captain of the merchant vessel that is their quarry – and of his brother, Denfrigg the Bastard.
It is a long day, and mine yet not finished, but the group sleeps fast in the safety of the inn.