Sarthisis looks on the pirate ship for any other loot, and finds a small chest with 300 gold. He distributes this money among the people on the ship. This makes him a very popular lizard with everyone in short order.
We realize that most of the people on the ship are not speaking Common, in fact they are probably being taken to Nyambe to be sold as slaves.
During the nights of our trip we drink and celebrate with the captain and crew. The crew plays dice and card games.
Sarthisis asks some of the natives any information about Nyambe. They say that it is sparsely inhabited with no major cities. There are some larger settlements but they are nothing compared to our large cities. He asks about the “Jungle Protector” and they say that he is known by many names which translate into “Spirit of the Jungle” and the like. They think he is a male human, but they are not sure because he moves extremely fast, faster than a man should be able to. He has been spotted all over Nyambe, and almost every village has had sightings of him. Generally he doesn’t talk to anyone, but often shows up to help hunting parties who are in trouble. It is rumored that he took out an entire party of 30 orks who were attacking a small village. He also protects areas of the jungle from being cleared and settled, and has helped animals who were injured.
An old man on our ship claims that he has seen the Jungle Protector once; he was holding off a bunch of orks who had attacked a herd of elephants. He killed all of the orks with a gleaming warhammer that seemed to flash with every strike. This sounds like Grom’s Bane, warhammer of Berethenu’s champion.
Sarthisis suggests that if he has this hammer, we may want to find something that we can trade him for it. Eilenos suggests that we may be able to barter with him if we help him rid some evil from his island in order to get his favor. He also notes that it may be difficult to convince someone of such tried neutrality to give up his weapon for our cause.
We are told that in addition to the many tribes (of which some aren’t even accounted for) there are groups of large, warlike, sentient gorillas. The orks and the gorillas spend a lot of time fighting one another, and this “Sprit of the Jungle” allows them to their own devices and has not destroyed them. One of the largest settlements is on the northern shore which is where most ships come in, and items can be traded with the Nyambe people. This is where we will be landing.
On the 4th day it begins to rain rather heavily, and then a great storm begins. The sailors have everyone else go below decks. This goes on for several hours. There is suddenly a great crack and water begins to flow into the boat. We go above decks to see what is going on but there doesn’t appear to be any rocks or anything sticking out of the water. There is screaming coming from the other ship and there seems to be water flooding in to that ship as well.
Sarthisis scampers across the water to the other ship and lets the slavers out of their cages. The captain says that we did not hit ground, but the hole in the ship is so large that it is definitely sinking. We put the lifeboats into the water and throw over barrels and pallets as well.
Eilenos is watching the water, and sees something move. He yells to the rest of the crew. Suddenly we see a large snake-like object begin to wrap itself around the ship. We run to attack it. Our weapons seem to have little effect, but Sarthisis, Aliga and Josephus strike with magical attacks. The creature rears and snatches one of the sailors in his mouth, killing him instantly. Krodmich buries two of his axes into the creature.
The creature opens its mouth and emits a sonic wave that puts several people on the ship to sleep. The others fight valiantly but cannot seem to pierce its hide. Soon everyone has fallen but Eilenos. He sees the captain be eaten. He can’t seem to get through its tough hide and eventually after several minutes he succumbs to the creature’s power and blacks out.
An undetermined amount of time later, we all awaken on planks or barrels. It is daytime now, and to our east we see a chain of islands. We attempt to rope ourselves together so we do not drift apart. Sarthisis grabs a rope and then walks on the water, pulling us along with him to the land, although it is slow going. It seems that we are the only ones who survived.
As we land, we attempt to salvage any goods from the ship that we can find. We see a couple of crates of food and some wine, probably enough for four days or so. We suspect that these may be the Dead Isles, a pirate haven. Porodo checks the horizon in each direction and sees no one.
We begin walking and after several hours, and are extremely tired. Just ahead of us we see large stone battlements coming out of the side of a mountain. There is a valley between the fortress and the wall that we can walk through — apparently it is designed to defend against ships and not land attacks. We see someone walking on the walls as we approach.
On the other side of the fortress there is a lagoon that comes in from the sea, and several docks coming out into the see with small boats nearby. There are a few other buildings and on the other side of the lagoon, there are four large ships docked here. The ships don’t seem to be flying any flags that we can see. There is another fortress further down that is cut directly into the wall of the mountain.
Nadia says that her father had mentioned a place like this, and that we may be at the home and base of the Corsairs. This is likely a fishing village, but deep within the island there is the base of the Corsair king, a pirate king.
We walk around the lagoon and climb on some rocky terrain to get to the town. As we come across we see a fifth large ship docked that is being worked on. As we do, a group of six scaliwags approach us and demand to know what we are doing here, tresspassing . Eilenos explains that they were shipwrecked and they had no choice. They seem somewhat placated but decide that they will take us to Spivey, their leader, to see what he thinks of us.
They escort us into town past a watch tower and a few storage buildings in the town, a fishing guild hall and several fancy houses. We come through a square with several temples, and then finally to a large building called “Winter Hall.” They bring us into a large chamber and ask us to sit down, and then ring a bell. They ask us if they can bring us anything and we decline.
A few minutes later a young, scruffy lad comes running in, out of breath. The others tell him to fetch Spivey. He returns a few minutes later even more out of breath, and announces Spivey, the master of the island. Spivey himself is a powerfully built man with long brown hair in a pony tail. He is wearing a thick breastplate with heraldry of a black eagle and two sailboats, but we haven’t seen the crest before. He addresses all of us as Spivey, guardian of the fort. We tell him our story and he says that the worm nests in the south part of the island.
He also says that the island is part of the Dead Isles. Sarthisis asks if we could get passage to Nyambe, and Spivey says that they do not travel down there. The worm has attacked many ships lately and the local merchants take a long route to avoid the worm, which will take many more days.
Eilenos says that they should find the sea snake’s lair and destroy it, though Spivey says that groups of elite sea elves have tried before and failed.