“It was always difficult to place the captain. You never quite knew what was going on in that head of his, might be cause of the other voices in there than his. His brother, some of his companions? I think I understood them, at least by the end. I’m not sure if I ever understood the captain though.Conversation overheard in Mistport, sometime after the Day of Fate
Best man I’ve ever met.”
Feral watched as the cloud of fog and storm rolled away into the distance, barely making out the distant bird that led it to and fro. The sea air filled his nostrils with salt, pricked at his eyes, keeping him from nodding off in the dark night. The waters were calm, tranquil almost, lapping at the hull as the ship cut a steady course towards the mainland. He tugged at his right hand, freeing it from its position behind his back, and shook the pins and needles out of it. Behind him, Petarix chuckled. Feral turned and pointed at him, the black scalar leaning on the balustrade, watching his homeland sink into the distance.
“Not a word of this to him,” Feral said, cracking a smile.
Petarix turned. “Of course not,” he said, grinning. Feral gave him a look, then turned his attention back to the wheel. On the deck below, the crew tended slowly to the ship, the murmur of a song from their lips the only sound on the empty sea.
Haul the ropes,
Hoist the lines,
Petarix crossed to the wheel, standing beside Feral and watching the crew below at work. He looked at Feral. “Are you alright, sir?”
We’re sailing into different tides.
Feral didn’t look at the quartermaster. “I’m fine.”
“Don’t lie, sir.”
“I’m not lying.”
Wind will howl,
Sea will roar,
“You’re worried about him.”
We go to where we’ve not before.
“Him? Oh, he’ll be fine.” Feral pulled out a compass, looked at it, and adjusted the wheel. The ship’s sails luffed. Petarix crossed his arms as a shape brushed against the keel below, unbeknownst to either of them.
“Is it because he didn’t say he loved you?”
There was a jerking creak as the wheel suddenly spun hard, and Feral grabbed control of it again hastily, correcting it. He turned and looked Petarix in the eye. “I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
Petarix pointed at the wheel and raised a browplate. “It is, isn’t it?”
Hear siren’s song,
See thunder’s crack,
Feral pointed at him. “Just you remember who’s in charge here.”
Petarix raised his hands slightly, conceding. The waters around the ship stilled slightly – barely, an almost imperceptible change, but an important one.
To where we go we shan’t come back.
“You know he does though, right?”
Feral blinked, not answering.
“It’s obvious,” Petarix continued.
Feral turned his attention back to the wheel while Petarix spoke.
“I think he just has a lot to think about right now.”
Our souls are lost,
Our lives were cheap,
“With his mother and the war and everything, you know.”
Feral sighed inadvertently and nodded, exchanging a look with Petarix that said more than the aged captain would ever find the words for.
And soon we’ll sail the briny deep.
There was a noise from below of something wet impacting with the wooden deck.