Shadows in the Abyss

The Pirate Council

Finally, my prayers have been answered! One Captain Brandon Rockheart has agreed to take me on as crew, in particular as part of a mercenary band in his employ for odd jobs and missions. The current task is to set sail for “The Brewery of Lost Souls”, but at this point I would nearly be willing to set sail anywhere, to hell itself, so long as it gets me out of this pit of a town and back upon the waves. It’s hard to seek the calm needed for meditation in this city that is never quiet, with the constant influx of boats in and out of port, there is always a new crew just reaching or leaving town. With all the noise that sailors make as they swarm upon the taverns and brothels, or as they seek each other out in order to leave with the tide.

The group consists of three, after the last missions resulted in two members leaving for reasons undisclosed to me. Firstly, a half-elf bard by the name of Aramis Barbcock, whom I seem to recognise as a naked body which streaked past me earlier. Second of the group, a halfling called Olo Loamsdowne-Burrows, a quiet fellow with a skill for hiding quietly and stabbing quickly. Lastly, a sorcerer, who certainly holds some dragon blood in his veins, named Gwetherineldur Ondolond (an impossible name by all accounts). We shall see how they hold up in combat, though first appearences do not seem promising; they seem soft and untrained.

The quiet of the nightwatch awaits, with the spray of the sea as we cut a wake through the surf and the cry of the gulls as they soar and swoop past our sails. Adventure is afoot, and I am happy to be carried along with it…

- Tyrnn Holyhand
Sultan of the Sea
Acolyte of Gozreh
Incubus of the Surf

Bran’s arrival at the council was met with little joy. His few friends at the table, Easton Vermont and Aiwa Dawnsong had all found themselves on thin ice after the disappearance of Captain Karahil some years previous. The eyes of all at the council were on the seats they occupied. Before entering the council chambers, Bran begged the party to remain calm and quiet and not to rock the boat. His rivalry with the twins Tetra and Kaira had drawn the attention of the council, but after the party’s discovery beneath Freeport, that had to be put aside.
All were in attendance that day, aside the Worm. It was to be the last council session of Akatash, the greatest pirate who ever lived, now reduced to a whimpering old man, mumbling about the fall of the council, and the scoundrels who run it. Bran stood before the council and offered his news, that a plot against the city, perhaps against the mortal races themselves was brewing once more in the cyclopean cities of the Aboleths. He spoke with purpose and integrity, and challenged the council to act against the threat before it grew too vast. Of those present, only Akatash had fought the Aboleths in times gone by, and Bran’s suggestions were met with scorn from Milton and Abnett, the twins looking on with excitement as they watched this man fall further from favour.
It was in this moment that Aramis spoke up. His words were full of fire, as he called those sitting at the council cowards and cravens. He demanded that something be done to avenge his mentor Steve, who had died in the caverns of the Aboleth. His speech, while unwelcome, was so rousing that the council discussed the matter openly. After some deliberation a verdict was reached, the council would send Bran to seek out the Oracle of all pirates, that ancient brewery at the heart of the splinters, and the mystic ale which was brewed within. With the recovery of the ale of forsight, the council might act with the knowledge of whether or not the threat was genuine or imagined.
Bran and the crew returned to the Mad Shark, a new sense of purpose on their minds. But Bran’s heart was heavy in those moments, he knew what was to come, he only wished he’d had a little longer. Taking Aramis aside, he told him plainly.
“Aramis, you are to be my successor on the council. Work to end the threat of the Aboleths when I am gone.”
Aramis responded with surprise, Bran had never shown him any special favour, but now he found himself a future member of the Pirate’s Council. With the words of Bran ringing in his ears, the party set out for the Brewery of Lost Souls, to find the truth of the Aboleth threat.

- Mara Varensis

The Traveler’s Guide to Freeport

The Pirate’s Council of Freeport is one of the more unusual institutions in the Splinters. How a city founded on freedom and refuge from the meddlesome interference of politics and the law grew to develop a government of its own was initially triggered by the growing power of the regional government of Freeport. The Petty Council was set up to see to the affairs of an increasing number of permanent residents of the city itself. With huge quantities of gold flowing into the city, businesses and guilds formed around the trade in piracy, adventure and plunder and upkeep of the city’s infrastructure was handed to a board of regional governors of the citie’s districts. As the power of this board grew, the pirates who moored in the city found that the city was becoming too civilised, too legalistic, and after a violent standoff in the city and extensive pillaging by the pirate fleet, the Petty Council finally conceded to a compromise. The privateers on which the city relied so heavily, would form their own guild, a loosely collected union of pirates who used Freeport as a hub for their exploits. This council would ensure the city remained attractive to pirates and privateers, and in turn the city would grant them freedom from taxation and mooring fees, and allow them all the priveleges of freemen of the city.
The balance of power between the Privateer’s Council and the Petty Council has always been fraught with the threat of violence or reprisal, but for the most part the two councils have come to a mutual agreement on a vision for the future of the city. The founding of the Pirate’s Council is perhaps what made Freeport the capital of piracy, which it remains to this day, while lesser safe harbours such as Castervale fell under the iron grip of sorcerer regents. Indeed, the legal power of the Petty Council has made Freeport a safe place for the common man, while the Privateer’s Council has maintained it’s legendary status as the city of adventure.
The Privateer’s Council at the time of writing is comprised of the following members,

Johannes Milton
Nicolas Abnett
Lord Easton Vermont
Aiwa Dawnsong
Irene Valenci
Akatash of the Damned
Renly Garside
Aemon Ironhand
Kirah Venris
Septimus Byron
Brandon Rockheart
Kaira and Tetra Von-Kane
The Worm

A member of the council is a member for life, and their seat is passed to the successor that they must name in person. This rule was designed to avoid the usurping of seats or fraudulent claims, but has nevertheless given rise to a complex system of bribery, backstabbing and blood where members jostle for control over the power that the council commands.



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