Author: Frank

Chapter One:

Waves splash against the boats lined up in the lonely harbor late at night. Few walk the streets at this hour, only the thieves and the drunks. But tonight is different. There is a lone man who walks the streets this night, looking for refuge from the raging storm, yet all of the doors are locked, and there is no where for him to go. He just walks down the dark and lonely roads, hopeing to find an inn, or a tavern that has a warm fire where he can dry his cloak, and get some rest.

After what seems like hours of endless searching, the man finally saw a open tavern. As he entered, he knew at once that this was more of a thieves haven than a tavern, but there was a fire and a chair by it, so it was good enough for him. He walked in the tavern, and was greeted with the cold stares of what seemed to be a million cruel faces. But he just kept walking on to the fire, and sat down, trying to sake off the cold. After a few minutes a waitress approached him.

“Look buddy, this isn’t just a service here. You either buy somthing or get out on the streets where you belong.”said the waitress.

“Tell me, do you have any spices for my pipe?”

“Why yes sir, we have a wide variety of pipe spices that range from three gold piecies to two hundred gold pieces.””

“Just give me the cheapest one you have.” said the mysterious man.

“Yes sir, I will be back very soon.” said the waitress as she walked to the back of the room

The man turned back to the fire again. Drops of water fell off of his long blone hair onto his fadded brown cloak as he felt the warmth of the fire on his cold body. He scooted his chair a little closer to the fire while he waited for the waitress to return with his pipe. Finally the watiress returned.

“here you are sir, now please give me the three gold pieces.” The man handed her the gold and she walked away to serve another customer who just walked in as well.

He poured the spice into the pipe, and held it up to the fire and lighted it. He inserted the pipe into his mouth and began puffing. After about twenty minutes of sitting in front of the fire, he seemed to be warmer, and much dryer than when he had enterted the establishment. He went up to the barntender to ask if any rooms where available to rent.

“Hello sir, how can I help you?”siad the old looking bartender

“Do you have any rooms? I only need it for one night.”said the man

“Im sorry sir, we do not rent rooms. You are welcome to stay here as long as you like, as long as you keep buying things.”

“Well in that case, I am almost out of this spice, give me some moire, and I will return to my spot by the fire.”

“Very good sir, that will be three gold pieces.”

The man handed him the money and walked back to his seat in front of the roaring fire. He laid back in the chair and closd his eyes, hoping to accquire a bit of sleep here. He quicky drifted off into sleep. After about a half hour the noise of the tavern awoke him, just as tired as he was before he took his short nap. He looked around, and saw that there were new patrons in the tavern, but most of the people that were there when he got there still remained in the tavern. Perhapse one of the men in the tavern owned a ship that he could stay on for the remainder of the night. He was sure that the night was still very young.

He got up and began to search for the sailor type. At that point, three new customers walked into the tavern. One was a young lad, appearing to be in his early twenties. He had blone hair, and he was followed by a rough looking pirate type and a young looking woman. What an uncommon looking group he thought to himself. He was able to overhear there conversation. They sat down near where he had once sat near the fire, so he sat far enough away that they would not notice him, but he could still overhear their conversation.

“We can’t continue our quest with this small of a crew said the atractive young woman.”

“We have done fine so far, we don’t need anyone else who would slow us down. Besides, how do we know that anyone we pick up isn’t one of bloth’s spies.”said the pirate

“Ioz is right, we can’t be to carfeful. No one ever said that our quest was going to be easy. We just have to bear down and keep fighting. I know that we can do this on our own!”said the confident young man.

The man got up, thinking that he might be able to get off of this island and earn some money with this band of what seemed to be adventures ruunning from the pirate lord Bloth.

“Excuse me, but I could not help overhear your conversation that you may be looking for an extra hand on your ship.”

The group eyed him carefully without saying anything, but the young man finally broke the silence.

“By the look of that greatsword you carry, you must be a great warrior. What is your name?”

“I am Lockhart. I am a very talented fighter. May I ask who you are?”

“I am Ren. These are my friends Ioz, he pointed to the pirate, and this is Tula. He pointed to the attractive young woman. We have… a special quest. I cannot just accept anyone, I have to know that I can trust you. Tell me, how do you happen to be here on this same island that we are on.”asked Ren

“I travel from island to island searching for work. I seek someone that will help me find a permanent job, but until then I just take whatever work I can, and sail with whoever will have me. I dont have much gold, but if you allow me to join your crew, I can promise you that you wont run into an unwinable fight with me around.” said Lockhart

“How do we know that he isn’t one of Bloth’s spies. You know that they are everywhere. This town itself is probably crawling with them. I say we just leave this one here.” said Ioz

“Not so fast, he seems like he could be of great use to us. What do you say Tula?”asked Ren

“Anyone who can ease the burden of this quest you thrust upon us I am all for.”said Tula

“It’s settled then. After we warm ourselves, and the storm stops outside we shall return to our ship, the wraith, and set sail for our next destination.

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