With great haste, the newly acquired crew exploded into action, scuttling about the rigging as they unfurled the sails and put The Maiden’s Vengeance to sea. What at first seemed like it would be a clean getaway as the began to put sea between the ship and Crescent Harbor, Sails appeared behind them! A much larger (and apparently faster) ship loomed up from their larboard quarter, and as the distance began to close, they noticed a fair amount of activity at the bow of their pursuer.
Suddenly, a puff of smoke was seen from the activity near the bow and a second later, a loud BANG floated into the ears of the crew on the Maiden’s Vengeance as a giant grappling hook attached to a large sturdy chain came flying through the air towards them! The first shot impacted the stern but did not catch. They reeled in the shot like a giant fishing hook and fired again, this time busting through the stern below deck, where the hook stuck and began to pull the two ships closer together. Leading a team of crew to work to dislodge the hook and stem the flow of water that began pouring in, Craggs worked tirelessly until finally the chain was disconnected and the hole was patched (but not before losing a hearty amount of the supply out into the sea).
A might cheer rose from the crew as they began to put distance between themselves and their pursuers, and they turned their attention to the voyage ahead.
What was hoped to be an uneventful voyage proved not to be so, as one night they found themselves beset by a squadron of Merfolk, lead by a much larger and aggressive Mer-creature than any of them had ever seen. This brutish leader managed to use his body as a torpedo and punch a hole through the hull into the main hatch below deck, in an effort to sink the ship, which would put the entire crew at their mercy. A mighty battle ensued, and a desperate repair operation was carried out, and the ship limped its way along.
About 2 weeks later, that glorious call came from the watch at the top of the main sail:
“Land ho! Land ho! Two points off the larboard bow! Land ho!” In short order, the untamed wilderness of Esovaria stretched out before them. Knowing of only 1 place on this side of the continent that they could disembark, the crew decided to head for the port of the Red Lotus River, what in Elvish was called “Reid L’atuus.” Not knowing how long they’d be gone exactly, they bartered a deal with Monte and the crew for them to head to Nysopoli, the grand Capital city of Spiros, to return in 3 weeks time.
Putting out to shore in a small dinghy, they landed at the miniscule port where a single tavern was. There they were told it would be about a 9 day walk if they followed the Red Lotus river north upstream to Eh’Toa, or if they wished, they could go 2 days due west first through uncharted wilderness to a small outpost on a river that flowed TOWARDS the city where they could rent rafts/canoes to make the trip in less time, but for higher cost for the convenience. Not eager to get back on another water-borne vessel after their long and harrowing sea voyage, they Ignacio, Lanth and Stevil opted to travel up the Red Lotus River on foot, with Peter Pantser to help guide them.
Towards the end of their 1st day’s journey, they suddenly were ambushed by a pack of savage minotaurs, aided by some strange plant-like creatures that hurled thorns and sharp projectiles from across the river. A mighty struggle ensued as they sought to fend off the charging Minotaurs, but ultimately Ignacio was overpowered and carried off as a prisoner.