“Now and then we had a hope that if we lived and were good, God would permit us to be pirates.” – Mark Twain, Life on the Mississippi
Welcome to the high seas of the Forgotten Realms!
Commerce is healthy and expanding with the many trade routes connecting Toril’s continents and islands, including Faerun, Kara-Tur, Zakara in the Central continent and Anchorome, Returned Abeir, and Katashaka in the West. Some trade is even opening with mysterious Osse to the South. These shipping lanes are filled with wealthy merchant ships wary of the pirates and freebooters who seek to prey upon them. Under a black flag, the these plunderers sally forth from parts unknown, raiding the ships of only to vanish back into their lawless maze of islands and reefs that they call home. The many trade consortium agents have hired privateers to deal with the pirate menace once and for all, but often these mercenaries turn out to be as bad as their prey. For now, piracy is alive and well in the Forgotten Realms.
Drink up me hearties, yo ho!
The Lucille is a large, multi-decked Galleon sailing ship easily recognizable by its odd shabby Turquoise colored hull and faded, dirty brown sails. Unlike most Galleons, Lucille is outfitted with two main masts, supported with aft and rear lateens. It is moderately armed and carries 32 twelve-pound cannons: 18 on the gun deck and 14 on the upper deck. Its full broadside contains 16 cannonballs in a volley. Extremely unusual for a pirate ship, the Lucille has no chase guns in her bow or stern.
The captain of the ship is a man named Solomon Negan. Legend has it that he was started his career as a privateer sailing the waters of far off Kara-Tur in the Koxakura region. This is where he met and befriended a tribe of Aarakocra. These strange birdfolk creatures remain his allies, dozens of them serving as the majority of his crew. They mainly tend to the sails and rigging. Also, these creatures do most of the navigating from their high perches in the topmasts, yards, and crow’s nests.
Solomon is what many would call “an odd duck.” He is a casual, jolly, savage man who adores violence and mayhem. He is very intelligent and logical, possessing a knack for controlling and manipulating others. He has a strong affinity for meanness and offensive comments and a morbid, perverse sense of humor, seeming to enjoy the shock value. His charismatic persona and domineering presence allows him to easily intimidate friends and foes alike.
However, he displays profound moments of wisdom when counseling people, keenly perceptive of abstractions that others may have missed. Also, he adamantly believes in a philosophy that the strong are to protect the defenseless. He has, on many occasions, beaten members of his crew to death with his fearsome club for injuring a child or disrespecting a woman. He is a man of Law and expects that rules be followed to the letter. This often makes those who serve under him come to respect him despite his cruel nature.
The remaining crew of the Lucille is a seemingly haphazard and expendable mixture of seadogs, mercaneries, and ne’er-do-wells. He tries to keep up a crew of seventeen non-Aarakocra crewmen that he calls “deckmates” as they are ordered to stay on deck or below, leaving the birdfolk to tend to the higher parts of Lucille. They also act as the “away team” for jobs. The birdfolk are rarely, if ever, given duties away from the ship.
There are sections of the ship that may not be entered at any time. These include: The Front and Rear Bilges, the Aft Hold, and the Orlop. All of these areas are protected by powerful and deadly wards that blast offenders into smoldering piles of ash.
Solomon has seven men who he refers to as his “Sea Dogs” who have served on the ship for many years. They are firecly loyal to the captain.
Along with these is a Dragonborn named Ragnir who has served on the ship since he was young. For ten years, Ragnir has worked his way up through the ranks of the crew to earn a place as a cartographer and navigator. He hopes to bring honor to his clan and plans to return home some day.
Arlan Strangeways is the ship’s engineer and chief mechanic. He is loyal to the captain as well, minding the rules of those places within the ship that are off limits. However, many wonder if the man knows more than he admits. After all, he is responsible for the ship’s up keep. Arlan is feared and respected by the crew because he is a powerful cleric. The Sea Dogs tell tales about how he can reach into the sky and pull down lighting to strike down enemies.
Damulah is a seasoned fighter who Solomon sometimes consults for strategy about engagement with the enemy. Although the Sea Dogs whisper that it’s bad luck to have women on ship, Solomon feels that she is a good luck charm. Since her addition to the crew, the crew has suffered fewer losses and injuries. Although Dalulah doesn’t speak often, her actions speak loudly enough.
Tia is another woman within the crew. She was not hired, but instead was discovered as a stowaway two days out of port from Luskan. After spending some time in the brig, she was able to prove her worth as an excellent smithy and crafter. In addition, she’s handy with a blade in combat. Solom sometimes says she’s the best “bilge rat” they ever picked up in Luskan.
Hapax is a Minotaur, recently added to the crew when he was found marooned within the northern isles of the Sword Coast. As he tells it, his captain and crew were murdered by rival pirates and only he survived. Solomon was happy to bring on a Minotaur, having heard about their nobility, honor, and masterful ability to navigate waters. However, the captain is beginning to think that Hapax is not a stereotypical specimen of his race. The Minotaur seems to be lazy and untrustworthy, recently having been caught stealing one of the captain’s very own pistols shortly after being promoted to boatswain. Solomon keeps an eye on the Minotaur, and often refers to him as a “screw up.” However, it is obvious that Solomon trusts the creature as it is now in charge of supplies and equipment since the recent loss of the ship’s Quartermaster in a terrible “accident.”
“N” is a High Elf wizard who recently joined the crew. He is a combat wizard, and a former soldier. He is a valuable member of the crew, lending his experience with the arcane and melee in a nicely tuned package. Although he is young for an Elf, he has been forged in the heat of battle to a razor’s edge.
Solomon also took on two guildmen from House Basadoni. The Captain knows all to well that all of the city’s guilds are controlled by D’aerthe mercantile group. Solomon has made many coins smuggling cargo in and out of Calimport, and was more than happy to do a favor for the House. Although Solomon is not sure why the guild wants two agents on the ship, he’s more than happy to employ two bloodthirty blaggards like Daehir and Matrim.
The most recent recruit to the ship is a High Elf known as “V” who has a reputation for clashing with the navies at most any port. He is aSeer by trade and is handy with sailing and navigation. He joined the crew during the “Blue Box Job.”