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  • Writer's picturedecayintodust


Pirates attack our heroes! The elements are on their side, but after this journey, will anyone be on Lucreza's?

Dear Kirya,

I mailed out the other letters I had for you as soon as we docked, but even then, so much has happened since the last letter I wrote that I feel the urge to write more. 

We had not been underway for more than a day when the cry of “Pirates!” erupted from the lookout in the crow’s nest. Everyone rushed on deck to see two streamlined ships fast approaching.

The Black Rose is a magnificent merchant ship, but deft maneuverability is not her strong suit. She’s built to hold a lot of cargo and withstand the fickle moods of the sea, not to turn on a silver coin.

The crew behaved admirably, preparing to engage the ships when they came within range and maneuvering the Black Rose as best they could to mitigate any damage the pirates could do to her from afar.

One of the two ships managed to get close enough to board us. It was then I first got to see my compatriots in action. Each can indeed hold their own in a fight. I mean, that is to be expected of the orcish race. They are a warlike bunch. The goliaths have size and raw power, and though they are slow to anger, once lit, their rage burns deep and powerful in their belly.

The one who surprised me was the human, Michael. He is well-built for a human, but his personality never struck me as one who could battle well. Yet he held his own and did not let any of the brutes from the other ships get to me.

I know you worry about me my friend. Let me assure you, I can also handle myself fairly well in a scuffle. I took out the EBIII and began to “field test” it as it were. It performed just as we expected it to. With these modifications I can at last show the council my progress and give them something concrete to work with which will provide us with more research funds for quite some time I’m sure.

But I digress, the other ship was drawing near and I knew that if I did not do something fast, we were all doomed to be killed, enslaved, or worse. My father always said that power was a gift from the gods, only to be used in times of great need. He will have been proud of me in that one moment I think, for had I not called upon Onatar to grant me power, our doom would have been sealed.

I cried out, raising an arm to the sky, clutching at my brooch with my other hand, and begged for the power I knew to be there to come. And come it did, with the swift fury of an avalanche, a streak of light bolted from the sky striking the mast of the ship attached to our side. The crew who had remained on board that ship cried out in terror and agony as the mast blew apart into splintered fragments that embedded themselves into the men. But the damage did not stop there, the bolt traveled down, into the belly of the ship, splitting it in twain. 

“One of my favorite fictions [...] was that elves sing stars down from the sky and drink their light.”

As that ship began to sink, we managed to turn our own ship and rammed the ship that was approaching us head on. It was a clever ruse of the captain, for our ship was made of Ebium wood and it was much denser and sturdier than that of the pirate’s vessel. Our men were ready to board the other ship, when it's captain shouted and they pulled away from us and headed out in the same direction we were going.

Some poor few of our crew died that day. Most survived. The captain, in what I deemed to be a foolish action, took the surviving pirates on board. Those who did not swear fealty and service to him until they could be brought ashore were taken to the hold and chained there for the duration of the journey.

On a lighter note, I have found that sailors tell the most curious tales of elves. I overheard some of them one night tell a tale that we all worship the moon naked on mountaintops. Others said we practiced with dark magic to attain our long lifespans. I think one of my favorite fictions told by these rubes was that we sing stars down from the sky, catch them, and drink their silver liquid light and that’s how we get our powers.

Of course, none of the sailors knew I could hear them. I was in my cabin and they were all below me in the galley. You know that while my hearing isn’t what it once was after the blast, that I can still hear far more than humans can. It’s a wonder they can get anything done with their limited hearing really. It must be a terrible handicap for them. I wonder if they realise it?

I could tell we were nearing our destination when the waters took on a stormy demeanor and the sky shook and rang with thunder and lightning. There is nothing quite like the seas of Thalasia in all the world and it felt good to be headed home.

One night near the end of the voyage, Giaus, Michael, and Bhaltair asked if they could eat supper with me in my cabin and discuss elven culture. Graciously I said “yes” and we began to talk. 

They asked the most curious questions, my friend. They honestly asked me nothing of importance. For instance, the orc, Bhaltair, he asked me how orcs are treated in Thalasia. How silly. Everyone knows an orc’s place is either in the kitchen cooking or doing any sort of heavy lifting labor. I mean, I know he’s lived his entire life elsewhere, but I’m sure nothing is different anywhere else. At least, not from what I’ve seen in my travels. I assured him that no one would kill him on sight, but that he had best not be rude to anyone or he would never get anywhere.

I don't understand why my answers made him so angry. I was just telling him the facts of my people. At one point he was so enraged he swiftly rose, drew his sword and lunged toward me. I admit that I panicked a moment and froze, unsure of what I had done to infuriate him. I assume he took offense at some small thing I had said, but for the life of me I could not think what it could be. Giaus had a head on his shoulders and calmed Bhaltair down and let me continue telling them all they wanted to know of my homeland.

Gaius asked similar things about how his kind were treated among my people. And to be honest, I’ve never seen a goliath outside of the frozen north. But again, everyone knows that politeness and manners are key with our fair race – well, my fair race. Yours is a good race, my friend, but gnomes can hardly be described as fair, though you are quite the best of your kind that I have seen.

Michael at least asked me a good question. He asked what our government was like. Considering that we only recently opened our country to the outside world, that was a very useful question.

I answered all their questions as best I could, speaking of our culture, customs, and even the terrain of the continent as best I knew it. After they were satisfied with the answers I gave them, they turned in for the night. I am quite glad that we elves do not need so much time to rest as those of other races do. It’s a wonder they can get anything done at all when so much of their short lives must be spent in slumber.

There is so much more to tell you my friend but this parchment is getting quite full. I shall have to purchase more before I can put my thoughts and adventures down for you.

I hope you are doing well. Give Sasanna my love and tell her I will see her soon.


Lucreza Amakiir

{Next in the Swarm of Scarabs series} - Coming Soon


  1. Lucreza Amakiir is the creation of yours truly: Rachael Murphy

  2. The world and main plot points of Swarm of Scarabs, and Zappy Zappy are creations of the Swarm of Scarabs GM: Jonathan Edwards

  3. Bhaltair Windruck is the creation of the player Christopher Rondeau (check out his D&D Podcast Website: Wyvern's Aria)

  4. Gaius Freezeheart is the creation of the player Joshua Panzer

  5. Michael is the creation of the player Horace Robison

  6. Selise is the creation of the player Eric Chae

  7. This campaign is written using the rules laid out in the Dungeons & Dragons 5e Player's Handbook and the Dungeons & Dragons 5e Dungeon Master's Guide

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