The Seven Seas: Waves of Fate [IC]
"Incredible ship you have here."
"Why thank you, son. Hope yeh've enjoyed yer time aboard the ol' girl on our way to Aria."
Sabre stood with his namesake attached to his hip, dormant but ready. "Can't speak for all of us, but yes sir, I have."
The ship's true captain nodded, and maintained his gaze on the wheel. A voyage that would have taken upwards of a week, traveling the Lantik from the large port city of Bluepool to the much smaller burg of Aria, was reduced to a mere few days aboard the Iron Dame. The ship, at a glance Johnny supposed, bore a resemblance to sailships of an older era; it had masts, sails, all the typical fixings....but the ship's deck, bough, and truly its entire skeleton was composed of fine metal. Long turbines were hidden beneath the smooth ocean waters, powering the vessel by steam for those off days when the sails failed to pick up a strong enough wind.
Johnny nodded to the captain and then exited the man's piloting cabin. A cool sea breeze rubbed gently against his face, as the deck bustled with lively voices. Much of the ship's crew was busy as usual, hefting boxes and locked chests to and fro in preparation for their landing this evening. It was about time these men of the sea hit the land, nesting on a port tonight to enjoy whatever festivities the small Aria villages could offer them. Johnny assumed the rural isle's pubs made most of their yearly gains on nights like tonight. Tired men, hungry for excitement and momentary love, docking in their humble ports for a few loud hours. Spending so much of their hard-earned gold on booze and food that they would be motivated to set out anew the morning after, pockets light and heads cloudy.
Likely, that's what his own gaggle of loosely-associated mercenaries would do, with slight deviation. Himself? Sabre reckoned that he should leave Aria as soon as possible. He'd bum around the ports for a few hours, trying to catch the next seabound ship in hopes that they needed a sword for hire. It never hurt, out on waters like these. If not, he'd perhaps spend the night sleeping under the stars in the Arian woodlands. Raath had recently set up a checkpoint on the island, most likely hoping to claim it for the Empire at the first sign of discord. That was Johnny's motivation, his lightened pocket. A night spent on Raath soil was worse than any hangover he'd incur spending a few hours in the pub.
He moved to the side of the ship's great metal flank, placing a hand over the edge of the vessel and watching the waves churn. Johnny wondered if any of his fellow guards would be willing to move on with him. It was nice enough, even for these few mild days at sea. He could likely enjoy their like-minded company for a few more to come.
He followed the shadow of the ship with predatory movements, as if it was an oversized steel tuna. The Dame's titanic propellers were going full blast, capitalizing on the lack of a strong enough wind to propel its layered sails. Jaws moved his great tail side-to-side, eyeing the murky abyss below for any sign of a big enough critter to claim for lunch. How tired he was of the galley's stocks of year-old salted jerky and spiced rum. Well, the rum was still good, but he needed to complement him with something else. Perhaps a big, juicy white-fin. Or anything, really! These damned open waters made hunting such a trial; everything could see you coming.
He ceased swimming for the moment and hung there, suspended in the water, his body only darkened by a pair of undergarments. Particles surrounded the shark-man on all sides, acting like iridescent fireflies in the Lantik waters. Such a joy they spent so much time in this sea; its calm waters and mild climate were the perfect environment for a seadevil like himself. Now, if only they could sail through a school of tasty, defenseless fish--then it would truly be the most perfect day.
Jaws closed his eyes and flared his gills. He could feel the electrical organ in his nose probing the waters, attempting to pinpoint that one tiny, telltale flinch of a muscle that would allude to prey. But nothing. His transparent eyelid took over, and he continued swimming. If the sea stayed this empty, he'd likely just return to the ship and wait out the remainder of the trip surface-side. Certainly would be a bit more entertaining. He had meant to talk to Johnny about the latter's plans once they hit Aria's ports. Would he stick around and rest for the night, or head right back out? Sabre was quite normal...well, average in almost all regards, really, but he made for a good traveling companion. The guy also knew how to pick a good job. And as little as cash meant when the ocean was your primary home, the sport of the whole thing was what really got Jaws' blood flowing.
There it was. The unmistakable scent. Jaws craned his neck to zero in on the intruding scent. It sent his more animal side into a momentary hysteria, but the excitement waned slightly as he recognized the chemicals to be of human (or near enough) origin. That simply wouldn't do for a midday meal. Humans were all bone, no meat, of course. But then he felt it. The din of a second motor, and the interference of many ripples in the waves. Something...many things, perhaps, was approaching in the distance. It was still likely far enough away to not cause much of a stir above-water, but Jaws could only assume the worst from these signals.
He quickly turned his body, pointing his nose adjacent to the ship, and then swung his tail. Like a hot knife through butter, the motions that had become so natural to the shark-man propelled him through the cloudy water, and he emerged like a force of nature. Leaping from the waves powered by nothing else than his own momentum, Jaws landed onto the deck of the ship, causing a shout of surprise from a few crewman who likely forgot he was a temporary resident.
"Hmph. Where's Sabre?"