The Saga of Captain Wereshark Vol. 2

Once trapped in a sunken barrow, surrounded by a horde of draugr, and confronted by an ancient undead prince, there were many ways a pirate crew might respond. Mighty Flicka's answer to Prince Vaugr's demands was perhaps the most direct. She strode up the skull-strewn dais, offered Prince Vaugr a mocking grin, and socked him hard enough to knock his flaming crown right off his head.

"To battle!" the Mighty Flicka shouted. "For glory!"

The response from the Wereshark's once cowed crew was immediate. With a chorus of hoots and hollers, the pirates forgot their fear of the undead and laid into the surrounding draugr with clubs, daggers, and fists. Caught completely flatfooted, the damned dead of Skyrim initially got the worst of it.

Unfortunately draugr, being no longer alive, are more resilient to clubs and knives than the average bandit. Despite the battering our pirates unleashed, Prince Vaugr's horde responded in kind. Garn Feathertoes was the first to fall, even his legendary speed insufficient to evade a hail of arrows. He was followed to the grave by two of the painted cannibals we'd rescued from the Isle of Red Mist.

The battle soon turned against us. Even as Mighty Flicka's great axe split one draugr after another in twain, and Vimy Lacroix's glowing daggers took eyes, ears, and guts, the draugr pushed forward, hacking and cackling. Crushed tight in the center of the crew, I raised my own club and prepared for the end.

Yet before we could be overrun, the Mad Mage, Neramo, unleashed a ring of fire that expanded like a bright-orange flower in the morning sun. It burned the nearest draugr to ash and scattered the rest. "Run, you fools!" Neramo shouted. "To the surface! Bring the treasure!" And bring the treasure we did.

Each pirate snatched a handful of whatever they could carry — gold, goblets, candlesticks, all of precious metal or inlaid with precious jewels — and fled up the steps down which we'd come.

A massive hulking draugr barred our way, but Hard-Scales and his poisoned daggers tore into it in silent rage. As I and the others leapt over the body, the Argonian held the rear guard, but I could see the disappointment on his face. Yet again, a seemingly worthy foe had failed to send him to Sithis.

We were almost to the surface when a great shaking filled the dripping halls. It left us stumbling. Leading the way as always, Galena Two-Scars was the first to spot the danger. The stone door we'd forced open was closing, of its own accord. If we found no way to stop it, we'd be trapped in this sunken tomb forever!

Yet before the stone door could close, he returned. The Captain! One could not fail to recognize his flowing silks, his jaunted crown, and its horde of colorful feathers. Captain Wereshark now held a bright glowing gem in both hands, and shouted words I imagined might be in ancient Nordic. His haunting intonations mimicked those of Prince Vaugr! The closing stone door shuddered, then came to a stop.

With cheers of relief, the Wereshark's crew rushed through the open door, draugr howling on our heels. Mighty Flicka was the last to emerge, and I saw then she carried Garn Feathertoes on her broad back.

At first, I did not understand her intent in risking so much — Garn was dead! — but then I remembered what Galena Two-Scars always said. The Wereshark's crew is a family, and a family leaves no one behind.

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