Pirates of the Shackles

A ship of our own!

...now what?

Besmara had put a tailwind at their backs, many among the crew agreed, when Grims told the tale of how they fought across the island and rescued Sandara – no other explanation worked. Ghouls, vine ropers, and a pod of grindylows had been destroyed…treasure was found…and now the Man’s Promise was free of Mr. Plugg and his cronies. Surely the blessing of the goddess was on them.

The ship had already been repaired, and a celebration was held to mark the new beginning for it and the crew. Lacking a great deal of food and/or alcohol, however, it consisted more of dancing, singing, storytelling, and various feats of strength and skill than the normal share of puking. Some of the crew actually agreed that this might be a better way to celebrate – but not too loudly lest they risk being mocked by others.

Taking stock of the ship and its supplies, as well as what was left of the crew, yielded the following:

  • The crew consisted of 13 – an unlucky number! – and one prisoner, Arreta Bansion.
  • There was enough food and other supplies to last maybe 10 days, or longer if reduced rations were enforced. This takes into account daily fishing.
  • Although the crew was small, and running the ship would be a significant challenge, there were enough with the various skills needed to get it somewhere close if the weather held out
  • Booty left from the dead crew comes out to about 1400gp worth of coin and items
  • Master Scourge had a Potion of Blur and a Potion of Cure Disease, as well as about 200gp worth of various items and coin
  • Mr. Plugg had the following: +1 Tidewater Cutlass (see Items tab), +1 Amulet of Natural Armor; +1 Bracers of Armor; Shackles of Compliance (see Items tab); masterwork cat o’ nine tails; 200gp; 100sp
  • There are enough weapons – mostly cheap blades and crossbows – to outfit the entire crew, and pieces of light armor for a few, as well

Sandara recommends that the ship continue on its way, to the hidden squibbing facility, as Plugg had intended. She is confident, given the heading they’d been on and bit of information she picked up over the last few days, that she knows where it – “Rickety’s Squibs” – is.

During the celebration a single topic of discussion quickly pushed out all others: who would lead the crew? Who would be captain, the first mate, the bosun? These were important questions for sailors. Tradition, practice, and logic held that there must be one final voice, one set of shoulders to bear the burden of command…who would be the new captain?

You folks need to figure out a few things, probably in the order presented below:

  1. Who will be captain?
  2. Who will be First Mate (the XO)?
  3. Who will be the Bosun’s Mate (essentially the chief NCO, chief overseer of the crew)?
  4. Where will the ship go?

These questions need to be answered within the first few hours after the mutiny – there’s simply no way a pirate crew is going to be able to function without a clear hierarchy. And sure, there are other questions that you will likely bring up and deal with…but those are the ones that your characters know are either being discussed or thought about…as each member of the crew eyes the others, looking for signs of weakness and opportunity, strength and a plan.

Also, you can see a list of the current crew here.


Mal strongly suggests we take the time to clear the cornfield, and harvest some if not all of the corn for food. Additionally, there is probably more tropical type fruit that could be gathered with the keen eye of Jaigo for example. If we take 2-3 days, we should be able to gather a good store of food, and might even find more on the island if we sent out search parties?

We could have a bonfire on the beach, and party on the shore.

Regarding choosing Officers, Mal considers that we have all contributed in one way, shape or form to our recent exploits, Mal believes that the group who rescued Sandara (minus Ceasar “the rope holder”) have all proven ourselves worthy in our own rights to call each other equal. Understandably, we need someone with the title of Captain, First Mate, Bosun’s Mate, etc. to keep the larger majority of the crew in line, it is how crews, or at least Pirate crews are managed (from Mal’s vast knowledge). With that said, he is willing to entertain the crews nominations for the positions. Maybe we could have competitions of a sort: bare-knuckle boxing, dueling, etc.

Unless someone was making a Perception, I don’t think the Amulet was noticed that it around Mal’s neck. He has it under his armor, but if asked about it, he provides a good non-answer. Seriously though, if the party determines someone better suited for it, Mal will likely part with it.

A ship of our own!

Meta what was the treasure we found on the island as well.
Grims steps forward. "We be figurin whos Cap’n tomorrow. The treasure on the ship is the crews. meta question what is the standard divy up ratio? The ones on the crew who stayed on the ship should get a portion as they kept some of the bad guy crew occupied. Also, with the 13, does that include the 3 that got tossed in the water? Were we able to save any of the others who were wounded/killed before they reached their con modifier?
I know these seas, and what’s need’n to run the ship. Lil Mal has a few more years o learnin. He’ll be my first mate. An I may not like ‘im, but shaka there be a good bosun. An enforcer. I know ole Red likes his place with fishguts. He may be bitchen about it, but he has a friend worth callin one.
meta question did Sandra make 5th level? Reason, it enables 3rd level spells be cast, and there is plenty of food on the island, just have to not catch, or be able to cure ghoul fever from the bug swarms guarding the farm of overgrown corn. It’ll give us time and not be forced to go to half rations.
lastly meta Grims is taking a spell that makes alcohol from water. I can make up to three pints. That should be enough to get a good buzz on, but not tip the scales.

A ship of our own!

The norm is for coin & other easily dividable booty to be equally distributed. Items and other takings that cannot be easily divided distributed by the captain to the crew as rewards. This works fine so long as the crew, over time, supports the captain.

The crew listed is the crew that survived. Blame sharks and drownings.

Sandara will be 4th level, along with you folks – she was only 3rd level.

The island is infested with botflies and who knows how many other ghouls. It’s possible the place has other grindylows, as well. Return at your own risk.

As for the quest for captain, Grims has nominated himself and is also making recommendations for who’ll work directly for him. Are there any other takers?

A ship of our own!

“We want Dan!” Red doesn’t really care too much who is the captain, he hasn’t listened to one yet and isn’t isn’t likely to start now.

A ship of our own!

I would like the cutlass if that’s ok with you guys. I’ve been thinking that majumbo (sorry, haven’t committed the name to memory yet) should get the harpoon because he stays back from combat (and since red is being ‘retired’ to his cooking). This will give him the range needed better than a spear. Mal, keep the amulet.(not that we know he has it) And let’s let Red keep the +1 short sword we got off the island. As for the rest, I believe Sandara earned the bracers of armor. And we can split the spoils from the boat evenly across the crew.
What do you think?

A ship of our own!

I think we’re going to assume that Red is the cook’s assistant and whatever else he’s assigned, and that (New Character X) has been with the leadership party all along. I don’t see you guys suddenly trusting some other random sailor, and since you’re all acquiring magic items I see a problem with the new guy not having such items – there’s no reason you’re going to just hand stuff to him. My preference for retiring Red is to simply say that Steve’s new character has always been in place, and that Red, crazy as he’s always been, is to be post-dated as an NPC. That way the +1 short sword can go to Steve’s new guy, maintaining parity with the other PCs in terms of items collected.

And who’s the captain? The crew’s getting restless over that.

A ship of our own!

Dice Roller 14. Plus 9 diplomacy = 23 to sway the crew to ‘My side’.
“I’ve been trollin these here waters most of me life. I was born on a ship not 500 leagues to the south east. Pirate’n’s in me bones, and in me blood. I’ll not run Ye aground like Plug did. Cap’n Harrigan chose poorly to his own detriment. We be goin to get the boat squibbed, then turn on these seas. I’m the Cap’n. Ye are My crew. What say Ye!!!”

A ship of our own!

The GM says “enough with the pirate talk!” In my world, pirates have German accents, and Grims sounds like the Red Skull!

A ship of our own!

The crew looks quizzically at Grims as he finishes his short stump speech, standing next to the ship’s wheel.

“Doth he believe himself a fair measure against the demands of the job?” murmurs one swab to another.

“Indeed…he is a boisterous young fellow; keen on getting involved in things. Perhaps a bit too eager, me thinks,” responds a rigger, rubbing his chin.

“And he does have a strange accent, does he not? Is it Varisian? I know it not…”

A ship of our own!

Sorry for trying to add some flavor to the game.

A ship of our own!

Red’s had enough of being told what he’ll do and what he won’t and he finally speaks up, “Hold on there, ‘stickyfingers.’ The halfling killed Plugg so he’s got first choice of that loot. And no one names himself captain unless he’s got Harrigan’s balls or he plans to be a one man crew. So stop campaigning and let’s figure it out, alright?”

A ship of our own!

Sandara holds sway over a portion of the crew, due to her magic, which breeds respect, her personality, which is both disarming and energetic, and her femininity, which is singular on board (in other words, she’s the most attractive woman on the ship).

I’m going to write another post to deal with this issue. Will publish shortly.

A ship of our own!

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