Laszlo looked out at the dark, shimmering surface. The sun’s rays were playing joyfully across the waves as their sender climbed higher and higher into the morning sky. The only thing which broke the monotone, dirty blue plain surrounding them was the distant contours of red mountains, presenting a shade of moroon darker than anything they’d witnessed across the Calledian Sea, which set the horizon on fire.
Half a week had gone since their fellow vessels, the Red Dawn and the First Mate, had left them alone and continues their voyage north east. Now they were completely alone, and their absence bothered him for a reason he just couldn’t put his finger on.
As the sun approached zenit the red was replaced by a sandy brown, and the opening of a river appeared, leading further in towards land. This was what they’d been searching for, the river the arakki smugglers had mentioned. The river to the town of Kurshid.
A man in a worn leather tunic with red markings approached Laszlo from behind as he once again stood and looked towards the distant shadows on the horizon. ”You’ve sprouted roots, have you sailor?” captain Sandor Kerek asked bruskly. Coming to his senses, Laszlo quickly grasped the bundle of ropes he’d been rolling up firmer and began to work it once again. ”Um… no sir! Not at all sir!”
he replied, trying to sound unanashed, while remaining painfully aware of that the rope looked more like a ball than a roll.
”We’ll arriving within the hour!” the captain continued, ”so I need every last man and woman on this vessel on high alert, don’t I? I won’t hide my discomfort at walking in on sand people without knowing the difference between sail and cloth about them, so should things turn ugly, you’ll need to be ready!”
The words had one effect on Laszlo at least, for not until a wall appeared in the ever-widening outlet. Above the stone he could glimpse two large buildings towering high above the rest of the presumed city beyond. He gasped. This level of wealth had been something he hadn’t encountered since he’d smuggled his family out of the roklavian capitol along with his younger brother, Isti, who was the coxswain of The Cheap Carpenter, wjere he also worked.
As the wall grew in sight a harbor came into view outside the gates. Isti steered them towards an empty pier and Kerek summoned them, splitting the dozen crewmen into two groups, one following him onto the docks, where their arrival seemed to have caused some stirs, the other half to stay behind and keep the Carpenter ready, should they need to depart hastily. Laszlo was picked to leave the boat, so he fastened his axe and his father’s dagger to his belt and stood in earnest behind his captain, along with his mates, as a land bridge was hoisted down onto the deck.