"A Trip to Hell" (An NPC's Perspective, Special Chapter) - Elsie Cooper, Part 1

While in most NPC’s Perspective stories I create a backstory for an NPC, which leads up to an event in the real game, this one is largely based off a true experience I had in the Dark Sea recently. And let me just say, it’s not pleasant. The story is told from the view of one of my sailors, one of the two who didn’t perish during the process.

The Dark Sea. It’s a place of cursed waters, a place most sailors speak of mostly in legend or in nightmares. However, some have bravely ventured in, many to never return to the War Seas again. Never in my life had I thought I’d enter - yet I had seen those seas for myself just several days prior. And let me just say now, I wish I had never gone.

A few days prior to the expedition, my friend Yasmin had came to visit me at Palo, mainly as a stop on her captain’s travels. I was on a break from sailing, as all sailors had the opportunity to; the captains of ships would often switch out their crews with different sailors. She had shown me something that piqued my curiosity - a small piece of purple metal. She told her that she had gone into the Dark Sea, which I honestly couldn’t process in my mind.

She didn’t seem the least bit afraid or traumatized recounter her story either; she said her captain had gotten 23 or so strange purple chests while exploring there, and that after a shipwright had opened all of them, she decided to keep a chunk of the chain that had sealed one of these shut. As a reward for helping out on such a risky trip, she had also gotten a hefty sum of galleons, and even a rare purple gem called a Musgravite that was in one of those chests. “Maybe you can go too, Elsie. Trust me, it’s scary at first, but it’s a pretty fascinating place. When my captain swaps out the sailors on the crew again, try to see if you can get on the crew.”

And so, a few days later, I was able to do just that. I was hired to be on the crew of the ship Yasmin had manned on her trip into the Dark Sea, and I honestly didn’t know how to feel. We did the regular stuff for a while: sailing from island to island, fighting pirates, etcetera. During this time I got accustomed with the deckhands of this crew, considering they, unlike us sailors, were permanent members. Hays and Reynolds, both of whom specialized with maintaining the ship’s durability, wore iron and steel armor. I had to wonder how they managed to get around the ship with all that clunky gear on, but I didn’t bother questioning them. Witt, one of the speed deckhands, and also the oldest member of the crew, wore an all-black outfit with a warrior’s coat. Despite this appearance, he was rather friendly. As for Becker, the newest recruit and another speed deckhand, she had on a teal bandana and cape, and seemed to be focused on doing her job right. All four of them seemed to have some level of proficiency in weapons as well, which was interesting.

After a few days of mundane sailing, we stopped at Palo, and that’s when the captain made the announcement. We were to head to the Dark Sea in the morning. We had a quick sailor switch for anyone who didn’t want to go in, out of fear, inexperience, or time (the trip was to take several days after all), and the captain went to go configure their equipment and the ship’s parts one final time.

During that time, I talked with the rest of the crew. Six sailors total, including myself, would be on the trip, the rest of the ship’s functions to be maintained by the quartermaster or deckhands. I was to manage the front cannons, as well as where the mortar would be on our brig, but this one didn’t have a mortar. On the left side was Gracie, a talkative sailor with messy brown hair, as well as Emma, a former merchant ship sailor who switched to this ship in the recent crew swapout for the opportunity of riches. Witt and Hays maintained the last two cannons.

The right side, meanwhile, had Sebastian, also a former merchant crew sailor, from Frostmill; Finlay, a more unsure sailor who trusted in the captain; and Joshua, a tired sailor with a large beard, who seemed to mutter a lot. The last cannons was maintained by Becker, with Reynolds in the back near the captain and one of the quartermasters, Enzior. It took a while longer, but the captain returned, and with a few more repairs, we were off to the Dark Sea, heading towards Harvest Island.

“Shouldn’t we bring some cargo?” I heard one of the sailors ask. "I think we might need repairs in the Dark Sea. The captain merely pulled out a bronze repair hammer in response; apparently, it was more cost and space efficient than bringing along a bunch of cargo crates. As we neared the border of the Dark Sea, a Navy caravel stopped us. The marine manning the ship looked at us, then at a pirate sailboat sailing nearby. “I’m not going to stop you, but I don’t recommend you go in there.” With that, he sailed off, presumably to arrest those pirates.

It was apparently once we had entered the Dark Sea. A dark fog settled in, blocking out any sunlight, and the waves grew significantly rougher. Strange weather was visible in the distance: magic tornadoes, magic waves, magic lightning, magic hail, and even a magic whirlpool… And lastly, a heavy rain immediately set in. As we sailed ever deeper, I could feel all the initial excitement die down. It was just storms as far as I could see… But still, we soldiered on.

After a while, we stopped at an island. It was strange, with stone figures sporadically visible on it, and two silvery cooking pots, as though someone had painted over one of the things found in practically every town. “Stay on the ship.” I heard the captain order as they hopped off. All we had to do was stay, wait, and hope no lightning struck us or something as they explored this strange island…


These NPC’s never shut up when in the dark sea.

the cargo part is really funny to me because i literally do exactly that

ignore placing cargos and use the hammer instead (its very effective)

Keep cooking catean! (On a gold cooking pot)