At the port of Gertrude, just north of Saj-graf, sits the Desert Jackal, a small former corvette. Originally built by the merchant Kicette, it is entirely made of redwood from the Javelin trees of the Sand Flow Desert. The hard wood was treated and stained resulting in shade of brown that reminded Kicette of the jackals he saw while his men harvested the trees. For a short while it was pressed into service by Saj-graf when the corsairs came to raid the lands where to its credit it served with no loss of crew.
Since then it has exchanged owners a few times till now employed by its current captain, Heranado. Hernando is a middle aged man standing at about six feet and a shock of grey hair in the middle of the otherwise brown hair. His beige shirt and black pants he currently is wearing don’t befit the title of captain but are far more appropriate for the amount of work he does on his own ship.
Desert Jackal sits looking as proud as ever, having pulled into port this morning. The ship is now being offloaded by the longshoremen that have done this task numerous times before. This evening its more valuable load of cargo will be unloaded from its hidden hold, a set of crates from the Fareson, for a lady Kaisu. Hernando saw no issue with the contents as he inspects everything he is going to haul whether it is black or grey market materials. To him it was a variety of plant samples and metals. His best guess is she is a healer with a connection to goods. If she has a proprietary formula that works, he understood the need for secrecy from normal suppliers.
Hernando had made such shipments for the nice lady Lyph and once for a priest of the Neffian order. In both cases he had suspicions of them, but the reputation he could get from his contacts was they were both on the up and up. Kaisu had come up as a fine member of the immigrants from the south, respectable and did provide minor healing and guidance to her community. Hernando had then gone a step further and taken time on the voyage to confirm that none to the contents fell into the thirteen items that were a hangable offence by the laws of port Gertrude.
He had one other package on board for Ertle, this was one he could not open as it was a lock box from a lord in Iseb. It included fancy papers that authorized free movement of the cargo. This was not contraband or even grey market material. This was just that important that he was to be paid in gold by Ertle himself when the box entered his hands.
Hernando, watched while the men unloaded the ship with their normal efficiency and thought to himself, the sooner this was done, the sooner he could get back to his cabin and close the books on another outing. The port bursar would log his profits from this trip and if his calculations were right he could take the next three months off without the slightest dent to his wellbeing.
It is while standing admiring his ship, a woman completely out of place on the docks walks up to Hernando. She is almost his height, wearing boots more suited for riding than sailing. Her brown cape shifted in the winds contrasting with her well fitted white shirt and brown pants. “Captain, I am in need of a small box you have. What do the pirates say? Hand over your valuables and you may live to tell about it?”