The Land Beyond the Horizon
As most stories go, this is where you'd meet your heroes. Unfortunately, this isn't most stories. So then where does it begin? Well, I suppose a little context is warranted…
It is a miserable night as you stand before a dour judge, a throng of law abiding citizens there to see your final fate handed down to you. Their faces contort with leers and accusing scowls, as they watch you bound in irons.
Defiantly you look the judge in the eye, still standing proud even in the face of your executioner.
"Miscreant. You are found guilty of charges both numerous and heinous. Though it would do my soul well to see you swing from a gallows, I fear that the release of death may yet be too kind to you. May God have mercy upon your soul."
"Move along you worthless maggot!" A whip cracks and you feel the hot sting of the lash on your shoulders. Cold, fat drops of rain fall across your face and aptly hide the angry tears that threaten to spill. Anger, resentment, fear and sorrow… these are the things you feel in this moment. Never again will you know the embrace of those you love, nor see the beauty of your home again. In this moment, you are no one. In this moment, you have nothing – not even the clothes on your back belong to you.
The fog is rolling in across the harbor as you approach it, like a shroud to carry you to a fate worse than death. Anxiety claws at your throat as you wonder where you are going and what will happen once you get there.
Rain is coming down in sheets now, piercing through your scarce clothes and soaking you through and through. Will you even survive to see your new fate?
"That's right, keep moving! Git on the ship!" A man with a bullwhip stands by a rickety wooden plank, which creaks as you step upon it.
Pick 1 PC: As you step upon the plank, the slick surface slides beneath your boot and you find yourself face down upon it, the tang of fresh blood across the back of your teeth.
"Get up you scum!" Muskets are raised by the guards, their bayonets mere inches from the throats of the other inmates to keep them from getting any ideas.
"I said get up!" A searing pain blinds you before you even hear the crack of the whip, but with your hands chained behind your back, the manacles already rubbing your wrists raw, there is little you can do to oblige him quickly.
Roll: DC Easy
"Faster!" Another lash stings you as you start to pull yourself up, the pain making you see stars dance before your eyes.
Roll: DC Medium
Pass: Though the pain sends you reeling again, you manage to stagger to your feet and with what little pride you have left, you stumble onto the ship.
Fail: Despite your best efforts, the pain buckles your knees and brings you to heel again. Through gritted teeth you curse your fate, even as you feel the lash strike you again. "Worthless dog! Teach them a lesson boys before you throw 'em in the brig!"
"Anyone else want to cause problems!" Many prisoners bow their heads and shrink away, and the guard sneers with snaggled teeth. "I thought not – git the rest of this lot on board! We wouldn't want to keep the reaper waiting…"
With heavy footsteps you find yourselves pushed onto the ship, and then a rough hand shoves you forward towards an open grate, where below you can see the chained and miserable souls you'll be sharing your voyage to beyond the seven seas with…