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Cormenaera: Reprise 1409
by
Ralf Vallman

Scene: The Ministerial Palace at Cormenaera, late autumn 1409

"It is true milady." The speaker, a bent old man with grief written on his face continued: "They took the whole convoy. By the Lord of Sea, they took it all, those pirates." Ashanishade, the Minister of Action looked at him as if in a dream, but she shook her self and said with a voice that almost broke:

"Tell me all there is to tell. Spare me no details." A feeling of utter doom settled upon everyone in the room as the man unraveled the terrible story:

"A second group of survivors have come to port. The attack is confirmed. Our trading convoy to Tanimbar, commanded by your son Bratheytes, was attacked by pirates from Kaeir. Almost thirty ships, all wearing the red flag of piracy. They must have been waiting behind the isle of Arelcar.

Our glorious fleet fought fiercely, knowing they were outnumbered. The battle went on for hours. Bratheytes was seen killing singlehandedly several dozens of pirates before he fell, bleeding from numerous fatal wounds. His last act was to throw his sword straight through the eye of one of the pirates’ captains. He died like a real hero, and his bravery will not be forgotten.

The pirates captured some the convoy ships, but some of the shipcrews burned their own ships in a last act of defiance. Those that survived the onslaught were captured, but some ships have apparently managed to escape.

This is a terrible thing indeed. Not only have we lost some of our greatest men and ships, but we have also lost the whole cargo, worth thousands of griffons. This is a terrible setback. What should we do now?"

The whole room was quiet, and all those gathered were silent, thinking of all that was lost.

Finally Ashanishade spoke, her voice filled with grief and cold anger: "This deed shall not pass unpunished. My son is murdered, my precious is dead. Let's show them the wrath of Cormenaera and crush them like vermin. No stone shall be unturned, no wave unbroken in our quest for vengeance. A curse upon them! Go out and tell the people that this is the appointed time for all to make the utmost effort. This is my command in the name of the Lord of Sea."

No one noticed one of those gathered in the room was carefully hiding a smile.