Near sunset you pass abreast of Thorn Island, and you get a good look at the first bit of land belonging to the city of Phlan. The deck falls silent save for the shuffling of feet as the majority of the passengers move to take in this first glimpse of land. The pebbly shore of the island is lined with tents and crowded with people, all backlit by a few camp-fires that send plumes of smoke up into the sky. Behind the tent city rises the walls of the old keep, and the lighthouse within. Scaffolding has been erected all around the walls, and the glowing beacon of the lighthouse shows the promise of a city revitalized.
Suddenly the silence and the gloam are shattered by a great roar as a ball of fire bursts above the small ship. Durell, more intent on watching the orc than the island is the first to notice it, as well as the two ships now bearing down on the Wake from the opposite direction — their sails and hulls dyed black to blend in with the night.
Within seconds the deck becomes a riot of settlers and animals attempting to get clear of the now burning sails.
“Nat! Yass! Get that sail down!” The captain yells from his perch at the rudder. Two deck-hands, a dwarf and a hobgoblin, rush to obey, but the damage has been done.
Aram rushes to the far rail, and peers out at the approaching ships. “These old eyes ain’t what they used to be,” he mutters and rummages through his hefty backpack. Withdrawing a small vial of blue liquid, he raises it to hips lips and concentrates on the corsair ships.
Aram’s vision swims and shifts, and he finds himself looking down on the two boats. They are smaller than the Wake, but lateen-rigged with three sails a piece, and loaded with men — perhaps thirty to a boat, lightly armored but heavily armed with swords, daggers, and crossbows.
One ship lags slightly behind the other, and Aram can see that it’s navigator bears no visible weapons, but does have an ornate mahogany wand or rod of some kind clutched in his left hand, while holding the till with the other.
Pin dashes over over and helps pull the burning sail down. The ashes from the fire begin to burn his wiskers.
“Thanks!” shouts the Hobgoblin as Pin runs over. “On three…”
The dwarven hand dashes to the main spar and quickly pulls the two pins holding it to the deck. “Three!” he shouts.
With a quick shove from Pin and the Hobo, the entire mast, topples sideways until it is hanging parallel with the deck. The ship tilts slightly, but the entirety of the burning sail now now hangs out over the water, several feet past the rail.
Making a quick check over the Featherdale settlers and directing them to “Stay down, but out of the way of the crew”, Durell hands his quarterstaff to one of the rambunctious youth with a “You hold this for me till I need it ok? I need an assistant like you!”. Picking up his longbow and adjusting his quiver, he heads in the direction of the ships he sees. With the flaming sails dropping, Durell yells at the closest crew member: “Got any tar, pitch? What do you patch holes with?” His intention is to turn some of his arrows into FLAMING arrows if he can dip them in pitch and light them off the burning sails.
With the mast down, the dwarf hops up onto the mast like a balance beam. “Aye!” he shouts to Durell. “There by the rail!” He points to a lidded barrel as he begins walking out along the mast, pulling a small axe from his belt. “Better make it quick though. We need to cut this sail free and run up a new one before we’re overrun.”
Grabbing 3 or 4 arrows in one fist from his quiver, he pries open the barrel and immerses the arrow tips and about 3 inches of the arrows in the pitch. Then looking for some still burning flame, shoves the covered arrows into the fire. Once the flame has spread to the arrows, he will, as rapidly as he can, attempt to return the favor and launch the missiles of flame at the main sails of the lead ships, hoping they too will be slowed without support from the winds.
Thrall keeps close to his new companions. Those who look him in the face, can see that his eyes are darkening and turning almost black. Helping where he can, the animals first. He reaches for a necklace under his shirt, kisses it and puts it back.
Aram, eyes still staring into nothingness, shouts to be heard across the boat. “There ships are rigged for speed, even with fresh sails we’d be hard-pressed to outrun them! I’d guess sixty men aboard! With crossbows! And their captain has a wand!” He blindly reaches for the massive chunk of flattened iron hanging on his back. “They have us out-numbered, but I’m more concerned that we’re out-gunned! I think our best bet is to engage them up close! Captain! Can we make for the island?”“Aye,” the captain shouts back to Aram, and pulls hard on the rudder turning you towards the island, though at this point you have only momentum and the waves to move you. Nat manages the cut the lines, releasing the flaming sails to be doused by the sea, but there is no time to raise the mast again.
Durell knocks two arrows, now lit. Despite the distance, both shots are true and little sparks of flame appear on the sails of the pursuing ships. With his magical vision, Aram can see the pursuing crews immediately leap into action to douse the flames before they can spread much.
Suddenly a bank of fog springs into existence around the rear of Valkur’s Wake, though Thrall’s spell is insufficient to shroud the entire 80-ft. vessel.
Though slowed slightly by the damage to their sails, the two ships bear down on the Wake quickly. Expecting to be boarded, everyone—farmers, sailors, and adventurers alike—rush to arm themselves as best they can. Thrall has just managed to tighten the last straps of his armor when the two ships pull abreast of the Wake’s rear, flanking it. Ropes and hooks fly out of the fog, and the Wake shakes as the two ships are pulled hull-to-hull with it. Armed men begin pouring over the gunwales.
Aram shakes his head to dispel the effects of the Clairvoyance, tightens his grip on his sword and rushes to intercept the men coming over the port gunwale. Unfortunately, he moves very slowly in his post-clairvoyant disorientation and from having to shove his way past the panicking farmers. Finally breaking through the crowd, he swings clumsily in the tight quarters, hitting nothing but air.
Durell looks for his young assistant, throws his longbow to him and holds out his hand and yells “Quarterstaff now, buddy”. Once he has his staff, he advances to join combat.
As the attackers begin streaming over the rail, they are met by fierce resistance. The silver-haired woman and the fiddler from the front of the ship react the swiftest, the former tossing a flash of greek fire onto the deck of the port vessel, and the latter catching three of the assailants coming from the same ship with a gout of Burning Hands.
A half-dozen men from the first rank coming over the starboard rail suddenly drop to the deck, snoring peacefully as the kobold gives a particularly vigorous crank on his hurdy-gurdy. The next in line is caught on the horns of the minotaur as he charges across the deck, and another is cut down by his sword.
Another from the port side takes a crossbow bolt to the face from the tentacle-haired woman, while several of his companions find themselves stymied by a trio of pitchfork-wielding farmwives. Then the melee begins in earnest.
Men swarm across the deck, hacking and stabbing. One finally reaches Thrall only to be knocked down by a blow from his staff, and savaged to death by his wolf. By this time Durell finally manages to recover his staff from the boy, and swiftly knocks one attacker overboard. He then rushes to the aid of some farmers, cold-cocking two more of the attackers with blows from his staff.
Pin, reacting slowly, finally draws his sword and guts one of the men as it charges him. Aram rushes up beside Pin, and swings wildly, hitting nothing but air. His opponent falls anyways, as the ogre comes in right behind him and decapitates it.
For a brief moment, the deck is mostly clear of enemies and the remaining settlers have managed to congregate in the bow of the ship, putting you and the other more militant passengers between them and further harm.
Aram looks at the next wave of men coming from the two ships and begins chanting a prayer to his god. He scans the crowd of attackers, looking for those with the best weapons or armor, hoping to stem the tide a bit.
Durell checks over his shoulder to quickly determine if any of his fellow Featherdalemen are among the wounded. In any event, he moves steadily forward toward the remaining enemies. His stride is slow and purposeful. If it can be done without coming to a complete stop, he will hurl overboard any of the attackers (dead or wounded) near enough to the gunrails, to let the sea keep them busy for a while. All while preparing to put the quarterstaff to use against the living pirates.
More men continue to pour over the aft rails from both starboard and larboard, but momentum appears to be on your side. The first several are met by yet another Sleep spell from the kobold, and another gout of Burning Hands from his accompanist. Meanwhile Durell, the minotaur, and the wolf take out the last three from the first wave, leaving everything forward of the mast clear of enemies.
Suddenly, there is a snapping sound, as the sails of the pirate ships fill with wind, but blowing directly away from the island. With the lines and boarding planks holding the ships together, all three boats begin moving backwards at a steady pace. The mysterious wind that has reversed your course also dissipates the fog shrouding the aft of the ship. As the fog lifts, there is a barrage of crossbow bolts from the two ships, tearing into your massed defenders. Durell, Thrall, the minotaur, and the ogre all take hits.
Still more men stream onto the Wake from the other ships. Two of the assailants manage to land solid blows on the fiddle-player. The orc rushes to her side with some timely healing, only to be stabbed himself.
Aram sees four men in chain amidst the attackers, he finishes his spell and two of them freeze in place, mid-stride, then topple over from the pitching of the deck. Another of the more heavily armored men charges and lands a blow on Pinder with his axe.
Two of the buccaneers, noticing Thrall chanting the words of a spell, rush him. One lands a blow, but they are not quite fast enough, as the Flame Blade appears in Thralls hand perfectly angled to run the man through.
More than a dozen armed buccaneers now crowd the deck. They mange to land several more blows on the minotaur and the wolf, but the slow-moving ogre holds the line, cutting down one of the armored men, and using his bulk to keep the buccaneers from reaching the remaining Featherdalesmen.
Aram shouts to the others, “Their mage must be controlling the wind. We need to take the fight to them if we’re to have any chance of getting out of this!” Then, more quietly to those nearby, “They’ve lost more than half their numbers. If we take out the leader, the rest will likely surrender.” He hefts his blade and begins leading the way towards the boarding planks, swinging the weapon in broad arcs to make a path.
While Durell agrees with Aram, as he continues to wield his quarterstaff in the direction of any of the boarders to the aft of the ship, he attempts to look beyond the two boarding ships to the third. In particular, he’s looking for who’s steering the ship, and how many visible crew members might be on THAT ship. He will also not the distance between the Wave and that ship.
As the sun is dipping behind the mountains to the west, Durell can just make out a third ship on the horizon. The ship appears to have the same dark hull and sails as your attackers, but that may just be a trick of the light, silhouetted as it is. It is much to far for him to make out any details, but appears to be sailing in your general direction.
Thrall calls Temur back to him. “Guard!” He tries to speak firmly but hardly manages it. Thrall to one of the children : “Can you get me one of the small bottles from that backpack please?”
Durell’s helper, bow still clutched in one hand, rummages through Thrall’s backpack with the other and hands him one of bottles.
Thrall drinks his potion of healing half. The other half he gives to Temur.
Thrall takes out any bolts out of his body and Temur’s, takes a sip. Hands it over to Durell. “Here. Take a sip. You look like you need it. The rest is for my friend Temur here.”
Durell turns his head at Thrall’s offer. Depending on the closeness of the “next” enemy, he either shrugs and continues fighting, or shrugs, takes the vial and tosses back the liquid like a veteran drinker of potent liquors. He then asks Thrall: “See the third ship? How long do you think before it gets close to us? More than 10 minutes??” He continues to fight, specifically trying to make his way to a gangplank on one side of the ship, with the intent to kick the end off the rail and into the water. Hopefully stopping the flow of pirates from at least one side of the ship.
Thrall, “Ten, maybe fifteen minutes. Hard to tell but it will be near dark then. Let’s try to keep them off as long as possible.”
Noting the direction Aram points, several of your ship-mates rush towards the ship bearing the wizard. The orc moves the fastest, charging through the ranks of pirates on your own ship, taking a few hits in the process, and tosses a bag onto the enemy ship’s deck — out of which crawl a large number of what appear to self-mobile, severed hands.
With a moments respite from the distraction, Thrall, Durell, and the wolf share the contents of Thrall’s healing potion (OOC: all are fully healed). Seeing them momentarily with their guard down, the remaining armored pirate charges, axe at the ready, only to Pinder slip in behind him and slash mightily at his hamstring, severing his left leg completely (OOC: critical hit with a backstab). The man topples screaming to the ground, all thoughts of offense forgotten.
The minotaur charges through the crowd of pirates at the rear, knocking one of them into the water as he leaps onto the wizard’s ship. The fiddler, right behind him, pulls out a pick-axe and hacks down another pirate.
The wizard on the other boat, alarmed by the turning tide of battle, launches another fireball, centered right above the boarding plank linking the gunwales of your ship and his. The minotaur, the fiddler, the orc, and the uniformed woman are all caught in the blast, along with quite a few of his own crew, and most of the livestock on the Wake. The ropes and planks holding the ships together are burned up, and the wizard’s ship begins speeding away under sails filled by magical wind, leaving Valkur’s Wake and the second pirate ship lurching in his wake.
Engulfed in the blast, the aft end of Valkur’s Wake is in flames. The taffrail, and with it the captain and the rudder, break away and tumble into the sea.
The remaining crew of the second ship, still attached, drop their crossbows and rush to break themselves free of the burning Wake — cutting lines and hacking at their own boarding planks. They too are soon free and furling sails to escape.
The last four pirates still on the deck of the Wake throw down their arms and join the settlers and the remaining crew in trying to douse the fires — hacking at the smoldering gunwales and tossing burning cargo and corpses overboard.
“Shit!” Aram exclaims. He drops his over-sized blade and rushes to the rear of the ship. He heads to the dead bodies of those who helped them repel the pirates and kneels over them in prayer.
“Blessed Afflictor, Exalted Interrogator, Sacred Parasite,
You who commandeth the nine million,
You who commandeth the seventy blasphemies,
You are made holy, an eater of souls!
I speak through the worms in the heart of The Just.
I will create a slaughterpen above the valleys,
I will create a place of injury and error!
Look with favor on these your servants who have fallen!
We hail them and offer them unto the Nothing.
We Name them, yet build them no monument.
They died as you died, in defense of Order.
Take them into your infernal legion,
Lest we all drown in the black that awaits the End of All Things.”
Recognizing them for experienced adventurers, Aram strips their bodies of valuables as he recites the last rites, lest any thing of power be cast to the chaos that lies in the watery depths.
Thrall hears the prayer of Aram and feels a little nausea coming up. He doesnt like what he hears but on the other side, any prayer for the dead that does not raise them should be ok….the pilfering is also not very comforting. He also starts to pray to heal the rest of the wounded.
Durell runs to the rear of the ship and scans the waters for signs of the captain or any others (especially Featherdalemen) that may have been split off from the main ship. Depending on what he sees, Durell will either look for rope or downed and unburned sailcloth to try to throw to a ship’s captain that knows how to swim, or will drop his staff and doff his quiver and will dive in to save a potentially sinking dwarf.
Scanning the water, Durell spots the captain floating not far from the ship. He is supported by a chunk of driftwood from the broken rail, but appears to be unconscious. Several corpses from the battle, and some lost livestock also float in the water, but no other passengers have gone overboard.
Soon the fires have been extinguished, but the ship has been severely damaged. Without rudder or sails, Valkur’s Wake drifts lazily through the night, driven only by the lapping of waves against its hull.
As Durell hauls the unconscious captain back on deck, the remaining crew hazard lighting a few lamps and scan the waters around the ship for other survivors. One crewman pulls a crossbow off of a fallen pirate and begins systematically putting the floundering animals out of their misery, as the ship lacks winch or tack for getting them back aboard.
Soon the waters are filled with dead animals and the smoldering remains of cargo. Much has been lost. As Aram and Thrall make the rounds, healing the injured and sending the dead on to their final rest, the settlers, practical folk that they are, follow Aram’s example in stripping the bodies of weapons, armor, and anything else valuable before tossing them into the sea.
Aram turns to Durell. “I also have no need of these weapons, but your friends,” he waves a hand at the farmers, “might do well to arm and armor themselves. Phlan is a treacherous place from all I hear, and you won’t be able to keep them all safe on your own.” He looks meaningfully at the dead bodies, settlers and pirates alike, strewn across the deck. “For myself, one of these rings and one of the potions seems fair, plus perhaps the large gem which would more than cover wagons and supplies for the expedition I am planning. Beyond that I would suggest we leave the weapons, armor, and cash to get the peasantry back on their feet — given how much they’ve lost in the attack.”
Thrall, “You are absolutely right, Aram. The settlers need their protection and the extra coin to get their new life started.”
“We need to give the orc also his last rites….. but we will get to him later. First things first. "
Thrall tries to revive the captain.
The captain appears to have taken a serious blow to the head when he was blasted overboard. Thrall is able to patch up the wound, but his skull appears to be at least partially fractured — he is not in any immediate danger, but remains comatose.
Durell: "If no one wants the armor and weapons, I am sure that either the settlers can choose to use them, or, at the worst, attempt to sell them and use the proceeds for whatever they need. “As for me, I would only ask for the Ioun Stone and/or the proficient Broadsword, also to give to the settlers (preferably whoever lost the most livestock, to prevent starvation). (I’d really like to give the sword to the youth who stepped up to aid us. If he can lift it, at least he’ll know how to use it in the future). Other items could be useful, but I would gladly yield them to my new brothers in arms. In fact, in my sea chest I happen to have an enchanted set of Brigandine armor that was passed down to me, but is too restrictive for my use. I would gladly give it as a ‘swap’ for the Elven Chain, if others were agreeable”
“Aye,” Aram says, looking at the eager and strapping lad who served as Durrel’s weapons-caddy. “Give him the sword, and armor too. It shouldn’t be too much trouble for us to train him up into a semi-competent fighter in his own right. And by all means, if you can use the mail, take it.”
The boy’s eyes go wide when he is offered the sword. “Really, Mr. Bulwark? I can fight with you?!” He swings the sword a couple times, the magical blade guiding his strokes and making him look like an expert. He sheathes it and takes the offered brigandine. It’s big, but he is broad-shouldered and long-limbed for a thirteen-year-old, so it only takes a few adjustments of the straps to make it fit adequately. The other youths, all a bit younger than him, ooh and ah as he gets outfitted.
“See,” Aram says, “he looks a proper warrior already.” He turns to the kobold, ogre, and tentacle-haired woman, “Is there anything here that you would claim as a memento of our battle? You did just as much, if not more, than we to repel our attackers.” He turns back to the eager youth, “What’s your name, boy?”
Durell grins in appreciation of the attention his “assistant” has garnered. He leans in close to the boy and whispers: “Where are your parents? They might not like having their son pressed into fighting. I’ll talk to them.” He then steps back and appreciates the skill with which the sword allows and enables itself to be used.
“M’name’s Eddie, sir,” the boy responds. He shrugs and shifts in the armor, getting used to the weight and testing how much it allows him to move. “My Ma and Da are back in Featherdale,” he says to Durell, then points to a comely, curvaceous woman in her mid-thirties perhaps, wearing a plain homespun dress, who appears to be trying to wrangle the llama. “I’m traveling with me aunt.”
Using his innate animal empathy, Durell will go and attempt to calm the llama, and introduce himself to Eddie’s aunt. He’ll ask about the “how and why” of the aunt and her nephew leaving the rest of the family in Featherdale, and move to New Phlan. Specifically, he’ll press for what the aunt expects from Eddie, and how his latest “baptism by fire” into adventuring is going over.
“Oh, thank ye,” she says as Durell calms the animal. With the pen in the rear destroyed, she loops a rope over the llama’s neck and ties it off to the fallen mast. “I’m hoping to start a new life in Phlan,” she explains, “you see I…” she stops and goes a little red. “Well, I didn’t have much luck back home, so I’m hoping a new start in a new place will set things right. My brother said that I shouldn’t be traveling alone, so he sent his eldest, Eddie, along to help me get settled and help around the house. Though, Eddie’s always had a bit of a spirit to him, I don’t really think he’s really meant to be helping out an old spinster like me…”
Meanwhile, the Ogre and the others join Aram in pouring over the pile of loot.
“Hmmm,” the ogre, Osakh, remarks. “All of these are too small to be of any use to me, save the stone,” he points to the ioun stone. “Give me that, and the rest is yours.”
The kobold, with sniffling noises and tears streaming down his cheeks, picks through the pile and pulls out the amulet and the silver pick. “These…w…were,” he sniffles. “These were Delphia’s.” You see he is already clutching the burned and battered neck of his accompanist’s violin.
A tentacle snakes out from under the woman’s robes towards the pile and picks up the ring of mindshielding. “This,” she says simply. Then, seemingly as an after-thought, “and a share of the coin. This voyage may have been advertised as free, but I am less liquid than I might wish.”
Aram picks up the two remaining rings, “Did you have a preference Thrall?”
“Anyone will do”. Thrall looks a bit absent minded and tired.
Aram hands Thrall the Ring of Protection, since it looks like he needs it, and hands him the unclaimed Potion of Fire Resistance as well. He then slips the healing potion to Durell, since he’s the only one of us that can’t cast spells, keeping the last ring and the potion of polymorph for himself. He picks up the dagger and hands this to Durell as well, “I understand there are many creatures that can only be harmed by magic, if you do not have such a weapon, you may want to have this in your back pocket, so to speak.”
Aram makes the rounds on deck, making sure the last of the injured are dealt with and the surviving cargo and animals are secured. He then turns to the four pirates that were left alive. “Hey Osakh,” he calls to the Ogre as he walks over to confront them.
“Good sirs,” he says, staring the pirates down as best he can with an old man’s dimples and laughing eyes. “I’m sure you understand the situation you’re in,” he gestures to the fourty-odd bodies of their fellows floating in the Wake’s wake, then gives a little nod in the direction of the ogre. “You clearly chose the wrong life-path, when you embraced a lawless life of piracy. This is your chance to make amends, a bit, for the error of your past ways. We currently sail towards Phlan — though I use the term sail loosely — and this ship is under-staffed. Phlan offers general amnesty to all those who would aid their city. If you can help us get this ship ship-shape, and get these people safely to Phlan, you will have a clean record once you step in the city, a clean start for a new life. OR…” he says dramatically, “you can choose not to help us, and I can ask my friend here,” he again indicates the Ogre, “to tear your limbs off and throw you to the sharks as just reprisal for the harm that you’ve caused…”
The four pirates fall to their knees in front of the scary, smiling old man and his ogre compatriot. “Aye! Aye! Aye!” they all say, “We’ll help you get to land safely…we’re sorry…please don’t eat us!”
Surveying what’s left of the ship, now without a conscious captain, Durell asks out loud – presumably to his new fighting partners, but potentially to anyone that hears, including the gods: “Excuse me, but are we to leave the Minotaur alone in the midst of our attackers? Is there any way we can provide locomotion to this floating raft now to attempt to assist?”
One of the deck-hands, a hobgoblin, who has been inspecting the dropped mast overhears Durell and turns in his direction. “Indeed, sir. The mast appears to be un-damaged, we’ll just need to hoist it back into place and rig a new sail.”
“Oi, mister optimist,” A bald dwarven hand chimes in. “The spare sail was stashed aft! It’s ash now! An’ we slashed all the lines, so we’re talkin’ days of riggin’ even if we had a sail.”
“Can we commandeer cloth?” The hobgoblin asks. “We’re less than 10 nauts out from Phlan, we should be able to limp in as long as we can catch any amount of wind.”
“I would offer my cloak, but that could turn out very badly. But,” Aram looks around at the corpses, “we’ve still got some dead pirates to strip, and we could fish a few more out of the water. If we take all their clothes, there should be plenty of cloth.”
Aram walks over to the mast. “But first,” he crouches and puts his arms under one side, “Osakh, can you help us get this thing raised and bolted back into place?”
Osakh grabs the mast opposite Aram. Soon the hobgoblin, several of the farmers, and the four pirates have joined and with a mighty shove the mast is hoisted back to a vertical position, and the bolts shoved back into place by the dwarven hand. “Fine!” the dwarf grumbles, “yous start strippin’ clothes and I’ll start sewin’…”
Uncomfortable with “life adrift”, Durell realizes there is little he can do at the moment. He does approach Eddie’s Aunt and asks her: “I don’t want to assume anything, but by the look of your wonderful dress, I am guessing you are no stranger to needle and thread. Might we get your help with stitching together a makeshift sail to get us to our destination”
Pending her answer, he will either escort her to where the sail is being put together, and then head toward the newly re-erected mast and look for a crow’s nest, if there had been one and if it survived the skirmish. If so, he will make an attempt to climb/shinny up the mast to “take watch”, specifically trying to understand the direction the currents are taking us, looking for the ship the Minotaur boarded as well as the “new third ship”.Like most of the passengers, Eddie’s aunt, Jeyne, is still much too wired from their present situation to even think of sleeping and readily joins Nat in attempting to stitch together a makeshift sail, thanking Durell for giving her something “useful” to do to “take her mind off of things”.
Valkur’s Wake’s small, single mast is not large enough to support a crow’s nest, and the rigging has all be cut away — though Durell thinks he might be able to perch on the boom or spreaders, at least until the makeshift sail needs to be hung.
Shimmying up the mast, though, Durell finds he cannot make out anything of use. With the time it has taken to deal with the fires and the bodies, and the descent of night, all three of the other ships are long gone, as far as Durell can tell.“Well,” Aram says, “it looks like we’re going to be here a while. I’m going to give these old bones a rest…” He puts down his large pack and finds a place to sit, resting his back against the port gunnel, then removes his crown and coif, setting them beside him, but doesn’t bother doffing his mail. “I’m just going to doze a bit. Don’t hesitate to kick me awake if anything’s happening.”
He is soon snoring quite loudly.