‘How far away from land are we?’ The disgruntled man said in the cabin, looking unwillingly at the stale bucket in the corner.
‘Not far, should be there by nightfall!’ The Captain said, shouting down to below.
Dawn had only just broken, and they’d approach the city by the eve, then be docked by nightfall. The man didn’t feel like he could take anymore bashing. He hated the sea, even at its calmest, which it never was, especially in the Casbian sea. The man tried to remember how long they were at sea for, but couldn’t for life, work out how long they had been at sea, since he’d spent the entire time in the cabin, throwing-up the entire contents of his stomach into a wooden bucket, until there was nothing left, and even then, he wretched at the smell.
A large storm had formed far in the west, and had been blown eastwards by the prevailing winds. The trip was only from the Winter Islands, in the north of Pravum, to Praevalidus, in the south. It had proven too much for the disgruntled man, but the other sailors embraced the challenge, enjoying every moment the storm threw at them.
It annoyed the ill man. The fact they were born with the gift of sea-legs and thrived on the water. Why can’t I be like them? But the tables would turn when they were to set foot on land, when he would walk to the Tower of Imperium, and start his training to become a Praevalidus Guard.
He chuckled to himself at that prospect. That was a mistake. Up comes breakfast. A quick lunge for the bucket. Dammit! A wave had hit the beam, and sent the bucket flying away from his reach. He stumbled over, holding his hand tightly over his mouth. Building the nerve, he stood and ran, with what little space there was in the small cabin. The bucket, he needed the bucket, otherwise the sailors would surely throw the man overboard if they were to find vomit all over the cabin.
There! He pulled the bucket to his face, the foul stench of the previous days’ vomit still lingered. Now, today’s stench began.
The sailors, meanwhile were chuckling to themselves, looking down into the cabin, seeing the spectacle that was the ill man trying the catch the bucket as if it was a prized possession. He didn’t care. What good would it do if he did care what they thought of him? After they moored in Praevalidus, he would never lay eyes on them again.
‘I’ve never seen such a dedicated man hunt down his bucket for a chunder!’ A sailor shouted down to the ill man. ‘You’re certainly a passionate passenger keeping that bucket safe! You two make quite a pair!’