Closehauled Beating

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Syka is a new settlement of primarily humans on the east coast of Falyndar opposite of Riverfall on The Suvan Sea. [Syka Codex]

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Closehauled Beating

Postby Marino Oceangem on June 1st, 2020, 3:03 am

82nd of Spring, 520 A.V.
Marino woke up covered in sweat. As his eyes adjusted to the dim interior of the cabin, he slowly realized it had only been a dream. He’d been on a beach. Only the sand had been as black as the starless sky. The sea had been even worse. It had been pure white, and hurt to look at on that dark shore. Then a dark red shape had emerged. That was when he awoke.

Rubbing his face, he shook of the fragments of his dream and got out of bed. He stumbled around for several moments in the dark cabin before coming out onto the deck to look at the predawn sky. From behind the island, the scarlet light was just starting to peek through the blue-black sky. A stiff breeze, and spatter of rain washed over him, waking him up while dislodging the last fragments of his troubling dreams. With a sigh, he got to work inspecting the sides of the ship and the deck while he enjoyed the light mist of rain.

When it appeared nothing had gone missing while he was asleep, he brought up his fishing net. He’d yet to use the thing before and early morning seemed like a fine time to try. Besides it would give him a chance to get his thoughts sorted for the day. After throwing a handful of bait over the side, he chucked the bundle of net in after it. Contrary to what he expected, the net did not unfurl as it dropped but landed with a solid plink, still very much bunched together. It sank like a rock upon hitting the water, and certainly was not going to catch any fish. After a brief look around to see if anyone was watching, he began to haul the net up as fast as he could.

Fortunately, so far as he could make out, no one stirred on the Casinors near him, and the few svefra he could pick out hopefully hadn’t seen his goof. The net was of course empty when he pulled it up. It didn’t look to be tangled on the end, but he gave it another check. Then, throwing it over the side, he watched again as it fell in a lump. He started pulling it up immediately, though it still made a loud plunk in the water. As he drew up the line, a voice startled him. “I thought you were throwing rocks overboard” It came from an adjacent Casinor, and wide eyed with a sheepish grin, Marino looked over at the svefra. “I think I’d have more luck fishing with a rock.” He replied looking over at the man. He had long brown hair, and clean shave. From this distance, it looked like they were around the same height. “Fishing? Is that what you are trying to do. I thought you were trying to wake up the pod.” The man said as he walked over onto Marino’s casinor. He gave him a brief nod and a disarming grin before continuing. “Shoal Wavecrest.” Pulling the net over the side, Marino nodded back. “Marino Oceangem. This net is your rock.” He chuckled. Shoal stepped closer, inspecting the net for a tick before shaking his head. “Looks fine to me, give it another toss.”



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Closehauled Beating

Postby Marino Oceangem on June 1st, 2020, 3:05 am

Looking dubiously down at the net, and back to Shoal, Marino shrugged. Walking back over to the side, he heaved the net out into the water, watching it drop in a clump again. Shoal started laughing as it made a loud splash and slapped him on the back. “Well, I can’t say I’ve seen worse throws.” Marino winced and looked away for a moment as he reeled the line in. Shoal said. “Give it here” As he was taking the line from him and pulled it up the rest of the way. Before he could protest, Shoal added. “For some peace this morning, I’ll cast it once so you can see how it is done.” “I can try again.” Marino finally protested, to which Shoal just chuckled, pinching off a portion of the net and throwing it over his left shoulder. He then grabbed the inside edge of the net and pulled it up over that same shoulder. “It will take you forever, just watch alright?” Shoal said as he grabbed a handful of the net and tossed it over his slightly bent right knee. Taking a hold of the outer edge of the folded net, he opened it up as he walked towards the side of the deck. Then with a swing of his hips left to right, he tossed the net over the side. To Marino’s surprise, the net unfolded beautifully in a wide circle that sank into the water a few meters from the ship.

“I can’t blame the net, can I?” Marino chided himself, and Shoal laughed at that as he let the net sink for a while. “Don’t worry about it, we can’t all do everything. Otherwise we wouldn’t need our pod.” Going over to the side, Marino looked down into the water as he tried to pick out the net in the dark water. It had been progressively getting lighter now to where he could easily see the people on the beach, but the water was still quite dark. “How long are you supposed to let it sink for?”

“Try it out a few times till get the feel for it. At least a third of the way should be fine though.“ Shoal said as he started to reel in the net quickly as he could pull the rope. Leaning over the side, Marino saw the net come out of the water with a couple of small fish caught up in it. Giving a brisk shake to all sides of the net, Shoal shook the fish free and handed Marino the net before picking them up. “Thanks for the bait fish, good luck with throwing that net of yours. Just make sure to keep trying till you get the hang of it.” Shoal said giving him a short wave before departing. “I’ll try. Hopefully you won’t hear any more rocks.” Marino joked as he waved at him back, and then looked at the bundle of net in his hands. Well, he didn’t make it look that hard, surely he could get the hang of this.

Draping the net over his leg like he saw Shoal do, he bent over to pick up part of it and slung it over his shoulder. However as he’d neglected to hold the top of the net, half of it just went over his shoulder instead of just in part so he had to hold it in front of him again to start all over. With a sigh, he draped it over his right thigh again, and this time with a firm hold on the top of the net, slung a portion over his left shoulder. The next part, working the inside edge of the neck up onto his shoulder proved to be slightly more difficult than it had seemed. He wound up fussing around in the net for quite some time before he found the inner edge he was looking for. Slowly, he slid that part up to the top of his shoulder while his other hand made sure to keep the top secure at all times.


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Closehauled Beating

Postby Marino Oceangem on June 1st, 2020, 3:07 am

With that done, he carefully draped the rest of the net over his right leg again. Then grabbing a third of it, he pulled that from the rest while his fingers worked to hold it up by the leading outer edge. That done, he hesitantly walked over to the side of the boat, looking down at the water. His bait had long ago sunk into the water but that didn’t concern him now. Instead he just focused on a spot of the water he hoped to hit as he took a step back. Swinging out with his hips, he spun the net out over the water. Shockingly to him at least, it actually spun out a ways, though it was more of a cylinder when it hit the water than a perfect circle. Still, it looked better than a rock, and excitedly Marino watched it sink into the water about half way down the line before he started hastily reeling it up.

It didn’t end up catching any fish, but Marino was happy enough that he managed to get it to open up a little bit in the air. Twist also chose that moment to swim up so he didn’t think much about his lack of a catch. Instead, he waved at his tavan and promptly hopped into the water. Twist cackled at him as he splashed down, swimming up to him to give a little nudge. Grinning, Marino stroked him along his nose as he swam by. “How you been Twist?” He asked before diving under the water. With broad strokes of his arms, up and outwards he pushed himself further under the water as he tried following Twist. Light from the rising sun started to slant through in patches of the sea around him, glimmering occasionally off of the scales of small fish.

Ahead of him, Twist circled back to tag him with his nose before swimming abruptly way. Shaking his head while wearing a grin, Marino decided to catch a breather before seeing what the dolphin was up to. He was always getting into something after all, and Marino supposed that was why they got along so well. However all that changed when he surfaced facing the beach, and was greeted with a strange sight. A crowd of svefra had gathered further along the beach, and appeared to be talking rather animatedly from what he could judge by their gestures. Curious, with a pit of anxiety growing in his stomach, he dived back down into the water looking for Twist. His tavan responded by coming up under him and letting him grab his fin as they swam together in a little circle around the casinor. Not really wanting to think about what his family could be talking about right now, he patted Twist on the side, and swam up for some air. Twist came up beside him, and he pet his nose again. “Say, you know any good fishing spots?”

Twists’ response to this was to promptly splash him in the face with his tail as he darted back under the water. “Thanks” Marino said sarcastically after gulping down a mouthful of water. He then climbed back aboard the Seasilk and folded up his net. “Alright, I’ll try to find us a spot.” He quipped down at Twist when he finally surfaced to peek up at him.

While he started the Seasilk’s slow creep down the coast, he thought about what he’d seen on the beach. It could’ve meant anything, but in his gut he knew that they would be leaving soon. It wasn’t something he wanted to deal with just now, though eventually he knew they would seek him out. Before sunset most likely the way he knew his family. That left him with a handful of bells to pretend that things would keep the way they had been before he had to admit to his family he was staying.

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Closehauled Beating

Postby Marino Oceangem on June 1st, 2020, 3:08 am

He winced at the thought. Not the idea of staying her, but of explaining that to his family. He didn’t know what they would say to that. If they would argue or stay silent. Whether they would be mad. What would it be like with them gone? All this and more swirled through his mind as he idly watched the coast ahead of them. Gently he steered towards the island before letting down the anchor. Looking at the shore, he realized he wasn’t far from where Tazrae’s Inn would be built and that comforted him somewhat as his eyes strayed back towards the casinors pulled up along the beach. It was going to be hard without them, he knew. He just didn’t know how hard or if he was prepared.

Twist interrupted him from his self doubt by leaping into the air and doing a series of spins. Marino smiled slightly and took up the net he’d folded earlier in his hands. Draping it over his left thigh this time, he thought he might give it a try the other way. While he’d been prepping his casinor to sail, he’d been thinking about how he was left handed and how that might change things. It had felt awkward throwing it from that angle over the side of the boat, so hopefully trying it from the other way would set it up better. With the net this time over his right shoulder, and spread out with his left hand he stepped to the edge of the boat. Then swinging from left to right this time, he sent the net spinning over the side where it spread out in a sort of oblong rectangle. Still not the best throw, but he’d got it closer this time to where he’d actually been aiming. Twist also seemed to approve, though he was happy if Marino just looked over the side of the boat.

As shoal had recommended, Marino let it sink in a ways before he started pulling up the net up out of the water. It was empty again, but he hadn’t really anticipated catching anything. Shaking out the line, he leaned against the side of the Seasilk to grin down at Twist. “You steal my fish?” Twist just clicked at him before ducking under the water. He took up the net again, and swung it out for a second time, this time almost making a circle as he cast it out over the water. Marino let it sink a bit before pulling it up, and laughing as Twist gave it a wide berth. “Wise choice” He said as he heaved it aboard and not seeing any fish let it settle on the deck. Looking a bit more serious, he gestured down to Twist. “What do you think of us staying?”

Twist didn’t respond other to stare at him for a while before going for a swim around the boat. “If only.” He mumbled to himself as he looked up and across the water towards the empty stretch of beach ahead. Maybe they would be ambivalent like Twist, but he strongly doubted that. It certainly wasn’t how things were done in the pod. There would be a talk. It just remained to be seen how that talk would go. Marino sighed, and considered maybe it was for the best that this happened sooner. In any case, he was done ruminating for the morning. He had work to get to.


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