AN: I live for zee reviews! X3

I held a dagger in my left hand. I stared at the blade, taking in every detail. It was silver in color, with red gemstones implemented into the fuller and the ends of the guard. The grip was wrapped in rough, brown leather. I was receiving personal training from one of the warriors on the SV Baron, a ship designated to the Ushad region. The Ushad region was separated from the rest of the continent by a large channel, which took a couple of weeks to cross by ship.

The trainer swung at my left with a sword ā€“ a real one. Thankfully, these weapons had enchantments so that every single time that somebody got hurt, they wouldn't feel it, and the injury would heal over the course of an hour. I moved my hand accordingly and blocked it, scraping the side of my dagger's blade. The trainer retaliated by making a mock swing to my right shoulder. I reacted as he expected and raised my weapon to block the blade. But he was agile, and he managed to duck down and hit me in the chest with the pommel. Hard.

I stumbled backwards, losing my balance for a second. One second too much. He leapt upwards and stuck his right foot out, kicking me straight in the chest. I tumbled over backwards, rolling thrice. I then collided with the wooden wall, seeing stars and everything in triple-vision. It resembled what you would see if you crossed your eyes. "You're pretty good, kid," all three of the trainers grinned. I groaned when the stars stopped, and I managed to regain my senses. "Tell that to my headache," I grunted, rubbing my scalp gingerly. "Sorry about that. Might've gotten a bit overzealous," he stuck his hand out to help me up. I accepted the help standing up, "Do you require an apothecary?"

"I don't think so," I responded, waiting for the room to stop spinning so I could take a step. I bet I look like one of those drunks that I always saw back home, swaying significantly and seeming like they could black out at any moment. "You don't think so ā€“ I do believe you need one, though. You look like a drunkard," he chuckled. "Exactly what I was thinking," I replied truthfully.

My whole body ached from the exertion and taking the brunt force of several kicks and punches. My left arm was especially tender because of my trying to block a full-blown sword master by merely trying to push against the blade. I found that the move they always show in books and paintings, the one where the hero sticks out his blade to block a sword swipe, is very excruciatingly exhausting. Think about it ā€“ you must raise your sword and keep it there while fighting off the force of an opponent.

I delicately rubbed my left arm, trying in vain to soothe my burning muscles. I rolled up the cloth of the tunic I had been wearing. From my experiences, letting any burning muscles have fresh air usually makes it feel better. "Believe me, mate, I don't need an apothecary," I said a bit irritably. "If you say so," he said, then walked out the door after putting his sword in the weapons rack next to me. I groaned as my headache turned from a dull thud to a hammering. "Damn it," I cursed, "Why does this hurt so freakin' much?"

I then focused on ignoring the pain, carelessly tossing the dagger at the rack. I started stumbling out the doorway and into the hall. I needed fresh air. I focused on my steps. Right foot, left foot, right foot, left foot, right foot, left foot. I was aware of little else, trying not to either pass out or upheave right then and there. The faint rocking of the ship, before barely noticeable, now seemed like it was being tossed side to side.

I managed to pull myself up the stairs without losing my breakfast and to get to the upper deck. We were currently sailing through a 'mist-spot', an area where fog condensed easily and could become deadly to unwary ships. The fog had a calming effect on me, and my headache returned to a dull thud while my stomach recomposed itself. I sighed, thankful for the relief from the excruciating dizziness from before.

I thought little of what had caused it, walking over to the edge of the deck. The water underneath us was churning and frothing, as if some creature was underneath it. My mind, against my will, got a few flashes of what it could be. Sea serpents? They're known to attack ships. Sirens? They could lead us to our doom.

I suddenly got a bad feeling down in the bottom of my gut. I glanced over to the bridge and spotted the captain. He was a man of 53 years of age. He had a greying, short, bushy beard, blue eyes, high cheekbones, and wore the black-and-white captain outfit. He, too, seemed to have some sort of inherit dread if his face was anything to go by. I jogged over to where the navigator was. "Navigator, sir?" I asked. He was frantically checking maps and compasses, yet not in a nervous way. More like he had simply misplaced something. He looked up at me from where he was sitting. "Aye?" he responded. "Are we lost?" I inquired, fearing the answer. The navigator sighed and nodded. "Why?" I pried.

"Look, kid, this fog is thicker than anything recorded in the last 3000 years, it'sā€¦ unholy, unnatural. I feel like it's watching us, judging every move," he stated. The way he said it, though, made him sound almost fearful. "Ah," I said simply, "Is the captain having any trouble?"

"Yes. Apparently, the winds have kicked up and the ship has suffered because of it," he grunted. There was one that was wrong with that. There was no wind. I didn't feel anything other than a salty breeze, and that was expected on the ocean. Suddenly, there was shouting.

"Ship on our portside, captain!" shouted one of the lookouts. "Can you make out the flag?" shouted the captain back. "Negative, sir! This accursed fog is blocking everything from sight except for the damn silhouette!" hollered the lookout. "Their firing their cannons!" shouted one of the other lookouts as three bursts of orange appeared on the ship. "Watch out!" I heard one of the crewmen shrill.

I turned only to see a cannonball headed straight for me.

AN: Yes, yes, I know I said I would write pirates in this chapter, but it feels better to finish it on a cliffhanger. Anyway, review! ^-^