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Dirty Bay (Collaborative Content)

one month ago

In the Rum-fueled haze of time, people forgot exactly what the name of the big, craggy isle in the middle of the sea was called, nor what the city that took up most of its surface was called. There are many, many nicknames for them, of course, but the original name has been lost to time. Unless you believe the old folks who said it used to be called something corny like "Skullduggery Fjord" or some nonsense, in which case it was better off lost to time and you should feel ashamed for canonizing it.

For the sake of a title, most tend to call it "Dirty Bay" for all the gunpowder burns painted across the buildings, rocks, and beaches. And that seems to be a title and reputation the residents are more than happy with, for, you see, Dirty Bay is a nigh-lawless sprawl of shanties, hamlets, and fortresses populated by only the most scandalous of scoundrels and the swashbucklingest of rogues. Dirty Bay holds no pretensions about being anything other than a pirate haven, and while bands of thieves and killers struggling for their own power can't agree on much, they can definitely agree on keeping any flag that isn't black and/or gruesome from flying over their home. Try as they might, the powers of the world just cannot root out this hive of scum and villainy... And for those seeking danger, glory, and adventure, perhaps that's a good thing!

~~~

This is a collaborative work to flesh out the people, places, history, and stories of Dirty Bay. Adding in your own write-ups is allowed and HIGHLY FREAKIN' ENCOURAGED! Yes, I did ruthlessly commandeer Berka's idea, but that's kinda in the spirit of the place anyway.

We only have a few rules:

Respect the continuity that comes before you! Not that we can't make exceptions based around different points in time in the lore, but try not to go around retconning people's carefully constructed shit.

Nobody else conquers any bits of Dirty Bay unless they're pirates and/or some other criminal force. If you want to flesh out the world powers that fight the pirates, put them on another island!

It's a big, big sea. Very possible that the known world is just a sea. (or ocean) There are unlimited islands, but try to keep track of space and time.

Always do your best, and have fun with it!

Other rules will come up as they are made and agreed upon.

Dirty Bay (Collaborative Content)

one month ago

Down the winding cobbles, around the corner of  Daggie's Bar and across from the perpetually overbooked Cooper's guild, is a 2-floor shack with a chimney, and a broad plank over its door with "LEG BRAKER 4 HIR" smattered across it with inconsistently red paint and consistently backwards R's.  A giant man named Arry Crankmer somehow lives on the second floor of the shack, and makes his living out of the "office" on the ground. His sinewy back is just hunched enough to keep his head away from the ceiling, and his stagger is just crooked enough for him to fit his broad frame through the door.

Arry was a prolific legbreaker, from a long line of legbreakers. It was a profession passed down from father to son in the Crankmer family for generations, and as such, his service has become as luxurious and high-class as legbreaking work can be. He goes about his work as a famous painter or a fine vintner. A prospective customer will be cordially invited into the shack, offered a dubiously alcoholic beverage, and sat down in front of a desk. If they seem particularly literate, they'll also be provided with a menu, detailing (in lacking grammar and penmanship roughly imitating cursive) all the services available. And there are plenty of services.

You'll often hear Arry muse about how misleading the title of "legbreaker" is, and that's true. For a few shillings more than the standard price of a leg, Arry will break someone's arm. For about half the price of a leg, Arry will break someone's nose. He'll remove people's ears at a bargain price unrivalled throughout the entire island, however it does cost more if you want to have them preserved for your collection. Arry's services even extend to frightening, gouging, protecting, surveilling, terminating, framing, enforcing, extorting, laundering, threatening, dismembering, embroiling, and even plain battering. Versatile though he may be, he is most often called upon to do legbreaking work, and that's where he shines most.

As with almost all of his services, if you ask him to break some legs, you'll have to give him a name, a rough location, and a description. He will then open up his toolbag and show you a selection of hammers and bludgeons. The typical service is one shin with the petrified beam he stole from under the church, but the tent-pitching maul he took from that damnable circus clown is also a customer favorite. As a fairly simple man who usually loses track of exactly how many bones he breaks, (and doesn't have much difficulty with different bones either way) he doesn't charge per kneecap or per femur as more stingy legbreakers might, but rather per leg, and how broken the leg is supposed to be.

Ever since Arry and his apprentices moved into town and set up shop, they've been a boon to the community, setting the standard in legbreaking and all related businesses across the island, and, some might say, even the world. For the discerning customer, there is no better leg-breaking service, and there's no other face on the island more loved by doctors, blacksmiths, carpenters, and other citizens in the business of making crutches and attaching hooks and peg legs. From the port taverns to the far reaches of the swamp, you'll hear people saying that Arry is one hell of a guy. Or, at least one hell of a something...

Dirty Bay (Collaborative Content)

one month ago
Skeevum Isle- as scummy as its name- is well known for one thing. Well, legally speaking, it's notorious for several things, but even for the wenchiest of barmaids (the most forgivable people in pirate terms), the chances of someone going into one of the famous island pubs, clearing their throat, announcing that- in fact- "The Rusty Hook" is not an inn but a Free House and thus is subject to different laws regarding which alcoholic beverages are saleable, and then not getting shanked thirty seven times by as many vagrants is nigh on about as likely as someone being able to read this sentence in one breath. Don't bother.

One particular inn is of great interest to the few tourists foolish enough to go within two cannonball shots of the equally dim Dirty Bay, mainly because accidentally ending up there is comparable to wandering into Guantanamo Bay boasting about leaking government secrets. In this grimy, dingy pub, the locals have a tendency towards tying up anyone without a peg leg or contraband whiskey and using them as a dart board. It's actually quite a cherished sport amongst those who can still feel emotion in the area, lovingly named 'Human Darts'.

Stay long enough in any of the drinking dens, however, and you'll realise that 'long enough' is too long; you don't have to listen hard to find out that this inn of interest, "The Whale's Stomach", is the scummiest of the lot, possibly exempting "The Capybara's Duodenum". A man can be shot down just for asking for a pint, so needless to say, it's pretty damn niche. So niche, actually, that filthy hipsters once tried to swarm the place, claiming it had 'wavvy vibes'. Regulars didn't take kindly to that. Some stools still have shin bones propping them up. One hipster from that great purge, however, adapted and survived, much like the mighty snow leopard (Panthera uncia), a rare and beautiful creature with fewer numbers than 10,000 individuals left in the wild. You can adopt your very own snow leopard for only 5 shillings a month to help this magnificent, endangered animal. Think snow leopard? Think WWF.

(Yeah, yeah I plugged it, okay? Yeah alright whatever. Yes. No, I said not another one at the end- just give me the money and fuck off.)

This specimen of evolved subspecies hipster- Townsend Rowe- dresses as a pirate. Townsend speaks like a pirate, smells like a pirate, and drinks like a pirate; in fact, he does everything piratey, but better. It's like someone's cranked up the pirate intensity on Townsend- he's a real nutter. Well... supposedly. Around these parts, the man's known as "Ruthless Row", a name founded on rumours he himself spread around, lest someone make him their bitch upon hearing his real name. It is only this way he can both snidely bluster about drinking 'draft IPAs' to his fellow Sociology undergraduates and keep his internal organs arranged as they are. Word has it he strangled an entire orphanage for terminally ill children because they looked too skinny ("Go'eh wheedle out'ter weak," Townsend wheezes to any soul brave enough to ask). Some murmur in hushed whispers that he ransacked a whole Indian city alone and altered 30% of the gene pool ("Iy're thin' they don' call it 'Bombay' no more? Change' t'name soon as I were done wi' ter place, heh," he chuckles darkly).

Every so often, daring ladies of the night saunter over to Townsend's lone table and take their chances offering promises of otherworldly pleasure and directions to a GUM clinic the morning after. Townsend, the pretentious cuck, can't help but think they're actually hitting on him, that it's all in the name of love and not money, and only on these rare occasions does he let down his guard and spew forth an unstoppable froth of pompous sophistry. Let's take a closer look.

"Aha- now this, dear lady, is where is gets interesting," he drones one night to a seducer in red, who looks as if she couldn't doubt anything more. "Postmodernism, which of course- aha- stemmed from Derrida's ideas on epistemology relating to layers of inference ad infinitum, is incredibly relevant to modern deconstructionism. Mm, now I know what you're thinking and you'd be spot on, dear lady. At the same time, it embraces a... a sort of relativism many other thinkers, ah, the Scholastics for example, completely ignored. So you see, truth doesn't pervade the ideology as such, but is more the... je ne sais quoi of the thesis." He flounces his hands wildly, revelling in the finishing touch.

"Uh huh," she mutters, stirring a muddy cocktail and making increasingly rapid gestures under the table to a nearby dreg of society.

Townsend can tell he's losing her- not enough obscure latin phrases probably. "Uh, Contra vim mortis non crescit herba in hortis?" he adds hopefully, then silently praises himself for having memorised it. Whatever the expression means, it seems to have done the trick; he sits back and suppresses a smirk as her face lights up upon hearing the words. Odd though, Townsend thinks to himself, maybe her eyes are a bit wonky, she's looking a little to the—

"Wha'yah say thar, Row?" The cracking of much used knuckles sounds behind and he almost falls off his shinbone chair in shock. The tibiae of his fallen comrades creak under the strain.

Townsend jumps to his feet, heart hammering and legs quaking as he puts on his usual persona. "I sai' mind yarh own damn busne' Rainbow Beard yah fuckin' pretty bo' fag!" he growls, slapping the considerably bigger man's multicoloured mane with as much confidence as a teenage girl. The lady in red jumps up and scurries behind Rainbow Beard as his face darkens to a similar shade.

"'E was on 'bout some posh bullshit, Rain!" pipes up one of those token weaselly pirates. You know the ones- the little runts always spotting impending danger in the crow's nest. Townsend hates those ones.

"Yahr, tha'be what I hear, Weaselface." How original. Rainbow Beard grabs Townsend by the neck. The whole bar goes silent, bar a tourist tied to a bar baring her teeth in pain from a dart to the arm. "See, I bee' hearin' suh in-uh-res-tin' thin's'bout yehr, Row." Townsend's pretty good with the local dialect, but even he struggles to understand the heavy use of apostrophes. "Like you dint actu'y steal all thar' long los' Nazi gol', or the las' Faberge Egg o' Mantunbo. Ol' Greaver dow' at the Scum marke' bin sayin' it's all fake." Rainbow Beard presses his face right into the other's as Townsend gives a little croak vaguely translatable into 'Oh shit'. The vibes feel very much not waavy all of a sudden.

A lone voice, Townsend's knight in filthy clothes, slices through the tangible violent intent. "Rain, thar' be Ruthless Row yer shou'in 'bout!" mutters the bartender nervously, looking around. "'Mon now... See sense yeh 'ear?"

"E'actly!" Townsend shouts wildly, taking his chances with a quick headbutt to Rainbow Beard's monstrous nose- a common way of emphasising pretty much anything in Dirty Bay. "Yahr be lucky I don' run yeh through wi' me damn sabre, yah vagabond!" Again, the bar becomes mute- even the tourist stares in disbelief at him, dart tumbling from a bloodied lip as her mouth gawks open.

"Wha're yeh jus' say?" Enormous hands squeeze round Townsend's throat and he lifts easily from the floor. Rainbow Beard pauses, struggling to pronounce the word for a second as the intense expression of someone using their entire cognitive function creeps up his face. "Vagabond!? Now ent tha're fancy wor' feh a pirate teh say boys?" The others jeer in response, sloshing beer over the floor.

Townsend gasps through the tightening vice grip, just squeezing out a few words before his windpipe is crushed, "I assure yeh—"

"ASSURE!?" screams Rainbow Beard, shaking the thin man about as the others whoop and fights break out. "We been tricked boys, yeh'ear?! This 'ere ent no pirate!" The others go mental, hurling daggers and rusty harpoons and tankards about the place as Townsend drifts into the void, dying with the deep regret of never having owned a suede jacket. Rainbow Beard hurls the limp body aside as the bound tourist begins sobbing again, shouting ever louder. "Le'be known I killed Ruthless Row- the damn fake 'ho hoaxed'er lot o' us with 'is damn deception!"

For the third time, the bar hushes and the pirates cease their frenzy, all staring at Rainbow Beard. "Deception?" repeats another pirate quietly.

Dirty Bay (Collaborative Content)

one month ago

If one were to look at a map of the sea about these places, one would see an island shaped like a perfectly round circle with only a few tufts of greenish hair sticking out (fault of the artist, most likely, who was shot), and another island stretched out like a dirty leer or, perhaps, a banana, in such a way that the latter appears to be eating the most noble, perfectly formed and blessed island that is The Center of the Known Universe, known by the common folk as Great Freinham and by the pirates as Greasy Fat Hog.

Needless to say, the island that appears to be eating the most favored and blessed of all islands is that belonging to the Gold Devil himself. It is said that, in the beginning, Frog created M'adam and the Gold Devil. He showed to them the world he had created, and he told them that anything they wanted on this world they could have. Gold Devil, when he heard that there were no wenches to have yet, took the most vile and putrid of all the islands and named it "Dirty Bay." M'adam, as snooty and full of hot air as a chimney, claimed Great Freinham. And thus Frog grinned, for he knew that he had created something so devious and so awful that he could sadistically grin whenever one of the poor souls trapped in his world cried out to the heavens for Frog to save him from his horrible fate. Some ask if Frog actually exists, and one can find proof of his existence on a stone tablet nestled at the edge of the universe on an island full of enormous jumping and cannibalistic snakes with legs, but of course no one has ever visited that island.

 Ever since then, the pirates of Dirty Bay have preyed on the innocent civilians of Freinham, and only now the greatest minds of the island gather to find a way to defeat the pirates once and for all. 

"Gentlemen, I believe the answer is perfectly simple," said a grotesquely plump man standing in front of a blackboard before a crowd of bespectacled and highly anemic men with a long floppy ruler in his hand. "We shall debate these pirates to death, and because they have never partaken in the esteemed Sociology courses of this island, they will be momentarily baffled by our knowledge and thus forced to retreat back to their sinful hellholes and inns and other such unlit places of the earth." 

"Arnold," whined another, "how do we know they won't grow angry at us for their own ignorance?"

"Why, we'll graciously throw a few of our chickens over to their ship so that they can vent their frustration on such weak and pliable objects of affection."

"Yes, but- but-"

"What is it, Gregory?" bellowed Arnold "Bullfrog" Tonsils.

"But Arnold, what if the chickens drown? Our sailors aren't quite good at  this er... ‘throwing,’ I think they call it, due to all the statistical logistics handling courses we force down their throats."

"Well, they're going to have to; we don't have any other options."

"Aren't we supposed to be making up-"

"SILENCE!" yelled a stately man, dressed in a red coat with sparkling badges on his uniform, just entering the room. "It's clear that all this fiddling with "new ideas" and such will not save us. I propose that we continue our current code of conduct with pirates and immediately surrender all objects of value to the pirates in the hope that our goodness will eventually prevail and these savages will accept the higher callings of civilization."

"Pfft, what an idjut," said a man dressed in ragged clothing and sneering like a madman at every comment there uttered.

"What did you say?" growled the Bullfrog.

"Oh, nothin', Cap'n."

"Let me see your credentials," declared the military commander.

After a bit of a fuss, the anemic men pinned down the greasy savage and snatched a small piece of parchment tucked in one of his pockets.

"Says here he works at the 'Special Intelligence Collection Division of Strategic Wealth Reclaiming at Sea,' located on a small island between this one and Dirty Bay," hooted the messenger boy.

Everyone was immediately impressed at the man's professional experience. Obviously, the man's speech did not accurately reflect the depth of “special intelligence” hidden behind his lazy, drunken eyes.

"Well, if yer done insp-ect-in' this old fella, Rickety Rick would like to make an exit."

The men watched as a great man made his way for the exit, two soft pillow doors that swung open easily and slammed as the staggering man went through them.

The commander solemnly added, "Companions, I have only known two such noble men in all of my existence, and they both impressed on me the great strength of spirit and mind which I had never seen before in the most learned of men. They are attractive like magnets, and you will always immediately recognize them. The first was Townsend Rowe, who tragically died in a rowing accident last fall. I am disgraced by our treatment of this man."

The rest sat down quietly as a reed flute played off in the distance before being cut short by a brief round of gunfire and bloodthirsty yet joyful hollers echoing throughout the island. 

"Marmalade, anyone?" piped the butler, who had only now entered the room and uncovered a bountiful platter of toast.

Dirty Bay (Collaborative Content)

one month ago
Centuries passed before Dirty Bay got a grade above 'Possible Anthrax Origin' on the National Health Department's Island Cleanliness Rating (NHDICR). For once, it wasn't down to a bribe or a threat, not that any right-minded pirate would want to bribe a health department anyway. Well... except maybe to get out of the mandatory Scurvy vaccination (you may remember reading in the paper about alleged links between the jab and developing a proclivity towards not wanting to pillage things).

No, the reason of Dirty Bay's change was a gradual, cultural one, similar to the shifting of continental plates or the disappearance of a lingering fart. I'm talking, of course, about that fleeting, superficial temptress: tourism.

'DIRTY BAY- WHERE YOU CAN EEK OUT YOUR CRIMINAL FORTUNE AMID PLANKS PAVED WITH GOLD*', screamed the flashy brochures in far off travel agencies ('*Origin of supposed gold ambiguous; purity not guaranteed', whispered the shy footnotes hastily scrawled somewhere hard to find.)
'MEGA-DEAL: ONLY 4 SHIL/CHILD, MONEY BACK GUARANTEED IF THE UNGRATEFUL BRATS ARE SIGNED UP FOR SLAVE TRADE!! OFFER ENDS SOON!!!', pleaded others.

Inevitably, the more cretinous families became transfixed. What better way to spend a mind-numbing week devoid of thought, all under the pretence of being immersed in actual culture? Honeyed words promised rest and recuperation from the nine-to-five daily grind. Pictures showed happy families grinning determinedly through their marital issues alongside bone white sand beaches, blood red cocktails, and slapped-arse pink sunsets. The generic layman of modern society and his spawn of four mediocre proletariats could ask for nothing more. Let the shitty dinner party conversation starters commence!

"But the pirates!" you may think, lower lip wobbling pathetically. "W-Whatever happened to the pirates!? Where will Captain Groutspeck and his band of Raucous Scallywags go to boast their wrong-doings and overall negative effects on civilisation? Where will the World Human Darts Championship be held if not in the scummy drinking dens of Dirty Bay?" Well, for whatever reason, the pirates followed in the footsteps of the Amish, despite hating any group of people vaguely foreign or not inclined to sexually assault the nearest moving object. Technology developed exponentially, but pirates remained the biggest Luddites of them all. As steam power turned to electricity, they shook their shaggy heads, preferring the simple pleasures such as feeling a man's skull gently cave under your fist, or getting so drunk you wake up as a well respected member of the Croatian mafia.

But there was no place for the common pirate anymore. A little thing called motherfucking globalisation came about and blew them out the water, just as they so loved doing to the indigenous populations of Who-Gives-A-Shit. Oil tankers and those absolutely massive boats with crates full of stuff people probably don't need but buy anyway began to dominate the seas- yeah, you know the ones. And soon...

...Soon? They were all put out of business.

The very people who didn't even DO business! The kind of people who maliciously eyed up your business, took a dump on your receptionist's desk, then got away with a 12 million shilling ransom because they happened to have taken hostage the child of the police offer you called. The reign of the pirates ended slowly and painfully.

Tacky shops took over much-loved, age old murder holes and gallows. Cheap hotels with too much plastic and not enough painting sprang up, renovated from pubs dating back further than the wheel. 'The Dirty Bay Strip' stripped the Strip clubs of all they had, and the fat cats got fatter. Soon, even the common wooden signs splattered with innards gave way to gimmicky neon alternatives, each pointing to the nearest, newest night club with assurances of being able to dance naked on the bar.

Pirates were revolted by the sudden increase in quality of life. Tuberculosis morbidity dropped at the rate of murders, and theft was at such an appallingly low rate that people started to actually use wallets and purses again. Most were forced to give up their swashbuckling pursuits of Eudaimonia and took up jobs flipping patties in fast food joints like 'Yahrr! Burgers'. They didn't last long, possibly because they tended to run through anyone who didn't swear every other sentence with a sabre. Many left, seeking out another of the uncountable islands of the World, waiting for the day of the rebellion. Those that did said they'd be back, bigger and better. Those that left spoke in hushed whispers of 'The Chosen One'- a fabled pirate so violent and drunk he'd kill a man just for looking near his rum. Like the mighty phoenix, they said, pirates would rise up in Dirty Bay once more and reclaim the Motherland.

Of course, pirates are notorious for being terribly lazy and bad at planning. Half of them forgot what Dirty Bay even was without the constant reminder of gutted fish attacking their senses. Their numbers dwindled as bar fights broke out and they just sort of withered and died away, much like the numbers of the snow leopard. Modern society reared its ugly head. Pirates never did come back in the end, and you'd probably just get fined for cultural appropriation or something if you tried dressing and acting as one these days.

You can pluck many, many stories on the adventures of pirates in Dirty Bay from its rich past. This, however, is not one of them.

Dirty Bay (Collaborative Content)

one month ago

Here in the Dirty Bay, most of those more civilized folks have a certain... image when they think of the people from the lawless island. Of course its true that most  of the scum in Dirty Bay are messy haired, straggle toothed no for good brigands, but Pretty Pete (a very lame name, I know, but don't say that to his face) is very, very different. He is perhaps the most handsome man the world over. Long, clean golden locks, a face chiseled from stone, piercing eyes, and the deadliest blade in the city. Its what he's known for, even if he doesn't have the scars to show it.

He runs a band of some of the most sought after assassins in the whole of Dirty Bay, and each one marked by their near impeccable beauty. Men and women, young and old these backstabbing, quick bladed devils are the bane of anyone with wealthy enemies. There are stories in every nook of Dirty Bay about Pretty Pete's band, some even say that some men willingly take the blade for a night with one of Pete's enthralling devils. 

Now you might be asking, how do you join this deadly band of friends? First off, you got to be lucky enough to be pretty enough to catch Pete's eye... but not prettier than Pete. Anyone prettier than Pete in Dirty Bay face a simple fate, and that's a quick and jealous blade. Now, if your pretty, but not too pretty, you might just be lucky to be taken in by Pretty Pete and his band of lover and killers. Of course its no easy life, your trained in every subject of murder and pleasure, the tools you'll use to kill.

Its a scary life in Dirty Bay, when any pretty face could be the last face you see... but would that really be all that bad?