The smell of salt riddled the air as your eyes gazed upon the glaze of sunlight on the open sea. The harsh cries of the local seagulls collide with the crashing of the waves against the pier. You smile at the open view of the ocean that surrounds the boardwalk and give a hearty laugh.

"Now this is what I call home!"

It is currently the year of 1716, a prime time for sailors to explore the open waters. You in particular are about to obtain your first ship. Rogers is your name and you have always been fascinated in the world of the ocean. If it was to sail for merchant goods or to travel for the Queen of your homeland, it did not matter. You wanted to be out on that water and today seems like the perfect opportunity for it.

You hear the creaking of the boards and turn around to meet a man in the usual suit and jacket. His face is rugged and he does not seem to be having the most splendid day.

"What a statement to yell so early in the morning." The man speaks with a demanding voice riddled with a low rasp. He glares at you but you respond in a gleeful nature.

"I just happened to be quite excited. How can the sea not speak wonders to you?" You gesture to the blanket of blue that spreads beyond the dock.

The man scoffs at you and smirks, "The sea only speaks when you are drowning."

You shake your head in disappointment and the man's face become curious. He speaks once more, "Then what are you here for? I assume that you are not just here to sightsee."

Giving the man a nod, you approach him with a gleam in your eyes.

"You do not happen to know where the ships are?"

Suddenly the man brightens up, his demeanor becoming much better than it was a few minutes ago. He speaks with passion, "I happen to be the man for your wants. Come with me and I will show you the finest ships in this dock."

You follow the man who tells you that his name is Sals. He is an admirer of sea vessels and works as a shipbuilder who transports the ships to the docks. He rambles on and on about the different types of ships that he has seen and brags about how excellent the vessels are. You smirk in response to his ecstatic mood as you continue to follow him through the pier.

After a few more minutes, Sals comes to halt then gestures out to the dock with his hand.

“Pick one that tickles your fancy!”

Your eyes widen at the sight before you. Dozens of wooden vessels float seamlessly on the blankets of water. Their sails tucked away and masts standing tall against the blue horizon. Their impressive sizes seeming to swallow the dock and daunt those who dare board their decks. However, there was one that stood out to you.

A single ship with three masts, resting above an incredible body that had cannons protruding all along the sides of the ship itself. The bowsprit proudly projected outward on the front of the ship with the figurehead right below it; a bronze skeleton that seem to be crawling out of hell on the lines holding the sail above the bowsprit. Above all, on the middle mast is a small black flag holstered high up, with the symbol of a skull that seems to be bleeding from its eye sockets.

“Tell me the name of that ship right there.” You point at the vessel that you are gawking at and Sals laughs.

“That ship right there? You have quite the interesting taste.” Sals walks up right beside you and begins to rattle off on the ship itself, telling you what he knows.

“That right there is a frigate class ship, probably built on the Queen’s shores itself. However you probably spotted the black flag up there; it’s quite hard not to spot.” He points to the black flag that waves so effortlessly in the wind. “That is a ‘Jolly Roger’ or that is what the folk around here like to call it.”

You turn to look at him as his words start to register, “A ‘Jolly Roger’?”

He smirks and gestures dramatically at the ship as though he were about to tell a grand story, “Yes! A Jolly Roger! A symbol of the infamous pirates of the seven seas! I have heard that this particular ship was salvaged from a battle near the coastline near here. The pirates on this ship tried to ransack the towns but we got the best of them. Ended up punishing every last one of them and even got their ship as a bonus. Although I assume this ship was not theirs to begin with.”

You stand in awe of the ship, imagining the scenes that Sals had described and how glorious it must have been to have witnessed such an event.

“Does this ship have a name?”

Sals smiles then announces the name grandly, “Vindicta.”

You take in the view of the ship then ask Sals for a price. He nods and gives you a price in which you pay upfront. He gladly takes your money and hands you a few documents to sign. Both of you sit on a nearby table, filling out any papers that you need to in order to confirm you are now the owner of the ship.

While signing the documents, you look at the Jolly Roger once more and ask Sals, “Those pirates… Are they common around these parts?"

Sals begins to think, his face scrunched as he answers your question, “To put it bluntly, yes. They are indeed everywhere, those rats. Pirates are always roaming around these parts, taking lives and ships as though they own the entire sea. They are just dirty sea rats that have no livelihood. I would much rather see them hung out to dry than out on water.”

You notice Sals’ temper building so you bring up another topic before he blows, “Hopefully I do not encounter any but I believe I can fight them off if I were to come across them.”

He laughs and slams the table in amusement although you do not find what you said humourous.

“Good luck in that. Those scum are not your typical man, they are trained in the art of blood and treachery. Yes, we ended up taking this ship from them but not without bloodshed. Those pirates are just ruthless monsters, the whole lot of them. If you were to see one, then I hope God is on your side.”

Sals looks at the Jolly Roger once more, his face once grand now full with hesitation. You do not bother him anymore and sign the papers. He takes them and points to the Vindicta.

“She is all yours. Just take care of her, she is a fine ship and I would not want to see her turn over to those rats again.” He spits and pats your shoulder before walking off into the heart of the pier.

Although feeling a bit offended, you look at the ship once more, your mind filling up with possibilities. You could not believe it, you were about to find yourself on the open sea! You give a grand smile then run off toward your new vessel…