The hollers of the crew echoed down from the deck and the ship's movements finally slowed as they reached port. Limping up from below the deck, the grizzled man slowly ambled onto proper land. Civilians shrank away from his advance but lawmen remained nearby, waiting but wary. Everyone knew the man. Well, they knew his ship. The Phantasm, named for its apparent ability to fade in and out of reality at will, was a renowned and infamous ship, a glorious vehicle of sails and weaponry unmatched by any on the open sea.
Of course, it wasn't really any sort of mystical ghost ship. That was all the crew's sweat and the captain's strategic work, moving the ship so swift and silent on the waves that it seemed to be an illusion. And the captain? Nobody even knew his name. Even those in his crew who knew it were threatened with death if they ever spoke it aloud. He knew the reputation of his ship and so he appropriately styled himself after that infamous old pirate Blackbeard. A pirate from beyond the grave heading a ship that may or may not actually exist. The reputation did wonders for their livelihood. And because his ship never left a trace of itself, no lawman had any real proof against him. Most never even remembered what it looked like. Just the name...Phantasm.
This day, however, he wasn't out at sea. Today was a port day. The crew needed supplies and drink and, gods willing, women. The women were often another cause of the fear his presence created. If a woman crossed him, he would often apologize or compliment her with no further incident...But she'd be captive by the next morning. He hoped none would cross him this morning, however...
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