The Sea of Shadows

In the Temple of the Kraken

Excerpt from a letter addressed to the London Royal University department of natural sciences

…The time I’ve spent aboard the HMS Lightbringer has been most enlightening so far! So many new, exciting things out here to discover every day. I think I may even have come across a previously unknown marine species! Enclosed you’ll find drawings and notes I made. Would have sent samples too, but the thing’s pretty massive!

Right now, we’re anchored at the Temple of the Kraken, and it is a truly magnificent place. I can’t even begin to describe the size and scope the temple, it’s amazing that mortals could have built something like this. In any case, there’s lots of things to repair and resupply after Captain Wellington nearly blew out the ship’s engines getting us away from a void storm. But don’t worry, I’m perfectly fine! Though I certainly wish I don’t have to see one of those storms again any time soon.

To be honest, I am more worried for one of our passengers that was hurt quite bad during our journey here. I did my best to treat his wounds while we were at sea, but so far it seems likely that an infection will soon set in and make his condition worse. To add to my fears, I couldn’t find the medical supplies needed from the marketplace here, so I ended up hiring a local shaman to help make him better.

Now, I’m sure that it seems weird to hire a faith healer to do the work of a surgeon, but after all I’ve seen so far, I think it’s not an unreasonable assumption. This world is truly strange, deities work in more direct and observable ways here; just recently, I’m certain I even witnessed a minor case of divine retribution right before my own eyes! The locals offered us a ritual they called a “purification,” and while I mostly agreed out of curiosity, my opinion of it all changed when the ship’s cook was slapped by disembodied tentacles after he mistakenly violated the sanctity of the place.

All in all, I have hope that things will take a turn for the best. We’ll be setting sail again soon, towards another one of the locals’ holy places. Next time I get the chance, I’ll be sure to write another letter and tell you people all about that! I’ll including more field notes, too!

Hand-drawn image of a thing that looks like some kind of crab, with text highlighting anatomical features

A very strange thing indeed! I can say with a fair amount of certainty that it’s poisonous; despite that, the locals use it to make stuff that seems to be their equivalent of moonshine. Sampled some at the market, and it’s not bad at all!

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MikkoK Sambs

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