He awoke with a start to the sound of the ship being torn apart by the raging seas. No sooner had he cleared his head, than his body was hit by the crushing water now filling the lower levels of the H.M.S. Pirancon. Swirling darkness encircled him as he struggled to hold onto the last breath he had. The salt stung his eyes and burned at the gaping lacerations on his arms and legs..."This is how my world ends," he thought. "Not with a bang, but a whimper..." and the waterworld around him faded into a dark haze.
He opened his eyes to see himself floating on the water's surface, and before he knew it, the surf threw him into the shallow sands of a beautiful beach. "How did I get here?" he said outloud, half expecting someone to answer him. Emerging from the murky water, the man took in his surroundings. The beach was beautiful and strecthed as far as the eye could see.
Off in the distance he saw what looked like a man walking towards him. Shaking the water out of his ears, and emptying the sand from his pockets, he slowly made his way towards the man approaching him.
"Who are ye, and wha bizness do ye hav here?" the man yelled. "Where ye come from and what be yer name?" "My ship sank and I washed up onto these shores," said the castaway. "And before I tell you anything else, tell me where I am and who you are."
Startled, the man looked more intently at this man who came from the sea and said in a whisper, "I be Captain Brown, Steve if you will, and this here be the isle of TSG. Dis be a bad place, and if ye know what is bes' fer ya, you won' go wanderin' too far from dis 'ere beach. Something wicked is brewin' in the forests and mountains...a stir of creatures and man alike. Sumthin' be stirrin' the life of this place into a right fine mess. If ya don' mind me tellin' ya, this place will kill ya if you not careful...it makes the mind go places that..."
The sentence trailed off and the old man fell to his knees with a vacant expression on his face. The castaway watched as the light faded from his eyes and then fell forward. There they were, a slew of arrows sticking out the man's back. Some unseen enemy had ended this man's life, and they were out there right now looking at him. From the darkness of the trees, the man heard a battle cry, and suddenly, the forest sprung to life with strangely clothed people.Four medieval looking people stood before him with weapons raised ready to strike. The man stood frozen with shock. The leader lowered his axe and walked cautiously over to the man and asked, "How do you know this man? What have you been talking about with him?"
"Honestly, I have no freaking idea who this guy is and why you killed him. My ship sank and..." the brute cut him off and said, "What did he tell you?" The castaway looked puzzled and muttered, "He didn't tell me jack-sh..." "He didn't mention anything about the prize?"
The castaway shook his head in frustration and simply said, "No." The leader of this troupe sauntered back to his friends and whispered amongst themselves for what seemed to be an eternity. In unison they began to laugh and soon the huddle had broken up. Once again, the leader walked over to the castaway with an outstrectched hand and laughed, "Pardon our rude behavior. My name is Conroy, and these traveling with me are the ARB Rejects. We would like you to accompany us on our quest to find the prize. Won't you join us?"
The castaway thought for a moment and recalled what the old man had said about this place being dangerous, and that this was an occasion where there would be strength in numbers. "Yes, I thank you for the offer, and I would enjoy the pleasure of traveling with your formidable ARB crew." The leader of the ARB group smiled and casually asked, "and what may I call you?" The castaway looked over each member of the ARB crew and without looking at Conroy said, "My friends call me Duellie."
'Well Duellie, then let me welcome you to the ARB Rejects. Come, we go to the castle this evening for dinner and entertainment." As they walked through the trees, Duellie realized that he was indeed hungry, and he had the sudden craving for a Regular Roast Beef Sandwich, Curly Fries and a Jamocha shake.