I’ve been drawing a lot on my iPad Pro lately, so I thought it would be a nice change to go back to paper for a bit. Here’s the map I came up with, and I think it turned out well. The top version has a digitally added background (an old paper texture), but the bottom version is a pure vanilla scan from my paper journal.
The Island Seis
The Island Seis is not your typical tourist destination. Rowdy pirates? Check. Dour swamp? Thirsty mosquitoes? Malicious voodoo witches? Check. Check. Check. But then, these nasty factors work in favour of those who hang out here. It’s an unwelcoming pirate haven, slightly, but not too far off from, some very lucrative trade routes. And that suits the inhabitants just fine.
Seis has two ports: Crapola and Port Fyshbite. Both towns are located within a protective lagoon, Crapola to the southwest and Port Fyshbite to the northeast.
Crapola has about 500 permanent residents, and about twice that number of visitors who are conducting business, trading pirated goods or hiding their sorry asses from folks who enjoy nailing asses to walls.
The name of the town stems from the pitiful fact that it is situated below a plateau. On top that plateau are a handful of freshwater lakes which leak off in every direction, pulling along mud, silt and less pleasant stuff and subsequently washing this shite over the edge and dropping it onto the town below. Constant splattering sounds can be heard as one walks the boarded streets of Crapola, and all locals use the phrase “scwapp” whenever someone close by is hit by muck, in order to convey their sympathy. More than a few visitors have incurred the wrath of a Crapolan for not uttering “scwapp” when appropriate.
There is no one ruler of Crapola, but a loose council of captains and merchants. The major players in Crapola are:
- Cap’n Juliana Greasepalms. She runs a large tavern (The Fat Stiff Inn), a moneylender, two large warehouses, and a small fleet of ships. Juliana enjoys making people trust her, then put them in debt and never, ever let them go.
- Commander Gaah. A tidy small man with a pince-nez and a large black top hat. He is an accomplished necromancer and runs only a single, large ship (The “Macabre”) so packed with zombies and ghouls that few dare stand before its charge. Gaahs crew isn’t allowed to set foot in Crapola, but he’s usually accompanied by a couple of brawny and well trained ghoulish mates on all occasions anyway.
- Silpert Solfax. Head of the pirate gang Silpert Solfax Solution, AKA “Trippel S”. He owns twelve big and small pirate vessels and is an easy going but very ruthless man. It is said that he cannot lie, which there might be some truth to as he often seems to speak exactly what he’s thinking, albeit often as mutterings in a strange language.
- Lily, more often referred to as “Frikkin’ Lilly”. She is an ancient sorceress running three fast and effective ships. Everybody knows she’s using demons in her service and some say she’s made a pact with Davy Jones himself. Others whisper that a devil taught her how to open The Veil, and she uses power from Beyond to fuel her crew and ships. One thing is for certain, whenever Lily enters, those present tend to shut up.
Port Fyshbite is a slightly smaller and more laid back town than Crapola. They’re in constant competition to their neighbours and – for obvious reasons – refer to Crapolans as shithats. They are the “little brothers” on the island, but furiously refuse to accept that fact.
However, unbeknownst to most locals, the town is constructed on top of an old tomb. The entity laid to rest here was not buried willingly, so a powerful death spell was put on it in order to keep it dead. All that death has to come from somewhere, so the spell funnels death from the townspeople and into the tomb. Living in a low death-pressure zone incurs the benefit of being less likely to die, and so the people of Port Fyshbite have a tendency to survive even the most gruesome injuries.
This evasion of death, even though it’s involuntary, has come the attention of certain strict supernatural authorities, who may or may not have a look into the matter shortly.
Major players in Port Fyshbite are:
- Maximilian Drake. A charismatic and once-pure knight who fell under the spell of the local siren/succubus named Lady Marlin. She has him on a leash, and he plunders away, convinced he’s doing it all for Love and The Greater Good.
- El Plato. Pirate captain running the gang called “Mystique”. They usually operate by summoning fiends from the deep, then plundering their prey while they’re busy fending off a huge octopus or something equally unpleasant. El Plato himself always wears a visored full plate armour (even when at sea), so nobody’s exactly sure who or what’s inside the metal suit.
- Sergeant Wally Cannonballs. Ah, good ole’ glassy-eyed Wally. An imperial navy officer who one day just snapped and turned pirate. Shortly after, he got impaled by a figurehead. Wether he survived the incident or not is beside the point. His body is still walking about, shouting orders, and that baleful parrot of his named “Crackahead” is still sitting on his shoulder, screaming obscenities. A common rumour has it that Crackahead has somehow animated Wallys corpse to do its bidding.
- Madame Wicca. She is the most likeable of the three witches hanging out in the swamp, on the northwest end of the island. She claims to be in full command of all beasts and birds of Seis. The steep price she demands for allowing any sort of travel by land between Crapola and Port Fyshbite is the reason most choose to go by boat. Just doing business with Madame Wicca or the other two witches is enough to give even the most hardy pirate a reason to reconsider his options. For some unknown, creepy reason, Madame Wicca can usually be found hanging out by the old gallows at dusk.
Here’s the backgroundless version of the map, in case that’s more to your fancy: