“A Historie of the Pirates of Realmgard” — Greybeard

Dwarves rarely take to the sea. In doing so, Greybeard proved himself both an exceptional Dwarf and an exceptional pirate.

Taking a break from promoting the launch of Fryte’s Gold on Smashwords — which, incidentally, you can find here — to get back into the Historie of the Pirates of Realmgard.

Without further ado, here’s the next pirate:

Traditionally hailing from regions of Realmgard far from the coasts, Dwarves rarely take to the sea. In doing so, the son of a cheesemonger who came to be known as Greybeard proved himself both an exceptional Dwarf and an exceptional pirate.

Born Alois von Käsehändler, though now known almost exclusively by his nickname, Greybeard began travelling across Realmgard in young adulthood, eventually making his way to the Free Cities of the eastern coast and joining a pirate crew out of Arrow Head.

Greybeard’s business acumen and natural leadership soon earned him a place as captain of his own ship and crew.

Though Greybeard did indeed live to a ripe old age, the nickname arose relatively early in his long career, due to his going grey young.

Greybeard was well-known as a tough but fair captain and a leader who did not take unnecessary risks with the lives of his crew. There are many surviving records of the codes of conduct Greybeard expected his crew to abide by.

These codes, with their clearly-stated provisions and equally clear consequences for breach of said provisions, combined with Greybeard’s naturally magnanimous and diplomatic character allowed his crew to resolve any nascent conflicts with peaceful discussion and even-handed compromise, where other crews would inevitably devolve into histrionics, fisticuffs, and childish name-calling.

While Greybeard was perhaps a less audacious pirate than most of Realmgard’s other famous pirates, he nevertheless looms large in the piratical history of Realmgard for the major role he played in the codification of the Lex Antiqua Piratica and the establishment of the Brotherhood of the Coasts to govern the pirates of Realmgard.

Ongoing animosity between many of the leading pirate captains of his time led to Greybeard convoking a conference between them on neutral ground on Roger Island.

This meeting of so many pirate captains is generally regarded as the first meeting of the Brotherhood of the Coasts, though the Brotherhood itself was not officially established until several years later after several further meetings.

The ensuing seven weeks of negotiation were long and difficult, rife with politics, scheming, double-crosses, triple-crosses, fistfights, duels, and murder, though ultimately successful. Famously, Greybeard secured peace with his long-time rival Blackboots through his marriage to Blackboots’ sister. Despite the circumstances, the marriage is noted by historians to have been a happy one.

This, in turn, led to the ratification of the Lex Antiqua Piratica, the governing document of the Brotherhood’s members. Many of its provisions are said to have been taken from Greybeard’s earlier codes of conduct for his own crews.

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