I didn’t necessarily go into this one trying to a write a scene based on my DunSanta picture.
But I did have the idea for “Dunstana gives her crew presents”, so the whole DunSanta thing did sort of naturally follow.
Though, worth noting, that the DunSanta pun only works in the real world (as opposed to in the stories themselves), because they don’t have Santa in Realmgard and the equivalent figure is called Uncle Wintermorn, which doesn’t lend itself as readily to puns…
As usual, Jimena Orceador is filling the role of the sole responsible adult authority figure aboard the ship. As unusual, she’s dressed as a reindeer.
It is Wintermorn, after all.
“I like your antlers, Miss Jimena,” Abrams says to her as he crosses the deck.
“Thank you, Abrams,” Jimena says, not letting the fact she’s dressed like a reindeer aura of rigid disciplinarianism. “Captain Dunstana was quite insistent that I should dress up for Wintermorn.”
“And where is the captain, Miss Jimena?” Abrams asks.
“She’ll be along,” Jimena answers, idly readjusting her antlers. “She just had to make a few stops first.”
Jimena glances over to the port side of the deck.
“Merry Wintermorn, Beasly,” Abrams says to another one of the raiders.
“Merry Wintermorn, Abrams,” Beasly answers.
“I got you a new hat.”
“I got you a new hat!”
“Look out!” Abrams declares suddenly. “We’re being boarded. By… a tiny elderly gentleman.”
“Captain on deck,” Jimena calls to the other Raiders.
“Hey, everybody,” Dunstana says from beneath the furry hat an false beard of her Uncle Wintermorn costume. “It’s me! I’m dressed as Uncle Wintermorn!”
“And, uh, Captain?” Abrams asks. “Who’s that?”
Dunstana glances up at Kat, who has somehow been roped into coming along dressed up a hood, cloak, horns, and big burlap sack.
“Kat’s dressed up as the Kindermampfer,” Dunstana explains. “That’s, like, a Dwarf Wintermorn monster who eats the bad kids. So, you’d all better behave yourselves.”
Kat sighs heavily, rolls her eyes and gives a half-hearted, insincere roar. And also promptly wishes she were anywhere else doing anything else.
“So, anyway,” Dunstana continues. “Since I’m the Captain, I figure it’s my responsibility to remind you all that you’re such a great crew. So, I bought you all presents. I know you guys all like grog, and, well, they were having a sale at the engravers, so I hope you all like mugs.”
“This is for you, Jimena,’ Dunstana says, presenting a mug engraved with World’s Best First Mate.
“Thank you, Captain,” Jimena says.
“Merry Wintermorn, Jimena.”
“Merry Wintermorn, Captain.”
“I like your antlers.”
“Thank you, Captain.”
As Dunstana continues to work her way around the deck, handing out her hoard of personalised mugs, Jimena watches the other Raiders.
“Which mug did you get, Williams?” Blackwood asks the pirate standing next to him.
“World’s Best Notary Public.”
“You are a very good Notary Public, Williams.”
“Well, I did notarise the Captain’s Associate Member of the Brotherhood of the Coasts status.”
“And this is for you, Abrams,” Dunstana says.
“Wow. World’s Best Mug. Really, Captain? For me?” Abrams asks in amazement.
“Merry Wintermorn, Abrams,” Dunstana says, before moving on to Beasly.
“Why does he get the World’s Best Mug, Captain?” Beasly asks indignantly. “That’s not fair!”
“Well, this is for you, Beasly,” Dunstana says.
“World’s Other Best Mug,” Beasly reads. “Thank you, Captain. You’re always so considerate.”
“Merry Wintermorn, Beasly,” Dunstana says.
“Merry Wintermorn, Captain.”
Dunstana starts moving to the rest of the Raiders.
“Mine’s better,” Abrams mutters.
“It is not!” Beasly protests.
I’m not crazy about the actual narrative in this one, but I do love most of the lines of dialogue, so I think it succeeds more than it fails.
Reminder that tomorrow will see a preview chapter of The Alchemist of Middlesbrooke.
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