Part 1:

Part 2:

Mudrend landed in a pile of hay. The rest of the bandits landed too. They began to make their way through the caverns towards the outpost. When Mudrend looked at the outpost, he recoiled in horror! Dead bandits were lying everywhere, killed by harpoons, Currentpedos, spears, crossbows all kinds of things. What had happened here? There were only 4 dead Rawrans.

“The Rawrans obliterated our brothers!”

One bandit roared. He was a lowbowlid and looked fiercer then Kelthunge.

They will pay blood for what this!”

The brutish thin axe guy that prevented Mudrend from passing said. They all cheered. The gang began to set up camp, not knowing how long they'd be here guarding. Mudrend recognized some of the bandits. There was Nobsnat, the axe guy, Nayorid, Riverwood, and many others Mudrend didn’t recognise. The Waters were silent for a moment. Then all of a sudden, a Currentpedo rocketed up the caverns.

“Boom!” It exploded, slaying 3 bandits and destroying part of the outpost. Mudrend and the bandits roared and scrambled for their weapons. Just then, another Currentpedo erupted, doing even more damage. In the chaos, Rawrans hurled harpoons, that hooked onto the ledge of the outpost. They began climbing. “Cut the ropes!”

One of the bandits shouted.

“No, let them climb up.”

The axe guy, who's name Mudrend had found out was Snar, responded.

"That way, they will pay all the more dearly."

Some bandits tried to cut the ropes. Mudrend himself used his sickle to unhook the Rawran’s harpoons.

The fight continued. Mudrend, Nobsnat, and Riverwood attempted to unhook the harpoons. Mudrend unhooked 1, causing the Rawran to fall back into the water.

“What are you doing here?”

Mudrend asked Riverwood. He felt a little worried, since a cat could get hurt.

“Don’t underestimate me!”

Riverwood responded, as if reading his mind. Riverwood swung his claws in a flurry, knocking back a climbing Rawran. Snar whirled his ax and cut down another. Nayorid duelled with a strange frog like creature. Mudrend continued unhooking the harpoons. Just then, Nayorid whacked the frog like creature using his staff and caused it to fly out of the caverns. Even Mudrend couldn’t see the creature anymore.

“How did you do that?”

Mudrend was amazed and fearful. Nayorid didn’t answer. Just then, the Rawrans fell back and a new troop of 17 Rawrans busted in.

“Look out!”

The leader of Mudrend’s squad said. Suddenly, Mudrend realized why the Rawrans weren't attacking. It was to make the bandits attack first, so that they could lure more bandits to their deaths. The leader thrust his spear, killing a Rawran with ease. But more harpoons were being launched onto the shores. Rawrans were climbing faster than ever. One of them grabbed a bandit and pulled him into the water.

“Rawrans are stronger in the water!”

Mudrend thought. While they were more than able combatants on the land, their true talents solidified in saltwater.

After a couple hours, the Rawrans retreated again. This time, they didn’t come back. Snar wanted to sail to the Rawran camp and slaughter all of them, but Redspear ordered him and the rest to stay here. Suddenly, coming through the caverns were hordes of Seascales! The Rawrans had lured the monstrous beasts into the cavern!

“We can’t fight them all!” Redspear yelled, “Retreat to higher ground!”

The bandits were quick to obey. They knew they couldn’t beat those savage seascales. It was then that Mudrend noticed something horrible! Every seascale bore a Rawran as a rider! Mounted upon a stormscale, most dangerous of all seascales, was the Rawran leader. Everyone stopped, too afraid to move. The leader of all the Rawrans was here! But it wasn’t Sharkspear. This one had an eyepatch.

“The leader is definitely the Rawran King.”

Redspear stammered.

“I've met him before.”

“Puny Bandits.”

The leader said to them.

“My name is Sarkalas, leader of the Rawrans! All of you guys are terrified, since we have the power to control Seascales! Accept it, you stinking lot, if you continue fighting against me and my pack of Rawrans, you are all going to die! So why don’t you surrender all of your weapons and allow us to claim Sinismanor.”


Redspear roared, finding his voice at last.

“Sinismanor is too valuable for us to lose! We will never give up Sinismanor!”

The bandits echoed his sentiment. Grinning, Sarkalas roared,

“Seascales, Rawrans, attack!”

Seascales started leapt onto the shores! Rawrans joined them, brandishing their cutlasses, harpoons, and spears. Many others launched Currentpedos that smashed into the shores. The bandits ran, Mudrend nearly getting crushed by the panicking crowd. When they finally made it, Mudrend felt relived. But more Rawrans were crawling onto the land, though the seascales, being fish, didn't follow. The bandits ran into the Railtunnels and in an instant, they had reached Siege Keep. Stabarrel and the other bandits who had stayed behind were waiting.

“Those Raw-“

Snar panted.

“They could control sea-“

He gasped for air.

“Seascales, we know.”

Stabbarrel answered, face grim.

“It seems impossible. Us humans have been trying to tame the beats for years. How could the Rawrans do it? Seascales are harder to control than piranhas in a frenzy."

“Don't give up hope. Even though they have seascales, they lack inventions!”

Indoran shouted.

“I’ve got a secret weapon!”

Indoran reached into a pocket and pulled out a strange orange glass ball. Mudrend looked closely at the ball, interested. The other bandits staggered back, horrified. “Are you really going to use the Firebomb, Indoran?”

Even Stabarrel's voice wobbled.

“That thing could very well turn the tide of this war, but at the cost of all our lives!”

Mudrend grew worried too, even if he had never heard of a Firebomb. He asked Nayorid.

“What’s a Firebomb?”

“I’ve never seen one in action.” Nayorid said, "Only the greatest of alchemists like Indoran can craft one. But I've heard that one can destroy a whole ship. Those things cause tremendous amounts of damaged.” Mudrend was definitely frightened now. "Don’t throw the Firebomb!”

They all shouted in unison.

“Quiet down!” Stabarrel roared.

“Sometimes, sacrifices must be made.” Indoran stood at the edge of the wall, gazing down at the Rawrans and bandits below. Without further ado, he hurled the Firebomb in one swift motion. Boom!”

The ball exploded, sending jets of flame across the sky. For a second, Mudrend could see nothing but fire, hear nothing but fire. Then the shrieks of Rawrans, seascales, and bandits raced across Sinismanor. When the smoke faded away, the sea was filled with slain Seascales, Rawrans, and bandits. Mudrend was aghast. Of all Sinismanor’s defences, this was the most wicked and destructive of. The good news was that some of the most savage seascales, like Gorerudders, Doomserpents, and Sandshooters were killed. The bad news was that most of the deck had been burnt to ash. Fires were still burning, and many bandits lay killed or wounded in the first blast. “That was my only one.” Indoran told Stabbarel. All of a sudden, all the Rawrans started swimming toward the decks. A wave of bandits went out to meet them.

It was then that Mudrend remembered his escaping plans. He slipped away and ran down the stairs. He was met by 8 Rawrans blocking the passageway. They fired harpoons. One of them wrapped around Mudrend! Mudrend was puled towards the ocean!

“If those Rawrans pull me into the ocean, I’m done!”

“All of you!”

A Rawran yelped. The Rawrans attacking Mudrend, as well as 23 others looked up. “Don’t spent your time hunting wolfbait! We have to get serious hunting!”

The Rawrans swam away.

“I’ll take care of you, boy!” The Rawran who had shouted thrusted a rapier at Mudrend. Mudrend rolled away just as the Rawran fired a crossbow. “Come, Fangarang!” A Rawran yelped back at the Rawran who was attacking Mudrend. “We have a problem!”

"Almost done!” Fangarang called, with a leer at Mudrend.

“This is the end for you, boy!”

Fangarang thrust his rapier forward. It jsut barely scraped his shoulders. Mudrend felt a stab of pain. That there was no more dodging Fangarang’s attacks. In a panick, he slashed Fangarang with his sickkle.

“How dare you, puny landcreature.”

Fangarang roared.

“Once I’ve killed you, I will join my troops and conquer Sinismanor!”

He roared with anger and began making a flurry of stabs. Mudrend dodged them and sliced again. This time, the cut he made was deeper. Fangarang roared in agony, as he fell down into the water dead. Mudrend had killed the Rawran. Relief broke over him. Just then, Riverwood dropped in.

“I saw you just killed Fangarang, one of the army's commanders. You did great.”

“Can I ask you a question?” To calm down, Mudrend asked Riverwood.

“Go ahead!”

“What’s your relationship with Stabarrel, the bandits, and Indoran?”

“I am Indoran’s pet cat.”

“Why do the bandits and Indoran want to claim Sinismanor?”

Mudrend said to Riverwood.

“Long ago,” Riverwood said to Mudrend.

“Me and my master arrived at Sinismanor.” Riverwood paused.

“No one knew where he came from. I know, but it's a secret.” “Oh.” Mudrend didn’t care if Indoran came from outer space, he was just curious about Sinismanor. “So.”

Riverwood continued.

“Indoran came into Saltcross. As you probably know, a family lived there known as the Sinismanor family.”

“I would have liked to meet them.”

“The Sinismanors disappeared mysteriously, without selling their house, so it's technically still theirs. Indoran didn’t want annyone disturbing him. So he spread rumours about Sinismanor being haunted! It does have pests and vermin, but haunted? Indoran made that up.”

“What did happen to the Sinismanors?”

Mudrend asked.

“They could have been killed or they got in a scandal and left in the night, or they joined a bunch of colonist headed to the poles. Who knows?”

Riverwood responded.

“So anyway, after people began leaving Sinismanor alone, Indoran moved in. He's turned Sinismanor into his home, his stronghold, and his alchemy lab all in one. But he's not gonna stay for long. Indoran had heard about a secret room where the Sinismanors kept all their beloved treasure. He wants to find it and claim wealth, fame, and power. Then he'll leave Sinismanor for the bandits. He and Stabarrel have a truce, you know.”

“So that’s why doesn’t want me to leave. He just wants to make sure no one else gets the treasure before him. When did the Sinismanors leave?”

“Probably a couple decades ago.”

Riverwood answered noncommitally. Mudrend sensed that Riverwood didn't want to talk about it, but he really wanted to know.

"Why did the Sinismanors want to leave anyway if Sinismanor was so amazing?"

"My theory? The Sinismanors went on vacation and never came back. That’s as much as I can tell you. Everything else is secret.”

Riverwood tipped his head and dashed away. Mudrend continued his escape. He caught sight of the crocodile. What was it doing here? Was it trying to eat him? Mudrend hurried away, but to his surprise, the crocodile ignored him.

The crocodile didn’t attack Mudrend for a certain reason. It had smelt the blood of the battle and had swam here from far off, hoping to get a good meal. It caught sight of a young boy dashing through the docks. That could fill its belly for a week. It was about to attack when Fangarang's body floated by. It turned its attention to that, jaws thrust wide in hunger.

Why was it so hard for Mudrend to escape from Sinismanor? He continued running with all his might. At the end of the decks was a pathc of ocean, then Saltcross–so close, yet so far. Rawrans were firing harpoons straight at Mudrend, who had to weave and duck and eventually retreat. So Sinismanor was on a remote island! He would never leave Sinismanor unless he swam, which would mean certain death. There was only one way out–the passageway Mudrend came from. He had fallen through a hole to enter Sinismanor in the first place. At once, Mudrend dashed through the docks. It seemed like a blur. Mudrend passed the First Floor. He ran through Crate level. There were tons of crates. Each were filled with strange alchemic reagents. He looked around Crate level. This was probably where he had landed. He went through the tunnel and found the spot he dug. He descended slowly, using his sickle as an anchor. Then Mudrend noticed something brown. Quickly, he brushed away the dirt, revealing a door. It door was next to the place Mudrend fell. How could he have missed it? He opened the door. A stone staircase awaited him. It led upwards. Curiosity overcoming self-preservation, Mudrend crept up the stairs. At the end of the stairs was an empty room. A small chute in the centre of the room led down. It was probably 12ft down. Mudrend looked down the chute. He could not see the bottom of it. Slowly, he crawled down the chute.

Mudrend arrived in an enormous round cave, large enough to fit three full-decked ships. Then he gaped–inside was a huge treasure hoard. Thousands of coins filled the room, enough to buy Saltcross 4 times over. Beautiful statues made from pure gold were scattered across the room, gazing with empty eyes at him. Rare coins with dragons, seascales, and all sorts of great people and animals were scattered amongst the plain coins. A wonderful carved portrait of a savage dragon, labeled "Kalasaur" was perched against the wall beside him. Their were even portraits of famous places, like the Savagewoods, Thrustwater, Welldrown, and a fabulous Saltcross sunset. A map of Saltcross made by the legendary cartographer Enfryn was also there.

“This must the Sinismanor family treasure.”

Mudrend breathed. He was so amazed that he failed to notice the many bloodstains on the walls (there was even a skeleton with an eyepatch on the ground, but the glory of the treasure covered it up). He faintly wondered why didn’t the Sinismanors bring the treasure with them. Perhaps they were in such a hurry. Then Mudrend paused, caution taking precedence over greed. Surely, there was some catch to this. How could he find the treasure so easily, when Indoran had spent years searching for it? He thought of taking some. Mudrend couldn’t take all of the gold by himself, but he could tell Indoran about where it was. If he told Indoran, Indoran would take the treasure for himself. On the other hand, if he took a little and kept it secret, the treasure he didn't take would rot away in the dust. Mudrend decided to take a little and keep it secret. Mudrend looked at all of the treasure and caught sight of a portrait. It was a portrait of the same young boy playing a lyre. It was decorated in golden colouring. Mudrend strapped it to his back and climbed back up the chute.

As Mudrend walked outside of the stairs, muscular hands grabbed him and a blindfold wrapped around him.

“You’re coming with me, boy.”

Mudrend was too scared to move. The figure dropped him onto some strange area and tied him to something. Mudrend ripped off his blindfold. He was on a ship. An old rusty ship. The words “The Scavenging Saltshark” were emblazoned the side of the ship. Tied to the mast with him was another fellow, in his early twenties. Stabarrel was at the captain's wheel, while Rubblecrash glowered at them both.

“What have you got there, Rubblecrash?”

“The boy who fell into Sinismanor.”

“Indoran would like to meet with you.”

Stabarrel said slyly to Mudrend. Mudrend gulped. Did Indoran somehow know about the treasure? He examined his surroundings a little more. There were tons of prisoners, guards, and cargo. Some of the cargo were labeled with a skull. Others were labeled with “Do not open.” Or “It will mean your end if you open this.” They didn’t look the stuff you'd buy at a normal market. Mudrend tried to peer inside the crates. Inside were more Firebombs. There were even poisons! Crossadder venom, Venompent venom, Sandpour, and even Voidwyrm poison. How the bandits got Voidwyrm poison was a mystery. Mudrend peered into another crate which was full of seven spear launchers, Bloodbows with knives instead of arrows, small catapults, even hydracannons that shot 8 cannonballs at once. Mudrend thought he even saw a 38 spear launcher, but he wasn’t sure. There was a huge metal ball labeled “Thunderspiker”. When thrown, it would send caltrops and ball bearings flying in all directions–he had seen it in action at the battle. But why were the bandits having all these weapons? For a second, he thought that the bandits might be planning an invasion on Saltcross. But an even better suggestion was that the bandits were selling these to other criminals. In the meantime, Stabbarel gave a speech.

“Many of us have been chased out from Sinismanor. But thankfully, we have rescued most of our goods. The bandits who were left behind are most likely dead, but we can avenge them by launching an attack!” Many of the bandits cheered and threw their ale.

Indoran arrived later, during the afternoon.

“Why have you brought me here?” Indoran asked.

“This boy came from a strange door. He might be hiding the treasure of Sinismanor away from you."

Indoran perked up, gazing fiercely at Mudrend.

“Where is the treasure of Sinismanor?”

He demanded. Mudrend had no choice.

“It’s by the wall.”

Indoran and Rubblecrash left quickly. But a few minutes later, they came back, livid.

“There is no door on the wall!”

“Rubblecrash knows where it is.”

It was true–Rubblecrash had captured him at the site of the treasure.

“Where is it?”

Indoran asked Rubblecrash.

“I brought this boy to the Scavenging Saltshark for you.”

Rubblecrash responded.

“Somehow, it sealed itself up.”

"Destroy the wall then!”

Indoran roared.

“I’ve waited 40 long years to find Sinismanor’s treasure. A simple sealing mechanism won't stop me now!”

Rubblecrash and Kelthunge went off, with Indoran leading the way.

As soon as they were gone, there was a great “Boom!” A cannon had hit the ship! The Rawran leader,riding upon a Gorestor, was heading to the sinking ship. Gorestors were Seascales with a special bone called the cannonbone, that allowed them to launch cannonballs made out of their own bones.


Another cannonball slammed into the Scavenging Saltshark. They were even deadlier than Currentpedoes. Water poured in, faster than could be bailed. The Scavenging Saltshark was sinking.


Stabbarel’s second in command, named Rendersine, yelped.


Stabberel roared, eyes wide with wrath.

“The Scavenging Saltshark is too valuable to abandon. It has all our cargo in it!"

Reluctantly, Rendersine ordered the men to fight. At once, bandits began patching up the leaks.

“We should release the prisoners so they can fight, you know.”

Kelthung and Nobsnat suggested to Stabbarel.

“Fine! Cut them free!”

He snapped. Several bandits untied Mudrend and the rest. Many prisoners rushed to patch the leak including Mudrend. But one Sea-elf prisoner refused to be untied.

“Never will I be saved by your notorious gang, Stabbarel!”

The seaelf rebuked.

“It’s your problem, then.”

Stabbarel retorted, as he fended off 4 Rawrans with his cutlass.

“Why don’t you go free?”

Mudrend asked the Sea-elf.

“Because if I go free, I have to help these stinking bandits fight against the Rawrans. In truth, I dislike both the bandits and the Rawrans.”

“How did you get caught by them?”

The seaelf might also have fallen into Sinismanor.

“I was just swimming by Sinismanor when they grabbed me and tied me to their ship.”

He grumbled.

“You seem like a curious kid, what’s your name?”

“Mudrend. What might be yours?”

“Navarre Slashshell.”

Mudrend continued fixing the leaks. Endless swarms of Rawrans were climbing aboard the Scavenging Saltshark. Snar and Redspear slaughtered hundreds of them, more were still pouring onto the ship. The leader of the Rawrans, whose name Mudrend later found out was =, was watching from the back of his Gorestor, continuing to fire the cannonballs. Hundreds of bandits and thugs fired arrows and swung blades. The Rawrans, who had an overwhelming number advantage, were charging too, armed with Currentpedos and harpoons. Mudrend ducked as a Currentpedo exploded in the sky, causing showers of debris raining down.

“Sinismanor will fall!”

Sarcalast hissed.

“And so will the poles once we conquer this mansion!”

“Sinismanor will not fall!”

Stabbarel shouted bravely.

“Sinismanor will stand, against the Rawrans, against the Pyanerins, against the Merfolk, even against the Carnassiouges!”

Another cannonball was fired at the Scavenging Saltshark. This one was much bigger than what had hit the ship before. Mudrend and the other leak patchers were having a had time fixing the leak. Many more Rawrans were crawling into Sinismanor and the boat. Eventually, Navarre reluctantly accepted help from the bandits. Rawrans were firing more Currentpedos and arrows than ever. One Rawran lunged and attempted to steal some cargo, only to be cut down by Snar’s giant axe. But it wasn’t just the Rawrans who were dangerous. The Rawrans with seascales continued to attack the Scavenging Saltshark. The seascales swam towards the ship with great hunger. One seascale even bit Stabbarel’s leg before getting stabbed between the eyes. And worse, the crocodile was patrolling the waters around Sinismanor, killing and devouring all it could catch. This included seascales, bandits, and even lone Rawrans. Indoran, Rubblecrash, and Kelthunge returned with a few bags, then promptly set them down upon seeing the situaion. Indoran launched some of his bombs, killing tens of Seascales and Rawrans at once. Mudrend looked back at Sinismanor. Much of it had been flooded. Other Rawrans had flooded Sinismanor, while the bandits were occupied with the battle. This was a cruel and creative tactic. Many bandits back at the mansion were drowned by the flood, while the Rawrans ate any who survived.

“The Rawrans are flooding Sinismanor!”

Mudrend said to Indoran. The alchemist muttered a curse.

“Those Rawrans are going to steal the treasure of Sinismanor! All bandits, retreat and defend Sinismanor!”

I'm the captain, not you! And what about our goods!”

Stabbarel snapped back.

“if those Rawrans steal our goods, all our business will be ruined!”

“I don’t care about your pathetic business! The treasure of Sinismanor is much more important!”

Both were getting more than a little testy. Indoran leapt off the Scavenging Saltshark to save his treasure–only to be washed away by the flood.

"Help! Help!" He called as the waters washed him into the manor. “That reckless old fool–now he needs rescue.”

Stabbarel groaned.

“Kelthunge, Mudrend, Swordleg, Nobsnat, Serpent-slasher, Riverwood, Rubblecrash, go find that old skeleton.”


The squad was given a small canoe. Mudrend had barely enough room to squeeze in. He didn’t really want to rescue Indoran, but he didn't want to face Stabarrel's ire. As they sailed across through Sinismanor, they found that nearly every single room and passage was flooded with water.

“Sinismanor had indeed fallen!”

Nobsnat groaned.

“Who'd have ever thought those stupid Rawrans could do it?”

“Be quiet Nobsnat!”

Swordleg roared.

“we'll also rescue any bandit we see.”

As the canoe floated on, Mudrend began to feel a little hopeless too. Much of Sinismanor was now a wasteland. The bricks and wood were wrecked; blasted into bits on by Currentpedos and other deadly weapons. Countless bandit corpses were floating by, and those were just the ones not eaten already by the Rawrans or the crocodile. The party occasionally tussled against roving bands of Rawrans. Although most Rawrans were celebrating their victory over Sinismanor and the bandits, there were still bands of Rawrans hunting the last surviving bandits. Mudrend and their group rescued some surviving bandits, who squeezed into the canoe as best they could. Seascales swam through Sinismanor hunting for any creature they came across. And the crocodile looking more sinister than ever still ate anything it spotted. At last, they caught sight of Indoran.

“So you finally arrived!”

Indoran snapped, looking rather annoyed than happy.

“Shouldn’t you be a little more relieved?”

Swordleg shook his head. Indoran was surrounded by several smaller seascales. They included Rocket-hammers, Runjaws, and Broad-head-chompers. Indoran was killing many with his alchemist-scorchers, but the monsters were wearing him down.

“Climb in and let’s head back to Stabarrel!”


Indoran hissed.

“the lost treasure of the Sinismanor family is in that hole right over there!”

He pointed to the hole, now submerged under the water.

“What did you say? You have to obey Captain Stabbarel’s orders! He is the master of this house.”

“Nonsense!” Indoran hissed back. “I was here before you murderous bandits!”

“The Sinismanors probably came here first before any of us.”

Mudrend thought. Then again, maybe it was the pesky snats to came to Sinismanor first.

“Why doesn’t anyone try to swim under into the hole?”

Mudrend asked.

“'Cause it’s too deep!”

Indoran snapped.

"Don't ask silly questions, boy."

Rubble observed the scene and nodded to himself. He raised a club and smashed a hole through the wall. Water drained away through the new hole, bringing the boat and Indoran downwards into the treasure vault.

Mudrend and the rest arrived in the treasure vault. The room was flooded of course, but the treasure still seemed magnificent.

“This is the treasure I’ve wanted for my entire life!”

Indoran said greedily, reaching his hands to scoop up some coins.

“Hold on just a moment...”

Swordleg leered at the alchemist.

"Stabarrel gave us secret orders to fulfill once the treasure was found. The orders were to kill you and take the treasure for ourselves!”

Swordleg ran his finger down his rapier belovedly.

“We only kept you around for your bombs and to help us find the gold. Now you aren’t needed anymore. Bandits, attack!”

“How dare you backstab me!”

Indoran roared.

“This room shall be your tomb!”

The treasure room was engulfed in fighting. Bandits were attacking Indoran, as well as Kelthunge, Riverwood, and Rubblecrash, who sided with the alchemist. Mudrend tried to avoid the fight, but the bandits were treating him like he was on Indoran’s side. Indoran emptied his alchemist-scorcher and threw a match. The alchemist-scorcher was a special type of oil. When lit, the fire would last for a couple hours, burning even underwater. The alchemist-scorcher nearly missed Mudrend and erupted on the wall, creating a small fire. Neither side seemed to be winning. Just then, Mudrend noticed a couple of Rawrans peering down at them. They quickly swam away.

“They’re going to tell their leader!”

Mudrend yelled, as a cutlass meant for Kelthunge whizzed past his ear. None of them paid any attention to him. The bandits were beginning to weaken.

“Shouldn’t we try to work together against the Rawrans? They'll be here like any second, and none of you will get a cent of the treasure if that happens!”

Once again, no one paid attention. Then it was too late. Sarcalast, flanked by 56 Rawrans, arrived in the treasure vault. At this, the bandits and Indoran finally noticed the Rawrans!

“So finally you guys notice!”

Mudrend exclaimed, rather scared and annoyed. He had hoped both Indoran and the bandits were to team up to fight against the Rawrans. But now, the bandits and Indoran were fighting with the Rawrans as well as each other. Mudrend managed to dodge a harpoon shot from a Rawran, who was then burned down by one of Indoran’s alchemist-scorchers. More Rawrans swam in, hungry for a good fight. The bandits and Indoran were vastly outnumbered.

“All of you should stop fighting, or the Rawrans will kill every single one of us!”

Mudrend gave up after his third attempt. One of the bandits hurled a signal flare to alert the rest of the bandit, just barely flying outside the treasure vault.

“That’s good.”

Mudrend thought. If the bandits were trying to signal for help, then perhaps Stabbarel and the rest of the bandits would come help them.

Then there was a crash. Everyone looked up to see the tattered remains of the Scavenging Saltshark sail into the treasure room, clipping off her mast in the process.

“Defend Sinismanor!”

Stabbarel, voice now hoarse, yelped along with his bodyguards Snar and Rendersine. They came with many reinforcements, who leapt off the ship to join the fight. A collective cheer rose up among both the newcomers and the ones already fighting.

“Fire the Bloodbows!”

Stabbarel ordered. Mudrend curled up into a ball and hoped the bandits wouldn’t shoot him. Luckily, they didn’t. 2 of the Bloodarrows stabbed into a Rawran, who fell down shrieking with pain. The other one hit Indoran. He didn't scream with pain like the others. Indoran didn’t seem to notice, and kept hurling bombs. Before Mudrend could dwell on this, he noticed that more Rawrans were pouring in. The bandits' flare also attracted the Rawrans, who came crashing in with harpoons and Currentpedoes. They rode on seascales of all shapes and sizes.

The treasure room was thrown into chaos. Bandits were clashing with anyone they could see, Indoran threw bombs willy-nilly, wreaking havoc on everyone within throwing distance. Rawrans stabbed and chomped with hungry and delight. Seascales hunted and killed all they could find. The treasure was trod upon and splattered with blood. One bandit kicked a precious China vase to the side, where it smashed into pieces. Another Rawran used a Danarié portrait as a shield from Riverwood's claws. And Mudrend had to keep dodging attacks. He didn’t really want to hurt anyone with his Swoophook, unlike what he had done mercilessly to Fangarang. The vermin of Sinismanor, who had moved in right after the Sinismanors had left and knew the place far better than Indoran or the bandits, joined the fight. And the crocodile slithered amongst the fray, seraching for any injure creature to finish off. One injured Rawrans stumbled outside the treasure vault and was devoured by the crocodile. One bandit mistook Mudrend for a Rawran and fired a Bloodbow which was about to hit him when Nayorid deflected the arrow with his staff.


Mudrend breathed.

“You’re welcomed.”

Nayorid replied, before he leapt to face one of Indoran's summoned homunculi. Mudrend scaled the walls quickly. Not many would think to aim there. As he peered down, he saw Kelthunge duelling with a slaylid. He also saw Snar cut down a Rawran, before stabbing a Seascale on the back. He also noticed that Indoran wasn’t paying much attention to the battle. Indoran was getting in the crossfire and taking hits, but he was too busy grabbing all the treasure he could fit in his satchel and arms. Mudrend tried to close his eyes and hide somewhere until the battle was over. The Scavenging Saltshark had finally tipped over and fallen, never to rise again.

“How dare all those Rawrans sink our precious cargo!”

Stabbarel wailed.

“They will pay with their blood!”

Snar roared and sliced his axe into a passing Rawran. The strong bandits fire the seven spear launcher into the Rawran swarm. But the Rawrans had too many numbers. They crawled with no fear of death into the bandits' canoes. Currentpedoes rocketed through the air, blowing up canoes and bandits in a single hit. Some bandits had enough.

“Let's cut our losses and retreat!”

Yelled a few.

“Never!” Stabarrel glared at them.

“us bandits will stand strong against all attacks, even if it costs us our lives!”

But even Stabarrel's charisma couldn't sway them. Most of the bandits were sailing away as quickly as they could. only 29, including Stabarrel and Snar, remained. Mudrend felt a small stab pity for them. Much of the Rawran army was also destroyed, but there were tons of new batches of Rawrans coming in every second. Mudrend decided it was safe enough to climb down.

“You foolish bandits will now witness what happens to those who stand against a Rawran invasion.”

Sarcalast laughed.

“We will use Sinismanor's excellent position–and the treasure, too–as a gateway to Saltcross and the rest of the continent. We will exterminate our lesser cousins the merfolks. And then we will turn our gaze to the poles and conquer that final frontier! The Rawran empire will rain supreme over all the races, all the lands, and all the seas! Everything!”

But during this grand speech, Indoran had stuffed most of the most valuable treasure into a small canoe. Kelthunge, Riverwood, and Rubblecrash were riding on the canoe. It sailed underneath Mudrend and picked him up.

“You heard Sarcalast!”

Indoran yelped.

“We have to flee!”

The canoe floated away, out of the treasure room and into the rest of Sinismanor, with Mudrend accidentally in tow. They picked up Navarre Slashshell who, after a talking-to, decided to be rescued. They passed by Nayorid.

"Thanks, I don't need to be rescued." He said mysteriously, and dove into the water. Mudrend turned around and watched the battle. It was almost out of sight, but Sarcalast's words still echoed through the mansion walls. “You stubborn bandits will not leave!”

Sarcalast hissed.

“Now you will pay the price!” Rawrans attacked with such frenzy that 6 bandits in 2 seconds. The bandits fought the best they could, but they were quickly losing. Then Mudrend noticed that Stabbarel wasn’t among them. Where was he? Then Sarcalast screamed and fell over, dead. Stabarrel stood behind him, wiping his axe. “Our leader is dead!”

All the Rawrans roared in fury.


By the end of it, all the bandits, including Stabarrel and Snar, lay dead.

“Sinismanor has fallen.”

Indoran intoned grimly.

“but not all the treasure is lost.”

The motley crew sailed away in silence. Mudrend thought where to go next. He could head back to life as a Saltcross urchin. But his old life felt boring now, and he didn't want to spend the rest of his life dredging for coins. Mudrend thought about joining another bandit crew. He even thought about exploring the poles! Then Mudrend remembered his strange tie to the Sinismanors, especially the boy with the lyre. He decided to search for the Sinismanors.

“I’ll find what happened to them, and if they're alive, I'll meet them.” Mudrend looked at his own treasure, the portrait of the boy with the lyre, and clutched it tightly, watching the sun set over Sinismanor's twisting spires.