Pledge Dive II
Sometimes, Maia wished that the waters around Riddlelock weren't quite so cold. She liked feeling the water soaking into her fur, a little cool and a lot familiar, like the embrace of an old friend; the water here in Citremery was the perfect temperature, and clear enough that she could see the footing of the piers by the docks of Citremery. Even before she had encountered the water dragon, she had loved the sea, loved water in all its forms; now it was a part of her, as much as her runic magic, as much as her eyes and ears and wings. Still, the cold waters around Riddlelock were forbidding, as were the rocky shores. She could dive, if she wanted, insulated by water magic, but there was a difference between swimming in the ocean and floating in a protective layer of magic.
A sunken galleon rested on the west side of the trench, its flag still flapping lazily in the current. Several paponis drifted gently around it, making their homes among the colorful seaweeds and coral that had begun to reclaim the great structure. Once inside, Maia made for the captain's quarters, in search of personal belongings lost in the wreck. Their value wasn't only monetary; this particular ship's crew had escaped with their lives, and their descendants still lived in Citremery. If she could just find something—
Ah! A tarnished sword, a cutlass, really, its scabbard rotted away. One of the chests revealed a spare uniform, still somewhat intact, if very delicate now, and a lovely silver flask, blackened with age and salt. Under the tarnish, she could just pick out the details of a scene, the Dawn Garden, it looked like, filled with growing things.
In the cargo hold, she found more traditional loot; coins, tattered bolts of silk, some intact flagons of wine, sealed jars of preserved fruits, honey, and other things she couldn't identify because the labels had been worn away. Picking over a fallen tumble of rope, she disturbed a cluster of paponi, sending them fleeing in all directions despite her apologies.
Her bags full, Maia turned towards the surface, where the hot summer sun would dry her off in no time, leaving a crust of salt in her fur.
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