Darkness… it always started with darkness… but this was different than what most people experienced. Instead of sinking, it was floating… floating back to the top. Instead of mud and blood it was dust and dirt. A bright flash of light and then a restoration. Gabriel Ward gasped as he returned to himself, feeling the sensation of air entering his lungs again. The air felt warm and humid, a sensation very familiar in the Riverlands.

“The dives are becoming easier,” mumbled Ward as he picked himself up.

Ward collected his weapons and gear, strapping them to himself before heading back to port. The town had been bustling with fisherman and traders, but now it was only occupied by pirates. The men looted whatever they could from the town, grabbing supplies in all shapes and sizes. As Ward entered the small town, a change could be seen in the crew, from busy work to tension and fear. They dared not stop working, but each of them became more panicked with their motions.

“Are we ready to set sail?” Ward asked one of the Leviathans Chosen.

“Only need an hour, and we will have everything on board and the ship ready, Admiral,” the Chosen responded.

“Good, I’ll be in my quarters. I am not to be disturbed, until Hart brings his sorry ass back to the ship,” Ward responded while boarding his ship.

Ward sank into his seat, his desk a collection of maps, rituals, and most recently a small ornate box. Ward eyed the maps, seeing where Spire Island had informed him of the strongholds they had been setting up for the coming war. He turned his focus towards the rituals, cult works of various forms of the Many-Eyed God. Each with a different focus, some dedicated to the dive beyond, others meant for channeling the healing potential of the Many Eyed God. Ward continued to look them over before letting his eyes rest on the box. It was the finest crafted box he had seen in a long time. Wards mouth slowly became a grin the longer he continued to stare at the package sent from Spire Island.


Gabriel Ward spun around, catching another blade against his before bringing his gun up, and finishing the last mutineer. Ward looked around as the rest of his crew caught their breath. This attack had been sudden; 30 of his men had turned on him. His eyes watched each member of the Twin Suns, doubt in his mind whether he could trust the ones that fought beside him or not.

“Strip them for gear then toss them overboard,” Ward said watching the reaction of the crew.

The surviving men sheathed their blades and began pulling equipment off the traitors. First the weapons, then the armor, lastly any other useful equipment they may have had. One by one, the dead men were tossed overboard, each hitting the water with a heavy splash. Ward watched as each one sank, looking at their faces as if searching for details that no longer existed. Ward sighed a breath of relief as the last one fell to the bottom of the sea.

“What will we do now Captain?” said one of the men.

“Head east, we’ll stop at a settlement to restock,” Ward announced to the crew. “Let me know when we arrive, I’ll be in my quarters until then.”

Ward sank into his seat, his desk a collection of maps, letters, and a small box. Ward eyed the maps, seeing where Spire Island had setup strongholds for the coming war. He turned his focus towards the letters, many pieces of information sent to him by various settlements he had been to before. Locations of enemies, safehouses, weapon caches, war supplies, anything and everything that might help win the War. Ward continued to look them over before letting his eyes rest on the box. Ward broke into a quiet laugh as the rain began to pour down.


“You slimy piece of shit! I knew I should’ve killed you ever since you fucking came aboard my ship!” Ward yelled as he beat the boy sitting in front of him.

The voice in the distance grew louder and louder as Ward continued his work.

“You have been his weakness since the beginning!” Ward screamed as he rained blows down upon the boy.

“The Cancer is Here!” repeated the voice, over and over.

“You fucking stay here Firefly! You fucking leave this place and I’ll make sure before this war is done I’ll destroy everything you hold dear!” Ward screamed continuing his assault.

“You’ve got one shot,” said a new voice.

With that one voice the boy crawled his way out while being torn apart by Ward.


“You slimy piece of shit! I knew I should’ve killed you ever since you fucking came aboard my ship!” Ward heard himself say.

The voice in the distance grew louder and louder as Ward could not stop.

“You have been his weakness since the beginning!” Ward heard himself scream as he rained blows down upon the man.

“The Cancer is Here!” repeated the voice, over and over.

“You fucking stay here Firefly! You fucking leave this place and I’ll make sure before this war is done I’ll destroy everything you hold dear!” Ward screamed while trying desperately to stop himself.

“You’ve got one shot,” said a new voice.

With that one voice the man crawled his way out while being torn apart by Ward.


The knocks on the door woke Ward up; he had fallen asleep at his desk. Ward turned his head towards the door, annoyed at the disruption. The chair creaked as he rose from his seat. Ward put one hand on his blade before he opened the door, revealed one of his crew at the door.

“Hart is back I take it?” Ward said lowering his other hand.

“N-No. Admiral, t-the guest arrived a bit ago, and wished to speak to you, sir,” replied the nervous crew member.

Ward stared down the man, before opening his door and beckoning the visitor to come in.

“I suppose it would be poor hospitality to kill one of my men in front of a guest,” Ward said as he opened a glass of hooch. “Come, sit, let’s enjoy some food and drink before we discuss business.”

“Indeed,” the stranger said. “We can finish your last lesson afterwards.”


The creak from the floor woke Ward up; he had fallen asleep at his Desk. Ward heard the noise as his assailant shifted his weight, going for the kill. Ward rolled back in his chair to avoid the blow, pulling his knife from his waist as he did. The assassin followed through with another deadly strike, aiming at his throat. Ward parried the blow and struck the man in the eyes before circling around him. The assassin, blinded, threw his hand into his pocket trying to get his hand on the tool that would let him escape, only to be stopped by the sensation of a knife in his heart.

“H-How did you know?” asked the Twin Sun assassin.

“You hesitated, when I told everyone to loot and discard the bodies. I figured there was a more than greater chance you were with them,” Ward said while following the man to the ground.

“Why did you do it?” Ward asked, removing the assassins gear.

“Because… you are no captain,” the assassin said with a sigh.

Ward drove the blade through the man's heart, finishing the work he had started. The rain continued to pour outside the ship, coming down heavier than it had in a long time.