Piracy is one of the most serious crimes a person can be accused of in the city. Holystone is a major shipping port and anything that interferes with it endangers the city’s economy.
There is a small archipelago about 50 miles to the southwest of the city that is a know haven for pirates. The pirate city of Freeport is located there. The Count would like nothing better than to raze that city to the ground, but his navy is not up to the task.
Any time a pirate ship is captured, the pirates will be killed. The ship captain who defeated the pirates will usually just hang them immediately following the battle. Sometimes, especially if the pirates are well-known and have a bounty on their heads, they will be brought back to the city to face judgment. Several navy captains have made their fortune after capturing notorious pirates.
A pirate’s only chance of survival after capture is if he aids the City in capturing other pirate vessels. Forty years ago, Captain Jasper the Bloody was made a privateer of the city after he provided information on several pirate captains’ whereabouts and led them into a trap. He served the city well for ten years before his ship disappeared while on a voyage near Freeport.
The Count issues Letters of Marque to privateer captains. These privateers are allowed to dock at Harbor Isle, where they can sell any goods they have acquired. They also restock their ships with food, water, and ammunition while at the Isle. Privateers are allowed to attack ships who fly the flag of an enemy city, humanoid ships such as those sailed by goblins and orcs, and pirate ships. They also serve as convoy-runners if Holystone is besieged by sea.
Captain Sir Rory Blackstone (F6) commands the Sparrow. He is a Knight of the Rose. He is a Holystone noble and is related to Baron Blackstone, who lives in Lord’s City. He is well-dressed, has a refined accent, and is more than happy to murder anyone who gets in his way.
Captain Colette Kelly (M5) commands the Avenger. She is a heavy-set, tough woman, raised in the wilds south of the city. She uses spells that manipulate the air and water, making her ship much faster and more maneuverable than it should be. She has been known to let captured enemies go, leaving them on the shore somewhere.
Captain Marv Eagle-Eyes (Halfling F7) commands the Waverider. He is famous for his excellent eyesight, which was magically enhanced years ago by a mage he knew. He is a tough scrapper and is considered one of the best knife-fighters on the coast.