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- Crew member: Hahahaha! Just like the Battle of Salamis, Captain! I have you trapped! Hahahaha!
The captain moved a piece.
- Phoxidas: Here comes Themistocles. And that is the game!
- Damastes: (Shit!) Phoxidas, why are we delivering all this treasure? We could retire to Lesbos with this amount of gold!
Aya fired an arrow at the circlet, lodging it in the mast.
- Phoxidas: What say you, desert rat?
Aya strode to the mast, snatching the circlet.
- Aya: If that chest doesn't make it to Pompey, this ship won't, either. We crawl through Hades to deliver it if we must.
Aya thrust the circlet into Phoxidas' chest to stress her words.
- Phoxidas: Fair enough. Back to work, you slack vlakos (bumpkins)! Damastes, my trusted shield boy, get to it! Eh? We've been hired to bribe Pompey, to save a queen and to win a kingdom. The usual fare for us mercenaries, eh?
The crew prepared to sail, moving the chest of bribes out of the way while Aya and Phoxidas made it to the bridge.
- Aya: Strike oars!
- Phoxidas: Steady, now. Rocks and rubble ahead.
- Aya: I'm not blind. I see the skerries.
- Phoxidas: Your third voyage, and already you bark like a command crew.
- Aya: Ha, I enjoy watching spittle get caught in your beard, Phoxidas.
- Phoxidas: Let's not be thrown into the sea. That's no death for such a hero as me!
- Aya: A real hero could swim to save himself. I see them, I'll not be sucked through a scupper for nothing.
- Phoxidas: Now you are just trying to impress me...
As they sailed swiftly through the sea, Phoxidas noticed something.
- Phoxidas: Sails on the horizon, there! Those colors are not from Rome. What mess has this poxy Queen dragged us into?
- Aya: Ptolemy's ships. Sent by the Order of Ancients, no doubt.
- Phoxidas: What business do they have with Pompey?
- Aya: Pompey's armies will give Cleopatra the throne. They mean to prevent the alliance before it happens. We must hurry!
In the distance, they saw a smoking volcano.
- Phoxidas: Poseidon's piss! The air is already choked with smoke. The seas will steam near the volcano. We should keep our distance if we don't want to burn.
- Aya: Is that Methana? She hasn't burst for hundreds of years.
- Phoxidas: Wouldn't surprise me if she burst now for us. Let loose a storm of sea dragons alongside her.
- Aya: You don't believe in that nonsense, do you, Phoxidas? Come on, now!
They approached by Ptolemy's ships.
- Aya: Ready yourselves! Let's show these traitors they chose the wrong Pharaoh!
- Phoxidas: A rain of fire! Order the shields!
I see ships bearing down fast!
We've got these maláka (assholes)! Target their rear wings. They're full of oil! They'll burn like camel shit!
Call for ramming speed! Gut them like fish! Alalaaa!
They sunk the ships.
- Aya: Hah! That's the last of them down!
- Phoxidas: Yet still no sign of your faithless Roman.
- Aya: Be careful with your jibes, Captain. Pompey is a needed ally, and no mean general. We didn't sail all this way just to offend him with insults.
- Phoxidas: I am who I am. I do not change for Kings or Queens. I left my wife and kids behind for the same reason. No one sane accepts me.
- Damastes: I accept you! We accept you. Alalaaa!
- Phoxidas: These hundred nautai (sailors) is enough acceptance for me. It's hard to say goodbye to those who don't accept us, but it is also the only way.
- Aya: Is it? Pompey will be at the appointed place, off Thera's coast. Sail on!
They sailed on, until Aya caught a sight of a ship.
- Aya: There, I see him! Pompey sails north.
- Phoxidas: Don't rush! There may be patrols ahead.
- Aya: Are you ordering me away from a fight?
- Phoxidas: Hades' shit, woman, of course not! But I am not keen to die protecting a Roman, especially one who can afford his own protection. You know, you really should join this trireme. You'd fit right in.
- Aya: We're not here to protect Pompey. We're here to bribe him.
- Phoxidas: Makes me sick to hear it. Wasn't it Cleopatra's father who did the same? Squander Egypt's wealth on fashion, fornication at Pompey's annual fee.
- Aya: You put it bluntly, but yes.
- Phoxidas: And you want us to trust his daughter?
- Aya: The Queen is not her father. All she does, she does for Egypt's sake.
- Phoxidas: As well as her own. Here we are, bringing Pompey more of Egypt's wealth, at her pity.
- Aya: She's paying you as well, Phoxidas. Handsomely, some might say.
- Phoxidas: Why am I wasting words on politics? Death to all leaders, pirates, the lot of them. There! Just as I said! Ptolemy's ships, portside! Seems this Roman of yours needs our protection after all, ha ha ha. Alalaaa!
- Aya: They fire on Pompey. Quickly! To his aid! Rain our arrows of Ra upon them!
They fought the ships attacking Pompey's octareme.
- Phoxidas: Firebombs ready! Call for them when we pull near!
- Aya: Pompey is taking heavy fire! We must stop them!
- Phoxidas: Keep at the poxy bastards! We'll break them, or take them down with us!
One more remains! That was brave work. There might be more to you than royal courtesies.
- Aya: Mind your tongue, old man! Or you'll discover I'm better at swordplay than sailing.
They sank the last ship.
- Aya: They're going down!
- Phoxidas: And that's the game! Well fought. Now let's find this metrokoites (motherfucker). I've never met a Roman General face to face before. Ah, don't worry, Aya, I'll be on my best behavior.
Aya and Phoxidas boarded Pompey's octareme with the bribe in tow.
- Pompey: Civil war in Egypt and a mercenary trireme comes to my aid? In the midst of war with Caesar, I find it odd. Who in Hades are you?
- Phoxidas: Well, we could have let you die...
Aya glared at Phoxidas, shutting him up, and bowed at Pompey.
- Aya: Pompeius Magnus. Greetings and friendship from Queen Cleopatra.
The crew members opened the chest of gold.
- Pompey: Cleopatra offers gold to win my favor, once I've won Rome? Is that what friendship means to your queen?
Aya threw Pompey a coin.
- Aya: Whose face graces that coin? Do Roman women receive the same honor?
Pompey inspected the coin. Aya smiled at him and stepped closer.
- Aya: An alliance with Cleopatra is a union of true power. She wants more than an ally. She seeks a King.
- Pompey: A valuable friendship, indeed.
Aya and Pompey looked at the latter's fleet.
- Pompey: Agreed. My fleet will soon be ready for Egypt.
Pompey tossed the coin back into the chest, and Aya smiled at Phoxidas.
Aya secured Pompey's support for Cleopatra.