The Seaman Oleander’s Song

Years ago, in the age where the pirates roamed the seas in search of treasure and pleasure and trouble, a scalawag called Oleander was thrown overboard by the ship’s captain when he was falsely accused of murder by another member of the crew. As Oleander thrashed in the unforgiving waves, he begged his shipmate’s to let him come up, but they only laughed and turned their filthy backs as he slipped, sputtering, beneath the surface of the sea.

Years later, sailors would tell the legend that Oleander hadn’t truly perished that fateful night and was still roaming the waters, not alive, but not dead either. In fact, whenever a pirate ship was lost to the deep, Oleander was responsible for their unfortunate demise, enacting his revenge on the scum of the sea and sequestering their treasure for himself while they suffer a miserable death at his hand.

When pirates hear whispers that there may be treasure for the taking, no level of fear or warning will keep them away. A brazen captain sent five of his most loyal swashbucklers to investigate and discover the plunder. The dismissive and greedy captain barely knew the names of these sacrificial officers as they set off on their journey.

Weeks passed and finally three of the five men returned in far worse condition mentally and physically than when they set out on their quest. The pirates had been hardened men before they left, but they returned fearful and wide eyed, startled by noises and refusing to talk. They never spoke of the journey until the frustrated captain tortured the pathetic scoundrels.

Under great pain and with much wailing, they revealed that the band had come upon Oleander and his lair, but they were soon consumed in mist and lost their bearings. The group tried to turn back, they were entranced by his Oleander’s voice chanting rhymes – a haunting seaman’s lyric, and they became haunted and obsessed by it and could not focus on escape. The men had no idea how long they were Oleander’s slaves and were only able to slip from his grasp when they put sea foam in there ears, blocking his enchantment. As they fled, they discovered the other two men from their party, impaled by Oleander’s hook on display at the edge of a cliff overlooking the sea as a warning to keep roaming sailors away.

They still say that if you say the exact rhymes that Oleander used to enrapture the pirates he will appear out of the mist and take you back to his lair where you’ll never be heard from again.

Reader submitted by,
Lewis Charles from London