Fearsome waves crashed over the deck of a lone galleon floundering beneath a dark, rain-filled sky. Timber groaned and cracked against an overwhelming onslaught of ice choked water. Men in loose, wet clothes hurried to tie themselves off to dangerously swaying masts. In the heavens, lightning rent the air while thunder let loose its billowing roar. Below decks those members of the fifth dragoons who hadn’t yet succumbed to the awful chill struggled to empty the ship of its wet invader. Among them Aleric Thronsike stood tall despite the bone wrenching shivers assaulting every fiber of his being. As long as a single friend remained among the living, he was determined to do all he could to help see them through the tormenting storm.