Plugg rounds up the new crew and informs them that he’s watched their floundering efforts long enough and has drawn up a duty roster for them, so he doesn’t have to assign them tasks each day any more. With an unpleasant grin, he assigns Theodric to hard work hauling the lines on the mainsail, and Zalamesh permanent duty in the bilges. He tasks the perennially unsuccessful Hamish with rat-catching duty, and tells Faiz that, of course, he is stuck assisting Fishguts in the galley.
Hamish focuses his energy on actually catching vermin today, doing little else, and succeeds, to Scourge’s displeasure, in producing an acceptable catch of rats. Theodric is forced to work hard and tire himself out on the heavy ropes, but he is able to find some time to speak with Badger. She has heard a lot of talk from Scourge about how he and the new fish are making trouble and causing problems, but she seems willing to hear his version of things. Faiz has an easy day in the galley, as Fishguts is sober today. He too spends a good deal of time speaking with Badger, trying to undo some of the more scurrilous rumors that Scourge has spread.
Scourge, for his part, stops Zalamesh before he goes to work in the bilges, and questions the Beykar about any weapons in his possession. Zalamesh is unsure why, until Maheem and “Narhwhal” show up to assist him in the bilges. Shango makes an excuse to climb back out of the bilge, but the two draw knives on him. He avoids a lunge from Narwhal and glowers, threatening to capture their souls. The old dwarf scoffs at his threats, but Maheem retreats warily. Zalamesh and Narwhal circle warily, until the wendifa forces the dwarf to drop his knife with his magics. Narwhal scrabbles for his knife, resisting Zalamesh’s magic further, and slicing up his hand, as well. Zalamesh kicks him hard in the groin, and the surly dwarf collapses onto the deck, causing Maheem to panic and flee. Zalamesh heals himself and rifles Narwhal’s clothes for loot, taking his knife and gold, as well as a small vial. Afterwards, he brags to Grok about his command of the spirits and coolness in battle.
During the evening meal and rum ration, most of the new crew get a little drunk. Hamish cannot keep his roaming hands off Barefoot Samms, and the two soon go below together. Faiz gets tipsy, and sleepy, and soon drifts off to sleep on deck. Theodric, perhaps unwisely, decides to play his fiddle, but his drunken performance only grates on the others. Zalamesh, who drinks a bit more slowly, seeks out Crimson Cogsward, who listens avidly to the tale of the knife fight belowdecks.