The crew of Hanged Meg, sailing off Avalon’s coast, encounter a fleeing Fortune’s Shadow. Captain McCrary of Fortune’s Shadow, attacks Hanged Meg as he passes. Meg returns and Captain Blackwell leads a boarding party across. Among the party is Young Tim. Kadlan, Luis de Alva, and Maeve remain on board to defend against the Shadow boarding party led by (and mostly consisting of) Darling McCrary, an 6’5" Inish monster. As the battle turns, Derrick McCrary thrusts his hat and coat on another crew man and runs for the launches. He is intercepted by Young Tim, as Blackwell accepts the “new captain’s” surrender. As the battle is taken place, two Avalon ships have been approaching. Arriving too late to assist, they call over to Fortune’s Shadow and ask to board. They are Sea Dogs, led by Jeremiah Berek. Berek has been pursuing the McCrary brothers, notorious slavers, to recover his cousin, Argyle Berek. Argyle is recovered and the command crew of Hanged Meg is invited to a dinner at Berek’s house in Caerleon. They are joined by Argyle Berek and Sir Thomas Middleton, head of the Admiralty. At dinner, the crew is offered probationary membership in the Sea Dogs. They are tasked with capturing Middleton’s weight in gold, (in honor of Argyle) either finding something old or discovering something new, and returning with a story worthy of a Sea Dog. As the heroes leave, Berek adds that picking up something for the Queen might be nice to.