The storm raged for nine days, and when it ended, it cast Scylla and what remained of her crew upon a black island ringed with jagged rocks. Exhausted men lay half-dead at the oars as the sea heaved them up, and then there was a terrible ripping and spears of glassine stone tore through the hull, impaling flesh and wood alike. The ship foundered, water sweeping the decks as another wave heaved them up, and then they were cast down upon the black deadly shore in a cascade of blood and brine as the ship sheared apart.
Scylla struck the water, already struggling for the shore. The rocks were sharp as swords, and she was glad of her armor that ground the bitter points to pieces. The water was only waist-deep here, and she found her feet and struggled inland. Men foundered about her, and she caught those she could and helped drag them from the waves, all but hurling them shoreward.
She trod upon a beach of black sand, and her sandals crunched on the broken rock. Her sword hung at her side, and her bronze breastplate still gleamed in the half-light, but she had little else. The remains of the ship were crushed upon the rocks by the incoming tide, and pieces of it washed about her knees. She spat into the water and looked about her, counting. She had six men alive. After a desperate battle and then what seemed an age of the raging storm, this was what she came to. She had no knowledge of where she was, nor even what place this might be. The sky was still heavy with clouds, and lightning flickered far away to the west.
The waves seethed past her legs as they drew back, and she saw she stood not only upon volcanic rock, but on bones. The beach was embedded with hundreds of bones, bleached by sun and turned green by the water, they were exposed when the waves withdrew, hands and ribs and empty skulls looking up at the pitiless sky.