I hope this letter finds you in good health. I apologise for the time it has taken for me to write to you and my sweet Helene, but unforeseen circumstances have unfortunately taken my undivided attention. Only now do I realise what is happening to me and what I will be leaving behind.
Always remember that I hold the memories of us close to my heart as I try to explain why this will be my final letter to you.
When I left you and the little one on the harbour side I promised I would return before Helene turned 6 years. The coins promised to me for bringing in the Whale were to be used for our new life, away from the confines of city walls and the ever watchful eyes of the Overseers.
As the boat made its path into deep water, darkness fell upon us like a shroud. As the beast surfaced for air it became clear to the crew that this was a whale sent from hell itself. The black flesh of the monster seemed to absorb the darkness that surrounded us and as I steadied the harpoon, the Whale opened huge crimson eyes and disappeared into the dark abyss of the ocean. As my crew stood in perpetual silence the beast emerged, rending half the boat into shards of wood and sailors. From the 100 men aboard the boat only 12 survived that night. The twelve crew, including myself, found ourselves stranded at sea. As we gripped for life on the broken remains of the ship, the sea and its inhabitants took their unrelenting vengeance upon us. Isaac the ships cook was taken from us on day one by an unseen creature from the depths, consuming his leg before returning within the hour for the rest. Upon day three, fatigue, hunger and exhaustion had overwhelmed us all. Madness and panic was rife within the men, their screams in the night and cries to the heavens haunt me still. As I found myself slipping into a similar state on day 4, a vision of you and Helene saved me. You were standing hand in hand, greeting my return on the harbour side. As I approached the dock Helene was calling my name, reaching out with both hands, eagerly awaiting the embrace of her father. As my vision started to fade, I fell into the darkness of sleep. A slumber I feared I would not awaken from.
On day 5 I was shaken awake by a young deck hand, his previous fatigue had been momentarily lifted and what remained was pure exhilaration. Thick ropes descended from a huge vessel above us, hitting the clear water like a life line from the heavens. The rescue ship fed and nursed us back to health before returning to their dock in Dunwall.
The weeks that followed our blessed rescue were not kind to us Ada. With no coins to our name, the city was cruel. We banded together for safety and warmth, hunting small animals for food and even resorting to begging, far from the militant eyes of the guards. Within the second week we had separated as a group, unremitting squabbling and words of blame had led to us fighting for survival alone.
This period of solitude is the reason I am writing this letter. As my unforgiving hunger led to desperation, feeding upon any available meat was my only option. Stray hounds, dead birds, even the flesh of rats were cooked upon my fire. Unbeknown to me, the heat from my fire does little to kill the infection in disease ridden meats.
My body has been taken by the plague. The affliction is steadily reaching the final stages and even as I write these words, my hand mercilessly fights against my will as if controlled by another.
My sight is leaving gradually each waking day; the vibrant world I once knew and loved now reduced to a colourless void. This is not aided by my new found 'accommodation'. The winding sewers that lie beneath the great city seem to provide the only sanctuary, forcing me to live like the very animal that has caused so much death and loss. Your picture that I keep has become less recognisable, from the incessant filth from the sewer and effects of the disease alike, but the memory of your beautiful face keeps me breathing for another day.
I cannot leave the confines of the sewers now. Guards patrol the streets relentlessly, destroying anything afflicted by the plague. Their hounds can smell the disease from a distance greater than I can imagine, only yesterday I witnessed someone afflicted hauled wailing from the streets and executed by blade without trial. The guards laughed as they tossed her body upon a pile of fly ridden corpses. Pray this fate does not become me and I can pass away silently.
Never forget me Ada. Tell Helene I will always love her.
I'm sorry for not being back in your arms.