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World Lumar
Universe Cosmere
Featured In Tress of the Emerald Sea
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Deadrunners are one of the two types of pirates on the planet of Lumar. They are most notably notorious for being the type of pirates that will kill a person, or as Tress put it; " entire ship's worth of people."[1]


Piracy is a common and accepted part of sea travel on Lumar, and in the Emerald Sea the King's Marshals keep records of all known pirates. However, unlike regular pirates, If you are known as a Deadrunner and are caught or captured by the kings sailors, you will likely be hanged, rather than simply imprisoned as a regular pirate would be. It is possible for deadrunners to remain unknown and avoid discovery if they leave no survivors from their attacks, to spread news of their existence.[1]

Pirate crews will often trade, sell or bargain crew members from other ships in order to augment their crews, as in the case of Captain Crow bargaining to get Hoid on her ship,[2] however; it is common knowledge that no one will accept a crew from a deadrunner ship.[1] Ann notes that there is no mercy shown to deadrunner crews, and in fact, even other pirates will hate you.[1]

There is little hope of pardon If you are a deadrunner. Only the Verdant King can grant this, and only in extreme cases, such as a King's Mask vouching for the crew would be considered enough to make the king enact a pardon.[3] It is highly likely that the crew of the Two Cups (formerly Crow's Song) is the only deadrunner crew to ever be pardoned.[4]

Then you become a deadrunner, no mercy for you if caught. Even other pirates will hate you.


Captain Crow notes that deadrunners generally live lives of opulence, but only in frenzied outbursts. And as most deadrunner lives are bound to be short, that opulence should be enjoyed quickly. She also believes that being a deadrunner is synonymous with being one step away from death.[5]

Crew of Crow's Song[edit]

The crew of the Crow's Song made the decision to leave behind the life of a successful merchant vessel and crew, and instead follow Captain Crow into a life of piracy, they had no intention of becoming deadrunners.[1] This title was forced upon them when Captain Crow and Laggart tricked all of them during the attack on the Oot's Dream. Instead of using standard cannonballs that explode on impact, they instead used cannonballs that exploded after they pierced the side of the ship, releasing their water inside the ship, rather than on the side. This caused the Verdent spores to explode inside the ship and on the crew of the Oot's Dream, effectively sinking the ship and killing the crew.[6][7][8]

Notable Deadrunners[edit]


  • Tress notes that the consequences for non-deadrunner piracy, is a very civilized process.[1]
  • Pirate flags are "Red on black" on Lumar.[1]


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