"Mab, the Trader Rosalyn, has decided she's ready to choose her Apprentice! Not before time, either, an' maybe she knows it, because now she's made up her mind she’s going at the thing under full sail. She's testing out candidates tomorrow. An' you're in the running, Britta—I've seen to it!"
— Captain Gripp to Britta
Gripp went into exile with the Rosalyn fleet on the day of the Shadow Lord invasion. As the years went by he befriended Dare Larsett and sailed with him on many voyages. After the monarchy returned, the Rosalyn fleet returned to Del harbour and Gripp returned with them.
Shadows of the Master
Gripp enters Britta as a candidate in the Rosalyn Trust competition, under a false identity. Later, at Britta's nudging, he sends his polypan Bosun to Britta's family to tell them that Britta will be coming home later than expected (although he does not say that it is because of an additional trading challenge set by Mab to test the four Rosalyn Trust competition finalists). After Britta returns to his cottage, Gripp is gleeful at Britta's victory and having figured out Britta's coded message to him and assures her that he did what she asked him to do. When the Star of Deltora sets sail at dawn, Gripp is there with Jantsy to farewell Britta and wish her luck.
Gripp has crooked hands and shaggy white eyebrows. His hands are knobbly and swollen due to what he calls 'pesky arthitics'. In Dare Larsett's vision of the day of the Shadow Lord's invasion, he is seen as being younger and bearded.
Gripp is very boisterous and blunt, and loyal and friendly. In some ways he can seem almost childlike, such as when he gleefully recounts to Britta his success at reading through her coded message and thinking of sending Bosun to the shop to reassure Britta's family of her safety. He seems like a typical sailor from an old tale—he speaks with a 'pirate accent' of sorts, lives alone with only a polypan for company, and can be very blunt and tactless at times. Because he lives alone and has no children, it would never occur to him to send Bosun to the shop without Britta's prompting, as he has never felt the fear and worry a parent has for their child, and cannot empathise with it.
Despite Dare's betrayal and the scandal that came after, Gripp remains steadfast friends with Britta and truly cares about her well-being. He is very open-minded and generous in this way, as most of Del (including Mab) reject Britta and her family and view them with scorn. Without notifying Britta beforehand, he enrols her in the Rosalyn competition, knowing cannily that if he did not spring it on her she would try and find a way out of it, due to her fear of her being discovered and shamed for her parentage. This shows Gripp's cleverness and also how he perceives his knowledge of his cleverness—he enrols Britta in the competition without consulting her beforehand, and appears pleased at his own initiative and cunning and not in the least remorseful at having sprung the competition on Britta in such a way that it is hard for her to refuse. This is also a further example of the 'child' in Gripp. A young child would show no remorse at such an action (at least not without prompting) and would be ever pleased and gleeful at what they have achieved for themselve or for another person. Similarly, Gripp is pleased with himself in a gleeful, almost childlike way when he helps Britta enter the competition and when he solves Britta's code and thinks of sending Bosun to the shop to let Maarie know that Britta is safe.
Gripp is a former ship's captain, and as such is experienced in sailing. When he was younger, before being hit by arthritis, Gripp was also exceptional at making scale models of ships, to the point where he was able to create a perfect replica of the Star of Deltora.
Gripp has known Britta since she was born. He and Britta are very close.
Gripp and Dare Larsett were old friends, and sailed together on many sea voyages before Dare's betrayal.